Archive for the ‘nifty gifty’ Category

savvy shamrocks: dressing your dining table for saint patty’s
March 17, 2014

hello friends…and happy saint patrick’s day!

i love today. it’s a holiday the whole world celebrates, that’s just plain fun and makes people happy. it helps that my mom got really into it growing up — making sure we always had at least something green on for school — and also that i married into irishness. a lot of irishness.

so, it only makes sense that — given my newfound obsession with my local 99-cent-only store — that i’d need to create a table centerpiece.  cyrillynn from any 2nd now, a fellow san diego style blogger, recently encouraged me to post a diy on another little something i’d put together (which i still need to do) — but i’m taking her advice now and sharing how to fancy up your own table with some glittery green and gold.

still working on that guinness beef stew? no worries — with just a bit of glassware, inexpensive seasonal decor and fresh flowers, you can whip this up in a mere 15 minutes!


what you’ll need:
– a trifle bowl
– a smaller container to fit inside trifle bowl (i used the dip compartment from a chips-and-dip set)
– a modern vase
– a cake stand
– white everyday plate*
– gold decorative charger*
– bunch of carnations
– bunch of baby’s breath
– decorative glitter picks (i love these shamrock and hat ones!)*
– green or white glitter garlands*
– glitter adhesive letters
– other ireland-inspired tchotchkes

* found while gleefully losing myself in the aisles at 99-cent-only


step 1: arrange the main structure / glassware arrangement.  place the everyday plate on the gold charger, then the modern vase on top of the plate.  set the trifle bowl atop the cake plate.


step 2: strip leaves from carnation stems and arrange bunch in line in modern vase.


step 3: bunch baby’s breath into smaller container, that can fit inside trifle bowl while still leaving a perimeter for garland.  place garland around this smaller container and flush with its top, so baby’s breath sticks out just slightly above garland.


step 4: create desired saying with glitter letters, and arrange/drape glitter garland around both pieces.


step 5: add decorative glitter picks to one or both flower bunches.  sprinkle glitter on plate and top of cake plate, if desired.  arrange other tchotchkes.


step 6: *pat* yourself on the back, you crafty leprechaun!  and enjoy that stew!


time to trinket: another last-minute gift guide
December 24, 2013

so, here we are again…the 24th of december.  and — while we may say this every year — Christmas really did sneak up on us this time!  i hope you and yours are enjoying a wonderful holiday season.

i started this annual gift guide two years ago, as a way to celebrate how much I loved my mom’s affinity for little trinkets and tchotchkes we found in our stockings growing up.

and this year, i’m taking it to a new level —  with the official 2013 elle webb style “under-$5-but-looks-anything-but” gift guide!  keeping with last year’s timing, this issue is also a bit late (but hey — new year’s gifts are totally acceptable!).

perhaps all the expenses in buying a new home (thank you, Lord!) are still a bit too fresh — or it’s my own little protest against the overcommercialization of this holiday — but gathering fab finds that are kind on the wallet, too, just makes me so giddy!  and i guarantee you, while you would never suspect it — everything on this list is truly $5 and under!

let’s get started!

you can bank on these cuties
i think i may be the last person on this earth to discover the 99 cent store.  i had always been skeptical of my friends’ stories of this veritable wonderland of savings, but now that i’ve seen for myself — oh boy.  unhealthy obsession time.

these unbelievable cute ceramic own coin banks actually started my co-dependence.  i’ve gifted them now a few times, with nothing but the most gleeful response.

black pink cream ceramic owls from 99 cent only store

black pink cream ceramic own coin banks from 99 cent only


i then came across this metallic pig — also a coin bank — and had to scoop it up.  don’t you think it makes a really whimsical place setting (perhaps to wish prosperity in the new year)?

blue metallic pig coin back 99 cent only store


metallic blue pig from 99 cent only store in holiday place setting


mug shot
i love coffee.  and i love mugs even more.

take a looksy at these two delightful ones from target — how can you go wrong with a personalized item, or a gift that comes already wrapped in a bow!

coffee mugs from target with personalized initial and bow


and speaking of personalized finds, i just couldn’t pass up a tea with my own name (also at 99 cents only!).

lindsay gardens tea bags from 99 cents only store


let’s get ladylike
i am a sucker for the daintier things in life, so you can imagine my delight upon spotting this rose soap (99 cents only) and floral print journal (marukai market, san diego).

rose soap from 99 cents only store and floral journal from marukai market, san diego


and what else do ladies love?  jewelry, of course!  check out these gorg beaded rings from — you guessed it — 99 cents only.

silver and gold beaded rings from 99 cents only store


silver beaded ring 99 cents only store


what are your favorite “$5 and under” secrets?  would love to hear them!

happy holidays, everyone.  hold your loved ones tight and may you feel the joy and peace in the Christmas promise this year.



fall in love with these finds: a last-minute valentine’s gift guide
February 11, 2013

hello friends!

yes, it’s been a little while — but never a better time to resurface than just before the most romantic day of the year!

pardon the pun, but i love valentine’s day. there’s just something so lovely (i did it again!) about a day when the world gets rosier and it’s totally ok to be full-on cheesy. when stark office lobbies are overtaken with gorgeous bouquets and heart-shaped candy boxes, and red and pink reign supreme in every outfit.

so you can imagine how giddy the little holiday treasure hunt i’ve been on has made me. take a peek at the spoils!

accessories to adore from francesca’s

francesca's accessories valentine's day

how darling is this valentine’s display? i made a recent stop at this hometown favorite of mine, knowing i’d find the perfect pieces to sport on our special night out.

i picked up these blush studs and another-little-statement-something to be revealed in a future post.

(earring photo courtesy of


just the right word: vintage dictionary page rings from suki bikoux

suki bijoux vintage dictionary page ring

i was introduced to this encinitas-based designer (and veritable queen of up-cycling!) at the december san diego style bloggers meet-up, and was immediately drawn to these unique creations. while i went home with the “faith” version, how fitting is the “love” one? i am so not doing her work justice by just showing this one example, so make sure to “like” her facebook page for the full collection!

(photo courtesy of

wear your heart on your sleeve — or wrist: brighton sweetness

Brighton bonbon hearts wallet

i definitely need to be spending more time in a brighton store. how totally sweet is this bonbon hearts wallet (which has a matching iPad case, key fob and cosmetics case, mind you)?? the cheerful print just makes me want to bake some cupcakes and paint my lips a bright pink!

(photo courtesy of

speaking of pink lips, give nars’ “carthage” a try! such a fun touch for day or night.

Nars Carthage pure matte lipstick

(photo courtesy of

and don’t forget the littlest valentines: cute-as-cupid headbands from bitty baby bands

bitty baby bands headbands valentine's day

i can’t remember when i exactly first stumbled upon this carlsbad-based accessories brand — but boy, am i glad i did!! my pal kristina has built such an amazing (and affordable!) line of hair candy for both young ones and their mommies. it’s like Christmas everytime i receive a bbb package, knowing a fully handmade gift awaits me or my little lady.

i’m currently crushing on this valentine’s day piece —

(photo courtesy of