Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Cards and Gifts

My mom still sends cards. A LOT of cards - to family, friends, church family, and probably to strangers on occasion. Sometimes I can find nice cards at estate sales for her. A couple of weeks ago I was in a creating mood but wanted something quick and easy, so I made a few cards for her. It was a relaxing diversion.

The card themes are pretty random as I was using papers I had on hand. My favorite is the aqua and green stripe bird card. I made several more the following week but forgot to take pics.  

A friend sent me some lovely ribbon recently. Barbara started as a customer. She purchased some lace from my Etsy shop, and I then swapped more lace for a darling little bird pin (read about it at the end of this post.) We've continued to send each other bits of lace and ribbon. She uses lots of tiny lace to make her beautiful pins, and sends me some of the larger things she finds.

I love these wide vintage ribbons and pretty appliques. I'm not sure just yet what I'll make with them, but I have a few ideas. In the meantime, I'll just enjoy looking at them! Thanks, Barbara!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

April and May Finds

There haven't been many good estate sales lately, but I did find a few things in April and May.

Small bird figurines are one of my favorites, as are the 1950s fancy paper napkins. The napkins don't sell well - apparently I'm the only one who loves them - but I can't resist them anyway. The chalkboard is two-sided and a nice size. The shakers are tiny with silverplate caps and would be great for some of the fun necklaces people are making. They're listed with some others in a lot on Etsy. The little spoon and forks are a bit tarnished but can be fun for crafts, and the plastic doily will be good for mixed media painting projects.

The sweet print, more ornate piece and rhinestone-studded compact have already been listed on Etsy. The compact is Avon, probably 1980s or 90s, but would be ideal for embellishing. All of these items came from the same estate sale, along with a shelf elf that I picked up for some unknown reason. It's not something I'd normally buy, but is fairly old and still has its Made in Japan label.

I keep telling myself to not buy any type of suitcases as I've not had much luck selling them. Obviously I'm not listening! The two patterns are fun, and the small jewelry box and jello mold will be good for altering. This is the second set of children's metal pans I've found lately, so they'll all be put on Etsy as a set. 

And of course I bought more lace. I'm always happy if there's at least one good piece of vintage lace at every sale, but at one April sale I scored a box full. These are just a few of the pieces.

Some aren't in perfect condition - like the collar above - but are still beautiful.

The sheer and delicate Battenburg-style lace is one of my favorites from this lot. The two other pieces in this photo coordinate and each piece is two yards long. It's not often that I find larger pieces of vintage lace. All three pieces above are listed on Etsy

I hope to be back soon with more finds to share, and some gifts from artsy friends.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Glitter Retreat 2015 - Day Three

On my way to Paper Crown for the final day of Glitter Retreat, I just had to make a quick stop at an estate sale. More on that in a later post!

I arrived at Paper Crown in time for a yummy breakfast before our first class with Angie. We made a fun little spring decor piece and learned quite a few techniques in the process. This was my first class with Angie. She was bursting with energy, smart, and funny. 
This little bloomin' wagon has a chipboard piece on the front that, after following Angie's instruction, looks just like leather. The "bloom" is under distressed beveled glass. The flowers are made from marbled foil-backed paper that Angie pre-cut and we layered and shaped to create 3-D blossoms. The little banner reads "everything is blooming most recklessly." Fun! Wish I had a better photo of it, but this was the best I've been able to do.

We had lunch upstairs in the Paper Attic. We were again treated to wonderful decorations throughout the room. Each table had a cute rubber boot filled with flowers and greenery.
At each place there were personalized flower buckets filled with lots of crafting goodies and flower seeds.
Here are just some of the treats packed in my bucket.
On the wall was another gigantic floral creation - this time in bright glittery colors. I can't decide if I loved the white one from Day Two or this one more.
After lunch we had our final swap - the Altered Spoon swap. I used a spoon I'd made earlier and added a bit more rhinestone bling. I also made a gift bag for this swap using a vintage napkin, lace applique and a tiny spoon charm someone had gifted me from an earlier swap. Perfect!
I received a beautiful spoon from Michelle, who flew in from California for the Glitter Retreat. She used a very pretty sterling silver spoon from her collection, adding a tiny little bird (I love anything with birds) sitting in a leafy nest. Pearls dangle from one side, and there's a curly hook for hanging. Thank you, Michelle! I love it!
After lunch we had our final class with the adorable Lesa Dailey. Lesa was at Paper Crown in November and I so wanted to take her class then but was preparing for Glitter Market the following day and knew I'd be rushed. I'm so glad she and her sweet daughter returned. 

