Opcycled Bird Bath

Bird Bath DIY

It seems we’re on something of an animal theme as of late. After our list of our favourite dog bed ideas, we’ve now moved on to our feathered friends. Alas! An opcycled bird bath.

An opshopping friend of ours shared her awesome project repurposing a vase and a plate into a beautiful bird bath. She simply sourced a place and a vase that matched, although clashing colours and patterns could also look great as well. Perhaps you could even get creative with painting and spray paint them if you’re struggling to find any that match. If you’re feeling a little adventurous you can heighten the birdbath by adding a second vase underneath.

Get yourself an outdoor silicone sealant. This will provide the best stability and make sure your project lasts. Make sure the plate is central and use the sealant sparingly, it can look ugly when dripping down the sides. Leave to dry as per the sealant’s instructions.

Then all you have to do is place in your garden, preferably somewhere where you can see it, and wait for the birdies to come for a bath!

9 Tips to Declutter Your Home (and not hate it!)

Declutter Blog Post (1)

Clean home, clean mind: that’s what they say! In the material world we live in, clutter builds up pretty quick. From the ‘ingenious’ egg box art work gift made by your kids to the dress in the back of your closet that you know you’re never going to wear again, it’s all there. Waiting for you. Don’t get overwhelmed, decluttering your home is doable! We’ve shared a few tips to make the decluttering process easier (and a little less awful).

1. Set a time limit

Before you’ve even started, you may be overwhelmed by the cupboard that needs clearing. There’s a lot of decisions to be made and it can be a daunting task. Break it down into 5, 10 or 15 minute sections. In 5 minutes, you can do two shelves perhaps. By splitting it up you have a better chance of staying focused and decluttering efficiently. Which leads on nicely to the next tip;

2. Break it down

Whether it’s a room a month, a bag a week or an item a day, break the task down into chunks. Everyone knows that identifying a plan and achievable goal, increases the chance that you’ll stick to it. So make yourself a manageable plan of attack

3. Crank up the music

This doesn’t have to be a boring task. Blast some of your favorite tunes to keep you energized and focused.

4. Keep, chuck or donate?

Take Sheree’s advice over at Home Sweet Homemaker and create 3 piles as you go. The ‘keep’ pile is for items you use regularly and are certain you wish to keep. The ‘bin’ pile is for things you no longer have a need for but are a little worse-for-wear and not suitable to donate. Finally, the donate pile are for items that are in good nick, but you no longer need or use.

via Home Sweet Homemaker

5. Have a maybe pile

If like me, you fear getting rid of things you may need, it might be useful to start a ‘maybe’ pile.This is for items you may not have used in a while, had forgotten about or you can’t imagine using in the next 3 months.  Store this pile away. If you find yourself in need of something in the pile, take it out and keep it. After a few months, try to recall what’s left in the pile. If you can’t remember, it’s probably something you don’t have a need for anymore – over to the ‘bin’ pile it goes! Same for those items you haven’t touched. For a similar trick but for you wardrobe check out the next tip.

6. Try the reverse hanger trick

If you’re in for the long game, give the reverse-hanger trick a go. Reverse your hangers in your wardrobe. When you wear an item, put it back with the hanger the right way. After six months, see what clothes are left on the reverse hangers and donate any you didn’t wear.

7. Get the kids involved

Kids create clutter. Fact. So pass on some responsibility to them and make it a family-wide activity. Give them a bag each and tell them to fill it with items they believe they no longer need. But make sure you check these bags after- kids can be pretty hasty! Today, they may be prepared to throw away the brand new train you bought them last week , but tomorrow they may be crying for it. . .

8. Donate your goods

See our top tips to donate responsibly and then donate your items to your local Salvos Stores.

9. Don’t let it build back up!Salvos Basket (1)

Once you’ve done the big ‘once-over’ and decluttered your home, keep a check on everything and don’t let it build up. Have a one-in-one-out system and keep a donation box/basket handy to pop anything suitable to donate in there ready for your next op-shop trip.

How do you go about decluttering? Do you have any family tips? As always we’d love to hear from you. You can comment on this post or join the conversation over on our Facebook page.

Top 5 Up-Cycled Pet Beds

Top 5 Op-Cycled Pet Beds (1)

You’ll know by now that we’re big fans of op-cycling (our new favourite term: up-cycling your opped purchases).

The list of up-cycling ideas is endless. You can put your own twist on a piece of furniture by adding a bit of your style to it or entirely repurpose something to have a new function, or several functions like today’s post.

Introducing some doggy DIY. . .

A few clever bloggers out in the online up-cycling world have recreated a few pieces of furniture into pet houses. Dog and cat beds aren’t hard to come by, but they aren’t very pretty. Most are limp faded tartan cushions or raised plastic beds. But with a little creativity you could quite easily make a pet bed that looks great, lasts and is loved by your pets. We’ve pulled together our 5 favourite tutorials for you to get creative with!

1. Bags are packed

via ruche

Vintage suitcases are on trend at the moment and you can often find them at your local Salvos Stores. But what do you do with them? You can stack them up as an ornamental piece/storage or how about suitcase to coffee table like the one we posted a while ago? Or you can convert it to the snuggliest doggy bed around!

2. Dog house

via 86 lemons

This gorgeous bed is made from an old side table that has had it’s doors taken off, painted with chalk paint and filled with an adorable pup! The roof/table top allows it to still be used as a side table. How efficient!

3. Drawers

via liz marie blog

This is by far the easiest tutorial, although possibly not suitable for huge dogs. She simply pulls a couple of drawers from a dresser, gives them a lick of bed and fills with some comfy homemade burlap pillows.

4. The upside-down table

via cups the pups

Fit for a queen! We’re not crazy over the colours but this super fancy doggy 4 poster is pretty special. The ‘posters’ of the bed are actually the legs of a side table as it’s been flipped upside down.

5. Raised bowl station

via the DIY village

Okay, so this one isn’t a pet bed but’s it’s so awesome we had to include it. To all the big messy dogs out there, why not repurpose an old chair found at a Salvos Stores into a raised bowl stand? It’ll keep your floors protected and their ears dog food free!

What’s your Salvos Stores technique?

There’s no doubt that shopping at Salvos Stores is different to shopping at a major commercial retailer. A good kind of different.

There is a talent to Salvos Stores shopping. A little creativity is required. Every item you touch at Salvos Stores is essentially on the ‘buy now or regret it later’ rack. Every dress, hat or book is the last one in stock. Yes, it’s a little daunting, but there is a little thrill in knowing that it’s special and a little exclusive.

What’s the trick to successful second-hand shopping? We asked our most seasoned Salvos Stores customers to share their techniques . . .

“I’m very methodical; I shop aisle by aisle.”


“When browsing art I always try to imagine the piece with and without the frame. Sometimes the frame might not be for you but the print or original painting/drawing is perfect. In that case you can spend a bit of cash to get it re-framed and donate the old frame!”


“Shop frequently. I visit two to three times a week. My local Salvos Store constantly turns over their stock so there are always goodies to be had!”


“Be open-minded. Don’t expect to get something specific but go in with a general list of items. Nearly everything I wear is ‘op-shop couture’!”


“I give the store a quick once-over. Then I go around again and take my time.”


“Have a look at the Music section. I have found some fantastic recycled music at Salvos Stores and the prices allow you to take a punt on something you don’t know but looks interesting! It’s an excellent way to diversify your taste in music.”

What’s your trick to shopping at Salvos Stores? Maybe you don’t think there is one! As always we love to hear about your Salvos Stores adventures and treasures.

P.S: WE NOW HAVE AN INSTAGRAM PAGE! :) Head over to our Instagram account, @salvosstores, for inspiration on Salvos Stores shopping, fashion and ‘opcycling’.

The item you saw today

Feast Watson Re-Love Project: Upcycling for a Cause

The Feast Watson Re-Love project is in it’s third year and once again you have the opportunity to bid on unique timber furniture pieces which have been ‘re-loved’ by eight Australian design personalities.

Over the last couple of months, using Feast Watson products, elbow grease and a touch of upcycling creativity, the designers have been busy sprucing up secondhand timber furniture. Head over to our Facebook page to watch a video featuring a few of the designers as they share the stories behind their pieces. The results are mesmerizing! It just shows you what you can do to turn a piece of furniture that’s ‘not quite your taste’, into a beautiful one-of-a-kind gem.

FW Re-Love all (1)

Like what you see?

All of the above pieces will be up for auction via eBay from 8th-17th July. All proceeds from the sale of this year’s projects will come to Salvos Stores to contribute to the funding of invaluable Salvation Army Programs.

Flowery Filing

Think of the last time you were in a Salvos Stores. I bet there was a filing cabinet sat amongst the furniture that you walked right past and didn’t even notice. The dull grey and faded drawer handles aren’t to everybody’s taste.

. . . .Introducing the Little House in the Big D’s filing cabinet makeover.

Be a filing cabinet superhero and save an old document/jewellery/makeup/craft storage piece! If the paper decal isn’t your thing, you can obviously chose any fabric or paper that suits. Or you could keep it brightly painted; we think the plain yellow one looks great as it is!

So next time you’re in a Salvos Stores be sure to keep a look-out for a grumpy filing cabinet that needs some TLC. A lick of paint and some imagination and this could keep your documents safe for years to come. : )

Not sure where your local is? Find your local Salvos Stores here. 

Dishing out the upcycling

We love up-cycling at Salvos Stores. If it means another product can live a new life, we’re all for it!

Up-cyling, DIY and crafts can be a little daunting. So for those of you that are a little fearful of getting creative with your Salvos Stores purchases, this one is a great project for you. All you need is a permanent pen and a few platesprinted-plates-DIY-tutorial-001.

Make it an ‘op-cycle’ project by sourcing your plates from Salvos Stores. There’s also stacks of delightful plates that would be perfect for this in-store. If antique floral isn’t your thing, modern block colours with a silver or gold pen would look great as well! Head over to Rebecca’s blog for a full tutorial.

The Donated Circle Of Life

Are you comfortable? Let’s go on an adventure to see the life cycle of a product if you donate it. This tale is admittedly fictional but inspired by every single good that comes through Salvos Stores’ doors.

Once upon a time (more specifically 1956) a vase was made. It’s a beautiful green tinted glass with a gorgeous shape and in pristine condition. This vase was bought brand new by Ronald and Dorothy for their Niece, Sarah, as a Wedding present. Sarah filled this vase with flowers given to her by her husband every week and eventually flowers given to her by her children on Mother’s Day. The vase remained in prime position on the family dinner table.

By 1980, this beautiful vase was still in great shape, but after Sarah’s husband received a substantial promotion, it was decided the dining room was to be redecorated. They were ready for a change and the green vase no longer suited their decor. So Sarah planned to throw the vase away. Lucky for us, that morning Sarah’s friend came over for coffee, spotted the vase on top of the bin and recommended she donate it to her local Salvos Stores. She said if Sarah donated it to Salvos Stores someone else could buy and love it and the money they spent on it would contribute to Salvation Army’s community programs. So she did.

And the vase lived happily ever after. Many times. It lived as an addition to a vase fanatics collection, a centre-piece to an old ladies windowsill, a gift to a girlfriend and to another family that filled it with years and years of flowers. Sarah could have thrown the vase away, forgotten about it forever, and contributed to the ever-bursting landfills. But instead, Sarah was a vase hero.


You can be a vase hero too. Or a chair life-saver. Or a dress’ guardian angel. If you have loved an item and think someone else could too, do the right thing and take it to a place where it could find a new home and live a new life.

That my friends, is the donated circle of life.

Read our tips on donating responsibly and find your local store or donation centre.DSCN0622

Second-hand Book Adventures

If your reading list needs an injection of inspiration, the first thing you should do is head down to your local Salvos Stores.


Climb the pages of classics at Salvos Stores Frankston

We sometimes find ourselves sticking to the best-sellers list. When I walk into the book shop in my local shopping centre I know exactly what I’m going to buy and if I don’t, I’m steered to those on special offers. There just aren’t any surprises.


But stood in front of the bookshelves at Salvos Stores, it’s a little different. No two visits are the same. Best seller names are hidden among dusty classics and unheard authors. Some are brand new with un-cracked spines, some are old and dog eared through years of re-reading, some with delightfully personal inscriptions in the covers.

It’s through browsing these collections you can come across the pages and authors you never would have in the usual book retailer. You may stumble across a genre you haven’t read before or maybe a book just a little outside of your taste. Try it! It’s like a little book adventure that you can embark on every week. . .


Salvos Stores Cheltenham- Styled By Myer

Our Cheltenham store is re-open for business! During the past few weeks the Salvos Stores team have been busy revamping the Cheltenham store; a little renovation to expand the store and painting the store front.


But most excitingly, our lovely friends over at Myer kindly volunteered their visual merchandising talents to dress the store for the opening. Over the day the team remodeled the shop floor, dressed the gorgeous mannequins , shaped up some glamorous window displays and strung two charming shoe chandeliers, all using Salvos Stores stock.



Hampton style Salvos Stores

Hampton style Salvos Stores

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We’d like to thank Myer, Shop for Shops, Active Display Group, Creative Colour, SI Retail and Kangan.

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Doesn’t it look amazing? Head on down to Salvos Stores Cheltenham (1216 Nepean Hwy, Cheltenham) this week to check out the great work of Myer and don’t forget, every time you donate good quality items at Salvos Stores in-store you can receive a $10 Myer gift voucher redeemable when you $50 on Myer exclusive brands.


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