IF you’re the sort who likes to dig out a bargain without getting your hands dirty, Greedy Edie has just the shop for you!
I’ve been a long-distance fan of Siopaella for quite a while now, via their highly-addictive and hugely popular Facebook page, but this weekend I had the pleasure of visiting – in person, actual physical human being in bricks-and-mortar store – for the first time. Regular readers will know that I live in the west of Ireland so my experience of Dublin-based boutiques tends to be virtual, more often than not, but somehow I knew that Siopaella needed a one-on-one before I reported back.
So, story? Well, Siopaella is a consignment store, probably the biggest and busiest in the country. Actually, it’s two consignment stores, one specialising in high-street goodies, the other in designer labels. Both shops are in the bustling Temple Bar quarter, minutes from each other, so you really can’t do one without the other (that would be playing favourites and feelings might be dented).
If you’re new to consigning, the basic premise is that the store will sell your clothes for you and you both take a share in the proceeds – it’s a real win-win scenario, with the shop getting good stock at cheap prices, sellers making a few quid out of unwanted clothing and accessories and customers getting brilliant value. It also results in a shop (or two, in this case) full of really interesting finds at great prices.
For some of you, this might sound too much like hard work. I understand – rummaging is not for everyone and sometimes it’s just easier to fork out full price for a bit more ease and efficiency. And that’s exactly where Siopaella has cleaned up the process. By splitting the stock between the two stores, you know instantly what kind of price bracket you’re in. Not only that but the stock is very clearly divided into the different sizes, massively reducing the necessity to sift and scour. So really, this feels less like a vintage/second-hand shop and more like a boutique.
The thrills, however, are pure jumble sale! Being a magpie for a nice label, I focused my attention on the smaller store and suffered several pulmonary attacks in the process. Fancy a role call? Okay, breathe deep, here we go – Chanel bags, Louis Vuitton luggage, Hermes scarves, Marc Jacobs wedge sneakers, Louboutins shoes, Victoria Beckham sunglasses, a Rick Owens jacket, Maje dress, a Manley cardigan…and so much more but I think you’ve probably got the point.
Price-wise, don’t expect to get change for €50 if you’re feeling the label lust but things are hugely discounted from their recommended retail prices. The Louboutins, for example, were €249; gold Ella Tahari heels, €195, RRP €400; the Maje dress was €59, which the lovely shop assistant very openly pointed out was priced down due to a minor stain (something I hadn’t noticed). For more pocket-friendly splurges, the larger Siopaella offers discounted high-street stuff so, for the same €50, you could score yourself a few special wardrobe additions, from labels such as Asos, Topshop, All Saints and Zara.
If you like what you see but, like me, live outside the Pale, fear not, as the Siopaella Facebook page is a huge winner. They post batches of images several times daily and are really efficient at responding to queries and dealing with orders. I have bought, I have received and I can recommend. There’s a website too, which will soon be offering an online sales facility (I’ve been reliably informed!) so, people, there is no excuse for not getting to grips with Siopaella, wherever you are. And if you do nothing else today, at least like their Facebook page to make sure you stay informed of their special shopping events – you’ve seen them flagged on this blog previously; thousands of items sold at €3 each, with all proceeds going to animal charities. Too exciting for words.
Seriously, folks, if you’re a magpie for great buys, you need to get some Siopaella in your life – even if it’s just to ogle their Facebook posts when you should be working (feel no guilt, we all do it). These guys are really working the consignment trend and best of luck to them. As recycling goes, it certainly beats composting…
For more information on Siopaella and their consignment policies, visit their website.