The NEXT (NE PDX) swap!


Thanks for being a part of the FREE swapping community!

All who choose to attend Free Swaps agree to help keep swaps running smoothly – See the Free Swap rules here:  For ALL current upcoming swaps, check out the home page blog roll and Swap Positive Events google calendar (to the right). If you don’t see a free swap in your size, interest, or neighborhood, how about starting one?  Find out more here.

Barb Hughes, Swap Positive Founder



03.11.20 Note from Anna, Swap host for the Women’s Size 6-12 Clothing Swap at this venue:

Out of an abundance of caution, and wanting to help “flatten the curve” (the exponential curve of coronavirus transmission in the Portland area), we have decided to cancel this month’s clothing swap.  We apologize to those who have looked forward to this.  Please stay tuned for news about the stuff swap in April.


Check your closet, drawers and storage, wash clothes and other wearables you no longer love/wear/need (including cleaning up jewelry, purses, shoes, and other accessories) and bring them to the women’s medium size 6-12 clothing swap!  This is a swap for women and teens who wear women’s sizes 6-12.   No children or babies please.

What: size 6-12 medium women’s FREE clothing swap 

When: Saturday March 14th, 2020, 2pm.

Swaps at this location are usually the 2nd Saturday of each month, and usually last about an hour. If a few women can start putting remainders into piles around 3pm, that would be appreciated!

Where: Evergreen Community Church (in the gym) 935 N.E. 33rd Avenue. Portland OR 97232

Directions: two blocks south of Sandy Blvd on 33rd (the west fork in the road), at Pacific Street, in a modern red brick building. There is a parking lot behind the church. Early arrivers will get a parking lot space, if you’re late you might want to park on the street instead. The gym is across from the playground.

What to bring: Bring only CLEAN and wearable women’s and junior/petite equivalent clothes in size 6-12. Also bring any accessories, shoes, purses, etc. Bring bags to take your new clothes home with you (some women bring rolling suitcases).

The reason we ask that all clothes be washed and in good condition (ie no rips/missing zippers etc.) before bringing them is two fold: 1. so people with allergies at the swap aren’t miserable and 2. the remainders are immediately donated, and it would be rude to donate musty or non-wearable clothing to others. Thanks for being the considerate women that you are:)

The idea behind Swap Positive is to offer and get free clothes, forever. We are a free swap, not a swap meet. See the difference here:

No money changes hands with these clothes ~ even if you get them home and decide they aren’t quite ‘you’, we ask that you GIVE them away to someone, not sell them. That is the mission of Swap Positive.

1. Wash all items before bringing to the swap. Check the pockets for tissues, gum, and money.

2. We are a clothing swap, not fabric swap, so the bottoms of pant legs or sweaters with a sleeve missing are not usable for us regular people. Also, please no food items. Save the wonderful other household stuff for our December gift swap or April stuff swap…unless you will pack it out when you leave so we don’t need to find a home for it.

3. No cheating! No taking, or hiding, or stuffing things into your sack before we officially start! It only makes it fair for all of us. Please feel free to gently and kindly remind others of our swap rules – they will feel better knowing the rules, and you will feel better knowing you are helping swaps run smoothly for everyone.

4. Wear a swim suit or spandex workout clothes under your street clothes when you swap. Try stuff on before you take it home. See how great you look in a mirror (if you have a full length mirror you could bring, that would be helpful). If it doesn’t fit, throw it back into the pile so someone else can see if it fits them.

5. It’s fun to see people smile as they try on something you brought, or see the encouragement of ‘that looks great on you’ and ‘here are some jeans your size’. You’ll be able to try new fashions you’d never dream to try on in a store, and it’s all because GIRLS JUST WANNA HAVE FUN!

