Wednesday, March 26, 2008

fun with denim.... i SO love plaid... and bows... and lace... and STUDS! so what a perfection combination.... i was going to put the peace sign over the lace... but after talking it over with a friend, decided that that was too predictable - ha - so i put it under the lace. i love it. i want to keep it. i'm going to keep it listed for the four months... and if it doesn't sell... it's MINE! ;-)
i like it when i find things that are too small for me anyway...
then it's not such a struggle to want to keep it.
do you struggle with wanting to keep your creations??

Thursday, March 20, 2008

i feel a little new york chic today. ha! it's this jacket. wow. i thrifted it a couple of weeks ago - i paid less than a starbucks coffee for this! :-) it has been too warm to wear it, until today. we got a little cold snap - the first day of spring! imagine that. anyway, it has the most amazing details, and the color... fantastic. and i love this little plaid purse with it.

update on the today show thing... it didn't happen. boo. i heard from the girl and she said she didn't receive it on time. which is crazy. because the tracking said she got it tuesday at noon. she thinks her mailroom screwed things up. man... what a total and absolute bummer.... but i'm moving on.... can't think too long and hard on that. it will get me all messed up! ha.

hope you all are enjoying the first day of spring! xoxo

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

bow love....

it is literally amazing to me what a few buttons and some ribbon will do to transform a vintage 80s dress!!! such simple changes.... such a huge impact. too bad it's too small... urg!

Monday, March 17, 2008

famous purse....

so i'm freaking out a tad i'd say..... i sold this purse over the weekend, and i get an email today from the buyer asking if i can fed ex it.... that she needs it for a segment on wednesday at 8:00 a.m. for..... THE FREAKIN' TODAY SHOW!!!!!
so i calmly email back... so... what kind of segment is it? and sure, i can fed ex it.
no problem... totally playing cool....
she emails back... it's for a "cheap and chic, deals you find online" segment....
um... okay.
GET OUTTA TOWN!!!!!!!!!!!!!
my little vintage purse is going to be on THE TODAY SHOW on wednesday at 8:00.....
i'm fainting....

i finally got the new belle armoire magazine this weekend, after learning that one of my flickr friends (i first saw her on wardrobe remix) and etsy friends, lorimarsha sandstedt, is the featured artist! i started reading it this morning, with my coffee, and WOW is about all i can say. this article was SO well written. it's like you are sitting right in the living room with lorimarsha herself! she is the most amazing clothing reconstructionist ever. she inspires me on a daily basis with her creations! she is so humble and sweet and colorful and just plain FUN! i love her flickr stream so much. i can always count on it to lift my spirits! her smile is contagious. what i wouldn't do to spend just one day with her. i resonate with this quote the most:

"i don't sketch, and i've never been able to draw. i never work with patterns. i don't even like them! i just start with some sort of garment that i've taken apart. they are sort of like collages, the way they come together." ~ lorimarsha
SHE is a true artist....

so... who inspires YOU???

Thursday, March 13, 2008

wow!!! i found my sweet paper roses on the front page of etsy today, along with a fabulous article in the news section of etsy called the storque. it was written by abby from the amazing ultimate wedding blog, style me pretty!! i am honored. THANK YOU!!!

Monday, March 10, 2008


i'm pleased to be featured in poppytalk handmade this month for their go green market! it just went "live" today.... it has been an absolute pleasure to work with jan at poppytalk. i hope this will bring more exposure to my little shop! that would be good....

Friday, March 7, 2008

doilies aren't just for grandmas part II

i found this adorable wool skirt while thrifting. i've been sitting on it for a while. i finally got inspired after seeing these pins from pipinghotpapers, a/k/a, runalicerun, to sew a doily with a deer applique on it. i LOVE the way it turned out. i love brown and blue together anyway, so this was a perfect combination i think. i wish it wasn't a tad small.... yes, i would keep it! :-)

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

doilies aren't just for grandmas

ever since i saw a blog post by the black apple, i've been obsessed with doilies and what i could do with them! i found some great doilies from vintage supply seller, artsfarm, and away i went! i made this scarf, patterned after the one i saw on the black apple's fashion blog, some girls wonder.

next, i added a doily to this vintage vest, with a cute cute owl patch. it sold within HOURS in my shop!!

then i decided to put some on this vintage 80s black and white pinstriped jacket for the shop. if it wasn't a TAD too tight for me, i'd totally keep it. i LOVE LOVE LOVE the way it turned out.

so, see there.... doilies aren't just for grandmas any more!!

