A hard-up thief pinched candles and designer socks after her " survival instincts" kicked in, a court was told.
Dawn Christie (49) had no money for gas and electricity when she took the socks, worth £15.98 from TK Maxx on November 16th and the four Yankee candles to the value of £35.96, from Clintons Cards, both in Burnley, two days before.
The town's magistrates' court heard how Christie, who has a record for stealing and exists on benefits, was having £20 taken from the amount she got.
Her solicitor Mr Daniel Frazer told the hearing: "This was purely her survival instinct kicking in."
The defendant, of Albert Street, Burnley, admitted two counts of theft. She was given an 18-month conditional discharge and was told to pay £100 costs and a £20 victim surcharge by Deputy District Judge James Hatton who told her: "This is effectively a shot across your bows." He continued: "Whatever financial problems you have you need to resolve in a different way."