Category Archives: clothes swap

How to De-Clutter Your Wardrobe in 5 Easy Steps

How to De-Clutter Your WardrobeJanuary is a month of reinvention for many – from starting a new fitness regime to trying to eat better, it’s the month of the detox, the goal setting and plan making. If this time of year is making you think about spring cleaning your closet and tackle your ever expanding floordrobe, then here are my tried and tested tips for de-cluttering your clothes.

Empty Everything

Drawers, wardrobe, rail – the lot. Instead of trying to take unwanted items out, start with an empty space and that way, when you’ve finished organising your outfits, you’ll only be putting clothes back in that you really love and want to wear.

Phone a Friend

If you’re anything like me, you might need to call in the cavalry for a serious de-cluttering session. Before I moved to the States two of my best girls came over for the evening and helped me suss out what I really needed to take. We ate chocolate, tried on multiple different outfits and they offered brutally honest opinions on what suited me and what didn’t.  Make sure to pick a friend/s that you trust and who will give you an honest opinion on that burnt orange and black feather pencil skirt…

Bag It Up

I find it useful to have different reusable carrier bags at the ready – one headed for the charity shop, one for the recycling bin and one for clothes swaps. Sorting out your clothes and separating them immediately will curb your desire to go rummaging back into the cast-offs pile as soon as the coast is clear. If there are some items that you haven’t worn in ages but aren’t sure that you want to part with, place them in a box or bag at the back of your wardrobe for six months – if you don’t take anything out once six months have passed, take the bag straight to a charity shop – without looking inside!

Organise Like a Pro

Find a system that will help you to pick out your outfit quickly – this could be organising your clothes into colours, splitting them into type (dresses, shirts, trousers etc) or grouping together in different categories, such as smart, evening-wear, casual, work etc. Personally I like to organise my wardrobe by type of garment, then colour-code it. Yep, I’m that geeky.

One In, One Out

You’ve finally gotten to a point where your wardrobe or closet isn’t bursting at the seams (woo-hoo!) so don’t spoil it by over-stuffing it with new clothes. To keep unnecessary clothing clutter at bay, use the one in, one out method. It’s easy to do – every time you buy  a new item of clothing, get rid of an old one to make space for it. You could donate it to charity, take it to a clothes swap or if it’s too far gone then put it in your recycling bin.

Additional tips:
It wouldn’t hurt to give the inside of your wardrobe a clean while it’s empty, so grab a duster and some polish before you place any clothes back inside
Make the most of what storage you have – under-bed boxes are great for storing shoes and bags
Aim to de-clutter twice a year – once in January and then again in autumn, ready for winter

So that’s it – a few (hopefully helpful) tips on de-cluttering your clothes to start the year afresh. How often do you detox your wardrobe?

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Clothes Swappin’

Clothes swap findsIf you’re a regular reader you might already know about my penchant for clothes swaps. If you’re not then let me fill you in. Picture a night with your best girlfriends, combined with snacks, wine and enough once-loved clothes to fill a small branch of Topshop.

You get to chat, browse and walk away with a whole new outfit (or five) for free! Oh, and did I mention the feel-good vibes you get for donating any unwanted clothes to charity?

My friends and I arrange swaps once or twice a year, and on Friday evening it was my turn to play hostess. Over the last few months I’ve been putting unclothed clothes, accessories and books to one side and I surprised myself by having over 40 items to swap. Unsettlingly this has barely made a dent in my wardrobe, so I had a strict limit of only allowing myself to swap five items. My resolve cracked a little and I ended up with eight in the end, which I don’t think is too bad, given the 200+ items we must have brought between the seven of us.

Here’s what I found in the swap. Forgive the random chunks of brick – our fence blew over  in the recent storms and we’ve only just had it put back up, hence the rubble!

Clothes swap Topshop trousers This t-shirt is a brand new one that I picked up in the recent Zara sale, for a ridiculously cheap £1.99, but the swapped pieces are these Topshop trousers and the black leather ankle boots. I’m not sure where they are originally from but there is a little Russian doll printed on the inside sole. They’re a little big for me but so comfortable and will go with so many outfits. The brushed cotton trousers are a greenish grey colour and despite the slightly creased appearance, are very smart. I love the turned up hems and asymmetric panel that cuts across the front of the trousers.

Clothes swap pleated skirt and Topman jumper One of the best things about clothes swaps is that, as well as looking for capsule wardrobe pieces that will go with everything, it also allows you to try out trends or styles that you wouldn’t normally go for. This black pouch bag with gold studs is one such example – something I might have been interested in in a store but not quite persuaded to buy. Now if I don’t use it that much I can simply take it to the next swap I attend. The sweatshirt is actually from Topman (who says swaps just have to be for girls?) and the skirt is a pleated floral number that was shortened by its former owner.

