my new CL find-

I don’t know about you guys, but

I have wAy better luck buying off of Craigslist than selling.

I don’t get that, but, oh well.  As long as I can find some interesting things to work on…!

And here‘s something I just found! It came with a “slate” top, which was actually stamped concrete, but I’ll find a use for that later.

AND, I also picked up another old door!    Pro-ject!

THIS picture looks REALLY exciting, doesn’t it? 

How ’bout THIS angle—

my new CL find-

Okay, I know it’s a coffee/cocktail table, but I see an

awesome upholstered ottoman

with a large vintage silver tray on display to hold drinks!

Ya’ with me?

my new CL find-

So yesterday I headed into my studio to get busy

◊ stripping it,

◊ sanding it,

◊ waxing it- clear wax and a little liming wax in key areas.

My inspiration?  Think raw wood and Restoration Hardware.

And before I quit for the day, I padded it and topped it with batting. Tomorrow I’ll work on the upholstery and welting.

-getting stripped-

my new CL find-

More tomorrow—


my new CL find-

-and waxed-

my new CL find-

my new CL find-

I shared previously about the tin tiles I cut apart from a collage form.  I said I’d be doing something extra to them

tin tiles-

-a brilliant idea!I was eager to test the waters and see what my recovering hand could do once again!  I jumped into ripping a length of barnboard—probably would have been an easier and less nerve-wracking task with a softer wood.  But I succeeded, and framed two of the larger tiles (that are for sale).

I keep leftover wood cuts of significant length.  The above project left me with 4 cut offs of roughly 14″ and 15″ —with one end already cut on a 45° angle.  So I cut the other ends of both pairs on a 45° angle, and joined them together creating a new frame.  For no particular project.

making a barnboard frame-Somewhere along my travels I saw a sign saying Sweet Tea served here. Adorable and EX·PEN·SIVE.  But it stuck with me and I was thinking to make my own now.  With my barnboard frame.

◊ I cut a ¼” veneered plywood board for the sign, and ran the frame through the router table to create a rabbet to drop it into.  AND, I routered a detail to the front frame edge. 

◊ I played with some graphics, sizing, and layout for my frame size.

I was still of a mind-set to print my signage on fabric!

I pulled out more grain sack and linen scraps to chose from, then it was a matter of adjusting and taping it down to cardstock to get it to feed through the printer—THAT was fun.

my Sweet Tea served here sign project-

Like my Butler and Champagne signs, I used spray adhesive to secure the fabric to the board.  I wish I had secured the fabric with wall paper paste or Mod Podge instead.  Or just left well enough alone.  I watered down some matte Mod Podge and lightly brushed it over my fabric sign to set it better to the board.  When it dried I was SO disappointed.

rescuing the "finish"Two happy accidents came of it in the end.

I sanded it down lightly which rescued that problem AND also “aged” the printing!


It’s tough to see by the pictures but—it does look better!


I’d like a Do-Over ~soon!

Live & Learn,


Sweet Tea served here sign project-

pushing buttons

My UNfinished as yet extra touch!I was only

goofing around,

but you seemed to really like my

Butler button!

I just used a door bell button to cover over the third hole in a triple light switch cover.  It’s a dummy -not wired to anything- but you CAN push the button!

I intended to add the writing by a transfer method, but the finish of the plastic cover was NOT having it!  Plan B—I printed the writing on white tissue paper and applied THAT with ModPodge!

press for BUTLER!

Now that I’m FINALLY getting some forward progress in the finger department, I’ve been playing around with MY kind of “crafting” projects to REwork strength & dexterity in my whole hand!  Scissors are sUper awkward!

small oval frames found in a thrift store!And since you guys seemed to like my silliness, I thought I’d make some -3 of them- for sale!

I found 4 small’ish 25¢ oval frames thrifting a few years ago and knew I would have some fun with them sometime down the line.

I used cardstock paper to make an oval template, to cut 4 inserts from ¼” veneered plywood.  I primed and painted all 4 inserts and readied them for a “press here” and “Butler” transfer.  BUT THEN…

I changed my mind!  I decided to wrap the wood inserts with scraps of grainsack for the texture.


-my BUTLER button proje!ctsI taped the fabric scraps onto the heavy cardstock paper and ran it through the printer!  THAT easy!

