Sensational and sustainable shopping with Sheffield charity

Welcome to our new fashion column, brought to you by The Fashion Exchange, a fashion styling and events company based in Sheffield.

Sunday, 27th June 2021, 4:45 am

In each edition we will share catwalk trends, on offer from local retailers modelled by local readers and street style spotting, looking at individual style that’s already all around our wonderful city!

Please do get involved in this column – if you’d like to feature as a model or have a particular style dilemma send us an email, we’ll do our best to help.

It’s been a funny old year hasn’t it? In amongst such unbelievable circumstances we have been living in, being charitable seems to have shone through every rainbow in every street. The fashion sector has always struggled to be seen as charitable, with so many manufacturers and designers send unused fabric to landfill or burn it rather find a second home. Although the tide is turning and fashion is becoming more guided by a sense of community.

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Natasha Meldrum, a performer from Sheffield
Natasha Meldrum, a performer from Sheffield

There is nowhere better placed in South Yorkshire to highlight a long life for unwanted clothing then The Suit Works, based at Kelham in Sheffield

Established in 2016, the charity supports unemployed people of all ages with a free styling session and an outfit to wear to interview to help give them confidence in their return to work. In their building it’s a treasure trove of donations, for male and female clients, and they rely on donations from the general public.

“We are so fortunate to get so many donations, and it’s a great way to prevent clothing being thrown out or going to landfill. We accept anything if it still looks smart enough to wear.”said Vanda Maddison who founded the charity.

We stopped by to learn more about their latest venture in the charity The Boutique Works.

Natasha Meldrum, a performer from Sheffield

This is a vast selection of clothing that has been donated to the charity, but isn’t quite suitable for job interviews, so they have been set aside to be available to the general public to buy via their website, and what a range they have.

There is everything from vintage dresses and shirts, glamorous evening wear from the high street and some very unique one off pieces. Everything is in tip-top condition and most reasonably priced. Often pre-loved can be slightly off trend or one step behind, not here! We wish we’d snapped up this beautiful dress shown in the photographs.

“I’ve got my first post-Covid wedding to go to, and I’m so pleased with this dress. I live locally so used click and collect to pop down today” said Natasha Meldrum, a performer from Sheffield . “I’m even more excited now I’ve come to collect it, and seen how my purchase is really helping the charity. It’s made me feel so good!”

The dress Natasha has bought is a wonderful floral print vintage tea dress, and is perfect for a summer wedding. The fabric is a delicate chiffon, perfect for the warm days ahead and the floral print is so understated and pretty.

This is a great initiative to help support the charity to raise the funds they need to keep them helping people dress for success – over 625 people have been helped so far!

“Our new venture with The Boutique Works really does underpin our ethos on clothing never being wasted, but not only that, you can buy something really unique at a great price and help us as a charity too – its win-win!” said Faye Mellors who works for the charity.

With a starting selection of clothing like we saw when we looked, The Boutique Works online shop will certainly be on our radar to search out a pre-loved bargain and let our own personal charitable rainbow shine through.

Top tip: Use an accent handbag to really bring a pop of colour to an outfit

All clothing from The Boutique Works and visit www.thesuitworks.co.uk/shop/ for more information.

Price Guide:

Dress £30

Bag £5