Opportunity Shops. Better known as the local Salvos or Red Cross, op shops were made popular by the infamous hit single ‘Thrift Shop’ by Macklemore in 2013.
By Stephanie Gooch
As defined by the ever-reliable Urban Dictionary, op shops were ‘once upon a time an outlet for charities to sell they’re not-for-profit goods, so lower socio-economical individuals were able to buy affordable and reliable clothing.’ However, over the past few years, op shops have progressed to be some of Australia’s most sought after retail hot spots.
Pre-loved clothing is a thing and op shops make the best use of them. Think of rows upon, rows of clothing – some a bit daggy, some a lot stylish. Here in this fantasyland, you can buy Lee Jeans for under $10 or a ball dress for under $15. What is there not to love about op shops?!
Although, some people are a bit turned off by the idea of op shops. Whether it is the fact that you’re wearing ‘someone else’s’ clothing or you just think shopping ‘below budget’ is below you, you’re really taking for granted the great retail business charities have put together.
Did you know that op shops are considered the oldest recycling industry in Australia with the Red Cross Foundation starting in World War I?
Or that op shops can be the best place to shop for that last minute party invite and you’re stuck to source a costume because it’s a themed part.
Op shops not only encourage the development of patience and gratification but they offer a variety of choices. Not only are you supporting a local charity but also you are helping to look after the environment, as recycling fashion is considered as environmentally friendly and ethical.
If that isn’t enough to convince you that op shopping is the best way to shop for your future outfits, then will Zac Efron convince you? The ever good-looking actor has been known to go into op shops on frequent occasions. His best buy to date would have to be the vintage tuxedo he found for his Prom night when he was still in high school.
And who is to say you won’t find your treasure too? If you wish to find your treasure next time you go op shopping, here are some tips when entering an op shop, whether it is your first or 50th time.
- Have an open mind. You never know what you’ll find and if you’re in a bad mood I can guarantee you won’t enjoy the experience.
- Don’t buy something if it’s chipped, ripped, stained, too short, too long, or ‘for a friend’. This is just a recipe for disaster.
- And lastly put it back if you’re not in love with it. This is a universal law of shopping and I hope all humans understand it. If you don’t love it in the shop, what makes you think you will at home when those jeans you 110% thought would match, don’t?
Photo credit: Frances Wang // Lepak Media (initiative of Colosoul)
Model: Alanah Yukich
Stylist: Poppy Maxwell
Hair and make-up: Alanah Yukich