Wednesday, September 26

playing with plaid...

yesterday i dabbled with plaid...

i dabbled with plaid to balance out the florals which appear to be having babies all over our shed these days. now i do not claim to be a plaid expert although i do like to think once upon a time i knew a thing or two about tartan. many many moons ago, i had a job working on a button and ribbon barrow in Edinburgh. it was the daily norm to be asked questions about different tartans and what belonged to what house. i did my best to sound like i knew what i was talking about but alas i think the accent gave it away...

yesterday i sallied forth with plaid in mind, the sort of plaid which would sit comfortably amongst the florals. as the case would be, i did not come across any plaid which fitted the bill, however, i did come across a plaid flannel which stopped me in my tracks. it was a plaid which told me once upon a time it would have lived life as a granny's car blanket. something to keep the old legs and jippy knees warm whilst driving around in the middle of a cold winter's day.
i was not convinced.
the plaid was.
and so it came home with me,
all 2 and 1/2 yards

i had visions for my little piece of plaid to be backed, along with inners and everything being rather lovely and quilt-y like. however my cogs and body changed their mind upon arrival home. it took me all afternoon to 'doilify' my little piece of plaid, for my doilifying skills are rusty to say the least. 

after cartwheeling 8 doilies in place i had to have a rest, i noted Miss Ethel needed one too. we both agreed a quilt-y like throw would not be necessary today...

as i placed my newly doilified plaid throw (a grand title for a couple of yards of fabric and a few doilies) upon the settee and stepped back, 

thoughts of my youth and tartan knowledge came trundling through my head. i wondered if indeed this was a true tartan, and if so, what house would it belong to? the little voice inside my head piped up, very pleased with its self.
"why Tif, of course it is a tartan and it belongs to the House of LumberJack"

Tif :)

Thursday, September 20

hip hip hooray!

today i turn 44
Gladys opens her door for the first time
so many things to celebrate
so many things to be thankful for

(spending her birthday quietly and wisely with her constant canine companions)

Friday, September 14

its a marvelous thing...

its a marvelous thing after the longest time, to see clearly again. me and my '3 in 1' rose coloured specs will take a little while to truly become one, but for now, i can't help but marvel at how big and beautiful the world is through my new specs

its a marvelous thing to know my girls are both coming home for christmas. i know its rather early to be thinking of christmas, but i do not care, no sirree. for the longest time i thought this would not be the case, but now i know it is the case i am wholeheartedly crossing off the days and thinking of christmas in september

its a marvelous thing to have a diary again. after 2 years of going it alone with only my little cogs to retain nitty gritty, i came to the conclusion it was madness. my temporary madness has been replaced by a sense of relief, knowing my little diary found on a pottle around the seven dials in london, will take all the responsibility of everyday things needed to be remembered. its a hefty responsibility for one so little but so far after 4 weeks, my new diary appears to be up to the job. hip hip hooray!

its a marvelous thing to see after quite the few weeks, Our Gladys slowly but surely taking shape. she could without a doubt have taken shape a lot less slowly however i can't help but marvel when looking back, really 7 weeks is not long at all to turn an 'old dear' of a trailer into a vintage eclectic pop~store

its a marvelous thing on the brink of turning another calendar year older, i am gearing myself up to 'keeping fit'. now keeping fit is an odd old thing. for indeed i do not see myself as someone who sits still for long periods of time, however being a crafter, i do indeed in-between my pottling endless hours, sit still. so starting next week, the very week of my 44th birthday i am going 'from crafty butt to 5k'. it is also known around the web as 'from couch to 5k' but for me, i have given it a new name as that is my intention. i have no plans to run a 5k at the end of it all, however my plan is, and its one filled with high hopes... (big big high hopes for in my case, 'keeping fit with intention' is not my forte). i plan to see myself one year from now, on the brink of turning 45, feeling healthier and fitter (with no crafty butt in sight), then i did on the brink of turning 44


Tuesday, September 11

granny chic, specs & little doggies...

yesterday was a day earmarked for getting a lot of nitty gritty stuff done. however as is the way of late, Mr Procrastinator arrived for a visit around mid morning and tempted me from my path of earmarked 'to-dos' and led me to dabble with a pile of vintage crocheted squares and the little flower babies i happened upon last week.

