-1
archive,paged,author,author-wbgs-admin,author-2,paged-2,author-paged-2,stockholm-core-1.2.1,select-child-theme-ver-1.0.0,select-theme-ver-5.2.1,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded, vertical_menu_transparency vertical_menu_transparency_on,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-6.1,vc_responsive
Title Image

Author: Worlds Biggest Garage Sale

Doughnut Economics: the sweet zone for all!

As questions of GDP, economic growth and job stimulation fly around during the slow easing of COVID-19 restrictions, a new model for economics is gaining exposure – Doughnut Economics. Developed by Kate Raworth considers it to be “like a compass for humanity in the 21st century” and extends economics beyond what we have traditionally known, posing the the following question:

How do we ensure we all have the resources we need to meet our human rights, but within the means of the planet?

Kate Raworth

Origin of Economics

The term economics is thought to have originated in Greece in relation to household management, but it didn’t really appear as know it, until the late 1700s and is generally credited to the publication of Scottish philosopher Adam Smith’s 1776 book, An Inquiry Into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations.[1] 

The industrial revolution is when economics and the mentality that our society is currently run by, really took flight. It’s also the time that we started to separate more distinctly from nature and planet earth – it’s any wonder we’re in the state we’re in.

Economic Shortcomings

Kate Raworth, has analysed economics as we currently define it and found a number of shortcomings – the economy does not take the environment into account, the monetized economy is heavily supported by the unpaid care economy and the distribution of prosperity is unequal.





Doughnut Economics

As long as someone has been making, supplying and distributing goods or services, there has been some sort of economy. Doughnut Economics challenges the status quo and flips economics as we know it on it’s head – what if economics didn’t start with money, but instead started with human wellbeing? It asks us to tackle the 21st century challenge of meeting the needs of all within the means of the planet. 





Circular Economy, SDGs and Doughnuts

Through strong visuals, it demonstrates that a doughnut is the sweet zone for all, bounded within by a social foundation and outward by an ecological ceiling. We see the circular economy as a fundamental principle ensuring we stay on the doughnut when making, supplying and distributing goods.





We highly recommend Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist by Kate Raworth. Let’s strip the term economics back to basics and redefine it moving forward for a better world for all.

How To Make A Social Impact

It was my great pleasure to be interviewed as a guest on the Stories Behind the Grind podcast recently. Aiden Vuocolo started his podcast so he could quiz the ‘creators, innovators and gamechangers’ on how they manage their successes and failures while working to scale up their business.

I joined Aiden for their 73rd episode – How to Make a Social Impact – I spoke about the principles behind World’s Biggest Garage Sale and the habits I put into place on a daily basis in order to create a profound impact.

Listen to your Gut

I have always been purpose-led, listening to my gut and my heart in equal parts. I believe this is why I’m where I am today. That’s not to say that listening to your head and logic is bad. But when listening to that logic allows fear to creep in and persuade you not to take the plunge…then it’s not ideal. It’s really important to balance logic and pragmatism with emotion and sensitivity. Lead with your heart, follow with your head.

Fail fast

Don’t be afraid to acknowledge the failures and the lessons they leave you with. My philosophy is to fail fast and get back up as fast as you can, and don’t look back. When we ran our first World’s Biggest Garage Sale event we ended up giving away every dollar we made, which wasn’t the best business decision. At the end of the day, we need to recoup some profit if we’re going to be able to grow and make a bigger impact for those outside our business. So we learnt a lesson from this ‘failure’ and the next time round we still gave a considerable amount to charity, but we also invested in our future as a business.

Be Authentic

I believe it’s never been more important to be a truer version of you, to lead with being authentic. Authenticity can be a great filter for the people around you – you might not please everyone but the ones who stick with you are like your ‘tribe’. It’s essential to preach the same when operating as a business, no matter what size or sector. Telling it like it is and maintaining transparency in your business and what you do with it, will always benefit you in the long run. To be authentic and function at our best we focus on measuring our impact. It’s our mission to not only be profitable so that we can continue to make a difference for the charities we donate to, but also  to multiply success for all. Money is simply a byproduct when your work is led by a greater purpose.

Pitching World’s Biggest Garage Sale as a female-led non-tech startup was not easy, but leading with transparency and vulnerability has allowed us to create a sense of connectedness within our community. We listen to our customers deeply and coined the term ‘customer intimacy’. As a business, without customers you have nothing. So we take signals from ours so that we can make a connection and make a difference.

