Junk Evolution breathes new life into home decor

Located in the art district of Downtown South Bend sits a little shop with a big purpose.

It’s called Junk Evolution, and through a process known as upcycling, it is quite literally turning “junk” into treasure by repurposing old items to create new ones. Much of the store’s inventory — from small home decor pieces and vintage clothes or accessories to real wood furniture — has been saved from landfills.

“We don’t carry new items,” said co-owner Char Swoveland. “Even our line of soy candles uses recycled containers. It’s a 100 percent green effort.”

The concept behind Junk Evolution was born out of the economic downturn of 2008. Laid off from her job, Char, an interior designer, considered turning her side job of repurposing into a career. She teamed up with Linda and Bernie Sherck, an interior designer and an artist/woodworker, respectively — both of whom had been downsized from their positions as well.

Together, they formed Junk Evolution.

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