Frock Swap!

This one’s mainly for the girls, I’m afraid. Mostly the girls who, upon opening their wardrobe, on a regular basis utter the fateful words: “I have nothing to wear.” Yep, which pretty much means all my female readers out there.

At this point I should translate the meaning of “nothing to wear” for those whose imagination somewhat lags behind. The phrase is usually used in association with overflowing wardrobes which are blessed with stacks upon stacks of clothing…all of which have been in their owner’s possession for over six months and/or are not exactly “this season” and/or don’t work well on fat days. Hence the phrase: nothing to wear.

Not being quite the airhead idiots some men seem to mistake us for on occasion, we are all perfectly well aware that if we wanted to we could dig up a wearable rag or two from the pile of chaos in the wardrobe. What we’re doing here, you see, is resorting to perfectly acceptable hyperbole. Although the clothes are indeed there, we want no truck with them for a variety of reasons, top of which is probably that we’re bored of them.

Given that the response to this “nothing to wear” scenario usually results in a shopping spree or two, this brings us to a very obvious dilemma.  Unless we’re blessed with a walk-in wardrobe the size of a small island in the Pacific, eventually we tend to run out of storage space. What’s a girl to do when faced with 20 navy blue skirts that she hasn’t worn in months but which she has no intention of parting with? Consigning them to the skip is a definite no-no. These are well-loved items we’re talking about, clothes that still occupy a warm spot in our hearts even if not on our person. Besides, think of all the money we spent on that one-off designer skirt that now seems to fit rather too tightly across our bum.

We can, of course, send them to charity. However this has become a rather tricky process. Thanks to inconsiderate sods who abused of the system by dumping every single dirty bit of torn clothing in their closet on the first unsuspecting charity, most charities will not accept clothes donations nowadays.

So you see the dilemma, I’m sure. Happily, I can now report that a perfectly functional – and fun! – solution has made it to our shores, courtesy of the delightful Abby Easby, the lady behind the Fish In Malta blog. A few  weeks ago Abby took the plunge of bringing one of Europe’s most well-loved ways of socialising to our island through a very well-organised Frock Swap party at her home in Madliena. Abby had the courage to open her home to a number of friends – and strangers, thanks to her blog and to Facebook – and the cherry on the cake is that it was all for a very good cause, ie Noah’s Ark animal shelter.

The way it worked was like this: against a very modest entry fee (that all went to Noah’s Ark) we all enjoyed an afternoon meeting new and interesting people, enjoying some wine and nibbles (Abby, well done for the spread) and…acquiring new clothes. The rules were simple: everyone met at noon, clothes were counted and sorted while we mingled and finally everyone could swoop on their favourite finds, taking back home up to as many items as they brought.

And if you’re curious as to whether I managed to get my hands on to any loot, the answer is a big yes with frocks and bags galore thank you. It all worked beautifully and a great time was had by all – as can be seen by the number of people (including those who didn’t make it) who are already hounding Abby for the next frock swap. The lady herself has promised one around the turn of the season so keep tuned to her blog  to make sure you don’t miss out next time round.

This blog appeared on The TV Guide (Times of Malta) on August 6.



  1. Abby Easby says:

    Thanks for the shout out Ramona! So glad you enjoyed. I will be arranging a Frock Swap for November, that time of year when we will all be sorting out our winter clothes! Stay tuned :)