Welcome to my blog!

Thanks so much for stopping by! I believe that everyone can have a beautiful home without spending a fortune! One of my favorite things to do is find creative ways to re-purpose things I already have on hand, or have picked up at yard sales and thrift stores. Join me as I share with you some of my favorite ideas for crafting and decorating, as well as travel adventures, and fun things that I pick up on my treasure hunts! Much of my work is influenced by my love all things French, nature, and of course shabby chic! I have gotten so many creative ideas from you very talented bloggers out there, and I hope that I can be an inspiration to you as well!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Chalkboard Mirror Combo

Hi there ladies!
If you visit on a regular basis, you know how much I adore both chalkboards and mirrors!  I just can't seem to get enough of them!  Well, when I discovered a vintage Syroco mirror last week at the antique mall, I was inspired to turn it into both!
 Ok, this is yet another one of those times where in my excited haste to paint this puppy, I neglected to take a photo of what she used to look like!  About 1/2 way thru priming,  it was "darn it all!  I was supposed to take a before shot!"  Bet you've done the same thing, too, haven't you?!
 Well, the frame began life as a very boring brown, which made her look quite, shall I say "plasticy"?  I don't know if "plasticy" is a word or not, but you get my point!!  Anyway, I drifted away a bit from my usual creamy dreamy white, and opted this time around for nice bright pure white.  Love!  Now instead of looking like plastic, she looks like finely carved wood!
 Ok, I was getting a bit ahead of myself there.  I decided to use chalkboard vinyl on the backside of the mirror. So, when you want a different look, just remove the backing, flip it around, and viola!  A mirror/chalkboard combo!!
 I am super happy with the way she turned out, and can't wait to create more (which I promise to do my best to take before photos of!!!).  I've put her in my Etsy shop, if you want to take a peek!
 11 years ago today on a beach in Hawaii, hubby and I exchanged vows.   
At sunset. 
With a Hawaiian minister officiating.
***more sighs***
And even a sailboat in the background.
***ok, one more sigh!!!***

I'm linking up today's post with Kathleen over at Faded Charm.  Be sure to check out White Wednesday for some terrific ideas!  Have a great day!!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Frenchy Wire Bird Cage

I love wire birdcages, and was so excited to find this cute one while out treasure hunting last week!  Of course, she didn't look like this when I discovered her!  The cage was black, and of course you know me!  I just had to break out the spray paint!
 Since I was feeling a little bit Frenchy, I added one of my "Frenchy tags" to the birdcage. 
Oooh, la, la!
 The top lifts off, love it!
 I guess you could say that this tag is now one of my "signature looks", as I've added them to many pieces that I've created.  I made it from a tea died tag, added a snipped of a page from a vintage French book, and my favorite stamped images, including this sweet little birdie.  The piece de la resistance is a silk hydrangea blossom that I've glittered (because you can never have too much glitter!), a tiny rhinestone for added bling, and my wonderfully crinkly taupe seam binding.
 Aren't the little hearts sweet?
As much as I adore her, I've added her to my Etsy shop!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!  Now go out and find something to paint!!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Sunset on the Sound

Hello, hope you are having a wonderful week!  It really has been flying by, hasn't it?
Last night, we had the most amazing sunset, and I thought you'd like to see some of the photos that hubby and I snapped.
 Believe it or not, these are unretouched photos!  The sky was just gorgeous, and the sunset just kept getting prettier and prettier!
 What a tranquil spot we live in!  As tough as it was to leave our home state of Michigan, there is not a day that goes by out here that I don't marvel at our beautiful surroundings!
 I really love the way the Olympic Mountains look at dusk. It's amazing how they change thru out the day, depending on the lighting.
We feel fortunate to live in such a beautiful place!  Eagle sightings are a daily occurrence, and an occasional whale sighting is beyond thrilling!

 I hope that where ever you live, and whatever you are doing, you take some time out of your day and just enjoy nature!
Have a great day!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Mirror, Mirror!

Hello ladies!
Mirrors of all shapes and sizes have always been very popular in my shop, and I am always on the hunt for more!  So, I was beyond thrilled when I discovered not one, but two gorgeous large vintage mirrors at an antique mall last week!

The first one that I am going to share with you (after her makeover, of course!) is made of Burwood.  The second, which I will show you in a bit, is Syroco.  Of course, they both began life as "gaudy gold"!  So, are you ready to see my new glamorous vintage  mirrors?
 Here is just a sneak peek!
 See, I told you it was gold!

