By Stephanie Young
Cross-posted with Sustainability at Harvard
HLS students and friends discovered that last year’s fashions don’t have to be disposable at the Fashion Swapaganza. Men and women gathered around the racks and tables to sift through gently used clothes, shoes, and accessories. People spent a lot of time trying on their finds next to the tables and modeling for their friends. Items included t-shirts with humorous slogans, winter coats, and business suits. The clothing was donated by HLS students during lunchtime tables in the Harkness Commons.
Cosponsored by the Women’s Law Association, HL Central, and the Green Living program, the swap served triple purposes of social fun, sustainability, and collecting clothing for a good cause. Myra Blake, 3L, said these multiple goals made the event both useful and meaningful: “At the Clothing Swap, I got to update my wardrobe, promote reusability, donate to a good cause, and bond with other students in the process. Win win win win!”
After choosing clothing, attendees snacked on coffee and breakfast provided by Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts. A compost bin was available at the event for food scraps and compostable products. Only clothes that were in good wearable condition were donated, and the new owners will put them to good use and keep them out of the landfills. Nearly three truckloads of clothes were donated to the Hildebrand Family Self-Help Center and the Heading Home emergency family shelter. Laura Wolf, 1L, said, “I hope this can really help given how cold the winter has been, and all the warm items people donated.” A raffle generated cash donations for the shelters, with prizes donated by local businesses.
The Swapaganza was organized by a great team of volunteers, headed by Rebecca Lake, Laura Wolf, and Elizabeth Hague from the Women’s Law Association. Green Living Reps Myra Blake and Stephanie Young were caught composting. Representatives from the Hildebrand Center and Shelter Legal Services were on hand to answer questions about their organizations and recruit volunteers.