Sunday, February 24, 2013

Treasures found in tangled thread

 A couple of summers ago, I picked up a little sewing bench at a moving sale.  I hadn't planned on buying it, but I had to buy it in order to get an aqua Mason jar full of buttons.  For $10, I got the jar full of buttons, the bench full of lots of thread and some other random things.  Not bad at all!  Just today, I was looking through it to find a wooden spool to use in an Easter Swap I am participating in and found so much more!
 There were 4 necklaces (1 was so tiny and delicate I couldn't get a good picture of it) and 2 rosaries that were all knotted together with all of the thread and a measuring tape.  It was a mess!  All that untangling was worth the work, just look at these lovely treasures!
 This first pearl necklace is vintage Avon.  It has a gold lion's head with diamond eyes.  I found a few on Ebay and Etsy.  They ranged in price from $50 to $125.  Wow!  I always love to see what these treasures could potentially be worth.  The second pearl necklace has heart beads in pretty shades of pink.  They are plastic so I am sure they aren't vintage.
 I love this silver tear dropped shaped necklace.  It has 3 diamond shape rhinestones hanging off of the bottom.  This piece reminds me of a chandelier. 
 This is a big, chunky rosary.  The decade beads are a dark red color and the 3 Hail Mary beads are a bright red.  The crucifix and the medallion both say "Made in Italy".  This is a beautiful rosary that I am so glad to be adding to my rosary collection.
But this sterling silver rosary is my very favorite find of the day!  All beads, the crucifix and the medallion are sterling silver.  It is so delicate.  You can tell that it has been lovingly used for years as all the features are soft and worn.  This one will make such a perfect addition to my rosary collection.  

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Vintage Liquor Cabinet Refinished

 Clear back in June, I purchased this vintage liquor cabinet.  I had every intention of refinishing it right away, but for some reason it just never happened...until this weekend.  The last 2 days have been in the high 40's/low 50's so we took advantage of it.  Cody did all the work since I wasn't feeling so great and as usual, he did a great job!
 Here is what it looked like before.  It definitely needed some TLC, but it is very sturdy and in great shape.  I think I paid $40 for it and after doing a little research, I know I got a great deal!  This particular piece was manufactured by Continental Cabinet Company.  They were started in the 60's and are still around today.  There is a sticker on the back that I didn't get a picture of. 

 I didn't find this exact cabinet in my research, but the cheapest most similar one I found was selling for $265 all the way up to $1500.  Here is the inside.  There is a lot of room for storage and I need more storage so it is perfect in my dining room.

 Cody always impresses me with his painting skills...but part of his job is painting cars, so he better be good!  I love all the details on this cabinet.  Sure wish I had the key to it...not that I need to lock up all my liquor, it would just be great to have!
 The wear and tear on this piece was enhanced by the painting and distressing.  I think it adds so much character and it is exactly the way I like it!
 I am so glad that we finally got around to finishing this piece.  It looks so much better and fits in with the rest of my white, distressed, vintage furniture in my dining room. 
Thanks to my amazing husband for always doing this stuff for me...I sure don't know what I would do without him!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Learning all about Photoshop & Illustrator

I am officially a college student again.  Not a full time college student, just a one class a term college student!  I am taking Visual Communications II on Tuesdays and Thursdays (3 hours each class period) at the college that I work for. It is for my job, but I am going to use it to my advantage in every way I can!  I will be learning graphic design, in particular Photoshop and Illustrator.  Now, before I was in this class, I though I knew what I was doing.  Boy was I wrong!  Photoshop and Illustrator definitely takes some learning in order to really use it and utilize all the things it can do!
 The first project that we are going to do is design a logo for an existing business, a made up business or a business of our own.  I am going to create a logo for my event planning business-"This Magic Moment Event Planning".  We will create a logo that will be printed on letterhead, business cards and a variety of other things.  I have already started my sketches for that but I am really looking forward to getting in the software and working with it!
 Our second project is to design a book cover.  Here is where I am going to make believe!  I hardly doubt that I will ever be published in a book or even a magazine, ever, so I will pretend and create a book cover with some of my favorite images.  The photos I have uploaded today are some of my favorites and I could easily see them gracing the cover of my imaginary book!  I have to come up with not just a design, but also a name and what the book might actually be about.  So many fun possibilities for it!
 The third project will be designing packaging for a product.  I have been toying around with the idea of starting a little pet bakery.  I love making treats for my dogs and I think a lot of people would buy homemade treats for their dogs as well.  I was thinking about calling it "GraBell Bakery" or something like that, after my fur babies Grady and Bella.  If the design is successful, I can make some dog treats, package them up and sell them at local craft fairs to see how they do.  I am looking forward to this project to!
I am thankful that I get to take this class because I have been wanting to use Photoshop and Illustrator for a long time.  Right now, I use free online editing software to edit my photos.  It is so easy and definitely helps, but Photoshop really makes a difference and not just anyone can edit their photos using it.  I think I have a long road of learning ahead of me, but I am so excited to get going on it!
After I get this experience under my belt, I know there will be a lot of new possibilities for me!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Grandpa's Childhood Treasures

