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!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bon Voyage!

Hello Ladies, hope your having a magnifique Sunday! I was at a total loss of what to blog about today!  Do you ever have days like that?  Usually it doesn't seem as difficult for me to come up with subject matter, but today for some reason I was drawing a total mental blank!  Maybe it's because I have been busy getting ready for a camping trip that we are leaving on tomorrow.  We are taking our motor home in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  I can hardly wait!  But, that means no internet connection (which means no blogging!  sigh!)  I know, that's really roughing it!  So I know I will be having major withdrawal symptoms!

Anyway, since I am feeling a bit lazy (not to mention I still have some more scurrying around to do in order to be ready for tomorrows trip!), I thought I'd share with you some photos of trips to Paris last year and the year before last.  If you have been following me awhile, you know how much I adore all things French, and Paris is my absolute favorite place to go!
Two years ago, we visited Giverny, the home of my all time favorite artist, Claude Monet.  We had been there once before, so I was really excited to visit again!  I love all of the vine that has overtaken his house!
His Japanese bridge, that has appeared in much of his work.  Check out all of that wisteria, just stunning!
View from inside the house, looking into the gardens.  They don't let you take photos of the inside the house, unfortunately!
View of the pond.  I just love the weeping willow trees!

Forget-me-nots.  Don't you just love their  vibrant blue color?
I took this from inside the house, too. Can you imagine maintaining a garden this size?
This is Chateau Fontainbleu, which we visited last year.  Hard to believe anyone lived like this!
Sorry this is a bit blurry!   One of the many bedrooms.  I love all of the gorgeous tapestries!
Of course, every chateau has to have its' own chapel!
I was drooling over all of the gorgeous chandeliers!  Oooh, la, la!
Me & hubs in a typical Parisian cafe.  Love the ceiling beams, and stone walls.  So cozy, and so much character (not to mention all of the great food!). I can't remember what I had for an entree here, but I do remember the dessert:  Chocolate mousse!  Yum!

You know how much I love chalkboards!  Pretty much all of the cafes and bistros post their menus on them.  Love it!

Ponte Alexandre III, my favorite bridge in Paris, and the most beautiful!
 I love this cute creperie sign!
And last but not least, the Eiffel Tower!
Thanks so much for joining me as I reminisced a bit! I will be sure to take lots of photos on our camping trip so that I can share them with you!  Have a great week!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

More Chalkboard Love, and an Adorable Surprise!

Hello and Happy Saturday!  The other day I told you how I was obsessed with chalkboards.  Well, today I thought I'd share with you my latest creation, that I have added to my Etsy shop. I will show you a bit later what she used to look like.  I didn't want to scare you by showing you the "before" shot first!!  I think you will be amazed by her transformation! She was pretty sad and dated looking, and just begging for a head to toe makeover!

I just had to paint her this bright and cheery aqua color.  Much better than her old look!  I also decoupaged at the top one of my all time favorite advertising labels from the Graphic's Fairy.  Love the Graphic's Fairy!!  I really like the cute little ledge (which you will see below) that is the perfect spot for holding chalk and maybe an eraser.

You can never have too many chalkboards!
Ok ladies, are you ready to see her prior to her "redo"?

See, I told you the poor thing had seen better days!  Not sure if you can see it or not, but some sweet soul obviously spent alot of time cross stitching "Love me, love my cat" in that way too country-ish looking heart!  Don't get me wrong, I love cats, but that circa 1980's cross stitching just had to go buh-bye!

I can almost hear her breathing a sign of relief!  What do you think?
Oh, I forgot to mention a few details of the project:  I removed the old board (which I will save for a future project. You know me by now, I can't bear to throw anything out that has crafting potential!), and hubby cut me a new one from masonite.  I use the kind of chalkboard paint that you brush on, as I seem to have better luck with that than the spray on kind.  Have any of you ladies used the chalkboard vinyl adhesive?  I think I would like to try that out for future chalkboard projects, and was wondering what you thought of it.

Today I received the nicest surprise in the mail!  My sweet friend Cindy sent me this darling necklace that she made for me!  Thank you Cindy, you made my day!  Isn't that little girl just the cutest?!  I wonder what she is thinking about? :)
And she also sent me this pretty, cheery daisy card which you can see in the background.  Cindy is the sweetest, most thoughtful and generous person!  She has not one, but two blogs, (you can check them out here and here) and is oh, so creative!  Stop by and tell her "hi"!  Thanks again, Cindy!
I have linked up with:
Cindy over at Whimsical Musings for her Creative Spirit Challenge Party
Funky Junk Interiors SNS Party
The Graphics Fairy Brag Monday
Cottage Instincts Make it for Monday Party
be sure to stop on in!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Chalkboard Obsession!

 Hello ladies!  It is a rainy day here in Michigan, perfect for crafting.

I really need to get better about focusing on one project at a time!  I get so excited about what I am working on, then I either move to another project before the initial one is completed, or else I make something and am not happy with the end result, so I put it away to re-vamp later.  Please tell me I'm not the only one who does this!!

