Christian Travelers Guide + Western Australia

Lucky Ones - Swan View Salvation Army Community Store Review

Oooh I’ve had the pleasure of visiting some new (new to me that is) op shops of late. And I can imagine you agree, sussing out a new place is always super exciting.

When a customer came into my oppie the other week, she mentioned a “community store” up the road, run by the Salvation Army. She informed me that she volunteers there and it was worth a peek. I love meeting other op shop staff….who op shop in their spare time!

Not to be confused with the ‘Salvos’ per se, this op shop is still run by the Salvation Army themselves, and my thoughts are it may be affiliated more so with the church side of things. There is a Salvos in Midland by the way, a little bit further down Great Eastern Highway, however the Community Store is closer to the Roe Highway intersection if that makes sense!

This little oppie does have a real community feel, much like a lot of the smaller op shops I’ve come across. It’s not as fancy as its other Salvo store counterparts, but it definitely stocks all the usual op shop fare and I can imagine it serves as a great option for those needing cheap and accessible items within the area.

The first thing you’ll come to as you walk in is a selection of furniture such as wardrobes, bed heads, dressers and drawers. Now, given this stuff has a MASSIVE turn over in my oppie down the road, I would hazard a guess that it would be the same for this op shop too. So what’s my advice? Heed op shop rule no 21 and if you like it – buy it - as I can guarantee it won’t be there when you come back.

Featured all along the left hand side of the store is a row of tables, with a mass of clothes to rifle through, sitting on top – mainly for babies, kids and teens. They’re also categorised into sizing too, so you know immediately where to go if you’re after something specific. I think I’ve mentioned before that this is one of my loves in an oppie. This section also houses a huge pick of stuffed toys too.

Then you’ll come to the back wall of books. And man, there is a library of them to choose from, catering for all ages. When I was there, some kids were going nuts at the selection, so I would say while you’re shopping here, pop the kids in this section and you’ll have a breather for a while! And if by chance the books don’t gain their attention, just turn them around to the games/puzzles area cause it’s another fabulous selection of pre-loved goodies. I do have an op shop rule to impart here, which has only recently become apparent to me in my time working in an op shop:

Op Shop Rule No 31: All Pieces Of The Puzzle Please

I’ve come across many op shoppers who are after jigsaw puzzles. And we’ve had quite a few donated of late too. But there is one problem….the jigsaw’s donated are incomplete! Um, why? Do those donating think that those who purchase the puzzle won't notice? Do those donating think those who purchase it don’t care? I know (read: assume) the donation is done in good faith, but the point of a puzzle is the gratification of finishing the thing... whole!

I recently had to count out two 300 piece puzzles before selling and of course they both had missing pieces and therefore could not be on sold. Shame, they were great puzzles too. So my rule is pretty pretty please just do a quick check of your games, puzzles etc to ensure integral pieces are intact and similarly if you are buying puzzles/games from an oppie be mindful that that oppie may not have had the manpower to check it for you, before putting on the shelves.

There is quite a comprehensive pick of shoes, some are in well-loved condition, but certainly there is life left in them for the new owner. I didn’t come across any for me this time, but that’s probably because I was champing at the bit to get stuck into the clothes. And at of 50c and $1, who could blame me? The great thing about this particular op shop and it’s clothes offerings is the bargains. For instance, Wednesdays are the day you can fill a bag of children & kids clothes for $3 while it’s main marketing hook is that all clothing only costs a “gold coin”.

There is a little bit of order in how the clothes are stocked (ie dresses, shirts, mens, ladies) but I definitely suggest with this op shop, you just hunt all the racks as you never know what you will find. I came across some neat little retro numbers in the form of a jacket and skirt/blouse combo. I wasn’t too fussed on the blouse (is there such thing as too nanna?) but the skirt was delightful. And for $3 I was willing to get ‘em both…and re-donate the blouse later.

The linen/haberdashery offerings are a free-for-all too, sitting on tables (or in baskets underneath) next to the clothes. It’s all jumbled in so you can just go for it. I was excited about what little treasures I could find and came up trumps with a little pillow case and kiddies sheet. Nath has already claimed the pillowcase and the kiddies sheet, well I’m not sure what I’m going to do with that just, but it was too cute to pass up. There’s a neat little selection of cushions here too.

The bric-a-brac is generally down-to-earth stuff, which will fill a kitchen nicely. In particular, there are lots of cups, plates and plasticware – particularly handy if you’re missing a Tupperware lid or three. But be sure to really get your detective on in this area, as buried underneath some more generic type things, you may just come across a collectible item. I happened upon the odd china plate here and there.

Similarly the knick knack section is a hunting ground, there are lots of little pieces and a few retro gold finds too – I found myself not one, but two packs of fondue forks complete in all the retro colours of the rainbow and as lovely Leisa from Vintage Bird Girl had recently posted about her fondue set thrift, I just had to make one of those hers.

The counter itself holds some random bits and bobs like costume jewellery and gift cards and I’m assuming by the display cabinets, possibly some more collectible stuff. Unfortunately there weren’t any on the day I was there.

This op shop is a bargain bonanza, and one that really serves the local community well. As I said, it’s not glamorous, but that’s ok as it’s still fab and worth a visit – particularly as the Midland area features quite a few oppies, you can really make a day of it. And the best part for me, is it serves as another little lunch time thrift break haha. Bonus!

Tell me, what causes do some of your favourite small oppies support?

Kx

Go For: Games, Books & super-cheap clothes bargains
Try Another: Jewellery

The Salvation Army Swan View Community Store
Great Eastern Highway
Midland WA 6056

Open: Tues-Fri 9-5pm / Sat 9-1pm

My Haul:
Squirrel Pillowcase 50c
Kids Sheet $2
Retro Jacket $3
Skirt / Blouse Set $3
Fondue Fork Sets x 2 $2

bargains, clothes, Community, Great Eastern Highway, kelly wayne, Midland, op shop, op shop rules, op shopping, op shops, perth, Salvation Army, salvos, store, Swan View, thrift, thriting, and more:

Lucky Ones - Swan View Salvation Army Community Store Review + Western Australia