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Donate to the White Elephant Sale

Thank you for considering donating to the White Elephant Sale!

We do not accept any in-person donations at our warehouse.

The White Elephant Sale truck picks up donations for free throughout the year in Oakland, Berkeley, San Leandro, Piedmont, Albany, and Alameda. We usually schedule weekly pickups in San Francisco, Fremont, San Mateo, Martinez, San Ramon, Livermore, and Marin County. To maximize the truck’s efficiency, we try to schedule pickups in distant locations on the same day. This determines how soon we will come to some of these areas. For specific questions about scheduling a pickup, please call 510-839-5919.

For detailed information about items we accept for pickup , please click here.

The White Elephant Sale has been a success for more than 60 years because of the generosity of our donors, the organizational efforts of the Oakland Museum Women’s Board, and the tireless work of over 1000 volunteers. But when we receive items that are not in sellable condition on such a huge scale, it costs us thousands of dollars and volunteer hours, which could be better used to support our mission of providing funding for the Oakland Museum's programming. 

We cannot take:

  • Items with batteries still installed – batteries MUST be removed from battery-operated items before donating

  • Items that are broken, damaged, stained, or needing repair

  • Items with corporate logos (e.g. office supplies, mugs, clothing)
    Exception:  items with college and professional sports teams logos

  • Items with monograms of names or initials (e.g. linens, towels, mugs, etc.) 
    Exception:  monogrammed silver or silverplate items

  • Chemicals and/or flammable fluids

  • Perishable or personal care items (e.g. food, wine, pharmacy, lotions, soaps, or other personal care items)

Take a close look at everything you are planning to donate and consider whether you or anyone you know would be willing to buy it. If not, we probably cannot use it. 


Click on the categories below for more details about items we cannot accept:

We cannot take:

  • Hair, bath, or beauty products, unless new and unopened  

  • Handkerchiefs

  • Health care products, unless new and unopened 

  • Hosiery, socks, or tights, unless new and unopened

  • Luggage

    • Luggage in need of repair (suitcases must be clean, empty, and in good condition with all zippers functional)

    • Luggage without wheels, unless vintage

    • Luggage with logos

    • Luggage straps and carriers

  • Slippers or bed socks 

  • Travel bags and totes with logos, giveaway items

  • Travel garment bags

We cannot take:

  • Art or frames that are damaged or broken

  • Folding easel displays

  • Framed jigsaw puzzles

  • Frames  

    • Clear acrylic box frames  

    • Empty frames smaller than 10”x 14”
      Exception:  antique empty metal frames, old photo albums with photos, personal photos, or anim
      al photos 

  • Old Master reproductions or prints  

  • Resin sculptures or figurines

  • Scrolls

We cannot take:

  • Computer manuals older than 4 years

  • School course curriculum or study guides

  • Encyclopedias​​

  • Magazines

    • All children's magazines

    • Bon Appetit​​

    • Food & Wine

    • Gourmet

    • Life, unless older than 1970

    • Martha Stewart

    • National Geographic, unless older than 1960

    • Reader's Digest

    • Scientific American

    • Smithsonium

    • Sunset
      Exception:  Bound copies

We cannot take:​​

  • Asian display dolls

  • Grandfather clocks

We Cannot Take:

  • Items that are dirty, broken, or damaged

  • Artificial Christmas trees taller than 2 feet

  • Asian display dolls 

  • Candles, unless new 

  • Ceramic figurines 

  • Christmas plates of clear glass  

  • Collector plates 

    • Franklin Mint

    • Bradbury Exchange

    • Etc.

  • Florist glass vases  

  • Outdoor Christmas decorations  

  • Tree stands, unboxed lights, or garlands, unless vintage

  • Wreaths over 2 feet in diameter  

We Cannot Take:

  • Baby monitors

  • Bean bag or foam child’s chair

  • Car seats older than 5 years

  • Car seats that are dirty or stained

  • Clothes that are stained or dirty 

  • Crib bumper pads

  • Cribs with drop sides, unless vintage or collectible (not intended for use with babies)

  • Exersaucers

  • Furniture or strollers that are dirty, broken, damaged, or recalled

  • High chairs that are missing trays or straps, unless vintage

  • Large rolling activity centers that child sits in

  • Personalized items with child’s name

  • Plastic baby bath tubs

  • Shoes

    • that show a lot of wear or are dirty

    • larger than child size 13

We Cannot Take:

