Use what you have

A good way to stretch your decorating dollar is to use what you have. This cabinet has a large wide area so I need to use large pieces up there to even be seen. I borrowed this chicken feeder from a friend. The bottom is rusty but I coiled a yellow garland around the base and pulled up the pip berries to be seen above the edge. The feeder would look good sitting on the floor as well and could have ivy or flowers as well as the garland in it. An old box I had lying around houses a variegated ivy bunch and had several old jars on the top of which only one remains. These jars were found discarded and we also picked up some at yard sales and flea markets. The wreath was another yard sale find and it was taken apart and redone to add interest. None of these items were expensive in themselves.. they were brought together and repurposed in an attractive display. This allows one to splurge on something like the goose decoy . It adds interest and pulls the colors together.. especially sporting a small yellow candle ring around its neck. This entire display could remain and the florals changed out to reflect the seasons.

Ok, this is not the best picture, but again, I have used some everyday items to create a unique display. the speckled pots were pulled out of a cupboard and stacked to add height and be noticable on the top of this hutch. I turned a divided box on end to show my crocks, a pine cone from my Grandmother’s old house and an pretty blue bottle I found in the dirt somewhere. Added to this are garlands and picks in rich earth tones to pick up the colors of the crocks.

The key to shoe string decorating is to keep one eye always open to the possibilites an item may have beyond what it was origionally intended to be.

Published in: on March 15, 2010 at 2:06 am  Leave a Comment  
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Eggs-Actly PrimiTive

I enjoy searching the net looking for ideas and products related to Country and Primitive decor. I like to make things myself.. when I have the time.. so like to check out patterns. These Primitive Easter Eggs are darling in this small basket. The price of the pattern is only $4 and you get her staining recipe as well. Make up several to use around your home in baskets and bowels. Click on the picture or HERE for the site to order.

According to the site, this egg pattern kit is a ‘No Sew’ pattern. This might be a good project to do with kids. The eggs are beautiful and the rich colors would be great in any Prim home. An old basket, some grass or straw and these rustic eggs and you have a nice touch for the coming season. Click HERE or on the picture to check out the sellers web site.

While you are on this site check out the articles and the rest of the information contained on the site. I have been here before I have gotten a lot of info here.

Another very nice site with lots of great patterns. These eggs are very cool and I fell in love with several of the patterns on the site as well. I particularly love the Woolie Sheep.. and am tempted to get that pattern for myself. I just don’t know when I will find the time to make them. Maybe when I get moved later this year I will have a few evenings to myself.. lol.. time to wake up from that dream. 🙂 anyway, click HERE to visit the site and enjoy.

Do You Have a Great Idea..

Have you come up with a nice display combination?  Have you repurposed an item in a unique way? I know I get a lot of inspriation from seeing what others have done and I love those ‘I never would have thought about that’ ideas I stumble across.

Share your tips and ideas with others by sending them to me for posting here on our Blog. If I add them to the blog I will give you one of our highly scented and long burning candles at half price or a $5 gift card for the shop.

And if you like the little bench in the picture, click the picture or HERE to check out the Etsy shop I found it on. Nice stuff.. her motto is “ Because a Womans Place is in the Woodshop”. I love it!

Published in: on March 1, 2010 at 1:23 am  Leave a Comment  
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Lighted Willow Branches

These lighted branches are HOT! There is a lot of buzz about these right now and they are getting hard to get as they are getting backordered because of their popularity. We have had these in and only have a few left. We are reordering more today.

 This great innovation is a fantastic way to add light to floral or twig arrangements without the hassle of dealing with an electric cord. You can also add them as light spray accents in trees. There are 20 lights on the branch and they give off a cool white light which has a slight blue hue. Branch is 17 inches long and requires 3 AA batteries (not included).

We are also getting in on some advance ordering for some branches that will have more of a warmer cast to the lighting instead of the bluish one these branches have. We do not look to have them in any earlier than May right now.

We will have a tall one at 39″ as well as a smaller one at 19″. Be sure to get some of these for yourself. the demand is high and supplies may be limited for most of the year.

Published in: on February 25, 2010 at 6:11 pm  Comments (4)  
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Cool Blogs to Visit

I love information and reading. Both are combined in searching the internet. I was spending some time looking for decorating ideas, repurposing sites and generally any kind of info for those of us who are having to tighten up and make things stretch. My search led me to several blogs dealing with Goodwill finds, crafting and being frugal. I find I enjoy reading blogs as the tone is conversational and you feel like your hanging out with one of your friends.  Here are some of the sites I found interesting while searching.

Suddenly Frugal – a cool blog with a lot of info. There are Freebie Fridays with info on free stuff from retailers and restaurants, information was given on where to find the best shopping deals during the holidays and there is lots more. I found this blog a bit later in the evening and was a bit too tired to fully explore. I plan on checking back regularly.

