Having a Spring Clear-Out: My Tips for a Clutter Free Home using the KonMari Method

I’ve long been a bit of a hoarder and quite messy by nature, but I’m trying to change (honest!). If anything, I’ve come to realise that getting rid of stuff feels really good. Last year, I jumped on the Marie Kondo bandwagon. Marie Kondo is the queen of tidying up, and developed the KonMari Method. In short, you’re encouraged to work your way through each room of your house, tackling different categories of items you own (clothing, paperwork, books…) and asking yourself, if each item ‘sparks joy’. An old pair of boots no longer sparking joy? Out they go!

I can’t say I followed the method by the rules. I didn’t personally thank each item before setting it free (as is part of the KonMari method) but I did ask myself if I really needed all this stuff. I managed to create six bin bags full of things I no longer needed, no longer used or I had lost interest in. I spent some time reorganising my rickety IKEA wardrobe, and again, I didn’t follow the rules of putting items in colour order, but just folding my clothes and putting everything into some sort of order felt
GOOD!

Bag of clothing that will be donated.

But old habits die hard, and I had all of these bin bags sitting in my living room for (I’m ashamed to say) months. But now we’re well into the new year, one by one, I’ve taken them all to my local Oxfam shop. What I didn’t realise before, is that you now get given a green label to stick on each donation bag – your Gift Aid donation number, name and postcode are added to it, and when your items sell you get an email to say how much money your items raised. You can also track your Gift Aid through the Oxfam Apptoo!   I admit, I got a bit of a buzz out of that email, knowing that some of my items were now ‘sparking joy’ elsewhere, and now I’m putting aside more things to donate. At this rate, I’m not going to
have anything left!

Want to join Sarah in starting a clutter-free life? Find your local Oxfam shop or donation point here  or donate to your local M&S for some loyalty card goodies
You can also get some declutter inspiration from another of our amazing Oxfam Fashion bloggers, Colleen,
here.

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DIY: How to make a Tie Lampshade

I’m sure everybody’s Dad / Granddads’ have a ton of ties, some never used?

This Lampshade is very easy to create, and is perfect for a handmade gift or even for yourself!

 

What you need:

 

– An old lampshade

– A few ties  (Oxfam Online Shop)

– Glue

– Scissors

 


 

1. Firstly, I started measuring the ties to the lampshade and cutting off the excess

 

2. Then, one by one I started to glue the ties to my lampshade, making sure the ‘V’ is just hanging over the edge of your shade. (I used strong Fabric Glue and tiny bits of Super Glue)

 

3. After this, Leave your  glue to dry (around 1hr)

4. Finally, depending on how you want your shade to look, you can add some other fabric like lace around the top to neaten up where the ties have been cut!

 

And there you have it, your handmade Tie Lampshade!

 

 

With the leftover bits of ties that had been chopped off I decided to put them to good use experiment and make another lampshade.

 

What You Need:

– Left Over Tie Cut Offs

– Glue

– A lampshade

 

1. I got all the ties together and measured them around the lampshade to make sure they fit snug. If they are a little big I cut them to size(remembering the lampshade is not all the same size and usually gets bigger towards the bottom..make sure you do measure before you start to glue)

 

2. I Then started to wrap the ties around the lampshade making sure the V is glued on top of the raw edge

 

3. Carry on repeating this process all way down to the bottom of the lampshade using the same glue as before.  And before you know it you have 2 Up-Cycled Unusual Handmade Lampshades!!

 

Share all your creations with us @OxfamFashion #foundinoxfam

Post written by Leah Topham, volunteer at Oxfam Batley where she helps upcycle the clothes. She’s written this series called ‘Rags to Riches’ where she lets us in on her DIY secrets. You can also check out her last one ‘How to make some Lace Bottom Tailored Trousers’Shop With Oxfam Online

What Fashion Means to Me: Georgia Bridgett’s View

For me, the way a piece of clothing is cut, the shape it provides for a particular person, the array of colours we have to choose from, all work together to form a piece that will suit certain people and not others, or will be preferred by some and not others; that I find absolutely fascinating. The reason many of us love fashion is because it is a form of expression, it is empowering. It makes us feel good. I am fascinated with the way designers like Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen take basic pieces like the t-shirt and put their creative energy into how it fits and falls. We all love a
beautiful design but we want it to complement different body types and skin tones.

