Menu

GoodFind

1 2 3 30

Commit to the planet on Earth Day with these tips

Earth Day, which is coming up on April 22, is a reminder to take a step back and remember that the health of the planet we live on is important. The way we treat Mother Earth is important. What we do now not only affects our lives, but those decisions and actions will exponentially impact generations after us.

Sometimes the responsibility of the health of our planet is a heavy weight, but it doesn’t have to be so overwhelming. There are everyday things you can do, like shopping your favorite online thrift store (wink wink) that add up to big things. Imagine if everyone made the effort to do little things?

Here are some suggestions for not just Earth Day but every day.

Reusable water bottles

Convenient? Yes. Environmentally friendly? Gosh, no. There are so many brands and styles of reusable water bottles available, there is no need for anyone to purchase another throwaway bottle. Keep one in your car and at your desk so you always have one on you. Some even come with a clip so you can go hands free by hooking it onto a purse or tote. Carrying a reusable water bottle is trendy and can even be considered a fashion accessory! If you absolutely do not have another choice, be sure you recycle, recycle, recycle!

Just stop littering

Have you ever looked out the car window and really studied what you see? When every gas station, restaurant or store has a garbage can outside the front door, it’s hard to believe people STILL litter. An easy solution is purchasing a small trash can that can be secured inside your car. Throw your wrappers in there and when it’s full, empty it into the trash.

Make the (small) effort to recycle

Yes, recycling at home means you need to have two receptacles. Find a way to make it easy to recycle. Keep the recycle bin right outside your garage door or under the sink. Make it convenient and be proactive. Your city most likely has recycling information available online. Find out what they do and do not accept for recycling. You may be surprised by what they can take.

There are also many businesses that will accept plastic bags or wrap, including the plastic wrap your toilet paper rolls comes in, for recycling purposes. Rule of thumb: Ask yourself if it’s possible any item can be recycled before you throw it out and then follow through with it. If you already are committed to recycling, make a pledge on Earth Day to kick your recycling game up a notch. It makes a difference, friends!

Invest in reusable sandwich bags

Do you pack your own lunch or a child’s lunch? Consider investing in reusable sandwich or snack bags and, of course, a reusable lunch bag. A quick search on Amazon will reveal a wide variety of bags in different sizes and adorable prints. They are so low cost that they pay for themselves quickly. Many bags now are machine washable. Again, little things make a big difference.

Buy secondhand

This is our favorite way to celebrate Earth Day!

The greatness of the second hand cycle speaks for itself. Cleaning out your closet benefits you by getting rid of things that don’t serve your needs anymore (including the stress that comes with it). You’re also opening space to fill with more second hand pieces that keep fast fashion in check. By donating your items to Goodwill, you’re helping to keep them out of landfills where they do no good. And when Goodwill receives your second hand donations, you’re supporting a whole network of programs and services designed to help people lead better lives! It’s a perfect trifecta of goodness and we can’t think of a better way to celebrate Earth Day!

If you’re looking to fill some gaps in your newly cleaned out closet, shop your favorite thrift store!

About Goodwill: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that believes in Elevating People by Eliminating Barriers to Employment across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin. Goodwill NCW is one of four companies in the nation to be honored with a Platinum Well Workplace Award from the Wellness Council of America, which recognizes our commitment to wellness in the workplace. The organization includes 27 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, 24 human services programs, a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store, plus online shopping at www.reStitch.com, a women’s apparel website, and www.shopgoodwill.com. It offers four Donation Express sites and 10 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities. Goodwill NCW is a Platinum Level member of GuideStar.org, the world’s largest source of nonprofit organization information. Visit www.goodwillncw.org.

 

 

Fashionista: Check out Goodwill NCW boutiques

Do you love shopping at boutiques or Nordstrom Rack sales?

If so, did you know there are boutiques located within the Darboy, Rib Mountain and Neenah retail stores and training centers?

The boutiques are curated areas in the corners of the stores that carry trendier and more brand-name pieces. Think Ann Taylor, Chico’s and Banana Republic, many with the original tags still on. You also will find purses, shoes, jackets and other accessories as well.

