Saturday, June 27, 2015

Thrift Blitz Episode Five ~ Special Graduation Edition

Thrift Blitz Episode Five Graduation Edition - SelfBinding Retrospect by Alanna Rusnak
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I graduated from the eighth grade in 1993 and I can still remember the girls bragging about their fancy dresses - dresses that robbed their parents of amounts reaching well into the hundreds.  I don't remember what mine cost.  I do remember going with my mother to the fabric store and flipping through the heavy pattern books and choosing a material with a pretty flower design to compliment the dress we settled on.

Grade 8 Graduation - SelfBinding Retrospect by Alanna Rusnak
My mother made my dress. Because she's Super Woman.  And because she didn't allow me to get sucked into the entitled mindset of a need-to-please teenage head.

I can remember girls bragging about getting their hair done. They left school early. Their parents forked over more cash.  My mother did my hair with a Topsy Tail {remember those?}. I remember being upset because it wasn't what I wanted {but then a boy gave me a corsage and I got over it}.

{ <--- Yes, I had permed bangs - it was the 90's, I need to be forgiven for a lot of choices I made back then...Pinned pants, anyone? Neon slouch socks?! And look how tiny I was. I look like I'm ten years old!!}

Graduation didn't cost us a fortune back then.

And it certainly shouldn't cost a fortune now.

When I declared we needed A Grad Outfit Plan, Zander said little more than, 'hmmmm'.  He is a boy with little regard for fashion. He would happily live his life wearing the same T-shirt, jeans, and hoodie every single day of his existence if he didn't have a mother nagging at him. We talked about getting him a suit but that really wouldn't be him and he's still growing so he'd never wear it again - it would essentially be pouring money down the drain.

Surely we could find something appropriate at Value Village!

Surely indeed!

He had very little opinion - except that there was no way in heaven he was going to wear suspenders {even though I begged and pleaded and but you don't even know how incredibly happy that would make me...}

We settled on a simple button-down dress shirt {$7.99}, slim fit dress pants {$9.99}, and a silk tie {$8.99}.

That was it. Our entire cost. Everything else, he already had.

Thrift Blitz Episode Five Graduation Edition - SelfBinding Retrospect by Alanna Rusnak
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~ The belt was one we already had - found in the back of a closet and made to fit him by creating a new hole with a drywall screw {oh yeah - we do fancy real good in the Rusnak home!}

~ The shoes belonged to his Grandpa GiGi and it was a special nod to his memory that they were worn for such an important night.

~ The fedora has become his signature piece. He doesn't leave home without it and it was only appropriate that he add it as the finishing touch to his outfit.

Looking sharp doesn't have to cost a fortune - especially when it comes to kids who are going to keep on growing.

I will tell the tale of the graduation in another post soon {because I have much momma-bragging to do} but first, you have to see these ADORABLE shoes Michelle from Simple Bounty shared during ThriftBlitz Episode Four:

http://simplebounty.blogspot.ca/2015/06/thrifting-fun-re-discovered.htmlAren't they precious? And I've seen first hand how great they look on! I'm a little bit jealous of her find - they have a real retro vibe but they're also timeless.

Shoes are a wonderful thing to seek out when you're thrifting - I seriously can't believe how much you can save if you can get over the thought that someone else's feet were in there before yours! 

{If you have a few extra minutes, read Michelle's latest post about inadequacy - it's good stuff!!!} 



*graduation photographs by my lovely sister-in-law, Stephanie Rusnak

Now it's your turn. What great finds have you made recently?  Have you ever chosen a thrifted treasure over a boutique shop expense when it came to a special occasion? Share your fancies in the comments, link up your post using the inlinkz tool below, or tweet it with the hashtag #ThriftBlitz {be sure to add @alannarusnak to your tweet to make sure I see it, or just use the button below}.


Happy thrifting!




http://selfbindingretrospect.alannarusnak.com/p/giveaway_8.html


June is GIVEAWAY month here at SelfBinding Retrospect.   I'm challenging you to take some time for yourself, share the ways you unplug and recharge, and enter for your chance to win a cute little gift pack I've put together with some of my own favorite 'Stolen Moments' tools.  I'm taking entries through the entire month of June.  Check out the giveaway page for more details or just enter below!

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Monday, June 15, 2015

How To Pass The 'Friend' Test

underwood universal typewriter
When I arrived at the chili cook-out, I plopped down my chair and greeted my friends.

"I have something for you," she said mysteriously.  "We were garage saling and we saw it and we both knew - 'Alanna would LOVE this!' - we had to get it for you."

Naturally I was curious and thinking 'what in the world?' and that this was a test - not of me but of her...does she really know me??


I followed her to the driveway where she opened the hatch of her Kia.

And there sat a black case.

For a second I thought: sewing machine?...to which I thought: Bah - she doesn't know me at all!

But then I thought: typewriter?

And then I squealed, "Is it a typewriter???!!!"

We popped the top off the case and heaven opened up and glory shone down and a million angels sang hallelujah on my head.

IT WAS A TYPEWRITER!!!!

A filthy old Underwood Universal that smelled dank and dirty like the shed at Grandma's old farm house.



I was beside myself with gratitude and offered to pay her for it but she waved me off like I was crazy.  "It was nothing," she said.  "It was only five bucks," she told me.  "We knew you had to have it."

The best gift is a reflection of its receiver.

I have dreamed of having a typewriter for oh, so long.  And to find one for $5? That's unheard of!  Every market I go to, every antique shop, even the aisles of The Salvation Army - I have been on the lookout for such a find.  And I have found them - for prices north of $50. {and let's be honest - the salary of a starving artist does not a typewriter dream realize}

Three Reasons I Wanted A Typewriter

 

1. Nostalgia.  I learned to type on a typewriter when I was nine or ten.  My father had a loud blue beast that tapped and dinged and I felt alive back then, sitting at it, writing short stories about dragons and orphans while those loud letter blasts echoed throughout the house.

2. Envy.  I have a writer friend who likes to type his first drafts on a typewriter and I find that wildly romantic and his process makes me mildly jealous.  I don't know that I have the patience to type a full manuscript but I would certainly use it for poetry and art - or simply for the inspirational soundtrack it produces or the images it conjures - for the black and whites of William Faulkner, poised at his desk with his pipe... 

3. Beauty.  They're gorgeous, sculptural pieces of history, representatives of great works of art {and elegant ladies with perfectly styled hair}.


I loaded the case into my car with plans to clean it up and get it working the next day.  

And goodness was it filthy.  I removed it from it's case and set it on the deck floor and scrubbed and rub-a-dubbed and q-tipped it until it shone.

underwood universal typewriter - cleaning

Oh Glory Be! Before me sat a beautiful dream! And with some clever finagling and restringing of the ribbon, I had myself a working typewriter.

underwood universal typewriter


And p.s. She totally passed the 'does she know me at all' friend test with flying colours, a gold star, and an A++



http://selfbindingretrospect.alannarusnak.com/p/giveaway_8.html


June is GIVEAWAY month here at SelfBinding Retrospect.   I'm challenging you to take some time for yourself, share the ways you unplug and recharge, and enter for your chance to win a cute little gift pack I've put together with some of my own favorite 'Stolen Moments' tools.  I'm taking entries through the entire month of June.  Check out the giveaway page to enter!

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