“Fresh Heirlooms is hard to capture in a review, since there’s really no other store like it. Basically it a playland for people who love vintage, repurposed junkyard finds, or just anything homemade. There’s a lot of fun vintagey furniture, imaginative nick knacks, and creative, homemade, everyday products like glassware and dishware. Everything is made with lots of love and care and is inexpensive to boot. Best of all, because all their products are repurposed and handmade from salvaged material, you can stock up on lovely wares without worrying that you are contributing to overflowing landfills. I went in for the first time this past week and came away with two awesome handpainted coffee tables and a one-of-a-kind bufffet for the dining room. I also stocked up on some candle holders repurposed from old soda bottles, tumblers made from old Vodka bottles, and some great shopping bags knitted from upholstery samples.   Lindsay and Joseph have created a truly original, kick ass store.”
-Yelp reviewer, Pittsburgh, PA
“Your creativity made my two old ugly book shelves look not only modern and sleek, but also functional and artistic. The colors fit perfectly in my office and I feel like I finally can get something done!
The added touches of using the old pieces of trim from my remodeled home truly made the shelves feel like a real heirloom and a lasting piece that I can use and admire forever.  I absolutely LOVE them!!  I really appreciate the time you spent getting to know my tastes and needs. Thanks again!”
– Jami Broom, Wilkinsburg, PA

PAST PRESS:
Fresh Heirlooms will be highlighted in an upcoming issue of the green-spirited national publication, Boho Magazine. Check back soon!


Fresh Heirlooms is featured on the cover ofPittsburgh City Paper’s Holiday Guide issue! Stop by the store or pick up your copy to see our custom vases created from reclaimed wine bottles, reused newspaper poinsettias, and repurposed wine-cork pine cones!
Conveniently Green: Local Artist Turns Trash To Treasure
Watch Fresh Heirloom’s TV debut on Channel 4′s “Conveniently Green”.
POSTED: 3:25 pm EDT October 23, 2008


PITTSBURGH — Shoppers at a Lawrenceville store might be surprised to see things like old plates and lamps turned from trash into treasure. Everything in Fresh Heirlooms is unique — and recycled or reused. The store is a potpourri of products. For example, what used to be an old Subway Sandwich shop sign has now been made into a desk.
“This was a wine bottle that was cut in half, and then the top was flipped over and heat-sealed on the bottom, to create a really neat drinking vessel,” said Lindsay Woge, the store’s owner.
Woge’s functional artwork includes bicycle chain bowls, pop can planes and flowers made from old phone books.
“If you look closely, you can see the writing on the petals. Definitely a great use from something we otherwise throw away,” Woge said.
Along with being the owner of the store, Woge is also an artist who creates many of the items she sells in her earth-friendly store. “I love the twisting and turning. I love looking at something and thinking ‘What can I do with this?’” Woge said.
Woge has created a bottle cap sunburst mirror, bowls woven from telephone wires and outdoor rugs that won’t rod. “They are designed to go outside and you can dump a bucket of soapy water and they can be hosed off. They are made from recycled plastic,” said Woge.
Every week there’s something new in the store that once was old. “Sometimes I’ll get here in the morning and their will be bags on my doorstep, and you never know what is in them. It can be exciting. It can be scary,” Woge said.
Woge also offers free classes for kids and adults. On Friday night she’ll offer a class on paper pumpkin making. To find out more about the classes and the store visit www.freshheirlooms.com


LUX Magazine says, “Fresh Heirlooms loves their customers.” Read the whole article below.
Click above and scroll to page 22 to read about Fresh Heirlooms in the October 2008 issue of Lux Magazine.
Lawrenceville girls gain confidence through tools and art
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania- September 18, 2008 – An eight-year-old girl straps on her tool belt, adjusts her goggles and approaches the sanding block. Nearby, a 10-year-old girl navigates a power drill. The instructor looks on, assisting the girls when they need help with their screwdrivers, levels, pliers or power tools.

For the six girls participating in Pitt Small Business Development Center client Lindsay Woge’s Give Girls Tools program, this is just another day of artful fun.
Woge, founder of Fresh Heirlooms on Butler Street in Lawrenceville, launched Give Girls Tools this summer to teach young women to use tools and hone practical art skills, with the greater goals of giving them more confidence in math, science and everyday living.

