Monday, October 31, 2011

It'll make sense next year after the movie comes out

I dressed up like Katniss Everdeen for Halloween. You know. The heroine from The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins. If you don't know her, it's cool. Nobody else did either. Whatevs. The movie will come out and everyone will dress as her next year.

Until then, know that she's the badass in a dystopian future situation and she rocks a bow and arrow. For some weird reason, my two colleagues and I decided to wear Katniss Everdeen costumes. Here's a picture of us. That's Katie on the left and Heather on the right. They are twenty years younger than me and it all seems ten thousand times more appropriate on them. Still, all of it is thrifted!

The best part? Heather added a totally perfectly topically wonderful sign to her costume. See it up there on the right? Occupy the Capitol! (The Capitol is the big bad in The Hunger Games). I know! Awesometimes! But then...check out the other side:

I have such creative envy of this brilliance.

Thursday, October 27, 2011


I wish I didn't want things. I mean, I'm delighted that the things I want tend to fall into the category of junk for most people - thrift store clothes, used games, old highball glasses. Not even "vintage" really, cuz I'm too cheap to pay vintage prices. Just crap. But still, I want. Honestly I have 100 skirts. Maybe the same in cardigans. And I still can't resist stopping at another thrift store.

So yeah, I wish I didn't want things. It's nice to pretend that because I want crap it's not the same as wanting fancy things. But it's still want, and to me that's still weak. And I already have so much, so so much, so much more than I ever in life imagined that I don't understand why I still want. It makes me a little embarrassed.

(Hey! I should say that I'm on a plane after being away from Sir C and the dogs and the goats for three nights and that means it's time for crazy time airplane drinky time blogging. And I am watching Lady Gaga's monster ball on the tiny tv and you know what? It's so good. Did you know this? She's a freak and quite talented and it's kind of making me cry. Which isn't hard. Of course.)

I remember wanting a lot as a kid. So much so, that I spent a good portion of ages 10 to 12 shoplifting at the stores in my neighborhood. I was really, really good at it. (Also, HI FAMILY MEMBERS WHO LURK ON THIS HERE BLAWG. SURPRISE!)

I would ride my bike down to Payless. Remember Payless? I would shoplift little things, like boxes of jello (nope, can't explain that). In a generation-defining vignette, I sometimes would shoplift a Marathon candy bar and then go behind the Dairy Belle and scarf it down. Polish it off with a Suicide Slush for 21 cents. Dairy Belle, Payless, Marathon Bar - all gone now. Gawd I'm old! Whoa.

I worked my way up to shoplifting really big things in my puffy blue coat. Like: The entire Sunshine Family. If you don't know about the Sunshine Family, they were the hippie alternative to Barbie. The lived in a van and the lady wore a maxidress and the man had a beard and they carried the baby in a hippie backpack and had a vanagon camper thing and smoked marijuana. I loved them. You should look them up on ebay. (I don't think they smoked marijuana. I mean, I definitely think they did, but it's not like they had a little tiny plastic stash in the vanagon.)

I remember being in 7th grade (where I was TOTALLY the good catholic girl teacher's pet and wrote and then printed the school newspaper on a ditto machine) and the tough girls, kathleen rasch and yolanda cabral got in trouble for shoplifting on a school field trip. It only fucking made them tougher and cooler. And I remember thinking, about the stupid shit they shoplifted, "that? that's NOTHING. if they only knew..."

I never told anyone. So, no, I wasn't doing it to be popular. Who cares why I shoplifted? I don't! And then one day I got caught. Something stupid. Lifesavers maybe? I was at Payless, and a man grabbed my arm and took me to the Payless office. Searched my pockets. Found candy. I started crying, saying, "please don't tell my parents. please don't tell my parents." Over and over. He confiscated the goods, and told me to never come into Payless again. And sent me away.

I never shoplifted again. And I never went into Payless again. I remember Sir Cardigan and I stopping there on the way to my folks house and I made him go in and fetch what we needed because I was afraid to go inside. Fifteen or so years later. I know.

