Charity Shops: Fashion, Bric-a-Brac, Books, Music and much more…
Dublin is extremely rich in charity shops, with the best of the bunch located around the George’s, Aungier and Camden Street areas. It is entirely possible for the thrifty shopper to assemble a unique and fashionable wardrobe, not to mention a very decent library from charity outlets. Recent trends in vintage wear, along with the economic realities of the times we now live in, have completely eradicated any stigma attached to shopping second-hand. Not only is it economical, charity shopping is also sustainable and guilt-free—each purchase will be helping a great cause. However, it is worth keeping in mind that navigating the wealth of charity shops around the city takes time, patience and good dash of creativity. A few of the best charity shops are Oxfam and Enable Ireland on South Great George’s Street and the Dublin Simon Community shop on Lower Camden Street.
Oxfam has a fairly good vintage section with higher priced designer brands and a bridal emporium upstairs. The Enable Ireland manages to stand out on the charity shop Mecca that is this stretch of George’s Street because of its fantastic ornate window displays. I have seen more than a few business heads turn to admire on passing by. These displays are a lesson in what can be done with a few Euro and a bit of imagination. A little further up, the Dublin Simon Community shop on Camden Street always seems to have some striking, cutting-edge trends on show—perfect if you are on the lookout for something unique.
What I love about these places is that you simply never know what you might find—in many ways they have the feel of Victorian-era curiosity shops. Most of the charity shops in and around Dublin city centre stock bric-a-brac, books, CDs and records, jewellery and of course clothes. There is quite a good variety of ladies clothing to be found. Unfortunately, this is not the case for men’s clothing. I suspect this may be to do with a widespread habit amongst Irish men who tend to wear their clothes until they fall off their very backs and/or their wives, mothers, girlfriends take decisive action.
Don’t Ditch, Donate: As the time nears for your departure from Dublin, it is worth keeping the charity shops in mind. Anything you do not wish to transport across the Atlantic will be gratefully received by the volunteer staff who work in charity shops all around the city.