{thrifting 101: not your granny’s blanket}

This is one of those items you come across and you almost need a second opinion to confirm if it’s tacky cool or just tacky. I’m pretty sure it’s so tacky it’s cool. Check out this huge and colourful wool blanket I found on my latest thrift store adventure. The colour reeled me in and I didn’t have the will power to walk away. The first thing that popped into my head was how great it would be as a photo backdrop, so that’s what I did! Oh yeah, it also works well as a blanket. 


{DIY: one of a kind sweet table}

So this is actually both a Thrifting 101 and DIY post all rolled into one. It’s a fabulous (and sweet) DIY that uses items you can find at a thrift shop. See how it easy it is to make beautiful serving stands and put together a unique & impressive looking sweet table for your next event.

It’s pretty simple (read: craft prone proof) and the end result is beautiful & impressive. There is only 3 things you need to make these beauties – some glass candle stick holders, old plates and ceramic glue or epoxy. 
To get the best result, choose various heights of candle stick holders and I like them to all be a bit different in shape as well. 

As for the plates – choose a variety of colour/pattern/size. Try choosing ones that have details or colour on the border so the pretty part isn’t covered by the sweets on top. I particularly love the ones with gold detail, they look all fancy.

Next is the hard part, which isn’t very hard at all. Make sure the dishes and candle stick holders have been washed well & dry then put a generous amount of glue on the top of the candle holder and place (with the plate facing down) in the middle of the plate. Most plates have little brand marks in the centre to help you out or if you want you can figure it ahead of time and make a small mark. I just eye-balled it because I like to be crazy like that. 

Let them dry for a full day or follow instructions on the glue package and then voila! You have some beautiful looking sweet stands for your table. 

I cheated and picked up some of the sweets at My Market Bakery in Kensington Market but I did make the mini-cupcakes myself, thank you very much. Including the super cute toppers (bonus DIY!) They are also super easy to make and a great use for your washi tape. You just fold over the tape around a toothpick then cut out a little triangle to make the flag. Super. Easy. 

So there you have your 2 for the price of 1 with a bonus DIY post. I apologize if this would’ve been more helpful before the 3 bridal or baby showers you’ve already hosted this summer but hey, you can always find a reason to set up a sweet table. This would also be great for a wedding if you’re looking to add some uniqueness to your reception. Or just pull them out for a girly tea afternoon with friends. 

See more DIY posts here and more Thrifting 101 posts here

{thrifting 101: milk glass party}

I’m a sucker for milk glass, as anyone can see by the shelf full of the stuff in my own place. I love that it has such a distinctive vintage look but can also be incorporated in a more modern space (when done right). In a way it’s really timeless. Here are two great pieces I found at the local Good Will store. Don’t they look great together? It’s like they were meant to be together to help someone celebrate a sweet occasion. 

{thrifting 101: planter with a twist}

This is a double duty project – DIY and thrifting. I came across this huge glass jar. I didn’t know what I was going to do with it but I knew it was great so I scooped it up. 

It would make a great home for the start of a new or current collection (wine corks?) and it would make a fabulous terrarium but I’ve really been into leafy plants lately so I decided to make it a planter. The twist is that I decided to make it more interesting by adding some layers that you could see through the glass. 

I found these great stones & coloured sand at Ikea for a few dollars each as well as the plant. I had a bunch of soil left over from my patio planting last summer. 

So here’s an example where not everything always goes to plan. This was a bit of an experiment and overall it turned out well but there’s a few things I would’ve done differently. 

First I started off with stones on the bottom. I would actually put a small layer (3″) of soil down first if I did it again. Use both packs of stones for a layer above that. 

Next step: put some more soil and on top of that your coloured sand. Make sure you spread it nicely and pack it down a bit.  Lastly put some more soil and your plant. Super easy!

I got a little carried away with the soil but you may want to make the coloured sand layer lower so that there’s more empty space left at the top. In my case I needed to add a bunch of soil to cover the plant and it went right to the top. 

