Friday, November 27, 2015

Friday Finds #2

I hope my American friends had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I hope everyone all over has had a great week. It's officially the start of the holiday season! I took some time today to retrieve our Christmas decorations and set a few out around the house. Now, to get and decorate a tree for the first time in many, many years.

Anyway, I'm popping in to share some more Friday Finds. If you didn't see my first Friday Finds post last week, let me clue you in on what I'm doing. I want to share some of the coolness I find in thrift stores, on my property, or wherever.

This time around I simply want to share some of the beauty and awesomeness I found while Pat and I hiked our own property last weekend.
This pink camellia bud spurred the whole hike. I spotted it and wanted to explore. So, explore we did!

Just inside the woods, I spied an old downed log, or tree stump, or some other kind of wood with a beautiful green mossy cover.

On the other side of the log, stump, wood thing was this large critter hole. In fact, we found holes like this all over the property. We've got a serious armadillo problem I think.

Just past the hole was this gorgeous oak tree, with a little magnolia on the side. I've admired it from the yard, but it's even more beautiful up close.

On the way to the other side of the property, we stopped to poke out heads into one of the sheds. Way at the back was this scale on a shelf. I LOVE IT! I had Pat grab it for me, and I drug it over to the barn to clean up later.

As we hiked and explored and checked out old trails at the back of the property, I looked down to see this delicate skeleton leaf. I scooped it up and carefully carried the fragile foliage through the woods as we finished up our adventure.

Before we left the woods, I quickly snapped a picture of the beautiful day we had been blessed with so I could share it with you wherever you are.

What have you discovered lately in your own back yard?

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Thanksgiving Rambles

I'm writing this on Thanksgiving eve as my sweet potatoes bubble away on the stove so I can pre-make sweet potato casserole for tomorrow's big event. While I have a scant few minutes of down time, I thought I'd pop in with a rambling, pondering, things I've found lately pos.

First,

Now for the ramblings/pomderings
**I'm so tired of seeing commercials for shops that AREN'T going to be open on Thanksgiving. Like it's some big, special thing. It wasn't until last year (as I remember. . .could be fuzzy) a few shops decided to be open on Thanksgiving. And now these other shops are all, "Hey, look at us! We're going to do the same thing we've ALWAYS done, but now we want you to be proud of us for it." WTH!? It just bothers me.

** I was talking to my niece about 80s music and I realized that I know we call the 1920s the 20s and the 1970s the 70s, and so on. . .but what to we call the 2000s? The naughts? The zeros? The nothings? What about the 2010s? The tens? The teens? I'm baffled. anybody got a good answer?

** So, I'm hosting Thanksgiving at my house - for the first time EVER tomorrow. I'm so excited but shocked by the prospect that I think I've been in denial. I keep thinking it's not really going to happen and thus I haven't really been busting my butt to get anything done (I didn't start cleaning the house in earnest until today. I haven't made any decorations. And, I'm not super stressed about the food. . .well, not until I realized that I hadn't planned any munchies/relish tray/appetizers. Pat calmed me down and we came up with a plan) Anyway, in this whole semi-getting-ready process I've unpacked my good china (inherited)  that I've never eaten from and some stemware (also inherited) but then realized that Pat and I only have a single set of flatware. . .enough for four. We never inherited any flatware, we had to go shopping! And now that I feel like I'm starting to get everything handled, I kinda wanted to plan something insane and memorable just in case I never get to host again but am afraid that may be the cause of me never hosting again. This is going to be quite the experience. I kinda want everyone to wear pilgrim hats then go spread smallpox to the neighbors (since we're new to the neighborhood and all.) Anyway, wish me luck!

**I stumbled on this video the other day and just had to share. #4 is my favorite one for sure - Pat and I quote it all the time.


**My family has its own share of funny Thanksgiving moments. My favorite is probably the time my aunt went to give grace and said the Pledge of Allegiance instead. We tease her about it to this day.

** Finally, I have so very much to be thankful for. My heart overflows with love from my family and friends, a dream house over my head, and plenty of food in my kitchen. I wish for all of you the very best. Happy Thanksgiving!!


Monday, November 23, 2015

Altered Playing Cards for Swap (way back in August)

I've mentioned a few times that I'm part of a Facebook group that often does swaps. . .actually, that's kinda the whole point of the group. Anyway, because of the move and everything, I'm very far behind in sharing what I've made and sent and all. Immediately before the move, I finished and sent off my August altered playing card swap. I even recorded my process of making them.

Here's the first of the four videos of the process. If you click over to the video, you'll find the links to the other three in the description, or here; Video 2, Video 3, and Video 4.


