Sienna Miller: ‘Rooting around in a charity shop is like hunting for treasure’

Sienna Miller is a spokesperson for the charity Oxfam, which runs secondhand shops throughout Britain and Europe. I used to shop at an Oxfam store when I lived in Berlin. I found some great boots there! Sienna did an interview a short while ago to promote the cause, which I’m just seeing now. She’s encouraging people to shop secondhand for the month of September. (I would easily be able to do this for myself, I do that most months, but my son needed clothes for school and it’s harder to find gently used clothing for men. It’s also harder to find secondhand clothing in the UK from what I’ve heard.) Sienna loves charity shopping, as they call it in the UK, and she compared it to hunting for treasure. I agree, it’s always been my favorite way to shop. It’s also environmentally friendly. Here’s some of her interview with The Standard about that:

Sienna Miller… is the face of the charity’s new #SecondHandSeptember campaign which aims to shed a light on the devastating effects of fast fashion.

Want to take part? The challenge is to buy only pre-owned clothes for the month of September, and donate any garments you no longer love. The fashion and textile industry currently accounts for up to 10 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, according to Quantis, and avoiding buying new is one way to try and slow production.

“I am delighted to be the face of Oxfam’s Second Hand September to help draw attention to how choosing second-hand fashion can be kinder for our planet,” said Miller, who will be visible in the windows of more than 500 Oxfam shops across the UK. “These small changes can make a huge difference. And rooting around in a charity shop is like hunting for treasure. Be a magpie!…”

“The climate crisis is already wreaking havoc on people’s lives with extreme weather events that are destroying homes and harvest,” said Danny Sriskandarajah, Chief Executive of Oxfam GB, of the true issues fast fashion is contributing to. “Choosing second-hand is one way we can leave a lighter footprint on the planet while sending a message to retailers that we want them to slow down fashion.”


The main argument I’ve heard against shopping at Goodwill and other secondhand clothing stores is that they’re messy and it can be frustrating trying to find good pieces. I understand that, and if I was fussy about that I wouldn’t want to charity shop either. For people like that I would suggest consignment shopping, where the stores are usually well organized and the stock is clean and high quality. I’m with Sienna though, I love digging through Goodwill! I’ve scored a Burberry women’s suit (in my size! I sized out of it during the pandemic and gave it to my son’s girlfriend though), a handful of Diane Von Furstenberg dresses, and several pairs of high end jeans from brands like Hudson, Joes and Adriano Goldschmied. If I am unfamiliar with a brand I just search for it on my phone. You can save so much money this way. Plus, as Oxfam’s CEO points out, it’s better for the environment to reuse clothing.


This photo is beautiful!
Embed from Getty Images

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17 Responses to “Sienna Miller: ‘Rooting around in a charity shop is like hunting for treasure’”

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  1. Krista says:

    Oooh, I love thrift shopping! My two teenage girls and I do the rounds once a month or so to check out what’s there. I’ve found some nice pieces as well as tshirts and jeans that I can use in my construction based job. These places are a great place for books as well!

  2. nicegirl says:

    Love it too

  3. (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

    I know I donate great stuff to my local Jewish Thrift Council shop. When I’ve gone in, I’ve found some AMAZING stuff! All items are cleaned before being put on the floor. The *only* thing in this place is that you have to go in wearing a tank top (or a bathing suit, if you want to try pants on in the corner lol) so you can try things on, as there aren’t any dressing rooms. Still, I’ve gotten some *great* designer stuff for $15-40 tops!

    This place also has shoes, purses, furniture etc. even tvs. A college kid/or one starting out, can furnish an entire apt. from this place!

  4. August Rain says:

    It’s not difficult to buy second hand in the UK for men at all. I just got back from a work trip with my husband and we were counting the thrift stuff we had been wearing.
    Also a good tip is here in London is to go to charity shops (as Oxfam shops and the like are called I inasmuch as a lot of thrift shops here support causes) in wealthy neighborhoods. You find the most incredible stuff.
    Another key thing to do is to go browsing often and only look at stuff for your size ?or you can get frustrated), rather than shop when you urgently need something.

  5. BeanieBean says:

    I’ve found lots of really nice (to me) framed artwork at various charity thrifts. And I found a really nice, brand new sofa at a Habitat for Humanity shop once, too. Browse everything, because you never know!

  6. Betsy says:

    I love thrift shopping. It’s less rewarding at a larger size, but it’s easy to find kids’ clothes. I’m not a big buyer of clothes anyway. My MIL has about 75 tops, all of which look pretty much the same, and she loves shopping. I don’t see the point. It uses so many resources at all ends.

  7. Mindy Lee says:

    I love that she and they are promoting this! I found two great dresses at a thrift shop recently for $20 each and they each retail for over $200. And one of them still had the tags on!

    And wow, Sienna looked beautiful at the Met. She’s hardly aged a bit!

  8. I remember on the podcast you mentioned sleeping in sundresses you’ve gotten from the goodwill and immediately I was like I’m not the only one! They’re super comfy.
    I love thrift stores and my mom and I always go wherever we’re on vacation. Totally agree about the treasure hunting aspect. She and I just found a beautiful roll top desk at a Salvation Army store. Secondhand shops are great for furniture and I also like knowing that they’ve disinfected all the pillows and stuffed toys, etc.

  9. Lay low says:

    Unfortunately, these rarely have plus size clothing. This is the frustrating part and what prevents me from shopping at secondhand clothing shops.

  10. Bean says:

    I love Thred Up for both selling, donating and buying clothes online.

  11. Stacy Dresden says:

    She has aged really well! I love consignment shopping.

  12. The Recluse says:

    I used to donate clothes I could no longer fit into to Goodwill or Salvation Army. Otherwise, I wear things to pieces.

  13. Blueskies says:

    This is such a great cause, I love that Sienna is promoting it! It’s something I would choose as a celebrity, too. I’ve been shopping/thrifting second hand for about 20 years now, I much prefer it to looking for new clothes. I’m seeing more thrift/consignment shops than ever before and I hope it remains strong.

  14. Marigold says:

    I hate shopping at goodwill. I’m not a person that is good a digging through things to find treasures. I can’t do kohl’s type stores either. My adhd brain doesn’t connect. I like places like eBay where I can put in a brand and scroll. I have gotten some used Johnny Was blouses that way.

  15. jferber says:

    I’d like to de-clutter now that I’ve collected everything in the f-cking world.

  16. Anh says:

    Secondhand as it’s used in this article should only either be one word or hyphenated, not two words. Can’t believe such a visible error would be made in a large-scale, public campaign.

    Second error, magpies liking shiny things (if that is what Sienna is referring to) is actually a furphy.

    Apart from that, love the environmental message. Something i don’t understand about the young ‘uns today are those who participate in “fast fashion.” Aren’t they worried about the planet that they’ll be inhabiting longer than i? Guess they’re not all Greta Thunbergs