 

My love for personal style led me to start my blog. I wanted to use it as a way of exploring my interests. Since I moved to Liverpool for university I have been rummaging through the abundance of fabulous charity and vintage shops. My finds started to become the heart of my blog and I increasingly started to question the ethical and sustainable status of high street stores. I wanted to understand how and where the garments I was buying were being made. This led me to find some shocking figures. The Guardian printed an
Oxfam report on Unilever’s treatment of its employees in Vietnam. Employees were struggling to provide for their families and ‘Of workers in the Cu Chi factory, 80% said they needed another source of income’.

 

Ethically Conscius

 

Workers in a garment factory in Vietnam where the employees work 12 hour days 6 days a week for as little as $1 an hour (Photo Credit: Eleanor Farmer| Oxfam) 

 

 

So charity and vintage shopping became for me a way of being ethical and sustainable in the consumerist world of fast fashion. It is fantastic that the money we spend on clothes from charity shops are going towards fighting incredible causes. ‘Shining Mothers’ is a women’s group in Nairobi that is supported by Oxfam. Jane, leader of the
women’s group, ‘trains other women on their basic rights and skills for running small businesses.’

 

Jane Muthoni, leader of ‘Shining Mothers’, buying ingredients to make homemade yoghurt which she sells to the local community in Kawangware, Nairobi, Kenya. 2016 (Image Credit:Allan Gichigi/Oxfam)

Despite the amazing benefits of charity shopping, it is a shame that it has a reputation for being for the less fortunate. I used to volunteer at a charity shop and I was often asked if we had any shopping bags that did not say the name of the charity on it. From my perspective they did not want other people to have the view that they couldn’t afford high street fashion. These customers tended to be the older generation whilst the younger generations today appear to be taking charity shopping as a new trend, a way of finding something quirky. I have a
friend who chooses only to shop in charity shops for ethical and sustainable reasons. I’ll always remember a short, deep purple cardigan she bought. It was knitted and had beautiful little buttons sown on and a ribbed rim. When she told me it was from a charity shop my heart sank – it was gorgeous and I was desperate to wear it! Only now with my own little finds do I truly appreciate the satisfaction of owning an item of clothing that contributes to your unique style. These pieces also have a story.  Perhaps that cardigan was worn on a trip to Canada or the French Alps. May be
the gorgeous vintage dress I bought from Pop Boutique in Leeds was worn on an evening out in 1960s Paris, walking by the Seine River. Or maybe it was simply worn to a family birthday party, whilst sharing laughs and food in good company. As I sit writing this blog post, a white beige cross-stitched jumper is resting by my side. I bought it today for £6 at a vintage fair in an old Church in the centre of Leeds. I rummaged through the racks of t-shirts, dresses and finally jumpers until I spotted it. The label says ‘CANADA’. Who brought it over here? Was it shipped with many others,
bought as stock? It has history. It will be loved all over again.

 

Laura Jones talking to a customer at the Cowley Road Shop, Oxford.  (Image Credit: Rachel Manns| Oxfam)


I can still appreciate the craftsmanship of designers and show my support for the ones who are environmentally and ethically conscious like Stella McCartney. I can still enjoy a high street purchase but I try to make sure it is from an ethical company.

The most beautiful designs begin with the beauty of ethical working conditions and sustainable sources and I hope one day all of fast fashion will become fair fashion.

 

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How to make your own Upcycled Vintage 20′ Cloche Cap

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How to make your own Upcycled Vintage 20′ Cloche Cap

Post written by Leah Topham, volunteer at Oxfam Batley where she helps upcycle the clothes. She’s written this series called Rags to Riches where she lets us in on her DIY secrets, keep your eye out for her next post!

Everybody has old hats that have been through all weathers and are now on the verge of getting binned! Why not up cycle your old hat, or find a plain one in your local Oxfam or from the Oxfam Online Shop, and transform it into one fit for any special occasion!

 

 

I have started with a plain black felt cloche cap, 5cm wide black lace, 2cm wide black ribbon, and some left over spotty fabric.

