Planning to partake in spring cleaning? Before you haul garbage bags full of clothing to the garbage, take a minute to think about where your old laundry is going to pile up.
Every year, an alarming 26 billion pounds of clothing and textiles end up in landfills—95 percent of which could be reused or recycled. That's why it's crucial to declutter responsibly.
When you drop off your unwanted goods at Value Village, you're taking a step towards limiting the 12 million tons of textiles North Americans send to landfills annually. Last year alone, Value Village diverted 700 million pounds of clothing and household items from landfills.
Instead of the traditional linear model of taking, making, and disposing, Value Village focuses on a circular model of reusing, reducing, and recycling. Here's how it works:
1. People donate items to nonprofits. Individuals donate unneeded or unwanted clothing and household items to nonprofit organizations partnered at the Community Donation Center located at Value Village stores or directly to the nonprofit, rather than sending reusable goods to landfills.
2. Nonprofits sell items to Value Village. Those community-based nonprofits then sell the items to Value Village, so that they can fill their shelves with merchandise for resale. By purchasing these goods from nonprofit suppliers (the same nonprofits our communities depend on), Value Village provides steady revenue streams that help to support each of their missions.
3. Items sorted and placed on the sales floor. Once an item comes through Value Village's doors, they get sorted, and only the best are placed on sales floors.
4. Items sold for reuse. The circular model comes to life when local shoppers purchase clothing and household items. Goods that don't end up being sold can be reused in other ways, as well: 45 percent is reused as secondhand clothing, 30 percent is upcycled or down-cycled into reusable products, 20 percent is turned into post-consumer textile fibers, and only 5 percent ends up as waste.
So, this spring-cleaning season, Value Village is introducing the next wave of decluttering: the one that works for you. It's not about being perfect or pristine – it's about decluttering your home and closets responsibly in a way that's uniquely you.
In collaboration with Orlando Soria, interior design expert and a self-proclaimed, "King of Decluttering," the Value Village Neat-ish declutter movement is designed to make the experience accessible, responsible and, most importantly, fun!
"As an interior designer, I'm no stranger to decluttering, but trying to be perfect can be overwhelming and strip away a home's unique style and personality," said Soria. "With the Neat-ish movement, we want you to feel supported, not more stressed out. Because no matter your decorating style, your house should represent you."
Rather than following a strict step-by-step guide, Value Village and Soria have crafted guiding Neat-isms to help spring cleaners embrace an original, eco-friendly way to declutter – an up-to-you approach that embraces the mess before the magic.
Put the "u" in declutter.
There's no one "right" way to declutter (except responsibly!). Bid goodbye to rigid 10-book limits and fold your t-shirts however you see fit. After all, we want your house to still feel like your home – just a little more neat-ish.
Have fun decluttering!
The decluttering process doesn't have to be stressful – it can be fun and environmentally friendly! Find ways to chill out and enjoy the process:
- Invite your friends over.
- Turn your bedroom into a "keep or get-rid-of" runway.
- Pop on your favorite playlist on the way to dropping off your items.
Make reuse a ritual.
Make organizing your own repeatable ritual, and it will get easier:
- One in, one out. For every new item that comes in your home, consider parting with another.
- Find your time. Whether it's once a month or twice a year, find a decluttering cadence that works for you.
- Set a reminder. Stay on track of decluttering by setting up a recurring notification on your phone.
Always declutter responsibly.
Take advantage of these easy steps to prep your used items for an extended life:
- Wrap it up. Protect your previously-loved items by wrapping fragile pieces in old newspapers or towels for safe transporting.
- Happy coupling. Rubber band or connect paired items to each other — think shoes, gloves, earrings and more.
- A clean break.Send your used items out into the world in great shape. Pre-wash and dry your items before giving them away.
Value Village™ stores provide a wide selection of must-havesecondhand clothing, accessories, and household goods at an affordable price and keeps more than 700 million pounds of reusable goods from reaching landfills each year. Learn more at http://www.valuevillage.com and join the #Neatish or #RethinkReuse conversation.
TVI, Inc. d/b/a Value Village™ is a for profit professional fundraiser accepting donations of goods on behalf of nonprofit organizations. Shopping at Value Village™ stores does not directly benefit any nonprofit. For more information go to valuevillage.com/disclosures.