Pictured here at Wayside Op Shop Sydney at a recent Op shopping trip with my girl Marieke. Found so many treasures. Wearing Hugo Boss Dress dressed down with a simple white t shirt and sneakers available for hire @ekoluv  

Pictured here at Wayside Op Shop Sydney at a recent Op shopping trip with my girl Marieke. Found so many treasures. Wearing Hugo Boss Dress dressed down with a simple white t shirt and sneakers available for hire @ekoluv  


I’ve always loved shopping small and supporting local businesses. Ever since I was a child I would go to my local market or op shop with my mother to find a bargain. It was also our way to spend quality time together and I just fell in love with the sense of community and also the treasures you could find in a market or op shop. Thrifting became a new hobby or sport I should say lol.  Became obsessed with scouring the racks for unwanted treasures which were waiting to be loved by someone again. One’s trash can be another’s treasure. I also didn’t realise that I have always supported the circular economy in this way. Mostly only shopping second hand I realised almost my entire life has been spent around closing the loop and making the most of what is already in existence and pro long the lifespan of unwanted items by rarely buying new.

So how does one shop small and support their local community this holiday season? Here find my top tips on how you can shop differently this holiday season and your wardrobe and wallet will also thank you for it.

If you’re looking for unique gifts this Christmas then look no further than your community and support a local designer, maker, artist or entrepreneur. You can shop new or second hand at your local market, an op shop, that little boutique that you know of or even a friend you know that makes things. Shopping small not only helps your community but you can find the most interesting, delightful and different gifts. The best gifts I find are the ones that give back!

1. Markets

Your local market can be full of treasures either new or old. Check your nearest community market which features creations from artists, makers and entrepreneurs. There are also plenty of Second hand markets around too. Plenty of opportunities to find unique gifts to give and in turn your helping support your local community/neighbours. It’s a win, win!

2. Op Shops

Your local op shop can have a range of gifts to suit anyone, most op shops stock not just fashion but homewares, books and even beauty products too. Check out your local op shop for hidden treasures,  found a pair of 100% wool Givenchy pants in my local Vinnies op shop! Plus shopping in an op shop not only supports the circular economy and helps to divert waste from landfill but these organisations give back to charity so you are literally giving gifts that give back in return, usually tenfold.

3. Local Boutiques

That little boutique you know of in your area or possibly near town that you love. Why not stop in and see what new things they have in stock. You’ll find in a little boutique that most of the things they stock you probably can’t find elsewhere and therefore can make shopping for a unique gift so easy. Y shopping in your local boutique your also supporting someone’s small business and therefore giving back to them rather than a massive brand/shopping mall plus  find the boutique shopping environment a lot more enriching and is usually a more pleasant experience than your typical fast fashion (or should i say fast food) store in a big shopping

4. That friend that makes things

I always get bombarded during holiday season since I’m a jewellery designer but I do love making custom pieces for other people especially when it’s a gift or for a special occasion. You may know someone or a friend of a friend may be just the person you could chat to who could create something special for you as a gift for someone. This can be one of the most unique, special and personal ways to give a gift that is treasured forever. So go on and think of who you know that might be able to create/make something for you, it might be just what you are looking for.  

My next post will feature my top markets, op shops and little boutiques on Sydney, stay tuned…