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Goodwill Home Décor Expert - Merri Cvetan

Goodwill Home Decor Expert Merri Cvetan

I started my career as an interior designer when we finished remodeling our home that was built in the 1890s. I loved the space planning, choosing finishes and decorating every little inch. It was trial and error, and we made mistakes, but I learned a lot along the way. Along with being a learning process, working on our home was also a hands-on project. We did everything ourselves (actually, my husband Tom did all the building and heavy work, I did the fun stuff!). I’ve had the decorating bug ever since I was a little girl, but I wanted to know everything about design, so, as a result I returned to college (Mount Mary) for a second degree in Interior Design.

I’ve been collecting antiques and vintage furnishings forever. My favorite shopping places are flea markets, antique stores and of course, Goodwill. I love DIY projects and saving money by taking an object and re-purposing it into something beautiful and useful. I’m also an amateur photographer, love to travel and study French (J’adore tous ce qui est franҫais)!

Although I love to entertain, I’m not much of a cook. My party philosophy is "if the table looks fantastic, it doesn’t matter what you serve."

My weekly column for Amazing Goodwill and my design blog, Design Coach, are about all things design, living a stylish life and entertaining (like setting a great table). I share DIY projects, decorating and design tips, as well as ideas and secrets.

If you have a specific question for Merri, feel free to email her at askmerri@goodwillsew.com.

Follow Merri on Twitter and Pinterest!

Watch Merri on Windy City Live! ... See more videos featuring Merri (and more) on our AmazingGoodwill YouTube channel!

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Jul 23, 2015 1:35:59 PM


It’s the middle of summer and you need a quick DIY project that takes no time, no sewing and no painting? Here’s one that organizes your desk, vanity or craft room. Simply fill interesting vases and jars with colorful table confetti and voila, instant color!

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Jul 15, 2015 1:46:32 PM

Please Be Seated!

Every bride wants her wedding to be perfect (and perfection quickly adds up). All the little details that make the day special can cost beaucoup dollars. Whenever you can make some of the things yourself, you not only save money, but also have the satisfaction of putting a personal touch on your big day!

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Jun 18, 2015 5:15:00 PM

A Heart for Dad

Father’s Day is right around the corner, and I bet some of you will be scrambling at the last minute for something to do from the kids. Instead of stressing out at the mall, have the little ones make daddy a paper weight for his desk.

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on May 29, 2015 2:19:00 PM

DIY Graduation Card Box

It’s that time of year again, graduation ceremonies, parties and celebrations. When planning a party for your special grad, don’t forget to set up a spot for gifts. To keep track of cards, make a DIY “mortar board” box.
For this project you will need:

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on May 30, 2014 11:47:00 AM

Lamp Table Transformation

Sometimes an item I find has seen better days or, in the case of this lamp table, is simply outdated. I’m not a fan of this style of floor lamp. I love lamps and tables, just not an all-in-one style. But, it only took two cans of spray paint to create a charming side table. 

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Apr 24, 2014 9:40:00 AM

DIY Message Board

I’ve been working on staging dorm rooms this month. I like to do a couple of fast and easy DIY projects than anyone can do. This magnetic message board is not only perfect for the college student, but would be a great Mother’s Day gift, too. After all, everyone needs to stay organized and on top of things.

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Apr 1, 2014 4:02:00 PM

Book Club Luncheon

There’s nothing like sitting down with a good book, unless of course, you discuss it over a glass of wine with fellow book club members. Next time you host your group, set an appropriate table that they’ll truly appreciate.