6. All remainders will be donated to a non-profit that will give the items away for FREE:)  Swap remainders have gone to the Portland PTA clothing closet,  “It’s Your Day”, a female inmate release program through Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW Learn more about the program here) Transition Projects, Mercy Corps, Q Center,  and any places YOU suggest (please contact Anna at if you would like to pick up clothing or household remainders in the future and she’ll add you to the list!) so the spirit of free frugal fun continues to make a positive difference helping bring joy and needed items to women and their families!   I’ve been told clothing closets needs/tastes run the gamut – from fashionista, conservative, retro, special needs – so as long as it’s clean and in good shape there’s someone who would enjoy your tasteful goodies:)

7. Please do NOT bring: clothes that are larger than women’s size 12, children’s clothes, clothes that are ripped/stained/dirty/smelly/not wearable. Go to to find a children’s clothing swap, large clothing swap, or all-size swap venue. Please take your non 6-12 clothes to an appropriate venue. Thanks for your understanding.

If this is your first swap, Here’s how a Swap works…

Shoes, purses, accessories, and jewelry will be in a separate pile.

All of the clothes will be kept in bags while we wait. Shoes and accessories can go into a separate pile…but no pre-swapping (taking things or scooting them into piles before we start). When everyone is present, the swap coordinator will give the go-ahead and we’ll empty bags of clothing into rows on the floor. After you empty your bags, please step back until everything is out and ready. Things in the middle of the room in rows are free. Items in little piles around the room, against the walls in bags, or on chairs are someones’ stash.

When everything is in rows, the swap coordinator will say, “Go!” And we’ll all start at the same time. That way everyone has the same opportunity to find new clothes.

Take what looks good to you, gather it into your pile, then try them on.  A few full length mirrors are available, but please feel free to bring your own if you have one to share. If the clothes aren’t quite ‘you’, throw them back into the pile for someone else to enjoy.

Please support our mission by enjoying the swap as a place to get free stuff, and if you part with your new-to-you swap items, we ask that YOU do it in a free way too!

If you would like to contact the PCL size medium Free Swap hostess Anna directly, her email is  If you don’t see a free swap in your size, interest, or neighborhood, how about starting one?  Find out more here.

Thanks for being a part of the FREE swapping community!

P.S.  YOU CAN ALSO BRING CAT FOOD TO THIS SWAP!  Swap hostess Anna helps feral cat rescuers with their colonies.  If you have dry or canned cat food you would like to donate (non-expired, and non-buggy, but it’s fine if it has been opened), Anna will donate it to those in need.  Please give this donation directly to Anna.  Thank you!”


NOTE:  We will plan as if the 15th Annual Spring Stuff Swap will happen, and will be watching the health news.  If needed we will notify by email those who have RSVP’d, and also post on this site as it gets closer if we need to cancel.  Swaps are all about free frugal fun – we want to swap THINGS, not ILLNESSES!  Thank you for your understanding!

RSVP NOW for the 15th Annual Spring Stuff Swap for April 11th 2020!  Combine spring cleaning, sustainability, philanthropy, treasure hunting, and free frugal fun with like-minded friends! Your home will be less cluttered, your in-good-condition stuff will be loved by someone else, you’ll find new-to-you items you CAN use!  This Swaps remainders are being gifted to the local charity The HIV Day Center which GIVES them away, not sells them- so your generosity keeps giving! Be a part of the saving$, recycling, treasure hunting, philanthropy, and good karma flowing around!  If you’ve never been to a free gift or stuff swap, see one in action here.

Due to space constraints YOU MUST GET ON THE GUEST LIST TO RESERVE YOUR SPACE AT THIS SWAP (RSVP form link below), and read and agree to the swap guidelines below so everyone knows what to expect and can have fun.

Kind and courteous women, men, and teens are invited.  Please leave babies, animals, and grade school children and younger safely at home with a sitter.

When: Saturday April 11th, 2020   2pm (arrive between 1:30 and 1:50 to get a parking spot, and to set your stuff out before the swap begins.)