 

1.) Firstly I started with my spotty fabric I cut it down so it was approx 11cm wide, I then folded from the bottom to create a little more volume.

 

2.) Then Pleat the fabric as you pin it to your hat …You can choose how you want your hat trim to look. I have worked more towards a flower shape so I have pleated my fabric and pinned in half a circle.

 

3.) Then using a needle and thread, gather the edge of the lace to make it into a circular shape. I gathered two strips of lace, you can do as many as you want and any length depending on the look you’re going for.

 

4.) After Gathering the lace, lay it on top of the fabric already pinned to your hat, keeping in mind the design and shape you’re going for.

 

5.) Then using Ribbon twist it into the shape you desire and tack a few stitched to hold the shape together.

6.) Next, Pin your ribbon into the middle of your lace, and start to stitch down all the fabrics to your hat, remembering to remove all pins afterwards.

 

 

 

And there it is! As easy as that. If you try to do it at home please, remember to share the pictures with us: @OxfamFashion #foundinoxfam

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DIY Doily Tips: Upcycle Ripped T-Shirts

Article written by Rumaanah Bilal, volunteer at  Oxfam Online Batley 

To begin these DIY doily shirts, collect everything you may need. I created two different shirts but there are limitless designs that you could create! Start off by ironing the shirts to get rid of any creases. I have picked these navy and white tops to work onto. The white one has a hole so I created a design to cover this up. This is a great way to bring new life to a shirt you’d otherwise end up recycling.

What you’ll need:

  • Plain T-shirt (Use ones you already have or check your local Oxfam or Oxfam’s Online Shop)
  • Dollies (Again if you don’t have any you want to chop up it’s worth checking your local Oxfam or Online)
  • Scissors
  • Needle and Threads (mixed colours)
  • Pins


Start cutting into the areas of the doilies you like the best. I picked out doilies with floral designs as this is something I really love, but you could easily use the lacy parts as well – customise to your heart’s content to make this piece a unique beauty!

After getting your desired pieces start to place them on the shirts in different ways to see which layout looks the best. I came up with a lot of ideas and they all seemed to be really interesting and wonderful. Here are some of the designs I tried out:

 

As soon as you have arranged your designs, pin the pieces down and carefully start to hand stitch the separate parts to the shirt. I noticed the edges of the blue doily was quite frayed so I had to fix that by stitching it down tightly, but still making sure I maintained the shape. I cut out around some hexagons from a different doily and I placed them in a row down the sleeves, this way it covered up the hole and also made it quite stylish. In contrast to the white shirt having quite a bit going on, I kept the navy shirt really minimal by only putting a white trim around the neckline.
This technique would also look great along the hem or armholes of your chosen garment, and would be a good way to cover up any wear and tear!

Here are my final designs for both tops. I like how they turned out and would love to do more like this. I like the contrast between both tops. Both are very simple and can be easily styled with a pair of jeans. I love that you can save a lot and create something stylish, whilst saving clothing that would otherwise end up in recycling, instead of paying £20+ for a high street piece.

If you try out my embroidered t-shirt DIY please share the pictures: @OxfamFashion #foundinoxfam I can’t wait to see what everyone makes!

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Clear Your Clutter Day 2017

On Saturday March 11th, Jasmine Birtles, consumer champion and founder of MoneyMagpie.com, is running the second National Clear Your Clutter day, encouraging and helping people all over the UK to de-clutter their homes and lives. See more details at clearyourclutterday.co.uk where readers can also get a free eBookTransform Your Life by Clearing
Your Clutter
Here Jasmine explains her thinking behind setting up this national day and why Oxfam is involved.

“I set up the National Clear Your Clutter Day in order to help the UK free itself of the imprisoning, burdensome and money-sucking clutter that holds so many of us back nowadays.

People in the UK know that they live in an age of consumerism, but do they realise what these consumerist habits are doing to their happiness their freedom and their wealth? Only slightly.

My aim is to help everyone to have more freedom, more happiness, more money and more life this way.

My aim is also to encourage people to use their clutter for good! To unburden themselves of the stuff around them and turn it into money for great causes at home and abroad.”


