Fix It Friday!! Dress Refashion!

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I bought this dress for $7.50 at Value Village at the 50% off sale.  I love the print and the fabric, it was just huge on me, but I knew this would be an easy refashion.

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As you can see, it was far too large.  A size 28 in fact.  But I knew that I could refashion it very easily.

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I turned it inside out and pinned in the sides and the front seams.  I sewed these up to my satisfaction with a long basting stitch and then tried the dress on to see if it fit.  It needed a little adjustment and then I stitched the seam with a proper length stitch, cut off the excess fabric and then zigzag stitched the raw edges to keep them from fraying.

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Here is the final result and it fits very nicely now.  A simple fix to a simple problem.  Cheers, Michele

Dotty For Polka Dots!! My Polka Dot Clothing Collection!

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Here is just a selection of my favourite thrifted polka dot finds.  As you can see, I have a real passion for polka dots.  I am always on the lookout for new pieces.

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As you can see I really love navy with white polka dots and black with white polka dots the most.  Do you have a pattern or print that you particularly love?  I just can help myself when it comes to Polka dots.  Cheers, Michele

Potato Salad Nicoise!! Delicious!

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I made this salad recipe to serve with our home made ribs fresh out of my husband’s new smoker.  The ribs were excellent and this recipe was voted a clear winner.  So I thought I would share it.

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Potato Salad Nicoise

3/4 pound green beans, trimmed and cut into 2 inch pieces

3 pounds of new potatoes cut into bite size pieces if too large

1/2 small red onion diced small, rinsed and drained

1/4 cup of pitted Kalamata olives, rinsed, drained and chopped small

2 Tbsp drained and rinsed capers chopped small

6 hard-boiled eggs peeled and sliced

Dressing

2 garlic cloves minced

1/2 cup olive oil

juice of a lemon

3 Tbsp white wine vinegar

1 cup mayonnaise

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper

dash of Worsteshire sauce

Mix all dressing ingredients well and set aside.  In a large pot, bring salted water to the boil, place green beans in the boiling water and cook for 5 minutes.  With a slotted spoon, remove the beans and place in a bowl of ice water.  Place potatoes in boiling water and cook for 15 minutes til tender when pierced with a knife.  Drain potatoes and place in a bowl.  Cover the hot potatoes with the dressing.  Add the olives, capers and onions.  Allow to cool to room temperature.  Drain the green beans and add them to the potatoes and dressing and mix well.  Top with the sliced eggs.  Serve.  If you are not serving the salad right away, place in the fridge to keep cool.

I hope you enjoy this salad.  Cheers, Michele

A Bit Of A Different Find Of The Day!! A Big Surprise!

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It has been a hell of a day today.  We have had some kind of animal burrowing under out house for the last little while and since we have seen lots of rabbits and squirrels in our yard we thought it was one of those.  But then Katie our eldest daughter saw a groundhog in the yard yesterday, so we figured it was one of those.  So we bought a humane box trap and baited it with vegetables and cooked chicken and put it out.

My husband woke me up this morning and said he saw something in the trap and then went off with the dog for a long walk to leave me to sort it out.  So out I went and here is what I found.

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A little skunk!!  He or she was pretty ticked off but luckily I didn’t get sprayed.  I covered the trap with a big plastic bag after tying a rope to the latch of the door and took the whole thing to an open field near my house and let the little guy go.  Be free little stripey friend.  Glad you aren’t living under my house any more.  Hope your weekend was a little less stressful and exciting than mine.  Have you ever had an unpleasant experience with a skunk?  Cheers, Michele

Kat Von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks Collection Review!!

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So Katie, my eldest daughter, has a rather healthy or some might say unhealthy addiction to makeup.  And one of her favourite brands of liquid lipstick is the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks.  We thought she could share her review of the collection.

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Here from left to right are Double Dare, Lovesick, Bow n Arrow, Lolita,   Mother, Melancholia, Armageddon, Backstage Bambi, A-Go-Go, Bachelorette, Outlaw, Nosferatu, Bauhaus, Susperia, L.U.V., Exorcism, Vampira, and Echo.

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Here are the swatches of the same colours in the same order from left to right.

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Exorcism

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Mother

Here are lip swatches of two of the colours to show the finishes and colours.

The most popular colours are Bow n Arrow, Lolita and Vampira.  Katie’s personal favourites are Mother and Lovesick.
The darker colours can be patchy and need a second coat applied carefully to avoid streaking and cracking from too thick application.  These liquid lipsticks are dry formula so on dry chapped lips it can enhance the dryness and flakes.  Using a thin layer of a waxy balm can help.  They dry down to a nice matte finish.  They are waterproof but will dissolve with greasy food and heavy application of lip balm or gloss will cause it to rub off.
Summary of this product, more is not more, less applied well is more.  Technique is everything with these liquid lipsticks.  A good oil-based makeup remover is a must for removing these products. All in all, very good products with a wonderful colour pay-off and finish.  Kate and I hope you will try these products out.  Cheers, Michele

A Mini 30% Off Thrift Haul!! More Summer Dresses!

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Today is National Thrift day so in it’s honour I went out and hit 4 thrift stores.  I will be posting hauls from those trips in future posts.  But at a recent 30% off day at Value Village, I got two dresses and a top.  And on a recent Friday I got a dress for 50% off at Salvation Army.

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This lovely patterned dress has already been worn many times and was only $9.99 after discount at Value Village.

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This black and white houndstooth Anne Klein dress was only $9.99 and goodness knows I love me some houndstooth so it will get a lot of wear.

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This brown and black leopard print top is still light enough to wear in the summer for only $4.20 at Value Village.

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This beautiful watercolour floral dress is fully lined and is gorgeous for only $7.50 at Salvation Army.  What do you think of my finds?  I can’t seem to stop myself from buying summer dresses even though summer in Ottawa is relatively short.  Cheers, Michele

Another Dress From A Duvet Cover!! A Refashion!

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So I bought this comforter cover a while ago for only $2.80 with a coupon and have been mulling over how to refashion it.

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I quite like the pattern and colours so it was just a matter of figuring out where to go with it.

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I didn’t want to just do the usual t-shirt style dress so I used this dress as my silhouette guide.  Then I just cut it out and sewed it up.  I hemmed and hawed about whether to put pockets, but it made my already wide hips look even wider when I put the pockets in, so I just sewed them closed and trimmed them off.

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Here is the hem with the button holes from the bottom closure of the comforter cover still visible.

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Here is the final dress.  I decided not to make a waistband as it interrupted the pattern of the fabric.  What do you think?  It is very cool and comfortable and I am quite happy with it.  My husband says it looks like a “Hausfrau” dress but I like it anyways.  It will get lots of wear in what is left of the summer.  Cheers, Michele

Things I Love Best About My Husband!! Happy Anniversary To Us!

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My husband, Will  and I are celebrating 30 years together this weekend.   We met on August 14th, 1986 and it has been a wonderful adventure ever since.  I love him more and more each day.  There are many things I love about him, but these are just a few.  In honour of our 30 years together, I have listed 30 reasons.

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Us on our honeymoon in Germany, 1988.

  1. He is my best friend…no question.
  2. He has the best twisted sense of humour.
  3. He always has my best interest at heart.
  4. He pushes me to be a better person.
  5. He gets my kind of crazy and weirdness.
  6. I get his kind of crazy and weirdness.
  7. He has saved me from the worst parts of myself, and continues to do so.
  8. He truly likes me.
  9. He loves me through the good, bad and the ugly.
  10. He thinks I am beautiful and tells me so.
  11. He thinks I am smart and tells me so.
  12. He finds me funny.
  13. He can laugh at himself.
  14. He supports me in my choices, both good and bad.
  15. He understands me.
  16. He doesn’t mind that I need time to myself sometimes.
  17. He supports me through my never-ending and ever-changing “hobbies”.
  18. He drives me to the thrift stores!
  19. He buys me important things like new winter boots or new tires for my car or a new computer when I need them, rather than buying me just frivolous things like flowers and chocolates.  (Although a few flowers and chocolates wouldn’t hurt now and again, and he does buy them too).
  20. He is the handsomest man I have ever met.
  21. He calls me on my bullshit.
  22. He understands when I have anxiety or apparently unreasonable fears, and doesn’t judge me.
  23. He is kind and considerate.
  24. He surprises and interests me everyday.
  25. He is open to new adventures with me.
  26. He loves to travel.
  27. He has many similar but also many dissimilar interests than me.  This keeps it interesting.
  28. He remembers my birthday and our anniversaries.
  29. He has the most beautiful smile and best evil grin.
  30. I can see the love in his eyes when he looks at me.

I am a very lucky girl to have such an amazing husband.  I hope that all of you are lucky enough to have someone in your life who completes you and makes you feel as good about yourself.  Have a happy life and I hope you have someone or many someones to share it with like good friends and family.  Cheers, Michele

Hungarian Cucumber Salad!!

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Since my cucumber patch in my garden is producing a bumper crop I though I would share one of our favourite ways to prepare them. This recipe is a family favourite and is inspired by my Uncle Matthew’s recipe and is very easy to make.  It takes a little time for the cucumbers to release their water and for the dressing to soak into the cucumbers.

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Hungarian Cucumber Salad

3 large English or Lebanese cucumbers sliced very thin

1/4 cup of salt

3 cloves of garlic minced fine

1 cup of sour cream

3 Tbsps of white vinegar

1/4 cup of minced fresh dill

1/4 cup of finely minced chives

1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper

1/2 tsp sweet Hungarian paprika

Place the sliced of cucumber in layers with the salt in a colander over a bowl.  Place a plate on top and press down with a heavy weight.  Leave for one hour to let the cucumbers release their water.  Mix all the rest of the ingredients except the paprika together.  Rinse the cucumbers several times and then place in the centre of a clean dry tea towel.  Twist the tea towel with the cucumbers inside to press out the water.  Once you have extracted as much water as possible, place the cucumbers in the bowl and mix well with the dressing.  Sprinkle the paprika over the top and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.  Place in the fridge for an hour to let the flavours meld.  I hope you enjoy this delicious recipe.  Cheers, Michele

Thrifted Fabric Remnant To A Top in 30 Minutes!!

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I saw this metre of fabric at Value Village for only $1.99 before my coupon and $1.40 after.  It was unfortunately too small a piece to make a t-shirt dress, so instead I made a top.

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I just cut out the fabric using the following top as a pattern.

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Then I just stitched up the shoulders, side seams, hemmed it, and finished the neck and sleeves.  All that in less than 30 minutes.  It took longer to wash the fabric than it did to make the top.

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Because the fabric is quite stretchy, it ends up being a bit of a bare shoulder top on one side.  I am debating whether to make the neckline smaller to get rid of that, or leave it as is.  What do you think?  Should a 51 year old woman be wearing an off the shoulder top?  Let me know what you think?  Cheers, Michele