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Oxfam’s Clothes Swap 2011: Let the Swishing Commence

With Christmas being right around the corner, now is as good a time as any for a wardrobe revamp… Well maybe not, it’s the end of term and student loans are undoubtedly running low and the chances of y’alls nearest and dearest finding themselves being showered with ‘thrifty’ Yule tide gifts is looking increasingly likely. Style followers everywhere are desperately attempting to conjure up a way of making last year’s Christmas outfits, this year’s statement.

Followers everywhere, (except for those in the know of course), Wednesday 30th November, will see Oxfam Society host a clothes swap shop at The Ropewalk, Lenton. The event will embrace the recent phenomena of clothes swapping, or “swishing”. Clothes swapping has been described as THE new shopping. The craze began as a way for people to indulge in retail therapy, without the carbon footprint. The popularity of “swishing” has escalated as the Recession has continued, and in the same way that charity shop chic has become somewhat of a wonder, clothes swapping has become a trend in itself.

According to TRAID organisation, consumers in the U.K. purchase 2.15 million tonnes of new clothes and shoes each year, and so as to make room for the new, the old is dumped and forgotten about. TRAID organisation’s statistics assert that 900,000 tones of clothing is thrown away on an annual basis, only to end up in landfills across the country. The ethical shopping events hit the mainstream in 2007 when celebrities such as Naomi Campbell and Mischa Barton supported companies, Visa and TRAID in their efforts to host a giant swap shop event in central London. The huge event urged consumers to question their “need” for their purchasing habits and encouraged it’s participants to consider recycling clothing instead of embarking on monthly shopping sprees.

The aim of Wednesday’s event is to promote Oxfam’s ‘Grow’ campaign. The campaign, essentially aspires to end world hunger, and for mankind to learn to live within the planet’s ecological boundaries. The clothes swap shop is just one of the ways that we, the student body, can support recycling and sustainability in order to support Oxfam in their historic challenges.

Clothes swapping is a great way to keep your wardrobe up to date, with (hopefully) like minded people in attendance, the events are a way for the fashion conscious to experiment with new styles, and push the boundaries with their look. The idea of clothes swapping is that people bring quality and not quantity to the table. All items brought to a swap should be clean and in good condition, think – the items you love-so-much-but-wore-to-death-and-cannot-be-pictured-in-AGAIN!

Swishing is the guilt free shopping that everyone has been searching for. No need to hide new labels from friends or go home post- term to tell your mother that instead of buying food you bought four new winter coats. Impact’ Style team will be present at the event, hunting the best finds of the evening and getting snap happy with the swap shopping pro’s. So come along to the Ropewalk, get clever with your clothing and swish!

Jessica Newsome

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