Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Vintage Thingie Thursday : Vintage Kitchen Decor

Welcome everyone to Vintage Thingies Thursday. If you have a love for vintage things, have come to the right place. We have a "dog-gone" good time each and every week!!!
If you are new to this party, please take the time to
read and follow the instructions for participating in Vintage Thingies Thursday, click HERE. I try and keep things fairly simple, so please make sure you follow the instructions. Please only ONE link per week. Lastly, if you link in, LINK back to my blog, so everyone can see all of the vintage goodies being showed that day. If you don't link back here, they won't know who to visit......thanks so much.

This past weekend, I did some organization and rearranging in my kitchen. Surrounding myself with things I love both from my past and new found items from today. This is a bean pot that belonged to my grandmother. For as long as I remember, she had this pot. I remember at one time, she made red beans in this pot on the stove, but in later years, she had it in her kitchen and did not cook with it. At one point, I think she had a plant even planted inside this pot. It originally had two handles, one on each side, but today only one remains. It certainly holds a lot of memories for me. I wish I knew where she got this pot originally, but I don't. I am estimating this to be at least 40 years old or older.

I decided to bring this pot inside and use it to hold all my kitchen stencils. I originally wrote about receiving this here from my cousin. I love it sitting on my counter.....nothing like a little red and white galvanized goodness to look at each day.
I stacked two of my cake plates and decided I'd enjoy looking at some of my smaller goodies displayed on the bottom one. Most of these treasures are Goodwill or estate sale finds. That little lemon is a tea bag holder and I found that one at Goodwill for 50 cents.....I think it is so 1950's. The amber glass bowl is also a estate sale find and I know I did not pay more than a couple of dollars for it. It really gives a fall feel for me.

That is about it for this week....hope you are all having a great week and looking forward to the wonderful fall weather this weekend. Have a great time either relaxing or spending time with family. See ya' next week with more vintage goodies!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Take Me Back Tuesday: Not Your Ordinary Cookies

Over the weekend, I watched a show on the food network channel which was a bake off among several teams. One team struggled with a old fashion cookie recipe not coming out like the other team member remembered it from their childhood. An argument broke out and accusations of not following the recipe exact was the blame for the mishap with the cookies not being the best they should have been.

Now, normally I don't watch the food network, that is more my husbands style of television watching...I'm more into reality shows myself...but this argument caught my attention and I wanted to see how this ended. Mostly, it confirmed my thoughts on replicating vintage recipes from my past to only be slightly disappointed in the finished product today.

Growing up, I remember especially during my preteen and teenage years, I baked a lot. You name it, I could bake it. Especially during the summer months, my mom worked during the day, so I had lots of time for baking. I remember looking through cookbooks to find recipes that we had all the ingredients for and I'd make it. I have mentioned here before of a pound cake I used to make, that was to die for. It was the most flavorful, buttery, moist cake and it always came out perfect each and every time I made it.

Along with that pound cake, I made lots of cookies. Chocolate chip, peanut butter, oatmeal, teacakes, sand tarts,  and butter cookies were just a few of the many cookies I'd bake. And even being a young baker, I never had any issues with anything I made not turning out just right. Never.

You would think at my age, and all the years I have spent in the kitchen cooking I would not have an issue with some of my favorite vintage recipes. I mean after all, I spent years making them perfectly when I was younger, so why would I have any issues today with the same tried and true recipes? I have struggled with that for a while now.

This weekend, I did some rearranging in my kitchen, cleaned out all the cabinets, brought out some of my favorite things that belonged to special people in my life and displayed them in my kitchen. I have said for years, I am buying back my childhood one item at a time, and so I unboxed several thrift store treasures that were exactly like the ones that once belonged to family members. Overall, I felt like it was a productive day, and honestly made me feel like cooking up something from my past.

And that is exactly what I did. I found some of my OLD cookbooks and sat and looked through them finding the recipes I always used to make. That was the easy part, as the pages that were the dirtiest, and smudged the most told me there was a recipe I had made over and over. I decided to give it a try once more and found the butter cookie recipe I so remembered from my childhood.

And I am happy to report that this turned out exactly the way I remembered them. They were like biting into a piece of the past and the warm cookies fresh from the oven were some of the best I have had in years. Consequently, that busted my theory on the ingredients today not being like they were 25 years ago. To sooth my bruised ego every time something did not turn out exactly the way I remembered it, that is what I have claimed was the cause. However, this weekend I could not say that at all.

