Happy Juneteenth!

Juneteenth is finally here and I am excited!

My level of love for Juneteenth is equivalent of that of that when syrup first met pancakes.

If you do not know what Juneteenth is you should first be ashamed. Be very ashamed.

When you are done being ashamed you can gain the knowledge of Juneteenth. Juneteenth is defined as “a festival held annually on the nineteenth of June by African Americans (especially in the southern states), to commemorate emancipation from slavery in Texas on that day in 1865.”. What this fancy definition fails to say is that it is also one of those holidays. By that I mean those holidays in which everybody and their mama stops by unannounced to grab a plate of food, gossip, or both!

“Gurrrrrl guess what I heard!”

This random group of people can include a distant cousin, an older “auntie” who expects you to remember her babysitting you when you were two years old, and your current crush.

You just never know who you are going to see on Juneteenth. It’s like hearing a knock at your door on Purge night.

It could be a friendly, terrified potential victim.

Or a group of mass murderers.

You just never know what you gonna get, life is like a box of chocolates, right?

So I’m guessing you want to look good when your future husband walks in the door.

Or former babysitter/ Auntie.

In an effort to look presentable to elders but still sexy to the future hubby I recommend a maxi dress!

Maxi dresses are the perfect outfit to appease everyone. They are long, loose, and modest so they are good for the elder. Then when you turn around….

As the famous philosopher Aubrey Drake Graham once said “I hate it when she go, but I love to watch her leave.”.

To find the perfect maxi dress to wear to your Juneteenth celebration that will not break the bank I recommend buying one from the thrift store!

One that I love is this cute and light weight hi-low black maxi dress.

The ruffles on the hemline add just the right amount of movement. The light weight fabric allows you to be cool while socializing at your Juneteenth celebration. I initially found this dress at a department store for $273.00!

Thankfully Thredup had it for only $33.50.

My next recommendation is this cute and sexy white sundress from shopgoodwill.com. Originally from White House Black Market, the price of this piece originally was a lot higher than the $15.00 price tag found at goodwill!

The affordable dress is fashioned using a lightweight tulle fabric and affixed with a bow. Few can deny that bows are cute, however the bow is used to hide a belt that cinches in the waist and gives you the perfect hourglass shape.

But even the dresses above are gone you can always put on pants and go buy the perfect dress to wear on Juneteenth at a physical thrift store!

or don’t…

Good luck and Happy Juneteenth!

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15 Upcycle ideas

In honor of the day that I was born I decided that I should give instead of receiving. My logic was that I have been getting stuff for more than two decades now, why not switch it up and give something? But by “give” I don’t mean a kidney, arm, leg or another body part. It’s only a matter of time before juvenile diabetes comes for me as it has came for many of my family members; and when it does I want to have all of my parts in pristine condition.

So I gave up sugar, instead.

This is a big deal because I absolutely LOVE sugar. If I could I would put a ring on sugar.


Sugar and I go wayyyy back. Sugar was with me back when I was shooting in the gym.

Now I’m out here ballin’ like Lebron. Yet sugar is still with me.

But, unfortunately I had to let my friend sugar go.

So with its departure a lot of empty wrappers of sugary items were left behind because we had to turn up together one final time before it left for good.

Not wanting to let the resulting pile of trash go to waste I scoured the internet to find creative ways to upcycle the items. Upcycle is defined as “reuse (discarded objects or material) in such a way as to create a product of higher quality or value than the original.” The following are the best upcycles that I found.

Capri Sun bag


https://www.houseofhepworths.com/2010/06/27/capri-sun-chaos

Cereal box dollhouse


Cookie box bank

https://makingfriends.com/cookie-box-bank/

Bookmarks from snack boxes

https://hubpages.com/family/recyclecrafts

Candy wrapper dresses

Candy wrapper bracelets



Cereal box gift boxes

Bottle cap snowmen

Crafts and Toys!

