3 Ways to Update Thrifted Baskets

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Quick quiz—what screams summer, makes organizing a cinch in any place at all (even on the go!), and is waiting for you at your local Goodwill? Thrifted baskets! From burly laundry baskets to breezy woven seagrass, these permanently picnic-ready decor pieces will feel right at home in every room of your home and even out on adventures! Today we’ll highlight three quick and easy ways you can customize thrifted baskets for looks and functionality.

 

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To add trendy tassels you’ll need:

 

  • A basket
  • Yarn
  • A small book or something else that makes just the right size tassels
  • Tapestry needle (Optional—can be helpful if the basket’s weave is tight)

 

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Step 1: Wrap the yarn around the book (or whatever you found) until it looks thick enough. I went around 18 times. Slide the loops off of the book and cut along one end.

 

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Step 2: With the yarn still folded in half, place a new length of yarn through the center of it. Then, lay that on top of another horizontal string. Double knot the horizontal piece of yarn around the tassel. You can wrap this around as many times as you want before tucking the ends inside the tassel if you want to (I kept it simple with mine).

 

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Step 3: Repeat steps one and two until you have enough tassels.

 

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Step 4: With the knots you just made placed against the basket, thread the top strings of the tassels through the basket and double knot them in place around the weave. If your basket’s weave is too tight for you to do this with just your fingers, use a tapestry needle to get through the narrow nooks. Do this, evenly spaced, all the way across the top of the basket.

 

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Next up, I loved the unique shape of this square basket that I spotted while out thrifting, but I knew that adding some handles would make it easier to carry while full. While I was at it, I figured I’d just slap on a chalkboard label, too, so I could stick it up high on a shelf if I wanted to and I’d still know what was inside.

 

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To add handles and a label you’ll need:

 

  • A basket
  • Faux-leather belt
  • Tough string
  • Tapestry needle
  • Paint mixing stick (or similarly thin wood)
  • Saw to cut the paint mixing stick
  • Power drill with a small bit (I used 1/8” bit)
  • Small paint brush
  • Chalkboard paint
  • Hammer
  • Nail
  • Scrap wood
  • Chalk marker
  • Sandpaper

 

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Step 1: Cut your thin wood to the right size for your label. I used a saw to slice a 3.25” long section of the paint mixing stick. After that, drill two small holes toward either end of the label. Sand all sides well then wipe off the dust. Paint with chalkboard paint according to the container’s instructions and let dry.

 

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Step 2: Measure two lengths of the belt to make the handles. Mine are each 6” long. Use the actual holes in the belt or add your own holes by hammering them in with scrap wood behind the belt.

 

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Step 3: Thread a length of string through the needle, position the handles and label (after it’s completely dry) wherever you’d like them, and thread them through the basket’s weave to the be secured with a knot on the inside. Try to stitch the needle between the weave of the basket if possible so you aren’t poking holes into the straw/wood itself.

 

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This last one is easy as pie and just as charming. I found this basket a couple of months ago and I love its size and shape so much. However, I noticed that since I keep it in a little nook in my bedroom, it tends to look pretty dark and shadowy over there. I was looking for a way to brighten this piece up and a fresh strip of white paint definitely helped!

 

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To get that paint-dipped look you’ll need:

 

  • A basket
  • Paint (I used spray paint, but you don’t have to)
  • Paint brush if necessary
  • Painter’s tape
  • Newspaper

 

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Step 1: Tape off the section you want to paint making sure to cover everything you don’t want to be painted. Remember that paint (especially spray paint) can seep through the basket’s weave so you may want to fill the basket with paper on the inside, too. Press the tape firmly into place so nothing can sneak through!

 

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Step 2: In a well-ventilated area, paint the bottom with spray paint or by hand with a brush. Make sure you follow the directions on your paint to make sure you’re doing it safely.

 

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Each of these is just a quick afternoon project that adds personality to one of the most versatile items on Goodwill shelves. Pile ‘em high with picnic supplies, replace your beach bag with something boho, or get a grip on your indoor organization. You could even use your thrifted basket to tote donations in on your next thrift store trip! Goodwill is where your stuff goes to work and any baskets you buy there are sure to carry more than their fair share of the workload.

 

Have fun making them your own!

 

 

When you #ShopGoodwill , not only will you look good, you’ll feel good, too! Because your purchases support Goodwill’s programs and services. Head here to find GoodwillNYNJ store locations near you!