De-clutter, help the world!

“As a financial journalist I am naturally coming at this from a money point of view. I’m encouraging people to make and save money by de-cluttering, and also to do good at no cost to themselves by taking some of this clutter to their local charity shop.

Different organisations regularly come up with with a figure for the value of the clutter in our homes. It’s usually thousands of pounds per household, and eBay said last year that we have £7.5 billion-worth of junk in homes across the country.

Can you imagine how much good this could do for the world if it were sold for charity rather than gathering dust in a cluttered shelf or, worse, adding to the landfill problem across the world?

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your clutter and don’t know where to start, sign-up to my 14 Day De-cluttering Challenge – these helpful emails will get you up and running in no time!”



Making it easier

In the Clear Your Clutter campaign we are setting goals for people to get rid of as much clutter as they can in one day – Saturday 11th March – and see how much money they can make for themselves and for charities in the process.

We will also have lots of useful videos from our de-cluttering experts giving us brilliant tips such as; The true impact of your kind charity donations, How to Clear Your Financial Clutter, How to sell your clutter for a profit, The easiest ways to donate to charity, The physical and mental benefits of decluttering, The Four Box Rule, How to declutter your garage and your loft, Clever storage solutions to help you save money and much more.

We will also be running a Live Twitter Q&A surgery on Saturday 11th March at 1pm, follow @ClearClutterDay to join in #ClearYourClutter. We will be giving our followers help on how to dispose of their bits and pieces, ways to sell, upcycle and generally clear clutter in homes across the country.

Added to that we will also be spearheading a drive to get more items to charities, rather than the local dump.

In this we are partnering with Gone for Good which is a social enterprise set up to both support retail charities and to encourage people to donate unwanted goods to charity and so avoid sending them to landfill.

We are also partnering with Oxfam to encourage people to take as much ‘clutter’ as possible to their local charity shop – and that’s likely to be an Oxfam! The idea is that unwanted shoes, clothes, bric a brac, books and jewellery will help pay for projects around the world to tackle the causes of poverty and to create societies where empowered people can thrive. Just £1 raised from a donated item can pay for clean, safe water for 1 person.

We want as many people as possible in this country to take part in the day so that we can make our possessions do good instead of burdening us.

Put the word about – Clear Your Clutter for charity on Saturday March 11th!

Join our Live Q&A Twitter Surgery at 1pm on Saturday March 11th where we will be discussing ways to sell, upcycle and generally clear clutter in homes across the country. Find out more at ClearYourClutterDay, on Twitter @ClearClutterDay use hashtag #ClearYourClutter and on Facebook – National Clear Your Clutter Day   

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Five Easy and Ethical Ways to Clear Your Clutter

I’m a firm believer that a tidy home leads to a tidy mind, and it seems I’m not alone, given the runaway success of Japanese de-cluttering guru Marie Kondo’s guidebooks and the minimalistic Scandi aesthetic currently dominating my Pinterest feed. However, simply throwing out your unwanted possessions isn’t the solution – chances are it’ll just get end up in landfill. So what’s the best way to de-clutter easily and ethically? Check out my top 5 tips below.

1. Define Your Style

Take a good look at your current wardrobe and think about whether it reflects your personal style. Are there certain pieces you gravitate towards on a daily basis, whilst other items are stuck at the back of the wardrobe with the tags still attached? Figuring out what makes your style ‘you’ will make it much easier to sort through the mountains of clothes and set you on the path to buying better and more sustainably in the future. If you’re unsure how, check out INTO MIND’s capsule wardrobe guides, which
also come with handy printable checklists.

2. Get Creative

Now you’ve defined your style and chosen the key pieces that will form your capsule wardrobe, think about how you could refresh the things you’re not so in love with any more. So many items can be given a new lease of life just by updating a small detail, such as distressing your jeans or changing the length of a skirt. You can even try bigger DIY projects, such as re-purposing an old shirt into an off-shoulder top, or shortening some trousers into this season’s must-have culottes. Soon you’ll be viewing your wardrobe as an endless source of creative possibilities, and be a sewing pro in no time!

