Monday, July 12, 2010

While I'm Away

 The Yankee and I are in Brimfield, MA for an antique show.  I won't be near a computer for awhile.  All linky parties will resume when I return.  I'll have lots of photos of the goodies I find.  Can't wait to share them with you.  Until then...

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Thank You for the Honor

Melody of Brown Gingham Creations has kindly honored me with The Versatile Blogger award.  Thank you, Melody, for your sweet gesture!

Now I must tell seven things about myself and pass this award on to fifteen other bloggers whom I find noteworthy.

About me:
1.  I am the eldest of five daughters and my younger siblings love to remind me of that fact.
2.  I was born in Germany–during the time my dad was stationed there in the army–and my first language was German.
3.  I drive my family crazy over my obsession with health and wellness.  Just ask the Yankee!
4.  I was a double major with a minor in college.  Told you I'm a type A personality!
5.  I would prefer a gift certificate for my favorite salvage yard (if one were offered), over one for a retail store.
6.  I would rather be outdoors than in–can't get enough of nature.
7.  I love, love, love birds.  The Yankee calls me "the bird lady".  Does that make me his "tweetheart"?

(Uh oh; I guess that's more than seven...if you count the "sidenotes".  Sorry about that.)

Fifteen bloggers I find exceptionally noteworthy (in no particular order):
I love the sophisticated simplicity of her style and her great tutorials.
2.  Donna of Funky Junk Interiors 
I think we're probably kindred spirits.  She loves creating beauty from junk as much as I do.
If ever there were a blogger superwoman, Susan would be it.  She works full time, creates idea books, hosts two weekly blog parties, and has just opened an eBay store and ETSY shop.  Where does she find the time?!
4.  Cindy of My Romantic Home
Viewing her blog is like stepping into a Romantic Homes magazine.  She has definitely captured romantic, shabby chic décor.
5.  Kim of Daisy Cottage
Though my decorating style tends to dictate soft, muted colors, I love visiting Kim's bright, cheery cottage via her blog.  Those two terms seem to describe her personality perfectly, as well.
6.  Mary of Little Red House
Her photography–especially as depicted in her mosaics–inspires me to perfect mine.
7.  LaurieAnna of LaurieAnna's Vintage Home
Her decorating style is unique and at times quirky.  I love to see what her latest repurposing projects are.
8.  Sue of JUNKMARKET Style
If you're a junkaholic like me, Sue's blog can be addictive.
9.  Dawn of The Feathered Nest 
Dawn creates such wonderful crafts and even shares the best sites she has found for images.
Tiffany's fun, energetic blog is full of creativity and spunk.  I think those adjectives pretty much sum up Tiffany, as well.
11.  Tara of Typing Out Loud
A beautiful blog written by a beautiful lady.
12.  Alice of Thoughts from Alice W.
She has a fresh, fun, and romantic style that I really love.
Everything there is dreamy in creams and whites.  I find her blog very soothing.
14.  Luann and Kaci of Patina Green
Their blog byline says it all..."buy old, make new".  I love their repurposed lovelies.
15.  Serena of Farm Chicks
I'm a farmgirl...need I say more?

There are many more wonderful blogs that I love to browse through.  There's just never enough time!

One in particular I would like to send a big THANK YOU to is Heidi of Bord & Butik.

I won this cute Enesco teapot in her giveaway.  It will be a sweet addition to the bedroom of a certain precious little pixie granddaughter of mine.

Thanks again Heidi!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Better Late Than Never


Back in the spring, the Yankee and I did an antique show in Cameron, NC.

 I got so busy preparing for other shows–scheduled back-to-back–I failed to post about this one. 

But this town is so unbelievably quaint, I just couldn't pass up the opportunity to share it with you.

I didn't have time to browse this adorable little shop when I was there, but the peek inside makes me want to go back as soon as I get the chance.

As I walked the main street to take pictures to share with you, I was sooo tempted to stop in each and every antique store along the way.

