Skip to content

Cost-conscious fashion

Style Editor Mia Flook walks us through the best charity shops in Bristol, teaching us how to elevate our outfits on a budget.

By Mia Flook, Style Co-Head Editor

The Croft// Style Editor Mia Flook walks us through the best charity shops in Bristol, teaching us how to elevate our outfits on a budget.

As Freshers week kicks off and a new year begins, here is my personal guide to amplifying your outfits on and off campus, featuring the best charity shops Bristol has to offer. These places will not only bless your bank balance but also uphold sustainability!

The Top Spots for Fashion Bargains in Bristol

Cotham Hill

Step into the vibrant world of Cotham Hill, just a leisurely five-minute stroll from the University. It boasts a concentrated cluster of charity shops (and coffee shops in between!). While it's tempting to dive headfirst into the racks of clothing here, I’d advise first checking out the well-stocked accessory sections. Whether you're seeking to add a touch of punk, a splash of colour, or a hint of bohemian flair to your outfits, Cotham Hill's accessory emporiums have you covered.

With stacks of jewellery ranging from roughly £1-5, there is no doubt you will find the perfect style to match and uplift your staple day-to-day outfits. Amp up denim with your pick from the array of belts, and add a touch of chic with purses and brooches. A choice of bags are typically stacked above the shelves, priced around the £5 mark, one of which I’ve personally copped to use for my laptop around campus. If you love budget-friendly finds, Cotham Hill is a haven of possibilities that won't break the bank. The Emporium of Loveliness boutique is also close, featuring £1 rails outside and a huge sale section downstairs!

©Krišjānis Kazaks

Gloucester Road

I can't talk about cost-conscious fashion without discussing Gloucester Road. It's home to one of Bristol’s most densely populated stretches of charity shops. The stretch starts with Shelter and ends with the British Heart Foundation. Here are some of the best vintage garments Bristol has to offer. It’s the place to find flowing dresses, embroidered tops, layered jewellery, and frayed bags that embody Bristol’s free spirit aesthetic. It's also, may I add, a mecca for upcyclers. The Cancer Research store on Gloucester Road is full of rare fabrics perfect for upcycling into tops/scarves or whatever you wish!

Clifton Charity Shops

If your student loan has just landed and you've got some extra cash in your pocket, dive into Clifton's fashion scene! Here, you can score designer items for under £25. The men's sections are filled with good finds, including cargo shorts for just £5 and a large selection of men's T-shirts. Shelter, Clifton has a good selection of vintage pieces and going-out wear. There’s no better place to grab your fresher’s fits.

Finally, Make a Day Out of Budget Shopping! is a sustainable fashion market holding monthly pop-up sales in Bristol's prop-yard, a five-minute walk from Motion. Keep your eyes peeled for their next event. It's sustainable and affordable - a student's dream. Their events feature thousands of unique garments to put your hands on, and they also offer beauty treatments, food, cocktails, music, etc. The perfect excuse for a day out with your mates!

Featured image:Krišjānis Kazaks

Copy Editor: Honey Ryder

Being stylish does not have to break the bank.