Charities have stopped taking old and unwanted clothing after Marie Kondo’s cult-like following sparked mass donations across Australia.

The Japanese ‘organising consultant’ became a Netflix star after her decluttering book took the world by storm.

Many embarked on a post-Christmas clean-out inspired by Ms Kondo’s guidelines, but some are dumping items at already overflowing donation bins – and unwittingly causing charities a headache, shares Daily Mail.

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Lifeline’s recent estimates suggest over half their stores in Australia have now stopped accepting donations.

Jamie Mackay from Lifeline told ABC that cleaning out the overflowing donation bins across the nation often cost upwards of 30 per cent of the charities funds.

Items are being dumped in and around charity bins putting a strain on charities which are having to employ people to collect, sift through and then take them to the trash.

Sustainability Victoria Acting CEO, Stephanie Ziersch, told Daily Mail Australia the KonMari method is positive, but highlighted the need for items to be ‘consciously re-homed’.

‘The sudden spike in tidying up at home, combined with Christmas excess, New Year’s resolutions for minimalism and the fact that many op shops are still closed for the holidays, risk creating the perfect storm for waste this month,’ Ms Ziersch said.

Ms Ziersch suggested households consider adding a seventh-step when applying Ms Kondo’s famous KonMari method to their tidying up.

‘Our simple request for Kondo-inspired declutterers is that instead of saying ‘thank you, next’ they instead find the joy in rehoming the items or recycling them thoughtfully and through the correct channels.

‘In fact, there’s a Japanese approach known as ‘mottainai’ that I suspect Marie Kondo would happily support. Quite simply, it encourages reflection on waste and action when it comes to reducing, reusing, recycling and respecting.’

The key is to find a charity that really WANTS your items

I must admit I have been on a bit of a cleaning spree myself. Although it has nothing to do with the Netflix series because shock horror I don’t even have Netflix! (I know right?)

While my youngest son was away for a few days I decided to tackle his bedroom without all the interruptions and screams of “But I NEED that!” Yeah, sorry but NO you really don’t, son.

Six hours later and his bedroom is practically empty.

But instead of just dumping the unwanted items I reached out first on my social media channels to ask if anyone knew of somewhere that might want the goods. That way they went to a charity that was happy and thankful to receive them.

2019 120 (2)

Win. Win!

Have you been on a decluttering spree recently?

Share your comments below

  • I wish, no decluttering going on here. I have noticed though that a number of the local op shops have removed their bins and posted signs to ask people to bring their donations during opening hours. Hopefully this will stop the over zealous dumping of supposed donations but I don’t like their chances.


  • This is an ongoing problem that already existed pre-Maria Kondo. People are just lazy. I’ve witnessed people pull up to charity bins and dump their rubbish without a care. I always use Diabetes Victoria. They offer a service where they collect from me to make life easier. When you call, they also indicate what they’re in need of. I try and declutter regularly, probably seasonal or more and bag up good quality stuff for re-use. Our local tip also has a re-sale shop where my hubby takes bigger items that they can sell and make money from.

    • We also use Diabetes Australia or our local op-shop where we can walk a bag of goods to them to donate them there. Those charity bins are just not a good idea, people dump utter rubbish in them without any regard of the people they are donating them too.


  • Yes I’ve experienced that the charity shops don’t accept anything at the moment.


  • I have to declutter and soon. We are getting renovations done but I hate to throw anything to the tip. Looks like that’s what I’ll be doing after all. Shame to put more into landfill when they are always saying we need to recycle


  • I’ve been decluttering because of Marie Kondo but I seperate my donations. I check with the local daycare / preschool for any toys or books they may find useful. I also donate to Cotton On – did you know they ensure your bag of clothing makes it to a person / children who really need the clothes rather than shredding it for rags which often happens with some other charity shops due to the volume of clothes they receive.


  • I regularly keep on top of items in the house – so no big decluttering here.


  • I try and declutter bit by bit.


  • I’ve started to declutter however haven’t watch the show yet. I will soon once move motivation has set in, and when I’m going to tackle the harder items.
    I think if you are going to get rid of stuff, go through this method, chuck anything that is broken, dirty or old. Sell anything that’s in good or excellent condition then donate. But only donate the things that you would give someone if you were to give to friends or family.


  • Instead of giving to op shops sell the good quality online and offer the rest for free.


  • I always donate to the one charity and op shop and have never had a problem. Probably donate every three months or so and a lot of the items are still new.


  • I’m always trying to sell on Facebook but I get such small results since moving down to Tassie.


  • Yes it’s definitely a busy time of the year to declutter and clean up because a lot of people take their holidays in December and January, plus all the extra “stuff” you get given as presents aren’t always wanted. The charities instead of dumping the clothes that aren’t good enough to sell can always bag them up in different sized bags and sell as rags as plenty of tradies and home handymen and women want them.


  • I do a big clean up /donate/give away in December


  • Always do a clean out at the beginning of the year. I heard about this craze but honestly, if you’re throwing out that much stuff you need to either rein in your spending habits or be replacing what you toss with a long lasting quality product.


  • I always bring my unwanted goods in to the store of Vinnies


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