PEI

What to do with all the stuff Marie Kondo convinced you to give up

Now that you've tidied up with Marie Kondo's new Netflix series, what do you to with all of your excess stuff? Here are some ideas.

'Can't wait to hit up Value Village in the coming weeks'

Value Village will give a discount coupon when people make donations. (Paul Borkwood)

Now that you've tidied up with Marie Kondo's new Netflix series, what do you do with all of your excess stuff?

Marie Kondo is an organizing guru who has inspired Islanders through her new series and her books to eliminate clutter from their homes — things that don't "spark joy" have to go. 

CBC asked Islanders via Facebook what their favourite places are to unload their treasures and why — here they are, in no particular order. 

1. Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity on P.E.I. runs a ReStore which takes donations and re-sells gently-used appliances, furniture and housewares as well as building supplies including lumber, paint and tiles and more. They also accept artwork, books and DVDs, but not clothing. 

Donations of building supplies, furniture in good repair, books and more are welcome at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Charlottetown. (Katerina Georgieva/CBC)

"Last year we diverted over 619,000 pounds [313,432 kilograms] of waste from landfills at our store," said Habitat's CEO Aaron Brown. 

All profits from the ReStore go to cover overhead for the organization like salaries for its staff, he said.

"Because of this, every dollar we bring in through fundraising and receive in homeowner mortgage payments goes directly toward building homes," Brown said. 

The store accepts donations Monday to Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. They also offer a free pick-up service Tuesday through Saturday. 

Find them on Facebook or phone (902) 368-7539. 

2. Mission Thrift Store

The Mission Thrift Store, previously Bibles for Missions, is on Allen Street in Charlottetown where Kent Building Supplies used to be. 

"I donate to MTS because all of the proceeds are for no-profit," commented Gloria Wooldridge on Facebook. 

It's a large, department-style resale shop that takes almost everything except televisions, encyclopedias and baby equipment. 

The store is a volunteer-driven Christian organization that operates 50 thrift stores across Canada. All the donations made on P.E.I. stay at the store.

The revenue generated by the stores goes to the joint ministry of BFM Foundation Canada and Bible League Canada to spread the "word of God." Some of it goes to other Christian organizations on P.E.I. such as Camp Seggie, spokesperson Marg Shroder said.

3. Value Village

Value Village is arguably the most popular thrift store on P.E.I. and is also a large department-style store. 

Many of the donations to Value Village are sent overseas for resale in countries like Ghana, India, or Bolivia. (CBC News)

"Can't wait to hit up Value Village in the coming weeks," said Beth Bruce of Souris. 

"Donate to VV's, because I get the coupon (and I also shop there)," said Nicole Bellefleur of Charlottetown. When you donate, Value Village will punch a rewards card for up to 30 per cent off your next purchase.

It is a for-profit company that partners with community non-profits such as the Canadian Diabetes Association and Big Brothers/Big Sisters. 

Value Village agrees to take the contents of the charities' bins and pay them a flat fee based on the weight of the load. That fee is negotiated on a case-by-case basis, and is not publicly available.

As CBC discovered last year, 80 to 90 per cent of donated clothing isn't being resold in Canada. It's sold in other countries, sold as rags, or reprocessed into new goods, or sent to a landfill according to the for-profit Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles Association. 

Some of the goods donated on P.E.I. end up at different Value Village locations or are shipped overseas. 

4. First Impressions

First Impressions is a P.E.I. non-profit that provides free professional clothing and accessories to women in need.

Clients at First Impressions come in for a private appointment and take the clothing they need at no charge. The public is also welcome to shop there. (First Impressions/Facebook)

"After Marie Kondo-ing last summer, I donated six large blue bags of clothing, accessories and shoes to First Impressions," said Dominique Chouinard of Charlottetown. 

"We help women who are leaving domestic violence, fire victims, transitioning from the mental-health system etc.," said owner Karrie Macdougall.

First Impressions is open to the public to shop — everything is priced at $5. Proceeds are split 50-50 between mental health and addictions and upkeep at the store as well as purchasing some things for clients that they don't have in stock.

It also takes mens' clothing and donates them to men in need at the Q.E.H. and mental health and addictions clients.

It operates from the Hillsborough Hospital at 115 Deacon Grove Road in Charlottetown. Hours are listed on its Facebook page

5. Gifts From the Heart, Inc.

Gifts From The Heart Inc. offers donations to low-income Islanders and "people going through a rough patch," its Facebook page says. 

Anne Putnam said she enjoys donating to this organization since "No money changes hands and she makes sure everything goes to families in need."

It is organized by Betty Begg-Brooks of Charlottetown, a retired nurse who gathers the food, clothing, furniture, household goods, toys and personal items at her home. Along with local charity Santa's Angels, Begg is looking to find a facility to open a free thrift shop for those in need. 

6. Free Store 

The Free Store in Summerside provides free clothes for those in need as well as housewares, baby stuff, toiletries and books. It was started by Belinda Woods in 2016 and is volunteer-run. 

The Free Store in Summerside provides clothing and housewares for those in need, for free. (Free Store/Facebook)

The store is at 109 Water Street, at the corner of Water and King, and is open every Tuesday from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. for donations. It is open to the public on the second and fourth Saturdays of each month from 1 to 4 p.m. plus the third Tuesday of each month from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

People are promised a "non-judgemental environment" and are welcome to take what they need, the shop's Facebook page says. 

