Category Archives: thrifting

Thrift Swap

A few months back, the lovely Megan from Kiddo TV emailed me and asked if I’d like to participate in a little thrift swap. Her idea was that we would each play stylist and go shopping for each other based on our size, style, and a few requests/prompts. The swap was open for clothes, accessories, and shoes and we’d mail the items once we got them. I thought that sounded like a blast, so I immediately agreed!

I actually found all the stuff I got for Megan on the epic thrifting trip I shared here! Makes my lucky shopping day seem even luckier, right? I was stupid and didn’t think to photograph what I got for her, but here are the goodies she sent to me!

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Did she do well or what?! I immediately loved the totally 90s floral print dress and leopard scarf–definitely items that I would’ve snatched up myself in a heartbeat! The little black backpack is so perfectly 90s with the dress and is definitely a fun little accessory. The black vest might’ve passed my notice at the store, but I knew it would be a great way to mix up some dresses and skirts!

Here’s how I styled my new clothes!

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Dress, Backpack: Thrifted c/o Megan | Faux Leather Jacket, Over-the-Knee Socks, Flats, Flower Hair Pins: Target | Collar Necklace: The Foundrie

I wanted to add some edge to the dress with my faux leather jacket, but I also had to sweeten it up even more with my collar necklace and over-the-knee socks.

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Scarf, Vest: Thrifted c/o Megan | Tights: Pamela Mann Hosiery via Amazon.com | Heels: Banana Republic | Tunic: Thrifted

I assumed that the floral dress would be my hands-down favorite, but this is the outfit I kept on for the rest of the day! The vest fit really well gave much needed structure to that frilly tunic. I love the way the bottom of it looks, but I often think it’s difficult to style just right. Now I have a good go-to solution!

Thanks again, Megan for this super fun collaboration! I love a good thrifting/styling challenge. :)

Estate Sale-ing

My good friend, Erika, came in town this past weekend to visit and I suggested we get up early on Saturday morning, get coffee, and hit some estate sales! Erika, being the best, enthusiastically responded so off we went on an estate sale-ing adventure! She’s a perfect hunting buddy because we both enjoy taking time and looking around, but our tastes are different enough that we don’t often compete over the same item. ;)

We ended up visiting 6 different sales (!!!) before 1pm and I got quite the haul of goodies! I drug along my DSLR and tried to get decent photos to share, but it’s often awkward pulling out a fancy camera in someone’s home and asking to take photos, so hopefully what I did get will suffice!

#1 was set up in a super cute little store front in the historic Soulard neighborhood.

Ahh, what an exciting mess to sort through! ;)

This sale had some interesting, quirky items. For example, an old lightbox used for dental x-rays and the gas mask pictured above!

No photos from sale #2. It ended up being in an upscale apartment complex for seniors and there wasn’t much that was too pretty to look at.

#3 was a gorgeous, huge home in the fancy Ladue area. Erika and I love getting peaks into beautiful houses, so naturally we tried to pick some fancy places to go investigate!

Erika found this cute wooden paperweight(?) of the University of Chicago–a perfect little gift for a friend who graduated from there. How sweet is the little cat?!

The basement was full of cool stuff! Notice the white lacy dance costume and box of wallpaper samples–how did I resist, right?

Sale #4 was the most interesting. This one didn’t open until 10am–in fact, a lot of the sales we found online didn’t open until 9 or 10. What gives?! I woke up at 7:30am, ready to go! That is no small feat for me. This home was pretty close to the last one and it was about 9:50 at the time, so we figured we could see all the good stuff by showing up right when it opened.

It was nuts! There was a long line outside the door and signs warning that prices were final, silver was priced above scrap value, and scales for weighing precious metals weren’t allowed! Hardcore. Kind of intimidating. They were at capacity inside the home and only let in a few people at a time as others exited.

It was worth the wait! The family that used to live there had my kind of taste! Gorgeous furniture with custom upholstery, lovely floral wallpaper, crown molding everywhere… and all the goodies for sale were great, too. I almost snatched up that super cute bird embroidery!

This adorable chair has Erika’s initials! Haha, well, her maiden name initials. If I was her, I wouldn’t have been able to resist it. And how stunning is that yellow wallpaper?! It killed me!

No photos from #5 either. It was pretty modest, but I found an amazing gem there that I’ll share another time! 8)

#6 was suppose to be our grand finale. A four family sale in a beautiful historic home in the dreamy Central West End neighborhood.

It ended up being a mediocre yard sale. Didn’t even get a peak inside the house. Boooo.

And here’s what I ended up taking home with me!

1. 2 Metal Card Holders (50 cents each)
I’ve been working on collecting these sorts of things for displays on my craft sale table–creeping ever closer! December 15! Eeeep. These guys will be for postcards. :)

2. Roll of Butcher Paper ($2.00)
This is seriously a jackpot for me! Drawing and painting on brown butcher paper is my favorite!

3. Vintage Bag ($5.00)
I’m not sure if this is an old doctor’s bag or just a carry-on type, overnight thing or what, but it’s so pretty. I have such a hard time resisting a big old vintage bag!

