Friday, May 28, 2010

The thrift experiment......

On the trip down to FL to visit my Mom, I always break up the tedious drive with backroads and junkin. Well, this time we (Martha came with me--she is the queen of thrifty shoppers) decided to stick to thrift stores and only buy things we can get "dirt cheap"! Everything in these pictures cost from .25 cents to a few dollars --with a couple of exceptions.

The problem was that it soon became evident that even in the middle of NOWHERE the thrift stores now think they can charge HUGE prices for everything!!! This blows my mind!

So we checked out some antique stores too, and that's where I found this mother load of old hardware in the below pic. The nice man who owns the shop invited us down to his basement filled with treasures (someday we'll go missing) where we spent the next hour blissfully rummaging around. I LOVE vintage hardware, and I came away with a big box of it for very little money. I'm imagining all sorts of collage projects using these treasures....

Below is the other junk (I passed up tons of great stuff that was not in my "dirt cheap" price range) that I got only because I had a definite plan for all of it, and it cost very little--some will be made into the tin flowers I took orders for at the last show--and some will go into the junk gardens. (I bought the wood pieces because they were .50 cents)

(I have no idea why I liked this photo so much, but it gives me an idea for a future project.....)

SO, while it seems everyone else finds great stuff in thrift stores, I can't say that I do----I find better stuff these days in antique shops in out of the way places--they seem to have given up charging high prices, and are just dumping stuff because of the economy---of course there are always those that charge too much, and seem OK with never selling anything in their museums!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A little dereliction addiction........

......'cuz I can't drive by these treasures on the backroads without taking pics of the interesting old architecture.......

These homes were somewhere in middle Georgia --west of I-75. You can pick just about any backroad from Atlanta southward and find awesome architecture. There are more derelict places than restored ones, but of course I prefer them with the artistic effects of weather, nature and time.......

I always try to stop in Lake City, FL to wander around the town (try the drugstore for some great food) and backroads--it is an unusual place with friendly people and interesting dereliction---this warehouse (?) on the tracks looks like an abandoned movie set.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Sarasota.....untouched by far........

This was a bittersweet trip home for me. I was apprehensive about the condition of the water and beach on my first day out, but I was thrilled to discover it was still far.

I spent every moment I could there, and ironically, I have never seen the water as clear as it was this week, and it was even cool for swimming, which surprised me.
It seemed to be glowing in defiance of the approaching destruction, but will it be able to survive all that oil, and the toxic dispersants the idiots are being allowed to spray on it out there?

I really couldn't get enough of this scene.......and I hated to leave, wondering if it will be safe to swim whenever I get back.
(There is a porpoise in the top left hand corner of the above picture----he was out a little far to see well in the photograph)

G'bye beach.....I'll never take you for granted again!

I love the bayfront marina area.....I used to work here in the summer during college, and it always brings back fun memories of my friends who lived on boats, and the interesting people I met from around the world who would moor off and row up for provisions.

There are lots of old Mediterranean style homes here......and the Banyan trees are so cool!

We had lunch here on the pier at the northern point of Anna Maria Island, and the water was so clear you could watch the fish swimming around......

This homeowner on the island made a cute dinner plate border around her bungalow!

Sunset overlooking Lemon Bay in Englewood at the fishing hole--there was a cool breeze and the mullet were jumping in the good.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Lakewood May show photos........

These are my "junk gardens"....they didn't photograph so well, but they have little buried treasures around the plants......(the above garden got to go home with Suzanne Duda of Pink Roses. Thanks again!--it's always nice to see you and your lovely daughter!! )

I am always disappointed in how my show photos turn out.....this stuff does look better in person thank goodness......

My flower garland gets sorta lost on this huge frame.

We can't get enough of these blue jars!

A special thanks goes out to Valerie of Iron Accents......we appreciate you shopping with us! (Be sure to check out her website---and stop in the shop in Clermont, Georgia when you travel up 52 between Lula and Dahlonega)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tin Flower update.......