if i was ever asked by anyone what is my fabby fav thing to do, i would respond, without hesitation nor pause to ponder, my fabby fav thing to do is stitch old lace and linens together. be it a quick happy five minutes or more labour intensive and thought requiring moments where there needs to be some rhyme or reason to the patching and placing. either way i am happy in my world.

little flowers strung along the bottom edge doing a brilliant 'dingle dangly' job of things

if perhaps you have always wished to dabble in such a pursuit but are unsure of how to get started. the fear of chopping into your vintage beauties without a plan has left you unable to 'start a stitching' then you will find plenty of wisdom and inspiration on this thrilling pastime in our Granny Chic book, due to be released in old blighty on October 25th. next month no less! this is particularly thrilling for Rachelle and myself, to see our combined crafty cogs and thrifty thoughts in print is rather a wondrous feeling. aside from patching and piecing old fabrics and lace, there is wealth of blurb on this and that, all manner of granny chic goodness is rambled on about, amongst pages filled with visual inspiration and recipes for the crafty secondhand nest.

little olive not convinced we need yet another lace panel at the windows of mossy shed. however she does note how kindly of me to leave her a viewing space

in the meantime, i have arisen today with two things on my mind. one is the left-over list of nitty gritty involving a large silver curvaceous gal called Gladys and t'other? 

well t'other is causing me to fret. for today is 'd-day' for my spectacles. after months of knowing most of the world is a blur (which isn't a bad thing some days) i have agreed with my dr to take the plunge and go for 3 in 1 vision in the way of new spectacles. she explained to me that certain areas of the lens will remain blurry, along the side edges. i have pondered this greatly and all i can keep on thinking about is, when i do a merry dance around my kitchen each evening to make dinner, i do that merry dance with a little pesky doggie not 5 inches off the ground. its a dance we have mastered over 3 years, a dance which involves waltzing from stove, to sink, to fridge, to island and it is done with no mishaps what so ever. quite possibly, many a fly on the wall has witnessed it whilst waiting for leftovers and told their friends, "tis a beautiful thing to see, poetry in motion without a doubt". and now what if little olive gets caught in my blurry bit of glasses vision and a terrible series of unfortunate events could happen in a split second. 

little olive 'summing up nicely' how yesterday was for the majority of the day

so tonight, the first night with '3 in 1 specs' on my nose, we will face our fears and dance our daily waltz around the kitchen, whilst wisely making salad for dinner ~ Tif

Friday, September 7

i like you today ...

a few weeks back i volunteered my man to be my fleamarket buddy. obviously he was thrilled by this and so the day 'crack of dawned' for us to set out on our fleamarket expedition. i put him in charge of surveying stalls, noting set ups and folks ways of displaying. on the car ride i explained what attracted me to one stall as opposed to another and he did a very good job at nodding at my wisdom. on the car ride home he proved to me he had done his job by relaying all his visual findings, including agree wholeheartedly the layout of a stall and how the wares are presented made a difference. i issued a gold sticky star and decided right there and then there was great potential for us to see our days out together if he continued to be my fleamarket buddy in this manner. yes i thought to myself 'i like you today'...

i had hesitated before volunteering my man for one reason and one reason only. if he came with me, then he would see what i was buying and this might not be wise at all, not at all. so along with my wisdom on this and that, i also prepped him for knowing i was intent on finding forsaken souls for Gladys. i marveled at his ability to nod in agreement in everything i found and do a brilliant job at carrying things for me, not a mention of 'crappity crap' or 'really Tif?' followed by laughter, left his lips. so another gold sticky star was bequeathed.

one of the finds of our fleamarket moment together, was a small cream mat, embroidered with lovely self coloured stitching, of course i said this was perfect for Gladys out loud to my man, but inside i was thinking "i don't think so, this is one to keep, surely upon all surelies" and so i did. i ferreted it away on arrival back at the shed and pondered my next move

its been the longest time since i stitched a 'just say it like it is' wall hanging and after several days i took out my little found friend and set to work. the cream floral design was so peachy and after adding my words i was overtaken with a need to add colour to the florals and so i did. following the guide of the hands which had worked this piece many years before me, i filled in the blanks and left some of my own...

