Tag Archives: Thrift Store SCORE!

Thrift Store Score: 80s galore

Before I even share my latest secondhand acquisitions, I must preface with the fact that I’m well aware not everyone will necessarily “get” it. As the post title suggests, these objects are distinctly 80s and not exactly mainstream, but I love them and am more than happy to give them a brand new life in our home. A little kitschy, they may be, but they’re MY kitsch.


With that out of the way, I will first introduce you to my new ice bucket. I’ve been hankering for a new ice bucket to add to our living room bar cart for, really, the past year. I wanted something sort of mid-century and definitely unique. I think I was able to succeed with this padded handled, faux wood grain number.


I am a big fan of wood grain in general, whether fake or real, so as soon as I saw this little guy sitting forlornly at the bottom of a shelf at Goodwill, I had to snatch him up. And when you factor in the $3.50 price tag, it simply couldn’t be beat. With a thorough rub down with multiple dish soap baths, it was good as new and party ready.


Now here’s where things get a little dicey. I know that many of you will be all “Say whattt??” when you see my new piece of art in the master bedroom, but I’m over the moon giddy about it. This massive decidedly 80s print is perfect in my book. Nice thin brass frame, abstract imagery, TONS of color – It’s got our taste written all over it. And, again, costing only $3.50 made it impossible not to take home. I figure, if our style changes, or we get tired of it, the oversized brass frame alone made it worthy of forking over the cash.



In hindsight after running a quick Google search of the artist (the print is signed in the bottom right hand corner), I’m especially glad that I decided to go for it.




Why? Well it turns out that my thrift store Carlton Sturges Abbott print actually could be valued at 30 TIMES what I paid for it (one lithograph print is estimated at $100-$200). Although Abbott’s work isn’t exactly “Picasso” priceless, I’m excited at the thought that I have an authentic print, done by an authentic artist. I consider this one an investment well made.



What era of art and accessories do you consider your guilty pleasure?


Ashley & Nathan’s DIY wedding

Today, I am beyond honored to share the lovely DIY wedding of our good friends Nathan and Ashley. Now, if ever there was a soulmate couple to our own little twosome, this is “the one.” Made up of one part manly musician and outdoor enthusiast, and another part girly crafting extraordinaire, the newlywed Hilbish’s are the yin to our yang. I could sit and chat for hours with Ashley about this and that for the home. Her exceptional taste (no surprise, she works as an interior decorator for Curtains, Blinds and Bath locally) is one that I have come to rely on for bouncing ideas off of. And nothing showcases that taste better than her and her hubby’s wedding day.

Shot by the talented Colling Photography, this oh-so-special May event is just saturated in style and elegance. What I thought a lot of you would appreciate is that, while the wedding ceremony and reception look filled to the brim with exuberance, a large portion of it was created at the hands of Ashley and her family and friends.

Throughout the photos shown below, you’ll find thoughts and memories spoken straight from the bride herself. If you’re planning your own wedding this season, Ashley shares tons of valuable (and practical) advice for tackling the sometimes stressful planning stages. A full list of local event vendors is also included along with links at the end of the post. I hope you enjoy!



I never thought it would be so daunting to recollect a day that was literally just a month ago! Trying to remember your wedding day is like trying to remember your 5th birthday – You know it happened and lots of amazing people were there to share the experience with you, (and yes you have way better pictures from your wedding than your 5th birthday, unless your parents are photographers) but that’s about it! I’ve never been a “focus on me” type of girl, or so I think, so I was all about the details. I had so much fun planning my wedding with my maid-of-honor/sister and mother, it was like I wasn’t even doing it. Also, props to Pinterest because without it I would have been lost.









I really started planning everything like um … a month or two before! I’m a low to no stress type of person so I didn’t worry about stuff (but seriously, take Pilates it will help). I knew the wedding would happen no matter what and that it would be awesome because everyone I surrounded myself with was awesome. So what if I verified flowers a week before, or my caterer had something terribly tragic happen and we had to switch to someone brand new four weeks before. Just wait until you see the food. Yeah, it was awesome. You can be “that girl” who stresses over everything, but what’s the point? You make your vendors miserable AND yourself, along with everyone around you who wishes you were just eloping.