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DIY: Denim DIY Vest w/ @thefabjunkie

What’s a better way to upcycle an old denim jacket you ask? Oh, I will tell you! Turn that bad boy into a denim vest you can rock all year round!  I feel like everyone owns a denim jacket and if I’m wrong… lucky for YOU Goodwill has you covered. I picked up this 90’s Anne Klein jacket a couple of years ago from Goodwill. As you can see, I’ve already shredded it and put my touch on it. It has been sitting in the back of my closet (because this year I thrifted another denim jacket. I know, I have a denim problem) so I decided I would revamp it a bit. What I like about this jacket is that it has a boxy shape. Check out this easy peasy Denim DIY!

 

Step 1: Find a denim jacket that is a bit oversized on you.

 

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Step 2: You’re going to use the seam line as your guide to cut. AND don’t forget your scissors.

 

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Step 3: START CUTTING! I started RIGHT where the seam meets which can be a little hard to cut through. You can start anywhere on the sleeve using the seam to guide you.

 

Step 4: Once you get your initial cut through, you’re going to want to separate the fabric and continue to cut. When you hold the fabric together you tend to get an uneven cut. It’s fixable BUT why waste time?

 

Step 5: You can flip the jacket over on its front side to do the back part of the sleeve. Once again, I do this because I want the cleanest cut possible in one shot.

 

Step 6: Repeat on the opposite side!

 

VIOLA!

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Don’t forget to tag Goodwill in your finds + DIY’s

xo Suma

#Boowill2017 : How to Age Books with Tea and Tights  


 

By Goodwill NYNJ


 

Goodwill NYNJ How to Age Books for Halloween BoowillYes, you read that title right! It turns out that it’s really easy to make thrifted tights into spooky spider webs and for tea to stain the pages of a secondhand book creating the perfect antique appearance. These two projects partnered with our tips for aging the outside of Goodwill books will give your library a complete facelift just in time for Halloween. One thing that I love about creating custom decor from Goodwill finds is that they look more authentic than the plastic props you’ll find in chain stores. The other benefit to updating thrifted purchases is that since Goodwill donations are the beginning of job creation, when you support our stores you’re helping people within your community find employment. So, without further ado, let’s jump into these projects, shall we?

 

Goodwill NYNJ How to Age Books for Halloween Boowill2017

 

 

Goodwill NYNJ How to Age Books for Halloween

Project 1: Turning White Tights into a Spider Web

 

Materials

White tights or nylons

Scissors

A microplane or food grater (optional)

 

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This project is so incredibly easy that I don’t even think I need to write out the steps! All you need to do is use scissors and/or a microplane/kitchen grater to put runs into the tights. Then with your fingers, stretch the runs so the fabric separates into web-like threads. Keep snipping, grating, and pulling until you like the way your web looks. I found it helpful to have the books I was decorating right nearby as I made the web so I could stretch it into place as I went. Since there’s so much elasticity in tights, it’s really easy to stretch them around items so they stay in place without tape or tacks.

 

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Project 2: Tea-staining Book Pages

 

You may have tea-stained paper before, but the process of doing it for bound books is a little different because you can’t bake the pages to dry or completely cover them with tea (that would dampen the binding and make it hard to properly dry every page). Thankfully, the way that books age usually shows a darkening of the page edges while the inner portion stays lighter. This is easy to replicate with tea! Here’s how:

 

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Materials

A book to age

Two large stacks of books to stabilize the tea-stained book as it dries

A heat-safe dish that is longer than the height of the book

2 cups of boiling water

4 tea bags (not herbal—I used Earl Grey)

A fan

A paintbrush (optional)

A kettle

 

How to Age Books for Halloween Boowill 2017

Step 1: Put the kettle on to boil the water. While that heats, build two stacks of books with the dish between them. The stacks need to be tall enough that the book can hang from it to dry (scroll down to see the picture of drying if necessary). Set the fan up so it blows on the area between the two stacks.

 

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Step 2: Place the tea bags into your dish and pour the boiling water over it. Let that steep for ten minutes.

 

How to Age Books for Halloween Boowill 2017

 

Step 3: Carefully remove the tea bags and set aside. Open the book holding both covers in one hand so the pages hang down. Dip the long edge of the pages only (not the cover or binding) into the tea. You can dip it in several times or hold it in the tea for a few seconds. Then pull it out of the tea and hold it above the dish for a few moments to let the tea drip off.

 

Step 4: Turn the book upright over the container and use the paintbrush or a tea bag to brush tea onto the top edges of the pages. Start on the corner that is already tea-stained then brush softly in toward the binding so the tea stain will fade slightly as it gets closer to the spine. Avoid getting the binding and cover wet. Then turn the book again and do this same brushing technique on the bottom edges of the pages.

 

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Step 5: If your book is still dripping, set it up to dry by placing its front and back covers between the two stacks with the container still underneath. If it’s not dripping, feel free to move the container so the stacks can be moved closer together. Turn on the fan to help the book dry. As it dries, the tea stain will darken.

