Monday, April 29, 2013

Got Dirt?

 I do!  The soil for the new garden plot was delivered this morning and the husband worked all day to get the trellis for the peas put up and the vegetable starts planted.  It was cool and a little drizzly so a great day for planting.  All we have left now is the barrier cloth and bark on the ground around the sides - and hopefully lots of fresh veggies to eat!
 I got out to one estate sale and was able to pick up a few fun things.  It was a paper kind of day.
 A full box of vintage cocktail napkins.  I love that they have instructions!  These will be headed to my Etsy.
 Two 1952 crochet books of doll patterns.  I'm sure someone will have some fun with these.
 An unopened pack of Dennison baggage tags, a 1948 instruction book for making flowers with Dennison crepe paper and an instruction book for tin can crafts.  I always wondered how they made those stars and little chairs.
I also got a stack of sewing patterns and four 1960s copies of Family Circle magazine.  I love looking through the ads in those old magazines!
Must go back out and watch the garden grown now.  8+)

Sunday, April 28, 2013

A Hot Mess

 How did it get to be Sunday night already??  I am behind on posting but I spent some time playing in the art room, quality time in the garden and even some button sorting and little new junk this week.  I will start catching up with this Dye-Na-Flow project.  It was a fun experiment that turned in to a hot mess!
 This is what I started with.  I got this jacket many months ago at The Bins.  It is too big for me but I still kept it, thinking I could do SOMETHING with it.
 It is 100% Rayon so I knew it wouldn't hold up to putting it into a hot pot of Rit for the background color.  I mixed Dye-Na-Flow with water in a spray bottle, hung the jacket from our apple tree and misted it until I got the "sky" look I was going for.  What, everybody doesn't hand their clothes in a tree and spray paint them??
 Next, I started painting with a paint brush and Dye-Na-Flow straight from the bottle.  So far, so good.
 The directions I found online said to apply it to damp fabric.  This is where things started to go south.  I had in mind to follow the designs on the fabric but the paint bled WAY more than I was expecting, completely out of control really.  If I had it to do again I would work on dry fabric for more control.
Since it didn't fit me anyway, it was really no loss and a good learning experience.  There are parts I really like so I will cut it up to use in fabric collages.
Tomorrow the dirt (excuse me, SOIL) for the raised vegetable garden will be delivered - yippee!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Making It My Own and Garden Progress

 I picked up this jacket at the VOA a couple of weeks ago and added some lace to the hem and the sleeves to make it my own.  Not a big change, just a little pizazz.  I thought about putting lace around the collar, too, but decided to keep it simple.  It's not my style to have a doily appliqued on my back.  I might switch out the buttons one of these days but for now it is done.
 This is "as found".  I thought it had good bones and love the color.  I am also working on the white jacket I mentioned in the post about the Dye-Na-Flow dyes.  I didn't realize what a score they were at The Bins until I went to purchase more colors - yikes!
A little more progress on the garden remodel.  This is a cold frame for starting seeds.  We picked up the vintage windows at the antique mall, I painted them, and the husband built the box to fit.  The dirt will arrive next Monday so we are getting close now.
It is a beautiful day here in Portland but I know that isn't the case for all of you.  Take good care and be safe!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

"Sweaty" Buttons...

 ... as Mike and Frank would say!  These buttons were especially dirty with a lot of broken buttons and crumbled sick buttons.  I had to work hard at the rescue, sometimes with a toothbrush, but there were treasures to be had and they cleaned up pretty nice.
 This is what I started with.  No complaints on the eBay seller - this is just the way I like to get them.  A real button box.

