One last Valentine craft!

I thought this flat back ‘half bottle’ was interesting and would led itself to an interesting alteration.


My initial thought was to decorate the flat side; then I had this idea!

P1180257I glued some paper to the flat side with the design facing toward the INSIDE of the bottle.

P1180251It’s quite IMpossible to photograph it well because the flash glares on the glass in the front.  You’ll just have to trust me that it looks pretty cool when you see it in person.

P1180259I really did try taking pictures from EVERY angle!  You can at least SEE the paper in this one (it just has some scribbled writing on it.)

P1180260Still trying to get the ‘perfect picture’!  To no avail!

P1180252I did the flat glass things on top of this one.  BUT I had to use three of them, because the neck on this one was very concave, so I glued (e6000) the first one curved side down.  Then the second one ‘flat side to flat side’, then a small one on top.

P1180253Tied on a little key with some sheer white ribbon.  Made this one all white, so I can leave it out AFTER Valentine’s day.  Would make a cute little wedding or anniversary gift, no?

P1180255You can see the topper better in this picture.

And that is the last of the Valentine themed items for me.  My Valentine craft supplies have been packed up and taken to the storage garage!

Time to start on spring the Easter things!


LOVE and Bliss banners

Time for some ‘Valentine’ themed banners.



P1170677I just learned that these are called ‘swallow tail’ shaped banners.  Backing of vintage sheet music, vintage dictionary page rosette, black paper with gold dots scalloped edge circle and gold letters with bling!



P1170687I just happened to find these letters in a single package, as opposed to having to dig out the letters I need from an alphabet set then try to figure out what to do with all the leftovers!

P1170688Decided to try a super simple one.

P1170690Just the sheet music triangle banner and letter.

P1170689What do you think?  Too plain?  Other ones too much?

P1170692Fancier bliss.


P1170695Pink bliss!


Hand folded crepe paper for the pink.

P1170706Pink love banner.

P1170707Pink crepe paper rosette topped with small dictionary page rosette.


P1170703Swallow tail banner of vintage sheet music, tea stained paper doily, dictionary page rosette, kraft paper oval then letter.

P1170713And a PARIS banner, just for fun!

P1170709Tea stained paper doily topped with white crepe paper rosette with tea stained edges, dictionary page round, small scalloped edge round, letter.


All of these have gone to my booth at Stars.


***  Forgot to mention that all the banner bases have been mounted to cardboard backing for stability.

Love potion No. 9 bottles

Time to get the Valentine goodies into my booth st Stars.  

Needed some new “Love Potion No.9” bottles.

P1170652Just rifled through my bottle stash and selected assorted shapes and sizes.


Used some vintage sheet music in the background and labels hand stamped on tea stained paper.

P1170654None of these particular bottles had lids or corks.  In the past I have covered the tops with paper or cheesecloth, then wrapped string around the necks.  Wanted to do something different this year, so I glued on round clear flat mosaic pieces. (they look like flattened marbles!)

P1170669Used my trusty e6000 to glues the glass tops on, and tacky glue for the paper labels.

P1170655Wrapped the necks with whatever scraps of paper I had that coordinated and tied some just around it and added a little key charm.

P1170657I really tried to make each bottle unique; did some labels vertically.

P1170658It’s hard to tell from the picture, but the label backing on this one is a half round as the bottle flares out a bit.

P1170660This ended up being my LEAST favorite!!  And initially it was my favorite bottle; such a pretty shape!  But that pretty shape made it very difficult to glue a label on!  Live and learn!  Save the shapely bottles for a different project!

P1170661Another vertical label.

P1170662On some of the necks I added a lot of string, just a little on others.

P1170663After letting my e6000 cure overnight, I decided to add another smaller piece on top!

P1170666All of these have gone to my booth at Stars.

Sheet music leaf wreaths – TUTORIAL.

I’ve been in the mood to work with vintage sheet music a lot lately I guess.  I’ve done the banners with it, covered the reindeer with it . . and made these new wreaths with it.

I actually keep boxes of leaf shapes that I have pre-cut ‘on hand’, so when inspiration strikes I can start creating right away.  I like to have something to do in the evenings when I watch TV.


Cutting out the leaf shapes is one of those somethings. I also ‘tea stain’ them ahead of time.  (I use my own recipe for staining; it does NOT contain actual tea or coffee or vanilla.  Those make it too sticky!)P1170027

I cut my wreath rings out of triple layer scrap cardboard.  (just glue three layers together with tacky glue)  I also use tacky glue to glue the leaves to the wreath.  This picture shows how I place the leaves; along the inside and outside rim first.