 

Step 6: Wait for an hour then turn the book around so the other short side of the pages is closer to the fan.

 

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Step 7: Wait for a half-hour while that side dries then you can remove your book from the piles and stand it upright with the pages fanned slightly to finish drying. At this point, the edges of every page should be perfectly browned just as an old book is! Each page will also gain a well-read crinkle/warp so they appear to have been leafed through again and again over the years.

 

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And that’s it! Your spell-binding aged books are ready for display this Halloween season. You could use these to decorate around your candy dish on All Hallows’ Eve or as a centerpiece on your October dining table. We’d love to see your creativity if you decide to try these projects yourself!

 

Goodwill NYNJ How to Age Books for Halloween

 

When you #ShopGoodwill , not only will you look good, you’ll feel good, too! Because your purchases support Goodwill’s programs and services. Head here to find GoodwillNYNJ store locations near you!

2 Easy DIY Flower Child Looks w/ @pinkvintagehrt


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Leigh Ray, Pink Vintage Heart

A Good Look Contributor

 


 

Is it me or does it feel like Halloween will be here in no time? Do you have your Halloween costume all picked out yet? I’m still undecided on what I’ll be for Halloween. But I am seriously considering going DIy flower child or something. Here are two DIY flower child Halloween costumes that are super easy and that I’m sure you can put together using what you already have in your closet or can thrift for with ease.

 

Look #1 with Flares

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This look can work with any thrift flared jeans or bell bottoms. Then pair them with a bohemian like a blouse or top that is flowy or oversized. I chose to tuck mine in which also works for this look.

This look is all about the accessories! You can use a long, narrow scarf or head wrap like I wore. A flower crown or braided cord could also work.

For shoes, you can opt for a chunky pair of high heeled boots or shoes. I wore a boho pair of lace-up sandals. If you don’t have any of these shoe options a pair of Converse sneakers would work as well. Round, heart or star-shaped sunglasses work so well with this look.

To take this Halloween costume to the next level, try adding some fringe of any kind. A jacket, vest, or belt with fringe would really compliment this costume. Also, try adding a peace sign necklace or some light face painting. I’ll try that next time!

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Look #2 – with a Flowy Dress

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I’m all about flowy dresses for any occasion. This look works well with a flowy dress in any length. You could also do a flowy top with a flowy skirt. A flower crown really makes this look. You can outfit #1 above, adding fringe works amazing with this costume. Also adding bangles and layers bracelets is cute for this look. The sky is the limit with shoes. A chunky heel or sandals would probably work best for this look.

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Leigh Ray is an NYC-based fashion blogger obsessed with all things vintage and thrifting at www.PinkVintageHeart.com. She’s a true shopaholic that loves the thrill of discovering the perfect thrifted and vintage finds while sharing them with the world.

When you #ShopGoodwill , not only will you look good, you’ll feel good, too! Because your purchases support Goodwill’s programs and services. Head here to find GoodwillNYNJ store locations near you!

Check out Goodwill for all your Halloween needs.

goodwillnynj.org/halloween

DIY Halloween Flower Crown

I’m probably the worst at craft projects aka diy. But this flower crown that I made was the easiest ever, trust me. Grab some flowers and the below tools to rock a diy flower crown if you’re going as a flower child, fairy or anything boho and magical for Halloween.

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What You’ll Need

  • Green wire
  • Flower tape
  • Strong scissors
  • Wire cutters
  • Flowers (real or faux)

 

Step 1) Make Crown

  • Take two pieces of wire and twist them slightly together to make half the circumference of the flower crown
  • Repeat for the other half of the wire crown section while measuring on the circumference of your head
  • Seal the ends and connect the two halves of the wire crown together using the flower tape

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Step 2) Assemble Flower Sections

  • This is the fun part!
  • Take small sections of the flowers and make mini bouquets making sure the stems are about 4” in length
  • Make the bouquets by gathering the flowers around small pieces of wire and tightly secure the stems around the pieces of wire with  flower tape

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Step 2) Attach Flowers to Crown

  • Attach the mini flower bouquets to the wire flower crown using small pieces of wire for heavier or larger bouquets or tape for light weight and smaller ones
  • Once all are attached go in and make sure all are secure and wire or tape down any that are loose or sticking up

 

Leigh Ray is an NYC-based fashion blogger obsessed with all things vintage and thrifting at www.PinkVintageHeart.com. She’s a true shopaholic that loves the thrill of discovering the perfect thrifted and vintage finds while sharing them with the world.

When you #ShopGoodwill , not only will you look good, you’ll feel good, too! Because your purchases support Goodwill’s programs and services. Head here to find GoodwillNYNJ store locations near you!

