Thursday, January 24, 2013

Color Correction

My husband is now fully on board with making some much needed updates to our home.  We're finally replacing the 90's builder-grade lighting, which means I've spent a lot of time on ladders.

We picked out a new light for the foyer from a big box store, but we didn't like the companion flush-mount light for the hall upstairs, so we went with another model from the same manufacturer since it had a similar, Tuscan-style finish.

Opening the first box, it seems the color of the trim was a lot lighter than what was depicted on the box.  It was more like an orange than a brown.  Hmmm...

Then I opened the second box.  Were my eyes playing tricks on me?  This was nothing like a Tuscan-brown.  It's yellow.  Can I live with it?  The answer was clearly going to be NO.

And at this point, I was frustrated.  I doubled-check the boxes to make sure they both the same finish.  They were, and the SKUs were identical.  I liked the style, but the color was all wrong.  So I did what any crafty DIY blogger would do.

Yes, I painted them with my favorite craft paint.

I'm happy with the end results.

I'm working on a big project this week that I can't wait to share, hopefully next week.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

New Additions to Etsy Shop

I really neglected my two Etsy shops toward the end of last year.  After two years of a lot of sewing in November and December for Tallgrass Design, I decided scale back for the holidays.  It's looking pretty sparse in there right now as you can see on the sidebar!  Just look at that lonely tote bag.  It really needs a friend.

But I did take advantage of some good daylight today to update my other shop, Tragically Retro, home of some really unique vintage jewelry.  Check it out.

More funky retro jewelry to be added this week!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Bringing Objectivity to the Closet

This is basically a re-post from a couple of years ago, but it's worth repeating.

Welcome to the Great Closet Clean-out of 2013!

One of my annual New Year tasks is to CLEAN OUT THE CLOSET.  I've seen some scary closets in blogland, and I'm very thankful that we're fairly tidy closet people.  No, we don't have some fancy closet system, but in the spirit of full disclosure, we're fortunate to have a spacious walk-in closet.

Sometimes, I'll do a quick clean-out in the summer too.  My usual cue that it's time to take a look at the closet is when I run out of hangers before the laundry is finished.  But in January, I'm ruthless.

Next step:  Everything left hanging in the closet, I hang BACKWARDS.

Then as I wear each item throughout the year, it is returned to the closet hanging FORWARD.

This makes the decisions a lot easier next January when I can see that a full year has gone by, and I HAVEN'T WORN IT.  I'll make exceptions for some items, like special occasion dresses or suits, but if the dust is beginning to collect on the shoulders, it's time to take a good hard look at it.  Does it still fit?  Is it still in style?  If not, out it goes!

Now, load those bags in the car to take to the thrift store right now!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Good Intentions, Project 1

One of my resolutions this year is to finish the projects that are really starting to collect.  I have a bad habit of finding all sorts of things that need TLC, but I never get around to them. One of my pals at ReStore calls these projects "good intentions."  She suspects I have a garage, basement, and car filled of "good intentions."  She's right, and that's going to change this year!

This weathered, crusty planter is an excellent example of a good intention:

I think I paid a quarter for it at ReStore last autumn.  After bringing it home, I gave it a good scrubbing and filled the cracks with Spackle.  I even took the "before" picture!  And then it sat on the floor of my basement studio, unfinished for months.

I finally got tired of stepping over it last week, and the dining room table was looking pretty bare after the holidays.  It was all the motivation I needed to finish it.

Too keep it from looking too flat, I painted it with a mixture of black and bronze craft paint and dry-brushed it.  It's finished with several coats of glossy acrylic sealer.

I used what I had on hand to fill it, focusing only on color and texture.  Never mind that a real hydrangea probably wouldn't be happy with a container with hens and chicks.  

I found the iced unripe pomegranates on clearance after Christmas.  I liked their color, so I tucked them in with the pine cones.

My favorite find last Christmas was these juniper picks I found at a local home decor store.  Since I usually shop the big chain craft stores with their sales and coupons, I hated paying full retail price for them.  But as the fake stuff goes, they were too lovely to pass up.

Good Intentions = 1.  One less unfinished, neglected item lurking in the basement.  What a great feeling!