Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Bringing Nature In and Lessons in Patience

"Adopt the pace of nature. Her secret is patience."
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Living in Montana offers up plenty of opportunities to practice patience, especially in the spring when I long for warmer weather. We are under a winter storm watch right. Yes, on May 22 we are expecting snow. It won't last long, just enough to make driving dicey over the next 24 hours and enough to perhaps break off leaf and bloom laden branches on trees and bushes.

So, I set outside to cut armloads of lilac blooms before the snow gets to them. But, the buds are not open and they have no sweet fragrance yet. I suppose it is for the best as they will probably better survive the winter storm as tight buds rather than blooming flowers.  Alas, more lessons in patience.
Bringing Nature In and Lessons in Patience
Instead, I opted to cut some branches from our Canadian Chokecherries and a volunteer honeysuckle growing in my hedge.
Bringing Nature In and Lessons in Patience
I placed the branches in a mason jar of water and set that inside a galvanized sap bucket I bought this past weekend at the flea market. I set the bucket in my front entryway.
Bringing Nature In and Lessons in Patience
They smell lovely and help to bring a little spring inside, regardless of what is happening outdoors. I am sure in a few days I will have little white petals all over the entryway floor--nature's glitter. Bringing bits of nature into our homes year round is always mood lifting and a  wonderful design choice. And hopefully, by the end of the weekend, patience will pay off and the sun will be shining on blooming lilacs.

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Cottage Vignette with Thrifted Finds

I am pretty sure cottagecore is not anything new, but was alive and well in the mid seventies when I was a kid. I drew mushrooms and mice all of the time and loved thinking about forest fairies. So, putting together recently sourced items and some of my original art in a little vignette took me right back to my childhood. 
mushroom print
The red mushroom print is an original of mine. My daughter gave me print making supplies and this mushroom was the first lino block I carved. I am framing some of the prints to sell. 
Cottage Vignette with Thrifted Finds
This vintage crewel that I just found gives me all of the seventies vibes. The rainbow is perfect for the cottagecore look.
Cottage Vignette with Thrifted Finds
I found the old leather binocular case (and binoculars) at a local flea market. The case is pretty busted up, but the red interior was perfect with the other red items. I added some moss and mushrooms that I made from tangerine peels to the lid. 
Cottage Vignette with Thrifted Finds
The worn leather adds warmth and texture to the vignette and helps to ground it. 
Cottage Vignette with Thrifted Finds
The wall pocket with yellow mushrooms on it is a vintage find and is made for scissors. But, it also makes a perfect planter or vase. The red flowered quilt is the back of two 1970's, handmade quilts I recently thrifted. I am pretty sure nine year old me had a long, quilted skirt made out of this exact fabric.
Cottage Vignette with Thrifted Finds
The book the wall pocket is sitting on is a German art book, I loved the cover and I think it adds more texture to this cottage grouping.

Thursday, May 16, 2024

Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom

Our guest bedroom has been what many guest bedrooms become--a dumping ground for this and that. Up until two years ago it had pink carpeting. This is what it looked like when we moved in--horrible vertical blinds, weird, on the wall lighting, a white and gold fan.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
When we moved in there were dolls on shelves behind plexi-glass in three corners of the bedroom. Those came out immediately and holes were filled, but not much else happened in the space.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
Then we rented out our home for one year and the renter who lived in this bedroom put a bazillion holes in the wall. Now, new carpeting and curated finds are coming together to create a guest room that will be cozy and eclectic and may look as if your eccentric, well-traveled great aunt lives in the space. 
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
The guest room is still a work in progress and the walls will get painted soon, but I wanted to share the headboard I made for the space and some of the items that are driving the design in here.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
This project started with a thrift store tapestry with beautiful embroidered flowers.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
I had an idea in my head and made a simple sketch to help the idea in my brain take shape.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
I cut the edge off of the tapestry.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
I joined together two pieces of pressboard to get the size headboard I wanted. I was going to staple on top of this pressboard and leave an edge for a reclaimed wood edge. Using spray adhesive, I secured a piece of memory foam to the pressboard. I then covered the foam with a white muslin.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
I then stapled the tapestry to the front of the pressboard along the foam edges. After finding the right pieces for the frame of the headboard and sanding and clear coating them, I attached them with screws screwed in from behind the pressboard. Using clamps helps when doing a project like this by yourself.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
We hung it on the wall using a French cleat. Before hanging it, I did attach side boards to create a clean look.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
The rug at the end of the bed, also a thrift store find, helps to anchor the bed and adds some of the colors I want to use--greens, reds, and pinks. The thrifted, velour, pink chair and the pink afghan crocheted by my grandma (who passed 38 years ago) add to the color scheme and the eccentric, great aunt vibe.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
Opposite the bed is my husband's armoire desk. I painted this green three years ago. A curated collection of art and objects add interest and curiosity to the guest room.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
I am still deciding on a wall color. We made add a wood wainscotting treatment to the bed wall as well. I will share the completed space when it it done. The headboard is comfy and is definitely a statement piece in the space. 
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom
The headboard took about two hours total to make and is unique and adds texture and personality to the room.
Tapestry Headboard for a Curated Guest Bedroom

Wednesday, May 1, 2024

May Day Vignette with Vintage Finds

Did you celebrate May Day as a kid? We would make cone shaped baskets with pipe cleaner handles and fill them with flowers and hang them on our neighbors' doorknobs.

