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Our Monroe Store is Moving

September 10, 2013

IMG_6095Thrifters, mark your calendars! We are excited to announce the relocation and grand re-opening of our Goodwill retail store and donation center in Monroe on Saturday, September 21. Make plans to join us that day at our new location at 4109 West Highway 74 to take advantage of great deals on fall clothing, Halloween costumes and seasonal décor. A temporary Attended Donation Center has been placed at the new store to accept gently-used donations Monday – Saturday now until September 20.

The new 12,000-square-foot store will feature aesthetic upgrades such as an improved layout, new fixtures to better display merchandise and ease of access for the public to drop off donations. Shoppers at this store will now experience a more modern and customer-focused environment as they take advantage of high-quality, low-cost shopping for the entire family.

The new store and donation center hours of operation are Monday – Thursday 9:30 a.m.-9:00 p.m.; Friday – Saturday 9:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.; and Sunday 12:00-7:00 p.m. Goodwill’s existing retail store in Monroe (located at 1213-B Roosevelt Blvd.) will continue to operate through Tuesday, September 17. This location will be closed once the new store opens; however, Goodwill will continue to operate an Attended Donation Center at this site.

To calculate the positive impact of your Goodwill donations, use our donation impact calculator.

Elizabeth Isenhour

Elizabeth Isenhour

What deals are you shopping for this fall?

Workplace Attire: Bold Colors

September 6, 2013

bold1I am a firm believer that corporate attire can be professional without being boring. Men in particular tend to think that any colors falling outside of basic black, navy or grey don’t work in the office. I’m here to dispel that myth!

Shades of purple, green, blue and orange are perfect for fall. A splash of bright, bold color conveys authority, and can be great for managerial positions. Wondering how to pull off a bold look like the one featured here? Keep in mind the following tips:

  • When choosing a bold shirt, pair it with dark, neutral-colored pants to add a pop of color without overpowering your entire outfit. In the workplace, you want to be remembered for your skills and contributions, not your fashion choices.
  • The key is in the fit. A sloppy shirt in a bold color draws the wrong type of attention.
  • Keep the look formal by adding a coordinating tie, belt and shoes.
  • Choose either a bold print or color, but not both at the same time.

Men, tell us how your incorporate color into your work wardrobe!

nakishaNakisha Ann Hall (pen name Ann Bouvier) is a makeup artist, corporate wardrobe stylist and trainer who travels across the country engaging audiences on various beauty and career topics. Follow her style via her blog www.theprofashionalist.com.

Compartmentalize your Life with Journals

September 3, 2013
Journaling offers many benefits.

Journaling offers many benefits.

There are many life lessons learned in school that are often discarded.  One of the most important lessons that I learned as a junior high student was to compartmentalize my life. You may be asking: how is something that was learned in junior high school going to help me? The secret lies in organizing your life.

Think back to when you formally transitioned from elementary school to junior high school. You were in a much larger place and were faced with a growing number of teachers who taught different subjects—English, History, Science, Algebra and Latin—each of which required a separate notebook. I learned early in my academic career that I could master these subjects if I applied myself and kept organized. Everything was always (for the most part, anyway) well-organized.

As an adult, I have learned that this same concept can be applied to my existing world. Although my life no longer consists of formal classes, it does consist of unique areas that demand my attention and passion, such as my career, spirituality, family, poetry and finances. As a result, I have transferred this organizational principle from notebooks to journals.

During my trips to Goodwill stores, I have been fortunate to find excellent, inexpensive leather-bound journals, in which I can record successes, as well as failures, to document how I learn and grow from my experiences. I thoroughly enjoy the journals’ rich leather bindings and acid-free parchment paper that receives the ink from fountain pens so well. All of these things cause me to look forward to my time spent journaling.

Visit Goodwill today to find some journals and compartmentalize your life!

books - EGlenn2 (2)Eric Glenn, Sr. is a volunteer with Goodwill. To learn more about available volunteer opportunities, contact Community Engagement Manager Kilby Watson at kilby.watson@goodwillsp.org or (704) 332-0316.

Success Story: Yolanda

August 30, 2013

cropped IMG_7733Breaking into a male-dominated industry is no small feat for a woman due to challenges such as gender bias and lack of specialized training. But for Yolanda Payne, a graduate of Goodwill’s Construction Skills Training program, opportunities to excel and win recognition in the workplace are always available, regardless of sex.

“I had always been interested in construction,” said Yolanda. “But I had concerns that it may be a difficult fit because it is such a heavily male-dominated industry.” Yolanda first heard about the Construction Skills Training program from a Goodwill team member while she was on medical leave from her job. While the program captured her interest, six months passed before she decided to take the plunge and enroll. “I was at a point in my life where I decided that if things were going to happen, I needed to go ahead and do them,” she said.

