Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Getting to work!

Yep, today is the day I get back to work on the Etsy shop! I will be updating outfits on past items, getting together outfits for new items, working on my listings and updating them all. It’s going to be a busy day. Brenda and I (Brenda is my form) will be playing Barbie for a few hours and getting everything together. Feels good to get back into some sort of rhythm.

Before that, I have some cleaning to do still. We’ve made some pretty good headway here but there are a few more odds and ends that need to be placed.

Later tonight, I plan on making bulghur wheat with ground turkey for Mom Jeans and I. Over dinner we go over the painstaking laborious art of budgeting. Oh the joys of being responsible!

Monday, November 28, 2011

An Unexpected Surprise

I have been super crazy, ridiculously, extremely overwhelmed and busy these last few months. In early September Mom Jeans and I did an awesome flea market in Astoria. It was fun and it gave me the motivation I needed to get involved in other ones and make my way over to the ultimate Brooklyn Flea Market one day. I bought a dress form, we were ready to take pictures with it, I was designing thank you cards and business cards….but something was wrong with me. My usual high energy levels were low and my brain was sluggish. I couldn’t remember the simplest things and I was just so … blah.

Could it be….nah!

Life has a way of giving you beautiful and unexpected surprises :

My little girl! 18 weeks old!

So there you have it. Mom Jeans and I just couldn’t have an Etsy shop and multiple projects alone…we had to throw a baby in there. Things weren’t complicated enough for us, I guess.

I cannot wait to meet her and see her tiny toes and hands. Jeremy would say the same if the look of shock leaves his face anytime soon! He’s a worrier, I’m a planner. It actually makes us a good team.

So we’ve been super busy getting things together and he is about to move in and my energy has returned in this second trimester. Hopefully the shop will be up and running again later next week. Can’t wait to get our shit together!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Time to get back to work

I have been stressed, tired, and having migraines. It was an overall crappy July. I started feeling a bit off in the beginning of the month, so I pulled away from working on the blog and shop to concentrate just on my full time job, housework, and taking care of my dog. You know, take things easy *roll eyes*.

I did manage to get some work for the shop done. I made color dyed cut offs! It was surprisingly fun and extremely easy.

Here, I will show you how.

What you need:

  • Procion dye mix of your choice
  • Bag of Urea
  • Bag of Soda Ash
  • Water
  • Clothes to dye

Step 1:

Get you dye tub ready. 5 gallon tub with cold water. fill with about 3 and a half or 4 gallons (remember displacement!!). You can use a larger tub, but remember if you use more water you will need more dye powder.

Step 2:

Completely soak the clothes separately, in a sink or tub, making sure they are fully saturated with water.

 

Step 3:

Make the dye bath! Add a cup of salt, 2 tablespoons of the dye of your choice, and 1/2 cup of Urea balls. Stir until well mixed. In a separate container of cold water, mix in 1/3 cup soda ash and mix until somewhat dissolved. Don’t  be shocked when the soda ash hardens, it will dissolve after a while.

 

Step 4:

Add the clothes. Leave enough room to stir (in a five gallon tub, two articles of clothing at a time). Stir consistently for 20 minutes.

Step 5:

When 20 minutes are up, add the soda ash bath slowly, while stirring. Keep clothes in dye bath for an additional 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally.

 

Step 6:

In a running bath, dump the dye out. Rinse the clothes until the water comes out clear…ish. It will take a few washes for the dye to stop running. Line dry.

 

a few tips:

  • use gloves. I didn’t the first time I dyed some shorts fuchsia. It looked like I killed a Fraggle.
  • If you are super neat with the stirring, go ahead and set it up like I have in the picture above (that was when I had the help of Mom Jeans to clean up spills, and he’s a lot more graceful than I am). But if you are a clumsy spaz like me, put the 5 gallon tub inside the bath tub so you can stir like a Tasmanian devil…and not suffer the consequences of getting your white grout tiled floors dyed pink and blue. Oops.
  • The water will not run clean when you rinse the clothes after the dye bath…they just won’t. Go ahead try it. Think you are better than me and you are gonna' get that water to run clean. Frustrate yourself. The best you can do is get as best you can to run it a lil’ clean and then wash the items (either in the tub or in the washer) with detergent.
  • don’t have the kitties around. I now have adorable little pink paw prints on the white sofa.
  • Remember the dye will react to the original color. So if you are dyeing something that was originally red in a blue bath, the color will come out …Purple. Just like you learned in art class! That’s part of the fun of dyeing things, see what surprises come out that bath!
  • An added plus is that you can mix dye powders to get different colors! But always keep in mind the original color of the garment being used.

