Monday, December 28, 2009

christmas gifts and lights

my christmas was spent eating tons of great food and sitting by the fire staring at twinkle lights. it was also spent creating many homemade gifts for my family.
about 2 days before one of my brothers arrived, i found this pattern on martha stewart for the most amazing oak leaf bowls. my mom and i hurried to the local thrift store in the pouring rain and picked up an old tweed skirt and men's jacket. the three bowls were printed on paper between the sizes of 8.5 x 11 and 5 x 7. they turned out perfect and would work best used for odds and ends such as keys or pocket change.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

cupcakes and friends

tonight is my annual ornament exchange party with 4 of my favorite people. we each make homemade ornaments and then walk away with 4 new ones. it is a great tradition and a lot of fun to see what everyone has made. however, it is best kept small so you don't get overwhelmed with ornaments as the years pass.

i made caramel banana cupcakes for dessert, but they looked so good, i had to try one early. i found the recipe in an old rachel ray magazine. often, i am leery of magazine recipes, at least half of what i try to make turns out awful - still not sure if that is due to my lack of cooking skills, or that no one at the mag actually ever tested the recipe. this one was a pleasant surprise, they are delicious. be warned that they do take a long time too make - more than the allotted 40 minutes and you might not want to eat many when you know how much fatty ingredients are involved!

Monday, December 14, 2009

new listings and etsy

finally, i have begun to list more items on my etsy shop. i procrastinate until i have a million of items and then it is just way to much :) since i learned early on not to list everything at one time, i will be adding items once a day over the next few weeks. lamps, shades and a ton of aprons.

one of my favorite new items are these black and white shades. but, i have decided to keep them for a secret room in my house that will be revealed after the holidays. not to fear, i will be making more as soon as my fingers are freed up from elf work.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

only 16 more days until christmas. yikes! i spent the day photographing items for etsy. is it just me, or do you think photographing and editing your wares is the most tedious process. it takes me forever to get motivated to drag out all the props, lighting, etc. i am so envious of the shops that sell the same items over and over again. they can relist as they please without taking new photos. but i guess the process of making the same item over and over again is the tedious part for them!

on another note, i absolutely love the advent calendar that my munchkins have been using for the past few years. this is from the martha stewart collection at michaels and unfortunately, i don't know if they are even for sale anymore. i bought one and then went back after christmas to buy up the rest for years to come. if you do happen to find these this holiday, one tip, use double-sided sticky tape to assemble rather than the glue included in the package. your holidays will be much less stressful!

Monday, December 7, 2009

trees and stands

remember how i have been on the hunt for a galvanized bucket to sit my tree in? well, my brother gave me a tip to go to lowe's and guess what, they had them for only 14.99! sometimes, my mind is so entrenched in antiquing and hunting for something old that i completely overlook the obvious. plus, the upside of buying a brand new one is that there won't be any rust on my carpet when i take everything down after the holidays.

last year, on a whim i used colored lights on our tree, then spent the entire month of december feeling like something wasn't right. this year, i went back to the old stand by - plain white lights and i can breathe again. don't you just love anything that sparkles!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

flowers and my first tutorial

since only one person was able to win my flower giveaway, i have uploaded instructions for you to be able to make them at home. click here to download and have fun!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

holidays and shows

for the past month or so, i have been giving my fingers a work out trying to get prepared for my show at serenbe. i was there from 8 to 4 today, and put so much energy toward this show which really paid off.

i love the way this crystal lamp sparkles!

remember when i bought this (scroll down a bit)? i gave the rack a good coat of white paint and then printed out Linwood Avenue price tags which i inserted into the metal slats on each shelf. the look and storage capacity was perfect!

i am officially done with shows for the season - now it's time to start creating holiday gifts!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

and the winner is...

my felted ornament giveaway is now finished - thanks to everyone who entered.
i placed everyone's names into a bowl and had my terribly dirty, tree-climbing munchkin draw a name for me...
blanche and guy, email me your address at and i will get your ornament sent out!

if you are local, come visit me at the serenbe holiday festival tomorrow, 1-4.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

new moon and a milestone

o.k., i can't believe i am going to write about this for my hundredth post, yes i said hundredth post - woo hoo, but i saw new moon tonight and it actually didn't suck. the directing was much better than twilight, the acting was much better and the cinematography was much better. all in all, quite an enjoyable movie if you are obsessed with the twilight saga. not saying i am though ;)

