Summer Thrift Tips - Traveling With the Look For Less

Last week, the hubs and I took our annual beach trip for our anniversary - this time to the west coast of Carlsbad to Newport Beach California. Before packing for our trip, I did what most of us girls do - Shop for something new because with a closet full of clothes, we still have nothing to wear! One of this Spring & Summer's hottest trends for wardrobing is a return of classic nautical style - especially boat-neck tops and stripes - along with staple denim classics, cotton strapless sundresses & cardis plus maxis, wedges, and straw bags. Being the thrifty person I am, but still loving the looks featured in my favorite specialty stores (Ann Taylor, Banana Republic and The Limited) I headed to my favorite consignment and thrift stores to get more bang for my buck. Having done a huge closet purge during Spring cleaning, with most pieces being able to be consigned (at both TurnStyle & My Sister's Closet), it was time collect. I put some of my consignment earnings towards a few new (to me) spring / summer wardrobe finds, from dresses, to purses, to shoes. What I wasn't able to consign, I donated to Savers thrift - which in return I got a few $3 off coupons... and when shopping shopping at Goodwill, I got extra savings on special color tags + sale days. Here's some of my finds plus how they looked pulled together on my trip...

LOVE navy nautical stripes in the summer, especially when only $4 at Goodwill.  Also picked up dark denim cuffed shorts (blogger butt didn't fit into last years denim shorts! lol) and the denim capris had a great cuff on them too - perfect for running down to shoreline!

All thrift - except the hat. I always try on outfits before I travel, but I read a good packing tip online I kept in mind:  
Layout out clothes and money to pack - Take half the clothes and double the money :)

 Cardi + Top + Capris - Thrift. The acrylic & gold bracelet + ring were from Dillards, after holiday clearance sale back in January - 50% off PLUS additional 50% off (you can get the best deals on fashion jewelry at Dillards!) the plaid bag behind me was a gift from Florida friend Shelby and Jeff & I use it frequently for picnics. Insulated inside, it holds one bottle of wine + 2 glasses + 2 plaid napkins + a corkscrew... Love it!!

Cheers! Sunset on the beach at Carlsbad....

Confession: Scarf not a thrift find - BUT: It was on clearance at Old Navy for only $8!! LOVE it! 

Sandals & flip flops are a beach must! Although I got these at Old Navy last summer (clearance $4), I cleaned them up to be as good as new for this summer.  To clean the top stitch, I used bleach on a toothbrush - Good as new! (And thrilled this worked because sandals can get pretty nasty living in a dry & dusty climate like the AZ desert).

Navy strapless maxi - $8 at My Sisters Closet - and $0 out of pocket because of consignment credit.  the denim jacket I had - thrifted from back in Miami (I think Salvation Army in Pembroke Pines during a Wacky Wednesday Sale)

After driving for 6 hours from Phoenix to Newport - I was in a ZEN place, on the rocks, along the shore, basking in the sun with a crisp sea breeze blowing...

Quick story: We got SUPER lucky...
A couple jogging on the beach saw us (with camera, not phone) taking pictures, and the guy stopped and asked, "I'm a photographer. Would you like me to take your picture?" uh - hello!!! YES!!!! He gave us some guidance to capture us with minimum shadow, and took 3 or 4 shots of us - SO GRATEFUL!

Ok - Back to thrift!

 Although I didn't take this tote with me during this trip, had to share: Liz Claiborne Navy & Khaki stripe and LOVE the braided handle and brass detail! Can you get anymore nautical with adding an anchor??? LOVE it! And yup - Love it even more at $5 at Savers thrift.

Dana Buckman Wedges from TurnStyle - $14 but $0 out of pocket with consignment credit. They 'may' have been worn once! Super comfortable and totally on trend for Summer! The straw bag I actually picked up last November at St. Vincent de Paul Thrift in Northern Phoenix...

PERFECT short summer dress! Cotton and strapless!! And only $5 after my donation coupon applied at Savers thrift...

Coastal chic - from THRIFT!

Paired great with my wedges, and brought out a Florida trip keepsake: a shell necklace I had picked up on a trip to Key Largo...

When the temps started to drop, just layered on a simple white cardi, also from Savers thrift... and my Fedora - NOT from thrift, but Marshalls last year...

When I travel, and I'm planning outfits + packing, I love using Ziploc bags - They help keep jewelry from getting tangled + it's easy to find. I love collecting wood bead necklaces from thrift - this one is probably my favorite (because it's simple). The chunky wood & brass bangle was $3 at Savers. the cream & Black (necklace + bracelet in Ziploc) were from TurnStyle - again, $0 out of pocket because of my consignment credit.

I LOVE straw bags - all of these were thrifted at Goodwill and St. Vincent de Paul.

Driving back from SoCal - stylish and comfortable!

 Woven stripe tops - Ralph Lauren (Black stripe) and H&M (Blue seersucker) both from Goodwill on a 50% off Saturday -- Denim shorts and crops too. I must confess though of one splurge: The Polka-Dot Maxi is from Macy's... as well as the new bathing suit I picked up at TJMaxx (Sorry - DO NOT buy swimwear secondhand!)

