"What one can see out in the sunlight is always less interesting than what is behind a windowpane."

Monday, March 28, 2011

Vintage Pixie Bunnies and Other Found Goodies

The other day, I went to my favorite haunt to donate 3 bags of toys and stuffed animals. (I LOVE Spring Cleaning!) Since I was there, I figured to browse, but seriously didn't expect to find anything. I just wasn't in the mood. First things I saw? These adorable vintage Lefton Pixie bunnies!

This little girl Pixie is in excellent shape. My jaw dropped when I found her!

Seated right next to her, was her little friend. Although there are no chips or cracks, unfortunately, there is some paint rubbed off from her face. I debated trying to touch it up, but decided to be a purist and leave well enough alone.

I know there are lots of pixie lovers out there and might sell them in my Etsy Shop. The jury is still out on that one.

I immediately spotted vintage Lefton bunny planter. It wasn't until I got home that I noticed 2 of the tips of the leaves were chipped off, but still looks really good!

And ANOTHER vintage Easter planter! This one is in excellent condition and the chick is just adorable.

Another Peter Rabbit to add to my growing Easter collection. My mantel is looking so spring-time fresh!

Remember these old clocks?! Wind them up and they play a tune. Plus, the front hands move to teach the child how to tell time. Nic claimed it as his own.

A peek at the cute old graphics.

And how about this? A 1950s PlaySkool puzzle rack, filled with wood puzzles!

Some of the puzzles, like Charlie Brown, are dated 1950.

They're made of wood and all of them inside the rack make it pretty heavy!

I actually had to research this Alice in Wonderland plate. It says, "Fishs Eddy" on the bottom, which is a store on Broadway in NYC. At first, I thought it might be a butter dish, but it is described on their site as a "mini rectangular tray" 3x6. I don't think this particular dish is being sold anymore.

Here's a close-up.

Not bad for an unexpected morning of thrifting!!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Want to See my New Chunky Art Journal?

A few months back, I learned all about Artist Trading Cards (ATCs), which is basically creating a piece of art the size of a baseball card. From there, I learned all about art journals, soul journals, chunky books, zines, and junque journals.

I've never been a scrapbooker, but the idea of art and junque journals caught my interest. These journals are in essence, books that an artist has free reign to paint, doodle, collage, sketch, the sky's the limit. There are no rules. After researching them, I decided to try my own. My art journal is created using a 6 x 4 3/4 inch child's "Winnie the Pooh" boardbook that I recycled.

The cover is a picture that reminds me of my parents. My father was a paratrooper, which I'm secretly sinfully proud of.

When completing my very last page, the boardbook's spine finally gave out due to the thickness of my embellishments. To hold it together, I glued vintage ticking around the book then adhered big buttons with ribbon so I can tie it tight.

I'm not someone who cares for abstract art and have a hard time just doodling. Instead, I prefer a method and theme. The theme for this journal is "Seasons." I chose to celebrate the seasons, holidays, and special days, starting with the beginning of the year.

Like my ATCs, I prefer using people in my artwork and creating scenes. Happy New Year is created using a vintage card and sheet music. I used tin foil for the backing to give it some shine. The card had a picture of a safety pin holding the baby's diaper, I chose to use a real, rusted one.

I had used this bunny girl image in one of my ATCs and really liked it so decided to use it for the Valentine's Day page. Of course, All the love goes to Ted.


My "No Irish Need Apply" was also used for a laundry-themed ATC. I just love the look this woman is giving! I put a calendar is the back and circled the 17th to represent St. Patrick's Day. I scorched the edges with a lighter and distressed the background in green.

April holds a few celebrations, the first being Mary's birthday. This picture was taken of her when she was just a little baby. Since it was done in sepia, I used brown fabrics and antique lace and appliques to enhance the old-fashioned look. On the bottom left are 2 wee finger prints.

Ted's Birthday and Easter...

Ted's birthday is also in April and he gets another risque woman! That's what I love about old cards. Even the risque women are cute! The background is actually 2 pieces of original wallpaper from our 1939 home.

Next to the woman in her unmentionables, is an angel celebrating Easter. I wanted to keep this simple so the focus would be on the angel. The background is Laura Ashley wallpaper left over from my mom's house and vintage velvet pink and white leaves give a hint of spring.


"Mother's Day" "Relax" were typed on my new antique manual typewriter! So much fun! I took a room from a Country Sampler magazine that I loved, added some stacked buckets from another picture, and the vintage girl cleaning.

Some of my favorite vintage pictures are of little girls taking on roles of the homemaker, like sewing, cleaning and cooking. I also love pictures of sweethearts and mommies.

"Happy Father's Day to the man who brings home the bacon, from the gal who fries it up in a pan."

My Birthday and 4th of July....

My birthday was the last page I completed because I found it hard to envision. Then I found this vintage picture of the little girl eating cake and the rest of it was well....cake!

This is one of my favorite pages. I really like the way it came out. Using vintage words from sheet music and old world pictures, I have Santa dressed like Uncle Sam holding a little girl and two flags. Originally, Santa was holding a basket of toys, but see what some scissors and a little imagination can do? I used little bump squares for a 3D appearance.