3. Throw a Clothes Swap Party

For the things that no longer belong in your new, streamlined capsule wardrobe, why not invite your friends over and see if they can give your unwanted items a new home? Clothes swap parties have recently grown in popularity as a cheap and easy way of freshening up your wardrobe without the extra cost or clutter, inspired by Fashion Revolution Day. If you’re lucky, you might just get your hands on that item you’ve been eyeing up for
the last few months – just remember to follow the “one in, one out” rule so you don’t end up taking home more than you brought with you.

4. Donate or Sell Good Quality Items

Good quality clothing, shoes and accessories can always be donated directly to those in need or to charity shops such as Oxfam, which use the proceeds to fund their work. Try to donate to somewhere with a clear policy on where the goods end up (read Oxfam’s here), in order to minimize the amount sent to landfill or to developing countries, which research
suggests is damaging domestic textile industries
. Resale websites such as Vestiaire Collective, Vinted, Hardly Ever Worn It and Ebay are another great alternative, and make selling on your unwanted items easy for a small fee.

5. Recycle What’s Left

Over the last few decades, the rapid increase in fast fashion and corresponding decrease in garment quality has meant that unfortunately, not every piece of clothing can be sold on or donated. For such items, have a look at what textile recycling facilities exist in your area, or try out some DIY home décor projects with the leftover fabric, such as colourful bunting, patchwork quilts, rag rugs or simple cleaning cloths. Why not go even further and set yourself a #zerowaste challenge??

A Unique Approach To Decluttering Your Run-Of-The-Mill Guide Will Often Overlook

Ok… so you’ve probably read all those decluttering guides full of clichéd questions like is it still packed? Does it fit your body type? Is it worn out? And blah blah blah. Truth is, a lot of these questions are a no-brainer. If you haven’t pulled off the tag, you probably never will, if it doesn’t fit your body type, you probably won’t wear it either, and if it’s torn and worn out, then you obviously have to give it away – duh! So instead, here’s an approach that just might make decluttering less of a yearly chore that you have to
enact and more of an interesting experience to transform yourself and your wardrobe. Read on!

Your wardrobe should be a capsule collection

Opening the doors to her closet only to see it flooding with all sorts of hues and textures – so many that they actually roll out onto the floor – every girl’s guilty pleasure, but hey, why are you still holding on to that prom dress that’s hideous and outdated now, or how often do you jump into that romper from a few years back that you surprisingly still fit into. Yea, two questions you have absolutely no answer to. The truth is, most girls have a signature look – a look that they know they look good in, but they’re still hanging on to extras
for no apparent reason. So when people actually say that ‘ditch the clothes you don’t wear,” take that a step further and focus on building a wardrobe that is essentially a capsule collection of your personal style. I’m talking about building a carefully-crafted and edited collection of about some 30-odd pieces reflective of your signature style that can be mixed and matched to create a variety of looks depending on where you’re heading and the occasion. That way you know you won’t even buy any
extras let alone stocking them in the deepest recesses of your closet.

Ask the right question

The award for the most frequently asked question when decluttering your wardrobe has to go to “When did you last wear this piece?” of course a century ago, that’s why you’re getting rid of it! But instead of opting for such a clichéd approach to questioning your clothes, take things a step further and ask yourself even more hard-hitting questions to interrogate yourself and the choices you’ve made. The point is to make you feel a tad bit uncomfortable
so that you scale back with the choices you make and don’t make the wrong decisions when buying clothes in the future. So grab a pen and note a few questions that you should actually ask when decluttering your wardrobe.

How did I feel the last time I wore this piece of clothing?

Do I have to iron this every time I wear it? Is it dry clean only? Is keeping it clean and wrinkle free it really worth my time and effort?

Do I need to alter my body shape to feel good in it?

Am I willing to put in the required effort to it into it?

If you answer any of those questions with cringing negativity, or a long drawn out sigh of despair, you know that it’s time to let it go and move on.

