Thrifting Dupes

 

Occasionally you may come across a new seasonal item of clothing or an accessory in an advertisement you love but would never pay the full retail price for it. I try never to pay full price for anything, but there are trends I’d love to copy by finding a decent facsimile at my local Goodwill Keystone Area store.

A few weeks ago, I received an email from Dr. Martens highlighting a shoe – the Adrian Snaffle Loafer in Plum. They are beautiful, tasseled loafers made in England with the class Dr. Marten yellow stitching and sturdy lug sole. The color is a striking deep purple – perfect for fall. And the price – $160 – was way beyond my budget for fall, especially with two kids in college. I’m always thrifty, but I’m especially aware of ensuring my budget stays on track.

Fast forward a few weeks, and while cruising the shoe aisle in my local Goodwill, I came across a pair of stunning suede purple loafers in my size. I always check all the shoe rows – not just the black or neutral selections. You never know when you will find footwear in a unique color.

Picking these up, I knew the suede was high quality, and seeing the label, and I knew I had a winner – Cole Haan. From their website, “Cole Haan loafers, driving shoes, and slip-ons are crafted for a perfect fit, exceptional comfort, and incredible versatility – and to get on or off in a flash. Whether you’re on the search for the perfect women’s driving loafers, suede loafers, or leather loafers, Cole Haan’s selection is the ultimate in efficiency, always ready for you to slip into and go–right up until the point where someone compliments you on your excellent taste.”

This pair has little to no wear and a price of $9.99. These lovely loafers are a fantastic dupe for the Dr. Martens version, and I knew they would join my wardrobe. And to top it off, their original price was the same – $160!

Keep your eyes open for current trends. You never know when you’ll ever be able to find a similar style when thrifting at Goodwill Keystone Area.

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten
KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Summer/Fall Collab

 

August is when back-to-school supplies and cooler weather clothing are on the top of your shopping lists. However, it’s an excellent time for your summer style to meet your new fall fashions.

Summer: I had picked up the ruffled floral dress on a whim. I didn’t try it on, and I didn’t see a tag, but I loved the print and took it home. Luckily, it fit perfectly; I found the brand tag, and the best part – it has pockets!!! The brand is Sundry, and according to their webpage, they are a fusion of the Mediterranean Sea and the Pacific Ocean with a casual coastal, French chic vibe. I felt great in this dress, so whatever they are doing, I love it! Retail on this dress was $199, but my Goodwill Keystone Area price was only $3.50 since it was a color tag sale of the week!

Fall: These Minnetonka suede fringe boots were picked up from the Goodwill Halloween section. Halloween and swimsuits are side by side in the stores I’m visiting right now. They were brand new, and I knew they’d be a fun addition to my wardrobe (and not just for a Halloween costume). This exact style is still available on their website and has been around for five decades! That’s iconic! The laces and fringe add a fun, whimsical feel to the floral dress. (Retail: $107; Goodwill: $19.99).

I added an older Marc by Marc Jacobs bag (previous purchase from Goodwill) and a purple statement necklace to wrap up this mash-up, cross-seasonal look.

Don’t overlook the seasonal sections when shopping at your local Goodwill Keystone Area store. Now is a great time to pick up a cardigan to layer over a lightweight summer blouse, or add some sturdy boots under your cropped capris. Mix up your seasons for a brand new look!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Dress: $3.50
Boots: $19.99
Bag: 4.99:
Total: $28.48
Retail: $406

From my kitchen to yours,
Kirsten
KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

DIY Garden Decor

 

The height of summer is always a beautiful time in my gardens. The flowers are in full bloom and haven’t gotten hit by the heatwaves of late summer. I enjoy adding decorative ornaments to my garden, and recently I decided to make some for my flower beds.

Many of my craft, fashion, and food inspirations come from Pinterest, and this one was no different. I knew what I wanted to do but needed a little guidance. I started by searching “glass garden totems” and “glass garden mushrooms.”

It led me to different variations of building sparkling glass towers to accent my gardens. I chose my signature garden color – cobalt blue and then went shopping.

