February 28, 2013
by blogazar




We always try to keep a box, bag or pile in the apartment for items that we are highly considering throwing out or donating. Keeping a constant outbox going is a great way to make sure our apartment doesn’t turn into a thrift store showroom, but it is only half the battle. Getting it out the door is the real hard part. Last weekend we decided to suck it up and let go. We got rid of a bunch of random pieces that never quite found a place in our home and took them to their respective final resting places… the garbage, Goodwill, and the cable company.

Among the things we got rid of was our cable box! Yes, we finally gave in and cut our cable off completely. We had been going back and forth on canceling it along with our DVR service. I was torn about whether to keep very basic cable but in the end we ended up going all the way. Its all gone. We kept our internet service, obs. Some things are nonnegotiable. I mean,  I have a blog to sometimes write. I am trying real hard to get used to the Apple TV, Hulu Plus and Netflix. It might sound like I am being sarcastic, but TV is not something I kid about. This adjustment has been tough. The Oscars were particularly rough. No 4 hour show honoring movies I haven’t seen yet. No Fashion Police on E the following night. Nada. I miss being able to turn the TV on and catch the news or some random show I would have never heard of otherwise. Don’t get me wrong… all in all, it is a good life choice. Shouldn’t we all be making those?  We have to be far more intentional with our TV time now, which makes for a far more productive and chill home environment.

Taking the cable box back to Comcast was the final step in our transition to a cable-less life. There are worse things in this world – is what I keep having to tell myself. Worse thing.

Among other thins that went out the door: 2 glass lampshades that were never used, a “Cafe” sign that we got as a house warming gift (sorry, Andre!), an Ikea lamp that stopped working, some candle holders, a candle, a pepper grinder and a laptop bag. The little cabinet with the Chinese characters on it ended up staying – we are still negotiating that one. Its a little TJ Max for my taste. Nothing wrong with the max, but this is too to the max.

In conclusion, outbox… do it. There are always things you can get rid of and the outbox allows you some time to let it sit there while you realize you don’t actually need/want it.

February 18, 2013
by blogazar


One of our weekend goals was to get the office part of our bedroom in order. Two days have gone by and all we have done it talk about it. Today is the big day since tomorrow we are back to work. It HAS to happen. Need. Motivation. Goals: stop using it as a hamper, set up the monitor to plug into my laptop, set up speakers and deal with cords and such.





I am going to leave this one in the “during” category for now. When we started work on the desk we headed to the hardware store to pick up a power strip and ended up picking up materials for another project which ended up taking most of our time. That project is pretty big, so I will post about it another time. The desk is functional for the first time in a very long time. The electronics are set up. I think some of them are ugly in that way that electronics sometimes are. It’s mainly the speakers and subwoofer I don’t like. Who needs a subwoofer? What is a subwoofer?! Cohabitation comes with its sacrifices. I should say: love comes with its sacrifices. The subwoofer and space-age speakers stay.

Next for the desk project:

  • Get all of the wiring under control. Zip ties!
  • Hang my beautiful long white lampshade (seen in the “before” photo).
  • Put a photo in that frame already! Just. pick. one.
  • Find a balance between well-styled and functional.

Stay tuned for the “after”.

February 7, 2013
by blogazar


2013-02-06 22.05.13 So last year I scored at the Lifelong AIDS Alliance Thrift Store when I found my first pair of Clarks original desert boots for about $14 (retails price averages $100). I had been interested in buying a pair for some time but I thought they were too expensive and, to be honest, I wasn’t totally convinced I could rock them. I certainly didn’t expect to find a pair in good condition at a thrift store but with a price like that. I couldn’t turn them down. One of the best life choices I have made.

2013-02-06 22.04.46 Not only did I become a desert boot fan, but apparently my luck rubbed off on my boyfriend because he found two Bass desert boots at the same thrift store just a few weeks later. His boots looked different enough from my pair that I didn’t mind having us wear the same style shoe. I never imagined we would be one of THOSE couples. You know, twinsies.We were now at 3 pairs in our household. Though let me be clear, we are not in the habit of wearing the same shoes…. even though we are the same size. I just can’t get into that.

One of my favorite things about desert boots is that they look great in newish condition, but they look even better when they are a bit more worn. Another bonus is that I know I will be sporting them in spring and summer as well. Perhaps with a pair of shorts? I think anything can be possible with this classic piece. See Chuck Taylors, Levis, Pea Coat.

2013-02-06 22.04.13 Our luck continued the other day when my boyfriend found a pair identical to my Clarks… in the same thrift store! We are now THAT couple – wearing the same shoes. 4 pair household. Soon we’ll be rockin’ matching outfits. I draw the line at shoes.

All of this being said: I do have a sneaking suspicion that desert boots are totally going out of fashion. Afterall, they are turning up all over the place at my favorite thrift store. Let’s hope that’s not the case. I don’t think so. I don’t think classic shoes go out of style. Right? In any case, I love them. I want more. Bring them on thrift gods!

Check out for FashionBeans some very useful and very detailed info on the desert boot, how to wear them, and all the different variations.

We bought the shoes at the Lifelong Thrift Store and the laces and waterproofing spray at Broadway Shoe Repair.

