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Monday, July 29, 2013

Driftwood Sailboats {Tutorial}

I am a huge fan of nature-inspired decor and crafts. Honestly, a pretty rock, shell or piece of wood softened by time and the elements is truly a work of art in my eyes. 

Recently, I've been seeing some projects online that involved turning a piece of driftwood into a rustic little sailboat. I fell in love with the idea, and knew I wanted to give it a try and this week I got my opportunity!
Last Sunday we were invited to the baptism of a young friend of ours at a local creek.  After the service the kids were playing in the water and I spotted lots of pretty pieces of wood on the banks of the creek and I knew these would be my sailboats. I'm pretty sure I was the only mom there walking around with sandy, wet chunks of wood hanging out of her purse, but what are ya gonna do?  : )

 This was a fun, easy and fairly quick project. Another young friend of mine, Miss Elisabeth Jones, helped me with some of the photos for this post and also some designing of the boats. Thanks, Beth! I always appreciate a helper with a good eye : )


We started by choosing three pieces that would be the hulls of our boats, and three driftwood branches to be our masts. 

 We matched up our drill bit size with the branch we would be using, and drilled a hole (with Silas steadying the wood) into each "hull". Don't worry, he held very tightly, and I drilled very slowly :)

 Now, I think if your boats are just going to be sitting on your mantel looking cute, regular hot glue would be fine to put these together. I know mine will likely be played with, so I used Gorilla Glue, hoping that the hold will be tougher. Here are our three boats with masts glued in place. Elisabeth chose the mast in the center that sort of looks like it has a knee. Pretty cute, huh? 
I grabbed a piece of canvas from an old ironing board cover for the sails.


 I layed each boat on it's side on the canvas and used a pencil to sketch the shape of each sail, then cut it out with scissors.

I decided for the three different boats I would try three different methods of putting together the sails just for a little variety. 


 For this first one, I cut two separate sails and punched holes in the canvas with a nail. 

I used some heavy cotton string to lace through the holes, and tie the sails to the mast. 

Here it is with the sails tied on.

For this one, I added a little flag to the top of the mast (hot glued)

For the second boat, I also cut a sail in two pieces. On this one, though, I simply added a few spots of hot glue to secure it to the mast and hull.

For the third one, I went even simpler than that. I cut a one-piece triangle of canvas for the sail. I ironed this piece with a little spray starch to help it hold it's shape, but I think it probably would have been okay without that step. I simply hot glued the fabric triangle right to the mast.

I wanted a slightly tattered look to all the sails, so I just dragged my fingernail down the edge of the fabric to slightly fray it.

That's all there is to it. Simple, nature-inspired and fun! We'll be in California in a couple of weeks, where I'll try to gather up a few pieces of "authentic" ocean driftwood : )

I plan to give one of these to our young friend who was baptized in the creek where these little pieces of wood also gained a new life. To the bottom I'll add her name and the date that she publicly chose to follow Christ in baptism in a cold creek on a hot summer day in Colorado, surrounded by her church family.

Thanks so much for hanging out with me today, friends!

I hope I've inspired you to maybe give a driftwood sailboat a try-what do you think? 

I'd love to hear what you all are working on over at your place this week!



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Saturday, July 27, 2013

MY Vintage Suitcase Find

In a couple of weeks the kids and I will be making a trip to southern California. If I had a dollar for every time I've heard, "When can we start packing??".... {smile}

We had some indecision about how we would get there, but utimately I felt driving would be the best option. Can you believe I haven't been "back home" in 3 years?! As we were debating about our mode of travel, my 6 year old declared in exasperation, "I don't care HOW we get to California, I just want to be with my grandma and grandpa!" And soon, we will be : )

Yesterday we headed to Glenwood Springs to pick up a few things we will need for our travels. My 16 year had some birthday money to spend, and wanted to see if she could find a small suitcase/bag for herself. One of our stops was to drop off some boxes of stuff at the thrift shop. Yes, I do occasionally manage to get some things into the thrifts shops instead of always coming out with something!

My daughter isn't a fan of this particular store and opted not to make the spin through as we made our donation. As I made my way to the back of the shop, I spotted a mountain of garment bags and suitcases in the corner. I thought I might as well take a look for my daughter. She may not like this particular shop too much, but she certainly likes to hang onto as much of her money as possible! Most of the bags were just yucky dirty old nylon, but at the very bottom of the pile I found this darling vintage suitcase.


