Sunday, December 21, 2008

A Whole Lot of Bambi

I found a bag of tiny fawns for a quarter. I've been playing with them ever since I took them out of the sealed bag and removed their attached wires. I must find homes for them amongst my Christmas stuff.
I know they are nothing special, but they sure are cute!
Oh, and the gray wool they are sitting on? It's about the size of a small scarf and cost 25 cents also.
I've got a doll that needs new shoes, and gray wool should look lovely with her cashmere dress...

Vintage Toy Find

I've yet to go to a mall this holiday season. I DO have to pick up a couple of gifts sometime before Christmas, but Saturday was not the day for that.
Two stores were all I could handle. One was Mynard's which had Christmas decor for 50% off.
The other was my favorite Thrift Store, where I found this Fisher Price Little Snoopy from 1965.
It cost one dollar.
I've pulled him through the house a few times already, but I think THGGM is questioning my sanity more and more each time I return from thrift shopping.
Anyway, I think he's cute. He has a charming 'squeaker' which still works (little snoopy, that is).

Monday, December 15, 2008

Fantastic Find for Famke

Saturday I made it to my favorite thrift stores, hoping to find something, anything, vintage.
I found two sets of dishes, but not quite in my $5.00 budget.
I did find this sweet little gingerbread girl outfit in Famke's size.
I didn't notice until today when I showed it to Daughter that it was new! The tag was still attached with the $20.00 price tag! That made me even happier, as I paid less than $2.00 for it.

Now, if only Famke had liked it!
She spilled a tiny cup of water all down the front of the cute little clothes she was wearing. Since it is insufferably cold here today, I quickly changed her into this.
I'm think she thought I was putting pajamas on her. She kept pulling at the sleeve saying "NO! NO! NO!"
Actually, she was probably thinking that she does not plan to spend the rest of her childhood wearing weird things her grandma finds at thrift stores. Should I tell her I saved the gingerbread cookie earrings that her mommy used to wear? Probably not. I'll save that for another year.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Over My Pink Toilet

Today I went to my favorite thrift store AND my favorite antique store. My favorite finds were these three tiny bottle brush trees.
I'd recently been looking through a Christmas book that showed the small trees in tiny tea cups and I thought..,HEY!
So, for just a few bucks I was able to spruce up the chippy white shelf over my pink toilet. (hmmm. 'over my pink toilet'. i believe i could use that phrase from time to time in a delightfully humorous way...)
I set the Sugar Plum Fairy in there too, just because she is the correct shade of pink, and her tree hanger broke off from the top of her head (and i think i have problems...).

Sunday, December 7, 2008


Let's see. There is a lot of thrifted stuff in this picture.
First, the piano. Free. It was even delivered for free. And, as THGGM tells it, it will NEVER leave this spot. It's terribly out of tune, but then, so am I. Me and my piano get along fabulously.
I found a great copy of Handel's Messiah for 25 cents. The Little Golden books were the same price, even though one of them is a first edition.
The candelabras were antique store finds and great bargains. I have several others. I would not dare light candles in them (thggm would, but not me) so I have placed Christmas balls in them. They reflect the light nicely.
The colored swags flung haphazardly on top of the piano were clearance finds at a great little store in Sutton's Bay. Yes, even on our May trip I was thinking 'Christmas'.
The three pictures are from an old hymn book. I stippled them with brown ink to get an even more aged look (no. i don't stipple myself. my aged look is natural.) The frames were a set of four that THGGM found and painted black. The mats were 90% off after Christmas one year.
I did pay full price for the letters. 99 cents each and painted black. They are just stuck to the glass with double-sided tape.
Just this week THGGM finally nailed the pictures to the wall. I guess this means they are staying there, too.

Weird. Just Weird.

THGGM likes this. He is the one who arranged it here, on a bookcase in our hallway.
The door is a french door from our last home.
The rest of the stuff is all thrifted. All of it.
Well, except for the branches.
Those were picked up on the front lawn, blown off the magnolia tree. I love the shape of magnolia branches.
The leaves are twisted bits of crape paper.
I'm not exactly sure just what it is he likes about it. To me, it does not say 'Christmas'. And, he doesn't usually like the things I make.
Hmmm. Weird.

