Tuesday, December 31, 2013

5 Tricks to Truly Stick To Your New Years Resolutions. Program Them! + 2014 Goals

Envision a life where being organized, eating healthy food, and exercising regularly is so easy it's automated. We can program our brain and accomplish seemingly difficult resolutions just like a shining chrome robot. Of efficiency! Effictron Completer of Tasks! I studied the subject and made three tasks that seemed impossible automatic, easy and enjoyable: working from home earning 100% my own income, eating a healthy vegan diet, and losing over 30lbs to arrive at a healthy weight. Here are 5 tricks I know will make your habit stick:

1) 30 Days: Commit to your resolution for 30 days straight; the time it takes for your brain to automate the habit.
Do This: Get a huge calendar and mark a big "X" for every day you stuck to your habit. Seeing an unmarked day will make you twitch. Seems juvenile but it works! Do whatever it takes to not miss a single day during your brain programming time.

2) Visualize: Visualization is an important brain tool that works for accomplishing goals. It's Science!
Do This: Imagine yourself fitting old clothes or knowing where every single item is in your home. Post pictures of your goals around your work space, like photos of things you want to save up to buy.

3) Plan Ahead: Don't expect to magically achieve new habits and hit goals without planning!
Do This: Write a list of what you need to buy or do to hit a goal. Example: If you want to lose weight, trash the junk food, replace your pantry with only healthy goods, and schedule work-out days.

4) Enjoy It: I don't reward myself for hitting goals, instead I do what it takes to enjoy my new habit.
Do This: Get what you need to make a task easier. Upgrade your computer or camera, only buy food you like to eat when you're switching up your diet, or do an exercise you actually like. I choose bike riding for exercise because running feels like dying. Makes me feel like an aspirating fish on land. Can't do it.)

5) Be Accountable: Buckle down and hit it, don't miss a single day for that first 30 days to make it stick.
Do This: Share your goals with friends, post them everywhere, start a resolution with a group of friends that'll beat you with a mallet if you miss a day! I kid. But no excuses, you! You can't excuse missing a day.

Be Specific and Simple: Drill down your resolution into a simple action step. Use your verbs! I changed "Innovate and improve quality on everything I do!" (too vague) to "'Try something new with every project."

What Are Your New Years Resolutions for 2014? What do you to to stick to new habits and resolutions? I'd love to know your tips, need all the help I can get personally!
Daily thrifting updates, information, & Inspiration: Follow Thrift Core on Twitter and Facebook.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Thrift Haul: A Designer's Dream; Patterned Scarves, Toys, and Inspiring Illustrations


This last haul to round out 2013 represents a few of my favorite things! We have toys, robots, mod art prints, eclectic bright textiles, nice colors, vibrant and unique illustrations. It's a designer's muse dream haul, a shangri-la assortment of creation! This haul consists of items I ran out of time to include from last week's insanely epic flea market haul and some favorites I've displayed and used for work for the past year:

I left this guy out of Halloween hauls, I sold his large counterpart and really enjoyed this one too but he seemed a little rough to list. I decided to go with it this time and see what happens, I love displaying him around my work space. As you know I'm Halloween-obsessed. ------>>> On Etsy

I found a fun pair of binoculars at the flea market, a nice blue color and portable for on-the-go, uh, peeping.

I'm going to peep out the windows at neighbors rear-window style until they sell. (I Kid.) ------>>> On Etsy

This Fisher Price toy perhaps should have been left behind but the price was right and it was a fun piece to photograph. ------>>> On Etsy

I enjoyed this "Home Sweet Home" plaque. I run into a lot of these cast iron style ones but the saying was too to leave behind! ------>>> On Etsy

The robot lover in me couldn't leave this gorgeous "The Black Hole" Little Golden Book behind, either. ------>>> On Etsy

The vintage illustrations in this ABC book are absolutely gorgeous, blocky with the right amount of texture.

