How to host a clothes swap party.

Did you know Australians buy an average of 27 kilograms of new textiles each year and then discard about 23 kilograms* into landfill. Two-thirds of those discards are manmade synthetic/plastic fibres that may never breakdown. Sadly only 10-15% of donated items end up in op-shops for reuse/resale because the clothing items are in bad condition from being left out in the rain, are filthy dirty or ripped/ruined.

We know that over 95% of textiles in landfill are reusable so there’s really no need for any of it to be there.

Our throwaway culture is creating a serious environmental problem, with 24% of people saying they threw out a garment after one wear. One in six people binned at least three garments they’d worn only once, ONCE!

Is it because people are so caught up in social media land that they feel the need to post a photo with a new outfit on every time they go out? Or they just can’t be seen in an outfit more than once?!

I’l admit I’ve been there, and I look back at all the clothes I’ve bought and money I’ve wasted over the years on new clothing and it actually makes me feel sick!

My wardrobe now is very minimal and I like items I can wear over and over styled in different ways.

Of course it’s nice to buy new clothing items, but there’s no need to buy new items on a weekly basis. We are living in a culture now that is so demanding for new fashion trends, and because the demand is there, fashion chains are just going to keep supplying us with new looks faster than we can even keep up.

We need to be more aware of our spending habits on clothes, and start reusing items we already have in our wardrobe already.

One of the best things you can do to help our environment is to host a clothes swap party! A party where you get the girls together with a bunch of your unwanted clothing and swap them around with each other.

My best friend and I put on a clothes swap this afternoon and it was a great success and it wasn’t any trouble at all to host it.

All you need to do is pick a date and a location to host it. We had our party at my besties house and used some rope and wood to make clothes rails and hung them from the beams on the pergola, but if you can get your hands on some clothes racks, even better!

We had about 12 ladies come along and everyone brought at least 5 items of clothing to swap. Once guests arrive, hang up all the clothes on the racks. We sorted the clothes into sections of tops, dresses, pants/bottoms and then a table for handbags and accessories.

The rules we had in place were;

*Each guest must bring a minimum of 5 items and a maximum of 15 items to swap. Items can be clothes, bags, hats, jewellery. The items must be in good condition, clean, ironed and on a clothes hanger.

*However many items you bring to swap, that is the amount of items you are aloud to take home. You can write up a chart to ‘register’ all the clothing items to keep track of who brought what and who’s taking what, but we felt like all our guests would be honest and fair so didn’t bother documenting it.

*Any items left at the end of the swap can either be taken back home with the guest or the host will donate to a local charity/opshop (and not just dumped out in the rain)

The more guests that come along the better style and size range there will be. So get those invites out early and let guests know to save there wardrobe clean out for the clothes swap.

It’s a great way to clear out your wardrobe of items you don’t wear anymore and pick yourself up some new items without spending money or throwing out good clothing that will most likely end up in landfill.

You can tweak the rules as you wish, but you get the gist of it.

Our event was so successful that we are already planning one for 6 months time! Plus it’s a good excuse to get the girls together, have some nibbles and a cheeky wine and have a shop, all while saving money and saving the environment.

X Jes

The side hustle.

My last post was all about budgeting with a baby and some little things we were doing to help save money and cut costs. Since then my husband has read the ‘barefoot investor’ which has stepped up our game. If you haven’t read it, then go out and get it now! It will change your entire mindset on saving money!

Anyone who has read this gem of a book will understand how all the bank accounts work and the ‘plan’ to save some good money while also being able to have fun and live life. It has really helped Aaron and I clean up our bank accounts and finally have some direction on where we are going with our finances.

We have become extra savvy with shopping, and how our money is being used, but It somehow got me feeling like I was letting the team down by not working and bringing in good money like I used to before I had Lara. It made me realize that buying our dream farm is a long way off and it’s not going to happen any quicker by living off Aaron’s wage alone. But what’s a mama to do though? Childcare is around $90 a day, which almost defeats the purpose of me going back to work, and I’d rather not work and spend quality time with my daughter and raising her how I want we to be raised than going to work, making a small buck and having someone else raise her. So what on earth are you supposed to do? Centrelink is a joke, and pretty much just laughs in your face while providing you with a lousy $30 a week to be a stay at home mama, I mean how is $30 going to help my family live?!

While wallowing in self pity, I was scrolling through Instagram and came across a friends post about making money from a side hustle. Mikhailla from www.wholeheartedly.com.au explained whether it’s selling items you no longer need or use for a small dollar or putting your house on air bnb while you’re away on a holiday for $400 a weekend, it’s all money that adds up and helps reach your goals. Her post really got me thinking and I instantly felt less guilty about not working. She made me realize I am contributing, and I am working my bum off to help our family become financially secure:- and it’s all thanks to the side hustle.

For example, today I have cleared out my wardrobe of clothes that I just don’t wear anymore, and il be taking pictures and uploading to Facebook to sell. $10 here and $20 there all adds up. I’m all for reusing and recycling and if there are items in the house we no longer use then I will happily sell them to help our savings grow.

I have 3 main side hustles that bring in money for us, while it’s not a lot of money, it’s still money that is helping to put food on the table and money in the bank.

I’m a qualified hairdresser so I can do hair from home, I make jewellery and smudge wands that I sell online and I also do photography sessions. Each one of these hustles makes me happy & I enjoy doing them. I can do all of these things from home with Lara, or on days when my husband is off from work. While I work hard to make time to be able to do these tasks and be a full-time mama and keep the house in order, I never realized the importance of these side hustles, and the small contributions they bring in for my family and my mental health. As Mikhailla said, ‘doing something is better than doing nothing’, and while I’m not earning what I used to when I was working, an extra $50 – $200 a week makes up a huge difference in our lives, and just takes that pressure off living on one wage.

We all want extra money, for a savings goal or to have as splurge money, and whether you work full time or are a stay at home mama like myself, the short cut to having it all is doing it all. I hope this post inspires you to start that side hustle, sometimes you just need that little push to get things moving.

Thank you Mikhailla for reminding me I’m a kickass mama with a side hustle.

Happy money making!

X Jes

Follow Mikhailla on Instagram at @mikhailla

www.wholeheartedly.com.au

My hustle instragram handles;

@thatsher_photography

@wolfandshe

www.wolf-and-she.myshopify.com