Illustration is something I've really loved for a long time. My friend Angela and I doodled a lot of "fashiony cool girl" characters in intermediate school, with enormous oval heads and big lashy eyes. I don't know why, but that was the preferred style. We'd pass these back and forth between classes and tape them to our desks; we even sold our drawings to classmates in a 6th grade project once? Of course they weren't very good (though hers were consistently better than mine), but I drew with her every day because it was fun.
Since then I slowly stopped sketching, because, tragically, I grew up and learned to be afraid of making mistakes. I won't want to start something unless I can do it perfectly, and that's the worst attitude in the entire universe for a creative person to have. I'm at the grueling stage right now of taking my fingers that have got, yes, a bit of talent in them, and using them to make the best thing I can, even though my best is not very awesome yet.
I had a miserable time falling asleep last night. I don't really know if it's because I had thousands of dazzling illustration ideas flooding my brain, or if my body was trying to kill me via bloodsugar violence. Probably 50/50? In any case, I'm a groggy little gremlin right now, but I'm happy for the inspiration, and that I somehow managed to scribble down a few of those thoughts in the dark. Notes scrawled out at 2AM are kind of hilarious by the light of day.
Anyway, I've got a long way to go with my drawing skillz, but I know if I keep working, I'll be making myself way proud someday.
These days have been merry with creativity, music, food, books, and birthdays. Lots of birthdays! I'm feeling optimistic about this twenty-third year. Daniel's got a good year ahead of him, too, I'm sure of it. There is so much awesome to look forward to! Like: my job interview this week! I'm nerrrrrvous. But it seems like a job I'd really enjoy and be potentially crazy-good at. Cross your fingers for me! I'll give details later, if I get hired. You know how it is.
I'm generally feeling very positive about life. February feelings! It's still cold and snowy, but every day is getting lighter outside! Sunshine for all! That makes me the most happy. Also, I made beef stew for supper last night (photo omitted because...it looks like guts) and I was nervous that it wouldn't turn out, but surprise! It was a hit! My ego-high from that feat alone may carry me right into my interview with high-kicks and confidence!
Lately! I've been listening to lots of music from the library. I love it. I've been baking and reading, and watching a healthy dose of Twin Peaks. I've been layering shirt upon shirt, trying to stay warm in my apartment. Wisconsin is cold, brother! Daniel says I should learn music theory and become a singer-songwriter. I think I may try it! Why not?
Murray the Cat has been hanging out in the bathtub like it ain't no thang.
Here's my two cents on the whole clothes-thrifting biz. Because I do it a lot.
Scope out different shops in your area. Every store has a different strength. One may have better brand selection, another will have lower prices, one will be better organized. That sort of thing. Once you figure out what's what, it's easy to decide what you have the patience for.
You can haggle *sometimes*. I once got a $30 pair of winter boots marked down at a consignment shop because I asked. It depends on the store, and it definitely depends on the item. I wouldn't try haggling on anything less than twenty bucks.
Look in odd sections! I recently found out that the maternity section is a stupendous place to find long, loose tops (even if you're not pregnant). I never thought to look there before! There's a lot of golden stuff in the pajamas section, too, like silky button-up tops and pretty slips you can layer in regular outfits. A lot of ladies swear by the mens section for big sweaters and flannels, but I personally haven't had much luck there. It's worth a shot, anyway!
Always look at jeans. All my most flattering, high-quality jeans were thrifted for less than ten bucks. My worst-fitting, rip-a-seam-after-six-months jeans were $30+ from department stores. I've vowed to never buy retail denim again. It's not worth it.
Another thing about jeans: Don't overlook flares or bellbottoms if skinny jeans are more your thing. Altering them is very easy.
Have a (loose) agenda. It really does make it less overwhelming if you've got an idea of what you want. Keep the criteria open ended; something like "button-down blouses" or "jean jackets" is specific enough. I discovered the magic of maternity sweaters because I was actually on the hunt for stretchy skirts, so guidelines can really direct you to sweet stuff even if you don't get what you originally set out for!
Do it a lot. I duck into a thrift store a couple times a month, and I've been doing it for the past few years. Most of the time I don't even buy anything, but because I like shopping and I take time to look for cheap gems, these days I'm usually wearing an outfit that costs less than twenty dollars total, including purse and shoes. It's fun!