National Old Stuff Day: How to tackle spring cleaning early


Makayla Roumph

National Old Stuff Day falls on Tuesday, March 2 this year, just in time to begin spring cleaning early. Photo courtesy of Pexels.

According to National Today, National Old Stuff Day is the day to clean out closets and garages, rediscover hidden gems and declutter other aspects of life. The day falls on Tuesday, March 2 this year, which means a chance to start spring cleaning early.

National Today recommended three activities to participate: clean out your space, donate intentionally and change an old habit.

“Even the most minimalist among us can benefit from taking a good look at our space,” National Today said. “Do all your pens work? Give them a try and throw out the ones that don’t.”

If planning to donate clothing and items no longer serving you, consider donating to a place with a cause. According to National Today, 80% of secondhand clothing ends up in landfills or incinerators. With that, donate to thrift stores or organizations who have the intention to reach the people who need their items most. Local places include St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store, Tip Top Thrift Shop Inc. and The Salvation Army Thrift Stop.

Secondhand shopping in America dates all the way back to 1820 when churches or ladies’ charity groups hosted charity fairs and rebranded it to be a “charitable act.” It was in 1902 that Goodwill Industries was founded, an iconic secondhand store to shop at nationally. The name “thrift shop” developed from the surface in 1919, which led Goodwill Industries to open 200 stores in the U.S. in response to the Great Depression.

It wasn’t until1995 was the first online marketplaces for secondhand shopping launched in the form of eBay and Craigslist, which have since served as a staple place to both buy and resell.

National Old Stuff Day is not only about cleaning out physical spaces and materialistic “stuff,” but mental spaces and non materialistic “stuff” too. The recommended activity in doing so is to change an old habit by setting intentions and committing to yourself in making the necessary changes to unhealthy habits by beginning new ones.

The benefits in participating in these activities, according to National Today, are that it saves you money, helps conserve resources and it’s fun! Secondhand shopping can result in finding authentic pieces that allow you to curate the perfect outfit that fits your style, all while on a budget.

On an environmental level, donating gives old items another chance to find a new home rather than wasting resources in fast fashion. You know the saying: Reduce, reuse and recycle.

Make the day more exciting by inviting a friend to join you on a covid-safe trip to a thrift store. For health and safety purposes, always wash, wipe down and sanitize your thrifted items before wearing or using.

Let this be a day where the priorities lie in both the old and the new, the physical and the mental, the letting go and accepting of the items, habits and things no longer serving you.