Of course, if you're not a video-watching kinda person - here are pictures of the cards I created for the swap.



I also did a video for the October swap and am currently working on the November cards. I thought it was best that I take a break from all the creating to actually catch up a little and share August's with you. Dang, that moving thing really does make an impact on getting things done. I'm still not sure I'll ever catch up, but I'm working on it.

Oh, and if you want to see some of the other cards I've made for similar swaps you can find them in blog posts here and here.

I hope you had a wonderful weekend and enjoy the week ahead.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Friday Finds #1

Because I simply cannot help myself, I've come up with yet another recurring feature to share with y'all: Friday Finds!

Basically, I want to show you some of the things I've bought, uncovered, and/or discovered. That leaves it open as to whether I found it in a thrift store, on the property, or pretty much anywhere. I've already got several ideas lined up for this feature. I'm going to start by showing you what I found (and kept) on our recent shed purge.

With the new house came several out-buildings. One of them is a raised, prefab shed that Pat want to use as his workshop.

The previous owner left a TON of stuff in it though. As such, we had to go through all of it and decide what was trash, to be donated, or kept. It was almost fun, though kinda gross. Here's a few shots of what we had to sort through.



Once all the sorting was done, here's what I ended up personally keeping:
Some mussed up paintbrushes and a roll of copper wire (score!); 

random small bits: little wrenches, copper pipe, paintbrushes, tiny pencil, tiny hand drill, and an old-fashioned syringe (I don't even know); 

really cool hardware pieces - but only the ones with a nice patina on them;

and a set of silver spoons and a brass metal of some sort.

In addition to what's pictured, there was a large box of whole sheets of foam core, the plastic organizer that stored the hardware, and a brass-framed mirror.

The shed contained all kinds of other treasures - old lamps and a chandelier, filing cabinets, tool chests, nuts and bolts, and a plethora of other items. However, we just can't keep it all. So, it's loaded up to be donated for someone else to treasure.

Now, I just need to use these items and not hoard them away in the craft room. Ha! Treasure hunting on our own property is so fun (and economical!). What treasures have you found lately?

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Days of My Craft Desk | Episode 1 (WOYWW)

I know I've mentioned here somewhere how much I love seeing other artists' craft rooms, workbenches, and creative spaces in general. I've been lax in sharing my own as I'm still not sure how this new space will work for me. However, I don't mind sharing my desk. In fact, I'm going to try a recurring feature giving you peeks of what's on my desk through a single day. Now, this can range from beady to crafty to paperwork-y, and that's just in the course of one day! And, because I'm a dork - I have to name it something corny.

Like beads rolling across the studio floor, these are the Days of My Craft Desk.  


In this first installment, let me start by sharing just how clean and pure my craft desk can be.

Yet, at other times it's quite dirty - piled high with miscellaneous craft supplies, projects, and general junk.

Now, let's begin.
Yesterday's desk was pure beady goodness all day long. It started out with the sorting of some broken jewelry acquired at an antique store.

By mid-day, actual jewelry was being made for a silent auction.

After lunch, a large jar of 'bead soup' was sorted into separate palettes for more silent auction projects.

Before the lights went off in the craft room, this was the bead desk's shameful state. Beads were scattered everywhere as bangles were being created from the bead soup palettes.

Come back later to see what else happens in Days of My Craft Desk!

Ha, see. . . I'm a huge dork, but I like this format so much. I'm sure I'll be sharing many more days. Of course, I'd like to know what you think of it too. Please let me know before I embarrass myself any more!

I'm also linking up at Stamping Ground for What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday

Friday, November 13, 2015

My New Display at Southern Antiques and Accents

I know I've been talking about my new display at Southern Antiques and Accents in Fairhope for over a week now, and I moved in a week ago. I guess it's about time to show it to you! Let me preface this by telling you that renovations at the shop are in progress so it was hard to get a good angle to photograph the booth. As well, I know the booth needs a little work - I'm working on it!

Here we go!
This is the majority of the display - all but the bottom shelf. I made the sign with foam board, dictionary pages, and burlap letters. I may share how I made it if you're interested.

This was a better angle that shows the bottom few shelves.

Now I'll take you shelf-by-shelf (excluding the sign).

I tried to divide the jewelry into sections or themes, but found that harder than I thought. This one has a bit of a blue theme to it. Everything is pushed up to the front of the shelf because it's high up, and I want customers to be able to see and reach the items.

The next shelf down consists of items that had an autumn feel to me. Unfortunately, the display for this one isn't so great. I know I need some more height in the back right. Like I said, I'm working on it!

