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The Wonderful World of the Royal Windsor Horse Show

27th May 2014

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'Such a fun place to shop, the most exciting store at Windsor'

It's that time of year again, the sun is starting to shine and Oxfam is set to embark on its summer tour of the best outdoor events and festivals. First up was the royally regal Windsor Horse Show, not only had I never experienced the show. It was my first time volunteering at an event with Oxfam it's, so safe to say I was excited!

The adventure started at the treasure trove, which is the Wastesaver Hub, where careful attention and a keen eye were required to sort through Windsor's gems. Luckily we'd been spoilt with donations, and were able to gather an amazing haul of royal worthy goodies, from vintage Mulberry, Daks and Harris Tweed to some brand new Whistles pieces. Not forgetting the amazing assortment of accessories ready for customers to swoon over!

Greeting us at Windsor was an empty shell of a store, crying out to be transformed into an equestrian inspired shopping wonderland, furniture was placed, tweed bunting was hung and the expertly sorted stock was loving (and painstakingly in the heat) steamed, hung and priced, add in a vintage till and a bunch of chirpy volunteers and we were ready to sell.

Adorning our rails hung an eclectic mix of designer dresses (I'm talking Moschino, Max Mara and Missoni here!!!) expertly crafted woollen capes, luxuriously soft cashmere, rider ready jodhpurs, festival favourite Barbour's and skilfully tailored tweeds. Embellishing vintage ladders and wire towers, dangled the most beautiful array of designer silk scarfs and ties, from Hermes to Liberty, you really could have wasted half a morning, appreciating the beautifully designed prints.

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The hardest part about working the event, wasn't any of the heavy lifting or mass steaming (argh the steaming), but the restraint to not buy half of the stock, I rounded up our wonderful volunteers and asked them to choose their standout piece from the store, the difficult task was narrowing it down to just one!

The first day ended, with customers promising to return to check out the re-stocked store throughout the week, eager to not miss out on any star gems. The Whistles stock was our winner of the day, the rails couldn't be replenished quick enough!

My Windsor adventure ended with me managing to catch a spot of show jumping and sampling a few the culinary treats (I would definitely recommend the sticky toffee pudding cheese). It made my week to hear one customer exclaim that the store was "the busiest and most exciting on the shopping prescient". Oxfam was definitely the MANE attraction of the Windsor Horse Show!

For more volunteer opportunities check out the Oxfam Festival Shop!

Blog post by: Chantelle Mallin

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