New Framed prints in

We have some new signs in today. This framed print is called Words of Wisdom and is a large 11 3/8″ X 38 X 3/4″. signs this size are great above a door or above a bed. Add some pip berry or ivy garland over the top to dress it up a bit.

Also in today are favorites in the popular smaller size of 3 5/8″ X 12 X 1/2″ that have such heart felt sayings as “Let us be silent that we may hear the word of God.”

Published in: on March 24, 2010 at 5:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: ,

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  
Tags: , ,

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  
Tags: , ,

A Primitive Place

I have found another wonderful site to visit.. A Primitive Place. From their site.. “Our site is full of primitive & colonial inspired homes, primitive inspired gardens, decorating and craft ideas, trash to treasure makeovers, monthly crafting tutorials and much more! ” Well worth some time just looking at the great decorating ideas.

 I especially enjoyed the trash to treasure and craft sections. Also check out their blog. Though it is now past my bedtime.. I can’t stop looking at all the wonderful pictures of decorated homes.

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.

DeCreAseD EcOnOmY = InCrEasEd CrEaTiViTy

The slowed economy is showing up all over. People have cut back on trips to town, groceries and the little extras that make life nice. Retailers too are having to cut back and tighten up with reduced inventory and rethinking product lines. But all this is not bad news for decorating your home. With some creativity, you can have new looks for the season that add warmth and are pocket friendly.

I love to go to yard sales and auctions. And my favorite things are baskets, bowls and boxes. Unique glassware will also piqué my interest and most of these things can be had for little to nothing. Why do I like them so much? Because they are a blank slate to make something unique.

Alone this little bowl is very cute. It can be set on a shelf and it will add a bit of punch on it’s own with the chipped finish and the red trim. To dress it up a bit all you need is some greenery.

Greenery and floral picks are a place I do not scrimp. Kinda odd maybe.. but I like my florals to look real, and, to stand up to all the bending and twisting I will put them through when I am working on an arrangement. You won’t get that with dollar store florals. So, I get nice stuff. Ivy is always a good base and investment. At the shop we offer ivy in deep rich greens, muted greens and creams as well as variegated picks and stems. No matter what your decor tastes.. and what they might be in the future.. ivy will go with it. This little ivy bush is about $6. It has good scale for the little bowl. There are several longer stems that can be bent around to soften the edge of the bowl

Check out that first photo of the bowl placed with a cheese grater and a candle stick. Now these are new items at the shop.. but you know things like this can also be picked up at yard sales and such. A rusty old grater would actually be really cool here.. especially with a little light under it. Its shape offsets the rounder shapes of the bowl and candlestick. And, they ivy trailing over the edge softens all the piece edges and ties it all together. So check out the sales, check out the garage and basement and see what interesting items you can come up with where you can add a beautiful piece of greenery to create something new for next to nothing.

Published in: on February 1, 2010 at 1:00 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , ,

I’m BoReD..

I am bored! I have new things set to arrive and the holiday stuff is almost put away. But I am wanting to do some new things in the shop this year and need more room.

To make that room I have placed on clearance my curtains, many of my place mats, bathroom items like shower hooks and curtains and much more. All items I am bored with are 40% off. We had a great day Saturday as many of our customers were delighted to walk in and find the bargains. Come in and get some great deals on items for your home while the selection is good.. then tell your friends so they can get some goodies too.

Christmas items are still being put away. They are boxed up but I will take half off any Christmas items still on the floor. And,  for those of you that just LOVE the German Twig Trees.. I have one left and I will take 40% off of it. These trees are the Country ficus. Add lights, and change the decorations with the seasons. Right now add some red bows and prim hearts. Then do some red, white and blue for summer. This tree will NOT last long.. and you will not find a better price on this tree.

Published in: on January 31, 2010 at 6:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: ,

NeW iTemS for ThE HoliDaYs

Gift Card Holder
Gift Card Holder

We are starting to put out our Christmas items that have been arriving the last few months. We have several ornaments and  these little guys are not only cute on a tree, they are an adorable way to give a gift card, especially one of ours, to your Country or Primitive loving friends and family.

