Ever wondered what thrift stores do when they have too much stuff?
In the past, local thrift store Twice But Nice has sent their overstock to places like the Canadian Diabetes Association, the Bissell Centre and even sponsored shipments to Africa. However, after reading about Blenderz, a garment recycling business in Edmonton, something clicked for manager Terri Ponich.
"We're pretty lucky in that we have way too much inventory coming in and she was looking for textiles, primarily. We found we could help each other out."
Twice But Nice and Blenderz have officially forged a new partnership.
The garment recycling company takes used clothing and textiles and repurposes them into other items. The aim is to keep as many textiles out of landfills as possible, something Ponich is committed to.
"[Blenderz] provided another opportunity to keep textiles in circulation which I think is becoming more and more important to all of us, with our landfills filling up with textiles and clothing and the whole disposable clothing market," she explained. "It's helping us by keeping those landfills, or starting to keep those landfills, less full.'
In Canada, the average person throws out 81 pounds of textiles annually, while North Americans send 10 million tonnes of clothing to the landfill every year.
The thrift store went a step further in their waste-reduction partnership by sewing reusable bags to transport textiles to Blenderz, which has become a weekly occurrence.
Even though Blenderz does resell some of the garments they receive they are not direct competitors to the local non-profit. Blenderz’ clients are in Edmonton, they use a different business model for reselling items and a lot of their business revolves around breaking down items for reuse in crafting.
Ponich added the store could always use more volunteers and sponsorships from the community.