Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Really, I didn’t push my sister……..

I have to say that I usually have the best luck garage sale or rather rummage sale shopping with my sisters.  Especially when I visit my sister in Wisconsin.  It seems like a lot of the sales in my sisters area are called rummage sales.

Either way they have lots of great deals.

Maybe it is the two of use egging on each other to buy stuff but we always seem to come home with a car or in some cases a van load. 

I didn’t think I could top my packing skills of last year.

Well I did this past weekend.

Who would have thought that you could pack 4 bird cages (2 jumbo, one tall and one smaller), a bust, frames, paper log roller, bridle, paper, stamps and 20 plants, most of them large, in one small car.  We did it with a little bit of spare room, well the inside of one bird cage, in the rain to boot! 

I didn’t think to take a picture before we started unloading. Here are some of the things we bought.


That bird cage is huge – I think 18” x 20” and probably 30” tall.100_7760

My sister may tell you that I pushed her out of the way, or rather held her in the car so I got to the round bird cage first.  My story is that she stopped at the free pile grabbing a horse bridle giving me permission to get to the bird cages first.

Never fear, she went home with three bird cages while I only went home with one.

100_7761 She did get even by making me dig up two trees from her yard so she could plant the new trees and shrubs we bought.  I may have twisted her arm just a bit saying that I could pack them all in her car that was already full with four bird cages.

Oh, well, what are sisters for if not for encouraging you to do things you really want to do anyway…….


She did pay some ridiculously low price for this Twist-n-Shout hydrangea.  I may have told her to buy each color they had but I’m sure she will thank me later when she is enjoying the blooms. :)


And just to show you how large the bird cages are – this one just about covers my patio table.

100_7765 I’m not sure where this $2 beauty will end up but it is home for now.

Yep, you read that right.  I snagged this two foot plus bird cage for $2 because they didn’t have clips for it so I’ll need to buy clips to hold the bottom on!!

Ok, don’t hate me too much.  Seriously the country rummage sales in Wisconsin are rusty, gold mines with the greatest prices.

Now do you see why I might have held my sister in the car to give me a head start?  To be fair, she was closer.

Who am I to begrudge her for stopping at the free pile to grab a horse bridle?  She didn’t exactly loose on the deal.  She went home with a lot more than I did.

I’m planning to show you more of my finds tomorrow.

I hope your treasure hunting went as well as ours did this past weekend.


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Thursday, July 21, 2011

$3 Thursday – My so called Mannequin

I’ve been drooling over vintage and not so vintage mannequins for a while now. 

I’ve seen directions on how to make your own mannequin and even attempted to make my own with newspapers and tape.  Let’s just say I gave up on that attempt.  It was a major fail before it was even half done.

But a few months ago I came across this at my local goodwill.


I couldn’t pass it up and to make it even better it was half off the day I found them.


So for $2.49 I had the base for my mannequin.

Hmm, maybe if I had a good base I could make my own mannequin of sorts.  It won’t be like the vintage ones on cast iron stands but it would be mine.

I wasn’t sure how I wanted to cover the clear plastic to make Missy   (Yes, I named my mannequin Missy.) more like the vintage image I had in mind.  I thought of book pages, sheet music, pattern pieces, canvas or kraft paper might do the trick.


I came across some free canvas and lightweight cotton material at the local SCRAPS shop and decided to use it to cover the plastic form I had.


Initially I didn’t think about the back side but when I realized one of the pieces would cover the back in one piece I decided to start with covering the backside.

I started with the largest cotton material and set Missy on top.  Then I got out some cheap school glue and watered it down to thin it out and make a decoupage glue.  Now is a great time to stock up on glue for your own decoupage projects with all the back to school sales going on right now.


I roughly trimmed the fabric to fit around the plastic form and cut a few slits around it to help make it a bit easier to form around the curves.


I then just slopped on glue and tried to smooth down the material the best that I could.


A word to the wise…. don’t use your best scissors for this if unless you don’t mind a bit of glue to clean up afterwards.


So once I had the front covered it was time to let Missy dry.


Here is the back side.


I know Missy still needs a bit of work but I’m not sure what the finished results will be quite yet.   Here is how she is, still hanging out drying.


It is fairly humid lately so even with 12+ hours of drying it is still not dry all the way.


Missy is not finished yet but for now, I’m happy with my $3 mannequin. 

Well, happy enough for now. 



Plastic Mannequin     $2.49

Glue                 $.40

Fabric             free

Total cost:   $2.89

My own so called mannequin….. priceless



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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A few more cards

Last week when I was in the mood to make cards I grabbed one of my favorite DCWV paper stacks – Black Currant.  I’ve made lots of cards with the papers in this pack. I love the elegant look of the rich blacks, pinks and purples in this pack.


