The Donation Closet

The hubs and I make a major haul of items each year to our favorite thrift store in town, the Nearly New. Each year we get tons of questions on how we clean out our closets, collect the items, etc…  Our method is super simple.
Our donation closet system was born after I joined the Junior League of Atlanta (JLA) and saw the direct impact of the Nearly New store on the community. Before I joined JLA, we donated to thrift stores, but not as actively.
  • Our donation closet lives in an unused closet in our house.
  • We empty it every June (you can certainly empty more frequently).
  • This system has allowed us to collect an average of 200 items per year (some years, over 300!).
  • It helps avoid the “I need to clean out my closet day”.

If I try something on in the morning and think “I’m never going to wear this again, and there is nothing wrong with it” I immediately put it in the closet. My husband does the same thing. The same goes if I see an item of clothing hanging on the rack staring at me for attention (or if it has fallen to unknown spaces of the closet). The idea that it will be in the closet of a little while lessens the sting of giving it away. In fact, some times we place each others items in the donation closet. My husband thinks I have a cardigan obsession (maybe, I do) and he used to have items hanging in our closet that I had never seen him wear.


true life donation closet #nojudgement

We sort everything in clothing categories to help the store volunteers and  “save” items the other one thought were better for the Nearly New than for the other. Sometimes they were right, but sometimes you need want that third black cardigan, or that dress is from your engagement pictures and while you may never wear it again; it has a very special memory. It’s also a great place for those interesting gifts you receive throughout the year that just aren’t your taste. Often times it’s hard to donate because we think we may need this particular item again. If it’s been in our donation closet for five months and we haven’t thought of it, obviously it is better suited for someone else.


George Washington enjoys getting in on the donation action as well!

If you live in the Atlanta area and are looking for a place to donate items, I highly encourage you to check out the Nearly New. The shop has a direct impact on women and children in the Atlanta community.

Happy Donating!

Aubrey Lee


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