Recraft: Breathing New Life into Leftover Craft Supplies

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If you are like me, sometimes you get excited about the latest craft fad, buy the supplies, do it once, and then leave the project untouched in the closet thinking you’ll get back to it and then never do.

What if instead of tossing that old fabric, scrapbook paper or yarn out, you could donate it to a place that will make sure it’s being used for more projects and not ending up in a landfill? That’s exactly what owner Bethany Daugherty had in mind when she opened the second-hand craft store which she appropriately named Recraft.

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Located in the Fountain Square district of Indianapolis, Daugherty opened the store in November of 2018. She says she’s always been passionate about reducing waste, and after working with a friend who owns a sustainable events consulting group, decided to look at ways she could incorporate that in her own life.

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Everything for sale in the store is donated and priced very low. In fact, some people tell her it’s TOO low, but Daugherty believes that keeping things at a lower price point is a way that a for profit business can still do good in the community. Accessibility is also key – Daugherty herself grew up below the poverty line and keeping prices affordable helps break down barriers to access for people without the means to purchase expensive products.

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Sometimes she places big ticket items on consignment in the store, and has been able to successfully sell sewing machines and cameras for her customers. Overstocked items are donated to places like women’s shelters where she knows they will get used.

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Recraft is also a place people can go to learn, and a variety of classes are held in the space on the weekends. Anyone can teach a class or attend a class, and with a variety like paint and pour, knitting, sewing and wood burning, there’s something for everyone.

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Recraft is located at 1802 Shelby Street in Indianapolis. Say hi to Sally the dog if you visit 🙂

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Public Greens

Since 2014, Public Greens has been giving back to the community through its one of a kind restaurant model. Started by the Patachou Foundation, their mission is to “feed wholesome meals to food-insecure school children in our community and teach them to create healthy habits.”

100% of their restaurant profits go to The Patachou Foundation, which in turn serves children prepackaged breakfast and lunch meals to children in schools who fall below the poverty line.

Public Greens employs a local farmer to tend to the gardens and they grow their own produce to be used in their restaurant kitchens. The garden stretches for several blocks through Indianapolis’ Broad Ripple Village and it’s fully planted with crops and edible flowers.

They also have bees on the property near the Monon Trail.

The menu changes monthly, depending on what’s in season and what’s not grown on the property is sourced from other local farmers with special attention paid to humanely raised proteins and house made desserts.

Martha Hoover, owner of The Patachou Foundation said the inspiration behind Public Greens was to do more than just making a donation somewhere. “We felt that it was time to stop asking the same questions in the community – it was time to make a real difference by doing, rather than just writing a check.”

I ate at the Broad Ripple location and had a delicious lunch of Israeli couscous with roasted cauliflower and a chili lime brisket taco.

Since the original location opened in Broad Ripple, two other cafeterias have opened in the Indianapolis area. The second opened last spring at the Fashion Mall and a third location this January in the downtown Cummins Inc.

ZIPS Dry Cleaners: Eco-Friendly & Affordable!

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Earth Day is April 22nd and what better way to celebrate than kicking off a month long blog series about ways you can preserve our planet? Over the next four weeks I will be featuring  local Indianapolis businesses who are reusing, recycling, and changing things for the better in the community. I’ll also have a post on how shopping second hand and thrift store bargains can up your wardrobe game.

So let’s kick this eco-friendly series off by talking about Indy’s newest and coolest dry cleaning service – ZIPS!

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Larry and Emma Frutkin moved to Indianapolis from Chicago to start ZIPS Dry Cleaning Service, and their first location on the north side just opened a few months ago. When you walk in, you will be amazed at how upscale ZIPS looks with lots of fresh, bright colors, a green wall and natural sunlight  – they are not your typical dry cleaning service!

Not only does ZIPS utilize a green, eco-friendly technology to clean your clothes but their prices are unbeatable – they will dry clean any garment for $2.29. And most of the time it’s a same day service.

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ZIPS also uses biodegradable garment bags, has a recycling program for hangers and they e-mail you when your order is ready, so there’s no paper waste there either! They also offer a night drop, so you can drop off your garments at your convenience.

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Emma likes to say that ZIPS is the “Target of dry cleaning” and the Frutkins plan to open at least five more locations in the Indianapolis area, as well as expanding to other cities around the state.

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This year, ZIPS is also partnering with Project Prom at the Johnson County Public Library (a program that I help run) and we are so excited to be able to offer our teens an opportunity to get their prom dresses cleaned for $1.99!

If you don’t live in the Indianapolis area, yet want to utilize ZIPS earth friendly model, you might be in luck. ZIPS is popping up all over the United States with locations in California, Texas, Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania and several east coast states.

 

Teejay’s Sweet Tooth

Who doesn’t love ice cream? It’s one of America’s favorite treats, and with so many places to get it, standing out and offering something unique to your customers is a must. Teejay’s Sweet Tooth is doing just that by bringing something to Indianapolis that we’ve never had before: donuts and ice cream.

Yes, you read that right!

TeeJay’s Sweet Tooth opened last August on Indianapolis’ northwest side near Trader’s Point, and has been offering its customers two unique creations ever since: the Donut Ice Cream Sandwich and a Fruity Pebble Treat.

Owned by two dental hygienists, Jerome Tiah and Taylor DeBruce, the little ice cream shop offers a wide variety of flavors which change every few weeks. I sampled all of them and highly recommend the Carmel Rainforest Crunch, Pralines and Cream or Graham Central.

I also tried both the Fruity Pebble Treat AND a Donut Ice Cream Sandwich, leaving the store on a sugar high! My favorite? The Donut Ice Cream Sandwich, although I think kids would probably enjoy the Fruity Pebble Treat more.

So how exactly does TeeJay’s make their signature creations?

For the Fruity Pebble Treat, two circular bars are made out of Fruity Pebble cereal and formed into what looked and tasted like a Fruity Pebble Rice Krispie Treat. Then two scoops of ice cream are placed in between those, and topped with a topping of your choosing.

The Donut Ice Cream Sandwich is made in a similar fashion. TeeJay’s get their donuts from Jack’s Donuts, another local Indianapolis business, and their ice cream comes from Sundae’s near Geist.

In addition to their two signature creations, TeeJay’s also makes milk shakes, other types of ice cream sandwiches, and offers sorbets for vegan and gluten free options.

Most of their recipes are from online sources, but they’ve started incorporating other cereals into the mix as toppings. Jerome said they hope to start making other signature treats out of cereals soon.

For now, Jerome and Taylor plan to concentrate on making quality treats for their customers at their Purdue Road location, but expanding in Indy isn’t totally out of the question. Both still work as full time dental hygienists and are the only employees at TeeJays at this time, so there’s a lot on their plate.

That doesn’t seem to detract from the quality of their product though, so if you find yourself looking for a unique ice cream spot, stop by TeeJay’s Sweet Tooth – you’ll be helping support a dream AND a local business.

Store Location: 8660 Purdue Road, Suite 8666-600, Indianapolis, Indiana 46268
Instagram: @TeeJaysSweetTooth
Facebook: TeeJay’s Sweet Tooth
Twitter: @TJ_SweetTooth