Inspired by DIY: Lauren Renfrow Antler Tray


By now you know I’m a bit of a thrifty person. I love having beautiful things in my home, without breaking the budget.  By being inspired by other bloggers to create their version of a designer style, I decided to give it a try. You know I’ve done a few tray makeovers, (see here ), but I’ve had my eye on this designer tray by Lauren Renfrow being sold on Layla Grayce for Times Two Designs.   The cost of these trays range from $400-650.00.  Yes.. I know what you’re saying — crazy right?!!  For a tray????? Not Me- not in nooooooo lifetime.. but that doesn’t stop me from liking it and wanting it, but I also knew I had to make it.  It took me some time to scour different thrift stores to find the right size tray, and I found one at Goodwill for $1.75.


I didn’t have any luck finding more antlers, so I used the ones from this project.


I spray painted the tray using Krylon White Gloss, but for some reason there were cracked lines that came through even though I sprayed three coats.  Needless to say I was a bit annoyed.


So to cover this flaw, I used faux marble contact paper (I love this stuff).


It’s a bit of a variance from the designer version, but hey, consider it my designer version.  For the antlers, instead of using gold leaf – I used Krylon Maxx metallic gold – it gave them the brilliant metallic gold shine I needed to accomplish the look.


Next up was assembling them.  I found these 2-hole pipe strap clamps made of galvanized steel at Lowe’s and painted them gold as well.


Used a couple of screws and screwed them to the tray and this is the finished look.



For a cost of $10.00 I have the look of a $600.00 tray



One more look at the designer’s vs mine,


So what do you think of my tray, I’d love to hear your comments.


For more inspirations, don’t forget to follow this blog and liking it on Facebook.  Until next time and as always, happy hunting while you thrift your house into a home!





At the Big Grab


Last Saturday was that time of year again to go hunting at the annual Big Grab Yard Sale.  If you remember the goodies I got last year, well I was on the hunt to find more this year.  I know you’re probably saying “what is she going to do with all that “STUFF”?”  right.. it beats the heck outta me.. who knows.. (I’m an addict remember..).. besides this time I had an excellent reason.. I’m shopping for my son’s home -insert big smiley face  :-)

So.. moving right along.. first let me say it was Blazzzzin’ out there.. just like it was in June at the I2I Yard Sale..but we persevered through it.  My first stop in Winnsboro I spotted this mid-century table and chairs set.. It looked like it came straight out of a MadMen episode.  I was smitten with the chairs  (the table I could care less about) but those chairs.. WOW!  and they were in excellent condition – only problem, not my choice of color. But for $40.00 for the whole set.. it instantly became my choice of – (crazy cool ! right!!)


We can check dining room furniture off the list.  I already have a tulip table and he was taking it but we needed chairs.. so this is the look I’m headed for (except his table is glass top)


For his home’s decor it’s going to a mixture of new and vintage.. (not one piece antiquey (as he calls it) looking.  So hopefully this look will work well for him – I can’t wait to start decorating.

As we moved along down the block I spotted this gorgeous mirror.. $40.00 (smh – it took every ounce of my being NOT to get it) because I don’t need another mirror and this is not for him.


I’ll bend over so you can kick me in the butt later.. trust me.. Ok.. so I did come across this set of sandwich trays.. (I have a hidden fettish for these things..- like for real, I already have 2 sets) but for $3.00 I had to get them.. after all I don’t have this shape..


Further down the block.. was this “to die for” Peacock rattan chair.. The Boho Queen of Chairs..  I need a bigger house- just to dedicate a room for this chair.  The asking price for this baby.. $75.00 ( and a damn good price at that!!!)


For some relief, we popped inside a shop and I spotted this budoir chair.. I do like the shape of this kitten.. and it swivels.  It’s asking price – $40.00


This lamp was another item that caught my eye.. I loved the details of the pattern.. and it was $25.00


Another lamp I spied was this vintage glam-amour lamp.. I love how the swirled base seems to cradle the mid-section – kinda sexy to me..


and on the way out the door I saw this silver-leafed contemporary mirror.  Perfect for a bachelor pad – and for $20.00 – Bingo!


