It’s a New Year … and welcome back to Ballarat OP SHOP DIARIES! For those of you who are new to the Blog, my name is Bianca Flint. I am an Op Shop Enthusiast, Body Positive Advocate, Preloved Fashion Stylist and Small Biz owner of The Wardrobe Green! I am thrilled to be working with Ballarat Family Guide for another year, sharing my passion for sustainability, and communicating the benefits of shopping preloved through this monthly Blog Series.
Op shopping has become more than just grabbing a bargain, it’s a fun pastime for many, even becoming a hobby for some. All it takes is a few dedicated visits, and some successful finds and you’ll be hooked! I promise!
Without further ado, here are my 5 tips for op shopping like a pro!
- DO NOT SKIM through the clothes racks … take your time and look at everything, otherwise you may just miss a fabulous find! I know it can be overwhelming, but narrow it down to a rack at a time and you’ll be amazed at how quickly you’ll get through it!
- CHECK CAREFULLY for small holes, pulls, broken zippers, missing buttons and stains … there is nothing worse than getting home and realising you have bought something unwearable! If the lighting isn’t great, which is sometimes the case in op shops, make sure you take the garment over to a window for some natural light. Hold it up and check it over carefully to ensure it’s in good condition. Having said that, don’t be hasty to discard something you love just because it’s missing a button or needs a small repair like a zipper replaced. These are easy fixes, you just have to decide whether it’s worth your time and the additional money, and often it will be.
- TRY THINGS ON … just like in a retail store, it’s important to try before you buy! Don’t just buy it because the item is a ‘bargain’! Sometimes it’s easier to say ‘It’s only $5.00, I’ll just get it!’ … because let’s face it, trying things on can really be a pain! Especially if you’re not dressed for the occasion or you have the kiddies with you! But you really can’t be sure until you try it on … sizes and fabrics can vary so much!
- SHOP THE CLEARANCE RACK … many people are surprised to hear me talk about the ‘clearance rack’ at op shops. But most do have them … and I always head there first! Just because it’s on clearance doesn’t mean it’s no good. These items are selected randomly … so you might just grab yourself an amazing bargain!
- DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK … if you’re on the hunt for something in particular, ask the staff if they can help you. They may be able to point you in the right direction … or even grab an item from out the back. New stock is being added constantly throughout the day, so you never know what items are coming out next!
I’d love to hear your ‘hot tips’ for op shopping too! And don’t forget to share your op shopping adventures using the hashtag #ballaratopshopping to connect with me and other op shopping enthusiasts!
Thanks for reading,