Thursday, October 16, 2014

What I wore to the Lumber Baron's Ball: 1920's style and Event Recap


What I wore to the Lumber Baron's Ball: 

1920's style and Event Recap!

We had a great time at the Lumber Baron's Ball! The staff of Watermark 920 did an excellent job as usual, elegantly decorating and creating a perfect 1920's atmosphere! The food from Ryke's was delicious, of course, and the band was great, too. 

The outfit I wore was totally secondhand and pulled from my own closet--I couldn't really find a fab sequin-y number and so I opted to create a softer look with a 1920's waistline utilizing a brown skirt and shirt combo. The pearl string was thrifted for 99 cents from Hope's Outlet--and the beaded purse was as well, some time ago, for two dollars.  The brown rounded toe heels (though a little tall for that decade) were purchased secondhand at Love Inc. last year for around 5 dollars. If you've followed my blog, you may have already seen that the flapper style headband was a DIY from completely secondhand items I had laying around the house!

If you consider that none of these items were truly new, that brings my outfit cost down to absolutely nothing!

Check out the pics below for more of my recap and also see the entire album on my photography page!




^^^ This gal had the right idea about snagging something glitzy for the event--a budget friendly and eco-friendly RENTAL at Rent The Runway! Have you checked out this website? Wear a pricey dress for a night or two, at a fraction of the cost. =)

Monday, October 13, 2014

Just in Time for Halloween: DIY Flapper Headband


Just in Time for Halloween: 
DIY Flapper Headband

Looking for a pretty and inexpensive Halloween costume? Dressing for the Lumber Baron's Ball this last Saturday (1920's themed) taught me that putting together a decade appropriate outfit can be a totally frugal affair! I'll have a re-cap of my outfit (which was totally based out of my closet and thrifted, of course) later, but I wanted to share the simple and 100% secondhand "flapper-style" headband I created using only items I had laying around the house, and my sewing machine.


In fact, that's why I'm sharing! Let's face it, you could easily go out and buy some sequined elastic and a feather, bust out your hot glue gun, and make a head dress in minutes. But why buy something new and waste resources when you have all the scraps and bits at home to put together this romantic gem?



I gathered my materials; a fabric flower I had laying around, reclaimed cotton lace, a vintage brooch, some odds and ends pearls...a few random get the picture!

Also:  thin waistband elastic, scissors, a spool of thread, and a needle.

I had the elastic laying around in my sewing drawer. I measured a piece at a comfortable width for the circumference of my head, and then I sewed the ends together. 


Then, I stretched the elastic while stitching some salvaged cotton lace over it, to "pretty up" the elastic. I wanted a softer, antique look with the white--rather than bright, flashy sequins.


I arranged the flower and brooch the way I liked it (positioned off to the side and together, as the focal piece) and then sewed them on to the elastic, trying the headband on every now and again to test the fit/mockup.


From that point, I sewed all of the jewelry bits around the flower and brooch (underneath, and around to create a "crowned" effect) and...voila!


Clearly, it's not rocket science--I mean, I sewed some stuff on to an elastic headband! 

But the idea here is:

What can you use for your Halloween costume this year that you already have laying around? How can you reduce your consumption of goods, and what might you be able to salvage or use secondhand?

Share your creative ideas on my Thrift Trick Facebook page!

Monday, October 6, 2014

COUNTDOWN to the Lumber Baron's Ball: What to Wear

COUNTDOWN to the Lumber Baron's Ball: 
What to Wear!

It's almost here! The Lakeshore Museum Center Lumber Baron's Ball at Watermark 920!(Check out my other announcement and hair post here). I must admit--I'm not certain what I'm wearing yet! I think that this era is easy to nail if you are dressing as a man--check out the great resource (shown below) I found on Pinterest with 1920's men's fashion. You can also view my entire Pinterest board (1920's Life) here!

1920s Fashion for Men: A Complete Suit Guide


SO. What if you are a woman and you don't have the luxury of finding a fantastic vintage dress from the 1920's in time for the ball? Read on...

DRESSES Well, they weren't made to hug curves. That is the only sad aspect of 1920's style for those of us who like to highlight our curves! Fortunately, showing a little leg or arms, or even cleavage, was more acceptable. The dresses of the 1920's were designed to hang a bit on the torso, so the idea is a low waistline. However, they were "glitzed" up with feathers, sequins, bows, pins and all kinds of adornment, so if you find yourself in a pinch, you can always try:

  •  "Bedazzling" a dress that is already in your closet with the right basic shape! 