Stepped outside again and came across this coffee table… Not bad looking – nice straight lines.. kinda masculine..Although it had a faint inlay pattern I could see painting it.  It was marked $22.00 but honestly speaking..I thought about it.  As I was walking away, the lady said ignore the tags – any price you name it’s sold.. I just said $5.00 to test her offer and she said “SOLD” take it.. Well alrighty now..she called my bluff.. So – I got a coffee table for $5.00


Next shop we popped in I salivated over this beauty.. but – it wasn’t for sale.. DRATS, DRATS and Double DRATS!! I was totally digging this


Buuuuut!!!! Look what I found next door!!!!  Kick my heels up – an Italian brass swan table–by far it was a steal of a deal at $25.00


I have another fettish for swans ( I know what you’re saying … another one????) But my Gosh.. how lucky can I get.. these babies are expensive as heck (see here).  Never under estimate the look of the store.  I’ve found some of my best deals and the crummiest, down-trodden places and this was one of them, and the stuff they had outside and inside was a thrifter’s delight.   Came across a parking lot full of vendors and spotted this vintage rattan kitchen set for sale – It had all four chairs – but the seller was sitting in the other one.. (didn’t need it for the picture).  This set was in very good condition – just needed cleaning, change the seat cushion fabric and a hit the legs with some gold paint and it’ll be all spiffy again.  Guess how much ??  $30.00 –  Gosh I wanted this one too.. but… no place to keep it.


And last but not least.. The one  frigging item I’m really regretting and –  here is where I bend over and kick myself in the butt over and over and over again.. I left behind.. the guy wanted $10.00 for it.. Here is where I’m screaming, air kicking and punching myself..


WHHHHHHHYYYYYY was I so stupid.. this really could have been repaired and would have been worth every bit of it.  I’ve been looking for a bench for my foyer to go with the mirror and this was perfect.. I’m still teary eyed over leaving it…

But.. this too shall pass….I’ll find one again.. So I hope you enjoyed reading about my hunt at The Big Grab.  This is a yearly event held in September and for more information visit their website.   Until next time.. Happy hunting while you thrift your house into a home!!





Decanter Crave

                                                                  “Vintage Decanters”


You know me… I’m always on the prowl looking for some new “old” items to collect.  If you follow me on Instagram– you may have seen me share the picture of my latest finds of vintage decanters. I simply love the various styles, shapes and colors they were produced in.   When I ran across these two plum tone decanters I knew I had to have them (not to mention at $15.00 for both – I’d be a fool to have left them)


Of course I had no idea as to where I was going to showcase them in my home, but I found a happy place for them nestled in with the green jungle.


Their shape has a bit of a Moroccan flair and felt they’d blend perfectly with Grace.  Now I’m sure you’ve seen these around, maybe at an aunt’s house or your grandmother’s home, tucked somewhere like in the bathroom, well they’ve made their way back into the decorator’s world and ready to be showcased.

Different designs and style, such as this Italian bubble glass decanter, adds color and texture to a room’s decor


Styled on the etagere you can see the pop of color.  This style is known as the genie bottle


They add pops of color all around your space without costing a fortune.

While thrifting I came across this stunning glassware


Here’s a beautiful handcrafted decanter by Bischoff – which is an American glass company manufacturer



Blenko Glass Company  is another American manufacturer of colored glass.

I used a similar piece to add color on the bar cart


Designers such as, Jonathan Adler remakes his version, which are equally beautiful

Have you ever thought about having couple of these nostalgic beauties around the house?


To find them hit your local estate sales, garage sales thrift stores and if  you didn’t luck up, there’s always Ebay 

If you find any, please share – I’d love to see yours…. Until next time –  “Happy Hunting” while you thrift your house into a home!



Little by Little

Have you ever had an item you bought years ago and stuck it back somewhere for it to get lost in the pile so you don’t have to look at it? (somebody please say YES! So I know I’m not the only one out here-lol)… Well that’s how I was with this Victorian antique brass coat rack.  As we were pulling things out for the yard sale, I re-discovered this buried treasure – and decided.. well.. I mind as well start with this draining, grueling, tedious project – this year – stop procrastinating – roll up the sleeves and get ready for HARDWORK !!  ( I hope you enjoy the snazzy upbeat tune – music always seem to make it a bit easier)


Since the hubs can’t seem to make it inside the closet (he comes home like Ralph Kramden after a long days – oh brother)… and the convenient door knob becomes the hang all.  So I figure hmmmm.. a coat rack.. it can’t get simpler, after all it’s got knobs…

Uggghhhhh… why must I cause myself agony over an item.  Sure I could have just washed it  and given it a quick coat of metallic gold paint, but why.. when the real natural brass could be shined and brought back to it’s natural beauty… Right???  Besides when I saw how much they’re going for (click here) – I wouldn’t dare devalue it with paint.


