Too Thrifty Chicks

Think.Thrift.Create


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First Day of School!

Ok, not really. More like new faculty orientation. But I was excited. I woke up, went for a nice run, leisurely got dressed, and then went to meet about twenty other new faculty members, which was pretty awesome. Before I left, Ricks insisted on taking “first day of school” pictures, so here they are!

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This is my “I’m so excited” look. lol

My top and skirt were thrifted and the shoes were 50% off at Old Navy (had to have a pop of bright color). Not too formal, not too casual.

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Y’all know I’m still getting settled in….excuse the stuff.

 

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One more picture on the way out the door….ok Ricks, that’s enough now.

How do you like to present yourself on your first day at somewhere new?


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Swap it Out!

IMG_9863When in doubt, swap it out.

Spring is quickly giving way to summer, and you already know that in addition to it being toe-out season, it also is spring-summer dress season. Spending money for new-to-us dresses is something we’ll avoid if we can and nothing was more true for us this Easter.

I know you’re all like,  “But Thrifty Chicks, Easter was months ago. Why are we talking about what you wore from way back then?”
Well, because we’re rusty at this blogging thing and because any time is a good time to swap it out. Whether it’s Easter or some other occasion where you want to look cute without cost, swapping can be an even thriftier option than actual thrifting.IMG_9883

Swapping can be as easy as asking to “shop” a friend’s closet, or it can be a more
formal meet-up where everyone brings something to an agreed upon location to swap with everyone else. In fact, it’s a great way to clean out your closet and replenish it at the same time.

Instead of buying new dresses for Easter, we swapped. Our friend Tasha gifted  this fitted floral number to Ricks, and Ricks gifted a yellow frock to Reese. New fashion for each of us. Zero cost.

 

 

 

 

 


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Spotted: Go Go’s Retread Threads

A converted school bus with super cool vintage and second hand goodness, you say? Yes, please. And Thank You!

A converted school bus with super cool vintage and second hand goodness, you say? Yes, please. And Thank You!

Reese and I have a thing for converted school buses. We are drawn to them and the cool things that some people manage to do to transform them into something other than what they were. One of our earliest posts — nearly a year ago — was about the pop-up that the eyewear do-gooders at Warby Parker put on for its Class Trip. Warby Parker has brought the Class Trip back to D.C. through Dec. 22, so don’t miss it.

Me and Stacy "Go Go" Chambers, owner of Go Go's Retread Threads, a mobile boutique based in Baltimore.

Me and Stacy “Go Go” Chambers, owner of Go Go’s Retread Threads, a mobile boutique based in Baltimore.

On a recent trip to Reese’s place of employ, we saw the most wonderful thing parked on the campus of the University of Maryland Baltimore County campus — a mobile fashion boutique called Go Go’s Retread Threads. Not only were we drawn to all the amazing vintage clothes and accessories staged outside the bus, but also to the rad art that covers it too. According to owner Stacy “Go Go” Chambers, her converted school bus is Baltimore’s first fashion boutique on wheels.

Because her business is on the move, her overhead is low and her prices are pretty reasonable. Specializing in vintage and gently used clothes, Go Go’s has it all. Stacy hunts for her amazing finds at thrift stores and estate sales. I was immediately salivating over all of the vintage accessories. Reese was pretty partial to a snazzy nearly floor length sweater situation that promised equal amounts of comfort and pizzaz.

Reese trying to resist the bounty of Go Go's Retread Threads.

Reese trying to resist the bounty of Go Go’s Retread Threads.

Stacy doesn’t get down to the D.C. metro area much, but if you’re in the Baltimore

metro area you can catch her and  her carefully curated menagerie of upcycled and eco-chic apparel, footwear and accessories at festivals, farmers markets and in various neighborhoods.

To keep up with Stacy check out her blog, and follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Laters,

Ricks


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A Thrifty Birthday + Give Away: The Too Thrifty Chicks Blog Turns 1!

