10 ways to swap your 'junk' for treasure in Toronto
Toronto Garage sales are great for picking up once-loved gems, but swaps are even better for cleaning out your clutter and repurposing someone else's treasures. The warmer weather especially brings out some of Toronto's beloved swap events, with plenty more serving the online community all year round. Here are some local swaps to check out around town.
A semi-regular clothing swap, appropriately dubbed a "big, fab, clothing exchange and mini eco-market." Hosted by Nathalie Roze & Co., each Uber-SWAP seduces swap enthusiasts to Leslieville with bags of clothes ready to recycle and elbows out in proper clothing-hunt form. Admission is generally $5 in advance, and leftover clothes are donated to the Yonge Street Mission.
Ontario Longboarding Swap Meet
Five years and counting. The annual Ontario Longboarding Swap Meet brings together
all of those punk kids skaters from all over to buy, sell, and swap boards and gear. The event is free and held at the Roarockit Skateboard Company, and the swap is typically followed by a "post-swap shred at the pooper." Whatever that means.
Swap Til You Drop
This year was the first in what is to be an annual event hosted by the Habitat Youth Coalition. Swap Til You Drop is a giant clothing swap held over two days, with all proceeds going toward Habitat for Humanity. Admission is $5, and you leave with exactly as much as you came.
Shiny Stuff Swap
This was a one-off event, but characteristic of the typical swaps organized by Swapsity. This no-cash-allowed exchange was centred around the best of the shiny and visually appealing — basically, all that is good and distracting. Admission is usually free and the guidelines dictate a one-for-one swap. Swapsity typically organizes several (themed) swaps throughout the year (Movie Music Eco-Swap being a favourite), so serious swappers might want to check out its website for upcoming events.
Swap Meet & Guitar Show
Tundra Music's guitar and music swap is a favourite annual event where musicians of all creeds can buy, sell and exchange (though I don't imagine you'll have too much luck if you're in the market for a new French horn). General admission is $5 per person (free for aspiring rock stars over 65) and the event this year is being held at the Royal Canadian Legion Hall on Pape.
Keep Toronto Reading Book Exchange
An annual book exchange organized by Toronto Public Library. This year's exchange is scheduled for April 26 at Imperial Pub Library, and books are the only acceptable form of currency (best to save your cash for the bar anyway). The event is 19+, which means it's time to dig out those politically charged/racy/drug-marked covers. Or Hemingway — whatever.
Most colleges and universities in Toronto have their own textbook swapping programs, but Ryebooks com combines them all in one. Believe it or not, U of T engineering majors, someone at Ryerson might actually have the textbook you're looking for! (Okay, maybe that's a bit of a stretch). The search function allows you to narrow by school and campus, and you can find books available for swap or sale.
Yes, you can even swap childcare online. SitSwap allows moms (or dads?) to connect and take turns looking after the kiddies in exchange for some time off. Participants are encouraged, needless to say, to meet and sit down with other moms before dropping their toddlers off in their front yards. After creating a profile, members can search for other SitSwap parents by city and intersection.
Anyone want to swap an "intimate massage" for a pair of touchscreen-compatible gloves? Alright, they're not all like that (emphasis on "all"). Actually, the tech-savvy especially might want to check out Craigslist's Barter section, as there are typically more than a couple of people offering goods and services in exchange for website or SEO help. Our touchscreen gloves.
MEC Online Gear Swap
Perhaps not great for business, but MEC's Online Gear Swap is great for trading up or out of merchandise. Basically an online forum, users can buy, sell, or swap everything from tents to climbing equipment, clothing and footwear. MEC is basically hands-off when it comes to the page, so it's very much buyer — or trader — beware.
Remember how your mom had to set up play-dates so you could swap Sonic & Knuckles for Street Fighter II? Ahh, how far we've come. Waygoz is a swap site centred entirely on video games, allowing you to connect with players in your neighbourhood to facilitate exchanges. You can opt to search by game title, or else see who is swapping in your community.
Photo from Swapsity on Flickr
Join the conversation Load comments