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Team in Training and The Rose

Posted on: Tuesday, November 22, 2011

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While you are out yard sale-ing (or whatever you do!) early Saturday mornings, you may have noticed a group of people carrying water bottles, wearing purple singlets with the Team in Training logo. These people are ages 16 and up--some walking, some running, some a bit of both. They are all like us, in that they are all motivated by 'something'--to train for a half or full marathon to benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Most have never attempted an event like this let alone a 5k. The team and its coaches, mentors, and an amazing campaign manager, will literally take you from couch to the finish line. All the participants commit to a half or full marathon and raise funds towards a cure--and these funds will help families while fighting these blood cancers.

Why are we talking about this??

For a few reasons, one is that we are going to have a team here at Ruby Rose. We are signing on to fundraise and do the miles! There are going to be fun events at the store that will enable you (our support team) to get something while giving. If one or more of the events interest you, then you can join in! If you are involved in another charity and give all you can to it, or simply, not interested, that is great too. Simply honk and cheer if you see one of us runnin' on by!

Another reason is that next year is the San Luis Obispo full and half marathon. We will be able to put in the miles and fundraising and will be able to run in our home town and be supported by all of our friends and family.

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(us before the Nike marathon, SF)

What we have learned since being involved in this charity these past years is that everyone wants the same thing. We all want a cure, we all want to help, but sometimes we simply dont know what will make a difference. We intend to make it easy for you.

Thankful (and our hours next week).

Posted on: Friday, November 18, 2011

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With Thanksgiving around the corner we can't help but feel thankful for all of you--whether you are blog readers, shoppers, supporters, Ruby Rose enthusiasts, etc. Thank you for being here for us, for supporting us through thick and thin, and for helping us thrive.

Good news...we will be open next week on Friday and Saturday from 11-4 (we'll be closed on Thanksgiving of course). Enjoy your turkey!

Remodel Episode #2 (Couch Intervention)

Posted on: Wednesday, November 16, 2011

As I mentioned in Remodel Episode #1, for years we had been planning and dreaming of adding an attic suite and remodeling our very tiny kitchen. My job had consisted mostly of the dreaming part.

As for the downstairs living room, I had one tear sheet (a Ralph Lauren ad.--no suprise there) which was my vision and would be my inspiration.

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While at an estate sale about a year ago, there was a lot of excitement over all the small and art and my eyes were having trouble landing. I reached for my mantra (focus focus) and as I was standing there looking around, I hear one of the sales gals say, "I'm suprised this couch hasnt sold yet" and gal # 2 says, "Probably because it's loaded with boxes and merchandise and no one has even seen it!". I watched them unload the debris and what unfolded before my eyes was a version of the couch in the picture from the RL tear sheet I saved. This particular couch was chocolate brown velvet as opposed to the amazing leather one--but I saw what I saw and loved it.

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I was lucky that John has a building for his buisness that I was been able to store my finds at during the process of building the attic. At times, it seemed like it would never happen, but the time finally came to arrange my rooms. The living room had some good pieces and I thought when John recovered from the craziness of attic add-on, I would ask him to build the bookcases or contract them out. We set up the brown couch, two leather chairs that I brought back from Colorado, and a rustic dresser with the T.V. on it. It was nowhere being done at this point but it was becoming clear that it was not looking like the picture...nor did I look like the gal on the couch. I knew I could get it there, it would just take more time and patience.

In the mean time, Ruby, John and I avoided this area because it just wasn't done. We were eating dinner one night and it was very enjoyable until Ruby said, "Mom, we need to talk." (I knew this couldn't be good). "We hate the couch." she said very cool, "It's so uncomfortable--the pillows slide and you have to sit up straight.". I look at john for a rope to help me, and he says "We hate it." (thanks for the help).

Our house is very, very small, so this room is really the main hub for our family and friends--for T.V. watching, Wii, and the fireplace...so you see, it really needs to work for everyone. Ruby and John continued, "We like the one you took upstairs.". Well, we know that bringing it back down wasn't going to happen--you may remember what we had to do to bring it up (see Episode #1). After dinner, I had to digest what they were saying. Hmmm, everything that they were saying was valid, I did have my comfy couch upstairs, and they were left with an unfinished, uncomfortable room. At this point, I realized my "Ralph room" wasnt meant to be for now. Who wants a room that only you can enjoy? I surrendered to re-group and go to plan B. I did get to keep the leather pair of chairs and the dresser, but everything else changed. I will show you the finished product in episode #3.