Hi Gang!

We’re coming at you really quick to ask, “Do you know what today is?” It’s TTC’s birthday! We’re officially one today!!! happybirthdayGIF

On this day last year, this blog began — a few days after our very first thrifting adventure when we rode around Maryland suburbs on an overcast day looking for Columbus Day bargains at every Value Village we could get to. We spent hours — seriously like 5 plus hours — going through every rack with a fine tooth comb. By the time we came up for air and Indian food a friendship was born. A few days later, this blog was born. We never imagined this blog would become what it is. We were both simply looking for a creative outlet to share our writing and adventures. But through this blog, we’ve met cool people, gotten great encouragement, and deepened our offline bond.

To celebrate, we went out for Indian food and a little thrifting to celebrate. When you get a chance, we hope you’ll hit up the racks of your local thrift store in our honor.

We also decided we wanted to show our appreciation for one of our most loyal followers. Seriously, this lady comments on every posts and shares them regularly on her Facebook page. Everybody put your hands together and show TOSHA some much deserved love!

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She’ll receive this studded top from Reese’s personal collection, and a pair of handmade

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Everybody else, stay tuned. More give aways in November and more fun and adventures to come in this new year!

1043877_10101575920175405_815990422_n— R&R


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Thrifty Transformations: A Multi-purpose Space Makeover

At the Thrifty Palace there is only one place more popular than our kitchen and our couch — our basement. And until recently it was the place where we stored the little bit of junk we have, the place where we worked out and the place where Reese occasionally worked on her dissertation.

What warranted the need for a thrifty transformation? So glad you asked. As you know almost a month ago, I quit my job and decided to give the self-employed life a go. After about two weeks of working from the couch and most nights falling asleep on said couch, I realized I was spending too much freaking time on the couch! At my previous place of employment, I’d had a stand up desk that I utterly loved. In fact, my “office-thigh jiggle,” a condition that I believe office workers develop from sitting at their desks all day, was starting to dissipate because I spent the majority of my day standing up.

I had no plans to develop “couch-thigh jiggle” and wanted to recreate the magic of a stand up work space at home. I decided that the opposite corner of the basement would be as good a place as any to create my own home office, for little to no money. Real talk, stand up desks start at about $500 and can cost more than $1,000. As Sweet Brown said, “Ain’t nobody got time for all that!” Luckily, we had all of what we needed to make such a project possible.

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All you need, really, is some cinder blocks and some left over scrap wood to create a flat surface. We already had a number of Sterilite modular drawers in the basement and I used them to provide further support to the blocks. I covered the scrap wood in leftover fabric. Put up a piece of cork liner, decorated with pictures, quotes and keepsakes and presto! I have an office space I love. The other perk is when I get bored, I can hula hoop or bellydance to pass the time and burn some calories as the majority of the space between my corner of the basement and Reese’s corner is still our personal fitness studio. Total cost: Zero dollars.

Reese had carved out a space for herself to work, but she hadn’t really done anything to make the space personal. I knew that she was going to be on assignment shooting engagement photos for friends and I got a wild hair to really jazz up her side of the room so that she might be inspired to go down there and work. I knew she was tired of her binders full of papers not having a dedicated home, and her small desk was losing valuable real estate to her printer.

20130716_163102Fortunately, we had an extra piece of wood that I knew could be used as a tabletop for her printer and other keepsakes such as framed photos. We had two smaller Sterilite modular drawers, but I didn’t think they would be sturdy enough for the printer. A box of books we are supposed to go through at some point provided the perfect amount of stability. I covered the wood in a leftover piece of fabric from Reese’s window seat project. I also repurposed the extra shutter that she had purchased for her headboard project as a space for her to stick notes and pin pictures.

We picked up some inexpensive metal clips and these cute little buckets  at Target for additional storage. All together this thrifty transformation cost about $10.