Nathan and I didn’t have any type of ideas to plan; well, frankly he didn’t care. We started out one way but as events fall into place, you can get a sense of direction on your true style. Don’t force it if it’s not meant to be, otherwise you’ll look back and you won’t even be reflected in it. Ours I think was relaxed, vintage-y, fun and personal. We had little details, from Nathan’s squirrel tie (yes, he loves squirrels and I thought why the heck not) and a group dance to break the ice prior to going down the aisle, to really cute things about us on the program to keep people entertained while they waited! It was fun to have fun doing everything, and I think it made it that much more special to the people involved because it made them know you really appreciated them as individuals. If you know your wedding party isn’t filled with “tux-loving” guys, don’t try to put them in one – They will just look super awkward in the pictures. Yes, my girls are girly in 3” designer heels and dresses from who knows where, and the guys were “the guys” with rolled up sleeves and Vans – It just worked together because we were all comfortable.





















The best advice I received that every bride should remember is that it’s your wedding! People are going to ooh and ahh over things they find, and  they will bring you magazine clippings from 1999 that make no sense to your scheme, and email you 1,000 photos of dresses you hate with hints on what they “wish” you’d do (but that you actually want to gag over), or tell you how they did it at their wedding; but what you actually decide to do is a different story. I learned to breathe deep, smile, tell them how great their ideas were, and thank them for thinking of me. I only had one huge meltdown before truly embracing that advice, and then it was all groovy! Have fun with it, it’s your day and your adventure, so surround yourself with people you love and who like to have fun, because in the end it’s so great to stand back and still have all of those people around you laughing at how ridiculous you look in a group jumping picture. 

Photography: Colling Photography
Venue: Afton Mountain Vineyards
Flowers: Doyle’s Forist (Bloom)
Dress: Celebration Bridal
Hair: Bliss Salon
Catering: Cater This!
Cake: Willie Payne (former owner of Magnolia Foods)
Coordination: R.S. Exclusive
Entertainment: DJ Mendez of Mendez Music Academy

Thrift Store Score: Mid-Century Couch

It’s finally (finally!) time to reveal what we’ve been up to in our finished basement, or what I’m now referring to as our den because I hate the stigma of a “finished basement.” I’ve teased tons of photos through Instagram, but if you haven’t caught wind of the project, John and I decided to flip this particular living space upside down – figuratively, of course.

The room as it was before (which I’m not even going to bother sharing in photo form, because it was that bad) was full of mismatched cheap pieces of furniture. It was KIND of functional as a TV room, but for the most part just served to give me nightmares at night. It was time to fix things. So we Craigslisted all the furniture, making nearly enough money to buy all NEW pieces! You’ve seen the awkward nook in the corner transform into a desk, but it’s time to see the rest of the space…

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The first thing we needed was a new sofa. I make it a point to check Craigslist at least once a week, searching for furniture listings under the “mid-century,” “midcentury” and “mid century” labels (I get different hits for each unique term). And my prayers were answered a couple of weeks ago with my most incredible “Thrift Store Score” to date. That big beautiful VINTAGE mid-century couch was not only within price range (in full disclosure, we ended up getting it for $440) but also within our own zip code. After following the lister’s directions, we discovered that she lived only about 3 miles away. Easiest. Pickup. Ever.

Oh, and before I forget to mention it – For any locals loving this couch, the matching side chair is still for sale. Click that link for details!

We brought the new-to-us couch home, set it up in the cleared out space and knew that we had landed on some kind of magic. It was perfect…But, of course, the new couch upped the art ante and I started dreaming big. What to hang? Once I narrowed my vision down to an eclectic gallery wall, I realized that I had an accidentally perfect collection sitting in storage in my studio. After hanging the art (for FREE) in less than 20 minutes, and setting up a new arc lamp (scored from the Yellow Brick Home curated sale on Joss & Main), we stepped back and called this half of the room officially “done.”