A group of six Lawrenceville girls, ranging in age from 8 to 11, meet at Fresh Heirlooms every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday morning throughout August to practice making art with power tools. Woge herself uses these skills to transform reclaimed materials into one-of-a-kind home furnishings, office furniture, handmade green gifts, and ecofriendly home décor.

“A lot of these skills are basic homeowner skills,” Woge explained. “If these girls grow up to be able to repair their own faucets, that will be a benefit.”

The idea for Give Girls Tools has been a long time coming. While working at the Chicago Children’s Museum, Woge, who has a background in arts, found herself teaching simple machines and developing scientific curricula. Through this experience, she came to appreciate the “melding of science and art.”

“I wanted to empower girls to do the things guys are traditionally trained to do,” said Woge, an artist who admitted that she has sometimes found math and science to be a bit more intimidating than other subjects.

“The girls are not intimidated at all” by the tools, Woge added. Woge has also organized visits with the girls to other women-owned businesses on Butler Street.

“I want to show them not only what women can do, but what other women are doing right down the street,” she said.

Woge is working with the University of Pittsburgh Small Business Development Center to continue building her business in ways that empower and strengthen the members of her Lawrenceville community.


Emotional Rescue: Creating Heirlooms from Trash
Fresh Heirlooms featured in EcoSalon, September 11, 2008

A salvaged light fixture becomes a stylish tabletop candle holder; a used vinyl receptacle mount is fitted with Plexiglas to create a one-of-a-kind wall frame. There’s also a fruit bowl crafted from reclaimed United Airlines knives that have been mounted onto scrap wood.

These are a few of the items one might find during a visit to Fresh Heirlooms in Pittsburgh, Penn, where most of the works are handmade from reclaimed materials diverted from the local landfill.

Consider it “historic and environmental preservation coupled with progressive social responsibility, sophisticated artfulness, and multi-faceted meaning,” says their website, which also sells a handful of work. An online gallery displays creations of local artists. In addition to their showroom, Fresh Heirlooms also hold creative reuse workshops for both adults and kids so you can expand your creativity and your functional art collection.

With a little guidance, even the most artistically-challenged can see how great Aunt Harriet’s old candle snuffer can soon be a revived treasure.


The Link: Lindsay Woge
By Jodi Weigand
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Read article in TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Lindsay Woge says she comes from a family of tinkerers. She grew up near Sharon, and, from an early age, she was building things “out of junk,” she says. She combined her interest in art, teaching, the environment and putting old things to new use and opened Fresh Heirlooms in October. She sells reused and recycled household items — from goblets she sandblasts herself to a desk she made from an old Subway restaurant sign. She tells us what’s so inspiring about stuff headed to the landfill.
Question: What made you want to sell reused and recycled furnishings?
Answer: I was working at the Chicago Children’s Museum, which I loved, but it was a very hands-off kind of job. I was writing curriculum, and I had a cubicle, and it was just maddening. Also, through my work at the Peace Museum, I started to become more aware of different social and environmental issues, and I felt like I could get out of my cubicle and I could also help to promote social and environmental causes if I opened a store like this.
Q: Why Pittsburgh?
A: There was such a positive vibe that I felt about Pittsburgh. When I left the city years ago, I felt like it was so different than it is today. I felt like there were a lot of businesses that were closing and young people were leaving, and now I feel like it’s the opposite. I thought it was a good time to come back to the city. And it’s an affordable city — I could never do this in Chicago.
Q: What do you like most about what you do?
A: I think my favorite part is just the problem solving. What I call my store is a creative reuse showroom, and so just the words are really what excites me. So just thinking about the possibilities. I love taking something and twisting and turning it and thinking about it a new way. I think that’s why I like having my own store — I can do what I want. I like the freedom of using whatever comes my way.
Q: Did you like to tinker with things as a child?
A: My favorite thing was building doll houses out of junk. I remember building Kleenex box doll houses. My absolute favorite thing was reading this book about all these different little doll house furniture pieces you could make out of stuff from your house. My favorite one of all time – they had a marble and they put a toothpaste cap on it to make a lamp so the toothpaste cap was the shade and the marble was the base. So I guess I’ve always liked stuff like that.
Q: Is your house filled with reused stuff, too?
A: No. I actually live with my sister, but I stay at the store most of the time. I pretty much live where I work.
Q: What’s a Fresh Heirloom?
A: There’s no funny story behind that. I was in Chicago, and I asked (my friends) what do you think about Fresh Heirlooms? And they were like, ‘What, are you selling produce?’ But I just went with it. I like it. I think it’s kind of cute. I think once you’re in the store you understand what I’m driving at.


