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How To Deal With Your Kids' Old Clothes

how to get rid of old clothesThere’s a box in my bedroom full of clothes to give away. It’s full, and there’s a stack of ratty sweaters and a grocery bag full of toddler clothes on top of it.

My intentions are good, but actually taking all that stuff down two flights of stairs and dragging it four blocks to the Goodwill never quite makes it to the top of my priority list.

Soon, New Yorkers won’t have to. New York City is getting ready to launch a convenient recycling program for clothing.

For the rest of us, here are some creative tips on unloading last year’s wardrobe.

  • Host a Clothing Swap: every couple of months, my friends and I get together and swap our excess clothes. I get nearly all of my clothes this way, and I get some great stuff. It’s a lot of fun, and when we’re finished, the hosts bag up the leftovers and make one massive trip to the local Goodwill.
  • Have a Target Family: Kids, especially babies and toddlers, grow so fast they change up their entire wardrobes more than once a year. In my social circle, we have a few friends who are the standing recipients of the stuff my kids have outgrown, and a few who routinely drop a box of goodies off for my girls.
  • Have a Yard Sale: If you have a pile of things in good condition, considering turning them into some extra cash. There’s an art to hosting a yard sale, but done right it can be a lucrative way to spend a weekend day.
  • Repurpose Ruined Things: Some stuff really isn’t fit to be passed on, but that doesn’t mean it has to go in the trash. Old, stained t-shirts make great cleaning rags. There are more creative ways to reuse clothing too: I’m saving my kids outgrown tights for a friend who turns them into sock creatures.

All of these take a little effort, but it’s worthwhile. Clothing makes up 5% of residential trash. That’s a lot of landfill that can be avoided by taking a little time to recycle the clothes we no longer use.

How do you deal with the garments your kids outgrow?

Photo: Dan4th

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