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ACR Donates Mask Materials

Despite the center being closed over the past two months, ACR proudly supported efforts to make masks for healthcare workers, the elderly, and other vulnerable members of the community. We donated enough fabric and supplies to make over 1,500 masks, with a retail value of nearly $500! Thank you to Dell Medical School – UT Austin, Covid Rangers, SAIVA, and all the individuals who picked up materials and volunteered their time. We appreciate your work to keep our community healthy!

Reuse and Rethink: Austin Landmarks Edition!

Deadline for submissions: April 30th

While we are all physically distancing at home, we’re bringing back an ACR classic – the Reuse & Rethink Challenge! This month, we challenge you to recreate your favorite Austin mural or landmark from any items (or people) you have in your home.

 

Guidelines:
♻️ All materials must be reused / found in your home.
🎨 The submissions will be judged on three qualities: creativity, workmanship, & use of other reused materials.
 Submissions for the month must be made on or before the deadline.

 

Submit your work for the opportunity to win a $10 gift card to enjoy at ACR when we reopen! 

Please provide up to 2 photos of your art piece, your contact info and a short description of materials used. Your submission can be emailed to rethink@austincreativereuse.org. Winner will be notified and announced on social media! 🧡♻️

 

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Creative Cardboard

Cardboard is one of those ever-present, but often overlooked materials inside our homes. Rather than break it down for recycling, repurpose it by trying out one of these activities with your kiddo!

 
Cardboard Nail Salon

Does your kid love painting fingernails? Draw a hand on a piece of cardboard and let them go to town! They can experiment with different colors and designs, while you get to keep your hands clean.

 

Cardboard Stencils

Use cardboard stencils to get some fine motor skill practice in. Cutout different shapes and patterns in pieces of cardboard and have your little one trace them onto another piece of paper. Encourage them to mix and layer the different stencils to create a unique masterpiece! 

 

Cardboard Weaving

Cut long, uniform strips out of a piece of cardboard. Cut long strips of colored paper for your kids to weave using their own pattern.

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COVID-19 Updates

Austin Creative Reuse has been continually adapting to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. We will keep this page updated with the latest information.


Summary of Current Offerings:


January 19, 2021

Nearly a year since the start of this pandemic, we find our center once again closed to the public.  Our community – our staff, volunteers, customers and  neighbors – will always be our top priority.  That’s why at the end of December, as Austin moved to Stage 5 of its risk-based guidelines, we again made the decision to put the well-being of our community ahead of our bottom line.

While our doors may be closed, we continue to work hard to fulfill our mission of putting high quality, affordable creative materials into the hands of our community – not the landfill – at a time when creativity may be needed most.  We continue to stock our online store daily with a large variety of creative materials.  We offer personal shopping over Zoom and bulk orders via email for educators and other non-profits.  We accept material donations by appointment only every Sunday.  We hope to offer outdoor sales like we did last summer when it becomes safe to gather in small groups again. 

We are proud to share  that since the pandemic started a year ago, we have not had to furlough or reduce hours for any of our staff.  We are deeply committed to keeping all our staff fully employed, for as long as possible.  Like back in the spring, our Board of Directors will make monthly salary commitments to our staff.  At this time, our Board has committed to pay all staff  salaries through at least mid-February.  You can help us continue to support our staff by using our safe contactless shopping options, by purchasing an e-gift card or by making a financial contribution to ACR if your situation allows.

We are, of course, monitoring the local Covid conditions daily and we pledge to continue to make decisions that keep our community’s safety at the forefront.  This is, after all, the same community that has built us up and supported us since we first opened back in 2015.

We don’t know what 2021 will bring, but we do know we will do our best to continue to honor our staff and supporters in every way that we can.  

Thank you for all you do to make reuse dreams come true!

🧡 Team ACR


December 23, 2020

Throughout this holiday season, the team at Austin Creative Reuse has been closely monitoring the rates of COVID-19 infections in our community. After careful consideration, and with the recommendations made by the City this morning, we have made the difficult decision to once again close our center to the public for shopping and volunteering, effective immediately. Avoiding the worst consequences of this second spike in local Covid cases will require each of us to do our part.  We are proud to model our values by continuing to make the health and well-being of our community our top priority.

