Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Craft Area Makeover

Fueled by a maddening desire to find art supplies without them tumbling on my head when I open the closet, I made a late night run to the hideously evil Walmart- desperate for more storage. $50 ($25 for each tall bookshelf) got me exactly what I needed, affordable storage that makes my supplies readily available.

In Progress. One Bookshelf up, One More to Go:

I was up until the witching hour feverishly constructing book shelves and organizing art supplies. I still have more boxes to sort through and organize but so far the new Art Supply Storage Center is encouraging me to create and resume projects long abandoned (because I couldn't find them!).

I feel guilty over my desperate late-night Walmart purchase, but who knows when Lady Thrifty Lucky would grant me the perfect curio cabinet I craved for storing my art supplies.

 [Pictured Above, Humble Beginnings: The dining/craft room the weekend I moved into my apartment 2 months ago.] Was I to live in utter chaos until that magical day? Patiently awaiting a cabinet that may never come?

[Pictured Left, The Hideous and Maddening Clutter of one of my hallway closets, stuffed with Art Stock that needs to be sold and art supplies. The chaos in this photo ain't the half of it]

To punish me for my impatience I'll find the perfect cabinet for a fraction of the funds I paid for my flimsy Walmart book shelves, such is the cruel law of Thrift.

Other Recent Room Renovations: 

This post is linked to: Welcome Wednesday / Works for Me Wednesdays / Creative Therapy Session / Show and Tell / Penny Pinching Party / We Did it Wednesdays / Make it Yours Day / Whatever Goes Wednesday / Room to Inspire/ Women Who do it All / Hoo's Got Talent / We Can Do it Cheaper / Transformation Thursdays

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Frugal Lunch for the Busy Professional

When you're at the office for 10-12 hours per day, a healthy and beautiful lunch brightens up the day. I've been uninspired to pack lunch, but Just Bento's  simple Rice Cooker Frittata recipe has me inspired to cook again!

Here's the simple dish fresh out of the rice cooker. I basically followed The Recipe Instructions by wilting the vegetables I had on hand (zukini, yellow squash, bok choy, asparagus, mushroom) and tossing them into the olive oil greased rice cooker along with 6 beaten eggs, salt, and pepper.

Soon after I easily extracted a delicious frittata with a nice spongy texture, better than oven cooked ones I've tried before.
Here it sits at the office, awaiting lunch time when it will be happily consumed with green tea. My "lunch bag"(first picture in this post) holds my bento lunches and accommodates a couple of fruits or other snacks, too. I love being frugal and packing my own lunch.

A Note on Thriftcore's Content: If you look at my projects list on my portfolio you'll see a rogue's gallery of ventures that keep me busy from 6AM to Midnight. My energy and optimism has fizzled and as I write this I feel my life force draining. The paramedics might find my skeletal remains soon, my bony fingers still gripping the keyboard, frozen in my last agonizing moments of living...

I have some good content on the way. Detailed frugal tutorials, inspirational room transformations, it's all coming and I've been working on it all behind the scenes for weeks. I can't wait to debut it all, so continue to check back because some good-ass articles with plenty of research and editing behind them are on the way!

This post linked at: The Happiness Project / New Nostalgia / Silly Little Sparrow / Today's Creative Blog / Review Retreat / Craft Edition / Tuesday Tagalong

Monday, June 28, 2010

Yard Sale Haul, Make Your Own Stones, Books & More

This weekend I continued my seemingly eternal organization and purging. Yet again I donated a box of stuff then came home with another after stopping by a yard sale. I paid $16 for:

 - Three retro interior design books

- A giant pack of scrapbook paper. You can kill someone if you drop it on their head, it's like a phone book of colorful patterns. I use this paper for random crafts and art pieces.

- Three Word Stones kits, 2 bucks each. I've always wanted one of these...

- A big stack of Jacksonville magazine for .25 cents and some other miscellaneous interior design magazines

- The homeowner asked if I was Hispanic. When I said yes she gave a stack of "Hispanic" magazine and a stack of "Hispanic Trend" for free

I'm physically and mentally exhausted from my home purge, so it's ironic that I bought home more thrifted goods.  Ah, the painful cycle continues...

