Upcycle projects! They are so much fun but, let’s face it, there are so many amazing ideas. Sometimes, it can seem so expensive to start or overwhelming to figure out where to start! I was excited when WA Goodwill invited me to attend an upcycling event and get the chance to listen to upcyclers in Sumner, Washington, give tips on upcycling projects and what to look for! Thank you, WA Goodwill, for sponsoring this post.
Now, I am not one to claim to be a crafty girl so, any time I have seen cute projects on Pinterest of upcycled projects, I always manage to talk myself out of them. When George, from Goodwill, invited me to the event and reassured me I would have help I was excited to join in!
We started out by stopping at Goodwill on River Road here in Puyallup Washington! I was so excited to be paired up with, Julie, one of the owners of the Junker’s Nest of Sumner, WA. Her energy was amazing and since we knew that we were making planters, we took off to hunt for our containers! I loved her ideas and picked up three containers to take to our next destinations.
Now, there are some things that Julie pointed out that makes for a good upcycle project but, most importantly, she told us to think outside the box when picking out our pieces for our planters or for any upcycle project.
Tips For Hunting For Upcycle Projects:
- Go in with an open mind
- Think of unique items such as shoes, baking pans, dishes, baskets, almost anything you can place succulents in
- Furniture: Look for solid furniture–ignore cosmetic details
- Look for other purchases for the project
- Keep an eye out for upcycle project supplies like burlap, fake plants, paint brushes, or other supplies that can be used to create your project
From Goodwill, we took off to Blue Goodwill in Sumner, Washington. I had been to a restaurant in Sumner and a running trail but this day opened my eyes to a whole new experience in Sumner with shops! If you haven’t heard of blue, this is like an upcycle Goodwill; everything in there was name brand and very chic in style.
Our next stop was Julie’s shop, the Junker’s Nest (You can follow them on Instagram -> here and Facebook -> here) where the displays were just amazing!!! I loved seeing all the fall ideas and to hear and see how many of the pieces they picked up at our local Goodwills to upcycle in order to make these amazing pieces and displays. I loved that the littlest pieces and additions really tie together displays.
Just up the street from Junker’s Nest is Intavintage (you can follow them on Facebook -> here) where we were treated to being able to listen to several different upclyclers talk about how they create and what they look for in pieces! This store is one I could walk around in for hours. The store rents out booths to vendors who all bring in their projects to sell. Plus, they also sell paints and stains for creating your own projects.
Tips For Upcycle Projects:
- Create your furniture to be able to change with the seasons so it can be enjoyed year-round
- Sanding will help paint or stain to absorb into the piece
- Use decals to dress up a piece even more (they sell those at Intavintage too)
- Look for old frames and bed frames that will be easy to redo
- Use clothing to create new bags, accessorize jeans
- Buying at the Outlet stores is a great way to find vintage pieces
Now, for the actual creating of our project, we headed to VanLierop Garden Market (you can follow them on Instagram -> here and Facebook -> here) to create the final project. I had picked up three pieces but I realized the basket with flowers would be the perfect way to decorate my back porch.
Now, I had no idea what plants to put in my basket but the staff at VanLierop Garden Market listened to where I was putting my planter and we were off and running. I was given choices to pick up and they did the rest! It turned out amazing and is perfect for my porch. So many of the other bloggers at the event made such fun pieces. It was a blast seeing how their pieces came out as well!
Afterward, we headed next door to Sorci’s Italian Cafe and Enoteca (you can follow them -> here on facebook) to have lunch and visit even more. After everyone was done eating, we headed to the back patio to listen to three women share their stories of how Goodwill changed their lives and the lives of their children as well.
One of the things I absolutely love about WA Goodwill is that thrift shopping funds $9 million in career path training, free to the unemployed in Southwest and Western Washington. You can see more -> here. I love the difference they are making in the local communities.
What projects have you upclyced? Have any come from Goodwill?