Do you see what I see???? (as in the Christmas Carol song..chuckles)…Ok.. As you see dull and rusted this has gotten over the years.  Again — WWHHHHHHHYYYYYEEEE!!!  am I doing this to myself?????  Because it’s a beautiful piece.. that’s why… (insert finger pointing gun to the head)


Yea, it appears to be about a 1,000 years of rust …Insert deep breath and sigh.. but then I met a new friend, BarkeepersFriend- open up heavenly gates…


Say hello to my little friend!  Hug, hug, nice to meet you!

I wet an old rag, dabbed some powder on it and began to wipe.  I couldn’t believe my eyes… WOWWWW!!!


Scrub, scrub. scrub..


Little by little – I was beginning to see the light


I can’t emphasize enough how hard this was.. but as I was beginning to see the beauty coming through – I was getting more excited.  I persevered many nights taking my time. My goal was to have it finished before the official coat/hat doorknob hanging season – aka Fall.

To clean it, had to keep dampening cloth and adding the powder substance (it would have a pastey feeling).  After cleaning each section, have another cloth to buff it for a shine.  This step is crucial, because it helps bring the shine through.  For this project I had to continue this process over and over and over and over..etc..on & on & on & on…etc…

***Oh- and please.. wear rubber or latex gloves while using this product. When I first started I didn’t wear them and it took several washes for me to get that funny feeling off my hands..(in fact I had to use a scrub) – so please don’t forget to use them***

Until low & behold.. as Bruce Willis says in “Death Becomes Her”


Isn’t she a shining glory!!


Halllllejuah!  Her curvy legs are gleaming with joy


Girl is shining brightly


This is why I love antiques.. because you just don’t find stuff like this at any given store.


I kept this little section dark to maintain a bit of an aged look.. (besides to remind me to never let it get that way again)


Standing tall and and looking brassilicious (my new made-up word)


So come on Fall it’ll be no more coat/hat doorknob hanging season again at the Wallaces –  (it better not be..insert angry face)


And until next time -as always-  Happy Hunting while you thrift your house into a home!




Bedroom Retreat Reveal



When Bernadine retired and decide to move south, it was wonderful news to hear. When she commissioned me to help her decorate her home,  I jumped at the opportunity.  Not only was I excited about working with her, but also because it gave me another reason to shop.  The room started with basically a clean slate. The home had been vacant for a couple of years and was left unattended.   No color on the walls and there were some antique pieces left behind.  This Duncan-Phyfe loveseat was purchased from the home’s estate sale and she wanted to have it reupholstered to use in her bedroom retreat.   Lavender was her favorite color and it became the color of choice for the walls and the rest is history.


This was the room at the time of her purchasing the home



I can’t tell you how exciting this project was.  I love working with fabrics and new designs so this provided the opportunity to be creative.  Bernadine loves antiques  but also wanted something new, so we scoured the antique shops, thrift stores and furniture outlets to find the right pieces to blend together.  Hours were spent at the fabric outlet picking and choosing the right fabrics for her the loveseat, window treatments and bedspread.  Her desire was to have an elegant, yet, functional bedroom – one fit for a “retired queen”.   The loveseat has been transformed and the new look is fabulous

bernie sofa

The cornice boards were perfect

bernie cornice

All fears were put to rest when the installment was complete.  Not only was the desired look accomplished, but she is completely happy and satisfied with her new bedroom.  Step into Bernadine’s retired new suite!


New bedroom furniture was purchased from Merinos Home Furnishing Outlet.  For fabrics, I chose a brocade paisley print along with a green & lavender stripe fabric to accent the wall color.  The custom made bedspread and cornice boards were trimmed with the striped fabric that was used to reupholster the loveseat.


