Monday, December 5, 2011

Making, making, making...

 I've been so busy getting ready for my first craft show. Here's some of what I put together last week. Aren't these skates cute.
 I've had this old piece of ceiling tile forever. I'm so glad that I figured out something to do with it. I also like that this is more wintry so it could be left out beyond Christmas.

Here's another wintry item. I just love this precious little deer. This wreath took forever to put together, but I think it was so worth it and hopefully some will give it a home.
I know this wreath is a little crazy, but I think it's so festive. Who knew an old skirt (the tartan plaid) could be put to such a fun use!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Covered in glitter

 After having a fairly successful trip to the Michigan Antique Festival, I decided to tackle my first Craft show. Here's a little of what I've been working on:

 I've been using some of my vintage stash to make "new" creations like these Santa arrangements, which I think would be perfect for bringing a little Christmas to a room like a bathroom or the kitchen. 

I've also been working with a lot of music paper, which I think looks especially beautiful incorporated into ornaments.

Here's a few sweater vases I made. I also have some other things to repurpose. I'm excited and hope the sale goes well, but I have lots to do still...the sale as at Immanuel Lutheran Church, 1505 West Michigan Ave. in Jackson, Mi on Dec. 9 and 10, if you are in the area and want to do some Christmas shopping.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Hail to the Turkey!

Happy Thanksgiving!
Today I'm thankful for so many things, especially my grandma's turkey and stuffing.
Yum! Stuffing!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Decorating for the Holidays

Someone recently asked me if I was ready to start decorating for Christmas and I quickly said, "No, I'm decorating for Thanksgiving." 

On Facebook many people are taking the opportunity to state things they are thankful for during the month of November. I like the trend. 

I decided to whip up this project last night. It took me much of the night and a little more effort this morning. I used items I had on hand, including the Turkey placard I made last year. It was fun to use some scrap fabrics and ribbons I've had taking up space and finally put them to good use.


Monday, October 3, 2011

Spring Will Come Again

 I have to give myself a few kudos because I actually remembered to take a before picture. I was given this chair by a friend to do with whatever I wanted for a silent chair auction. I wanted to incorporate some of that natural wood into the design. I almost immediately settled on the idea of a tree and a bird, but because I'm a Michigan girl, I decided to go with Michigan's state bird, the Robin, and state tree, the White Pine.

 I'm usually in love with Fall, but this change of seasons have left me feeling a little melancholy. I don't know if being a mother makes the difference? My son Jack started preschool, so maybe that's left me feeling a little blue.

I've comforted myself with the idea that the Robin, a perennial symbol of spring, will come again. I thought it was a perfect metaphor for Michigan, where winter can literally and figuratively be long. 

I can't help myself. I am a hopeful person. 

I believe that Spring Will Come Again, both literally and figuratively.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Until we meet again.

Wow, my trip to the Michigan Antique Festival was a whirlwind, but I loved it. I showed great restraint in making purchases at the festival too. I was there after all to make a little money, but I couldn't resist this little sled. I haven't decided just where I'm going to use it at Christmas, but I'm very excited to add it to my Christmas decor.

I also brought home this round table, thanks to my mom. She let me have it. I've been wanting a round table and this one was my grandparents, making it extra special. I need to refinish it. I'm thinking of doing a dark stain on top and cream on the bottom. 
As you can see, I also have to figure out seating...that means fixing up some projects.

I intended to take this chair (and it's match) to Midland with me but, alas, there was no room. I kind of like them, so I may just hang on to them for a little bit. I keep trying to funk up my living space, but I keep falling back on these traditional looks. I can't help myself, I like the classics.

You'd think I'd be antiqued out after spending my weekend at the festival, but I still had to take a gander at the Goodwill when I got home. I was so happy to find this great turkey platter. I've always loved them (though I've never made a turkey) and I'm especially fond of this brown transfer ware one. 