Simply Decorating

Another simple decoupage project.
One thrifted box, one page from a thrifted Mary Englebreit book.
All I added was the glue.
I set this on the floor in the kitchen yesterday, and Jonge found it right away.
I'm attempting to decorate 'kid friendly' this year.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

A Vignette, by Judy

I noticed while at my sister and brother-in-law's home on Thanksgiving Day that she had lights on top of her kitchen cupboards.
That gave me an idea.
My kitchen cupboards have no tops (yet) but this hutch in our dining room was calling out for.., well.., something.
And, I like the final (final, as in so far) results!
I bought the little cardboard houses at Michael's Craft Store. Every time I went I bought one. This made the cost SEEM minimal. They were $1.99 a piece. At first I was going to make my own houses, but learned after several failed attempts that $1.99 IS a fair price. Trust me. And, as a side note, it is harder than one would think to get the milky smell out of those cardboard creamer containers. Anyway...I was going to paint these houses white and sprinkle them with glass glitter, but, I think they look just fine plain, so unless I suddenly get a large amount of complaints about why I have plain old cardboard houses on the top of my hutch, I shall leave well enough alone. That, my friends, is something that I rarely do, so go ahead and savor the moment.
Everything else visible in the above picture came from either a clearance sale, a thrift store or was a great deal at an antique mall.
The cake plates are all thrift. The end two are made from candle sticks and small plates. I have glass cake plates all over my house. Once I get an idea in my head.., okay, now where was I? Oh, yes.
The hutch was a great find at one of our favorite antique malls. I am amazed at how much this thing holds.
The tinsel came from the thrift store.
The lights were after Christmas clearance bought for Daughter's wedding nearly five years ago.
The three glass covers I picked up for .99 cents at the thrift store. They are very heavy and were intended to cover a cheese plate.
And, see that Precious Moments nativity? It's the very large one. It was a gift. Won at a Christmas party many many years ago.
The tree top finials I found after Christmas last year. They were also on clearance. I snapped up all four of them and leave them out all year round. Full price, the four of them would have cost $80, I paid $8 for all of them.
I'm rather pleased with how this looks. But, as always, I am open to suggestions.
Tonight is our family's St. Nicholas Day party. We shall be feasting in front of this arrangement. Although, I quite possible will have to draw attention to it myself or else it may well go unnoticed.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Thrifted Christmas Decorations

These guys were found in thrift stores years apart.
The bottle brush tree (one of three) I found for 49 cents.
I'm not sure why, but this makes me happy. Although I do not ski.
Presently I am trying to work them into a vignette on my mantle.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Mill on the Floss

Tonight I went to half price book day at the thrift store.
I found five hardcover books that interested me, each for only 50 cents.
This one was the best. An embossed cover with a picture is ALWAYS a nice find. Fifty cents is ALWAYS a good price. And, this is a George Eliot book.
Oh, this made me SO happy.

I Make Stuff. Out of Stuff.

I love these little cedar boxes.
I also love books and calendars with Mary Englebreit art.
Also, I love to decoupage.

This is our Christmas treasure box.
In it, I keep the holy family and the three wisemen.
Baby Jesus in the
manger will join the family when he returns from wherever Famke put him.
The box, the picture and the nativity people are all thrift finds.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Oh! Looky What I Found!

I collect these little plaque thingies. They are getting VERY hard to find.
Yesterday I went into my favorite thrift store and I found one! I nearly fainted (although that might have been because i had waaay too much coffee). Then, I turned it over to see the price and it was 25 cents.
Oh, yes. I was a happy girl. Even better was the Bible verse, which I greatly needed by the end of the day. Sometime I may write about it on my Anybody Home blog ( but I just can't, yet.

I also found the crochet pot-holder dress. It looks to be new. That too was 25 cents. I crochet. It's worth waaay more than that!
Anyway. I also made the doll. Hard to get a good picture of her today. She is a thrifty girl. Her body is from fabric I paid a quarter for, the shirt is from a Ralph Lauren thrifted sheet, the stuffing was purchased at the thrift store last night, her pants are cut from an old pair of crop pants of mine. Let's see.., what else.., oh.., her face is loosely based on a transfer pattern for a potholder. The face reminded me of Famke. I haven't decided on her hair yet, so I wrapped her head in a thrifted embroidered hanky. She seems to like it.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thrifty Gift

I found this book a while back. I loved the pictures by Marjorie Cooper and used many of them in decoupage projects. It had quite a bit of damage, so I had no trouble taking it apart.

