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Charity shop bargain-hunting tricks. Jenny Keefe. Facebook Twitter Print Whatsapp Mailme. Look out for surplus de-tagged stock from popular high street shops. Many high street chains donate surplus stock to charity shops. Charity shops often sell these products de-tagged, to prevent returns to the original store. So if you spot a brand new item with no label, chances are it could be a big name donation. This includes fashion and sample homeware items. We de-tag donated items from brands if they request this, and have done this for quite a few large companies.
Unfortunately, we do not have permission to name them. Follow charity shops on social media. Social media is a great way to get insider info from your fave charity shops.
Many post details of sales on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. On the hunt for a vintage Nintendo or some cool furniture? Nowadays shops often post snapshots of their wares on Facebook and Instagram as they come in. You can save money on top-notch labels at Mary's Living and Giving shops. Retail expert Mary Portas helps run these higher-end second-hand stores for Save the Children. It's not dirt-cheap, as staff are aware of items' values, but you can expect 'statement pieces' and designer donations. You might even get your hands on an A-list cast-off.
Victoria Beckham once donated 25 designer outfits from her daughter Harper's wardrobe to its Primrose Hill branch. Oxfam's boutiques do a similar thing, selling some of the poshest items in carefully arranged shops.
If you're near Oxford, the charity recently opened a new superstore , 12 times bigger than its normal shops. When the store opened earlier this month, brands up for grabs included Gucci and Victoria Beckham. Though Oxfam says it can't guarantee there will always be designer stock — it depends what comes in. It's worth noting that Shelter Stockbridge in Edinburgh has an annual designer sale in the first week of January.
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Brands this year included Vivienne Westwood, Paul Smith and Christian Louboutin, so put it in your diary for next time. Head to chi-chi towns For swish bargains, head to charity shops in swanky areas such as Chelsea and Cheshire. Got a niche interest? It's worth going to areas where that pursuit is popular. If you're in the market for say, surf gear, head to Newquay or for horse-riding gear, the Cotswolds. It pays to pop in regularly.
The good stuff gets snapped up almost as it's brought out, but that same faded Atmosphere T-shirt stays on the rack for an eternity. Weekdays are slower than weekends, so you've more chance of bagging treasure then. Popping in first thing in the morning can yield bargains too. Charity-shop from your sofa. These days lots of big name charities offer their wares via online outlets. Oxfam's online shop is a treasure trove of clothes, books, toys, homeware and more. You can search for your favourite brands. See eBay's charity shop page for more.
Items can usually be delivered.
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The downside for buyers is bidding wars break out over many auctions thanks to eBay's size. Most items are auctioned, but you can occasionally pick up a buy-it-now bargain — and it's all going to charity. Get touchy-feely. Go for classic items in natural fibres such as silk, cashmere and merino, which are more expensive new than synthetic.
You'd be surprised how quickly you learn to find the nicer bits just by touch. Go to specialist charity shops, eg, books, furniture and bridal. Many charity shops have specialist branches. You can search for these online. Got your heart set on a designer wedding gown? Volunteer for first dibs. Volunteer your time at a charity shop and one of the perks can be first dibs on the best donations. Of course, we're not generally talking about paying less than customers, just getting to choose from the widest range of stuff. Get to know shop staff. Establish a rapport with your local charity shop volunteers.
Duty free at Bangkok airport is a mixed bag really. There are a number of major fashion brand shops such as Coach and Gucci to name a few as well as shops selling alcohol, perfume, make up, chocolates and so on.