Please forgive the highly fluorescent photography…There are no windows and therefore no pretty natural sunlight to use to my advantage. Oh, and for anyone curious, the two gray pillows came from The Everygirl curated Joss & Main sale (more on those scores here), the geo lumbar pillow is from Target and the shag rug is from Lowe’s. The wooden box to the side of the couch and the foot stool are vintage.

We still have a few things to do to the rest of the space, but I’m sick of sharing teasers while I hurry to perfect it. The reality that I have to face (yet again) is that these things take time and it will evolve slowly – And frankly, that’s exactly how it should be. That said, here is our progress in the rest of the room thus far…




Quick interjection: That white dresser above is another Thrift Store Score worth noting. Believe it or not, it spawned the entire room. We knew we wanted to upgrade our old TV cabinet (a rickety particle board book shelf from Wal Mart), however we always had in mind a nice wooden piece with legs. But when we glimpsed this white lacquer Lane dresser at Estate Specialist downtown, our vision started to shift. It’s definitely a vintage vibe, but more of a 1970’s space age feel than the Danish piece we had envisioned. In the end, we love the sleek lines and cool, quiet look.




I’m so excited to have all of you along for the ride as we transform this space! Thanks for all of the support so far – You must know that it means the world to me.

Enjoy your day!

Thrift Store Score: Botanical Prints

Art is one of those wonderful things that can come from all kinds of sources. From preschool children’s art and happy painting accidents, to catalog tear sheets and old books. The possibilities of the latter option are what I’m excited to share with you today…


That big beautiful book of botanical images is something my mom and dad picked up at our favorite estate shop in town. The book cost only $22, and came chalk FULL of beautiful garden artwork just begging to be hung. Although the prints were meant to be viewed while flipping through the big coffee table book, my mom decided that the pages could be put to better use detached from the binding and hung behind glass on the wall.

So, with me on board to document the process and offer input when prompted, we began brainstorming locations for a set of framed botanicals. Ultimately, we decided on the formal living room above their couch. The existing painting is a family favorite (it HAS to be with 3 real live labs roaming around our feet at any given moment), but the piece was a little small for the wall space between the windows.



Down the painting came (to be relocated, as soon you’ll see), and out the big book of prints came so that we could choose the fateful 3. Our process was HIGHLY scientific (sarcasm) – Mom sat on the couch in the living room flipping the pages show-and-tell style, while I sat across the way judging the colors and shapes in their future environment. The possibilities seemed limitless, but we finally managed to come up with a pile of runner ups.




After carefully slicing our favorites from the book using a razor blade, we narrowed the choices down to our top 3 and then put them behind matted frames snagged from a local craft store for around $40 total.




The 3 prints fill the space much better than the lone painting did before, and the red/yellow/green color scheme picks up on the traditional accents throughout the rest of the space. They make a world of difference in fixing the proportions and add such lovely texture.




You’d be hard pressed to get more sophisticated than traditional framed floral paintings – The scripted type on the bottom of each piece really takes things up a notch too. You know I’m a stickler for modern pop art, but even I adore these and wish I had wall space for my own little collection.


So where did the pretty lab painting go? This consignment store gem simply shifted to the wall perpendicular to the new framed flowers, taking up the perfect amount of space between the front windows.



Before I leave you, this piece really deserves some close ups…In my art history classes in school, I was always drawn to paintings that had a bunch of shifting color. This portrait from far away is pretty standard, but from a foot away you can really see all of the variety. Sky blue, navy, emerald, rust, gray – They’re all there is this incredible sea of color that somehow translates into the shiny coat of a dog when seen as a whole. I love it. Could stare at it for hours.