The only bad thing is my kettle corn is already gone. I guess there is always next year.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Busy times

I'm doing my first sale with my mom at the Michigan Antique Festival this weekend. I've spent a lot of time trying to finish up old projects, but I couldn't help taking on a new one. I didn't get a before shot, but just picture dark, 1970's clunky table.  And yes, that is a pillow in there.

For people that furry friends. I've seen side tables/dog beds in high end catalogs, and thought I'd get it a shot.  I was originally planning on doing this in blues with maps, but I decided to paint it grey and my sister helped me come up with the idea of using the black and white maps. I love how it turned out. 

I have a thing for old books and prints. I've busied myself in the last few weeks framing up some of my collection to offer for sale.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

When two loves meet....

 Do you remember this piece of furniture? I plan to sell it at the Michigan Antique Festival coming up on Sept. 24-25. Well, this piece of furniture hit a bump in the road.

Enter our foster puppy Ya ya, available through 4 Paws Animal Rescue. People who know me know I have a couple of passions in life, one includes reviving junk and the other includes rescuing animals. Sometimes passions are hard to balance.
Puppy meet project. 
Now, I don't want to malign Ya ya, she's a really great puppy and is not overly destructive, but she needs constant supervision...a little like a toddler. Needless to say, this happened when she wasn't being watched carefully enough. 

After I cried, I decided everything is fixable. I just made her chew on the other side so it would have matching corners. 
I jest. I did sand the other side to make it curve a little down too. I also fixed the drawer a little bit better since I had to get the sander out again.
I'm pleased with the results.
And don't worry, puppy and project will never meet again. 
My two loves can coexist as long as I'm watchful.

Friday, September 9, 2011

The house is just destined to be a mess in Sept....Sorry honey.

As many of you know, I have a thing for refurbishing furniture. Sometimes that means I have far more furniture than I possibly need. My mom came up with the idea of selling it at the upcoming Michigan Antique Festival in Midland Sept. 24-25. 

 I've been busying myself getting projects together for what I'm calling "Attic Rescue League: giving old stuff new life."
 I found two of these chairs, which I kept in mostly as found condition, though I cleaned them up a bit. I didn't want to cover-up there charming details, which I think have an early-American vibe.
Ugh. I hope I can get enough done to make it worth our time. I'm so glad that my mom came up with the idea. I know it will be hard work, but it will also be fun.  If you are in Michigan, you should consider going to the festival, there are over 1000 vendors and Elephant Ears!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

I was planning on keeping that...

So I picked up this nightstand/side table at the thrift store. Of course I didn't get a before picture. I know, I know, bad blogger. Anyway...I was planning on keeping it, but it turned out so cute I might try selling it.

I'm trying to decide if this guy might be disappointed. I originally picked it up for his room.

This piece weighs a ton. It is a good solid piece of furniture, though it did have some veneer issues. I decided  to make the damage work in my favor and paint and "age" the piece. 

What do you think, should it stay or should it go?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Less time for projects...

We've had some extra visitors this summer. They are all rescued dogs from 4 Paws Animal Rescue who are living with us temporarily until they find their permanent homes. Lucy, Honey Bear and Yaya are great house guests but puppies aren't always great at allowing you to divide your time. They demand cuddles...and frankly I haven't minded...but just in case you've wondered where I am, I've been busy getting puppy kisses.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

My friend is having a baby girl!

I've passed along many a cute outfit to friends who have younger little guys than my Jack. I love seeing Jack's old duds given new life on other cuties.  I found out a close was expecting a little girl...I thought I was out of luck on passing-clothes-along front. Her son had looked so cute in some of Jack's hand-me-downs, that I was disappointed I couldn't do the same for her daughter.                                         

When I found a cute pair of red pants for the little one, I decided this old shirt of Jack's had potential.

I added some lace to the front. Cut off the collar and used some bias tape  to give it a rounded neck. In a last little tweak, I decided to make the sleeves cuter by running a bit of elastic through the sleeve hem to gather them a little. I made a pair of matching shoes using this great tutorial by Prudent Baby.
 It's not the typical baby-girl pink, but it's girly all the same.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Well, that project spiraled out of control...