But there were just too many–in addition to the street vendors–to even consider it. 

It amazed me that there was so many terrific shops in such a small town, considering the population of Cameron is under 200. 

Maybe they're all shop owners!  ; )

As if all the antiques and collecibles weren't eye candy enough, the houses that line this main street made me wish they also offered a historic homes tour.

And I actually got to meet a fellower NC blogger at this show.

Tammy @ Tattered and Timeless had some of the sweetest offerings in her booth.

Be sure to stop by and tell her Liz @ the Brambleberry Cottage said hi.

Believe me; there were sooo many wonderful things to look at, I couldn't take it all in in the brief time I had to snap these few photos.

Let me show you where the Yankee and I were set up.

We were in the backyard of an old tea room that is no longer in business.

The owners's daughter tried to convince us to buy the place and restore it to its former glory. 

Oh, how I wish that were possible!  It's my dream to own a tea room and fill it with creations from the Brambleberry Cottage.

Maybe some day!

It was truly one of the most delightful places to be a vendor.

Tucked among the tall trees and set up next to an old barn, it was almost like being back home on our farm.

Even the old pecan grove where we slept–the night before the show–was serenely beautiful.

We will definitely visit Cameron again.

Next time, I want to go a few days early, so I can visit each one of those shops.  Want to come along?

If you look closely, there are splashes of pink in these pics, so I'm sharing at Beverly's Pink Saturday.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Talented Time Travelers in Focus #5


Let's revisit some of the creative travelers from last week's party.

Patti @ On Hollyhocks Farm transported vintage chairs through the time machine with this wonderful garden paint treatment.

LoriPaisley Passions transformed this vintage chair for a special princess...her daughter.

 Look at the funky fun wall art that came out of the time machine when MeKell @ Chase & McKell put her vintage frame in!

How do you get a piece of vintage driftwood from a new piece of wood?  Go visit Cheri @ It's So Very Cheri for the secret.

Cross stitch on jute?  Who would have thought of such a creative idea? Why Zeshuregi @ Creative Mind of course.

Thanks for sharing your creativity Time Travelers!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Time Travel Thursday #6 - A Yard Conservatory

"We all have our time machines. Some take us back, they're called memories.
Some take us forward, they're called dreams."
~Jeremy Irons~

Welcome to the 6th Time Travel Thursday linky party at The Brambleberry Cottage!

Are you ready to share your fondest memories, grandest dreams,
and most creative projects? Great!

Then let's get to it!

I've wanted to build a yard conservatory
out of vintage windows for some time now. And I was finally able to talk my Yankee
project partner into it this week.

We pulled the basic bones—the windows above and
the old chippy-paint board below—out of the barn a few days ago and began construction.

Don't you just love vintage chippy?!   ; )

It didn't take long to construct the basic conservatory.

Honestly, I was glad to get this part done though, so we could move on
to the really fun part—embellishment!

I pulled these old legs and spindles out of our stash
in the barn because, in my mind, I saw this lovely lady-to-be standing on pretty legs.

And...we needed something with character to
 camouflage the rough areas where the windows
were joined and to cover the plywood that was used for the base. 

out of the barn came more vintage beaded boards.

Once all that was taken care of, it was time for the
really, really fun part—decoration!

These old door escutcheons were perfect for the gabled ends.

This rusty ornamental iron piece
and vintage tin panels came from our favorite salvage yard.

I think the scrolly designs of each
 are just fabulous.  Don't you?

Giving her a tin skirt was another
 decorative feature that seemed to evolve as we went along.

Little details make such a difference!

See where we used the chippy-paint board and the escutcheons? 

And the vintage knobs and curly cutouts—from the tin panels—added
 just the right touch to the gable peaks, as well.

I was delighted to find this old filigree door handle
at the bottom of a bin of vintage hardware in our workshop.

Just one more pretty little detail.   ; )

These old decorative wood pieces
were scored at a local junk shop. 