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Garage Sale Signs

Posted on: Monday, November 14, 2011

As you might imagine, the Ruby Rosers go to a lot of garage sales. And when I say a lot, I mean a lot. We all have our different neighborhoods. We use Craigslist, smart phone apps, iPads or the back of envelopes for notes. But even with the latest technology, we still rely on signs along the way. Signs are also a great way to find sales that are not on your list.

We have become connoisseurs of signs and are here to offer some tips to would be garage salers.

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This sign is cute, and fairly easy to read. The lettering is large, it is on cardboard or some other stiff material (no flapping in the wind). The flower is eye catching and does not distract from the address. The only thing that could make it better would be an arrow. Thanks, we made it to your sale.

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This sign, on an old cardboard box, was at the corner of Broad and South Streets in San Luis Obispo. Broad is a 4 lane street with a high speed limit. Even stopped at the corner in the right lane, we could not read your sign. Invest in a big fat pen. Sorry, we could not find your sale!

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There were recently two signs at the corner of South and Higuera Streets in SLO. The top sign is bright and painted with black paint, but it is on paper and blowing in the breeze. The bottom sign is big but could have used the paint from the pink sign.

When you are making your signs, remember that we are looking at them while driving, early in the morning, before fully caffeinated. Use big pens (or thick markers) and write the address, time and date--and don't forget arrows. Don’t list items for sale, or other directions. Remember 35 miles per hour!

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Good friends of Ruby Rose, Jenny & Joe, recently had a garage sale. And they rocked the signs. This monster sign was at the turn in to their neighborhood.

And at every turn along the way, they posted matching signs with arrows.

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And lastly, please please please take down your signs once your sale is over. Otherwise we might be knocking on your door next Saturday at 7 am.

Guest Post by Kim: Holiday Baking with the Grandmas

Posted on: Sunday, November 13, 2011

One of my favorite childhood memories revolves around holiday cooking and baking with the grandmas. Each grandma had her specialty, grandma C's was fudge and cookies and Grandma M's was breads.

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Next year I will be a grandma and am looking forward to the day when I can bake with my grandchild. I uncovered a fun little cookbook for children we used when I was little. I remember the fudge sauce because we had it with ice-cream. Grandma C thought it was too runny so she added Karo to the recipe.

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We made the uncooked fudge, but I was just noticing that you need to melt the chocolate over boiling water...so how is that not cooked?! It was easy to make and I thought it was good at the time (especially since I made it), but it didn't compare to Grandma C's fudge, so we never made it again.

Hope you are able take some time to make memories with your family and friends during the upcoming holidays. Especially the little ones. --K.

The Weekly Six

Posted on: Friday, November 11, 2011

This week's six items were all found from our recent 17-hour road trip. The funny part is that we were only two hours away! Yes, we are proud of the fact that we can "shop til' we drop", or for the most part, "shop til' they kick us out"!

1. For this surf cowboy look, we bought a pair of these mid century end tables and this lamp with a great combo of colors on the ukelele. Love the whip stitch shade with it.
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2. Don't feel blue, flow blue! Just in time for Thanksgiving, we have a beautiful "hotel silver" platter + cover to house your turkey. It won't matter if it's overcooked 'cause it will look so pretty!
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3. Continuing our love of the mexican cowboy, we have more art and textiles.
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4. It was love at first sight! A hand-painted card table that adjusts to two heights, and metal legs to boot!
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5. An SJP pleated blush dress, topped with an ABS tuxedo jacket. This jacket is a savvy alternative for the holiday season!
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6. Jewels, a girls second best friend! We have been wanting to develop this category for some time, and we are off to a stunning start.
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Guest Post by Stacy: It Is What It Isn't.

Posted on: Wednesday, November 9, 2011

There is an old (bad) joke or maybe it's a movie line. Anyways, it goes like this: The man asks the call girl, "What's your name?" and she asks replies with a question..."What do you want it to be?".

Junk is kind of like that. Just because a piece was something or served a certain purpose, it doesn’t mean it cannot be something else.

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Recently The Weekly Six featured the stack o' luggage at Ruby Rose. They are some gorgeous pieces. People have been stacking them for night stands and coffee tables. I have two under my tv table to hold the DVD player--and they are great for storage too.

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I inherited a collection of teapots from a family friend and a love of tea time from my Mom. I like to mix it up and use some of my glass laboratory beakers to serve cream and sugar. They are also great for condiments at a picnic.

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Last year at about this time Hillary made succulent gardens. I still have mine, which was made in an old baking tin. I have a collection of baking and kitchen things and love that this was rescued from the trash and repurposed. It loves the light on my kitchen table.