Blog post featured at: I Just Whipped Something Up Monday / Metamorphosis Monday / Making The World Cuter / Motivate Me Monday / Southern Hospitality Blog / Thrift Share Monday / Debbiedoo's Thrift Share / Twice Owned Party

Friday, June 25, 2010

Thrift Store Fun & Funnies

Whenever the world has me so stressed  that I want to kick a stranger in the face, a trip to a thrift or antique store relaxes me.I haven't shopped at a mall in months, and I don't miss bright lights and blaring music from hit music stations. I like the relaxed, slow pace required for thrift shopping.Go too fast and you'll miss buried treasure.

Like these beautiful Japanese houses. They were very heavy and could have been bronze. At $25 each I couldn't afford them, but they are so damn lovely.

Or these unique ketchup and mustard dispensers. How...charming...
 My friend Marianne shows us a suspiciously phallic ketchup dispenser. I think even Freud would say this one is too easy.
Yes, we did get strange glances for playing with these and making sound effects like 12-year-olds.

Make it stop!
I love selling collections lined up. The boats are beautiful. Soft lighting entrances you, drawing you in...

Beautiful Asian objects. I love the goldfish, the rabbit, and the tiny powder blue tea pot. Oh, and everything else, too.
 Delicious stimulation and so many smiling treasures. I like all the planters, which included a fish and an owl (cropped in this photo). Does anyone know what in particular was always grown in these retro ceramic planters? Succulents? Cacti?

This weekend I have immense workload of cleaning, organizing, researching, and writing. But I think I'll squeeze in a yard sale or two. And perhaps a trip through some St. Augustine Thrift stores? And some beach?! Ah, can't wait... 

This Post is Linked to: Frugal Friday / Feature Yourself Friday / Furniture Feature Friday / Finding Fabulous / Tidy Mom / Favorite Things Fridays / Flaunt it Friday / Social Parade Follow Friday / Fun to Craft 

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Top Tips for Decluttering Your Art Studio


A friend recently purchased me a copy of Cloth Paper Scissors' Studios Magazine and I've been slowly soaking in all the art and inspiration like a sponge. My favorite part of this magazine are the decluttering tips. All artists and thrifters need these. The following is my re-adaptation of featured expert organizer Barbara Tako's tips (
Controlled chaos is stimulating for many creative people. But when chaos gets out of control and clutter starts to impede your creativity, it may be time to cut back on your stash and re-organize.  

Take Small Steps

Spend 5-10 minutes a day working on the clutter instead of cleaning in big bursts. I did this- now it'll take me a whole day of cleaning straight to get my house back in order. (Boxes....everywhere...) 

Toss the "Guilt" Items
You don't want to get rid of something because you "paid too much for it", "it was a gift", or "I might use this one day".  Shut off the voice in your head and toss the junk, you'll feel relieved when it's gone.

The 80-20 Rule
"You spend 80 percent of your time with 20 percent of your stuff. You're just storing the rest."

Form New Habits
Toss trash as soon as you see it. Wash a dish as soon as you use it. Continue to exercise your new habits and your work space won't get cluttered again.

Everything in its Place
Don't store the same stuff in multiple places. Rubber stamps go in one place, paint brushes in another. Always store your supplies in the same place- nothing ruins your flow like having to dig for a certain tube of paint or a certain type of paper. Use labels if necessary.

 I wrote about this artistic and inspired space here. Some people just see a lot of clutter but an artist might see an inviting place to work and live. Organized doesn't imply that everything is out of sight and spartan.

Group Like Things Together
Keep the stamps and their ink pads together, keep the paint brushes near the paint. Keeping things in their "collective" makes working so much easier.

Organize to Suit Yourself
How do you work? Standing up? At a desk? Sitting down? Note the rhythms of your day and your style of working, then organize accordingly. Don't imitate something you see if a magazine if it doesn't suit your style, or you'll mess up your work flow.