She entered the seven-week program as one of only two women in the class. “At the beginning, I felt a little defensive because of the gender disparity,” she noted. “But I soon realized that if you could do all of the work, there was plenty of opportunity to prove your value.”

And prove her value she did. Yolanda was awarded the Craftsmanship Award at graduation, due to her passion for creating things with her hands. “I can’t sit still,” she laughs. “I like repurposing old materials into new, functional items.”

Participating in the class also linked Yolanda to new educational opportunities. She is currently completing coursework towards her Associate’s degree in Construction Management Technologies at Central Piedmont Community College, and plans to pursue a Construction Management degree from UNC-Charlotte in the future. She credits her Goodwill experience for helping her focus on new career goals.

“It’s been a long time since I felt so motivated and excited about working towards a goal,” said Yolanda. “This has been a great opportunity to come along for me.”

Elizabeth Isenhour

Elizabeth Isenhour

Have you ever pursued a job in a nontraditional industry? What lessons did you learn?

DIY T-Shirt Projects

August 27, 2013
Rainbow Rug via Untrendy Life
Shag Pillow via V and Co
Jersey Knit Bracelet via V and Co

Who doesn’t love a great DIY project?  Here are three fun projects that can be made from items that can be found at any Goodwill store: t-shirts!  Visit a store now to get crafting!

How do you reuse t-shirts?

AllisonPlatteAllison Platte is a Charlotte, NC blogger & internet marketing specialist that writes a lifestyle and fashion blog, In the Queen City.

A Visit to the Goodwill Outlet

August 23, 2013

2013-08-02 10.53.00I recently visited the Goodwill outlet to do some back-to-school shopping and was excited to stumble across some deals that were steals, to say the least. If you’ve never visited the outlet on Freedom Drive, here are some highlights to get you better acquainted.

I wasn’t expecting to find designer ties there, but couldn’t pass up a great bargain when I came across two outstanding accessories. On eBay and Etsy this Hermes tie sells for around $45, so my pick was a pretty good one, right? A flawless Christian Dior tie was quite a find as well. Thrifting for work attire is a great way to save money when you work in corporate America. You can dress well, without the crazy price tags.

Now for the kiddos. I have two girls and I sew, so I tend to gravitate towards special items that give off that handmade quality like this little vintage dress that reminded me of Little House on the Prairie. We were also excited to find these sweet boutique brand dresses. Most kids’ items are usually priced under $5 at Goodwill retail stores. Amazingly, the outlet charges for clothing by the pound. I was able to get all these items for under $5. Where else can you purchase name-brand goods for pennies on the dollar?

2013-08-02 10.51.12As avid shoppers know, it is easy to overspend when you find things you like. That is not an issue at Goodwill stores in general, but especially not in the outlet. All that is required is a bit of extra time to sift through the tables piled with clothing and accessories, which are not sorted by size or type. You sort through for things that catch your eye and then check the size and condition.

With a little extra time and perseverance, you can easily walk away with great purchases for under $5. Not bad at all! Even if you find things that don’t quite fit into your closet, some vintage and designer items could be resold on eBay or Etsy. I have other fun items and thrifting tips to share with you next time.

577212_10151221988112892_1619354282_nJessica Ballard is a native Southerner, mom of three kids 6 and under, and wife of 10 years to a true country boy. She is a chemist by trade and former recruiter for scientists and hospital staff. She blogs about all things parenting, DIY projects and lifestyle blessings at www.begintocraft.com and www.savvysouthernparent.com.

How to Wear Khakis in the Workplace

August 20, 2013

khakisKhakis have always been a staple in a business casual office setting for their abilities to be dressed up or down and their easy transition from work to play.

I bought the skirt pictured here from a local Goodwill store and it’s become one of my favorite work items. For a casual look, I paired it with a cotton tee in a perfect summer color and added a scarf because it gets cool in my office. A short-sleeved blazer (also thrifted) adds the perfect touch of professionalism. The key here is layering. This look can work for any office setting by adding (or subtracting) a few items.

If you want to put the ‘business’ back in this casual look, pair the skirt with a cotton button-up shirt. As you can see, button-ups don’t have to be boring! Goodwill retail stores have a wide variety of colors, cuts and styles for you to choose from, such as this ruffled Ralph Lauren button-up. The Ralph Lauren brand is great for those of us with long arms. Remember, the fit makes the biggest difference in the overall look of your outfit.

How do you style your khakis?

nakishaNakisha Ann Hall (pen name Ann Bouvier) is a makeup artist, corporate wardrobe stylist and trainer who travels across the country engaging audiences on various beauty and career topics. Follow her style via her blog www.theprofashionalist.com.

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