Friday, November 25, 2011

Soldering With Friends

I got to do something I've wanted to do for SO long.  I finally took a soldering class...and I LOVED it.  This particular class included two projects and was taught by two teachers, my pals from The Vintage Marketplace, Rita Reade and Lisa Loria.

Lisa and Rita are at the top left, Maggie is at the top right, Rita and Kim are in the middle, Rita and Terry are at the bottom left and there's me at the bottom right.

Did you notice the adorable cupcake stand Lisa made?

This is what I was welcomed with as I took my seat in class
"The Rabbit Hole." 
So appropriately named, it's so easy to just get lost in "creativeness" and lose all sense of time while secluded in Lisa's studio.

Now let's get to work!
My jewels are copper wrapped and now I'm getting ready to solder.  Notice the empty cupcake wrapper...PRIORITIES!!  Rita brought some homemade pumpkin muffins with chocolate chips.  They were heavenly delicious! 

Yay!  I actually soldered these!  Only one minor mishap...I had no idea what to expect when I melted the solder (duh.) and a big drop of HOT melted metal (solder) dripped on my finger....OUCH!  I'm pretty sure a colorful word may have escaped at that moment.  Then I heard Rita ask Lisa if she had any potatoes...what?  Yes, she came back with a freshly cut chunk of potato and told me to put in on my burned finger - that already had a blister.  Oh, the drama of it all!

But I quickly recovered and started soldering, just a little more carefully.

Not only did I have a great time learning to solder, they fed us a DeLicIouS lunch!  Homemade cauliflour soup and a yummy salad by Lisa and some awesome homemade Italian bread by Rita.

Rita snapped this shot just before we pigged out gracefully dined on our lunch.  I wonder if anyone noticed how many helpings I had...

Well, I would love to show you my finished projects but I didn't completely finish my bling baby.  I did get done with my votive holder but forgot to take a picture, of course.  As soon as I put the final touches on my bling baby I'll share pictures of both.

If anyone is interested in taking some soldering or other classes, you can check out these links and see what they have coming up.  They are both very patient, talented and fun - you'll have a ball while learning a new, creative skill!


The Vintage Marketplace is coming soon!

Next Friday and Saturday
December 2 & 3, 2011

Hope to see you there!


Monday, October 17, 2011

Fall Boutique

I'm inviting my followers and friends to a fall boutique.  This is a smaller venue that is just perfect for this quaint gathering of about 8 local vendors.  I will be there some of my fellow artists from The Vintage Marketplace as well as a few new ones.  So, come and get your holiday shopping started!  You'll find vintage, romantic, and industrial cottage home decor and accessories. 

Join us for shopping while treating yourselves to fall inspired snacks, beverages and desserts!

Saturday, October 22
11 am to 4pm
at the Anderson Residence
33731 Blue Water Way
Temecula, CA
hosted by Amber Anderson of

La Belle Vie

Hope to see you all there! 


Thursday, September 8, 2011

It's Show Time!

The time is finally here! 

presented by Rita Reade and Christie Repasy

this Friday and Saturday, September 9th and 10th

9 am to 4pm

4815 5th Street
Rainbow, CA 92028

Come down and enjoy a beautiful day of shopping the best Vintage Marketplace around.  Over 30 talented vendors with incredible finds and hand-made creations.  Have lunch at the famous Rainbow Oaks Restaurant and then shop some and visit some more.  You don't want to miss it!

I'll be bringing some freshly painted furniture and home decor.  I can't wait to see what all my fellow vendors will be bringing.  They always surprise and amaze me. 

I just got back from our quick drop off that was supposed to be our full set up but we lost a few hours at the hospital where my great-nephew was born today.  He was 5 weeks early and had to be air-lifted to a neonatal intenstive care unit at another hospital.  My nephew was able to get a special Red Cross emergency flight from Afghanistan, where he serves in the ARMY.

I'll be a busy girl in the morning  so if you're there, you may see me looking a little frazzled trying to turn my piles and boxes into something more presentable!

Hope to see you there!



Sunday, August 21, 2011

Giveaway at Common Ground

It's GIVEAWAY time at Common Ground!  Debra is celebrating her one year anniversary of her Friday blog party, Vintage Inspriation Friday.  There are so many creative and inspiring entries every week.  They don't have to always be about actual vintage things but also "vintage inspired" things that creative bloggers make, paint, find and or display. I've joined it myself a few times and if I was really on the ball I'd join every week.  Hopefully, once the girls are back in school I'll do just that. 

OK, back to the GIVEAWAY....

It's pretty cool actually.  The winner will receive the items pictured above:
TWO of Debra's favorite books that have inspired her while decorating her own amazing home - The French Inspired Home and Romantic Style.  They will also win one of Debra's beautiful Key Pendant Necklaces.