Phone a friend

Decluttering your wardrobe can be such a strenuous ordeal because of all the hard-hitting questions you have to ask yourself and all he tough decisions you have to make. Worry not, I have a solution for that too. While this may not be a shopping spree for you, it could be one for your friend who’s probably looking to grab a few things for her own wardrobe after you’re done disowning them! You know, that really chunky statement necklace you don’t know how to wear anymore, or that pair of short shorts that are too short for your liking. Jokes
apart, having a close friend around really lends a considerable amount of moral support when making tough decisions regarding what to retain and what to throw out from your wardrobe.  That way, the strenuous ordeal no longer feels like a strenuous ordeal. Rather it feels like an event – a ritual – one you’re performing to honour your once precious fashionable possessions as you say goodbye to them one last time.

ROI is strictly a business term

Well, not really, but still! Most guides will tell you to consider the return on investment (ROI) when buying expensive clothes and accessories. Truth is, there is no ROI on luxury clothing, shoes, and handbags – you’re going to wear them and brag about them till they eventually wear out. And if you use them just sparingly to increase the longevity, then the only interest they’ll be accumulating over
time is lots of dust and lint. Personally, I’ve never even gotten around this concept of using luxury wear less than scarcely in order to preserve its life. If you’ve blown up a couple of months of rent to own a Louis Vuitton, then own it and show it off – proudly! And if you’re really looking for a long-term ROI, consider investing in the stocks of the fashion brands you love or taking advantage of charity shops.

Save time

I’m not talking about the process of decluttering itself, in fact, I’m talking about saving your time with managing the stuff that you’ve successfully disowned from your wardrobe after the whole process. Yea sure, going online and selling the stuff on places like eBay can be quite lucrative especially if you know how to keep things in good shape. But honestly, is it really worth the effort and time that you would spend? Can you really be sure that you’ll make big bucks by investing a small amount of time? Probably not. Because time itself is
a valuable asset worth money, consider the opportunity cost of spending all those hours you spend on internet against the money that you’ll get in return. Alternatively, you could even donate the entire lot to make a couple of more people – in addition to the friend helping you out with moral support in exchange for a few freebies – happier.

And here’s probably the most interesting one of them all that is often skipped – start decluttering sooner rather than waiting for a time when your closet becomes an ocean of textile and fashion products going to sheer waste! 

Photo credit: https://allenranch.org/

Winners of Oxfam vintage fashion competition revealed. See the stylish shots now…

Four fashionistas, each with a passion for vintage, have won Oxfam’s competition to find its faces of decades of vintage fashion #VintageFaceAndStyle.

The women, all respected fashion bloggers, showcase the looks of 1950s, 60s, 70s and 80s in photographs viewable on the Oxfam Online Shop.

The images, which encapsulate the looks of each era, were taken by leading photographer Benjamin Tietge at Oxfam’s huge recycling hub Wastesaver in West Yorkshire. Make-up was by celebrity stylist Rosie Lewis. Andrew Williams Senior Stylist at Nicky Clarke worked the hair.

The Daily Telegraph’s Senior Fashion News and Features Editor Victoria Moss, herself a dedicated and discerning vintage fashion fan, judged the competition.

Victoria chose: 1950s Nora Thoeng, 29, norafinds.com; 1960s Sarah Brewer, 28, stylesixites.blogspot.co.uk; 1970s Leigh Travers, 25, foxandfeather.com; and 1980s Kristin McIlquham, 35, tightscameraaction.com.

“Fashion is currently having a love affair with mid century colours and inspirations,” said Victoria. “Sarah has a brilliant and enviable grasp of sixties style and her look feels current. Leigh’s look clearly takes inspiration from the 70s but feels very now as well, which is clever.”

All four winners were delighted to be picked. Nora, a molecular biologist researching motor neurone disease, even wears 1950s clothes to the lab.
“I wear vintage full time but since I’m a scientist I don’t wear my favourite vintage clothes to work because it can get messy in the lab. The 1950s is the most popular vintage decade – it never really left. You still see the 50s silhouette in modern fashion – the small waist and full circle skirt. It’s very elegant and feminine. You still see it on the runway of Christian Dior,” she said.

Kristin spends her spare time in charity shops. “Dedicate a day to vintage shopping. If you’ve never done it before, take a chance. Pick one shirt because you love the colour,” she advises.

Oxfam has more than 670 high street shops and the huge Oxfam Online Shop, which raise crucial funds for Oxfam’s work fighting poverty and suffering across the globe.