 Love, love those three glass balls.  They remind me of the claw-feet on vintage furniture.
 An amazing art-deco style green Lucite button with a black top. I am not really sure if this is Lucite or not.  Does anyone know if there was a transparent plastic earlier than Lucite?
I find Scout buttons from time to time but they are always plastic.  These are the first metal ones I have found.
Pretty MOP and those three red plastic buttons are a design I haven't seen before.  They are ball-shaped sew-through with two holes visible from the top and bottom.
I love the thrill of the hunt and clearly don't mind kissing a few frogs!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Altered Book Pages And A Surprise In The Mail

 I took some time to work in my altered quote book - my relaxation, you know.  Thank you to Z at Old Grey Mare for the quote on the right. I love those words and they are appropriate in the literal sense as I'm working on the garden remodel, as well.
The page on the left was a bit of a struggle but play is what my book is all about.  I tried to write on top of a pretty piece of very vintage wallpaper and the pen dug in and ate whatever finish they used to make it washable back in the day.  Note to self, seal it with some matte medium next time!
 I received the most precious gift in the mail last week.  I met Rachel Stewart during the Grow Your Blog Party back in January.  She gifted me with the beautiful pair of earrings. Naturally, I adore the bird theme!
The blue earrings are perfect for me.  Rachel is a Tennessee based jewelry designer and she does excellent work.  You can see more of her designs on her website.  Thank you Rachel!
A special note for Linda....   I could not find any contact information to respond directly to your comment on my recent post.  The Volunteers Of America retail store is called Thrift It and it is located at 2330 SE 182nd Avenue.  Have fun shopping!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Tiny Pickings

 I got out to one estate sale and a swing through the VOA yesterday.  The pickings were all tiny but it was fun digging for them and I got some fun things.
 Vintage plastic lace coasters, thimbles, bling, a pincushion and a strawberry and three of the tiniest little cookie cutters I have ever seen. I think they must be from a child's toy baking set. I love the rusty rabbit the best!  I have already soaked the sweet crochet potholder and the stain DID come out - yay!
 Plastic cake decorations and another tea ball.  Oh-oh, that's three now.  A book of old checks and the sweetest little box of "David's birth announcements and shower cards".  That kind of stuff always tugs my heart strings.  The box even has the handwritten list of names and addresses and the gift list.
 Yes, I got another satin dresser box.  I have room for just two or three more and my cabinet will be filled.  I also got three more tape measures.  That is one of those accidental collections I'm going to have to snap a picture of one of these day.  Did you notice the antique hair crimper?  We have no business complaining now days!
 And a birdie in a nest just because I cannot resist a birdie.  This one is a nice size.  It is laying on top of a big pile of ruffled trim.
A little closer look at my new friend.
I have been busy all weekend painting windows for the new cold frame and cleaning the attic.  I could feel my house breath a sigh of relief at all the weight I hauled out of the attic.  I treated myself to a long weekend so I'm hoping to get out to the antique mall tomorrow to check out their Spring Home and Garden show that started on Friday.  There is an up side to rainy days off!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Spring is Springing

 I have shown you pictures of the Dinosaur Food (gunnera) in mid-Summer when it is already huge so I thought you might like to see it when it "springs" to life.  It dies back when it frosts in the Fall.  I saw off all the huge leaves and we wait anxiously for signs of growth when Spring arrives.  Right now these leaves are about the size of my hand up to the size of a dinner plate.  It went from nothing to this in about 10 days.  Amazing!
 This is how the emerging leaves look.  That thing just left of center, behind the leaves, is one of those "blooms" that will eventually grow to about 36" in height.
 It shares space with the dratted ferns that spread like weeds around here.  The ferns will inherit the earth.  Seriously.  This gives you a close look at the spines on the Dino Food stalks, too.  Uniquely evolved to catch the rain in the huge leaves and channel it down the stock to the root.
More progress on the new raised garden bed.  We are just about ready for soil, just in the nick of time.  Spring is springing around here!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