Today I am celebrating May Day with a sweet, springy vignette created with recently sourced, vintage finds.
May Day Vignette with Vintage Finds
And because it was spitting snow today in Montana, an indoor spring vignette is perfect to lift my spirits. These two pairs of vintage prints have a lovely faded look. 
May Day Vignette with Vintage Finds
I especially love the little girl print planting flowers. 
May Day Vignette with Vintage Finds
A candleholder with tulip shaped candle cups and an old green bottle with some fresh flowers from a birthday bouquet incorporate more spring vibes.
May Day Vignette with Vintage Finds
The vintage wood box with a floral print on top has the cutest red handle. It was the red handle that first caught y eye while thrifting.
May Day Vignette with Vintage Finds
Because dandelions are the only flowers blooming in my yard right now, I added a few dried peonies from last spring's bloom. 

My "theme" for my May 31st and June 1st POP-UP SHOP is "Cowboy Cabin and Country Cottage". These sweet vintage finds will be perfect for any country cottage and will be available for sale at my pop-up shop.

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Creating a Montana Vignette

I have always loved creating vignettes. As a kid I would rearrange the shelves above my bed on a regular basis. They held favorite books with Raggedy Ann and Andy bookends, a Hawaiian doll, a tiny wood table and chair set painted pink, some favorite stuffed animals, a patriotic Bugs Bunny figurine from Great America--all objects that held memories for me, but probably not very similar in their style and look. 

I am thankful that today I still enjoy creating vignettes, both in my home and in my pop-up shop. Recently sourced items came together in the perfect Montana vignette.
How to Create a Visually Appealing Vignette
Keep reading to see the details in this display. 

I recently purchased the book Vignettes by Sean Sherer. This book is beautiful and I highly recommend it to anyone who has an antique booth or does vintage shows or who wants to create great displays in their home. (Affiliate link) You can buy it HERE
Vignettes Book
I have learned a lot from the book. Sean says, "A great vignette embodies...meaning and history." And that still life arrangements were the precursor to vignettes. Objects give us information to the past and hold memories. He shares about how to mix things up in vignettes and still make them look connected and put together.

These objects or curiosities share a common western, Montana theme. Let's start with the Ralph Lauren fabric piece hanging on the wall. Hanging a rug, fabric, a strip of wall paper is an easy way to add color, texture, and pattern without making a huge change. I thrifted this fabric and love the classic, American West pattern on it.
Montana Western Vignette
The log turned candlesticks and vase incorporate a natural, organic feel.
How to Create a Visually Appealing Vignette
Any self-respecting Montanan knows a CM Russell print when they see one. This one from an 1849 painting, needed a new matte. The rusty, hand painted, tin box picks up on the red inn the fabric on the wall. The flat wood box sitting in front is handmade and has a gorgeous wood grain. On top of the Russell print sits a piece of Montana river driftwood found on a recent hike. 
How to Create a Visually Appealing Vignette
A dear friend bought the Will James photo at a garage sale. She gave it to me as Will James was the name of the junior high that we attended. A rare, brown and white, graniteware spittoon is upcycled into a planter. The wood flowers came with the thrifted wood vase. The cowboy and horses print behind hanging on the wall is a copy of a photo. I found it at a thrift store as well and it is in an old frame.
How to Create a Visually Appealing Vignette
The height of the candles on the left helps to balance the height of the hanging horse photo. Repetition of colors, materials and subject matter helps to make a vignette that is pleasing to the eye. Interesting objects with a history produce a still life that is both exciting and creativity and one that inspires further inspection.

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Simple Summer Vignette with a Bit of Whimsy

