Category Archives: Art

Planning a Gallery Wall

I have a new wall to decorate. It’s in the newly created hallway between the mudroom and the kitchen.

I have space for a gallery wall in the hallway created by the pantry.

I have space for a gallery wall in the hallway created by the pantry (viewed from the kitchen).

It can be a personal statement so I am out to find some gallery wall inspiration.

The wall on the left would make a nice personal gallery wall.

The wall on the left (viewed from the mudroom side) would make a nice personal gallery wall.

The gallery wall in a Pottery Barn catalog shows some key elements in creating an interesting display: a clock, a license plate, photos of foreign counties.

I have photos of Paris, etchings of Pisa, a special license plate, a clock, etc. I'll leave out the TV.

I have photos of Paris, etchings of Pisa, a special license plate, a clock, etc. I’ll leave out the TV.

I am also drawn to this wall based on my favorite color: true blue from VT Interiors.

Love the round mirror, sea fan and color scheme.

Love the round mirror, sea fan and color scheme.

I have a few items that I know I’ll want to use.

I spray painted this seafan in anticipation of a special project.

I spray painted this seafan in anticipation of a special project.

I took this photo in Paris.

I took this photo in Paris.

I even have a license plate.

I even have a license plate.

I have some work to do before the wall can be a display  but I can dream.

What’re you dreaming about?

I’m Gonna Have a Covered Porch

I love the way other bloggers decorate their porches.

Our new main entrance will be a covered porch on the driveway façade of the house.

Our new main entrance will be a covered porch on the driveway façade of the house.

Soon I’ll have a porch (actually 2 of them) to decorate so I decided to shop the house for items to decorate our new porch(es).

We could use this bench for an easy place to sit.

We could use this bench for an easy place to sit.

I think there should be a place to sit maybe with pillows or cushions since the area will be under cover.

Maybe a couple of  French park chairs would be convenient.

A couple of French park chairs would be convenient.

And for sure there’ll be plants, planters, pots.

Found this on the free table at church.

Found this on the free table at church.

A rustic planter made from salvaged wood.  FREE!

A rustic planter made from salvaged wood. FREE!

Perhaps a sign or two of welcome or whimsy.

I've won 2 of these signs: one for the front and one for the side doors.

I’ve won 2 of these signs: one for the front and one for the side doors.

I’d like a little table or platform to have someplace to set down a drink.

A tray on a carved pedestal could double as a small table.

A tray on a carved pedestal could double as a small table.

This tiny tile table will fit just about any place.

This tiny tile table will fit just about any place.

Oh, oh, and a mirror.

A plain old mirror hangs on the front of the shed. Maybe I can find another one for the side porch.

A plain old mirror hangs on the front of the shed. Maybe I can find another one for the side porch.

The main thing is to guard against our natural bent toward CLUTTER!

 

Does this mock-up make it easier or more difficult to picture?

Does this mock-up make it easier or more difficult to picture?

 

What do you dream about?

Move the Bed

For ages and ages our back bedroom (which we call the Treetops Room since that’s what you can see out the window when you wake up in the morning) has been set up the same way.

The Treetops Room viewed from the doorway.

The Treetops Room viewed from the doorway.

Then we inherited a headboard which I have been storing in the room for 3 years.

The iron headboard is leaning against the far window with a robe thrown over it to keep it from scratching the paint.

The iron headboard is leaning against the far window with a robe thrown over it to keep it from scratching the paint.

We hadn’t attached it because it would slam into the large painting on the wall if it were connected to the bed.

If we connected the headboard it would bang against the frame of this Kolean seascape.

If we connected the headboard it would bang against the frame of this Kolean seascape which is already hung about as high as possible.

Since our aim is to get things put away and consolidated before the renovation begins in earnest I asked Charlie to put this iron scroll headboard on the bed.

An arabesque iron headboard.

An arabesque iron headboard.

So it wouldn’t smash into the painting (which we’ll probably move after the reno if we can find a wall large enough to hang it on) we turned the bed sideways into a little alcove.

The bed just fits in this little nook.

The bed just fits in this little nook.

It’s not pretty but it is functional.

Do you live with unfinished projects waiting for just the right time? Are you as patient as I am? HA!

Sweetgrass Baskets! $$$$

Before I went to Charleston (South Carolina) I had never heard of a sweetgrass basket. Our accommodations were in the Sweetgrass Room and I just thought it was a type of native grass.

Sweetgrass baskets come is a variety of sizes from tiny to waaaay big.

Sweetgrass baskets come is a variety of sizes from tiny to waaaay big.