I love John Burninham's style, very retro and whimsical with great use of color. He's an award-winner for a reason! ------>>> On Etsy

I almost listed this little guy as a dachshund but upon closer inspiration he's quite clearly a basset hound, isn't he? I love this figurine, bigger than the usual ones I find and in perfect shape. He's chilling in front of my keyboard right now until I sell. Closest thing I can have to real doggie for the moment! ------>>> On Etsy

This Samsonite case has actually been with me for years, I've used it store and transport art supplies for a while and finally decided to put it up on Etsy. I love train cases for road trips to visit friends, I'm an extremely light packer. ------>>> On Etsy

So you like my model!? I'm always looking for new ways to stand out online and offline with my brand when this idea to pose my scarves (and possibility future neck ties) on my huge  Godzilla Shogun Warrior (named "Ben" after the Michael Jackson song, a gift from @zombiedad!) struck. Love it thus far, now I want to make custom mannequins!

Work it Guuuuuuurl. You're beautiful.

The two striped scarves have been personal favorites for a while that I didn't know how to list until recently. Check 'em out: red stripes, green stripes, blue ethnic, polka dot and floral scarves.

I finally uploaded a lot of vintage illustrations to Etsy, I'll need to go back and edit some of the images (I used Photoshop element's batch edit with auto-levels and the result is a bit grainy and some need re-cropping) but I've been dying to share some of these.

Check them out here / here / here / here and here. I did a re-upload with new images of this beautiful misogyny post card too.

This the second copy of Gifts to Make Yourself I've found. Definitely have to try some of the crafts therein before it sells! ------>>> On Etsy

I can't eat likely any of the recipes in here unless there's some kind of basic salad but I really love the look and illustrations in these retro cookbooks and decided to pair these two as a set on Etsy.------>>> On Etsy

I'm going to scan the gorgeous illustrations from this vintage science textbook. Even the inner cover was interesting with depictions of Floridian marshlands. The front has delicate fish in a simple asian style. Very interesting book, books were better in the 1950s! ------>>> On Etsy
These Playmobile toys have served as a muse on display for a while now and I finally got around to listing them.

Perhaps a bit of cultural appropriation at work here but I really love the basic shapes and how they represent some fine graphic design at work. I appreciate the smalls size too, shown with a potted plant for scale. ------>>> On Etsy

And a final little score is the groovy retro tray I'm using as a catch-all at the moment. ------>>> On Etsy

And now I'm off to stuff my face with healthy grub and drive two hours down to Orlando, Florida for some inspiration and furniture shopping. E-mail me if you have any questions or would like to buy anything you see in today's post.

Find anything amazing at the thrifts this weekend?! Do share your finds and posts in the comments.

Daily thrifting updates, information, & Inspiration: Follow Thrift Core on Twitter and Facebook.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Taking Time To Do It Right + What's to Come . . .

Edit: Decided to share a photo from the lights at St. Augustine this Holiday season. So damn beautiful!

I'm taking my time behind-the-scenes writing a detailed step-by-step organization series as I tackle my 14 Before 2014 list, writing my editorial schedule, making it easier to browse blog archives, getting some real progress on art lines and eBooks that have been floating in my head for too long. I want to start the New Year as The Batman of Organization and Efficiency, Dammit! (I may have to give myself a couple of days OFF too!? Yay! Miracles happen!) I am so excited to write and work into 2014, I'm ready to challenge myself, collaborate, and produce the most useful/beautiful content ever. I have many more house tours, indie business owner workspaces/processes, collection write-ups, indie biz help, and simple/creative lifestyle tips/DIYs aplenty in the making.

I'll be back with posts on Monday the 30th and Tuesday the 31st. Hope you're enjoying your Holiday! Comments are off on this post. E-mail me or chat on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook if you have any questions or just wanna say "Hi!
Daily thrifting updates, information, & Inspiration: Follow Thrift Core on Twitter and Facebook.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Thrift Haul: Great Big Flea Market Haul of Cheaply Scored Mod and Kitsch Goodness

Hot. Damn. It was a good day at the flea market this past Wednesday. I was carrying so much back to my car that it was physically impossible to add one more thing to the load. Arms filled with a small industrial table, other hand toting a white flea market cart precariously stuffed with stacked vintage goodies, bag of vintage on my arm.

Next time I'll need to learn how to balance a big bag on my head so I can tote more, ha! I ran out of time to document a couple of detail but here are my favs from Wednesday (By the way this is the second Haul Post That Almost Never Was in a row, I had Photoshop difficulties and had to chat with 3 different tech support people before I could use it! Augh!):
I couldn't resist a stand with little collectibles. These guys came with a sugar bowl and a huge ceramic squirrel holding two nuts in his arms (the salt and pepper shakers) but one of the nuts was cracked.