Primitive Lifestyle – This blogger is in Ohio and loves to hit the Goodwill store and repurpose items she finds. She posts the latest treasures and will later post her project to change the item into a new piece for her home. I enjoyed going back through the archives to see all the neat items she has reclaimed and given new life to. Though I too love to redo items, she has inspired me to look at things a little differently to find the hidden treasures.

Behind My Red Door – OK.. not really a lot of How-To-Do.. but the pictures are delightful eye candy to those that love the country/prim style of decor. Cruising thhrough her posts gave me ideas for decorating the shop. Sometimes the bets way to save money on decorating is to get some free inspiration. Enjoy..

Published in: on February 8, 2010 at 1:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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BeAuTiFuL BoXeS

As stated in the earlier post.. I like to get inexpensive little containers like boxes to use in my decorating. Often old boxes can be found for a few dollars a piece and the beat up nature of old boxes in general lends itself very nicely to country and prim decor. Take this little green box, for instance. It is a reproduction but it is made to look like a little drawer from a spice box. This box actually has a hook on the back for hanging on the wall as well as sitting on a shelf like it is here. We have put all kinds of things in it and right now it is home for a twig ball. The rounded ball plays a nice complement to the little wood block’s rounded top and the box’s round pull. The square shape of the box is a sharp contrast to all the other spherical shapes in the arrangement. A nice floral pick with trailing stems ties the green color of the box to the arrangement and of course it softens and ties it all together.

This is my new favorite treatment of small rectangular boxes… masses of pip berries! We have some great, thick pip berry wreaths that I have been scrunching together and putting in boxes. The pip strands are long enough to pull up above the top of the box and the thickness of the wreath makes a very full effect in the box. With this little box I added a mini candlestick light. Is that not the cutest way to display a light?? Instead of the candle stick light try adding a small strand of christmas tree lights or the popular mini rice lights. Those tiny lights look darling in among the berries.

Once again I have taken one of our pip berry wreathes, this time a mustard color,  and flattened it sideways to fit in this box. You can see how thick and full the berries are in the box. This box has a neat rustic fence behind it that just begs attention. I stuck a star up there for no reason other to get the star up where it could be seen. I can see this box with some nice ivy trailing over the side and up the fence and some spring colored florals added in for color. Or add some brightly colored eggs or a cute little rabbit and you have a seasonal piece for your wall or table.. and it could be easily changed for the coming seasons.

The texture of time-worn boxes can also be used to set off other pieces. This candle stick is fairly new. We added a candle ring to dress it up and then put this unique box behind it duplicate the tall vertical feel of the candlestick. And of course, the beat up box adds to the rustic finish of the candle.  The compartments in the box are a nice place to tuck little things like a wood block or a small picture.

Boxes are also very useful for adding height to an arrangement. A well placed box with items on the top help to draw the eye up without drawing attention to themselves. This reason in particular is one of the best for having a collection of boxes to use in your decorating. And.. the best part.. is they are usually cheap and easy to come by so having several will be easy on your purse. First thing to do is look around for the free ones. My grandmother had several in her garage. A cool old box with items to repair shoes in it and several long, shallow boxes with compartments for screws, bolts and what have you. A quick scrub and her trash became my new found treasure. I have picked up boxes at auction for just a few dollars each. Even larger storage boxes with hinged lids can find use to get items up off a floor and to add visual appeal next to a table or hutch. Happy collecting.

Variety.. the Spice of Life

I like to get a lot of bang for my decorating dollar. Soo, I look for pieces that I can change with the Seasons.. or my moods. Big bowls and our Lighted Twig Garland are two of my favorite items right now. Large bowls or troughs look great with candles and candle rings, potpourri, yarn balls, bells at Christmas time.. and the list can go on. And the garlands.. well, I like them in just about anything that will hold them.

40This is one of our nice, heavy pieces of Treen to which we have added a variegated ivy pick and a lighted twig ball garland. It lights up this corner of the house in a unique way. These twig ball garlands are very versatile.. you can put them in crocks, Treen pieces and large pots.

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On the last post you saw one of the smaller Barn Star wall pockets with a pip berry pick stuck in it. Here is the largest one with some of the muted green and cream ivy and some orange pip berries stuck inside it. These stars give you a nice base to change out over the seasons with different floral elements. This one is transitioning from Summer into Fall colors with the splash of orange. Add a gourd pick to make a real statement in the Fall and change it all out and put in some pine boughs and cones for the holidays. I have one of these with the multicolor variegated ivy in my kitchen.