It is a native grass. Charleston Sweetgrass is tall, thin, and has a distinctively sweet smell. Sweetgrass grows in bands about 50 to 75 m from the mean high tide line in undulating sand dunes usually behind the first dune along the ocean from North Carolina to Texas. Sweetgrass grows on many of the barrier islands along South Carolina’s coast, such as, Kiawah, Seabrook, Dewees, Bulls, Fripp, and Hilton Head.

Sweetgrass grows freely from North Carolina to Texas.

Sweetgrass grows freely from North Carolina to Texas.

The baskets were originally crafted for the practical purpose of collecting rice and cotton in plantation fields.  Now they’re used mostly for decoration.

The handwoven baskets are usually signed by the weaver.

The handwoven baskets are usually signed by the weaver.

At the historical market in Charleston there were many vendors and makers of sweetgrass baskets.  Some of the most attractive ones combine other grasses to vary the design.

Many vendors of sweetgrass baskets populate Charleston's City Market.

Many vendors of sweetgrass baskets populate Charleston’s City Market.

I was ready to buy one until I turned a beauty over and looked at the price: $395. More than I want to spend on a basket although they’re lovely and collectible.

Flowers from palm fronds.

Flowers from palm fronds.

Photo Link

My darling bought me a palm leaf flower instead that a young man was making while he stood on the street.  We’re always glad to support the local economy.

Does you area of the world have specialty crafts indigenous to it?

Saturday City Outing

Charlie and I went on a little outing on Saturday afternoon into Baltimore City to visit one of the City’s historic landmarks: The Bromo Seltzer Tower (now called the Bromo Seltzer Arts Tower).

The Bromo Seltzer Tower is modeled after the bell tower of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy.

The Bromo Seltzer Tower is modeled after the bell tower of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy.

We had never been to the Tower although it’s impossible to miss it on a drive into the city of Baltimore.

A view from the base of the tower.

A view from the base of the tower.

They hold an open house on Saturdays from May to October (check website for more information).

BromoSeltzerTower

Upon arrival we were greeted in the tiny lobby and  gallery by a vivacious woman who told us we could sign up for the “clock tour,” go to the 11 floor (of 15) for poetry readings, take in a youth production on the 15th floor, and drop into the various art studios.

The building is over 100 years old and uses the original elevator floor indicators.

The building is over 100 years old and uses the original elevator floor indicators. Note there is a mezzanine but no 13th.

We signed up for the tour and waited for the elevator to take us to the 15th. Upon arrival at the 15th we walked down a few floors to see the artist’s studios and works.

A view from the 15th floor looking down the stairs.

A view from the 15th floor looking down the stairs.

The walls were used as galleries for the various artists studioed here.

Varied media, sizes, and styles are available.

Varied media, sizes, and styles are available.

One of the studios was also a gallery of the watercolorist Martha Dougherty.

The watercolor studio of Martha Dougherty.

The watercolor studio of Martha Dougherty.

I enjoyed her large-scale floral and  architectural renderings.

The prints can be hung in any direction.

These prints can be hung in any direction.

We had an interesting visit that was not finished until we took the Clock Tour which I’ll detail in a separate post.  Charlie and I walked down the 15 flights of steps just to make sure we didn’t miss any of the displays.

Do you have a list of free or inexpensive happenings in your hometown?

Saturday Plans

I made myself a list of projects and plans to work on at the beginning of the month and frankly have made very little progress.  Today I’m kicking myself in the pants to stay on task and get something done. (Oh, I’ve been doing things but they weren’t on the list to begin with.)

#8  I’m singling out painting dining room chairs since Charlie finished sanding them (which is the part I really hate to do).

These oak chairs have been sanded and wiped down with mineral spirits.

These oak chairs have been sanded and wiped down with mineral spirits.

# 9.  Work on my personal wardrobe – try on, make a list, weed out.  This item is at least started.

#10. Buy motor oil, grey spray primer, clear resin, navy spray paint and √ gym shoes.  I totally knocked out this item which consisted of a variety of purchases.

New gym shoes

New gym shoes

So, numbers 1 through 7 on the original list are still in the planning stage while 8, 9 and 10 have a real shot at completion.

We have also planned a local outing for today on which I’ll report.

BromoSeltzerTower

Have you ever finished a to-do list? How?

Some Old Windows

We have some old windows that I bought for a few bucks at a yard sale. Charlie uses them to cover the early plantings in the potager.

An old window helps warm the soil and protects the seeds.

An old window helps warm the soil and protects the seeds.

But we also found among our stuff (and we don’t know where it came from) a basement style window.

This old window has frosted up overnight but the panes of glass are actually clear.

This old window has frosted up overnight but the panes of glass are actually clear.

I’ve been wanting to try Catherine’s (at Freddy and Petunia) technique of adding a little music and faux mirroring to a window. Check it out here on Pinterest.