  • Layering a long shirt over a seperate skirt with a low belt--drapey necklaces or fancy brooches can help the items flow together!

    SHOES Get a feeling for the classic "T-strap" show with the picture on the left, or visit this awesome gallery from Vintage Dancer to see what other types of styles were popular in the 1920's! Remember, overall, that platforms and tall, spikey heels were not popular. I personally think this would be the easiest element of your outfit to thrift! 
The Oxford look and heels with buttons, straps and low chunky heels were popular.

Looking for accessory inspiration? 

We've already covered hair and hats in my hair inspiration post--so it's time to get started.

What are you wearing to the ball?

Monday, September 29, 2014

I'm Bringing Beauty Back | Re-Writing "All About That Bass"

I'm Bringing Beauty Back | Re-Writing "All About That Bass"

OK. So, I'm late "weighing" in on this one, and I know it.

The thing is, I haven't been able to stop thinking about this song because, well, it's everywhere! On the radio, when I'm out shopping, topping Taylor Swift in the charts! And, unfortunately, stuck in my fiance's head, which completely enraged him and made me laugh.

People obviously like the song, because it's hugely popular at the moment. When it first came out, so many dear friends messaged me to share it with me. It was sweet that they thought of me when they heard it, and the association was well intended. However, upon my first listen all the way through, I was pretty perturbed by the lyrics. I also didn't care so much for the fact that it seemed as if Trainor was "accessorizing" with black people. If you haven't heard the song yet, check it out. The lyrics are seemingly innoccous until you get into the first verse, where Trainor begins to drop little notions that don't exactly resonate well with me. 

As many others before me have noted, the song seems to suggest that women should frame their ideas around their physical worth based on what men like...but then it gets worse. Trainor calls out the "skinny bitches" in a passive-aggressive voice, but recants a moment later when she claims all of us are "perfect".  We know this isn't helping women out there--I mean, it makes sense that we would validate all bodies and shapes. You can't possibly succeed at raising the confidence of a particular set of women by tearing another set down. This is only creating unrest and feelings of inadequacy amongst people who really DO need to embrace their perfection.

Some people claimed that listeners should "just have a sense of humor about it", when folks like me expressed concern. Against all good judgment, I made the mistake of reading the comment section from an article regarding Trainor's recent chart-topping, only to find this comment from Bill, who wrote on 9/11/14 at

"I think it's fun. It's obvious she's not a bombshell and she knows that. It's obvious that this type of song is an uphill battle for someone like her, and she knows it. So, she put all that aside and made the song anyways just for fun to see what would happen."


I'm sorry, but why is Meghan Trainor not a bombshell? And how is her song like an uphill battle? Please do explain. Because her entire physical persona is presented for your evaluation. So enlighten us, Bill, on all of the "obvious" shortcomings that she has.

But I digress.

We (women of all shapes) have worked long and hard to appreciate our bodies. We simply can't tear eachother down, and though it may seem that a "thin" girl couldn't possibly be offended by the lyrics to this song (a possible perception of a world thought to be dominated by some sort of elite perfection), we have to consider the message we're sending.

Though there have been so many interesting commentaries on this matter, I thought it might be thought-provoking to simply flip the script. 

Here are selective passages from "All About That Bass", rewritten from the opposing perspective:

Yeah it's pretty clear, I ain't no size fourteen
But I can shake it, shake it like I'm a beauty queen
'Cause I got that perfect shape that all the boys chase
All the right gaps in all the right places

Yeah, my momma she told me don't worry about your size
She says, boys they like little flat tummies to hold at night
You know I won't be no thick-figured, plus size or big and tall,
So, if that's what's you're into
Then go ahead and move along

I'm bringing skinny back
Go ahead and tell them chubby bitches “Hey!”
No, I'm just playing I know you think you're fat,
But I'm here to tell you that,
Every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top


It's pretty clear how upset people would be if these lyrics were in a hit song. Perhaps outraged might be a better explanation! I have a feeling that, deep down inside, the intent for "All About That Bass" was positive. Yet, when a song is so catchy, and really gets gets in to your head, that's even more opportunity for the same message or mantra to be sent, over and over again, to your sub-conscious mind. It becomes a subliminal meditation!