I don't know about you, but when warmer weather hits I want a less cozy feel in my home and a more simple and organic vibe. That means tucking away some of the "stuff" and fluff--fewer pillows and blankets, vignettes that are a little less busy, and more natural, earthy objects. I put together some recently thrifted items as an example of a centerpiece, display, or vignette that feels easy and breezy for the summer months.
Simple Summer Vignette with a Bit of Whimsy
While these recently curated items are going to be for sale in my POP-UP SHOP, I love how they came together to create a visually appealing display.  Keep reading to learn the details.
Simple Summer Vignette with a Bit of Whimsy
This thrifted, sturdy stool got a quick paint makeover. It provides height and a bit of color to the centerpiece. I set it on a thrifted cutting or charcuterie board that I revived with a light sanding and some coconut oil.
Simple Summer Vignette with a Bit of Whimsy
I always like to arrange my table displays on something so that it is easy to remove for big family dinners. The wood cutting board adds a gorgeous, worn patina. The color reminds me of something from a boat or beach cottage.
Simple Summer Vignette with a Bit of Whimsy
The rope and jute, macramé, hanging candle holders or vases hold a candle and some greenery. They further enhance the beachy, summery feel. An old. leather bound book and cedar trinket box introduce more organic textures.
Simple Summer Vignette with a Bit of Whimsy
And the solid brass, vintage Donald Duck figurine is simply a bit of whimsy, although his sailor suit coincides with the beach mood. 
Do you like to lighten up your home decor for warmer weather? 

Friday, April 12, 2024

Recent Neutral Earthy Sourced Goods

My POP-UP SHOP will be open again next weekend and my theme for April is "Global Home". With Earth Day being in April I thought focusing on more organic, natural, earthy decor would be fun. Choosing second-hand, upcycled, refurbished finds is such a good way to help our planet. 

My thrifting word I have been keeping in my mind is "GLOBAL" and I have curated some lovely neutral items recently.
Recent Neutral Earthy Sourced Goods
Keep reading for all of the details on some of these goodies!
Recent Neutral Earthy Sourced Goods
These wood candlesticks are HEFTY and have a great light wood patina. The greyish/brown thin wool blanket underneath has a nice, nubby texture. The basket needs some fixing, but I loved its style. The cream colored, needlepoint pillow has the softest, terra cotta colored, velvet back.
Recent Neutral Earthy Sourced Goods
A couple wood, pool racks make great wall art and can even be used as a small shelf to prop photos on. The cream and navy, cotton table runner is new and brings a nautical, summer cottage look to the home. I loved the star design and the dark color on the round basket. This would be great in a gallery wall grouping or makes a nice bread basket.
Recent Neutral Earthy Sourced Goods
This gold, plaster or chalkware, noble chief has some damage, but I do love him. The copper patina on the lantern is lovely and the heavy, brass teapot aren't old, but they are well-made. The homemade deer shelf mimics a Victorian era piece and the small basket has a hook or hanger on it to hang it on a ledge or off the back of a chair. I sourced two, long, vintage needlepoint wall hangings or tapestries. The work on them is amazing. The pom-pom curtain panels were in a free box. I will hang them in the shop and then I think use them across the top of my gazebo.
Recent Neutral Earthy Sourced Goods
The verdigris patina on this heavy copper bowl is swoon worthy. The oval basket under the deer shelf makes a great tray for a coffee table or kitchen counter.
Recent Neutral Earthy Sourced Goods
This little black case has a time-worn leather handle and sweet, pink, flowered fabric inside. The chair seat needs recovered, but someone else had already done the hard work of sanding the dark stain and replacing the caning. 

I love sourcing new items for my home and for my customers. These light and organic natural finds and colors have me ready for summer days and will blend well with a variety of home styles and decor. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

From Mail Cubby to Modern Storage Piece

Sometimes when I thrift items, I do not know what I am going to do with them, I just know they have potential. Such was the case when I recently purchased this mail cubby or paper sorter. I knew it had great storage options, I just was unsure of how I wanted to upcycle it. 
From Mail Cubby to Modern Storage Piece
I removed the paper labels (I wondered if it came from the school I taught at here in town, it seemed familiar) and wiped it down with vinegar. I knew I would need to spray paint it to get inside the cubbies. I spray painted it green to start but it was too green and reminded and just not right. So I switched to a Navy Blue spray paint.
From Mail Cubby to Modern Storage Piece
I knew I wanted to put some kind of feet on it to get it off the ground, but originally I was planning on something shorter. When I found these hairpin legs at the thrift store I decided that they would elevate the mail cubby into a more modern storage piece. The taller legs allow for a storage piece underneath it such as this vintage, baby blue tool box. A basket or wood crate would look underneath it too.
From Mail Cubby to Modern Storage Piece
The top was a little unfinished looking with the plywood so I added some thin, reclaimed barwood tongue and groove.
From Mail Cubby to Modern Storage Piece
I think this piece makes a fun, modern buffet in a kitchen or dining room. It is perfect for open kitchen shelving storage to hold plates and bowls, linens, cookbooks and wine bottles. 
From Mail Cubby to Modern Storage Piece
Art and other objects rest easily on the top of the storage cubby.
From Mail Cubby to Modern Storage Piece
This piece would work well in an entry for mail and mittens and even shoes. Keys and bags could be set on top. It could store folded or rolled towels and toiletries in a bathroom or be used in a family room for book and magazine storage. I think I would be keeping it if I had a spot for it, but I do think it will be for sale in my pop-up shop.