Secrets To Sustainable Style

May 29, 2018

In the lead up to Brisbane’s biggest sustainability fair, the Green Hearts Fair, #SheSociety had the chance to ask Hannah from Never Ever Pay Retail a few questions about her blog and sustainability style.

Tell us about Never Ever Pay Retail

The website ( is designed for those addicted to thrifting and for newbies who are just starting out on their sustainable style journey. It features an op shop locator that finds the thrift shops around you in a 20 kilometre radius, tips and tricks to turn you into a thrifting ninja, an events calendar with all the picks of the preloved markets and garage sales, guides on the best places to op shop around almost every capital city of Australia and fashion editorials for second-hand style inspo.

What inspired you to start Never Ever Pay Retail?

When I started Never Ever Pay Retail in 2014, my main goal was to inspire people to thrift with the amazing garments that can be found in op shops… second-hand really doesn’t have to mean second best! And there are SO many reasons to thrift…it’s kind on your wallet and the planet, it helps to drive down consumer demand for fast fashion, and your retail therapy actually provides charities with one of their main sources of income…I call that a win, win!

Image: nevereverpayretail Instagram

What has been your favourite op shop purchase?  

I’ve found so many amazing things it’s hard to narrow it down! My top three would be a Carla Zampatti top for $4.50 from St Paul’s op shop Ashgrove, a Karen Walker skirt for $5 from Suited to Success in Fortitude Valley and a denim jacket I found in the kid’s section for $1 at Windsor Road Thrift Shop in Red Hill which I’ve worn on repeat for years. Check out @nevereverpayretail on Instagram for a daily dose of op shop gold!

What do you look for when op shopping?

I think it helps to go into the op shops with a vision of the look you want to create. I often scroll Instagram or flick a fashion mag before I go so I know what’s on trend and stay on track, and I actually keep an op shop wish list in the notes section of my phone so I can really focus! Haha. But at the end of the day you have to look at everything…leave no stone unturned because you could find garments on the kids and men’s clothing racks and even some incredible vintage pieces in the plus size section, as sizes have changed a lot over the years.

Image: nevereverpayretail

Tell us about the Green Heart Fair

I absolutely love the Green Heart Fair! It’s so encouraging to see the council putting the spotlight on sustainability! There’s hands on workshops, cooking demos, green living advice and more, and the best part is it’s all free! To find out more sustainable ideas make sure you head to the Live for Less marquee @ the Green Heart Fair 3 June.

How can Australian women choose to live sustainably? 

By buying nothing new…except underwear! Haha. Your local thrift shop or preloved clothing market is the perfect place to begin your search for more sustainable style. But if the thought of rummaging isn’t your cup of tea and you’d rather hunt on your phone, app’s like Thredup, Etsy, Depop, Gumtree, eBay and even Facebook Marketplace are all good platforms for sourcing second hand. If you really can’t bear the thought of putting on preloved though, download the Good on You app which rates over 1000 fashion brands on their impact on people and the planet. They also list hundreds of ethical brands so you can shop with peace of mind.

You can also live a more sustainable life by making do and mending….sometimes all your clothes need is a few stitches and some TLC and they’re good to go again!

It’s crazy to think that 6000kg of textiles goes to landfill every 10 minutes right here in Australia, so when you’re done with your clothes either donate them to your local op shop, host a clothes swap or sell them on preloved clothing apps or at the markets, to make sure they don’t go to waste.

The Green Heart Hair is on this Sunday the 3rd of June at 7th Brigade Park, Chermside – 9am-3pm

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