As January comes to a close, it occurs to me that I haven’t written even one blog entry this month.  I guess I’ve been busy pickin’ and paintin’.  I thought I’d jump back in by highlighting the best things to happen over the past month in this thrifting-painting-decorating-antiquing business of mine.  So here goes…in no particular order…

1. I moved to a bigger booth at the antique shop.

I started this little experiment business venture in September in a 4×6 square booth with only half walls.  For $55 a month rent, it felt very safe and I knew that even if I didn’t sell a single thing, a couple of months wouldn’t break the bank.  It soon became obvious that this wasn’t going to be enough space.  And when a bigger space opened up, I jumped on it.  I have double the floor space (4×12) and walls that go up to the ceiling. (Yay!)  The layout of the booth also fits me well (it’s sorta like a hallway rather than an actual booth you walk into) and allows me lots of flexibility with my little pieces of painted furniture.  January has been my best month yet, so I feel like I’ve made the right move!

2. I finally tried “THE REAL” Chalk Paint.

You may know that I have been making my own DIY version of chalk paint.  And it’s been working fine.  But this past weekend, I finally shelled out the $38 a quart for the real stuff by Annie Sloan.  It feels and acts much different than the paint I use; I’ll do a whole blog on it soon and talk about the differences, but for now, I’d say I really like it.  Do I “$38-a-quart-more” like it?  Only time will tell.  Here’s an up-close of the first table top I did with it.  What do you think?

 

3. The new Goodwill in Goochland opened

Am I the only one who gets excited about this stuff?!  This has got to be one of the best Goodwills I’ve ever been to!  It’s very clean and organized.  In fact, when my friend, Halle walked in, she said, “Is this Marshalls or Goodwill?!”  It was that nice.  It smelled good, and I found a ton of stuff to buy.  Not so much for the booth as for me and my family.  I hate to admit it, but I even found my baby’s first walking shoes.  I know that sounds bad, but they are leather Stride Right shoes that were brand new for $2!  They retail for like $40, so who could blame me?  Just please don’t tell my husband.

4. I made a new friend

This month I became good friends with a woman who has a booth in the same antique shop as me.  She’s really fun and funny and has great taste.  Her booth is one of the cutest in the shop, and the pieces she picks have a unique Asian influence.  The reason I include this on my list is that it has been so nice to have someone who appreciates the “thrill of the hunt” as much as I do.   I finally have someone who gets as excited about Goodwill as me!  If you visit Oddballs, check out her space.  She’s expanding too, and as of February 1 will be the second big booth on the right.  This proves you’re never too old to make a new friend.

 5. I sold these chairs!

I found these mid-century chairs at a yard sale several months ago.  I bought them both for $20.  They sat in my house for a month or two waiting for me to recover and paint them.  But, the problem is that I never found the right fabric for them (after searching exhaustively) and frankly, I’m not that good at upholstery.  So when I got my new larger space, I stuck them in there until I had time to redo them.  And voila!  A nice mother and daughter came in and snatched them up for $150!  I was thrilled with my profit margin, and now I don’t have to recover the seats!

6. I started selling on eBay.

I’ve been buying on eBay since early 2000.  I’m not sure why, but I’ve never sold a single thing until now.  What was I so afraid of?  I guess I thought it was more involved than it actually is.  With all the new technology, it’s super easy to take some pictures and throw up a listing.  This past week I sold two sweaters.

I bought this hand-appliqued Easter sweater for 3.99 and sold it for $38!

I think I paid $1.50 for this vintage LeTigre sweater. Remember those?! (It was 50% off!) I sold it for $19.

And I currently have a listing for this old set of vintage hot rollers.

I got them for $6 and have them listed at $19.99. We’ll see what happens.

Apparently the old technology (wax core?) in these rollers cause them to get hotter and/or make better curls.  I hear they are highly desirable among the pageant set.   Who knew?! (I mean, I did, duh, that’s why I bought them at an estate sale!

So there you have it.  Not quite a “Top Ten,” but I sure have enjoyed myself this month!

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

I’ve been doing a lot of “thrifting” lately, (I’m addicted!) but it seems like I’ve bought more “projects” than “products” for my antiques booth.  All of these projects have been piling up in my dining room, and apparently someone wants to have Christmas dinner in there.  So my goal this week was to clear out the room and get some things painted and off to my booth.

First up was this hexagonal end table.

This table looked so dated when I bought it at the Love of Jesus Thrift Shop in Richmond.  I loved the hardware and the cool slate top and knew it would look awesome with some paint.

The picture makes it look grey, but yes!  It’s another blue table!  I know, I know… you’ve seen this paint before.  It’s the one I painted my son’s room (and several mirrors) in – What can I say?  I had a whole gallon to use up!

But what a difference it made here!  Welcome to the 21st century, little table!  The cool color combined with the slate top gives it a modern look.

Check out all the storage inside!

I love the way the handle looks with a coat of paint and some distressing.

They just don’t make hardware like this anymore!

