Neil Mach

Author – Fantasy Realism

70s paper

How does it feel to be forced to wear cast offs?

Due to poverty, the worldwide demand for second-hand clothing is on the rise

Buying clothes at charity jumble sales was extremely common in the 1970s 

Doug, my closest friend from that period, had a talent for finding second hand deals on market stalls

Doug remodelled, personalised, and accessorised the cast-offs to create amazing new outfits

My mother dressed me top-to-toe in second hand jumble sale threads. This was not a choice, but necessity 

Though other mothers believed jumble sale clothes were ‘unclean’

Even my mum thought second-hand clothes were not sanitary, particularly underwear. She boiled handkerchiefs. We couldn’t afford dry cleaning

Mum bought fresh clean underwear

The fact that second-hand is ‘donated’ puts some people off purchasing seconds – they associate charity with being ‘poor’

Second-hand clothing purchasing has increased again in the 2020s

Growing concern over the environmental & ethical consequences of the clothing sector caused this resurge

Rising prices across all sectors of the economy has also helped the second hand clothes market flourish

There are around 4,000 shops that specialise in used clothing in the UK

Sales in second hand clothing increased by 17.6 percent in 2019

As the economy slows, sales of second hand garments will likely rise

42 percent of UK consumers said that more than half their wardrobe is made up of second-hand products!

Charity shops are the most common used clothing retailers in the UK these days, replacing jumble sales

Large number of buyers also search for used clothing on internet auction sites

(Thanks to for the figures on this page)

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