Denim shirt.

Best of the blogs: the secrets of second-hand style

We follow a lot of fashion bloggers who know how to turn charity-shop finds into something stylish. Here are some of the best tips we’ve come across this month.

It’s possible to find outfits that are both elegant and parent-friendly

Jo at Britishette (slogan: “second hand is a lifestyle”) has found the perfect, elegant travel outfit. It works on trains, planes and with small children climbing over you – and it’s from a charity shop.

Mix and match to avoid the “fancy dress” look

Amie at Credit Crunch Chic shows the stylish way to mix vintage and modern: you can’t tell in her photo which is which. She says “I like to incorporate vintage elements into my everyday looks and I think the key to doing this (for me, anyway!) is to mix those older pieces with more contemporary styling so they don't look too costume-y.”

Start with a timeless classic

Lauren at Lily Makes agrees: “The best way to wear vintage and pre-loved clothing is to style key pieces with new separates or modern accessories.” As an easy way in, she suggests choosing as your starting point one of those wardrobe essentials that never really goes out of fashion. Her blog post shows seven ways to wear a vintage denim jacket – there’s lots of inspiration here.

Always be on the look-out

Poppy Chanelle, who blogs as Misseverydayelegance, is interviewed in the Fara Charity Shops blog about her personal style. She says:  “I try to go on a charity shop crawl at least once a week, as people donate items every day, so there is always something new to find.”

It has to be amazing, but it doesn’t have to be perfect

Graeme at The Zipyard Bedford says: “If you find something that is amazing, but annoyingly the wrong size or slightly broken – buy it and have it altered.” He also has some good tips for thinking laterally: women can find great tailoring in the menswear sections, for example.

If you look hard enough, you can find your dream dress

Beyond Retro invited some fashion writers and stylists to pick out their favourite vintage dress. There are some gorgeous outfits, and some great tips too.  Each of the people interviewed have interesting insights, but they all come back to the same reason for choosing vintage: getting your hands on something no-one else could get.