I'm glad my parents never knew. I would have hated to worry them. They had enough to deal with what with the nine kids, some of 'em truly troubled.

Whatever. I don't know why I'm writing this. OH YEAH. Airplane drinkytime melancholy.

Hey! Thrifty clothes time! I wore this to a bizness meeting. I've given up trying *not* to match my clothes to my hair at this point.

  • Gold silk cardigan with pretty sheer edging on the sleeves and bottom $6
  • Silk shirt with vaguely asian AND british characters on it. I KNOW. I LOVE IT too. $5
  • Lovely Merrill 40s black wool pencil skirt $20
  • Navy blue suede belt $2
  • Green suede maryjane wedges $10
  • Miscellaneous gold jewelry $10
Not thrifted: Probably something. Who cares?

Shoplifted: Nothing. Ha ha.

What I would change about this outfit now that I've seen the photo:
  • Well, I think I just look like your basic garden variety business lady in this get up. But I still like it.
Total outfit cost: $53

PS: Right now the lady gaga is singing poker face. Which I really don't get as a song what with the silly words but you know? I've rewound it three times to hear it again. WTF.

PPS: Dudes. Lady gaga's yellow hair is very kinda like my bangs right now.

PPPPS: I am going to go ahead and publish this post even though I am fairly certain I will blush when I read it tomorrow.

PPPPPS: Or maybe I should LIVE BLAWG the rest of the concert.

PPPPPPS: Don't worry. I don't think I can do that.

PPPPPPPS: OH SHIT. Before I could publish, Lady Gaga put on the costume that I made for my darling stephanoodle last year for halloween. Can you tell the difference between the lady gaga and the stephanoodle?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Well. This happened.

Yesterday afternoon, I was carrying a pile of happy hour goodness into the lodge where Sir Cardigan was greeting some guests. He turned to me and said, "These folks are on their honeymoon checking in to [vacation rental we manage in addition to our inn] and guess what? She [pointing to the lady] reads your blog."


Me: [out loud]: BLAERG MUFFLE PIE.

Yes, Readers of Cardiganza. I met a reader of this here blawg that I don't even know. And the person she mentioned who told her about it - I don't know her either. So that makes two. Who knew? Anyway, she is cool and trying to do the low-impact-life-thing, hence the interest in thriftysauce.

As we were chatting, Sir Cardigan* pointed out that I have made a map of thrift stores between our homebase and our inn area. It's not actually complete, but still pretty damn useful. If you are in northern California and need chunky boots in any color, I guarantee success at any of these spots!

Go forth and prosperize. I will be making a halloween costume for my halloween gawdchild today from my thrift treasure. There is no cardigan, but a cape. Capes are honorary cardigans, of course, so there will be a photo (should I ever finish).

*Yeah, that's what I'm calling him now. I likey.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Power suit

To my nearly daily astonishment, I have what I believe they call a "career." It cracks me up. Who knew? Most of the time, I am surprised that a fuck-up* like me has a great big real job.

I'm not talking about the inn. Which is also astonishing and rather astoundingly real too. I'm talking about my (ha ha!) day job. In which I am ceo of a small company. I KNOW. WHAT??

Like (I presume) lots of career ladies, I have spent a fair amount of time going through all that shit that ladies' magazines say we ladies go through in the bizness world: feeling imposter-y, thinking that maybe I missed some class that showed you how to pretend you know what you're doing all the freaking time, thinking I'm an outsider, vague feelings that I don't deserve any of it. And so on and so forth. Stupid shit, all of it.

However. Somewhere along the way I decided to (mostly) not sweat it. I'm here. I'm gonna do my best. And my work - the challenges of having to do really good work for clients about whom I give a fuck - is real stuff that I ought to sweat versus wasting my sweaty time on silly things.

I've been thinking about that a little cuz I had a Great Big Big-time Bizness Meeting today and I had to settle up inside my skin and focus and nail it. Which I did. I think. We'll see.