Snowman Ornaments
Snowman Ornaments

Another Primitive Snowman ornament are these two. They come as a pair and have a wonderful grungy look that will complement any tree, especially the German Twig Trees so popular in Country homes.

santa 2Even Santa has a nice grungy Prim look with these ornaments. Our Santas are a good size and I can see them hanging  in several places around a home as well as your tree. I am looking for unique places for them around the shop and will get some more pictures when I start putting things together.
Gold Flecked Tree
Gold Flecked Tree

These pictures do not do these little trees justice! Instead of a bright green typically found in Christmas trees, they are a neat olive color and are dusted with a gold glitter that just makes them something you HAVE to have this year. I bought the last three of these and am seriously considering keeping one for myself. They are about 2 to 2 1/2 feet tall and have little pinecones on the branches and are nestled in a primitive finished pot.

tree 3A close look at the branches and you can barely see the sparkle of the glitter. These trees look fine on their own  or add a few small prim ornaments or a small strand of rice lights for even more impact.
 

FeaThEr TrEEs

feathertree-5Christmas items have been arriving at the shop for months now. It has been no fun to have all this cool stuff and not be able to have it on the floor. In a few weeks we will be phasing out Fall and bringing out the Christmas goodies in preparation for our Open House November 7th.

One of the items we have new this year are Feather Trees. I did some checking on the internet and found out some history of these trees. I’m going to pretty much quote a page I found at Victorian.com. This site has a lot of cool information if you are into Victorian decorating so check them out when you finish reading this. Here is their article:

Yes, it is actually true that feather trees were the first artificial Christmas trees and they were originally made in Germany as early as 1845.  Like many inventions, tabletop feather trees came about out of necessity. By the mid-19th century, decorated trees were more popular than ever; however, in Germany deforestation was widespread, especially during the holiday season. It had become the fashion to chop off the tip off a large Fir tree to use as a Christmas tree; however, this practice prevented the tree from growing taller and thus made it useless as a timber tree. Statutes were enacted to limit people from having more than one tree, hence protecting the forests. With the introduction of the “goosefeather” tree, this problem was resolved. Goose feathers were plentiful and these feather trees began to be produced as a cottage industry as the alternative to cutting a live tree. These goose feather trees became the first artificial Christmas trees. Metal wire or sticks were covered with goose, turkey, ostrich or swan feathers. The feather sticks were drilled into a larger one to resemble the branches on a tree; the feathers were often died green to imitate pine needles. The trees were made to resemble the locally growing white pines of the German forestland, so they had wide spaces between their branches, short “needles,” and composition “berries” on the end of every branch tip.

feathertree-3Meanwhile in America, cut live trees were the cherished way to make the holiday come alive.  When the Germans immigrated to the United States, they took their beloved portable feather trees with them to use in their new homes. While it was the German immigrants that introduced feather Christmas trees into the U.S., the practice of using artificial trees really did not take off in America until Sears Roebuck first advertised artificial trees for sale in their 1913 catalogs.  Often they had berries and candleholders at the branch-tips and a round white base.  They ranged in size from 55 inches to 17 inches tall.  By the late teens, Japan followed suit and manufactured feather trees for the U.S. market.

In the 1920s feather Christmas trees were gaining in popularity, especially to European-born Americans continuing to follow their customs. However, by the mid-1930s their popularity declined somewhat as the tree farm industry grew.  In an effort to revive the market, Germany began supplying Montgomery Ward with a wider variety of color choices and fancier designs on the tree stands. Artificial trees all but disappeared during WWII. Then after the war, in the 1950s, feather trees were replaced by artificial trees made of synthetic substances, like visca and aluminum.  It’s no small wonder why feather trees are now a popular decorating choice for people with period homes.

Published in: on October 2, 2009 at 1:56 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , ,

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.

018

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  
Tags: , ,