First Upcycled Art Boutique Benefitting People with Disabilities to Open in Middle Tennessee
Nashville, TN – SmART! Supplies, a social enterprise of Progress Inc. will open the first upcycled art boutique in Middle Tennessee during a ribbon cutting ceremony on Thursday, April 7th at 10:00 a.m. at their Berry Hill location (4 Buchi Court, Nashville TN 37204). The opening will feature remarks by The Tennessean’s Ms. Cheap as well as light refreshments following the ceremony. SmART! Supplies sells reclaimed art and craft materials at discount prices, while employing people with disabilities. Proceeds from the social enterprise support Progress Inc., a non-profit organization which has served people with disabilities and seniors in Middle Tennessee for more than 40 years.
The Boutique at SmART! Supplies will give local artists the chance to showcase their upcycled art five days a week in a retail setting. Artists will have an opportunity to gain recognition and further their audience through the boutique. The endeavor is lucrative for both the artists and SmART! Supplies, as artists will profit from each item that sells, and a percentage of the sale will also be donated back to SmART! Supplies.
Linda Lipe is one of several featured artists displaying works in the boutique launch. She’ll be selling 3D greeting cards made from upcycled materials using the iris folding technique. The cards are crafted by hand by the Brenthaven Church ladies group, which has gathered weekly to create the cards for over six years. The cards have evolved into a fundraising campaign for the church’s homeless outreach program, Sacred Sparks Ministry. “We are very excited about the SmART! Boutique,” she explained, “to be able to have an outlet and larger audience to share the cards with is going to help us raise more money and spread the word about our homeless outreach program.” Linda and the ladies group also shop at SmART! for paper and scrapbooking materials for their cards. “SmART! has been such a huge help for our group by selling materials at prices we can’t find anywhere else.”
Since opening in 2014, SmART! Supplies has sold more than 191,254 items originally destined for landfills. The store hosts a variety of workshops throughout the year and also provides volunteer opportunities for non-profit organizations, including Friends Life Community and Girl Scouts. SmART! Supplies supports people with intellectual disabilities through employment and job training; store proceeds fund the many programs of Progress, including day programs, residential support and employment training.
Progress Inc. is a non-profit organization in Nashville, TN that promotes health, happiness and safety for people with disabilities and senior adults needing care. Progress provides staff supports to bridge the gap between limited independence and the realization of the best possible life. For more information about Progress, visit www.Progress-Inc.org or call 615-399-3000.
SmART! Supplies is a unique retail space that sells locally made, up-cycled goods, and reclaimed art and craft materials. SmART! benefits Progress, Inc. – A local nonprofit for adults with intellectual disabilities and senior citizens. For more information about SmART! Supplies visit www.SmartSupplies.org or call 615-454-5808.