Emmie often uses Goodwill items for amazing do-it-yourself projects, and then writes about the process. This week we learn more about her, her blog, and why she chooses Goodwill as a place to shop.
We’ve seen Goodwill finds and DIY/upcycle projects on your blog and love them. What inspired you to choose those particular pieces to fix?
I try to go to the Goodwill with certain projects in mind, otherwise I would buy the whole place up. If I see something inspiring or that makes me think of someone I will purchase it and use it as an opportunity to teach my friends how to up cycle. The Lainie’s Vanity project is a great example of this. She was so in love with the vanity I had made years ago that when I found a good quality desk at the right price I snagged it up and told Lainie it was time for her to learn how to use power tools.
The biggest deciding factors in how I choose my pieces are the quality of the materials-am I working with a solid wood desk or particleboard? I also base most of my decision on price. How much are the refurb materials going to cost me? I try to stay under 30$, it makes finding pieces more of a challenge and even more exciting when I hit the jackpot.
Are there any other DIY projects we can look for in the future?
One of my most recent projects, which I am in love with, is a high quality dresser I found a few years ago and have been storing in the storage unit (my parents were tired of my projects taking up their garage space). During my most recent move I was able to repurpose the dresser and give it my own personal flare. I am hoping to get the post regarding this project up within the next few weeks.
My next goal is to learn how to reupholster furniture. I have two armchairs I’m working on now. There is a bit of a learning curve, but half the fun is what you learn along the way.
My friends and family have recently discovered my newest Goodwill addiction…Crystal. I have been stocking up for a long time on crystal dining pieces and recently threw an open house where everything was served in crystal. I can’t get enough of the elegant, yet whimsical, little works of art and I can only imagine my collection growing larger. I now have started converting the glass candy dishes into the most awesome jewelry holders that seem almost worthy of an Anthropologie ad.
How would you describe Goodwill to someone who’s never shopped at one before?
Many people think of Goodwill as a place to buy used clothing or drop off your stuff when you clean out your garage, but it is so much more than that. It really brings to life the saying “one mans trash is another mans treasure.” If you take the time to really look at the items that fill the shelves at the Goodwill you can find something for everyone. I have purchased everything from paintings to teacups there.
What’s your favorite location(s) to shop and why?
I first discovered my love for the Goodwill while in college in Duluth. I would go to the Superior, WI location towards the end of the school year and the place was an absolute treasure trove of discarded furniture as students were moving. Now my go-to location has always been the Goodwill in Maplewood. I have started to venture out and explore the Goodwills in my surrounding areas like Stillwater and Woodbury. Some of my favorite finds have been at the Woodbury location but Maplewood will always be my home base.
What excites you about shopping at Goodwill more than just the thrill of a good deal?
“I think it is important that people are aware of all the amazing work the Goodwill is doing for those in need.”
I think it is important that people are aware of all the amazing work the Goodwill is doing for those in need. When you make a donation or a purchase you are not only gaining something for yourself but also helping others. I always jump at the chance to round up my total to donate a little extra. I hope by getting people excited about treasure hunting at the Goodwill more people will be able to donate and give back in whatever way they can.
Thanks for sharing your Goodwill experience, Emmie! Stay tuned to the blog for our next Thrift Spotlight segment!