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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bird Nest Topiaries - A How-to

I love a good bird nest, don't you?
I bought a few little white pots a couple of weeks ago at the GW and thought I'd use them for herbs.

But, how many times does something actually turn into the first thing we envision? In my case, not often.
So while I waited to find just the right vinyl font for the herb lettering, I changed my mind.

Playing in my craft room while getting ready for the flea market, I discovered I had moss, styrofoam balls, birds nests, and a slew of embellishments. So, I decided to create topiaries instead.

I gathered all of my goodies and started to see what I could up with.

1. I started by pushing some flat circular foam pieces into the bowls. They fit really snug so I didn't have to bother with any glue at this point.

2. Next, I pushed a small styrofoam ball onto a little dowel rod. I made the hole, then backed the rod out and filled the hole with glue before putting it back in so the ball would stay in place.

I still wasn't sure what I wanted to put on the pots so I decided to go ahead and fill them with moss while I thought about it.

3. I covered the foam with a lot of hot glue and then packed the moss on top.

At this point, I decided to try putting some pretty rub-ons on some of the pots. Worked great.
(Can you see there is no rhyme or reason to my order? I had 4 of these to do, so that's why this one doesn't have the moss yet - Iwas playing, obviously out of order.)

Next, I put a little moss on the nest and glued in a few eggs, then pinned it in the moss bed
(See that turquoise strip? That's some Martha Stewart Crafts decorative tape. Actually, it's an adhesive ribbon that's extra sticky, so I thought I'd see if it worked on the pots and it did. You'll see a pink one also.)

4. The final step was to put the moss on the styrofoam balls. To make this easy, I layed a lot of moss on the table and squirted the hot glue on it. Then I rolled the ball over the moss and covered it up. When it gets fully covered, be sure to press down all over it to pack it in place.
After I got that finished, I remembered that I had some metal birds I picked up at Hobby Lobby that I wanted to put on the top. I burried them in a blob of hot glue and held it in place while it dried. Then I added turquoise rhinestones for eyes.
Here's the finished topiary!

 I completed 4 of them, and here they are.

Aren't those birds wonderful? I wish I could find some more. I took all they had when I found them.

(I made a few more just like these after the market to sell, so you'll see them show up somewhere soon.)

Tell me about the bird stuff you have around your house.

It's been a while since I made the rounds, so I'm linking to all of the following this week:

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Need Photography Tips for Your Blog?

I'm sure there are many of us who wish someone would just tell us - errr - show us how to take great pictures for our blog.

Do you want to impress your readers with blog pictures that are more vivid? Clearer? Centered? Focused? Well lit? Taken with a steady hand?
I know I do.

If you want to learn too, then follow me over here.
As part of Funky Junk's WorkShop Series, she is offering a 5 week blog class/series on taking pictures with your regular point and shoot digital camera.

You don't need a special camera for this class, and you'll learn tips and tricks in everyday layman's terms that are easy to understand and put to use right away.

I'll see you there.

Gone Thrifting

Don't you just love it when you run across a great little shop when you're out thrifting?


I found this one a few weeks ago and wanted to share.
It's located in an old house, and every single nook and cranny is filled with fabulous treasures. Even the bathroom, seriously. And when you're finished looking in one house, they have another one right next to it full of stuff too.

I just love, love, love to browse in unique shops.

Junkyard Gypsies is located in Bowling Green, KY.
If you're ever in my area, head over and take a peek. And then come by my house for a cup of coffee.

(I have not been compensated for this post. I simply wanted to tell you about a great shop I found.)

Do you know any shops or antique malls in the area that spans from Elizabethtown, KY to Nashville, TN? How about fabric stores?
I'm not having much luck finding many by myself. boo.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Off to the Flea Market!

I'm off to the Nashville Flea Market this weekend, and my partner in crime, The Shabby Chic Cottage, will be there too!

If you're in the area, please stop and see us. We'll be in Shed 4, Booths 417 & 418.

Hope you can come!

Wish us luck. This is our first venture together and I'm so excited. Gina (SSC) has been making things for weeks. Me? Not so much, but I still have plenty to offer!

This Flea Market is among the top ten largest in the US!!  WooHoo!

Hey, what flea markets or craft fairs are in your area?
We may want to travel to some of them.
Let me know. Thanks a bunch!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Aprons, Aprons, and More Aprons - Reader Special

Does absense really make the heart grow fonder?
If so, then you must be super fond of me by now!

