Friday, October 30, 2009

Eeek! A Halloween Tour

Since tomorrow is Halloween, and my kids are just bursting at the seams to get into costumes, I thought it would be fun to take a little Halloween tour.  Now, it would be really fun to take you room by room through my house and show you everything that I have done, but it would look something like this...

Yup, you guessed it, we are a Halloween blank canvas.  I'm still trying to unpack boxes here folks, there is not time for halloween decor!  Plus, you saw how many Christmas decorations I have (remember this) I cannot allow myself to start collecting decorations for any other holiday!  So, since my sweet friend Kristi does decorate for Halloween, she invited us in for a tour.  You might remember that we went on a tour of her house earlier this year, but here it is all spookified! 

See those little containers?  They each have an perfect insect specimen in them that either Kristi or her son have collected - freaky cool!

Every well dressed witch has her hat, shoes, and transportation waiting for her by the door!

Spooky sillouettes!  Kristi made this creepy cute creation out of some salvaged architectural pieces, cardboard, pre-made Halloween decor, and Christmas ornaments, and ribbon.  Great combination! 

hocus pocus  -"spelled" out in tiny little vintage letter tiles

Danger!  Poison!

A spider resting on the coral.  No, this spider isn't real!

Lucky #13?  The funny thing is that unlucky 13 really is Kristi's lucky number!

Forks and moss - - so cute!  How does she think these things up?

Oh the details here - - make sure you look at each of the jars and their labels!  So cute!!!!  And the banner?  Fabulous - - these are Kristi's specialty, she custom hand makes them for all occasions and they all have so much detail in them!

Look at those!  It is the perfect blend of creepiness, vintageness, and creativness all displayed together!

Crows anyone?

The bug collection (or at least part of it).  And take a close look at those shells in the birdcage--they're all broken or parts have naturally been worn away, but their shapes are so interesting and some of their hidden beauty has been revealed.  Kristi purposely collected them that way! 

A close up of the nest those crows are watching over (or are trying to get at?).  Remember that Kristi collects nests?  This one was made of lavender and smells so good!  And yes, the eggs are real; the birds abandoned their sweet little nest before the eggs got a chance to hatch.

Thanks so much for taking us through your spookiness, Kristi.  You are always such and inspiration and you motivate me (and others I'm sure) to think outside the box, and be creative!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Lighter and Brighter and Miss 90's

If you have been reading my blog for any amount of time, you will know that since I moved I have been trying very hard to go "lighter and brighter."  A hard task for me at times since I seem to be naturally drawn to the darker, richer colors.  But it has been a fun challenge.  The easiest way to achive this has been by slipcovering my furniture.

Slipcovering is fantastic because you still have your original piece, without any damage done to it, it's kinda like a 2 for 1!  But even better, if you move alot, like we happen to (by the way, I just counted it up the other day... we have been married for 12 years and we have moved 24 times!  Gosh, that's like moving every six months, but in reality we have stayed in most places longer than 6 months!) then slipcovers are fantastic because you can very quickly and easily take them off before the packers come, throw them in the wash and pack them safely in a box yourself.  Then when you get to your new home, you can take it out, have a perfectly clean piece of furniture and if the movers happen to have scratched, dented, ripped, or otherwise mangled your piece, you can be non-stress about it and know you still have a beautiful cover to go on top.  When I make slip covers I do them very custom.  I like to have them look like it is an upholstered piece of furniture.  I know some people really like the loose fit, but for me, I like it to be snug and custom, so I use buttons and velcro to close up any seams that have to be able to open.   Here is one from a past post - - see how fitted it is and how the back is closed up by a row of buttons?

But when it comes to a piece of furniture that you absolutely can not stand the fabric on it, then I think it is time to reupholster!  Such was the case for my project this week.  I found this chair at the Salvation Army for $50. 

Not bad, it was in perfect shape as far as sturdiness, no smells, no odd stains that make you wonder.  It had a fabulous shape, look at the curved back...

