From Winter Parkas to Shorts

When the temperature hits 50 on the bank sign here in Iowa, we do not hesitate for one tiny second to go from this:

winter parka in Iowa

to this:

spring shorts

But are you prepared?

Other than mentally ready to  shed the layers and layers of organic cotton, denim, wool and fleece you’ve grown accustom to assembling day after day for what seems like an eternity now, is your closet ready?

This week, we are celebrating everything that is SHORTS.

shorts in spring

All of our locations have an abundance of trendy, new to you shorts at prices that will allow you to get all of your favorite brands for far less than you’d pay at the mall.

Got $20?

I think it’s safe to say that you could pick up 2-4 pairs of name-brand shorts for just that and nothing more.

shorts in spring

SO …

Go get your spray tan on and head into Stuff!

{I’m no weather man, but warmer temps are definitely on their way}

{ all pics courtesy of College Fashionista }

Easter Traditions

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Still, to this day, when I see brightly colored Easter eggs, the happy child in me gets all giddy.  I can rarely recall the process my mom and my sister went through to get to the end result, but I do remember the proud moment sitting back on my heels at the kitchen table admiring our boldly, colored creations.

This was an Easter tradition at our house. 

Another tradition was never missing Palm Sunday. As a kid, I couldn’t wait until they got to part of the story when they handed out the hundreds of palms to the congregation. As an adult, this still serves as a powerful reminder to the reason of the season. 

Now that my kids are getting older, there isn’t a whole lot of egg coloring any more. And I miss this. 

Seeing the multiple egg images flashing across blogs and pinterest this week, it got me thinking that maybe we can still keep the tradition alive but slightly modified to satisfy the kid in me … and maybe some of the kid still left in them.

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Check out these cool DIY Easter Egg decorating tips.

In the states, every now and then you will come across a yard that has as a few eggs hanging in the trees. This never struck me as a fun decorating idea .. it’s not a Christmas tree after all??

But apparently it’s a European tradition and these shots from Germany are downright gorgeous!

{ If I had the patience, I would TOTALLY do this! }

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Volker Kraft decorates a tree with 9,200 Easter eggs in his garden in Saalfeld, Germany. The Kraft family have decorated their tree with Easter eggs for more than 40-years

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What are your Easter traditions? 

Even if it’s just getting together with family and sharing a meal, we hope you have a wonderful and blessed weekend! 

{ reminder: all locations will be closed on Sunday, March 31st }

xoxoxo

 

 

Refrigerator Overload

fridge door

This isn’t so bad.

There are times you can’t even see a hint of blue showing through!

And although I love all the notes, and photos, and art work, and awards, and alphabet magnets, and other random wonders that get stuck on to what is known as refrigerator wasteland  …  I can’t take another visual addition.

And honestly, I might have a stroke if I ever saw it empty …

almost as if we had been robbed!

But I fear it is time for a new solution .. heck, we may find something with extreme monetary value under all that other visually stunning stuff.

{ highly doubtful, but not completely unreasonable or wishful thinking, right? }

Here’s a few ideas I found via internet…

Option #1 – chalkboard paint?

kitchen chalkboard wall

{ p/c remain simple }

Not bad … but I fear the chalkboard could cause some visual overload as well and it’s not as easy to stick stuff too, not to mention the chalky mess & build up.

Option #2 – cork board wall?:

kitchen cork wall

{ p/c Flickr }

meh … not a fan of this option either.

Option #3 – the best of all three?:

kitchen wall best

{ p/c It’s Written on the Wall }

um… can you say YAY!?  Houston, we have a WINNER!

I love love LOVE this idea!

It’s like a mini gallery of chalk, cork and magnetic possibilities!

And it doesn’t feel cluttered or visually abusive.

I canNOT wait to get started!

Do you have a special “creative space” for all the notes, art & treasures?

Consignors = Business Partners

 

consign

Target, TJ Maxx, Pottery Barn, Crate & Barrel, Anthropology …

What do all of these stores have in common?

SUPPLIERS

ALL of their inventory comes from warehouses, designers, manufacturers, etc.

Our SUPPLIERS are our CONSIGNORS.

Essentially making them { YOU } our partners in business.

{ YOU } are the key component to the beginning of our success cycle (#1 below):

1. { YOU } bring in your quality, previously loved items

2. We select, price & merchandise those items correctly

3. We sell { YOUR } items for the best possible price

4. { YOU } collect your cash

5. Cycle complete

WIN/WIN

consignors

To all of our current and future consignors out there,

THANK { YOU } for being our PARTNERS …

Our business is better because of { YOU }!

Why the Need to Alter a Classic?

family playing monopoly

* sigh *

Our family Monopoly game night circa 1975.

{ p.s. I jacked this family photo from Google Images to represent my own family in the 70′s … which is super close to my actual family .. except we were two sisters and not brothers  and my dad had a mustache with an army crew cut and never drank coffee and my mom had super long, hippie hair, and that bottle of Crush was most likely a beer …  buuuuut, you get the idea }

AND

it wasn’t as serene and happy as this photo depicts.

Picture the four of us hunkered down over an unlit coffee table in the middle of our orange shag carpet living room floor. My dad was focused and ruthless playing Monopoly against me, age 7, and my little sister, age 5.  Occasionally, he’d call over the neighbor boy, age 11, just to throw in a bit of a challenge. He ALWAYS had to be the dog, and for some reason I always got stuck with the crappy wheelbarrow. My sister never lasted the grueling two hours it took to slaughter us and I’m pretty sure I learned all my math skills from playing this game.  As painful as it was to watch my dad take so much pleasure in the brutal win against his two young daughters, it is one of my most cherished memories.

And games to date.

BUT .. I’m not so sure how I feel about eliminating the classic “iron” token and replacing it with a “kitty cat” token.

Vintage Monopoly Game Pieces New Monopoly Game Piece

Unless you live under a rock, or avoid all news and social media, you probably heard the announcement yesterday. But why the need to alter a classic like Monopoly?

Some researchers say, “the iron is a symbol of old-fashioned labor & core manufacturing…”

ooooo. kay.

so?

And the cat is ” a symbol of happiness, relaxation and the simple love of the feline, ” not to mention it got the most votes on Facebook.  Which does not surprise me one tiny bit … did you know there’s over a million funny/cute/fuzzy cat videos on YouTube and more added every second?

Sorry … getting a bit off topic here.

Monopoly, since it’s inception in 1935, has sold over 275 million games.

There are 1,170 different (known) versions.

But, thanks to my dad, mom, my sister and the neighbor boy,  I’m partial to the classic version. I’ve introduced this version to my own kids and anything else would just feel phony … but my daughter is BEGGING for a cat version… so anything is possible I guess.

Someday, this version won’t even exist anymore but until that day comes, you can almost always find a version of Monopoly at all of our Stuff Etc locations.

monopoly board

And I think tonight is going to be a Monopoly night!

{ Guess who’s the DOG now, Dad! }

Happy Weekend!

xoxoxo

I LOVE Construction! Who’s With Me?!

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How many times have you heard someone mutter those words?

My guess is probably …. NEVER.  Unless you’re one those lifers in the biz, right?

Well …

Our Coralville Stuff Etc is currently under construction and we are ECSTATIC!

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We recently secured an acre of land to our west and have begun construction in our lower level where we will have official Franchise office space.

If you stop by today, this is what you’d see :

{ I’m not gonna lie … looks a little like we’re going out of business, but I assure you, it’s quite the opposite } 

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Even more exciting than the franchise offices, is the 50 foot expansion you will soon see on the main level! 

This expansion will include a new, separate and easily accessible entrance for our consignors connected by a hallway that flows into the main store for our shoppers continued convenience.

As you are shopping and consigning with us throughout this process, we beg you for your patience.  It could be a little noisy at times, but we assure you that we will continue to serve you and care for your items at the same level you have grown accustomed to.

Beyond the excitement we have with the new construction, we look forward to the extra step of service we will be able to provide once it’s all completed.

Stay tuned for updates!

xoxoxo

Staff Assemble Knock-Out DIY T-Shirt Scarves

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These three lovelies from our Cedar Rapids crew were inspired to buy 25 cent t-shirts from our store and turn them into fabulous upcycled scarves!

Emily (left, 2 years on the team), chose to fashion a lime-green spaghetti scarf… nice choice!

Steph (middle, 3 years on the team), went with a two-tone ruffle scarf… love the colors!

And Jamie (right, 2 years on the team), powered out an awesome combination of the braided and spaghetti scarf … are those wooden beads I see in there?

Seriously girls, I am impressed!  And inspired!  

{ and a little jealous, I might add }

Did I mention they recycled t-shirts they purchased from the quarter bins at our store?

Check out this link to get a little know how.

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{ p/c My Blessed Life }

Have you made an upcycled t-shirt scarf?  We’d love to see it!

Happy Weekend!

xoxoxo

Why I am Considering an Anti-Resolution for 2013

be awesome

Did you know that 88% of all New Year’s resolutions fail?

Which leads to unnecessary shame and disappointment.

Yet, people do them year after year after year.

Including me.

This year, I decided that maybe I would try a different tactic.  Not so much as to outsmart myself, similar to setting the clock 10 minutes ahead so I will be on time every day { because that always works }, but to avoid the impending self-loathing that occurs as I under-achieve … year after year after year after year.

I decided to do a little “google” research on anti-resolution { because I can’t possibly be the only human on earth that has had it up to here with another January of planning out my next set of failures }

and I found this.

choose your resolution

Which, I might add, I am very fond of.

It has inspired me to stop the resolution madness and start looking at making/achieving new goals with a different perspective …

take my goals and break them into small daily actions …

leading me on a journey to “EVOLVE” in this life rather than “RESOLVE”.

Are you ready to buck the resolution system and join the anti-resolution revolution?

Cheers to you, my friends … and GOOD LUCK!

xoxoxo

Happy Weekend

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I am in awe of the intricacy of a snowflake.

As kids, we are reminded that each of us is as unique and individual as a snowflake…

And looking at these images by macro lens photographer, Andrew Osokin

I will concur.

I can’t help but stare in pure wonderment how water and ice can morph itself into such beautiful patterns and shapes.  And to think that a gazillion, individual, perfectly crafted flakes go completely unnoticed after they fall to the ground in a giant pile of white. 

It makes me miss snow.

Thank you, Andrew, for showing and reminding us that no flake should go unnoticed.

Happy Weekend All!

xoxoxo

Upcycle vs. Recycle .. What’s the Dif? Who Cares, it WAS a Sweater

You could take THIS …

recycled sweater

and turn it into THIS …

recyceld sweater into new dress

{ p/c Make It Love It }

Today, I went a-looking for a way to turn my old, worn out, loved and loved again til it was beyond tired (and unworthy of consignment) sweater INTO mittens.

recycled sweater into mittens

{ p/c A Beautiful Mess  (a personal fave blog) }

And to my wondering eyes did appear…

ALL of these beyond wonderful ideas for my previously loved sweater:

recycled sweater stockings sweater dachshunds recycled sweater boot socks recycled sweater blanket

recycled sweater dog bed

Check out these ideas and many many more on our Pin Board here.

Now I need to find more sweaters!

You do too?

Don’t forget to check the clearance section or quarter bins at all of our locations for inexpensive sweaters you can upcycle … or recycle … or whatevs!

Who cares!  It WAS a sweater!  Am I right?!

Happy Holidays!

xoxoxo