Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Ultimate Secondhand Scare

I brought it home for a buck. And this thing has been haunting me ever since. I was actually able to catch his creepy antics on video. 

Incidentally, did you know that the fear of clowns is called coulrophobia?

Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Something Wicked This Way Comes...

Greetings, thrifters. While I had such timely things planned for Let's Go Thrifting readers this Halloween, my plans will likely be taking a backseat to Hurricane Sandy, which is quickly approaching the Philadelphia area. 

Schools have closed, a state of emergency is in effect and there are predictions of possible longterm power failure. 

To my friends and readers on the east coast, be safe. If you are in mandatory evacuation areas, please do so before it becomes too dangerous. 

To my other friends and readers around the world, I hope to give you thrifty updates soon. 

Here's hoping we don't get blown away in what is being called the second largest hurricane in recorded history. 

Stay thrifty, my friends. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Vintage Photo Friday: Yamato Suzuki Cuteness

How cute is this little book? My Very Own Seasons represents a trifecta of my thrifted interests: 
  1. Vintage
  2. Children's books
  3. Japanese culture
Featuring poems by Chisachi Suehiro and the most adorable illustrations by Yamato Suzuki, this little book was too charming to resist. 

And guess what! I also found  How I Grow and Finding My Way...two other little books in the  Petals series by the same author and illustrator.

I scored all three books from Impact Thrift for $1.50 and was happy to fork over the money for the abundance of cuteness within those tiny pages. 

For this Friday's vintage photo, I decided to share with you this heart-tugging interpretation of Fall.  

My Very Own Seasons, 1967. 

What vintage wonders did you find this week? 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Thrift Rant: Trash Talking Thrifters

"OMG, Becky did you see what she's buying?"

When I visit the thrift, I tend to just browse and mind my own business. I'll occasionally smile and comment on nice things other thrifters find, be it fashion or otherwise. But lately I've been noticing a trend that I'm not enjoying. 

My Thrift Rant? Trash talking thrifters, those loose tongued secondhand shoppers who just can't help but find some flaw with what I'm choosing to buy. Ever have it happen? 

My most memorable trash talking thrifter was way back in August, when I was hunting the aisles of the thrift with friends for the $20 Thrift Store Challenge. I was perusing the shoe racks in search for a pair of boots for Fall. As some of you know, me finding shoes is something of a challenge in itself, beings that I'm a size 10-11. So when I spot anything in my size, I assess the situation thoroughly. But I digress.

On that particular day I happened to see a pair of boots in my size. I wasn't sure that I was totally in love with them. So I picked them up for a closer look, turned to my friend and said "What do you think of these?"  And then...out of nowhere comes this haggard looking woman with a scowl on her face...swear to God, people. A scowl. And she scoffs at me:

"Oh, those are awful. The color... it looks like poop." 

Um.  What? Firstly, I was speaking to my friend, mind you, who surely would've warned me that my potential boots weren't the most flattering shade of brown, if this was the case. Secondly, who was this random shopper who interjected in our conversation? And lastly, who above the age of 8 years old seriously uses the word poop? 

Like I said, I occasionally will comment on strangers' thrift finds, but never to insult their taste. My comments are of the "nice find" variety, even if my sentiment is slightly tinged with jealousy over me not finding them first. 

In the end, I didn't buy the boots. But it wasn't out of the supposed helpful advice of the other thrifter. It would have broken my $20 Thrift Challenge budget!

I believe the moral of the story, dear friends, is exactly this: Don't tell other thrifters something they're eyeing resembles poop...unless you want the poop kicked out of you. 

And since the general public pisses me off with some regularity even at the thrift store, be sure to check out the next installment of Thrift Rant. 

So... what has your secondhand panties in a bunch?

Friday, October 19, 2012

Use Your Braaains... A $10 or Less Costume Idea

Make this Halloween a BYOB. Bring Your Own Brains!

Halloween is the second most expensive holiday in the United States. And we don't even exchange gifts! Between the candy, the costumes and the decorations, it can get pretty costly. 

But if you're looking for something cheap, something easy and something with a little bite... you need to become  a zombie. 