When it comes to messages about self-acceptance, we can only hope that more high-profile artists will begin incorporating lyrics that empower and compliment ALL body types, and more importantly, encourage self-love that goes beyond the reflection in the mirror.

In closing, I've re-written just a small portion of "All About That Bass" with a message that I feel is more important than booty--which, by the way, NEVER LEFT THE BUILDING (so we didn't need to bring it back).

(Re-written Thrift Trick Style):

I'm bringing beauty back

Of all varieties and cultures that

Women belong to--we’ll define it as

Your soul and spirit. 

Every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

My 1920's Hair Inspiration for the Lumber Baron's Ball!

Image courtesy of Arabia Weddings

My 1920's Hair Inspiration for the Lumber Baron's Ball!

So...what was trending for 1920's hair? Well, definitely shorter 'dos: bobs, finger waves and closely coiffed hairstyles were all the rage.


Images courtesy of  Best of Hairstyles, Hair Archive and Wikipedia

But, what to do if you have longer hair like me? 

You have a few options:

1) Rock a cloche or similiar period hat! Tuck hair underneath and allow some curls to pop out.

2) Fake a bob. It's easier than you think; check out this article on Elle for directions on how to do it in six easy steps.

3) No matter your length, curl and adorn. Add waves and beautiful accessories to your hair to transform any length 'do into a respectable 1920's statement!

Check back with me soon as I have an accessory DIY, as well as "trial run", planned for my Lumber Baron's Ball hairstyle!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Pennies Into the Pig: Budgeting for my Wedding

Image courtesy of

Pennies Into the Pig:
Budgeting for my Wedding

It has to be the least romantic detail of wedding planning: budgeting. No doubt, though, it is of paramount importance. Yet, as says, 16% of brides surveyed "didn't even have a budget" (CNN Money, 2011).  


I can't imagine trying to do this without planning finances carefully and it's not just because I don't want to overspend--I can't AFFORD to! Therefore, the first thing I did after the excitement from my engagement settled down was start number crunching. Although I'm not sure what my final numbers will be, I can tell you that I'm not planning on spending more than $5000 (honeymoon included) on my wedding. If you consider many people spend over $20,000 on a wedding (dress and ring included) according to polls, than that sounds like a mere fraction of most budgets. Then again, who has $20,000 to spend on a wedding? I don't. I think most people I know end up spending between somewhere in between--usually no less than $1000 on even the most DIY, backyard hitchin', and most of the time, closer to $10,000.

Between the costs of a venue, food, photography and incidentals, the dollars stack up quickly. Therefore I'm trying to budget for the big stuff right away. Though looking at the numbers can be scary for some people, I wanted to get hit in the face with them right away so I can budget and spend that money before it's even in my pocket (Dave Ramsey style).

Without getting too detailed, here are the basics for my PHASE ONE savings plan:

  • All loose change is being saved in a bank for the wedding (to be deposited regularly in to our savings account for the event)
  • My fiance and I are both starting to deposit $10 weekly ($20 collectively) into the savings account as a base, which will balloon as time passes.

Wedding Countdown Ticker

Deposits will increase in amount, and we'll be taking a percentage of tax returns this year, but that is phase one for me! There are 53 weeks left until my wedding, so depositing that amount each week (without figuring in any loose change deposits) only brings us to a fraction of our cost. Therefore, we'll be looking at making that up somewhere along the way, but it's a start!

It's intimidating to think about--but what's the alternative? Burying my head in the proverbial sand and having a huge freakout in the summer next year? HAHA! Let the saving begin.

Also check out the Pinterest board I've made dedicated to saving, "Thrift Trick Thrifty Wedding Pins!"


Looking for all of my wedding related posts in one place? Click on this icon:

Located on my top navigation menu as well!

Monday, September 15, 2014

2014 Lumber Baron's Ball: Let's Get "Hotsy Totsy"!

2014 Lumber Baron's Ball: Let's Get "Hotsy Totsy"!

In case you're wondering, "Hotsy Totsy" is 20s slang for "pleasing to the eye." ;)

I'm so excited to announce that I will be helping to style the 2014 Lumber Baron's Ball for Lakeshore Museum Center again and this year's awesome theme is the 1920's!