So, go on over and visit Debra's blog here.  You won't be disappointed!  ;).

Oh, be sure to enter by September 3rd!

Have a great Sunday!


Monday, August 15, 2011

I'm Feeling Aqua

I have been in love with the color aqua for several years now.  It has made its way in just about every room in our house in one way or another.  It was the main color in our wedding (here) and, well, you get the idea.  I've noticed aqua has become more popular over the years and I'm so glad because I've always wanted to use it in the furniture and decor I paint and create to sell.  It just never sold very well but very recently, at the last Vintage Marketplace (here) actually, I was pleasantly surprised that several customers were practically fighting over an old drawer I decked out with appliques and aqua paint.  Well, maybe they weren't exactly "fighting" but let's just say that if the woman that promised to come back didn't end up buying it, I would've needed a referee for sure. 

To be totally honest, my Husband and I loved the drawer so much I was kind of hoping it wouldn't sell - it was so perfect for our bedroom.  I was actually pretty surprised that so many other people shared in my love of that drawer that I decided to bring more aqua to the next show.  I think I'll even add some aqua to my space at Mission Galleria.  But this next piece I just finished I'm saving for the show.

I have to say that I just LOVE the way it turned out.  And again, it is just perfect for our bedroom!  Very Frenchy don't you think?

See how nicely it goes with one of our million bed pillows?  OK, OK, I'm selling it, really.  I even took before and after pictures this time.  You won't believe how tacky and ugly different it looked before. 
(I'll just apologize now just in case one of you has the before version hanging in your bedroom right now.)  Eh-hem, anyway....

I loved the design of it as soon as I saw it.  I immediately envisioned it painted cream and antiqued.

Once I got it home I had a light bulb moment and decided to paint the ribbon aqua.  I was hoping to tame the fake mirror aging but I would have destroyed the mirror trying to take the back off so I decided it looked fine.

Here it is laying on our aqua duvet.  Doesn't it just match it perfectly?
I'm just sayin'.

This is what it looked like after paint and before the antiquing was complete.

More before and afters. 
The fake aging of the mirror looks more obvious in different light.  Some of the after pictures were taken with the mirror laying on my bed.  I didn't want to use the flash but the can lights above highlighted it more than I liked.

I've got it propped up on our headboard here because I didn't want to put a nail in the wall just for a photo.  I couldn't just temporarily switch it out with something else already hung because we're still not done with the finishing touches in our bedroom.  If I put up everything I've collected for the walls, I'm afraid we wouldn't be able to see the walls at all!  OK, maybe too much information but I see so many beautiful stylized "photoshoots" out there I feel like I had to explain.  ;).

Anyway, that was a sneak peak of my first completed piece for the next Vintage Marketplace at The Oaks.  Hope you can make it.  I've got a lot more things in the works.
Be blessed!


Thursday, July 28, 2011

Mammabellarte Giveaway!

Rita Reade of Mammabellarte is having a GIVEAWAY to celebrate her 500th post!

Her heartfelt theme for Giving Back is "Sharing is Caring."

If you don't know Miss Rita, you are missing a little sunshine from your life.  This little Italian is one talented and busy woman!  Not only is she a co-host of the best show around, "The Vintage Marketplace at The Oaks", she makes beautiful birdhouses, signs and soldered jewelry and bottles.  She also teaches classes.    And her accent - adorable - I could listen to her all day.

Be sure to check out her blogs:

Here are the awesome giveaway prizes:
(There are six!!!)

A copy of Somerset Home Magazine and one of Rita's Heart Pendants.

A Soldering Kit and a Mega Pack of Copper Foil.

No Sew Sealah Tape and an enamel house number sign by Ramsign.

Is this an incredible giveaway or what?!?!

Click here to visit Mammabellarte and learn how to enter.

And just to remind you to mark your calendars for the next show...

September 9 & 10

Hope to see you there!


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Red Hen Home Giveaway!

Korrie at Red Hen Home is having a GIVEAWAY in honor of her 1 year blog anniversary.  I discovered her inspiring blog not too long ago and was just smitten over this awesome coffee table she hand-painted a French label on. 

You can check out the full story here.  She has done a couple more since then, so just click away when you visit her blog.  You'll find all sorts of cool things she creates. 

Then be sure to check out her blog post here to get the details on how to enter to win her one-of-a-kind custom GIVEAWAY prize.


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

An Almost Before and After

In my last post I mentioned that I'd share some before and afters of some of the things I made for the show.  Well, I'm sort of doing that here only I discovered I actually don't have any "before" shots of it...oops. 

