Swanky Lady Living

Retro style for the modern girl!

New Finds and Current Obsessions April 20, 2013

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Brand new additions to the shop, just listed today:

adorable red hat box suitcase

adorable red hat box suitcase

antique bedtime story collection, 1941

antique bedtime story collection, 1941

milk glass footed bowl

milk glass footed bowl

retro embroidered throw pillow

retro embroidered throw pillow

This week I was bad….very bad indeed. In complete defiance of my inner determination to become a minimalist, my body betrayed me and I found myself pillaging the thrifts like a savage shopping Viking.

The good news is, most of it will end up in the shop. Of what I found, I am keeping a blue and gold enamel flower pin, a couple of books, a kitschy 1960’s pedestal mug, and a lidded glass carafe that is a square shape with a plastic aqua lid that I will use to store  iced herbal tea in this summer.

I am obsessed with tea right now. I have sort of lost my taste for coffee lately, partly because I am watching my weight and coffee just doesn’t taste the same without my cream and sugar. So I guess I didn’t really love the coffee so much as the cream and sugar…

Other current obsessions:

*edamame steamer snack packs (Nicole, I blame you)

*Annie Freeman’s Fabulous Traveling Funeral by Kris Radish. I don’t know that I am in love with her writing style but I am in love with the entire concept. I am 100 pages in and hooked.

*Fructis Style Wonder Waves. I am so into NOT drying and straightening my hair lately. I spray it on my damp hair, scrunch with my fingers, and voila! Done.

*Watching Gossip Girl with the Netflix app on my Nook while I work out on the elliptical. Such a dumb vapid show but it’s sort of the perfect thing to exercise to because you don’t have to concentrate on it too terribly hard.

*plotting and planning away with a game plan to quit my job and do re-sale full time within the next two years






Morning Sunshine! March 24, 2013

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I am so wide awake this morning; it’s odd. I usually sleep in on weekends but I woke up bright-eyed and ready to go. How cute are these woodland deer planter vases? My mom bought me the one on the right a few months ago, and last week I found the one on the left at Salvation Army for a song.

I’ve been finding way too many little trinkets and doo-dads for myself lately and nothing for the shop. That’s not a good thing, as my small house is cramped as it is. My inner minimalist has long since been silenced (bound, gagged, and locked away forever) but I still don’t want my house to resemble a booth at an antique store. I seriously need to invest in some more shelving or pare down my collections. (yeah, like that’s going to happen…)

The other night I popped into Goodwill on my way to somewhere else. It was not a good trip. The pricing is way too high, there were several aisle hogs in the housewares section, and the staff was agitated and acting rude because it was near closing time. They were openly staring at customers, counting how many people were in the store, pacing around and talking about how close it was to getting out of there. When I left, there was still a half hour until the time they close, so I’m not sure what the fuss was about…

Anyways, I left with two cute dresses for summer and this little incense burner:


Isn’t it so cute? It was 99 cents.  I’ve really been into burning incense again, a nod to my teenage years in the late 90’s. The smoky spicy scent instantly transport me back to my cozy bedroom in my parents’ house. (I say cozy but that room was thrice the size of the bedroom I now share with my husband-I used to hang out in my closet because it was the size of a very small room! *sigh*….I was spoiled and didn’t know it…)

Well, now that I’ve met my required coffee intake for the morning, I have to get ready and go catch a late breakfast with the hub’s folks.

I pity the fool who messes with me before I've had my coffee!

I pity the fool who messes with me before I’ve had my coffee!


Shop Updates and a Glorious Estate Sale August 19, 2012

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atomic thermal melamine dish

pretty pastel Libby juice/shot glasses, set of 8

money symbols bill holder

1960’s day-glo colored birthday cards

Viking glass owl candle holder

Travel-theme vintage drinking glasses-Bombay, Paris and Havana!

I went to the coolest estate sale yesterday!  My cousin and aunt called me to tell me about it as they were there already and spied a bunch of things they knew I would like. I got ready as fast as possible and raced over like Speed Racer. The minute I stepped inside the beautiful, old 17-room house that was packed full of goodness, my heart started racing. I kid you not. I was like a kid in a candy store, whirling around in wonder, unsure of where to start. To free up my greedy hands, I had left my purse in my car and stuffed my money in my pants pocket.  “I should have brought my phone in, ” I said to my husband (yes, he was dragged along and may I add, never ever again) “How will I ever find Nicole and my aunt  in here?”

In my excited state of dumb wonder, I bumped into another young woman with an armload of old books. “I’m sorry!” we both said, and then I realized it was my cousin. We both laughed and then they led us on a tour of the rooms they had explored up to that point.

