Skip to main content

 Natural Awakenings Lancaster-Berks

Lancaster Creative Reuse

Connecting Community Excess to Those Who Can Use It Creatively                                        

by Ava Hampton

Starting nine years ago, Lancaster Creative Reuse was created as a community resource center leading to a more vibrant art scene with the addition of the thrift store. According to director Susan Zeran, adding the thrift store to an ever-changing society features saving money, with an emphasis on reusing and donating, connecting the community and helping artists with inexpensive materials, and it’s another way to spark creativity.

Donated materials from around the Lancaster area are sold for 40 percent off the retail value. At nearly half the cost of purchasing items in a traditional arts and crafts store, the materials are extremely affordable to all audiences and also encourages the surrounding community to donate before recycling or throwing materials away.

“We connect with the community, encouraging the benefits of reusing and inspiring creativity,” explains Zeran. “We welcome all. If you are a teacher buying supplies for you class, an artist looking for supplies for a work-in-progress, a child or an adult, you are welcome to come and craft.”

The wide variety of materials includes broken mirrors, paper, stamps, yarn, postindustrial materials, party materials, tiles and anything considered to be art supplies. While customers browse the shop for materials, the open craft table inspires and invites them to stay and allows them to create on-site.

“Some may call it trash from cleaning up or clearing out practice pieces, projects that were halfway done or that were only just started,” she says. “But by donating your unwanted items to a secondhand shop like Lancaster Creative Reuse allows for our customers and community to find inspiration and love in these items, just as you once intended with said materials.

“If someone would like to donate, whether they are downsizing, moving or just clearing out, please do not hesitate to visit our webpage at and click the link titled ‘How and When Do I Donate to LCR’,” she enthuses. “All unwanted materials are wanted at Lancaster Creative Reuse. Trash is not trash until you trash it.”

The use of donated materials will also be featured at the open craft table during regular store hours. At Lancaster Creative Reuse, “All are welcome,” is emphasized. “With more donations coming in, along with volunteers from the community helping out at the store, there is no doubt that creativity will flourish within Lancaster,” shares Zeran.

Lancaster Creative Reuse is located at 1865 Lincoln Highway East, in Lancaster. For more information, call 717-617-2977 or visit

Ava Hampton is a student intern from Conestoga Valley High School with Natural Awakenings, Lancaster-Berks magazine.

Upcoming Events Near You
Our Current Issue





2020 Natural Living Directory