wood back

Friday, January 31, 2014

Make this Nautical and Pin-up Style: take two

I'm so tired. So, I'll keep this short. But, not the dress; the dress I kept long because I like to take newer items and make them look old-timey and they didn't wear minis in the 40s. Anyway, I already did this sailor dress refashion but wasn't completely satisfied, so I continued changing things.
First, I got rid of the belt and took in the waist, using the weird-string-pullback things and the snap in cleavage cover that I cut out. Say it, pics:
I'll probably edit this later, but I think you see what I did there, right?
Next, I thought that my dress was missing some kitsch factor, and nautical themed stuff. I wanted to add a red neckerchief thing that crossed like a bow in front. (Can't describe, can't find a picture) I didn't have a neck bow thing like that. I had a men's, red necktie. Take it away, pics!
Used seam ripper, then scissors to open up tie; took out the guts; cut and pinned the fat end of the tie to match other end; pinned and ironed it; realized I wasn't gonna hand stitch that whole damn thing; used a paintbrush to apply fabric glue and closed the seams that way.
With a few stitches, I attached the tie under my dress's collar and crossed the two ends in front, securing them with a little anchor pin. Without any further typing...my refashion refashion:

 If you notice that these look a little more 'shopped than usual...Oh dear god, the cold took a toll on my skin/lips. I didn't apply any lipstick, but did try a lot of foundation and some new pink eyeliner. The photographic result was a corpse like pale and creepy. Shudder.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Thrift Hoard: Half price and full of awesome.

I got out of bed on Monday and treated the day off like a work day. Because I was hitting up the thrift stores like it was my job. (It's not, though. I can't sell for shit!) I went to the Savers holiday half off clothes and accessories sale. I got these items in the Nashua, NH store, which I should visit more often. Let''s just look at the goods.

Does anyone know anything about this planter? It's in two pieces, and that bottom piece has little holes on the side. I got it up in my little shop, but it would be nice to be able to explain it's use. orange-yellow planter

That thing isn't actually for sale. I just took a picture of the vintage (and missing a part) iron/steaming thingie to capture the old timey goodness of it's box.
I asked my dad for help in MacGuyver-ing a makeshift cap for the place you put the water into. I'm just waiting on the glue to dry (crosses fingers).

Check out that awesome file thing! I love those old metal file holders and that one's got the old wood-grain look! metal file case It's just like the one Van of Thrift Core has! (Mine doesn't have the key.)

This Vera Neumann scarf has some cool retro charm, and is in great shape. I've got some other Vera's in my stash that I should list, too. Vera scarf

Wow! Look at the beautiful vintage handbag! Those details and that black plastic thing at the opening are just lovely! $3? Get in my cart, bag!
Oh, come on! How did I miss that?! I haven't listed that, because I have a plan to save the beauty of that old bag with either some ribbon or little bows. I'll clean off the fingerprints, too.
 My favorite thing to hunt for is dresses, and I grabbed a few good ones. Such as this plaid number...

I am really having a hard time with location for these clothing pictures. That's my hallway. It was cold and I had to use the flash. How cute is that dress, though? orange-turquoise plaid dress
But, wait, there's more! And keep waiting, because I'll have to save the rest for next week. It's a school night and I have to get my layers and layers of winter clothes ready for tomorrow.  I also have the box of old timey vintage blocks I picked up to reward a boy with special needs who's behavior was absolutely out of this world last week.. (Knock on wood.) So, come back next week for more dresses, some suspender pants, accessories, and the blocks.
Linking up with a living space and Sir Thrift A Lot.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Finally; mint colored, tacky, Easter dress Refashion

I tried to look up other dresses like this, and wasn't sure what keywords to use. It's like a suit, but it's only one piece, so like a dress, but like a blazer?
Anyway, this refashion is a long time in the making. (boring, wistful story coming) I remember buying it over the summer of 2013, when everyone was wearing pastels and I was hoarding thrift store dresses in an attempt to fill a hole in my soul...Not really a story, actually. As a chick who's always fancied herself as "edgy," I never thought I'd be interested in such a pale green. I'm gonna go with "mint." This is my old, mint dress.

