Yesterday night, some of my girlfriends and I got together for a clothes swap. I hadn’t done one since junior high school and had totally forgotten how fun they can be! If you haven’t swapped, I highly recommend it. Swap clothes, tools, books, raw materials, or anything else that can be used for a little bit longer, and kept out of a landfill.
Picture this: it’s a Monday night and 10 sweaty women are in various stages of undress. A woman in her skivvies is trying on a skirt; a few other ladies are clickity-clacking their way up and down the hall – trying to determine if their new old shoes will fit. From various rooms, you can hear the “ooh” and “aww” of a chorus of women endorsing each other’s fashion choices. Good times!
I was able to score 3 pairs of shoes (hooray for vintage!), a scarf, some sunglasses, and a beige kimono. I also took home a few bottles of nail polish and a white ribbon that once belonged to a wedding dress. The cost for this bounty? I merely had to contribute some items that I no longer need. (OK, let’s face it: I never needed them at all!)
Swaps allow you to find one-of-a-kind, vintage, and just-plain-weird items. They’re also great opportunities to shop for upcoming Halloween costumes. Swaps are free, fun, and a great way to spend an evening. They’re also a perfect chance for you to think about what you have, need, and could stand to part with.
For more opportunities to swap, check out some of these websites:
Free Cycle Calgary http://groups.freecycle.org/freecyclecalgary/description
Calgary Bike Swap http://www.calgarybikeswap.ca/Bike_Swap.html
Calgary Seedy Saturday http://seedysaturdaycalgary.shawwebspace.ca/
Also, browse Facebook for a variety of seasonal and one-off swap events.
A final comment: I sometimes find it hard to part with old clothes, because in my mind, it’s like parting with cold hard cash. But this time I told myself: there will be women at the swap whom I may not already know. Swapping clothes will be an investment in new friendships, and therefore, worth it.
And, I was right! After the swap, I walked back to the C-Train with my new friend Angela – each of us carrying a bag of new duds.