Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Handmade Hammers & High Heels Home Decor and More at Finch's Holiday Boutique!

For the first time ever I will have some of my handmade creations up for sale!  Where you ask?
At Finch's Holiday Time Boutique...
featuring unique items from over 50 artists & designers, just in time for the holidays!
(and sorry to the long distance readers, this one is local here in Minneapolis)

Mark your calendars, the Handmade Open House is Saturday, December 3rd from 11am-5pm, and Sunday, December 4th from 12pm-5pm.  Check out Finch's Boutique Blog for all the event details, location, and get a sneak peek at what will be up for sale!  It really is a talented group of people with lots of incredible creations!  Special thanks to friend (and fellow home & craft blogger ) Elisa for organizing the event!
 Now, onto what I have up for sale (a lot might look familiar if you're a regular reader)!  Most of these items are things I have made for our own home.  I love them very much, so I hope that others will enjoy adding them into their own home!  Things like...

Torn Book Stacks/ Stocking Hangers
I am still in love with book stacks!  They are so easy to add into your home decor!  I have also added a hook into the book binding so you can use them as a stocking hanger/weight. 
Most are decorated for the Holidays as well with twine, yarn, burlap, and sheet music ribbon.
Torn Book Stacks/ Stocking Hanger: $4.00 each

Burlap Sacks, Decorative Pillows, Reversible Table Runners, and Storage Bins
All of the burlap items shown are made from authentic burlap coffee sacks. The Burlap Bin is also collapsible!
Large Burlap Pillow: $12.00; Small Burlap Pillow: $10.00; Collapsible Burlap Bin: $8.00; Authentic Burlap Coffee Sack: $6.00 each

This authentic burlap table runner is also reversible!  One side shows the original printing on the outside of the sack, and the other has a gray stripe down the center.  I also found burlap fabric printed with skeleton keys that I just loved so I made a couple pillows with it!
Authentic Reversible Burlap Table Runner: $12.00 each; Burlap Skeleton Key Pillow: $12.00 each

Vintage Style Wood Crates
This was a DIY favorite on our blog!  I added an ampersand symbol and black stripe to the design.  Additionally, the black stripe is chalkboard paint, so you can label what you store inside!
Vintage Style Wood Crate: $15.00

I also made these smaller black wood crates with distressed edges. 
Smaller Distressed Crate: $5.00 each

Mini Framed Chalkboards
No surprise here, I LOVE chalkboards so I had to offer up a few!  They are framed with a wire hanger and sheet music ribbon for a holiday touch.  I think they would be a cute gift-able item for the holidays!
Mini Framed Chalkboard: $6.00 each

Multi-Wear Snap Scarf/ Yoga Scarf
This item is by far the one I get the most request for... which is understandable because I think it is soooo versatile and fun!  So many ways to wear it!
I ended up making just 1 scarf in the original jersey fabric version and 4 in a simplified no-sew sweatshirt fleece version. I think the no-sew version is even better for the yoga (or even lounge-wear) use.
Multi-Wear Snap Scarf/ Yoga Scarves (Spot Clean or Dry Clean Only)
Jersey Fabric: $12.00; Sweatshirt Fleece Fabric: $10.00


I still have a couple other items at the Boutique that I didn't get photos of yet, but that is most of the bunch!

Will you be at Finch's Holiday Time Boutique???

I know I will be there early on Saturday
Hope to see you there!

Monday, November 28, 2011

The 'Griswold' Tree Tradition Continues...

“We're kicking off our fun old fashion family Christmas by heading out into the country in the old front-wheel drive sleigh to embrace the frosty majesty of the winter landscape and select that most important of Christmas symbols.”  ~Clark W. Griswold
That's right!  Christmas madness is official now that we have a TREE!!!