It's one drawback?  It's  -"I'm still living in the early 90"s floral upholstery."  It definately was not fitting into "lighter and brighter."

 I did not want to keep Miss 90's current frock, so it was a perfect candidate for reupholstery.  One postive about reupholstery is that it take less fabric than slipcovers so I was able to look through my stash and use one of my fabrics that I have been wanting to use, but I knew I did not have enough for a slipcover. 

What do you think?  Isn't this a fabulous pattern?

And here is Miss 90's after her makeover!  I think she is showing herself quite well and she fits perfectly into my lighter and brighter livingroom makeover.  This room is almost done - - only 2 more slipcovers to go and then the big reveal!!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

A Sneak Peek!

I had to put some sneak peeks on here of some projects I am working on!  First up... a chair before and after.  These chairs were saved from their trip to the trash pile but they obviously needed some work!  The fabric  on these chairs was in horrible condition, not to mention those UGLY legs! 

But look at this fabulous after!  A clean line, femanine, white slipcover.  I wanted to be able to keep the shape the curved top to these chairs, so the slipcover is  more like a jacket with the entire front fitting onto the chair and then closed with an entire row of buttons down the back.

Some closer details

And another sneak peek at a little Halloween  pillow I am working on.  So festive!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Oh, what a sad, sad day at my house :(  My sewing maching has broken down - - broken as in, can't pretend that it is working corectly - - broken as in, can't jerry rig it to make it work - - - broken as in... no sewing for me until it is fixed.    GRRRRR and I was working on so many fun projects right now!!!  I did pull out my old dinosaur machine.  The hamsters that are running around in it to make it go sound very tired and strangely metalic!  So no detailed or exact sewing on that one either.  Now all I have to do is figure out where to take my machine to get it serviced and figure out how to transfer my warranty from the CA shop to wherever the new shop is in VA.  Moving has so many little details that you just don't think of!

So, in light of the fact that no new crafty things are going on, I thought I would share some pictures of our little day trip to DC.  Going into "the city" is only a 30-45 min. drive depending on the traffic, but we like to take the metro in, so we don't have to worry about traffic or parking and we can just enjoy the day!  We love to go into DC, I would go at least once a week if I could still get everything else done that I needed to.  There is so much history and fun stuff to do.  I don't think we will ever be able to do it all, even if we are here for three years.  It is the perfect place for homeschooling.  Where better to learn American History than right where it all took place?  The best part about DC?  Being the "frugal" person that I am, I love the fact that almost everything is free!!  The Smithsonian -made up of something like 13 different museums in the DC area - and all of them FREE!!!

while we were walking toward the Washington Monument, we heard lots of helocopters going over...

and then we got to see Marine 1 land on the whitehoue lawn - - pretty cool!

looking from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial toward the Washington Monument

Arlington Cemetary

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

The view from the top of Arlington cemetary, over the cemetary, across the Potomac and the Washington Monument and Capitol in the background.  What a view and what a perspective.  Knowing that all of the people buried here have sacraficed their lives for everything that those monuments and buildings represent.  May we never take it for granted!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

A Night in My Father's Vineyard

So this past weekend, I was invited to my Mom's church for a women's dinner.  "A Night In My Father's Vineyard."  While my Mom read various devotional selections about vineyards relating to John 15:5, "I am the Vine and you are the branches..." I painted.  It has been a long time since I have painted and I have to tell you I was a little nervous about pulling out the brushes for the first time in 3 years in front of a large room full of women!!  But it all worked out well.  I painted a landscape of a vineyard and then one large grape vine/plant with lots of grape clusters on it.  I wasn't 100% sold on it the night of the dinner, but after a little tweaking and some repainting the next day, I am quite pleased.  The church is going to hang it in their "meeting room" and put a frame around it.  It is a very large picture 8ft x 6 ft so it should make quite a statement!  Here are some pictures of the during - and wouldn't yuu know it, I didn't get any pictures of it completed!  Story of my life!

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