Almost any Goodwill Keystone Area store you visit will have a fantastic selection of glassware. I chose a variety of clear and blue pieces for my project. Sometimes I carefully played with the elements in the store to see how they’d fit together; other times, I took a chance and just bought pieces I liked.

Most of the instructions I read specified E600 glue. It dries clear, is waterproof, and is easily found at home improvement stores. After dry fitting the pieces (sometimes I took photos to remind myself how they went together), I washed them to remove all dirt and oils and let them air dry completely.

I recommend using the glue in a well-ventilated area and leaving the pieces to dry for at least 24 hours before placing them in your garden.

This was not an expensive project. Most glass pieces were between $0.99 and $3.99. The glue was under $5. Visit your local Goodwill Keystone Area store, choose your favorite colors and get creative!

From my garden to yours,
Kirsten

KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Christmas in July 2022

 

Although it’s hot, sunny, and in the middle of July, Christmas is less than six months away! Back-to-school may be what you are shopping for and possibly a last-minute bathing suit, but keeping your eye out for Christmas and holiday decor is always an excellent thrift tip!

I’ve been to several Goodwill Keystone Area stores lately, and almost all have a shelf or two of holiday home decor and sometimes a rack of festive clothing. I always look because you never know what treasures you’ll discover for yourself or gifts.

There are several Christmas items I always look for when thrifting. First are festive or “ugly” Christmas sweaters. Whatever you want to call it, I enjoy adding a new one each season to my wardrobe to get into the spirit at work or when out with friends or family. This year I found one featuring a cute little gnome (a current trend), so I snapped it up for $4.99.

I also look for Spode Christmas Tree china and its coordinating items. So far this year, I found a small teddy bear dish, a candy bowl, and a pack of paper napkins (both were new-with tags). It’s great to add to one of my special holiday collections for just a few dollars.

Rounding out my recent purchases are a Mikasa crystal star ornament and a modern glass tree. I like to change up my decor every year. Be sure to donate if you decide to clean out your holiday stash – those items are helpful now. Please don’t wait until December to drop them off at your neighborhood Goodwill.

Start shopping now for the upcoming holidays – including Halloween and Thanksgiving – you can avoid the rush and maybe find some extraordinary presents.

Happy Christmas in July,
Kirsten
KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Quick Thrift Trip

 

Whenever I only have a few minutes to hit up my local Goodwill Keystone Area store – I head for my favorite sections – the shoes and the dresses. A lightweight dress and comfy sandals are my summer uniform. They are two easy pieces that can adapt to different temperatures and situations in warm summer months. Adding a cardigan or jean jacket nips cool office air conditioning or a chilly evening in the bud.

A recent visit turned up these two dresses (which both had pockets = big bonus!) and sandals. The olive green dress from Lush (A brand found at Saks Fifth Avenue or Nordstrom; Goodwill: $6.99; Retail $59) is light, floaty, and great for work or date night. The cotton plaid Marc by Marc Jacobs rainbow sundress (Goodwill: $6.99; Retail $200) gives me serious 80s vibes. However, it has a more casual feel and would be perfect for brunch with friends. I could layer it over a crisp white fitted t-shirt to change up the look.

I purchased the leopard-print Loft sandals (shown with the olive dress). (Goodwill: $3.99; Retail $69). Sadly, the Toms black leather sandals were not the right size, so I left them behind.

Maybe you’re shopping over a lunch break; maybe you have your kids in tow. When you only have a short amount of time but are on the lookout for Goodwill thrift finds head to your favorite sections. Maybe it’s purses; maybe it’s home goods – whatever it is, make it a fun and quick treasure hunt.

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Dresses: $6.99 each
Sandals: $3.99
Goodwill: $17.97
Retail: $328

KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Thrifting Among Friends

 

My friends always seem to appreciate getting a thrifted gift from me. And on some occasions, my close friends, who know my taste and style, give me a thrifted gift! And that makes those items even more special.