P1170026It can be quite labor intensive, gluing on one leaf at a time.  To speed up the process I lay out a couple dozen leaves; then dot them ALL with tacky glue (just a small amount on one end of the leaf shape).  Then place them on the wreath form.


This is what the leaf placement looks like close up when finished.

P1170036This is a really BIG one!

P1170035On this one I used non tea-stained leaves, which do lay nice and flat; but a little TOO flat once I got it all put together.  (tea staining the leaves causes them to curl up and wrinkle a little bit as they dry; giving them a more natural look)

P1170048I didn’t want to try to tea-stain these leaves after they were already in place, bit I thought maybe spritzing them with water might curl up the leaves a tad; giving a more natural feel it it.

P1170047It worked like a charm!  Exactly the look I was hoping to achieve.  A few of the leaves did curl up a bit too much, to where the cardboard base showed underneath.  I just put a dot of tacky glue under them and glued them down a bit more.

P1170046NOW I just have to figure out how I want to ’embellish’ this one.  It feels a bit too BIG to leave plain.

My first thought for dressing it up was to hang a small banner across it, but that just looked too busy.  I stared at this thing for WEEKS trying to figure out ‘what else it needed’?!?!?


I finally settled upon some ‘bling berries’!


I had found a packet of these amber colored crystals at Dollar Tree, and decided to use them on the big wreath.


I just glued them on with tacky glue in little clusters of three.


I don’t think I’ll make them THIS big anymore!  SO many more options for ‘styling’ smaller ones; like this next one:

 I made this one using my pre-tea stained book pages instead of sheet music.

P1170033Added this little laser cut wood ‘love’ to the top left.

P1170031And a couple of tea stained felt birds and a little read heart to the lower right side.

P1170029Here you can see what I was talking about with the tea stained leaves curling up a bit and looking more natural.

Perfect little wreath for Valentine decorating.

Outdated gold wall cherubs ~ shabby cottage chic updates

If you’ve EVER gone to a thrift store or rummage sale, you’ve seen them!  The old gaudy GOLD cherubs that were apparently VERY popular at one time.  They have a hook or a hole on the back so you can hang them on the wall.

They come in all kinds of poses and sizes and different shades of gold.

Some are plaster,  some are plastic, some are holding instruments.  But the one thing they ALL have in common is that they have LOST their  appeal.  Or so you’d think.

It’s amazing what some white paint and antiquing glaze can do!  It’s not the cherubs themselves that have lost their appeal; it’s just the outdated GOLD color!

This is a TINY pair (about 2″ tall) from an old post.  They were mounted on dark turquoise velvet in the oval frames.  JUST.  UGLY.

Look how beautiful they turned out!!!

The moral of this post is never avoid buying something ONLY because you do not like the color.  The color can (ALMOST) always be changed.

This one was ugly gold when I bought it too.

P1110415I wanted to try something different on this set, and see if I could make the make-over process a little simpler.  I spray painted them VERY lightly, so as to not get the paint down into all the creases.

P1110416This would save me from having to do the antiquing process.  And I quite like how this pair turned out.

P1110418But you have to be sure that you start with cherubs that HAVE a lot of detail to them and sharp lines for this to work.  It can’t hurt to at least give it a try.  If it doesn’t look like you’d hoped, you can still always do the antiquing glaze step.

P1110420You really can’t see the gold undercoat, but it still looks a bit ‘shaded’.


Those two cherubs have gone to my booth at Curiosities.  A perfect little Valentine or Christmas decoration; but not SO holiday specific that they can’t be used year round.  They’d make cute wedding decorations too!

P1110423The rest of the cherubs got the old ‘antiquing treatment’.

P1110425This very small one I mounted on a 5″ plaque with attached easel.

P1110424Vintage looking sheet music scrapbook paper background; and a hand stamped ‘bliss’ tag.

P1110475This one is also at Curiosities.

P1110426The rest of them were made into plaques.

P1110428I’m finding that I prefer to wipe away as much of the antique glaze as possible these days; as opposed to leaving more of it on in the past, which gave it a ‘grubbier’ look.

P1110429Old dictionary page, tea stained paper doily then a red paper doily for the background on this pair.

P1110430The ‘hope’ and ‘love’ cut outs came from the craft store; and I backed them with pieces of tea stained paper.  This pair and the next set are still sitting here at home!  Will be going to one of the booths next week.


Went with a simpler background on these three, pretty much out of necessity!  The bigger cherubs took up most of the plaque.  These plaques came WITH the black scrolls on the top.