An Experiment and Some Garden Progress

I scored 11 barely-used jars of Dye-Na-Flow at The Bins last Summer and I have been meaning to try using them.  I have a white jacket type thing with woven-in flowers that I thought would be fun to paint but decided to take a test drive on something smaller.  I dampened the doilies and then just dabbed the dye on with a make-up sponge.  It was fun and easy.  The Dye-Na-Flow is washable (at least by hand) and doesn't stiffen the fabric.
 So far, so good, so I tried to get a little fancier.  I like the way the white looks with the magenta border.
 Then I went too far when I tried to color the center.  It would have been okay except I SO do not like the color combination.  I think I could still save it by going back over the blue with some purple, which I don't have.  Everything I have is blues and reds plus one bottle of Ochre which is kind of ugly.  I need purple, green and yellow.  Have any of you used these?
Our son came by tonight and helped move the sides for the raised bed in to position.  This photo is taken from the backyard, looking toward the front, opposite of the others I have posted.  That will be one big box of groceries!  More to come...

Sunday, April 7, 2013

A Little Spice

 Yesterday felt like a contest to see how many things I could tick off my list in one day and I even managed a quick run through the VOA.  In addition to what is in the photo, I also got two cushions for the patio chairs and new garden knives for the husband and son.
I used to make new cushions for the patio chairs every year or two but the thrifts always have plenty of chair cushions and throw pillows so much easier to just throw the dirty ones away and replace.  Leaves more time for gardening and junk shopping...8+)
 This pepper shaker is not Jadeite (dang!), it is painted that beautiful "Grandma Green" and clearly vintage.  The top is aluminum. There are no markings on the bottom.  I know I have seen these before.  Does anyone know what it is called?
 I got two button poke sacks.  LOVE the graphics on this old snap card.  Click it bigger for a closer look and those sweet babies!
Most of the buttons are of the modern novelty type and a little too cute for my tastes but they will be great for spicing up my button lots for Etsy.
There is NO manual labor on my agenda for today.  I hope you are all having a lovely weekend!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

The Garden Remodel - Part 1

 I told you we are working on a garden remodel project and the first phase was completed today.  The new cross-fence is in!  We robbed 20 feet from the unused front side yard by moving the fence forward and putting in a gate so we have access to the front yard from this side.
 This is the "before" picture.  You can see why I didn't want to show it until we made some progress!  The old fence was bent from a snowball bush falling on it during a Winter snowstorm a couple of years ago.  The flower bed on the right side used to be filled with iris (my favorite flower) but I took them out because I couldn't keep it weeded.  The elderly neighbor next door doesn't keep up her yard and the weed seeds just showered into the bed all year long.
 All of these pictures are taken from the front yard, looking in to the back yard.  On the other side of the fence there is a rose garden that has seen better days.  We have already started taking out roses and planning how new ones will be positioned. This is the sod coming out before the fence went in.
 A patch we had to leave so the fence installers could see the locator's marks.  Soon to be gone now!
Stay tuned.  A raised bed for vegetables is coming, as well as replacing the tired roses that are coming out and a new "hedge" of blueberry plants in the old iris bed.
I cannot believe how big the space looks from the back yard.  It is like we got more real estate without moving.  Should have done this years ago.  I have to run back outside now.  My eyes aren't filled up yet!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Amy's Buttons

 Remember that baggie of buttons Amy gifted me with at Plucky Maidens?  Well good things do, indeed, come in small packages!  There were some neat buttons in there and these are "the good stuff"! You can click the pictures for a closer look.
 I always save carved MOP and unusual shapes.  That square shaped button in the center is actually a flat but is cut in such a way that it looks like a cube.
 The large cream colored button with the gold trim is metal.  I had this button once before but it was rusty.  This one is in perfect condition.  The two white cameo buttons are glass.
I think the little doggie is Bakelite.  The glass rose isn't a button at all, it is a flat-back cab.  It is so pretty I couldn't resist showing it.
Speaking of pretty, did you notice the plate the buttons are sitting on?  My Grandmother bought it in 1922.  That would have been when she was 12 years old.  She turned 103 last Monday.  Go Grandma!