Over the weekend, we journeyed out to Rum River Tree Farms in Anoka MN to cut down this year's tree. Once again, we followed the Christmas Tree Guidelines from Clark W. Griswold and avoided getting a tree from a tree lot because... "They invented them (tree lots)  because people forget to have a good old family Christmas and are satisfied with scrawny, dead, overpriced trees that have no special meaning!"  We know that isn't true, but I still think that quote is hilarious!  Plus, cutting your own tree is A LOT cheaper!  Our tree total came to $32.57!

One thing that IS true, is that going out to cut down your own tree is indeed an adventure and a very memorable experience!  We certainly try to have a lot of fun with it, even making sure we have a theme for the occasion!  Last year, we went with the Lumberjack feel and wore flannels.  This year, Alex insisted on rocking a Cousin Eddy type look...
He was really hoping for the whole Cousin Eddy ensemble- bomber hat, dirty bathrobe, and penny loafers.  Hmmm, cutting down a tree in a bathrobe...yea I don't think so!

The bomber hat was a-okay though!  Goofy picture totally necessary...
 Anyway, Alex and I wandered through the Rum River Tree Farm and finally found our 2011 Christmas tree!  Then it was time to get out the axes and our bowsaw to start cutting!
Alex of course had the tough job crawling around the base of the tree.  I simply stuck the camera in the tree for a picture :)
After a lot of sawing, he was ready to give it a big push to knock it down...
Boy was he excited (or decide)!!!
 Alex magically floated carried our 2011 tree back to the car (while also managing to make this picture look fake). Seriously, something looks strange about this one, kind of like his "Elf" picture from last year.... 
 We then had the tree shaken and bundled before strapping it to the roof and taking it home.

This year we decided to put the tree in the sunroom instead of the living room and I'm super excited to change it up!  Alex and I got the tree balanced in the base (which takes forever, requires patience and plenty cursing.....seriously not a fun part), and then he unwrapped it!
 Finally the fun part...Let the decorating begin!!!!
 I'm working on the tree decorations AND all the holiday decor around the house.  I better get off the computer and get back to it!  I can't wait to show you our 2011 tree next week! 

How about you? 
Did you cut down a tree this year? 
 Are you going bananas decorating for the holidays too???

Friday, November 25, 2011

Head Over Heels Friday: Things To Be Thankful for...

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving Day, I know we certainly did (and the table was gorgeous too, take a look)!

In the spirit of the holiday, I thought for this Head Over Heels Friday that I'd share a few things I am thankful for...

A wonderful visit and sharing Thanksgiving with the Kilpatrick family
(AKA Alex's sister Amber, her hubby Ryan, and our nephew Henri!)

Spending time with this ever-fast growing little guy (Henri likes chalkboards too!)

Bonding some more with my lovely sister in law

Enjoying all the fun that comes with the imagination of a child
(While at Psycho Suzies, Henri thought the light up Mary wanted one of his tater tots... nice he wanted to share right?)

And probably most of all...

Making lots of goofy memories with family

We certainly are a goofy bunch, but that's the way we like it!

Onward toward Christmas right?!?!  Let the decorating madness begin!!!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Holiday Table Decor: Antique Spoon Napkin Rings, Cutting Boards, Wine Tasting Station & More!

Happy Thanksgiving Everybody!  It is a beautiful and unseasonably warm day here in Minneapolis, just loving it! 

I thought I'd share some of our Thanksgiving Day Decor while Alex is busy cooking up a feast in the kitchen! Here is a look at our table settings and decor (I think this could also be fun for Christmas but adding in ornaments with hints of red and green!).
 I got a white stain & wrinkle resistant table cloth from Target to cover the table.  Then I layered on a linen table runner that I sewed from some scrap fabric.  For the centerpiece, I just used 2 lanterns, pine cones, and 1 large birch candle- found all those goodies last minute at Marshalls!