So, I have come to the conclusion, that me being home alone this weekend, with no interruptions, no one poking a spoon in the bowl to see what is being made, no distractions at all was the difference in my baking one of my old time favorites. It almost took me back to when I was younger and would be the only one home, in the kitchen alone and turning out recipes right and left that were wonderfully delicious. At least, that is the only logical explanation I have at this moment.

Let me tell you, I was so impressed with these cookies and how they turned out I decided to go out on a limb and make another favorite dish my grandmother made when I was a little girl. This recipe was lost years ago, but the internet is a wonderful thing and as I searched for something similar, all of a sudden, the recipe started coming back to my memory.

Would you believe, this was the best tasting meal I can remember having in a long time. The sheer taste and smells in my kitchen on Sunday took me back to the days in my grandmothers kitchen all those years ago and a little girl who stood at the stove as her grandma made the most delicious meal that was always a favorite. I had forgotten how wonderful it smelled, tasted and how much love came from my grandma's kitchen. Isn't it great how a food can take you back to the places that are forever etched in your heart.

This Take Me Back Tuesday is all about the food and being able to achieve success with some of the vintage recipes of yesterday. It is about not being able to blame ingredients of today on my unsuccessful attempts in the recent past in making them. It is about realizing that maybe I need to slow down, and enjoy being in the kitchen without distractions, husbands, internet or television to keep me from being focused. It is about remembering wonderful things from the past and rediscovering them today and feeling a connection from long ago. It is about me having the courage to try that recipe again for the pound cake I so have a craving for. It is about having hope and faith.

P.S. I will share these recipes with you in the future, but I did not have the camera in the kitchen with me, and took no pictures at camera in the kitchen....that may be another distraction I should have listed above......just sayin'

Friday, September 24, 2010

Ugly Fabric??? Or Hidden Beauty??

Go ahead.....Tell me what you see??!! Please tell me you see the same thing I do......I am wondering what my shrink would say...if I had one that is. Maybe I need one. I wonder most days.

Cotton quilting fabric....the fabric of our least quilters lives. Oh. Stop Me. That was as corny as it gets!! Sorry.

Last month, I signed up for a "Ugly Quilt Contest" via Stash Manicure's Blog. I'm telling you, she had me at "Ugly" so I decided to see what that was all about.....needless to say, I raised my hand and signed up right away. Sounded fun and interesting to me!

The rules for this contest is pretty simple really. You are paired with a partner and you are to send your partner 2 yards total of "ugly" fabrics from your stash. Fabric you either no longer like, know you won't use again or fabric you wonder what in the world you were thinking when you bought it. Oh, that should be no problem for me, I have tons of that!

The two yards were to be (4) 1/2 yard cuts or 8 fat quarters or any combination to equal 2 yards. Once you had your choices to mail to your partner, place in brown bag and send it to your partner along with any information about yourself you wish to share.

Once you receive your parcel of "ugly fabric" you must construct a quilt using 90% of the fabrics sent to you. You may add any fabrics from your own stash and only purchasing one newly piece for the quilt. No maximum or minimum size for the quilt. The quilt is yours to keep.

Contest runs from September 1, 2010 until March 1, 2011 with prizes and awards issued on April 1, 2011.

This is the package I mailed to my swap partner. Don't let the packaging fool you....there was some ugly going on inside that package.

These are the fabrics I sent to Mary in Minnesota. Now, some of you may not think they are too ugly, but I know there are some out there that are cringing just looking at that lot. Honestly, if I had gotten this package, I would be stressed to the max. I don't do well trying to figure color, scale, contrast...and well, this would have my head spinning. Totally.

Now, here are my fabrics Mary sent me. There are 4 pieces in the back, and one larger cut of fabric in the front. I have to admit, this is totally out of my comfort zone.....totally. Believe me, I have spent a good amount of time worried about a design, pattern, fabrics to pair with this....but I think I have a plan....I think.

Now, here are 4 of the 5 pieces Mary sent me and they are not bad. I have never worked with this type of fabric, and honestly.... Mary sorry.....but I would not have gone into the fabric store and snatched these bolts off the rack and carried them to be cut at the fabric station. Not because they are "Ugly"....more so they are not small print, floral, vintage reproduction fabrics I am drawn to.....for me that is safe......for me this is a bit scary......