 

 

HiRes DIY Flower Crown

DIY Halloween Costume: Office Cat


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Leigh Ray, Pink Vintage Heart

A Good Look Contributor


 

I don’t know about you, but I live for wearing my Halloween costume on the actual holiday. Did you know that Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year? I think there’s nothing more fun than wearing a Halloween costume to work. Here’s a cute and super easy cat costume that can be worn to the office or any party where you might not have too much time to put together an over the top Halloween costume. Here’s how I achieved it:

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Cat Ears

I attempted to make cat ears, but they didn’t quite turn out so great. Sigh. But my plan B was to wear two little mini hair buns where my cat ears would have been. I simply twisted two sections of my hair and twisted them to make these buns. I think it would be so cute to add a little glitter or hair paint to these as well.

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Eye Make Up

I rarely leave the house without cat eye eyeliner. I will admit that it took me a while to learn how to apply. The good thing is that you can draw a cat eye in several different styles. Pick the one that’s easiest for you. You can also skip the eye liner and achieve the cat eye look with eye shadow.

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Nose & Whiskers

These really make the costume. I used a black eye liner pencil to draw in the dot on my nose and the fun whiskers. It took just a few minutes and I felt totally transformed into a kitty cat!

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Leigh Ray is an NYC-based fashion blogger obsessed with all things vintage and thrifting at www.PinkVintageHeart.com. She’s a true shopaholic that loves the thrill of discovering the perfect thrifted and vintage finds while sharing them with the world.

When you #ShopGoodwill , not only will you look good, you’ll feel good, too! Because your purchases support Goodwill’s programs and services. Head here to find GoodwillNYNJ store locations near you!

DIY Halloween Costume: Rosie the Riveter


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Leigh Ray, Pink Vintage Heart

A Good Look Contributor


 

Rosie the Riveter is the coolest girl power icon there is! Just about everyone knows the famous We Can Do it! Poster. The Rosie the Riveter Halloween costume happens to be one of the easiest DIY costumes ever. You can use items that you already have in your closet or you can easily thrift what you need. You’ll surely use and wear them again. Here’s what you need for your DIY Rosie the Riveter costume:

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Outfit

The outfit is the easiest part for this costume. Any jean on jean look can work – a jean jumpsuit, jeans worn with a jean shirt, jean overalls. I wore a pair of jeans with a jean shirt tied at the waist.

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Accessories

The red bandana really makes this costume. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a red bandana but I used a pink one that I had in my stash of scarves instead. You can use a bandana of any size as a head wrap or even wear as a head turban style that covers the entire head. For shoes you can do boots, converse or any flat shoes.

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Make Up & Hair

You can wear your hair up in a ponytail and create a retro look with a tiny bump at the front of the hair or rolled bangs. After researching this Halloween costume, I found that wearing your hair out is totally fine also.

I’m so into retro make up and wore cat eyeliner and red lipstick to capture the look from the famous We Can Do It! Poster.

 

Leigh Ray is an NYC-based fashion blogger obsessed with all things vintage and thrifting at www.PinkVintageHeart.com. She’s a true shopaholic that loves the thrill of discovering the perfect thrifted and vintage finds while sharing them with the world.

When you #ShopGoodwill , not only will you look good, you’ll feel good, too! Because your purchases support Goodwill’s programs and services. Head here to find GoodwillNYNJ store locations near you!

 

DIY Crop Top Tee w/ @TheFabJunkie


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Suma KaulThe Fab Junkie

A Good Look Contributor


 

Crop tops can be winter friendly but at this point who’s thinking of winter? I think we’re all ready for SPRING! Here’s an easy DIY for turning an old or thrift tee into a crop top. Check out the step by step directions after the cut:

Continue reading “DIY Crop Top Tee w/ @TheFabJunkie”

DIY Slit Knee Denim


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Suma KaulThe Fab Junkie

A Good Look Contributor


 

When you’re in love with all things denim, you always try to think of new DIYs to create. Currently trending in the world of denim is the Slit Knee. The difference between this and other shredded denim style is that there’s just a subtle rip that lies directly on the knee.

Continue reading “DIY Slit Knee Denim”

If You Give a Girl a Men’s Shirt…

By Goodwill NYNJ, goodwillnynj.org

Goodwill is no stranger to Do-It-Yourself fashion. We ❤️  a good DIY. Our stores are a treasure trove of goodies for those who like to get their hands messy with threads, scissors and glue.

This past month, students from Parsons School of Design reconstructed an array of men’s shirts into high fashion women’s attire. For their thesis project, the students from Parsons focused on the “anonymous women” behind the seams and design of men’s wear clothing, Below you will find photos taken in the warehouse at Goodwill NYNJ headquarters.

Continue reading “If You Give a Girl a Men’s Shirt…”