These photos are from the show.

Oh, just to warn you, this post is more wordy than usual because I'm giving a lot more how-to information than I usually do so bear with me ladies....

It always seems like I'm half way through a make-over when I realize I forgot to take any "before" shots.  Once, at a show, I actually asked a customer, as she was walking away from my booth with her new purchase, if she wouldn't mind setting it back down and moving out of the way so I could get a shot of the really cute vintage, metal vanity chair I made over.  Hopefully she wasn't too offended.  I was polite about it, really.

Even though this is a mid-project shot, this is my "before."

Let me at least give you a mental visual of the actual before (without my feet of course).  This started out as your typical French provincial, dark stained, double bed.  Yes, I had the headboard, footboard and side rails.  So why did I not just keep it as a complete bed?  Well, as you may or may not be able to relate....we had soooo much junk many treasures that some things had to be stored on my Mom's back patio and the footboard sustained a little damage from the elements.  (of course I haven't thrown it out, I'm sure I can still do something with it!)

My first plan was to just fix up the headboard with some paint and appliques figuring someone would buy a headboard by itself.  Then when I saw my friend, Margaret, make a chalkboard from a headboard for her daughter's wedding I was so inspired that I had try it and of course take it a few steps further.  ;).  I can't just keep it simple.

I began by very carefully taping off the curvy frame part with blue painter's tape.  I used a flat black spray paint as a primer before I spray painted it with 2-3 coats of chalkboard paint.  When I was ready to paint the rest I removed that tape, then taped off the chalkboard part this time (see pic above).  I wanted the painted frame to have a crisp and clean edge around the chalkboard so I didn't want to take any chances without the tape.  I'm just picky like that. 

I then whipped out my trusty, crusty can of the now famous, Annie Sloan's Chalk Paint in Old White.  When I originally sanded the headboard months ago, I didn't know about this paint.  I'm not a cheesey sander, I really get in there and do it right when the piece calls for it.  Trust me, I would NOT have spent all that time sanding, especially the curvy parts, had I known it would not be necessary.  

We added a shelf and trimmed it with nice, detailed moulding.  I went back and forth on either adding appliques or hand-painting some words since there was such a large blank spot under the chalkboard.  I decided appliques would appeal to more customers.

I already had the curvy brackets (see why you shouldn't ever throw anything away?) and they fit perfectly on the legs of the headboard.  I also loved how the curvyness worked with its shape. 

We also added a piece of wood across the bottom (under the shelf) so we could attach old, vintage door knobs for hooks.  I actually didn't have time for the knobs when I took it to the show so I wasn't very disappointed it didn't sell.  I really wanted to see it completed the way I had envisioned it.  Can't you just see this on a wall in a mudroom or entry way with a purse, coat and back packs haning from it?
And wouldn't you know it?  It sold just three days after we put it in my booth!

This project was another learning experience with the Chalk Paint.  I'm still getting used to using the dark wax rather than the antiquing glaze I normally use with regular paint.  At first I really didn't like how dark it got but after playing around with it, I learned that you can lighten it up by going back with clear wax - it sort of dilutes it.  I just kept working with it until I got the look I was going for. 

There are all sorts of Chalk Paint techniques on different blogs and you can even go directly to the Annie Sloan web-site as well.  But for some video tutorials, check out Mustard Seed Interiors
For this project, I just painted it on with a cheap brush, followed by a smaller, nicer brush for painting around the taped areas.  It does dry pretty quickly so you can actually sand and distress it the same day without it rolling up and peeling.  After some distressing, I rubbed on a clear wax with an old terry cloth washcloth.  A tip I can offer - make sure you are watching carefully that you do not miss any spots with the clear wax.  I have made that mistake and it makes the dark wax look really muddy and grayish brown everywhere you missed.  The paint just soaks it up and it doesn't look pretty, trust me.

You can see how I left it a little heavy in the corners and around the applique where a piece would naturally get sort of grimy over the years.  You just have to work with it yourself and do what you like.

Please pardon the kids' play table and sidewalk chalk art.  ;).

A great tip I learned from Miss Mustard Seed - to avoid "burning" words on your new chalkboard, you should always "prime" your chalkboards.  You do this by taking a piece of chalk on its side and rubbing it all over the chalkboard.  Wipe it all off afterwards of course but don't worry about trying to make it perfect.  After all, it's meant to be used, right?

I like to have fun and write on my chalkboards when I put them out to sell.  I think it helps people visualize the use they can have in their homes.

Jack likes it, too!

So, there you have it.  An almost before and after of my chalkboard headboard.

Linking up with:

Please visit the blog parties to check out all the creative talent and be inspired!

Have a great weekend everyone!