To give the loveseat a richer look, it was given a darker stain. The artwork above the sofa (originally hers) is a signed serigraph by artist Alonzo Adams.  It is one of her most treasured pieces because it reminds her of her beloved mother who was a quilter.





The richness of these two fabrics together blended perfectly


She loves crystal, so some thrifted crystal dishes and lamps were used in the room


The antique crystal lamps flanking the mirror were scored at one of the Metrolina antique sale dealers.


They originally had a hunter green faux marble base (but a bit of silver spray paint gave them a new look)



After retiring from working in an office the last thing she didn’t want in her home was the word “office”..but wanted a computer station.  To solve that dilemna and to keep with the elegance of the room, an antique Duncan-Phyfe drop leaf table (scored at the Metrolina) paired with a ghost chair gave her the perfect look.


Above the chest of drawers is her set of decorative art plates and her Daddy’s Long Legs Angel doll



One more close look at the gorgeous brocade fabric.


The room is a true example of how mixing old and new, blending different patterns (paisley and stripes) you can create a beautiful look without breaking the bank.    The owner  couldn’t be more pleased with her elegant new budoir – perfect fit for a retired “queen”


I hope you enjoy the new look and if you’re ready for a makeover, let me help you create it..and until next time – always remember – it’s not how much it costs but how you style it.  Happy hunting and enjoy thrifting your house into a home!



I hope enjoy the video recap. If so, hit the “thumbs up” and by all means, do share.  I’d love for you to follow along on my YouTube channel.



Light Up My Life


Hey! Hey!!  I know it’s been a while but I’ve been trying to catch up with myself.. The heat is on and the thrifting scene is HOT!!!!  I’ve been on the go and I still found time and energy to hit a few thrift stores.  I hope you’ve been staying cool.  What I first like to say is Atlanta is one big thrifter’s paradise…Oh my goodness!!!! I can’t wait to go back and hit the scene.  I thought Charlotte was booming —- but chile, let me tell you– Charlotte ain’t got sugardity on Atlanta.  I want to recap with you all the wonderful items I found in the past few weeks from going to Atlanta, to Charlotte and then Jersey.  My lamp fettish has gotten off the chain.. Lamps galore.. and the best thing about lamps is- there’s a ba-zillion out there in thrift stores. In this post I’m going to feature a round-up of the favorite lamps I came across.  All didn’t make it home with me, but I snagged a couple.  Look at these beauties I found…This pair of classic ginger jar chinoiserie lamps would look awesome in a living room and at $17.00 ea.. they were a steal

I found these beauties – perfect for a garden inspired sunroom (or if you love birds).. they are an excellent accent.    I love the iridescent sheen and soft glow on the glass


and here’s another pair that I came across – do you see that price.. $20.00 ea.  My brain was on lamp overload – I kept wishing I had a place to put them (I’ll regret leaving them later).  They’ll look excellent with your Fall decor.. the rich earthy tones will accentuate the rooms’s accessories.


This brass beauty was only $10.00 at Goodwill in Atlanta – perfect behind a reading chair


I simply adored the pineapple leaf inspired top


I came across this pair of mint green & brass beauties at Palmetto Thrift Store in Columbia, SC.  They were marked $15.00 for the pair and the store was having a 20% off  sale so that made them $12.00 for the pair (yes – these came home with me)


Retro cool!


This modern mother of pearl lamp was  a mere $28.00


A little brass table lamp for $6.00 was another bargain.  I loved the black/gold lamp shade.


I got this modern wood/pewter lamp for $2.99 at Goodwill in Maryland. It’ll be perfect for my son’s new place (and he liked it -wooohoooo!).   It didn’t have a shade – but I’m not worried about that.. One will turn up.  If you follow me on Instagram then you know recently introduced my son’s brick cottage house he bought. He took a step towards freedom from rent to owning his home.  It’s a fixer-upper but it’s most definitely worth it.  You can follow along with us and the new hashtag for his home #brickcottageproject in which we’ll be showing the re-hab journey.


And last but not least…. I snagged this retro chandelier for $25.00 for his new place as well – (he wasn’t too much a fan of this but I assured him once he gets it hung in his kitchen – it’ll look fantastic)


One thing for sure.. it won’t go to waste… !  I hope you enjoyed my luscious lamp finds.  It’s so much fun when the thrifting scene is good.  At prices like these – you can play switcheroo anytime and not feel the pinch in your purse.  Remember as always- Happy Hunting and enjoy Thrifting Your House into a Home!!






