Sunday, August 31, 2008

My Crazy Fantastic Find!

Today at The St. Lawrence Sunday Antique Market, I found a typographers dream treasure box! Being a former graphic designer & general type enthusiast, this was too good to pass up. Not only letters in all their 1940's glory, also flourishes, ampersand, dollar & cents... I have not examined it all yet. It also came with 2 type pads & 2 bottles of ink, unopened, in mint condition. I will contain myself from further gloating and not reveal the price. It was a bargain is all I need to say.
So what will I do with this? Ideas are swirling through my mind. I'm sure I can incorporate this in my card making, an obvious application. Maybe even custom cards with monograms? I could apply this to fabric perhaps... The numbers I could make great price tags with for my upcoming crafts show. Please leave any ideas you want to share on the comments page!

Craft Show Preparations...

This looks much better in person. It was tricky to photograph this sign I made but you will get the idea... My thought was, in the instant you have to get someone's attention, let them know what you are selling. My work is on the small side so at a distance it is hard to read what it is. By making this approximately 3' x 2' sign and placing it just outside my tent I hope to attract people to come into the tent and have a look. In the center I added a short bit of text describing the essence of the jewelry and what products I am currently selling. When I set up at the show I will take more photos of it in place and of course report if my idea worked!

Monday, August 25, 2008

New Vintage Textile Cuff

I have been busy sewing, getting ready for the up-coming Cabbagetown Arts & Crafts Show. It is held each year in Toronto, Ontario, the weekend after Labour Day. It runs on Friday, Saturday and Sunday in a beautiful park setting. Approximately 160 exhibitors are selling their work in this juried sale. All we need is good weather to ensure thousands of visitors. This year I will expand my line of goods to include greeting cards, wrist cuffs & chokers. The work has been evolving lately; designs are more free-form and by hand dying some of the lace fragments the color has shifted to a more nuanced palette. This cuff is one of many new pieces I will have for sale. I will be adding more posts leading up to the September 5th. event, documenting the ups and downs of preparing, setting up, selling and recovering from a weekend in the 'craft show world'.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

St.Lawrence Antiques Market/Toronto

I am taking you to the most lovely shop today. If you adore vintage, especially textiles, you will enjoy this tour. This tiny but crammed full of treasures shop is nestled in the corner of the St. Lawrence Antiques Market in Toronto, Canada.The market itself only runs on Sundays however this shop, Ephemera Too, is open on Saturdays also, from 8-2p.m.
Barbara Griffin is the owner of this emporium and is passionate about all things vintage. She specializes in fabrics but has plenty of other treasures that have caught her eye. Mounds of chenille bedspreads, quilts and blankets are stacked neatly on lovely worn wooden shelves.
Crisp cottons are laundered and ironed waiting for a sewing project to inspire. Barkcloth drapes and cushions adorn a corner light by 1940's lamps. Vintage clothing, purses, shawls; any type of accessories you can imagine are to be uncovered here. As you can see from the sampling of what this shop has to offer in these photos, it is certainly worth a look if you live in, or are ever visiting Toronto!

More Images from Ephemera Too

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Before & After/ Found Chairs

I was walking in my neighborhood one day and saw these chairs (there are 2 of them that are identical) standing on the curb, as garbage. Upon closer inspection I could see that structurally they were in perfect condition and extremely comfortable. The curve of the back gave fabulous support and molded nicely to the body. They just needed some TCL, a facelift...
The first job was to strip the awful shellac from the wood. A bit of a task as it turned out! From there I applied a rich deep brown stain and rubbed in a wax finish. I knew an excellent upholsterer from my film industry contacts. He's from 'the old world' and knows his craft! Having chosen a neutral wheat colored twill fabric I kept the cost of materials down and my guy gave me a great deal. Thank goodness I spotted them on the curb that day; they could have been tragically wasted and adding to landfill...

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Champleve Buttons

Here are a 'mother/daughter' pair of vintage champleve buttons. They are two of my favorites in my expanding vintage button collection! (For a close-up view just click on the photo).
I have used a few in pieces that have sold and am, for now, hanging on to these...
In French, champleve means 'raised plane'. This refers to the enameling technique in use for these buttons and other decorative objects. By hollowing out areas of metal, leaving a trough, vitreous enamel is added and then fired until it melts. After cooling, the object is highly polished. These buttons also have a faceted cut steels design which catch the light and give a lovely depth to their appearance. Although the larger button has some wear it does not, in my view, detract from it's beauty. The history, the wear they have earned in their useful life is to be embraced!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Lovely Vintage Textile

I wanted to share this lovely piece of embroidery I bought at an antique market last weekend. It is actually a little pouch that was used by ladies to hold their handkerchief. I just love the softness of the colors and the placement of the design.
I have it hanging by my work table. When I look up it feels a bit like looking through a window at wildflowers blowing in the breeze...

Sunday, August 3, 2008

My New Studio Space

I've had a hectic week, thus no posting for a while! With one of my daughters moving out a spare room was created. I was sorry to see her go however it meant I could move my 'studio' from the dining room up to it's own contained space. Three coats of white paint later I have a fresh blank canvas of a room to create in! I am still getting used to having a well set up space; so organized with 3 set-ups; one for sewing, one for card making and one for the computer. I still need to adorn the walls with some favorite artwork although I don't want to add too much at this point. The calmness is refreshing and I can focus on the color in the work I am doing.