 I would like to start out this post by saying thank you to all of you who left comments and sent messages to me after my grandfather's death.  This was a completely new experience for me and all of the kind words, thoughts and prayers that were sent my way really meant so much to me.  It is still such a weird feeling to know that he is gone, but the memories we have of him will stay with us throughout our lives. 
 My whole family got together the day after his death to go through pictures and share more memories.  My grandma pulled out an old metal box and the treasures that were stored inside were absolutely amazing!  Since I couldn't steal them and take them home, I grabbed my camera and took pictures...maybe someday all these things can be mine!
 My grandpa was born in April 1928. Just a year before The Great Depression was in full swing.  This little nightgown is so precious.  Someone lovingly cut linen into the shape of a nightgown, sewed it together and then hand-stitched pink and blue flowers onto it.  Since there was no way to tell if the baby was going to be a boy or a girl until it was born, pink and blue would have to work for either! 
 The lace trim is so delicate and tiny.  It took all my might not to sneak this into my purse.  It would look so perfect in a shadow box with all of the other treasures that my eyes quickly fell in love with!
 This sweet little grooming set is in fantastic condition for being almost 85 years old.  There is a soft bristle brush, a comb and a little soap box.  The soap box contained a lock of hair from my grandpa's first haircut.  It was the prettiest golden honey color.  This set has hand-painted blue and pink roses on it.  The brush has a pink velvet ribbon tied to it.  Again, so hard not to steal all of it away!
 This rattle is pink and white...again, there is no way to tell if the baby was a boy or a girl, and I am sure my grandpa didn't care what color it was when he was a baby!  The plastic felt so flimsy but it has lasted for almost 85 years!
 One side of the rattle was white with pink letters spelling out "BABY" and the other side was solid pink.  I bet my grandpa loved playing with it!
 Look at his sweet little glasses from when he was just a tiny little guy.  I can't remember my grandpa ever not wearing his glasses.  He even had a little dog stand that he put his glasses on every night.  I love that his mom saved all of these things and gave them to him so that someday, someone would cherish them!
 Can you believe these sweet vintage cards?  They are seriously in pristine condition and I really, really, really wanted to steal these too!  They have just been sitting in that metal box for years and are like brand new.  I think my cousins thought I was crazy when I went nuts over these.  There were also letters and old pictures/cabinet cards in the box.  Please Grandma, give them all to me...I will cherish them forever!
 My grandma told me that this was my grandpa's grandpas shaver.  It is dull to the touch since it hasn't been used or sharpened in years, but it is amazing.  The box is original and the handle is made of ivory.  It is vintage perfection!
My dad now has this little toy pistol that belonged to my grandpa.  He is going to make a shadow box to put it in.  I can see my grandpa as a little boy playing "Cowboys and Indians" with his brothers, using this gun to shoot them!
 See the notches carved into the handle of this gun?  My grandpa always told us that he kept track of all the outlaws he killed while living in Colorado.  Oh, my grandpa had the most amazing personality and told the best stories.  He claimed to know how to speak Indian and outran Indians on the day he was born.  I will miss hearing these stories, but I will never forget them!
 Here is a picture of my handsome grandpa when he was just a young man...WOWZERS!  No wonder my grandma fell head over heels in love with him the first time she saw him!  I always remember thinking he looked a little like Ricky Ricardo, James Dean and Paul Newman all wrapped into one amazing man!
And this is my MOST FAVORITE picture ever.  This is my grandma, my dad, my aunt and my grandpa circa 1958.  My dad was dressed in a little suit but just before they were to go into get this picture taken, he had an accident and my grandma had to change him into these overalls.  He is adorable!  What a cute little family they were, often compared to a 1950's sitcom family.  I have loved this picture since the first time I ever saw it and I am so thankful to have my own copy now.  It is framed and proudly displayed in my house now!  

My grandpa's death has definitely changed me.  I can't tell you how many sympathy cards that I have signed half-heartedly, never really knowing how these people truly feel.  I also never knew how much that card could mean to someone in their time of loss.  The hardest thing for me was seeing my dad break down in tears or thinking about my grandma being alone after 59 years of marriage.  But I know that my grandpa is now with all of us, all the time.  I am so glad that I got to spend time with my family going through pictures, sharing memories and reminiscing about what an amazing man my grandpa was!

Linking up with:
Knick of Time Tuesday
ColoradoLady: Vintage Thingies Thursday