I had two that were perfect for dressing up the front and back.

I added some plants and a vintage statue to "pretty up" the inside.

Yep!  I think they look great in there
What do you think?

I've been waiting a very long time for this conservatory to come into being. 

But, I have to admit, good things do come to those who wait! 

**To get all the how-to details for making your own conservatory visit here.**

Linking up to 
Kathleen's for White Wednesday, Gina's for Transformation Thursday,
Suzanne's for Vintage Thingie ThursdayLeigh's for Thrifty Thursday,
Cindy's for Show and Tell Friday, Allison's for Hooking Up With HOH
Carolyn's for Make It Yours Day.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Tips and Tricks Tuesday #6 - How to Give the Appearance of Age to Wood


Welcome to the sixth Tips & Tricks Tuesday linky party here at the Brambleberry Cottage.

There were several really great tips shared last week.  Let's recap, shall we?

A little bit of everything had the perfect tip for keeping the white flour–that you typically coat your baking pan with–off the chocolate cake you're baking.  A dusting of this ingredient will do the trick.


Yum, yum!  Beth Anne @ The Thrifty Ba gave us a terrific family tip for making delicious steamed crabs.  We'll be right over Beth Anne!

And we'll need something cool and refreshing to drink after we polish off all those delectable crabs and chocolate cake.  So let's pop on over to Heather's Our Life in a Click and have a tasty treat from the fun fruity fountain she created.

Thanks for the tips ladies!

Now it's time for another Brambleberry Cottage Tip and Trick.

The Yankee and I found this cute table some time ago.

Well, actually just the table base.  It was missing its top, drawer, knob, and casters.

The chippy green paint and timeworn patina on this beauty were just to good to pass up–even though she was missing a few key components.

Of course, our barns were the perfect places to shop for the missing pieces.

Among the piles of beadboard, trim, spindles and balusters, windows, doors, hardware, and miscellaneous cool junk, we also have stashes of old wood...and even a number of old table tops. 

It just so happened that we had a top that could be easily cut down to fit this lady–and a drawer constructed with the leftovers.

The only problem was that at some point in its history, the solid oak-board top had been covered with laminate.  The laminate was removed, and the top sanded, to reveal the beautiful wood beneath.

Yet, there was still some work to be done to make this piece worthy to take its place atop the charming vintage table.

Besides looking too new after all the sanding, the wood lacked the patina and character of old wood–though it actually was about fifty years old.

Center stage...pigmented glazes.

Note the uneveness in the wood's color–above.  We knew the glazes would help to tone down that uneveness and unify the look.

The first step was to wipe a heavy coat of white glaze all over the top, its sides, and the drawer face, and then immediately wipe it all off.

Once it was dry, the orbital sander–with 150 grit paper–was used to take a good bit more of the white off.

Remember the pickled woods of the late 80s and early 90s?  That's what the finish looked like at that point in the process.

The next step was to apply a black glaze using the same procedure as outlined above with the white.

Once that glaze had dried and been sanded, an additional step was added.

A wire brush was pulled back and forth over the top to remove more of the black glaze and expose some of the white that had been deposited in the pores. 

The trick to this step is to apply light pressure and go with the grain.  This is not a procedure we would ever apply to a fine antique. 

Since this piece was a rustic farm table, this step was crucial for getting the aged look we were after.

Note the sharp contrast in the grain now.  Both white and black make their appearance.

A few coats of our favorite sealant–sanded with 220 grit paper between coats–a set of vintage casters and a vintage glass knob and our beauty was as good as old.

And there you have it!

I'll be linking this beauty to Susan's Metamorphosis Monday, Roeshel's DIY Showoff Project Parade, Linda's Nifty Thrifty Tuesdays, Diane's 2nd Time Around Tuesdays, Laurie's Tip Me Tuesdays, All Things Related's Anything Related, Maryann's Power of Paint Party, Jan's Boardwalk Bragfest and Marian's Furniture Feature Friday.