31 Days · Good to Know · Organizing · Thrifts

31 Days: The Thrift Project – Day 24: Beautiful and Useful

Today’s post will be a quick one. I’m working on a BIG project for Thursday that will take every spare second I’ve got between now and then.

As I was looking through my “to-do” box today, deciding which projects were actually worth doing, I starting hearing the quote above. I first came across it years ago in Country Living. I copied the words into my journal because they resonated with me so much.

My “to-do” box has several great pieces that I’ve kept because I know they will be good projects. But sometimes I keep something just because it was a good deal. Or because it is ALMOST what I’m looking for, so I settle for it, even though it’s not quite right.

But when I think about my good buddy, William Morris, I realize that there are many beautiful and useful things I have, and the things that don’t meet the criteria for me may be perfect for someone else. I’m continuing the cycle, I tell myself. It’s a balance. To appreciate what you have (or what raw materials you have to work with), you often have to let some other things go.

So what’s going today?

  • A turquoise linen skirt I made 8 years ago. I haven’t worn it in at least 5, and I don’t really iron much, so it’s always wrinkled. It’s hard to let go of it since I made it myself, but it’s not useful if I don’t wear it, and I don’t find it beautiful anymore.
  • A green dress that’s too big. It’s going to take more effort than I’m willing to put in to make it work. And it’s not that beautiful.
  • A butter warmer. I thought it was something different. And then I thought I would use it anyway. I don’t.

So my tip for you today is, when you are shopping (thrift store or not), ask yourself if what you’re looking at is really beautiful or really useful, and it’s even better when it’s both.

PS – I’d like to give a shout-out to my friend, Jenn. She’s been following the blog, and when she was deciding what should stay and go in her own closet, she saw this dress and thought of me.

And let me tell you, it is beautiful – unique fabric, lovely beading. I’m so excited to create something with this. Stay tuned!


  • This post is part of a 31 Day series. Find all the posts in this series here.
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6 thoughts on “31 Days: The Thrift Project – Day 24: Beautiful and Useful

  1. Good for you! A lesson for all of us, especially me. When I go through everything in this house and eliminate what is not useful or beautiful, you won’t have anything to do when I am gone!

  2. This is totally where I am and I’ve had the Morris quote on the wall since we started remodeling. I have a garage full of stuff that came out of storage (we put it in to remodel) and I don’t think much is coming back in this house. If I don’t use it, love it or absolutely need it, it can all go where it will be used, loved and needed. Now if I can just convince the boys….

    1. I hear you! Just this week, I was digging out Big Boy’s baby toys for Baby Girl, and HE was so excited – “New toys for ME!” Um, yeah, this is for your sister. I don’t know how we’ll ever get rid of his toys – unless it’s under cover of darkness.


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