Where: Evergreen Community Church in the gym, 935 N.E. 33rd Avenue.  Portland OR 97232

Directions: two blocks south of Sandy Blvd on 33rd, at Pacific Street, in a small modern red brick building. There is a parking lot behind the church. Enter through the gym, which is across from the small playground. If the parking lot is full, you can park on the street. Car-pooling is encouraged.  Due to space constraints, you must register and be on the RSVP list/reserve your space to be admitted.


By coming to Free Swaps, you agree to the following Free Swap Rules:

  1. No pre-swapping, gathering piles, or taking stuff before we officially start.
  2. Only kind and considerate women, men, and teens. No babies, small children, or animals (it could be too overwhelming with the gym not childproofed). If two or more people want the same item, and you can’t work it out by talking, the person who has the least number of items gets it.
  3. All items brought must be clean, complete, and in working order. No broken or missing pieces. Nothing greasy or dirty. No volatile or toxic chemicals, paints or products. No junk. Nothing too large to fit into the backseat of a car. No mattresses or pillows.
  4. No resellers/eBay/etc. The mission behind free swaps is “free stuff forever”, so if you get something home and decide you don’t want it, we ask you to give it away, not sell it.
  5. We are all volunteers and donate our time for free. The venue donates its space for free. All swappers agree to bring items in good, clean condition so you can find items in good, clean condition. Remainders are given away so others can play, too!


To reserve your place at the swap, just click this Spring Stuff Swap 2020 RSVP FORM LINK and fill out your name, email, and number of guests!  If need to see the link in readable form, it’s

When you click and fill out the Spring Stuff Swap 2020 RSVP form above, Aubrey will send you a confirmation email and your name and email address will be your ‘entry ticket’ as well as agreement that you and all your guests agree to and will abide by the free swap rules. Aubrey will keep a waiting list, so if you find that you or a guest can’t make the swap (including due to illness or exposure to illness April 10th), please let her know at before April 10th so she can give your space to the next in line. Also, be patient for her response, as she’s volunteering in her free time and will get back to you as soon as she can.

Since all items will be placed on the floor and our venue has carpet, all items need to be free of dirt, grease, spider webs, etc.  Since we are volunteers and don’t have money to pay for a dumpster, all items must be useable items – NO junk, no recyclables. Only bring items in good shape you would want to receive.  Items must be small enough to fit in the backseat of a car (no large furniture, but a clean bike or bedside stand would be O.K.). No poisons. No hazardous/flammable materials (such as house paint, lamp oil, lighter fluid, etc.)



You come in and put your stuff in rows on the gym floor, with a walking path cleared down the middle so we all can walk freely.  We’ll have signs on the floor in rows that say:

  1. TOYS AND GAMES: this might include new and lightly used dolls, stuffed animals, gag gifts, toys, games (including board games, puzzles, etc.) with all the pieces still intact.
  2. MOVIES, BOOKS, CD’S DVD’S: bring books in good condition, music and movies on CD and DVD that are still in great working order. Computer games can go in the techie area.
  3. CRAFTS, FABRIC, ACCESSORIES: items to bring include scrap-booking, beading, knitting, sewing patterns and clean fabric, the gift towels that were the wrong color for your décor. You CAN bring accessory items such as hats, scarves, gloves, etc.… however, please don’t bring clothing or we won’t have room for anything else!
  4. HOUSEHOLD AND HOLIDAY: items might include dishes, potholders, coasters, fondue sets, non-expired and non-opened food items, blenders, bath salts, table lamps, Seasonal items and decorations. Perfume used once, lotion used once (i.e. still looks new – isn’t half full and doesn’t have gunk running down the side of the bottle.) Please no mattresses, large unwashable pillows, bean bags or other material that could spill out.
  5. TOOLS, TECHNOLOGY, GARDEN, PETS: Clean ratchet set, clean sports equipment, clean bicycles/tricycles in great shape, computers, cameras, gaming systems, computer games, clean garden pots and tools, viable seeds, clean pet dishes and toys, car stuff.  If in doubt, please bring/put your item on plastic or in a container.
  6. BREAKABLES AND COLLECTIBLES: jewelry, antiques, fancy glassware, collectibles, artwork, toys that are too delicate to be in the official toy area, candy dishes.  All those knick-knacks that keep piling up – get rid of them here!
  7. OTHER STUFF: We’ll also have a misc. area, where you can put things you have no idea where they go. It also works as an overflow aisle if other areas are full.