Friday, February 29, 2008

etsy friends....

i got this cutie little punky hedgehog in the mail from my dear friend, runalicerun. i saw it on her flickr and favorited it. i got it in the mail a few weeks later. that runalicerun is SO sneaky. anyway, i LOVE her. i think we look alike. and i've appropriately named her... alice.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

birds and flowers

made some more birdie magnets for the shop....

and some pretty lavender flowers....

i'm digging these colors right now....

you can't tell that i want spring to be here, can you???

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

extreme creative space makeover.....

i just made this treasury for treasury west. i LOVE these colors right now. in fact, i'm thinking of redoing my creative space in these colors. right now the colors are chocolate brown and an apple green. i'm a little bored with it. BUT i think these fabulous colors could be HIGHLY inspirational. what do you think?

so.... what are the colors in your creative space, office, etc.?? what colors do you find to be inspirational to you during this season??

Monday, February 25, 2008

and the oscar goes to....

i'm not one to sit and watch the oscars.... i just have too many other things going on to sit down and watch something for hours. not to mention, jon stewart, i'm sorry, is just not funny to me. why can't they just do the stinkin' show? why do they HAVE to have an MC anyway?? urg. anyway, so i bailed out after about 30 minutes last night. but am SO GLAD this morning to see that diablo cody won the best writing award for juno (plus, she just rocks the look, doesn't she??)

unlike many others who didn't enjoy this film or thought it was unrealistic - i thought it was BRILLIANT. i watched it actually with my 11 year old daughter, and we had A LOT to talk about. we have a very open relationship, my daughter and i.... we always have, and she knows we can talk about anything and everything. in fact, when she was just in first grade, she came home from school one day and asked what S-E-X was. and i gently gave her a few pieces of info.... and i've been gradually giving her some ever since. i don't EVER want her to feel like she can't talk about her sexuality with me. it is so natural and such a beautiful thing. i don't want it to ever feel shameful or dirty or secretive to her. she is an amazing girl, full of so much creativity and energy! i hope i'm steering her in the right direction. she said last night, after we watched ellen page being interviewed by barbara walters, "mom, what if i came home pregnant at 16? you'd pretty much love me just the same right?" i said, very quickly, "um... i'd pretty much kick your a**." ha! and we both got a chuckle out of it.

man, i've gotten off on a ramble, haven't i?

hope you all are having a great monday.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

dreaming of the beach....

this was me last summer. i love the beach. it is one of my favorite places to be. we go to the beach a lot during the summer. i'm so glad the kids love it as much as i do. it is the one place that i can truly leave all my troubles behind and just relax.... so after the week i have had - our dishwasher broke and had been leaking without us knowing, which in turn ruined our floors - to me yesterday dropping my canon rebel and breaking the lens. i will be without a camera until wednesday. i feel completely naked. next to creating and sewing, taking pictures is my outlet.... it hits right up there next to relaxing at the beach! so in response to the cruddy week i've had, i made this treasure to brighten my mood.... it's called scratch and sniff! i hope you enjoy it as much as i enjoyed creating it.

Friday, February 22, 2008

knee socks? yes, i've added embellished knee socks to my etsy. i love these. really. it's hard for me not to keep them. i sent some to a friend, to kind of test the waters, and see if it was something i wanted to embark on, and she wore them and posted them on her flickr....

and the picture made EXPLORE, plus 30 people favorited the photo!!! so.... i listed the socks today. we'll see how it goes.


how DO people do it in third world countries. our dishwasher of 11 years broke, and i'm whining and complaining because we've been without one for two days now. the hubby ran out and bought a new one (along with a new fridge and stove too - all stainless... it was time...) so until it gets here, i've of course been handwashing the dishes in the kitchen sink... BUT then we realized, when we saw water on the floor in the living room, that the dishwasher had been leaking, and probably had been leaking for days. so our floors may be damaged as well.... urg! so... we turned off the water to the sink, and i washed the dishes in the bathtub this morning. but FIRST i had to scrape all the food off into the trash - YUCK. i've never been more in love with my garbage disposal as i am at this very moment. so i feel quite certain that i would not survive without the luxuries that america has to offer..... but at the same time, makes me so sad to realize there are people across this world that don't even have fresh drinking water. i am humbled today.....