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I love the lettering on this galvanized bucket. I didn’t have a use for it but it was a deal (duh, I bought it at Ruby Rose) and it came home with me. I tried putting it in several places before I decided it needed to be the trash can by my desk. I don’t know what it was originally, but I really like it here.

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After my last living room re-decoration I realized that I didn’t have a place to put my keys. If I don’t walk in the door and put them in their place they can be missing for days. I was searching for a little table or something when I came across this vintage bird bath at Alameda. I knew instantly that is was what I needed. It's a great addition to the room and so much more fun than a side table.

Be creative. If you love a piece, don’t worry what it was or what it is supposed to be. Embrace it and find a way to make it work for you!

It would be great if we could come to all of your homes and see what you do with your Ruby Rose finds! What is your favorite repurposed piece? What comments/compliments have you received on your creativity?

It's Radiculous!

Posted on: Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A few of us at The Rose have a love for the 70's. Recently and without a plan, Kathy and I discovered that we both found and brought in a variety of flashback items.

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How bitchin' is that!

I remember begging for the Chemin de Fer hip huggers and the cool ski jacket. There was no need to see the snow, you just had to have the jacket. Desert boots, Wallabee's, and music, were essentials.

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This week, we rocked the striped pants with the gromet rings, the tiger flares, and the embroidered mom jeans.

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I think it was '79 that I started my career at Contempo Casuals.

This was probably where the love of trends and retail started.

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Rock on!

Posted on: Thursday, October 27, 2011

We are consistently blown away by the style and talent of our customers and visitors. We will occasionally hear that they will come in to be inspired or to find a component for a project, but really, we are the ones that are in awe!


This is Kyle and when he pulled up in this vintage 'stang which turns out, this was his very first car. We begged for a picture and he obliged.

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Thanks Kyle.

The Weekly Six

Posted on: Monday, October 24, 2011

1. A beautiful writing desk with a cream patina, paired with a stunning french louis chair.

How about a hand written letter instead of an email?

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2. Our sacred space.

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3. Parisian style iron chairs in a perfect faded shade of turquoise

--a setting that awaits a warm latte on a fall day.

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4. It's a season for layers. Elegant little dresses with chunky cable knit sweaters.


5. A pair of tufted celedon velvet side chairs. With these lovelies, you could be queen everyday!

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6. Love these for a DIY project or simply for their archetectual beauty.

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Guest Post by Stacy

Confession time. My name is Stacy and I am the daughter of junkers. Every weekend we were on the road to a flea market, swap meet, antique car show, or some other event where junking was also possible.

My Mom collected California Indian baskets, Navajo rugs and blankets, and pueblo pottery. My Dad collected everything else. Seriously everything. Peddle cars, Buddy L trucks, Ford trucks and cars, slot machines, gas pump heads, enamel advertising signs, black powder rifles, pocket watches with steam trains on the back, and on and on.

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When I moved away to college I didn’t take the junking bug with me, or maybe it was just dormant. I collected floaty pens and books from the art museums that I visited, but not much else. I didn’t really decorate with antiques until I started receiving things from my great grandmother and my grandparents. But still much of that went in to boxes in the garage.

I hung my grandmother’s turkey platter, The Barnyard King. And I love having my great grandmother’s autograph book. The family treasures made me start to appreciate the trips we took, the people we met and the esoteric knowledge that was still lodged in my brain.

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My French-made Turkish-style rug was nice but did not compliment my 1930’s Jo Mora Cowboys and Indians prints (from my grandparents garage). I was visiting Mom and asked if she still had the Navajo rugs rolled up in the basement and if she didn’t mind I’d like one for my floor. She had started collecting in the late 1950s and by the early ’90s she was ready to move on. She said I couldn’t have just one, I had to take all that were left. Several trips up and down the basement stairs and the backseat of by vintage Prius was filled with rugs wrapped in brown paper.

Last Sunday after Stephanie and I returned from the Sunset swap meet and our trip to Sally Loo’s I decided to unwrap the rugs and see if there was one I might want in the house. But I wanted all twenty five! Every one I unwrapped was my new favorite.

I narrowed it down to eight on the living room floor and one on a chair. And one in the hall and two in my bedroom. Each one is a work of art and I was having trouble with the idea of walking on them. But Mom said they a made for using and can’t be enjoyed while rolled in brown paper. So I will use them and enjoy.

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I’m sure my brother and I complained about our travels. We wanted a ‘normal’ house with ‘normal ‘furniture from ‘normal’ stores. And maybe even ‘normal’ parents. We were crazy. Thanks for the travels and priceless times Mom and Dad. Now every time I open my front door I remember another junking adventure.

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