The Closet Cull: Selling, Donating and Giving

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Pictured: Clothier Jeffrey Scott’s clothing donation event, you give & you save 20%

If you’re like me, you have a few too many extra clothes in your closet. Am I right dear reader? Is your closet overly full? Do you have things that you are no longer wearing that are just sitting in moth balls. Yours truly is guilty as charged of closet over crowding in the inner city. Please don’t convict me for my shopping sins. I am working my way out of my shopping glut rut pre-Memorial day weekend in two eco-friendly ways. I am culling (doing some triage or weeding out) items from my closet either for giveaway to charity or sale on eBay.

First, let’s talk about the giving away items. I’ve always given to Goodwill, Salvation Army and others. But now, a neighborhood retailer has made me aware of a new way to give that can help me buy my Dad something nice for Father’s Day. Yes, as a practicing Recessionista, I’m always on the look out for ways to get discounts. And everyone who reads here knows that! Jeffrey Scott menswear here in Los Angeles is working with “Clothes The Deal“, a non-profit organization that distributes clothing based on need. When you donate to “Clothes The Deal”, your items can help people who are looking for employment potentially close the deal of finding a new job. All the donations you make to “Clothes The Deal”, like suits, dress shirts and ties go to men and women who are job hunting. Casual clothing will be given to those who are in rehab, or are homeless. When you donate, you will be given a receipt for tax purposes.

Now here’s the cool twist that can help you shop for something for your Dad or significant other for Father’s day. If you live in Los Angeles, and you donate your old clothes at Jeffrey Scott menswear, you’ll receive 20% OFF on all purchasesnow through Sunday, May 24th. It’s a great opportunity to clean out your closet and help those in need. Kudos to Jeffrey for giving away a share of his own profits to help those who are truly in need.
To learn more about this great organization, check out the Clothes The Deal web site. Clothes The Deal is based in Southern California and to date has distributed over (221,000) pieces of clothing to over (55,000) individuals. This is just one of many great organizations helping folks look their best while job hunting during these tough times. Do a Google search to find an organization like this in your city or your county. If Eleanor Roosevelt were alive today, I truly believe she would be working with groups like these to help job seekers raise their self-esteem and by getting a new suit for an interview. Remember, you can give to a Goodwill, Salvation Army or an Oxfam to help others. I was recently at the Salvation Army store in Canoga Park, CA and I was amazed by the selection of good suits they had for job hunters.
Now, on to Tip Numero Two for the great closet cull. eBay.

Pictured: eBay Seller Insertion Fee offer to start June 16, 2009

I will be sorting through items that I thought were once must haves, that I now consider perhaps too trendy for continued wear. This is a great way of swapping stuff with others around the globe. And, starting June 16, eBay will be making listings more affordable to sellers. Every 30 days, your first 5 Auction-style listings will have NO Insertion Fees when you list with eBay’s Sell Your Item form or simple listing form–regardless of your start price. Click here to learn more and read the details.

Pictured: The Top 10 eBay searches for Women’s Clothing

Recently I had a chat with Constance White, the style director of eBay. She reminded me what a great marketplace eBay is for stylish items at good prices. She even has her own blog on eBay to offer style tips.

I will be selling off old stuff, and trying to acquire more Celia Birtwell, Chanel, vintage Norma Kamali, plus the elusive occasional Ossie Clark item. Off with the trendy, on with the classics. Viva La Recessionistance!


Since 2008, Mary Hall has been the author of The Recessionista Blog, which is read by thousands of regular readers in over 160 countries. An internationally recognized expert on the art of the living the good life for less, she has been a commentator on local, national, and international radio and TV shows. Her advice has been featured in over 2,000 media outlets, including The New York Times, Reuters, Life & Style magazine, ABC News, NBC News and now The Huffington Post, among many others.


  1. Target-Addict

    May 20, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    Great tips, Recessionista! I personally do not sell on eBay (although I do buy there) and instead sell my closet castoffs via consignment. I am really lucky to have a fabubulous consignment shop in my area, and regularly cull my closet for items to sell. I probably make approx. $100 there a month… which of course, all goes into the “fashion fund” for future purchases!

  2. Redondo Beach Blond

    May 20, 2009 at 5:48 pm

    Jeffrey Scott is a MENCHE (good man)!!!

  3. Anonymous

    May 21, 2009 at 12:23 am

    When I clicked that Ebay link, I was taken to a blog from Fall 2005! Why no new blog?

  4. MH

    May 21, 2009 at 1:33 am

    Good comment on the eBay blog, but that is what I found for a link to stuff she has written for style tips online.