MINI PENNY: June 2011

Thursday, June 30, 2011


I somehow managed to squeeze quite a bit into my day today! I worked this morning, and since my car is in the shop, I biked to and from. Work is really close to home (about two miles or so), so the bike ride is pretty short. After work I took a shower and then a couple hours to catch up on some sleep. The nap was unintentional, but needed nonetheless. When I woke up I realized that Geoff was going to be home soon and cleaned up the bedroom and my craft area.

While cleaning I came across a hideous dress that I had thrifted and had plans to make into something adorable. Since I hadn't yet decided what my outfit for the day would be, I figured I would give this a shot. I think it turned out great. When I first started it, Geoff was questioning the end goal. I love proving him wrong! See the outfit details after the jump.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Thirty: The Shop I Most Frequent

I would love to post a photo of my favorite store, but alas, there is no photo. I go to the Village Discount Outlet on Cleveland Avenue most often. It's my favorite thrift store. It's kind of in the "bad part" of town, so it seems like I get dibbs on the good stuff (or, at least, what I consider to be the good stuff). It's fairly clean and the staff is really nice. Their prices are better than the other thrift shops around here, also. On Sundays and Mondays they have 75 cent days where they select one color tag to be 75 cents! Plus they choose two colors per day for their 50% sale.

My other favorite shop is Ohio Thrift. They have multiple locations around the Columbus area, also have 2-3 color sales per day (usually one of each 25%, 50%, and 75% off), and are really clean stores. I recommend both of these places if you're into thrift shopping!

This is my final thirty day fashion challenge entry. I got through every prompt without a hitch, so I must say that I feel a bit accomplished. At first I wasn't sure I'd be able to do it — but now that I'm finished I'm ready for my next challenge!

A Day at the Zoo

Click to View on LookBook
Today I went to the zoo with mom, dad, Jen (my sis-in-law), and my nephew Baby Evan! It was a great temperature and while the zoo was busy, it wasn't over crowded. We didn't get to see the entire zoo, but were there for about five hours. Needless to say, I'm tired. I wondered if it was too cheesy to wear this sheer leopard + tiger print vintage top to a zoo, but in the end decided to do it. It's long — almost dress length. I tied it in the front to meet the waist line of my shorts. Cute, right? It was perfectly comfy for today's outing. See lots of animal photos (including jump polar bears!) and outfit details after the jump.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-Nine: An Unworn Shirt

I made this shirt/vest a few weeks ago from a thrifted dress that wasn't selling on Etsy. I really dig it (and don't mind the wrinkles in this photo), but haven't found something quite right for it just yet. I have quite a few virgin items in my closet, so this was an easy pick!

Velvet Playsuit

I really can't express how much I love this playsuit. Earlier I posted the DIY tutorial and decided to use it as my daily outfit today. The photos make me so happy. I must say that I'm pretty proud of myself on this one! See more photos and other outfit details after the jump!

Dress to Playsuit DIY

I've been aching to do another DIY tutorial! I'm totally in love with my finished product and can't wait to share it with you. Earlier today I saw the left image on Tumblr. My first thought was "I want that romper." And of course, my second thought was "I can make that romper." See the full how-to after the jump!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-Eight: Favorite Accessories

Necklaces! I own lots and lots of them, I love making them, and I love thrifting them. I used to work for Claire's — you know, the kids and costume jewelry store — so I used to have a lot more than I do now. But I do think that my collection now is of high quality. I'm not talking diamonds (I strongly dislike the diamond industry) nor precious metals. I think of it highly because I do have a lot of unique pieces. My jewelry box is filled with rocks, dreamcatcher, animal, vintage, and other DIY pieces. What's your favorite accessory or jewelry pieces?

Summer Look

I wanted to wear something with a great summery feel today, so I put this little outfit together. And then, of course, when I stepped outside, it was raining! Typical Ohio weather, right? It's supposed to storm tomorrow morning — bad news! Since my car is still in the shop, then I'm forced to bike to work tomorrow. Normally I wouldn't mind, but the storm will make it less than wonderful if that's the case...

