Sometimes, you need to let go of the old to make way for the new. We’re talking about the old dresses, jeans and tops you have buried deep inside your wardrobe and which haven’t seen the light of day since…God knows how long. They’ve probably gone way out of style so there’s little chance you’re ever going to wear them again.
But before you toss them down the chute, know this: There are plenty of meaningful and sustainable ways to empty your wardrobe without things going to waste (or straight to the landfill). Here’s what to do with the garb you don’t want anymore. Get on it, because trust us, the purging is going to feel good. And you might get to score some discounts, new clothes, brownie points or even cash benefits!
Donate to a charity
Instead of contributing to textile waste, do some good with them. As the saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure – someone might take a liking to your unwanted floral blouse. There are several organisations in Singapore that accept used clothing items. The Salvation Army, which runs several thrift stores, is the most popular place to donate clothes to.
Just deposit your items at one of their donation-in-kind booths located island-wide. You can also consider the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations’ New2U Thrift Shop at Waterloo Street and the MINDS Shop (four stores at various locations).
Donate to a fashion brand
We already know Levi’s offers you an incentive when you trade in your old pair of jeans. But did you know you can also do the same at H&M? The fast-fashion brand has a garment collection programme in a bid to promote fashion sustainability and reduce impact on the environment.
As part of their initiative, your donated old clothes that are still of good quality will be resold, with proceeds be given to charity. Those that can’t be sold will either be reprocessed into other products (such as cleaning cloths) or recycled for their materials.
The brand accepts all kinds of textiles from any brand and of any condition. Simply drop them off at the nearest H&M outlet and you’ll receive a $5 voucher off your next purchase!
Sell them online
Selling your stuff online has become so much more convenient and easy over the years. Carousell is your best bet when it comes to selling pre-loved clothing. All you have to do is snap a few photos of your item, type a short description of it on the app, and wait for queries and offers to come in.
After negotiating and settling details, all you need to do is meet up with the buyer or make arrangements to mail it to them. Instagram is another popular platform – just create an account, upload pictures of your clothes with descriptions and hashtags, and that’s it.
Here’s a tip if you want to get more offers: Visuals are very important! Make sure the lighting for your shot is good, and perfect your flat lay skills so your items look more appealing and professional.
Sell them at flea markets
The flea culture in Singapore is still vibrant even with the rise of online shopping. After all, fleas are where people can indulge in good bargains and impulse purchases. If you’re looking to make all your bags of barang barang disappear all at once, this is the best place you can make that happen.
Fleawhere, a local flea market organiser, is one of the places you can try getting a booth at – they have flea markets ongoing almost everyday! All you need to do is to pick a date, rent a booth with them and pack your clothes. They’ll provide you with a table and two chairs per booth. The good stuff goes out pretty quickly, and towards the end, you might start selling your pieces for as low as $1 to ensure that everything goes. It’s even better if you have friends to share the rental cost with.
You can also try Refash – an online community that allows you to sell your pre-loved clothes and buy secondhand pieces from ladies with similar styles. It’s like a flea market, only they do the selling for you. Just pack your clothes, drop it off to them and watch the bucks roll in.
If you’re into DIY crafts, breathe new life into your old apparels by repurposing them. You can turn an over-sized work blouse into a skirt or into an off-shoulder top – or even both! Or how about turning that too-long skirt into a tube dress? Or that tank top into a bag?
Even if you’re not that adept when it comes to making things yourself, there are tons of free YouTube videos to guide you through the process to make it less daunting, like this and this! You’re welcome.
Participate in a Swap Meet
If it pains you to give up your precious clothes, try clothes swapping. Get in on a swap meet, where you get to spring-clean your closet, meet like-minded people and add new pieces to your wardrobe without spending a cent. It’s environmentally sustainable and fun.
Check out Swapaholic, Fashion Revolution and Your Clothes Friend Swap for future swap meets and go crazy.