Adding some more Spring things

Out with the Easter decor and in with the Spring.  Here’s what’s new in my ‘big booth’ at Stars:

P1350543Jars of nests and eggs, jars of moss and bird cages.


This shabby white cubby is $68.oo, and includes the hardware for hanging it on the wall.

Making the most of every inch of display space; an old crate on top of the shelf gives me a little more room.  Shabby wood bird-cage and dessert stand with cloche top underneath the table that the shelf is sitting on.  More jars, big and small, of nests and eggs to the right.

Another little grouping on the back side of the table.

P1350554Very cool glass cake stand with extra deep lid.

P1350551Vintage, upcycled ‘breakfast in bed’ tray.

P1350558Tall glass cloches are perfect for showcasing childhood tap shoes and ballet slippers.

Moved a few things around in Sophie’s Annex.

Stop by for some spring decor inspiration for decorating and organizing.  LOTS of unique baskets, trays, containers and crates for making organization fun and pretty!




Beach cottage decor in my etsy shop

It’s been a while since I blogged about my etsy shop; so here you go!  A post about the great beach cottage decor items in my blog.

LOTS of Framed white fingerling starfish.

Great hung alone, or in a group.

OR hang a sea glass wreath with a couple of framed starfish.

 This is the very LAST of the sea glass wreaths that I will EVER be making.  I had stumbled upon a ‘once in a lifetime’ AMAZING buy on the glass to make these; and I’ve finally used it all up.


For as ‘simple’ as they appear to be; they are EXTREMELY time consuming to make also.  There is NO way I could actually charge for the amount of time I put into them. Lesson learned.   Even though they were so labor intensive that they can’t be make ‘profitably’; they really are beautiful in person.

When I first got the sea glass and was sorting through it, I had set aside a few ‘extra pretty’ pieces.  Some uniquely shaped; perfectly round or square or like gumdrops.  they were just too special to mix in with all the other pieces on the wreaths.  So, I put together some little ‘treasure’ boxes for them.

I custom blended this glitter for these mermaid crowns.

And of course, beach cottage SIGNS in my etsy shop!

Old lamps; new (?) shades

I HATE my living room lamps!  They have those deeply pleated shades.  You know, the kind that have LOTS of deep crevices for collecting DUST.  UG!! Have been wanting to replace them for EONS.  But I just haven’t found anything that I really LIKE. 

P1080486Then I found a shade that I really liked at Ross.   Have been seeing these ‘vintage document print’ fabrics on shades for a while, but they were always out of my budget.  Gotta love the prices and Ross AND senior discount Tuesdays!

P1080488It’s even pretty when the lamp is ON!

P1080489Dare I HOPE to ever find a similar or matching one for the other big lamp in the living room?!? 

P1080484 Not more than a WEEK after I found the other shade at Ross, I found this one at Goodwill!  I was originally looking at it as one to turn into a ‘skeleton’ shade, with all the fabric removed.  

P1080485But it was SO perfectly CLEAN and in such good shape, I decided to see how it looked on the floor lamp.  Not bad, eh?!? I’ve actually toyed with the idea of trying to stencil some old style lettering onto this one.  But then if I RUIN it, I’ll be worse off than I was before, with NO shade for it!

But if I ever do find a better shade for this lamp I will for sure try to stencil this old one.  And if I ruin the fabric I’ll just do what I was originally going to do with it and ‘skeletonize’ it!  


This is what the other living room lamps look like.  

Both of these are ‘thrifted’ lamps and shades too.  The bases are the same, but the shades are slightly different.  I really like the new trend of not having everything ‘matchey’matchey’!  

Pot of moss

12.17.12 finds hats nude beach sign 034I was originally attracted to this because of the POT.   Love the rustic fell and thought it would make a great piece for holding a bird nest.

12.17.12 finds hats nude beach sign 035

Alas, the moss was NOT removable.  Hmmmm. . . .Do I want the WHOLE thing??  It IS half price . . (I’m conversing with myself in my mind!)

12.17.12 finds hats nude beach sign 036The yellow bare spots between the moss rocks (fake ones!) put me off a bit.  But the price was right and I figured I could ‘doctor it up’.  So I bought it.

12.19.12 boxes Stars 037I got out my bag or Dollar Tree reindeer moss that I’d been using for the little nests with eggs and grabbed my glue bottle.  squirted a bit if glue into each hole and shoved in a pinch of moss.

