Spring is almost here and for many of us that means taking an intentional look at our closets and removing items that no longer fit our bodies or lifestyle. While packing up bags of clothing and clearing space often feels good, the unfortunate reality is that 84% of all clothing produced ends up in the landfill, causing further harm to the environment. While the most sustainable option is to buy less and repurpose items that you already own, we know that isn’t always possible, so we’ve got 6 great alternatives when repurposing isn’t an option!

  1. List your items on resale websites like thredUp or Poshmark. 
    Both operate similarly as online consignment stores, selling users gently used clothing. Our personal favorite, due to the simplicity and ease of use, is threadUp. Request a clean out kit, pack up your items and they do the rest. When something sells you can cash out or use as store credit, thredUp handles all listing and shipping.
    If you’re looking to keep a higher percentage of each sale, Poshmark may be a great alternative for you. While the platform is similar from the buyers perspective, as a seller you will need to take photos of your items, price them and handle shipping of anything that sells.

  2. Sell items locally at Uptown Cheapskate or Plato's Closet.
    Take your clothing you are no longer wearing and they will process your pieces while you browse. Once complete their team will offer you cash or store credit.  This is another great way to extend the life cycle of your clothing.

  3. Consign your clothing at a local consignment boutique.
    MODE, located in Raleigh and Durham, will consign your name brand and designer pieces. MODE accepts walk-ins with a maximum of 30 items.

  4. Donate your clothing to local nonprofits.
    A favorite of ours is Dress for Success of the Triangle. Their mission is providing support to unemployed and underemployed women. They create a safe environment and provide trained career coaches to help women thrive in the workplace and life.They accept business attire that a woman can wear to a job interview and employment.

  5. Donate to a local thrift stores like Dorcas or Durham Rescue Mission.
    Be mindful that thrift stores are often inundated with donations and on average, only sell 10-30% of donated goods with the rest are often exported overseas and have devastating impacts on local communities. This isn’t to say, don’t donate, but we’d recommend using this as a last resort

  6. Take your clothing to a local, Wake Co Convenience Center and deposit in the textile recycling bins.
    All 11 Centers send clothing items to be repurposed by a Durham company called Green Zone. Green Zone is the largest textile recycler of secondhand apparel and footwear in the southeast. 

We hope you found some new and innovative ways to lengthen the life cycle of your clothing!

Amber Brennan