Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Random Musings on White Wednesday

Yep...playing with the mantel again.  Our beautiful Snowball bush is in full bloom and how could I resist clipping a couple of branches off and plopping them into my vintage white matte urn?  I couldn't, DUH!  They almost remind me of little hydrangeas, they are so pretty.  We don't really grow hydrangeas here in Colorado; our soil is too alkaline and we're at such a high altitude (over 6,000 feet) and low humidity that they just can't thrive.  For a while, we had a couple of hydrangeas in our yard.  We planted them near the Colorado Blue Spruce to take advantage of the acidity created by the spruce, but they got all of about a foot tall.  I guess it just wasn't meant to be.  Anyway, back to the pretty white Snowball bush...

As you may have noticed underneath my urn, I like to use pretty old books as elevators.  This little grouping is one of my favorites so far.  The one on the bottom was a recent ARC find as well.  I was all yippie skippie over that because of the great color and the gold pizazz.  But I digress.

So forgive my randomness, but I thought I'd share a kind of lame attempt at a redo.  Miss Mustard Seed I ain't, but bear with me.  I got this cute little no big deal hanging wall basket at the ARC thrift store ($ .50, just the right price!).  I liked it, but I wanted to make it look like old wicker.

I did this concoction of water and walnut glaze.  I painted it on with a foam brush (which took absolutely forever).  It really didn't soak in since the basket wasn't actually old wicker, it took freakin' forever to put on because you had to really get it in all of the cracks and crevices, and oh, did I mention, it looked like CRAP?!  I didn't even take a picture of it because it was SOOOOOO bad.  So, I decided to try to pull it out with a coat of paint.  I watered down a concoction of grayish paint and put it over the awful walnut stain.  It isn't what I originally had in mind, but it is OK.  I had this really cool wide wired edge linen ribbon which I girded it up with and then I added some reasonably good fake lavender since my lavender is a LONG way from blooming.  I hung it on the door to my studio (yes, that's an outside door...my studio is over our detached garage, so it is in a separate building).

I think I like it.  Was it worth the effort?   Maybe the jury's still out on that one, but at least it is done.

So, after all of this randomness, you probably should pop over to visit Kathleen at Faded Charm for White Wednesday.  There's no doubt oodles of fun posts featuring our favorite color (or is that lack of color?  I think COLOR.)

Until next time,

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Friday, May 27, 2011

Antique Ironstone Love

Casseroles and butter pats and platters...oh my!  Now available at my Etsy shop Elegant Farmhouse with more to come as I dig through my boxes and stashes.  I LOVE the clean classic look of antique ironstone, don't you?  It goes with any decor and it mixes and matches with newer pieces as well. 

Speaking of clean and classic, I am SO excited.  Colorado has never had an IKEA store anywhere in the state.  Well, come the end of July, Denver is getting one.  We passed it yesterday on the way up to watch the Rockies play and it is HUGE!  I can't wait to visit it.   I've never set foot in one (since we've never had one-duh!), but I see such wonderful things around Blogland and in magazines that have come from there.  Everyone is so pumped, I'm sure I'll need to wait a bit for things to cool off...or just gird my loins and enter the foray.  Guess it depends what kind of mood I'm in come the end of July!  Not like I'll have any money to spend, but lookie looing is a lot of fun and doesn't cost a thing.

Well, time to go get ready for my real job.  Have a lovely weekend my sweets!

Until next time,
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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Be Careful What You Wish For...

