Cool Second Hand Shop, photo by GH.Planet


In Australia as a teenager and beyond, one of my favourite pastimes was to go 'op shopping'. For those non-Aussies out there, this means shopping at Opportunity Shops, or charity shops, like the Salvation Army (the Sallys) or St Vincent de Paul (Vinnies). It was an important part of being a student, firstly because we never had much money, but also because this was where my friends and I would find unusual pieces and hone our individual style. Now it is called 'Vintage', then it was just called cool.

Even as a mother I would visit the op shops looking for hardly worn baby clothes as well as books, toys and accessories. These shops are huge in Australia, and depending where you are you really can pick up some great bargains. You just have to dismiss the stale mothball smell and get down to business.

I wonder if people here in Singapore would appreciate second hand, now that we are officially in recession and people have to be careful. Traditionally it is bad luck to bring used items into the household, I am told, but I wonder if things are changing.

Garage sales are popular here, although people expect to pay rock bottom prices for even expensive, undamaged goods. Do you buy second hand? Take a look at the right sidebar and take a minute to fill in the poll "Do you buy second hand?" . I will publish the results in a week.

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