See more photos after the jump!

NYX Makeup Haul and Review

Whew! It's been a hectic two weeks! I haven't been thrifting for the past couple of weekends (withdrawal!) and I've been neglecting my NYX makeup haul and review. Finally, finally, finally, here it is! I recently had an awesome discount code and purchased a decent amount of new makeup. Here's the rundown on the product and where you can purchase them after the jump.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-Seven: Favorite Dress/Skirt

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Pardon the diptych (and ignore the image on the right), but this is the only photo I have of this dress at the moment. I have yet to use it for an outfit post, but I love it. I found it at the thrift store for only a few dollars and it is maxi length, dip-dyed, and velvet. It's perfectly soft and a tiny bit oversized, so I cinch it with a belt and I'm good to go! Hopefully I can't use this for a LookBook post soon!

Mellow Yellow.

Today started as a lazy Sunday, but we became rather busy once the afternoon hit. My brother's birthday was two days ago (happy birthday, Stephen!) and my sister-in-law and baby nephew, Evan, flew from California today. We had a family meet-up at the beloved Old Spaghetti Warehouse.

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-Six: Your Favorite Designer

I don't really have much to write about regarding my "favorite" fashion designer(s). I've said it before in previous posts, but I rarely ever buy retail (especially as of recent), and prefer to work with what I find instead of what I'm seeking out.

With that being said I have recently come to appreciate Burberry's line of studded trenches and jackets. I first saw one of the trenches on Emma Watson and fell in love with it. I'm actually looking forward to this fall/winter so that I can create my own DIY version!

It's not that I don't appreciate fashion designers. I love designers of all forms. Sure, most of us love Alexander McQueen and the like, but I don't watch the runways as closely as other fashion bloggers. I'm not saying that there's anything wrong with it — I should pay closer attention simply for the inspiration — but right now it isn't fitting into my schedule!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

ComFest at Sundown

Today was our second day at ComFest! We headed down in the afternoon and it was really busy. And of course there was some amazing people watching!

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-Five: Your Favorite Brand

I was dreading this post because, well, to be quite frank I'm not sure that I even have a favorite brand or label. I get so much joy out of the bizarre no-names that I find while thrifting that I really don't think about the upcoming J. Crew line or anything of the sort. I will say that consistently throughout the years, though, I regularly get excited about what Vans is doing.

When I saw these leopard print lo-pros on Urban Outfitters's website a few months ago I was exstatic. I waited until my next paycheck, logged back onto the website, and they were already sold out. My heart was so broken. After a few days of searching, they finally popped up on KarmaLoop and I made them mine. I wanted them badly enough that I didn't even wait to find out if Urban was going to get them back in stock (for those of you who don't know, I work for Urban so the discount would have knocked a few bucks off).

Can you see my excitement? If you follow me you may have noticed that I find much comfort in my leopard print items. I consider myself to be a connoisseur of leopard print — and that it can be done tastefully, terribly, or ironically trashy. To each their own!

Recently these floral flannel Vans were brought to my attention and I adore them. I feel like Vans has their cuts on lockdown. Keep in mind that I don't wear sneakers terribly often, but I have found a niche in this company that I really adore. I actually own many, many pairs of Vans — not to mention that my boyfriend's collection is larger than mine.

I would say that aside from my leopard lo pros, my Wingtip Eras are my other favorite pair. They were part of the Vans Vault line in 2009. It took me a long time to find them in my size (a men's 5/women's 7), but eventually I snagged them on eBay. Cute, right?

In the end, I'm not sure what originally drew me to this shoe. I've been buying them for a while (well, since junior high/high school) and have always followed them quite closely. Part of me enjoys the shoes for their quality and variety, and another part of me adores the artistic atmosphere that the company itself promotes.

