October 2014

Habitat Hump Day-Shopping at the Habitat for Humanity Restore

I have died and gone to heaven!  Well, that’s a bit much.  I stumbled across a gem.

Habitat Hump Day

Habitat for Humanity Restore

Yes, it’s the Habitat for Humanity Restore.  Finding this place was like finding a pair of comfortable stilettos; it was mind-blowing.  If you’ve never been to a Habitat for Humanity Restore, run don’t walk!  The Restore proceeds help fund the great organization Habitat for Humanity.  Their goal is to aid deserving families in finding affordable housing through building, renovating, and preserving homes.  There are chapters in just about every city in the United States.

Restore has a variety of items that can be used in your home.  Items are donated from a number of sources.  You can find anything from shingles to shutters.  There are doors, windows, marble tile, even appliances.   The great thing is not all of the items are used.  Many of the area box stores donate items that are discontinued or damaged.  If you have an idea of what you need or in my case if you don’t , you still feel like a kid in a candy story.  The best part is the price.  These items are priced to sell!  You have to know what you want.  Most of the time you have to make a split decision.  The best items don’t stick around long.  Our Restore is only open Wednesdays and Thursdays from 8am to 12 noon.  And it’s not uncommon to find people waiting at the door before the store opens.

Now this is not a shopping trip down Michigan Avenue or Rodeo Drive.  When you walk in it evokes that nostalgic perfume of  Granny’s  musty basement.  You have to be willing to dig, lift, and get a little dirty. The volunteers are great.  You can’t find a more helpful group of people .

I found some great inspiration.

Habitat Hump Day
Mid-Century Modern for $50
Shut up!! Tiles for 50 cents or less per piece!
Habitat Humpday
Stop Playin!! Is that a beveled mirror?!?

Now I just have to figure out how to get some of this stuff home without Big Daddy having a heart attack.  Any suggestions?

My Type A Life. Is it a gift or a curse?




October 2014

Free 99…The Best Things in Life are Free!!!


We’ve all heard the phrase, “The best things in life are free”.  When you live in the world of impulse like me that is even more true.  How often have you been driving down the street and found a great piece of fabulousness?  It’s that chair that would look great in your daughter’s room. There’s a cute little table that would fit just perfectly in your foyer. What’s the best part?  It’s completely FREE!! There’s no loss. The worst part is schlepping it home.

My dad use to do this when I was younger.  I was sooo embarrassed.  He would stick tables in the trunk of his car.  I would try to sink down as far as I could into the seat so no one would see me.  Now look at me!!  I’ve noticed that I’m not the only one.  How many times have you driven in a residential area to find things on the curb with a big fat sign, “FREE”.  The shame is not like it was.  Now its called salvage instead of junk.  Going to rummage sales, thrift stores, and second hand shops is en vogue.  Old is now vintage and free is just plain smart!! When my husband gets irritated with me my answer is always, “But it was free.”

I have it bad for doors. Really bad!! Especially the solid wood doors that are found in some of the older homes.  You can’t find that kind of craftsmanship without paying a lot of cheddar!! Free verses hundreds of dollars?  That’s a no brainer for me.

So, guess what?  I found this door on a rainy Saturday.  I had my son help me drag it home. It’s a  super heavy solid wood door.  There are these great recessed panels.  Why would anyone get rid of something like this?   When I saw this on the side of the road, I knew instantly what i wanted to do with it. I was sooo excited! Did I say it was free? I guess you get my drift.


Door found on the side of the road

Do you see what I see?!!

My poor husband-who I lovingly call Big Daddy-  just about burst a blood vessel when he saw it in the garage.  This is usually the moment we have an argument. Did I mention he made me  promised that I wouldn’t buy anything else and bring it home?  Since this was free I figured it was ok.  Right?   NOT!!  He really meant don’t buy anything AND don’t bring anything home. I keep getting accused of being a hoarder.  WHATEVER!!

Once Big Daddy calmed down, the interrogation started.  Where did you get this? How did you get this home? What are you going to do with this? How are you going to do that?  Ultimately, the biggest question is, “Why do your projects always turn into my projects?”  What can I say, I think of what I want, I just need him to make it happen.

Here’s another door that I found the other day.


Door to headboard before pic

Free salvage door for home decor

And another one…


Door as Decor


I know. I know.  I need to stop with the door thing but I just love them!! I have my eye on a few others.

Just wait, you’ll see, it’s going to be great.

Normal is over rated!!





September 2014

Hello world!

So… Before I start I have a confession to make.  I have been so nervous about this blog I’ve never actually “pulled the trigger”.  I’ve been writing, taking pictures, and formulating ideas in my head for almost 2 years.  Would anyone even know it exists? Who really cares? And the voice that loudest in my head says, “Girl, get yo’  life!!” What I know is life as it is has not been enough.  I work to live, not live to work.  I had to think long and hard.   So what do I live for?  I live for my family and what makes us–US.  Here it is. It’s time. It’s time to LIVE MY PASSION.

My name is Mesha.  My niece calls me,  Meme.  I am a not so reformed Shopaholic.  Unfortunately, I have more style than cash.  My husband always says, “You have  the best taste”.  Translation, “You always pick the most expensive thing on the rack”.  I am a bit of a snob.  I like what I like.  I love certain brands.  I won’t skimp when it comes to my bags.  I still believe you get what you pay for when it comes to shoes.  And I will not.  I repeat.  I WILL NOT be caught dead with a knock off!!!  I am not willing to sacrifice quality.   I  learned early to spot quality.  I still cringe when I see ” man-made upper” in a shoe( I told you I was a snob).   What is even better, I learned to find all these things at a good price.

Growing up, I had the privilege of watching some of the most stylish icons–my family.  My family didn’t get dressed.  Oh no honey, they got sharp!!! When you heard,  “Girl, that outfit is shaarrpp” you knew you hit the mark.  Cutting edge, classic, elegant, you name it I saw it. A family reunion, was like fashion week.

Looking good and quality pieces can be found without going broke.  I love a good sale.  The clearance rack calls my name from the parking lot.  “Meme…Meme…come to the light.”  It’s like treasure hunting.  I’m the girl telling all her friends how much her outfit cost.  I’m not bragging.  I love sharing the great deals I’ve found.  So here I am.  I can share my great finds and the tricks I used to achieve my look.

Living this Chique on the Cheap life has spilled over into other areas of my life.  I have come accustomed to a certain amount of “luxury”.  Let’s face it, I am who I am.  I make no bones about it.  My budget still hasn’t changed.  This blog is about how I accomplish just that.

Wait, let me back up.  Did I mention that I am a mother of 3 teenagers?   Yes, let’s all bow our heads.  PRAY FOR ME Y’ALL!  Two in high school and one that is a freshman in college.    Anyone who has teenagers knows how expensive it is to feed them,  let alone clothe them.  Proms, homecoming, school dances, trendy hair-dos. . . I’m getting a headache thinking about it.  But wait, it gets better.  Like so many families in this recent economy, our family had to make some tough decisions.  So, my husband is now a full time college student.  After years of working at a job that he hated, we decided that finishing college was the right move.  So you see, I HAVE 4 STUDENTS!!!  All on one income.  It’s a sacrifice I am only too happy to make.  Chique on the Cheap is not a phase, for my family it’s a life style!

My mom says, “When you look good, you feel good.”   So, cue Ru Paul…You better work it girl!

Sashay –Shante,