Have fun mixing colors and dyeing away! Here are the final results of some items I dyed.

 

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Original color: Yellow

 

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Original Color: black

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Original Color: light grey

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Taking it Easy

I’ve been taking a bit of a vacation away from the blog and from the Etsy shop, but this week will bring me back into the swing of things. I have a pretty hectic work schedule this week, but I plan on posting some pictures of the projects I have been working on these last few weeks.

I like being lazy sometimes. I work way too hard. . .

Saturday, June 25, 2011

List of Things I Need Pt. 1

 

Ugh, This Etsy thing is very trying when you also work 40+ hours a week. I get soo overwhelmed with the amount of things I need to buy for the shop!  I put them in order of importance

1) More Inventory

This one is obvious. I need more stuff to sell more stuff. Time to head to the warehouse!

 

2) Computer Printer

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This one will save me time! Printing out shipping labels and decorative thank you notes/designing things will make things a snap

3) Camera

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Just to get some fresher pics and inspirational shots. Jeremy needs something better to work with…and I need to get better pics taken.

HMM MAKE THIS NUMBER 2 ACTUALLY!!

4) Garment Rack

I’m running out of closet space! The sensible thing to save room in my already cramped apartment would be to store the items in a bin…but it seems unfair to store everything after its been kept away for years. Especially after I’ve steamed them and cleaned them!

 

That’s all for now. I suppose. I can’t wait to get new items but that probably won’t happen till next month some time. Hmm, maybe I can manage to swing by the end of this month. We’ll see!

 

Do you guys have items you need right now?

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thankful Thursday

 

I saw this on as a weekly series on a blog and I thought to myself

“What Am I thankful for?”

There is one thing (besides the family) that I know I am COMPLETELY thankful for. . .

 

Charles Xavier

Santos

 

charles

 

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Charlie came into my life in March of 2010. He was originally my sister’s dog but she couldn’t keep him anymore.

 

 

 

 

He was stressed and unkempt. My sister was going through a difficult pregnancy and had a hard time keeping up with the 1 year old dog and her two teenage boys.

He’s clingy.

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He’s a stubborn eater.

His hair grows like a weed.

 

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She’s was going to give him up to a Schnazer rescue group, but I wanted to keep him in the family.


He’s a sweet lil’ guy

 

 

SO I TOOK HIM HOME.

 

He’s my puppy. I know to many it just seems ridiculous to love a pet as much as I love Charlie, but he’s my whole world. He’s truly my best friend. I would do anything for him and he would do anything for me.

My sweet angel Charlie. I’m so glad I gave you a home.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Why Belt It When You Can Knot It?

I love a good belt, but lately too many people are belting things to make an outfit a little less boring.  Why belt it when you can tie it, knot it, clip it, cinch it, tuck it, pin it or cut it?

Now, you WILL see me put a belt on a few outfits on here, especially if I am selling the item (I don’t want to damage a garment I am selling!). Sometimes a belt is the best option.

But I challenge thee, think outside the box!

I’m not good at this fashion blog/photo taking thing…very humble beginnings.

out the way Charlie!

Grainy is my middle name

Yeah I pretty much always look displeased.

Floral Romper, Sweater, Turban – Urban Outfitters

Boots – Dr. Martens

Cut off leggings to hide my butt cheeks, baby’s got back. . .

Totally Amazing Time Waster!

 

So I finally got the help I need to decorate my room!

Check out this AH-mazing website, if you haven’t discovered it first yourself (I am always the last to know).

MYDECO.COM

 

IT’S MY ROOM!

Pros of the programs:

    • Choose your own wall colors
    • choose from hundreds of furniture choices
    • able to accessorize rooms and surface tops
    • 360 and 3D-2D views
    • can add architectural features

Cons :

    • Unable to play with wall placement of shelves, art, tv’s etc (for example I want shelves at different heights on wall, but when placing shelves on “my walls” I can only use one standard placement)
    • cannot put d├ęcor items on shelves
    • Cannot change color of furniture to fit your wall colors/schemes.

Despite those minor issues, the program is a miracle. I can see what my room looks like before I spend a dollar on revamping it. This has helped me plan out what I wanted to do with my huge bare wall.

I will retake pics AGAIN of my room to illustrate what I have now/what I gots to work with and then show you pics from my MYDECO account. EEEK, so super excited.

What would your MYDECO room look like? I’d love to see what everyone comes up with! Have fun!

