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How To Cultivate Your Dream Wardrobe On Trade Me


We all LOVE Online shopping in your pyjamas (usually with wine) and scoring preloved bargains. It’s a shame it ain’t chic to op shop in your onesie. Enter: Trade Me.

As a huge second hand and pre-loved apparel advocate, Trade Me is definitely a part of my personal arsenal in culminating an uber chic wardrobe on a budget. Crazy user-friendly and ultra reliable, Trade Me these days it is very difficult for sneaky sellers to pull the wool over your eyes legally, providing a safe and inviting environment for you to literally run wild. Op shopping of this generation, pre-loved clothing is a blessing, reintroduction pieces we thought we’d completely missed in stores and providing an infinite spread of unique pieces, sure to set any budding fash gals heart aflutter. Put your snobbery aside, remove the “dead people’s clothes” umbrella and let’s delve into the art of Trademe shopping.



TradeMe has done heaps of work towards making the platform a safe online trading destination. To protect yourself from any dodgy business, it’s best to check out the sellers background, check their feed back history. If it’s a whole host of really sooty looking emojis, best skip this one.


I don’t mean to sound like a naggy school teacher here, but this is really the best way to avoid disappointment. The description should outline any marks, snags, shrinkage etc with the garment. They should outline the exact condition of the item, helping dictate allowed budget for the piece.


This is really the best of both worlds reality of online shopping. Obviously not every piece on TradeMe will be current season and available in stores: but often it is. In these cases, take advantage of this and head in store to try it on and ensure it looks fabulous before bothering with the TradeMe purchase. A wee insurance policy for those a little unsure about up to date bits and pieces.



Auction set ups can be dangerous from a spending perspective. Make sure you set a limit with yourself and don’t exceed it (of at least not by much), often getting carried away in an auction can lead to disastrous overspending *guilty*.


Know your body. Whilst we would all love a Kendall Jenner frame, we cannot all be blessed with the mile long limbs that look great in literally anything. So have an understanding of what suits you and what doesn’t. Play up your assets, not that you need telling twice.


Price you pay should be directly related to two factors: the condition of the garment and the RRP (in relation to how old the garment is). Condition is often new and unworn, so thank your lucky stars for TradeMe delivering outstanding value since ages ago!


Investment pieces should be made of good quality materials, (think wool, silk, angora, cotton, linen) be ready to pay a premium cause they’ll last a lifetime. Others are more throw away piece and bear this in mind.


Make sure you execute your part of each trade quickly and efficiently, using email as a tool to draw attention to won auctions that sellers may have forgotten or overlooked. NZ post can be a wee bit slow. So, if things are taking a long time, the best thing to do is drop the seller a friendly note to let them know you’ve not received yet and just wanted to check the postal day. That way everyone is in a positive, rather than accusatory, frame of mind. If you are in a rush to get an item, be upfront  and ask the seller before you bid/buy. That way the seller can let you know if a quick postage is possible. You could also offer to pay extra for express courier etc.


This button is an online shopping godsend. Use this to efficiently dig through all the other goodies from like brands and designers, unearthing all sorts of pre-loved treasures.

Second hand shopping online is really having your cake and eating it too. The games don’t stop at just clothing either: think jewelry, perfume, homewares and exercise gear – the sky really is the limit! Like all good things, it requires patience and feels super rewarding (the next best thing to paying it forward, paying online).


To showcase the awesome range of on trendy threads available on Trademe, we went shopping  and put together some groovy winter looks – get inspired.


White Witchery Bomber Grey Trenery Longsleeve Country Road Ribbed knit Skirt
White Witchery Bomber Striped Topshop Mini Dress
Country Road Wet Look Jeans Zara White Brogues
RUBY Raindrop Skirt

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Written by Ellen Dick

Music & Lifestyle Co-ordinator. Ellen's a PR/Advertising graduate on the brink of adult life. She loves list making, ice cream and the beach (in no particular order).

Instagram: @dicke26

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