I left with just the sugar bowl and the salt and pepper shakers, love the set though. Can't resist kitschy woodland critters. ------>>> On Etsy.

This handsome bowling ball bag was actually one of a couple of lucky pound store finds from earlier in the week. I spent 33 cents on it and sold it for much more! ------>>> Etsy.

My adorable lamb blow molds didn't sell as quickly as I'd hoped they would. The last one I found sold lightning fast. ------>>> On Etsy.

Me and my Beer Steins. I'll have to show off my collection someday soon, it's quite extensive. Love it in all its kitschy misogynist glory. ------>>> On Etsy

I found a little white whale similar to this crazy purple one that sold quickly so these must be from a mold. Had to nab this odd purple whale! ------>>> On Etsy.

And I love these gorgeous mod plastic drinking mugs. Perfect for a picnic or clumsy person. Practically indestructible? (Don't you hate breaking gorgeous vintage drinking glasses?! The pain!!!) ------>>> On Etsy.

This particular type of Made in Japan 1960s figurine rarely sticks around long so it had to come home with me, too. This is a little Cocker Spaniel, right? ------>>> On Etsy.

And yet another Beer Stein! This one has a beautiful slogan on the inside. ------>>> On Etsy.

I try my best to avoid mugs these days, they're a slow sale and my storage is limited, but the Halloween die-hard junkie in me had to bring home this adorable clear glass mug. ------>>> On Etsy.

And another odd find I had to nab was this Spinnerin Baroque nylon yarn. I got a huge lot of stuff for $6.50  (yay!) and most of the finds in this post were included (and many more which will be documented next week and so forth.)------>>> On Etsy.

These beautiful Life World History books came match a solo Japan one I've been meaning to read for a long while now. Love the graphic design on the fronts and hope I'll get the read these before they sell! ------>>> On Etsy.

And a final favorite find is this gorgeous basket! I've been wanting 1960s shopping baskets for a while and finally found a couple. They're in rough shape but it's still hard to let them go. They're so mod-tastic. I'm using one to hold some vintage magazines and comic books I have listed online, goes so well with my art/toy collection.------>>> On Etsy.

I snuck in these dog sweaters as a Christmas gift for my mom. (Mom, go away, don't look.) To inspire her for something she's working on. I'll have to update with a photo of her dogs wearing them! Shall be too funny.

And there was a fail in today's post. While swiftly leaving the flea market I saw and bought this retro serving tray and coasters, unaware that the big tray had a broken butterfly inside, the coasters covered it. Not sure if I should list this on Etsy or not now with the glitch. What do you think? Any takers for this piece on discount? The coasters are still nifty if I can't sell the tray, at least.

There will be much more to show next time, for now I've gotta get back to Christmas gift wrapping (I may have a post on that tomorrow for my fellow last-second wrappers. Happens to me every time), cleaning, and organizing. I'm doing well on accomplishing my 14 Before 2014 list! E-mail me if  you'd like to buy anything from this post or have any questions!

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU! I'll be back on Friday December 27th with an update on my 14 Before 2014 list challenge and some challenges for you for the new year!

Find anything amazing at the thrifts this weekend?! Do share your finds and posts in the comments.

Daily thrifting updates, information, & Inspiration: Follow Thrift Core on Twitter and Facebook.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

DIY Thrifty Photo-Taking Station for Blog Posts and Reselling or Art Product Photos


I almost gave in and bought some expensive photo backdrops. The shopping cart was up to over $200 between 2 different color backgrounds and the frame to hold them up when I decided, "Nope, I can do this myself! And spend that money on food and bookshelves!" And so I did, for less than $4.00 and using what I have around the house!

Creativity is a fickle muse and it's important to have your work station ready to go at all times so you can snap photos when creativity strikes. I tried having my photo paper rolled up and set aside but it was hurting my flow to have to set-up it and put it away frequently. My photo station is in the far corner of my living room/dining room combo space. The inside of my counter/shelf combos hold merchandise and supplies.

