Monthly Archives: March 2020

Sham-Rocking Your Thrift Finds

It’s almost St. Patrick’s Day, so we are all in a little bit of a festive mood! While this holiday falls right in the middle of the week, you can still celebrate on the weekends and at night! (Even if this year, it's with a small group of friends or family.) Here are a few ways I styled pieces from Goodwill, along with some tips for shopping the racks for holiday gear.

From Day to Night

If you plan to celebrate holidays during the work week, it’s a great idea to find something you can easily transition from day to night to minimize time getting ready. A skirt is great for either class or work, especially this sweater skirt which is super on-trend. I paired it with a green plaid shirt to tuck in and a motorcycle jacket to throw on over top. For accessories, a pair of black block heels and sunglasses. The plaid shirt ($4.50) and sweater skirt ($4.00) were both found at the North Canton Goodwill location.

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Transitioning to after work, I swapped the skirt for a pair of jeans, and the jacket on top for a satin cowl tank underneath. The sunglasses were switched with a gold chain necklace, and the heels with a pair of white pointed-toe booties. The booties, jeans, and tank top were all previously thrifted.

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Fun and Festive

If the subdued look isn’t up your alley, get festive with a kitschy tee like this “Get Lucky” one I picked up from the North Canton Goodwill! For only $4.50, I don’t mind that I only get to wear it once a year because I didn’t break the bank on it. I paired this shirt with some ripped jeans and festive accessories. Just throw on your favorite pair of sneakers and the outfit is complete!

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What Was in My Cart but Didn’t Purchase

I found several t-shirts while shopping the racks, but only one made it home with me. It just reminded me that you don’t have to get something directly related to St. Patrick’s Day to be festive. This location had a few Guinness t-shirts, which could be a unique take on a holiday outfit! There were also plain green ones that you could wear as is, or make your own with appliques and other items. I also came across some green sweaters that could easily be transitioned from work to evening. 

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The left two sweaters could be worn like any other sweater, while the cropped sweater could be worn over a white button down for a fun twist on a layered outfit.

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Tips and Tricks

1. Find things you would normally gravitate to so you can get more wear out of it.

It is always so hard when shopping for festive clothing to justify spending money on something you will wear once a year. When you grab it at Goodwill (especially for half-price), it’s not as hard to justify! Not only that, but getting something you will wear throughout the year makes more sense in the long run. For me, I love flannels, so I know I will wear this more than just once. It’s better for the environment to make decisions this way, and it’s better for your wallet.

2. Look in areas other than clothing.

Belts and shoes are an easy way to add some festivity without it going overboard. Look around for things that may not be right in your face! These will also be easier to incorporate into your wardrobe after the holiday season.

All-in-all, a holiday doesn’t mean you have to break the bank for something festive to wear one day out of the year. Get creative and find items you like so you save some money and get more wear out of your purchases! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

A Sewing Hack for Any Holiday

Top o’ the morning to ya! It feels like forever since I’ve done a crafty post for Goodwill, so let me start by saying I missed you and I hope you had a great holiday season! Ever since I’ve taken my decorations down, my house has felt a little empty and lifeless, so I thought it would be a fun idea to create a cheap and easy St. Patrick’s Day center piece for my dining room using mostly thrifted goodies. 

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For the first time in a while I went into Goodwill without any idea of how I wanted my project to look because I really wasn’t sure what was going to be available in greens and golds and oranges. Luckily for me, there were still so many Christmas decorations on the shelves that inspiration hit me quickly! I first found the gold plate/candle set and when I opened the box and saw that everything was in good condition I knew I had to have it and that a table runner would be a perfect addition. I wasn’t able to find a kelly green table runner but when I saw the beaded placemats, I knew I could make them into exactly what I was looking for in less than 20 minutes.

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The first thing I did with the green place mats was check their condition. A few of them had minor stains, but I really only needed 3 of the 5, so I just chose the best looking and set the other two aside for a future craft project (like a sewing bag to keep my seam ripper and such).

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Now that I have my selected pieces, I used my clips (you can use pins if that is what you have at home) and clipped right sides together on two of the place mats. I then took it over to my sewing machine and using a straight stitch sewed the mats together. For this project, you don’t even need matching thread colors since it will never be seen when sitting on the table. I used black because it was what I already had loaded into my machine.

