Christmas gifts, unwanted gifts, decluttering, charity

Did Santa bring you something you’re not that keen about? Don’t let your unwanted gifts pile up and create clutter in your home. Here are some ideas on what to do with them.

RELATED: Clutter Crazy: How To Declutter (And Save Your Sanity)

Refund or exchange

Most likely you will need a receipt to do that, but some shops will exchange your unopened gifts without a proof of purchase. Depending on your relationship with the giver, you may even be able to ask them for the receipt. This is especially easy to do when the gift is clothing or shoes. You can always say that the item is not a perfect fit and they didn’t have your size when you went to exchange it, so you grabbed something else.


They say one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. It certainly doesn’t hurt to try putting your gift on eBay and see what kind of interest it gets. Keep in mind that everyone sells their unwanted presents just after Christmas, so unless it’s something that will go out of fashion, it pays to wait for a couple months, when you’ll have less competition.

Donate to charity

Take your unwanted gifts to your local charity shop and your gift will serve a good cause instead of gathering dust in your home. Most charity shops will happily take clothes, shoes, books, CDs. Only some will accept electrical goods, so check with them before you drop off the items.

Give to someone else

If it’s a downright horrible gift that you’d be embarrassed to offer to anyone else, then don’t do it. It can also be that it’s not a great gift for you, but it would be perfect for someone else you know. Just make sure you remember who gave it to you in the first place, so that it doesn’t make its way back to them.


With a bit of imagination most items can be turned into something else. Your unwanted gifts can provide hours of rainy day entertainment for crafty kids. You can use clothes to make party costumes, book pages to include in your scrapbooking projects and a mug to turn into a pen holder (after giving your kids free reign to re-decorate it).

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