Consistency is Key

As entrepreneurs and as people, we need to be consistent and patient. Get up, do what you said you were going to do that day, find your tribe, and hold yourself accountable. Daily life can have us on a phone call, checking social media and eating lunch at the same time. We’re all trying to do so much to achieve more, when the key is to do less to do more. One of my own goals is to make it possible for people to see that they have the power to be everything they’ve ever dreamed of. And I hope that through my actions and through my work, that I am edging closer towards that aspiration – slowly but steadily.

To hear more about the ins and outs of our business journey, listen to the Stories Behind the Grind podcast episode here.

Declutter dormant goods – the gift of isolation

With many of us spending more time at home recently, the chance to declutter your dormant goods may be one gift of isolation. This week we delve into the benefits of clearing out your ‘clutter’ and how to do so in a way that delights someone else’s life.

Decluttering is the term given to literally removing clutter from your space, whether that be your home, workplace or other area you frequent often. Synonymous with ‘spring cleaning’, decluttering involves sorting through the items you own to determine what is still valued and useful, and what is no longer needed or wanted. 

Declutter Clothes
Give your clothes a second life!

If you’re now working from home, it may be in your best interest to rid your space of extra mess. Psychologists have suggested that there’s an intrinsic link between clutter and one’s mental health. Research on the subject implies that more clutter leads to higher stress levels and that its presence can lead to unproductive behaviour and an unfocused mind! 

Decluttering has recently experienced a resurgence like no other. Marie Kondo’s best-selling book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, captivated readers with its new take on home organisation. Its popularity was spurred on by the successful spin-off Netflix show, Tidying Up With Marie Kondo. If you’re unfamiliar with Marie Kondo, her ‘KonMari’ method of tidying taps into the spiritual connection one has with the clutter they own. Her belief is that one should only possess belongings that inspire a happy sensation or are associated with wonderful memories. If a possession of yours doesn’t ‘spark joy’ then it isn’t worth holding on to.

Easy ways to start decluttering

Her other tidying tips are easy ways to make a start on your decluttering mission…

  • Need storage? Don’t purchase storage containers without knowing exactly what you’re using them for – make use of the boxes you already have at home.
    • A great way to mindfully reduce the amount of plastic you’re buying too!
  • Get rid of loose paperwork – they’re not needed in the digital age. Important papers can be photographed or scanned into your computer.
    • Make sure all your papers go into the recycling bin to help our environment!
  • Make note of what’s in your pantry – only keep what you will use and enjoy.
    • With all the cooking at home this is especially important! If your food items are unopened and still in date, consider donating them to a service like Foodbank!
  • Ensure everything has its ‘place’ in your space.
    • This will help to prevent loose clutter and any future messes from occurring!

Yas and dormant goods
Yas with an eclectic mix of dormant goods given a new lease on life!

Here to help with dormant goods

Once you’ve been through a decluttering process, there’s always that final stage of ensuring your clutter actually leaves your home and your car!! If you’re unsure what to do with your dormant goods or where to take them, we’re here to help! World’s Biggest Garage Sale has now moved to a brand new warehouse The Depot, Rivermakers, conveniently located at Morningside.  We are offering a contactless declutter drive-thru drop-off point for all of your dormant goods. Say goodbye to clutter and feel good knowing that your items will delight someone else, as we give your items a new home and lease on life.

Declutter drive-thru
Declutter drive-thru!

For more details on dropping off your dormant goods, feel free to contact us via our website!

Sustainable Development Goals can help us “Build Back Better”!!

The lessons we will learn from this time remain to be seen. I’m sure there will be many. What is already clear, is that when borders are reopened, schools and businesses are back and social distancing measures are lifted, the world will be a very different place. We will be different. Now is a great time to look at models like the Sustainable Development Goals, to help us with recovery.

During economic crises, while we’re all dealing with the immediate and sudden changes to life as we knew it, it is easy to forget about long-term sustainability. Routines have changed, social interactions are different, uncertainty is an ever present bedfellow with whom we need to make peace. And all the while, those long-term issues still need to be addressed. While the first world is trying to get a handle on food waste, other nations are still suffering from hunger and poverty. Recent reports indicate the Great Barrier Reef has suffered its third mass coral bleaching event in five years. Climate change is still very real.

No Planet B - Build Back Better with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

There is No Planet B

For a long time at World’s Biggest Garage Sale, we have talked about the need for business to put people and planet first – before economic growth. This time that we all have now, is an opportunity to reset the compass on both business and government policy. To reflect on what really matters and to build foundations that consider social, environmental and economic concerns in equal measure. In the words of United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres,



“let’s #buildbackbetter and turn the recovery into a real opportunity to do things right for the future”.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres



It is also essential that government policies and decision-making are informed by science and evidence.

A great way to start this journey for your business, your government sector and at home, is to familiarise yourself with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and incorporate them into your business. 



