Yesterday, I walked into the best thrift shop around, and in place of what are normally extremely extravagant and colorfully creative window displays depicting the seasons or holidays, there was a mountain of clothing!
There was also a note.
I read the notes, understood the predicament, and asked who’s idea it was to pile the clothing in the window, because it was AWEsome! I was told that Ellen Graham, the Assistant Manager of the store, was due credit for the eye-catching statement. So I walked to the back room and asked for her by name. I found this Rennaisance woman actively sorting clothing, like a picture out of a book of hard-workers with seemingly thankless jobs. And yes, she just happened to be wearing a shirt that read, “No Thanks.” I’m not sure I’ve ever seen anything more perfect.
Ellen kindly humored my questions (and camera), and explained that the recycling company that used to haul away all of the stained, ripped, and otherwise unusable materials, will no longer be able to do so, due to a drastic drop in financial incentive. This suddenly leaves Experienced Goods buried under a pile they can barely see over.
Ellen said that the store receives 8,000 pounds (4 TONS!) per month of unusable clothing, and now begs all donors to keep this in mind when donating goods to the store. In lieu of screening incoming donations, and potentially turning away valuable donors, Ellen prefers to continue accepting the (damaged) goods, but hopes that local people who have some need for material or textiles will step up and claim their prizes.
So Ellen got creative!
There is already a bin of wool garments that you can fill a bag with, and pay only $5 to take it away. Ellen also said that if someone has a specific material in mind, like denim or corduroy, that they can set them aside for pick-up.
This is where I come in! The possibilities of local ARTists and creative folks who might have some really resourceful ideas for how to use portions of the mountain raced through my head. I thought On The Edge Of Art would be the best place to post a call for people who can help Experienced Goods out in their new-found dilemma, while simultaneously reusing and repurposing all of the energy that went into creating these garments.
- Upcycled clothing
- Throw pillows
- Pet toys
- Costumes for plays
- Teddy Bears
- and on
- and on
- and on!
Anyone else out there have some really creative ways to use any/all of these materials? I’d love to see Brattleboro’s commUNITY help Experienced Goods stay on top of this mountain.
Experienced Goods’ mission is “to fundraise for Brattleboro Area Hospice by selling good quality items for affordable prices.” They represent an undeniable GOOD in this area, and certainly deserve our help in their time of need!
And a HUGE Thank You to Ellen and all of the employees of Experienced Goods Thrift Shop!