I have a few fun DIY's up my sleeve and I'm so excited to attend this year! I'll be covering the event and posting a re-cap as well, so don't miss it and follow along for ideas on how to dress appropriately for this awesome event!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Five Looks from Michael Kors Spring 2015 that you can Thrift or DIY

Five Looks from Michael Kors Spring 2015 
that you can Thrift or DIY

RLWL Michael Kors

1. Crisp white dress shirt, floral skirt, cute knotted belt (instructions here courtesy of, sandals.

RLWL Michael Kors

2. Extra long white t-shirt, with sheer or tulle calf length skirt overlay (easy sewing DIY!), cute knotted belt, sandals. 

RLWL Michael Kors

3. Cream or white blazer with chambray blouse, neutral calf length skirt, cute knotted belt, sandals, neutral handbag. 

RLWL Michael Kors

4. White dress shirt under a grey knit OR sweatshirt (DIY rouching?), 3/4 trousers or rolled trousers in a neutral shade, sandals, neutral handbag. 

RLWL Michael Kors

5. The ultimate classic: crisp white dress shirt with a calf length or full length black skirt, plus black sandals or ballet flats.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Makeup Review: Younique Moodstruck Minerals Pigment Powder (and eyeshadow tutorial)!


Makeup Review: Younique Moodstruck Minerals Pigment Powder 
(and eyeshadow tutorial)!

I had an awesome experience reviewing Younique's Moodstruck 3D Fiber lash masara, so I jumped at the chance recently to review another interesting product: Moodstruck Minerals Pigment Powder.

These high pigment powders interested me for a few reasons. First of all, they have all kinds of fun names rather than hues; "Playful", "Heartbroken" and "Corrupted", to name a few! I was able to choose four colors for my review, and I chose the following shades (shown in the same order below as pictured by photos on the website): Famous, Sexy, Curious and Dignified. They are $10 each. Shop for the pigments here!

Are you 'moodstruck' yet?    Are you 'moodstruck' yet?    Are you 'moodstruck' yet?     Are you 'moodstruck' yet?

Cool facts about the pigments: They are 100% natural, chemical-free, mineral-based pigment powders, free of talc, oils, preservatives, perfumes, synthetic dyes, and parabens! (And you can mix them with anything...and that's where the fun starts).




Here's what I noticed right away:

--The pigments arrived in handy little pots with locking systems.

--The colors really ARE high pigment; a little shake goes a very long way. 

--The colors blend smoothly with other products (lotions, water, mascaras). PERFECT for ladies who want to create their own makeup shades, tinted moisturizers, temporary hair streaks, tinted nail polish, tinted lip gloss, eyeshadows and eyeliners...the list GOES ON!

--I love the coverage and application of the colors. They lasted a long time and I still can't believe how far a little bit stretched (even when added to nail polish!)



Once my other makeup was done and my eyelids were primed and powdered, I took the following steps to acheive the look above!


1.) I applied a sheer layer of "Curious" pigment over my entire eyelid, using a large, flat, eyeshadow shading brush, including the inner corners of my eye. 


2.) lined my eyes with black eyeliner to provide a solid line and dark focal point for the bright liner (which I mixed myself) to compliment.


3.) Using just a couple shakes of "Dignified" on to a small mixing tray, I added a few drops of water, and blended with a thin lining brush. An eyeliner brush, small angled brush or even another eyeliner tool from a pot (cleaned, of course) would work well for this job!


4.) Following the black eyeliner as a guide, I painted a parallel line over each eye using the "Dignified" eyeliner paste. The pigment was actually quite pronounced with just one line, but I allowed it to dry and painted a second for extra coverage. Be patient waiting for the pigment paste to dry. I then followed up my normal mascara with a layer of Younique 3D Fiber Lash mascara!

The coolest finshing touch?

After my makeup was done, I decided to add a few shakes of the same pigment to a small mixing tray with about 5-6 drops of top coat nail polish, and I matched my exact nail shade to my eyeliner! I was shocked at how well a few sprinkles of pigment covered my nails when mixed with the polish. I could have easily done one coat--the color was totally rich! I loved having nails that matched my eyeliner so well.

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Each pigment pot might cost a little more than individual eyeshadows at the drug store, but the color goes a long way. For me, a definite selling point is the natural, paraben free state of the pigment, as well. It's nice to know that a product that you can add to your other products doesn't contain any harmful chemicals, fragrance or even talc! Not only are the colors safe, but they lasted all night as I rode bikes in the warm sun, without melting away or smudging. I'm sold on these products and I would definitely recommend them!

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