HERE’S OUR GUIDE TO THE BEST STOCKED SEC­OND-HAND SHOP­PING IN THE UAE

Friday - - Fashion -

DUBAI FLEA MAR­KET

Dubai Flea Mar­ket now has five lo­ca­tions around Dubai, in­clud­ing Zabeel Park and JLT. There’s no way to play it down – whether you’re buy­ing or sell­ing, the mar­kets are crazy busy, but you re­ally can pick up some amaz­ing finds. Good pre­sen­ta­tion of a stall doesn’t al­ways mean qual­ity, so don’t be put off by the stalls that are just messy piles of clothes rather than the care­fully mer­chan­dised ar­eas. The trick is to rum­mage. Op­er­a­tions man­ager Mo­ham­mad Al Hamwi told me the mar­ket is so popular they are plan­ning to ex­pand into more lo­ca­tions af­ter summer, in­clud­ing in Abu Dhabi. Dubai Flea Mar­ket takes place ev­ery week at var­i­ous lo­ca­tions. dubai­flea­mar­ket.com

MY EX WARDROBE

My Ex Wardrobe was set up by Bri­tish ex­pat Sian Row­lands when she couldn’t find any pre-loved cloth­ing in the UAE. Sian in­vites people to bring un­wanted cloth­ing to her ware­house in Al Quoz where she or­gan­ises and stores it all. She holds an event ev­ery few months where shop­pers are in­vited to come and buy the pieces she and her team have col­lected over the pre­vi­ous months. ‘I am very spe­cific about what I ac­cept,’ says Sian. ‘All the items have to be in good con­di­tion and the pieces have to be af­ford­able’ – so you won’t find any su­per high-end brands here. ‘I’ve been do­ing this a long time now and I have a good idea of what will sell and what won’t, so I know what to ac­cept. Although some­times items do surprise me!’ Sian adds. Most of the My Ex Wardrobe events co­in­cide with a ladies’ night, so it’s a great op­por­tu­nity to get to­gether, so­cialise and shop. Myexwardrobe.com

SO CHIC

So Chic was founded by Euro­pean duo Alex Bouvy from Bel­gium and Emma Di Rito from France. They spend months col­lect­ing un­wanted sec­ond-hand, and in many cases, un­worn, cloth­ing from women here in the UAE (and also from France) be­fore hold­ing a twice-a-year sale with thou­sands of items. They also have a shop where you can go and get a lim­ited amount of their col­lected pieces all year round. The style of So Chic is very spe­cific and the founders are very fussy about the type of items they select. Ev­ery­thing must have a Euro­pean, and in par­tic­u­lar, Parisian, feel to it and be in very good con­di­tion. Alex and Emma will visit the homes of the ladies that are do­nat­ing

to help select suit­able pieces. Ev­ery­thing in their ware­house re­ally is so chic with many de­signer brands and one-off pieces. Be­cause of that you can ex­pect to pay slightly more than other out­lets, but there are some in­cred­i­ble bar­gains. Sochic.ae

SEC­OND HAND DUBAI

If you thought we were alone in our sec­ond­hand quest, think again: The Sec­ond Hand Dubai Face­book group has over 260,000 mem­bers in the UAE. This so­cial me­dia plat­form was started by Dubai res­i­dents and is for lo­cals to sell their un­wanted goods. This can be any­thing from clothes to house­hold goods. There’s a lot to sift through but if you go onto the page at the right time you can find some amaz­ing bar­gains. You do have to go and pick up your items, so check where the per­son you’re buy­ing from is lo­cated.

SHEDD

Shedd was cre­ated by the founders of Du­biz­zle as a plat­form for people to sell un­wanted cloth­ing. It’s pretty sim­ple – you scroll through the hun­dreds of items on the fash­ion app and ar­range to meet the sell­ers in per­son to col­lect your goods and hand over the cash. Some items can be de­liv­ered, mak­ing things a lot eas­ier. You’ll find some great bar­gains and there are a lot of sell­ers also sell­ing new items (many of which are im­ported from other coun­tries). The only issue with Shedd is hav­ing the time to meet users to buy your items. It can be a lit­tle dif­fi­cult to ar­range but if you can, there are some great bar­gains.

THE LUXURY CLOSET

This com­pany sells pre-loved de­signer cloth­ing on its UAE-based web­site at a frac­tion of the orig­i­nal price. When it launched in 2011, it mainly fo­cused on bags and leather goods but it has since ex­panded and stocks an ex­ten­sive range of prod­ucts. The site is updated daily with new items and prices are of­ten re­duced fur­ther. You can find some amaz­ing bar­gains on the site. We found a Stella McCart­ney skirt for Dh150 and a Prada top for Dh281. You can pay online and items are de­liv­ered to your door within two to three days (in the UAE). Thelux­u­rycloset.com

DUBAI CHAR­ITY CEN­TRE

One of Dubai’s old­est char­ity stores, this shop in Karama doesn’t just sell clothes but books, house­hold items and ev­ery­thing in be­tween. You can pick up cloth­ing from any­where be­tween Dh5 and Dh25 but you’ll never pay much more than that. It does take some search­ing to find stylish pieces, but they’re in there. Trust us! We found high-street branded pieces for Dh10 and less.

Dress Dh1,300, Lan­vin at So Chic Shoes Dh1,800, Jimmy Choo at So Chic

Jumpsuit Dh712, Diane Von Fursten­berg at The Luxury Closet Shoes Dh35, Top­shop at Dubai Flea Mar­ket

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