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I then repeated the same steps to attach the third piece. Once all the mats are attached, you now have a very wavy and wrinkled table runner with some long thread tails that need to be snipped. Of course I wanted to make my runner as smooth as possible so I took special care to really iron out the corners as well as opening up the seams I had just made with my sewing machine. Always test a bit of the fabric with your iron before going full speed ahead. Satin can be an iffy fabric to iron on, but I just lowered the heat setting and had no issues. 

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While I was able to flatten out my table runner 90%, unfortunately only time will get out some of the deeper wrinkles in the satin fabric (or if you are fancy and own a steamer, it’ll flatten out in minutes). Now that my table runner is complete, I got out my newly beloved center piece and got all of the items out except the Christmas baubles.

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To make this project complete for the holiday, I stopped at the Dollar Tree on my way home from my Goodwill trip and picked up a few specific St. Patrick’s Day goodies to fill in the plate as well as decorate the table with.

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All in all this project only cost me 10$ and it will not only serve its purpose for St. Patrick’s Day but also for the Christmas season as well. The table runner is also a great beginner project for anyone looking to dust off the old sewing machine. I hope you all got some inspiration out of this post and I hope you get even more inspiration walking the isles of your favorite Goodwill! Cheers!

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Dr. Suess Day

I don’t remember any specific times that Cat in the Hat was read to me as a child. Growing up, I have zero recollection of what shelf Green Eggs and Ham was placed on in my house. I’m not even sure which Dr. Seuss book was my favorite back then.

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One thing I’m sure of, though, Dr. Seuss books were an impressionable and significant part of my childhood. Decades after Seuss books were first read to me, I can still recite most of the books, word for word. And, I cannot deny the sentimental feelings I get when I’m reading these children’s’ classics to my own children.

And I’m not alone. Dr. Seuss is an iconic part of most of our childhoods, which is why it should be no surprise that Dr. Seuss’ birthday (March 2), has become a national holiday of sorts.

Classrooms and schools across the nation and the world will gather children of all ages for Read Across America. They will recite ‘Wocket in my Pocket’ and dress up like ‘Fox in Socks’ and maybe even taste some green eggs and ham.

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Theodor Seuss "Ted" Geisel, would have been 116 years young this year. During his life, he was responsible for writing and illustrating more than 60 different children’s’ books, many of which became of the most popular books of all time.

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It would be short-sighted to think that this holiday ONLY celebrates Seuss, though. Read Across America is a celebration of the importance and significance of reading, especially at a young age.

Consider these facts:

  • Across the nation less than half of children between birth and five years (47.8%) are read to every day by their parents or other family members.
  • Daily reading to children can put them one year ahead of their peers who are not read to each day.
  • Books in the home are strongly linked to academic achievement.
  • Children growing up in homes with at least 20 books get three more years of schooling than children from bookless homes, independent of their parents’ education, occupation, and class.
  • The most successful way to improve the reading achievement of low-income children is to increase their access to books.

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These statistics are startling and should serve as a reminder on this literacy holiday and every day, how important reading is to children, nationwide and right here in our community.  

Goodwill has taken action and created a new program that works to address issues of literacy in our own community.

Book Works was a program first launched by Goodwill Industries of Greater Cleveland and East Central Ohio in late 2019. The program provides gently used, age appropriate books to children and child care centers at no charge.

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Thousands of books have already reached children throughout Stark County as a result of the Book Works program, and in 2020, thousands more will be served.

Children’s books that have been donated to Goodwill and not sold in stores are sorted and cleaned by local volunteers. Then, Goodwill partners with area schools, daycares and agencies to fulfill orders. Children that are part of the Books Works program are provided a minimum of five books, and centers are provided a minimum of 25 books. Books range from infant board books to first chapter books to teen novels. And, yes, Dr. Seuss books are oftentimes part of the Book Works order!

So, in honor of Read Across America and Dr. Seuss’ birthday and all the wonderful Seuss memories we all might share, here are a few things that you can do to support literacy in the local community:

  • Read to your children. Reading just 15 minutes a day can make a significant difference in the educational achievement of a child.
  • Donates children’s books to Goodwill. Your unused children’s books are a much-needed donation at local Goodwill stores. Find a donation center near you today.
  • Volunteer with the Book Works program. Volunteer groups are needed to sort and clean the books for the program. Email info@goodwillgoodskills.org for more information.
  • Enroll your school, daycare or church in the Book Works program by completing an order form. Book orders are typically filled within two or three weeks of the order. Supplies may affect fulfillment date.