I consider myself a bargain shopper, and I’m kind of extreme. I rarely buy items at the beginning of the season, and I love going into the stores at the end of the season for a HUGE savings! Throughout the retail world, most summer items are on clearance. Most stores start putting their items on clearance around Labor Day and some have recently put their items on 75-80% off clearance.

This year I picked up some outdoor cushions for about $4.00 each. I actually bought them solely for the foam inside.

Foam is EXPENSIVE! I don’t know what I will be using the foam for, but I know I will come up with something. Ha ha. Maybe I’ll do another tufted ottoman or a sofa table turned bench project.
I also bought some yard “gazing” balls for about $6.00 each at Big Lots. Guess what I’m using them for? Christmas ornaments! :) Christmas is right around the corner. The gazing balls look exactly the same as a very large ornament.

In fact, I already used them on Saturday. Yes, we had a Christmas event on Saturday. It was quite fun actually. We had a “Warming up for the Holidays” event to get ready for the upcoming season. I used the “gazing balls” as part of our centerpieces for each table. I also cut pine sprigs to go around the base of each centerpiece. My neighbors were very nice to let me come and cut a few branches off their pine trees. I also gathered pine cones to add to the centerpieces.

 I surrounded the base of each centerpiece with pine sprigs and put in pine cones and small Christmas ornaments.

It was simple and very inexpensive. No one noticed that the “gazing balls” weren’t ornaments.

We also picked up a Martha Stewart Patio Set at Home Depot on clearance a few weeks ago. The set is $549 and we got it for $179. It is a very nice patio set that comes with a table and six chairs. Yay for CLEARANCE items!

Have I convinced you to start hunting in the clearance section yet? :)


  1. says

    I love what you bought & the gazing balls centerpieces are masterpieces!!

    I, too, hit the clearance sales on a much smaller scale – now what the heck am I going to do with all the stuff I bought??? lol gotta luv it :)

  2. says

    Great deal on the patio set! We bought some solar powered path lights at Target for 50 cents each (marked down from 2 bucks). You can take them off the stake and use them to light the pumpkins! Safer than candles and cheaper than buying a ton of batteries for lights. So bummed that when we went back for more 3 Targets were wiped out. Oh well, maybe next year! 😉

  3. says

    We LOVE, LOVE, LOVE a good price too. Not sure about you, but when I go to Target I get a workout as I always walk the back aisles since that is where they store their clearance section. You have to really hunt sometimes but you can find some awesome deals.
    Not sure where you live, but if you are on the east coast, you must visit an Ollies. Again you have to hunt cause some of their stuff is really poor quality, but there are some awesome things you can get for amazing prices. We miss Ollies big time now that we live in WY. :(

  4. says

    I hit Big Lots this past weekend also. Cardstock, stickers, spangles,die-cuts and more. Most were $.25 or $.50. The most expensive was the cardstock $1.50 for 75 sheets. I thought that was a good price, though I am just starting to play with paper, so not sure. Now I want to go back and get gazing balls. Such a great idea.

  5. says

    I am IN LOVE with the gazing ball idea! Oh my goodness, that is gorgeous! I would have never thought of that. I am headed over to Big Lots to see if they have any left!
    Thanks for such a cool idea! So elegant, too!

  6. says

    YES, you have. I went to Academy last Friday for shoelaces and came home with two beautiful damask print outdoor cushions for $1.88 each. Why, oh why, didn't I buy all of them? I try not to be greedy…i love your idea for gazing ball centerpieces and may steal it!

  7. says

    Love the post! End of season clearance shopping is the BEST! I dont know if they have any left but the SUNSET HOME DEPOT had 2 1/2 inch thick foam pads about the size of a twin mattress for 19$ Just FYI! your the bestest!

  8. Michelle says

    My Smith's has thick foam (like 2 1/2-3") the type you would camp with in sheets about 6 feet by 3 feet long for only $19. I'm wondering if the foam would be better (thicker) and would be easier to work with since you don't have to take the material off your seat cushions. I LOVE your center pieces though!

  9. Michelle says

    The Lehi Home Depot has them for $19 as well. (That's the same kind that is at Smith's, but I think the Smith's ones are better quality foam, just by a drive by squeezing. 😉

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