Quick and simple way to use up scraps.  No stamping on this one but I did ink the edges of the pieces.


These glittered swirls were from a dollar find at Target.


I distressed the edges of two pieces of the paper, inked the edges and tied on a ribbon.


I crinkled the bias tape before I tied it around the paper to add a little texture to the ribbon.


The black ribbon was a vintage find from a garage sale earlier this year.  It was a 50 yard spool marked $3.40.  I think I paid $.50 or $.75 for the full spool that will probably last me my crafting lifetime!


I thought these pins added a bit of charm to this simple card.


I used some of the patterned paper as my card base and added a couple of the more solid papers, a ribbon and a stamped and punched out greeting.


Same idea with this card but I added a pearl accent and a butterfly to this card. 


Although the blue is a bit bright the butterfly wings have a purple tint to them that match the purple paper.


The same design with a thank you greeting.  The butterflies were stickers that I picked up at a dollar store during my spring sister crafting weekend in Wisconsin.


One thing with the vintage ribbon I used is that it is wider that I normally use so it makes it a bit more difficult to make a bow that doesn’t take up the whole card front.

100_7709 I punched a scallop border to the black paper to add just a bit more contrast between the papers.

I’m sure that some of these cards will make it in the next couple card assortments that I sell in my Etsy store which you can check out here.


I hope you are staying cool since it seems like most of the country is experiencing high heat right now.  We are in the 90’s with heat indexes of 100-115 which is hot here in Minnesota.  I’ll enjoy the heat thought without too much complaining as it is so much better than the bitter cold of out too long winters.  :)



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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Small victories

I realized today how much of a small victory person I am.  You see I decided to take the days that my daughter was done to do some projects around the apartment.

The first one was reorganizing the bathroom cupboard.  Pretty easy, I ended up taking out my tool box (yes I know it is crazy to store a tool box in the bathroom but it ended up in there years ago and it worked.)  I was able to put in a few more things that were in my hallway closet that really belonged in the bathroom.

Then I tackled what is suppose to be our coat closet.  I had rearranged it a month or two ago in the hopes of turning it into storage for Etsy shop item that were spread out all over the apartment.  I never really liked it as I set it up so I decided I needed a different storage system for there rather than the mismatched items that I was using.

I was able to find a wire system on sale at my favorite store for $13.99.  I picked up two as I wanted it as large as I could make it without taking out the existing shelf and rod that was in there. 

I got most of the items that were around the apartment in closet in addition to the newly displaced tool box.  Now I had a plastic drawer system and some wood fruit crates that needed a new home.  The plastic drawers will eventually make it under my craft tables.  I had ideas to use the wood crated in my bedroom somewhere.

Now avert your eyes if you want pretty – this before is so not pretty.

Closet before:


I know, I know it is bad.  Very bad.

Here’s the after.


Not picture perfect pretty but it is a whole lot better than it was just days ago.

I still didn’t do much with the top shelf.  It has smaller frames in the hat box on the left.  Various wreaths hanging on the wall and some larger pieces and frames to the left with a purse in the middle. 


I thought the divider would help store some of my frames but it isn’t working quite like I imagined it would.  So the top shelf is still a work in progress.  Well, mainly it is a put it off for now project that may or may not ever get done.

The closet redo lead me to decide today was the day to finally tackle rearranging my bedroom.

I moved the bed, end table, dresser, chest but wasn’t sure yet on the wood crates.  What do I tackle?   Do I keep rearranging furniture?  Nope I tackle the small stuff.  Seriously I rearrange the top of the dresser to look like this…..



I thought I would finally display some of my vintage jewelry finds along with some of my newer jewelry.


Really a pretty dresser top when my bed still looks like this…..


Yep that is what I do.

What was I thinking?
Am I the only one who does things like this?

I guess I need to see some small victory.  I need to know that there is light at the end of tunnel, even if it doesn’t look like it. 

Ah well, I better get back to work working on clearing off my bed so I have a place to sleep tonight.

Well, even if I have to sleep on the couch or floor at least I will have a cleaner closet and a pretty dresser top.




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Flower cards

One of my favorite paper packs from TAC is called Catelynne.  I love the blues, greens, browns and a hint of pinks in the papers.

I stamped a flower outline in a matching blue ink with a simple birthday stamp and layered it on brown paper.  I cut some of the Catelynne paper to size, added a blue ribbon and layered it on a brown card.


The paper I used looks like it was a couple different papers pieced together.  I love the layered look without all the work.


I didn’t get as clear of an image on this one so I decided to add a little rhinestone bling to hopefully distract from the less than perfect stamped image.

I guess it wouldn’t be as noticeable if I didn’t just point it out to you!

If you need a quick and simple card get out your papers, stamps and ribbon and make yourself a quick and simple card in 5 minutes or less.