In order to pass as undead you'll need two things...the attitude and the ensemble. So let's first discuss how to get the zombie look. 
  1. First, you'll need to dig through your closet for some clothes you don't mind destroying. If you can't part with anything from your wardrobe, take a trip to the thrift store.  I estimate a cheap shirt and pant combo costing an average of $7. Make several tears and holes in these garments. You were attacked by the clawing hands of the undead and you did not survive. It's gonna get messy.
  2. The dollar store is your friend. Most dollar stores have a small cosmetics section. Look for eyeshadows in green/gray/light blue and black...something to give you the perfect postmortem look. You might even find a tube of theatrical blood for a buck. If not, those can be bought cheaply elsewhere. 
  3. Take a few cotton balls to your eyeshadows and dust over your face and any visible skin. Go dark under the eyes. Zombies don't sleep, so you want those under-eye circles! Don't forget to coat your mouth with a bit of the blood and maybe apply a few liberal squirts to the holes of your clothing. Finally, ladies, muss the hair in an undead up-do that looks like there was a struggle, or simply let it hang in your face. Like I said, it's messy being dead.

Now, as per the zombie attitude...  It's all about the movements and the moaning. Keep the eyes cold and unfocused. Think slow, painful motions combined with an exaggerated stupor. "Like a drunk who's lost a bet."

Since I like to get reaaaallly into Halloween and was acting in a neighborhood haunted house, I invested in edible theatrical blood capsules to dribble from my mouth. (Warning: they taste like cough medicine, but have a pretty horrific effect). I also borrowed a brain from my friend (literally) and gnawed on it a great deal. 

In short, I make a pretty unconvincing undead cannibal. Don't ya think?

Clothes: From my own closet $0
Eyeshadow palette in gray/green/blue: $1 from Dollar Store
Black eyeshadow: $1 from Dollar Store
Cotton balls: $1 from Dollar Store
Theatrical blood: $3 from convenience store
Edible blood capsules $3 from Halloween store
Brain: Free meal

Friday, October 12, 2012

Vintage Photo Friday: Beautiful Abandon

This is The Ball House as it stood in 1949. Built in 1903, the estate was renowned for its Victorian style in what is now Skagit County, Washington.

The property was first abandoned in 1913, following a terrible flood which terrified John Ball and his family and sadly, killed two of the family dogs. 

Ever since its last occupants in the 1930s, the house became something of a local legend. A regular attraction for spectators of the supernatural, The Ball House would succumb to natural wear and tear as the years went by. 

How do I know any of this?

The previous owner and presumed photographer personally inscribed this photo. With a bit of research, I found that the rest was history.

And sadly, the tangible history of this mysterious house is no more. 

According to The Skagit River Journal The Ball House fell mercy to the  Washington winds, and finally tumbled down back in 1996.

What a shame. It's the decrepit buildings, rich with history but in desperate need of repair, that most fascinate me. I would have loved to visit The Ball House. But in some small way, thanks to this thrifted piece of history, I feel almost as if I had. 

The Ball House   
Skagit County, Washington
Built in 1903.
Photographed in 1949 by Bill Osbourne
Thrifted in 2011 by Jackie Jardine

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Let's Go Haunting: You Are Getting Very Sleepy...

Advanced Techniques of Hypnosis Book, Philly AIDs Thrift $2 

I hope that you are enjoying the special October editions of Let's Go Thrifting Haunting. In the last installment of delightfully spooky secondhand entertainment, I busted out the vintage Ouija board.

But for this evening's entertainment, I suggest you gather a few impressionable friends for some good ol' fashioned hypnotism. Ladies, don't forget to  get glam for the occasion, Old Hollywood style. 

Some swear by the power of suggestion for the treatment of addiction. Some enjoy self-guided hypnosis for meditation. I just want to make my friends cluck like chickens and other equally embarrassing shenanigans. 

No Hypnosis disk? No problem. (If you have epilepsy and are prone to seizures, please do not risk your health for hypnotism).  

Everybody else, give it a shot! 

Who's sleepy? 

And who's ready to come to school in the nude and cluck like a chicken...?

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Just Gettin' Dolled Up

Anyone care to venture a guess on what I'm being for Halloween this year? 

Well here's a sneak peek of the thrifted find that inspired the entire costume idea.

And once I get the whole ensemble picture-perfect, you thrifters will be the first to see the finished product. 

Now, don't worry. I have plenty of thrift-friendly costume ideas to go around. So if you're short on some cost-saving costume ideas, click back over in the coming weeks for my series  of Halloween-themed thrift posts.