Crushed Silk Ann Taylor Maxi - Bright White - $25, but with my consignment credit, $0 out of pocket. White tunic tube top: Goodwill $3 (LOVE getting my tunic tubes from thrift! Perfect summer top!) The money I earned from consigning my Spring Cleaning closet purge not only went toward some updated pieces for my summer wardrobe, but it also gave me some fun money to take along on our California trip...

 On our anniversary day, we relaxed by the pool at the hotel... and later on went to a surfers cove beach in Carlsbad to take photos before heading out to dinner up the coast... This is just a peek. I'll be sharing more of our California Coastal Trip pics next week - including also a tour of Barclay Butera's newly renovated Newport Showroom (GORGEOUS!!!)

I hope you're inspired to get out there and SHOP THRIFT - or even consignment. You can truly save a bundle on good quality clothing to refresh your wardrobe with. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:


1. Know before you go: have an idea of what trends or styles you like to narrow down what you're looking for - from dresses, shirts, bags and shoes.

2. Try on everything at the store - don't guess. And also do a good inspection for stains, or a tear in a seam. Returns for thrift and consignment aren't the same as retailers - usually it's only for an exchange or store credit, which you only get with tags still on + receipt and within a shorter window (usually 7 to 10 days vs a retailers 30 days)

3. Before heading out to thrift (or do any wardrobe shopping, especially for travel) go through your own closet first. Try on what you already have, from tops to dresses and especially jeans. If it doesn't fit - get rid of it or you'll end up with a cluttered and chaotic closet.

4. Give yourself a budget - and think how often will you wear your purchase? What else do you already have that you can you pair it with? And also - go for your lifestyle and stay age appropriate.

5. Most clothing is cleaned before it's donated / consigned, but still wash new items before adding into your wardrobe, that way they're ready when you are!

Happy Thrifting!
Thanks for stopping by!

Summer Entertaining Ideas

This week, the long Memorial Weekend kicked off the start of Summer Entertaining outdoors! And with so many opportunities to choose from, it can get a little tricky planning those outdoor gatherings – from pool parties to a backyard birthday bash – movie nights to the family barbecue - daytime bridal or baby showers – to even relaxed sunset engagement parties to an intimate outdoor wedding. One commonality between all of these outdoor summer soirees will be the need for recipes, trays and barcarts. Visit Hadley Court today, where I am sharing with you some of my favorite Summer Entertaining Tips in my guest post: Summer Entertaining - Recipes, Tablescapes, Trays + Barcarts. Here is a peek at some ideas & tips you will find...
Tips for Summer tablescape ideas, including setting up buffets...

Tips for stocking up the barcart - and it's many other uses...

Tips to keep cool & fresh...

Grilling tips...

Tips for using trays...

Even a tip on how using trays can create a teachable moment...

For much more tips & recipes on Summer Entertaining, please visit Hadley Court blog today.

Thank you for stopping by and happy Summer Entertaining!


I am so grateful!! Thanks to your votes, two of my outdoor living design boards made it into the TOP 50 boards for the 'Inside-Out Design Challenge' at Olioboard. The design challenge judges, Lori Dennis and Kelli Ellis, had to select their Top 3 picks from the Top 50 boards, meeting the requirements of using 5 Hayneedle products, and my board, Zig Zag Gazebo won FIRST PLACE!!! woo-hoo!!! (YES - I'm excited!!) As I mentioned in a previous post when the challenge began, I hadn't been on Olioboard since holiday - nor have I entered any contests or challenges (also since holiday) so winning the Hayneedle $1000 Shopping Spree feels fantastic! Congrats also to Olioboard members, Robbie and Tabitha for winning tickets to attend Lori & Kelli's Design Camp & Workshop, coming up on July 29 - 31 during Las Vegas Summer Market! Here are the Top 3 winning boards selected by the judges:

Browse through all the boards entered at Olioboard to get ideas and inspiration to refresh & renew your outdoor living area for this Summer! 

See the other boards I entered plus read my previous post about the challenge and its requirements at 

Although I'd love to get four new (upholstered) dining chairs, I'm giving my $1000 shopping spree to the hubs (aka Chef Jeff) to get a new grill, just in time for summer (unless I can win the "Great Grill Giveaway" I just entered, happening at Hayneedle, now through June 13!!) Our grill has been road hard and Jeff has done many replacements + repairs to it - A new grill is long overdue, especially with all the grilling we've done in Florida and living here in AZ.  Since I won first place for the Olioboard contest, I'm doing (my first!) giveaway with the other part of my prize...

I'm giving away my winning ticket to attend Design Camp this summer in Las Vegas! I am attending the summer market, and I was invited to attend Design Camp as a guest - so I'm paying it forward by giving away my ticket I won from the Olioboard Challenge to you! In 10 days, I'll select the winner at random, after entries complete these 5 simple tasks:

1. Subscribe to my blog, Focal Point Styling.
2. Follow / Join the blog, Focal Point Styling.
3. Like Interior Design Camp on Facebook. (Go here)
4. Like Focal Point Styling on Facebook. (Go here)
5. Leave a comment on this blog post of why you'd like to attend Design Camp!