My friend Kristan picked up this treasure for me at a local Goodwill Keystone Area store. This dusty pink vinyl geometric bag, a replica of a Bao Bao Issey Miyake style (retail $350), is a great little summer bag. It has a herringbone lining and zippered pockets inside. It was the inspiration for this outfit.

I added a floral split-neck Loft dress (Goodwill: $6.99; Retail: $79) which features summery shades of pink, orange and blue. I can wear it as is or layer it on a cooler day with a cardigan or jacket.

I shared a DIY version a few weeks ago but found a new with-tags Denizen from Levi’s black cropped denim jacket on a recent outing. (Goodwill: $12.99; Retail: $49) It’s made of a lightweight stretch denim and has a fun silhouette for warmer days.

My flip-flops are more substantial than dollar store versions, which are much better for your feet. These white leather ones from B.O.C. Born Concept have a nice padded foot bed and a slightly stacked heel. Similar styles sell for $55, but these were only $7.47 at Goodwill.

The old saying that “It’s the thought that counts” definitely applies when giving or getting a thrifted gift from Goodwill Keystone Area Stores!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Dress: $6.99
Jacket: $12.99
Shoes: $7.47
Bag: gifted
Total: $27.45
Retail: $200+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Goodwill Gal-a

 

I’ve been a Goodwill gal for a long time, but this is the first time I got to shop for a gala outfit in a while. I work for a non-profit special education school, and our first large gala in a few years is happening soon. It’s a major fundraiser for us, so it is an actual gala with beautiful decor, delicious food, fantastic auction items, and a musical performance by our students and adult participants.

Of course, I headed to Goodwill Keystone Area for my outfit. Since I am working the event, I needed something comfortable, stylish, and maybe a little sparkly. An obvious choice was an “lbd” (little black dress). In this case, it is a lace overlay shift-style from Ann Taylor. (Goodwill: $6.99; Retail: $79). The only thing that would have made this dress more perfect work have been pockets!

The next important item was footwear. I needed shoes that were comfortable but wanted something fun. The rose-gold wedges from New York Transit were a great find. The sturdy wedge will help me run around all evening assisting guests, and the neutral color elongates the leg, making this petite girl appear a bit taller! (Goodwill: $7.47; Retail: $69)

Accessories included a rose-gold beaded necklace from the Goodwill Keystone Area Boutique in the Phoenixville Store ($4.99) and a striped Loft clutch, found new-with-tags for $6.97. (Retail: $49).

Goodwill should be your first choice when looking for formalwear. For something you only wear for one or maybe two events, thrifting fancy duds is a great way to save money and help your community and environment. Goodwill Keystone Area offers so many different options for your wardrobe – from extremely casual to black tie, and it should be your go-to for whatever your closet needs!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Dress: $6.99
Shoes: $7.47
Necklace: $4.99
Clutch: $6.97
Total: $26.42
Retail: $230+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Edgy Denim

 

Spring is the perfect time for a denim DIY project or two. And Goodwill Keystone Area is the ideal place to pick up some pieces to get crafty without spending a lot!

Raw hems on jeans have been popular for several years now. Being petite, I LOVE this trend since I could alter my denim without sewing. Skinny jeans were the jeans of choice for several years, but I have recently seen cropped flares or kick crops. They are a fun alternative to a tapered hem.

The Goodwill Keystone Area outlets are the best place to get clothing to experiment on, whether it be tie-dye, bleach dye, or chopping off of hems or sleeves. These Calvin Klein flairs were a great bin find at less than one dollar and the perfect width at the bottom to cut. I looked at a couple of online versions of kick crops to decide on my length. I marked the length with a pencil and started cutting. Next, I got a stiff wire brush and gave the edge a good scrubbing. Washing and drying will soften the edges. And if you want them shorter, it’s as easy as cutting another inch or two off and repeating the process.

This spring, another denim DIY trend I saw on Instagram is a denim jacket hack. I looked up a few examples and got to work again. This time I cut off the collar, bottom, and sleeves of a Gap jacket I got at a Goodwill retail store for $10.25. I was a little more nervous with this one since I’ve never chopped up a jacket before, but I think it turned out fantastic after cutting and roughing the edges up. I feel like it’s a trendy little Channel jean jacket!