Plus, you will find the 50% off color tag of the week as well in the boutiques.

If you’re a budget shopper like me, here’s a tip. Purchase a classic piece from the boutique such as this small polka-dot skirt with all the details I love — black buttons, flattering pleats and huge pockets.

Then I found the other pieces outside of the boutique to complete the look. Except for my pumps, all of my finds were half off.

Here’s a breakdown on my boutique look: Comme Toi black and white polka-dot skirt, $6.99 (half off with color tag of the week) from the boutique; black and white shirt, $4.99; Liz Claiborne bright green sweater, $4.99; and Ann Marino pumps, $7.99 (new).

Give it a try and check out the GW boutiques. Find great high-end pieces without the high-end price!

About Therese Bishop: Therese is Goodwill’s fashionista and always is on the hunt for her next great treasure. She writes regularly about her fashion finds.

 

Fashionista: Goodwill your destination shop for vacation clothes

I’ve got a trip to Florida on my mind. As I prepare and pack for my trip, I want a great new-to-me dress to bring along. Of course, I went to Goodwill in search of one.

There was a mannequin that had exactly what I was looking for!

I asked one of awesome Goodwill team members if I could please defrock her. Oh, yes, I did! The team member offered to do it instead and the best part was the dress was my size. Win!

Fashionista pro thrifter tip: Take style inspiration from the mannequins throughout the store.

Here’s the cost breakdown of my vacay look: Lularoe dress, $7.99; turquoise leopard-print scarf, $6.99; rattan purse, $6.99. The sandals are from my closet.

If you are looking for some fun pieces to wear at your warm destination, check your local GW stores!

About Therese Bishop: Therese is Goodwill’s fashionista and always is on the hunt for her next great treasure. She writes regularly about her fashion finds.

Bring Good Home with thrifters’ decorative collectibles

When searching for collectibles for their homes, Shelley Cullen of Appleton and Kim Hageman of Oshkosh might have different tastes, but they have one thing in common. They both turn to Goodwill for artwork for home sweet home.

For Kim, a lifetime thrifter, one of her favorite finds is a surreal art sculpture in the shape of a large wooden shoe. The unique piece matches her one-of-a-kind personality.

“I love adding to the thrifted collection in my home. Every room in my house has pieces I’ve thrifted since I was 18.”

When Shelley, who shops regularly for her herself and her three children at Goodwill, found the decorative globe that now has taken up residence on her mantle, she knew she had to buy this little piece of heaven.

She often says to her youngest, “Ava, you have the whole world in your hands.”

And now she does. Literally.

About Goodwill: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2017 helped improve the lives of more than 70,000 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin. Goodwill NCW is one of four companies in the nation to be honored with a Platinum Well Workplace Award from the Wellness Council of America, which recognizes our commitment to wellness in the workplace. The organization includes 27 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, 24 human services programs, a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store, plus online shopping at www.reStitch.com, a women’s apparel website, and www.shopgoodwill.com. It offers four Donation Express sites and 10 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities. Goodwill NCW is a Platinum Level member of GuideStar.org, the world’s largest source of nonprofit organization information. Visit www.goodwillncw.org.

 

Bring Good Home with thrifter’s vintage toys from childhood

Jerry Melvin’s basement is a testament to his love of vintage toys.

With everything from posters of Transformers to Pac-Man characters, the glass cases and bookshelves are filled from top to bottom with the collectible toys that are carefully displayed and lovingly cared for.

It’s all a tribute to his childhood and the happy memories he had playing with these favorites.

Many of the vintage toys the Rothschild dad has found at Goodwill, like Skeletor, the classic Saturday morning villain from Masters of the Universe. The cartoon character was the stuff his summer days and weekends were made of.

“When I was a child, this was my favorite toy. I had misplaced it over the years and recently shopping at Goodwill, I saw it and I was 8 years old all over again.”