if perhaps upon seeing this, you may feel the urge to do a spot of embroidery for a wall hanging to brighten up an empty space in your nest, then it is really quite simple. i do not use anything other than a regular pencil borrowed from a clan member and several coloured threads which please me at the time. in my dottie angel book (published by UPPERCASE) you will find a whole chapter on 'just say it like it is' sayings, including a little recipe on making your own. if you do not have a vintage cloth or doily suitable for your needs, fret not, do as i have done many times before, patch some of your fabby fav fabrics together and then embroidery on top. 
when all is said and done, pop it on the spare bit of wall and admire your handiwork.

here is a brilliantly brilliant example of how its done, Sara and her lovely crafty buddies had a dottie angel crafty day, this was their second one this summer, (here is the first one they held earlier) in which they made their own 'just say it like it is' wall hangings. both days looked to be so peachy perfect and i am so delighted my dottie angel book inspired them to feel a little crafty!

i think upon reflecting on the ramble up above, it is quite true to say, thrifty and crafty things are always peachier with a buddy or two

wishing buddy weekends all round dearest readers ~ Tif 

Thursday, September 6

thrifted loot...

yesterday upon returning from an impromptu visit to the thrift store on the way back from soccer drop off, i felt like a pirate.
a pirate with his thrifted loot no less.

thrifted loot as follows...

lace window panel and a perfectly 'granny' birdie figurine complete with pearlized finish

two embroidery hoops and a pile of doilies

a gasp worthy pair of vintage plastic flowers and huge curtain ready to be chopped up to make the fourth and final fireside cushion (little olive was particularly excited by this find)

an abundance of crochet thread in the most peachiest of granny chic colours
a pleasant surprise upon arriving home, this little dearie had several crocheted babies hiding inside

yes indeedy, it feels good to be back on the thrifting trail again... it may be a lonesome one at times without my thrifting buddy of the old days, but that is 'a-okay' with me


Wednesday, September 5

glorious gladys... part one

once upon a time, many moons ago, in far off climes, several state lines away, lived Gladys. a glorious airstream trailer who spent her days travelling the highway along the Californian coastline. her silvery beauty and curvaceous body received many an admiring glance from passer~bys. she was loved by a family who spent their summer hols taking her to places and spaces.

then one day, quite suddenly out of the blue, a large truck arrived and towed her away. no time for sad farewells or thank yous for the good times and memories. all she had known forever and a day was no longer. Gladys found herself left in a field amongst others who appeared to be a little the worse for wear. she noted they also appeared to have not gone on any jolly trips in the longest time as there was grass knee high around their wheels. as all trailers can only do when unhitched, she stayed put and she waited. 

it wasn't long before another family arrived, this time there were to be no jolly trips along the highway but she was 'a-okay' with this, for it appeared the family were going to live within her all day every day. this was rather comforting for Gladys and so she settled into her new life of stationary living, watching the small beings grow into medium and then large beings to then slowly but surely head out into the world on their own.

once again, a day like the day which happened 'oh so long ago' came around. her cupboards were emptied and so was her heart. the door banged shut, leaving her behind and then silence. after years of laughter and tears played out within her, the silence was deafening. Gladys stayed quiet and patiently waited for the next chapter in her life to begin. alas and alack for Gladys, it took several years and a lot of neglect for it to begin again. for although the family had loved her greatly, they had not cared for her in the way she required. the holes and the dings on her silvery body took their toll and the rain from up above, found a way in below.

it took a kind man with a kind voice to see her potential. he towed her back to his place, set her up out front and pondered what needed to be done. it wasn't an easy decision, one he did not take lightly but if she was going to be rescued despite being beyond restoring he would have to be the one to do it. day and night he worked on tearing out Gladys's inners, her heart and soul, along with the memories of years gone by were removed, leaving just a shell of her former glory and a rather sad looking airstream trailer. no light or warmth was left, Gladys felt cold. he patched and he pieced the majority of the holes and painted her inner walls beige and laid a rather unattractive green wooden floor and placed an ad online for Gladys to find a forever home.