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We plan to add more lighting because the basement is rather dark with just two bare bulbs and a lamp. We also plan to add a world map to chart our thrifty travels and to paint vibrant, inspiring quotes on these blank canvases that we call walls. I’d also like to put a cute rug down on my side and I suggested that we add some spray paint, which we have an abundance of, to Reese’s basic black desk.  All mostly inexpensive ways to make our basement a much more user friendly and inviting space. Transforming a space that has multiple uses can be a big, challenging project that is hard to visualize, but my best advice is to always keep in mind what the space will be used for and then decorate with what you’ve got on hand. Besides, if you hate it, you can always change it.

— R&R


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A Short Truth About Shorts

We might be nine days away from the official start, but it certainly is beginning to feel a lot like summer. That means we’re traipsing around town wearing far less than we did even three weeks ago. Seriously, the weather has been crazy around these parts.

The last time we took advantage of a half-off sale at one of our favorite thrift stores, B-Thrifty, we were on the hunt for spring and summer clothes. We both found an abundance of long shorts and skirts that we plan to re-purpose into shorts so look out for some DIY, recreations coming to the blog soon.

Reese can sew, and this summer I’m going to finally learn. My first project were these really funky looking printed shorts. They were super long and so baggy that they looked like a skirt on me. You’ll have to take my word on what they looked like. I got to cutting them up and I was so intent on changing them that I forgot to take a picture of what they looked like before. Forgive me? Thanks.

I raised the length from the knee to about mid thigh (yes my legs are really long), and presto, here’s the look. I topped off the ensemble with this great thrifted t-shirt and wore it on the same day, unbeknownst to me, that the legendary, revolutionary Nelson Mandela, 94, entered the hospital.

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Reese also was strongly considering cropping her shorts, but realized she loved the high-waisted shorts at their existing length. So she just topped her ensemble off with this colorful and inexpensive tank she picked up at Walmart and finished the look with what else, her Chuck Taylor’s.

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We hope you’re staying cool in this heat, saving money and asserting your style by finding some pre-owned clothes to love!

And if you feel so inclined say a special prayer, word of thanksgiving, or offer up a sun salutation for Mr. Mandela. The Too Thrifty Chicks are certainly praying for you Madiba and sending light, love and positivity into the universe on your behalf. Whatever the universe decides we pray that it will be well with your soul. And if we don’t get the chance to tell you, thank you for your service.

— R&R


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Man of the Moment: William “Beaver” Brooks

One Sunday, we’re greeting folks at church, and William aka Beaver comes up to us and says, “I’ve been meaning to tell y’all, I love y’all’s style….and then we say (almost in unison), “We love yours too! We want you on our blog!”IMG_5044

That was a few months ago, and we finally got around to doing a photoshoot with Beaver and learning more about his style. He has a passion for thrifting and finding unique pieces. He’s a bigger guy and says that guys like him are often left out of the picture in this new thrifting trend. When he’s not singing in the church choir, or working his full-time gig, Beaver dedicates his time to helping other men develop their own unique style profiles. According to him, he’s dedicated to “keeping the big guy fly!”

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…Oh, did we mention he’s an entrepreneur too? His business, Bebow Fashions, focuses on designing handmade bowties and lapel pins. They are sooo dope and can be made to order. He believes in providing good quality because he doesn’t sell anything he wouldn’t wear himself, so he is often sporting his products whenever we see him. We’re waiting on our own custom designs (::hint hint Beave::).

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If you like Beaver’s style, check him out on Instagram: the_awesome_life_of_a_beaver and Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/BebowFashions.

BTW, what’s a Too Thrifty photoshoot without a little silliness? Check out some of the outtakes below. Between Reese’s silly jokes (Knock knock. Who’s there? Interrupting cow…interrupting cow wh…MOOOOO!) and Ricks’ ability to strike any pose on cue, we had a grand ol’ time. — R&R

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