Creative Reuse Workshops for Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh
July 2008, Fresh Heirlooms
Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh and Fresh Heirlooms, a retailer of creatively reused home furnishings, are pleased to announce a July partnership.
Each week in July, four enrollees in Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services’ Community Transition Program will travel to Fresh Heirlooms’ Lawrenceville store and creative reuse workshop to participate in hands-on projects designed to meld the two organizations’ missions: to transform reclaimed materials into unique eco-friendly home furnishings and to reduce limitations that may result from loss of vision.

One of many services offered through Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services, the Community Transition Program provides life-long learning opportunities to persons that have severe developmental delays. This program was established in 1993 initially to serve persons with cognitive impairments that were being transitioned from state centers to the community.
In line with Fresh Heirlooms’ commitment to people and planet, the July program hopes to provide participants with opportunities to work with a variety of atypical materials – those usually bound for the landfill — in new ways, while socializing and interacting in a new setting and neighborhood. Participants will spend the four two-hour sessions creating items to be used in the facility’s Homestead kitchen — a familiar scene, as part of the group’s daily schedule includes taking part in the preparation and clean-up of meals.
Shannon Woge, the program’s Team Leader, believes the program is an opportunity for participants to play an active role in shaping the spaces they use each day, while developing their cognitive and social skills and reducing environmental impact : “This is a priceless opportunity to expose our participants to the idea of completing the projects they enjoy in a more earth-friendly way.”
Projects planned include using reclaimed materials to screen-print on aprons fabricated by visually impaired workers at Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services’ Industries, located on the Northside. The participants will also be creating “green” place-mats, place-settings, herb container gardens, and more, all from recycled, repurposed, and second-hand sources.
Fresh Heirlooms is located at 5218 Butler St. in Lawrenceville. Summer hours are Wednesday through Friday, 1 – 6PM, Saturday 12 – 4PM. Learn more at www.FreshHeirlooms.com or by calling 412.512.5098. Information about Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh is available at www.pghvis.org.


Spotlight: Fresh Heirlooms
May 6, 2008, 16:62 Design Zone
Fresh Heirlooms’ owner Lindsay Woge is thrilled to highlight her collection of creatively reused furnishings this Mother’s Day. Maybe that’s because her shop includes items hand-crafted by almost every member of her family–including her mother, grandmother, and great grandmother.
“My great grandmother would be tickled if she saw what I was doing now,” says Lindsay. “The mindset during her era was to never throw anything away.”
And she didn’t. Lindsay’s mother has taken her grandmother’s old buttons and sewn them into napkin rings. In the shop, the napkins are placed on vintage plates arranged around a creative cake pedestal (made from second-hand dishes) and glasses made from reclaimed wine bottles. The setting sits on a vintage table Lindsay repainted to pair with four reclaimed chairs.
“I love that you can see the old paint underneath the new paint,” says Lindsay.”You can actually see the history.”
Fresh Heirlooms is a shop full of heirlooms. Lindsay’s grandfather has created a fruit basket by attaching old butter knives (from United Airlines found at a thrift store) to a scrap-wood base. Lindsay’s father installed the shop’s lighting and also helps her with custom projects. When you’re ready to check out, your items will be placed in a bag made from material sewn together by her grandmother.
Inspired? Book a small group class with your friends to learn how to reuse items you may have otherwise neglected. Or attend one of Lindsay’s public workshop like “Magnets for May” (below).
This summer, Lindsay is also coordinating a series of workshops titled “Give Girls Tools.” Funded by Operation Weed and Seed, the project is intended to unite young girls and teach them how to build and repair reclaimed items–with the goal of building their self-esteem and ability to create their own projects. For more information, call or email Lindsay at 412.512.5098 or Lindsay@FreshHeirlooms.com.
Images top: the interior of Fresh Heirlooms with the table setting of reused materials.


‘Light’ Soft Drink
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, February, 2008
Beth Adamson, of Kingston, Ontario, makes a lantern out of a recycled soft drink can yesterday. Ms. Adamson attended a free workshop at Fresh Heirlooms in Lawrenceville druing her visit to Pittsburgh. Fresh Heirlooms is a store that specializes in creatively reused furnishings for the home. Owner Lindsay Woge opened the store at the end of October and frequently holds free craft workshops to get people interested in the store. Read a pdf of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette piece on Fresh Heirloom’s creative reuse workshops.