From there it was as simple and tacking the fabric to the walls, I went out and got the dark gray specifically for my white items which are lost in my usual white background.The subtle thatched texture reminded me of mid century modern table tops I've seen. I'm going to replace the white felt (not recommended) pictured with a roll of photo paper my friend Jason (a cast off from his Engineering day-job. Yay for not-wasting!) gave me. I used binder clips as much as possible on the fabric so the thumbtacks wouldn't pierce the fabric and leave holes.

There are some draw backs to this ghetto-fied method! You have to watch for wrinkles in thin fabric and iron it thoroughly but I'm loving this so far and look forward to streamlining the process!

How do you take photos for your products or for your blog posts? I love taking it to the next level and finding ways to improve with it. This just proves you don't need fancy equipment to take professional-looking photos.
Daily thrifting updates, information, & Inspiration: Follow Thrift Core on Twitter and Facebook.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

14 Before 2014: An End of the Year Business and Home Goal List. Theme: Curate!

2013 is already drawing to a close! Isn't it odd to think of the years passing and the dreams we had when we were younger? When I first started college at 17 in 2004, 2010 seemed like a distant Jetsons-flying-car future year where I'd have already graduated with a graphic design degree. I thought I'd be a full time office working professional,  but I drew a complete blank on what that "work" would be and what my "life" would be. I was completely lost. Everything felt uncertain. 10 years later I have a mission and feel so fulfilled working on exactly what I want to every single day. I'm excited to take it to the next level in 2014! I'll further curate my life, goals, brand, everything!

My Life's (and Thrift Core's) Mission: To Inspire others to live a happy, healthy, creative, and meaningful life outside the status quo and to curate unique and inspiring items and artwork.

I always love to end the year by accomplishing a specific list of action steps so I start my next year's mission with a fresh slate. Here are my 14 Before 2014 goals. I'd love if you shared your own in the comments! The trick is to make them small, very doable steps. We're already busy enough during the holiday season without having to tackle huge projects.

1) Go through house with a trash bag and a "donation" box and deep purge. No Regrets. No Mercy.
2) Dust and clean the house from top to bottom, from the ceiling to the floor boards.
3) Sweep, mop, and scrub every floor in the house thoroughly. Then make this a no-shoe apartment!
4) Clear off every apartment counter, clean it, then replace collections thoughtfully.
5) Create my "thrifty photography station" (Post on that coming.)
6)  List All Excess Apartment Furniture, Lamps, and Vintage Artwork Collection on Craigslist.
7) Put the vanity in my bedroom together. The mirror is tucked behind it improperly. Drives me nuts.
8) Finish hanging my art collections according to the art gallery hanging rule.
9) Finalize my merchandise storage plan and implement it! Even if I have to buy it!
10) Curate and purge my wardrobe. (Creative post on this upcoming, too.)
11) Designate a place for every work supply and have it documented in a spreadsheet.
12) Have all of my income/expenses added up, filed away, and ready for taxes. (Post soon!)
13) Finish writing my "Apartment Challenge", "Thrifty 2014 Challenge" & "Big Dreams" posts.
14) Go see and document the beautiful Christmas Lights in St. Augustine. Window shop for inspiration and eat at my favorite raw vegan cafe (Present Moment) while I'm at it. A complete day off, lawd knows I need one!

Bonus: Finish reading and taking notes on Handmade Success! & Finish Editorial Calendar for 2014.

Some More Big and Small Goals for 2014: Make a light-up antique mall booth sign, make better linking buttons for Thrift Core, new Thrift Core streamlined blog design, create a line of planners, create indie business help and reselling help eBooks, create a new line of vintage illustrations, finish my vintage illustration/ephemera line.

I'm looking forward to pushing the envelope with journalism on Thrift Core, finding rad new creative spaces to share and urging others to reach their full potential in health, in their homes, and creatively. I want to work with creators, share off their spaces and processes and make this a space of learning and inspiration. Every day is an opportunity to improve, I love my job :) ! Even when it forces me to trash my house and then make an exhaustive list to get it back to it's former glory, haha.

What are your big goals before 2013 ends? Any big goals for 2014? Do share, it helps keep us accountable!
Daily thrifting updates, information, & Inspiration: Follow Thrift Core on Twitter and Facebook.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Thrift Haul: This Post Almost "Wasn't!" Vintage Christmas and an Obnoxious Robot

This post was not supposed to be. I was so frustrated trying to To Do it All this weekend that I was going to replace my haul with a rant about Thrift Hauls being over forever!  Instead I enlisted help to get caught-up, slept early and arose early (NOT my usual way but so much healthier!*) to finish my entire post in the morning.