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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Extreme couponing or Savvy shopping?

It seems like TLC’s Extreme Couponing show is creating a whole new idea of how to be a savvy shopper.   Do I coupon?  Yes, I do.

Are the results on the show realistic?  I don’t really think so.  Do I get the 90-95% savings that just about all of their shopper get?  No.  Am I disappointed if I don’t save that much.  Absolutely not.  The results on the show are, well, very extreme.  

I like to coupon.  I love to see the savings.  Just today I watched my grocery bill go from $46.78 before coupons to $17.43 after store and double manufactures coupons.  Ten manufactures coupons were doubled which accounted for $7.50 of my savings. 

Where I live I usually can’t get double coupons but a local grocery store just started having double coupons on Saturday’s for the next couple months.  They don’t do it all the time but I think it is a smart move on their part with all the hype that Extreme Couponing is getting. 

What did I get?


Four boxes of cereal, four boxes of fruit snacks, five single servings of ice cream, lunch meat, drink mix, watermelon, toothpaste and body wash.

Do I see results like this all the time?  No but I’m happy to take a 63% savings today at one store.  Considering that the watermelon was $4.99 I was very happy with my shopping trip. 

Do I really think I actually saved that much?  No.  I mean technically I did but I know I would never buy four boxes of cereal for $4.53 and $3.37 a box.  I mean, who usually pays regular price for cereal?  Not me.  My store had a store coupon for 4 boxes of cereal for $7.  Now that I would pay but luckily the sale included a few kinds of cereal that I had $.75 off one and $1.00 off two boxes. 

I’m happy to say that I paid only $2 for four boxes of cereal.  The Trix I know we will eat, the Fiber One I’m not sure but at that price I’ll try it and if we don’t like it the other box will get donated the the local food shelf. 

I also have a good shopping day at Target.


I forgot to include a 12 pack of Sierra Mist in the picture. 

I got it all for $8.07.

Target is usually my go to store for groceries but since I went to Aldi this week as well as double coupons at a grocery store I didn’t have a lot of grocery needs on this trip.

Am I an extreme shopper?

No, but I like to think of myself as a savvy shopper.

Do you coupon and if so are you an extreme couponer or a savvy shopper?



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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Flower card

After seeing a card with a large flower cut out of patterned paper I remembered that I had a large flower stamp that I’ve only used a few times.  I knew it would be perfect to use on some text paper.


I stamped the flower on the text paper then outlined it with a black pen and cut out.  I used a large gem for the center of the flower and some floss to add a bit of texture to the flower.


I cut outside the stamped image to add a bit more contrast from the patterned paper on the card.  I think I like the white edge just a bit better than the one that was cut close to the edge of the stamped image.

I’m slowing working on building up my card stash after selling quite a few last week in my tsy store.  Selling my cards not only brings in a bit of extra money but it helps me use my paper stash.  I’ve been selling them mostly in 25 card assortments for about a dollar a card.  Please check out my Etsy store if you are interested in some of my handmade cards. 




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Saturday, July 9, 2011

Flower birthday cards

I thought I’d share a few more cards that I made with one of my grab bags.


A few stickers and a stamp were the base of this card.  I punched a couple holes in the chipboard circle to make it look like a button and tied some ribbon from my supplies through the holes.


I used ribbon from my supply on this one along with a few rhinestones to accent the flower stickers.


I colored the chipboard with a glitter pen and added a row of pearl accents for this card.


The pink paper, ribbon and rhinestone accents were from my supplies.



I usually don’t tend to use stickers on my cards but had fun creating these cards with the stickers that I got in this grab bag.  It forced me to create in a new way.  I sort of like the clean simple lines, but I sort of miss the layers of cardstock that I usually use.

If you are interested in these or other cards please check out my Etsy store for card assortments that I’m selling.


I usually link to these fabulous parties:

Friday, July 8, 2011

Stars and stripes

These cards are not a style that I would usually make but I got most of the supplies in a grab bag kit. 

A good thing about a grab bag is you never know what you will get and it can really expand your crafting.   Personally I really need to in the right frame of mine to craft with supplies that I usually don’t use. 


The cardstock and stickers came from a one grab bag and the striped ribbon came from the $5 grab bag I used to make the Happy Birthday 2 U cards I made here.

A few pearl accents were the only thing that came from my craft supply.


This card was quick and simple.  A few star stickers, a pearl accent and a ribbon.

Quick and simple and is a great card that can be used for women, men and children.


A few stickers and a birthday stamp finished this card.


Another neutral card with the star stickers and a small scrap that I stamp with a birthday sentiment and accented with a string of pearl accents.

Even thought I recently bought the grab bags it feels good to be using the supplies I have to make cards.  As I use the supplies I have it is easier to organize and see and use what I have. 

What supplies have you been using up lately?


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