Repurpose or Donate?

by | Mar 10, 2020 | Fashion Tips | 2 comments

Recently I have been creating ways to repurpose some of my pieces and thought I’d share in this post. My apologies for the being so quiet here the last month. We moved again, and despite the fact that I should be getting really good at this, it’s still very time consuming!

I’ve moved three times in just over 4 years. The first move in 2015 was from a house we had built and where we raised our kids. There were 17 years of memories and LOT of things needed to be sorted and purged. We do not hoard our possessions and had frequent garage sales as the kids were growing up. I’m also quick to donate something instead of repurposing. During that sorting/packing process, we shook our heads wondering where all this stuff had come from. Can any of you relate?

As a former teacher, despite selling and giving away, it’s one of the professions that causes great accumulation. Then I moved to a scrapbooking home business. I’m still recovering from that accumulation two moves later!

Where am I going with all of this? When it’s time for a purge, whether it be your closet, household items and decor, children’s possessions they leave behind, there are DECISIONS. Those can be hard. I think I’m a pretty decisive person. (especially when it comes to helping in someone else’s closet .) I have my criteria that guides the decisions. Yet with the last two moves, I found myself spending too much time staring into space trying to decide and weigh out the possibilities if it stays or goes. I’d put it in a box, only to take it out again… It’s really easy to throw in a box to decide later. Recently I went through boxes my husband or I had packed last spring, and you could just tell that was our thought process!

Moving my clothes this last month I have decided I simply have excess again and I need to learn to get by with less. With all my posts about the capsule wardrobe, mixing and matching you’d think I’d learn! My purchases were far less this year, how did I still have so much? I’ve decided I must buy more pieces that stand the test of time and a fewer trendy pieces that I can move in & out when styles change. Here are a few examples of some recent repurposing.

Repurpose a Blazer:

If you’ve been reading here for a while, you know I LOVE the structure of a good jacket, yet prefer one with stretch that provides some movement and comfort. Animal print doesn’t appear to be going anywhere for a while. I can’t recall for sure, but I think I made this purchase in the fall of 2017. I wore it constantly and was photographed in it a lot. Those factors caused me to grow tired of it. Instead of consigning or donating, I put it away for a season and didn’t wear hardly at all. When it came time to putting together an outfit for a recent conference, I pulled it out again and tried to give it a new look. If you tire of something, try putting it away for a season especially if you still love it and there are good elements and style to the piece.



Blazers and Graphic Tees

I showed this trend two years ago and it doesn’t appear to be going anywhere. Pair a graphic tee with a blazer and denim and a casual sneaker. We are still seeing that everywhere. This photo is from 2018, but check out my Pinterest board for many more ideas.

I have purged a large amount of jewelry lately. In fact, instead of consigning I donated to Divine Threads. If you are local check it out. It’s a great cause.

I hung on to a bracelet I’ve had for over 20 years. I bought it in St. Thomas and it’s white gold vs sterling thus  more valuable. I wore it constantly when I had a two-tone watch with a similar band. I brought it back recently to combine with the new mesh bracelet and charm and I love that combo.

Home Decor:

I debated about putting this in the donation box. I had it hanging above my dining room buffet for years. I had not had used it when we re-did our house in Oregon. Yet, I thought I’ll hang on to it one more move. Now I love that it has a new look.

And last, formal dining rooms are simply not a part of most newer floor plans. We bought this set 25 years ago thinking it would hold its value, but as I said dining room sets are now a dime a dozen. So I used it for my desk! It has 6 chairs and 2 leaves to extend so eventually it will have to go. For now it works. And that armoire? It’s one of the first pieces we bought when we got married. It was probably $150 at an antique store. It has great shelves for storage and I stuff it full. Definitely got our money’s worth out of that one.

Previously I had used this table for a desk– another example of repurposing since I’ve used that for several different things over the years.

I gave that to my husband for his office and his office still needs some attention so no photo of that quite yet!

Over to you–Have you recently used a piece you’ve had for years in a different way?