My Kate Middleton-inspired wardrobe ALL comes from charity shops

My Kate Middleton-inspired wardrobe ALL comes from charity shops – I’ve saved around £8,000 on designer clothes

  • Sarah Kingham from Chelmsford, Essex, has a Kate Middleton inspired wardrobe
  • Her designer outfits are worth thousands but her collection is from charity shops
  • The mum-of-three prides herself on finding vintage pieces worth around £8k

A woman with a Kate Middleton-inspired wardrobe bursting with designer outfits worth thousands has revealed her collection is all from charity shops.

Sarah Kingham, 44, from Chelmsford, Essex, is always impeccably dressed – but looking a million dollars costs her pennies, as she proudly shows off her second hand steals.

Often head to toe in high end labels, the stunning mum-of-three prides herself on finding vintage pieces and has bagged herself designer items worth around £8,000.

Sarah Kingham, 44, from Chelmsford, Essex, has a Kate Middleton inspired wardrobe bursting with designer outfits worth thousands and she revealed her collection is all from charity shops

The Princess of wales donned a similar dress during a visit to The Nook in Framlingham Earl, Norfolk, in 2020

Sarah Kingham, 44, from Chelmsford, Essex,(left) has a Kate Middleton (right) inspired wardrobe bursting with designer outfits worth thousands and she revealed her collection is all from charity shops

The mum cuts a stylish figure with her mix of designer and high street bargains – and says she tries to emulate the Princess’s fashion values by reusing key designer pieces.

Her bargains are sometimes new with tags and she has saved a fortune off the retail price on some of her favourite items, spending just £600 on her impressive collection.

Sarah’s best buys include a See by Chloe trench coat, which she snapped up for just £6, with similar coats from the high end designer retailing for more than £3,000.

Sarah has five favourite designer items found in charity shops, which she paid just £35 for.

Sarah is always impeccably dressed, pictured here in a blue and black floral dress which she bought second hand

Sarah is always impeccably dressed, pictured here in a blue and black floral dress which she bought second hand 

Kate wore a similar black floral dress during a visit to the National Portrait Gallery exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery on February 28, 2018 in London

Kate wore a similar black floral dress during a visit to the National Portrait Gallery exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery on February 28, 2018 in London

She said: ‘I think my best designer buys would be worth around £6,000.

‘I paid £6 for the See by Chloe coat and a blue Max Mara coat was just £6.50

‘I paid £7.50 for the vintage Jaegar dress and just £10 for the floral Mother brand jumpsuit, which had tags on it and retails at around £400 online. I only paid £5 for a Chloe Paddington bag too.’

The marketing professional says shopping second hand has given her the freedom to find her true style and the money saved is an added bonus.

Sarah explains: ‘Around 10 years ago, I’d had enough of what was on the high street.

‘Everything was mass produced and I noticed a real decline in quality with fast fashion items. I felt uninspired seeing the same stuff in shops.

Sarah (pictured) donned a stunning pale blue wrap dress which was similar to one that Kate (right) donned while visiting the Grand Duke Jean Museum of Modern Art in Luxembourg

Sarah (left) donned a stunning pale blue wrap dress which was similar to one that Kate (pictured) donned while visiting the Grand Duke Jean Museum of Modern Art in Luxembourg

Sarah (left) donned a stunning pale blue wrap dress which was similar to one that Kate (right) donned while visiting the Grand Duke Jean Museum of Modern Art in Luxembourg

The stunning mum-of-three prides herself on finding vintage pieces and has bagged herself designer items worth around £8,000

The stunning mum-of-three prides herself on finding vintage pieces and has bagged herself designer items worth around £8,000

Sarah looked incredible in a summery blue dress that she found in a charity shop for pennies

Sarah looked incredible in a summery blue dress that she found in a charity shop for pennies 

‘I’d never been a designer person, for me it’s about what something looks like, not the label attached.

‘But once I started shopping in charity shops, I noticed high quality brands would have a beautiful cut or a vintage item would be made from an amazing material and the price was pennies compared to lesser quality stuff on the high street.

‘Kate looks impeccable at all times. She always looks well put together and dresses for her body type.

‘She’s not afraid of mixing designer items with regular brands either. I’ve never seen her not looking elegant.  

She added: ‘My mum introduced me to charity shops and they just have a really different vibe to shopping centres.

‘Charity shopping allows you the freedom to embrace your individuality and your personality can flourish.

‘You can be drawn to what you really like, instead of being restricted by what’s ‘fashionable’ and in season in stores.

