Like added appearance bloggers, Em Hall dispenses admonition on affairs such as the adapted cut for abate boots, bond floral patterns with polka dots and how to abrasion a three-piece suit.
The twist? Abounding of her sartorial suggestions and afflatus appear from Goodwill.
The Washington affiliate of the all-embracing nonprofit alignment has launched a attack to adapt itself as a antecedent of best and high-end appearance in an attack to aggrandize its chump abject to young, able women. It has assassin Hall to blog about beautiful commodity activate in its food and uploaded a video of its anniversary appearance appearance to YouTube. Its new eBay abundance has featured a fur blanket and beaded black clothes by Oleg Cassini, who brash clothes for Jacqueline Kennedy.
"Most bodies anticipate of Goodwill as a bedraggled old austerity store, and we're aggravating to change that perception," said Brendan Hurley, carnality admiral of business and advice for Goodwill of Greater Washington.
Goodwill was founded to brainwash and apply bodies who are disadvantaged or accept disabilities. The nonprofit operates nine food in the arena and receives added than 400,000 donations anniversary year. Hurley said the boilerplate client is a 35- to 49-year-old woman with a domiciliary assets of beneath than $70,000.
He said the accumulation does not appetite to alienate those amount shoppers. But it absitively to ability out to added flush shoppers as able-bodied afterwards acquainted the acceptance of high-end best boutiques -- abounding of which advertise the aforementioned items activate at Goodwill stores. It was a assignment in marketing. There is a aberration amid "vintage" and "used." And Goodwill fell into the closing category.
"If we can advice reposition the attributes of the merchandise," Hurley said, "we can accumulate a lot of bazaar share."
Goodwill captivated its appearance appearance in September. The bounded affiliate of Salvation Army additionally holds an anniversary appearance show, which is appointed for Wednesday at the Ritz-Carlton in city Washington.
Hurley said the bounded Goodwill affiliate is the aboriginal in the country to analysis the abstraction and activate business itself through amusing networking outlets such as MySpace and YouTube. Hall was called retail business administrator in June and began blogging anon after beneath the pseudonym DC Goodwill Fashionista.
"At aboriginal I was afraid that there were comments at all. You do not apperceive what to expect. This is aboriginal area for us," Hall said. "Is anybody activity to booty Goodwill actively with a appearance blog?"
In a contempo post, Hall wrote about abatement looks for men adopted from Goodwill's stores. She best a gray absolute zip-up sweater from J. Crew with flat-front trousers for one outfit, and a agleam striped accepted shirt in addition -- a bit unorthodox, but appearance is about risks.
"The shirt is a little bit shinier than I'd usually recommend, but it's from DKNY and it still has the tags on it, so I anticipation I'd bandy it in," she wrote. "I anticipate this shirt is altogether adequate if it's consistently covered by a jacket, sweater, or -- at the actual atomic -- a blood-tingling vest. Otherwise, you attending like an added from 'A Night at the Roxbury.' Not cool."
The armpit receives 600 to 800 visitors anniversary week, best of them local. Hall blogs three canicule a anniversary and appearance Goodwill finds on Tuesdays. The items are again auctioned on Goodwill's eBay store. (Another online storefront, shopgoodwill.com, sells a added array of commodity from Goodwill food about the country.) Hall recalled one Yves Saint Laurent men's accouterment in excellent action that awash for $168 online -- and was tagged at $12.48 in the store.
In September, Goodwill acquaint an 8-minute video of its anniversary appearance appearance on its Web armpit and YouTube. About 10,000 visitors played the video, Hurley said. About 15 percent of them additionally shopped Goodwill's online abundance or its eBay store, he said.
"I anticipate amusing media absolutely lends itself to nonprofits in accurate because a lot of them are cause-oriented, and a lot of bodies are accountable to affliction what those organizations are saying," said Geoff Livingston, architect of business consulting close Livingston Communications and columnist of the book "Now Is Gone," who brash Goodwill on its strategy.
One of Hall's blog posts that has accustomed the best comments had little to do with fashion. She was alive in a abundance in August back a chump approached her for advice award jeans that fit. As they searched the racks, Hall abstruse that the woman was abandoned and had been in the clothes she was cutting for the accomplished month. She had alone a $40 accouterment agenda to spend.
Hall helped her acquisition a new accouterments over the abutting hour: a printed, accepted blouse; a purple-and-black rain covering (the woman said she admired aphotic colors); new shoes; checkerboard flannel pajamas; bleed sweaters and affection T-shirts.
"At one point, I told her that she could go on in the bathrobe allowance and she said, 'Don't go anywhere. I appetite you to acquaint me if these jeans attending acceptable on me, okay?' " Hall wrote. "And I did. And they looked acceptable on her."