And then I got in my car and drove up to the inn and had plenty of time to MULL and NOODLE and think about just what the heck happened somewhere along the way to make me feel like I am a-ok in this job and can nail a big ol' meeting when necessary.

So here you go, courtesy of a three-hour drive and two glasses of wine.


1. I am just about as good as anyone else in doing whatever the heck I am doing. Maybe not better. Maybe not worse. But just about as good as anyone else.

2. If I actually sit in a meeting and listen, really, actually, listen and be actually, truly present, I will probably be just fine. When clients are paying me to be in a meeting, that goes double. I try not to even check my phone. Which drives friends and colleagues nuts if I am in a long meeting. Because unless you are on fire, I am not paying attention to you while I am in a meeting.

3. I know what I'm doing. That is not to say that I am a know-it-all (although I kind of am). But, rather, I have done what I do a lot and that experience and knowledge counts for something. I trust that.

4. I really dig that I work with a bunch of smarty-pants over-achievers who will not let me get away with anything.

5. I think being friendly and kind goes a long way.

6. Letting my freak flag fly appears to be a good thing. I mean, I'm a little kooky. And clients and colleagues a like seem to appreciate that just fine. And when I am just myself in a meeting, what with the swearing and the dreadlocks and the blunt-ness, all is fine. Really, really fine.

7. Feeling good about myself physically matters. For me, that means slapping on the makeup and the hairdo and the power suit. Like today. I very thoughtfully put myself together in a way that would make me feel like I was the shit so that I could be my very most confident self. Hey! I'm about to actually write about clothes on this here clothing blawg, so listen up.

Today, I picked out my favorites so I would feel extra confident.
  • This hair do:

  • This cardigan:

  • This skirt:

  • These shoes:
The end. Or to be continued. Or whatever.

*Listen, I get that I'm not a fuck-up by most standards. But YOU GUYS. I lose things constantly. I avoid doing things I don't want to do (like a freaking five-year-old) (like my expense reports). I never met a late fee I didn't have to pay. One time, I didn't renew my driver's license for four years. I didn't have license plates on my car for nearly two years. I have bought plane tickets twice for the same trip like four times. HONESTLY. How do I function?**

** I function, in large part, because of Mr. Cardigan's rather remarkable attention to not just OUR details, but MY details. Lucky. Also, my assistant-type-dude at work is kind of scary and I don't want to disappoint him with my fucked-up-ness. Even though I do, all the time.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Turning heads! Well, turning one head that is.

What? What? Is that a handsome little man turning his head at this sweet getup? Why yes. Yes indeed.

Scout-y, the fine little man to whom I refer, apparently liked this outfit as much as I did. There's just something about a skirt with a lot of skirt to it. Girly McGirlyTime, yeah? My colleague Heather said I looked like candy. Ha ha.


  • Ivory cross-hatch pattern cardigan $4
  • Ivory tshirt with gray circles and funky ties across the front $4
  • Banana Republic pinks, ivories, and moss full skirt $5
  • Pearly time $3
  • Ivory wedge espadrilles with tie up straps $10 (These were brand new, never been worn. A little sandal-ly for my taste (I don't like toe showage), but drove me nuts all day with the straps moving and slipping and falling and doing whatever the fuck they wanted to do all day.) (Still, cute.)
Not thrifted: Nothing!

What I would change about this outfit now that I've seen the photo:
  • So. I realize I sound crazy. But I am doing that thing that when I see myself I only see the previous me. A year ago me. So much so that I pulled out a pair of previous big lady jeans and put them on - in my head, I thought they were gonna fit. They didn't of course - way to big. But, I had to fucking prove that. What the shit is wrong with me and my head? Ay yi yi. The silliness!
Total outfit cost: 26

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I really really do love a parade!

In fact, I love parades so very much that one year for my birthday, my truly fucking creative amazing colleagues gave me one of those drum major hats with the feathers. And gloves. And boot spats. Oh, and also made me a freaking flag. I don't even have any pictures of it. But picture the most awesome handmade funny personal flag with glitter and rainbows and iron-ons and silly sayings and whatnot. That's my flag.