About Goodwill: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2017 helped improve the lives of more than 70,000 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin. Goodwill NCW is one of four companies in the nation to be honored with a Platinum Well Workplace Award from the Wellness Council of America, which recognizes our commitment to wellness in the workplace. The organization includes 27 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, 24 human services programs, a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store, plus online shopping at www.reStitch.com, a women’s apparel website, and www.shopgoodwill.com. It offers four Donation Express sites and 10 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities. Goodwill NCW is a Platinum Level member of GuideStar.org, the world’s largest source of nonprofit organization information. Visit www.goodwillncw.org.

 

Bring Good Home with thrifters’ vintage clothing finds

Both Tad Lipschultz of Appleton and Christa Vogt of Neenah shop Goodwill NCW for vintage clothing, but each has a favorite.

For Christa, her prized vintage clothing find was a Harley-Davidson leather jacket that makes an old soul like hers dance. She discovered the Hein Gericke Harley-Davidson leather jacket that fits like it was made for her when she was shopping the costume rack at Halloween.

It’s been love ever since.

“Hitting Goodwill in early September when they put out the Halloween stuff is almost like a little holiday for me,” Christa said.

The vintage clothing fanatic, who has a circuit of Goodwill retail stores and training centers she shops every week, also is an interior designer and is always searching for interesting home décor.

“The days I pop into a store with no agenda are usually the days I score the best stuff,” she said.

For Tad, it’s all about vintage tees, particularly vintage band tees.

The lifelong music fan’s passion for concerts and heavy metal music was turned up a notch more than 30 years ago when he attended his first concert — KISS — and he has been to 100 and counting since that first one in 1986.

Along with a love of music, Tad also developed a fascination with Goodwill, scooping up graphic band tee after band tee.

He is now the proud owner of a hefty collection of heavy-metal vintage tees like KISS, Metallica, Whitesnake They’re the perfect reminder of his childhood, his favorite bands and the music he can’t get enough of.

Rock on, Tad!

“I’ve been a metal fan my whole life, been going to concerts since the 1980s, my first show was KISS. Years later I found this vintage KISS T-shirt at a Goodwill. I’ve been going back for years, and I always find great band shirts.”

Cue the air guitar!

About Goodwill: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2017 helped improve the lives of more than 70,000 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin. Goodwill NCW is one of four companies in the nation to be honored with a Platinum Well Workplace Award from the Wellness Council of America, which recognizes our commitment to wellness in the workplace. The organization includes 27 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, 24 human services programs, a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store, plus online shopping at www.reStitch.com, a women’s apparel website, and www.shopgoodwill.com. It offers four Donation Express sites and 10 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities. Goodwill NCW is a Platinum Level member of GuideStar.org, the world’s largest source of nonprofit organization information. Visit www.goodwillncw.org.

 

Spring cleaning tips for decluttering and donating

With the promise of the spring season comes an excitement of knowing that we will be shedding our sweaters and saying a warm hello to our favorite tees.

If you’re not feeling it because you left your ho-hum spring and summer wardrobe behind when the birds went South, it’s time to change that around!

But before you go out and buy a bunch of stuff to make you and your closet happy, you need to shed the things that no longer fit, matter or match your style.

Welcome to spring cleaning!

And there is no time like the present. Given the popularity of the queen of tidying up Marie Kondo and her Netflix series, there’s a national decluttering frenzy happening now. It’s time to hop on board, folks!

For those of you who need a refresher or who haven’t tuned in, here are some of her organizing tips:

  • Ask yourself if the item sparks joy. If it doesn’t, thank the item for its service and put it in the donation pile.
  • Donate the books you aren’t going to read or reread rather than storing them.
  • It’s OK to part with gifts you’ve received that you don’t use or enjoy. Don’t feel guilty getting rid of gifts or obligated to use them.
  • Buy storage containers only after you figure out what you need to store.
  • To declutter your closet, take everything out and make a pile. Go through and only keep your favorites. Donate everything else.

Afterward, not only will you have a decluttered home, but you should be extra satisfied knowing your donations make a difference in your community. The average donation provides more than three hours of job training and opportunities for people with barriers to employment.

Plus, all these terrific donations make for some incredible shopping!

“I am thinking now that @MarieKondo is now on Netflix there is going to be some awesome thrift shopping in the coming weeks. #TidyingUp,” blogger Kelly Collis tweeted.