“A universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and improve the lives and prospects of everyone, everywhere.”



These 17 goals are multifaceted and interconnected. By addressing one, you will quickly find you actually need to address more, as the complex way in which society operates now, means that various levers need to change in order to address particular goals. 

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

To start, try the following:

  • Review your core business and see which sustainable development goals align best. Visit – About the Sustainable Development Goals.
    • As an example, World’s Biggest Garage Sale is strongly aligned with SDG 12. Responsible Consumption & Production. 
  • Read up on that goal on the United Nations website to understand the goal and why it matters. Each goal has great resources such as Why it Matters, Infographics and Targets.
  • Dive deeper and understand the Facts and Figures for a specific goal’s targets and integrate these with your business strategy.
  • Track and Measure using the SDG Action Manager to monitor your business progress against the SDGs.

As I love to say:

“What gets measured gets done.”

We can create more more sustainable, resilient and inclusive societies moving forward. We’d love to hear how your organisation is working on the Sustainable Development Goals and helping the world reach the 2030 target! To further show your support, we have SDG pins on sale at our online store. Wear one today to demonstrate you are an ambassador for the SDGs, you GSD for the SDGs and lead with love!!

Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Pins

Circular Economy News: Luxury Goods From Recycled Firehose

Garbage To Grandness

In our line of work we watch the circular economy news closely and as a result we get to see sustainable innovation at its finest. We never tire of seeing individuals, groups and corporations create profits from ideas that not only don’t exploit people or the planet, but actually provide benefit to both. This article is about one such company.

Elvis & Kresse turns decommissioned fire hoses into sustainably and ethically made luxury accessories,. If that isn’t good enough it donates half of its profits to support renewable energy and women’s empowerment projects, as well as firefighters in need. I read about Elvis and Kresse in this article featured on causeartist.com, a website dedicated to shining a light on social enterprises, that is the people and companies making a difference in the world.

Every moment of reading this circular economy news article filled me with joy and one day I’d love to purchase one of their amazing products. Apart from being great looking and practical, they are made from a super-tough material that I’d expect to last a lifetime, perhaps longer. That pretty much ticks every box I have to before making a purchase. 

Circular Economy News: Innovative British company recycles firehose into luxury goods turning garbage to grandness


Key takeaways

  • Elvis and Kresse’ products, which include bags, wallets, belts, notebooks or laptop cases, are designed with a zero waste ethos in mind. This means their production processes leave no scraps behind, involve only upcycled materials, and use packaging made out of reclaimed fabric.
  • Through a chance encounter in 2005, Elvis & Kresse founders James Henrit (aka ‘Elvis’) and Kresse Wesling, realized that every year, between 3 to 10 tons of fire hoses are destined for the landfill in London.
  • Despite no previous experience in fashion, the former design consultant and venture capitalist duo spent two years prototyping what products reclaimed fire hoses could be repurposed into, and created conscious sartorial brand Elvis & Kresse.
  • When asked what sets Elvis & Kresse apart in a world defined by consumerism, fast fashion and increasing greenwashing practices, Wesling explained their definition of sustainability: “For us, if it doesn’t make the world better for other people’s grandchildren, then it isn’t sustainable.”
Circular Economy News: Innovative British company recycles firehose into luxury goods turning garbage to grandness

Top tips for aspiring social entrepreneurs

Think backwards. Don’t start with an idea, start with a problem. We face unprecedented environmental challenges: we have lost 30 percent of our bees, and by 2050 there could be more plastic than fish in the oceans, much of it too small to see or capture. If you want to run a truly rewarding, impact-driven business, choose one of these challenges.

Be entirely sustainable. This encompasses environmental, social and financial aspects, the latter because positive cashflow means you won’t have to compromise on your solution. Just because you are a purpose-driven social enterprise – that exists to do good – doesn’t mean you will be immune to wider economic issues.

If a business decision is bad for other people’s grandchildren, don’t make it. Period. This is something we talk through with Elvis every time. The world doesn’t have time for exploitative, destructive businesses. Those days are gone.

The last word…

I wonder what we’ll make? For those of you who don’t know, we moved into our new Morningside location at 506 Lytton Rd just before Easter (2020). We can’t wait to run a Retail Rescue sale day, a Circular Economy Futures Meetup or even a smaller World’s Biggest Garage Sale event. In a special announcement, our own circular economy news is that we are dedicating part of the building to being a makerspace. Between ourselves, other businesses and individuals and some strategic partnerships, we expect to be producing, or more to the point repurposing goods, from that space within weeks. Watch this space…

Yas 

Co-Founder/CEO