For the table settings, I started with square mirrors we had laying around from Ikea and I laid our everyday square white plates on top.  My FAVORITE part is the mini vintage bread boards! I got just in time from Diana over at Our Vintage Home Love.  Aren't they beautiful?!?  They are all different shapes and sizes, so cute!  You can find them here at her Etsy shop.  On top, I used some brown napkins I picked up at Target and made the place cards myself with a stencil.
 Aren't the napkin rings beautiful?!?

 Alex and I made them from these antique spoons I picked up for $5 at an antique shop!
He simply used his "man strength" and bent them around the handle of dumbbell.
Bending around the dumbbell helped to ensure a consistent shape for all 5 napkin rings.
I was so happy with the way they turned out!

Now to our Sideboard... 
I picked up that extra large bread board on clearance at Bachman's for only $15!!!  Steal right?!?  I wanted to use it as a backdrop for the sideboard set up.  Thinking I will decorate it a bit more for Christmas.
 I put the tallest lantern that matched back to the ones at the table in the corner and filled with some wine corks.  I ended up getting the Wine Tasting station I mentioned in this Head Over Heels post from Bachman's for $34.99.  I couldn't resist!  I loved the small chalkboards above each wine bottle.
 The sideboard was all set up with our Thanksgiving Day appetizers.  We like to snack through the day while we are all hanging out before the BIG meal.  I thought the wine, bread, and cheese combination always makes for a lovely looking display.
 When I changed up the decor on the sideboard, we ended up having to remove our wine rack that usually sits on top.  It took up most of the space on top of the sideboard and we were ready for a different look!  I got creative with this vintage wood caddy I picked up at Art and Architecture in St. Paul...
I still wanted to store a few bottles in the decor, so just placed them on their side and used our vintage widow's peak to hold the bottles on top (and it looks fun)!

That's what Thanksgiving is looking like at our home, how about you?

Well, I better see how my handsome chef is doing in the kitchen :)

We hope your home is full of family, friends, food, love, and laughter today!

Had to link this post up for Layla's Table Decor Party :) I think it'd be lovely for Christmas as well!

The Lettered Cottage

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Crown Molding, Thanksgiving Prep, and a Paint Disaster

Nothing like the last minute, right???  That is kind of how I am feeling right now.  We have family arriving tomorrow morning and we are still finishing up a few projects before the big turkey day... Ugh!

The big one being the Guest Room.  We still had to tackle putting up new crown molding since the old stuff had to come down when our new ceiling went up.
 We picked out a thicker molding so it would look a bit nicer than the small 2" molding that was there before.  Alex got to work on it over the weekend and it sure wasn't easy like we both thought it would be!   

Turns out the dormers in this room required a lot of extra effort and complex mitred cuts.
Once all of the molding went up, it was time to give it a nice coat of paint.  This is where our little paint disaster happened :)

I was nearby cleaning up our bathroom when I heard a 'clunk bloop' type of sound.  I turned around and saw something like this...
Image via Paint Pouch
(I don't have photos of our actual spill, because honestly who the heck would rush to get a camera with a ton of paint on your wood floor?!? )

I looked over at Alex and he had the Tom Hanks "Money Pit" look on his face...

 We both scrambled to grab paper towels, cleaning spray and water to start diluting the paint in order to sop it up without smearing it all over.  Totally not an easy task!  It took us TONS of paper towel to get it all cleaned up but I'd say we did it in record time.  I guess you have to though when it comes to spilled paint!

You betcha I grabbed the camera after all of that :)  Here's what remained of our little paint disaster...

After that fantastic experience, Alex got his rear back in gear and painted the crown molding.

While he has been tackling "man" tasks, I have been busy cleaning and getting the Thanksgiving Day decor in order!  At least that part is fun :)  Here is a peek at some of the goodies I brought home to tinker with!
I can't wait to show you what I do with them!
I will also get to show you the newest version of our Guest Room soon!  Errr, well we have to get it done tonight anyway since our guests arrive in the morning.  Wish us luck!

Hmmm, I might need a cup of coffee right now?