Overall I’m happy with the result and it fits in nicely in my new favourite green corner. 

Oh and look, there’s another great thrifting tip – you can use an old suitcase as a much more interesting and decorative way to store your vinyl collection. It invites people to take a peak instead of having them hidden in a cupboard.  

{thrifting 101: flower power}

There seemed to be a theme to my finds on my last visit to the thrift store – flowers! I swear I found all three of these items during one visit to one store, sometimes things just work like that. 

This super retro looking ashtray was just too pretty not to scoop up. In fact the word ‘ashtray’ to me seems too dirty for something this cute. This would be a great dish in your bathroom or bedroom for hairpins or rings. Or I guess it could be used as an ashtray, if you must. 

I’m a sucker for tins….like it’s probably gotten a little out of control. I usually don’t find true vintage tins in thrift stores, they’re more of a flea market find but my eyes lit up when I saw this colourful tin. I haven’t decided where it will live yet but everyone has something that needs a good storage space. Or you could take the lid off and use it as a vase with some really basic wild flowers or grasses.

Lastly is this huge vintage bedspread that I found. It’s so big that I can’t really show it all in a photograph. I was so drawn to the colours and velvet-like texture but I had walked away from it because I just didn’t know what I would do with it. But before I cashed out I had to go back and grab it because it was just too nice to look at. I love the vibrant colours and contrast between the random flowers and the orderly pattern. 

When I brought it home I took it out on the deck to take pictures and realized that it looks amazing on the ground and would make a super cozy rug (shoes off please) with a bunch of big pillows tossed on top for extra seating. 

thrifting 101: be the bartender}

The theme of this thrifting 101 post is all about cocktail hour. It’s also about patience. If you wait long enough you will find that your random finds can make a fabulous collection. These are all items I found at thrift stores for a few dollars each and over time I’ve got a great looking vintage barware collection. 
Now just add some fresh (or faux) flowers, a cute accessory and of course some of the good stuff to drink and you have yourself a bar that’s ready for some fancy cocktails. (ps: the tray is also a thrift store find)

{thrifting 101: dress it up}

Today’s thrifting lesson takes us away from housewares and into the world of fashion. I think vintage fashion is what intimidates most people. You may question if it’s actually stylish or just tacky, you’re not sure if you can pull it off, and you don’t know what you can mix it with. All totally legitimate thoughts. I remember thinking all the same things. I think it takes confidence to wear vintage but the good news is you can slowly build the confidence and I believe anyone can wear it.

What I love about vintage is that not only are you channeling a specific style and moment in time but it really lets you show off your style and personality and most importantly you won’t see anyone else wearing the same outfit!

I recruited my beautiful friend & vintage lover, Jess, to help me model a bunch of my most recent and favourite vintage finds. We had a ton of fun styling these dresses and Jess was a natural in front of the camera.

I would say the biggest tip for vintage dresses is it’s all about the styling. If you’re feeling super confident in your vintage matching skills then find a great vintage purse or boots to go with your outfit. But if you don’t have a big collection to choose from I recommend updating the look with more modern accessories.

I have a little bit of a vintage purse problem as you can see but I almost always mix my dresses with a new pair of shoots or boots. 
Here’s a small taste of my collection – 99% of which I found at thrift stores.  I’ve come to terms with the fact that I can’t keep all these or my closet will overflow. So I’ve started an Etsy shop to sell my dresses and feed my little hobbie. Some of these are my personal favs that I’m not quite ready to part with but many of them and more are in my shop and I will be adding more soon. (more dresses and also boots & purses to come)
Take a look and be inspired by the styling. Tights are a great way to update a vintage dress. Probably my number one tip when it comes to updating vintage dresses is edit your hemline. By shortening a hem you instantly make the dress more youthful, flirty and trendy. A few inches above the knee is a flattering length on most people without looking like you were shopping at Forever21. 

Visit my Etsy shop here

Happy vintage shopping. Have fun with it!