About Joyatri

Avid thrifter and vintage clothes wearer. Love 1960s and early 1970s styles. Partial to Art Nouveau, Pre-Raphaelite, Victorian, Renaissance and Medieval art. Former art historian. Current packrat. On a continual quest for good-looking, comfortable vegan shoes. Bhangra dancer since 2002. Fascinated by all things Indian. Vegan and animal advocate. 

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Words I like:

"She was dressed, as usual, in an odd assortment of clothes, most of which had belonged to other people." 

Excellent Women by Barbara Pym (1913-1980)

 

 

“I said "Somebody should do something about that." Then I realized I am somebody.”

 Lily Tomlin

 

 

 

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Entries in trash finds (4)

Monday
Jan072013

Picture not perfect

How I envy bloggers with outdoor spaces and live-in photographers. I’m about to call it quits on outfit shots until the summer.

How not to take photos:

  • Wait for a day when the weather is slightly cloudy. Don’t even think about taking photos if it’s sunny or overcast.
  • Wait until between 12:37pm and 2:17pm when the light comes through living room window.
  • Move couch away from wall. (First move end table away from couch.)
  • Set up ironing board in center of living room. Place camera on table-top tripod. Place tripod on ironing board. Place a small book under one leg of tripod seeing as how tripod is broken and won’t hold camera exactly vertical.
  • Set self-timer and stand near bureau, maybe in front of it, Or next to it. Repeat 10 times.
  • Download images onto computer. Delete most. Choose least horrible one and adjust size, orientation, lighting, and color. Rename and save.

But I really wanted to show off the lovely 1970s maxi dress that A. got me for Christmas.

He readily admits that he is able to buy me things I actually like due to the “power of Etsy” and the fact that all my ‘favorited’ items are public.

1970s Vicky Vaughn Junior maxi dress, present from my boyfriend. Necklace, present from my mother. Bangles from India. The sleeves are a bit short, but all the bettter for wearing bangles. I love the wine color and the bit of tapestry on the bodice and the back. And, of course, the full sleeves.

I might as well tell you about my co-star, the painted chest of drawers. It's another one of my trash finds.

About 20 years ago, a friend found it on the street outside a store that had gone out of business. It's metal and the drawers are each divided into 6 compartments. It was all scratched up and didn't have a top. I painted it the same color that my woodwork used to be, sort of a light 'raisin' (it looks a bit washed out in the photos in this post). I salvaged a nice piece of birch from the trash where I worked at the time and painted it silver and affixed it to the chest. And painted the drawer handles silver. The interior is quite cavernous and it has served me well.

Label from my dress.

If anyone has a better way to take photos, please let me know.

Linking up with Lakota's Ta-Dah! Tuesday.

I post more on my Facebook page, so please 'like' it if you haven't already.

Wednesday
Oct032012

All I need is a small aubergine

I hate buying anything new (for environmental and financial reasons), so I use trash free things, or stuff I have (and I have a lot because I rarely throw anything out). This means that I do need to take the time to make things usefu, hence, lots of 'projects.'

In my last post, I was bemoaning the lack of time to work on projects. I agree with those who commented that having a blog does help motivate. So I decided to tackle a bunch of little projects over the weekend. My little projects are nothing amazing and since I’m linking to Faith, Hope and Charity Shopping’s Ta-Dah! Tuesday, I’ll call these Ta-Dahlets. 

No, not these.

Ta-Dahlet #1 – Patched my ‘work’ jeans

I fell down and ripped the knee of the jeans I use for messy chores. Not having suitable scraps of heavy- duty fabric, I made a patch out of a 1950s tablecloth, stenciling it first. Since I couldn’t just throw out the paint I mixed, I made a moon patch for when I rip the other knee. Oh, and stenciled a t-shirt.

Jeans thrifted many years ago. Water cup - empty soy yogurt container/trash. Paint cup - fruit cup (taken out of a friend’s recycling bin). Paint stirrer - plastic stick from an Edible Arrangement/trash. Stencil – free premium sent with invite to subscribe to Martha Stewart’s magazine (about 10 years ago). Foam rubber – trash. Vinyl used under my stenciled fabric - old photo sleeves/trash. Rag – friend’s discarded t-shirt/trash. Drop cloth - cut-off from too long shower curtain/trash. Patch – from tablecloth. Paint was purchased new.

Ta-Dahlet #2 - Stenciled work t-shirt

T-shirt thrifted many, many years ago.Ta-Dahlet #3 – Mended thrifted 1970s top

Someone had chopped off the sleeves of this slinky shirt right above the elbow and left them un-hemmed. I shortened and hemmed them and repaired a hole in the front (covered by the belt). And wore this out today.

1970s Alex Coleman of California shirt. 1970s red bag and olive corduroy skirt I’ve had for decades, Mexican woven belt purchased at Cultural Survival bazaar. Vintage Liberty of London scarf thrifted last week. Silver bracelets made by me in 1979.