Congrats to all who participated, to the voter winners and again to the top winning boards selected by the judges - many thanks to you Lori & Kelli!

 Thank you also for stopping by - and possibly joining me here on the blog and Facebook! Good Luck and I look forward for the chance to meet you in real life at Design Camp this Summer!!

Note: 10 day period from today May 27 - June 5. I'll blog post winner on or before Monday, June 9, 2014.

Happy Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day - As you enjoy your pools, lakes, and beach time today, with friends and family, gathering around the many barbeques kicking off the summer season, may you also keep in mind and never forget the sacrifice so many soldiers made to help secure our freedoms in the USA. Thank you for your service. 

Thanks for stopping by,

ASA Decorators Showhouse Spotlight: The Master Terrace

Besides magazines, searching the Internet or touring stores & showrooms, another option to source for interior design inspiration is to visit Designer Showhouses - especially in the Spring.  Most designer showhouses are non-profit fund raising events held in historical dwellings across the country. Some of them include Kips Bay Showhouse in New York City, Hamptons Showhouse, and San Fransisco Decorators Showhouse. I even learned from my Godmother when we spoke on Mother's Day, she volunteered at the Mansion in May Designer Showhouse in her hometown of Spring Lake New Jersey. And this week, if you're in the Atlanta area, you can tour the 44th Annual Atlanta Symphony Decorators Showhouse. I learned of the ASA Decorators Showhouse from fellow blogger Sherry Hart of Design Indulgence who had attended when the showhouse opened in late April, and ends on May 18. Of the many beautifully designed spaces in the Atlanta showhouse, one really caught my attention: The Master Terrace, designed by Lance Jackson and David Ecton, the Co-Founders of Parker Kennedy Living . While you can visit Sherry's blog to see the two-part tour of the showhouse (links listed at end of post), I found a few "behind the scenes" photos Lance had shared to see how this magical outdoor living space came to be. The incredible transformation can also become inspiration for your own backyard retreat...

This is TRULY a spectacular 'outdoor living space' - once really gets the sense of this being an entire room added onto the exterior of a house - and it basically was, thanks to Lance's vision. It's the perfect space for relaxing with coffee and a book on Sunday morning or gather with friends & cocktails on a Saturday evening. From the ground up, here's a look at how the space came to be...


Just love the use of lattice panels and the construction of the hip roof, they later cover along with including a square scalloped edge valance...


Besides the crispness of the color scheme, strong sense of balance and harmony this space has, I LOVE the repeating elements such as the brass mirror and how their shape relates to the brass inset on the coffee table - Brilliant!

If you're as inspired as I am to re-create this look for your outdoor living space, some of the items are actually available at Parker Kennedy Living, Charish, Home Depot and even Target - pulled together in a "get the look" statement at Kelly Market...

I must admit: I have a HUGE crush on the Vintage Ficks Reed & Co Rattan Love-seat from Parker Kennedy, and it's actually been reduced on Charish

As I mentioned in my post last week about the Inside-Out Design Challenge on Olioboard, I created and enter a design board inspired by this outdoor living space - By no means is it meant to be a copy - but just shows how you can see something, from fashion to decor, be inspired, put your spin own it and make it your own. And although the designers have some restrictions to consider when creating their spaces at these design showhouses, their design style still shines through.

 Master Terrace - designed by Lance Jackson and David Ecton, for the Atlanta Symphony Associates Decorators Showhouse, a fundraising event benefiting the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and its Education and Community Engagement Programs.

 Lance Jackson and David Ecton - Co-Founders of Parker Kennedy Living

 Photo by: Jeff Roffman

The Italian style home, called the Palazzo Rosa, was designed by architects Neel Reid, Hal Hentz, and Philip Schutze in the 1920's. It has been called the "Pink Palace" because of the previous stucco color and classic pink dogwoods lining its driveway. This year the historic Palazzo Rosa with its 5 bedrooms and 9 bathrooms in a 16,000 sq ft space was chosen to showcase 30 of the Southeast's Top Designers. If you're not able to attend, be sure to visit bloggers who have: 

Sherry Hart - Design Indulgence
Erika Ward of Blulabel Bungalow

 Founded in 1971, the Decorators’ Show House & Gardens is a fundraising cornerstone of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. All proceeds benefit the Orchestra’s education and community engagement programs and initiatives, which touch the lives of countless children and adults throughout greater Atlanta each year.Leading interior designers from across Atlanta grace one of the city’s storied estates with a collective aesthetic vision and the “one of a kind” open house attracts thousands of visitors each year. The Decorators’ Show House & Gardens is presented annually by the Atlanta Symphony Associates, the largest all-volunteer guild among American orchestras.

 Atlanta Symphony Associates’ Decorators’ Show House & Gardens – Palazzo Rosa
541 West Paces Ferry Rd, Atlanta, GA 30305
Now – May 18, 2014
Tickets can be purchased for $30 at the door or online at
Learn more about the 2014 designers and their room creations at:

 Thanks for stopping by,


Related Posts with Thumbnails