Monday, November 23, 2009

and more holiday ideas

looking through the december issue of country living, i came across a fantastic idea - use a galvanized bucket to cover up your ugly tree stand. i bought a tree skirt a few years back, but have never really liked it. i feel like i am always struggling to get it to lay straight or worrying that too much water has spilled on it. a bucket has the perfect antique holiday charm and would look great with the rest of my holiday decorating.

i am now officially on the hunt for a bucket like this, cheap of course! any ideas?

photo from page 110 of december/january country living magazine

and a perfect partner for everyone

remember when i bought this a few months ago? who knew that i would find it's perfect companion this weekend. i walked into an atlanta value village and it was waiting for me right at the front door. how could i say no! after a face lift with new wiring and some white spray paint, it will be better than ever.

Friday, November 20, 2009

ice atlanta is happening this weekend. if you are in atlanta, you should definitely check it out. i went to one of their may festivals at centennial olympic park and it was fabulous. the art is fabulous, the swag is fabulous and the people are fabulous - what more can i say!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

sales and storybooks

i spent my morning heading to an estate sale that was a total bust. hardly anything for sale and it was all under a tent in the driveway. maybe it's just me, but isn't snooping inside of the house one of the main reasons to go to an estate sale! what i did find is the cutest little storybook house a little bit down the road. the entire house is probably the size of a one car garage, maybe smaller, but oh so cute. i dream of one day having an office in a space like this. a building all to myself that has a commute no longer than the walk across my yard.
since i turned up empty with the sale, i made a pit-stop at the local goodwill and found these adorable sheets. the sheets have the sweetest trim and i must say they are calling out for me to make aprons out of them. i can see it now, the trim running along the bottom of the apron with a hand stitched floral pocket.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

doors and jewelry

i have an affinity for glass doorknobs, i always have. they add such warmth and are the perfect jewelry for french doors! i scoured a bunch of atlanta flea markets and didn't find any so i bought these off of ebay. although they aren't perfect (like the description said they were :), they are definitely better than any reproduction that i could have bought at home depot. the metal finish is perfectly antiqued and they are the right size for my narrow office doors.

my office move into our (old) downstairs living room is almost complete. we had french doors installed to keep the munchkins out and i am just getting around to painting them. i used to be able to paint all day every day, but since my experience with our first house which was barely 1100 sq ft and included 14 doors (no lie!), i must say i hate painting doors. and yes, hate is a very strong word as i am constantly reminding the munchkins, but i really hate it! so it might take me more than a few days to finish these babies and add their jewelry, but after that, it will be time to unveil the new space. which, have i mentioned, i love, love, love!

Monday, November 16, 2009

aprons and another show

i have been working hard to get ready for another show on sunday, november 29th from 1-4 at serenbe in palmetto georgia. if you have never been here, it is definitely worth the trip. this community is simply beautiful and inspiring and i could not do it justice by explaining it here - you'll just have to come out and have a look for yourself.

last night the productivity bug hit me and i finished all 20 craft aprons that i had cut. seriously, it feels so good to check things off my list that i don't know why i ever procrastinate! these aprons are a big hit with the vendors at each festival i attend. at the end of a show, when everyone is packing up is when i am the busiest with crafters running over. they are perfect to hold cash, checks, pens and your cell phone while you are selling your wares.

whatever doesn't sell will be available on my etsy site the beginning of december. that is, once i find someone to model them for me. my current model is preggo and probably won't want to wrap these things around her belly!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

100th post and giveaway

i am coming up on my 100th post and in celebration, i am having my first giveaway! the winner will be gifted with one of my felted poinsettia ornaments. all you have to do to enter is "follow" me between now and friday, november 27th. that's it, just click the follow button in the right hand column and you are entered. i will post the winner on saturday the 28th. thanks for all your support and feedback throughout the first year of this blog!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

junk and pearls

my friend joy and i hit a local estate sale today and had so much fun playing dress up (that's me on the left). i am definitely not a girly girl who spent her youth dressing up as a princess, but in my adulthood, i definitely have a weakness for shoes and jewelry. when miss jean passed away, she left the most gorgeous jewelry. the lady who ran the sale said that she was married 3 times and had no children. by the looks of her closet and the amount of crystal decanters for sale, she must have lived one hell of a life.

