Tuesday, August 25, 2015

7 Easy Upcycle Projects for Fall

Do you love decorating for Fall as much as I do? Of all the seasons, this one is my favorite and I love that you don't have to spend a lot to make a beautiful impact on your home during this season. Nature brings so many free and fun elements to your home decorating. Pairing these with a few simple upcycle DIY's, you don't have to spend a lot to make your space cozy and beautiful.

Today I want to share with you seven easy upcycle projects you can try to make yourself and your home cozy for Fall. These projects were selected with your Goodwill shopping in mind and should be easy to execute with some commonly found items at our store!

Transform Book Pages Into a Wreath

Book page projects are always my favorite and I just love this easy DIY Paper Leaf Wreath created by Nalle's House as a whimsical element of decor to a door or window in your home. I particularly love that she uses a fallen leaf as a template to create a rustic feel to the wreath and the addition of fallen acorns really embrace the natural elements of autumn.

Turn Sweaters Into Cozy Legwarmers

Living in Indiana, a girl can never have too many layers in the colder months. I love a good legwarmer or boot cuff to add a touch of color and warmth to my wardrobe. Lucky for you, sweaters are available in every color of the rainbow at Goodwill. As Svetlana HillKovich Photography explains in her easy tutorial, this is a simple no-sew project since no one will ever see what's lurking underneath your boots if you don't feel like making a finished edge. So cute AND easy!

Add a Little Pottery Barn Style

Wouldn't we all just love to fill our homes with everything from Pottery Barn? I know I would, but just can't justify the expense especially when it comes to simple seasonal decor. Live Laugh Rowe replicates these elegant mason jars filled with seasonal filler and votives for families on a budget. Glass jars are always something I can snag at my store and filler for these can be purchased at your local craft store (with a great coupon, of course!) 

Create a Book Page Pumpkin

I am always looking for thrifty seasonal touches to add to my bookcases and shelves. Consider making a simple book page pumpkin out of a book from Goodwill and finish it with a little twine and twig to complete the rustic look. If you select books in different sizes, you could create a beautiful coffee table display for your home! Check out this easy step-by-step tutorial from Red Ember to create one of these (or ten!) for your own home! 

Add a Fall Touch to a Mug

It is rare that I stop in the store and can't find a few white mugs for my DIY projects. I have transformed many a mug into a beautiful gift and I love the idea of adding a fall touch to these Goodwill treasures with a simple stencil. Since these are a rub-on transfer (versus a permanent paint transfer) consider using these as a place to tuck your toothbrushes, to fill with a treat for a teacher, or plant a little succulent to place next to a kitchen window! You can get the scoop on this easy stenciled mug over on Callaloo Soup

Add Simple Details to a Faux Pumpkin

Although I love a glitzy pumpkin, my eye is drawn to these simple Baker's Twine pumpkins because they create such a beautiful detail with such pretty lines. If you aren't crafty, this is the perfect DIY project for you and just requires a little wrapping of twine to complete. This project is so easy, you can enlist your kids to help you!  Check out Design Improvised to see how to create these for your own home. 

Add a Tassel Detail to a Cozy Throw

I am absolutely nuts about tassels and how they can transform anything from clutches to necklaces to pretty trims. A basic vintage throw from Goodwill can be taken up so many notches with a beautiful tassel detail. Design Sponge shows you how beautiful this detail can be in cozy neutrals for the fall season. I'm dying to replicate this project for our home, aren't you? Get the easy tutorial over here today! 

What is your favorite upcycle project that you have done for Fall? Feel free to leave your ideas in our comments below!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Goodwill Ambush Makeover!

 Have you ever wanted to be on one of those Ambush Makeover shows?  

Well, we can't promise that, but we CAN get you excited about something we are doing at local Goodwill stores!

Our fashion guru, Kathy Friend, will be randomly showing up at one of our stores and offering a quick Ambush Makevoer to one of our deserving guests.

Think you should be our next Ambush Makeover recipient? Comment below (or email Goodwill@KathyFriend.com) why we should choose you, your contact info and what store you frequent.

YOU could be the next
Goodwill Ambush Makeover!

Watch the first Goodwill Ambush Makeover that took place in the Rochester, IN store. 

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Goodwill Success Story - Scott found employment with Lowe's!

We would like to introduce you to Scott.
He is another one of our many Goodwill Success Stories. 