Charlotte Tastemaker Summit



On July 27th, I had the wonderful opportunity to attend a topnotch premier event, The Charlotte Tastemaker Summit, hosted by Black Southern Belle.  It was a panel of creative professional women ranging from interior decorators/designers, event planners, publishers, entrepreneurs, DIY crafters, stylists and bloggers who  joined forces for an inspiring display of influential women.   Black Southern Belle/Black Southern Belle Collective was founded by Editor in Chief, Michiel Perry, who noticed while she was planning her wedding and decorating her home, women of color were not represented enough in the media, so she decided to create a platform to showcase the collective group of African-American women who are achieving their goals in this field.


I was so excited as I took the drive up to Charlotte, (aka Queen City) ready to meet the Belle behind the brand Black Southern Belle. The event took place in one of Charlotte’s upscale design showrooms called TUFT.  Upon walking into Danielle’s beautifully eclectic designed boutique we were greeted with warm hugs, smiles and sweet treats and swag bags.


This was definitely my kind of welcoming station!  Michiel and her staff not only planned one of the best events, but left no stone unturned as for creating style and grace.  The simple mere use of all vintage glassware was the complete pièce de ré·sis·tance for me.  The delectable sweet treats were the baked goods of Grey Ghost Bakery






The buffet table was equally appeasing with catered dishes from Gravy Waltz Catering Services





The bar cart was refreshingly stocked with Pure Leaf iced tea (looking just as sweet as she could be)



To start the program, Michiel presented her opening remarks on how she started BSB, her goals, objectives and along with her future vision.


Next were guest speakers talking to the attendees about their businesses, blogs, and designs.  We all listened attentively as they spoke of testimonies on starting their businesses, the ups&downs, highs&lows and gratifications of being an entrepreneur and how it affects their lives and livelihoods.


All of the ladies were graciously answering any and all questions that were posed.


In addition, we also were shown demonstrations on tablescaping and along with how to create flower arrangements




And this lovely belle (along with some of the other photos) was photographed by Michelle Flowers


No classy event is complete without a swag gift bag…



Michiel and her staff created the most tasteful, elegant, and informative affair and I look forward to attending more.  Learn more about Black Southern Belle/Black Southern Belle Collective and their chica-power upcoming Atlanta and Charleston events by clicking here.

The “A” list Vendors


Thanks to Michiel for creating this hub for women to connect and inspire one another.  As always… until next time…happy hunting and continue thrifting your house into a home!














Gardenia-Lime Sugar Scrub


To keep the momentum going, Dixie Crystals decided to give-away 3 tickets to next year Bloggers University 2017 and to enter you had to create your own sugar scrub.  So..  I decided to give it a try.  I love gardenia and wanted to use that in my creation.

It was so simple – and here are the ingredients:

  • 1 cup of Dixie Crystals sugar
  • 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • 6 drops of White Gardenia essential oil
  • zest of 1 lime grated

Mix all the ingredients and find yourself a nice bowl to keep in the bathroom ready to use


I used an antique silver miniature coal scuttle sugar bucket.  These are normally used for sugar cubes but I think it’s perfect for the scrub



The buckets usually come with a scoop but unfortunately mine didnt’, which is why I got it for $3.00.  I lucked up and had a baby spoon and it makes a good scooper.


This scrub has  the right blend of floral/citrusy smell and after you use it… the gardenia scent lingers on your fingers without being overpowering.


It’s a great alternative to liquid soap and leaves your hands feeling soft and smooth


So, go ahead, give it a try…you’ll have skin so-soft.


Scuttle buckets are  found at several estate sales and yard sales, but you can also find them here.

Until next time, happy hunting and enjoy thrifting your house into a home!