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

the story behind the name.....

i did the story behind my flickr name, zoo_gal... here is what i wrote:

"so... how did i get this zoo_gal name anyway? well.... i've always loved the name zoe. and although i wished my parents would have named me something exotic like that, they didn't. zoe is the greek word for life. zoe looks a lot like zoo. i love that saying, "it's a zoo around this place." it makes me think that it's a place full of life, full of character, wild and crazy fun! i do love animal print.... i know... i know. so... it just kind of evolved. i am a gal who loves life. i've been through a lot of crap and have come out the other side, and continue to go through a lot of crap. but it's a wild ride for sure.... and i love it. every minute of it. really. even though some days are harder than the next, i have a great husband and family that continues to remind me that i am alive. so that's it. the story behind the name.

what's the story behind your flickr name??? i'd love to hear it."

i was doing flickr way before etsy. i have such a love for photography. but i have an equal love for vintage. so theVintageZoo was born. it basically means the same thing... i have an intense passion for vintage and feel full of life and creativity working on items for my shop. and i feel like that's translated into my shop well (or at least i hope) - a crazy, fun, wild store, which is full of life.... life from the past... and now with some handmade items, life from the present. i love the way the two connect.... old and new.

so.... what's your story on your etsy name? i'd LOVE to hear it! ;-)

Monday, February 18, 2008

less is more....

sometimes i have to be really careful not to overdo things. do you ever have this feeling? i usually get an idea in my head and jump right on it. but i'm learning to let some ideas just marinate, and roll around in my crazy brain. that requires patience, which i have very little. but i'm trying. i'm learning. i found this already gorgeous vintage handmade dress, but it was a little plain. i mean, the construction and the print on this dress is wonderful, but it just lacked that certain something. of course i've been applique-ing it up over here, and thought of applique-ing perhaps a black rose on top of the other roses... but that just didn't seem right. so i let it sit. i've been "sitting" on this dress for about two weeks. then i had the idea of just adding a simple black velvet bow and a cute victorian style shoe button. just a few stiches and i believe this dress is transformed!! i love it. if it wasn't a tiny bit snug on me, i'd have to keep it. i almost want to eat salads for two weeks so i can!! ;-) somebody should blog about that.... how to resist keeping all of your creations!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

read this on my coffee cup this morning... yes, i stopped for starbucks. urg. i don't necessarily love going there... would rather support local coffee places, but i was in a hurry....
"taste is subjective. taste is democratic. taste is powerful. taste - the combination of texture, aroma, temperature, aesthetic and environment - is also a window into someone else's life or culture. be confident in your taste, but remain curious and expose yourself to new tastes. allow your taste to constantly evolve and grow - while keeping and cherishing the memories that taste creates."
marcus samuelsson, chef
i like that.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008