Anyway, have you ever framed pages from a book before? Or do you find the idea of pulling pages out just horrific? I wouldn’t blame you one bit if you cringed at the idea of us removing the prints from the book, but our need for DIY-able, inexpensive art definitely won out in this particular case!

Now, please excuse me while I go gaze at the close ups of that painting again.


“Thrift Store SCORE!” {From Shabby to Chic // Peddler Antiques}

I’ve got another antiquing adventure for you today – This time, I’m keeping it local to our own little hometown here in Lynchburg, Virginia. With the transition of our go-to secondhand shop in progress and the future uncertain, I’ve been forced to investigate other local diamonds in the rough. Pessimism aside, it’s actually been a really great excuse to try new places and discover fresh sources for antiques, case in point today’s story.

This particular antiquing trip, I asked my friend Ashley along for the ride. Ashely’s got great taste and knows a good bargain when she sees one. With a brand new house to fill, she had a list on hand and visions of pretty vintage pieces to fill all of the new extra space. That’s Ashley pictured below with her fiance, Nathan – Aren’t they adorable?!


Source | Colling Photography

So, first up we made a stop at From Shabby to Chic. The shop was having it’s seasonal fling market that day, so we got to wander between the vendors set up on the lawn sporting tables full of custom crafted frames, jewelry and bags. Inside, we took our time meandering through all of the rooms of the converted farmhouse, considering delicate tea cups, vintage framed black and white photos, floral paintings and antiqued mirrors.






This display of jewelry was like a magnet to my soul – no exaggeration. PERFECT colors, PERFECT shapes, PERFECT gold details. I am actually astounded that I managed to keep my wallet tucked away in my purse for this particular stop. I really loved the way the collection was displayed too in those simple trays lined with natural linen. May have to try that at home…




My favorite part of From Shabby to Chic, even with the assortment of beautiful vintage accessories at every turn, has to be the furniture. Each piece seems to have been lovingly restored with fresh modern colors and hardware. Oh, and I should note that everything in this store is surprisingly affordable considering how lovely and unique the selection is. I’m always tempted to pick something up for myself, and this is one store where I wouldn’t feel guilty indulging just a bit.





Unfortunately, this was the part in our trip where my good camera died…So the rest of this post is filled with iPhoto pictures. I think (at least I hope!) that you’ll still get the point though, despite the added graininess and blur.

I adore the brass hardware on that cabinet pictured just below, and my Instagram of the pink headboard below it got some major attention from you guys. I loved it too – Nothing beats that rich unexpected color.




Did we buy anything? Ashley did! She picked up this fun upholstered side chair for a STEAL at $65. The piece was in great shape and was just the thing she needed to fill a corner in her new living room. Don’t you just love the tufted back and the curvy wooden detail on the arms?


After that, it was off to our next destination – The Peddler Antique Mall. This store and I actually have a bit of history. My mom’s best friend used to sell her own antique finds here on consignment in the 90s, so my sister and I would get packed up in the car fairly often to go peruse the latest selection. For whatever reason, it had been over a decade since I’d been back to the store, so Ashley was forced to listen to me banter on and on as I regaled stories from my memories. We had a fun time walking up and down the aisles though, and through the rooms upon rooms of old antiques.

Our favorite room by far though was Bluebird Urban Farmhouse. The collection was perfectly suited to a modern woman looking to fill her space with little treasures. No digging necessary – Everywhere Ashley and I looked, we were compelled to reach out and touch something. From old clocks and dishware, to pretty reclaimed frames and metal signs, we were hooked.




I ended up choosing a palm-sized clock for myself (under $10!), while Ashley went ahead and grabbed this conversation-worthy wire rolling basket. It caught her eye right away and, after talking it out and deciding that it would be the perfect place to toss living room lounge pillows and blankets, we rolled it up to the register.


Before heading out though, we spent another fifteen minutes making our way through the Bluebird Urban Farmhouse room, shifting this and that aside and day dreaming about each pretty accessory. There were a lot of excited exclamations and frustrated grumblings that we didn’t have unlimited budgets (and square footage).