I bought my mirror spray paint. (Looking Glass Mirror-Like Paint by Krylon)

The Looking Glass spray paint by Krylon gives a mirror finish.  Spray adhesive heolds paper to glass.

The Looking Glass spray paint by Krylon gives a mirror finish. Spray adhesive holds paper to glass.

I chose my favorite hymn (Great is Thy Faithfulness), photo-copied it on old vellum, and tore it to bits.

Sepia-tones copies of "Great is Thy Faithfulness".

Sepia-tones copies of “Great is Thy Faithfulness”.

Then I glued it to the back of the glass with spray adhesive.

The paper is glued to the back of the window with the writing showing through to the right side.

The paper is glued to the back of the window with the writing showing through to the right side.

Masking the deliciously worn painted wood with tape and paper I sprayed the mirror paint onto the back of the windows. (Five light coats.)

Spray the Looking Glass paint onto the back side of the window.

Spray the Looking Glass paint onto the back side of the window.

After letting the mirror finish dry for at least 24 hours I painted the back with outdoor paint to protect the mirroring. The back paint lifted some of the music so it was necessary to reglue the corners.

The window blends well outside.

The window blends well outside.

I’m going to find a place outside to hang this one-of-a-kind meaningful piece of vintage up-cycle.

A chippy detail.

A chippy detail.

Do you like it?

Great is Thy Faithfulness

Great is Thy Faithfulness

I’m tickled with it.

What music would you have chosen?

But Can It Be Called “Art”?

I changed out the desk lamp in the Diva bedroom and now it sits right in front of the clock I made with our souvenir map from France.

The right side looks kind of empty.

The right side looks kind of empty.

I think the clock needs to hang higher so it balances the art work on the other side of the window.

Map clock

Map clock

Since this IS the Diva Room and  is sort of dedicated to the arts I thought my pink toe shoes might look good hanging on the wall.

Well-used pink satin toes shoes

Well-used pink satin toes shoes

I found this unique little hook to hang the ballet shoes on.

The screw holds the the fan on the wall.

The screw holds the brass fan on the wall.

I moved the clock up and put a hook for the ballet shoe ribbons to be tied to.

The wall near the computer now has toe shoes under the clock.  Time to dance?

The wall near the computer now has toe shoes under the clock. Time to dance?

I’ll show the before photo again.

Before adding the ballet shoes to the right-hand wall.

Before adding the ballet shoes to the right-hand wall.

That’s a little more balanced.

Compare this picture to the one above.

Compare this picture to the one above.

Can you call it art?

Next, something for the bare wall on the left.

Next, something for the bare wall on the left.

Seriously.

Do you hang personal belongings on your walls? Do you call it “art”?

Spring Cookie Cutters

I’m not a cookie baker; it’s too labor intense for me but I have some neat cookie cutters.

These cookie cutters are about 9 inches tall.

These cookie cutters are about 9 inches tall.

Happily they’re bold enough to double as kitchen wall decoration.

Thes cutters are made of copper.

These cutters are made of copper.

One is a bunny.

Bunny cutter

Bunny cutter

The other is a doggie on his hind legs.

This little dog seems to be wagging his tail.

This little dog seems to be wagging his tail.

If any of my cookie making friends want to borrow these cutters just let me know.  They’re so large a batch of cookies will probably only yield a half dozen.

What’s in your oven?

Blown Glass Gallery

The other evening while Charlie and I were having a “date night” at McFadden Art Glass Studio we wandered into the gallery and shop.

Vases of various shapes, sizes and colors. The blue one is about 15 inches tall.

Vases of various shapes, sizes and colors. The blue one is about 15 inches tall.

Greeted by the owner’s mother she told us her son’s story of how it all started which you can read about on Tim’s website.

The shop is small so lots of objects are jammed together on shelves.

The shop is small so lots of objects are jammed together on shelves.

There were items large and small in the gallery.

A wavy bowl full of cool blue ornaments.

A wavy bowl full of cool blue ornaments. (Detail from shelves above.)

Something to attract everyone.

A large (about 18 inches in diameter) crushed glass bowl.

A large (about 18 inches in diameter) crushed glass bowl.

I really liked this glass-topped coffee table.

 

The base of this table is blown glass balls.

The base of this table is blown glass balls. (The table is about 3 feet long).

Charlie liked this twisted plate.

Yellow and blue swirled plate has about an 18 inch diameter.

Yellow and blue swirled plate has about an 18 inch diameter.

McFadden can be commissioned for pieces like chandeliers and pendant lamps.

Blue and yellow blown glass chandelier originally made as a wedding decoration.

Blue and yellow blown glass chandelier originally made as a wedding decoration.

Wouldn’t that be a fun project to collaborate on?

Have you collaborated on any artsy projects recently?