Finding things, Thrifty

Charity Shops in Streatham and the Charity Shop Blog Hop

31 May, 2012

When I was younger Streatham was known for only one thing; its gargantuan and spectacular ice rink.  We would put on our cool bomber jackets, exchange our best crepes (yoof speak for shoes, mum)  for some skanky boots and skate the day away to the winsome harmonies of BoyzIIMen.

Now though, memories of skating in Streatham are being squeezed out by the minutes spent gallivanting around the charity shops.

I am a charity shop ADDICT. I start going through withdrawal if I don’t go for a week (symptoms include pottering around my friend’s homes, picking things up from their shelves with an inquiring gaze.)  I like that it is a kind of shopping that requires imagination and vision (my husband didn’t have that vision when I showed him a little packet of retro Christmas candles this evening) and that it builds patience as you dedicatedly wait until you come across the item you hope for.

So Streatham REALLY floats my boat. It must have the most number of charity shops per sq mile then any other area in London. In the one mile walk from Streatham Hill along Streatham High Road to Streatham Station there are TWELVE  of ’em and two junk/antique shops. Never has a road so aptly been nicknamed (er, by me and Tim) The Golden Mile.

Here is the run down but also check out the google map where I’ve  handily plotted them for you!

Give a Little

Begin at the top with Give a Little at 77 Streatham Hill- just opposite the Mega Bowl. Bursting at the seams with clothes and trinkets, both up and downstairs. Clothes tend to be on the steeper side – £7-8 for skirts  but all good quality. The bric-a-brac is fairly priced, nice mugs for £1.

Trinity Hospice Shop
Stay on the same side of the road for this sprawling jumble sale kind of a shop,  chocka block with quirky things and people. I love the kids clothes section- literally a tiny mountain of garments that you bury your nose into – three for £1.

A little shop that involves popping off the main street a few metres, but well worth browsing as the prices for things vary wildly.

Relief Fund for Romania
Carry back down the main road for a while until you come across the little yellow sign pointing you up to the left. This one has £1 rails- hurrah! Sometimes when you need jumpers for craft projects you really don’t want to spend more than £1 but these rails are so rare.

British Red Cross Books and Music
Cross over the road for the next two. A huge selection here, carefully laid out. In specific Books and Music shops I find you don’t get the bargains you might in another shop but you are paying for a higher chance of finding something ace, aren’t you?

Trinity Hospice
This Trinity Hospice Shop  is as sparse as the first is sprawling. But they have selected the choiciest cuts, and there are some creative little crannies. (Doe we say crannies?)

Nip back over the road for this new, massive Oxfam – this one is the Ikea of chazza shops. Clean, spacious, affordable and air conditioned! Primarily for furniture and bric a brac, they have some gorgeous things in there. Our sofa hails from here, this massive, bed like thing and it was only £30.

Amazing shoes and clothes- I snapped up a pair of Reef flip flops from there today for £3.99, they kinda, mostly fit me, even though they say a size 10 and I’m a size 6. Just a few inches sticking out the back. I wonder if I can snip that off…

Cancer Research
They have the longest rail for dresses ever seen (each one around the £5 mark) and the BEST tunes. One of my favourite things about charity shopping is the eclectic music and how it is perfectly acceptable to singalong. (No?)

British Red Cross
Huge selection of clothes and lovely crockery. They always seems to have some nice retro bits in here too.

Working for Charity
Tiny shop with a small selection of things. The things were LOVELY but, dare I say it, a bit overpriced. I saw this tea set and thought “OOf, I’d stretch to £15 for that” as it was so beautiful. Turns out they wanted £58. Yep. £58.

What the?

The ongoing charity shop pricing dillema. See, on one hand I agree that they have a responsibility to their charity to get as much as they can for an item. On the other hand, I feel like they play an important redistribution role too – making beautiful and good things affordable for those less well off.

This is quite a new shop and  swanky with it.  It’s a Next Generation charity shop – making charity shopping more clean and appealing to the masses. (However, personally? Give me a rumble in the manky old jumble anyday.)