Closing to the public will allow our staff to practice safe distancing and proper sanitation protocols, and will limit the number of people coming in and out of the center. Throughout the closure, we will continue to offer contactless shopping options including personal shopping via Zoom and keeping our online store stocked with unique finds and all the crafting goodies your heart desires. We will also continue accepting donations by appointment on a reduced schedule.

We encourage you to stay engaged with our community from home via our Austin Creative Reusers Facebook group or tagging us @austincreativereuse on social media to show us what you’re working on. If you have the capacity, please consider making a financial donation or purchasing an e-gift card to use in our online store or in the center once we re-open.  

We will continue to actively monitor policies and directives at the local, state, and federal levels regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and will adjust accordingly, if needed. We will keep you updated via email and our Facebook page with any developments. In the meantime, we encourage you to do your part to help reduce the spread.

Be kind to one another, take care of yourselves, and wear a mask!

🧡 Team ACR

 

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Learning with Plastic Lids

 

Plastic Lids are a Great Learning Tool!

Whether you notice it or not, most of our households consume lots of things with plastic lids. Those lids add up! Hang on to them and consider using them for some of these fun, interactive lessons!

 

Alphabet and Letter Recognition

Write lowercase letters on each cap and have your little one line up the lids in alphabetical order. Try playing with color – vowels in one color, consonants in another.

Take this one step further by writing uppercase letters on the lid’s corresponding bottles or pouches. Have your little one match the upper and lowercase letters. 

 

Counting and Number Recognition

Create number cards with whatever you have laying around the house. Place number cards down and have your child stack (or pile) lids behind the card.

 

Pattern and Color Recognition

See the cards linked below for patterns your child can replicate using colored lids.

Lid Pattern Cards

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“Trash to Treasure” – Creating at Home

Color Matching

Collect small objects that you already have lying around the house, including those that may have ended up in the trash! Have your kids sort them by like color. Get creative with the sorting containers!

Cardboard Shapes

Cut cardboard into different shapes and punch holes into it. Use extra shoelaces, yarn, or string to weave through the holes, creating fun shapes and patterns. This can also be used as a tool to help learn how to tie your shoes!

Homemade Ring Toss

This homemade ring toss game is great for kids of all ages and it’s fun and safe for both indoor and outdoor play. Form pipe cleaners into rings, and use either an empty paper towel roll, or two toilet paper rolls taped together as the base. Use your imagination to figure out how to stand up your paper towel roll!

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March Artist Spotlight: Janis Bergman-Carton

 

Janis Bergman-Carton

 

How did you start making art?

In my bedroom on a TV table when I was about 7 years old, messing around with anything I could put my hands on. More than once I clogged the plumbing in our house with plaster of paris. I thought I would be an art major in college but didn’t then have the fortitude to deal with critiques of my work (part of it I now understand was not yet having words for what I experienced as a young woman being told by my all male art professors that my work was “too personal”).  Anyway, after 25 wonderful years teaching art history I now am thrilled to circle back to where I began. 

 

What is your preferred medium?

It’s always been about texture for me. Clay, mixed media, and mosaics. 

 

What drives your creative spirit these days?

Everything, but I’m particularly interested in memory and place in art- evoking memories of absent loved ones or the historical and material textures of place. I have an ongoing project now called the Texas Cotton Series.

 

How does reuse play a part in your art? 

It plays a big part. Because I am interested in expressing connections to people and places over time, what feels like deep history and memory, I’m always searching for things or pieces of things that appear to have been well-used and well-loved in the past.  ACR is a treasure chest.  

 

What compels you to donate to ACR?

The idea of creatively recycling items more typically thrown away is magical. And the community ACR has created in such a short time of people of all ages and backgrounds is a big draw for me.

 

Do you have a favorite ACR find? What did you do with it?

An amazing sample board for porcelain colors from the 1960s with 12 tiny cameo heads. The heads show up in memory vessels I make. 

 

Where can we find out more about your art? 

Website: janisbergmancarton.com

Instagram: @bergmancarton

 

 

“With Great Space Comes Great Creativity”

After Weeks of Preparation, Ready to Open!

Just a Few of our Volunteers, Board and Staff

That quote comes from one our many community members upon seeing the new and improved Austin Creative Reuse Center.