I haven't been around much lately and I apologize.
I've been unpacking more boxes, stripping wallpaper, working on my webstore, making aprons, and getting ready for the Flea Market this weekend.

I'm sorry you haven't seen me around your blog, but I'll be returning next week. Really, I will.

I had a super sale on my aprons over at Funky Junk a couple of weeks ago, and I've been sewing ever since. I shipped out the last of the aprons from that sale a few days ago, and I've been working on getting some new spring aprons in the shop.

Like this:

and this:

Aren't they fresh and fun?

If you've read my blog then you know that I specialize in making work aprons for women.
I want function and fashion when I work, and I want to offer that to others as well.

Up until recently I've only sold my aprons in the wholesale market. I decided a few months ago to also start trying to sell them to retail customers. This way, I can offer many more fabric changes in my line. Rather than making 100 in one pattern, etc, I can make more fabric combinations in smaller lots. This allows me to give you more choices.

I love my readers!

....and because I do, I want to offer the same special to you that I offered to the Funky Junk readers. I've changed all of the prices in my Etsy Shop to reflect this special.
The prices will remain until midnight March 25. These are the LOWEST prices I will ever offer them for, so grab one now if you want it at the best price.

If you're a crafter or seamstress of any kind, you know how important it is to be able to have all of your supplies at the ready. How conveinient to be able to carry them right at your waist.

You won't find frilly kitchen aprons in my shop. That's not my specialty.
These are serious (and seriously cute) aprons for people who are dedicated to their craft, and know how important it is to work efficiently.

Here are just a few of the specials I'm running for you right now.

Our most popular selling apron is the one that Layla from the Lettered Cottage wears.
She was kind enough to do a feature on her blog, and she's given me permission to use this collage she made. (Isn't she just the most darling thing you've ever seen?)

Here is that full apron. Please note that the little tools in the collage above was a special addition for Layla, and does not come with the apron. (If you want some of your own, snag them up at Hobby Lobby during Christmas time in the small tree decorations.)

This apron normally sells for $48, but right now I'm offering it for $35!

There are several fabric combinations in this style.

Our Farmer's Market apron is also very popular. It's what we sell the most of when we set up to sell at a market. It's so flattering and flirty on.
This one normally sells for $46, and I'm also offering it at $35 right now.
We have three new fabric combinations coming in this style soon.
I only recently started making this one in denimn, and it's selling like hotcakes to wholesalers already.

The Everyday Crafter is the "go to" apron for the general crafter,  and flea market vendors seem to love it. This style is selling for $28 during this sale. You'll get your own name on the patch.

Wanna know which one my great friend Donna over at Funky Junk wears?
She's promising a video soon, and knowing her sense of humor, it'll be something
funny. Can't wait to see it.

And here's what I wear, and some of what I carry in it. Mine is 3 years old, so it's extremely broken in. Although, you can see how well they hold up!

Here it is new.

And here's my 3 year old partner.
On this particular day, I have screws and nails in one pocket, a box of staples in one, a stapler, a stud finder, a hammer, a pair of pliers, a staple remover, a chalk marker, a pair of tweezers, and scissors.

I'm going to show you a side view so that you can see the slide-on pockets. (Just keep in mind that I'm wearing a bulky sweater! lol) I have a calculator, a note pad, a camera, and my cell phone in here.

So see, they really are functional!

I could use your help.

I'm still considered fairly new to blogland, and I'm still growing my readership. So many of you have already been there, done that, so to speak, and your wonderful blogs have lots of loyal readers.
Would you mind helping me spread the word about my line of aprons? I would be truly grateful for the help. (And if you have something you'd like me to spread the word about, I'll return the favor.)

If you're up for it, please grab my shop button from the sidebar and share it on your blog.
Help a fellow DIY gal make a dream come true!

If you already have one of these aprons, please leave a note in the comments about yours, the quality, how you use it, or whatever you want to say. It'll let others know that real people like us are wearing them and using them.

How do you feel the quality compares to the price? It's so hard to convey quality online, so those of you that have them can help me out here if you will.

If you've blogged about yours, or plan to, please include a link to your blog or the post in the comments.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Don't forget to head over and grab your apron!

*** If you have a brick and mortar shop, or you set up at large markets, and would like to offer these to your customers, please let me know. We have a vendor program and a wholesale program. Write and tell me a bit about your business, and a link to your site. ***

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Inspirational Eye Candy for DIYers

I have a lot of things going on in the background right now and haven't had much time to post. I'm still trying to finish unpacking my house, get ready for a market, and put the finishing touches on my Home Decor Series that I promised you all.

