Create your own sustainable wardrobe at TRAID Clapham!

July 31, 2014

TRAID_event_postera3_clapham_redCreate a fabulous and sustainable wardrobe at TRAID Clapham’s late night opening on Thursday 7 August, 6:30pm – 9pm at 28 St John’s Road, London, SW11 1PW.

You are invited to visit the Clapham charity shop to browse the rails for the best in hand-picked second-hand clothes, vintage and shoes.  They will also have stylists on hand to help you get the most from your charity shop finds. You can pre-book a slot by phoning TRAID Clapham on 020 7924 3065 or emailing

TRAID will also be asking shoppers to sign up to the charity’s #secondhandfirst pledge asking customers to commit to ensuring a percentage of their wardrobe comes from sustainable sources like charity shops and swapping.

This is the fifth in TRAID’s series of late night openings in 2014 with the charity offering lots of different ways to create a sustainable wardrobe including up-cycling workshops, styling advice, talks and films.

Around 1 million tonnes of textiles are sent to landfill and incineration every year, much of which could be worn again. TRAID take practical action to stop clothes being thrown away by working with local authorities, businesses, housing associations, households and schools to divert clothes from the waste stream for reuse.

Find out more about TRAID’s work on their website. You can support their work in preventing unwanted clothes from going to waste and raising funds for projects tackling global poverty by using one of our on-street TRAID textile banks.


Give your unwanted items a second chance!

May 19, 2014

Heart-4Items that you no longer want or need can often be used by someone else. There are lots of ways to donate and reuse unwanted items in Lambeth.

Charity shops

Charity shops accept good quality, reusable items during opening hours, such as books, bric-a-brac, CDs, clothes, games, records and shoes. Please check with your local charity shop to see what they can accept.


The following organisations in Lambeth accept good quality unwanted furniture and white goods for re-sale.

You can also offer items to other residents for free on Lambeth Freecycle.

Mobile phones

91% of adults in the UK now own a mobile phone and with regular upgrades available, most of us have old phones at home that we no longer use. Most mobile phone shops will accept old handsets for reuse or recycling and many charities recycle phones to raise funds.

Fonesforsafety, an organisation based in Elephant and Castle, reconfigure old handsets into ‘999 only’ phone alarms for vistims and survivors of domestic violence. Visit the fonesforsafety website for information on their work and how to donate.

Clothing and textiles

Most charity shops will be happy to take your unwanted clothing and textiles for reuse. You can also use one of our on-street textile recycling banks. Any clothing placed into the banks which is unsuitable for reuse will be recycled.

Some charities provide door to door collections of textiles and you may have collection sacks posted through your letterbox. Unfortunately, there have been problems with bogus collectors. To ensure that your donation benefits a genuine charity, please follow this advice issued by the Metropolitan Police.

Swishing is an increasingly popular way of swapping clothing you no longer want for something you will wear. Visit for information on parties in your area or organise your own party at home.

IT equipment and electrical goods

Some charities will accept working IT and electrical items for reuse. Not all charity shops are able to, so please check before donating.

In Lambeth, you can donate your working equipment and goods to one of the following organisations:

Broken goods can be taken to one of our Reuse and Recycling Centres and small electrical items such as kettles and hairdryers can be placed into one of our on-street WEEE banks.

Garden and hand tools

Tools shed is a project that organises the refurbishment of garden tools at HMP Wandsworth for redistribution to community gardening schemes and schools. All tools donated at Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre will be donated to this project. To find out more visit the Tools Shed website.

Join us for a swish @ Upstairs at the Ritzy

October 10, 2012

We’re pleased to announce that we’re hosting another clothes swapping evening!


Monday 22nd October. Drop off clothes from 6pm. We’ll be swishing from 7pm.


Upstairs at the Ritzy, Brixton, SW2 1JG.

How does it work?

Bring up to five items of clothing in a good, clean condition and exchange them for something new to you!

All clothing will be placed onto rails. You’ll then have the opportunity to browse and choose items equal to the number you brought with you.

There will be everything from jackets, jumpers and shoes to bags and accessories so you’re certain to find something you like.

You can drop off clothes from 6pm and while you wait for the swishing to begin, you can relax in the lovely bar – so bring your friends!

TRAID at the swish

Re-work your swaps! Traid will be on hand to share their skills with you to fix, alter and revive your newly swapped garments.

Whether you need to fine-tune your skills, get to grips with a sewing machine, or even learn to thread a needle, the sew good workshop will help you to transform unwanted clothing into something you’ll love to wear.