Toy guitar

Hurricane in a bottle

Candy wrapper pouch

Bottlecap decorated car

Starburst wrapper bracelet

Soda bottle lava lamp

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The devil’s in the details

All throughout elementary and middle school I had to wear a uniform to school.

A photographer I am not

Having to conform in regards to the majority of your outfit made people more apt to express their individuality through the details. Sewing on funky buttons in place of the ordinary white ones on your uniform shirt or donning an Hermes scarf in your hair were a few of the minor details used to make a school uniform unique. This attention to detail is one that can be adopted to fit your wardrobe even if you are not required to maintain a specific wardrobe. After all, the devils in the details ;).

“You can never be overdressed or over educated.”


-Oscar Wilde

Buttons

Buttons go a long way in making a piece stand out. I like to remove the unique and colorful buttons from blazers that I get at the thrift store and place them on white button up shirts.

Jewelry

Unfortunately, the era of bulky statement jewelry is over.

The ending of this era was especially difficult for me because I have a lot of bulky necklaces. But at the risk of appearing “dated” I willingly traded in my bulky jewelry pieces for dainty minimalist jewelry. This is made easier by the low cost of jewelry from vendors on Alieexpress.

The low cost does result in poorer quality ( in my opinion) but at around 16 cents, what do you expect? I tend to buy 2 of everything, because it will either break or I’ll lose it.

Scarves

My future fashion forecast is that the ascot will regain popularity.

I guessed correctly in regards to a lot of popular fashion trends. Including athleisure and colored hair or wigs. Backed by prior adequate predictions, my current prediction is pretty stable.

But even if wrong, the advice to don a colorful scarf is a great way to make an outfit memorable.

Brooches

Often tooted as the forgotten accessory wearing a brooch is no longer reminiscent of a grandma.

Brooches come in a variety of shapes and patterns and can express parts of your personality aesthetitiacally. To modernize the classic brooch wear several different ones that fit one cohesive theme. For example, I have a set that’s dog themed. It consists of a brooch fashioned like a paw print, one that’s a dog bone, one in a pug face, one that’s a doghouse, and one that’s a dog food bowl. Wearing them all at once on the lapel of a solid colored jacket helps to make your outfit more visually appealing.

Layers

I am a huge fan of layers and believe that every outfit needs a blazer, cardigan, denim jacket or something . This ideology works to my detriment in 100 degree weather, but works out well when I step into businesses and they have the air conditioning set to 30 degrees for some reason.

Either way the appeal and fashion of a uniquely patterned outer layer with a solid colored inward one cannot be denied.

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Remade by Thredup


So recently I came to the conclusion that I need a new wallet. All the cash I have now just won’t fit comfortably in my old one.

So as I embarked on my wallet finding quest I decided what better place to start than the thrift store? You can find cute, eco-friendly, and, most importantly, affordable clothes. So I assumed those principles would apply to wallets as well.

Garnering that assumption in conjunction with my need to purchase a wallet I headed over to my favorite online thriftstore, Thredup. I try to steer clear of online shopping because shopping online makes me forget that I’m not rich and shouldn’t spend thousand of dollars on Amazon buying wigs and Cheetos.

But I had already taken off my pants and put up my hair. When those two events occur I’m not leaving the house. My house could catch on fire and I would question whether or not I should leave.

So armed with my debit card in hand I headed over to Thredup.

Upon immediate inspection I was comforted to see that the site appeared the exact same as it had when I had visited it last. A white background remained accented by clean, black fonts signifying categories available. I was comforted by this consistency.

However, upon closer inspection I noticed a new category available. This category sported an ombre tone in blue and was also in a bold font which also led it to stand out amongst the other menu items. This category was titled “Remade” and defined itself as “A new clothing line designed for the secondhand revolution”.

Other features of the line include size inclusive fashion, a buyback guarantee, use of lasting fabrics to craft their items, and high prices!