There it is,  The Golden Mile – for some of the best charity shopping in London. The prices reflect those of other Capital charity shops – no 50p china plates here- but for sheer volume and overall thriftiness Streatham is Where It Is At.

Having a little one, I have to plan my charity shop traipsing carefully- ensuring Ramona gets a chance to run wild either before or after. Being a scorching day we trundled round the corner to Tooting Bec Lido, this fabulous old school pool, where we bumped into a wonderful friend, scoffed ice cream and splashed our merry wee hearts out. Heaven.

And Now, Roll Up, Roll Up-  Time for the Charity Shop Blog Hop!

I am well excited about reading everyone’s write ups- be it local or exotic.

Please link back here (with the image if poss) and visit all the other linker-upperers to share a comment– hopefully you’ll find even more charity shop lovers than you knew of.  Hurraahhh!

Just click below where the links (and photos) will be displayed in all their glory…


And finally, if you are on Twitter use the hashtag #charityhop (see what I did there?)

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  • ChrisTeaAndCakes 31 May, 2012 at 6:36 am

    Lovely post and such a great idea, looking forward to some Londoners sharing their trails as my sister is having her hen do in a couple of weeks time and we’re going to the big smoke to tat and vintage shop our little socks off.

    • lulastic 31 May, 2012 at 10:27 am

      Hightail it to Streatham ladies! #glam

      • ChrisTeaAndCakes 31 May, 2012 at 12:29 pm

        Will now be top of our list! Thanks. x

        And yes, we do do the word crannies. x

  • Lakota [Faith hope and Charity Shopping] 31 May, 2012 at 7:10 am

    I am not dressed and still have to get two ‘kings’ washed, brushed and into crowns and capes for school but I shall be back later for a proper read!

    • lulastic 31 May, 2012 at 10:26 am

      Hehehehe. Love your prioritising!

  • Magpie Monday – the joy of charity shops « minibreak mummy 31 May, 2012 at 8:38 am

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  • minibreakmummy 31 May, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Really interesting post. One day I might do something similar for Beeston. As it is, I’ve linked up my ‘Magpie Monday – the joy of charity shops’ post.

    • lulastic 31 May, 2012 at 10:26 am

      Lovely post. I reckon Beeston needs a write up for sure though!

  • StReatham Soul (@StReathamSoul) 31 May, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    Aces! Great write up :):)

    ‘Working for Charity’ is actually called ‘All Aboard’. I’ve found some incredible stuff in there (awesome leather braces, a purple suit) over the years, but they are at the pricier end and also for ‘charity’ read ‘religious something-or-other they’re touchy about revealing’, so always a bit of an ethical dilemma giving them cash!

    • lulastic 1 June, 2012 at 10:10 am

      Hmmmm, curiouser and curiouser. I did think the name “Working for Charity” lacked a bit of originality!

  • Bek @ WeAreWildThings 31 May, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Never been to Streatham, might have to venture. I’m trying to wean my addiction at the moment. Running out of space in the flat for anything! Thanks for the blog hop. 🙂

    • lulastic 1 June, 2012 at 10:11 am

      Hehe, maybe run a boot at a booty sale, get read of stuff, THEN go to Streatham!

      Thanks for taking part


  • Lakota [Faith hope and Charity Shopping] 31 May, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    Bloody brilliant post my dear – thank you! I used to work on Streatham High Rd about 10 years ago and whilst I did do my fair share of charity shopping on my lunch break there certainly weren’t as many as this. It’s been ages since I’ve been there (or the lido, must rectify that too), am obviously overdue a visit. Maybe we should meet up some time?

    Finally finished my Crystal Palace post and will now go and read everyone elses!

    • lulastic 1 June, 2012 at 10:11 am

      I’d LOVE to meet for a flat white at the coffee bar you mention in your post!

  • thriftshopperforpeace 1 June, 2012 at 2:09 am

    as if i needed another reason to visit London; this cinches it! i’ve saved your map under “favourites” and will now start saving my pennies so i can fly all the way over there to thrift shop. (one of my dream jobs would be to organize vacations around thrift shopping. wouldn’t that be a hoot? do you think it’s a niche market?)