005-2I know, I know.. it doesn’t seem very versatile. BUT.. these German Twig Trees are the Primitive Ficus. After the holidays, put away all the ornaments and decorate the tree in something seasonal. Grungy, fabric hearts and red bows for Valentines Day, print out pictures of your family and tie them to the tree with some homespun for Mother’s Day, or red, white and blue felt stars for the Fourth of July. Coming into Fall try some orange and purple lights and some grungy cheesecloth ghosts. Best of all, come August, we are going to offer a pre-buy on these trees. If  you place an order and a deposit by the first of September, you will get a discount and untill the end of November to pick it up. I’m still working out the details but I will keep you posted.

Published in: on May 18, 2009 at 1:52 am  Leave a Comment  
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Light Up thE Night

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We carry some nice lighting by Katies Lighthouse. For almost forty years they have taken pride in hand-crafting the best colonial lighting in America. Their skilled craftsmen build, finish and inspect each of their products by hand. We can custom order any heirloom-worthy piece of art for you to have in your home.

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If you love decorating in Country/prim.. you just can’t have a plain ole Wal-Mart night light. Especially when you can have one of these. We actually offer several nice styles, including an outhouse, that will make  a walk in the dark a pleasure in itself. And of course, we have replacement bulbs for all these fixtures. Just for fun, when you replace one of these bulbs, try one of our Flickering Night Light Bulbs. They are incredible, especially in the lantern styles.

Published in: on May 17, 2009 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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More Rearranging

img_0119_2This old hutch is really neat. It is beat up and the doors are in pieces in the back of the shop. It is rather deep so I often have a difficult time showing off items I put on the shelves.

img_0120_2Though difficult to see in the picture.. I took one of my 140 bulb Deco Rice Light sets and wove it behind things on the top two shelves then ran them through the garland on top. I have had more people want the lighted garland since I did this. Though the Deco 140 lights are a bit much for the garland alone, we do carry a smaller Deco 35 light strand that would be perfect for adding that touch of light to a garland draped like this one.

img_0122_2Here are some of our Grubby  Battery Tapers. This is a nice, heavy candle pan with a colonial finish. The colonial finish is a very dark brownish black.. not the flat black many of them come in. We added some color coordinating candle rings then a fun little sign. These tapers are lit.. a bit difficult to see in the picture.. but they are a warm orangish yellow and have a gentle flicker to them.

img_0126_2OK.. I absolutely love, love, love these lighted balls! Again, difficult to see in the picture, each of these 10 twig balls have a little light in them. Are they not awesome in this treen bowl? They also looked great in an old, cast iron pot I had them in around Christmas time. I had 6 of these before Christmas and they were gone in 2 days. I got a dozen this time and once again, they are moving out quickly. I can think of lots of cool primitive containers for them.. baskets, bowls, pots, crocks.. you will find many delightful places for them as well. When you do.. send me a picture so I can post it here.

The Dust is Settling

img_0129_2Well, things are finally getting back together at the shop. I moved the white Hoosier type hutch over into the corner and moved this little drop leaf table in next to it. I added a little primitive bench and put a cute Spring birdhouse on top. Added a nice mat hand made by a local Amish man and put some hyacinths under glass. A basket with greenery fills out the back and 2 fluffy yellow ducks are added for color.

img_0128_2Here’s the Hoosier.. angled back into the corner. A wreath stand with a nice twiggy wreath and one of our new, hand made in Kenton, lighted houses adorn the top. We still have the easy to fix dip mixes in the top. The shop favorite is Beer Cheese. My favorite is the Lemon Cheesecake. I pretty much like cheesecake plain.. but I tried this at market and fell in love. When I brought it home my stepson and a friend tore into it and got almost done before they realized it wasn’t ‘regular’ cheesecake. But they loved it.. according to the empty pan.

img_0131_2Nothing fancy here. But I love this chair. My personal favorite way  to decorate an old chair like this is to set a rustic basket with some greenery on it. Something hanging over the side of the basket to soften it up and enable you to see the back of the chair. I had a muted ivy and some soft, pastel hydrangeas on it once and almost took it home I liked it so well. Old chairs can often be found for just a few dollars and they are a unique way to add a little something special to a corner or narrow wall space.

img_0134_2This cabinet I drug around the corner and put the cookbooks and party napkins in. Have some friends coming over? Get these cute primitive dinner and cocktail napkins to bring your prim flair to the party. The cookbooks are those really neat brownie/cookie in a jar type of recipes. These cookbooks are nice to have on hand to whip up tasty gifts for birthdays, holidays or even to say your just thinking of someone. I’ve always enjoyed the ones I received and remembered the giver when I was enjoying the tasty treat. We also have a nice selection of the Gooseberry  Cookbooks. My favorite is the slow cooker one. Always nice to come home to dinner already made.

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All this activity and there is still always more to do. I now need to sit down and get some things ordered. Next Monday I am planning a trip to the cash and carry so will have some new Spring goodies then.

Me too Bruce… me too!