7. Anderson House 

Family Violence Prevention Services runs Anderson House shelter for women and children in Charlottetown, which is frequently in need of donations. 

The organization updates its list of needs monthly on it website. To donate, contact them via Facebook, call (902) 894-3354 or email admin@fvps.ca to co-ordinate. 

"The majority of the items we usually need are food and supplies so I'm not sure if this will work very well with decluttering, but you never know!" said Lindsay Merrill.

The organization also occasionally posts calls for help on its Facebook page.

8. Salvation Army 

The Salvation Army Thrift Store in Summerside, P.E.I., at 79 All Weather Highway accepts donations and resells items. 

Clothing for anyone in the family can be found at cheap prices at the Salvation Army or Value Village. (Summerside Salvation Army Thrift Store/Facebook)

Hours are 9 to 4:45 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and donations can be dropped off after-hours on their front deck says manager Anna MacDonald — just make sure boxes and bags are sealed in case it snows.

Excess items and items that haven't sold in the store are packaged up and sent to a central processing station in Dieppe, N.B., and may be disbursed to other Salvation Army stores or sold on for further recycling.

Clothing items in the store are priced from $2 to $6. Other items like home decor may have higher prices — that money goes to support Salvation Army programs on P.E.I. like a daily free lunch, MacDonald said.

"It's a store for everybody and designed so anybody who walks in the door can find something," said MacDonald. 

The Salvation Army is a Christian faith-based organization — bibles are available for free at the thrift shop, and Christian music plays in the background. 

9. Blooming House

P.E.I.'s new shelter for women, Blooming House in Charlottetown, is looking for donations of furniture including beds, mattresses, lamps, sofas and more. 

Charlottetown's new shelter for women, Blooming House, is seeking donations of furniture. (Laura Meader/CBC)

Find them on Facebook where you can fill out a form telling them what you have. You will need to drop off in Charlottetown.

"I still have another round of downsizing to go, so will look here!" commented Mathieu Arsenault.

10. Nearly New

This resale store on Main Street in Montague, P.E.I., raises money for the local Kings County Memorial Hospital. 

"Although it's a little out of the way, we send our clothing and housewares donations to Nearly New in Montague — proceeds go to the hospital (love that it's non-denominational, not-for-profit)," submits Shayna Johnston of Charlottetown. 

The store is open Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

11. Charity yard sales

You could also hold on to your things and donate them to the annual Mikinduri Children of Hope giant indoor yard sale, which raises money to help reduce poverty in Kenya. It's held at the beginnning of May each year. 

The annual Mikinduri Children of Hope indoor yard sale looks for donations in the days leading up to the sale every May. (Mikinduri Children of Hope/Facebook)

There's also the Pinch Penny Fair held near the end of April every year at the Confederation Centre of the Arts. It sells gently-used household goods, plants and books to raise money for art education and projects at the centre. 

And the annual Coats for Kids drive in early November every year wants donations of warm winter wear for all ages. 

If you have some things that you think have value, you could also try selling them. 

"I sell any really special mint condition items and then I ask my friends if they need anything for themselves or children, then I donate," commented Denise Dawn MacLeod.

12. Sell online

Sell online on Kijiji or some of the many Facebook buy/sell sites just for P.E.I.

There are lots of great tips for sellers and buyers in this recent CBC story

13. Pawn/antique shops

Some resale shops will give you a bit of cash for your treasures, or consign them — put them for sale in their shops for a cut of the selling price. 

Second Time Around thrift shop in Souris buys and sells just about everything. (Second Time Around/Facebook)

Most Wanted in Charlottetown is a popular spot for everything from electronics to jewelry to musical instruments. 

Sawyer & Co. on Great George Street in Charlottetown buys brand-name clothing and accessories. 

Coulson's New & Used Furniture on Water Street in Summerside buys antiques and local artwork.

Second Time Around in the Main Street Mall in Souris buys furniture, housewares, books and clothing and will also take donations. 

14. Have a yard sale

You could have a garage sale indoors in the winter, or if you have space to hang on to your items, wait until spring and have a yard sale.

You could encourage others in your building or neighbourhood to hold sales on the same day to increase traffic. 

15. 70-mile yard sale

The annual weekend-long 70-Mile Yard Sale in P.E.I. at the end of every September is a great way to unload lots of stuff quickly. 

People are looking for just about everything too, from furniture to jewelry to collectibles. Join a public site like the one at Wood Islands or team up with someone you know along the sale route. 

More info on its Facebook page.

16. Flea market

There's a flea market in Charlottetown every Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Sherwood Business Centre. 

Rent a table at the Sunday flea market on St. Peters Road to sell some of your excess stuff. (Nicole Williams/CBC)

Rent a table for $15. Find them on Facebook or call (902) 368-8161.

Every few months a group of avid thrifters on P.E.I. also holds a Thriftspotting Pop-up Flea Market where vintage and collectible goods are popular — keep an eye out for these on Facebook if you're interested in renting a table. 

More P.E.I. news

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sara Fraser

Web Journalist

Sara has worked with CBC News in P.E.I. since 1988, starting with television and radio before moving to the digital news team. She grew up on the Island and has a journalism degree from the University of King's College in Halifax. Reach her by email at sara.fraser@cbc.ca.

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