Scott came to the Goodwill Community Career Center for a job fair in October, 2014. Initially, Scott used the Career Center’s computer lab to search for jobs online. He was struggling to get an interview, and asked the career counselor for help. After some edits and suggestions on format, Scott’s resume was ready to be passed along to potential employers.

Scott attended the Job Club at the Mishawaka Career Center. This group helps, encourages and supports those who are in the process of a job search. Joining this group allows participants to build confidence talking about their skills, wants and needs in a career.

In February of 2015, Scott attended a job fair and was able to get an interview with Lowe’s. He was well prepared for the interview. He spent time practicing interview questions with his career coach and attended workshops that helped him understand proper attire, etiquette and protocol. Scott’s hard work and dedication to finding employment paid off. He was offered a job at Lowe’s.

Today, Scott continues to build his skills and hopes his position as a seasonal-employee becomes permanent. He is living proof that dedication and hard work will pay off. He overcame insecurity and stepped outside of his comfort zone in order to achieve his goals. WAY TO GO SCOTT! We are all so proud of what you have accomplished!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Great Teacher Gift Ideas (On Small Budgets)

I am a firm believer that it's a great idea to start your year off right with a little treat for your teachers. When my kids were small and I was tired, the gestures were small like a shiny apple on the first day and a handwritten note of thanks. Through the years, I try to do grander gestures like knitted cozies and cakes made from school materials. 

When talking to teachers about what gifts they love though, I am told that the act of thankfulness can be a rarity in this harried world and that is why even something as small as a note to say thanks can mean so much.

Today I want to talk about small gestures that don't cost a lot, but could mean a lot to a teacher. These are budget-minded projects created with a few items you can find at your local Goodwill store! 

Craft Bookmarks From Jewelry & Buttons

Oh, I do love a good book craft and these button bookmarks are absolutely precious from peanut & olive. The great thing about this craft is that it would be so fun to hunt for unique materials you could use whether it was from a sweater, a pretty button on a coat, a bag of odds & ends jewelry, or a pair of pretty earrings. 

Pair it with a beautiful vintage school book or a stack of classic reads for the classroom for a thoughtful and inexpensive gift. 

Create a Teacher Emergency Kit

If there is one thing you can always find at Goodwill it is jars for crafting. How adorable would this back-to-school emergency kit be for the first day of school. Paint the jar lid in your favorite color, attach the free printable from Crafts Unleashed, and then fill it with a variety of emergency supplies (headache medicine, lint roller, mints, hand cream, chocolates, etc...) to get your year started off on the right foot with your child's teacher. 

Frame a Book Page

How simple and beautiful would it be to find a classic book and simply blow it up and frame it for a teacher. As a book lover myself, I'd love a book page with the vintage illustrations like Little House in the Big Woods or Charlotte's Web framed. 

Julie Blanner shows you how she created this simple gift of a framed book page. Placed in a simple black frame (spray painted or purchased that way) from Goodwill, this would make a thoughtful thrifty gift. 

Craft Some Pretty Pencils

I am a big fan of Modge Podge projects and this one is adorable. Who knew you could wrap pencils in simple scrapbook paper to achieve such beautiful results? Crafting Chicks shares this cute Write On printable that you could attach to a jar from Goodwill and fill with beautifully patterned pencils for a special teacher.

Add a stack of pretty notebooks (bought from those back-to-school specials) to pair with this pretty jar for a gift that your teacher can use and share with students in need.

Make Some Book Page Posies

Over the years, one of my favorite gifts to create and share are my book page flowers. These look complex, but are so simple to make and they couldn't be more inexpensive to create either. With a book from Goodwill, you have all the materials you need to craft a beautiful bouquet of posies; or you can pair one flower with a shiny apple for a great first day for your teacher. You can download the free printable petals over on my site, MomAdvice!

I hope these budget-friendly ideas have you dreaming of a fun way to start your year out right with your teachers. If all else fails, a thank you note periodically throughout the year or time spent volunteering is always a beautiful thing for your teachers! 

The smallest things really do mean SO MUCH! 

What is your favorite budget-friendly teacher gift to give? Share in the comments below! We would love to hear about it! 

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Easy Boho Look in 2 Minutes or Less

Nothing says summer, a day at a craft fair, outdoor concert or beach staycation quite like the trendy Bohemian look.  That Boho trend is a big one this season, and is super easy for you to implement into your style repertoire.

