Those shady Southerlands.

Talk about an ironic title. These Southerlands I speak of are two of the most generous and loving people I know. Did I mention, patient? Well they have waited over a year for their custom lampshades, and not a peep out them until they arrived. Good people with an enviable collection of beautiful Mid Century items so I must do a good job.
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It all started in the summer on our annual Wilmington, NC visit, I got sidetracked by their new lamps they inherited from family and promptly set about re-wiring them,  after that the shades simply would not do, with the light shining through the stains showed up.

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I tried to clean them, doing my darndest to keep the shape.

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I could not save them.  We put them back on and they waited. The next summer I stole the shades leaving the pretty lamps naked.  I did some research and aimed to acquire yet another skill.  They came for a visit and I ended up wanting to spend time with them instead in my zone. They left shadeless and I had another bump in my education. I could not get the old lamp frame rings back to round no matter what I tried.  I decided to order new ones. They don’t make them the like they used to so I had to factor that in to the new shade and do some very dubious math. Then I decided to change the fabric, and the tape, and finally got down to business.

Materials needed.  (I purchased all of my materials from http://www.lampshop.com)

-2 lamp wire frames, one with bulb or harp holder, and one without. size depends on your shade. I used 12 inch in diameter. (tip- for your first go at this use two of the same size. It becomes much harder when top is smaller than the bottom)

-stryene shade liner (sold by the yard)

-white paper tape.

-fabric

-clips (I use clothespins)

-masking tape

-Xacto knife

-glue

-small paintbrush

-rag for excess glue.

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– tape the very springy lamp liner to work surface and trace the old lamp shade on it.

-cut using an Xacto knife (material rips easily so scissors can be disastrous)

– Tape fabric face down on clean work surface.

-lint roll to remove inevitable dog hair, so it is not permanently trapped between layers.

-lay shade liner over fabric and trace if you wish so the design or weave is straight, or wing it like me.

-slowly peel back protective layer on the stryene while firmly pressing on the fabric.

-once it is fully stuck, cut remaining fabric leaving 3/4 inch of fabric all the way around.

-pin the shade all the way around folding extra over the ring. do top and bottom.

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-fold edges of fabric over and glue the seam, add a little weight on top to make it flat. (you might like me think this is a stupid step, but trust me it is important.)

-sit back and think you are really cool while this dries because it gets a bit messy from here on out.

-when seam is dry stand shade up on one end and get busy gluing, make sure you can complete each end without interruptions #The Associate

-damn lost the image, sorry.

-try to follow me.  apply glue to the paper tape with brush and fold over wire and fabric to connect everything together.  make sure your tape line on the outside of the shade is straight in case you don’t apply trim.  do a couple of inches at a time and wipe up excess quickly. let dry.

– don’t give up!

-once you have done both ends, pat yourself on the back and decide if need to cover up any mistakes with trim 🙂

-wait another month until a gigantic box comes into your life so you can send shades to your longsuffering friends.

 

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YAYYYYYYYYYY

 

 

micro studio makeover.

My kids aren’t babies anymore, I am almost 42 years old and I am finally at peace with my brain funktion (no spell check that is spelled correctly)  It is time to work this out, and the first place is my studio, the smallest room in the house, and now it will be mine! (maniacal laugh)

It is really difficult to redecorate a room when there is a bunch of stuff that has nowhere else to go in it while you are redoing it.  I deftly moved everything into the middle and patched a million holes, primed and did some seriously acrobatic painting while simultaneously painting all of the furniture the same color in the same room.

It is also really difficult to organize a tiny room around a brain that funktions in spurts and sputters, highs and lows, and is always in creative problem solving mode.  Needless to say I have focus issues so I tried to create organized areas for specific purpose.

Here is the before.

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chaotic and haphazard and now that I think about it, hazardous to my safety and to my mental stability.