The fact that the majority of their items are priced between $32.99 and $49.99 is a significant factor barring many of the customers who prefer thrift shopping because it allows them to spend little on clothing items. They do offer a buyback guarantee of at least 40% but in order to receive that you have to return your item to them in fairly nice condition.

Then on top of that the line is about as fashion forward as my big toe.

Plain white t-shirts, plain black wrap dresses, denim shirts, etc. The Remade line is reminiscent of the Target maternity line. The difference is at least at Target you can get two items and still have money leftover to buy popcorn.

So Thredups Remade line is overpriced, boring, and NOT THRIFT ITEMS.

Have you purchase something from Remade by Thredup? Will you?

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Halloween Costumes from the thrift store

Halloween is my third favorite holiday.  Preceding it are the other chill holidays, Easter and Martin Luther King Jr. day,  The fact that Halloween is holding the bronze medal for holidays does not make it any less fantastic in my eyes.

My holiday ranking list is most comparable to the times garnered in a 100 meter race.  They are extremely close together being determined by mere hundredths of a second.

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So, to sum it all up,  don’t underestimate my love for Halloween.  I love everything about it from the eerie feeling it gives, to the candy (especially the candy), to my favorite: the costumes!

I LOVE dressing up for Halloween.  I have a twin brother, and you know there’s nothing cuter than a couples costume.  Then when you add a pinch of cute kids the outcome is a successful halloween night.

black kids

This isn’t us, but it’s something our mom would do.

Our mom dressed us up as everything from Barney and Betty Boop to a cowboy and indian (this was the 90s people, no one even heard of cultural appropriation back then).  When I was under the age of 15 a successful Halloween night meant several bagfuls of candy, nowadays it means other things…

But the takeaway from this post is that if you look memorable on Halloween night the great pumpkin will bless you with a successful night!  Also I’m somewhat of an expert when it comes to Halloween costumes (not to brag but I have 9 “Best costume” awards just saying) and I actually practice what I preach!

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So read more to discover how to make a unique costume with pieces found at the thrift store!

Gothic Girl

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I actually wore this costume to a Halloween club event a few years back.  I don’t have any pictures of it because I had just turned 21 and didn’t know how to drink yet without getting wasted, so needless to say I don’t really remember much after leaving my residence hall (thank god those times are over).  The brief times that I do remember are that this costume looked pretty yet creepy, it wasn’t your typical slutty costume that isn’t even scary.  That it was not made it unique and memorable.

Little Leaguer

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That scene on Hocus Pocus when the little sister tries to defend her big brother and proclaims that he’s dressed as a “little leaguer” is so iconic.  Being a little leaguer for a Halloween costume would actually be a great costume.

Spice Girl

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If you’re a 90’s kid, chances are you can finish the verse “If you wanna be my lover, you gotta get with my __________”.  The Spice Girls was iconic!  I don’t know about you, but I definitely wanted a gang of friends who had my back like that.  They also promoted diversity before it was dubbed “advantageous”.  The Spice Girls is a really great group costume.

Carrie

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Stephen Kings Carrie is remembered visually for the scene in which the main character sports an evening gown covered in pigs blood, switch the pigs blood with a faux blood mixture of kool-aid and jello and pour it over a cheap 80’s formal dress from the thrift store (don’t worry, the faux blood washes out easily) and you have the greatest and cheapest halloween costume!

Couples costume: Egyptian Queen and king

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YES for this costume, it doesn’t even need words it speaks for it, it speaks for itself!   Just look at it!  Oh and if you know the guy in the picture tell him keep doing what he’s doing.  He has a beautiful woman AND a banging body!

Tourist

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This costume is a triple threat!  It’s cute, unique, and EASY. This is a great last minute costume idea.

Festival goer

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This is a fun costume perfect for those Halloween parties when you want a cute costume that’s not scary or too slutty.

Prom Queen

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When I hear Prom Queen I first think of that bad lil wayne song lol.  I’m sure other people think fondly of prom, not me.  The drama surrounding it (my friends ex took another girl and those are fighting moves for teenagers, and then I would have to fight with her because that’s my friend and I looked too cute to be fighting) and the high cost of it turned me off.  But this costume is cheap and Halloween parties are usually free!