Oh, who an I kidding......THIS IS A LOT SCARY!!!! Totally out of my level of comfort and my thoughts on my abilities! All joking aside.....this is good for me!  The questions I ask myself is, do I cut this up and turn these images into blocks or highlight the large "face" into blocks and work around that!!! So many options. But if this quilt turns out half the way I think it will.....I will love it!! Oh, who am I kidding...I already love it and it is only in my thoughts....and I will tell you it does not involve any faces!!

The very best part of this process to me is meeting a new friend. No, not a new friend....but a kindred spirit. It is totally amazing how emailing back and forth with my swap partner Mary, we learned we have so much in common. Even the quilting process and likes and dislikes are much the same. I guess the moral of this is no matter how ugly you think something may still attracts beauty in some way. I have never really come across too many things that were entirely ugly....there is beauty in everything, even if it has to be reworked to see something beautiful!

These are the fabrics from my stash I pulled....see my problem?? I always pull like colors and never contrast....that may pose a problem for me! My brain has issues with color combination and contrast. I guess that is really an ugly issue for a quilter....maybe that means I am not a quilter. Oh dear.

What are your thoughts on ugly fabrics? Do you see potential no matter what others think or see? Do you discard your "ugly" fabrics or hang on to them? I can not wait to hear your thoughts.....and don't forget.....Tell me what you see in that first photo....tell me you see a Walt Disney Monster's head. Tell me I'm normal. Please.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Vintage Thingie Thursday : Vintage Souvenir Spoon Rack - With Updated Look!

Welcome everyone to Vintage Thingies Thursday. If you have a love for vintage things, have come to the right place. We have a "dog-gone" good time each and every week!!!
If you are new to this party, please take the time to
read and follow the instructions for participating in Vintage Thingies Thursday, click HERE. I try and keep things fairly simple, so please make sure you follow the instructions. Please only ONE link per week. Lastly, if you link in, LINK back to my blog, so everyone can see all of the vintage goodies being showed that day. If you don't link back here, they won't know who to visit......thanks so much.

It is no secret that I have a passion for vintage linens and have stacks of them stored in containers away from view. A long time ago, and I can not remember where, I saw a display with vintage handkerchiefs and decided to try and duplicate that for myself.

Some of these are proudly displayed in my sewing room so I can enjoy looking at all their vintage beauty. This is the simplest of projects. Do you recognize what this display holder is? That is right.....a souvenir spoon rack from the 60's or 70's. All I did was spray this with some spray paint and it was ready to hang on the wall.

I did add a vintage button or two to where the hole was (that is where it hangs from the wall) and I rather like how this turned out.

Best part of it is, it is a easy way to get those vintage hankies and linens out of storage and start enjoying them on a day to day basis.

So next time you see one of these sitting on the shelves at Goodwill or a thrift store, think of the possibility and take it home with you, a little paint sure makes a difference.

I'd like to thank everyone who entered the quilt giveaway. Random Number Generator must have had a connection to a higher power to be, because I was sorta shocked when I counted the comments and realized who won this quilt.

Congratulations LaVoice from Thoughts From Meme's Corner.....Like I said, I was shocked and would like to think maybe CC would be pleased that you won ......I think you might want to go buy a lotto ticket today!

Happy Vintage Thingie Thursday everyone....hope you have a great week.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

How To Locate That Hard To Find Fabric

I have something to share today  in regards to locating hard to find fabrics. Here is my story on this subject. Some may already know about this....but if there is one person out there who has never heard of was worth sharing.

I have spent a lot of time online searching for fabrics for a sports themed quilt I have been commissioned to make for someone else. I began to see the quilt form in my mind, but was still missing one fabric for one of the blocks. Well, as luck would have it, I found what I wanted to use and nothing was going to take the place of this fabric.....this was the one I wanted. The End.

I almost hesitated showing this swatch because should the person not like it, I'd feel bad....but trust me, I do have a plan and it will be great....pending if I can find the fabric.

I began searching online, and found no one had this. Next, I emailed the manufacturer and was told that it would be almost impossible to find, as this had been discontinued and they felt sure that I would not be able to locate any. She said it was popular about 5 years ago or earlier. She asked me why I did not buy any of this fabric when it was in the quilt shops.....I told her...."Lady, I did not even know quilt shops existed over 5 years ago....and that is the truth!"

That was the end of the conversation....she was stumped, in fact, it was almost like I could hear crickets chirping on the other end of the phone. True. This is a reproduction fabric and I really loved it.....especially knowing it was going to be paired with two other fabrics. I had to have it. It became an obsession. Sorry....I am that way!