I moved my desk and arranged my magnetic trays above so that I could organize my thoughts in a visual way.  Each tray will represent a project I am working out in my head or a page of my website.  Please excuse The Associate she was enjoying her last moments of being allowed in my room.

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To the right of my desk on my beautifully refreshed garbage picked bookcase I have all of my businessy housey stuff. I put them as far away as I could from the fun areas because nothing can kill a creative buzz like PTA newsletters and bills.

One of the thought morsels banging around my head all the time is how to re-purpose stuff that nobody wants.  Like these oven trays from the GW that I spent a whole dollar on. I soaked, scrubbed and then hung them on the wall to keep my jewelry sorted by what needs to be photographed, and what is up for sale.

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wow these pictures are bad, sorry.

The next area I needed to resolve is my collage wall/ scrap booking table.  I no longer wanted to pierce the images that I was working with and splurged on three 2′ by 2′ metals sheets,  once again destroying my meticulous patch job with holes big enough for metal toggle bolts. I organized all of my scrap booking supplies and subsequent paper in the file cabinet and boxes below so they are easy to access.

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As far as the large work table is concerned I oriented it differently so I could work on three sides and still easily reach all of the supplies on the shelves above.  I kept all containers the same so my eyes do not jump all over the room when I enter which will likely make me turn right around and leave.

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I made new curtains with fabric that makes me happy to replace the ugly ones that were there 12 years ago when we moved in, and hung my currently favorite works on the wall to inspire me.

The cuporama I made a while back is still doing a good job of  keeping small things I use often in sight, providing a good place for seed pod storage and jewelry in progress can be dumped in a cup if I need to clear off my work space.

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I streamlined all of my sewing supplies, giving up a lot of items I won’t ever use and made them readily accessible on this caddy.

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I am VERY excited to get started using this space, so excited that the tables are already covered with projects and I am about to make a sign that forbids any mess makers entry.  (The Associate and The Teenager)

I would love to hear what you think.

 

 

belt banger.

In an effort to remain hip to the The Teenagers lingo I listen carefully, although stating it like that makes me decidedly unhip. Many of the phrases, music, and movies are coming back around and I hear my own mother’s voice echo in my head.  “I used to have that same dress” says the voice, or “I used to listen to that music”  shake head vigorously. I listen closely because I want to pick up the secret teenage code and be aware without embarrassing The Teenager.  For instance if a young girl within earshot says “I had surgery and those pills they gave me were awesome.” Her name automatically gets added to a list in my head, and that list is called “I have my eye on you little girl.”

A word that the kids are using these days is “banger” I know!!!!! right!!!! It is a word that can summon a number of images to ones head, especially a mother of a beautiful teenaged daughter. Fortunately, The Teenager thinks this is a ridiculous word for party and promises she will never attend a “banger.”

I have been encouraging The Teenager to have friends over so I can quietly get to know these walking masses of hormones.  She had a few friends over yesterday and I set about working on a chair.

This just happened in real-time as I write this.

The Associate- Can you glue his hair back on?

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Me- Maybe grampa went bald. Maybe it is a toupee.

The Associate- Maybe, can I have an Ice cream cone?

Me- You need to have a sandwich first.

The Associate- Ok.

Then I went down to grab some more coffee and she was just finishing up an ice cream sandwich. sigh.

Back to the chair. I was sitting at the kitchen table because there was “a nice breeze” (bringing their voices in the window)  I learned quite a bit in that time.  First of all and most importantly they actually wanted The Associate to hang with them.  WOW. I think I could like these kids. A few wandered through on the way the bathroom and I cataloged the ones who or whom (*sorry Mickey and Nicky) said hello and or thank you. I am pleased to say not a single name made it on the list today, and the chatter was nice background to actually finish my chair.

So…. this chair came to me one day on a walk through the neighborhood.  I brought her home and I cleaned and shined her up.

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Some glue and a chair clamp settled her back together.

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A whole bunch of belts, a hammer and some upholstery nails, and I had myself a banger.