Who else is planning on hitting the thrift for their Halloween costume this year? 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Let's Go Haunting: The Vintage Ouija Edition

The date was September 22nd. It was a breezy Saturday morning and knowing that the flea market season would soon come to an end here in Philadelphia, I decided to take a look around a few local spots.

I didn't find much, just a few records. When I was about to leave my second flea market, I spotted a sign. Across the street, tucked away just behind a sharp turn of a small residential street, was a homemade cardboard sign marked "Yard Sale." I decided to check it out before grabbing a cup of coffee. 

There was a small assortment of inexpensive dolls, scuffed and worn handbags and Christmas crafting supplies. Then, I saw it. Seemingly out of place, I found this William Fuld Talking Board.

While the Ouija board in its earliest form was born in 1890, this particular incarnation  of the Mystifying Oracle was sold to Parker Brothers in 1966.

I love the solid masonite board...

...and the cream color of the plastic message indicator...

...and the graphics with the detailed instructions on the back of the box.

Did you know that the Ouija rules state a preference to the two persons using the board being "a gentleman and a lady?"

According to the instructions, "it draws two people using it into close companionship and weaves about them a feeling of mysterious isolation..."

And in keeping with the mysterious, above all else I love this flea market find because...

September 22nd, if you recall, was the start of the autumnal equinox. Yes, I bought a vintage Ouija board.... secondhand... from some random yard sale...on the autumnal equinox---the celestial equilibrium between day and night.

OOOOHHHH creepy. Of course, you know my theories on secondhand scares and personal the imprint of the former owners. And with me bringing a secondhand Ouija board into the house, I feel like I'm just sending an open invitation to any ghost who just happens to be hanging 'round the neighborhood. Well, it is October after all.

Incidentally, this is how Regan's problems started. Just saying...

William Fuld Talking Board Ouija, 1966: $2
Ghost: Free with purchase

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Thrift Style: Well, Label Me Frugal

It's a rare occurrence. But one fateful day it just may happen to you. The stars may perfectly align and you might find your thrifted designer clothing.

It's true that some lucky thrifters may find their labels for less with far more ease than others. But, me? Generally, I fall into that dreaded "others" category. 

Not only do I have to luck into lovely designer wares, but I have to pray that they're in my size, a curvy XL. Today, however, was my time to shine. 

Dont' you love this creamy white shirt with ruffle detail?

 $4.50 from 2nd Ave. 
The designer?

And that lovely gray and black print skirt? That's a...

...for $6. I estimate this find alone to be worth upwards of $60. And that  Lauren shirt was likely $50 or more at retail cost.

Who scored some thrifted labels? I scored some thrifted labels!

Lauren by Ralph Lauren Shirt: $4.50
Calvin Klein Skirt: $6
Finding designer my the thrift: Priceless.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Happy 2nd Blogiversary to Me!

I cannot believe that two years ago today marks the very beginning of Let's Go Thrifting!      

Ya know, I was tempted to call this remarkably special event a birthday. But, really it's an anniversary. It truly is a partnership---a union between my passion for secondhand wares and my passion for blogging. And it's a partnership between me, the blogger, and all of you wonderful readers. Together we have created an online thrift community and I love you all for that, more than you know.

I'd like to thank you all so much for reading, sharing, commenting, for sponsoring me, for shopping from my Etsy store and for thrifting your little hearts out.  

Let's Go Thrifting...the early days.

I've come a long way with Let's Go Thrifting! I've made so many connections, colleagues and friends and hope to continue doing so for a very long time. I have exciting things in the works...interviews..giveaways...thrift styles...thrifty tips and more. 

But until then, grab yourself a piece of cake. Maybe buy a balloon or two and have yourself a thriftacular day!   

Dress: Thrifted
Shrug: Thrifted
Red tights: Lane Bryant, Clearance
Mary Jane T-Strap Wedges: Torrid, Clearance

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Official 27 Perry Launch... With Discounts!

27 Perry is here! And if you recall my little review of this virtual consignment wonderland, you know to be excited. 

Beginning today, October 2nd, you can redeem your free coupon code exclusively for readers of Let's Go Thrifting! 

Use the code: LETSGOTHRIFT at the checkout and receive $10 off your first order. Woo woo! Discounts, consignment goodies annnnnd supporting a small business with big dreams. Head on over to 27 Perry and check out the inventory. 

In taking a long look around the site prior to today's launch, I'm sure you will all find something you'll love at 27 Perry.