In this video, you will see what key pieces you will need to look for at your local Goodwill Store to create a simple Boho look. 

I would love to see what your interpretation is of this trend!  Post your photos here, or hashtag them on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest #GoodwillBoho. 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Creighton Brothers, 2014 Business of the Year!

 Congratulations to Creighton Brothers
2014 Goodwill Industries of Michiana Business of the Year! 

Goodwill Industries of Michiana began a partnership with Creighton Brothers in March, 2014.  They had a need to find qualified workers in the community. Goodwill and Creighton Brothers developed a system to bring potential employees for interviews.  Many of these individuals have been hired, and continue to enjoy a profitable career at Creighton Brothers. 

At the Goodwill Career Center in Warsaw, IN, we continue to post job openings, forward resumes and applications.  We work with clients to prepare for interviews with this outstanding local business. In return, Creighton Brothers has gone above and beyond to accommodate our clients and offer them an opportunity for employment.

Creighton Brothers has hired 18 Goodwill clients. Our partnership to better our community and help those with barriers to employment has created countless success stories. We are thrilled to congratulate Creighton Brothers as our 2014 Business of the Year!


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Beautiful Ideas for Outdoor Entertaining With Goodwill

I love entertaining outdoors in the summertime and today I wanted to share with you some fun and frugal ways you can entertain utilizing items found at your local Goodwill store. Outdoor entertaining does not need to be expensive and many of the items found at Goodwill can be repurposed into great items to have on hand for outdoor meals and entertainment for your guests.

Here are just a few beautiful summertime ideas I have gathered to help you  make the most of your outdoor space with Goodwill! 

Update a Serving Tray With Washi Tape

One of the best arsenals in my tools for entertaining outdoors is utilizing serving trays for displaying food and bringing and taking dishes to and from our kitchen in the summer months. If you find a tray that is lacking that sparkle you want or you want to easily coordinate a tray with your dishes, consider giving it a beautiful update with a little washi tape.

Design Improvised offers this sweet and simple tutorial for creating a beautiful display for your outdoor table. The best part? This DIY isn't permanent so you can change it with your mood or tablescape.

Add Mason Jar Twinkle Lights to Your Patio

Outdoor lighting can be tricky and expensive, but it doesn't cost a lot to set the mood for your next outdoor gathering thanks to these beautiful twinkle lights in mason jars.

The Tinyprints blog shows you how to make these beautiful outdoor lights with just ribbon, tulle, mason jars (which you find at Goodwill!), and some battery-operated lighting. What a treat for the eyes this would be!

Host an Outdoor Movie Night 

Outdoor movie nights are so much fun and we have been among the privileged to enjoy beautiful summertime evenings at a friend's monthly gathering in the summer at her house. There is something so nostalgic about an outdoor movie with your family and friends so I was thrilled to happen upon this beautiful diy outdoor movie set-up that actually IS budget-friendly.

June Bug Photography shows you how they created this incredible set-up on a small budget that is sure to be the talk of the neighborhood for your next cookout!

Dress Up Your Patio

Patio decorating doesn't need to cost a lot and Goodwill receives many furniture donations that you could potentially use for your outdoor space. Don't just think of these items as one piece, but consider the parts of the furniture items for your project. A pair of legs from one piece and a drawer from another, for example, can be painted into a brightly colored plant display that you could fill with colorful flowers or could be used as a herb garden on your patio.

An Aiming High Wife shows you how she created this beautiful plant display and she gives you some smart advice for weatherproofing this piece! 

Keep the Bugs Away 

Bugs can be problematic when dining outside so it is always nice to have coverings and solutions for keeping them away.  Earnest Home Co. shows you an elegant way to keep your food covered with just simple terra cotta pots and a little rope for a handle.

Since my son just did a science project utilizing a pot, we can scientifically say that this is not only a great way to keep food covered, but it also a great way to keep your food insulated (warm or cold) while dining outside.

Of course, keeping the bugs away from YOU is also a good idea especially when you have guests! Consider visiting Goodwill for a slow cooker and utilize this fun tutorial I put together for making your very own DIY Citronella Candles in your slow cooker for your own outdoor entertaining or use the gift tag I have created (Thanks for letting us BUG you!) to attach for an adorable hostess gift for summer.

I hope these ideas inspire you this year! Let me know what your proudest DIY moments are when it comes to outdoor entertaining in the comments below!