Giving a Stitch

It’s the season of Thanksgiving here in the US. With turkey or tofu dinners on their minds, many generous folks give food to food banks so that others less fortunate can enjoy a hearty meal on Thanksgiving, too.

It’s also the beginning of colder weather in most of the country, which is an excellent opportunity for nudists, whether acting alone or in organized groups, to donate not just food but also clothing. Thrift stores and the Salvation Army will accept any donations of usable, clean clothes, especially coats, hats, mittens, scarves, and blankets at this time of year. Their website has information about how to sponsor a clothing drive at your workplace, school, or, yes, even your friendly local naturist park.

I’m glad to make clothing donations for the good of giving, but not for that reason alone. I also happen to enjoy participating for the reason that many of the clothing items I wear myself either have been or will be recycled. When you buy a paper or plastic product made out of partially recycled material, do you question what use the material had before? If some shirt fits me and it’s what I need, I’ll wear it; I don’t care who owned or wore it before. It’s not that different from growing up with siblings and being used to hand-me-downs. Really this is just another way of recycling responsibly, and recognizing that we all share our resources just like we share the planet.

My family and I donate clothes often and, when we need clothes, we shop frequently at thrift stores. We’ve utilized consignment stores as well, where you can be paid a percentage of sales if the clothes you donate are bought (depending on how quickly they’re sold, etc.). Garage sales, of course, are good for buying and selling clothing economically, and there are New-Mom networks for swapping the very quickly outgrown clothing of infants and toddlers.

Hey, we’re all members of the greater body politic, right? Need clothes? Shop or swap through recycling, and help subvert textile dependency. Do you have a wrong-size or wrong-color t-shirt from one of the times you ran the Nude 5K? Give a stitch, and spread a positive message about nudism while you’re at it!

Paul Gauguin, Study of a Nude (Suzanne Sewing), 1880

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