Sometimes, I think I bring items like this home, just for a challenge. It's a 80s Easter lookin dress by Knapp Studio. I guess that I liked the color and the fit (except for the arms). I hate the big shoulders and arms. I hate the buttons.
I started the overhaul process without a real plan. I remember taking the arms off and buying some novelty heart shaped buttons that didn't work out. "Meh," I probably said before tossing it into a pile.
 In early September, I picked it up again.
I guess I took pictures of the process. Looks like I'm pinning the side seams, so the bodice can be taken in. That's right before I tossed it back in my "later" pile.
Finally...I have my very own sewing machine and was able to get to work. I know from my limited experience that removing sleeves leaves you with wacky sleeve holes.  Here's where I would show you what a nice job I did on them, considering I don't know what I'm doing. But, I can't find where I uploaded the picture. Here's a shot of the cheesy embellishment that I removed. It's an assortment of pearl-like buttons sewed into a doily. It doesn't look bad there, but I assure you it was really lame.

 Oh, wait. I found my picture (but not the "edit" button, apparently.)
Nighttime, phone pic...you can't really appreciate my amateur job.
Anyway, I hemmed all the parts that I had previously pinned, I won't walk you through that. The buttons. I actually sewed two on back in September! Look, I just wasn't excited about sitting down with a seam ripper and needle/thread to deal with eight buttons.
  I know, not all that exciting but I went with plain, round black buttons. I knew I would have to add something to cover the damage where I ripped off that lacy button thing. I figured the buttons shouldn't compete. Luckily, I have a stockpile of iron appliques. (hand sewed this one on, though. Hard time committing.)
  I went with this one that looks like an old crest or a girl scout badge, perhaps. Let's just look at the after pics, shall we?

 I'm satisfied with my results! Here's the thing about the pics. I slapped on a little lipstick, and managed to look drowsy and ghost-pale in every picture. I'm just gonna remove my head...

 Went without the belt for once.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Thirft Diet? Tomorrow, I Binge

Originally published Sunday, Jan. 19; due to some bizarre edit mishap it republished on Wed?

Money is hella tight, so I'm supposed to stop spending it, I guess. One day, last week, I got out of work with a need for a thrift fix and like an addict I drove to the Savers in my city. When I got there, I saw the sign in the window which announced the 50% off sale for the upcoming holiday on Monday. Like a reformed junkie, I chose to look, but not buy. (By the way, while looking, I got the sale alert email for card members. Nice timing, jerks). Ok, I bought one thing. It was really cheap.

Oh, hello. I'm just trying on my 80s plaid blazer. I just brought it home and I already took in the left sleeve (I'll eventually do the right one, too). Old label in it says that it's a size 3/4. Really? I understand this isn't all that exciting. What else can I show you...

Raw materials! Nothing's more fun to look at than some pieces of wood! Ticket says $2, but I grabbed those at half off a little while ago. I put them down on that tarp like I was going to spray paint them, but I didn't! What will I do with them? Mod Podge? I don't know, but I bet I can make some sweet-ass wall art in a set of 4! Or just leave them in a pile, somewhere.
I don't believe I've shared these things.

Hey, check out my jugs. Apparently, I'll find a way to put a lame, naughty sounding pun in each post Also, help me out, Corey Hart; I take my thrift pictures at night, so that the quality is bad. It's not on purpose, it's just that I work during most of the day and it gets dark out so early. I just wanted a before picture for the blog, I'll retake when I want to put 'em on Etsy. See, that blue one looks like it was already painted by a previous owner and now it's banged up.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Make this Nautical and Pin-up Style; take one

I got this retro 80s dress from a Savers sale in the fall, and and now I'm finishing the refashion now. I think it was probably $3.50.
Oh, man, look how long it is on me. And the sleeve/shoulder area is all huge. I could tell it had a nautical-ly sailor vibe to it, but it also looked like old timey flight attendant. I did a little internet searching from some inspiration on this dress.

So, I took about three inches off the bottom and removed the shoulder pads. Then I had to make the shoulders smaller, so I did what I thought would be easiest and pinned the top of the dress an inch or so smaller and sewed. I think I was supposed to do that to the armpits, not shoulders. Looks smaller though, right?
Then I got rid of that modesty panel thing that was in front. My cleavage deserves to be free!