Anyway, my love for parades may explain why I can't resist paradewear. It's like sportswear but for parade people. I am quite certain that the white jacket over there was for someone's high school marching band. It's crappy polyester and either handmade or poorly made costumey stuff. But, you know, I love it.

  • Butterfly scarf headband $2
  • Turquoise Arrow manshirt $2
  • Drum major jacket $5
  • Navy polyester a line skirt with buttons in the pleat down the middle (I love this skirt!) $5
  • Red criss-cross practically flats $6
  • A necklace $2
  • Blue clip ons $1
Not thrifted: Nothing!

What I would change about this outfit now that I've seen the photo:
  • I felt like a parade all day, but, not being critical here, this outfit is not a parade. It is fine. Just not a parade.
  • I have to say that I thought my color combination here was really rad. I don't think the photo captures that. But I know. I know!
Total outfit cost: $23

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The ladies

Hear ye hear ye. I would like discuss a rather sensitive subject about the ladies! If this kind of thing makes you a wee bit squeamy, that makes two of us. Hence the use of the term "the ladies" to discuss the ladies. Also, I appear to be writing in british today. Tally ho!

First, some facts:
  • Being a lady of ample proportions, I have a generous supply of ladies.
  • Having lost a goodly amount of weight (MANY STONES, PEOPLE), the ladies have also lost a goodly amount of weight (maybe even an entire stone!).
  • Yet, the skin remains.
  • Indeed.
I find that the result of the aforementioned facts is that my outfits spend an undue amount of attention accommodating and arranging the ladies. And, I do feel like they are always a "thing" in my outfits. It is not to my liking.

However, I am not fancy in the way of "lifting" this or "reducing" that. Mostly because: If I am lucky and get to live to be ancient, it is entirely likely that I will be spending too damn much time under the care of physicians...I don't want to use up my share now. I don't want to jinx it. Also, it costs money. So, I'd rather not.

So, what to do, what to do. Spend lots of money on a Very Dear Brassiere (or two)? (I made that up.) (There should be a brassiere company called that though, right?) Is that it? Or is there a skin shrinking cream of some sort? OR WHAT?

Meanwhile, thrifted:
  • Lined linen khaki skirt with brown stitching and brown grosgrain ribbon belt $5
  • Pink t-shirt with rosettes $4
  • Pale green cardigan with embroidered flowers all over it $7 (I can't believe I haven't worn this before...have I?)
  • Chunky brown boots $7
  • Bangles $4
Not thrifted: Nothing!

What I would change about this outfit now that I've seen the photo:
  • I can't tell if it's me or not, but I'm not digging the way the sweater accentuates the ladies (maybe, really, I just need more better brassieres)
  • Umm, I forgot jewelry other than bracelets. Maybe simple is good, but I like the jingle jangle when I stroll.
  • I look weirdly girly here. I am not this sweet on the inside
Total outfit cost: $27

PS. Maybe I blawg once a week now. Maybe I don't. I don't know. Maybe I blawg whenever the fuck I feel like it.

PPS. I hope I take a picture of today's outfit. It's cute in a parade-like-way.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

These bangs were not easy. No they were not.

Oh I know they may not look all that special to you. But I will tell you that there are three different kinds of hair color in my bangs. AFTER the bleach part. But, I am perfectly happy with the results. They are the color I had in my mind's eye. Blonde in dim light, but with greeny tones in bright light.

Do you want more information? YES? I am here for you.

First I bleached the shit out of my bangs. Then I mixed up two parts Manic Panic Electric Banana with one part Electric Lizard and painted that on my bangs. Then I rinsed it out. Freaked my shit out. Went to bed. Endured kind glances the next morning at my 10th grade dye job. Then, added some Nice-n-Easy Medium Champagne Blonde. Voila. Crazy-ass-vaguely neon doll hair. But, that's what I was going for. I KNOW. Who actually goes for that? Me. I do.

