Irish Eyes are Smiling: Clovers and a Claddagh Ring





Photos of clover: around the pink flamingo in the yard, in the Santa Monica Mountains, and in the house.

The Irish Claddagh ring is a recent thrift store find. I love the design to represent love, loyalty, and friendship. Tradition holds that it should be given as a gift, but I didn’t want to pass up the bargain—only $6 and sterling silver—so I brought it home and told Mr. MVP he could give it to me (and he happily obliged). It is shown here on a vintage handkerchief embroidered with shamrocks, given to me by my mom.

The rosary beads—another thrift store find—are wood with shamrocks all around the beads. I’m a collector of rosaries and often find them rusty and broken; repairs are easily made with a pair of small pliers, and I like to use some of the beads to make upcycled earrings, bracelets, and necklaces.

Easter Fashion Find: Floral Jacket

Getting a new outfit for Easter was always a thrill for me when I was a kid. My mom would take me shopping and I always chose something feminine and bright. I recall a floral skirt with pleats and a pink top. Then there was a pair of bubble gum pink pants with a ruffled white cotton top. If I were born during a different time, there would have been bonnets and gloves. I loved (still love) the candy (jelly beans, chocolate, marshmallow Peeps—yum), but the new outfit was the real prize. Easter signified the beginning of spring for me and with it came high hopes for warm and sunny days, and summer vacation right around the bend. Even now I mark it as the time to make lighter and brighter wardrobe choices. This year, I gave up shopping for Lent (it was a test of will), but I traded in some unwanted clothes at my local vintage/consignment shop last week and spotted this vintage jacket on the rack. I didn’t have to think twice; it was so bright and Monet-like (and a perfect fit).

No-Shop Retail Activism

I’ve gone a month without shopping and have found it to be easier than expected. My college roommate gave up chocolate every Lent, then would pig out on it on Easter and the days that followed, so I assumed I’d be ready for on all-out shopping spree at the end of my time. Oh, there have been serious temptations, but I’m not desperate to run out and buy anything. Instead, I’m ready to revise my no-shop rule. I’m going to continue to shy away from new and don’t-need purchases. (Oooh, I want that! Hold on, do I really need it?) I’ll recycle my closet and get rid of something before acquiring something else, trading in unwanted pieces at my local vintage and consignment shops or on eBay. For straight shopping, I’ll support Etsy and other indie sellers (homemade rules!), and I’ll make eco-friendly and good-cause purchases, like this tote from Housing Works, a nonprofit in NY I’m proud to have worked with. And just because: I’ll dig into a big box of chocolates on Sunday to mark the end of Lent.