Home Forums Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Clutter Disposal and Donation What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

This topic contains 18 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by  wintermute 6 years, 3 months ago.

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  • #160273

    wintermute
    Member

    Hi all,

    I’ve been lurking around the site and forums for a while looking for inspiration to unclutter my closet. I’m sort of a clothes-and-shoes hoarder and am trying to thin out what I’m not wearing on a regular basis.

    One aspect I’m struggling with is getting rid of thing I don’t think anyone else will want. I have no issue whatsoever sending a pair of gently used pants in good condition to Goodwill if they don’t fit or get used, but I have several pairs of old jeans from college that have frayed and ripped hems and no longer fit. Everything but the last 3″ or so on the jeans is in good condition, but I know places like Goodwill won’t take them if they are torn. That being said, I feel like they are too nice or have too much “life” left in them to simply be thrown out for their hems…so back into the closet they go until I figure out what to do with them.

    Does anyone have any suggestions on what to do with these jeans (FWIW, they are also kind of out of style right now)? I’m not crafty so I’m not really up for re-purposing, I’d really just prefer to get them out of the house.

    Thanks!

  • #230213

    luxcat
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    textile recycling seems a possible answer. if you donate them to goodwill or similar large groups and they are not usuable, goodwill recycles them much of the time. or you can find a textile recycling dropoff in your area if you are lucky. I have had trouble finding one but a call to a local recycle center might give advice. also I read recently that some H and M stores are accepting worn out clothing for recycling.

  • #230216

    Rosa
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    if your Goodwill really won’t take them, you could try freecycle – sometimes people are working on jean quilts or needing some to upcycle into a skirt or something.

    But at least around here, it works like luxcat said – anything they think is unsellable, Goodwill will sell as recyclables (jeans are mostly cotton, which gets made into all sorts of things) or rag.

  • #230221

    arthelemis
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    Post them for free on Craiglist, kijiji, freecycle, etc.

    By my own experience, there is always somebody out there for whom your ”trash” is a treasure. I’ve given so much random stuff on these sites, I’m positively sure somebody will be very happy to reclaim your unwearable jeans.

    If not, I’ve heard of some people composting their jeans (and any natural fiber clothing). They then screened the compost to remove the zippers, buttons, etc. Those can be recycled (brass can fetch an high price with metal recyclers)

  • #230231

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    I can imagine they look great if they’re well worn. Take some good photographs of them before you take them wherever you’ll eventually take them. Apparently they are too valuable to you to just chuck them in the bin (and I can totally relate to that). At least capture their beauty 😉

  • #230232

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    And as far as decluttering your closet is concerned, the following test helps me decide what items to keep and what items to recycle: do I have a better alternative for this item? I mean: if I feel like wearing a light coloured sweater (that’s not three times a week), I choose my best light coloured sweater. The other light coloured sweaters in my closet are not used, so I might as well give them away 😉

  • #230235

    sharonus
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    Funny you should post this, I’ve started to regularly post on the ATAD forum, and my “thing” today was five pairs of trashed jeans. Three from my husband that were too long and have what I describe as “shark bites” on the bottom in the back and two others with huge holes in the knees.

    I had meant to Freecycle them so that someone could make a jeans quilt if they wanted, but I never got around to it. (I think part of the reason for that is I can’t imagine sleeping under a heavy quilt like that myself.) I found out that our Goodwill (in a large metro area) does sell unwearable clothing to companies who make rags. So, that’s easier for me than trying to find someone on Freecycle who would want them.

    There are some other cute D.I.Y. projects with old jeans like these placemats at on one of Goodwill’s Pinterest boards: http://pinterest.com/pin/41799102761702161 But let someone else who is crafty make those! Don’t torture yourself with guilt!

  • #230240

    TatiLie
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    I’ve read once that some companies use old jeans for home insulation.

  • #230241

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    My initial reaction: trash them. How much of your mental energy are you willing to expend fretting over a pair of jeans that are damaged, out of style and that you do not wear, do not intend to wear and cannot envision another use for? These jeans are not the boss of you.

  • #230251

    sleepykitten
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    Around here, used jeans are a hot commodity! There are companies that make home insulation out of repurposed/shredded jeans. There is a place that collects donations specifically for craft enthusiasts, and used denim is always on their list of “wants”. Or there are your standard textile recycling places (sometimes there are textile recycling bins by elementary schools or similar semi-public places).

    Or just give them to Goodwill – maybe in a bag separate from your regular donations marked “for textile recycling”. That way, you don’t “cheapen” the good clothes you are donating, and you help the sorters out.

  • #230262

    Nina
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    Ask your goodwill if they really wouldn’t take them and if not you can google “recyle clothes” and see if anyone does recycle them in your area. If both those things are not an option I agree – let them go and throw them away. Think of all the time and energy you have spent worrying about them – at the end of the day isn’t it worth more to just have that space in your closet and move on?

  • #230275

    bandicoot
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    hi wintermute!
    i read and re-read your post.
    i guess it boils down to one thing: you want them out of the house.
    it is your house and you do get to choose what leaves and what stays.
    so just take a bag, put the jeans in it, and drop them off to goodwill.
    it is not your responsibility to control what happens next.
    your job is done. let them go. it will be ok.

  • #230288

    Jackthetiger
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    I agree. Donate them as they are. Jeans are not like other clothes in that they look good with a bit of wear. Someone will turn them into shorts, or use them in a project.

  • #230316

    djk
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    I’m all for the quick donate, too

    If that is truly too much, why not give yourself a firm date, e.g. “If I have not found the ‘right’ home for them by next Saturday, I will drop them off at the nearest thrift store” ?

  • #230943

    wintermute
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    Thanks for all the excellent advice!

    I gave myself a week to list the jeans on Craigslist or Freecycle, then naturally never got around to it. They went off to Goodwill this afternoon, separated out from several other bags of nicer stuff. It’s so nice to get them out of the house!

  • #230988

    djk
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    Well done, wintermute!

  • #231291

    s
    Member

    What would you do with un-donateable jeans?

    Yes, winter. Well done!

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