If you have items you’re not sure where they go, put them in a row that in some way makes reasonable sense, or put them in a row that isn’t too crowded. Also, please don’t bring clothes – if we bring our usual generous bags of clothes, there won’t be room for anything else!

After you’ve unloaded your stuff, stand against the wall and visit while you wait for the swap to start. Please don’t wander around in the middle – there will be a LOT of people needing that space to put their stuff out, and the quicker they can, the quicker we can start the swap.

NO PRE-SWAPPING.  Experienced swappers know this, but for the newbies – No picking up stuff or scooting it into your bag/box beforehand!  We want this to be fair for everyone. At 2pm or so, the emcee will welcome everyone and shortly thereafter will say “Go” so we can all start at the same time. Be kind and courteous – if two people want the same item, the person who has the least gets the item.  (At a previous swap, a mom with many kids chose a pile of puzzles for them. A second mom with one kid kindly asked if she could have one of the puzzles, and the first mom gladly shared. THAT is the spirit of free swaps!)

Stuff in the middle of the gym floor in rows is free for the taking.  Stuff in boxes/bags/sacks next to the wall belongs to someone.

We usually have about 100-150 people show up to the Spring Stuff Swap. It’s important that everyone is patient and kind, and only bring good stuff so you in turn find good stuff!

Bring your own boxes/bags to cart your new stuff home in. Some people bring rolling suitcases.

By participating in free swaps, you are part of a 15-year tradition of fun, recycling, and philanthropy!  Thank you for being a part of the fun, and making your corner of the world a happier place.

Barb Hughes, Swap Positive Founder

14 responses to “The NEXT (NE PDX) swap!

  1. Anna, thanks so much for organizing this. I am the mom who brought her daughter, Frances and her classmate. We had a blast. We like to sew too and sometimes enjoy repurposing the items.

  2. What time does the swap begin? It’s the only detail not included!

  3. An idea – if everyone leaves w/ as much as they came w/, there’s no extra work for hosts, & we all have (perhaps) a few extra things to give away next time. Perhaps if we think of it as an opportunity to get good stuff, rather than dump stuff, they will be more likely to proliferate & continue!

  4. If there are leftover Halloween costumes/makeup/accessories, they will be accepted by Community Partners for Affordable Housing, 6380 SW Capitol Hwy #151.

  5. The only swaps I need RSVP’s for at this time is the gift swap in December and the stuff swap in April. As long as our size 6-12 medium swapping takes place in the gym there should be enough room for all women/teens teens to come. I’m thinking I may have the winter swaps in the gym as well, even though it’s not heated, because women have said they’d rather all meet for one big swap in the gym and be a bit cool, than have to divide the swap into 2 (due to the smaller size of the heated Narthex). See you and your two teens for the medium clothing swap June 11th in the Gym at the PCL church:)

    • I would love to rsvp for the toy swap in December can I do that here?

      • Thanks for reminding me, Evie Ehrlich – I need to ask for volunteers for that swap! After we get all the volunteers in place, then people can RSVP to whoever the volunteer is who takes RSVP’s 🙂 . I’ll get working on that and post here soon asking for volunteers.

  6. I would like to know when the next one is and also when the gift swap is. It sounds like fun.


  7. can you tell me how to find an exchange for large-sized ladies clothes?
    thanks so mch.

  8. Looking forward to this swap! What a great way to pass along unneeded items and also get some great things to take home. Thanks for organizing it again!

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