Below is a wide shot I took of the room (curse you, dark iPhoto image!!) because I wanted to remember those fabulous mod lights and the curtains. I was immediately drawn to the simple white linen with bands of burlap at the top. By stringing the clipped panels on a thin wire, the creative mind behind these lovely curtains saved install time AND money. Love it.


After one final look, we sauntered through the doorway to investigate the rest of the antique mall. As with any antique store, there were a few odd pieces that gave us the heebie jeebies – Take those clowns for example below. We moved on fairly quickly from THAT particular display, but found several other happy little corners that made us realize the limitless potential of the Peddler’s inventory.





Downstairs, the basement offered still MORE antiques to consider. This set of colorful dominos caught my eye right away. It doesn’t seem all that “vintage” to me, but I L-O-V-E all of that color, plus John I really enjoy playing board and card games throughout the week. I would love to add a nice box of dominos to our collection one day, but at $20 for these, I had to walk away…



I had to chuckle at the “Wife for Sale” novel below. Oh, the weird things you’ll find at an antique store…I considered buying this one for John as a joke, but ended up putting it back for the next sarcastic wife to consider.


Before we called it quits for the day, Ashley and I spent a little time in the Greige Market booth. While linking to the Facebook page just now, I discovered that this brand is actually an extension of Bluebird Urban Farmhouse. It makes total sense now that I think about it, although I would have to say that Greige is more of a masculine version of what we found upstairs. In other words, John and Nathan would have loved this section. The inventory featured a lot of really affordable LARGE restoration projects – Think big salvaged doors, cast iron pieces, windows and street signs. The pieces would have made for one fantastic “Man Cave”…





Those cool metal mesh baskets above were found ALL OVER the entire store and cost only $22 apiece – Such unique storage options, perfect for linen closets, pantries or a masculine office.

Ashley and I finished up the day with tons of great thrifted pieces between the two of us, and a brand new appreciation for the potential of buried secondhand treasure in this little town of ours. That said, do you guys have any great local places for vintage pieces? You know I’m willing to travel for a good find!

“Thrift Store SCORE!” {Charlotte, NC}

Just to warn you, this post is FULL of photos. I suppose that’s to be expected though when two best girls head down to North Carolina to visit their OTHER best girl. My iPhone got its workout this particular lady’s weekend since I didn’t want to miss a single thing. Upon arrival, we enjoyed the requisite high octave catch up session, but also great food, great mediocre wine (out of a cat shaped bottle, of course) and SHOPPING. Sarah (the NC transplant), Alyssa (my travel buddy) and I did ourselves proud with our shopping this particular trip. But we’ll get to that in a moment – First, a little documentation of the trip…

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That one above is of Alyssa and Sarah in front of IKEA, the spoils of which I will be posting about soon. It was their first time to the store (ever!) and let me just say that they were troopers. If you’ve been, you know that it can be a little overwhelming. Sarah was more than a little blown away by the fact that “they sell FOOD here?!?!!?” and the two of them were uncharacteristically quiet as we snaked our way through the massive showroom. I did my best to motor through so that they didn’t burn out and somehow managed to get in and out in about an hour. That’s a record people! And all three of us walked away with an arm full of personal treasures.

And down below, I threw together a mini montage of food, drink, and thrifted finds that rounded out our blissful little weekend.

Charlotte Instagrams

Since so many of you guys responded to that bottom left Instagram of the Pyrex, I knew I needed to expand and give you more (MUCH more) eye candy. That particular little cluster of vintage finds hails from none other than the mecca of all antiques: Sleepy Poet Antique Mall. If you live ANYWHERE near Charlotte, NC, you need to go to this place. Aisles and aisles of side-by-side booths piled high with the most amazing collection of treasures – Did I mention that the space is 55,000 square feet? Taking the description straight from the website, it features “250+ booths selling everything from Antique Furniture and Vintage Clothing, to Mid-Century Modern and Classic Home Decor.” It literally put my beloved Estate Specialist to shame, and I never imagined that that was possible.


