Pack Rat has two ears and a heart–that’s why we love Phil Collins.
Look what I just bought! Honest to God, I am totally in love with The Utilitarian Franchise. This guy makes THE. BEST. STUFF. ON. EARTH. Snapple may try to make that claim, but oh ho ho hooooo boy, they are way off. Quick test. Which is better? Unique, affordable ($9.00 – $12.00 a piece), and blazingly surreal art slapped onto a hand towel…or some kind of artificial ice tea that tastes like bowel cancer waiting to happen? If you’re on the fence, let me remind you that these towels don’t just look like a Wonderland dream, you can also use them to dry stuff. That’s two, count ‘em, TWO great uses in one. Where as Snapple…well, now that the Snapple lady is gone, they don’t really bring much to the table at all, do they? Stop surrounding yourself with mediocrity in your everyday workhorses. Fill your home with stuff that you’re going to love! And if you think I’m talking about Snapple, there’s just no hope for you.
View my most recent acquisitions. Do it.
photo copyright by The Utilitarian Franchise
photo copyrighted by The Utilitarian Franchise
Bob’s your uncle, Pack Rat is the dogs bollocks
One of my favorite episodes from 90s cult classic Canadian sketch comedy troupe, Kids in the Hall, is the one where Kevin McDonald decides to grow a beard while on vacation. As the days wear on, he gets intensely attached to his beard. When he wife suggests he shave off his prized facial hair, he turns on her and shouts, “The beard stays! You go!” Lucky for us, we now don’t have to choose. At beardhead.com, those of us who are follicly challenged in the facial region can get a faux beard, and those of us who need to keep their face rug warm in these chilly winter temps can enjoy these “ski masks.” Extra bonus, they come with moustaches that you can twirl like a cartoon villain. For only $24.99, thats, like, a dollar a laugh.
photo copyrighted by beardhead.com
A long time ago, when my grandma was cleaning out her basement I acquired a bingo game set. I’ve never been a gambling kinda gal (I’d rather keep the money I earned, thanks), but I loved to play bingo growing up because of those translucent, brightly colored chips you place on your bingo card. Fast forward several years and that same bingo game was shipped off to the Sal. I wanted desperately to keep those chips, but I just couldn’t come up with any good projects on the fly. I should have taken notes from MOCKFROG Jewelry. I just love this bingo chip bracelet ($16). It’s whimsical and vibrant piece of bling. Or, I guess since bingo chips can get you money, it’s pre-bling bling.
photo copyright MOCKFROG Jewelry
Pack Rat smells like we sound, we’re lost in a crowd, and we’re hungry like the wolf
Rainy days were always rough growing up. Who didn’t wish for some sort of Cat In the Hat like interventionist to come in and shake up those rainy day blues? What I got instead was my mom dragging out that God aweful Monopoly board, which took forever to set up and twice as long to play. Only later in life did I discover she found the game as tedious as my brother and I (I guess it was better than the total anarchy that would have occurred if we tried to entertain ourselves). But, after seeing this hilarious Monopoly Smackdown print by artist John Tebeau ($19), I think that all the game really needs is a fresh marketing campaign and a bold new look to make it more exciting. Dear Parker Brothers, please get on that. Because the red houses and green hotels? Totally not working for me.
photo copyright by John Tebeau
When Pack Rat thinks about you, we just can’t get enough!
Today’s pick comes from Breconstructed, a delightful play on words as shop owner Bree reconstructs outdated second-hand clothes into modern vintage. Although that might sound like an oxymoron, the pieces at Breconstructed retain their vintage appeal, but with some contemporary tailoring and detailing that make them less costume-y and more easily integrated into a modern wardrobe. We are especially drawn to this Blue Polyster Sundress ($25). The romance of the ruffled collar combined with the geometry of the stripes makes a combination that is the cat’s pajamas. And Breconstructed just opened on Monday, so expect more great design in the days to come.
photo copyright by Breconstructed
Read the new issue of Pack Rat, and join in our birthday contest!
Today’s frugal find comes from a fellow nut megger (if you can’t tell, I love my home state of Connecticut. Don’t underrate the Constitution State!). Carissa Black’s checkbook cover ($10) is just perfect. The design is neat, no frills with plenty of storage space, but the fabric is bold, bright, graphic and makes me smile. Black’s Etsy shop can be found under the title gardencris27 and she has more than a few bags, wristlets, and such that I covet. She is helped along by the modern, eye-catching patterns of Amy Butler’s fabrics, but Black has a great eye of her own for matching patterns and textures. Add one of her pieces to your outfit and you’re sure to get stopped several times by people dying to know where you got your awesome wears.
photo copyright by Carissa Black
Read the new issue of Pack Rat, and join in our birthday contest!
Good morning! Oh I know it has been a while since we did an Item Du Jour, but have I found a good shop for you? The Lovelys Etsy shop is a fantastic collection of shabby-chic antiques, and pure kitsch. Like an edited thrift store, you get all the wheat and none of the chaff, but it’s still a free-for-all of unique, odd-ball finds that are both funny and dazzeling. My favorite for the day is the “Vintage Ceramic Danish Modern Vintage Shy Bull Gentleman’s Organizer” ($9.50). I imagine it sitting jauntily on my desk top, holding all of mail, covered with my sticky notes. But I encourage you to check out the whole shop, between the false teeth and the depression era glass, I feel pretty confident in saying there is something for everyone.
photo copyright The Lovelys shop
Pack Rat saves the date, every date
Hullo Pack Rateers. We are fast approaching the first anniversary of the magazine and in celebration I think I will order a set of these clever Circle the Date patches from Chakra Pennywhistle. Only $7, these patches help you commemorate with love all of your most important events. Made from thrifted tea towels and embroidered with love (literally, a heart), these patches are not just a fanciful graphic element, but also a way to subtley remind friends and family about impending special events. This way you can make sure no one forgets Arbor Day again.
photo copyright: Chakra Pennywhistle
Pack Rat loves you for your braaaains
You know, as society goes to hell in a handbasket for us Americans, a nightmarish existance that we never thought possible seems to be becoming more and more likely. So it seems reasonable that with the way things are going, we may just bypass a depression all together and go straight into the zombie armegeddon fortold by the prophet George A. Romero. Assuming that this will is the case (and really, at this point what other choice do we have) you can prepare for your inevitable battle with legions of the undead by buying your own Zombie Survival Pack from ElectricNomad. Thirty dollars is a small price to pay to keep your brains from being eaten.
photo copyright: ElectricNomad
Pack Rat will take you to the land of Make Believe, if you have cab fare
Hello Internet land! A good afternoon to all of you. You can’t see it, but I’m taking off my dress shoes and putting on my sneakers, in the spirit of Mr. Rogers. As I settle in and get comfortable, why don’t you keep yourselves busy by scouting out the lovely jewelry at Kiki Handcrafted Designs. Today’s Item Du Jour is the fun, vibrant Emerald Attention necklace which is bound to turn a few heads. I especially love the little crocheted bead. Nothing like combining two crafts into one. And all that green will help keep your spirits up as we head into the seasons of brown and gray. For only $20 it’s well worth it.
photo copyright: Kiki Handcrafted Designs