DIY Show stopping scarves!

With the new year and recently becoming engaged, I have found myself putting my budget at the top of my priority list and it being even more strict than before. However, a tight budget doesn’t always mix well with a shopaholic. I have managed to stay under my budget with all of the help from my internet BFF, Pinterest! I’ve been in need for a new scarf for awhile but I haven’t allowed myself to spend the money on the $45.00 scarf I saw at Macy’s.  So, I decided to make my own! For how much you ask? FREE!   Here’s how:

You need:

  • Old tee-shirt
  • scissors
  • glue
  1. Lay the t-shirt flat on the ground. Use your scissors to cut about 1″ rows of fabric all the way to the armpit of the shirt.

(The dog is optional ha. )

2. Pull each strand so it is stretched out and each piece is around the same length.

Photo Courtesy of Ette Studios

  • Gather all of the pieces together. I looped them on the palm of my hand so they were all hanging from my hand at full length. Since I used a shirt that had a seam in it, i put all of the seams together so they were easier to hide.

    Photo Courtesy Ette Studios

    3. Cut an additional piece of fabric from the shirt to use to wrap around the seams to cover them and also add some design to your scarf. Glue the end of the additional fabric down so it doesn’t come loose.

4. You can play around with what you want to add to your scarf, or just leave it plain, but I wanted to add some subtle “bling” to mine.  I had an old necklace from Forever 21 laying around that was perfect.  It was added simply by mixing the chain in with my fabric and braiding it in. I wrapped the additional fabric around the top of the chain where the seams of the shirt were being covered to make sure the chain would be secure.

5.  You’re finished! Best part of these is that they are totally custom and so easy to make! You can dress them up or wear them with your favorite casual outfit as well for a little added flare!

I’d love to see what you all come up with!

Advice From A Rapper & Dear Photograph

I wanted to share with you all a couple of websites/blogs that I am current obsessed with!

Advice From A Rapper

I recently stumbled across Advice From A Rapper, a website/blog created by a graphic design artist in Austin, TX named Jessica Wright.  She takes famous lyrics from rap songs and creates uniquely styled graphics.  She hasn’t updated in a while but the graphics she already designed are incredibly creative!

Here are some of my favorites:

Bone Thugs N Harmony I TriedNotorious BIG JuicyyTupac Me Against the WorldPhotos courtesy of Advice From A Rapper

Dear Photograph

Dear Photograph was passed on to me from a friend and reminds me of Broke Girl Sandra Leah’s favorite site, PostSecret.  Dear Photograph is a site dedicated to users submitting photos – old photos held up to the current photo’s location.  Short stories and anecdotes are usually submitted with each photograph, some being sad and others nostalgic.

Here are some of my favorites:

Dear Photograph Family - KidsReminds me of my siblings and I!

Dear Photograph Old CoupleDear Photograph Little Boy Olden DaysPhotos courtesy of Dear Photograph

Somebody That You Used To Know-Gotye

I am at it again!  A great song and a great cover from YouTube.

I don’t know if I have been living under a rock or what, but I just heard Gotye’s (pronounced Go-To-Yay) “Somebody That You Used To Know” on the radio last night and immediately fell in love.  The song is so emotional, yet hip and upbeat.  Gotye sings about the common feelings one endures after a relationship comes to an end.  It features Kimbra who sings from the perspective of the woman in the relationship and she is just amazing.  Also, the video is gorgeous!

Canada’s Walk Off the Earth did a cover that is so great, it reached almost 15 million views in just one week!  Truly remarkable.

Please listen (if you haven’t already) and you will also fall hard for it.

Gotye ft. Kimbra:

Walk Off The Earth:

Almost Lover-A Fine Frenzy

I am unsure if this will become a trend on BGT but I am a sucker for a good cover of a great song.  I suppose it does drift from the original intent of our blog but what the hell, youtube is cheap entertainment, right?

Below is the video for A Fine Frenzy’s song, Almost Lover.  An incredibly gorgeous, sad tune that we all can relate to.  Below that is my favorite cover of this song available on YouTube.  Sanna Taskinen masters it beautifully with so much emotion.  You want to cry for her as she lets it all out.

