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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 Merri Cvetan on Feb 5, 2020 9:33:23 AM

Celebrate Valentine's At Home This Year!

Although the legend of St. Valentine has been around since AD 496, it wasn’t until the 18th century that lovers began expressing their love for each other with cards, candy and flowers. Today we’re still celebrating with our loved ones. Instead of going out this year, why not stay home?

Follow these simple steps to create a cozy, romantic dinner for two!


Posted by Merri Cvetan on Feb 8, 2017 2:54:09 PM

How Do You Spell L-O-V-E?

Everyone loves February 14. The challenge is to come up with someone unique and personal for the special person in your life. Cards put your thoughts into words, and who doesn’t like a box of chocolate? But this year, I wanted to design something different, so I decided to spell out my feelings!

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Feb 10, 2016 3:47:58 PM

Love Chain

Valentine’s Day might be the day to celebrate love, but it’s also a good reason to decorate the house. If you live in the north, you’re still feet-deep in snow, so a little red will brighten things up.

I made a little heart garland to hang in the window, but it would be just as cute hung horizontally on the mantle.

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Feb 12, 2015 2:32:00 PM

Love Notes

Valentine’s Day is approaching. But, no worries, you still have time to make a heart-felt card for your sweetie.

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Feb 5, 2015 1:47:00 PM

Celebrate At Home This Year!

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Jan 23, 2015 11:36:00 AM

Raise a Glass

Goodwill stores are always a great source for wine glasses. Every shape, size and style can be found for as little as 50 cents. I love glassware; and because they are so inexpensive, I like to do something different every time I entertain. Valentine’s Day is coming up and so is the wedding season. Here are four simple ideas you can do at home to dress up your party or reception table. 

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Feb 13, 2014 1:11:00 PM

Sweet Tooth

Forget the usual flowers and box of candy for Valentine’s Day, this year serve up a romantic dinner for two.

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Feb 7, 2013 3:23:00 PM

9 Valentine’s Day Gift to Make from Sweaters: Part 2

There is no end to the gifts you can make for the girls in your life from sweaters. 

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Jan 31, 2013 3:43:00 PM

9 Valentine’s Day Gift to Make from Sweaters: Part 1

With Valentine’s Day only a few weeks away, I challenged myself to see how many gifts I could make from a couple of sweaters.

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Feb 13, 2012 9:20:00 AM

Eat Your Heart Out!

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and offers a wonderful opportunity to include your children in this festive event. Here are a few simple heartfelt snacks that will make your little Valentine feel extra special.

Posted by Jamie Klinger-Krebs on Feb 9, 2012 9:35:00 AM

Safari Valentine's Day Dinner

Serve up a romantic dinner for two this Valentine’s Day without a bit of red! Be adventurous- set a safari table.