We all need to re-evaluate our wardrobes and do a good stocktake every now and then, and chances are you're not going to love absolutely everything you find in there. While it's always better to keep, alter and reuse old items what you do with the clothing you choose not to keep can also make a big impact. Firstly consider the importance of looking after your clothing to ensure it's in good condition even after the many wears you have gotten out of it. Then consider these options when you find yourself with clothes you just aren't going to wear again:
Use resellers like eBay to sell any items that are in really good condition and from recognised brands. The key to making a quick and easy sale is to take great photos, write a good description and include as much information as possible in your listing. Be truthful in your description about the quality of the item and always answer any buyer questions promptly. Set your price where you are comfortable selling the item, it's useful to set a buy it now price and a lot of people like to set their reserve at $1 (but remember you have to be comfortable selling at this price!). I like to look up any listings of similar items to make sure my pricing is competitive. These online communities provide a great way to make a bit of extra cash while supporting someone else's wardrobe in a sustainable way...you might even find yourself responsibly adding to your wardrobe!
Resell at Markets
If you're not into spending hours on the computer to resell your clothing then setting up a stall at a market is another great option that requires a one off input of time and energy. There are lots of organized markets which usually only require a rental fee for your spot at the market and sometimes even provide you with tables to display your goods. It's useful to have clear pricing on your items and try to display them in a way that makes them easily accessible, garment racks are better than tables so it's worth it to hire some. Have a mirror on hand and if the market doesn't provide changing rooms it's a good idea to create your own, most buyers will want to try on! Pricing needs to be competitive in this situation and expect to offer discounts. If you're looking to sell a large amount of clothing at once then this is definitely an easier way to go.
Resell In Store
Selling to thrift stores can have it's benefits as it is obviously less time consuming than reselling online or at markets, however as a result your return will also be less. Most stores will give you a rate they are willing to buy at and it's take it or leave it, so again you have to be happy to sell your items at a realistic price. Generally stores will offer a greater rate if you take it in store credit rather than cash, so if you've found a thrift store you love to shop at then this could be a great option and a positive way to contribute to a community of recycling and reusing our clothing. Remember, as is the case with all of these reselling options, if you've kept your clothes in good condition and cared for them you will be more likely to have success when reselling them.
Host a Clothes Swap
Get together with friends and host a clothes swap or mini sale. This makes for a fun night and apart from providing some wine and cheese it requires minimal input! If you and your friends vary in size and shape and a swap is too difficult then get each of your friends to bring a friend and make it a mini sale. While you'll likely be selling your items at a lower rate you'll still get something in return, along with the pleasure of seeing your clothing go to new homes where they'll be loved for longer.
For anything left that's still in decent condition then it is always better to donate than bin! Find a charity that has meaning for you, ask questions, do your research and understand how your clothing will be used by the charity and what will happen to it if it doesn't sell. The amount of unwanted clothing we produce today exceeds the worlds need for it so we need to reconsider the feel good factor we get from donating used clothing and instead focus on consuming responsibly. To find out more you can read Where Do My Clothes End Up?
Household Rags/Textile Recyclers
Any items that are in unwerable condition or that are unable to be resold or donated, such as undergarments, can still be put to better use than being thrown in the rubbish bin. Cut them up to use as household rags rather than buying cleaning rags or using rolls of paper towel. You can also donate to a textile recycler in your area, these programs are becoming more and more common and with a bit of research you're sure to find a service that's accessible to you.
Check out Build Your Wardrobe as part of the Hungry Wardrobe Style Journey to learn more about reviewing your wardrobe and remember to always ask yourself these questions when deciding on wether an item should end up in the Yes, No or Maybe pile:
- When was the last time I wore this?
- Is the style flattering for my body shape and achieving my body shape goal?
- Does the colour suit my undertone and work with my colour palette?
- Does it work back with other items in my wardrobe to create outfits easily?
- Can alterations be made to improve the fit, colour or style?
- Does it make me feel amazing and 100% me?