Now, to be honest, when I spotted this I was not thinking of it for her! I was immediately envisioning what I was going to use it for! When the clerk said they wanted $5.00 for it, I knew it was coming with me. My daughter paid no attention as I came out of the shop and put it in the back of our van, and we continued on to Target and Walmart where she couldn't find a bag she liked enough to pay what they wanted : )

 I really like the pretty blue interior of my suitcase. Everything is in really good condition, but of course it needs to be cleaned up a bit.

 This is the first time in my life I've purchased a vintage suitcase that still had the original key with it. Very cool.

Whenever I find an old bag with a nameplate, my mind always wanders a bit to who this might have been, and how the bag got to where it is now. Anyone know Jessie Brockelsby from Manilla, Ohio? And how his or her suitcase ended up in a thrift shop in Glenwood Springs, Colorado?

 I know it's a little nutty, but I always think these old suitcases look like they're smiling! 

Oh, I almost forgot to tell you the funny part! Hours after we got home my daughter came out of her room and spotted my suitcase and exclaimed, "Where did this come from?! This is awesome! Can I use it for the trip?!" 
Oh, motherhood. Did I mention this is supposed to be MY suitcase? I'll let you know how that works out, okay? 

I hope you're having a great Saturday, friends!


***Update from reader Debby Owens***

" I couldn't resist looking up the original owner of your suitcase on! Jessie Brockelsby of Manilla, Iowa passed away in 1972 at the age of 92. She was one of eight children born to John A. And Mary E. Cook. She was married to Ed Brockelsby."

Of course this makes me think of lots of other questions! Thanks so much for taking the time to do that, Debby! 

Sharing over at:

Creative Bloggers Party at Homemaker on a Dime 
Knick of Time Tuesday 
Inspire Me Tuesday at A Stroll Thru Life
Share Your Cup Thursday at Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson 
Party Junk at Funky Junk  

Friday, July 26, 2013

Around Here...

This past week, I had one of those experiences. You know, the kind where one minute you're carrying around a chubby, curly haired baby and the next you're celebrating her 16th birthday! Yikes! 

We had a wonderful day with friends that included treats and coffee at Starbucks, playing in the Colorado River, taking in a movie and dinner at her favorite restaurant, finished off with homemade pecan pie. Why don't I have any photos of our fun day? Well, I don't have a camera! All the photos I take for this blog are with a camera that I borrow from her, and she had dibs on it that day : ) 
I'm hoping (and so is she!) that I can get a camera of my own very soon. Do any of you have any recommendations for a fairly inexpensive {under $300.00}camera? I'm not camera-savvy in the least, so I have lots to learn!

I just have a few images of things around here this week...



I'll leave you with this sweet little pitcher that came my way this week. I haven't decided yet if I'll keep it or put it in the shop. What do you think?

Thanks so much for coming over! I promise I'll be back soon with some projects.  What fun things are you working on this week/weekend?



Sharing this week over at:

Be Inspired at Common Ground 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Vintage Trunk Ideas on Hometalk

Recently, I painted my old steamer trunk, and turned it into a coffee table.

I still giggle every time I see my son's worried face : )

I had moved this trunk from room to room in two different homes...

{Original post here}

 ...and finally decided it needed to be cute and useful. 

Judging from the response I've gotten to this project, alot of you really like the idea of using vintage trunks and suitcases, too. 

When Hometalk asked me to curate a board of vintage trunk ideas, I was super excited to work on it! There are so many creative ideas for decorating with-and making things out of-vintage trunks. I think you'll love these projects as much as I do!

Source link below

How about a trunk turned settee?

Original source link below

I love the idea of using an old trunk as a comfy place to sit!

Original source link below

How about this genius use of an old trunk as a wall shelf? How do people think these things up....

I put together a board of 17 Vintage Trunk Ideas that I hope will inspire you to think about how you can use these old beauties in a new way! Come visit me over at Hometalk, and let me know what you think, ok?

I hope you're having a wonderful week, friends! See you soon-


Sharing this week at:

Tutorials Tips and Tidbits at StoneGable 
Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Creek Cottage
Party Junk at Funky Junk
Creative Bloggers Party at Homemaker on a Dime