Cheap Could Be Couture?

We all scrounge up our clothing to donate year after year – either it doesn’t fit or it just doesn’t blend with your new post-college professional life (ahem!) but for some reason scouring the goodwill racks has been often looked down upon. Delightful treasures for cheap prices have been mistakenly overlooked by fashionistas everywhere.

Goodwill is dedicated to the employment of people who are disadvantaged or disabled, so when thousands of pounds of clothing are discarded wastefully it is a painful disservice to the project, the people and the planet.

During my daily dose of Have Fun*Do Good I came across the first of the great strides that Goodwill is making in revamping their image to the mass market. Goodwill has a new fashion blog and the blogger, Em Hall reveals her tips and tricks in accessories and dresses but at the same time she introduces fashionistas to the vintage finds that are in plenty at Goodwill retail locations or its Ebay site.

And courtesy of PSFK , I stumbled across another “good” find. Goodwill is teaming up with designer, Nick Graham, to launch a fashion line, William Good, which reuses and reinvents the clothing you’re tossing into fabulous pieces that can grow into a brand that according to Graham will “help the environment, create employment, and generate profit.”

This year when you lug your box of “too-big” jeans, you may just want to peek into the store for someone else’s “that color doesn’t work on me anymore” sweaters.

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Filed under Environment, Fashion, Social Causes, Social Media

Red Sox Fever

I felt as though I owed an apology for the lack of posts.  I have two excuses.  The weaker of the two is that I have been stung by an unfortunate bug this week, which has manifested itself in the form of a fever, annoying cough, irritating sniffles and an all around ickiness!  The better of the two excuses began last sunday when the Sox clinched their ticket to the World Series :-)

So here I am, three games  to the series – watching them on their way to another title, while curled up in my PJ’s, sipping my new favorite green tea (“yogi revitalizaton”).  There is a rumored sleep deprivation that is plaguing us Sox fans, as these games begin at 8:30…  so I’m going to go ahead and blame my blogging hiatus on that! Go Sox!

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Changing colors and Changing lives

I’m used to pink products piled on shelves for the month of October, but I was pleasantly surprised when I watched bloggers turn pink for this month.  The face of many of my favorite blogs changed their look in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Though changing colors and placing a pink ribbon on your facebook page may not necessarily generate funds it does peak people’s curiosity, inspire people to learn more and prompt some to take action. 

For the bloggers who are already pink, they have adopted their own means of supporting causes. Recently as I was scouring The Budget Fashionista for some fabulous fashion tips, I realized Kathryn and Angela were doing their part by contributing a $1 toward the Breast Cancer Awareness fund for every comment readers left on their posts.

Since breast cancer has touched the lives of many, it has garnered significant support.  However, we all support causes that we feel passionately about, whether they are on a large or small scale.  I’m an avid reader of Beth Kanter’s blog which documents how non profits can implement social media.  Beth just launched a personal campaign for a Cambodian student she cultivated a relationship with.  I learned about her fundraising efforts as I was checking her blog and noticed that each day she was dedicating a post to recognize and thank her contributors.  Each of these generous contributions are going to help make a difference in Leng Sopharth’s life.

Whether they are making a difference in one life or a million, these women and bloggers have my support.  I’ll be posting a note on TBF’s blog and  making my contribution to Beth’s Sharing Foundation shortly.  I encourage all my friends to do the same.

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Filed under Social Causes, Social Media

Broadcast Your Cause

One of my best friends, Leigh sends me YouTube tidbits of her pug, capturing every precious head tilt. We all appreciate YouTube because it gives everyone a platform to document the scenarios that make them laugh, shout their opinions wide and far, and share the moments that are special to them.

So I am loving their You Tube Non Profit Program. It allows non-profits to reach out to their audiences effectively and inexpensively. The program offers organizations a designated “Nonprofit” channel on YouTube where they can upload rotating promotional videos, brand themselves, provide information to interested parties and even accept donations.

Some of my favorite organizations already have channels set up – take a peek at Autism Speaks or the American Cancer Society. For other wonderful organizations with lesser funding, this is a valuable tool to inform the public of their own cause and the lives they touch.

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Filed under Advertising, Social Causes, Social Media

Dear Dove

As we are all inundated with images of rail thin women and self esteem of young girls has paid the price, Dove’s real beauty campaign has earned unwavering loyalty and admiration from throngs of women including myself.  Their first viral video, Evolution, closely detailed the transformation of an average looking girl into the supermodel that we see on billboards and magazine covers.  It was a comforting reminder that the images that surround us tend to be nothing short of superficial.

When I received the first video I sent it to all my girls that I love so much with a little note reminding each of them how beautiful they are.  So when I recieved their recent video I was thrilled.  Though this one is a bit more intense and has far more shocking images, Dove’s “Onslaught” once again suprised and pleased me with its message to young women. 

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Filed under Advertising, Fashion, Media

Threads and Talent

My design friends are going to love this and fashion hounds will enjoy… Threadless, an online community covered by Mashable, is bringing its community to the streets of Chicago.  The site started as a unique way for anyone to post their original and funky tee shirt designs and share them to the community.  The community members rate the designs and the winner of the week gets to see it print!  Added Bonus: $500 …

Playground Love… Recent Winner

Playground Love… Recent Winner 
In September, Threadless opened a flagship retail store in Chicago to distribute always fresh styles, and offer design workshops for budding artists!  The creative expression is evident when I scoured through this week’s submissions so Chicago contributors will adore this new store. 

The idea of a merging of online community and real world is another step in the evolution of social media.

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Filed under Fashion, Social Media

Artists I’m Loving

Watching Regina’s latest music video for her song Better, transported me back to junior high – listening to Natalie Imbruglia’s Torn and watching her thrash around her deserted apartment.  I appreciated the emotion that clung to every word. Better has the same fragility that was apparent and the excitement that was wrapped up in melody.

For a while, Regina’s songs were easily confused with Feist. Her talent has always been evident, but videos like these put her her creativity and originality centerstage.

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Filed under Entertainment, Personal