... it's a sit and stare out the window day..... it's been a crazy time for me this past year. a time of self reflection... a time of trying to discover who i really am. am i a court reporter, small business owner, mom, wife, friend, loner, social butterfly, lazy couch potato, go-getter??? i, of course, am all of those at one time or another.... some at multiple times... some i do good. some i suck at! ha! over a year ago, my husband quit his job he had had for over 10 years because it was basically sucking the life out of him. i had been the stay at home mom for the past five years, after having quit my successful job as a court reporter after my third child. but a great job presented itself, another court reporting job, making really great money. so i took it. and have been working that since last october of '06. my husband did start his own consulting company, which has allowed him to be very flexible to pick up the children and make all the appointments, etc. he gets up and fixes their lunches in the morning, and makes ME coffee as i head out the door.
but then ETSY presented itself in august of '07, and it seems like EVERYTHING has changed. i turned my love for vintage and thrift shopping into a business. WOW!! and after being on ETSY for six months, i have been SO inspired to start creating things of my own. i have picked up sewing and i am having a great time. the problem is, i am burning the candle at both ends, as my mom would say. i am getting WORN OUT. it is too much.... working my court reporting job, and trying to run a small business. but i can't give either one up. i can't give the court reporting job up because it is our main source of income, and i can't give ETSY up, because it is my main source of joy.
however.... on monday my husband had a meeting with someone that presented him a possible full time job. and then he got a call from someone else today that might want to present him a full time job as well! but then we have another decision to make. because of some bad decisions in the past, we are a little financially messy. so.... if he were to get a full time job, and i kept my court reporting job, then we could pay off some debt. maybe i give ETSY a break while we both work really hard to do that? i can't even begin to imagine life without ETSY right now. it is my only creative outlet, besides photography, which i love equally as well.
so... these are life's options right now. this is what is ahead of us. i hate having that knot in my stomach, like there's something just not quite right, or that feeling like everything is caving in on you.... i have a million things i need to be doing... but i can't seem to start any of them.... all i want to do is sit and stare out the window. i've been like this for the past couple months now. but i can't fix it. it's going to have to work itself out. i just want to be happy.... that's all. is that too much to ask? ;-)

working on.....

making my blog spiffy..... i've seen so many gorgeous blogs in the last week.... so bear with me.

Monday, February 4, 2008

make me fabulous....

i found this vintage top a few weeks ago, and the sleeves were damaged... but the shirt was TOO lovely to pass up....

so.... i shortened the sleeves, added some lace, and then added a lush velvety bow tie, with an adorable cameo button! wow. what a transformation. it's amazing to me that what once was a "damaged item" is now something so beautiful and lovely, with just a few simple touches. i love the way this shirt turned out.

moxy - your place to find all things bath and body!

my first etsy feature!!! and i'm happy to feature a product that i received this week! i have been looking for someone to do a custom order scent that i haven't been able to find. there was a certain bath and body place in the *gasp* mall that i loved and they discontinued it. so i've been trying to find something to replace it ever since. i found moxy in the forums, and she was SO friendly and non pushy! ;-) i convo'd her and asked her if she could make a scent of sandalwood and rose, and she was very excited to do so. she said she had never made this combination, but that she was happy to try! she also said she could make the matching roll on perfume as well. although she said it would take her some time (soap making is quite a process) i didn't mind, and told her to send me a convo when it was ready. i received these two WONDERFUL items on saturday....

and not only were they worth the wait, i absolutely LOVE them both. the soap is SO beautiful, with dried rose petals at the end, and it smells JUST like i imagined. and the perfume is such an added bonus. you don't need much, so it will last a LONG time. the packaging was excellent and professional. the roll on scent was even sealed!! and the soap, wrapped in a beautiful piece of linen type material. i would highly recommend this amazing etsy seller. she makes etsy look and smell GREAT!! thanks moxy!

Sunday, February 3, 2008


this applique was inspired by one of my favorite coldplay songs, yellow.

"look at the stars, look how they shine for you, and everything you do... and it was all yellow."

i really like the way this one turned out, and plus it's a little bit of a bigger size. i have people sending me emails all the time asking for larger sizes. i really lucked out and found about five handmade vintage dresses this week. this is the first of those. it was just a blank canvas waiting to be turned into something unique and FUN! if it fit me, i'd be keeping this one!! that's my problem with all of my creations, i want to keep them all. does anyone else have that problem??? so i love it when i find dresses or items that are too big or too small. then there is no temptation!!

hope you're having a great weekend so far!