Entry is free but places are limited. Please email to book your place.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Give and Take in Brixton

September 26, 2012

Brixton Community Market in partnership with Veolia Environmental Services is hosting a Give and Take Market in the heart of Brixton on Saturday 29th September! The market will give people the chance to both get rid of unwanted items as well as to pick up and re-use good condition second hand items.

Reuse! They’ll be accepting everything from furniture, books, children’s toys, house ware, bric-a-brac, clothes and shoes, plants, bikes, musical instruments, camping equipment and everything in between to put out on the stalls and find new homes for!

Recycle! They will be accepting unwanted broken electrical items too, which will all be collected by Veolia and taken to be recycled, helping to recover valuable materials.

Repair! There will also be several workshops brought to you by local artist and organisations, to inspire ideas on how to re-use clothes, repair bikes, make gifts out of scraps and fix things up!

How it works?

People are welcome to take items without giving and to give without taking!

Between 10am – 12pm people can drop off items to be exchanged by coming down to Brixton Station Rd and following signs to drop off items.

Then from 1pm – 5pm we open to the public to browse the stalls and take goods away, and a team of volunteer assistants will be around to help you. (They will still accept small donations throughout the day, particularly small electricals)

For more information, see the or email

Valuing our clothes – a new report

July 12, 2012

Clothing on a rail Today, Wrap (Waste and Resouces Action Programme) have launched a new report into how we design, use and dispose of clothing in the UK.

The full report is available on their website and makes for very interesting reading. We’ve outlined some of the key findings below.

  • The average UK household owns around £4,000 worth of clothes – but around 30% of clothing in the average wardrobe has not been worn for at least a year, most commonly because it no longer fits.
  • Extending the average life of clothes by just three months of active use per item would lead to a 5-10% reduction in each of the carbon, water and waste footprints.
  • An estimated £140 million worth (350,000) tonnes of used clothing goes to landfill in the UK every year.

The report suggests that consumers can get more value out of their clothes by:

  • Using clothes for longer, passing unwanted clothing on to friends and family and exchanging or sharing clothes.
  • Buying more pre-owned clothes.
  • Donating unwanted clothing, instead of throwing it away.

It also highlights that nearly half of all adults put at least some clothing in the bin, usually because they think it couldn’t be used again. Even clothes that may no longer be suitable for wearing can be put into your local textile bank for recycling.

What can I do in Lambeth?

Use your local textile bank to donate items for reuse or recycling.

Attend one of our fabulous swishing parties! The next is on Tuesday 24th July.

Donate unwanted items to your local charity shop and while you’re there have a look around, you never know what you might find!

Join us for a swish on the farm!

July 10, 2012

Vauxhall City Farm logo

Unfortunately this event has been cancelled but please keep an eye on the blog for upcoming events.

We’re heading down to the farm for the next Lambeth Swish!


Tuesday 24th July – Drop off clothes from 6pm. We’ll be swishing from 7.00pm.


Vauxhall City Farm, London, SE11 5HS

How does it work?

Bring up to 5 items of clothing in a good, clean condition and exchange them for something new to you!

You can drop off clothes from 6pm and while you wait for the swishing to begin, you’ll have the opportunity to meet some of the farm’s lovely residents!

Entry is free but places are limited and need to be booked in advance. Please email to book.

The farm is mostly concrete however, we’d advise against wearing your very best shoes!

The venue is accessible to all.

We look forward to seeing you there!

To find out more about Swishing, watch our video.

Refresh your wardrobe and prevent waste at the Lambeth Swish!

February 15, 2012

Clothes rail full of clothesSwishing is an increasingly popular way of giving your wardrobe a shake up. Not only are you able to pass on good quality items you no longer wear, you can also choose something new to you!

With 800,000 black bin bags of textiles thrown away in London each year, it’s easy to see the scale of the problem. Swishing is just one way in which we can prolong the life of our clothing and prevent unnecessary waste.

Join us

Whether you’re a seasoned swisher or a complete newbie, join us at our next event – you never know what you’ll come away with!

Our next Swish is at Upstairs at The Ritzy on Tuesday 21 February at 7.30pm. Places are limited so please email to book.

The doors will be open from 6.30pm, so you can drop off your clothes and relax in the bar before the party begins.

Plan your own swish!

How about holding a swishing party at home?

Remember, even if clothes are not good enough quality to ‘be swished’ or donated to your local charity shop, you can still put them in your local textile bank for recycling.