Vintage home decor – green bud vases

I love neutrals and white for home decor. It’s restful and feels very fresh and clean. And a great thing about neutrals? When you add a pop of color, it really shines. Case in point:

vintage green bud vases from Hearts Ease Vintage

See what I mean? Put these darling vases off-center on your thrifted coffee table, or on a shelf near your window. You’ll smile every time you see them.

I found them at Hearts Ease Vintage at Etsy – and you’ll find lots of fun goodies there. Salt spoons. A vivid red hat. Laura Ingalls Wilder 🙂

And lots more. You need to go look, you’ll thank me!

A beautiful quilt – and DIY inspiration!

I saw a beautiful – and inspirational! – quilt this morning at All People Quilting, part of the Better Homes and Gardens family:

Victoria Findlay Wolfe quilt at American Patchwork Quilting

Of course, just seeing this quilt is inspiring – the intricate, lovely design, and those cheerful happy colors! And then we get to the “DIY inspiration” I mentioned.

First, you could buy one from the designer, which would mean you’d have a beautiful piece of useable art and an heirloom for your kids. But if you want to Do It Yourself (or have to because, well, funds are limited) – think about it. You could use a quilt design as a template for recycled fabric scraps, discarded t-shirts, or old neckties, and use the design as a quilt – or as wall art.

Take the idea further – you wouldn’t have to use fabric. How about cut out magazine images? construction paper, or too-creased-to-use-again wrapping paper.

You see what I mean? Endless options – and using recycled materials, almost cost-free.

There are a LOT of inspiring quilts out there. Until you can buy one of these masterpieces, well, make your own!

Recycle Vintage Chandelier into Bird Feeder

This is good on so many levels. You reuse a cool vintage chandelier that comes from a thrift shop or your attic. So: recycled and re-used, which is wonderful.

And: you’re feeding birds! Also wonderful.

And: it looks so classy!

Vintage Chandelier becomes backyard bird feeder

I found this fun DIY over at Craftster.org which is so full of great projects, you could surf there for a year and still be finding new stuff.

But this one? is on top of the cool list 🙂

Maxi Dress refashioned into a Maxi Skirt

Are you always looking for ways to look chic, fashionable and fabulous – and not spend a lot of money? Yeah, welcome to the club. I just found this little DIY tutorial and it’s so simple – and smart – I just wanted to share. And there’s an added bonus, too 🙂

Savvy Lou DIY - maxidress to maxiskirt

Click on the pic and it takes you to her instructions and her blog. And, to give you an idea of the bonus I was talking about, look at this great outfit:

Savvy Lou Fabulous and Thrifty Outfit

The pic takes you to Savvy Lou’s blog – and her blog is the bonus. Why, you ask? Search for the entry that says “Classics With Taupe”, or just go halfway down the page, and you’ll find this breakdown of what she spent to create that super outfit:

Croft & Barrow shirt ($2, Salvation Army)
Investments skirt ($2, Goodwill)
Belt ($2, Salvation Army)
Wooden Bracelet (gift, Good Wood)
Merona Booties ($10.48, Target)
NewYork Color nail color, Flat Iron Green ($1, Dollar Tree)

You see what I mean? This girl is cute and dresses well and she’s SMART. She is a fashionista resource!

DIY jewelry storage

First – I am not organized by nature. I have to work at it, because if I don’t, stuff grows around me in piles and jumbles and pretty soon I can’t find anything and, well, you’ve been there, right? So: organization is good. DIY is good. Free or cheap is good.

Also Pinterest is good! Look at the terrific do it yourself jewelry storage idea I found today:

do it yourself jewelry storage

The back of the frame could be screening, or fabric, or foam core, or, well, lots of things that you could slip earring wires through – or stick pushpins in to hold necklaces – there are lots of alternatives. And you’ve probably got the iongredients sitting in your junk drawer. Go to Goodwill and find a frame for a dollar – spray paint it – and you’re on the way 🙂

And speaking of great storage and DIY organization ideas – follow that pin to its source and you’ll find I Heart Organizing Blog. Jen, the blogger, has TONS of great storage ideas over there. And it’s fun to read!

P.S. And if you’d like a little organizational help – check out Jen’s I Heart Organizing Etsy shop, too!

Before and After – Recycle Upcycle Refashion DIY

And then of course, if you’re feeling just a bit craftish, you can Do It Yourself. Sometimes this can be daunting, but you know, it doesn’t have to be. If you have no sewing skills at all this won’t be for you. But if you have just the bare basics – you’re good to go.

Take a look at One Little Momma’s self-described “Easiest, Quickest, Dress Refashion. Ever.”

thrift store dress to skirt refashion DIY

and here’s what it looked like before she transformed it:

thrift store dress to skirt refashion DIY

Yes, the sleeves were literally torn off, it was stained, etc. She gives clear instructions – with pics – on how she turned it into a cute wearable garment. Truly it’s not a big job. It cost her about a dollar, I think. And it has elastic in the waist now, so she can wear it while she’s expecting – and then later.

If you can’t sew – find some great vintage. If you CAN sew – find some great vintage and refashion it. Like I’ve said before – win/win 🙂

PS Plus her blog is full of great styling ideas and it’s just fun. Go read!

Fashion and Repurposing – Before and After

I have to say, it is so fun to discover new stuff out here in webland. You know I’m always on the lookout for vintage recycled and refashioned ideas – well I struck a gold mine today. I found a site called Refashionista.

The fabulous woman behind the blog is Jillian Owens. Her tagline says “I’ll change the way you think about fashion”. And man, she is good at what she does. What she does (among other really fun stuff) is find thrift store rejects, shows you what they look like “as is”, and then transforms them into something you would love to wear. And she shows you, with clear pics, how she does it!

For example, here’s a recent Before and After:

From this:
Refashionista thrifted dress - Before pic
to this!
Fashionista - thrifted dress revisited  this is the After pic

And look at this one:

From this:
red sweater - the Before pic
To this!
red sweater dress - the After pic

I would totally wear that dress! Well, assuming I had a cute figure like hers, anyway. She mentions in her article how much each of those cost – I think one was a family gift, and the other one cost…. wait for it… a dollar. One whole dollar.

Now that’s my kind of shopping. Go visit Jillian’s blog, she has tons of great ideas and she’s not even all Taking Herself Seriously.

Latest Development! Jillian accepted a challenge to remake a totally rejected garment EVERY DAY for a year. And showing us what she does and how she does it. And then – donating the refashioned garment to a shop where all the profits benefit a women’s shelter! Read about it here – and share the love!

DIY and Repurpose Old Desk to Nightstands

This is such an easy and obvious idea – once we’ve thought of it or (in my case) seen this darling example – it’s one of those slap-self-upside-head and say “WHY didn’t I think of that? I need nightstands!”

Recycle and Repurpose DIY craft - desk to nightstands

Isn’t that great? I don’t even need specific instructions. Remove the top, find a board or tray to use as a new top – and voila, you’ve got a nightstand that fits even in a small bedroom, that offers you STORAGE, that can be customized to your exact taste, and that you probably found at a thrift store for, what, $20? Or on Craigslist as a giveaway 🙂

And may I say, bless Pinterest! There are so many wonderful ideas over there – this one is originally credited to Sugar Bee Crafts. I couldn’t find the exact link to this dresser-to-nightstand idea but there are so many wonderful ideas over there – you’ll want to explore!

P.S. And I haven’t even mentioned – okay, haven’t *emphasized* – that this is one more useful and wonderful example of the Recycle, Reuse, and Rethink mantra that I love. That you love.