Sometimes, you realize that your deepest wish, your heart's desire, and that which you never thought possible was becoming your reality.  Many years ago, I dared to express out loud what my heart's desire was...and it is becoming apparent to me that this desire is indeed becoming a reality, at least in part.  I am grateful for the chance to live my dream and yet, it is terrifying.  I never actually thought I could live the artful life I am living (no, I haven't given up my day job, but my other life is becoming more and more prevalent).  I never thought the work of my hands and the yearnings of my heart would support me and my family, but it is becoming more and more important in my financial livelihood with Mr. FL not working.  We aren't solvent by any means, but we are hanging in there and I can thank, in part at least, my creative life for helping to keep us afloat.  The grace of God is the other piece of the puzzle.  I keep getting the gentle nudge that says, "Trust me to provide for you.  I will be faithful if only you will put your trust in me."  I must say, every time I get to feeling terrified and panicky, I get a big sale on one of my web venues or something else presents itself that makes me feel like it is a sign that I need to take a deep breath and stop worrying.  I need that, I will admit.  It feels great and yet,  I forget and then I begin to worry all over again.   I should grasp that everything will be fine, it just may not be look like what I think it should look like.  I need to get over the preconceived notions of what my life should be right now and accept what is and be grateful.  I admit, I struggle with that on an almost daily basis....but what is life without struggles, right?   I am trying very hard to remember that all we have is now and worrying about tomorrow is a waste of time, but it is so hard.  I've never been "here" before.  I've never had to rely on the Almighty to figure out how I'm going to pay my bills.  This is uncharted waters and yet, I see more and more opportunity for my creative life of art and antiques to become not only a hobby, but a source of my family's very existence.  So I go back to my blog title, "be careful what you wish for".  It is a double edged sword-wonderful and terrifying, all at the same time.  Satisfying at the end of the day.  Scary.  Warm. Cold.  Amazing.

Thanks for being such a great positive and creative source of energy for me and so many others.  You guys rock and you mean more to me than you know!

Until next time,
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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Helping Celebrate 100 White Wednesdays!

I don't know about you, but I am amazed at Kathleen over at Faded Charm...for the last 100 Wednesdays, she has hosted the most fun blog party around, White Wednesday.  That's quite a feat, or as someone who has a blog called French Laundry should say, a "tour de force".  I thought in honor of this, I would do a little retrospective of a photo from each White Wednesday I had participated in (22 in all-seems kinda puny in light of 100 posts, but that's why she's AMAZING and we're all helping her celebrate.  I've shown pictures of my mantel (lots of times...but hey, I like it!).

Statues have been a favorite, along with pretty lacy things, and Jeanne d'Arc Living inspiration...

I've shared some craftiness...

And some shopping tresors from my antiquing jaunts...

We've shown our whites on holidays...

And it wouldn't be White Wednesday without the occasional piece of ironstone...

And, this still remains, my favorite WW post when I did a couple of mosaics of pretty white things I found around my house.

Kathleen, hats off to you gal, you've been faithful and oh so consistent.  Thanks for making WW THE event of the week.  We should be giving you gifts, but instead, sweet Kathleen is giving US a chance to win her most amazing 100th post giveaway.  All sorts of beautiful gifts for a lucky blogger.  I am getting all excited just thinking about it.  Click here to be taken there.
This week is going to be one heck of a party!

Until next time,
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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Show Me Your Style Honorable Mentions

Well, I didn't get this post done late last week like I said I would, but better late than never, I guess!  Story of my life, running behind and playing catch up.  I just had to share some of the other entrants of the Show Me Your Romantic Prairie Style Photo Challenge.  These gals all have their own take on the style.  These 4 readers are a little more towards the romantic feel.  I just want to go "YUM" when I look at their photos. 
Amandashows off her entryway, Jenny had a divine stack of quilts, Jasmin had some amazing lilacs, and Nicki has a beautiful dreamy bedroom (loving that bedcover and its ruffles, aren't you?). 

The next 3 ladies also submitted photos that totally tickled my fancy.  From L to R:  ShawNa (who I got to meet at her very cool store since we are in the same county-she's a hoot, I think we'll be getting together again!),  Julie from Austrailia had a beautiful vignette, and Sandi who has great style and can make the prettiest photos out of the simplest items.

I hope you enjoyed seeing a few more photos from the challenge and again, thank you for those of you who sent in photos. 

I'm going to pop on over to visit Kathleen and White Wednesday and get a little more inspired (if that's possible).

Until next time,

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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Show Me Your Romantic Prairie Style Final 5 and a Winner...

