LOUISVILLE, KY – One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, right? Lynn Quire thought so when she opened up “Good Garbage” last November, the region’s first and only warehouse of discarded scrap material for creative reuse. A year has passed and it’s time to celebrate the success.

First off, Good Garbage is stocked with left over, unused, scrap and recycles donated by crafters, artists and corporations. It has a workshop area that hosts classes and birthday parties, a gallery for kids and artists, and a boutique of re-purposed items called The Redux Boutique & Gallery. This is all impressive considering the building was a former neighborhood corner grocery store, and was most recently a Laundromat.

Quire receives help from Dan Despain and many volunteers in the community. She teaches classes and workshops on reuse and art at community events and schools, informing teachers about her resources. Since most teachers do not have the space to store the materials, Good Garbage does the collecting and storing of the miscellaneous items for them.

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Artist Annette Cable works with children at the Shelby Park Community Center who use materials from Good Garbage for projects organized by the Louisville Visual Art Association and Walden Theatre.

The Center’s mission is to divert usable materials from landfills and protect the public waste stream. In its first year it has done just that. It has diverted about 9,000 pounds of material from the landfill, provided free reuse art and outreach to 1,000 children, and provided free and drastically reduced materials to many teachers, artists, community groups and non-profits.

“It’s more than just recycling,” says Quire. “It’s all about changing the way I see ‘garbage’ and realizing it has use outside the landfill. It’s something I would suggest everyone try just once, to see how it could change their lives too.”

There have been donated items coming as far as California and sold items extending from Chicago to Florida. Earlier this year, Quire learned she was voted Louisville Magazine’s Most Creative Business in its Best of Louisville issue.

A Louisvillian that was at a recent event says Good Garbage has opened their eyes to how much they unnecessarily throw away on a daily basis. So instead of throwing away your extra paint, or storing that unused yarn in your drawer, why not donate it to a good cause? This is also a great opportunity to get out of the house and finally do that craft you found on Pinterest.

The big pink building is located at 2020 Duncan Street. Hours of operation are Wednesday-Friday from 12-6 and Saturday 11-2. Donations are only accepted Friday from 1-4 and Saturday from 11-2.

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