How lovely to read that Ed Sheeran donated 13 bags of “old” clothes to his local hospice shop St Elizabeth’s in Framlingham. Lots of his gear for sale in the shop and on eBay if you’re interested in a pair of Ed’s Gucci trainers. What a brilliant way of having a sort out and lending his public support for the charity.
I’m one of those people who tries to recycle everything from an empty yogurt pot to a dead computer. But I’m also the product of post-war thriftiness where my mother never threw away so much as a rubber band as it was sure to come in handy one day. This means that I will keep those floral flared trousers that don’t fit me any more because they may come back into fashion (yeah right – and I may lose that two stone which causes them not to fit) and, if not, I could use them for that patchwork quilt I’m always going to start (but never actually do). So I have a three stage approach to my clothing sort-outs:
- Leave them cluttering up my drawers and wardrobes – never wearing them but letting me struggle to squeeze in the clothes I do wear
- Move them to my “clothes on probation” bag. This is a bin liner in the bottom of the wardrobe that stores clothes I’m not ready to part with but I have admitted I haven’t worn for anything up to 7 years. But I still really like them! And I am going to start that diet tomorrow… If they are still there unworn after a year, they have to go.
- Bag them up and get them to the charity shop before I change my mind. (Seriously, if I leave the bag there for more than two days I will start pulling things back out)
Needless to say not everything that goes into one of these bags is as desireable as an Ed Sheeran onsie. So a couple of years ago I checked with my local St Peter’s hospice shop about how good the quality needs to be now. I was surprised to find that they want it all! As the shop assistant said “if its no good for the shop, the rag man will have it”. What a brilliant idea.
In Bristol we have a national centre for textile recycling that collects unsold textiles from charity shops around the country. They ship lots abroad and hold regular Preloved and Vintage sales where you can buy clothes for £6 a kilo. And yes, ok, I do sometimes go and begin the whole cycle all over again! You never know, I might find a tour jacket from Ed Sheeran there.