What I'm saying is, my posting has been intermitent, and will continue to be so for about two more weeks. I appreciate all of your emails checking in on me. Rest assured, I'm okay, just super busy.

I thought I'd pop in today and give you a show of eye candy.
Spring is fast approaching, and with Spring comes the itch to start cleaning, downsizing, redecorating, freshening our surroundings, and getting creative indoors and out.

Today, I wanted to post a few pics that I have in my inspiration files in hopes that you will see something you'd like to recreate for yourself during your Spring freshening efforts.
These are some painted chests from Guildmaster that I just love. I think I'll recreate the first one on a small night stand.


Love, love, love this. From

I just love the cheerful colors and the use of vintage canisters for organization, and the fabric panels on the wall as art. Take a peek at that fabric storage underneath.

Someone sent this to me in email, so I'm not sure of its origin. If it's yours or you know whose it is, please let me know and I will credit it properly.
How's this idea for your paints?
I really like that you can look at the color actaully painted out, and then just pick out that bottle.
I usually just put a dab of the paint on top of my bottles, but I like this idea much better for being able to select and pair colors quick and easy.

I think I got this from Houzz, but not sure. Again, if it's yours, let me know.
This idea doesn't take up much room, but look how many things it allows you to put in one spot.
I love it when people use every nook of space effectively. Gotta try this one!

Got this from House and Home website. Again, super effective storage.
I'm for sure going to do that with my wrapping paper.

From This is her personal bedroom.
Think of how many doiles you could come up with if you shopped your own home.
Wouldn't this be wonderful against a brighter bacground, or even a soft aqua?

How fun to add a punch of an unexpected color. Love this.

I could move in her house today and be perfectly content.
If you've not seen her blog, you must go look at the slideshow of her home.
So simply beautiful.

What a great fresh look for spring. This is a store display at Arheuz in downtown Cherry Creek in Denver.

What a great idea for an old door. This could be a coffee table or a dining table.
This is from SharonS on the HGTV Trash to Treasure message boards.

This is fabulous. Found this at Junk Market Style, member Chovey.
I've made benches from beds before, but never thought of making a planter.
I'll definitely have to do this one this summer.

A store display from Honey's Home Style in Texas. Isn't the silver, red, and white so cheerful?

I will never lose my love for red.

What inspires you?
Any favorites to share, or sites I should visit?

Friday, March 12, 2010

Home on the Farm in Pictures

I love photography. You will rarely ever catch me without a camera. Outdoor photography is my passion - my indoor photography, well, it still needs some polished skills applied. I never even realized how tricky indoor photography was until I started blogging. I never really had a reason to take pictures indoors.

One day I was at my mom's and my nephew announced that he wanted to submit a photo for something at school. Could I show him how to take a picture? So after much discussion we agreed that I would show him a few things, but he had listen and be patient. Kinda hard for a 10 year old boy addicted to video games, but he pulled it off nicely. In fact, he became very interested and took to it like a pro.
My mom still lives in the home I was raised in. I grew up on a working farm in a small town in Tennessee. It's no longer a farm, and there's barely a hint of animals ever having taken up residence there. But the property still holds the beauty it always did. On that particualr day, it was such a treat to show my young nephew how to look at his surroundings in a different way. How to look at big things and break them down into smaller vignettes.

So without further ado, here is what came out of that 10 year old boy (now almost 12) down home on the farm that day.

(That is my mother's barn in the background.)

(This photo is special to me. It is the trunk of the first Christmas tree we ever had in this house. Planted in 1975 it now stands higher than the electric poles. The last time I was home my nephew showed me where the electric company marked it to be cut off. [pouting with bottom lip turned under]}

This is at the corner of the barm. I challenged him to find a spot where he could get at least 3 blocks of color
in one picture. He did pretty good with this one.

And this is my favorite. Each time I look at it it reminds of my dad. I have an affinity for bird houses which I'm sure came from him, and there are many to be found around my mom's house. The little triangular block on the side of the pole used to hold an ear of corn for the squirrels back when the farm was still active.
(Next time I'm home Ill snap a picture of a bird house I made for him on Father's Day when I was still a teenager. It still hangs on my mom's patio.)

So what do you think? Didn't Brandon do a great job? You'd never know it was his first time out.

He has no idea I'm posting this but as soon as I get a few comments, I'm going to call him and tell him to read my blog today. He'll be so surprised!


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