Spring is here and you know what that means—spring cleaning! The first step to getting your home ready for spring is to declutter and get rid of things you’re no longer using. But rather than tossing your items in the trash and having them end up at the landfill, consider donating your gently used things to a local thrift store for the good of the environment and the community!
The Ann Arbor area is packed full of amazing nonprofits that accept donations of clothing, furniture, household items, appliances and more to help support people in need in our community. There are also several consignment shops where you can actually make money off your donated goods! If you have a few garbage bags full of things to get rid of, read on for our favorite thrift and consignment shops in the Ann Arbor area.
This local nonprofit thrift shop has been supporting Ann Arbor Public School students since 1993! Proceeds from any sales at the Ann Arbor PTO Thrift Shop are distributed to participating AAPS school PTOs, PTSOs, and 501(c)(3) supporting clubs, organizations and teams for student enrichment activities in their school. Here, you can find unique and gently used community donations of clothing, furniture, toys, home décor and more. For great deals, be sure to follow them on Facebook to find out what their “Color of the Week Discount” is this week!
The Ann Arbor Thrift Shop is one of the oldest thrift stores in the area, having served A2 since 1932. Entirely volunteer–based, this nonprofit has 350+ members that accept, sort, price and sell thousands of donated goods each month. They use their profits to provide emergency social service aid to community members. And between 2019 and 2020, they raised more than $318,000 to help local individuals and families in need! But they couldn’t do any of it without your donations. You can donate almost anything (except for books) during shop hours. Just follow signs to their drive-up donation door located under the striped awning at the rear of the shop.
If you’ve ever been a bride—or have known one—you know the struggle of trying to figure out what to do with a wedding dress once you’ve worn it. While you could hold on to it for years and pass it on to your children, or convert it into an everyday garment to wear, you could also consider donating it to another bride in need! The Brides Project is a bridal boutique with heart, providing gently used bridal gowns at large discount. Not only do they give Ann Arbor brides the chance to find affordable gowns, but they also use the money raised from their sales to support families touched by cancer through the Cancer Support Community of Greater Ann Arbor. They are currently only open for shopping by appointment due to COVID-19, but you can still donate your wedding dress on Wednesdays and Saturdays without one.
When we think of donating items, we think of Goodwill. One of the largest thrift chains in the country, Goodwill provides training and employment services to those in need. Their recent Saline location is specifically a part of the Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Michigan, which works to assist persons with disabilities and other barriers to employment. You can donate almost anything to Goodwill—including financial contributions! But if you have specific goods you’d like to donate to Goodwill, we recommend checking each location’s respective website for a list of items they accept.
Habitat for Humanity Huron Valley is dedicated to providing affordable homeownership opportunities for families and individuals in the entire Southeast Michigan area. Their ReStore thrift shop in Ann Arbor is filled with a wide variety of home improvement materials, tools and home furnishings, almost exclusively donated by the generous Washtenaw County community. So, if you have any furniture, appliances or extra building materials, stop by and donate them Tuesday-Saturday. Proceeds from their ReStore shop go directly into funding their Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley programs.
Owned by the Kiwanis Club of Ann Arbor Foundation, The Kiwanis Thrift Sale is a fundraising activity that helps support over 80 local non-profits that provide services to children and family in need. In their thrift store, you’ll find everything from books to exercise equipment and clothes to household appliances. While they are currently closed for shopping due to COVID-19, they are still accepting donations on Tuesday, from 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Located in Saline, Nu2u is a thrift store that raises money to create employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. They partner with Saline Area Schools Special Education, Liberty Club, The Eisenhower Center, Life Enrichment Academy and plenty of other organizations to provide job coaching and job skills to those in need. Their store, which helps fund all their amazing projects, is packed full of gently used clothing, home furnishings, housewares, children’s goods and much more. Click here for a list of donations they accept and information on how you can donate when visiting.
The Resale Boutique in Saline is a consignment shop offering you cold hard cash for all your gently used clothing items! Just drop off some unwanted items and receive 40% of the sale if someone buys your items. You can pick up a check any time after the 15th of the month for items that were sold the month before. You can also choose to have it as store credit, which can also be used online if you’d rather do your shopping from the comfort of your own home!
We’ve all heard of The Salvation Army—especially during the holidays each year, when we can spot their kind bellringers outside almost every department store in the area. But that’s just one of their many fundraisers to help support people in our community. One of their other, and most well-known, fundraisers is their thrift stores, which raise money to fund their Adult Rehabilitation Centers, where those struggling with drugs and alcohol can find help, hope and a second chance at life. You can donate clothing, furniture, household goods, appliances and even cars to their Ann Arbor location.
Thrift stores don’t have to be for just clothing and household goods! Scrap Creative Reuse is a nonprofit organization that inspires creative reuse and environmentally sustainable behavior by providing educational programs and affordable materials to the community. Their Reuse Center is essentially a thrift store for crafting items! Here, you can find extra yarn, painting supplies, house paint, fabric, gift wrap and pretty much anything else you can use to make something new. Currently, due to COVID-19, they are only accepting donations by appointment only.
Second Time Around is a consignment store, located just two blocks from downtown Plymouth. They carry gently worn and often brand-new items including clothing, shoes, purses and jewelry. You can drop off clothing Tuesday-Saturday to be put up for sale. If they don’t sell in 70 days, they will be donated to local thrift stores, but if they do sell, you’ll receive 40% of the profit! Click here for all the information about consigning with Second Time Around and information on items they will and will not accept.
For great deals and unique items, don’t miss The ShareHouse, a local nonprofit thrift store in Ann Arbor. They are known for their great selection of tools, toys, furniture, home goods and other gently used items. They will often post about newly acquired donations and exciting deals on their Facebook page! Click here to follow them and to check out their list of items they are currently accepting and/or are in need of.
While The Thrift Depot in Depot Town isn’t a nonprofit—yet—they are a community-conscience business, helping to provide free clothing, shoes and essentials to those experiencing homelessness at no cost. They are a thrift store, selling items to the general public for a cost, and using those proceeds to support the business and their mission. They currently accept clothing, shoes, home goods, kids’ items, electronics, books and more, but are unable to accept large furniture at this time. You can make a donation during store hours Tuesday-Thursday or you can schedule a pickup at your home. Click here for all the information!
Located in downtown Ypsilanti, The Ypsilanti Thrift Shop is one of our favorite spots for affordable, gently used clothing, furniture, home décor, kids‘ items and more! This all-volunteer organization has been serving the area since 1942, donating all their profits to dozens of local organizations that provide for those in need in our area like The Hope Clinic, Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels, Friends in Deed, Food Gatherers and many more. In fact, in 2018, they donated more than $72,000! Click here for more information on donating and be sure to follow them on Facebook to be notified about sales and new items that hit the shop.
Where do you like to thrift?
Did we leave off your favorite local thrift store or consignment shop? Let us, and other readers, know all about them in the comments below!