After I had taken out all of the pages, I got this idea for the cover. All it required was a Mead notebook and a piece of grosgrain ribbon glued inside. I love it! I haven't been able to write in it yet. I just sort of look fondly at it and admire it and THIS year, I shall use it. Or, give it as a gift. I haven't decided yet.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Thrift Store Finds

It's handy for me that the place we dump our leaves is right nextdoor to a thrift store.
So, while THGGM dumps the leaves, leaves and more leaves, I shop!

Tonight I found that cute little house with the advent calendar boxes under neath it. This should be fun for Jonge and Famke to count down to Christmas.
Oh, who am I kidding? It will be fun for ME.
I also found a cute little Dutch couple. They hadn't actually hit the floor yet, I pulled them from a shopping cart on it's way to the shelves. They were 49 cents each. She, like many Dutch women I know, was not very photogenic.
And, while quickly glancing through the books which were rather picked over due to 1/2 price days on Wednesday and Thursday, I found "All in the Family" by Edwin O'Connor for only one dollar. I had just started reading his "The Edge of Sadness" last night.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Charming Little Book

This charming tiny book was a dollar at the lovely School Days Antique Mall in Stirdivant, Wisconsin.

It was published in Germany, although it says not when.

It doesn't look very old to me, but has an old-world look about it.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

She Plays the Piano

In Wisconsin last week I found the John Thompson Hymns and Fur Elise. Both were a dollar. Tonight I played through the hymns, which wasn't too taxing, as it isn't much above Teaching Little Fingers to Play.

I also played through Down By the Bay. Jonge and Famke are in Florida this week, but that is no reason for me to slack off in the piano playing department. I found that book years ago for a dime. It isn't something I remember singing with my kids, so it seems new to me.

Not so with Perhaps Love, which came in a wedding song book for two dollars a while back. That one is loaded with fabulous songs. Perhaps Love and For You being two of my favorite John Denver songs. My favorite is Grandma's Feather Bed. Sadly, that song didn't come in the book of wedding songs. Perhaps it should have, for me.

Anyway, I have stacks and stacks of piano music now. I cannot stop myself, because I remember being told that it was too expensive, so when I see it for mere dimes and dollars, I buy it. Wouldn't you? If you are reading this blog. You would. I know you would.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Dutch Stuff Found in Wisconsin

Since we were on vacation, I let my $5.00 budget go by the wayside.
Yet, nothing that we bought was expensive at all.
I've been wanting a salt box for a very looong time, and was thrilled to find this one. I don't think it is all that old, but I love the vintage-y look of it.
And, the linen dish towel I could not resist. Although, now that I have it home I realize that I will actually have to stitch it myself.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Riley Poems

I still cannot believe that I found this exceptional copy of "A Child-World" by James Whitcomb Riley for only $4.00.
If you don't recognize his name, you are likely to be familiar with what he has written. Does "when the frost is on the punkin" ring a bell with you?
Anyway, it wasn't until AFTER I purchased it that I realized it was an autographed copy. I had noticed the beautiful handwriting and that was enough for me, but an autographed
This does not appear to be one of a numbered limited edition that recently sold for $500.00, but another volume of his sold at an estate auction for $140.00.
Oh, and the birth-death years were added in blue ink, and the book was passed on to the first recipient's grandson.
I really do find treasure everywhere!

The Egg and I


Look what I found!

A lovely copy of "The Egg and I" by Betty MacDonald.

