Author Topic: Mom's expensive clothes - I think I am going to throw them away, any thoughts?  (Read 4216 times)

Qingdaonese

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Hello Fellw Mustachians.


So I am a self-employed consultant.  I wear pajamas to work.  (I just sit in front of my PC)  I hold investment seminars a couple of times a year, but I have given presentations in my T shirts in the past.  No one was particularly bothered or interested in any way.    (Small crowd, not corporate)

A few years ago, mom passed away.  My sisters called me to say they threw away 10k's and 10k's worth of clothing, and will I take the rest because they are not dirty and no one else is her size.

There were fur coats, designer suits, bunches of frilled shirts, silk Hermes scarves,,,  well, not my wardrobe.  Her suits cost 2k.  You know Hermes scarves cost 500 dollars.

So here is me saying, I can't throw all of this out!

I took back 2 suitcases full to China, and most of them are still there unworn after 3 years.

Yeah, I wore some of them.  I can, but it isn't particularly, well, me, since I am okay wearing jerseys and slacks everywhere.  From Goodwill's.  As a mustachian, I bicycle.  Can't do that with a pashmina scarf around my neck.

I wore some of the suits to my seminars.  UNCOMFORTABLE!  Is it doing anything for me?  I can't tell, I mean, they came to my seminar when I was wearing a baseball cap, so um, guessing no? 

It kind of kills me to send them to charity for free because they are so expensive.  I can send a 100 dollar lightly used clothing to the nearby charity, but designer suits of this price tag, well, they will still get sold for 5 dollars or less, and no one would care.   That is, without a proper market, it will not sell for the right second hand price.  (I am in China and people don't generally go for second hand.  Can't do eBay.  Did you know that lightly used Hermes scarves are being sold for 300 dollars in Ebay?  Maybe the suits will also sell for 100 dollars online if I were in a position to market them appropriately in Japan where they came from.)

So I have been thinking about the opportunity cost of giving them away, because if I do, well, I won't be able to buy another nice suit for less than a few hundred dollars, and at least, these kind of fit me already even if they are not my choice.  You know we all hate shopping, I can't bear the thought of going around buying work clothes, trying them on and off.  Very boring, right?

So, do you guys think I should just throw them out?  I will keep the silk scarves (maybe my 11 year old will grow up and wear them to work someday, sigh), I gave the fur to my best friend here in China, but the rest?

I love my mom but she died in her 80s and had a really full life (very wasteful).  I don't need to bury myself in her clothes and smell her scent anymore to be reminded of how wonderful she has been to me.

Am I cold, or did everyone go through this?  Is it more Mustachian to throw it all away, or to try to wear as many of them as possible?  By the way we are relocating to Canada.  It would be cheaper to throw them out and buy cheap second hand clothes anew rather than to pack them and ship them even if surface mail.

Thanks for sharing your experiences or thoughts.












MandalayVA

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Are there consignment stores in China?  It sounds like your mother's clothing is very classic, which consignment stores like, and you would make money when the clothing sold.

Reader

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i think that if the clothes do not suit you, it's better to sell them away instead of throwing them. it's eco-friendly not to throw away perfectly good clothes. you can consider selling the designer stuff in hongkong http://butterboom.com/shopguide/guide-selling-pre-loved-fashion-hong-kong/ as the hongkongers love a good bargain. shipping the stuff to hongkong from china should be quite affordable.

connor

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Send them to me and I'll sell on ebay, take all the hassle from you and split what it all fetches. (University student so I have the time to full-time ebay until it's all sold, and would help my tiny stache)

plainjane

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Why throw the suits away if a charity would take them?  Perhaps they would be sold for $5, but so what?  How does that hurt you more than having thrown them away? 

The person who buys them might not appreciate them, but they might very well do so.  You have no way of knowing.

If you are planning on doing in-person seminars in Canada, it might make sense to select one suit that you like the most, and hold onto that.  You may find the cultural norms make tshirts & baseball caps less acceptable (depending on your audience).  Yes, it might be cheaper to buy second hand once you've moved, but it would also be easier to already have something than to need to spend time searching something out.  If it turns out you don't need it, then you can consign it.

pbkmaine

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Scarves don't take up very much room. I would keep some of those and maybe three suits. There are times in a professional career when a suit is useful.

zephyr911

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Your reasoning is absurd. You don't care about these clothes, you don't have any interest in trying to extract residual value, but you don't want to donate them because they'd be sold for less than retail?