Next up was a bench I picked up at a shop in Norther Virginia while visiting my mom.  It  had a horrible faux paint finish and dated plaid fabric.

After a light sand and a coat of grey paint, she was ready for her new top.

I picked out a modern yellow and grey fabric from Joann Fabrics.

Then I added a bit of grey trim to finish it off.  Wouldn’t this be sweet at the foot of a bed or at a bathroom vanity counter?

My last project for the week was another lamp revamp!  I painted a boring brass lamp a nice shade of olive green.  After hand painting the lamp, I gave it a light sand, distressed it a bit and then sealed it with finishing wax.

I topped it off with a new burlap shade adorned with birds.  What do you think?

Wish I could keep it, but all of these items are going in my booth at Odd Balls Antiques & More this week.  That is unless of course you, or someone you know may be interested in giving something a new home.  If so, shoot me an email at worthwhilerestyle@gmail.com.

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

 

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A few weeks ago I visited my in laws in New Bern, North Carolina.  New city, which means… new thrift and antique shops to explore. I always look forward to checking out the local junk shops when I travel.  Does that make me weird?

A few years ago we went on an Alaskan cruise. As we were walking around the port town of Ketchikan, my husband pointed out the local thrift shop. What a guy!

There it was in the distance…that famous red shield of the Salvation Army beckoning to me to come search for bargains.

I really hoped I’d find something. Have you ever wanted to buy something in a store “just cuz?” How cool would it have been to have found something fabulous (and cheap) and say “I bought this in Alaska!?”

But unfortunately it was one of the worst thrift shops I’d ever been to (and I’ve been to a LOT).  I did however capture this picture of two dogs hanging out of  a window on the walk back to the ship.  So it was worth it.

I think they were campaign dogs.

The Salvation Army I recently visited in North Carolina was pretty good.  And by “good,” I mean three things:

1) Clean – no funky smell.  I HATE that!

2) Well-organized – I like digging through piles as much as the next person, but I do prefer when things are where they’re supposed to be, and

3) I found stuff to buy. Muah ha ha!

Here’s what came home with me:

~ A wooden serving tray.

I just love the retro-looking cluster of grapes.

I painted it grey and lightly distressed it.  Don’t you love how just a little paint can transform something so outdated?

~Small pitcher – I can’t get enough of these. I price them at an affordable $3-4 in my booth since it’s something people love to collect.
~ 4 ceramic fleur de lis decorative doo-dads
~ A shirt for my son, and
~ A vintage wooden doll cradle.

 

I forgot to take a picture before taking it to the shop, but there is an old-school transfer of a little lamb on it.  Remember those from the 70’s?  I mean, not that I really remember the 70’s, but you know.  It’s so sweet.

The cradle is down there on the left being used to display the pillows.

I put it in the shop for sale as-is and then will restyle it with some pink paint in a few months if it doesn’t sell.

The only thing that bothered me about the NC Salvation Army was that instead of the prices being on stickers, they were written on the bottom of each item in permanent marker.  Hello!? It’s permanent!

What’s the point of getting something and trying to pass it off as expensive if it has $1.99 written on the bottom?!

Luckily I was able to scratch it off with a Mr. Clean Magic eraser.

The last thing I bought was a magazine rack.

They say magazine racks come in threes.  No wait, that’s tragedies.  So scratch that.

I’m not sure if I find things or things find me, but recently I became the owner of three standing magazine racks within one week.

This first spindly one I got at an online auction. I told you, I’m addicted to these!

The next one my dear friend Catherine scavenged, I mean, bought for me.  I introduced her to the Goodwill Outlet, you know, The Pound.  She was texting me live from her maiden voyage. When I told her about my recent auction score, she mentioned that she had just passed a rack.

Not knowing whether it would still be there (to say merchandise moves quickly there is and understatement) she hurried to where she had seen it. Thankfully it was still there.

And lastly is the one I found in North Carolina while visiting my in-laws.

So here are some ways to use these uber-useful racks:

-For magazines next to your favorite chair in the family room.
-For books or other interesting reading material in the bathroom.
-For children’s books in the nursery.
-For files in the office.
-For cookbooks in the kitchen.

Can you think of any other uses?

So what am I going to do with them?  You tell me!  If you’re in need of a magazine rack, send me an email or reach out on Facebook.  I’d be happy to custom paint one the color of your choice as they’re currently all still available (and taking up valuable floor space in my son’s play room.) Poor thing.  It’s a good thing he doesn’t crawl yet!

Thanks for reading!

Lots of new items have been added to my booth at Odd Balls Antiques & More.

It’s all decorated for the holidays – well, as much as a 4×6 space can be.  I made a curtain out of a gorgeous vintage table cloth to brighten the space.  I also have some adorable retro Christmas ornaments for sale for only $2 each!  I think they would look great featured in a glass bowl as a centerpiece on your holiday table. Or they’ll add a bit of whimsy along with your own cherished family ornaments.