Austin Creative Reuse moved to it’s new 11,000 sq ft home at 2005 Wheless and we could not be happier (or more exhausted)!  Our new Reuse Center is big, beautiful and completely reinvents the shopping experience.  We have so many plans for the future and will be offering more programs and services to our community.  

Austin Creative Reuse could not have done this without our dedicated staff, volunteers, and board members.  Next time you are in the center, be sure and say “thank you” to the staff and volunteers you meet. 

We would like to sincerely thank the following individuals and businesses who helped make this happen.

Realtors:  Max McDonald and Kristi Simmons at Aquila

Contractors: Green Building Energy Services LLC, Wally Colvin, JWL Electric, Elite Systems, North Loop Signs, and Stripe It Up

Short Break then Back to Work!

 

Making signs

Move In

Setting up Fabric

Game Ready

Welcome back to Austin, Rebecca!

Rebecca Stuch and Amber Scardino

First sale at our creative reuse center in September 2015

Cory Skult (left) and Rebecca Stuch

Cory Skuldt welcomes Rebecca back to ACR, January 2020

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Austin Creative Reuse is excited to welcome Rebecca Stuch, our founder, back to Austin.  It was with Rebecca’s steady hand and complete dedication that we finally were able to open Austin’s first Creative Reuse center way back in September of 2015.  We grew a lot that first year with much of the credit due to Rebecca’s relentless promotion of ACR and the help of the solid business practices put in place by Rebecca.

Rebecca joined the Peace Corps a few years ago and  spent  two years in Moldova working on Community and Organizational Development, as well as traveling throughout Europe and Asia.  She’s back in Austin for a few months reconnecting with old friends and what had been her baby, Austin Creative Reuse.  It seems we are all experiencing big changes with ACR’s move to a larger location and anticipated growth.  With that, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to leverage Rebecca’s experience with  business development as well as her understanding of our mission to bring her onto our staff as our Transition Manager.  This is a temporary position created to help us with the move to a new location and the departure of our Interim Executive Director, Cory Skuldt.   Rebecca will help guide our organization’s growth as we add more staff, programming and services.  Rebecca will also be spearheading our search for a permanent Executive Director.  We couldn’t be more excited to have Rebecca onboard.  Look for her around the center and be sure to say “hi and welcome back!”.

February Volunteer Spotlight: Eleanor Schorre

Photo Credit: Lisa Hause Photography

 

What motivates you to volunteer? 

I’ve always enjoyed the community that is built around a volunteer organization. A place created by so much giving – of time, appreciation, care, and of course donations – is rarely a bad place to be. 

 

Why ACR? 

A thrift-type store for craft supplies?! I was hooked as a shopper immediately. After shopping for a bit, I noticed that there might be some need for organizing help, which is something I love to do! 

 

How long have you volunteered with ACR? 

I started volunteering in early 2019, so just over a year.

 

Are you more into the arts aspect of ACR or the conservation aspect and why?

I came in primarily for the arts aspect, though I’ve always enjoyed finding reuse through art and creativity. I grew up surrounded by artists and creatives of all sorts and I’d gotten out of the creative mindset somewhat because life happens. Through ACR I’ve found that spirit again, as well as a newfound appreciation for conservation and reuse beyond the usual recycling programs. 

 

Where else have/do you volunteer? 

I currently don’t volunteer anywhere else but I spent a lot of time in college volunteering for Autism Speaks. 

 

What do you enjoy the most out of volunteering at ACR? 

Sorting and organizing mainly – seeing all the donations that come in also exposes me to so many things I’ve never seen before and allows me to learn about new types of craft and new uses for ordinary things.

 

Do you have any interesting or funny stories about something that happened while you were volunteering at ACR?

I started volunteering shortly after I got engaged. Many things I found at ACR showed up as decorations at our wedding, most importantly the majority of the ribbon for our 5’ by 7’ ceremony backdrop.  A lot of the things we used either have been or will be re-donated, but I’m keeping that backdrop!

 

Thank you, Eleanor, for all that you do to help Austin Creative Reuse continue to grow!  Interested in joining our volunteer community? Visit the Get Involved section of our website today!

2005 Wheless Lane, Austin, TX 78723
Center Hours:
CLOSED Until Further Notice
Curbside Pickup, 10am-4pm, Daily
Tel: (512) 375-3041