Posts Tagged ‘thrift store finds’

Sorry I’ve been MIA…I have a post I’ve been meaning to publish about the simple pleasures enjoyed on my trip back to CT, but you know how it is when you return back from a week long trip: you hit the ground running once you return and this last week was no exception.

In addition to catching up on orders, I knew I needed to beef up my display at The Barn, so I spent some time this weekend making more magnets (strangely my most popular item there the past two weeks), creating new items and upcycling thrift store finds and painting/embellishing old goods to make them new again.  (Full disclosure, my photos are pretty awful, but I was either in a hurry, forgetting to take photos along the way or trying to dodge customers on a busy holiday, so please bear with my pitiful photos!).

So I painted over a bunch of thrift store frames with chalk paint (a great all-in-one, meaning no stripping/priming needed, paint that is great for distressing; and I painted inside because the huge wildfire in New Mexico made for a very smoky day that would have killed my lungs and eyes and this paint is non-toxic and doesn’t smell one bit)…

And for the large frame, I added strings of wire…

Which I then hung some vintage inspired magnets in my booth:

I made two new paper cone wreaths, including this star-shaped one (which I’m now not sure should be considered a wreath?)

Embellished simple ho-hum buckets with some paint, distressing and vintage hardware…

Painted some chicken wire baskets and whitewashed/embellished a birdhouse that was originally painted in hideous colors…and even painted and distressed this awful looking thrift store find:

Into this (wish I took more photos of the top but just got so busy and forgot…but the curves/lines and legs on this baby looked great painted over):

(Note I forgot to add the hardware knob prior to taking this picture!  Ay, it was a bad weekend for photos; will try to remember to take more before, during and after photos next time!)  This is my first piece of painted/distressed furniture (after spending a year reading/learning/following blogs and practicing on frames and smaller objects).  That’s it.  I’m addicted and can’t stop looking at furniture in thrift stores and imagining how I can turn pieces into something new!

After we reset my booth and added new items, we spent the rest of the day antique shopping and hitting up all the thrift stores on our path as many of them had 50% storewide sales because of the holiday.  Even ran into Mondo, the winner of Project Runway All Stars in a Denver thrift store!  Found a lot of great things and will share later in the week.

If you follow my artwork and are wondering why I haven’t posted anything recently, it’s because I haven’t painted in several weeks.  If you’ve followed me for a while you know that I’m not a paint-every-day kind of girl.  I have ebbs and flows…weeks of massive creation followed by sometimes long breaks.  I’m a creative girl and painting/collaging is just one of the many things I do to feed my creative inclinations (as evidenced above).  Sometimes I just feel like focusing on papercrafting, sometimes its painting things (rather than painting art), sometimes it’s cooking/baking; I try to follow my muse and wherever it takes me.  So my artwork will probably come back to me in a wave in the near future.  For now, I’m having fun going back to my roots and upcycling/making new uses out of old things.

Hope you all had a nice long weekend!

Read Full Post »

Oh, I’ve been on a spending bender.  The kind that even makes me feel a little woozy.  You see, I’ve found Craigslist.  I mean, I’ve used Craigslist in the past, but now I check it daily.  Baaaad.  And I also went to about 10, yes 10, garage/yard sales last weekend.  It’s really addicting, but I’ve got to watch my budget!!

The good news is that I didn’t really break the bank.  I’ve spent about $150 worth and all of it reused/old stuff, so nothing new and I’m giving second life to items.  And I’m having FUN! (but really, I’ve got to watch it!)

Anywho…I’ve been so busy working on projects that I didn’t paint anything for my shop…more for decor and possible items to sell down the road in my goodies shop as upcycled goods.  I’ve been able to get so much purchased and so many projects worked on that this will just have to be a multi-post.

Alright, enough yappy…here are the goods and transformations:

First I found this really heavy, albeit gaudy wood frame at the antique store a couple weeks back.

And painted/distressed it:

I love how the ornate corners pop out when distressed…

This guy was painted with a $1 quart of “oops” paint at the hardware store (love that!) and then a glaze (3 parts water to 1 part brown paint – I only use about 1 tbsp. water to 1 tsp. paint) was applied over and then wiped off before drying to give it that grungy/rustic look.  It came as just the open frame and I’m going to display it open as well for that shabby chic look.

I also had this photo frame I found at the thrift store for $2.

Actually not bad at all…but nothing is safe from me and my desire to PAINT!!

You can’t really tell, but it’s a light sage green (also an oops paint find).  But, this frame came with glass, so I painted right over it with a magnetic primer followed by chalkboard paint and voila – it’s now a framed magnetic chalkboard!

But then I decided to replace this odd ceramic tray on our dresser with it and put assorted metal hardware finds on it (as well as a great pair of “XO” letterpress letters) – of course, all used and very vintage.

Tomorrow I’ll show you more of how the rest of our dresser got transformed to fit our new look.  But first, another frame!!

This one, be-still-my-heart, was given to me free when I bought a pair of antique doors last year on Craiglist (and I’ll be showing you in another week or two just how those doors are being used!).  The woman who sold me her 1907 doors asked if I would want this gorgeous gilded frame?  Um, yes please!!

As you can see, I almost forgot to show you the before!

Don’t mind my old shower curtain turned drop cloth.

More beautiful, ornate corners…

I love the large cracks in the frame…shows its age but still has lots of life left to it!

I originally wanted to use it to frame my boring corkboard and just may do that in the future; but meantime, I love the look of empty frames on a shelf/mantle/tall dresser (don’t mind the terra cotta paint, it’s going to get a re-do too!)

Phew, and I’m not even a quarter of the way done showing you everything.  That’s why my dining room table/project area looks like this…

Oy vay.  I can hear my french mother groaning 2,000 miles away at my sharing this with you all.  What’s that saying about a well kept house is a sign of a misspent life?  ;)

Come back tomorrow for more updates!

Read Full Post »

I may sometimes come across as all zipped up.  Let me assure you, this is most often not the case.  Especially when it comes to artwork, I am very messy, jumping from one thing to the next, working on creative projects then stopping to fill and package an order.  I have creative ADD.  And as much as I try (I really do!) to clean up after each task or maintain daily, I often approach cleaning with an all or nothing point of view.  It amasses, it piles up, then I go through like a Tasmanian devil and get this place spotless.

Right now, I’m in the former stage.  My studio is wrecked and I’ve now taken over the dining room table, which is traditionally my painting spot.  Here’s the overwhelming stage that it’s currently in:

Ouch; today is cleaning day…I mean the whole dang house!  As an aside check out these great finds from the thrift store.  This place has now become my crack.

A great big ball o’twine (don’t laugh, I use this often!):

Great copper-esque metallic frames (I found 4 and they originally were mirrors but I removed them out and plan to use these to frame some artwork):

As well as wooden frames that I plan to distress and also use to frame some pieces.  Although I failed to take a picture of the before, this frame was formerly dark green and held a glass covered image of a illustration of an herb.  I painted over that image which was on a mat, distressed the frame and here’s what I came up with.  Voila, recycled art:

"She has music in her heart"

I’ll be adding this lady to my Etsy shop very soon as she’s all done (my other works still need finishing up).  But before that I want to scan her so that I can sell the prints in the future.  Now if only I can find my thumb drive…

Read Full Post »