A Christmas Kickoff

Thanksgiving is over, so it’s now officially okay to start celebrating Christmas (if that’s your thing, anyway). It’s always been an important holiday in my family so I’m excited to throw myself into decorating, party planning, and gift buying with all the vigor of a well-rested reindeer on Christmas Eve morning. Join me, will you?

Image via pioneersettler.com

Let’s start by gathering a little inspiration. I was delighted to find this Christmas Ideas Pinboard by Goodwill Industries of Greater Nebraska (Grand Island), which is packed with festive décor ideas like these adorable stocking silverware place settings. Goodwill® is the perfect place to find cute trimmings, especially if you’re looking to buy multiples of one item. Low prices allow you to really stock up and Goodwill’s mission (which is for 164 independent, community-based Goodwill agencies in the United States and Canada to provide employment training, job placement services and other community-based services to 9.8 million people annually) is true to the spirit of Christmas. You can give back to your community this season just by shopping at Goodwill! It’s that easy…

Image via goodwillcentraltexas.org

While you’re out thrifting for your seasonal décor, don’t pass up the perfect gifts for those on your shopping list just because they’re second hand! Goodwill Central Texas (Austin) puts it perfectly in their Gifting Goodwill blog post when they reflect on the art of thrifty giving. As they mention, when Vogue suggests re-gifting, then you know it’s mainstream enough to be a universally accepted practice. Just make sure your second-hand purchases are clean and well packaged before you hand them off. This will show the gift recipient that you really did think of them when you saw the item sitting on a shelf and not just that you wanted to save money (although that’s always a plus!). I also love the darling DIY packaging solution they suggest that yields fragrant nesting paper for free! Check out the tutorial for details.

Image via kristimurphy.com

Since we’re on the subject of doing things ourselves, how about creating your own ornaments? I thought this leather feather ornament that Kristi Murphy made was sweet enough, then I realized that she made it from leather harvested from a couch she scored at Goodwill for just $25! It turns out that since leather can be super expensive to buy new, purchasing an entire couch from her favorite thrift store to strip was much cheaper (and more Earth friendly!). You can follow her adventures to find out what else she’s made with the leather by stopping by her blog. HINT- the Peter Pan collar and pockets on her dress look might familiar, am I right? The DIY décor and fashion possibilities are limitless when you’ve got a good imagination and a sense of thriftiness.

Now I’m off to make my list and check it twice. I’ve got a lot of joy to spread this holiday season and I know exactly where I’ll start. See you at Goodwill!