I Brake for Yard Sales: High Style - Low Budget - Lara Spencer, Kathy Griffin I’m a fan of Lara Spencer, so when I saw this at the library I quickly snatched it up. TV Lara, the one that appears on Good Morning America and Flea Market Flip, is a down to earth funny girl, but in this book she comes off as a little pretentious. Pretentious is not a term you would think of when a person is shopping at flea markets, auctions, garage sales, etc. However, Lara uses the term “blue-blood” ad nauseum, admits to having electricians, painters and upholstery people and shows pictures and interviews of her designer friends. This just proves that this book is not for the average person.

I like the whole concept of recycling, reusing and repurposing. It’s definitely good for the environment and for the most part wallet friendly. Lara shows some great pieces she has recycled from her finds. She shows pictures of her home, her friends’ homes including Kathy Griffin’s home, which Lara was hired to decorate. Visually the book is pretty stunning, even if I’m not totally feeling the aesthetic. Advice wise most of the book is pretty common sense. Things like, look for good bones in furniture, know your brands, have cash on hand and have a plan of attack before getting in the car, etc. Lara also gives links to her favorite sites and provides a Filofax of her favorite haunts. One thing she doesn’t provide, which irked me throughout the book, is how much it costs and what the time investment was to repurpose the pieces she bought. Even in Flea Market Flip the teams have the help of a carpenter and electrician. They never reveal how much fabric is or how much it is to turn a vase into a lamp. I get that you can get some nice conversational pieces by going Martha Stuart on an old piece, but I feel like you need to factor in the additional costs and time investment to get a better understanding of how much that conversational piece is. I’ll tell you this much, it’s not the $20 Lara claims to have spent on it, especially not when she’s reupholstering it in mohair fabric and she paid someone else to do it for her!