meanwhile, several hours drive south of Gladys and her sad ways, Tif and her clan moved to mossy shed and so began the search for an airstream trailer. with a budget rather on the low side, Tif set her sights at airstreams without inners and in doing so, stumbled across Gladys in her brown and green state. upon close inspection it appeared Gladys was still glorious, she just needed a bit of tender loving care to shine again. for several years, Gladys once again found herself waiting patiently, this time at the bottom of Tif's backyard on a bed of moss. slowly but surely sinking a little lower as each year passed. in the summer of 2011 Tif and her lad's of 2 could no longer bear to see Gladys waiting patiently for her moment to shine and they set to with sheets of metal, a rivet gun, several cans of blue paint and some faux kitschy flooring tiles. the lads moved in one end and Tif moved in the other for summer days to be spent nicely and wisely. Gladys for the first time in the longest time, felt loved.

then one month ago, Tif had a 'bonkers but could be quite brilliant' plan. a plan which really was a master plan for it involved much planning and doing. the plan worthy of the title 'master plan' resulted in Gladys once again being moved to new views and new adventures. once in situ, Tif along with her Man (a necessary requirement for most of the master plan to actually take place), set about transforming Gladys into something rather splendid and most suited to an old gal like Gladys, who (when Tif stepped back to admire just the other day, noted) quite obviously still has many years left to give of being glorious...

Tuesday, September 4

patching & pottling or pottling & patching...

last week before the end of summer feeling was upon us, me and my lads of three went on a bit of a jolly across the waters to the olympic peninsular. having lived here for 12 years it seemed somewhat of a crime we had never been before and so we went. we pottled up a mountain in clog boots, (me not them), we pottled around places and we pottled amongst the shelves of despair in thrift stores and vintage malls (still in clog boots). after our pottling days, we spent our eves around the fire pit and then watching old movies. upon arriving home we all agreed it was a few days well spent pottling and none more so than myself. for amongst the moments of pottling, i found several pieces of vintage linens which had my heart skipping a beat and my crafty cogs turning.

with the 'great mossy shed shuffle of 2012' coming to an end, it has resulted in where once my old studio desk stood, then a settee, now resides our kitchen knook table. upon discovery of 6 squares of old linens i was spurred into action with making some fireside seating. now here is the thing, its not much of a thing but its a thing worth mentioning. the thing is, this fireplace was once red brick and brass surround. it was not to my liking but it had potential and with a can of soft white paint the potential was realized. when the cold winter nights draw in and the power outages arrive, we do rely upon this little fireplace inner to give us warmth despite its unpretty looks. hence the 'warmer days' decoration is removed and heat comes forth. so what more lovely then fireplace cushions me thinks to distract from the rather not so pretty gas fire.

 i rustled around in my linen closet upstairs amongst the towels, bedlinen and unearthed several spare pillows for beds. brilliant i thought, that will do nicely if ever nicely would do.

after finding a few other willing fabric victims including a wonderful piece of vintage cross stitch tapestry, i patched and pieced to my crafty hearts content, three fireside cushions... reversible no less.

uppers showing
unders showing

i have noted in the days which have passed since placing my patched cushions in situ, an abundance of short white hairs sticking to the tapestry cloth, pointing to the fact there has been rather a lot of illegal parking going on from a pesky little doggie 


Sunday, September 2

curiosities, collections and clusters...

a few days previously to this one i am on right now, i found a little wooden shelf out and about. i took the little wooden shelf home noting its distressed state. for it was painted in a distressed fashion on purpose. i told the little shelf i noted its distressed state and not to worry, i would give it a nice coat of glossy soft white in the hope of it feeling less distressed about things.

yesterday upon waiting patiently for several coats of paint to dry i put up my new little friend upon my new wall of vintage wallpaper. 

as i did so, i felt a rebel, for i have read on several occasions, where i do not recall, it is somewhat risque to place things upon wallpapered walls. after my small act of rebellion i plonked several curiosities and clusters which pleased me greatly.

upon going about the rest of my day i noted there appears to be a growing band of little shelves of curiosities, collections and clusters around the shed these days. here is just a sprinkling of a few i noted

technically not a shelf but a side, however i noted it quite the cluster and therefore felt it qualified for inclusion 

in my new and improved studio space

another collection from my new and improved studio space. this is a bit of blur, a bit like the whole summer really

next to my man's side of the bed, thought he would appreciate a few forsaken souls to look over him at night

above my little office corner, hard to see but is indeed a shelf amongst the inspiration bits and bobs

Tif :)