Newcastle Herald

Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018

Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018
Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018

This article is sponsored by City of Newcastle.

Channeling Marie Kondo and embracing minimalism? Looking to make a quick, fun buck? Or just happy to step out of the fast-fashion cycle of homewares, clothing, accessories, knicknacks and more?

Garage Sale Trail is a huge weekend of coordinated garage sales, where novice sellers and crafty vendors from all corners of Newcastle (and Australia!) will come together to sell their pre-loved treasures. 

Host a sale or shop the trail – either way, there’s plenty to gain from heading along and enjoying the festivities. 

Households, schools and community groups in Newcastle will join over 400,000 people across the country on Saturday 20 October and Sunday 21 October.

It’s the eighth annual Garage Sale Trail proudly supported by City of Newcastle. Waste Education and Program Coordinator Alicia Sheen says the council is excited to be involved in the event. 

“The weekend-long festival of garage sales has become a popular way for people to connect with their neighbours, while also finding a new home for unwanted items or hunting for second hand treasures,” says Alicia. 

“It's also a great reminder for us to become more conscious as consumers and to think carefully about what happens to all the stuff we buy when we no longer want it.”

At last year's event around 648,000 items found a new home, redistributing more than 3,687 tonnes of stuff!

Why re-use?

The current rate of consumption is having a huge impact on our environment. Clothing, one of the worst offenders, is not only extremely resource and labour intensive to make, it’s often only worn a few times before it ends up in landfill.

A massive 75 percent of Australian adults have thrown clothes away in the past year according to recent YouGov Omnibus report. The report also found 30 per cent of us throw away more than ten items in a year, and 24 per cent of us said we’d thrown away clothing after wearing it just once.

It seems younger Australians are driving the surge in fast fashion. 38 percent of respondents aged between 16 and 34 saying they'd purchased at least half of the clothes they own in the past year, compared to just 9 percent of baby boomers.

Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018
Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018

Six easy ways to reduce clothing consumption

1. Buy quality garments second hand at vintage stores, op shops, online markets and garage sales. There’s loads of bargains and besides, you never know what label or style you’re going to find in there.

2. Take time choosing your purchases and only buy what you really need. Do we really need multiple pairs of jeans in our wardrobe? How many beach towels is a beach towel too many? 

3. Buy less and spend a little more on quality, well-made items. It can be easy to hit the massive chain stores, but they can be the worst offenders of churning out cheap fashion that falls apart after one wash.

4. Look after garments and learn to make simple repairs to prolong their life. Sewing a button can’t be that hard… can it? 

5. If you have clothing you no longer want or wear that are in good condition, donate them to charity*, invite some friends around for a clothes swap, or sell them online for some extra pocket money. 

6. For items that can't be repaired, try upcycling them. Have you seen this handy hack to turn a tshirt into a tote bag without any sewing?

Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018
Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018

Insider tips on Newcastle’s best slow fashion (and other pre-loved goodies!)

- Upcycle Newcastle is a community group based in Hamilton North that runs workshops and events to upskill people in reusing and reinventing unwanted clothing and textiles. Check out Upcycle Newcastle for more. The group will be hosting a sale and repair café for Garage Sale Trail on Saturday, 20 October 2018.

- For other pre-loved goods, drop into Recycling Solutions Australia at 34 Rural Drive, Sandgate. They salvage household goods from the City of Newcastle’s Summerhill Waste Management Centre, and fix them up for sale.

- Keep your eye out for bargains at the second hand furniture available on Clyde Street, Hamilton North and antiques and old wares on Maitland Road, Islington.

- Raid My Wardrobe is a sprawling festival of fashion and accessories that happens several times a year. There are always high fashion labels to be found in the mix. 

Or, if you have unwanted items cluttering up your home, consider participating in this year's Garage Sale Trail!

  • * Please only donate to charity clothes that you would be happy to give to your family or friends. Many charities are forced to pay hundreds of dollars in tipping fees to dispose of unsuitable clothing and illegally dumped items. 
Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018
Make some dosh, find a bargain and love the earth at Garage Sale Trail 2018

Disposing of waste responsibly 

For items you can't reuse or find new homes for, City of Newcastle provides a range of waste collection and recycling services to residents: 

Bulk waste collection

City of Newcastle provides two free bulk waste services per household per rolling 12 month period. You can book either kerbside pick-ups from your home or self-haul the items to the Summerhill Waste Management Centre, or choose one of each option. Limits apply and not all items can be accepted through this service. For more information visit 

Scrap metal

Whitegoods (excluding fridges, freezers and air-conditioners), car parts, bikes, steel and aluminium can all be brought to Summerhill Waste Management Centre free of charge, as long as they are a separated load, not mixed with other waste.

Electronic or 'E-waste' collection

A free, permanent e-waste drop-off is available to Newcastle residents at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. Proof of address is required and it is for household quantities, with a limit of 10 items per visit. For more information, visit 

Problem wastes

Some household products can cause harm to the environment and human health if they are placed in your kerbside bins. A range of recycling options are now available to safely dispose of household problem wastes, free of charge. 

Summerhill’s Community Recycling Centre is a permanent drop-off centre, open year-round, for the most common household problem wastes; paint, motor oil and other oils, household and car batteries, flouro light globes and tubes, fire extinguishers and smoke detectors.

There are smaller Community Recycling Stations for batteries, glasses and x-rays at Beresfield, New Lambton and Stockton Libraries.

For more information about problem wastes, visit 

This article is sponsored by City of Newcastle.