Responsible Decluttering

Responsible Decluttering

It’s all very well to declutter your home or life but we all need to think where these items are going. To just send them to landfill is irresponsible and we’re all about responsible behaviour here at Thrifty Towers. Unless of course you’re talking about that time I drank half a bottle of gin and thought I was stuck in a lift and phoned my then boyfriend crying at 3am before the final exam of his Maths degree only to realise I was pressing the wrong button. Yeah.

So where do we send all of these items we’ve decluttered as part of the 30 Day Declutter if not landfill?

It should really go without saying that things such as paper, glass, tins and plastics should be recycled at home as normal if you have that facility, if you don’t I imagine the majority of councils have recycling centres, as do most large supermarkets. Here’s where to send the other stuff.

Charity shops 

In these credit crunch times more and more of us are turning to auction sites etc. to sell items that we would in previous years have sent to charity shops and that’s fair enough – a girl’s gotta eat. However charity shops are  finding times hard at the moment and are clamouring to for good quality items. If you’re going to put something in your eBay pile and leave it there for 6 months until it goes out of style leaving you with all of 20p profit, perhaps consider donating instead? Perhaps you’d like to give more to charity but can’t afford to? Your donations of unwanted items are just as valid a donation as cash.
Remember – a charity shop isn’t a dumping ground, don’t send them anything you wouldn’t see as fit for sale.

Animal Shelters/Vet surgeries
If you have any towels or linens that are past their best consider sending them to an animal shelter. I sent a pile of old towels and duvets to my local animal shelter and they bit my hand off such was their need for them. Give your local animal shelter a call and ask if they’re in need of your old towels.

Textile and shoe recycling banks
You may have fabric that can’t be sold because it is damaged or stained. Get yourself down to your local recycling centre or tip and put the fabric into a textile recycling bank. You can find out where your local bank is by entering your postcode here.

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When you’re going through your gadgets and electricals you’re sure to come across an assortment of batteries. Please don’t just chuck them in your general waste bin. You can take them an assortment of supermarkets who have various boxes, tubs and tins for you to deposit them in and they’ll do the rest.

I heart Freecycle. Sure the people on there can be annoying but if you ignore the pleas for brand new washing machines and wide screen televisions there are genuine, grateful people who will be more than happy to come and take anything you’re giving away. Half full tins of paint, scraps of fabric, lightbulbs, CD cases, VHS tapes, broken landline phone, old furniture, cardboard boxes, broken printers are just a few of the things I’ve rid myself of via Freecycle in the last few months.

Schools and libraries
My local library were thrilled when I phoned to ask if they’d like 100 DVD cases and a teacher from primary school up the road even came to pick up boxes full of crafting stuff and old magazines in her spare time.

Please don’t chuck your old medication away or flush it into the water supply. Please take it to a pharmacy and they’ll be able to dispose of it correctly.

Is Twitter perfect in just about everyway? Well yes, it would be if it got rid of that stupid ‘Activity’ tab. I’ve managed to pass on tents, furniture, car parts, magazines, shoes and a myriad of other things via Twitter. Just pop out a message letting people know what you’d like to pass on and more often than not someone will be thrilled to take it off your hands.

Blog sale
Why not host a blog sale to get rid of some of those clothes that no longer fit or homewares that aren’t quite working for you?

Just about everything can be spared the landfill treatment, you can send your old glasses to charity, the same with your mobile phone (or you can even get paid) and MP3 player.

When taking your items to charity shops, schools etc. please consider the amount of plastic you’re packaging them in. Can you use an old cardboard box, hamper or suitcase (empty out and take home, natch) instead?