French Fries

Today was a bizarre day. I worked this morning, met up with parents, had an important phone call, and then had to get ready to head over to my favorite festival of the summer — ComFest.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-Four: Your Biggest Faux Pas

Don't get me wrong, I have had plenty of fashion faux pas moments. The worst (or I guess in my case, the best) part of that is I don't have (m)any photos of these incidents. But in the summer of 2009 I decided to shave half of my head. I liked it. It was fun. The biggest problem was when I had to grow it out.

Tumblr Thursdays

I adore this mix of neutrals and neons from WhatIWore! Check out the rest of my picks after the jump.

This 'N That

Today's outfit is very basic! I had some errands to run today so I needed something simple and comfortable to wear. Most of the outfit is thrifted or DIY! I love when outfits work out that way. I thrifted this skirt about a year and a half ago and recently had to take it in so that I could still wear it. Now it fits better than ever!

Denim vest, thrifted
Grey studded pocket tank, Forever 21
Yellow skinny belt, thrifted
Leopard print skirt, thrifted (altered)
Kimchi Blue black flats, UO
Feather earring, DIY
Amethyst crystal necklace, DIY
Happy triangle pin, YACHT show

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-Three: Your Favorite Store.

Well, aside from thrift stores.... I must take this opportunity to let all of you know about my Etsy store and the summer sale that's currently happening!

If you head over to the Mini Penny Store and enter the code SUMMERSALE at checkout to receive 25% off of your entire order! I have jewelry, clothing, swimwear, and more currently for sale. This sale is for one week only, so be sure to head over and check it out!

You Spin Me Right 'Round

There really aren't any news updates for today. I was unable to do the Tuesday DIY post yesterday, but I promise to make it extra wonderful next week! We got our Urban Outfitters order in the mail today and I have mixed feelings. I had been very excited about the saddle shoes that were coming my way, but the sizing was totally off and they're like clown shoes on me! Shucks!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-Two: Your Favorite Era

I struggled with this. I dig the 20s and their flapper style. I love the dresses of the 40s and 50s. I adore everything 80s from pop star to punk rock. I currently own a lot of clothes that have the 90s grunge revival feel. How am I supposed to pick a favorite?

I'm not going to pretend to be one of those people who say "Oh, I'd be so much happier if I lived in so-and-so decade." Nostalgia has its limits and I'm not entirely sure I've found how I feel about idealizing certain time frames. When it comes down to it, I love living right now — with all of the Twitter and smart phones and music and information overload. Every day there is something that inspires me to dress a certain way for that day. I can see a time period movie and change my makeup routine for a week or see a great Tumblr image and buy some hippie-style round sunglasses. And the best thing about right now is that we can build off of every previous era and make it our own.

Woody Allen wrote for Midnight in Paris, "Nostalgia is denial of a painful present." The way I look at is, my present isn't even close to being painful. I don't need nostalgia to escape it. I prefer to live in the now, live for myself, and dress the way I feel, the same way many young people before me have done!

Home is Wherever I'm with You

Oh boy, where do I even start with today? You know how sometimes you just feel so drained? About a month ago my car (that I have owned for the past eight years) started acting strange. When I would slow down at an intersection sometimes, it would shut off. Our first though was the fuel pump, but after some Google research we came up with the idea that maybe it was the crank sensor.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty-One: A Hat

I have this wide brim hat that I love! I love the size and shape of it. The only problem is that it's made from felt and it typically too hot for the summer! I've been meaning to get a black straw hat but have yet to get around to it.

Anyway, I love pairing this hat with a skirt. I guess that this isn't the best photo of it, but you get the idea!

Case of the Mondays

We didn't do much today except relax. It was nice. We went down the street and picked up a replacement part for my car. I'm really hoping that it fixes it. There are very few things that I like about cars other than how they tote me back and forth when the bicycle is not applicable.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twenty: Summer-Only Item

Isn't this one obvious? I wear swimsuits in the summer, and I can't think of a time when I have ever worn one in colder seasons!