Below that one, and a bit below eye level is this shelf with the chalkboard mirror I made. There's not much of a theme with this one except colorful mixed media.

Second from the bottom is this shelf - again with not much of a theme. I think I was going mostly for a 'casual' jewelry theme here but a couple of the necklaces don't really fit in with that line of thought. The layout is a little flat too. . .

Finally, the bottom shelf has button bracelets and button rings along with a few more fairly casual necklaces. It was very difficult to photograph so I'll try to get in there later for better pics once the moving things around phase is done.

So, that's my booth! I'm working on a few other ways to display the pieces and will share those with y'all when I get them done. If you're in Fairhope, you should definitely stop in at Southern Antiques and Accents. There's so much to explore and so much variety - not just my handmade jewelry.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

DIY Chalkboard with Mirror Tutorial

So, I moved into my new space at Southern Antiques and Accents. There's still a little work to be done on the booth, but I definitely like how it's coming together. In preparation for the move, I did make a new, larger sign and (per the shop owner's suggestion) a small mirror for the display.

It took a little time for me to decide what to do for the mirror. I played with buttons, a larger mirror, some small found objects, and other options as ideas sprung into my head. However, the shop owner did say something about chalk. . .  She could have said chalk paint, but I immediately envisioned a chalkboard.

To create my vision, I started by spreading some chalkboard paint onto an 8x10 canvas board. I followed the direction for the chalkboard paint I had (sand first coat, apply 2-3 layers, wait an hour between coats, scribble chalk all over last coat.) Follow the directions on your chalkboard paint.

Gather the rest of your supplies. I used a framed mirror from the Dollar Tree ($1), some lacy tape from the Dollar Tree ($1), and metal filigree corners from Michael's ($3.99 for 16 - before coupon). I found these in the scrapbook section of the store. I also used E6000 glue (not pictured here).

Remove the mirror from the frame, and apply the lacy tape around the edges.

Once you've covered all four edges with the tape, select which of the metal corners you want to use (I picked the bright, pewter-like ones.)

Glue the metal corners onto the corners of the mirror, letting them hang over the edges a little to cover the sharp.

Spread more E6000 on the back of the mirror and place onto the chalkboard. Allow it to set before moving onto the next step.

Use the backer from the framed mirror for this final step.

Glue the backer/stand onto the back of the board. Allow glue to dry.

Use chalk or a chalk marker to write your message.

I placed my mirror on one shelf in my new display. I'll share more of the display later.

How will you use your new mirror?

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Southern Antiques and Accents | November Feature

I've decided to do a regular post here that features a few of the items I have for sale at Southern Antiques and Accents. I'll likely do this monthly, but it could be more often depending on how much I switch up the display.

Before I show off today's features, let me share some news. Yesterday when I went to add a few items, I was greeted with happy news. My display is moving into a new, more open spot. Currently, my jewelry is housed in a glass case that makes it hard for customers to really get a feel for my pieces.

Later this week I'll be moving into the center column of these open shelves.

The shelves will give customers a chance to pick up and examine my creations without having to wait for someone else to retrieve them. However, this also means that I have to figure out a new sign and display in just a few days. Yes, I'm freaking out a little.

In any case, let me show you a few items that are currently available at Southern Antiques and Accents.
First is this simple but stunning necklace. The focal was made from a Vintaj arte metal blank that I ran through the Vintaj BigKick I won a few months ago (I should talk about that here at some point huh?). I added some alcohol inks and Pearl-Ex powder before sealing the whole thing. It has amazing depth that you just can't see in pictures. You really should go check it out in person!

Next is a more eclectic piece. The focal is a collage I made some time ago. I paired it with a beautiful handmade lampwork bead that was purchased AGES ago. The chain of the necklace is a mix of glass and stone beads that pull colors from the collaged focal.

Finally, there's this simple necklace made of art beads, a button, and chain. The focal is a Humblebeads polymer clay acorn charm. On the chain is a Gardanne beads (I think!) enamel bead and then a green Gaea ceramic bead. A leather shank button ends this line of elements before the metal chain. The other side of the pendant features antiqued brass chain and a chain of wire wrapped seed beads (hard to see in the picture). It's a lovely Fall necklace.

There's tons more in the case at the moment. I'm not sure how all the pieces will work out in the new display, but rest assured that these three will be there the rest of the month unless they go home with someone else.

Now, to come up with some creative, eye-catching displays for my six cubbies. If you've got some amazing ideas and suggestions, please let me know. I welcome your creative input.