My favorite tip from Barbara is, "Organized doesn't mean that everything is out of sight". Sometimes having supplies displayed is inspirational and will inspire you to work while also being organized and effective.

This post is linked to: Get Your Craft on Thursdays / Somewhat simpleTransformation Thursdays / Show off Your Stuff / Hooking Up with HOH / Just a Girl / It's Party Time

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Thrifty Bedroom Makeover Before and After

 This is yet another room makeover, following my Quick Desk Makeover. This weekend I'll add my painted bed frame (it's outside drying) paint the room, and hang more art. But so far it's already a big improvement over the BEFORE:

Cringe in horror - this is the room AFTER about an hour of cleaning and organizing. Yes, I could barely walk in here. I blame my 50 hour a week job and a million other commitments for this mess of monstrous proportions.

I know this is a subpar and boring "Transformation", but it's better than the bedroom at my new apartment has looked before. After paint and some better balance this room will look much better.
 The Desk Corner. I'll hang some curtains on this side too.
This small thrifted "table" (actually a tray and stand) cost me $3 total. I can't believe I forgot to brag about it in Monday's Thrift Post. I bought it at a very beautiful thrift store.

This Quick Makeover took about two hours, I did it while listening to/watching the beautiful Interstella 5555 on YouTube. I only slept for 3.5 hours but it was worth it. Settling into this new apartment has been a slow and satisfying process, but it's time to pick up the pace! 

This post is linked to: Welcome Wednesday / Works for Me Wednesdays / Creative Therapy Session / Show and Tell / Penny Pinching Party / We Did it Wednesdays / Make it Yours Day / Whatever Goes Wednesday / Room to Inspire/ Women Who do it All / Hoo's Got Talent / We Can Do it Cheaper

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Thrifty Vegetables: Still Growing Our Own

This picture is from a couple of weeks ago. The produce is from our Community Garden. We've come a long way, and we'll only continue to grow (pun intended).

Right now my first Black Seaman tomato is finally ripening (after sitting green on the vine for a month, torturing me). I have plenty of bell peppers waiting for me in my garden plot and in pots at my apartment. I'm letting some more eggplants grow and I have tomatoes, eggplants, and bell peppers in the fridge ready to be sliced and eaten or frozen.

"Garden Scramble" from Ani Phyo's raw food cookbook. It's not very photogenic, but it was delicious and made from home grown veggies. She makes a variation of it on YouTube

Since it's actually easier to grow vegetables from Late August to November here in sweltering, humid North Florida I'm starting some fall seeds now. Tonight I'm going for:

- Tomatoes (Zapotec Pink Pleated, Black Seaman, Cherokee Purple, Stiped Roman. ONE of each)
- Nasturtrium
- Purple Basil
- Various mints
- Assorted Herbs (starting an herb bed at the community garden)

What are you growing this year? I can't wait to get back out to the garden and cultivate some more beauties.

This post linked at: The Happiness Project / New Nostalgia / Silly Little Sparrow / Today's Creative Blog / Review Retreat / Craft Edition / Tuesday Tagalong

Monday, June 21, 2010

Thrifted Art and the Prettiest Thrift Store

I had a very full, fun, and thrifty weekend. There was a beach visit, some cleaning and organizing, and glorious thrifty finds. The two beautiful and artistic vintage purses in the picture above were $1 each. The Namco 5 games in one set was $3 at a yard sale, the sunglasses were $2. If you look closely you'll see a 1950s Japanese little-girl planter I bought for $1.

 This screen print reads "Copyright the Nestle Company, Inc 1975" on the bottom right, it's signed Barry Ross. The thrift store owner has it erroneously labeled as watercolor on canvas and sold it to me for $6. She threw in the mat and frame I found (picture above) for free.

This fish "applique" was made in the San Blas island of Panama by a member of the Kuna Indian tribe. It's called a Mola. It was sold to me for $6 and it will be beautiful matted and framed.I plan to sell this and did a lot of research to find a fair price, but I'll be sad to see it go. I love the colors and graphic design.