August 9th Ted and I will celebrate our 15 year Anniversary. The veil the bride is wearing on this page is piece of my actual wedding veil.

In September, my little Nicolai was born. Like Mary's picture, I used old fabrics to decorate. On the right, are 5 little fingerprints, one for each year he was born.


Since I had extra pages, I was able to celebrate both the Harvest and Halloween. Last October, we had a "Fall Harvest Moon Party" where everyone brought a hearty meal and dessert that fit the fall weather. We had a bon-fire, hot cider, and lots of fall decorations and games for the kids. I used this picture as an invitation. For the art journal, I added vintage Eureka Halloween stickers. I also took a lighter to this and burned the edges for an older look.

My Halloween picture has Mary and Nic sitting on jack o'lanterns next to a witch. Despite her being a friendly witch, their facial expressions show some concern.


I love the scrumptiousness of the picture of the mom cooking with the little girl by her side. The picture of grandpa holding the turkey came from an entirely different children's book. I just LOVE fall colors.

Encircled by vintage pipecleaners, this Christmas picture came from different cards that I pieced together to make the scene I wanted. Again, a mom baking is a very comforting look to me.

I ended the book by celebrating the new year, 2012. And who are these little babies? My mom and her twin brother, Joe, who's holding the balloons!

Using sepia-colored scrappaper, I covered the last page and overlapped it with the vintage ticking. By gluing the edges together, I made a pocket, which now holds a small envelope detailing certain aspects of this journal I don't want to forget.

Now that I've done my first chunky book, I'm sure I'd love to do another. It's very freeing to create a piece that is ALL for YOU. You can do whatever you want, which is the pure beauty of art. For me, it was a nice way to destress and keep my spirits up during the winter blahs. I also got to spend some art time with Mary as she sat next to me creating her own journal. Next time, I'll try using a spiral notebook, which will give more more freedom with embellishments.

Have you ever tried one? If not, don't be intimidated. The price for a book was 25 cents at the thrift shop and all the scraps I already had, so the price was right! It also gave me more freedom than ATCs because I could work with more space, but still kept it relatively small so as to not be overwhelmed.

Lots of fun! Give it a try!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

TIARA DAY in Frederick, Maryland!

The most scrumptious of stores! If you're ever in or near Frederick, MD, this store is a Must-See!

A few weeks ago,when the winter blues were finally getting to me, I did something I don't think I'd ever done in my life. I called Ted at work and asked him if we could go away for the weekend.

We left on Sunday and came home Monday. It was just enough time to get away and reenergize. Although it really doesn't show in the pictures, it was pouring outside. We all looked like drowned rats, but didn't care. It was still fun despite the storm.

While searching for one store, we passed this one, "Tiara Day". It looked so cute...and warm inside. I told Ted I just wanted to take a peek!

What was supposed to be a peek, turned more into an ogle. I came home with a square of this gorgeous robin's egg blue wrapping paper. I have no plans on wrapping anything with it! Maybe use it for journaling. It's too pretty to waste!

I can't describe the style of this store exactly...sort of a girly-girl-shabby-chic-romantic-sparkley-vintage-curiosity shop!

The owner was very nice and laughed as she told us, "Men just don't get the baby heads. It creeps them out, but women usually love them."

I can see both points of view!

It was a cozy store, overflowing with eye candy.

I hated to leave, especially with the rain coming down so hard, but we had to move on.

The kids were so well-behaved during the trip down and enduring the weather, what better way to show our appreciation by bringing them to a "Penny" candy store?!

HMMMM-MMMMMMMM!!! This is going to be good!

Barrels and barrels of old-fashioned candy! The kids each grabbed a basket and went a little crazy. We had to keep explaining to them that it wasn't Halloween!

Ted and I weren't much better. Ted tossed in some of those horrific circus peanuts into Nic's basket. EW! Remember those? Uck! I preferred the coconut Neopolitans and Bit Of Honeys!

Remember Candy Cigarettes? Although they now only sell these packs as "Candy" and omitted the word, "cigarettes", we all know what they're doing! They're not fooling anybody!

After a long trip and braving the weather, we needed a hot meal. Maybe it's because we were extra cold and wet, but it was one of the best meals I ever tasted!

Nothing makes these two happier than full bellies!

Before the day was through, we hit one more antique store, which wound up being 10 times the size we envisioned. Don't you love it when that happens?

It was only 6:00 pm, but being Sunday, most stores were now closing and we happily (and eagerly) went to our hotel room, where we spent the night eating lots of candy and watching, "Forrest Gump."

The next day was bright and sunny, but actually much colder than the day before. We headed to the Baltimore Aquarium.

Now I know how Jonah felt.

This aquarium is different than most, and to me, very intimidating. You travel upward on very thin escalators to each level. Meanwhile, you're looking straight down into tanks of stingrays, sharks, and even this poor three-finned turtle.

I felt much more comfortable looking at the fish through glass.....

except for the sharks, of course.