Our class kits for this darling Bon Bon bunny came in cute burlap bags that Lesa made. 

Isn't she precious? She has lots of vintage elements and a little secret - her top lifts off to reveal a little cache for candy or what have you. Such a fun class!

Following this last class we had the chance to shop in the Paper Attic. Jackie and Lesa both had some of their creations available to purchase - a little sneak peak for this fall's Glitter Market. 

I truly enjoyed my first Glitter Retreat. A big thank you to Cindy, Amy, Jackie, Medeah, Angie and Lesa for such a wonderful event! 

If you'd like to see more photos of Day Three, visit Jackie's blog here and here. My two previous posts were also about Glitter Retreat.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Glitter Retreat 2015 - Day Two

I'm being my usual slow self completing my Glitter Retreat posts, but hopefully you'll hang with me for this and one more.

We started Day 2 with a mixed media class with Medeah. At each place was a class kit, a personalized metal pitcher holding more supplies, and a Glitter Retreat apron. I tied on my cute apron first thing so it's not in the photo.

I've taken a couple of classes with Medeah before and loved them, and this one was great, too. You leave her classes with not only a wonderful creation, but lots of techniques you can use for other projects. Here's my final piece.

Lunch was going to be a picnic in a nearby park but the weather didn't cooperate, so we moved to a space next door for a picnic on the floor, complete with blankets and decorations. The food was wonderful! It definitely made us look forward to the rest of the retreat meals prepared by Val, a friend of one of the instructors.

After lunch we took a field trip to Jan's Jewelry Supplies. They do a lot of online business so you can shop with them no matter where you are. They have an amazing selection of beads, charms, chain, and more. I managed to work in a quick stop at a nearby estate sale on the way. It wouldn't be the weekend without an estate sale!

Jackie's Sacred Heart class was on the afternoon schedule. I was so looking forward to this class and it didn't disappoint. Jackie had pretty kits on the tables for us along with her always awesome name tags. 

This looked like a truly complicated project, but Jackie had things well prepared and helped us through all the steps. I truly enjoyed it.

She also showed us ways to display our pieces - in covered cigar boxes, on clipboards, and more. I haven't decided yet just how I want to display mine.

We had dinner upstairs in the Paper Attic - more delicious food! I'll give a link below so you can see more photos, but here are the few I took.

The white paper flowers were huge, and so pretty! 

Each place setting had a tiny glittered trophy and beautiful hydrangeas and roses were displayed in vintage silver loving cups.

The final event for Day Two was the Junque in the Trunk swap. Each participant completed a survey ahead of time to give their partner some clues about things they wanted or needed. I used a vintage basket to hold the junque for my partner Tami but, sadly, I was stuffing things in up until the night before and forgot to take a photo of the basket and much of the contents. The next two photos show some of the items I had gathered early on.
The napkin is wrapped around some vintage fabrics, and the paper roll underneath is full of various chains and necklaces for her to use in her jewelry creations.
I included some random found metal objects, vintage beads, vintage ribbon, and a good selection of vintage papers.

Tami made a beautiful box to contain the junque she gifted me. This box is really lovely and is now displayed in my craft room. Wish you could see it in person!
In my survey I indicated I could use some purple items for a journal project, and talked about my obsession with washi tape. Tami found lots of fun purple items, including unusual fabrics and three rolls of purple patterned washi tape, that I can incorporate. She put in vintage trims, some of her beautiful handmade flowers, ribbon, lace, and more - lots of everything I love!
I'll try to get Day Three posted in the next few days. For more photos from Day Two, visit Jackie's blog here.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Glitter Retreat 2015 - Day 1

Various things kept me from signing up for any out-of-state retreats this year, but that allowed me to attend Paper Crown's Glitter Retreat April 23-25. It was a perfect weekend, with talented teachers and great classes, shopping, eating and art swapping. 