  • Clothing that is stained, dirty, or torn 

  • Clothing that is missing buttons or fasteners
    Exception:  vintage clothing is accepted in any condition

  • Women's underwear, unless vintage, or new in unopened package

We Cannot Take:

  • Electrical items that are in non-working condition or need repair

  • Air purifiers and ionizers

  • Appliances

    • Bread makers

    • Dryer

    • George Foreman grills

    • Microwave ovens

    • Refrigerators

    • Stoves​

    • Washers

  • Carpet shampooers

  • Cell phones and cell phone chargers

  • Ceiling fans

  • Computer equipment

    • Hardware​

    • Software

    • Peripherals

    • Routers

  • Console phonographs, stereos, TV units

  • Ear buds

  • Fluorescent light tubes

  • Office Machines

    • Cash registers​

    • Copy machines

    • FAX machines

    • Printers

  • Personal grooming products

    • Curlers

    • Foot massagers

    • Hair dryers​

    • Massagers

    • Paraffin baths

    • Shavers

    • Toothbrushes

  • Table lamps over 2 feet tall

  • Televisions

    • TV antennas​

    • TV stands

  • Track lighting

  • Typewriter tables

  • Vaporizers or humidifiers

  • If there is any question about the suitability of your item, we may request photos for review

  • Due to limited space in the department, we may not be able to take your donation  

  • Our truck drivers are authorized to make the final decision on accepting your donation

We Cannot Take:

  • Furniture that is broken and needs repair

  • Furniture that needs to be reupholstered or is stained, dirty, or discolored

  • Furniture that requires assembly

  • Furniture made of particle board

  • ​Bean bag chairs

  • Beds

    • Box springs

    • Foam pads

    • Futon mattresses

    • Head and footboards without the rails

    • Mattresses

    • Metal bed frames or bed springs

    • Twin beds

    • Double bed frames

  • China cabinets over 36" wide

  • Commercial office furniture

    • desks​

    • case goods

  • Couches over 6 feet long

  • Glass top tables
    Exception:  Mid-Century and under 36" wide

  • Hide-a-beds

  • Hospital beds

  • Large La-Z-Boys
    Exception:  non-electric in excellent condition, or high-leg, push-back recliners

  • Metal foot lockers (commercial)

  • Non-bound carpeting
  • Papasan chairs

  • Partner desks

  • Roll-top desks

  • Rug pads
  • Shag rugs
  • Vanities

We Cannot Take:

  • BBQ equipment

  • Dog beds

  • Gas powered yard tools

  • Hose reels

  • Hoses, unless new

  • Igloo coolers

  • Lawnmowers

  • Pet carriers

  • Pet gates

  • Pet stairs

  • Plastic garden furniture with mold or mildew

We Cannot Take:

  • Aquariums

  • Automotive items

    • ​Batteries

    • Jacks

    • Rims

    • Tire chains

    • Tires

  • Home renovation items

    • Cabinet doors

    • Ceramic tile

    • Food or wine glass windows or doors

    • Paint

    • Propane tanks

    • Stoves, unless vintage

    • Used hardware

    • Used window hardware

  • ​Ice chests, Styrofoam or plastic

  • Jars, unless canning jars

  • ​Large power tools

  • Medical supplies, unless new and unopened  

    • Walkers – basic aluminum

  • Pet items

    • Gates

    • ​​Igloos

    • Large crates

    • Hamster cages

    • ​Pet carriers

    • Pet doors

    • Pet stair

    • Wire bird cages

  • Plumbing items

    • Bathtubs  

    • Plumbing fixtures

    • Toilet seats

  • Sports cups with straws

  • Toxic materials

    • Flammable fluids

    • Matches

  • Window coverings​

    • Mini blinds

    • Venetian blinds​

    • Window shades

    • Other window blinds

We Cannot Take:

  • Items that are wet, mildewed, soiled, torn, frayed, or covered with animal hair

  • Air mattresses or beds, futon mattresses

  • Bed pillows

  • Electric blankets and controls

  • Foam futon covers or mattresses

  • Slipcovers and covers for chairs or sofas

  • Table pads

  • Window coverings

    • Black-out drapes

    • Cornices

    • Heavy drapes

    • Metal blinds

    • Shades

    • Valances

We Cannot Take:

