Thrift the closet shift

Rasa Kaye
November 11, 2018 - 4:14 pm
Consider donating your clothes when seasons change.

ID 62847665 © Ian Allenden |


PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The long mild autumn has finally settled into more seasonable pre-winter conditions, which means it really, truly is time to pack up the lighter clothing and footwear and rearrange closets and mudrooms with cold weather garb and gear. 

When making the pre-solstice wardrobe shift, many of us face the quandary of whether it's worth saving some items for next spring, such as flattened flip-flops or stressed sundresses, and whether last year's duds now just look like, well, duds.  

Those garments cost Mother Earth plenty to produce, so consider keeping them out of a landfill if you're done with them.

To reorganize a clothing closet sustainably, apply the three R's of the environment: reduce, reuse, and recycle.

Just switch up the order and start with what you will reuse. If you love it, you keep it. 

Easy peasy.

A little more challenging is how to recycle the rejects, especially if they're in good shape but no longer a fit in more ways than one. Friends and family might welcome some wardrobe refreshers from you, and it can be fun to hold a clothing swap. But in Philadelphia, there are oodles of organizations with open arms where your fashion misfires can bring someone else joy and you, a few bucks. 

Non-profit thrift stores apply proceeds to their good works while consignment shops will resell and share the profit with you. 

Pro Tip: Check web sites for what these stores look for before you go, and consider making even more space in your place by donating furniture or other home goods where accepted.  

As for reducing: resist the temptation to replace what you sent off! 

Here's our curated list:

Addiction Studios “caters to couture” for 100% authentic designer goods. 

Greene Street has 11 locations in New Jersey and Pennsylvania for mid to high-end threads.

Sophisticated Seconds has two Philly locations for upscale consignables.

Urban Exchange Project in Fishtown touts its offerings as "name brand and secondhand for men and women.” It has a pop-up shop at the Gloucester Premium Outlets in Blackwood, N.J. too.

Buffalo Exchange in Rittenhouse offers cash or trade when donating men’s and women’s clothing, shoes, and accessories.

Sazz Vintage Clothing is for finds from the far corners of your (or your mom’s) closet.

Mesh Vintage is the pride of Passyunk for retro clothes.

Beggar’s Banquet Vintage “chooses sustainability over fast fashion.” It is located in Roxborough/Manayunk. 

100 percent of sales at Home Spun Resale Boutique go to Project HOME, which “aims to break the cycle of unemployment and poverty.” 

The Wardrobe Resale in Spring Garden is an upscale resale shop benefiting Career Wardrobe, which “uses clothing and professional development to empower unemployed individuals to work.” 

Two Philly Circle Thrift locations support the Circle of Hope Christian communities in Philadelphia and South Jersey.

Proceeds from Philly AIDS Thrift stores benefit local organizations fighting against HIV/AIDS.