There's no fundamental difference between doing this with a t-shirt and a $10K fur coat. You're giving it away so it doesn't get wasted, and someone gets a good deal. Maybe it's a picker who makes a profit, or maybe it's a hobo who sleeps on the street in it. What does it matter to you?

Don't waste this stuff. Your sibs suck for doing so, and you shouldn't follow suit.

elaine amj

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I would ship it back to Canada and slowly sell them on ebay. Or take advantage of a PP's offer to do it for you :) I would consider this to be a nice little gold mine.

I'm a red panda

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I do not understand the logic that you won't give them to charity because they'd sell for so little- so you'd rather throw them away!

Even if they aren't appreciated, at least they aren't wasted!

I would use a seller on ebay who splits the proceeds with you, or just give them to charity and stop worrying about it.  What a waste to just throw things away!

Qingdaonese

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Wow I got so many responses.  Thanks all.

1) The Chinese don't like second hand period.  No consignment shops in my locale.  Maybe in Beijing for foreigners.  In my apartment if something gets thrown away, the workers go through it all with a fine tooth comb so it will get sold by them but not for what they could be worth.  If i ship it to a charity it will still get sold for something similar and may profit the charitable organization.  The local workers here are charity cases themselves, from rural areas with no health insurance nor pension, family back home, so maybe I won't make that big a difference in sending it to charity.

2) I don't have to do presentations in China.  It's possible that they would care if I was wearing a baseball cap.  But not my current Japanese audience. 

3) I will send the stuff over for a split after cost if you guys offer to advance the shipping?  The reason being that I don't KNOW that they sales price will exceed the shipping costs.  I know how much they cost, I don't know how much they will fetch.  Most of them are Japanese labels and may not be appreciated in the US or Canada.  Half of them have padded shoulders so old fashioned.  You might also get taxed by customs if you are unlucky.  I think each box would cost like 60 to 100 bucks or something like that on surface mail transatlantic.  PM me if you are serious, and I might send you photos of the clothes and share my email for paypal transfers.  If someone lives in Hong Kong maybe it would work because the shipment costs would be substantially lower.  I have made money on Ebay in the US and online in Japan from similar situations, but I can't handle China nor Hong Kong. 
 
4) I guess I am being wishwashy because they are not only originally pricey, but also because they are my deceased mom's.  I am saying that I don't know how to handle the emotional side of it apart from the practical side, obviously objectively I understand that other people won't care.  It made me happy to give the fur coat to my best friend because I love her and I know she will appreciate the value.  But it doesn't make me happy to give it away to charity that can't price it right, it will just be "tossing mom's stuff away" because I need to get rid of them.  So I have to make a decision.  But if you don't understand that at all, no need to tell me that you don't get me, because that is just being cold, and it is not helping.   

I think men don't understand that a man's suit is probably less specific,  if it fits then it fits, but a woman's suit is a bit more.  It can fit you but there is a bit more to wearing a suit when you are a woman, like color and design.

Right now, I am leaning toward keeping the scarves and one suit and or one silk blouse, and tossing (=giving it to the workers at the apartment) the rest.    God knows mom was much, much more wasteful....

Thanks.


« Last Edit: January 04, 2016, 08:34:41 AM by Qingdaonese »

EAL

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Sell them on eBay. There are also consignment websites for name brand clothing. That way people would actually pay closer to what they are worth for being an expensive brand.

elaine amj

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You could also toss/give away the more obscure brands and partner with someone to sell the more common brands that would be easier to sell on ebay.

pbkmaine

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Hermes scarves can also look wonderful framed as artwork.

thingamabobs

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when you say "throw them out" do you actually mean donate to charity? because if that's the case then go for it. Like others said, others will benefit from them in one way or another. You may not think there's a market for them but there are really resourceful people out there. Keep the stuff that's easily transportable like the scarves and sell them in Canada.

happyfeet

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Keep the scarves.  They are beautiful and do work as pieces of art.  Hermes scarves are crazy expensive.  Please don't add to a landfill.  Just donate the rest.  Maybe keep one favorite suit.  Or take pics of the suits  and then arrange the photos in an artful way with a pic of your mom? Just a thought.

NoraLenderbee

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Right now, I am leaning toward keeping the scarves and one suit and or one silk blouse, and tossing (=giving it to the workers at the apartment) the rest.   

Perhaps you can think of it as allowing someone else (the apartment workers) to enjoy the things that once brought your mother enjoyment. Rather than throwing them away, you're passing on the pleasure to new people. Is that a helpful idea for you?