  • Magnetic tape media of any kind, recorded or blank

    • ​Audio – cassettes, reel-to-reel, 8-track

    • Video – VHS, Beta, home-recorded

  • CDs 

  • DVDs

  • Boxed sets or bound albums of records

  • CD jewel cases (empty)

  • Electric organs

  • Hymnals

  • Organ music

  • Pianos

    • Grand pianos

    • Full-sized upright pianos

    • Player pianos
      Exception:  Please contact us about other kinds of pianos

  • Racks, carriers, or cases for tapes or CDs

  • 78 RPM records

We Cannot Take:

  • Binders, plain or with logos

  • CDs, floppy discs, or their storage boxes

  • Electric typewriters

  • Filing cabinets, 2 or 4 drawer

  • Mouse pads

  • Old phone directories

  • Outdated calendars

  • Photo albums that are discolored, unless vintage

  • Picture frames

  • Wrapping paper – partial rolls or scraps

We Cannot Take:

  • Digital cameras with less than 10 megapixels

  • Digital cameras without a memory card, battery pack, charger, cables, and instructions

  • Family slide collections

  • Film editing equipment

  • Photo chemicals

  • Photo enlargers, slide carousels, or slide projectors

  • Studio lighting equipment

  • Video cameras, camcorders, or tapes

We Cannot Take:

  • Craft kits – opened or incomplete

  • Drapery supplies

  • Fabric – large rolls ​

    • Burlap

    • Naugahyde

    • Netting

    • Synthetics

    • Upholstery fabric

  • Fabric scraps

  • Foam rubber

  • Fur

  • Knitting machines

  • Looms – assembled or disassembled

  • Magazines

  • Mosaic glass tiles

  • Plastic needles

  • Quilt frames

  • Quilt tops in need of repair

  • Sewing machine cabinets without a sewing machine

  • Sewing machines

    • Domestic rotary sewing machines

    • Industrial sewing machines

    • New Home rotary sewing machines

    • Treadle sewing machines​

    • White rotary sewing machines

  • Unfinished garments or projects

  • Upholstery sample books

  • Used patterns, unless older than 1970

  • Yarn cones

We Cannot Take:

  • Dance shoes

  • Golf shoes

  • Ski boots

  • Sports shoes with cleats


We Cannot Take:

  • Boats with outboard motors

  • Camping equipment which is dirty, rusty, or soiled

  • Car cargo carriers (Tule racks)

  • Car racks for skis or bikes

  • Diving equipment

  • Exercise equipment

    • Nordic tracks

    • Rowing machines​

    • Stationary exercise bikes
      Exception:  Tunturi and Schwinn in working condition

    • Treadmills

  • Firearms or ammunition of any type, including toy guns

  • Golf bags and clubs older than 2018

  • Hockey equipment

  • Inflatable mattresses

  • Mounted trophy fish

  • Pilates equipment

  • Plastic wading pools

  • Skis, ski boots, or ski poles

  • Snow boards

  • Styrofoam ice chests

  • Taxidermied animals

  • Tents  canvas

  • Trophies

  • Water skis

  • Windsurfing equipment older than 5 years

We Cannot Take:

  • Asian display dolls

  • Broken or dirty toys

  • Cardboard building bricks

  • Chemistry sets

  • Costumes

  • Doll beds or strollers

  • Doll furniture  large

  • Doll houses, unless small and portable

  • Dolls over 18 inches tall

  • Graduation caps and gowns

  • Inflatable toys, unless new and unopened

  • Jewelry making kits, including loose beads

  • Outdoor play structures -- large

  • Play-Doh and paint, unless new and unopened

  • Riding horses  large, spring-type

  • Sand boxes  large plastic

  • Sand, pool, or bath toys

  • Stuffed animals, unless Steiff

  • Train tables  large

  • Trophies

  • Video game consoles and accessories, unless PlayStation

  • Wading pools  large plastic


To schedule a truck pickup, please call (510) 839-5919.

Truck drivers have the right to refuse to take any donations for reasons for quality, size, or number of donations. Truck drivers retain the right to refuse to pick up the donation if they have a concern about safety matters. Truck drivers expect all contacts with donors will be safe and in keeping with government recommendations. All persons they come in contact with must be wearing a mask, even if the contact is outdoors. Truck drivers will not tolerate harassment.

Please help our truck drivers quickly identify the items you want us to pick up by printing our donation tags, and then taping or stapling one tag to each box, bag, or item that you are donating.  

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