Sunday, October 13, 2013

Fall Garland

I have a wystria tree in my front yard, and every year, we trim it, and every year, I try to figure out what to do with it's gnarly branches. This year, I decided I would use it and make a garland. So up it went, and it is adorned with things from around the house, that I could find that said " fall" to me. 
If you look real close, you will see some rubber snakes, I put into it, to give it a little Halloween touch, then out they go, and it will stay up untill I get up the Christmas garland. 
There is no wire or glue involved, if you cut it and make it, you just need to twist it! 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Chore chart

This " chore chart" really is more of a reminder chart. Even older kids and adults, need a little help with the remembering to do something. As a parent to two boys, we are busy. I cannot rewrite a list everyday to remind my 11 year old, all his responsibilities, and my expectations for his school work. All he wants to do is run outside and play with friends. So now at a glance I can tell which things he still needs to do, and the hope is he will establish habits, he lacks currently. 
This chart is made from plastic window screen. I wanted a transparent look. I sewed pockets on, but I realized during this, I could have used ribbon and a glue gun. I used index cards and put dots on front and back. Orange means need to do. When u flip them, other side represents green means it was done  some of his cards include read 20, put soccer uniform on ( this is to hopefully prevent the rushing around, right before practice starts) and clean his guinea pigs cage. 
On the back there is an extra pocket for things that don't happen daily, like study for history test, math test etc. 

This chart will benefit me as well, I am hoping it is helpful for me to stay consistent in checking on him. 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Playing around with chalk paint

I've been very busy, with painting projects lately. Besides items that I consign, I also do custom for people. 
If your not familiar with this paint, it is made to give your piece an " aged" look. They dry very quickly, and can be used in the house. You use a wax or waxes to give it a hard finish. The plus side of these products, is that you can use them on laminet furniture. 
I do believe their is an art to using these paints. I've read many things about these paints, one of the things that makes this technique work is the sanding or wet sponging after you paint, to give it a distress. Looking at some pieces, I've seen done, some people randomly put " wear" spots, that make little sense of the placement of this type of wear. So, if you decide to try to chalk paint, make sure your not random, think about the piece, what it might have been used for, then decide where it would have gotten worn by love. 

These chalk paints were both Van Gogh paints. 

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Fun with Vintage Rakes

Vintage rake heads painted can make great fun hooks for displaying things! You don't have to have a lot of supplies, with these 3 rakes it just took 3 different spray paints and a little thought on how to make them even more playful. They are great to hold many things! In my case I use them as a display for the coffee purses I make and sell. I went out on a limb with the colors, I knew I wanted to use colors, that I normally don't get to use! I also knew I wanted to paint one into a flame rake. Why? I don't know. That's the beauty of whimsy!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Great Gift Idea- A Box of Random

Recently I had a birthday, nope not going to tell, anyway and my mother in law had asked what I would like for my birthday. I love to ask her for random things, because normally she has these things, and is always on the verge of throwing things out. She is on a budget, but I didn't want to take away her fun.

 She like many other aging people, is trying to clean out and get rid of old items, so she can downsize. Great for me right? Wrong, she lives over 15 hours away by car. So, I'm also not being the greatest at helping her!

So this year when asked what I wanted for my birthday, I said" Ummm,"How about a metal thimble, a pin cushion, a fabric measuring tape and anything else you can think of out of your house your not going to use, thrown in a box".

When the box arrived, it was like Christmas! It was filled with a tons of just fun random things. Some of the items included 2 dresses (she never wore), rick rack, sequins, vintage lace, corks, water globe things for the plants (which I didn't know I wanted, until I adorned my plant friends with), some zippers, a couple of costume jewelry pieces, a grow a clover kit, google eyes (never know when you need those, I do have two children) and various other treasures including my thimble, pin cushion and tape.

I have been to two parties since, and have gotten compliments on my dresses from some of my friends, and they wanted to know where I got them. I get to beam proudly that they are from my box of random! I picture mother in law, going through the house and touching these items and thinking of me and it brings a smile.

So the next time someone asks you what you want for your birthday or a holiday, and you don't want them to spend any money, tell them you'd just like a box of random.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Old Lunchbox Wreath

I try really hard to repurpose things, even when it may not be in the best shape. I was at one of my favorite stores, where I also am a designer for, and I find an adorable 1950's lunchbox. It was rusty in the inside, but I didn't care, I knew I needed to save this little guys life. So in my brain, the right thing to do was spray it to protect it from further damage and to make it into a wreath. 

I drilled four holes in the bottom and ran wire to connect to the wreath. I also made some burlap ribbon roses and sprigs that are made of vintage buttons. I added a chalkboard, so whoever ends up with it, they can write their house number, welcome, go away or whatever else they may want to say!

Get a Grip and More in Washington N.J. Is a great place to find items for your creative projects. They can also be found on EBay and Facebook. If you get a chance to visit on the web or in their location, tell Dan Ivy sent you!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Broach bouquet

Since I have been consumed in my friends wedding, I thought I would share her real bouquet as well.i had blogged previously on her "throw away". We had asked her friends and loved ones to send her a piece of costume jewelry, so she could keep a meaningful bouquet. Her wedding colors are black, red and silver. 

It was really fun to put together, we had a "mini" party to put it together, it took about 3 1/2 hours to do between the giggling and the trying on of all the fancies!!
I really love the idea of this type of bouquet, not only because its a beautiful way to repurpose, but because it gives new life to things that are usually forgotten in a drawer. We used not only broaches, but single earrings, chandalier crystals etc. Her plans for this, after the wedding is the china cabinet!

