By Tiziana Murgo
It sounds like a year-end resolution, but it’s actually a challenge that’s increasing in popularity among our friends and people we know on social media: How can I go an entire year without buying new clothes? Very few of us have the ability to sew our own, but if you live in London the challenge can become reality, save you a lot of money and it’s stress-free. Thanks to swapping events running in the capital, we are more and more turning our back on conventional shopping and opening our mind to this new way of ‘shopping’, reducing the environmental impact of fast fashion.
Betsy’s Closet Swap Shop is one of the best-organised and most child-friendly kids in town to introduce you to this whole experience. Swapping is not just searching compulsively for your summer dress and beach sandals to fit with that amazing summer hat bought in Greece; swapping is an experience. Whether you do it by yourself, with your family or a group of friends, it’s definitely going to be a success for everyone. Their motto is Why shop, when you can swap!
We have been following Betsy’s Closet for a couple of years as we share the idea of the importance of protecting our environment while having fun. Because it’s not just about swapping and clothes, it’s also about a spirit of community—about bringing people together, having fun, enjoying live music, local artists and pop-ups.
The eco-friendly, conscious-living swapping events are hosted around London in various locations. It’s a mobile enterprise, which offers the advantage of picking the location and the venue that is convenient for you. You can follow them on Facebook where they regularly update their calendar, as they collaborate with different organisations and venues across London.
The entry to the event is usually £5 and the concept is simple: you bring unwanted clothes or shoes or accessories from home (in good condition) and you can swap them for anything you might like at the event. And if you don’t find anything suitable, you are given points for the next event, so that you have a sort of credit.
Swapping events are held in pubs, parks, markets and so on, and some are kids’ clothes only. So why do you keep stuffing outgrown kids’ clothes in that pile? Swapping is the solution: it’s fun, it’s relaxing, it’s for the whole family and it’s good for the environment.