Sarah paid just £6 for this See by Chloe tailored camel designer coat which screams elegance

Sarah paid just £6 for this See by Chloe tailored camel designer coat which screams elegance 

The mum also snapped up this designer black Max Mara coat for just £6.50 in a charity shop

The mum also snapped up this designer black Max Mara coat for just £6.50 in a charity shop 

This jumpsuit which Sarah found in a charity shop for a few pounds was originally priced at £400

This jumpsuit which Sarah found in a charity shop for a few pounds was originally priced at £400

Sarah looked incredible in a charity shop yellow tartan skirt which she paired with a jumper she already owned

Sarah looked incredible in a charity shop yellow tartan skirt which she paired with a jumper she already owned 

‘When the rails are full of a variety of colour and styles, you can pick what you are naturally drawn to.’

Sarah enjoys shopping at a range of charity shops, including regional charities and national brands.

She often gets her best bargains at an independent shop which raises money for a local hospice.

Sarah said: ‘I would say around 70% of my wardrobe is now from charity shops.

‘Many items are often new and you can get lots of good quality, pre loved clothing and really nice brands.

Sarah modelled a vintage blue floral dress which was cinched at the waste with a belt, she bought the ensemble for just £7

Sarah modelled a vintage blue floral dress which was cinched at the waste with a belt, she bought the ensemble for just £7

Sarah looked incredibly chic wearing some of her charity shop finds including a sophisticated cream coat

Sarah looked incredibly chic wearing some of her charity shop finds including a sophisticated cream coat 

‘I didn’t start shopping second hand necessarily as a budget thing, but the price difference was a big bonus, especially when you have a family.’

Sarah’s love for vintage fashion is another reason she loves searching charity shops for one off pieces.

She said: I’ve got a keen eye for vintage and that’s a big appeal for me in charity shops.

‘You never know what you might find, you can mix and match items from various decades and find your individual style.

‘There is so much variety and the quality of vintage pieces is outstanding, compared to the high street these days.

‘One of my favourite pieces is a gorgeous, 1970s blouse with a lace trim that I paid just £4 for.’

Sarah has also bagged various accessories, coats and boots for a fraction of the cost brand new.

The only downside of a charity shop hunt, is finding something she loves but it’s not the right size.

Sarah added: ‘I’d love to learn how to alter items, I wish I had the talent to sew.

Sarah bought this Chloe Paddington black leather bag for just £5, it would usually retail at £450

Sarah bought this Chloe Paddington black leather bag for just £5, it would usually retail at £450

Sarah managed to find this timeless black leather jacket for just £15 in one of her local charity shops

Sarah managed to find this timeless black leather jacket for just £15 in one of her local charity shops 

‘For now, if something doesn’t fit, I give it to my daughter, friends or re-donate it.’

Married for 18 years to husband David, the couple have two teenage boy aged 13 and 15 and Sarah’s money savvy style has rubbed off on their 14 year-old daughter too.

She said: ‘When I was a teenager, I wouldn’t go in charity shops with my mum.

‘She loved them, but I was too worried in the early 1990s what my friends would think.

‘Thankfully attitudes towards sustainability and recycling have changed for the better and my teenage daughter fully embraces charity shops.

‘She loves to come shopping with me and I think it’s great that youngsters these days are more environmentally conscious of their fashion footprint.’

Asked what her advice would be for someone who has never visited a charity shop, Sarah said: ‘Go in with an open mind and you will find something.

‘Donated clothes are not holey and dusty, volunteers steam clean everything and half the bargains I find still have the tags on.

‘Sadly some people still have an outdated and snobbish view of second hand clothing, but you can find some really lovely pieces and I think people who don’t shop in charity shops are missing out.’

Sarah proudly tells friends and family about her buys and shares her love for charity shopping in groups online, with likeminded bargain hunters.

She said: ‘I’m never ashamed to say I buy from charity shops, in fact I love it when people compliment my outfits and I get excited to tell them where it’s from and how little it cost.

‘People are often shocked, especially a designer brand or an item still with tags, but that’s the beauty of charity shop shopping, anything could turn up.

‘For me, every shopping trip is a treasure hunt, I never know what I’m going to find.’

Read more like this…

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Duchess doubles! Meghan Markle dons $5,000 monochrome jumpsuit in NYC that is STRIKINGLY similar to gown worn by Kate Middleton just weeks earlier (and it’s not the first time it’s happened!) 

Kate’s TikTok time machine: Teenagers emulate Princess of Wales’s eclectic Noughties style in social media craze 

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