Archive | May, 2011

Thrifty Finds: Cake Plates and Serving Platters

31 May

I decided that my next thrift store hunt would consist of searching for vintage and/or unique candle sticks and parfait glasses after running across these fabulous DIY cake plates below:

via Reclaimed Studio

via Reclaimed Studio

I’ve actually been eyeing some pretty nice vintage milk glass cake plates on eBay, but since I already have a fairly extensive plate collection going on (I’ve been building up my collection for over a year now in order to make a plate mural like these) I thought why not make my own!?

So I hit up the Salvation Army and wouldn’t you know they were having a 50% off sale on all their dishes and dinnerware items, which included candlesticks!  Here’s the loot I ended up walking out of there with:

  1. Eleven brass candlesticks.  Nine of which were $.79, two of which were $1.99 BEFORE the 50% off!
  2. A small lamp for Olive’s room for $1.99 (will be removing or DIYing the lampshade)
  3. Two matching brass lamps, one was $8.99 and the other was $12.99 (will be getting different lampshades and going on my new entryway credenza, details on that coming soon!)
  4. A cute little vintage purse box?  I was really interested in it as an inspiration piece for my next few painting projects, and it was only $1.99.
  5. Glass tumbler with a cute little Indian girl on it for $.99 plus 50% off.
  6. An oval plate for $3.99 before getting 50% off (thought it would make a lovely bottom tier for a multi-tiered serving platter)
  7. And this set of dishes and three matching tea-cups was actually scored for FREE!  Yes, F R E E!  Before I headed to the Salvation Army, I took the bags of donations that Rob cleared from his closet (more on that here) to the goodwill donation station in the Albertson’s parking lot near my house, there were several boxes of someones garage sale leftovers just sitting next to the dumpster ready for the taking, so I rummaged through them and nabbed these lovely blue rose plates and cups, SCORE!

And for a closer look:

Not too shabby for just over thirty bucks!

And here’s a preliminary design for a serving platter that I just threw together real quick for picture-taking sake:

I imagine cheese and crackers on the bottom plate, maybe some grapes on the next one up, and small nuts or candies on the top saucer, with some kind of dipping sauce or mustard in the very top tea-cup.  What do you think?  I think it’s super cute and best of all, I made a four-tiered serving platter for only a buck twenty!!! Craziness!

This post is linked up to Vintage Revivals, click the button below to see what other bloggers out there have been thrifting themselves!



Typewriting for Creativity’s Sake

23 May

I gifted this book to myself for Christmas last year, and if you are a creative person but happen to work in a not-so-creative office setting like myself, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you read it.  It couldn’t be further from the truth.  So I decided to put some of what is suggests into action today: 

Not quite a masterpiece, but definitely a tad bit of a creative outlet. 

There is only one typewrite on all of the 16 floors of the office building that I work in, which is no big deal since I only have to use it on very rare occasions (not sure of whom else uses it and how often, but I use it about once a month or less).  When I do need to use it though, I have to refer back to my email history to remember on which floor it is located.  So today I decided to put an end to the email searching and make a little note for my bulletin board of its whereabouts, all the while fulfilling a slight creative itch that beckons for attention throughout my otherwise dull and creative-less days at the office.  So rather than just hand-write a note (which is actually suggested in the book to do as a way of being creative, but was not the best suited creative outlet for me in this very instance) I decided to take it a step further and typewrite the note, since it so fittingly went with the whole purpose of the note to begin with. 

There it sticks, just below the white arrow.

 Ahh, to the little things.  And you know, taking a few seconds to select a post-it size and color, and deciding on wording and spacing actually brought a little not-at-all-guilty pleasure to my day!

Out With the Old, and In With the … Older (?)

19 May

As I mentioned in this post about my spring cleaning consisting mostly of getting rid of unneeded and unwanted clothing items, I also happened to get rid of some unneeded and unwanted furniture items during my spring cleaning purgation fest.  This all kind of happened as a result of my visit to the Salvation Army, the same visit at which I bought my new dresser.  Not only did I buy the new dresser, I bought a new (well new-to-me) sofa as well!!!  And as a matter of fact, it’s the very first sofa I’ve ever bought, so this is kind of a big deal for me.  I went to the Salvation Army in hopes of finding the perfect dresser (which I did) and in doing so I just so happened to find this lovely sofa too:

I know, I know this granny-esque style of sofa is not for everybody, but for me it was  And it was clean!  It smelled good!  The cushions were perfectly intact and comfy! The tag and lining underneath the seat cushions looked as if it had never been used!  It was the perfect shade of green!  And it was only $169.00!  S.O.L.D.  I imagined it going perfectly in the green room… but then I started to think… where would the sofa that is already in the green room go?  Hmmm?  So I went home without actually buying it to think about whether I really needed to buy a sofa or not…

After getting home, I looked at the sofa that we had in the green room (which was furniture of Rob’s from back in his bachelor days) and upon looking at it over and over again, I decided it really needed to go:

Those frumpy cushions on back, yuck!  The worn out seat cushions, eww!  And it had a burn hole right in front and center… yeah it was time to let this thing go… big time!