we each picked up some fabulous pearls which were love at first sight. i told joy that i need partial custody of hers since i had the misfortune of her eyeing them first. we are very diplomatic about not fighting over pieces. what else are you going to do when you shop with someone who has the same taste as you!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

illustration and art

i just signed up for an art class at the callanwolde fine arts center in atlanta and couldn't be more excited. come january, i will be exploring the world of botanical illustration. i really have no idea why i am drawn to creative disciplines that conjure up white haired women in their 80s all sitting in a circle, but such is life. maybe i am really one of those white haired women trapped in a 34 year old body!

i have been eyeing this class for years now and with the munchkins in school and me having the ability to make my own work hours, there is no time like the present. so i am going to dust off my fabulous micron pens and go buy a new drawing pad.

and also pray that the creative gods send someone for me to be chummy with in the class :)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Thursday, November 5, 2009

ornaments and memories

i don't know what bug has gotten into me, but i can't stop making christmas ornaments! for once, i am ahead of the game and not stressing out days before christmas.

i started a tradition when each of my boys was born to make an ornament for them every year. not cutesy baby ornaments, but real grown up hand-crafted ones. i have 2 boxes (one for each) tucked away in the attic christmas bins. each year, i deposit their ornament in and the goal is that when they grow up and start living on their own, they will already have love and memories to fill up their first tree.

next on my ornament extravaganza? deer and gingerbread men courtesy of some brown felted sweaters.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

sweaters and felting

i've had some sweaters hanging around since high school and yesterday i put them to good use! felting is something i have wanted to try for a few years now and i am so excited that i finally jumped in. i researched a couple of different techniques, but it is really as easy as washing a few times on hot and drying. it does clog up your washer a bit, so if this becomes a new hobby for me, i might take my sweaters down to the local laundromat and ruin their machines.

the sweaters were all different - the pink one, i ran through the washing machine twice and the one on the far right went through 4 times. i guess it all depends on the individual sweater.

now if you'll excuse me, i have a lot of christmas ornaments to cut out of this beautiful felt.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

halloween and a lazy day

happy halloween (a day late :). we will be hanging around the house today in a sugar coma. hope some of you are a little more productive with this beautiful sunday!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

plum, pomegranate and/or amethyst?

my husband came home from work today to find the front door painted purple. sometimes i feel bad for him having to live with my visions :)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

office and christmas sneak peek

i have been busy moving my office downstairs this week, that is when i haven't been asleep in bed! my old office was in an extra bedroom upstairs, and the new space is in the front living room downstairs. i wasn't sure of the idea at first, but now i love the space. sunlight floods the room and i actually want to be more creative in this room - which is a struggle for me these days! it's not all finished, but i have added some photos as a sneak peak.

the huge yard sale lamp i blogged about a few weeks ago has received a new coat of white paint and some crystals and looks perfect on my glass ikea desk.

a few years ago, we built bookshelves which line one entire wall of the room, which i am very happy about since i have a lot of art supplies!

and here is my first order of creative business in the new space. i have a holiday show coming up at the end of november and i hope the shoppers love these christmas tree ornaments as much as i do. the old sheet music and metallic pipe cleaners create such a vintage look.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

what in the world?

i make it a point not to put my kids on this blog, but this time, i couldn't resist. i pick my cute adorable munchkin #2 up from pre-k yesterday and they handed me an envelope full of photos. let me state for the record that these are photos we did NOT purchase and did NOT even know they were taking. in fact, we are kind of an oddity that we don't have professional photos of our kids taken. i prefer a candid journalistic style when it comes to photographs and am actually quite frightened by any posed ones i see, and rarely if ever buy school shots. that being said, seriously, what were these "professionals" thinking! munchkin #2 told me that the pants slipped on over the ones they were wearing. phew! for a second, i envisioned 20 little kids stripped down all waiting for their turn in these polyester pants. honestly, i can't stop laughing. this has got to be the funniest thing i have ever seen. from the grecian stand to the fake ivy to his bare feet it is a total train wreck.

but i have to admit that my little ones cuteness still shines through.

oh, and the best part, my husband tells me that when i was in london, they called him into the school to show him different shots they took and one pose had my son at a baby grand piano in this outfit. to quote rachel zoe, "i die"!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

treasury and me

i was on the etsy homepage in a treasury yesterday and i didn't even know it! thankfully a very sweet etsy seller emailed me this screen grab. to anyone closely tied to etsy, you know what a big deal this is. to a non-etsian, let's just say that it is a huge validation that the work you create is well liked.
now i will get back to doing a little happy dance :)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

newest project and obsession

i found this sewing machine table for $15 dollars at a yard sale recently. i absolutely love it's retro lines and i can't wait to get started in its rehab. lately i have been having the hardest time repainting furniture. not the actual painting part, but the fact that when i am finished, it doesn't seem to be very durable. this time, i think i am going to bite the bullet and have it professionally painted. i found a shop in town that will finish your piece with a custom colored lacquer. perfect! now the question is "how much is this luxury going to cost me?"