Donating tips:

  • Check for and remove any documents containing personal information, including tax statements, bank statements, medical records and similar items.
  • Don’t worry if your clothing has holes or rips. The items that don’t meet quality standards for the store floor can be cut into wiping cloths, for example, as part of our GoodWipers team. These products provide job-skills training within our mission services while offering wiping cloths to businesses and households. Other imperfect items can be sold in secondary markets as a way to keep it from the landfill.
  • Check our list of what we can accept and what contains hazardous materials and must be disposed of differently.
  • Check pockets of clothing for jewelry, money and other valuables you might not be intending to donate.
  • When possible, include all pieces and parts to games, toys and household appliances.
  • If your business has outdated branding on merchandise, we will take them, remove the branding and make them into GoodWipers as a way to provide job-training opportunities.

About Goodwill: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2017 helped improve the lives of more than 70,000 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin. Goodwill NCW is one of four companies in the nation to be honored with a Platinum Well Workplace Award from the Wellness Council of America, which recognizes our commitment to wellness in the workplace. The organization includes 27 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, 24 human services programs, a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store, plus online shopping at www.reStitch.com, a women’s apparel website, and www.shopgoodwill.com. It offers four Donation Express sites and 10 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities. Goodwill NCW is a Platinum Level member of GuideStar.org, the world’s largest source of nonprofit organization information. Visit www.goodwillncw.org.

 

Thrift-store prom dresses that make a girl stand out

Prom is a rite of passage for teenage girls, and it’s often dreamt about for weeks and months before the big event. Looking for a prom dress at a thrift store isn’t probably the first thought for teens, but with prom dresses costing upward of $500, it can be a serious pinch on a high-schooler’s piggy bank.

Shopping for secondhand prom dresses is a smart alternative to shelling out that kind of babysitting cash, and you might be delightfully surprised at the trendy and affordable prom dresses you can find. A girl still wants to feel like a princess and fit in with the trends. We have the top prom dress trends for 2019 and dresses that will make jaws drop and heads turn, and what girl doesn’t want that kind of attention on the big night?

Ballgowns and prints

Nothing can elicit the feeling of being a princess more than a glorious ballgown. Float into prom with this classic black City Triangles gown. It features a trendy beaded bodice and beautiful gathered skirt. Because of the length and fullness of the dress, you can wear it with a pair of flat shoes so you can dance the night away and not hobble around with blisters on your feet.

This next ballgown dress features another huge trend in prom dresses this year: prints. This dainty yet bold dress with original tags from Chi Chi London features a ballgown silhouette and cobalt blue floral print. We also appreciate the high-low hemline and know the girl who wears this will be the belle of the ball.

Rose gold

Rose gold has been the trending metallic in jewelry for quite some time and now it’s moved on to prom dresses. This plus-size, NWT ballgown from Deb exudes beauty and elegance. The strapless gown features sequined applique details and an organza skirt. The second hand price just sweetens the deal!

Metallics

Metallics are the trend to follow for prom this year. You can incorporate gold or silver in more ways than just jewelry. Try going subtle with some sequin or jewel details or go all out with a dress like this Love Reign gown. If you’re craving attention, try this gorgeous, all-over sequin dress with an open back and corset sides. Since it’s new with tags (gasp!) no one will guess you bought it for under $55!

Another head-turning metallic option is this beauty from Tadashi Shoji featuring a cool neckline and a body-skimming cut. The silvery lace and elegant neckline are stunning. The other stunning piece? It was originally more than $500! The girl who wears this to prom is truly a winner.

Green

Green prom dresses just might be the biggest trend for 2019. We are loving the simplicity of this evergreen, one-shouldered White by Vera Wang dress. To keep in the spirit of simplicity, we would add some pretty gold dangly earrings and gold strappy heels.