12.19.12 boxes Stars 038There were a lot more holes than I originally anticipated.  And after I filled the holes I noticed the GAP around the base on one side, so I filled that with the reindeer moss too.

12.19.12 boxes Stars 039The color contrast looks a bit extreme in the pictures, but it looks much more ‘natural’ in person.

12.19.12 boxes Stars 042I finished it off by using some of my new thin burlap ribbon.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 011
Something simple and organic looking for the table centerpiece after Christmas.

Bold paint colors on walls: To paint or not to paint.

This post started out as a reply to a comment in my blog, but I decided it really needed to be a post.  Someone asked about ‘my beachy blue’ paint color because they wanted to paint some wall that color.

Here’s the answer to ‘what color do you use? ‘  Just in case anyone is wondering.

As much as I LOVE color, (obviously!) I would NEVER paint the walls in my home a bright color.  I’m not even a fan of accent walls.   My preference for wall paint is, and ALWAYS has been, soft neutrals.  And I KNOW the ‘real design world’ would argue profusely with me on this, but I have GOOD reasons.

1) The color you are ‘in love with’ today WILL change. Do you really want to have to repaint an entire room when you tire of that color?

2) The design trend WILL  change too! Used to ALWAYS be on the ‘sell this house’ make-over show that they DEMANDED all neutral walls in the homes they helped update for sale.  Then all of a sudden it’s RED accent walls in every home! What’s next?!?! Who knows!  The point is, it’s GOING TO CHANGE!

3)  Do you REALLY want to re-paint over those bright walls in a few years?

If you just can’t stand to NOT have some bright or bold color on your walls, at least start with just an accent wall.  ‘Live with it for at lease a MONTH before you commit to an entire room.  Better still, live with it for a YEAR before committing to doing a whole room.

You may LOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE all that color in the sunny months; but it might be totally DEPRESSING come the long dreary days of winter.  (Especially if you live in the Pacific Northwest!)

4)  There are a bazillion OTHER WAYS to bring glorious color into a room.  Less permanent and overbearing  ways.  Less expensive ways.  Less time consuming ways!  AND more flexible ways!  With your ACCENT PIECES and accessories.

Personally, I even prefer very neutral sofas and bedspreads.  That way, IF I want to, I can change the entire color scheme and feel of a room on a shoestring!

If you are STILL really REALLY dying to paint a whole wall or room, try this first.  Go to the dollar store and buy 10 or so pieces of poster board for 50 cents each and paint them your color.  Hang them on the wall and see how you like it.  I know, it’s a little extra time and money to invest, but TRUST me; It’s a LOT easier to pull those off the wall then to re-paint over a red wall!

HOW do you bring color into a room if not on the walls or you primary piece of furniture?  Everything and/or anything else!  Throw pillows and comforters on a sofa.  Pretty curtains (even if there AREN’T any windows; you can still hang curtains!)  Hang colorful tapestries on walls.  PICTURES!  Gallery walls of colorful frames, JUST the frames with no backing or anything inside!

Small accessories on shelves can (and should be!) color themed.  Balanced with neutrals.  Pretty up your book shelves by covering your books with colorful paper.  OR turn the books BACKWARDS for a more neutral look.

Paint your other furniture!  Coffee and end tables, benches, stools.  Lamps?  Sure you can paint lamps bright pretty colors too!  I WISH I had examples to show you, but I think you get the idea.

Just BE SURE you really can LIVE WITH a color before you commit to painting a whole room!

P.S.  ONE Exception!  I DO like color on BATHROOM walls.  But they are pretty small rooms!

Long time, no blogging . . . catch up post; a little bit of everything!

Hallelujah! It is FINALLY cooling down. And even just started to RAIN (just as Michael and I were preparing to start on some ‘outside’ projects). But I shan’t complain. I’ll leave him in the workshop by himself, and I’ll catch up on internet stuff.


I’ll take THIS weather over THAT weather ANY DAY!!!


It was a VERY busy day at the store yesterday with the estate sale. BUT, I had a LOT of stuff and there is still a ‘good amount’ (probably sold 1/4 of what we had) left. All the leftovers have been moved into the shop and will be available at 20% off.

