Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Closet In Crisis

Clothing from past years has accumulated and amidst the clutter all you can think is, 'If I open my closet door, will I ever be able to close it?'

The prognosis looks grim. Your closet is so crammed full of old clothing that you fear it will never be able to fully recover from your pack-rat ways. You are a hoarder, tightly clinging to the memories found in prom dresses, grandma's hand-knitted sweaters, and your ex-boyfriend's t-shirt. In our eco-friendly age of "recycle, reduce, reuse" not all hope is lost. Being more responsible with consumption can involve diving into the chaos of your closet and finding interesting ways to clean it out. For all the fashionistas with hungry eyes for style, this just means more room on your shelf for the latest trendy item. Here are some beneficial suggestions to help you work towards a healthy, happy closet.

Your closet looks great, did you donate?

Trot on down to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army and drop off your used clothing for those who really need it. There are also other charities in Toronto like Dress Your Best (14 Dewhurst Blvd. at Pape and Danforth, www.dressyourbest.ca), which provides men and women from low-income families with clothing for the workplace. Another fantastic option is to research your own charity, but remember to check out the Canada Revenue Agency website (www.cra.gc.ca) and make sure that the charity is registered before you donate.

Swap till you drop

Ok, so your closet may get a tad full again, but clothing swaps are the new way to rid yourself of burdensome old sweaters and jeans. A clothing swap might involve exchanging my purple dress for your to-die-for suede tassel jacket, a most excellent trade! Invite your favourite fashion friends over for a night of drinks, chatting, and swapping. Facebook is a great way to create a clothing swap event, and Craigslist is the place if you want to find public clothing swaps in your area. You and your closet will feel rejuvenated and refreshed after a good swap.

Before you buy, SELL! SELL! SELL!

Perhaps you prefer the thought of a little cash in your pocket? For a small fee, you can register as a seller on Ebay (www.ebay.ca) and post photos of the items that you wish to sell. For those vintage darlings with a collection of ill-fitting dresses, Etsy (www.etsy.com) is the ideal place to sell your unwanted garments. Consignment stores are another option for those who are not so internet savvy. Common Sort (804 Queen St. East, 416-463-7678, www.commonsort.com) offers twenty-five percent of the price that the item would be sold for in the store. If you have a wardrobe full of brand-name clothing, The Comeback (4893 Dundas St. West at Burnhamthorpe Rd, 416-231-0381) is the consignment store for you. So, after you have donated, swapped, or sold your excess clothing, you and your closet will be ready to move into the fashion future.
There are only clear shelves ahead.

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