About Goodwill: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2017 helped improve the lives of more than 70,000 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin. Goodwill NCW is one of four companies in the nation to be honored with a Platinum Well Workplace Award from the Wellness Council of America, which recognizes our commitment to wellness in the workplace. The organization includes 27 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, 24 human services programs, a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store, plus online shopping at www.reStitch.com, a women’s apparel website, and www.shopgoodwill.com. It offers four Donation Express sites and 10 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities. Goodwill NCW is a Platinum Level member of GuideStar.org, the world’s largest source of nonprofit organization information. Visit www.goodwillncw.org.

 

Fashionista: How to wear animal print

OK, I have to admit that I’m not a huge fan of animal prints. You either look like you’re going on safari or a bit like Snooki from “Jersey Shore.”

Then I had to step back and rethink this look.

How about treating animal prints as a neutral color? One piece can go a long way. Try a skirt or a pair of pants or a shirt, like in this look.

I love the look of this outfit. It’s fun but not over the top. I found this cheetah-print shirt, added a pair of jeans and an animal print clutch. For a touch of color, I added these red small-heeled, pointed pumps.

It also looks like this print isn’t going anywhere. Animal prints are here to stay for a while.

Here’s the cost breakdown: Chico’s leopard-print blouse, $4.99; Jimmy Brand jeans on clearance, $1.99; animal-print clutch, $4.99; and the red pumps are from my closet.

So, get out there and shop your local GW. You are sure to find some gggggrrreat deals. Sorry. I couldn’t help myself!

About Therese Bishop: Therese is Goodwill’s fashionista and always is on the hunt for her next great treasure. She writes regularly about her fashion finds.

What to pack for a beach vacation

Let’s be real. For most of the country, this winter has been a wild one. Snow, ice, flooding, winds, cooler-than-average temps. We’re ready to escape to the sunshine and warm breezes. Who’s with us?

Resort WearWhen your mind has been on sweaters, sweatpants and staying warm, it’s so refreshing to think about breezy dresses and fun tanks.
If a beach vacation is on your agenda in the upcoming weeks, we have a list of must-haves to consider when writing up your packing list.

Swimwear and a Cover-up
Yes, we’re digging right in. The last thing that most of us want to think about after a long, cold winter is slipping into a swimsuit with our pasty white winter bodies. Don’t worry. Your local Goodwill has a variety of swimming suits that flatter all body types. Since you may be spending most of your beach vacation time in your swimming suit, it’s important that it fits well and you are comfortable in it.

A really big trend in swimsuits is the high-waisted bikini bottom. It’s perfect for holding things in and still being able to indulge in sandcastle building. Plus, black is always slimming, and the V-neck and ruching are very flattering.

Every beach vacation bag also should include a great cover-up. Imagine heading to a beachside cabana for a lunchbreak or while walking back from the beach at the end of a sun-filled day.

Tanks
Tank tops are a must-have for any beach vacation. We suggest picking a few that can be worn multiple places with multiple things.

Or if you want to go for a bolder look, bring a tank top that feels like a tropical paradise. Wear it with denim cutoffs for a carefree look or with a pair of white jeans for a nighttime outfit.

Maxi dresses
Easy, breezy and beautiful, the maxi dress is a beach vacation staple. When you have a suitcase with limited space, you want to find pieces that can be worn in more than one way and the maxi dress is the perfect example. Wear it over your swimsuit during the day, when you go out exploring or dress it up at night for dinner. Opt for one with a bold and bright print.

Shift dresses
Shift dresses aren’t necessarily figure-hugging and, therefore, some women shy away from them because of this. We’re telling you to give them a try when you’re considering beach vacation outfits. The last thing you want when the weather is hot and humid is a tight, non-breathable dress.

Rompers
Rompers are still the “it” piece, and it’s easy to see why. An all-in-one outfit, they can be dressed up with heels, jewelry and a clutch or worn casually for a beach cover-up or sightseeing outfit. They are a versatile piece that should make it on everyone’s vacation outfits packing list.

Shorts
A comfy pair of denim shorts must be on your beach vacation packing list. They pair well with casual tanks and tanks. You also can slip them on over a swimsuit or worn on an excursion.

Check out the resort wear selection at your local Goodwill today.

1 2 3 30
Goodwill Stores Near You!
Apply Today
Returning Applicant
Board of Directors
Find Your Goodwill!