Here are a few pictures of the sale all set up. I barely had time to snap them as it got busy right off the bat. Michael brought the truck and trailer and helped my unload and set up. He had gone to the bathroom before leaving and in the two minutes he was in there, the store FILLED with customers! He came out, and before he rounded the corner where he could see into the store, I whispered to him “Get out while you can!” WHAT??? I repeated and pointed into the store. He gave me a quick kiss and hightailed it outta there!





All the ‘big stuff’ sold. Both trunks, the wicker set, the little cabinet and table. I still have lots of dolls, pillows, stitcheries, and assorted wood smalls. Il” TRY to get by the store in the next couple of days and take a picture of the table of what’s left. We have a 6′ table PACKED full and three bins underneath that we have no more room to put out


7.28.09 pantry037

So, now my living room is pretty BARE!


As you can see from these two pictures of the entertainment center and shelf above it!

I’m going with lots of ‘neutrals’ this time. A simpler country look. But before I get going too much on the ‘decor’, we’ve got to get some FURNISHINGS in there! The two trunks we sold at the estate sale had been our coffee table and an end table. The wicker love seat and two chairs, our only additional seating, and the wicker table was our other end table!

Hoping to get the coffee table built today. Michael is making it ‘similar’ to this bucket bench he made (and sold) previously:


He gathered up some old white fence boards already. He used 2×4’s for the legs on the one shown, but thinks 4×4’s will be sturdier for our coffee table. Once he gets all the pieces cut to size, I’ll ‘drybrush’ on some light ‘sand’ color paint (I don’t want it so starkly white) and them he’ll assemble it. I’ll add a pillow or two for propping feet upon (we HAVE to put our feet up on the coffee table!!!) and we’ll be done!


Not much time to hot garage or estate sales the last couple of weeks, with doing the Farmers Market and readying the estate sale. I did make it into Goodwill and found a few treasures. I’m ‘on a mission’ to go to GW EVERY week and track the ‘color of the week sale tickets, so I’ll know which color is coming up next. (IF they actually have an ‘order’ they do it in!). I’ve been trying to only buy things that are half off, especially of they the original price is over $3.00.

So, here’s what I found last week:


I have always LOVED this style of wicker chair! “I thought we were getting RID of all the wicker?!?!” Michael lamented. All the OLD wicker, I replied. This is totally different! The green is a tad faded on the backing. I’ll probably dry brush paint over the wicker parts with some antique white, and leave the legs ‘as is’; and add a nice cushion seat.


How cool is this VERY old folding chair!?!?! Even the legs fold in (it’s sitting on top of a small tale in the pic) Perfect to take to Farmers Market to sit on.


A white feather wreath!!!! Never in a million years did I think I’d actually find a white feather wreath that I could actually afford to buy! It was my lucky day for sure!


A neat copperish colored wire basket. It’s in the store filled with glittered fall fruits.


An old wire Christmas card holder that I plan to use to display TAGS on.

I better go see how Michael is coming along on the coffee table and get my paintin’ arm ready to go!


Lots of fun monograms in the store now!  Some I’ve spelled out into words (each letter sold separately).  There are big ones and small ones.  Vintage ones and handcrafted ones.  Framed ones and plain ones.  Fat ones and skinny ones.  Even paper tag ones!  AND I’m working on LOTS more at home, so there’s more to come!








~ primitives ~ trash to treasure ~ shabby chic ~ cottage ~ Paris apartment ~ repurposed home goods ~ repaired ~ restyled home decor ~ reused ~ recycled art ~ handcrafted gifts ~ one of a kind ~ artist originals ~ second hand style ~ junk market style ~ flea market style ~ beautiful junk ~ beach cottage décor ~ unique home décor ~ vintage home décor ~ unique gifts ~ custom made gifts ~ custom made home décor ~ personalized signs ~ Sophie’s Cottage ~ grubby candles ~ how to craft books ~ Shabby Paris apartment ~ baby gifts ~ personalized gifts ~ AJ Finsand ~ upcycled ~ rebuilt ~ flea market chic ~ gift baskets ~ custom orders ~ vintage ~ collectibles ~

August 1, 2008 ~ Here’s what’s new in the store.


And of course, a Halloween tree!  (sorry about the bad photo!)

Some new gift baskets filled with bath/body products:

Ane even some gifts for your four legged friends!

These are the COOLEST things ever!  A doggie water bottle (with a clip even) and a flip down BOWL so they can easily drink!  Perfect for the dog on the go!

Mini alphabet rubber stamps sets make a great gift for the crafter, scrapbooker or cardmaker.  There are a DOZEN different font styles!  Fun to mix and match!

NEW CALENDARS ARE IN!  16 month 2009 calendars.

Gifts for baby:

AWESOME vintage white chest of drawers




~ primitives ~ trash to treasure ~ shabby chic ~ cottage ~ Paris apartment ~ repurposed home goods ~ repaired ~ restyled home decor ~ reused ~ recycled art ~ handcrafted gifts ~ one of a kind ~ artist originals ~ second hand style ~ junk market style ~ flea market style ~ beautiful junk ~ beach cottage décor ~ unique home décor ~ vintage home décor ~ unique gifts ~ custom made gifts ~ custom made home décor ~ personalized signs ~ Sophie’s Cottage ~ grubby candles ~ how to craft books ~

My ‘Creating Space’ . . .

Aka ‘the craft room’ .  Since the store is now only open one day a week, and it’s too busy on that one day to work on any projects; I had to start hauling all the assorted supplies that I had lugged TO the store over the past 3+ years, back home. 

BUT FIRST, I had to clean up my messy craft room!  Now I don’t have ‘one of those beautifully decorated art studios’ that you see so many others share pictures of in their blog.  I LOVE those pictures and WISH my work space could be that pretty.  (especially since the FORMAL LIVING ROOM is the space that serves as my craft room in this house!)  Alas, it’s all about ‘functionality’.  AND lots of storage space!  And making-do . . . .

This is as good of a picture as I can get of the entire space.  As I said, it’s the formal living room of the house, and right off the front entry.  No one ever uses the front door.  HA!  No one ever comes out here period!  (too far away from civilization for everyone!)  So, the front door is kind of cordoned off by shelves (which you’ll be able to see in a later picture).

I have two tables.  Only managed to keep ONE of them uncluttered long enough to take this picture!  Shelves line both ends of the room, and my computer desk and office supply cabinet are opposite the work tables.  We even utilized the space above the windows for storage! 

I keep a plastic table cloth on my ‘painting table’.  This is the FIRST time in probably FOUR YEARS that it was clean enough to take a picture of it!

This next picture is looking to the right of the room.  Michael built those shelves for me and they cover the entire length of the room.  They are 2′ deep, so I can double stack boxes on them.  And we put up a rod so I could hang curtains to pull shut to ‘hide the mess’ just in case anyone ever comes to visit’.  Or sometimes I just need to hide the mess from myself!


This is the left side of the room.  These are SIX 6′ tall Dania shelves.  Three, side by side. and then back to back (I have to go around into the front entry way to access the other ones)

I couldn’t get a picture of the shelves on the back side because there isn’t enough room to get back far enough in the entry way.  But you can get an idea from this.  It’s a good way to utilize this otherwise ‘wide open and unusable’ space.

And this is my little ‘office area’.  My computer desk (closed up cuz I am NOT showing THAT mess!), a supply cabinet, and the big white one is for office supplies.

And that’s my little nook of the house that I do my creating in! 

The separate WORKSHOP (which I have to share with Michael) is a whole other world, and will NEVER be tidy enough to take picutres of!



Got punch????

No, not fruit punch!  Not a punch in the nose either.  And not punch as in you are so tired you are getting silly and ‘punchy’.


You hear the designers on TV shows mention ‘adding a punch of color’ all the time.  Meaning adding something that is dramatic or REALLY catches your eye.

I tend to be quite ‘matchey matchey’ in how I create my store displays.  With as much product as I cram into a small space, I feel like I need a sense of ‘unity’ to each vignette to keep it from feeling ‘too busy’.  I have certain colors that I like to mix together in grouping and tend to not venture far from that.

But after putting out all the Valentine stuff, I was feeling like the red section was just TOO RED.  (dies that make any sense at all???)  Like so much red together made it feel a bit bland.  Like I wanted more CONTRAST. 

I didn’t change up the red section, but I ‘sprinkled’ red stuff throughout the store in somewhat unexpected places.  For a ‘punch of color’.

Here on top of a stack of tan suitcases.

And on the table filled with mostly black items that is right next to the stack of suitcases

And right in the middle of a yellow and white display:

THEN, in the beachy blues and green section: