Seven ways to save money AND the environment during holiday party season

by Kim Merrikin, Seattle Goodwill
November 22, 2014

Thanksgiving has passed, launching the 2014 holiday season, it’s time to start planning those holiday parties, family meals, and friendsgivings! No matter what your party theme is, there are ways you can create a gorgeous environment for your event while being both eco AND budget friendly—and you’ll be supporting our job training and education programs!

Getting your holiday baking on? Skip the brand new pans.
Whether you’re turning your kitchen into a gingerbread assembly line, or you’re in charge of the family fruitcake for the first time this year—skip the brand new pans. You can save a lot of money by picking up your baking pans at Goodwill—and we often have a huge variety!

Thrift your way into having all of the serving bowls, plates, and utensils that you could possibly need!
We’ve all done it. We’ve all swiped the slatted spoon from one dish to serve another. We’ve all used the same pie server in the pumpkin pie and then in the pecan pie. No more! Pick up a few extra serving utensils, bowls, and plates so you’re sure to have enough to have turkey at both ends of the table. 

Ditch the plastic ware. Reduce the waste. 
In 2010, the EPA did a survey that concluded that American’s produce about 25% more waste during the holiday season—that amounts to around 25 million tons of extra garbage! This year for your holiday party, opt for reusable table ware over plastic ware and help do your part to keep waste out of landfills. Plus, it’ll add a touch of class to your holiday party that just can’t be achieved with plastic cups.

Stock up on holiday music!
If you need to put together a holiday playlist, but don’t have hours of tunes at your disposal, check out our CDs & records. Christmas music is donated year round—and sold year round too!

Thrift your Pinterest project parts & décor.
Goodwill is FULL of items that are waiting to be transformed into your Holiday DIY projects—from linens to furniture to craft supplies and even electronics that can add a fun touch to holiday décor! We also have a ton of already-made décor items—many of which are vintage! (And if you do a DIY project, enter our contest!)

Dress for the occasion!
Classy cocktail dresses, ugly Christmas sweaters, scarves, mittens—whatever you may  need to look the occasion for your holiday party—we’ve got it. Getting that once-a-year wardrobe item doesn’t need to put additional burden on your wallet during an already pricey time of the year.

One awesome way to be environmentally friendly during the holidays is to donate last year’s sweaters, decorations, plastic trees, and other used items. When you donate holiday items to Goodwill, three things happen: You keep stuff out of landfills (that’s eco-friendly!), you support our job training and education programs (that’s good for the community!), and you help enable others achieve their holiday party plans (that’s just plain nice of you)!


Kim fancies herself a professional communicator. She has experience in writing, graphic design, and social media, and is always looking to expand her knowledge base into other fields of communication. She loves people, coffee & Seattle (including the rain).

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