P1110439And of course, the ALWAYS get a crown!

P1110433If you love the tiny crowns but don’t think you want to be bothered to make your own; (there IS a tutorial for them in my blog)  I do sell them in my etsy shop HERE.

P1110434The word tags on these are ones that I hand stamped on tea stained paper.

You can buy my tea stain recipe in my etsy shop too.  (if you make your own tea stain with actual tea, coffee or vanilla; you NEED my recipe.  That other stuff gets REALLY stinky if you make it really dark and/or leave it sit for a while.  My stuff keeps ‘forever’ and can be made scented or unscented.  End of shameless plug for my etsy shop)


Here’s what’s new in my booth at Curiosities . .

P1110090I now have Valentine goods stocked in my booth at Curiosities also.


Little shelf filled with assorted Valentine-y stuff.

P1110033Pink glitter owls with hearts and keys.


Itty bitty gumball machine filled with candy conversation hearts.

P1110036Pretty Valentine gift boxes.

P1110037With metal charms attached to the bows.  (and paper shred inside of course!)

P1110070Little red birdcage with stamped pillow inside.  Tag on the side says ‘prisoner of love’.


P1110074Paper love crown.

P1110075More of a ‘spring thing’ than Valentine; bird and nest on urn.

P1110079Paris chic burlap pillows.

P1110083Child size rocking chair.

P1110061Shabby chic picnic basket.

P1110062HUGE vintage cheese box.

P1110091BIG black footed tray.  I didn’t measure it, but it’s at least 4′ long.  Perfect for a big farmhouse table.  I filled it with assorted gold stuff.  Gold finials, little crown baskets, cloches and framed picture.

P1110094Pair of rusty wire cloches with bird toppers; a red glitter love crown placed atop the larger cloche.

P1110088I completely ‘flip flopped’ the left side wall of my booth this last time.  Actually this side has NO wall.  The booth only has 2 walls and 2 open sides.  But to make the best use of the space, I ‘build a wall’ of product along one of the empty sides.  this is the side that faces OUT to the aisle.  (All of this stuff was previously INSIDE the booth. )

P1100982These three aqua shelf units were previously on that outward facing wall.  Now they face inside; backed up to what’s in the previous picture.  (kind of difficult to explain!)

P1100986A sign display as an ‘end cap’ (sort of!) of the two previous back to back displays.

P1100996Rustic wood hearts with keys.

P1100995Barnwood heart with old hinge and shutter.

P1100992Spring-ish whites.

P1100964Hand crafted ‘cranberry’ (wood bead!) hearts.

P1100980Altered heart shaped candy boxes filled with chocolate CANDLES. (yes candLes, not candies!)

P1100990Shabby white bird cage filled with dried hydrangea.

P1110097Moved the antique enamel table further into the booth against the wall; with the two shabby end tables tucked underneath.

P1110110Lots of fun new stuff for Valentine and spring decorating.  Come by and check it out.

Curiosities is open Tuesdays – Sundays; 10am – 6pm  (closed Mondays)

Valentine gifts and decor now in stock at Stars

P1100884Lots of fun Valentine gifts and home decor items just stocked in my booth at Stars.

P1100885The tea stained lace quilt hearts that I’ve shown in a previous post.  These are ONLY available at Stars.

P1100887I also have some of the small red ‘conversation hearts’ at Stars.

P1100886Loaded them into a HUGE 2 gallon mercantile jar.

P1100888Lots of little bits and bobs to decorate with or give as gifts; including several pretty gift boxes.

P1100889Love potion #9 bottles adorned with vintage keys.

P1100891Serendipity bottle.

P1100900Tiny bottle of bliss.  (Because a little goes a long way!)


P1100905A big gold tray full of assorted fun stuff to dig through.

P1100909Rustic wood hanging heart with key.

P1100910One of a kind pink Valentine fairy.

P1100912Altered vintage candy boxes filled with chocolate CANDLES!

P1100913Perfect for those of use who have resolved to get into shape in the new year!

P1100925Several to choose from.  Vintage bears with hearts and keys.



P1100922Vintage pink  wicker shelf; packets of blank note cards on top.

P1100924Glittered LOVE sign.

P1100930Pair of pink glittered birds sitting on a sweet child size bow back chair.

P1100935Little cherish sign.

P1100936Little LOVE sign.

P1100898More love sign and little cherub.

P1100933Big beautiful (heavy too!) shabby chic frame with love collage.  The love collage is removable so you can use the frame for a picture after Valentines Day.

P1100944Little ‘Be mine’ heart shaped pillow.