Today Geoff and I went to the Franklin Park Conservatory. I hadn't been there in about a year, so we went to check out the butterfly exhibit. We arrived just before one o'clock so that we could witness the 1pm release of new butterflies. It was pretty interesting.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Nineteen: Fashion Icons

I picked a few lovely ladies for this. And pardon my redundancy on one of these, but I really can't help it. I had a hard time choosing my fashion icon(s). Normally I don't really look specifically at one person's style and attempt to replicate it, I instead take bits and pieces from images that I see floating around in magazines and blogs.

First I'll state my obvious choice, Diane Keaton. I love her. I think she's such a simple (I mean that as a compliment) and complete beauty. She has aged so wonderfully. I especially love her signature menswear look!

I adore Peg Bundy. I used to watch Married... With Children with my brothers when I was younger. Now I have been catching up with the entire series on Netflix and can't help but to swoon over her clothing. My boyfriend dubs her style as "trashy done well." I supposed that's one way to put it. I love the high rise and the animal prints. And it doesn't hurt to be so damn sassy.

And finally, how could I not include my childhood idols? During a couple of years in the 90s, I regularly  pretended that I was Scary Spice. Still, if I had to choose one as my favorite, it would certainly be Melanie B. Her hair and her leopard prints are so fun. I find the current state of Victoria Beckham to be rather boring, but found her Royal Wedding outfit to be really lovely. As for Geri, Emma, and Mel C, I could take and leave certain parts of their characters and outfitting. Nowadays I can appreciate Geri's sexy-curvy-redhead appeal, but as a child I didn't really get it. Emma is cutesy, but a bit too much for me, while Mel C is too sporty for my tastes. But she does have a gold tooth, which I would love to have! Speaking of which, does anyone know of a place in Columbus, Ohio, that will make a cap for a single tooth? Maybe a place that makes grills?

Who are your fashion icons?

Pride Festival

Finally! One of my favorite days of the whole year — The Columbus Ohio Pride Festival! I was really excited to head down to the Short North to take part in all of the activities. Geoff went off skateboarding early this morning and was running late coming home, but we made it down in time.

Instagram, anyone?

Who's on Instagram? I love following all of you lovely people, so leave a comment or follow me so I can take a look at your feed! These are just a few of my favorite iPhone snaps. My username is Chaplinnn minipennyblog — look me up!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Eighteen: Your Favorite Shirt.

I have so many tops that I can't pick a favorite blouse. I'm going to alter this entry and make it more custom to my "shirt" collection — my favorite graphic tee. I don't have a lot of graphics, just a few that I couldn't live without. And if you know me, my love for John Hughes, and my obsession with Chicago, you'll understand why I picked this as my favorite.

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The day that we got this shirt in at work, I had to buy it. Unfortunately, it's a men's tee and the smallest size we offered was a small, but I thought I'd make it work. Ferris Bueller is one of my all-time favorite movies!

I ended up cutting out the necklace as soon as I got it home. I adore it this way. It's a little off the shoulder, which works out just fine. It's been quite some time since I have worn this, so maybe I can try to work it into an outfit soon. The only problem is that it's a bizarre shade of dark army green. Oh, and why is there a photo of Cam when the shirt reads "SAVE FERRIS"? Who knows, but I'm not complaining.

Want a Ferris Bueller shirt of your own? You can buy it here!

Canoe or Kayak?

Okay, so I did not wear this on our canoeing trip today. This was for the rest of our adventures (which was basically just grocery shopping and a short walk). See more after the jump!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Tumblr Thursdays

Momchil Hristov shot this image for GIA Magazine. It was shared by never. See more of my picks after the jump.


Today was rather rainy. We headed down to the Columbus Convention Center to see my momma and her friends at their NQA Quilt Show. Yep! My mom quilts for a living and belongs to a quilting bee. How cute is that?

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Seventeen: Your Most Unique Fashion Item

I bought this dress during a 50% of sale at Rag-O-Rama last fall or winter and it sat in my closet forever. It [was] ankle-length with long sleeves. Finally, a few weeks ago, I decided to chop it off into a cute summery dress! You may have witnessed it back in early June when it was featured in my Daily Outfit called Animal Print, Literally. Check it out!