To make matters worse, I saw several discussion boards on line with people looking for the same fabric.....did not make me feel better seeing those messages with no leads on anyone having it. I pressed on.

However, I did call one quilt shop and she told me the same thing...they did not have it. But she gave me a bit of information I want to share with you. She explained that there was an email address to send a request for what type of fabric I was looking for. She exclaimed to be clear, if you have a picture, include it and the message is sent to all over the country. She assured me if a quilt shop had it, they would contact me. I sent the email on Saturday.....and waited....did I mention that I do not have the patience of Job in things like this???

Now, being on the impatient side, and I did manage find a quilt shop in Georgia that had this fabric after hours calling and searching online. I wanted two yards, and they had a little under two yards. The lady was not very friendly at all, promised to call me back and did not, I had to call them back. I was just sorta put off by their lack of customer service. And to make matters worse, they had a online business as well, that is how I found her in the first place. Anyway, I was going to call them on Sunday afternoon and order all that they had, but I forgot and remembered once the store had closed.......fate.......or bad luck.

Monday morning, I had a email in my in-box from the sweetest lady from a quilt shop in Pennsylvania. They not only had the amount I needed, but it appears I could have ordered a couple yards more without any problem......and the real deal was the fabric was $2.00 cheaper per yard than the fabric at the quilt shop which totally lacked in customer service in a bad way. Fate.....bad is a good thing.

Now, if you are searching for a certain fabric and can not seem to locate it....send an email to this address below, tell them what you are looking for and cross your fingers. I only got one reply from my request....but that was all I needed.

fabsearch {at} aol {dot} com

I hope this is something useful to you, I had never heard of that as a search option and would not have known about it had the lady volunteered the information to me over the phone. Now, I have another fabric I have been looking for and hope an email proves to find that one for me too! It is an older MODA floral and I don't think it will be any easier to locate than this print was...but there is always a shot. Anyway, that one is for another project sometime down the road!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Recycled Wall Art Tutorial

Yesterday, I showed you my tired, outdated mirror that I have had for years and the new updated look. Now, I'd like to show you what a little bit of odds and ends from around the house and home improvement store turned this into a easy fun promised....this is how I did it.

I started with this mirror. It is well made, strong wood and I am sure when it was purchased new, cost a pretty penny. But since I don't buy new...this cost originally about 12 years ago around $15.00 at an estate sale. Believe me, I have loved it and got my $15.00 out of it.

First thing I did was remove the metal and wood roosters. Using a flat head screwdriver, they just preyed right off. Then, I lightly sanded the piece with a medium grit sandpaper.

I covered the mirror with paper and gave it a light coat of primer, then 3 coats of black paint. I just concentrated on the edges of the mirror as the inside would be covered up later. I let the paint dry and set for a couple of days.

Now, I am sure right away you  know at first glance what I used for the mirror after seeing this pile of scrap pieces of paper. A trip to the local home improvement store to search for color paint chips was loads of fun. Now, don't get me wrong, I actually did pick up a couple that I am considering the colors for painting one of my rooms......but the rest were just screaming to come  home with us....and yes, they were free.

I trimmed the paint name off the chips and cut them to size. I used my rotary cutter and ruler for more accurate cuts.

Now it was time to adhere the paint chips to the mirror. I know many tutorials I read online always tell you how it is done, and never ever tell you what went wrong with the project. I try to avoid that, because for me...something always goes wrong.....most of the time!!

I decided to try and just Mod Podge the paint chips to the mirror. After all, I'd be using it anyway, so I thought that would work......not so much. For me, the paint chips were too heavy to adhere to the wood with just Mod Podge. Please, if you do this project, save yourself the headache and use spray adhesive for this step. Just spray the spray adhesive onto the wood, and place the paint chips in place and press to adhere. Let dry well.

Next, using Matt Finish Mod Podge, apply 3-4 coats to the mirror covering the paint chips well. Let dry in between coats really well.

It looks pretty good like this, but it just sorta lacked a little depth and texture. I used a antiquing glaze I had on hand that was left over from some other projects I have done in the past.

Using a soft cloth, I rubbed the antiquing glaze over the paint chips covering well. If it was too dark in some areas, just wipe off and work with it until it has the look you like.

And here is the new updated mirror. This project cost absolutely nothing. All the paint, glaze, Mod Podge and adhesive was what I had on hand. The paint chips were complements of the home improvement store. This is an easy project that could be done with so many re-purpose  projects. I can see this technique used on frames, shelves, table tops.......or maybe......

