At Wearable Collections we are big believers in the compound effect. While we strive to have a massive, positive impact on our community and the environment around us with every campaign we launch, we know its the little things we do every day that really add up. We know you all have busy lives and are inundated with activities, but we want to give you a gentle nudge and help you navigate a way that with a small action you can be part of a bigger solution as Earth Day approaches next month.
If any of the below fits YOU, then simply email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will walk you through, step by step to set up a convenient clothes, shoes and home linens collection.
YOU have a closet full of clothes you no longer wear – Ask us about a home pick up.
YOU have a child in school – Lets set up a drive!
YOU live in a large residental building – Request a bin for your building!
YOU live in a small residential building – We can do periodic drives!
YOU work in an office – Set up a clothing or shoe drive and your colleagues will love you!
YOU particpate in a community group that can use more funds – Pick a day and let’s do a drive!
YOU work for a fashion company – Let’s figure out a way to green-up your operations.
The list goes on and on and we know you get the point. All it takes is an email for us to get a collection event started.
At Wearable Collections we are obsessed with providing convenient solutions to help declutter your closets. The fact that we live in an on-demand society has not been lost on us. While it may not be realistic for us to appear immediately at the touch of your phone, we plan on doing our best to work within our current confines to make the reuse of your preloved fashion as seamless as possible.
We will be launching our home pick-ups in Manhattan today and plan to expand the service to the outer boroughs very shortly. Please be patient while we work out the kinks and adhere to our minimum requirements, as you all are in important cog to this programs’ success.
In terms of pick up timing, think of us like the cable company with 4 hour window periods. 8 am to 12 pm and 12 pm until 4 pm. We will do our best to accomodate and keep to any specific instructions but know that the easiest thing for all of us is if you could leave the bags with the doorman or in a place, clearly marked, that we can do a fly-by. These pick-ups are not limited to residential. Businesses, retail, and dry cleaners feel free to experience the convenience of Wearable Collections service.
(5 bag minimum) –
Find your zipcode and mark appropriate day on this pick-up form
10004, 10038, 10002, 10013, 10012, 10003
10009, 10010, 10001, 10016, 10018
EVERY OTHER TUESDAY
10035, 10030, 10031, 10037, 10039, 10032, 10033, 10040, 10034
10017, 10022, 10065, 10021, 10075, 10028, 10128, 10029
10036, 10019, 10023, 10024
10025, 10026, 10027
All outer borough residents please sign up for our newsletter or follow us on facebook, twitter, and instagram for updates on when we will be paying you house calls. Stay Tuned!
As proud members of the NYC community, the Wearable Collections team would like to tip our hats to those who give their all to provide an education to the children of the city. We have children, siblings, spouses and parents who have all been nourished by our city’s system. Being so involved in the community, we are also very aware of the amount of money it takes to keep lots of incredible programming afloat. While we don’t have a solution that can sweep away these problems in one fell swoop, we do what we can to help in our little way.
A shoe and sneaker drive is a seamless way to engage your community, help declutter closets and raise funds for your school all at the same time. We make it so easy you will wonder why you haven’t done it before. We are certain a shoe drive will become a mainstay as part of your fundraising tools.
Please go to our website and fill out the form on the right side of this page to host a drive A representative of the company will contact you to answer any questions you may have and to finalize details for the drive.
Next the fun part –
1.You promote the drive to the families in your school.
2. We arrive on the pre-determined date to pick up the collected shoes.
3. We weigh the shoes and cut your PTA a check for .25 cents/lb
We have seen schools raise anywhere from $50 to $1000 on a drive. So please come along and help us keep shoes out of landfills while keeping them in circulation. There is someone out there that would still love to walk a mile in those shoes.
****Please ask us how you can participate in the #socialshoeproject A Wearable Collections campaign to trace where your shoes go by connecting the donor to the second wearer via instagram. We are all connected in many ways – sometimes even by our feet.
I recently received a unique interview request from a group of 11 and 12 year old girls from Floral Park who are participating in a challenge called Trash Trek sponsored by the First Lego League. I was only introduced to this organization through these inspiring girls. From FLL’s website “In the 2015 FIRST® LEGO® League TRASH TREKSM Challenge, 290,000 children ages 9 to 16 from over 80 countries will explore the fascinating world of what you throw away. From collection, to sorting, to smart production and reuse, there is more to your garbage than meets the eye.” Just fro the questions these young ladies asked, I can tell the future is in good hands!
Here’s the interview:
Alyssa: What is your favorite part of running your business?
Being such an integrated part of the NYC green community. People know about us and have an expectation that we will be there for collections every week. We love living up to those expectations.
Faith: How did you choose recycling textiles as a way of raising money?
One of my good friends from Chile runs a sorting facility out of New Jersey. He told me about the opportunities in used clothing collections and i was intrigued.
Kaitlyn: Were there any conflicts or obstacles to overcome when you started creating this company? If so, what were they?
One of the biggest obstacles for us has been that we are not a non-profit. When it comes to clothing “donation” people have the perception that they are giving to a charity. We provide a terrific service and dedicate a portion of the proceeds to charity, but we are not one ourselves.
Myrah: How can we improve textile recycling?
For me the answer is always about convenience. We must continually educate people and create convenient ways for them to dispose of their textiles.
Jennifer: If your partner was not hurt, would you still have started this business?
GREAT QUESTION! To be honest, the answer is probably no. This started out as a little project in 2004 which grew into a business strictly due to need and demand.
Kaitlyn: Is the Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn location your only location? Have you been there since the beginning of your business?
This is where our office is but we collect in over 200 residential buildings, 31 weekly greenmarkets and hundreds of one-off community drives.
Alyssa: Are you thinking about expanding to sorting textiles?
I have been pressured to sort the textiles and it is compelling. However, i personally dont believe my strength is in sorting. My strength is in marketing and creating unique partnerships that allow for greatest volume to be kept from landfills. If someone wanted to partner with me and do more sorting, i would be open to the idea
Caitlin: How did you get money to start this business?
Me and my two partners put in the start up capital from money we earned in our jobs before we started Wearables. We didnt start with that much, only $50,000. Which may sound like a lot but isnt so much to start a company. All of the growth from the company has come from organic growth whcih i am very proud of.
Myrah: What is the value of different textiles?
Used clothing is a commodity. It is subject to the laws of supply and demand which can change the proce at any time. IT is the 50% of the collections that is re-used as second hand clothing which drives the the whole recycling industry. The rags and materials that are shredded are the byproducts of this process and arent valued anywhere near the value of reusable clothing.
Jennifer: What is your goal for expanding the business?
I would like to continue making startegic partnerships that expand our reach. Partnerships with schools, municipalities and corporations are some areas that we are focused. We have just launched a campaign called #socialshoeproject which we hope will lead to growth in both our shoe/sneaker collections and also lead to greater awareness in general of our overall business and goals.
Caitlin: How many pounds of textiles do you need to pick up from a building or a greenmarket to be efficient?
Building and greenmarkets are two different models. We like to infuse our routes with a mixture of both and even adding a community drive to the mix. What’s important is density of collections and trying not to lose too much time to traffic or other items that can mess with logisitics. The greenmarkets are a way of having a dense collection since the community brings the clothing and shoes to us, so we can service a lot of people in one location.
Kaitlyn: How many pounds of textiles more do you hope to collect?
I would like to collect as much as needed to keep it all from going in landfills. Is that realistic? Probably not but we hope that Wearable Collections impact goes beyond simply the clothing we collect. We are active in creating educational and convenient campaigns that not only impact the amount of clothing diverted but have also been models for composting and electronic waste.
Faith: Where do you send the textiles for sorting?
We work with several sorting facilities in the tri-state area.
Kaitlyn: Where do you store your textiles?
We move the textiles almost as quickly as they are collected.
Last week was an extremely busy week for Wearable Collections. It seemed as if everyone in New York was cleaning out their closets. We hosted dozens of drives with community groups, residential complexes and even one smack dab in the middle of Times Sq with the Broadway Green Alliance. On top of hanging out and speaking with the public at some of these events, I also got the opportunity to do some public speaking. Lots of discussions about what we do: handling clothing collections, waste managment, charitable giving and community building. I can speak all day on these topics and often do, but for me the conversation kept on coming back to one thing – PEOPLE.
On Earth day its not unusual for the discussion to circle around saving the Earth. I have read many books on the environment, pollution and garbage. All this reading had lead me to one conclusion – The Earth is gonna be fine in her ever evolving status. What’s at jeopardy is our ability to inhabit her. Humans, we too are a resilient, but need very specific environment to live healthily. When I speak to people about why we should care about the environment, it always leads me back to the idea of living consciously. About being educated about the articles of clothing we wear, the food we ingest, the products we put in our hair and on our body. There is so much mis-information out there and people live such busy lives that they throw their hands in surrender – saying they dont have the time to care about all these things.
Well, I believe that every day should be a celebration of the Earth. The wondrous place that we all call home and not a day should go by where we don’t contemplate and be in awe and aware of all the products that surround us. But also the people that produce these products and how their lives are affected by our consumption habits. When I speak to people about my experience in diverting 10 million lbs of clothing,shoes and textiles over 10 years, I often come back to raising the public’s consciousness of the value of the wastestream. It seems like something that people can relate. But also, what has gone into the production of clothes before they are ever worn. The cotton that takes loads of water and pesticides to produce, the energy that it takes to ship this cotton to lands where it is turned into garments, the toxins in the dye that pollute the rivers in the lands where the garments are finalized, the shipping back to the garments final destination. That’s a whole lot of lives affected by production and consumption. There is a saying that says – out of sight, out of mind. When i think of Earth Day, I think of bringing back into mind all of those who are out of sight. A conscious life is a healthy life, and as overall consciousness is raised we will all benefit…….and so will the Earth.