Birds on a Blossom Branch Wall Decal

shopping for wall decals? Check out some Etsy shops such as the one featured above! I Love the mix of colors and the variety that they have available!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Boardwalk Empire

“WHAT A WEEK!!! Sometimes we all need to let loose and unwind. I’m so wound up I can eat nails and poop out screws. My back aches, my feet hurt, my eye has some weird bump/sty thing going on with it. I am a mess.”

That was me a week and a half ago, trying to wind down and write a blog entry. I finally had my little excursion to Atlantic City, my favorite cheap lil’ local vacation spot. I feel a little better, although I’m still experiencing a little anxiety. I really need to save up and really go away, somewhere far, where people seldom speak English. Hopefully by the end of the year.

I love Atlantic City, it’s the Jersey girl in me. It is the perfect blend of trash and glam. It’s not fake like Las Vegas and I think that is what I like about it. I can’t deal with all show and no personality, like Times Square cookie cutter image of a big city. I like the imperfections in life, wonky boardwalk floors, cheesy gift shops, cheap boardwalk food, a dirty little city beach, gum stuck under my flip flop…especially when its not trying to be anymore than what it is. It is a fun little town. I wish I had more time to spend there, but Jeremy can only get away for two days since he does not have vacation time yet, and he was the friend I chose to drag with me. He needed his first Atlantic ocean/REAL JERSEY SHORE experience (fuck you MTV’S Jersey Shore).

Step out of your hotel room and hit the boardwalk wood. Listen to the hollow footsteps as you walk down the famous stretch.THUMP THUMP THUMP THUMP. The smell of grilled foods and pizza fills the air, as the breeze from the ocean kisses your sunburned face. Is that chicken I smell, and boardwalk fries?! Throw some salt and vinegar onto those bad boys and drink it down with a cold beer. Look around, see the smiling faces of those who won big and see the disappointed looks of the ones that lost it all on one hand. Is that a crack head skittering by? Whoa, jump to the left he’s muttering angrily at a June bug. Look its an Atlantic City Boardwalk kitty walking by, I name her CHUY (Chewie) since she’s missing the tip of an ear. Her real name is Molly. I insist on calling her Chuy. OH NO, it’s starting to rain! Let’s get lost in this Casino and have a jolly good time!

I miss it already.

I really need to take some pics of my own to really capture what I think is just so amazing about this place. Camera come to me soon!!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Splish Splash

Now that I have given up the vehicle, I spend most of my day walking around the neighborhood. I do not mind it one bit! I walk/jog about one mile a day, not to mention the running around the store for 9 hours. I honestly feel good again getting the extra work out. My body needed it.

I get to buy all these walking accessories. I bought a book bag (I haven’t owned one since high school!), a large umbrella, and now I am in the market for rain boots. Nothing worse than working in wet socks all day.

 

Vintage 1980's SPRING showers RUBBER Booties @Pomegranate Seed

 

little red rain boots @ benefit jewels supply

Burberry Buckle Rain Boots

Burberry Buckle Boot

Kamik - Kelsey

Kamik Rain boot

Very hard to find a cute rain boot! I do long for some big ole polka dotted one. The great thing is…rain boots are apparently out of season (I guess they never heard of Thunderstorms) so they are all pretty cheap right now! Score!!!

Remember I posted this blog not too long ago :Boy am I exhausted

I really wanted to take that advice to heart. My poor soul was aching for a change. I’ve really gone forward and did many of those things. Made the drastic change of getting rid of the car. I implore everyone to do something to jumpstart motivation in the positive direction. Of course, getting rid of your car is probably not an option for you but maybe getting rid of TV right after work for 3 hours. Or going for a walk before you go to work. Or skipping the second cup of coffee. Small steps equal steady gains in the long run. Try it out. What do you have to lose?

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Four Walls

My room revitalization project is going much slower than I first anticipated. The whole blog thing is going a much slower than I anticipated. I feel I am back on track now! As I said before, I just had to get some things into place, like a jigsaw puzzle.

So step one, new layout of room, has occurred. The new format makes me feel like my room is a whole new world, much like Aladdin and Jasmine found a whole new world…with love!

My room is lacking usable wall space which became a bit problematic, especially for the eyes. A window takes up one whole wall, and my closet and door to my room takes up another. Which leaves me with two walls. I used up my two walls with my bed and my furniture which really boxed in my room.

Before:

After:

I moved my bed to the other wall in order to have open space when you first enter the room. It gives the illusion that the room is much larger than it is. I moved the desk against the window because it has a beautiful view AND it fits perfectly. Utilizing this wall opens up a lot of space in my room. I may use the negative space under the window for displaying something. What, I do not know for now. I will build a shelf under my table to store some quick things that are too big to fit in the drawers. Right now, its resting on the support beams for the desk. My dresser stayed where it was but when I build/get shelving I intend to free up some space on top and lay out  my jewelry and headbands. Maybe even get a few bowls to hold my items. The mirrors are still resting up against the walls but once I paint my room I plan to put them somewhere special. OOOOOH sooo exciting!