It was so cool; I wish I would have had time to dig around in there all day and load my car to the brim. In no way did I deprive myself, though. I had a pile going next to an old organ in the front room where you paid for your haul. The best part was…everything was HALF OFF! $30 bought me:

The floral patterned glasses  and the 1960’s stationary above, two old leather yearbooks from 1941 and 1939, a 1949 “Look and Learn” book full of adorable pictures I shall scan in to share soon, a large black tin with kitschy Amish graphics, an industrial metal box, a blue with white polka dots apron with folksy embroidery, cat eye reading glasses, a giant faux wood fork and spoon wall hanging,  a set of 4 rectangular metal kitchen canisters that are off-white with daisy patterned lids, a mid century desk lamp,a kitschy floral pedestal mug, a group of flocked deer for my mom’s Christmas-time mantle collection,  a small “Bourbon St.” sign (the husband’s one pick) two round metal trays with 70’s-looking food graphics, and my favorite….a small portable record player!

The record player was only $5. It definitely needs a needle and I’m not sure if it will work or not, but it was worth the gamble for only 5 bucks. My cousin found a bagful of retro Halloween masks, including Star Wars characters, a Pac man wind-up toy, a piece of Victorian mourning jewelry, a pile of neat old books, old baseballs, and two cool vintage umbrellas, including one that is clear with a red border. She may have found more but that’s what I remember.

Also, when we first got there, I saw my mom’s thrifting nemesis, the guy that snapped out on her when she worked at a thrift store and they battled over a piece of furniture. She won and he now hates her with a passion and never fails to give both her and me (what did I ever do!) the old “stink eye”.  I see him everywhere yet he hardly ever buys anything. I think he holds out for the real true-blue valuables. He left the house empty-handed.

So now I have some listing to do. I am definitely keeping the yearbooks, the Look and Learn book, the apron and the record player. And possibly the lamp. Everything else will eventually make it to the shop. I just need to keep telling myself that. Or I’ll keep it all, I kid you not.











Coffee is my Friend February 26, 2012

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This past week went by really fast, despite bad moods at work and emotional issues going on inside my crazy head! I am glad it is Sunday. It’s my day to veg. Since we didn’t get to watch our shows together on Thursday, the Mister and I watched them in bed this morning, while I guzzled way too much coffee. Hours later and I’m still hyper.

I’m taking advantage of coffee-induced productivity and listing some stuff in the shop. I tried to go out in the garage and photograph the aforementioned dresser (yes, it is a dresser and yes, it is still sitting out in my garage.) but someone’s car is in the way of me getting a shot and someone cannot be torn away from the big race on TV to move said car. I’d move it but it’s stick shift and I don’t want to crash into my new/old dresser.

If today is typical of my usual veg-out day, Tuesday was the usual go-go-go! thrift-fest that I usually aim for. Mom and I met up with the infamous Larry again. He needed a lift in our (well, my dad’s, actually) truck to pick up some aaaamazing chairs he bought for $6 total. (!) I didn’t have my camera but a quick search on Etsy brought up these beauties by MPG Home Design, which are pretty similar to what Larry bought:

Larry has this uncanny ability to uncover these unbelievable mid century furniture finds for ridiculously low prices. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t the teensiest bit jealous. Good thing he’s so nice…

Anyways, while we were on the chair retrieval mission, we made it our business to stop at every thrift shop we could find on our way. It’s fun shopping with someone who is as passionate-if not more- about finding treasures in the midst of trash. The junkier, the more jumbled and unorganized a place is, the more fun it is to hunt for diamonds in the rough. I love the smaller shops, the holes in the wall, the little dives that most people avoid. This is where you find the good stuff…and for cheap.

The best stop of the day for me was this little shop in a shady area of town that I’ve only been to once before, and it was with mom & Larry. This time did not disappoint. I found these little gals:

more poodles for my ridiculous collection!

I also found a set of Russian nesting dolls, a vintage Sesame street lamp featuring Big Bird reading under a street lamp  that I will save for my future child (Paul says he remembers this from his childhood and he showed me a feature I didn’t notice…big bird lights up, too!)  and four glass egg cups that have little chicks on them. Nothing was priced but the grand total came to $6, so not too shabby!


I have a headache and can’t think of a title for this post. February 7, 2012

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mod retro folding desk lamp

Sarah Coventry cherry pin

mid century Danish enamel saucepot that I just sent off to Japan today

small speckled orb-shaped planter with mint green interior

crazy vintage box purse, vinyl "wicker" with fake plastic flower panel

Just a few of the most recent additions to the shop. Things are picking back up a bit, I actually sold a couple things in the last week. Today was a wonderful and fruitful day of thrifting. I found lots of goodies for the shop and a piece of furniture for myself! I promise to post pictures tomorrow, as long as the morning light is adequate before I head off to work. I’m going to go to bed now because my head is killing me and the Advil is not kicking in.