So, with Rob’s approval, I posted that bad boy on Craigslist!  And you know how it goes when posting things on Craigslist, if you’re gonna post one thing, you might as well post everything else you’ve got, right!?  So I posted the following three items as well:

My trip to the Salvation Army and all these items getting posted on Craigslist took place on a Friday after work, and then first thing the following Saturday morning I went to buy my “new” sofa, which to my delight was marked 25% off!  Hoorray for waiting one more day to buy!

So after first selling the lovely, tufted orange chairs (I really loved them, they were super comfy and very cool, but the color just wasn’t the right shade of orange for the room, so they had to go) for $140, it was like I got the new sofa for free.  Oh how I love thee Craigslist!

And then I let the cradle go for $25, and the also lovely yellow velvet rocker (it had no place to call home in our house, so I decided to let it go) for $80.  Making over $100 from items I just had lying around the house that rarely ever got used.  This made me happy, very happy.  Oh, and as far as the junky old sofa goes, we got a whopping 40 bucks for it after having it listed for 3 weeks, first at $100, then $80, then $60, then finally at it’s selling price of $40 (wop, wop, sorry Rob).

But in the end, doing away with things from around the house that rarely (or sometimes never) get used isn’t always about the money you can recoup, but more so about purging and letting go of them.  There is something so refreshing and rewarding about letting go of unused things, especially large things that take up lots of space!

So there’s the final piece (read about the closet cleaning, dresser renewing, and furniture moving that took place right here, here, and here) to the whole getting rid of things/spring cleaning hullaballoo that went down this past March and April.  Have any of you gotten rid of anything(s) that basically just sit around taking up space in your house, or have you bought or sold anything from Craigslist lately?  Tell me about it 🙂

This post is linked up to Vintage Revivals, click the button below to see what other bloggers out there have been thrifting themselves!

Bedroom Progress Part III – The Big Table and Dresser Shift About the House

6 May

This is kind of a “behind the scenes” look at what was happening in conjunction with parts I and II of our bedroom progress.  Let’s recap: in part I, we purged clothing and reorganized Olive’s closet, and in part II, I renewed an old dresser that was in my bedroom and moved it into Olive’s room .  Which brings us to the “final” segment of this whole spring-cleaning-turned-clothing-reorg-turned-furniture-shifting project that has so appropriately been named: The Big Table and Dresser Shift About the House! (I’m trying to make this sound as exciting as possible).

As I mentioned in part I, I purchased a tall seven-drawer dresser from the salvation army a few weeks prior to my embarking upon this task-turned-entire-room-overhaul, which was basically the catalyst to this whole endeavor:

new dresser = clothing purgation/reorganization


new furniture = the shifting of old furniture throughout the entire house

Let’s take a quick gander at said new-to-me dresser before getting into the nitty-gritty of all the furniture moving that took place:

I L.O.V.E. this piece of furniture!  It’s tall, slender, and already divided into small sections for easy and effective organization.  It even has smaller sections within two of the drawers which I designated for my less-often used jewelry and glasses collection (no need to share what’s in the other five drawers, just your basic unmentionables, use your imagination… err don’t) :

Ahhhh, serenity.

But before things became all cozy and squared away in the dresser department in my bedroom, a succession of table and dresser shift-arounds throughout the rest of the house ensued.  The “table situation” began in Olive’s room when we had family in town for my brother’s wedding back in March.  Three of  said family members were cousins between the ages of 4 and 9, all of whom spent a lot of time tearing everything  apart playing in Olive’s room, resulting in this:

… and this:

Holy cow, whatamess!!!!

So began the plight for containing, controlling, and organizing everything within the confines of this room, which somehow tailspinned into moving furniture, namely tables, throughout the house.

First, I moved Olive’s cubby-table, (part of the IKEA Stuva series) which contained mostly art supplies, from the less-often used blue/art room into her much-more-often used bedroom where it could serve better as a toy separating and containing unit since she obtained an obscene amount of teansey-tiny little toys for her birthday and Christmas this past December:

Sidenote:  WARNING to all new moms – as your child gets bigger, their toys get smaller.

Looking better already!

Next, I made the executive decision to completely remove the round table since she already has a smaller square table in there, and also since she gained some surface space on the cubby-table that was just brought in.  So out from her bedroom and into the entryway it went:

… and:

Much better indeed!  I really like how the round table pairs perfectly with the round rug.  Where did the white table that was in the entryway go, you ask?  Well into my bedroom of course:


Still a work in progress, but much better placed in the bedroom than in the entryway nevertheless.

And last but not least, while I was on a roll,  I moved a shelf/table that was doing nothing more than sitting next to the front door in the blue room holding leftover frames (amongst other things) from this wall of frames project into my bedroom as well:

It’s definitely serving a much better purpose in the bedroom than sitting by the front door that we hardly ever use.

Whew!  All that table and dresser shifting about was kind of a task, but so worth it in the end.  It was actually refreshing to make better use of things that we already had in the house, that’s always a bonus!

Now let’s take a side-by-side look-see at how things were before and how they are now in each of these rooms:

Olive’s room before:

And now:

Entryway before:

And now:

My bedroom before:

And now:


And now:

And finally before:

And now:

Wow, that’s a lot of photo-info thrown at you all at once, but there were quite a few changes that were made and it was much easier to show than tell about them.   And as you may have noticed in the labeling of “in progress” on some of these pics, things are still-a-changing in both the bedrooms. 

Update:  Olive’s bedroom has recieved even further organization since this post, check out all the details on that right here

Thanks for looking!

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