 

*I apologize to Mickey and Nicky for my grammatical incompetence.  I am sure you both wince when you read my blog, but I will never be as eloquent as either of you so I am gonna call it poetic license. xo

 

 

 

 

wicker wonder.

These were actually made.

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Sometime in the seventies some genius made a mold and made these plastic atrocities. I thought it must be Kismet that I found six of them in the same day while combing the thrift stores for treasure.  I like a challenge after all.  While waiting for the weather to break so I could go outside at all let alone spray paint something, I tried to decide on color and filler.  Normally I would just go with whatever color I have on hand, but these needed to be red.  We had some 60 degree weather the other day and I stumbled out blinded by the sun to get started.

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Sooo much better. I wanted to make them mirrors, but I was pretty sure I would never find them to fit. I spent a grand total of 8 bux already so custom mirrors were out of the question. Then I found these. (sorry for blurry pic)

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It is plastic mirror that can be cut to any shape you can imagine!

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Using the old insert as a template I cut the mirror. I used tin snips so as not to dull any of my scissors that I am already batting out The Associates hands while screaming “FABRIC”  or “PAPER.”  Scissors are expensive. I then oh so carefully removed the plastic protective coating and worked the mirror back under the little snaps. Not perfect, but they are too small to really use as mirrors, just to reflect light.  I connected them together using thin wire so I only had to make a few holes in the wall, because knowing me it will be somewhere else soon.

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digging for gold.

Ever since I moved back to Cleveland I have been going to estate sales.  These usually occur on Friday mornings and they are serious business. There is one woman who shows up at the house at 5 in morning to get a number at 9:30 to be let in the house at 10. That is just plain crazy. I do have to avert my eyes as she leaves because she has bought all the stuff I would have bought. Actually it’s kind of hard not to hate her. I wish I was a morning person.

Before The Teenager was a teenager I would always bring her along. The nice ladies running the sale would always gush over her and give her stuff, but once she was in preschool I was solo again. Without my baby buffer and instant conversation starter I began bringing a book.  I found it difficult to make small talk about what would be in there. I just like to dig through people’s junk, and luckily I can usually find stuff that nobody else wants and make it into something cool, oorrrrr store it for ten years.

The Teenager managed not go to school this Friday so I dragged her along with promises of donuts, and a T.J. Max trip.  We arrived very late, around 12, and there were still people waiting!

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The Teenager- donuts…..?

Me- just hold on. It won’t take long.

The Teenager- Mom? I pretty sure there isn’t much left in that tiny house.

Me- that’s a bad attitude.

The Teenager- That woman just left with a dead person’s colander. I’m pretty sure only the dreggs are left.

Me- maybe she was specifically looking for a colander to add to her collection.

TT-  If she is desperate to strain something why doesn’t she just go to target and buy a clean one. I wouldn’t ever be able to stop thinking about what that dead woman “strained”  in there.

Me- thanks for image. Come on let’s go.

As we wait another 20 minutes in the biting cold, The Teenager continues to make me laugh.

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TT- If this was my house I would totally put pictures of my face in those Flan looking holes.

Me- pose for me.

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this is the first time I was allowed to put her image on my blog. (as if it isn’t already plastered across every other social media site.)

TT- I feel bad for that shovel.

Me- why?

TT- it has got to be the most useless shovel in the world, sad.

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Me- snort.

We finally get in, and nice ladies freak out! That can’t be Ruby!!! hugs.. well wishes…. I remembers….. so nice. I wish I took pictures.

We left about 30 minutes later with a pile a random stuff for 5 bux, off to get some donuts.

mess managed.

My wood shop/garage is 10 degrees. I can’t cut, sand, or paint. So, as I sit on my couch lazy as can be I decide I can organize.  I am sure many are guilty of this, but I am especially because the bookshelf that holds all DVDS and games is at least 10 feet away from the TV.

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Oops. just detected an overdue copy of The Little Mermaid.