That mystery photo sucks. It's what I did to the back of the dress. That bunch of strings went across the back of the waist, like some non functioning belt. It cinched nothing and looked out of date. I closely cut off four of the strings leaving two in the middle, thinking I'd tie the remaining two strings on each side to a bow or something. Until I decided what to do, I tucked them into my red, shiny belt.
Because I took out that boob hider thing and because the dress was too damn big to begin with, I needed to do something with the dress because it didn't button up high enough to be appropriate for anywhere. I guess I didn't get a picture, but I hand stitched that floppy collar to the dress so that it stayed in closer (not sure if this makes sense) and then I added a couple hook and eye closures that I had in my craft pile. This would make the neckline higher and make the top more fitted.
Those things kinda worked.
At this point, it looked good, just not quite what I had envisioned. I wanted that quirky, sexy look. Like that Zooey Deschanel jerk. Like Mod Cloth.

Ooh! I should add a little bow! Those bows around the neck really whimsy shit up! At that point, I just wanted to take some damn pics and get this project in the can (I think that's what they say when they wrap a movie). One sash under the collar. Done.
Wait for it...

Friday, January 17, 2014

You call that a "DIY?" Gluing things onto things

The best DIYs are the simplest. Because if you have to do something yourself, it's best to do as little as possible. I wanted to make some cool rings, but I don't know how to make jewelry. What I can do is buy parts of jewelry and glue them to things. Don't worry, I'll provide a tutorial so you can follow along.

First, you need supplies. Start with what they call "jewelry findings." In other words, the metal thing that holds things that look cool.

Here are some ring dealies that I pulled from the clearance bin at a craft store
Then, you need some cool little items to attach to the "findings."

Here are some things that I pulled from stashes of junk from around my apartment. From left; wooden bird, buttons, felt piece, single earring, game pieces from old board game (remind me to show off that collection), old dice from a board game, a scrabble tile bearing my first initial, and in the center are puzzle pieces shaped like Maine and New England.

Here's some more crap you'll need. Super glue that claims to be wicked permanent. I used some Styrofoam to hold the rings upright. I saved that chunk of it, just for this project! I cut little slots in it with that exacto.

The Scrabble tile fits almost perfectly in that square ring opening. I didn't want to leave weird space on the sides, so I glued a tiny piece of felt on one side of the tile.
Do not get glue on fingers! When they say that shit bonds instantly, they mean business. I'm not saying that I glued black felt to my fingers, I'm just saying it could happen.
For the round ring, I figured I could stick just about anything on there and it would work.

I decided to keep it small and go with a button. I've got some good ones, but most of them have those little rings on the back, so I couldn't just glue them down. I went with a plain black button, but on top of one of those round game pieces. I carefully applied glue to the base then laid that green circle thing on it and let it dry. After a few minutes, I put a spot of glue on the green thing and used tweezers to carefully place the button on top.

I'm kinda bummed that I didn't use my kick ass dice. They would've made a ring to high to be practical for my work. Maybe I can make something else with them. Anyway, here are the finished products:

My rings were very well liked by the children at school who were super impressed with my glue skills.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Cheap Imitations vol.1: Pants; also more plaid

I've been meaning to do this post for a while, but ya know...It's allegedly going to be a series of posts in which I see something cool on another blog or on Pinterest or maybe even a 3 dimensional human on the streets and attempt to duplicate it at a thrift store. Because if you can't be original; copy something good.
I was wasting time looking at cute outfits on Pinterest (because is good to keep one's mind sharp...) and I saw these sweet pants from ModCloth.

I've made it no secret that I recently got down with this high waist pants and shorts trend. I've heard conflicting reports about the effects of high paints on short (5'), hip-py gals, and the concept of tucked in shirts is a little hard to get used to. because I am short, shirts tend to come a little lower on me than they might on a regular sized person, so it seems like a lot to tuck in. I cannot have any bunching in my clothes, I say in a dead serious tone. It will bother and distract me all day. Let's just look at pics!
I found a pair of Liz Claiborne, black, pleated, high waist pants at Goodwill for $2.50. Just saying "pleated pants" is making me do a double take. Aren't those bad? Those are mom pantsThe sketch