Yes, I drink beer in the middle of the afternoon…and what?

Stay on my page for more ideas about putting shit where!

Finally, a Successful Photo Shoot!

Jeremy and I waited so long for this moment! We’ve been patient with the rain, opposite schedules, and fund lacking but we finally got it together and took a few pics of our new items. I’m so excited I could cry.

Well not really, I’m much too cool for that.

As I said before, I hate taking pictures and I have panic attacks whenever I do have to take them. I’m a weirdo I suppose. I’ll try and get more of my personality into my shots the next time we get together to take some piccys.

But I digress…here is the super fun, totally awesome photo shoot!

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Check out the rest when they are posted onto my Etsy shop! WOO HOO! We are also retaking pics of older merchandise now that I have gotten over my fear of taking pictures outside. So excited for what else is to come!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Bookshelf Idea 1

I have nowhere to put my book collection. Pile upon pile of books lay stacked in my closet, collecting dust and inaccessible. I get so frustrated when I want to reference a design, concept, recipe, anything and I have to go through each book to get the the one on  bottom. Yellowed pages and dust, bindings warping from undistributed weight, words forgotten and ignored because they are out of sight and out of mind. Well, not anymore damn it! I have finished phase one of my room design (new room layout!) and will be moving soon to phase 2  (fresh new paint). In the meantime I am just dreaming up some bookshelf designs and trying to find the best solution for me. This is all so exciting!

 

 

I love the old weathered wood and the simplicity and rawness of the pipe and flange. Raw and understated, this would fit perfect in my reds, blacks, and yellows of my room. Fortunately I have been working with pipe and flange for 6 years at Urban. Unfortunately, I know how well it does not hold up. I would still love to try this out.Click on the picture for the tutorial on how to make this bookshelf.

Monday, May 23, 2011

A bit of a Sabbatical

 

I had to take some time off to get a few things together. Oh, don’t worry, Maraley will be back to the grind next week, updating her blog regularly and getting things running smoothly in the shop. Just had a few me things to take care of first.

But the dust will settle soon and things will be a lot clearer in my day to day routines. I wish the sun would come out already! It has been raining for two weeks straight, that is not an exaggeration. I hate complaining about not having sunshine because it is just so upsetting to know that these rains have caused rivers to rise and belongings to be lost for some people. I just wish for the good weather to come back. I really would like to take some pictures.

All is well on the eastern front here. Will be updating a lot more often. See you then!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Getting it Together

It has been a hectic few weeks over here in Maraley land. Busy with work, trying to get it together with Jeremy (to take pics), and having no time to write in this blog!

In these hectic moments, trying to analyze life and clear up any clutter/loose ends, I’ve decided to give up my car. It costs too much to maintain and pay for. My car payment is GROSSLY high, insurance is insane, gas prices are rising, and regular maintenance of the car is slowly sucking away at any chance to really start building a savings. Not to mention the stress of all this mounting inside of me. I just need to start getting rid of unnecessary stresses and it is gone! NO MORE.

I can’t keep up this unhealthy lifestyle of high stress, bad food, and no money. So goodbye pretty car, we had a wild time but I don’t need you!

I’m really dedicated in bettering my mood and my life. So you’ll start to see some pleasant changes around here.

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The last few days I have been watching “My So Called Life” and it really got me thinking. The perspectives of life, the changes that have happened within my world, who I am now vs. who I was yesterday.

When the show was on air, I was the around the same age as Angela Chase and her friends. I remember thinking, “Wow, this is so real and so how I feel. Jordan is the hottest guy ever, so crush worthy. Rayanne is the coolest friend, Rickie is the best gay boyfriend ever, and Brian Krakow. . . such a turd. The parents, oh god they are annoying!”

That was 15 years ago. But now, watching the series, I feel so connected with the parents. Their stress, their worries, Graham’s search for his dream job, their relationship insecurities. Yeah, they still are a little annoying, but I can sympathize with their reality a little more than with Angela’s.

That is what I love about life. How dynamic it all is. Because Angela’s reality, life, and problems were no less important than Graham’s and Patty’s. The same as my issues as a teenager are no different than my issues now. The relevance of age and wisdom are just the factor that makes them different.

That is what made this such a good show. The two perspectives of all of their “So Called” Lives.

Streaming now on Netflix! Check it out!

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