I played around setting it all up graphically a few days back, and now a little more time playing around with the size and spacing!  But it was ultimately very easy!

I epoxy’d the doorbell buttons in place last night.  I’ll still add the screws to the holes, but use a metal grinder to knock the access off from the back side.

The door bell button.  They can be surprisingly kind of expensive—even the plain ones!  And you need to figure out how to address the mechanical portion of it if you’re using a shallow “format.”  The style I chose is raised and I didn’t have to “amend” the guts of it in any way!

I DID, however, take some sand paper to the glossy brassy finish to make it look older.

my door bell buttons

my door bell buttons












I made 2  Butlers and 1  Champagne

that I’ll be taking to the antique mall!

…if only a BUTLER would appear…sigh.
And I guess I’ll have to pour my own Champagne.


press for the BUTLER!

 I’m sharing this project at The Curator’s Collection

-tin tile collage found at the ReStore!I’m bored, I’m restless, I’m project-deprived.

I’m still not confident in safely working on my saws.

So I’ve been staying away from the usual sources of  “new project material”— trying not to torture myself.


I did venture into my very favorite ReStore right before Christmas, and

look what I found!

At first I just took notice and breezed by, BUT THEN, I hit the brakes and backed up.  The WHOLE doesn’t do anything for me, but as PARTS…hmmmm?!

I was determined--I’ve been spending quality time in my studio cleaning up and REorganizing— ’cause that’s about all I can do still. But I’m restless and decided to test the waters.  I fired up the compressor and metal grinder to see about taking this guy apart.  Very awkward right handed trying NOT to bump the finger—only marginally less awkward left handed but,

I was determined to do SOMETHING!

The spot welds were done VERY WELL, but patience won out!  After grinding down the leftover rough welds, I primed each square with Kilz.  But then I remembered a technique I haven’t employed in a long time.

◊ I REsprayed each tile, one at a time, heavy handedly with the Kilz.  I let the paint have just a few minutes to firm up.  *Can be done by brush too.

◊ I attached the air gun to the compressor and played around “destroying” the paint with harsh blasts of air -creating texture.

The effect can get even better when the paint is only given enough time to set up before attacking with a hand sander.  You can achieve much more of a chipped up, layers of old paint, alligator’d look—depending on the firmness and thickness of the paint!

*I’ve only ever done this technique with Latex paints.

*And remember, only while the paint is just “set up,” not cured.

(*Set Up = “dry” to the touch, but you can still smudge it.)

But alas, I  -HAD TO-  head back to the house to watch the season premier of DOWNTON ABBEY, you understand, right?   So my paint had overnight to cure~unfortunately.

Below, a picture of my air-blown, “wrecked” paint (now settled down & dry).

"wrecking" the paint-

See the pointing hand below?  If I would have sanded areas like this down while the paint was only “set up,” it would have come out more alligator‘d instead of what you see in the picture after.  But it’s nice too!

~I may STILL get more aggressive sanding areas like that on the bigger tin tiles.  What the heck!  Maybe I’ll try over-spraying, blowing, then sanding a 2nd time!  Maybe I’ll dry brush another top color, maybe I’ll just wax…??

"wrecking" the paint-

sanded down AFTER paint cured-

sanded down AFTER paint cured-

the other 2 bigger tiles-

The last two big tiles were primed with Kilz, lightly sanded, and waxed with a medium-dark wax.  I’ll be selling those and the four smaller tins.  I’m keeping two of the big ones for myself and gifting one away.

Below is one of the smaller tin tiles—they’re not totally finished.

BUT, hey

keep watching to see what else I’m planning to do to [all] of them! Hopefully! 


*All the images are raised, however, sometimes they look recessed~optical illusion at play!

one of the smaller tin tiles-

Christmas 2016A slow recovery has not just interrupted working on projects,

it totally messed with my

decorating for Christmas

motivation~which didn’t begin until December 16th and stayed simpler and more natural this year.  Even  s l o w e r, the kids’ tree went up Christmas eve, and was finally decorated Christmas morn’ (tsk~tsk).

I’d still like to share some of the pretty pictures before things are packed away.

How long do you wait before UNdecorating?  Especially when-  if- you start so late?

This year’s decor was kept more ‘simple.’