Right when I was finishing up the post and getting ready to hit "publish" the internet died and I had to call  to get it back in order! This is The Little Post That Could! A small haul of finds but ones I love with nostalgic childhood vigor.

First we have a Cybotronix Turbo Fighter Robot! 15" tall, and very much a combination of Optimus Prime and...Robo Cop? I see a lot of his ilk at the flea markets and almost left without him but couldn't bear to part with him. He is the perfect loud obnoxious toy to gift to the child of a person you loathe as twisted revenge. (A boss, perhaps?) I mean, listen to my video of this thing:

It will just do that in a loop forever as long as the on button is switched. Not sure if it's supposed to do that but it's pretty awesome. He even sounds like a combination of Robocob and Optimus Prime with the random violence and booming bass. I think I'll put him on eBay soon but e-mail me if you'd like to buy it before that. Makes an awesome Christmas gift, my nephews have a blue one (also thrifted) and they love it. Anyway, enough robots...

How 'bout this McDonalds toy!? If there's one thing I sorely don't need it's a Playmobile broken plastic McDonald's toy but something about indoctrinating kids to love the golden arches while they're still in diapers was so hilariously insidious that it had to live with me for a while. I'm imagining some hilarious photographic/editorial possibilities with this set.

Besides it was only fifty cents! The price of, what, one of McDonald's cheapest rat-meat cheeseburgers? Awesome! I'll have to write more about it later but I have such an attraction to this type of bulky bold plastic toy, it has an almost mid century modern distillation of design into basic shapes and elements. So pleasing to the eye.

My favorite find of the week is this coin bank, too damn cute. I thought it was an odd tin pencil holder which I could always use more of for organizing art supplies.

Upon inspection it was revealed as a coin bank with slots for each type of coin! The little scenes on the front recalling what a kid could do with pocket change in the 1960s! Yeah, try to go to the fair, the zoo, or on Holiday with quarters. Our local zoo almost cost as much as a trip to Disney World last I checked. At least you can still get Christmas presents (second hand!) for change if you're lucky!

I have this in my entryway to house spare change until someone takes it off my hands. ------>>> On Etsy

How about some gorgeous Jacks pieces for Christmas!? I didn't play with these as a kid so they're kind of exotic to me, gorgeous shapes. I like them as photo props and displays. I'm sure many a mom curses these things to fiery depths of hell from stepping ones carelessly left on the floor after play. ------>>> On Etsy

And look, I found another absolutely adorable flocked Christmas critter ornament, this is the cutest one yet! A little fuzzy siamese kitty. My first kitty (April the beautiful "snowshoe") was a blue-eyed beauty like this one. ------>>> On Etsy

Kitty and dinosaur will chill around my tiny tree until kitty finds a new home. Dinosaur is not for sale. So sorry, he likes it here.

And I found a Santa Blow Mold! I love these guys and still wish we had all the ones from my childhood. Halloween ones are naturally my favorite but this Santa is still quite nostalgic.

I lit him in my kitchen last night and my Grinch's Christmas-hating heart grew three sizes that moment! Quite charming inside and out! He'll be going into my Southern Crossing booth today. He's also ------>>> On Etsy

* My usual way with writing these haul posts is so unhealthy. I usually work all day Sunday from sunrise 'til sometimes 3AM on it! Doing this is smaller dosages and letting myself sleep is going to save my life. Really. So much better!

If you're still Christmas shopping (I know I am!) I've marked down lots of gorgeous vintage items in my Etsy shop. I'm always do same-day delivery so items can arrive before Christmas. Today and tomorrow are the best days to order to ensure items will be under your tree in time so check 'em out. I may host another sale tomorrow! (Let me know if you'd like that in the comments!)

My favorite gift ideas include :: sexy ash tray, sexy nude lady glass, bowling toy, bowling bag, atomic toy, dino tray, automobile card game! But I love everything in the shop of course!

Find anything amazing at the thrifts this weekend?! Do share your finds and posts in the comments.

Daily thrifting updates, information, & Inspiration: Follow Thrift Core on Twitter and Facebook.

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