I’ve also added a few new mirrors.  I love the curvy lines of the blue mirror below.

I hope you get a chance to stop by the shop this season.  Antiques and hand painted items make great gifts for that person on your list that has everything.  You’ll know that you’re giving them something one-of-a-kind that can’t be bought in a “big-box” store.

Through the holidays, everything in my booth is 20% off!

Thanks for reading!

I love a homemade Halloween costume.  I guess it feels like “goin’ old school” to make your own costume.  Remember when you were a kid – foraging for parts to cobble together into a costume?

Don’t me wrong – when I was a kid, all I wanted was a store-bought costume.  But now, as a mom, for some reason, buying a costume from a Halloween superstore somehow feels like cheating. I’m totally NOT judging anyone for buying their costume.  We’ve done it in the past and will again.  But there’s something about being able to say “I made that!” that I especially love at Halloween.

This year I made both my son’s costumes.  Well, not made…restyled.  My ten year old (he just turned double-digits last week, so I’m still not used to saying that) wanted to be a “sheet ghost.”  He felt that would be a very unique costume.  I tried to point out that it is probably the least unique costume he could have chosen, but he advised otherwise.  So off to the Goodwill I went to acquire a white sheet.  I found one for $2.99.  Luckily for me it was 50% off!  His $1.50 costume probably set a record for the least amount I’ve ever spent at Halloween.

We decided our five month old would be a turtle shortly after he was born because he sorta resembled a turtle.  It was something about the way he stuck his neck out.

About a month ago I found a reptile (snake?) costume at a children’s consignment sale for $5 and hoped I’d be able to restyle it into a turtle.

BEFORE

First I cut off the head and the long tail.  Then I sewed shut the head (keeping the hood) and reattached a shorter version of the tail.

Next I painted a child’s bike helmet that I found at a yard sale a few months ago.  I freehanded some spots to look like a turtle shell.  I had planned on working on this after my son went to sleep that night.  But he was so fussy and was only consoled in my arms.  So into the sling he went.  And out came the paintbrush.

 

This is what you call “multi-tasking!”

So here’s what we ended up with.

BACK

FRONT

Both boys wore clothes they already owned under their costumes, so both of them combined cost me less than $10!

I know I’m biased, but I think he made a pretty cute turtle.  Don’t you?!

Every time I find an amazing piece of furniture for my antiques booth with the intention of painting it, I pause and ask myself, “Should I paint this, or not?”

I love wood!

(Go ahead and insert joke here.)

I think it must be the tree-hugger in me coming out.  I mean, I do own, not one, but two pairs of Birkenstocks!

Seriously though, I really do love wood.  I love how furniture acquires more character over time.  I especially love dark wood.

Our house is full of it.  Every time I think I’ll move away from the dark-stained wood that fills our house, somehow I still end up with it.

Last year when I was planning my son’s nursery, I had the perfect opportunity to introduce a new stain into our lives.  I searched and searched and finally settled on a crib and dresser combination that I loved.

We loved the way the finish looked in the pictures online.

I bypassed my usual choice of “cherry” (progress!) for the finish they called “Tuscan.”  Well, I’ve always wanted to go to Tuscany; I hear they have good wood.  Oh, wait, that’s wine.  Whatever, I like them both.

The reviews said it had a beautiful well-worn, hand-distressed finish. Right up my ally.

So we took a gamble and ordered it online.  And we waited.  And when it arrived…guess what?  It matched all the other dark wood in our house.  So much for branching out (pardon the pun!).

 

Here it is in my son’s room. It’s a little darker than we expected, but we still love it!

I guess the one good thing about sticking with the same finish is that we can mix and match the pieces in other rooms as needed.

So what’s a girl like me doing painting over all this wood?  Well, as much as I love wood, I also love bright colors.  And frankly, I just love to paint.

There is just something about a lime green table that makes me smile.

And in my defense, I only paint bad wood.  Well, that and ugly wood.  Actually bad, ugly wood from the seventies doesn’t make me feel bad at all.

Here she is “before.”

Take this little Queen Anne-style end table.  When I found it, it was sad and lonely sitting in a cold storage locker.  Well, it wasn’t actually lonely because it has a twin.  And come to think of it, it wasn’t really cold either because we’ve had a very mild September.  But she and her sister were gouged and the crevices were covered with glitter.  Glitter? Don’t ask.  I have no idea why.

But here she is now in all her painted and distressed glory.  She’s for sale in my booth, waiting for the perfect home.

I’m still waiting to paint her twin.  They’re tired of having the same identity, so we’re going to switch it up and paint her a different color.  Any suggestions?

Here she is “after.”

My latest acquisition that has me wondering, “Should I paint them or not?” is a pair of mid-century cane-back chairs.

I just love this chair! So glad there were two of them.

Don’t you love the soft sloping arms?  The purist in me thinks they should stay dark, but the creative side of me wants to paint, paint, paint them – slate grey perhaps – and cover them with a super-fabulous fabric.  I’ll let you know what I decide.