P1100945Love heart banner and 2 doves Valentine wreath.


Saturday, January 18th – Monday, January 20th (MLK holiday!) 

Stars infamous HAGGLE SALE!  

Many of the Stars dealers will be on hand ‘wheeling and dealing’ throughout the sale.  Since I can’t be there to offer individual deals, I’ll be offering 25% off ALL REGULAR PRICED MERCHANDISE in my booth.  

Second batch of tea stained quilt hearts

P1100700When it’s too cold to go out in the workshop and paint sign boards, I sit in front of the TV and stitch!  Have had LOTS of stitching time this past month!  This is the second batch of tea stained lace quilt hearts.

P1100703I stamped out some tea stained muslin ‘tags’ for this batch.





A few close-ups.  I don’t really know HOW to explain how I did these; other than gluing on layers and layers of lace and ric-rac.


Typically started with a BIG piece of lace first, then layered on the thinner pieces.

P1100709Sometimes I worked laying the lace ‘down the sides’; and sometimes across, like on this one.


 A few layers along one side, then a few along the other side; overlapping at the end point.


 I HOPE you can see all the layers in these close up photos.

P1100712Added a snippet of burlap to this one; and a border of lace around the right side edge.

P1100713This one I did the border along the outside edge on both sides.    I think this one is my favorite.  Not as ‘busy’ as some of the others and that ‘bluing’ on the button is just perfect!

These will be going to my space at Stars.    Then it’s time to start cranking out the signs for the upcoming spring show!

Hand stitched Valentine hearts: 2014 edition

I typically start working on Valentine stuff right after I get all my Christmas stuff put out in my mall booths.   This last year was no different.  I started stitching the day after Thanksgiving when we went to the coast for the weekend with my son and his girlfriend.  Doing hand stitching is just very relaxing for me.  I’m never entirely sure WHAT I am going to stitch until I actually start stitching.  I usually start with some simple, basic heart shapes . . . then I get inspired to try something new.

P1100560The first year I did these, I stayed with traditional RED.


 Then last year I did a lot of tea stained hearts with buttons.


 Started off the ones for this year with some creams and tans; then decided to add pink and then turquoise.


All the hearts are individually hand cut, no pattern; and each design is original and unique.

P1100566I use ‘pinch needle yarn’ to stitch them together.  I just like the look I get with it as opposed to using regular thread.  sometimes I MATCH the yarn to the heart; sometimes I use a contrasting color.


I did a lot of ‘seed stitches’ on many of them this time too.  It takes a LONG time to add all those decorative stitches, so I only added them ‘here and there’.   I just like the ‘polka dot’ look!


After I got all of those done, I dug out some lace and ribbon and made this one with a key added to it.

P1100672That batch of hearts is available to purchase in my booth at Curiosities.

After I did that batch I found a bunch of lace that I had tea stained a summer or two ago.  (easier to stain in the summer when you can let it dry out in the sun!)

P1100582And I made this bunch!

P1100572I started out with stitching the lace to the felt backing; but soon realized that it would take an entire DAY just to apply the lace to a single heart!


Grabbed my trusty bottle of Aleen’s tack glue and started gluing the lace to the felt backing.


I had to let the glue dry overnight before embellishing and stitching on the backing and stuffing.

P1100577Added some snippets of burlap here and there, scrapbook embellishments (little metal tags) and buttons.

P1100578By the time I got it down to a routine, it took me about 30 minutes to apply the patchwork of lace to each heart.

P1100603This entire batch has gone to my booth at Stars.

Weathered wood two part hearts with old hinges

Had to dig out some old templates from my former ‘primitive crafting days’ for these new hearts and shutters I just made:

2.5.12 signs finds etsy 024This is one of my all-time favorite patterns that I’ve designed; for the fact that it leaves ZERO wood scraps behind, and requires a very minimal amount of cutting.  And you get TWO finished items by making only four simple cuts!

2.5.12 signs finds etsy 021“Back in the day” I used to make the shutter part longer at the bottom, and add a shelf and a few pegs.  And I didn’t have the grubby old hinges to use.  I used to ‘wire them’ together.

2.5.12 signs finds etsy 010Love the old wood look too!

2.5.12 signs finds etsy 012I also cut out some slightly larger hearts, that do not have coordinating shutters.

2.5.12 signs finds etsy 020Perfect ‘guy Valentine gift.  And something that can be left on display year round.

I’ve only listed ONE of the hearts in  my etsy shop ; four shutters and eight of the hearts have gone to my space at Stars.    After Valentine’s Day, if I have any left; I’ll probably list more on etsy.