  • (Yet another) Mustard short cardigan, Liz & Co, $5
  • Brown tank $4
  • Homemade wool pinky champagne a-line skirt with brown stitching $5
  • Pearl jewelry $4
  • Brown Dingo boots $20
  • Sheer ivory scarf head band $1
Not thrifted: Nothing!

What I would change about this outfit now that I've seen the photo:
  • All I can see is the five pounds I think I've gained. That's all. I know, pathetic-pants. But there you are.
  • Also, though, I see a bag under my arm with goat cheese and artichokes and a baguette and Le Monde, and I am strolling briskly on a cobblestone street towards the Metro. Because, for god-knows-why-reason, this outfit seems french to me. It does.
Total outfit cost: $39

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Oh geebus I freaking did it again

Maybe you can't see this. Fuck, I didn't. But I effing matched my outfit to my hair again.

Today I put on this mod green, brown, and white print skirt and thought I was being all avant garde with my crimson cardigan. And then Mister Cardigan, when I said I needed to do something with my hair, said, "well, it matches your outfit, what more do you want."

HONESTLY. Matching an outfit to your hair is just silly.

  • Christie & Jill silk/cotton crimson cardigan $4
  • White t-shirt $3
  • Mod print skirt $5
  • Brown cowboy boots $10
  • Brown belt $2
  • Dangly white earrings $2
Not thrifted: Nothing!

What I would change about this outfit now that I've seen the photo:
  • If I didn't have to do real work of a running around variety, I would wear platforms. Platforms are cool and mod like the skirt. But I had to run around today, so boots.
Total outfit cost: $26

PS. It has been brought to my attention that I am sometimes unnecessarily critical of my outfits. But you guys! That's the point! This isn't for me to say "hey look how cute and cheap my clothings are!" (Well, maybe a little.)

I mean, I already am writing a blawg, a fact about which I am so embarrassed that I can't even freaking spell the word correctly. Because, obvs, I can't bring myself to admit that I'm engaging in a past time so horrifically self-indulgent as this here blawg. So if I'm already going to go fishing for compliments every day, because that's what this ends up doing even if I don't want it to, damn, I'm gonna go out out of my way to really mitigate the self-congratulatory nature of it all. By finding the things that are wrong.

And even if this wasn't the case, well, damn, I hate how everything in the world is so "you're great!" I mean, sure, I'm all for self-worth and not beating yourself up. But there's always room for improvement. There is! I try to find that! That's all. So that's why I'm trying to be self-critical.

That is all. The end. Carry on, friends!

PPS. I am dying my bangs a citron color right this very minute. That is yellowish-green fyi. And, not kidding, I think it's going to glow in the dark. I AM RAD LIKE THAT.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Wow! I didn't recognize you!

Hey, miss me? Me too. I've been away on the bizness, part of which was a conference at which I saw a whole lot of people whom I hadn't seen in a thousand years. That is what conferences are for. You know.

A lot of people at this conference commented the likes of "Lady Cardigan? I almost didn't recognize you!" Or, "Wow. You look great. Not that you didn't look great before..."

My colleague asked me how I felt about that sort of thing, and the truth is that I feel weird about it. Weird. And I've been trying to put my finger on exactly why.

I mean, it's nice when people say nice things. And, hey, I write a BLAWG about CLOTHES so I damn well better be aiming to please, right?

But, and I know I sound ridiculous, but I almost don't want people to notice. Because noticing means...noticing. And just to be extra clear on this pile of terrified crap, it means that people will also notice should I regain all that damn weight. Blergahatightttwzzouasyg.

It's terribly embarrassing to admit this. That's all I'm gonna say on the subject.

In other news, I ate like a growing teenage boy all week (right down to being tempted to buy a box of cereal and a carton of milk at the cvs) (I didn't). However, I did not resist the totally worth it totchos (tater tot nachos). I'm not weighing in for a week so I can get things back in order.

In other other news, I really dug choosing my favorite past outfits and just wearing them this past week without a single extra minute of choosing and thinking.

That is all my friends. Happy Friday to you!