Thursday, September 27, 2012

Pumpkin Crazy

So, I kind of went over the top tonight crafting white pumpkins. I've been obsessed after seeing them on Pinterest.

I took my 25%-off-everything coupon and my 40%-off coupon and had a shopping party at Michaels. I bought bling (Recollections makes great swirls and has fall colors for the dots), I chose ribbon and a pick with glass beads and leaves,  and I had a blast.

The smaller ones are thank you gifts...

 BUT the big one with the crow is all mine.

I'm in love.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Remembering my Dad

September 24, 2012 -- Six years ago today, my Dad lost his fight with lung cancer. He was 85 years young and I have chosen to only remember his strong and vibrant days and not the few weeks when we noticed him starting to fail.

My Dad was a talented, self-taught craftsman. One day he got the idea to make some furniture and turned out this little hutch cabinet. (I can't remember exactly when this was, but I am suspecting the late 60's, early 70's, pine, varnished, etc.) Maybe that's where I get my spurts of inspiration - I tend to get an idea and have to act on it or it burns into my being until I do.

That said, I bought Real Milk Paint - Yellow Ochre over 4 years ago with the intent of transforming this hutch and some other pieces.  (Note irony, please!)In a burst of have-to-finally-do-it, I mixed up the paint last week. I'm don't think my Dad would appreciate my rustic styling. I did an undercoat of red and then covered it with the yellow/mustardy milk paint to try to make it look aged and as if it had been painted over several times over many years. I left the scratched, varnished wood top alone. He would have said, 'What the hell?' considering he probably worked hours getting that finished look on it!  You can find this color and their others here:

I hope you like it, Daddy. My sisters probably won't like it either, but this piece stays in my home forever, in honor of you. Your soul is in it and now, I hope, a little of mine, too.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Weekend junking finds

Quite by accident - and at the last minute!

Took a quick trip up to the harbor in Port Jefferson, NY. It was too nice of a Sunday afternoon NOT to take in the scenery. Seems a lot of people had the same idea. We were just doing some window-shopping and browsing, trying not to spend any money we don't have. I stepped into the Barkin’ Basement Thrift Shop, loocated at 116 East Main Street. All proceeds here benefit the Save-A-Pet Animal Rescue.

There they were! TWO - not one, but TWO - lovely old chairs just waiting for me to take home and fix up.

The one on the left is marked from 1950 - WOW. Something actually older than I am! It has a funky kind of seat cover, but I'm thinking it will do well with paint. Price $6.00

The one on the right has some delicious carvings on the back and sorely needs a new seat cover. Price $4.00

So 2 chairs for $10.00. Could I ask for better? I didn't try to haggle at all!

I think it's going to be a very busy, paint-covered winter!

What did YOU find this week?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Brimfield finds - and then some

Great Fall-like weekend here in the Northeast. Saturday's trip to Brimfield, MA was only marred by the rainy weather. It started out as a decent day, but towards noon, the skies darkened and there were rumors of tornado warnings as we watched one of the snack shop owners grab up his tables and chairs! But just like the postal service, we marched on, looking for our treasures. I ended up with some rusty skeleton keys, a ceramic jug, a big rusted tin "L" to add to my studio walls, and some mugs and a pitcher from one of the Fiesta dealers.

My letter 'L' - It's big, it's rusty, and it seems these are all the rage.

It's not unique, but I like these jugs.
Just love Fiesta - adding to the collection.

The Fiestaware is NOT used, or primitive, or old, or recycled. Brimfield is a good place to find it, though. I have cups and saucers and ONE mug already, so I thought I'd add some t the collection. The pitcher is classic Fiesta, so I just had to have it.

Today I took some of the skeleton keys and glued them into this little wooden box I had been saving. It used to hold a bunch of metal Christmas tags and I knew it would make an interesting frame for some king of collection. Last week I painted it with yellow milk paint. I think it's really simple, but fun art for the wall. What do you think?

Most of the chairs which I found were way out of my price limits and the few I saw that weren't were in such ill repair that I had to pass them by. One of the dealers told me that they had to charge higher prices because they paid so much to be at the show. I understand that and I also understand the effort and time that goes into restoration. But, I wasn't looking for a finely painted chair. I was looking for something that needed some fixin' up and decorating.

Today, along with attending a local arts festival and finding some lovely holiday gifts (don't tell!!), I found this little charmer at a yard sale. The seller told me she purchased it in West Virginia. It's in perfect condition and is handmade, but I can't wait to paint her and give her new life. I already know what I'm going to do with it, but I have to get down to business!!

Oh, forgot to mention, it's a mini rocking chair. The woman used it to display some stuffed animals and dolls. I have other plans!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Brimfield, here we come! Flea market tales

Just a few more days and I'll be jumping on the Bridgeport/Port Jefferson ferry and a tour bus to get to Brimfield, MA for the last antique and collectables show of the season. If you've never been, try to schedule a trip for next year. So many wonderful treats all packed into one area. I could spend days and a fortune if I was let loose!

Each time I do one of these large flea market type trips, I am a little wiser. Ive learned:

* Bring along a hat and sunglasses no matter what the weather - just in case you need that extra protection in addition to a good sunblock.

*Pack a lunch and snacks. The prices at some of these venues are startling, the choices are limited to hot dogs, burgers, bagels, and fried items that don't fit into my diet, and I'd rather spend money on objects than food. There are usually picnic areas where you can eat your own food.

*Also, a few bottles of frozen water will stay cold all day long and, again, save you money. 

*I saw what the other shoppers were doing, so I had added one of these little wheely carts to my repertoire.

A very necessary accessory. Folds up when not in use

Now, while this is a very helpful and useful accessory, I find that those tiny wheels and those thin stands make it a little difficult to haul my finds.

*The bigger the wheel, the better the tow. Right after my last trip, I made a decision to search craigslist and the local Freecyle for THIS:

Step-2 Tag Along Wagon and Trailer

Good old craigslist!! It was $20.00 - no debate from me.  One man's trash is this woman's treasure! I've already packed it full and rolled it across the sand at the beach with excellent results.  So, I'll be trying to get this onto the bus next weekend. (No more dragging chairs around on my arm all day long...)

Just as a warmup, I looked around this Labor Day weekend at the local garage sales. Quite surprisingly, I didn't find anything of interest to me, BUT when I popped in to the local thrift store, I learned that Saturday is 50%-off-all-furniture-day. Here are my new additions to the chair pile.

Believe it or not, the chair with the great legs - such nice turnings and carvings - was cheaper. Marked at $8.99. The smaller pine chair with the woven seat (in perfect condition!) was marked at $16.99. My final price: $13.01. I was giddy!!

Now to get painting. I have quite the growing collection in my garage and need to start decorating them. I've got loads of plans in my head and have informed my husband that he will be doing a lot of painting in the future. Need to take some creative action!

But first, BRIMFIELD!

SO -- What did YOU find this weekend?