This studio pottery teapot and cup was a happy find for $2.50, the set of owl cups was $4. I've already used the teapot to steep yerba mate to great effect.

The cup doubles as a "lid" for steeping the tea and for storage. I think this design is brilliant. Unique looking, a bit sculptural, and resourceful. 

The thrift store I purchased the art and vintage purses from was covered in this blog post. When I visited this Saturday I was lucky enough to meet the owner, Barbara. A passionate vintage collector. She was kind enough to give me and my friend excellent deals and showed us the back room, which I didn't know was assessable when I first visited.

Behold the most beautiful thrift store in existence:
 The back room of this thrift store in St. Augustine, Florida.

After some passionate conversations about vintage collections and art my friend Shoni were extended to dig through some stashed boxes of valuable vintage goods over some tea. Can't wait for that adventure to unfold, we'll definitely be back!

This blog post is linked to:  I Just Whipped Something Up Monday / Metamorphasis Monday / Making The World Cuter / Motivate Me Monday / Southern Hospitality Blog / Thrift Share Monday / Debbiedoo's Thrift Share / Twice Owned Party

Friday, June 18, 2010

More Antique Store Adventures

 Whimsicle Fish and mermaid teacups. So...tempting...

I'm taking part in a massive puging and following my thrifter's decluttering rules to create a stress-free organized home. It'll be hard, but I'm going to limit my thrifting to yard sales with cheap things this weekend.

To resist thrifting and bringing in more clutter I'll just look at these beautiful pictures and objects. Hopefully it will provide enough of a thrift-fix.

A cute vignette, and look, it even has a "V" for Van.

Beautiful painting of Venice. This looks a lot like a painting my parent's commissioned of Naples, Italy when we lived in Italy. I love the reflections in the water.

Vintage Americana Shabby Chic (or whatever your would call this) isn't my style at all, but this vintage shadow box is still an interesting little piece.

The bold colors and graphic design this vintage label is more my style. I love the beautiful lemons in the bottom right, obscured by the price tag.

 Globes make any corner fun. I have no use for a globe but if I found one for free or extremely cheap I might not be able to resist. They're fun to spin, anyway...

Interesting ceramic food canisters! They could stand alone as works of art but they're actually useful items, too.

Follow Fridays:  Friendly FridayFriendly Friday FollowSocial Parade Follow Friday blog hop / Follow me Fridays / Friday Follow Me and New Friend Friday (Join the Fun!)

Also featured on Chic on a Shoe String Budget's Flaunt in Friday

What are your thrifty weekend plans? I plan to fill my little Suzuki up with things to sell back to the book store and boxes of Goodwill donations, which will be donated back to the thrift gods (So they will have mercy on my soul and bring me even more treasures). I can't wait to have a clutter free home again!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Yo Ho A Sketchy Life for Me

This month's local Dr. Sketchy's art event had a pirate theme. It was hosted at my friend Emily's bar, Underbelly (where these awesome crafts were made). As always, the set design and costumes were impecable and I left feeling inspired.
 Aaron (A.K.A Miss Titties or Tremendous Tits) kicked off the show by singing us a velvety, sultry sea shanty to get us in the mood for sexy pirate fun.

 The Pirate's Booty- what a treasure. The beautiful set is decorated with flea market and thrift store finds and other items owned by the collective Dr. Sketchy's crew. See- thrift enough and you can make your home a sexy pirate lounge. Pretty tempting...

Ready for battle! Loving the ambient lighting, from the candles to the string lights.

Who's ready for some thrifty pirate crafts and art projects? A piratey event is the perfect way to kick off summer.

Past Dr. Sketchy's Events: Chasing the Rainbow Muse with Dr. Skethcy's and Dr. Sketchy's Thrift Porn Inspiration

This blog post is linked to Thrifty Thursday / Get your Craft on Tuesday / Strut Your Stuff / Transformation Thursdays / and Show off Your Stuff

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