Yes, it's true, I am in love with chalkboards!  I have made three of them in the past week, and am almost finished with  fourth! I am always on the prowl for beautiful frames that I can transform.

 I love this turquoise color!  I mixed it up using several different shades of craft paint. Then, you know me!  I just have to do some distressing and glazing!

And of course I just had do to an heirloom white one!

I really love this shade of blue that I blended with several different craft paints. It's so fun to mix colors, I think!  That way you can get so many different colors without spending a small fortune buying tons of paint!
I am calling this color "French Blue".  I love all shades of blue, but I especially adore light blue!
I picked these frames up a couple of week ago at two different garage sales.  The funny thing was that three of the prints ( that came from 2 separate sales) coordinated!
I really love the prints that came in the frames, so I saved them for another use. What use that will be, I don't yet know!  But I am sure that I'll come up with something!  At any rate, I thought they and the mats were just too nice to throw away!  I removed the glass inserts, and had hubs cut wooden inserts for the chalkboards.  If I had been keeping these for myself, or given as a gift, I probably would have just painted over the glass with the chalkboard paint.  But, since I put these in my Etsy shop, I didn't want to take the chance of sending something so fragile in the mail!

So now I need to get busy and get back to my projects!  Hopefully I can get my blogging fix tonight and get caught up on some great blog reading!  Have a great evening!

I am linking this post up with the following great parties.  Be sure to check them out!
Beyond the Picket Fence Under $100 Party
Frou Frou Decor Fabulous Friday Finds 
Chic on a Shoestring Flaunt it Friday
Funky Junk Interiors Saturday Night Special 
My Romantic Home Show & Tell Friday

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Au Revoir Summer!

Bon Jour Mon Amis!  And Au Revoir Summer!

I am a warm weather kind of girl, so I always am a bit sad to see summer end!  While I love fall and the cooler temps that it brings, not to mention all of that glorious color with the changing of the leaves, I am always a bit hesitant to see summer come to an end!

Today I thought I'd share with you a little curio cabinet that I have accessorized with a few favorite things.  I love vintage flower frogs.  This one was found a few years ago at a yard sale for about a quarter!  Here I am displaying one of my vintage postcards (again, a yard sale find!) that features a pretty sail boat, and gorgeous blue Forget-Me-Nots.

A few end of summer blooms in a cute little vintage hob nail pitcher.  Below you will see my curio cabinet shelf, which I have painted a pretty cream color (I know, you are shocked at my use of cream!!).  This little shelf wasn't always so cute!  I found her several years ago at a church rummage sale, for free!  It was obvious why they couldn't even give the poor thing away:  she had the most awful dark brown finish on her, and was looking very sad!  At first I painted her a nice soft mossy green, which I really loved.  But when we painted our walls green last year, she just kind of blended in and disappeared!  So out came the heirloom white!  I must say I love this version much better!

On the very top, I have added two glass jelly jars, one vintage, one not.  Also this pretty little tin "pocket" that I received from a friend, that looks like a vintage postcard.  Love it!

A vintage glass cruet my mom gave me years ago.  I really love the simplicity of the old cruets.

Sea shell love!  I adore vintage pressed glass creamers.  My mom gave me the ones you see here, and they are so fun to change out with the seasons!  At Christmas time, I enjoy displaying vintage ornaments in them.  Right now they hold some pretty shells that I've collected on some of our trips.  Aren't these sea urchins amazing?  The are so fragile, so I am always excited to find them intact!  I also love the conch shells and the pretty pink & white scallop shell in the pink Depression glass creamer.

One last look at my little curio cabinet shelf.  It hangs in a nook off from our dining area.  I like changing it out with the seasons, so I will soon sadly put away all of my shells, and replace them with some autumnal decor.  How do you decorate for fall?
I am joining Kathleen over at Faded Charm for White Wednesday.  Be sure to stop in!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Trick or Treat!

Hello ladies! 

The other day, I showed you some wonderful seam binding that I had purchased on Etsy.  Some of you wondered what I planned on using it for.  Well, today I thought I'd show you how I used the black, orange and yellow seam binding.  It was so fun to work with!  ( I think it may be my new addiction!!  To go along with my addiction to Diet Coke, of course!)
Cute little Halloween tin pails!  I combined my three favorite crafting items:  Mod Podge, copies of vintage images, and glitter!  I added the seam binding to the handles along with little black Halloween tags.  It was a fun project!  I have put the pails in my Etsy shop, as well as the candles below.

I also made come jar candles, too.
I always used to say "You can never have too much glitter!"  Now I will add to that "And you can never have too much crinkly seam binding, either!"  I am adding these creations to my shop, and I can't wait to use the rest of the lovely neutral colors that I received!
Have you made any Halloween crafts?
Enjoy the rest of your day!
I have joined the following parties.  check them out for some great ideas!
Between Naps on the Porch Metamorphosis Monday
Funky Junk Interiors SNS Party