April 06, 2017

Grungy Prim Egg Tutorial

I needed a tutorial on grungy eggs, but my go to blog for that project is being revamped.  Now what? Well, I did what I needed to do.......figure it out and make my own for future references.  Disclaimer: I am not a professional grundy egg maker or tutorial maker.  My eggs were really pushing the limits of grundy almost into ugly, but in the end I am satisfied with how they look in their proper setting. Bonus: My hands smell wonderful and my house smells like I've been cooking up something very delicious. 

You are going to need plastic easter eggs that have the holes in the top or bottom, ground cloves, toothpicks, a small dish, melted wax (preferably a wax that is white, tan, or brown), a cooling rack with something under it.  I also found later that I needed cotton swabs and a fine sifter. 

I am not patient enough to wait for hours for the wax to melt on the candle plate so if you start out with cool water and put your glass container in it to heat up all together on med low the glass won't crack.  It only took 15 minutes to melt with a very slight simmer.

Take a toothpick and insert the end of it into an egg then quickly submerge it fully into the melted wax.  Hurry and get it out or the egg will fill up inside with the wax. 

   You are not going to get great results in covering the egg unless you have a ton of cloves in your dish.  I was trying to be conservative because I only had a small bottle of it.  If you can, get a big bottle of cloves and make it pretty deep in the the dish and it will be so much easier for you.  Working quickly before the wax sets cover as much of the egg as you can.  I found that I actually needed to pick of the cloves and push them in and onto the egg.  It was more like molding it how I wanted it to look.  Some areas needed more while some needed less.
*Note: If you're thinking of filling up a ziplock back with the cloves and then dropping the egg into it for a good shaking like you do your chicken, don't do it.  It does not work.  The wax sticks to the insides of  the bag and the cloves clump up.....big mess. 

Sometimes wax will drip into the cloves and set.  It makes it nearly impossible to cover the egg or pick the cloves to push them on if there are chunks in it.  Just fine sieve them out and throw them back into the hot melted wax.  If you melted your wax via stovetop and find it is setting while your working, then put the container back in the hot water for a few minutes. 

By this time your workspace and hands will be a complete mess, you might be wondering what the heeeell you are doing, and your eggs might be very ugly.  Just stick with it and keep creating. There will be parts of your egg that need re waxing because it set before you got spices on it.  Just take a cotton swap and transfer melted wax to the spots you need to cover.  Keep adding wax and covering spaces until it looks how you want it to. 

 The last step is to brush off all the existing spices that are not set into the wax.  

See, they really will be o.k..  Once you get them in a proper setting I think they look just fine. 

Good luck!

March 23, 2017

By Baby Bunny Bunting

"By baby bunting daddy's gone a hunting to fetch a little rabbit skin to wrap my little baby in."

As babies, after our baths, our father would wrap us tightly in our towels and hold us in his arms and rock us back and forth and sing this song.

I am not in the habit of creating decor like this.  It's not the style I am looking for, but when I saw something like it on Pinterest the memory of my father singing this song instantly came to my mind after many, many years.  I fell in love with the bunting and since it is spring and close to Easter time, it was fitting.  I also think the bunnies look quite nice on the china hutch.  

March 21, 2017

Vignette~ Spring has Sprung

It was Spring eve, March 19th.  The kids were in bed, the kitty curled up in her usual spot, the house was dim, and there I was, ripping things apart and pulling out the flowers, bunnies, grungy eggs, nests, and birds late into the night.  The house had to be transformed, I couldn't take it another second let alone another day.  My heart needed spring as much as my mind and eyes did. Yes......welcome spring.......indeed. 

Sometimes I wonder if I never rearranged again, if I never decorated for the holidays or the seasons, if I just stopped fussing about the mantle, the centerpieces, or the shelves if anyone would ever notice.  Would my children and husband one day realize the house had been the same for months and months?  Would they care that the flowers were not there or that the Fourth July decor never got put out?  Would they realize that the Spring or Fall sign had been up through all four seasons?  Would they care?  I hate to really ask that because I think they might not.  No one really notices anything when I rearrange.  No one says they like the flowers, or the way the entrance has been changed.  I have to tell myself that it doesn't really matter because it's something I love to do.  It doesn't matter if no one likes it on Instagram or Facebook. It doesn't matter if my family cares or not.  It's my way of being something other than just a mom. I have to do it for myself, so the decorating will go on.  