April 11, 2012
by blogazar

Weekend Finds = Future Weekend Projects

Our way of enjoying the sunny Easter weekend weather was to hit the thrift and fabric stores in Ballard and here on Capitol Hill. Check out what we picked up:
  • Vintage bird print ($2.99 – Value Village)
    • Still looking for a place for this. This is definitely inline with the bird and nature theme slowly taking over our apartment. If it worked for Ernest Hemingway, it will work for me.
  • Vintage ceramic tea holder ($1.99 – Lifelong AIDS Alliance Thrift Store)
    • Already in use storing q-tips in the bathroom. 
  • Vintage wood tray with metal details ($3.99 – Value Village)
    • This will love on my mid-century dresser. Probably a place to dump anything and everything on. You will see photos once I clear the dresser off, clean the room and accessorize it!
  • Modern wooden salt and pepper shakers ($.99 – Lifelong AIDS Alliance Thrift Store)
    • We already have a pepper grinder and a ceramic bowl we keep sea salt in, but we got this for dinner parties and our guests who might like a more traditional salt container.
  • Ikat fabric (On sale for 7.99 a yard – Jo-Ann Fabric)
    • Remember those bar stools we recovered in a table cloth(“They will look great when you reupholster them” March 2012)? Well, we weren’t sold on that material so we bought this stuff which gives me butterflies in my stomach. In a good way. Purchasing high gloss white spray paint later this week. That is all I will say for now. Prepare to have your mind blown. 

I wish we had time to complete the bar stool project and place all of these awesome little accessories we got but the weekend was busy. We must put our dreams away for the week and revisit them on le weekend. 

March 27, 2012
by blogazar


Apartment Therapy recently posted about the bedrooms of 15 writers and one of the rooms looked very familiar. I was lucky enough to go to Key West last year and while I was there I went on a hungover tour of my favorite writer, Ernest Hemingway’s home. That seemed appropriate considering who the homeowner was. The photos got lost among many others from that trip. Frankly, I was so sad to leave sunny Florida that I think I intentionally avoided the file where these photos live.
Having read The Sun Also Rises more times than I can remember I always fantasized about living the exotic romantic lives of the characters in his stories. I realized while walking through his home that I identified with his style and that I already had some elements of his “look” in my home. I don’t claim to be as manly and rugged (and perhaps homophobic) as Mr. Hemingway but I do think I share some of the same interest in animal carcasses, nature, Spanish pieces and color. Oh and we both share a love of the drink.
Here are some photos from my tour of Ernest Hemingway’s home:

March 26, 2012
by blogazar

PhotoBlog: Warmish Weekend

Friday night: Bathroom Graffiti at The Sitting Room in Queen Anne
Saturday: Enjoying a pitcher of Blue Moon on the patio at Captain Blacks.
 The beautiful houses around the corner from our humble little apartment building.
Party punch Saturday night. Yes, we drank it out of sippy cups. Long story.
Sunday: Random flower arrangement outside of Linda’s.
Monday morning: Heading to work on the bus with my coffee.

March 23, 2012
by blogazar

"They will look great when you reupholster them"

Well guess what, Andre – we already did!
When bar stools are your only dining option very close consideration must be paid to what kind of stool you choose. We spent months eating at the coffee table because I insisted we should not invest in stools until we found something we loved that I could stand to sit on for longer than 5 minutes and that we could afford. This was no easy task. Luckily, the organization I work at has a thrift store. Yes, how lucky am I?! We saw these stools back in December. They were almost perfect: comfortable, affordable… but totally unappealing to me. In fact I pretty much hated them. I refused. 
Finally after seeing them in the store for two months I began to consider what they might look like with a different fabric on them. After all they were the right size and if we bought them we could finally eat in the eating area and more importantly set up our computers and get some work done as we face each other and listen to Warren’s records… a dream we have been talking about since we moved in. 
We bought them home and tried to let the existing fabric grow on us. It did not. We decided to take a Sunday trip to the fabric store and fell in love with a few fabrics but they were out of our price range. We headed to Target to pick up some other things we needed. That is where I spotted a table cloth on sale for 10 dollars. We brought it home, measured, cut, staple gunned and BAM! 
I was feeling really good about everything until my friend Andre came over and said, “they will look great when you reupholster them”. 
His comment angered me because it was saying something that a little voice inside me was saying the entire time. I like this fabric more than the original but I don’t love it. Luckily, it was super easy to change out. As soon as we find the right fabric at the right price we will have the stools we absolutely love instead of ones we really like. Regardless of the fabric, the stools work out better than I had expected. They are wide and sturdy and there are only two of us so we sprawl out on them and chill for hours. 

What do you think of the fabric? Not too bad for 10 bucks, right? or the stools beyond visual repair? Go easy on me.

March 13, 2012
by blogazar
1 Comment

Red Carpet Building, NBD.

Last weekend we decided to take advantage of a sun break by running outside our building with our rug and shook it off on the street. Don’t worry, it didn’t have garbage or anything littery. Just a little dust. Is that tacky? In any case, while we were out there we decided to glam up our apartment building with a little red carpet treatment.

March 13, 2012
by blogazar

Before and After: Living with a giant EXPEDIT

I was home sick this weekend so I finally decided to tackle the EXPEDIT bookcase in our living room on Sunday afternoon. Naturally I asked Warren to help. When we moved in we just haphazardly put everything on the bookcase that we needed to put somewhere. As you will come to find out, our apartment is very small and every area has to be thoughtfully planned. We came together with a lot of stuff while at the same time getting rid of furniture that did not fit and dealing with an apartment with little to zero storage. We should probably have not brought this huge shelf into this apartment but an EXPEDIT shelf is hard to get rid of because it comes in handy in apartment living (Seriously check this out). I will admit that I think it is a little overpowering in our tiny little living room so I am hoping to eventually replace it with something a bit longer and lower like a long console table with storage. Our edit, rearranging and organizing helps it blend into the room more and is much easier on the eyes. I kind of love it. 
What we did:
  • Removed some accessories that we are willing to donate to a thrift store (we’ll see if that happens)
  • Removed family photos and relocated to a shelf elsewhere in the apartment
  • Color blocked our books
  • Alphabetized Warren’s 200+ records
  • Dusted

Next Step:

  • Buy four BRANAS baskets for the bottom row’s unattractive necessities

A closer look at the after: