One Man’s Trash Is Another Man’s Treasure : Slowfashion Saturday Clothes Swap

Never have I felt this statement to be more true than after organising Doncopolitan’s first ever clothes swap. The idea was, people brought in things they no longer wore or have never worn, and walked away with something that they loved and definitely would wear. It’s possibly THE cheapest way of getting new clothes. Not only that, but if you look around, there is such an amazing feeling that comes with someone picking up something you once had, and looking at it like you once did.
Hosted in Donco’s own HQ on Copley Road there was a washing line packed with clothes, a shoe tower made from Bentley Urban farm crates, two full rails, three tables of folded clothes and key pieces displayed on the walls. Basically, we had tonnes. Some even designer.
On arrival, each guest would be greeted by the stunning bio-queen, Bipolar Abdul. They gave their donation for Doncaster Women’s Aid, and headed into the madness. They could get five garments of any kind for £5, anymore was simply an add on donation.
Upstairs was a small exhibition where Doncaster College students were able to present their work on mannequins. They were given a bag full of garms from Keystone Vintage, all with a little something wrong with them, and just one week to upcycle and make them wearable again. Lets just say, they achieved a lot in one week. Myself, Jonathan Phillips from Keystone, Bipolar Abdul and Lindsay McGlone (@missbuckdich_) all judged the pieces, picking our top three. This was so hard, they were all so good. The winner ended up being a design by Annabelle Thornton. A beautiful white blouse with a ditsy floral print and a lace peplum accentuating the waist. She won a free pick from the Keystone Vintage store, and you can look forward to us doing a Donny Swagger article all about her in the near future. Second place went to a stunning leather corset made by Holly Fisher from an old cowboy boot. Joint third went to Khristie Lawton with a pirate-esque dress made out of scarves, and Emma White reworked Donco girl-boss Rachel Horne’s very own vintage Burberry jacket, transforming it into a truly one of a kind piece.
Blouse by: Annabelle Thornton
Jacket by: Emma White
The fun didn’t stop there, a mini photoshoot occurred when myself and Donco’s own Warren Draper whipped out our cameras – and Spiderboy whipped on some heels. Let’s just say, a model was born. He, Bipolar, Rachel and Lindsay showed everyone just how to work the college guys pieces, just check out the pics.
Jumper by: Anna Baeuerle
Dress by: Natalie Wood
Gilet by: Rosanna Boyes
Corset by: Holly Fisher
Dress by: Khristie Lawton
Top by: Rosanna Boyes
Not only making vegan brownies, almond cookies and bringing lots of tea and cake, Rachel Horne and Joe Powell managed to transform a meeting room into a make shift changing room. Using only off cuts of material, posters, bulldog clips and string. Mirrors, chairs and the occasional visual aid gave the overall look and feel of what we were going for: slow fashion.
But what is slow fashion? I hear you ask. It is the practise of consuming slowly and mindfully.  Keeping good quality garments for a long time, recycling or repairing rather than throwing into landfill. This is a good thing to commit to in this day and age, what with vintage being a trend. What better way to dress like someone back in the day, than wearing something that is actually from said era. Also, because people used to make things with the intention  to last, you won’t have to throw them away in a week. High street favourites are most definitely pursuers of fast fashion. Trends for them change every week, new styles are in, and things are sold and produced cheaply and quickly to meet that demand.
Another way to be a slow fashion follower is to shop locally and shop home-made. Get creative about how you use things. I’ve explored this in the next issue of Donny Swagger, citing all the best independent fashion shops of Doncaster. Get your hands on something unique this Christmas. Happy shopping, and be sure to take it slow.


  1. Annabelle Thornton

    The University Centre at Doncaster College have only just seen this article on the Vintage Slow Fashion. A great article and so pleased to have taken part in the event and especially surprised I won the competition! Thank you for hosting a great event!

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