Clothes swap jeans and vintage bag

This is quite a casual look but I’m chuffed to bits with these skinny, indigo jeans, originally H&M, as I’ve been after a pair of jeans for a while now. I tend to only wear jeans at festivals or on camping trips, so I’m trying to branch out and incorporate them into more outfits. The biscuit coloured fine knit cardigan will be perfect for layering over dresses and t-shirts during the transition from winter to spring, and the vintage bag, my favourite find, is structured with a gold clasp – perfect for dressing up any casual outfit.

Are you a fan of clothes swaps? What’s the best piece you’ve ever found at one?

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Clothes Swap Haul

Clothes swap goodies | Ship-Shape and Bristol Fashion

Regular readers might have noticed that I have a bit of a thing for clothes swaps. What’s not to love about getting rid of once-loved clothes, gaining some new ones and having a girly gossip at the same time? It’s environmentally friendly and allows everyone to walk home with a new outfit (or three) for free.

A few weeks ago, on a horribly dark and wet night, Amy hosted a clothes swap at her Christmassy flat, and I couldn’t wait to get rid of my wares and find some new ones. Since we moved house I’ve had a couple of bags of clothes that just don’t suit me anymore, and after a wardrobe consultation with Amy, I managed to get rid of even more clothes that I no longer wear.

After the obligatory gossiping, cooing over her Christmas decorations and eating plenty of nibbles, six of us got down to swapping! In a bid not to bring too much back with me, I restricted myself and only picked out items which I’ll get a lot of wear from, such as this brown felt trilby and quilted bag, below. The gathered denim Zara shorts will be perfect come summer (I know, I know – it’s not exactly on the horizon!) and the camel coloured top is an ideal base layer for winter outfits. For once I’ve actually managed to pick items that could form one outfit, which is rather unusual for me!

Have you ever been to a clothes swap? If so, what’s been your best find?

Clothes swap outfit | Ship-Shape and Bristol FashionClothes swap quilted bag | Ship-Shape and Bristol FashionClothes swap Zara shorts | Ship-Shape and Bristol Fashion

Rock The Week

Fashion related (and totally non-fashion related) things that have made my world go round over the last seven days…

Picton Street

  • Bristol Harbour Festival. Yesterday I wore a new (old) blouse from Grandma Ship-Shape’s wardrobe, sat in the sunshine with friends in Queen’s Square, drank cider and attended a random street fair in Picton Street, above. It’s weekends like this that make me fall in love with Bristol every summer.
  • This week I finally got around to documenting the awesome clothes swap I went to a couple of weeks ago. The evening involved some tasty cakes and fantastic finds, all in the name of charity. I can’t wait to wear all my new threads, though I’m still not sure when I’ll be brave enough to wear the leopard print dress…

Kat’s Clothes Swap

A couple of weeks ago I was invited to an impromptu clothes swap. Actually, it wasn’t that impromptu – Kat, who is raising money to fund her trip to work with a charity in Mexico – had been planning it for weeks, but I didn’t find out about it until S of Beautiful Plumage asked me to go that same afternoon. I love a good clothes swap, and since this one was for charity I could hardly say no, could I?

I’ve been to a couple of small-scale clothes swaps and while Kat’s was held in her home on a quiet street in Southville, it was the most organised and well-stocked swap I’ve ever been to! The photos I took on my phone are a bit rubbish, but picture a living room piled high with clothes, accessories and jewellery, all divided into neat sections, including knitwear, skirts, jackets and even ‘sparkly things’.

Not only was there an abundance of clothes to choose from, there were also ample sweet treats that Kat had whipped up, including carrot cake, scones and fresh strawberries. Yum!

After some tea and cake, nine of us spent half an hour perusing ( I love that word) the extensive collection of clothes and selecting a few outfits to try on, before getting stuck in and swapping.

I came away with some fantastic finds, including a mustard coloured chunky knit jumper from Warehouse, a linen blazer and leopard print jersey dress. Once the weather picks up I’ll put up some actual outfit posts, but for now, check out my best finds, below.

I’ve mentioned it before on the blog, but clothes swaps are such a fantastic way to socialise with friends, clear out the clothes you never wear and pick up some new threads at the same time. And, in the case of Kat’s clothes swap, you can raise money for charity, too.

Have you been to any clothes swaps recently? What’s been your favourite swapping find?

Coffee coloured Topshop jumper
Coffee coloured Topshop jumper
Redoute leopard print jersey dress
Redoute leopard print jersey dress
Blue spotty F+F top
Blue and cream spotty F+F top from Tesco
Grey linen Primark jacket
Grey linen 3/4 length sleeve jacket from Primark
Mustard yellow chunky knit Warehouse jumper
Mustard yellow chunky knit Warehouse jumper
Grey wollen jumper dress
Slouchy grey jumper dress