We live in the city, where lots are small, so I use every inch I can for gardening. The most usable space is actually along our driveway, but since our dogs and my son like to hang out in the backyard, that leads to a lot of lifting Jack, 4, over our gate because I don't want to risk the dogs getting out. Frankly, he was just getting too heavy.

My solution was making a movable fence. It's not perfect and not exactly what I had in mind, but this hodgepodge is my creation and believe or not, it's working...well it's working for our little dogs...a visiting foster, recently jumped our backyard fence and then made quick work of this "little obstacle."

When I need to move it, I can simple pick it up and put it too the side. My son has enjoyed going from the backyard to helping mom with your garden without having to rely on me lifting him over the fence and my back has been very happy.

This may look like a random picture, but it's actually the table I used to create my fence. It was really too big for our family room, but I really loved it and didn't want to get ride of it. I started disassembling it with the idea of using the components in the future, when I realized that the frame, cut in half would work for my movable fence.

This was definitely a trail and error project and it shows, but it's made my life easier. I think it has some charm to it...I'm sure there will be some tweaking in its future...I was trying to do it without having to buy pickets (which would have been my first, but too pricey, choice.)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Peonies and a thrift store find...

Each spring I eagerly await when my Peonies bloom. I'm not sure there is anything quite as lovely. There a little like clouds on a stem. When I saw this lovely pottery "basket" at the thrift store. I knew I had to have for my Peonies. It set me back a whole $1, thanks to a 50 percent off sale.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Make your own Mercury glass...

So my friend recently had a yard sale, and let me tell you, I was buying. (Plus she gave me lots of stuff too.) Anyway she had this star shaped tea light holder that I thought had potential as just a decorative element. I thought it would look great with a mercury glass treatment.

The main ingredient needed is the Looking Glass spray, by Krylon. It's a little expensive, but it's awesome stuff.  I've used it to make mirror before. You just follow the instructions on the can, but they basically entail spraying the back of the glass. I like it because it created the aged mirror look that I love. While making the mirror, I found it sped the process along if you sprayed black paint on the back. (Otherwise you have to put on a lot of coats of the Looking Glass.)

So to get the Mercury glass look, I found it works best to use the looking glass first, a couple light coats. While the Looking Glass is still a little wet, start spraying, other metallic paints - I had chrome and gold- on the backside of the glass. It's also great, while the paint is still wet, to hit it with some sprinkles of water. (It reacts cool with the paint and makes it more Mercury-like.) I forgot this step on my star. I finish off with a light coat of black paint. I just used chalkboard because that's what I had on hand. 

Here's the finished product ... cloudy-mirrored, loveliness. Useful, no. Pretty, yes.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Almost everything has potential...

When it comes to furniture, I think almost anything has potential. There are a few caveats...pressed board pieces are generally not worth the effort ...okay, so maybe there is really only one caveat. Anyway, when my grandmother offered me this ugly footstool I didn't hesitate to take it in.

It took me awhile before  I decided what I wanted to do. I've never really recovered anything like this before, so I was a little hesitant. I decided to tackle it using some nice, but cheap fabric I picked up at St. Vincent Depaul.

I originally going to sew a removable cover for it, but since I'm new to sewing, I made the initial part of the cover a little too small, so I decided to get out my staple gun (otherwise known as my BFF.)

 I stapled the skirt on. I also chose to do the fabric on the reverse because it was a little garish (which is probably why it ended up at the thrift store.)
I  was able to cover up my staples with a combination of piping and gimp. This was my first attempt at making my own piping. The single piping turned out great, but the double piping not so much.
It's a little wonky, but I'm pretty happy with my first attempt. I have a similar project waiting it's turn in the basement.

Now the real challenge--- finding  time for the piles of potential hanging out in the basement.