Christian Travelers Guide + [womens]

Country Road Pt III - Red Cross Margaret River Op Shop Review
You Got That At An Op Shop?!

So the final thrifting stop I got to do on my recent jaunt down to Margaret River was the Red Cross shop.

I actually used to work down the road from this little place and I have to say I think I only ever visited it a handful of times. Jasmine, the lovely bride whose wedding we attended was always urging me to check it out, but I have to say I wasn’t a huge thrifter at that stage so I guess I really didn’t know what I was looking for. All I know is that I was more than jealous of Jas’s op shop finds and was keen to know where she was finding all this gold!

You Got That At An Op Shop?!

So it was a delight to retrace the old footsteps and see how things had changed. Unfortunately we didn’t pick the best time to go, as not only were Farmers Markets on (right next door) but it was a peak tourist weekend due to the Margaret River Gourmet Escape, and so there were a few too many peeps crammed into the tiny little space the shop occupies.

Situated next to the Resource Centre on Tunbridge Street (which houses the infamous soup kitchen) the op shop itself occupies a small cottage like space, incorporating goodies in several rooms and due to space limitations, on the front verandah!

You Got That At An Op Shop?!

You’ll find mainly racks of clothing on the verandah and (this is one of my favourite things in an oppie), they’re grouped by size. I had a pick through the clothes while Nath headed into one of the rooms which holds all the men’s stuff (shoes, ties, jackets, shirts etc). He did find himself a very cool sailing cap and whilst we made fun of it, a few days later he admitted that he wished he had got it…clearly he does not read my blog very often otherwise he would have heeded my op shop rule number 21 and just grabbed it! I thought the men’s section had a nice range too.

You Got That At An Op Shop?!

In the main room, where the counter is situated, you’ll find lots of knick knacky things as well as more racks of clothing. Again, unfortunately, I wasn’t really able to get stuck into things as there were many bodies having a browse. There were a few one’s in particular that did get on my goat:

Op Shop Rule No 27: Teenage Boys Be Gone** Guys, I know it’s painful to follow your mum around while she shops – anywhere – and believe me, when you grow up, you’ll hate it just as much with your wife, but for now may I please ask that if you find yourself nipping at the heels of your mother in the confines of a teeny store and want to whine about how bored you are, only to stand in the way of every other shopper and look gormlessly at them when they ask you politely to move then maybe, just maybe, waiting for Mum outside is a better option. Besides, you may not be aware that your new man voice is pretty loud – and can throw us thrifters off the scent of a good lead. Thank you. That is all. (** let it be said that I understand not all teenage boys are like this, but ya know, there’s a few!)

I picked out a couple of tops that I seriously considered purchasing but something stopped me. I couldn’t figure out why. I had a Mink Pink tee and a Sussan’s tee in my hands and while I was umming and ahhing, Nath walked in and said “geez that’s a bit pricey”. He nailed it, it was the price I was a little dismayed with. Especially as the Mink Pink one had a few balls/pulls on it, I just really couldn’t justify the $9.95 price tag. So, I left them.

Afterwards hubby and I had a discussion on the different pricing in op shops in general, even the differences in stores from the same charity. We floated the ideas of 1. Being a top tourism region, perhaps the staff believe tourists *may* have the funds to spend on higher priced items. 2. Not many people visit the store, being a rural one, and therefore need to make a good profit on items they do sell. 3. Staff in charge of pricing aren’t entirely educated in the worth of some labels. It’s timely that I mention you can head over to Kelly from They Call Me The Seeker’s blog post on op shop prices too, there’s been all manner of comments on the topic – see where your opinion lies!

As we were heading out of the store, we noticed we’d missed the bric-a-brac & women’s shoes area but as a vollie was busy tidying up this section, I only got a quick scan of the offerings. There appeared to be a heap there, lots of general type kitchen stuff – glasses, plasticware, cups, kettles etc. Alas, no wonders caught my eye however.

There certainly was a steady flow of people coming in as we left and although disappointed that I wasn’t able to get really stuck into it, I’m glad I stopped by.

And whilst my op shopping came to an end here in an official capacity, I did come to realize that my passion is always around me, no matter what capacity. Here's what I learned on this trip in particular:

1. Thrifted decorations make the nicest of them all.
The gorgeous wedding we attended featured all sorts of op shopped decorations for the reception including champers glasses, bottles and vases, all of which created a magic evening. Jazzy, it ltruly ooked amazing.

2. Not everyone appreciates thrifting.
At one particular winery, the lady serving us couldn’t contain her shock & horror when we told her we had three weddings to attend – and that I had three separate outfits. I was darn proud to tell her they were all op shopped. She however, didn’t seem terribly impressed at all.


3. The Flying Wardrobe still rules.
We paid another trip to the Flying Wardrobe and I purchased some goodies including a pale pink Glomesh wallet and a 1979 Christmas activity book which I’m using as images for gift tags. So retro cool!

4. You can find thrifty peeps in the most unlikeliest of places.
Whilst one lady baulked at my thriftiness, another (at another winery – sensing a theme here?) couldn’t get enough of our chat about all things op shop, retro & vintage. So much so that hubby ended up purchasing my chrissy present from her; a 1950’s gold chain complete with an amber coloured Bakelite star. Yes, it was on display in the winery! Ok, I’ll let you know – head over to Deckchair Wines, there’s all manner of retro goodies on display – along with some fabbo wine!

K x

Go For: Clothing
Try Another Red Cross: When it's tourist season in Margs!

Red Cross Op Shop
Tunbridge Street
Margaret River WA 6285

Open: Mon-Fri 9-4pm / Sat 9-12.30pm

www.redcross.org.au

YOU & THE RED CROSS: TWICE AS GIVING
If you've been following the facebook page, you'll know on Monday Op Shop News night I recently posted the great news that the Red Cross oppies now have their very own facebook page! Woohoo! And via their page, they have launched the "Gifts For Everyone" campaign.

This campaign is aimed at reminding us that some wonderful items can be found in their stores - and by shopping in their op shops, you're also contributing to making other's Christmas's just as special. In a nutshell, you help Red Cross help others when you buy gifts from Red Cross shops. View the touching campaign animation here: