Before you know it, the winter season will be over. That means it’ll be time to rearrange your closet and make room for your spring and summer wardrobe. Instead of packing away your winter coats, gloves, hats and scarves in bulky boxes which takes up useful space, consider recycling or repurposing items in your closet that you want to get rid of. Here are some ideas on what to do with your winter clothes once the season ends:

Donate: Help those in need and donate your winter clothes to a charity. Organizations such as American Red Cross and The Salvation Army provide programs, shelters, and schools for those in need. They also take clothing and shoe donations year-round.

Give to retail recycling programs: Many companies are now taking up sustainable practices. Find a business or retailer that will take used apparel or footwear for their recycling efforts. For example, The North Face created Clothes the Loop, which allows the public to drop off used clothing items to be sent to their non-profit partner, Soles4Souls. The items are then repurposed for micro-enterprise programs that help create small entrepreneurs with business opportunities. 

Repurpose items: Get crafty and find unique ways to repurpose your old sweaters, socks, scarves and mittens. Try making a t-shirt quilt from old tops and sweaters, a coffee mug cozy from an old pair of mittens, or funny hand puppets from old socks and scarves.

Don’t let bulky winter clothes take up valuable space in your closet year round. Once the temperature rises, look into different ways you can repurpose and recycle your unwanted winter apparel.