When Bloggers Bond


Good morning everyone!  It’s been a bit of a whirlwind week for me, but I must say well worth the hustle.  Remember I entered a contest for a chance to go to the Blog Life University Conference in Atlanta, well I must say it was worth every effort of creating my dessert.  Not only did I get to bond with other bloggers, but the conference was such a rewarding event.  It was my first time attending one and the theme was “How to Monetize Your Blog”.  Melissa, who blogs at Serendipity and Spice started the conference as a way for bloggers and social media influencers to connect, learn, and prosper with each other.  She and her staff did a fantastic job at bringing in many inspirational and motivational speakers who taught you how to grow your blog, connect with brands, and earn an income all while having fun blogging.  When I started my blog three years ago, it was just to have an outlet to share my DIY and decorating ideas.  I didn’t realize it would turn into a passion (and a fun passion at that), but who knew you could make money (and lots of it).  I learned so much and became motivated to kick things up a notch on my blog.  It was also a pleasure to finally meet a few of my blog-buddies who I’ve become so familiar with .  I connected with Marsha Jones through her blog (above) and Shelly, through her blog Confetti Style.  If you’re not a follower of their blogs, I urge you to and if you are, then you’re quite aware how wonderful they are.

Some of the bullet points I learned at the conference were:

  • How to establish affiliate links
  • The benefit of E-books & Newsletters
  • The importance of good photography
  • What brands are looking for to establish a sponsored post
  • How beneficial Pinterest can be to your blog
  • How to grow your blog and attract new readers
  • Adding travel to your blog
  • Working with brands
  • Time Management

There are many obstacles I need to overcome to begin this process and I’m going to start by taking “babysteps” .  In the words of Robert Culler:  Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out.   This week I finally made up my mind to learn how to create my first YouTube video.  Since I became motivated from the conference, I decided to use my Fruity BreadPudding recipe as the premier video for my YouTube channel:


I hope you liked it – if so – how about clicking that “thumbs up” button for me🙂 and don’t forget to follow to see more of my upcoming videos.

Below is the line-up of speakers and each of them were well versed and very knowledgeable about their topic.  They shared a plethora of information and answered all our questions whole-heartedly.


After the session, Chateau Elan provided a wine tasting


and the Dixie Crystal ladies were giving away prizes


I was one of the lucky winners of a silicone baking mat.. it’s definitely going to come in handy while baking


Afterwards – we all engaged in plenty conversation and idle chat and later gathered for dinner at Pappasito’s Cantina.  It was   “THEEEE FREAKING BEST” mexican food I’ve ever eaten


Dixie Crystals supplied treats and the opportunity to make our own sugar scrubs.




There were several supplies left over so the wonderful ladies at Dixie Crystal allowed a couple of us to take them home to donate to our local foodbanks.

Overall, the conference was a big success and I look forward to going again.  One important tip I got out of the entire conference was: Don’t get stuck in a black hole.. follow what you enjoy and write about what you love…therefore, it won’t feel so much like work.  Your blog is a business and you must treat it that way.  Blogging is the new business model and if you enjoy it, you can actually earn an income.  They provide you the tools and information needed to grow your business and it’s up to you to decide how to make it work for you.  You can learn more about Blog Life University here.    Again, I’d like to thank Blog Life University, Dixie Crystals, Chatteau Elan, the other sponsors and speakers for a rewarding event and the DoubleTree Hotel for their exquisite accommodations.   Next up.. You know I had to take on a bit of thrifting while in Hotlanta.. The thrift stores were the bomb-diggity – I can’t wait to show you all what goodies we got.  So until next time.. Happy hunting while thrifting your house into a home!




Zenfully Yours

Cheers to a wonderful new week ahead of us.  I’m excited for two reasons, one – I’m headed to my first bloggers’ conference and two- I’m looking forward to meeting many of my blog-buddies and enjoying all there is to offer and learn.  Before I head off, I wanted to share one of the most fabulous make-overs by a FBF.  Last week while I was in the midst of perusing my Facebook newsfeed I stumbled on a picture of her outdoor zen-spot.  You know me – I’m always enthused to see beautiful Rest-Havens and when I spotted Keisha’s outdoor creation I had to share it with you.. Thank you Keisha for allowing me to share your haven.  Grab you coffee, tea and vittles because you’re gonna want to see all what’s in store and see how she created it.  Let’s look at where she began.


I know you’re probably excited, like me, to see how she did it all on a budget of $500.00 – Let’s begin where she started.  Keisha cultivated a personal vision for her garden and began to think of ways to incorporate her style while maintaining natural elements for a zen-oasis.  The space was no where near easy to work with, and having a tree in the center was even more challenging, so she decided to make that her focal point and build around it.


Her desire was to have a warm, welcoming area to enjoy entertaining her family and friends for outdoor festivities.  We all know that pallets are free and there are many, many, many projects you can use them for.  Keisha took full advantage of the freebies and that laid the ground work for her oasis to be created.


With some help from her father and a friend,  they dis-assembled them and made the floor for her raised deck.


Lots of sawing, cutting, measuring and patience went into this project, but as you see, it was well worth it.  Here you can get a visual of the framework and how the pallets became the wall around her space


More pallets are assembled and laid to encompass the tree


Bricks are lined to design a pattern


She added flagstone for another natural element in the space


Filled the area in with small stones and gravel


This bench was a roadside special.  Luckily she found it and gave it a new life (keyword – BUDGET)


Old bowling balls spray painted silver are being used as garden art


She used red mulch around the tree for a pop of color


She stained the pallets to weatherproof and give them color



Next up was adding the plants.  She found an old ladder to use as a plant stand and the boarder pallets were used as as planters


Nestled between these two sunshine yellow adirondack chairs is a table she made from a tree trunk


Isn’t it gorgeous!!  I love the redwood color and blended with the jewel tone vase was pefect


What a warm, welcoming environment she created.  By being creative, resourceful, diligent and patient, she was able to achieve her goal and accomplish a zenful retreat for her after work and weekend entertaining.


Using pallets as the gateway separated the haven area from the garden, while still balancing the artful flow into the  haven.


Last but not least – it was time to add the cushions and pillows for the seating area.  She covered foam and added an array of brightly colored pillow to finish the space.


A piece of driftwood is another artistic element added to the area.


I hope you all stand with me and give Keisha a round of applause for creating such a restful retreat – all on a budget of $500.00!!!


Meet the beauty behind the brains of this creative garden Zen Oasis..


And she did it her way…..


Do you have a project that you’re working on and would like to share with my other readers?  If so, email me and you’ll be my next featured guest.  Also be sure to follow me on the blog, Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest

Until next time lovies!!  Remember – it’s not what it costs but it’s how you style it.. Create your own style and design on a dime



Fruit Cocktail Bread Pudding


Fruit Cocktail Bread Pudding w/Frangelico Carmel Glaze

I am excited to share with you that in two weeks I’ll be headed to Atlanta, Ga connecting with other bloggers who share the same passion as me at the Bloggers University Conference.


This is my first bloggers conference and I’m skipping happy about it.  I started blogging for fun and now it’s turned into my passion.  I’m headed there on a volunteer ticket – but that’s cool because I get to share in on the fun and learn even more about this thing we call “Blog” world.   For my ticket I had to enter the Dixie Crystals Sweet & Southern Recipe Contest (talk about under the gun – I had to do this within 24 hrs – YIKES!!!)   but I’m happy to say I accomplished that goal.. – A girl on a mission..


I’m sharing my version of one of the oldest southern classic recipes that will satisfy the after dinner sweet tooth for everyone.  Thanks to Dixie Crystal for having this contest where I’ll be competing nationwide with other bloggers submitting their Sweet & Southern Desserts.

15453 Std Manual Cover

For the recipe of this delicious bread pudding you’ll need:

  • 1 loaf of white bread (I used Sunbeam giant loaf)
  • 5 oz evaporated milk
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 large can of fruit cocktail (in heavy syrup)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 3/4  cup Dixie Crystal pure sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp lemon flavor
  • 1 1/2 stick of butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.   In a 9×13 glass baking dish melt butter (do not let it burn).  Tear bread apart and put in large bowl


Pour both milks on top of bread and let it soak in.   Stir in fruit cocktail (with the syrup), egg, sugar, extracts and cinnamon.  Give a good stir.. I know.. (looks like lumpy oatmeal.. )


Add melted butter and give a good stir.  Pour batter into dish (you melted the butter in) sprinkle top with a little cinnamon


Bake for 30-40 minutes..     Let rest approximately 10 mins before cutting.  Drizzle with Frangelico Carmel Glaze (optional)


Frangelico liqueur is a is a pale gold colored liqueur made of Tonda Gentile hazelnuts. It is distilled in the Piedmont region of northern Italy from an alcohol and water infusion of the nuts. Natural flavoring extracts such as cocoa and vanilla are added before blending with alcohol, sugar and water to meet the bottle strength.