Hey Blogger Friends,

My apologies for being slow at getting the 5 finalists of the "Show Me Your Romantic Prairie Style" Photo Challenge.  I have been getting ready for the MUTHA of all garage sales.  We are really choking at our place with our own slightly pathological accumulation of stuff.  So, we are being as ruthless as we can.  It's hard.  Sometimes there are tears.  But I know that eventually, this weight will be cut from around our necks and we can start to enjoy our lives more.  Or that's the plan anyway.  SO, if I am a bit MIA the next month or so, rest assured all is well and I am just taking care of business.  NOW, with that bit of dirty laundry out of the way, on to our finalists.  Thank you to all who entered.  I've had a ball going through your beautiful pictures and seeing how you interpret the romantic prairie style, but after much deliberating, I've narrowed it down to 5 pictures that really struck me.  I hope you'll pop over to these gals' blogs and see more of  their unique styles.

First up is Lynn of The Vintage Nest.  She shared 3 beautiful photos with me, but this one is the one you absolutely have to see.  This cute little house is her chicken coop.  Now I don't know about you, but I think if your chickens have a romantic little abode (they call it the Romantic Roost), you've got a good start on the romantic prairie style.  She said it was a child's playhouse that was no longer needed and they bought it via Craig's List after about a year of looking for just the right place for their backyard chickens.  I think it is darling, don't you?

Next, we have a very talented gal, Lara from Air Kisses.  Her use of zinc and natural materials is very much in keeping with the romantic prairie style in my humble opinion.  Her photo collage showed several lovely elements and captures the simplicity of materials that come together to make a simply beautiful vignette.  Lara was just featured in Artful Blogging and you'll want to pop over to see her gorgeous blog where it will become quite evident why she was selected to be in this quality magazine.

Our next gal is Patti of The Shabby Chick.  Patti has been a follower of mine for a while now and she is one of the nicest ladies you'll ever meet.  She's always tweaking and fluffing her beautiful home and infuses so much personality into it.  I hope you'll agree with me when I say I am enchanted by the top of her bookcase featured below.  I love the way she used the vintage silverware as decorative elements and, of course, you know I love the ironstone....yummy!  Stop by and see her amazing kitchen redo that she is working on.  I think it is looking smashing!!!

Next is Karen's home from A Delightsome Life.  It just says "farmhouse" to me and, while perhaps a literal interpretation of romantic prairie style, I just want to move in (get my room ready, girl!).  Everything looks like a turn of the century home and yet, it is very fresh and inviting.  This is where I hope to go with my kitchen one day.  I can't complain too much, its been a very nice and amazingly attractive space (albeit a bit small) for over a decade, but I would like to infuse some farmhouse charm.  Anyway, back to Karen.  She's been doing some gardening lately and her plants are beautiful.  Go check them out when you have a chance.

Last, but certainly not least, I'd like to show you  Rene's beautiful living room.  Her blog, Miss Gracie's House is a beautiful study in white and all it's many shades.  The warmth of this lovely spirit's home is amazing.  Every detail is well thought out and tells a story.  Her many vignettes give interest to this 100 year old farmhouse and her generally traditional Victorian style is stunning. The color palette keeps it light and airy and fresh.  Another source of inspiration for yours truly to be sure.  Drop by and take a look at her post titled "Why Do We Love White" and make sure you check out her divine bedroom.  I get inspired each and every time I go by her place and I know you will too.

Well, these are my picks.  Later this week, I will be doing a photo collage of my "Honorable Mentions", so check back again.  As for part 2 of this post, one of these lucky ladies featured above will be getting their own copy of Fifi O'Neill's "Romantic Prairie Style" although I think they may just have to give it away as a gift since they obviously have it going on already!  I assigned each one a number, based on the order in which they submitted their pictures, so the numbers are as follows:

1.  Patti
2.  Lynn
3.  Lara
4.  Kathy
5.  Rene'

And Mr. Random Number Generator says the winner is...


Congratulations to Lynn of The Vintage Nest!!!

Sorry I couldn't figure out how to do a screen shot of the generator, but I guess you're just going to have to take my word for it that it came up 2.  Lynn, give me a hollar with your physical address and I will ship your beautiful book out to you.

That's all for now.  Back to the sifting and sorting...

Just for grins, I'm linking up with Kathleen's White Wednesday over at Faded Charm.  Maybe just a few stops before I hit the basement again... :-)

Until next time,

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