Reuse & Reduce Your Closet’s Footprint

Tried & True Boutique, Snohomish

You might not realize it but choosing to buy something old instead of new helps the environment, on top of providing some unique things for your home and closet. If you are scratching your head and wondering how being second hand helps the environment, allow me to elaborate.

Buying second hand has two main benefits for the environment. The most obvious being that it reduces waste. Instead of heading off to a landfill, items are given a second chance to be used again or repurposed into something new. This is something that is especially important when it comes to clothing and other textiles.

In the United States, over 65% of used textiles, 10 million tons, were sent off to landfills each year. Once there they take hundreds of years to decompose, all the while releasing toxic substances into the surrounding soil and groundwater.

What is the second benefit? Buying second hand items for your home and closet also reduces the need for production of new items and encourages manufacturers to create recycled and reused items to maintain customers and sales.

When you choose something used over something new that is one less product that needs to be manufactured, and the more you and others make that choice, that is less and less trucks and shipping vessels traveling cross country and internationally polluting our air and water.

I can’t think of a better incentive to not only use the clothing and things in my home longer, or find ways to reuse them, but to buy second hand as well. These are small steps that, if taken by enough individuals, could have a big impact working towards a better environment for future generations.

So now that I’ve got your attention with some major reasons to choose second hand, where should you go to get it. There are lots of thrift shops located across Snohomish County to shop, particularly local based ones that support community programs and food banks. My favorite places to go though, have to be the local antique/vintage shops and consignment boutiques like Tried & True Boutique of Snohomish.

Owner Carrie Alles has been a consignor and second-hand buyer since her 20’s. Back then that choice for her, and for many, was more about living frugally and having unique style.

“When I was in my 20’s and 30’s, I thrifted and consigned to help stretch my dollar farther. That frugalness necessity grew into a love and passion that I share with my family. I believe in forgetting about conventional, traditional style rules. Bring those fun, spirited pieces together and create the image you want to project and the life you want to live. I opened Tried & True Boutique to share my passion with the community.”

That brings us to a third benefit of buying second hand, one that not only allows you to do your part to help the environment, but earns and saves you some money at the same time. Consignment shops like Tried & True pay you for your old clothing and items, allowing you to recoup some of that hard-earned money you spent buying them.

Those are dollars you can use to get out and enjoy your life more (hopefully at local shops, eating + drinking establishments, and recreation of course). You can also use them to buy second hand items and clothing that are fun and unique, or that you might not otherwise be able to afford new.

“My shop is a great place to experience higher-end, name brand, clothing at a price point that is more affordable. We currently have sizes from 0-18, carefully [curate both] old and new, in-season and in-trend, styles not only for you but also your home.”

The items found at Tried & True can also be extremely unique and exotic at times, including an African Yoruba Beaded Crown with white beaded birds on it that is a must see, and a challenge to find since it doesn’t look like the Western idea of a crown. There are also lots of shoes, handbags, jewelry, and other accessories to choose from, as well as cool finds for your home. It is a boutique that is truly worth exploring.

Did you know that this article, as well as all of the others featured on our website are part of a monthly magazine. Our monthly magazine is available in both electronic and print form (yes, you read right, print!). As if that wasn’t awesome enough, each issue contains exclusive content that can’t be found on our website or social media accounts. So if you aren’t getting a copy each month you are missing out.

Single issues can be bought HERE and annual subscriptions, which include exclusive giveaways and discounts, can be signed up for HERE. Finally, a limited number of printed copies are available at The Chic Boatique,  Artisans Mercantile, and Tried & True Boutique in Snohomish and Reclaimed Heart in Arlington, Vintage Company No. 7 in Bothell, Dahlia’s Vintage Marketplace on Camano Island, Rustic Redemption in Granite Falls, and Vintage & Rust in Monroe.

Let us know what you think! Share your comments and experiences below and don’t forget to spread the love on social media at the bottom of the page.