A Fine Frenzy:

Sanna Taskinen:

Enjoy!

Grooveshark Free Music Streaming

In a pinch for that perfect song but you don’t want to go to the iTunes store to buy it?  Wish you could listen to it for free without doing something illegal?  That is why I love Grooveshark.  You can legally stream music instantly from your computer and they literally have almost any song you can think of.  It is similar to Pandora but I think it is better as there are no commercials and you have more control over exactly what you want to hear.

Grooveshark is free and easy to sign up.  I just logged in through my facebook account. You can make your own playlists, listen to stations, and much more.  Being a free streaming surface, you can’t actually save and download any of the songs.  You always have to stream from the website.  This is sort of a bummer for people who want to make the music portable.  For this, Spotify is great.  You can download the app on an iPhone or Android and take the streaming wherever you like!  As expected, these free music options all have opportuities to splurge for a “premium account” where you get perks, better access, etc.  I never opt to go this route as the basic functions are all that I need.

At the end of the day, I’m a Grooveshark fan but do whatever works best for you.  Happy listening!

The best things in life are free!

Alright budget watchers, just because we all want to save money and watch our wallets doesn’t mean we can’t have fun and enjoy our time!  Why not do both at the same time? It seems like all of the “fun” things require money.  Wrong! The best things in life are free!

Gather some friends and family up for a game night! This has grown to be one of my favorite things to do. Some great games I recommend to include in your night are Scattergories, Pictionary, and Phase 10.  These games have proven over and over again to bring endless laughs and create fantastic memories. Pictionary is especially fun when you are paired with a few people who don’t possess the artistic knack (me, for example).  It keeps things lively and the competition more entertaining.

It’s the holiday season, so it’s the perfect time to take a walk or drive and go look at all the amazing decorations!  This has been one of my favorite past times for years. Ask around and see if your community has any kind of “holiday decoration competition.”  These houses are always the most fun to take a gander at.Take a camera with you! You never know if you’ll see a photo worthy scene where you can print and frame!

Also check out your community parks.  Many parks offer free holiday events for all ages. In my local hometown they have Christmas in the Park every year. It’s a great winter event that the entire family can enjoy.

Like to dance? Want to people watch? (always entertaining). Don’t want to pay the cover? Join the rest of us. Keep an eye out for any specials at your local nightclubs. Yelp is a great place to find these kinds of places and which are the best ones to go to. It has reviews from people who have experienced the place you are researching, price range and also any specials or free cover nights that they may be running and on what days.  You don’t have to be a celebrity to get into everywhere.

Take an interest in your town’s culture.  Go visit your local museums or landmarks! I can promise you it will be a lot more interesting than sitting through a history class. If you live in the LA or Orange County area, the Long Beach Art Museum has Free Friday’s every week! You also can’t pass up going to the Griffith Observatory at least once. Check out the website for a listing of all the free events the Observatory holds.  The view from the observatory is spectacular in itself.  Look over all of downtown Los Angeles and take in the beautiful scenery all at once.   Not to mention all of the amazing exhibits the observartory has have to showcase inside.

If you love the west coast, one thing I highly recommend is to take a drive on the Pacific Coast Highway. The PCH has been showcased on National Geographic’s world’s greatest driving tours.   It is one of the most amazing and spectacular drives you can take.  During a clear day, it’s especially beautiful.  You will pass through some amazing cities such as Huntington Beach and Laguna Beach where you can make a few pit stops and see what these places have to offer as well.

The options are endless for free and fun things for everyone to do! Here are a few more adventures you can do that require no cost.

  •  Explore the Sunset Strip
  • Free express makeovers at your local Sephora store
  • Develop new hobbies ( crafting, painting, photography, blogging etc…)
  • Check our your local entertainment venues for special admission days
  • Can’t afford a new hairstyle every week? Check with salon’s to see if they are needing hair models for any upcoming classes.
  • Volunteer!

I’d love to hear what you all are doing to live your exciting lives all while on a budget!