Aaaaahhh!  So much better, don't you think?  Isn't it amazing what paint and a bit of distressing can do?
If you are unfamiliar with Burwood, it is just like Syroco, and made of a heavy resin like material.  The details are so amazing, you would never guess that the frame is not made of carved wood!

 Here's another close up of the beautiful details.  Love!
 Here is the Syroco mirror, they are both so gorgeous, it's impossible for me to pick a favorite!
 More of that "gaudy gold"!
 The Syroco mirror even came with it's original hang tag, which I was very surprised to see!  For the past year and a half or so, I've become an avid "Syroco huntress" (haha!), and have never come across a piece with its original tag til now!  I'll show it to you in a bit.
 The Burwood mirror has gone into my Etsy shop, and the Syroco one is headed there next!
 Did you know that Syroco products, which were made in Syracuse, New York, were exact reproductions of the original hand carved wood pieces?  That is the reason they are so incredibly realistic looking in their details.  By the way, the name "Syroco" was derived from a shortened version of "Syracuse Company".
Here is one last look!

I'm linking up todays post with White Wednesday, over at Faded Charm.  Do be sure to visit!

Monday, August 22, 2011

San Juan Islands

Yesterday hubby and I rented an airplane, and flew to the beautiful San Juan Islands.  The weather was perfect, nice and warm & sunny (thankfully the rain held off til today!).  We are lucky to live not far from the islands, which were just a short 30 minute plane ride away.  The views from above were breathtaking! (warning, lots of photos in this post!)
 I was surprised to learn that there are 172 islands that comprise the San Juan Island chain, ranging in size from tiny uninhabited rocky "islets" (didn't know that was a word, but it's in our tour book!), to the 4 larger main islands.  The views were even more stunning in person than in these photos!
 Ok, Blogger was acting up on me as I was uploading these pictures, so some of them are not in order!  Anyway, I snapped this shot of Deception Pass bridge on the way home.  We've driven across it, and walked across it as well!  If you click on the photo again, you just may see the pedestrians walking along the side!  So neat to see it from this perspective!  The bridge joins Fidalgo Island to Whidbey Island.

 Aaaaah!  Spectacular views!  The snow covered mountain you see in the distance is Mt. Baker, one of the highest mountains in the state.
 Another shot of the bridge.
 Of course I had to hit up a couple of wine tasting rooms while on the island! (hubby passed, as he's the designated pilot!).  Hold the piano bar, just give me the wine!
 This sign made me laugh!  They take coffee drinking very seriously here in the Pacific Northwest!  It made me think of my caffeine addicted coffee affectionado blogging friend of mine (come on, you know who you are!).
 Lots of quaint architecture and pretty flowers!

 More amazing views!

 And a nice view of the wing, haha!
 Here's a close up of Mt. Baker.  Isn't it stunning?

 Ok, I was getting carried away with the snow covered mountain shots!  I just couldn't help myself:)

 A little slice of heaven on earth, I think!

Ok, here we are getting closer to our destination of Friday Harbor, on the island of San Juan.  I think that's probably one of the most popular destinations, from the looks of it.

 Most people arrive by ferry, and in the summer months there are really long waits to get on the ferries (been there, done that!!), so it was a real treat being able to fly in for the day!  The main town is just a short walk from the airport.  Good thing, as we had a big lunch on the island to burn off!
 This cute little island had just a few houses on it.  Can you imagine living there?
 Coming in for a landing.  Nice view of the prop!
 I took this photo for all of you pink loving ladies out there!  Isn't this the cutest?!  I'd never seen a pink airplane before til yesterday!  I was dying to find out if the pilot was a man or a woman!!!
 Speaking of pink, look at these absolutely gorgeous stargazer lilies!  The smelled as wonderful as they looked!
 And gorgeous blue hydrangeas!  Sure wish I had luck growing them!
 Love the bright blue blossoms!
 These white and pale yellow lilies were pretty, too!
 I loved the window boxes & shutters of this pretty old building!
 Tons of boats in the harbor.
  We had a really yummy lunch at a waterfront restaurant.  I had the most delicious crab burger, yum! This float plane came in for a landing while we were eating, which was very exciting!

 And here is my cute pilot hubby and our ride home!
One last shot that I snapped on the flight home.  Thanks for coming along with me!  We can't wait to check out the other island next time!!
Have a great day!