The glaze adds a bit of a nutty flavor to blend with the fruity flavor without having something crunchy in the pudding.  But for those who prefer your pudding plain, its just as yummy.





For the glaze:

  • 4 tblspns butter
  • 1 cup light Dixie Crystal light brown sugar
  • 3 tblspn Frangelico liqueur
  • 3/4 cups half&half

In a small saucepan melt butter, add brown sugar, liquer and half&half.  Whisk until smooth  – drizzle warm glaze over warm bread pudding and enjoy


As always – cooking is easy with “TLC”  Enjoy!!


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Thrifty Thursday

Forgive me guys, I know I’m suppose to continue the Victorian Charm home tour, but I wanted to interrupt it with a quick post of thrifty Thursday.. I have to say one thing for sure …. it’s been a freaking thrifters’ paradise out here.   I can envision us (fellow thrifters) sitting in the anonymous cyber circle and admitting to our guilty pleasure of being a “thrifterholic”, meanwhile showcasing our fancy finds,  giving the reason behind the addiction.  So with that being said.. My name is Jamala and I’m a “thrifterholic”.   Anyone else ready to step inside the cyberbox and confess with me?  Don’t be afraid..there’s a lot of love in this group… chuckles…. we’re birds of a feather that flock together…🙂

Okay.. now that’s over and done with.. let’s jump to all the goodies that were found!

I heard about a new Goodwill that opened in Lancaster and decided to take a visit.  Glad I did, because I found this loveseat for $50.00.  Excellent condition – no stains, smells or damages.  So this came home with me for my son’s house.  He just purchased his first “starter” home and he’s pretty excited.  Woohooo to him!!  This will be perfect for his living room.


I’m no wine specialist or sommelier but when we popped into another off the beaten path thrift store, I stumbled upon what looked like swizzle stick with a cork thingy..and did a quick research and found out it was a Winecicle.  They sell for in the range from $8.00 (without an Aerator) to $50.00 (with an Aerator).  If you’re like me and hadn’t heard of them, you simply freeze it approximately one hour before using your wine.  Once frozen, place the icicle in the bottle to keep your wine perfectly chilled  Wait for 10 mins and it is ready to pour at right temp.  They’re easy to wash and clean and it’s dishwasher safe.


The one I found has an Aerator and it was $4.00.  A perfect accessory for the bar cart

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If you’re following me on Instagram, I posted this gorgeous crystal cut pitcher that was another thrifted find for $2.00  –  They make my fresh cut hydrangeas look so beautiful

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another look… because they’re just so darn beautiful… (I loooooves me some hydrangeas!!!)

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insert another smile  🙂

I got an email from the Goodwill Blog letting us know of another Goodwill grand-opening in West Columbia. Me and my musketeers got up early and headed there and boy are we glad we did.  I found this set of Threshold gold flatware for $10.50.  They had 6 boxes  – so needless to say… you know what I used my contest giftcards on (yippppeeeee !!)

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A thrifting diva Toni found this snazzy club chair for $12.46.  I can’t wait to see what she does with it.. High-5 Toni!

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and fellow Instagrammer Marla found this fabulous pair of metal & lucite lamps at a local thrift store.. (She really peeped these bad-boys out!!) she spent a whopping $6.00 on  High-5 and a hip bump to you girlfriend!)

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and last but not least – Up next – is one of the grandest mirrors found by another thrifting diva Shelly and it was “THEEEE best” $45.00 spent.  You know my mouth dropped open and eyes got big as pool balls.. lol… She gets 2 high-5’s, a hip bump and a heel kick on this score.

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She’s using it in her boutique and as you see, it adds the perfect chic-ness for her decor- WAY TO GO Shelly!!!

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Now you see why I was soooooo excited to post a Thrifty Thursday???  It’s really fantastic seeing all the gorgeous finds out here and how everyone is thrifting their house into a home.  As always, it’s not what it costs, but how you style it.   Happy Hunting and have a wonderful weekend!  (up next is the Victorian Charm home tour continuation🙂