Thursday, June 25, 2009

An ode to the ever-elusive sundress

I don't know about you, but I have a heck of a time finding dresses. Not only am I short (5 ft) but I'm also short-waisted. And. AND! I have what's commonly known as the "J-Lo booty." I'd like to find a dress that doesn't make my butt look like a fabric shelf. It's torture trying to find a dress that's not only cute, but looks halfway decent on me. And without looking like I'm trying to be 14 again.

I generally have to shop in either the juniors dept or the petites. There's a downside to both. The juniors stuff is cute. I like cute. But almost everything has some sort of sparkle, glitter, ruffle, teenage saying or some other sort of curly-Q-rhinestone-whatchadoodle on it. And the petites...most of the time I find things with high waists, or worse yet, elastic waists. Or the pieces just look too old. I think the fashion gurus are really missing a mark here...the "I'm not a teen, but I'm not yet in a nursing home" crowd. Yep, that's me.

A few weeks ago I went to every store known to man to try to find a dress for my cousin's wedding. I just wanted something simple. A cute little sundress that I could wear with a cardigan. I couldn't find anything. Anywhere! After looking at high-end stores, low-end stores and everything in between, I finally found a cute little dress, at Burlington Coat Factory of all places. Let me say this. I've never been in a BCF before. And I doubt I'll ever go again. It was the nastiest, dirtiest, most unorganized store I've ever set foot in. However, due to my desperation, I did find a dress, and miracle of all miracles, it was on sale for $15. Good bargain aside, I felt like I needed to bathe when I left the store. Even the dressing rooms were covered in gum, and the doors were barely hanging on the hinges. *shudder* I think I literally said "ew!" out loud when I walked in to try on the dress.

I think it's cute. I wore it with a white shrug. I also have a black shrug and a coral shrug that would look great with it as well. Versatile. That's what I like.

So today I happened upon another cute summer dress at Walmart of all places. I'm not a fan of Walmart. In fact, hubs and I boycotted the W for probably 8 years, but I'll spare you the long story. Anyway, my favorite pool float had a hole in it, so I went up there a little while ago to get another float. And soy milk. I happened to pass by the clothing area and saw the ca-utest dresses! Who knew?! At Walmart! I found this one and tried it on. It actually looked really cute on me! Miracle! I love these flowy sundresses. They can hide a multitude of issues (JLo booty, menstrual bloat, anything!)...The one I really wanted was orange (one of my fave colors!), brown and white. But they didn't have it in my size. My second choice was this pink, white and black one.

I love that it's a halter dress. I love that it fits. I love the pattern. Girly without being too girly.

The best part...

I think it would look cute with a pair of sandals. Or, my black and white Lucchese cowboy boots for when we go honky-tonking (aka hub's gigs).

So today I feel victorious. I love you, sundress.

Friday, June 19, 2009

I need your opinion

I'm out of ideas, so I need yours. :)

I have this glass candy dish (?) on a pedestal that my mother recently gave me. It was my grandmother's. She received it as a wedding present a gazillion years ago. At some point over the years, she broke the lid. I've been wanting this piece for a very long time, and finally wore my mother down and was able to get her to give it to me. ;) She doesn't part with family heirlooms often. So I'm happy to have this (though I still have my eye on my great-grandmother's cookie mom said I can have it once she dies...*rolling my eyes* ha).

So here's the problem...I don't know what to do with it anymore. During the Christmas season, it looks fantastic with colored glass balls. At one point, mom filled it with colored water and floating candles and used it as a centerpiece. But I'm stumped for ideas on what to put in it for every day use. It's very special to me, and I don't want to pack it up and pull it out only on special occasions. I want to display it every day. I currently have it on my kitchen table, though I had to put it on a wood table to take the pictures so you could see it. Everything I've tried with it just doesn't seem to work for me...seems too mundane, not quite special enough. Any ideas would be much appreciated!

And a little change with my garage sale candlesticks. I decided to use only green on them, and I wrapped the beaded garland around the candles instead of having it dangle. Hubs said he likes this better. And for him to say anything at all is highly unusual. He really doesn't care what I do with the decor. ha

Spent the morning walking around the square with hubs and Cissy, drinking coffee/tea from our favorite little coffee shop. Stopped by only one garage sale and found a pretty necklace and matching earrings ($2). Been home for about an hour. And it's only 10:30am. I've got a few errands to run, then some jewelry pieces I want to make. I'm hoping to squeeze a nap in somewhere. Also hoping to hit some g-sales tomorrow. I hope everyone has a blessed weekend!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Garage sale - before/after projects

This weekend we saw that a neighbor was having a garage sale, so we stopped by to see if they had anything I couldn't live without. I found a couple of things...both are things that I'd been searching high and low for, but never wanted to pay full price. Patience paid off.

First I found this set of nesting wrought iron outdoor side tables. Aren't they cute? They match my patio furniture PERFECTLY. And at $10, I couldn't leave them behind. However, they were the wrong color and the paint was a bit rusted.

After a little bit of black spray paint, they now are the perfect partner to my patio furniture! (the morning light is not great for these pictures, but you'll get an idea of how they look)

I've also been on the hunt for a pair of chunky funky candlesticks. This is something that can be very pricey, and because I'm frugal, I haven't wanted to pay full price. Besides, I change my mind on decor so often, it doesn't make sense for me to pay full price for anything. And because I worked in advertising for so many years for a major retailer, I saw the enormous amount of mark-ups that were given, I just can't bring myself to pay for anything at full price EVER. ;)

So that same garage sale had this pair of chunky funky candlesticks that I've been dreaming of. They were a really tacky gold/brass/patina color. I love a nice patina as much as the next girl, but I am not much into the gold/brass look. At $4, these were a steal. It would have been a sin to leave them behind!

I couldn't decide if I wanted to paint them black or brushed nickel, but since I had the black paint already out for the tables, I just went ahead and painted them black. I also bought two pillar candles for 50% off at Hobby Lobby. Then I added these really funky beaded garlands. I've been saving these for a long time, just waiting for the right project.

Unfortunately, the pictures aren't great. The lighting in my house is terrible for picture taking. I wish I could get a good picture of these, because they turned out really cute.

I found the garlands in Salado, TX at one of the many cute shops. They were only $6.50 a strand. I bought one green, one "topaz" and one pearl. I decided to save the pearl for another project. Those shops in Salado have these in every color imaginable, and they use them in such cool ways. They string them on anything you can think of. The best way I saw was on a chandelier. I wish I'd gotten a picture of it to show you all. Here in my town, I did see a couple of strands of these garlands at a boutique on the square, but they only had one or two color choices, and they were $14 each! Insane!

I'm pretty pleased. I wish the photos would do them justice. But then I never claimed to be a photographer. ;)

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Do you ever have days where you just don't want to get out of bed?

Saturday morning ramblings...

Most days I'm feeling good. I feel blessed. God has truly taken care of us during these times where so many people are having struggles with finances, health and more. And I don't want to sound ungrateful, because I am grateful. I'm so very thankful to the Lord for watching out for us, keeping us under His wing. But sometimes I feel like I'm spinning my wheels. I don't know what is in the future. For the first time in my life, I don't have a plan of action, a goal. And it's scary! The thought of going back to a corporate environment is so unappealing. I've been there and done that. I just want a simple life. My goal isn't (and never has been) to shoot up the corporate ladder. All I ever wanted was to do what I enjoy and be happy. However, after six months of being at home, I'm not quite sure what that is anymore. I've lost quite a bit of confidence in my abilities. Ideally, I'd love to find something creative that I could do from home, however, those opportunities seem to be few and far between, as are "regular" opportunities for that matter. I wish I didn't have this burden that I put on myself. I can't seem to find the motivation to do things I enjoy much less things I need to do because I'm a responsible adult. I don't know how to light my fire. So many other things I'd hoped for that can't or won't ever happen. But through it all, I still try to remain thankful. Sometimes I find it difficult not to be angry. I'm human, I can't help it. Then I try to remember that God is near, and His plan is better than any other I could have for myself. I just wish I had a little bit of guidance to show me the way...

Monday, June 1, 2009

Latest weekend garage sale finds

Well, this weekend I went to a few sales with Cissy the garage-sale-loving rat terrier. She loves going to sales, but never seems to buy anything. Hubs had been out of town, so he stayed home and slept in.

I saw lots of really good things, but not much in the way of what I needed/wanted. I did manage to pick up a couple of things.

Technically, this isn't a garage sale or thrift store find, but I did get it for a good price, so I consider it a thrifty deal. I collect vintage stained glass windows. I don't know why. I just love 'em. I hang them in my windows around the house. I'm starting to run out of windows to hang them in! :) I found this one at a local antique store. I thought the design was so sweet. I even ignored the fact that there's a crack in one of the clear pieces of glass. It's from England. Since it did have a crack, I asked for a discount and got it. Usually, around here, these windows for for $90+, even with cracks. I got it for $32. For that price, the crack doesn't bother me that much. It's character.

Here's a canvas I found for $2 that I plan on recycling. If I'd bought a canvas this size for new at the store, it would have been at least $20. See, it's even already sitting on my crafting table, ready for some gesso and paint! :)

I found these really cool iron things...I assume they are drink holders, but could also be used for candle holders. She had 10 of them, but I only bought 5. They were $1 each. I stuck them in the Indian Hawthorne for the time being.

For $1 I found this wood/metal frame. I'm going to put it on the patio with a little pot filled with trailing flowers or ivy. Cute! (See my new glider? I've been on the hunt for one of those for several summers and have never been willing to pay the price. Found one this year for a good deal. Love it!)

And lastly, two metal plate/picture frame holders and a sweet little basket. Each was a quarter. I'm going to take the checked bow off the basket and put something more "me" on it, then hang it by the garage door and use for extra sets of keys. I also found a set of king sheets, but no pic.

Did you find any good deals this weekend? Join the fun on the Southern Hospitality blog! We're sharing our garage sale/thrifting finds!