Well, yes, it seems they could certainly help ! From time to time, I visit Collectors Weekly , a site packed with all kinds of interesting information about fashion, design home, culture, machines (from letter openers to boom boxes), and collectibles—how we feel about them, what they mean to us, and what we do with them. I also get a regular auction email from them to see who has recognized that my apparently rare and definitely beautiful thrift-bought Telechron electric art deco clock is worth three or four times what I paid for it—economic worth being a relatively meaningless term, of course. My clock is worthful because I love it, even if someone wouldn’t give one thin little dime for it, but still it’s fun to see that you got quite an economic bargain, too!
And as Collectors Weekly points out, the same is true of clothes, of course: what they’re worth depends on so many things, sometimes the least of which is what we paid for them. But no matter what clothes mean to us personally, where and how we buy them, and what we do with them when they no longer function for or appeal to us, we can do it all in ways that extract a smaller price from the planet, as well as from our wallets and our consciences.
Take a look through this Collectors Weekly piece and you’ll see all kinds of neat ideas and inventions that will make you proud to be a thrifter (or even a buyer of new clothing )and excited about all the new ways you can indulge your love of clothing without feeling you have to skulk around like a some kind of galaxy-wrecking virus because you like to have lots of clothes and really enjoy dressing up in “new” threads or sharing your latest maxi- or mini-haul. [Big idea: Levi’s has figured out a way to save more than 200 million gallons of water by changing the way it manufactures its men’s jeans. Little Idea: Individual thrifters (like you!) proudly, even gleefully, telling people where the clothing they’ve just complemented came from so the admirers can attitude-adjust beyond thinking used clothing is for only the poor, unwashed, thoughtless, and unstylish.]
One of the very best things about this Collectors Weekly piece, and the reason I hope you’ll have a look at it, is that it’s full of new (to me, anyway) information about possible solutions from so many earnest and thoughtful people who are trying so hard to solve Earth’s problems in all sorts of ways—the particular problem in this case bring the very clothes we wear. You may know that The Man in the Plaid Shirt teachers college students, and from his work we know that they are deeply concerned about climate change, the earth’s current state of ill-health, what we’ve done to cause it, and how we can help fix it. This deep caring is a sign of hope, without which, let’s face it, all is lost. Hope precedes action, which is the best antidote to fear.
So buck up, have a look at the Collectors Weekly piece, do what you can, and let your thrift flag fly.