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8th November 2016

Fashion tactics

As the winter chill sets in, Sophie Billington provides a guide to alternative means of shopping so you can avoid braving the cold

With winter and deadlines fast approaching, it seems like taking a trip all the way into town is becoming increasingly difficult. We find ourselves confined to our cosy warm rooms more and more and are left asking ourselves, how do we keep our wardrobes as fresh and crisp as the outside air that we continually avoid? Fear not, and fear not the cold, for here are some excellent answers. Stay in the know so that you can stay in the warm.

One way to keep shopping with less effort is to get scouring your local charity shops. A charity shop scavenge means that you waste no body warmth (or money) on getting your threads. Small suburbs such as Withington are top spots for charity shops and good finds. If you enjoy the activity of shopping but hate committing to it, this is the one for you because there’s rarely a charity shop too far from home and you won’t have to linger for long to find the few items per shop that are worthy of your personal attention. It’s unlikely that you will want to buy out the whole shop, meaning that you won’t have to spend hours trying on your finds. The money you save and the moral superiority that you might feel in your gracious act of recycling is really just an added bonus.

Physical-effort-saving rating: ***

Mental-effort-saving rating: ***

Time-saving rating: ***


A second way to minimise your effort is by keeping your eye on the internet so that you can search high street shops selectively with types of clothing in mind. There’s little worse than just wanting a new coat and having to travel and explore the seven corners of Zara simply to identify three of them. If you aren’t looking for anything in particular, perhaps look for ‘best selling’. This way you can sit at home on your sofa and enjoy a coffee instead of juggling your take-away cappuccino awkwardly as you flip between hangers.

A good way to save money and time on this is to choose the option ‘price low to high’ if it’s available or to look at mid-season or end-of-season sale sections. Also consider looking at websites such as Etsy for your clothes; thousands of independent sellers from all over the world allow you to maintain an image of exotic travel and activity as you lie in bed pushing guilty thoughts of how you haven’t left the house all weekend to the back of your unexercised mind.

Physical-effort-saving rating: *****

Mental-effort-saving rating: ***

Time-saving rating: **


While most people have internet-shopped before, a not-so-secret yet very up-and-coming method of lazy shopping is to use Depop. Depop is an open marketplace for clothes and thus traverses both the realms of first and second-hand clothing. Here is a place where you can search not only for specific types of clothing, but also for specific colours, materials, textures, brands. The possibilities are practically endless.

The option to ‘follow’ specific vendors means that you won’t even need to leave your newsfeed to see items tailored to your personal needs and wants. Even better, should you have seen something in store a few seasons ago, deigned not to buy it and experienced endless regret, you could potentially find it with a flick of the finger. This app is the perfect combination of charity shop, Internet shop and eBay: this is the future.

Mental-effort-saving: *****

Physical-effort-saving rating: *****

Time-saving rating: (dependent on your personal level of terrible addiction to the app)


Finally, if you really want to save brainpower, you might find fashion solace in the use of the wardrobes of your friends and family. Borrowing (or tactically stealing) items of clothing from your loved ones is an excellent way of avoiding the great outdoors or even organised shopping activity. There’s no mental effort involved here, just predisposed background knowledge: you already know which friends have great style and a similar shoe-size and you know which items of clothing that your siblings won’t miss. Also, this allows you see a few faces to break the monotony of those long sessions that you spend staring at screens whilst cowered against a radiator. As long as you maybe give back to these people, either in the offer of your own quality garments or quality interaction, or perhaps the eventual return of borrowed items, depending on the personalities and tendencies of your fellow beings, you should be able to sustain this as a long-term method of clothing yourself.

Physical-effort-saving rating: ****

Mental-effort-saving rating: *****

Time-saving rating: *****

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