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

christmas stockings and treats

here is a sneak peek at some christmas stockings that i will be adding to my etsy shop shortly. the stockings are made up of chenille, candy cane inspired piping and vintage buttons all lovingly hand sewn by yours truly.

Monday, October 5, 2009

a little love and a flower sticker

i bought this table at a yard sale in the spring. i already have an old metal typewriter table, the kind where the sides fold up, that i painted red as a bed side table for my son's room. when i saw this table, i knew i had to have it as well, plus the $3 price tag didn't hurt. the coolest part is that you can pull up on the black handles and the table folds in half, very easily and it becomes really skinny. the top of the table did come with some rusty scratched parts, but i thought i could spray paint it and all would be good. upon closer inspection, i decided not to spray paint it because the entire piece is held together with grommets, not screws. because of the grommets, i wouldn't be able to take it apart to get a clean paint job.

instead, i ordered a lovely vinyl flower decal from this etsy store and positioned it so the decal covered as many of the scratches as it could. i also had some left over white vinyl mini circles that i placed around the top for more visual interest.

i love how it turned out, i am just bummed that i didn't take a close-up before photo!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

fall and fairs

this weekend was the bi-annual cotton pickin' fair in gay, georgia, which meant i spent all day saturday going to yard sales along the fair route. i love heading out early in the morning with a packed lunch and a car full of blankets and tools because you never know what you will find and need to take apart to fit in your car! i found this amazing blue carnival glass lamp at a little sale off the beaten path - literally, my car is filthy from the gravel road. i know exactly how to update it and i can't wait to share photos of its transformation. we have been toying with the idea of moving my office to the first floor so i can be more available to the little munchkins in this house. i have been hesitant because i couldn't see the space in my head, but now, thanks to this lamp, i have the entire room planned out.

my biggest purchase of the day was an old 6ft by 4 foot metal shelving rack. i have been wanting to change my festival displays up a bit and this piece is perfect. it has 5 shelves, each progressively deeper as you reach the bottom. the shelves will showcase my shades perfectly while getting them off the table away from little sticky hands :) the best part is the thin metal strips that i can slide custom designed pricing tags and Linwood Avenue signage into. we finally figured out how to collapse the piece and get it into my trunk with only minor damage to my car (ooops). i am hoping that my plan to bungee it onto the top rack of my car on festival days will go more smoothly! now, the only question i have is what color i should paint it!!!

Friday, October 2, 2009

custom made and beautiful

i am loving this batch of aprons i recently finished for a custom order. they are from one of amy butler's fabric collections and the different patterns work together beautifully (as she always plans!).

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

walking and loving

i am back, safe & sound, exhausted, drained and in love with london all over again. the first time i visited this amazing city was in my early 20's. i was there for 5 weeks and visited every tourist spot in existence. this time around, i really wanted to experience the city by walking and getting lost. looking with my eyes, not necessarily through a camera lens. my plan turned out better than i thought when one of my traveling partners discovered her camera was broken. jessica is the face behind peachtree photography and i was all too happy to lend her my camera - her beautiful visions on my memory card, it couldn't get any better.

graffiti off the beaten path of brick lane. this eclectic area was by far my favorite experience of the trip. basement antique/thrift stores, vintage clothing, craft vendor stalls. a little bit of my home abroad.

art everywhere.

lovely house in notting hill. within the city limits, there is very little personal green space. the small garden vignettes you pass by are so amazingly beautiful, and make you realize that you don't need a lot to have beauty. as americans, we are constantly being drilled with the notion that bigger is better. when you travel abroad, you realize how completely misled this thinking is.

glass goblets that i fell in love with.

a bit strange taking photos of someones knickers, i know, but this was such a completely european moment, we couldn't pass it by.

gorgeous chandeliers at portobello market. and yes, it was very difficult for me not to pack every one of these up and buy a return flight home for them!

british royal academy.

macaroons at a fancy corner bakery by the royal academy.

pocket watches in notting hill.

installation artwork outside the waterloo station (i think). made of paper shipping cartons.

jessica and i on the millenium bridge on our last day.
(thanks to the nice guy taking our photo, much appreciated!)


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