Olentangy Caverns

Today Geoff and I were searching for something to do, so we headed up to Delaware to see the Olentangy Caverns. The caverns are for sale and there's a rumor that it may be sold to a private owner — meaning that it could be potentially closed to the public. We wanted to see this roadside attraction before that happens. Hopefully it doesn't!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Sixteen: Your Favorite Pair of Shoes

I bought these Chelsea Crew Perforated Oxfords last fall for ten dollars. Someone had purchased them from Urban Outfitters's website for $60 and when they were returned to the local store, they were marked down to $9.99. As soon as I saw them, I knew they would be mine!

While I don't wear them all the time, they are probably my favorite shoes in my collection. I'm a huge sucker for oxfords, brogues, and jazz shoes. I have similar styled shoes in black, gold glitter, black/white/tan combo, off-white, and royal blue. I still would like to find some crazy leopard print or floral oxfords for my collection!

Fringe Theory

Tish told me that she loved this swimsuit, so I had to wear it to work today to show her how amazing it is in real life. I’m obsessed with it, seriously! I got it yesterday at the thrift store for $2 and it’s DKNY.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Fifteen: Describe Your Personal Style

My personal style is a mix of so many things — girly, thrifty, hipster-y, 90s, and Peg Bundy. I consider my closet to be rather unique since a lot of my items are thrifted, altered, or totally DIY. I can sport black lipstick or bare lips, skirts or sneakers. I consider it to be an accumulation of years of my "collecting" and bargain hunting. I love it!

Thrifty Monday

My favorite thrift in Columbus, Village Discount Outlet, doesn't have fitting rooms, so I always try to dress simple. It makes it easy to try clothing on over top of my outfit! I got some really amazing finds today. Check hem out after the jump.

Shipping Container

The weather was amazing again today. My mom came up early this morning so that we could go thrift shopping, eat some lunch, and go grocery shopping. She usually comes up every once and a while so we can go thrifting together. My mom did pretty well and was able to get a nice used baby high chair for when my sister-in-law and nephew visit us from California in two weeks!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Fourteen: If You Could Style Any Celeb

This was a tough challenge for me. In all honesty, I don't really "look up" to any celebrities. In fact, there's aren't a lot of people that I consider to be my idols or fashion icons. I had to do some thinking.

At first I thought of Aubrey Plaza from Parks and Recreation. I love that show, and I love her character in it. But I wasn't sold one hundred percent that I'd be into styling her. Then it hit me.

For a long while I have considered Tina Fey to be a beautiful, smart, strong, and funny woman. She's not pushing a thinspo image, nor cattiness, nor fake tanner. I genuinely like her, or at least the persona. Sure, it would be a challenge for me to style her, but the experience would be awesome.

Sure, the photo above is from Esquire and they sexed her up quite a bit. But in my opinion I think the glasses-and-cardigan look on her is absolutely gorgeous and that she has a great mind to back it up. Could I ask for anything more?

A Long and Lovely Day

Today was really great and has felt like it has lasted forever. Check out the photos and the sangria recipe after the jump!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Thirteen: Your Most Expensive Piece of Clothing

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In the winter of 2008 I decided to drop money on a nice basic black coat. At the time I was working for Apple Store and there was a J. Crew in our mall. Dangerous! I ended up dropping $300 on this (I got a small discount for still having my student ID) — The J. Crew Double Cloth Tulip Coat. I still have it and it's in great condition.

I have taken this with me so many times to Chicago and it's lightweight enough to pair a hoodie or sweater beneath it, but still warm enough to wear on it's own. I adore it. The classic cut makes it easy to match with denim or a dress! The tulip dress is easily the most expensive item in my closet!

