Visit to Reuse Center in Seattle: Seattle Recreative

Visit to Reuse Center in Seattle: Seattle Recreative

ACR board secretary and regular volunteer Karen Miller recently had the opportunity to visit Seattle and found the gem, Seattle Recreative.  


Caption: Seattle Recreative’s storefront on Greenwood Avenue. Photo source: Ian McGregor




I am very fortunate to have the opportunity to travel the world in my job as an environmental engineer. When I travel to new places, I try to eat local foods, hike, and visit other reuse centers for inspiration and to meet like-minded members of the reuse tribe.

Recently, I visited Seattle Recreative, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting creativity, community and environmental stewardship through creative reuse & art education. Seattle Recreative (SR) has a very similar feel and history as Austin Creative Reuse (ACR) in that they’ve operated in their 2,100-sf storefront for about five years (ACR has had their storefront for a little more than 4 years and is in 1,800-sf, not including Suite 1301). Both ACR and SR have around 10 employees and process on average 15,000 lb of donations per month. Both centers are bursting at the seams and haven’t seriously pursued business donations due to a lack of space to display the donations.




Marva Holmes in Seattle Recreative’s Maker Space arranging items for a social media photo shoots




Jenna Boitano, Executive Director and Co-Founder of SR, generously answered all my questions and provided a tour of SR. She comes to the reuse world via serving as Executive Director of Crayons2Calculators and serving on the board of The Scrap Exchange, both in Durham, NC. I also met Marva Holmes, Education Manager and Lead Teacher. 








The Playspace has is full of materials, providing endless opportunities for exploration and creativity.


One of the most charming aspects of SR is their Creative Playspace, which is open every hour the center is, and offers an opportunity for young children to develop their imaginations in a social environment.  

The Playspace allows children the opportunity to initiate independent play and explore their ideas in an informal group setting with their peers.







Seattle Recreative’s Paint Playground




Adjacent to the playspace is the toddler classroom where the walls and floor are covered with paper for the Paint Playground, open every Monday through Friday mornings, offering young children the chance to paint to their hearts’ content. 









One of the many creative display solution


SR has a wonderful retail center selling various reuse arts and crafts items. Some of their displays are very creative and pleasing to the eye.











Another of the many creative merchandising displays.














SR’s instructions to create alcohol inks out of dried up markers.


I especially enjoyed the poster with directions on how to make your own alcohol inks out of dried-out markers, and I purchased a marker (only 5 cents!) to make my own at home. (Update: ink has been made and appears to be very vibrant. However, I have not yet had the chance to deploy the ink on a project). 








If you find yourself in Seattle, please consider visiting Seattle Recreative!

Comments Are Closed!!!
2005 Wheless Lane, Austin, TX 78723
Center Hours:
Thu/Fri: 10AM - 4PM
Sat: 11AM -6PM
Sun: 12PM - 6PM
Curbside Pickup, 10am-4pm, Daily
Tel: (512) 375-3041