I had a request to show these tin collage flowers before they were painted, which got me thinking that even though I didn't like the shiny look, they do have that industrial thing going on..... so I left these as is, and........

.....then I made a wire wall garland to hang them on.

I painted these below a fleshy pink and put them on wire stakes.....

.......but I've run out of time to get to the other ones (at the top of the first picture) done. These were really fun to do though--give it a try if you have stacks of those jello molds and tart tins sitting around! all you awesome cyber-sisters: THANK YOU so much for all your encouragement and kind comments the past few months!! I have been so freakin' busy since January.....and have stayed on the road or in the workshop, and haven't had much time to blog-visit! Aside from posting and job-hunting (I finally finished school) I don't seem to be on the computer much, and I sure miss everyone. You guys are the BEST!!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Simplicity continued.......Tin Flowers

With the show just around the corner, and having spent so much time on the road, I need to do quick and easy projects using materials I have on lamp parts, tart tins, jello molds, and some hardware----it just takes a little time to make some fun metal flowers.

Just cut with tin snips, drill holes if needed, paint and assemble. (I am going to do additional ones in different colors and distress them more)

OK, now how can I use them? How about in a funky garland, or on garden stakes..... or maybe wire some into the spaces of a bare lampshade..... or I'm leaning towards attaching one each on some wire flower pot shaped baskets I have and hanging them upside down as covers on the bulbs of a string of outdoor patio lights.

Pricing logistics have to be considered at this point--I love the idea of putting them on a bare lampshade, but I would have to use lots of them on one project, and the price would be high with all of them tied up in one piece. Same with the garland, unless you sell each cover separately. The way to make the most profit on them would be to sell them as they are by the piece, and just display them in an interesting way, but it's much more fun to give them a function! For the most awesome artwork around using vintage metal "junk" for flowers, visit Alice and Jay (march post).

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Too simple.......

I know this is beyond simple, but when I saw these huge paper flowers hanging all over the open door of a cute downtown shop in Charleston, I loved the effect. They are made from the free "Skirt" paper/mag. that that you can find in larger cities (it's the variety of colors used in them that make these look so cool). I'm kicking myself for not grabbing a few mags while I was there--I really wanted to do a display with them for the show. Such a simple idea that makes a big impact.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Beaufort and Charleston......

I'm starting to feel like a travel writer!
I got a chance to take a non-working (translation: no junking allowed) trip to the low country, and this was the first stop.... the ruins (oh yeah-love that dereliction
) of the old Sheldon Church on the road to Beaufort.

Next stop is the Atlantic Ocean (deep sigh--I'm home when I'm near the water) as seen from Hunting Island State Park near Beaufort. The water was the calmest I've ever seen the Atlantic and warm for swimming, but it was also inhabited by lots of jellyfish!

(I bet Sea Witch knows what kind of jellyfish these are!)

The lighthouse on the island is beautiful, and you can climb to the top on these spiral stairs (at which time vertigo will quickly set in).

More old church ruins can be seen a short drive off the road to the island. The mausoleum with the ancient fence was so cool, and the church has the"tabby" walls used so much in the low country.

This boat had just docked in Beaufort that of two boats--the "Nina" and "Pinta" exact replicas--one made entirely by hand!!

On to Magnolia Plantation outside Charleston. The live oak trees steal the show here--some 300 years old, with that moss hanging down--so awesome. The cypress trees were huge. (I had been to this place over 20 years ago, and I have to warn you, it is very expensive and too touristy now for my taste) but I was glad to see it again if only for the views on......

....the bayous and inlets!! I would be paddling around these waters all day if I lived here.....I really need to take a kayak next time I get down this way, and do just that!

Looks like scenes from the old Tarzan movies!

Since everyone has seen pics of Charleston, I didn't post any of those--we did eat at Hyman's seafood (salmon on grit cakes--so yummy), and enjoyed walking the city!

p.s. It's unbearable to think of places like these in the gulf waters that will be decimated by the oil spill. In this day of technology, it should never have happened, and those men shouldn't have died. I know I couldn't buy BP gas again.