Thursday, April 16, 2015

Spring Cleaning, Part One: Swaps!

Time to watch an episode or two of Hoarders for motivation, roll up my sleeves and clean house.

This month, I'm starting with my closets. I'd like to refresh my wardrobe but I don't have the money to fling at every cute outfit I see when I window shop -- and frankly, I've got way too many items that I never wear.

My solution? Swaps! Who knew that you could swap your clean, gently used/not broken stuff -- including housewares and whatnot -- all over Gotham for free? (I didn't!) 

Here's a short list to get you started.
  • Stop 'N Swap! Sponsored by, you can show up with that blender you never use -- or come empty-handed and take whatever you need.  (Sounds like hippies to me...!)
  • Fashion Swap and Meet is wunderbar -- their last swap featured fashion bloggers.
  • Although features over a dozen swaps in the New York area (including one for single parents with small kids), Five Boroughs Clothing Swap looks promising. It's members only -- hopefully with others who are as thrifty and fashion-conscious as you are -- it happens six times a year and it's free.
  • There's lots of shops that swap, like Thrift Disco and The Frock Shop...
  • ...and yep, you can do this online via Swapdom, Swap! and Thread Up.
My solution? A few times a year, there's an extremely private swap amongst maybe a dozen friends that involves a lavish meal, lots of wine and clothes galore.  Whatever gets picked over is donated to a great cause, like a women's shelter.  (My favorite donation spot: The Bottomless Closet.)  And because I know which girlfriend has that pencil skirt I used to love, I can always get it back if I miss it too much.  That's the beauty of swapping with a closed circle of friends: we're all up in some small part of each other's closets.

There's also another seasonal swap amongst friends -- a tea party! with cocktails! and delicious tea cakes and whatnot! wheeeee! -- that's strictly vintage.  All this with regular donations to the Salvation Army means that my closets are actually in pretty good shape these days. And here's a happy bonus: losing this pesky winter weight means that I get to wear all the clothes in my closet, not just the stuff that fits me this week. 

Next month: Zen and The Art of Clearing My Junk Room...!

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