…In a Charity Shop.

I remember the morning well, it was a bitterly cold Saturday and we were waiting for the clock to strike 9am. So we could huff and puff our way through our local Park Run, I looked at G with a glint in my eye, because I knew what was coming.

Okay. Alright. I’ll stop it there because this blog post is reading as it could turn into a horror movie or girly romance. When actually we were just taking a trip into town and I was going to put G in charge of picking my Christmas party outfit.

Christmas, without a shadow of a doubt, is the time to get together with family and friends. However, it is easy to forget that it can be a very lonely time of year. Not everyone drives home for Christmas and thousands of people over the age of 65+ across the UK can easily go a whole month without speaking to anyone.

With this in mind, it was important that my Christmas party outfit was not only as economically friendly as possible but gave a little something back at the same time. The benefits of charity shopping are endless, from slowing down fast fashion, reducing the chance of being seen in the same outfit as everyone else and supporting Age UK Northamptonshire.

With all this in mind and a vague guide as to what I’d like to wear (aka “a dress, please) we set off on our mission. G has picked outfits for me before and always with great success, therefore I was excited about the end result.

Despite trusting G entirely, I found myself lurking around like a bird stalking its prey, curious as to what his next move might be.

Luckily, I’m easily distracted, from barely worn shoes, to brand new gift sets and designer watches. I’m completely bewildered why more people don’t visit the 7 charity shops Age UK Northamptonshire have across Northampton. It’s actually the perfect place to buy a sustainable Christmas gift too!

Shortly after our arrival at the first shop, the trying on started. I diplomatically explained the beautiful (new with tags) top was a little large due to the fact it was 4 sizes too big. The darling little Boohoo dress was a touch too, daring for my party. The third dress was declared by mutual agreement lacking that special something. Entirely unperturbed, G carried on to the next shop and picked out the perfect cosy “chilling at home” dress. Shortly after we were celebrating the joy of fact we got “third-time lucky” and found not one, but two dresses!.

Navy is my colour, it’s elegant, timeless and easy to pair with shoes and a bag I already own. I’m voluptuous, so anything body con is a huge tick and at the same time, I was hoping for classy but fun. This Amanda Wakeman dress was love at first sight, I would have never normally paired this kind of necklace with a formal dress but I trust G so went along with it. The end result was absolutely perfect and set me back £4.50 for both items. Yes, really.

For the second dress, I think G decided to have a bit more fun, I love the shape but my shyer side would have swayed away from sparkle. But, oh what a vast mistake that would have been? This was brand new and cost only £8.00, the style is playful, yet respectable enough to wear without feeling self-conscious.

If you take one thing as a result of reading this post, please let it be that next time you pass by your local Age UK Northamptonshire Charity Shop. You stop and spare a few minutes to explore the rails, you might find an absolute dream buy and a difference to someone else’s life at the same time.

Katie

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Disclaimer – This is a collaboration between myself and Age UK Northamptonshire. I’m proud to be supporting a local charity and would genuinely love to see more people supporting these shops.