Green Thursday: recycling, regifting

Long term readers would know I’m on a constant mission to declutter. Trying to declutter without adding everything to landfill is hard.

Op shops are closed at the moment even so, I often worry how much of the really good clothes I put in a clothing bin actually make it on shelves of the op shop.

What I prefer to do is offer friends or colleagues first dibs.

Before lockdown, I offered a friend a quick look at things I was going to donate. She took a couple of items. In return she gave me a Sheridan bedspread, in excellent condition. It has been acquisitioned by my oldest boy who needed a warmer bed cover as we moved into winter. (His doona stays on his bed in our house.) Win, win all round.

The same friend gave me several items that were glamorous aunt’s. Look! An Armani jacket.

I’ve joined a local Buy Nothing Facebook site. It’s a freecycle group, the slight difference is that you need to be local.

I like the concepts of passing things on and keeping it local.

I also like the idea of giving things a new life, giving them to someone who will use them rather that having the items taking up space in my home, unused. Or worse, going to landfill.

Several people have suggested I sell, or try to sell, the items I want to declutter on Marketplace.

I’ve resisted that. Not only can I not be bothered with all the fuss of taking photos and posting and dealing with people who will haggle and maybe not even turn up, but I like the karma that comes with this site.

I have gifted away things big (like a squatters chair which the recipient fixed up$ and small (garden hose attachments)

I have been gifted a nearly new queen bed and a vintage plant stand. The former I was about to buy, at a cost of hundreds, for the “new” guest room; the latter I have been looking for for ages. So happy.

9 thoughts on “Green Thursday: recycling, regifting

  1. What a great idea the Facebook site for passing things on. I am trying not to buy things because eventually they could be tomorrow’s declutter. Our village charity shop takes most things and the money goes back into the community which is good – it is run by all our village churches together which is also good as it includes all the different denominations working together.
    The bed was a lovely gift to you.

    • I like it when charities are part of the local cycle – gifting/donating, selling, using funds. Part of why I like the Buy Nothing group is it is local. No trapezing over the city. No haggling. Just locals giving new life to stuff to people who want them. And it avoids landfill.

      • In the local town here at the cottage in Scotland there is a large shed at the tip (waste centre) and you can take things you don’t want but are still useful there including bikes and electricals. They have people who give them a check and a makeover and then and then display them for people to buy (I think) or they could just pass them on free (not sure). It has been closed though due to Covid. There is nothing like that at the tip near our home but there should be. If we have to take any waste to the tip it saddens me and even more so when I get there and see the perfectly good things that people throw away.
        I have done well again on Ebay – I had one of those maximum fee offers so I sold some of my daughter’s hardly worn clothes from just before she was expecting. She had passed them on to her sister who chose some but didn’t suit others and they ended up with me in the spare room! So I listed them – most of the items sold and the money went towards entrance fees to attractions etc on our holidays together. It is a faff doing the photos but DH doesn’t mind taking the pictures and I write the blurb. I decided against the Facebook Marketplace, as other people told me local buyers often mess you about and haggle on the doorstep. With Ebay they have to pay up front. More often though I will take clothes I don’t want to charity but this year it has been almost continuous no donations accepted because they have been overwhelmed with them and most charity shops here can only have 2 people in at a time because of the virus so cannot sell as quickly as normal.
        I have very few good clothes to pass on now as my new tactic is to wear them to death and not buy new until I am actually replacing something I wear a lot. I have been minimising my wardrobe over time and trying not to buy those mistakes by being extra careful in my purchases. Buying on a whim when I was working and earning is definitely a thing of the past now we are on a pension!

      • It’s the best when dumped goods can be repaired and sold or ti en away. I love the British show “The Repair Shop” or something like that. People used to be able to pick over tips but then health and safety stopped that. I think it is great to sell items on eBay or the like. Declutter, avoiding landfill and people aren’t buying new with all the impact on the environment that new stuff brings. I just don’t have time. I get the set income that come with pensions. We will have to curtail our spending, even though I buy less than a lot of people.

  2. We try to sell as much locally as possible, but our island is basically a small town of 70,000 so it can be hard to find a buyer at times. Still, we feel safe when we sell here and everything does eventually get sold.

    We had to buy everything new when we arrived in 2020 because of the pandemic – there was no thrifting, yard sales, or Buy Nothing groups going on which is what we would have used to set up housekeeping otherwise.

    Our neighbors threw away and filled I don’t know how many large trash cans when they moved out last May. They had so much stuff – it’s still incredible to think about how much they had stuffed into their small apartment, and as far as I can tell they gave nothing away other than a big donation to a local thrift store after their yard sale (although much of their stuff was junk, and dirty). We hope to fill less than on trash can, and have less than a carful of things going to the thrift store when we leave.

    (BTW, former neighbors are now living in a camper van and doing a road trip around the U.S. It won’t be long before that small van is filled with stuff.)

    • Yes, harder when the community is smaller. This group often has people asking for stuff. Young girl asked today for stuff to help with moving out of home. Immediate response from people with things they have excess of.

      I like your goal. I am going to be strict with our campervan. There’s only two of us – so there will be limited cutlery and utensils. And no tchotchke or knickknacks.

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