Avoid Grey weather turning into a Grey mood

This time of year, all we see is the cold, grey of winter. It’s easy to fall into a grey mood as we patiently (or not so patiently) wait for spring.  Here are 2 easy ideas to help you avoid the doldrums:

2020_brightsBrighten up your outfits.  When the temperatures outside fall below freezing, it seems we tend to think that means we should be dressing in dark dull colors. Liven up your dark ensembles with pops of bright colors. Things to look for at your local Goodwill Store include scarves, tank tops, belts or other layering pieces.


Spring clean – a little early. After the holidays, my office is a disaster. Well, if I am being honest, everything in my house feels cluttered and unorganized.  We all have that room in our home that seems to accumulate all the “stuff” over the holidays. Take an afternoon and re-organize that space. Focusing on just one room isn’t as overwhelming as thinking about your entire home. Take all the extra things and duplicate items that you find and donate them to Goodwill. Keep the other rooms of your home free from clutter by not re-storing things you don’t use over the holidays.

Christmas Cards

…and family pictures!

It’s that time of year. We start to get holiday cards in the mail from friends and family…near and far…and then…PANIC!  Thoughts of Family Holiday Pics and Christmas Cards bring on the stress!

Before the panic feeling hits hard, plan a family photo shoot this weekend for this year’s Holiday Greeting Card. Sound overwhelming and expensive? I promise, this will be the easiest part of your holiday season.


We’ve all seen the typical family pics where everyone is wearing the same color(s).  Why not embrace one of the biggest trends of this holiday season, and go Mad for Plaid? Trust me…


When choosing the right plaid for your Christmas Card, keep in mind:

1.  Size & Scale – the size of the plaid should match the size of the person.  In other words, babies should wear a smaller print than mom and dad.

2.  Color Choices – either keep all of the plaid worn in the photo the same color(s) (for example, all reds and blues), or make sure everyone is wearing something different.

3.  How Much plaid? Not everyone needs to wear a plaid shirt. As a matter of fact – it is best if you mix it up.  Goodwill is a great place to search a variety of plaid pieces all in one place. Look for a top, skirt, pants, shoes, scarf.

4. Props – maybe  add in some fun plaid “props” like a mug, blanket or pillow. Don’t forget to get your family pets involved too!


This is a display that is in the Niles, MI Goodwill Store, and is a great example of how mixing a lot of different plaids in one ‘family picture’ can look pretty amazing!

DIY FAMILY PICTURE TIPS for your Christmas Card

Professional photographers and wardrobe stylists offer these tips for a perfect Family Christmas Card picture:

  • Lighting – make sure you have lots of lights. Gather extra lights and brighten the space as much as possible. The lighting in your photograph should come from in front of the people in the picture (not from behind). Many times taking the picture outside on a partly cloudy day is the best.
  • Don’t overdo makeup – too much won’t look great in your family picture. What you may want to pay attention to is gloss on your lips and a dab of highlighter (or light eye makeup) in the corners of your eyes (near your nose).
  • Setting up your camera – this will probably be the hardest part of your family picture project.  If asking a neighbor to help isn’t an option, use a tripod. Using the portrait mode on your camera phone can create some amazing pics…however, using a tripod will save you from getting the perfect shot all set up and your phone shifting.
  • Post photo shoot editing – there are tons of great apps to help you edit your photo, but don’t sweat the small stuff.  It’s easy to get bogged down with time and detail in the editing process.   And honestly, aren’t some of your favorite holiday family pictures the ones that aren’t perfect?


With our Goodwill mannequin family from the Niles Goodwill Store, we spent less than 5 minutes editing to come up with something we’re sure this family will be thrilled to use for their Christmas cards this year!

Fall/Winter Trends – Leather

Nothing says Fall/Winter like LEATHER! The thing that I think is so unusual this season, is I’m seeing more and more pleather (fake leather).  Pleather is much more affordable, and very easy to alter or re-work.
The ‘rocker chic’ look is a fun one to incorporate into your holiday looks.  Think about pairing a motorcycle leather jacket with a flirty ruffled or lace skirt.
For the office, take the same motorcycle jacket and pair it with a tweed skirt.

Fall/Winter Trends – Global Details

I am in love with Global Details in fashion (home fashion and wardrobe fashion) this season. The thing I love the most is the eclectic and vintage feel those details bring…and what better place to get great vintage finds than Goodwill!

Global Details simply means, well, DETAILS!  Tapestry, colorful woven designs, heavy knitting.

When you are wearing a piece with these kinds of details, be sure to make THAT piece the statement of your outfit and keep everything else very monochromatic and simple.

Be sure to keep this trend within your style personality. If your style is natural (in other words, you like natural fabrics, love the comfort and ease of jeans and t-shirts.  Your shoe choice would be Crocs or maybe a Toms)…then choose your Global Detailed piece carefully.  Keep this trend in your accessories (scarf, hat).

If your style is more sassy (people ask you how you came up with outfit combinations, you aspire to be the local Carrie Bradshaw) then go wild in this trend!  This style will easily pair a fair aisle sweater with a tulle skirt and cowboy boots.

And if your style is tailored and polished (you love a trouser and sweater set, you prefer to not make a statement with your clothes, you know what looks good on you and what flatters your silhouette and you stick to it) then a great tailored piece is best for you.  You are most comfortable in cuts of clothing that are generally the same.  Stepping out of your style-box-comfort-zone and adding a pencil skirt with a subtle tapestry would be perfect for you.  Even a jacket will add some pizazz into your wardrobe, and mix very well with the other pieces in your closet. 

To see more ideas on this trend, visit: KATHY’S PINTEREST PAGE

Goodwill Fashion – winter coats!

Goodwill is a great place to pick up a fashion-forward vintage coat. Look for quality fabrics and signs of wear. Also search details that make a piece unique. Remember, anything can be altered. Buttons can be changed.

This is my favorite Goodwill jacket find. It is the perfect weight for this time of year…and is also a great jacket to wear in the rain.

I’ve been searching for some fun funky vintage buttons to add to this jacket for a long time (haven’t found the perfect set yet). I change the pins from floral to something with sparkle…depending on my outfit that day.

I paid around $5 for this jacket.

Be on the look out for leather. Leather jackets are always in style. Search for something with details that make it unique, like this biker jacket. Love the way this fashionista paired it with a skirt! Super cute!

PHOTO: chictopia.com

PHOTO: www.shopgoodwill.com

This style harkens back to the 60’s and 70’s. I am pretty sure I have family photos where my Mom is wearing a coat just like this (hey, maybe this is HER old jacket?!).

A tie waist wool coat is a smart addition to any wardrobe. If you find one that doesn’t have a fur collar, that can be added later.

PHOTO: www.thedressrecycler.com

PHOTO: www.shopgoodwill.com

Sparkle…the Goodwill way!

PHOTO: http://tangarangblog.blogspot.com

This time of year, we’re all looking to add some glitz and glam into our holiday wardrobes. I have an idea…put on your crafty hat, and get to bedazzling! Find a perfect tank, or perfect blouse and add a few sequins. Adding just a touch of glitz can transform something that is rather boring into something that is fabulous!
PHOTO: http://www.chictopia.com 

You can also purchase glitzey appliques from any craft or fabric store. You could also purchase sequin fabric, and add a band of sparkle to a skirt, top, gloves or anything! 
PHOTO: http://www.recycledlovelies.com

Even adding a little pop of shine with a hair accessory can bring up the wow factor in your holiday garb.
PHOTO: http://www.prudentbaby.com

Tips on how to add sequins can be found at: http://www.doityourself.com/stry/how-to-sew-on-sequins