03 February 2013

Macklemore Challenge

This post is a little out of the ordinary, but I thought I'd mix it up a bit!

I have been a frequent reader of the DIY blog Young House Love for a few years now. Even in my little Kentucky apartments and this fully-furnished house in Northern Ireland where DIY is near impossible, I like to watch the things that John and Sherry do to make their house a home.

So last week, when they posted their Macklemore Thrift Shop Challenge, I was all over it. For those who have never heard of Macklemore, he is a musician that has gained significant notoriety for his song "Thrift Shop", which is hilarious, but also fairly raunchy - so I've included the PG-13 version below:

THRIFT SHOP (PG Radio Edit Clean version) - MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS FEAT. WANZ from Garrett Wesley Gibbons on Vimeo.

Essentially, the song is about going to Thrift Shops (shocker!) and turning other people's discarded items into your own personal treasure. You may have heard me talk about living simply here, so when I'm in need of any new clothes or household items, the many charity shops in my neighborhood are my first stop. They're a bit more expensive than the Goodwill might be back home, but it's definitely cheaper than buying new, and the proceeds benefit charity - so it's a win/win!

There were three simple steps to the challenge:
Step #1. Go to a thrift shop with – just as the chorus of the song says – “$20 in your pocket” and take a picture.
Step #2. Spend that $20 any way you’d like and photograph your spoils. 
Step #3. Find one item (or more) referenced in the song and snap a pic.
Step #1. Thrift shop. $20 (I took the UK equivalent of $20, £12.66).


Step #2. Spend that $20.
OK, I didn't do so well on this one. Since I am living abroad, I have to be careful about what I buy - anything I get here either has to fit into one of two suitcases, be donated (back) to charity, or get shipped home at the end of the year. So I'm picky - which is great for my wallet, but not so great for my challenge. I tried, I really did - I visited a total of SEVEN charity shops, but didn't see anything I couldn't live without on this trip. A few things I might have purchased, if I was at home: 

This writing desk. Fo sho. It was technically £14, which is £1.34 over our challenge budget, but I bet I could have talked the guy down. A little reupholstery could make this a pretty awesome and unique piece. Also, I could make Alice and Wonderland jokes all day long.

This mirror was huge, but some of the silver leafing was scratching off. For £5.99, I'm sure I could think of plenty of ways to update it!

I was also tempted by the heart-shaped waffle iron and manual camera, but held off... for now. I only have a 100 pound luggage allowance, people!

Step #3. Scavenger Hunt.
"it was ninety-nine cents! (pence)"
Funny enough, I have several of the items listed in the song, many of which were actually purchased at charity shops... so I am actually the proud owner of: another man's luggage (£9), that plaid button up shirt (£3), a big --- coat (£5), and of course, the built-in onesie with the socks... (don't worry, I'm also passin' up on those moccasins someone else's been walkin' in)!

And, in the "you're only gonna find that in Ireland" category:

(an Irish step dancing costume)

So, in summary:
I wear your granddad's clothes
I look incredible
I'm in this big --- coat
From that thrift shop down the road

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