“Second Hand September” was started in the UK a few years ago, challenging their country men and women to avoid buying any new clothes for the month, in attempts to slow the 13 million items that head to the landfill EVERY DAY!
The movement has now opened to a broader view, asking everyone in every continent to think about a change in mindset from consumption to becoming more conscious shoppers all year round.
And now more than ever seems like the perfect time to shift our awareness. The pandemic has created an opportunity to reimagine our economies and how we live, to make lasting changes that set us on track to a healthier world.
Choosing second hand is one way that we can all play a part in shifting to more sustainable consumption and helping to build back better from the virus. By joining the movement, collectively, one, we can demand that retailers change their business models to more eco-friendly options, and two, keep raising awareness about the fragility of the planet we all share.
While industries are slowly changing, everything from furniture to apparel, is being produced by upcycled, ethically sourced, and sustainable materials, not everyone can afford a $75 pair of pants made from recycled plastic bottles, or a sofa built from old car tires.
This is where the second-hand markets, thrift stores, consignment shops, and other pre-owned sales outlets are the superstars. If you find yourself needing to purchase something new try looking at second hand first; the quality of thrift store furniture may surprise you. Nowadays it is SO easy to find high-quality pre-owned items to satisfy your every need while simultaneously diverting these items from landfills.
Here are some resources to start your new second hand awareness shopping:
- Facebook Marketplace
- Ask a friends who might have the item you’re looking for
- Borrow an item you don’t need long term
- Try upscale consignment stores
- Take a trip to a thrift shop
And right here in Phoenix and the Bay Area, is a local second hand shop called The Local Flea. This is only a partial list, but look at the selection offered:
- Decor & Art
- Electronics & Tools
- Musical Instruments
- Outdoor furniture
- Sports & Outdoors
What’s unique about The Local Flea is that this warehouse sized consignment store is part of a larger recycling and environmentally conscious organization that is helping those who are downsizing, reorganizing, closing storage units or offices, as well as estate sellers not only profit from items they no longer want, but also provides donations to non-profit organizations, in the end keeping items out of our landfills.
The Local Flea’s parent organization, Remoov, is a full service decluttering and upcycling company that takes all your unwanted belongings off your hands, and, in turn, sells, donates and recycles those unwanted items on your behalf. On average, about 50% of the items Remoov picks up are collected for resale, 20% donation and 30% disposal. Of the items collected for resale, roughly 85% are sold during the consignment period.
Items sold at The Local Flea are inspected and listed for sale online and in the store, conveniently offering a 7-day return policy. You can shop online or at either store location (an appointment is recommended). Purchases can also be delivered locally or shipped anywhere in the US.
The Local Flea is more than a consignment store: every purchase contributes to their mission of sustainability.
So, you’ve taken a look at The Local Flea’s online shopping site and feel comfortable and motivated to give the sustainable lifestyle a try. At the same time, you might be looking for places to donate clothes, or a tv recycling option, where to donate toys, asking the question of who will pick up old appliances in your area, or thinking of dumping your furniture, take a look The Local Flea’s parent company, Remoov, and the full range of services they offer and jump into the Second Hand September movement!
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I know, Changing mindsets is key to preventing social and environmental disaster. We are what we think. The principles of sustainability mindset force us to study not a single operation of the company, but the whole system.