Double Feature

This morning Geoff and I went to see Super 8. We made it a point to wake up early enough to both avoid the teenagers and catch matinee prices. We succeeded. Our original plan was to see it last night at the Grandview Theater (per my iPhone's app's suggested movie times), but we got all the way down to the theatre to discover they weren't actually playing it! In retrospect, that's totally fine because today we squeezed in a double feature. See more of our day after the jump!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Fashion Challenge Day Twelve: A Piece of Jewelry That You Made

I'm going to go ahead and feature two pieces of jewelry that I have on my Etsy shop, Mini Penny. I have quite a bit of jewelry that I'd made in my personal collection that I'm sure you have seen on multiple outfit posts. My favorite are the crystal and amethyst mineral necklaces. I like to buy rocks, arrowheads, teeth, and other items at history and natural museums and make them into love necklaces!

The first is a series necklaces that I made from a vintage wooden puzzle. There are multiple states still left, so if you don't see your favorite state listed, feel free to send me a message or an email. Each of these necklaces are on a chain that ranges anywhere between 20-22 inches. Aren't they lovely? See the Illinois necklace here.

The second necklace is this jasper arrowhead necklace. It is made out of a real arrowhead that was handcrafted in Mexico. Since they are hand made, no two arrowheads are exactly the same! The item for sale is the one in the photo, complete with the triangle design in the chain. The necklace is about 28 inches. You can see more about this necklace here.

Always remember that if you read this blog, you get a discount! Enter the code BLOGSPOT at checkout to get 10% off of your order.

The Pipes All Froze.

Geoffrey and I went on a walk today down to the tattoo shop so that he could make an appointment to finish his arm. It was really sunny outside, ack! And then we got some yummy Jeni’s Ice Cream. I recently won a gift card from @TweetAndGoSeek, so I got two scoops of goat cheese+cheery and one of dark chocolate gelato! It was delicious. If you're in or around Columbus, check out Jeni's. It is a must. We also tried to make plans for this evening. I'm pretty sure we're going to go see Super 8. I've been looking forward to it.

E.L.F. Cosmetics Haul and Review

Hello lovely readers!

I was shocked when I checked my mail this morning and saw that my order from E.L.F. Cosmetics had already come. That means this came in just five days four days (it had to have come in yesterday's post). How awesome is that? Not only am I impressed by the quick turn around, but also the great quality of the products. See the full review after the jump.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Rose Hips

Regardless of the less-than-perfect day I've been having, I wanted to dress cute and show off my new NYX lipstick (Penelope)/liner (Black Berry) that came today. The rest of my order should be here tomorrow, so I’ll expand on that later. Oh, and by expand I mean... a review! I'm excited to make another one. Anyway, there isn’t much thrift in this outfit — only my belt. It’s pretty abnormal for me to wear so many retail pieces. I guess it happens sooner or later, though, right?

Fashion Challenge Day Eleven: Wishlist Item(s)

Creating a Wishlist is a tough project for me. I think this stems from the fact that I never really buy much retail. Usually I waltz into a thrift store and come back out with excellent goodies. Many people envy my ability to do this. In all honesty, I don't know how it happens — it just does.

I would say that the only retail item that I can pinpoint at this time are a pair of Jeffrey Campbell shoes. I dig the Litas in both black (not the patent) and the turquoise suede, but surely can't shell out that much money for them. I like many of their shoe designs, such as the Foxy Wood,  the Miracle, and Genoa. Some of the "crazier" ones are nice as well. I'm indecisive, but it's safe to say that I'm really into heels and wedges at the moment.

Other than the shoes I can't afford? I guess I am currently seeking some basic brown sandals (not flip flops — I h-a-t-e flip flops with every fiber of my being) and some lace, knit, or crocheted shorts. I've never been the sort of person to keep a long wishlist and I'm proud of it!

Tumblr Thursdays

I can't believe it is Thursday already! I'm excited for the weekend mainly because of one (well, two) things: My planned Double-Feature date! Midnight in Paris and Super 8 both come out this weekend and I'm excited for both. The last time I checked, the weather is supposed to be pretty nice so I'm hoping to squeeze in some bike rides as well.

ZTox posted this awesome black and white image from Sexties on DeviantArt. There is something ghostly and beautiful about it. Check out the rest of my picks after the jump.

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