Throw Away Bouquet? Weddings

A dear friend of mine, is getting married and we will be making her one of the new "trendy" broach bouquets. This is a bouquet where in her case we asked her loved ones and friends for an inexpensive piece of costume jewelry for her to compile into her bouquet.
I love this idea, and since she wants to save this after her wedding, and not to mention, it might be a little heavy and dangerous to throw, she asked me to make her a throw away bouquet. Here is her "trashy"' Bouquet!
 Since, I am who I am and I have never made a "throw away" before, I decided to compile it completely out of things people throw away. So essentially her bouquet is made of garbage!
2'' wide scrap white  fabric strips folded in half 
2"scrap silver fabric folded in half
A plastic Starbucks cold cup lid
Left over Christmas Ribbon
Hot Glue
Unfortunately before I decided to snap pictures of this process, I did not take a pic on how to assemble flower. It easy, you take your strip, fold down the end to make a triangle and wrap in a circular motion. Put a dab of glue on top of cork, and keep wrapping until you form a rose. It took me 2 strips of fabric per rose, but it will vary depending on your length of fabric. There is no wrong here!
When you have finished gluing and ruffling your fabric
you do the same with the underneath!
It should look something like this if you made 6 cork flowers



Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Winner of the coffee purse

Thank You to everyone who entered. The Schroeder page intro contest. My son Jack enjoyed pulling the name out of the hat to pick the winner.

Julie Mckown

This is the prize that will be awarded to you!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Repurpose a Record Cabinet or What to do with an old Record Cabinet


I love old record cabinets! I love the smell of them, their quaint size, and their craftsmanship. Recently, I was at an auction, and this record cabinet came up for bid. Nobody bid on it. I'm standing there and couldn't believe how quiet the room became. What felt like 10 minutes, of course it wasn't, I raised my hand to save the record player. As soon as I decided to save him from doom, I also decided, he would become a plant stand.

If you have ever shopped for these stands, the picking is usually pretty slim.  I like to have plants, and when they grow babies, I like to share them with the world. I hate to throw out a sprout. So, if your anything like me, you end up putting them on your good furniture hoping not to over water them.

Here is the record player

I started gutting him, and took off his hinged top, sanded him and filled the holes. I really had a good time seeing all his "parts."

 I have a Silhouette Cameo, that I used to make a stencil with. I decided I wanted words and a picture. I set it up to be the same width as the speaker part in the cabinet. Fiddled around with it, and came up with a design. Then I used fabric paint and stenciled it on some cotton fabric.

A little paint, some faux finishing, and we have a plant stand!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

How to make a wine cork wreath

1 straw wreath
Ice pick, or something like this
Round toothpicks
Scrap fabric or piece of tee shirt
Approx. 200 wine corks
Glue gun
Small piece of wire, for a hanger

I have been asked several times on how to make a wine wreath. I keep my wine wreath in my dining room, all year round, and I have also made these as gifts.This is my first tutorial, so hopefully I'll make it clear!

 First the wrap hay wreath with some sort of scrap, use your glue gun to tack it into place. You want to tack it in the back of the wreath only, so when you are putting your corks on, you don't have to fight with the glue spots.Using the fabric, keeps the back looking neat and tidy.

 Take your piece of wire, and decide what will be the top of your wreath. Bring wire around, and make a small loop.This design is such that you don't see the hanger. It should be in the middle of the wreath on backside.

 Use ice pick to poke a hole in the cork, and insert toothpick. Start sticking them one by one into wreath. There is no more gluing involved in this project. You want to cluster these corks in two's and three's, and then change their direction for the next set. 

 You can see here the beginning of the row. The toothpicks help with getting the corks to go around the wreath, you can manipulate them to go on a bit of an angle as well.
 Half way done here, You can see it taking shape, it ends up being a lot wider then it started out. Once you finish covering the bottom, check your sides all around and make sure everything is covered. Adding a couple of your favorite or special occasion corks on top (like a second row) will add more interest and texture. You only need around 5 or 6.

Finished, now you can add a bow, or grapes or whatever else you may want to embellish it with! If there happens to be any loose corks on the edges, you can add dab of glue.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Spring Colors 2013 and The Wizard Of OZ

A friend and I were talking about the new up and coming colors for the 2013 spring season, and her list and my list were completely different.We had both been flipping through magazines and both read our lists to each other. So, I decided to get to the bottom of this and go to the source. If your not familiar with this company, they are the forecasters and creators of color. They are linked to all different industries including, graphic arts, decor fabrics, paints and plastics.

It's the year of emerald green! They do research on the emotions this color will bring us. It is funny, that the new Oz movie will be coming out also on March 8, 2013. Most of us enjoy the Wizard of OZ, some of us are still afraid of the flying monkeys, but I would say there is a place in our hearts for this story. So we can tie in this seasons colors with the movie so easy. It makes remembering these up and coming colors a piece of cake. Emerald Green 17-5651- Emerald City, Dorothy wore a Monoco Blue 19-3964 and white gingham dress, It was stormy Jaded Grey 14-6411, It was dusk, so we have Dusk Blue 16-4142, They traveled down the yellow brick road Lemon Zest 13-0756, The scarecrow was Linen 12-1008, Took a nappy in the poppies Poppy Red 17-1664, The Great and Powerful Oz curtain reflection, we find, Tender Shoot 14-0446, Those happy little munchkins who love to sing, who can forget their darling colorful outfits that hosts 16-1360 Nectarine and African Violet 16-3520 as well many other over the rainbow colors!

Will you be using these colors and how?

Monday, February 25, 2013