We started on Thursday evening with a group dinner at a new restaurant, Pizzeria Gusto, in OKC. Great pizza! The DH and I will be going there in the near future.  After dinner we headed to Cindy's beautiful home (Cindy is the owner of Paper Crown) for dessert, a group painting project, and the first swap of the weekend - The Flower Pin Swap. This was my first ever swap to host, and although there were only a few of us, everyone did a great job. I made little flower-themed treat bags for the participants.

Here's the pin I received from Suzy. Love it, and it's perfect for me as my wardrobe is at least 75% gray and I love anything with a watch face and bling. It came in a really cute bag Suzy decorated, but I forgot to take a pic of the bag. I'll add it in when the sun comes out.

The pin I made went to Debbie. 

I made it convertible as I didn't know who the recipient would be and some people don't like to wear pins with all the streamers. There's a pin on the back of the smaller flower, but also Velcro so you can attach it to the larger backing and streamers. There's a pin back on the larger piece, too, so it can be worn either way. 

Part of the swap was presentation, so I made a little bag for the pin. This was something I'd wanted to try since Tami gave me a pretty bag at Birdsong last year. The cross stitch dresser scarf was purchased at an estate sale last fall. I stitched the two ends together, sewed the bottom seam, added embellishments...and now I'm addicted! 

You can see the swappers and more photos of the Day One action on Jackie's blog here. I'm always thankful for Jackie as she takes great photos and lots of them - certainly not MY strong suit!

Hope you'll check back later for more Glitter Retreat fun!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Sweet Gifts

Recently I had the pleasure of sending Laurie something I found that she had been seeking for some time. It was a cross stitch piece found at an estate sale. I didn't have any real plans for it, but purchased it because it had birds on it and birds = cute! You can see a bit of it in this photo.

Laurie saw it on my blog and wanted to buy it. Another of her friends had a similar piece that she loved and she had wanted one ever since she saw it. Laurie has shared so much with me in the past that I wanted to give her this piece. Of course - being the sweet person she is - she sent me more lovely things as a thank you. 

She made the pretty box, which is covered in vintage wallpaper and millinery flowers. She also made the very clever envelope with scrapbook paper and organza. The paper she used for the envelope just happens to be one of my favorite patterns ever - you can see a bit more of it to the left in the photos below - so I'm excited to have this keepsake made from it.

Inside the envelope she put vintage wallpapers, cute vintage cards (can't believe she found one with an adorable Basset Hound!) and some of the new IKEA stickers. Our closest IKEA is about four hours away and I've not made it there yet to see all the fun new paper products. These stickers will keep me happy until I can make that trip.

The box was packed with lots of fun things for spring creating - sweet chick fabric, a beautiful lavender millinery flower, trims, tiny birds, chicks and eggs, and more.

There were also tags and stickers, flowers and charms, a vintage decal, more cute birds, and a fun honeycomb strawberry. 

Thank you, Laurie, for sharing your creativity and vintage finds. I love it all, and hope the bird cross stitch brings you lots of happiness! 

Laurie has recently reopened her Etsy shop with some pretty handcrafted items and ephemera. You can see it here.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

My Creative Space

In September of 2013 we moved my creative space from our smallest bedroom into our master bedroom. It was the DH's suggestion. His reasoning was that since I'm in my space for a good part of every day and since our only computer, which we both used, was also in that space it made sense to move it to the bigger room. I had to think about it for a bit - really, how would that look to other people? - but he was right. We've never had a lot of company - our nice-sized guest room had only been used a handful of times in the last 19 years - so we made that our master. Now the DH has his extra-large garage (part of the reason that third bedroom is so small but that's a whole other story!) and I have lots more room for fun junque! I intended to take pics of the "new" space ages ago. It's a bit messy (always) but here's a tour. 

As you look in the door, you see the table the DH made for me to work on. It's two cubbies from Target topped by a piece of MDF. Since I usually work standing up, I had him make it higher than normal and added bar stools from IKEA. For the holidays, it can serve as additional dining space. On a day to day basis, it's usually piled like this with estate sale finds unless I'm working on a project. Love, love, love my IKEA cart underneath!

The cubbies hold canvases, lace, and miscellaneous craft supplies on one end...

and mostly fabric on the end closer to the sewing table.

As you walk in the door, this white chest is mostly filled with lace and trim. I thought it would hold my entire collection, but not even close. Above that are creations from various classes, some gifts from friends, and a few things I've made on my own or purchased. And since this is also my office/Etsy shipping space, here's the printer and postal scale.

Next to that is the armoire where I store most of my Etsy stock and shipping supplies. It's amazing what will fit in there! My petite dress form stands watch.

Next is a cobbled-together bookcase found at a local antique store. Someone used scrap lumber and sort of threw it together, but it actually functions fairly well. It's cluttered but I know where everything is.

It holds tags from most of the tag swaps I've joined, buttons, millinery, and lots of little bits and pieces. There's a shelf "missing" between the two photos below. You can see a bit of it in the second pic. That shelf holds all my journals - ones I've made, some I've received, and several blank ones waiting for me to get creative.

Next is my IKEA Expedit shelving. I had wanted this for ages and finally had room for one in this space - barely! The top is covered with class projects, things I've received from swaps, gifts, and various things I've collected. The shelves are loaded with jars of buttons, boxes of linens and lace, books, and more interesting tidbits than you can imagine. The canvas bins hold paper, embellishments, and things I just can't let go of. One is full of just little boxes, mostly vintage but all too cute to throw away. Might need one for a swap or gift someday!

Here are close ups of a few of the cubbies. The locker basket in this first one is full of hankies and napkins. I need to pull the glove boxes out for a peek as I can't remember what's in all of them!

This next cubby has buttons, ribbon and my two bags full of vintage buckles.

The pretty boxes in this next cubby are full of lace and ribbon. The jar at the top is full of old strings of faux pearls, and there are lots of things I'm hoarding for future projects.

This next cubby holds four one-gallon pickle jars - one with Scrabble letters, Bingo tiles and checkers; one with miscellaneous small junque items; one behind full of sewing notions; and the other full of glass tubes, vials and tiny jars - more than I could ever possibly use. 

One more cubby and then we'll move on. This one holds my four jars of white buttons, a jar of rhinestone-accented buttons, jars of pink and gray buttons, and a gallon jar stuffed with rayon seam binding. The oil cans are just two of several in my collection.

Next up is my vintage cabinet. My mother gave me this. It originally belonged to her grandmother. It holds lace, a shoe box full of cabinet cards and vintage photos, vintage gloves, porcelain heads and lots more. 

Here's a close up of a few of the things in the cabinet. On the middle shelf you can see my two partially completed Briley the Birdie dolls from a Colleen Moody online class. Need to finish those!

There isn't much wall space left in this room, but this tiny bit beside the window holds a shelf of stamps and stamp pads, plus a couple of hooks for blingy things.

My sewing table sits in front of the window. I just got a new machine and love the bit of turquoise on the front.  The plastic cabinet on the left holds my Etsy files as well as folders from retreats and classes. That's my newest dress form on the right, still waiting for a frilly skirt to cover her exposed foam rubber. 

On the far right is my ribbon rack, and under that are six plastic bins of things that won't fit anywhere else in this room. Purging might be in order. Next to that is a three-basket rolling rack full of old books and various vintage paper items, topped by my Harbor Freight four-tier lazy-susan-style storage rack. Plus a basket with more ribbon. And a few other things. Eeek.

The bookcase and computer desk are next. Lots of assorted things find their home here, and the desk is always messy.

The top of the credenza holds lots of little jars and containers with beads, sequins, rhinestones and more. A recent addition is the wonderful graphic my mom did for a correspondence art course when she was a teen. I get my artistic inclinations from her.

There are more containers on the other end, and an amazing angel creation from an amazing friend. This room is filled with gifts and creations from special people, and it always makes me happy to be in here.

Lastly, here's a little table that holds my tool carousel, two boxes full of costume jewelry, and bags and bins of vintage velvet ribbon. Underneath is a vintage overnight case that holds more millinery flowers.

That's it! It really is a fun space and I'm happy to have it. Now I just need to clear off that table and start creating!

Thanks for stopping by!