March 17, 2017

The Reason for a Photo

It was a Sunday drive to another town for a family gathering.  We were early as usual so we decided to go down to the edge of the dam to see if the utilities were pumping out much water. It wasn't the color of the water or the sound of the swift falls and river.  It wasn't the smell of the grasses and sage as the snow was melting around them. It wasn't the old bridge that cars and trucks were passing on overhead.  And it wasn't the washed out sky in contrast to the canyon walls.  It was the abandoned pump house that captured the reason for the photograph.  It's haunting. 
It's strange.  It's beautiful. 

March 10, 2017

DIY Cotton Blossom Stems

If I were a pioneer woman and had to beautify my little cabin I would probably be the one to pick all sorts of flowers, twigs, branches, etc. to try and somehow make my home a better place.  The ability to see beauty in such simple things is a gift I enjoy.  I am not sure others see some of the things in my house as beautiful, but it's all in the eye of the beholder. 
When I saw pictures of cotton stems floating around on the Internet I knew I needed to have some for spring.  Sadly, I was not impressed with the tutorials or the actual product I was seeing. So I set to doing it my way and making a tutorial that hopefully will benefit someone.  I think they are oh, so lovely......and simple.

Gather stems that have many out-branchings. I prefer the thinner stems that aren't so stiff and woody.  This time of year it is great to find them with the buds.  You will also need pine cones, cotton balls, hot glue, and some sort of tool for cutting. 

Start by trimming your stems of broken edges and loose debris.  Look at the branch and even it up by cutting off any twigs that look out of place. 

Separate a cotton ball. If you pull gently on the cotton ball you can discover which way it pulls in half easily. 

Roll it in between your palms until it becomes a little cotton bud. 

Pinch the bottom together so it looks like a V shape. 

Hot glue three pine cone scales around the bottom of the bud.  Place the scales so the inside of it is toward the cotton.  I tried to pick scales that would fit the size of the bud.  Some scales were very large making it look unnatural.  The smaller ones looked better. 

You will get better results if you glue them on so the tips are all touching at the bottom.  Secure the tips together with just a bit of glue.  Your bud will hold better this way and it will make it easier to attach it to the stem.

Try and pull just a pinch on the top of the bud so it doesn't look too  flat, round, or synthetic.

Now it's ready to be attached to the branch with hot glue.  You can put however many you wish on and wherever you like.  Group them together or place them singly.  Just make sure that they are even all over so one part does not become more heavy than the other. Also too many on one branch may bend it over unnaturally.

There, that wasn't so hard.  And once your done you will love your cotton stems so much you might just offer to make some for your friends!
Happy creating!

March 04, 2017

The Lucky Mantle

There is this weird space of time between Valentines Day and the first day of spring.  I usually take down the Love and fill the nooks and crannies with other textiles until I can display the flowers and bunnies, but this year I thought I'd just leave the hearts and reds where they sit until March 20th.  It was a good plan until the mantle really started to get on my nerves with the "be mine" banner and "love you" sign.  I was on my way to tearing it down when I found my inspiration on Instagram.   A lovely March display full of vintage fun and dark greens. I'd never even thought about a display like that until then.  I set to gathering anything green around the house and in my decor closet I could find.  I had more than I expected, but it's hard to fit random jars, books, spindles, etc. into a display.  In the end this is what came of it all.  I made the banner out of foam paper, glitter, and some ribbon I found at JoAnn's  

It was therapeutic to rummage around the house for items, rearrange them in a pleasing way, and then have created something my family can enjoy for just pennies on the dollar. 

With any "luck" the snow will all melt soon and the weather will warm up.  It's been a very long and cold winter here in Idaho this year.  I am more than ready for the forsythia, pussy willows, and fruit blossoms. 

Stay lucky my friends!