But let’s jump right in, shall we? First, that now mildly famous photo of kitchen wares, tins, carafes, trays, glasses, tea pots and Pyrex. The restraint I exhibited was almost award-winning. The second photo shows even more 1950’s kitchen perfection, with a fun to-go coffee container, graphic tea tin, pitchers galore and pretty pink linens.



This pair of brass kitties almost came home with me, as did the wall of old telephones. If there had been a mint rotary phone, it WOULD have been part of my take away.



Speaking of mint, one thing I was absolutely dying to buy was this mint cake/pastry stand. Alas, the $125 price tag forced me to walk away. The two tiered server pictured below it for only $38 was a great substitute, though I ended up passing on him too…



Oh man, the glasses…So. Many. Glasses. I’m not much of a glass collector myself (at least after buying this beautiful set of wine and champagne glasses from Estate), but a true collector would have been bouncing off the walls. We’re talking purple glass, amber glass, glass with etching, glass with gold and teal details – There was one particular decanter below, with a price tag of only $4, that caught my eye but my bar cart is already overflowing with pitchers so I had to walk away. 






Alyssa was in particular need of a lamp that day, so we stopped and stared at all the lit beauties offered at the antique mall. The first one photographed below was a quirky piece, made from an old rotary phone (catching our eye more for the conversation factor than the style), and the one after it is this gorgeous industrial floor lamp that I would have loved to take home.



There were so many dressers…If Alyssa had decided to take us to North Carolina in a truck, this could have been dangerous. Her sedan helped to keep us in line though, and we simply looked wistfully as we walked by.







Isn’t that cracked mirrored piece above kind of cool? Not sure that I would have done that for MY home, but I think it’s definitely interesting (enough to share it with you fine people!). That big beautiful Danish cabinet several photos up takes the prize for Most-Coveted-Wish-I-Had-$800-To-Spend ::le sigh::

So. What did I actually end up getting? For starters, Sarah, being the ever gracious host that she is, bought Alyssa and I each a little animal to take home – I got this lovely palm sized owl, and Alyssa found a funny little glass skunk.


I also grabbed up this set of vintage mint salt and pepper shakers. At only $8 each, there was no way I was leaving the store without them. That particular booth actually had a BUNCH on display – Alyssa bought a pair as well! It was just too good to be true…


And here’s that fabled antler that I spoke about and contemplated in this post. I’m still a little torn on the finish. Should I paint it (like this), or leave it natural? I’m feeling like “natural antler” is a little too rustic for our tastes, and think that a bold dipped color on the end could modernize it just enough. We shall see. Oh, and it was a teenie splurge at $20.




This $8 vinyl/plastic sign letter “C” was too good to pass up. I love the graphic, three-dimensional shape, and of course the fact that it’s my initial. I couldn’t wait more than a day to get this guy up on the wall – I’ll share where later this week!



So there you have it (well at least part of it). Believe it or not, I have much more Charlotte shopping spoils to share, but that will have to wait since this post is 34 photos long. Until then, happy thrifting!

One Word: Antlers


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I have a new styling obsession…Yup, none other than antlers. These little pieces of nature are sculptural, always one-of-a-kind and infuse a space with a unique organic feeling all their own. Although some may find the notion of decorating with antlers a little creepy, I have quickly joined their team after doing a little Pinterest research and discovering the plethora o’ uses.

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I spent the weekend with two close girlfriends down in Charlotte, NC. You ALSO know that we visited the mecca of all things antique (as hinted here). Well, I’ll let you in on a little secret before I blog about it later on this week – I purchased a gorgeous single antler, and I am DYING to get started with styling it up. I’m heavily leaning towards the neon dipped paint look…What do you guys think?













For more “One Word” features, click here

P.S. If you haven’t joined in on the fun, be sure to click here for a chance to win a free premium stencil from Royal Design Studio!