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Thursday, 21 March 2013

Green In My Life For 2013

I am sure you've heard by now that Pantone's colour of the year is emerald green.  Green is such a funny colour isn't it?  It can take on some many oppositional meanings such as new growth, Spring or jealousy and envy.  I've written about the colour green before, here, but it's been on my mind lately especially when I received a  letter from a particular credit card issued by a certain bank named after a Canadian city.  It said that I hadn't been using my credit card enough and, if I didn't start using it more, they were closing it down.  What???  I thought that, after the global financial crisis, the trend was to get people off the credit card wagon, not browbeat them back on it.  As I told the hapless client representative, if the cc company is worried I've switched over to the competition, there are more effective ways to get me back.  I see the green-eyed monster in the company's eyes, don't you?  I've had this card for longer than the age of the client rep so it wasn't a case of me being in arrears, simply that I wasn't using it enough for their liking.  So, in a grumpy mood, I went off to the local mall to see what I could charge up.  I went into Banana Republic and saw this dress.

Banana Republic Peggy Knit Shift Dress

Hmmm, I don't think I am brave enough for this dress.  Monsieur really liked the clean crisp lines of this shift dress below though.

Banana Republic Tipped Shift Dress
I liked it too.  I do think one has to be careful with an all green outfit as there is the danger of looking like Kermit the Frog.  I think the trick is with the addition of accessories to break up all the green.  However, this frugal girl really wasn't keen on being forced to part with her green and thus go sliding into the red, if you know what I mean.  So I went off to Old Navy and ended up getting this.

Old Navy Patterned Shirt

Of course, I had to go thrifting in order to recover from all that out of character retail shopping.  I picked up this vintage Swedish cast iron enamel casserole dish.

I've never seen cast iron enamelware in green before as I'm used to the traditional "hot" colours of red or orange that you often see in Le Creuset.  There was something about the green accents that really spoke to me.  And, I love the naive quality of the squiggles on the lid.   I think it would look fab displayed in a kitchen.
I celebrated a milestone birthday this past week.  Monsieur gave me this amazingly huge tote bag from Banana Republic for my birthday.  It really is enormous.  He said that it was for me to fill up with treasures when I go thrifting which I thought was really sweet and thoughtful as thrifting bores him stiff.

Switching out your decor or wardrobe whenever fashion changes can be pricey so I find that the easiest way to stay on trend is with the addition of accessories.  I like adding little touches like a scarf to a bag to personalize it.  But even relying on accessories may not be feasible if you are on a really tight budget.  So the easiest, fastest way to inject green into your decor is with....plants!

I have met people who think green is an unlucky colour and avoid it at all costs.  But plants are a part of Nature and it is a great way to bring life indoors. So if green is not your favourite colour, plants are a safe "neutral option."  What do you think of green?  Embrace or avoid?

This was not a sponsored post.  The tote was a gift and I just really liked the shirt.


Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Vintage Easter Decorating

Are you obsessed with vintage decor?  Do you troll flea markets looking for that one vintage thing that nobody else has?  I'm a bit of a magpie when it comes to vintage.  I can't really name any one thing that I collect with any degree of fervour.  The only thing in common with the things I bring home is that there is something about them that speaks to me.  This can quickly lead to a scattered look at home.  How to integrate these pieces into a functioning home without ending up with that feeling of living in a nursing home or in a capsule home?  Not that there is anything wrong with living in a capsule home but I, for one, prefer to live in a home that works and functions for modern life and doesn't have that dreaded museum-like quality.  Holidays, however, are the perfect time to pull out vintage pieces without worrying about being over the top kitschy.  Would you like a sneak peek at my Easter decorating?

I'm in love with vintage skirt hangers.  I do find that bulletin boards can look messy very quickly.  These hangers with their multiple clips are the perfect way to display cards and other pretties.  If you have paper ephemera that is vintage or antique and you don't want to stick a pin through them, the clips are a great way of displaying such items without damaging them.  Plus, you can quickly rotate out your display with the season or holiday.

Who doesn't love vintage crepe paper honeycomb decorations?  I'm such a child with these things.  It's magical how they look flat and boring folded up and then you unfold them and they blossom into overwhelming cuteness.  Below, I have a pair of vintage papier mache chicks.  They open up so that you can hide sweet treats inside their tummies.

I knew I wanted to display them but wasn't sure where or how.  

Personally, I've found that the trick to integrating vintage pieces into a modern home is to find a use for them such as the skirt hanger or else to use them as accents or punctuation marks where they get tucked into the existing decor.  I sneaked the chicks into the tablescape vignette I already had assembled on a dresser.

And, of course, what is Easter without eggs?

But not just any eggs will do but egg dioramas!  Hee, hee.  Do you decorate for Easter?  Do you go all out with your holiday/seasonal decor or do you tuck little bits in here and there?

Monday, 4 March 2013

Keeping House

When I was a little girl, I loved to play house.  Did you play this game?  I don't love it quite so much now.  I am not a "Clean Nazi" by any stretch of the imagination but I am not fond of living in a sty either.  The problem is that I live with someone who has to be the messiest person on the planet.  I guess I should have known what I was in for when we were dating and I would visit his bachelor pad.  He told me that he used to lie in bed and watch his friend Ms. Spider make her daily circuit back and forth across the ceiling going from web to another.  I know spiders help keep the insect population under control but, between you and me, they give me the creeps.  I prefer them outdoors rather than hanging over my head.  Sometimes, I wonder if I will make it to a happy old age and be like the elderly couple below:

Thrifted vintage sweetness.  If you have any information on the elderly couple, please let me know.

Then I think of the decades  and decades of cleaning that faces me and I begin to feel a little alarmed.  I would like to end up like this but a bit less wrinkled:

Thrifted vintage Quebec folk art

I think I need to call in the big guns.  I was so thrilled when I found out that Williams-Sonoma carries my best friend, Bar Keeper's Friend.  I'd heard about it from other vintage loving bloggers who use it to clean off years of grime off things like vintage Pyrex.

I panic when my supply begins to run low as the Williams-Sonoma near my home is constantly selling out of it.  And no, this isn't an infomercial for the stuff.  I use it and I have no idea what's in it but it's like magic.  I think part of being able to complete a job successfully is having the right tools.  And having good looking tools is a bonus.  Lately I have been obsessing over Kaufmann Mercantile.  Why have I never heard of this mecca before?

Kaufmann Mercantile Enamel Dust Pan & Hand Broom

One of their slogans is "Products That Will Outlast You."  Whoa!  Those are fighting words.  And no, this isn't an infomercial for Kaufmann either.  The shipping to Canada is quite hefty and so, for the moment, I can only ogle the dust pan.   I asked one of my best friends once how she dealt with the housekeeping.  I've always remembered her answer which was 1) Forget about attaining perfection and be happy with "good enough" and 2) Get a housekeeper.  Haha, I think the second option is out of the question or rather has already been taken care of because I AM the housekeeper.  Tell me, do you live with a messy person?  How do you deal with it?

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