Ta-Dahlet #4 – Datebook salvage

Some dubious charity sent me this datebook with a donation appeal (I don’t want to promote that charity, so I’ve blurred the name and logo). Using handmade paper from a pile of scraps I found, I cut one and glued it to the front of the datebook.

Ta-Dahlet #5 – Making pressed powder

Loose face powder that I got for free proved too messy to use. I mixed it up with some rubbing alcohol and put it into an empty compact.
So what's with the 'small aubergine' reference? My boyfriend says that I'm like the Indian mother from the BBC comedy series "Good Gracious Me." I couldn't find a video of that episode but her schtick was that she complains about making purchases, saying that she can make whatever it is at home "for nothing." All she needs is a small aubergine.

Friday
Aug172012

A good day

Today was a good day. After a productive day of work, I went out to do errands and meet a friend.

Just up my street, I found these blue glass candleholders with etched stars on the sidewalk. I guess I’ll start a ‘trash finds’ tag. 

Then, I saw a cool bike – painted gold with a burgundy seat -- on my street.

I went to the thrift store and found one great item (more on that in a bit).

I then walked past the natural foods co-op and saw that, in preparation for a move to a location across the street, everything in the store was 50% off. Inside, it was a madhouse, teeming with shoppers frantically grabbing items they’ve never bought before off the near-empty shelves (I got laundry detergent, 3 boxes of graham crackers, some Lara bars, some cream of tartar, a chocolate bar, 2 packages of Liz Lovely cookies, and some pudding mix – not my usual assortment of purchases). Given the long waits and the general euphoria over such deals, the lines at the registers had a bit of a party atmosphere with folks comparing purchases and generally having a good time.

This diversion led to my being late to meet my friend Karen at Life Alive Urban Oasis & Organic Café, one of my favorite veggie places in the neighborhood.

I can't wait to check out the Peter Max fashions inside.After a long visit with Karen, I walked home to discover that my latest eBay purchase, the April 1970 issue of Seventeen magazine, had arrived in the post.

Sorry for the bad photos. It was dark and I had to use flash.I then tried on my thrift store purchase. I’ve confessed my fashion obsession -- scooped necklines combined with short puffy sleeves over long sleeves -- before. Add to that a wild print and this late 60s/early 70s ribbed knit top with a scoop neck and puffed sleeves at the top made of a vibrant print fabric proved itself to be the holy grail of thrift store finds.

Jordan Marsh top, $4.99. Antique Indian and stone pendant strung on a cord (had as long as I can remember). Lac bangles given to me by a friend's mother in Mumbai, 2004. H & M denim mini, purchased in mid 90s. Blue thrifted tights, 99 cents. Clogs painted by me.This top is 100% acrylic and was made in Italy for Jordan Marsh, a Boston department store. I can’t imagine an acrylic knit top nowadays lasting more than a few months. This top was very well-made. It’s obvious from some repairs in the seams that it was worn frequently, but yet it isn’t pilled or stretched out – after 40 years.

I hope you had a good day!

Thursday
Aug092012

Finders keepers

Moving 54 boxes from storage to a one-bedroom apartment makes one less enthusiastic about acquiring new stuff. So I haven’t been thrifting lately. Well, not too much.

Today I bought a couple items of clothing that need to be re-fashioned. Sorry, for the lack of ironing, but they're going to be cut up soon.

This top is made of soft, lightweight block-printed cotton with mirrorwork. It appears to have been stitched in India and doesn’t have a label. It’s huge so I’ll probably re-size it to fit me. $4.99 at my local Goodwill.

I love the wild print and bright colors of this homemade 1970s smock-dress. It was either made for a child with very long arms or is an adult dress gone horribly wrong as the armholes are miniscule. There are some holes in the sheer fabric of the sleeves, so this will be made into a skirt. Also $4.99 at Goodwill.

Walking home from the thrift store, I happened upon two pieces of furniture abandoned on the sidewalk in front of my apartment building.

This 5-foot long early 20th-century mirror from a long dresser or sideboard will make a great topper for a 6-foot long low bookcase I was just given. The bookcase is now sitting on the plastic in the middle of my living room floor, waiting to be painted.

With the mirror was this vaguely Aesthetic Movement-looking shelf from the top of a cabinet. I have no idea what I am going to do with it.

I’m always finding interesting things in the trash or abandoned on the sidewalk in my neighborhood. There is a fairly transient population here and the last and first weeks of the month, when people are moving in or out, find the sidewalks littered with books, furniture and all manner of things. It’s better than thrifing ‘cause it’s free and serendipitous.

Have you ever found anything wonderful in the trash?

I think all of these finds qualify for Lakota’s Ta-Dah Tuesday!