On a recent thriftaganza I unearthed this gem with the 1986 version of THE Print Shop intact.

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The Associate has reached the age that she can play on my computer. (deep sigh)  When I left the room for 5 seconds the other day she managed to print out thirty of these.

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A 2 by 3 image on a full sheet of paper. I  explained to her that this is wasteful and banned her from future printer use.  However, these once coveted sheets have been in my studio for over three weeks, and that makes them scrap.  I cut them down to squares and put them in my new organizer in hopes that they might go between the disks to prevent further damage.

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handy-dandy labeler.

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now if the discs can just make it 10 inches into here we are all good.

 

 

100th post!

I was so excited to write my 100th post that I couldn’t wait for a crafty project. I decided instead to focus on the real star of my blog “THE ASSOCIATE.”  I’m sure I was doing something difficult while she was lounging around with the “Lokness Monster”

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Me- Whatcha doing?

THE ASSOCIATE-  lounging.

Me- Do you want to come and help me make some lunch?

THE ASSOCIATE-  Ken’s got it.

Me- oooookkkkkkay

Me- I enter the kitchen to find this.

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Me- honey? Ken looks like he might need some help.

THE ASSOCIATE-  He’s been up all night with the baby.

Me- Well, lets just tidy him up a bit so he can get to fixing lunch.

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under the clutter and to the wood clock.

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On a recent thriftazganza I unearthed a clock from underneath a child’s toilet seat. Yes I still picked it up.  I don’t let the threat of infectious diseases stop me.  After I removed the clock works I thoroughly disinfected the glorious 70’s ish masterpiece.  Fortunately for me the maker of this clock really liked to poly urethane the heck out of things, so the surface was non-porous by like four layers. Once the specimen of great design was dry. I tested to make sure the works worked. They DID! yea.  I then pulled out my treasure trove of clock hands and selected a new pair.

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I couldn’t figure out what to use for the numbers. I went through several options before settling on some buttons.  These are the kind that have a hole in the back instead in the center, so snipped the hole down with wire cutters to make them sit flush.  A little Elmer’s glue and now it is rescued.

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what to do? what to do?

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After a purging of my associate’s so-called bedroom (It has a scent more like an animal den).  I absconded with these goodies (I feel a maniacal laugh coming on).  What to do with decapitated plastic misrepresentations of humans?

During my first attempt at raising a girl I was completely anti the bleach blonde bauble, oh and those Bratz dolls.  When she asked for a barbie house I bought her a Kaleidoscope house from MOMA, she still hasn’t forgiven me.  Her big blue eyes would dart my way whenever she shed the wrapping to reveal a barbie or bratz doll.  I mean they went the whole other way with those ridiculous Bratz dolls.  Knowing she had to return it she would graciously thank the child who gave it to her without turning me in as worst mom of the year.  I would always let her pick out a little something extra while fervently trying to not continue my tirade.

Then came the second child, she was loaned a vintage barbie ski house, which was just awesome. It came with a variety of 80’s dolls and clothes.  I imagine that somehow because their clothes were so big and their abode so awesome I could turn the other cheek.  After slicing open my foot on one too many “shoes” and struggling to help her dress their waxy bodies we sent it back to its former home.

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And she got the Kaleidoscope house that is even more awesome, the picture doesn’t do it justice.

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disclaimer No actual barbies were hurt for this blog, their heads were already ripped off and just wouldn’t stay on.

sad lamp, now happy

I found this lamp in pieces on a tree lawn and I thought it deserved another chance.

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I took it apart and cleaned it thoroughly then checked the wiring which was remarkably intact.

I then gave the metal pieces a light sand to take down the glossy finish so paint would be able to stick to it.

choosing the colors on hand in my paint arsenal, two Krylon and one Rustoleum.

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Luckily I had the the colors that match the new pillows I made for the porch (update pictures to come later)

and put it back together, now it is happy again.

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