4. Rectangle Basket ($2.00)
More for my sale table display! I thought the basket would be a cute touch. I want to spray paint all the displays to match–maybe white or pale pink.

5. Vintage Fur Stole ($15.00)
Okay, okay, I know this is a controversial item. I’ve always been against wearing real fur, even vintage fur. I just feel like it’s an unnecessary cruelty in today’s society and it just kinda weirds me out. I’ve been slowly warming to the idea the vintage fur, though, and this stole is the perfect accessory to make my old pea coat feel different and special again… idk, y’all. It still makes me conflicted.

6. Vintage Christian Dior Coin Purse ($2.00)
This little purse is in perfect condition and still has a little hand mirror inside! I couldn’t resist!

7. Box of Envelopes (50 cents)
So great for thank yous and miscellaneous mailers! I was really excited to find these.

8. Clip-on Bow Ties ($2.00 each)
Bows. Typical Michelle weakness.

9. Mouse Clasp Belt ($6.00)
This cost more than I’d usually pay for a second-hand belt but that mouse clasp is AMAZING! I’ve been wanting a belt with a cute animal clasp and this felt like destiny.

10. Scarves ($2.00 each)
I try to be a careful judge when buying scarves. It’s so easy to go overboard and just want them all, but these two were lovely little additions to my collection.

11. Gold Bow Necklace (25 cents)
Again, bows. Enough said. I’m sold!

12. Belt ($2)
Always on the look out for belts in this style!

13. Floral Blazer ($3.00)
My eye was immediately drawn to this baby from across the room, but I dismissed it as maybe not so practical a choice. After trying on some sweaters and a little urging from Erika, I tried the blazer on and the fit was so perfect, I just had to take it home with me!

All-in-all, I got some practical items and crossed some things off my long time thrift hunting list, but I still spent every penny of my allowed estate sale budget. Haha, this is why I don’t let myself go very often! ;) It certainly makes for a fun Saturday morning, though, and hopefully Erika will be in town to go with me again soon!

Antique Mall Adventures

Like any good blogger, I love thrift shopping. The thrill of hunting to find a hidden treasure, knowing you’ve got something unique and weird, and marveling at the human tendency to hoard like a magpie–all part of the fun!

I go hunting for clothes more often than other goodies, so I sometimes skip antique malls or flea markets in favor of a Goodwill, Salvation Army, etc, but the other day I had some time to kill before a painting class so I decided to wander through an antique mall that’s right next door to one of my favorite clothing thrift stores. I don’t think I’d ever even been inside it before!

As any experienced thrifter knows, you can’t take home everything that catches your eye, so I thought I’d take some photos with my phone and share my favorite finds with you! “Finding” is the real thrill, right? So I still get some enjoyment taking a photo with me at least. :)

This dreamy pink lamp caught my eye right away! It’s the perfect shade(pun intended, always!) and was in amazing condition. At $42, I would’ve had to have been specifically searching for a lamp for me to consider actually snagging it. :/

I love the mustard tray with hand painted flowers! This would be a perfect pop of color on a shelf or table with a small bowl or little stack of books on top.

Matching set of Abe Lincoln book ends! Very cool.

I had to zoom in and press my face against the glass to get a photo of these adorable sterling silver bow earrings! If you know me at all, you know that I am nuts over bows on anything and everything and these babes would’ve been mine in a heartbeat if I didn’t have gauged ears. :(

Super cute bike!

Adorable cookie jar. I know the right kitchen could really pull it off!

Okay, so I’m not athletic in any way, shape, or form, so maybe these bags are really common and I’m going to sound silly gushing, but I’d never seen one before! Amazing vintage tennis bag with a racket-shaped side pocket.

You guys. Colonel Sanders Balloon Racing Team 1978. This glass tumblr would’ve been mine in a heartbeat but it was like $7.00. idk idk

I wore this purse around the antique mall for like 20 minutes trying to decide if I wanted it. I mean, there’s a big bow on it! Plus, it was only $2.75. I ended up leaving it. I’m really trying to make smart thrift decisions lately and I would rather buy fewer, high quality bags than a bunch of cheap ones that clutter up my closet. Plus, I’m pretty sick of my other black shoulder bag right now and I know I wouldn’t use this one enough to justify it. SIGH.

Pretty sweet embroidery art of St. Francis of Assisi throwin’ down to some animal homies. It was so big, too! At least 20″ wide.

I’m not a paint-by-numbers collector myself, but I’m sure someone will be very excited to stumble upon this one!

I gasped aloud when I saw this dress. I have a weakness for 80s peplum dresses with loud, tacky patterns, so I felt like I hit the jackpot. Unfortunately this one was way overpriced–it even had a broken zipper ugh–so I didn’t even tempt myself by trying it on. :(

So concludes my little adventure! I was very practical and proud of myself. I ended up spending $4.17 on two picture frames in perfect sizes for a couple of prints I’ve been wanting to frame. Just need to clean them up a bit and spray paint them!