February 25, 2017

Vintage meets Modern

When you are on the road and pass a store you've never seen before which happens to be called Redeemed Decor, you make your hubby slam on the brakes and u-turn into the parking lot.  And he does because, even though you warned him it would be dangerous for you to go in there, he loves you and is fully prepared to come out of the place with a treasure.  And what a treasure it is.

Sometimes items actually jump off the shelves into my arms screaming for me to take them home.  This was just the thing that happened.  Only it was too big to jump so it grabbed my heart instead and pulled.  A re purposed vintage radio cabinet!  I mean how cool is this!?

The first thing that went into the cabinet was actually the kitty.  Baby decided it needed a cosy place to hide and then shut the sliders so the poor thing couldn't get out.  After a mighty rescue I freed it and then set the cabinet in the music room.  Hubby and I decided the perfect thing to do with the cabinet was to use it for it's intended purpose and that was to house a radio.  We went to Best Buy and found the best blue tooth system we could afford (there are lots to choose from).  I drilled a hole in the back for the cord and got it all settled in.  

I must tell you the sound from the stereo once it was place in the hollow body of the cabinet really can amplify throughout the entire house and it's amazing. 
But what's more amazing is how this piece speaks to me.  This awesome vintage cabinet meets modern time.  I LOVE it.  It's now my most favorite thing in the house.  Besides my family of course!
Last night we turned off the lights, blasted our favorite music, danced with the black light on, and had a great time all together. 

Happy Weekend my Friends.

February 11, 2017

A Flood and a Country Drive

How long it has been since I've taken a picture of something other than my children and house!  Today we took a country drive to observe the damage the flooding had created over the farm land of Southern Idaho.  The destruction is real as lakes had formed in the middle of prospective crops, rivers were running through fields and over roadways, canals had been blown out, top soil eroded away, and parts of roads had been washed out.  People's homes are flooding, barns are muddy messes, trucks are stuck, and livestock have been displaced.  Never before have we seen this kind of calamity caused by inordinate amounts of snow and quick rising temperatures.  Mother Nature is truly amazing. 

The children sighed when I told hubby to stop so I could get out and snap one of this barn.  They were a bit tired of the drive and all the gawking their parents were doing.  The sun was shinning in all the wrong places for the picture, but I did a bit of photo shopping in order to pull out the colors and some texture.  Sometimes it takes a flood and a country drive to help me remember what I used to love to do; photograph the barns and old houses. Life can truly get so wrapped up in the little day to day things that we forget who were are and what we love to do.  I am thankful for today. 

Wishing you all a lovely week.

February 04, 2017

Valentines Day Love

Hearts are not a thing I decorate with, nor the little love sayings, or the sentiments.  It's not that I am a Valentines Day grinch. Although I do have a distaste for the holiday altogether, I will decorate and celebrate it for the sake of my girls.  I find it harder to keep within the prim parameters when trying to put up reds, hearts, banners, ribbons, and fluff.  But, I enjoyed the challenge and in the end I think things pulled together.

It has been ages since I've actually sat down and crafted anything.  I don't know why, but it's been so long and I used to do it all the time.  It was fun to create this garland and the I Love You sign on the mantle. The antique tin was my grandmothers.  I am beginning to really see the beauty in the deep reds with a lovely patina.   

 The wreath was another project.  Not so prim per say, but the coffee filters are tea dyed and once the red ribbon and hearts are off of it, I can really turn it into something pretty.  My oldest had a good time making it with me and that what counts.  

The clock used to sit on my Grandfather's night stand.  I remember once my Grandmother making me take a nap on the old stinky bed in the back bedroom which was the master bedroom she never occupied.  All of my Grandfather's things were in that room and were left there untouched since he passed away.  I played with the clock to keep myself occupied instead of sleeping. 

Here's the sign I cringed when buying.   Alas it doesn't look bad, but it has no depth.  Nothing interesting about it.  No story.  A cheesy saying.  It's fluff.  But it fulfills a purpose and that is this:  it fits the space with it's vertical size, and it's for Valentines Day. So bingo, it comes home with me. 

*Also this is the last decor change until Spring!  Eeek I can't wait for that!*

Wishing you all love and friendship in this month of celebrating all things romantic.