 I'm guessing that at this point, if any men were reading, they've stopped. Here's the thing: I felt kinda like I was carrying a little extra weight that week. (whispers) you know; menstrual fat feeling! After tucking in the top, those size 2 pants were at max. capacity.
I looked up a pair on Etsy.
I'm telling you, the first time I wore these pants, they were super cute. I'll do a few crunches or whatever. I think I managed to get the look I was going for with my thrift store pants. More pics:

That top is also a little snug. Camera has the guts to tell me what my mirror couldn't say.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Thrift Haord: Last Year's Best Scores

If you giggled a little when reading that title; thank you for humoring my cheap attempts at jokes. I do need your charity titters. If you like year end clip shows like I do, then good. But, hold onto your Pyrex, thrift lovers; this material is fresh.
Since I haven't yet shared these finds, they're new to you!
First up, anyone who's seen my narcissistic attempts at fashion blogging has probably seen this chair. It's just next to the window, so it's a backdrop for just about anything.

There it is, where I first saw it at the store last spring. Don't try and zoom in, nosy Nellies, I'll let you in on the secret paper. It's a price that's been slashed repeatedly. It's $2. I thought that there must be a catch, like maybe there's a nest of hornets inside. Within a few seconds, I was like, "here's your two dollars!"

(a clip. I'm guessing about 0.2 people got the reference)
It seemed relatively clean and I had my landlord help me check for bedbugs before bringing it indoors. It's got an old label from Connecticut Chair Company. The catch is that the nubby fabric on that old chair is kinda scratchy (you don't say?) I painted the legs in a "blonde" paint color so they'd show up.

Sailing across my $2 chair, is a $0.50 ship. One of them. I already have a boat just like that as part of my mash-up of stuff that I refer to as a gallery wall in my bedroom. One day, I was trolling through the same Goodwill and I saw this one marked for a dollar and at half price that week. I wasn't gonna just leave it there, for some other lucky soul to love! I selfishly hoarded that treasure and it's sitting on a shelf in my bathroom.

If the globe looks familiar, that's because it's featured in that huge collage of a blog title banner. I made a totally brief Savers run, one afternoon and I spotted it. I love globes and always grab them to add to my collection. Not only does it have beautiful, mid-century colors that match my living room, it's also a lamp! (I was about to show you a picture of it all aglow, but I don't have one ready, and I don't plan on getting off the couch.) I think it was about $6.99 and totally worth it.

It's a table cloth. I just really, really like it. I always look at the fabrics and linens for cool old prints and patterns that I might be able to toss in a pile and not use use in a DIY project. That's one that I took home. It's got white branches on it! White birch trees are kind of a theme for me. I planned using the material for an applique skirt, but I couldn't risk ruining it, even though it was only $1.99

I took these pictures with my phone at night, in case you couldn't tell. This find set me back a little more than I like to drop, but I was absolutely enamored. I think I actually got this on the same Savers trip when I got the table cloth. I guess it's a wall border, just kinda tall. There's a big-ass roll of it, and short of unrolling the whole thing and measuring it, I don't know how much I have. (and don't laugh at 'M'!) I spent $12 with the intention of taking one little portion for myself and selling the remainder. It doesn't look very old, just retro. I honestly have no idea what to price it, not to mention that I don't know how long it is. 

Would you believe I still haven't officially hung this up? I just put it there for the photo op. I dug this shelf (by the way, second boat on the list) out of the wood aisle in the back corner of Goodwill. It was covered in a thick, dusty layer so I had them hold it up front to keep my other scores clean. It's about 2 ft high and only $2.99! I want to keep it, I just can't choose the right place for it. Not sure if it should be painted, either. Back behind the door, for now.

Also hiding are these posters I picked up during my one flea market trip last summer for a dollar each. I don't have the cash for custom framing right now, so I've been patiently waiting to score something secondhand that I can use.

For my final score of 2013...another Hudson Bay knock off? Nope, that one's legit! On New Year's eve, I made a quick detour into the Family Outfitter's store where I get a lot of vintage clothes. I spotted the stripes and took it home to my parents' washing machine the next day. First, I unfolded it on the floor to get a closer look at its condition (could be better). Then that happened. You're welcome, girl, I brought that blanket just for you!
Linking up at a living space and Sir Thrift A Lot!