Many shops have vintage sections, while the Oxfam Online Shop is a virtual world where fashion lovers and collectors discover treasures from the past at amazing prices to create looks that are totally on trend.

Richard Saint, Oxfam Senior E-Commerce Product Manager said, “Our four winners are super stylish and influential women who share their flair and passion for vintage on social media. They rely on charity shops to create their looks. The Oxfam Online Shop is a huge virtual department store where shoppers can time travel at their leisure and find items from yesteryear and yesterday to mix and create looks that are bang up to date.”

For more information and interviews contact Emma Fabian, Press Officer 01865 47 2193, efabian1@oxfam.org.uk.

Notes to Editors

Oxfam is a global movement of people all working towards the same goal – an end to the injustice of poverty. Together we save and rebuild lives in disasters, help people earn a living, and speak out on the big issues, like inequality and climate change, that keep people poor. And we won’t stop until we get there. Join us!

• For every £1 donated to Oxfam, 84p goes directly on emergency, development and campaigning work, 8p is spent on support costs, and 8p is invested to generate future revenue.

Oxfam Online Shop is the UK’s biggest charity shop with thousands of unique treasures all in one place, from the Oxfam Unwrapped range of charity gifts to more than 100,000 unique second-hand items. There are over 50,000 books, more than 23,000 women’s clothing and accessories items, 13,000 music products, films and video games and 6,000 items of homewares and collectibles. Oxfam shops across the country upload new items to the site every day, and volunteers at two central hubs, based in Milton Keynes and Batley,
Yorkshire, upload thousands of new items a week.

• Wastesaver is Oxfam’s central hub for all things vintage. It’s where unique clothing donations – from high street fashion to vintage gems – are sorted and listed online. Oxfam’s individual high street shops also list donations online, from designer labels to signed books and second-hand cameras.

• Victoria Moss is Senior Fashion News and Features Editor at the Daily Telegraph. Previously she was Acting Fashion Features Director at Marie Claire and Fashion Features Editor at Instyle. Victoria writes a regular column at Instyle.

• Photographer Benjamin Tietge was Mario Testino’s former first assistant and has also worked with Annie Leibovitz.

• Rosie Lewis is a QVC presenter who has made up faces from Hollywood to Brentwood and even the Prime Minister.

• Andrew Williams is Senior Stylist at Nicky Clarke’s salons.

Throw Your Own Summer Swap Party

Inspired by Fashion Revolution

Summer is almost here, and it’s the time of year when brands are falling over themselves trying to convince you to buy into the latest seasonal ‘must haves’. But here’s the trick – unless the British weather plays along, you’ll probably only be able to wear your new purchases for a few weeks before the weather starts to turn again and the first drops of the Autumn/Winter collections start trickling into stores – meaning an even fuller wardrobe and no money for those big winter investment pieces!

So what’s the solution? Of course, shopping second hand is one of the best and most sustainable ways to refresh your wardrobe on a budget, but an even better option is to throw your own summer swap party. Have a sort out of everything you no longer need or wear and invite your friends round for some Pimms and strawberries to really get in the summer mood, before swapping your unwanted items for those key pieces you always secretly had your eye on.

Swap parties are becoming more and more popular as people look for innovative ways to stay on trend without filling their wardrobes to bursting. In 2012 in collaboration with Oxfam, M&S started their own ‘shwopping’ initiative, and on the 24th April there were swap parties held all over the world for Fashion Revolution, an annual event that asks brands #whomademyclothes to commemorate the Rana
Plaza disaster, in which 1,134 garment workers died in an unsafe factory in Bangladesh in 2013.

For this year’s Fashion Revolution, I attended a swap party in Berlin in the amazing 25 hours Bikini Hotel, which overlooks the monkey enclosure in the city’s zoo and is decorated to match, with a focus on natural materials and eco-friendly products. I brought with me a couple of dresses and tops that I no longer wear, and instead picked up a great pair of Mango jeans and a Nike t-shirt that will be perfect for long summer evenings chilling
in one of the many parks around Berlin – I can’t wait!

Have fun swapping and socializing, in time for summer!

Go to the Oxfam Online Shop