I have wanted this book for years. I found it at an antique mall in Wisconsin. One of my favorite things about hunting for something for a long time (as opposed to buying it on ebay), is that delightful thrill one gets upon finding it! Just like a treasure hunt. And, this book is green, so as soon as it's finished, it will have a place of honor in my 'green book' collection.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Good Stuff

These things were found on my weekly Saturday trip to the local thrift store.
I love the variety.
Clean, beautiful Fostoria creamer and sugar bowl with lid. Sold separately. $4.00 total.
Dirty old occupied Japan Westie, in a baggie with three other occupied Japan dogs. $1.00 total. For sixteen years I had a Westie named Niki. I was thrilled to find this, and plan to carefully clean it up for use in a shadow box.., someday.
THGGM found exactly what he has been looking for. Although, at this moment, I cannot remember just what it was.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Never Too Many Books

Last Saturday I found several great books! I'm presently reading "Mary Chesnut's Civil War" again. This particular book had more to it than the edition I read first. I'm enjoying it very much.

I also found several children's books and then these two hardcover music books. I've attempted to read them, but it would require more concentration than I'm capable of presently to make it all the way through. So, I am just admiring them as they lean against my piano.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

A Good Tin Is Hard to Find

Tins are so plentiful in thrift stores that I rarely look at them. But, this one caught my eye. The plentiful kind usually aren't cool and a bit vintage like this one.
I love the winter scene and the colors.
And, it was 69 cents.
I'm trying to figure out if I want to make something of it - which is why it has green florist wire with thrifted wooden beads bobbing around on the ends.
I'm just not sure, yet.
Sometimes plain is fancy enough.

Monday, October 20, 2008


I found a baggy full of monopoly pieces for 25 cents.
The money just may come in handy someday.
I've been looking for this for some time. I did find an old game awhile back, but before I bought it (for $2) I thought I'd better give it a whiff. Before I even got the cover half off, it became obvious by the smell and my extreme itching and sneezing that it was full living things trying to kill me. So I passed on that one.
These smell good.
One learns a lot thrift shopping!

Friday, October 17, 2008

From Sweater Vest to Coasters to Wreathes

Hmmm. I could not quite get the coasters to 'square'.

So, I cut each coaster into 9 tiny squares, and threaded those onto a wire coat hanger (said in my best Joan Crawford voice!)
In between every fifth squares is a brown jingle bell. I found those on clearance and just KNEW that someday I would find the perfect use for them.
I'm not sure this was it.
Although I am happy with how they turned out, THGGM made a funny face at them, and also had a dream about a crazy craft person who made stuff out of felt and bushel baskets.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

These Are Two of My Favorite Things

A few years ago I found an oval etched glass piece and thought that perhaps dozens of them would look lovely attached to the two French doors at the entry doors of the house we lived in at the time.

I made it to three before that clanging and banging of the pieces against the windowpanes every time the doors were used got to be a bit much.

But you know how it is, once one develops an 'eye' for something, one starts to see them everywhere.

So, I have moved on from the etched kind, to THIS kind, although I really do not know how to describe them.

I first found the one in the lower picture. I believe it is a Guttman.

Then, just a few months ago I found the one in the top picture.

I LOVE it. The colors are so vivid.

I know that to the untrained eye, these are just pieces of junk picked up at a thrift store for under a dollar.

But, to me?

To me they are priceless works of art, available to the masses!

(oh. i am just sooooo easy to please.)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Wash, Cut, Sew

Today while cleaning out my closet, I found a wool vest that I used to wear ALL THE TIME.
I hear that it is a problem many with my personality type have, but I grow strongly attached to certain articles of clothing.
This vest was one of them.
But, it was clearly time to turn this into something else, so I washed it in very hot water, attempted to dry it in the dryer (WAY too much woolly lint) and cut it up!
It was clearly too thick to sew using my machine, so I hand sewed both pieces. Easy blanket stitching.

Then I remembered seeing on someone's blog, squares of felted wool used for coasters. I have eight 4 inch squares. I'm trying to decide if I want eight flat coasters, or four thicker ones with cinnamon and cloves sewn inside.
Another problem I have. Getting carried away with an idea.


I just can't quit with the rice bags!
This one is half of an old table runner.
I believe it came from THGGM's grandmother.
It had a stain I could not remove, so I just cut around it.
The rice is actually in it's own pillow case, so the outside cover can be washed.
I added cloves and a broken up cinnamon stick to the rice, and OH! the smell is wonderful when it is heated!
This is a perfect neck roll pillow for migraine-y me.

This bag was made from a two-piece denim outfit that I've been wearing for years. It refused to wear out, so I had to kill it.
But, it has returned in the form of several rice bags.