    • lulastic 1 June, 2012 at 10:12 am

      I having been having the same thought – Charity Shop Tours of London! May be a little too niche perhaps 🙂

  • Michelle 1 June, 2012 at 1:21 pm

    OOh I’m not far from Streatham and do love a charity shop session. At the moment I go to Beckenham – on the High Street there’s probably about 6 in a row. I have found some fantastic bits and bobs -mostly clothes but some china too. My best buy has been a grey cape. It’s really warm, really versatile, you can chuck it in the bottom of a bag and it doesn’t crumple, use it as a picnic rug, wrap cold kids in it, lay it over yourself on the plane. Fab and all for a couple of quid. I’ll defo check out Streatham. Great post! Michelle

    • lulastic 1 June, 2012 at 8:12 pm

      I LURRRVE Beckenham, have got some of my fanciest clothes from there. You should join in the linky – still open for a week!
      Your cape sounds completely lovely. x

  • Penny Dreadful Vintage 2 June, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    Fab guide, bookmarking this for future use!

    Penny Dreadful Vintage

  • Singlemarriedmum 3 June, 2012 at 7:35 am

    Next time I go to stay with my sister in Dulwich, I’m DEFINITELY taking her to Streatham with your map in my pocket.
    I nearly chickened out of posting mine, because after I’d done it I found one written by CSTourism about the same town that was a lot less gushy! Hey-ho. But I do go a fair bit which should be an advantage?
    I’ve also gone off on a tangent, so not solely charity shops. Sorry, won’t do it again x

  • Kezzie 3 June, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    Hello! I loved your post over at Lakota’s and I love this one! You sound so enthusiastic! Brilliant! I’ll definitely come back for a visit if I can work out how to follow in wordpress….

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  • Liz 8 June, 2012 at 11:11 am

    Oh dear, looks like I’m too late for the party! I’ve just done a round-up on my blog, but never mind – maybe next time x

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    Oh – I’m another latecomer to the Charity Shop Blog Hop party – just posted a guide to Derby if anyone fancies a look

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  • omalone1 6 December, 2012 at 2:20 am

    MOuth watering. Cancellations tomorrow. I am going STREATHAM

  • Charity 4 June, 2013 at 11:59 am

    Interesting post, thanks to share this wonderful post. Online charity is really a good idea of connecting people and build relationship.

    Nicole Martin

  • Anand 18 September, 2013 at 7:21 am

    Hope i will also do same for Beeston. anyway nice post i love it 🙂

  • becky 28 September, 2014 at 10:54 am

    Thanks, Alyson! Great reminder of what we need to be doing and when!

  • mona 18 October, 2015 at 1:58 am

    hi 🙂 are there still as many charity shops on that strip you so kindly mapped out? i’m looking to go tomorrow with hubby to try the whole meal cafe but need something else to do to make the trip worth while….and we both *love* charity shops. thanks! 🙂

    • Lucy 21 October, 2015 at 11:31 am

      I beleive they are all still there! Woo! Have fun!

      • mona 21 October, 2015 at 11:32 pm

        sorry, didn’t know you had moved to new zealand (jealous! lol)…we’re only in sutton so shall venture up there one day~ 🙂 following you on fb now, intriguing stuff (even tho i’m not a parent)!

  • bioniclady 6 March, 2016 at 2:20 am

    I really liked your post regarding charity shops. I was in Streatham a couple of weeks ago and saw a charity shop with a few hats. I need one for a wedding. The shop was closed today unfortunately, but as I edged my nose nearer to the window, I am sure it said £14!! Omg…is it me or is that overpriced. Went along the same side to 2 other charity shops and couldn’t believe the prices they were charging. For anyone who does not know. I believe (unless corrected), Charity shops by law only have to give 0.12p in the pound to the actual charity. It used to be great going around looking for stuff years ago and I know that the charities used to get more of the money. I do not believe that is so now. I believe it is purely business enterprise and if people looked properly at the numbers, they may be shocked at how much goes where. Sorry to moan, but people want a bargain and if you’re lucky, you may stumble across one at a reasonable price. Your blog is great and very useful and honest. Thanks. Ps. Any tips on where to get a nice hat at a reasonable price would be appreciated.