If you were proud of your spring cleaning spree this year, we hate to break it to you but Sophia Bush took the term to a whole new level. She just spent 20 hours clearing out more than 1,500 big-name designer pieces from her two closets — and she’s auctioning them all off for a good cause. You might as well just tell your employer to make this week’s check over to her directly.
She teamed up with eDrop-Off, a luxury consignment site, to help her sell off all her high-fashion designs (we’re talking Chanel quilted bags! Christian Louboutin pumps! a Burberry trench! Among many others). But before you start calculating the damage this will do to your bank account, keep in mind that your money will be going to a great cause. A portion of proceeds from the sale will benefit The Girl Project (an organization that helps provide education to girls in need globally). To learn more about this epic overhaul, we caught up with the Chicago P.D. star to find out why she decided to partner with the charity, what hurt the most to part with and more.
PeopleStyle: Was this the biggest clean out you’ve ever done?
Sophia Bush: Absolutely! I’ve been doing small clean outs every few months over the last two years, with my best friends snagging things they love, and then putting boxes together for the women’s shelter in downtown L.A. But this was massive.
What was the hardest thing to part with?
I’m trying to have a healthier relationship with the idea of wardrobe turnover, honestly. The chicest women I know are constantly editing, and it’s not such a parting process for them. But man oh man, putting some of those Chanel bags into the “auction” pile certainly caused pangs of doubt! [Editor’s note: We can totally see why!]
What were you most shocked to find still in your closet?
I was mainly just shocked by the sheer amount of stuff I’ve acquired over the years. I mean, my best friends were all amazed that I haven’t wound up on Hoarders!
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There are photos of you signing a couple pieces — how did you decide what to put your name on?
I signed some items that were nostalgic and recognizable. Pieces I’ve worn on shows, items I’ve worn to big events. It felt nice to personalize some things. I’m such a fan of clothing swapping, and trading with friends, because it’s an eco-friendly (and wallet friendly!) way to satiate the desire for newness and freshness with your wardrobe that every woman feels. Since this wasn’t just happening one night at home with friends and a bottle of rosé, it felt special to add little ‘thank yous’ to some things. Fans are supporting a cause near and dear to my heart, and we are sharing the clothing love, and I wanted some pieces to have little surprises for them!
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What have you had the longest you’ll never get rid of?
Sentimental items. Vintage sweaters from the ’40s that my mom’s best friend gave to me as a little girl. The first jacket I ever bought with an acting paycheck. The Calvin Klein gown I wore to my first CFDA [Awards]. Those things I’ll save, always.
What are some gems people should look for? Are there any red carpet pieces, or ones that hold special memories?
Absolutely! There’s an orange gown I wore to a Golden Globes party one year [pic here] that was my favorite! Items from One Tree Hill and Partners wardrobe. Accessories and bags because they’re timeless, fun, and require no measure-matching! And for anyone who wears the same size shoe as me, it’s a wonderland! [Editor’s note: She’s about an 8!]
How did you decide it was time to do this for charity?
Living in two states — for locations for One Tree Hill and Chicago P.D. — for the better part of my adult life led to feeling like I just had too much stuff floating around. I came home after wrapping season three of Chicago P.D., and had this sort of surreal feeling looking at my closet in L.A. I thought, ‘Well, all of this is beautiful, but I’ve lived without these things for the past nine months. Someone deserves to wear this stuff!’ Hanging onto it isn’t doing anything for me, but could make a difference for the girls who will be supported by The Girl Project.
Which brings us to: Why The Girl Project?
The Girl Project is a cause I’m incredibly passionate about. Working with women and education groups through the past decade brought me closer and closer to realizing the goal of working in countries all around the world on the shared goal of making sure girls have access to secondary school education. The opportunities schooling affords women, emotionally, developmentally, economically, and in regards to their families makes education access both a moral and a practical imperative. And while education should be a right for all women, all women also love feeling fabulous in their own skin. If sharing the love with my own closet can help girls around the world, I’m thrilled!
What pieces are you most excited to buy?
— Colleen Kratofil