Hi Everyone! I’m Gilly, aka Silly Gilly Vintage, seller and buyer of all things 60s and 70s. When Gemma, the manager of my favourite charity shop, Barnardo’s Vintage in Cheadle, suggested I should write a blog post about my vintage shopping escapades, I thought, what better than to showcase the wonderful preview evening she had planned. And after the lack of Summer we have had in the UK of late, what better escapism than a hula party!
Yes, on the eve of Friday 4th August, Gemma and her super enthusiastic volunteers had prepared a Hawaiian spread fit for a Tiki King and Queen, decorating the shop and always stunningly creative window display in flower garlands and cheeky pineapples. To celebrate their well-deserved win of ‘Specialist Shop of the Year’ at the Charity Retail Association Awards back in June, Barnardo’s Vintage had invited its customers to this preview evening and you could feel the excitement and anticipation of the goodies that might be found from the moment we stepped into this tropical paradise.
I am proud to be a regular customer of this shop and these events always feel like a long-lost family gathering. Because Gemma is so good at valuing her clientele, after you’ve been in store a couple of times, she makes sure she knows the type of thing you like, be it a particular era of clothing, a certain style of homeware or that elusive toy you’ve been trying to seek out from your childhood. I often have a number of 60’s and 70’s frocks put to one side for me and this time was no exception. I left with a gorgeous mod striped jersey dress and with a fitting room like this, every time you try something on it’s like a party! But anyway, I must get out and ‘mingle’…
This is the third event I have taken part in at the store, and I am always happy to travel over the Pennines from York, because so much effort is made to make it a fabulous evening. This time it was lovely to see my old pals @mrsmortonvintage, @essentiallyeaglevintage, and @suzylovesmilo, but I also bumped into familiar Instagram faces such as @msbethtaylor and @sarasmells. To chat about our mutual love of charity shopping and vintage in such stunning surroundings, a mocktail in one hand and a delicious home-made Pina Colada bun in the other…well, what could be better?
The event was topped off with an amazing raffle, with a necklace donated by Tatty Devine (yes, a Tatty!) up for grabs as well as exotic plants from Cheadle-based ‘Plant Shop’ and a £20 voucher to spend in store. We came away with our purses lighter but our hearts a little happier with our unique purchases. Make sure you are at the next one!