This is in response to Duchesse's comment on the post about my past life as a picker. She has seen her chic donations to charity end up in boutique windows. That is a tribute to her fab taste, but also....errrrr...annoying.
I won't get into the ethics of reselling (except I do talk about it below--oops). I did read something on the issue that pointed out that charity shops were in business to make money for their charity, not to provide cheap goods for the needy (though this is a by-product). Also--trust me--if people didn't buy for resale, the charity shops wouldn't make much money. Seriously, most of the people I see are resellers. In the USA and perhaps Canada today, many of the needy have too much clothing--just like the rest of us.
There are reselling practices that I find unethical. Example: my area Friends of the Library has a huge book sale every month. A book reseller is now in charge of the sale. THAT is unethical. The reason it's unethical is because he LOWERED all the book prices (to a dollar for hb and 50 cents for pb) and now has first dibs on everything. I used to see him with his price scanner at Goodwill all the time. Now I suppose he just works his book sale. I spoke to the former prez of the organization on this : he said "It's ok because he puts a lot of hours in." I replied, "He's not donating his time. He's being compensated." Whatever. Now he can scan the donations.
Another example: the former manager of an area thrift store (who was not very alert due to health issues) had daughters who sold on Ebay. You could see the daughters take things directly from the donation area to their cars--without even paying a paltry thrift store price! That's even worse than the above example.
But what can YOU do with your chic donations if you want them to go to a needy person who would be thrilled to get them? Sadly, not much. Pickers are EVERYWHERE (perhaps I'll do another post on this). I would suggest donating directly to orgs like "Dress for Success" if you have interview-worthy items.
OR take the item to a consignment store yourself. Then donate the cash proceeds to a charity of your choice.
OR find a bunch of worthy recipients. One of Frugal Son's friends--a grad student-- wanted cashmere sweaters for the cold winter. I gave her some of my overstock.
Any other ideas?