1st~I really love adding hydrangeas from the garden to the tree.  I dipped last summer’s crop in scarlet Rit Dye, but didn’t leave them long to keep a lighter tone.  I also picked, dried, and dyed some Sedum Autumn Joy from the garden.

2nd~I have bags full of pine cones from so many trips to the Grand Canyon when family & friends visited me in Phoenix.  I selected my fav’s and rolled them in glue, then in rolled them in crystal glitter.

I sprayed the tree with “snow,” used silk lamb’s ear, some ice-crystal’d strands and picks, and feathered Cardinals. But to add a little oompf– I included gold sugared baubles and the gold crown tree-topper.

Christmas 2016

I bought a glittery Merry Christmas banner at Hobby Lobby to swag from the drapery rod, only to discover it was misspelled!  MeRRRy ChristMSto  y o u  too.

Here are some of my Cardinals

Christmas 2016

and some views of my pine cones, hydrangeas and Sedum, the ice-crystals and lamb’s ear!


Christmas 2016

Christmas 2016Christmas 2016Christmas 2016

Christmas 2016

happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

~best wishes for the


New Year!


my “progress”

a setback and a special splint--Sorry I’m so –sporadic– in posting anything anymore,

the finger is giving me a true run for the money.

You’d be surprised at how difficult the simplest and most innocuous things have been to do!  Plus~ a setback has me sporting a special splint now (that is painful at times).  All I want for Christmas is a healed & straight fingerpretty please!

But, in the meantime…

…and because I’m feeling SO project-deprived…

I showed you THIS picture last time~

making some changes-

And THIS is what I’ve been up to!

It’s not a BIG change—but it has some BIG impact!

changes are afoot!

1st- My mother has ONLY agreed to let me COVER OVER her beloved mural BECAUSE- I had a fun idea for her to focus on.  A 4ft x 10ft chalkboard to draw out our family tree!  Our British and German maternal families!

She’s traced us back to the 1600’s so far, and this should make it easier and more fun to share it all with us!

2nd- I had the j-box moved so the chandelier will hang centered over the table for the first time  E V E R.  AND, I hung a “new” chandelier!

3rd- I deleted the old wall phone.  It was a fun thing back in the 70’s, but time has moved on.  It held the phone books in the side and had a chalkboard front for messages.  It’s now for sale at the antique mall should you be interested.

I got some help hanging the hardboard and wasted no time painting.  But the color was mis-mixed!  A purple-y periwinkle…NoNoNo! Then it was too bright and “yellow-y” a blue, so I had a gray’ish color mixed and played with the two till I got the lighter blue-gray I actually wanted!

Uh Oh!

Here’s the new look!

mom's kitchen "makeover!"

The banquette-bench and table are moved to the left to clear the deck door swing when it’s open (which is a LOT).  You can kind of see that MOST of the chalkboard is primed—THAT’s an exhausting exercise!  I love how the color is faded just a bit more by the priming!

The chandelier is vintage metal with a great patina, and yes, I added white doves to each arm for Christmas!

The "new" chandelier!

The "new" chandelier!









The other thing I took liberties with was changing out the decorative switch plate cover –although– the new cover is DECORATIVE too!  This is what it will say just above the door bell-button when finished—I‘m just sharing prematurely.  It makes me giggle every time I walk by.  *If only a butler WOULD actually respond!  When no one comes I guess I’ll just say it’s his day off!  ; D

My humorist twist!

My UNfinished as yet extra touch!
— I have to frame the whole chalkboard.  
I have the wood and crown molding for the top, but, operating a saw is still iffy with my finger.  I bang the poor thing into just about everything….dah!

doesn't everyone have a beauty salon chair in their kitchen !?!Oh yes— one more thing to share!

Many years ago I bought an old beauty salon chair at auction for $5.

I reupholstered it and used it in my master bath while I was getting myself together for the day! Yes—felt a little bougie!

I’ve put it in mom’s kitchen.  I’ve seemingly become her hairdresser and it’s inCREDibly handy to raise/lower as needed  -AND-  it becomes a booster chair when little ones come over!  Truth be told- the bigger ones fight over it too!

Whew!  That was a loooooong post—sorry!

Can you tell I’ve missed you—


on a daily basis-


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