Volleyball player

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Volleyball is a serious sport which requires just as much skill and athleticism as any other sport.  The fact that the players have to wear those tight spandex shorts that make their butt look good does not take away from this.

But seriously volleyball players have the most memorable uniforms of any sport.  Also,  Dressing like them is a lot more unique than the played out cheerleader costume.

Captain underpants

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In a world where there’ a resurgence in the popularity of superheroes; everyone wants to be like them.  Batman has let it be known that you don’t have to have powers to be a superhero, just money and good looks.  Captain Underpants has none of those things and sitll manages to attempt to fight crime.  He is an inspiration to all and on Halloween you can honor him by dressing up as him!

This costume is so funny and unique.  If you think about it wearing underwear in public is akin to wearing swimsuit bottoms, but if you don’t feel comfortable doing so you could put them over leggings or jeans.

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How to find luxury items at the thrift store

 

So most of us are familiar with the “urban legend” of finding a luxury item in a pile of Mens tee shirts and children socks at Goodwill.  Stories of finding Birkin bags or Loubotins at a thrift store are commonly dismissed as aspirational stories that could never possibly happen.  But that phenomenon has happened frequently in the past and can happen to you! To learn how to make that happen click read more.


Tips to finding expensive items at thrift stores

Go often

A lot of thrift stores stock their racks daily.  Hidden treasures get scooped up quickly most times on

the same day that they are put out.   To increase your chances of finding a hidden treasure you’ll want to peruse the racks daily.

Check ALL of the racks

Many of us are guilty of “hiding” a clothing item that we want intending to come back for it later.  It’s not uncommon to find a nice pair of jeans on the rack with Mens shirts or a pretty dress in the pajamas section.  Just as it is common for persons to hide regular beautiful items it is also common for them to hide luxury items.  So comb through the pajamas rack, you never know what hidden treasure you may find.

Bring a snack

With going often and having to comb through all the racks you will probably find yourself losing patience and getting cranky.  With these ailments you are less likely to have the patience to adequately search and may overlook good finds.  The best cure for the cranks is food.  So when you feel it coming combat it with some peanut butter crackers or an apple.

Become friends with the workers

Talk to the workers and become friends with them, then divulge what specific luxury items you are looking for.  Then when those items come into the store they are likely to save it just for you.  This tip probably comes off as a bit manipulative, and that’s because it is.  Thrifting successfully is a sport, and as with most sports you have to get dirty during games, and if making a new friend is the dirtiest you will get then so be it.  Take that chance.

Take a friend

Shop for each other!  They take one half of the store and you take the other.  You guys meet in the middle and together you comb the entire store.

Location

Shop in a thrift store that’s in a location with a high income bracket.  Thrift stores stock merchandise donated locally, and if the residents in the local area have the coin to buy and tire of a pair of Loubotins it is more likely that you will find them at their thrift store!

Go to Estate Sales

Estate sales are basically bourgeois garage sales.  Someones classy grandma moves to a home in Florida and her kids do not have the space for all her stuff so they sell it in an estate sale!  Estate sales are awesome because rarely does the seller go through the items beforehand to pick out the valuables.  The result is all these great, high-end items going for unimaginably low prices.

Look at furniture items

More specifically the large furniture.  Like in estate sales the new owners do not typically have room to house the furniture and therefore do not look it over thoroughly before  e donating it to the local thrift shop.  As a result you can find some nice antique furniture items for a fraction of what you would pay for them at a furniture store.  Remember that grandma from the estate sale?  She had a china cabinet.  And her family made beautiful one of a kind carvings in it, like in The Piano Lesson.  Think of finding that gem!  And if you’re like me and have nowhere to put it you can sell it and use your profits to buy that Birkin😜.

What are your favorite finds at a thrift store?

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