Don’t be afraid to hack your denim! Goodwill Keystone Area makes it easy and affordable to try a few new techniques! If you need some inspiration, go to https://www.pastemagazine.com/design/10-ways-to-diy-your-denim/ 

WATCH KIRSTEN’S DIY DENIM VIDEO

From my close to yours,
Kirsten

KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Wearing & Saving Green

 

With St. Patrick’s Day right around the corner and falling on a weekday, I decided to pull together an office-appropriate look for this week’s blog.

Of course, the outfit had to start with green! The background of the floral, bell-sleeve blouse from Loft was a deep hunter green. I love the drapey, lightweight fabric that is perfect for this time of year when the temperatures can swing pretty easily during the day. (Goodwill: $6.99; Retail $64.50)

I used the colors on the floral print to choose the rest of the outfit. The light-khaki capris (also from Loft) are a wardrobe staple for office workers in the spring and summer months. Their neutral tone lends itself to being paired with about any other color. (Goodwill: $6.99; Retail $69)

The black Mary Jane wedges are classic and comfortable. They’ve resided in my closet for several years and can go from dressy to casual quite easily. (Goodwill: $7.47; Retail: $79) The bag from Relic provides another pop of hunter green. (Goodwill: $6.97; Retail $59)

Lastly, the statement necklace from Stella and Dot was a splurge purchase for $15 from the boutique in the Phoenixville Goodwill Keystone Area store. However, I didn’t mind paying that price since a quick search revealed it was $139 when new!

Not only does shopping at Goodwill Keystone Area stores save me green, but it’s also good for our environment and community. It doesn’t take luck to be thrifty! Visit your local Goodwill store today!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Goodwill: $43.42
Retail: $410

KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Cooking Up Something Good(will)

 

I know this is usually a fashion blog, but Goodwill Keystone Area stores sell so much more than just clothing and accessories! I have recently been on the hunt for new additions to my kitchen, so today, this is more of a food blog.

My sister is also a Goodwill thrifter and has found some fantastic things. A few years ago, she gifted me three Le Creuset pans (she was lucky enough to find a whole set at a Goodwill outlet!). She gave me two small turquoise skillets and a yellow grill pan. They are high-quality, sturdy cookware that will last a lifetime.

Recently I came across two sets of the bright red Le Creuset ramekins and snapped them up, knowing one set would be for me and one for her. Since it is almost Valentine’s Day, I decided to whip up a batch of chocolate lava cakes to give them a test run. The ceramic ramekins cooked evenly and quickly. I can’t wait to give a set to her. I know she’ll make something delicious in them! The set of 8 was $4.99, and the set of 4 was $2.99 – a fantastic bargain knowing they retail for much more.

I’ve included my recipe for the Chocolate Lava Cakes below if you want to give it a try. The secret is to undertake them just a bit, so your interior stays molten and delicious.

Goodwill Keystone Area stores help you spice up your wardrobe and your kitchen! Don’t forget to check out the houseware aisles when you visit! Every item you buy at Goodwill benefits your community and the environment.

Chocolate Lava Cakes

Ingredients

  • 4 oz chocolate (milk, bittersweet or semi-sweet – use your favorite and you can even use chocolate chips)
  • 4 oz butter (1 stick)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon Instant coffee or espresso powder (optional, but makes it extra rich!)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Generously butter and dust 6 (4 oz) ramekins with cocoa powder or sugar; set aside.
  • In a medium microwave-safe bowl, melt chocolate and butter in 30-second increments.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk eggs and sugar until pale and fluffy. Fold in the melted chocolate along with the flour, vanilla, and instant coffee if desired. Whisk until smooth and creamy.
  • Divide batter into ramekins and place them on a baking sheet. Bake 12 minutes or until the edges begin to pull away from the ramekins but the center is still jiggly.
  • Remove from oven and serve immediately with ice cream, whipped cream or berries.

From my kitchen to yours,
Kirsten

KirstenBlogHeadShot

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.