 Photo from web
A wall mural.......
 Photo from web
Or wall art using these paint chips as backgrounds for the changing seasons......Love this one.....

 Photo from web
 Or how about a backdrop for a bedroom......that is amazing.......And all created using paint chips.

It really is an easy and pain free project. And for me, those are the best kind.....and it is always an added bonus to say you did it yourself!!!

REMINDER: My Giveaway ends on HERE to enter if you have not already!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Recycled Wall Art

One afternoon, I was watching television, and a commercial came on advertising lighting. I was not paying too close attention until the very end of the commercial and the image below flashed on the screen. Good thing we have a DVR so I could pause, rewind and go grab my camera.

This is a photo right from my television screen. I was not really thinking about the lamp, more about the wall mirror. I thought that was a cute mirror for maybe my daughters apartment. So the plan was to figure out how to make it happen.
I have had this mirror for years.....and have loved it.....for years. But after careful consideration...THIS.....

quickly turned into THIS...........

And it cost absolutely nothing.....FREE......I'll show you tomorrow how to do this. The process could be applied to almost anything.......what do you think?

~As always, clicking on the pictures makes them larger and easier to see. Check back tomorrow for the "how-to"

"From Little Things" Brand New Fabric Line Giveaway!

Brand new line of fabric giveaway.....go enter. This is by Sarah Fielke of Australia and it is called "From Little Things". This is brand new and has not even made it to Houston yet...WOW what great fabrics in great color packs. There will be 5 total given away, one in each color family.

I don't know about you...but I am crossing my fingers!!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Friday's Fabulous Find: Holiday Gift Idea

 Welcome to my first addition of "Friday's Fabulous Find" Holiday Gift Ideas.

The holidays are not too far off, in fact Christmas is LESS than 100 days away.  I wanted to share on Fridays some of the wonderful gift Ideas I have found lately. Hopefully, each Friday, I will have something to share in the weeks to come. It is never too early to get started thinking about the holidays and if you are ordering gifts for loved ones, now is the time to do so.

 Do you have a recipe box filled with great-grandma's recipes or other relative's wonderful recipes tucked away in a cabinet or shelf? Did your Aunt Betty have beautiful penmanship and her writing was a work of art? I have found a great gift idea for friends and family members alike.....and I am so excited to share this with you guys.

Treasure.....Yesterday's Memories

For a one of a kind gift, this small home and family run company offers printing of your original vintage recipes onto towels, aprons, or totes. They can even be framed for your kitchen. What a great gift this would make to anyone on your shopping list. Just imagine Grandma's Cookie Recipe (in her own handwriting) printed on a flour sack towel, pair that with a wooden spoon, cookie cutter and all wrapped in a ribbon.....such a sweet gift. For me, the possibilities are endless.

" A unique way to display your loved one's favorite recipe. Remember Aunt Betty's angel food cake that she brought to the family reunions each year, or how about Grandma's apple pie? Send original "recipe" in your loved one's handwriting. The more food, smudges or grease marks on the recipe the better. Capture those special memories on an old fashion flour sack towel. You can display it in your kitchen or order it already framed. You can also choose to have it printed on a apron or tote, your choice. This is truly a one-of-a-kind piece of art for you and your loved ones to enjoy for years to come."

 (Please accept my apologies for the bad photos) I was having issues with my camera!

I am going to order several of these this year. Another idea, would be to use these as shower or wedding gifts. Especially if there is a family member who is no longer living but left a legacy of wonderful recipes, this would be so cute and special to give a new bride or groom. Sure beats buying off a registry, and so personal  and unique.

If this is something you are interested in, please contact them right away. Like I said, this is a small family run business and they own a printing company too, so expect 4-5 weeks turnaround for your order. But rest assured, you will be so pleased with the response you get when you give these gifts of treasured memories.

Contact Information:

Yesterday's Memories
767 Doves Landing, Coldwater, Michigan 49036
(517) 278-4199

 I hope you enjoyed this fabulous find on Friday.....I just fell in love with this gift idea and had to share it with you guys. Be sure to tell Donna that The Coloradolady sent you!! Now, who on your list would just love to have one of these unique gifts....I know several on my shopping list, myself included! 

I am linking in this Friday to Deck the Halls Friday,  hosted by Tinsel & Company.  Be sure to stop off and see what creative ideas, recipes, and holiday decor are being shared this week.

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