Friday, February 1, 2008

etsy front page

made it on the front page today, thanks to budanART!! and it brought in some great sales! i've been on the front several times, and i think this was the most "successful" outcome. it really was a lovely treasury, and a nice way to start a day.... which happened to end horribly. urg! hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

if i were stranded on a desert island.....

no, this isn't a post about LOST, however, it is coming on TONIGHT!!!! yipee! been waiting a long time for that! but, if i were stranded on a desert island, i would want this product over anything else.... it is "control paste," by aveda. it is heavenly. it's great for short, messy type hair, and it smells DIVINE!!! what product do you absolutely love?? do you buy any products from ETSY? if so, what? fill a sister in!!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


this is the first deconstruction/reconstruction piece i've done. i think it turned out quite nice. i took a men's style button up shirt that i thrifted, and found this lace camisole top, also thrifted, and transformed them into one piece! i added some cameo buttons as well, to make for a very feminine, victorian style look. i really love the way this piece turned out. i just need to finish off the inside so i can list it in my shop. i hope to be able to do more pieces like this... it's just finding the time... oh, where does the time go anyway???

wardrobe remix and the storque!!

i've been a member of wardrobe remix for a little over a year now. at first, i was posting every day, and now i'm lucky if i'm able to post once a week. just too busy sometimes. anyway, today, i was reading the blog of tricia royal, bitsandbobbins, who is the founder of WR, where she announced she was featured in the storque! so cool! i love it.

i really love thrifting, and incorporating that into my wardrobe. i'm usually half thrifted/half new. some days i'm 100 percent thrifted. and there's a group for that too on flickr here.

so what would you say your fashion style is? does it change? are you stuck in a rut? do you like to thrift, mall shop? do you shop on etsy? if so, what are some of your favorite clothing shops?? have you ever done ebay for shopping?

i really think it's amazing how creative and fun people can be with their wardrobes, and it's been fun making new friends on flickr through similar fashion interests.

don't forget to check out the storque!! i'll be honest and say, i always forget to look at it!!! i'm glad tricia blogged about it, because i might have missed it. proof that i need to check it more!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

skirt love

i really love skirts. they are SO very feminine, and flirty and sweet. i made this one last summer, with the help of my mom. i haven't quite gotten down zippers!! but it's something i'd like to work on. i would love to incorporate some handmade skirts into my shop. that would be FUN!

front page of etsy!!!

and what a better follow up to my first post, where i ended with the jacket i am SO proud of.... that it ended up on the front page!!!!!! awesome! i LOVE etsy!!

in the beginning....

it's been five months since i joined up to start my own shop on etsy. i can still remember my first sale.... it was this bright orange vintage tunic top!! (please keep reading - i promise it gets better!! with better pictures as well!! hee hee)

it really all started because i love to thrift and shop for unique and fun items that most people would walk by every day. i just don't like to "fit in," and be like everyone else. there were some days while thrifting that i would find such cute items, but they didn't fit me or weren't quite my style, but i KNEW that i couldn't leave them in the store. so i started my collection. i told a friend about this, who had just opened a shop a few weeks before, modernmama, and she said, hey, you should start your own shop! so theVintageZoo was created.

now, i know there has been quite a bit of controversy over vintage on etsy, some love it, some hate it. but over the past five months, i have seen my store morph into something totally different. i look at this picture above, and it makes me laugh outloud. what was i thinking wearing that bright orange tunic with those bright orange 80s heels?? eek! i had some VERY lovely people offer me suggestions on how to better my store, i.e., taking better pictures - after all presentation is KEY on etsy. those same lovely people encouraged me to create something - to find what it was that i liked to do, and DO IT! and so started my love for appliquing. i always watched my mother sew, and never really was interested, until this past year. my mom bought me a sewing machine for my birthday, and i haven't been the same since.

here is my latest listing

wow - what a change from the bright orange top!! i am SO proud of this latest creation, and have also started making magnets, rings from vintage clip-ons, and trying to be more selective of what type of vintage items i put in my shop. no more bright orange things!!

a month or so ago, i was contacted by another vintage seller who asked me to take a look at her shop and give her advice. i took about 30 minutes, browsing through her shop and taking notes. i convo'd her back, listing all the things that i thought she could improve on, and guess what? she totally took my advice and did those things! i just wanted to give back some of what was given to me. i look forward to seeing how her shops progresses.

i love etsy and am looking every day at ways to improve my skills, my shop, and ways to help others! it is such a wonderful place, isn't it???