Monday, November 30, 2009

A Month of Vintage Christmas

I went through a phase where I went to estate auctions. A lot. I even dated an auctioneer and enjoyed the perk of early access to the lots a little too much. I was fueling my passion for vintage Christmas ornaments at a time when I had disposable income. I love love love them. And I have a LOT of them. Way more than I can use each year. Now with two little ones, I am cautious about getting them out. But I love them still, and would like to share them with you all month.
I was away from home this weekend and haven't had a chance to put away all the Thanksgiving and fall decor, so I'm going to start with some pictures from my archives.

This large brandy snifter is from my wedding. We were married on December 28th, and decorated for Christmas. It held red and silver balls then, but I like the Shiny Brites much better!

More wedding leftovers- the lighted garland lined the aisle. The first year in our house, I hung it at the ceiling (where I am still waiting for crown moulding) and decorated it with vintage ornaments.

This brown has replaced the green walls in the other pictures. I removed the glass from an old window and stapled in chicken wire. It gives me a littl peace of mind that little hands won't be able to reach my pretties.

Visit Anything Goes Here to read more blogs feature vintage Christmas items.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thanksgiving/Fall Decor


Living in a small and cluttered house, I usually feel overwhelmed about holiday decorating and skip it. Unless last year's decorations are still sitting in a tub in the corner, and then it's easy to put them out again. Just kidding (kind of). When my oldest son was about four, he started asking me to decorate for holidays. I've made an effort to decorate for the holidays on our living room's massive built-in fireplace mantle. Here's a super-old picture from before pets and kids. I think that's the last time my house was clean!

I've decided that the least I can do is switch out what's in my frames for the holidays. For Halloween, I printed vintage postcards that looked great, but now that it's Thanksgiving and I haven't found time to sneak a nice color print or two at work. The other night I found myself with some free time and decided to dust off the sewing maching and embroider fall designs for the frames. I am quite pleased with the results, and ashamed that it was so easy.

This is actually a piece of scrapbook paper with a fake leaf glued to it. My son picked it up somewhere and carried it home for me.

Something's a little off in this vignette. I'll worry about it next year.

The smiling pumpkin is actually
stitched right onto scrapbook paper!

Mach Madness

One the way to school one day, five year old Owen asked me, "If you're still alive when I'm a grown up..." and I wondered if he wanted me to live with him, maybe take care of his children, but he finished with "will you bring me sandwiches when I work on my race car?" He thinks his life will play like the Speed Racer movie.

So it came as no surprise when Owen wanted to be his favorite racecar driver for Halloween. I ordered his costume from months ago. And then I stopped thinking about it. As Halloween approached, I began to rack my brain for a good complementary costume for younger brother, Corbin. I worried that other characters from the series would be too obscure for most to recognize, and decided to just dress them both as Speed. And then I stopped thinking about it.

With Halloween just a week or two away, I decided to paint an old yard sale Little Tikes car like the Mach 5. I used Krylon Fusion spray paint, and was a bit disappointed at how many coats it took and how easily it dinged. In Krylon's defense, many of the dings occured before the seven day curing period.

Here's the car before (photo courtesy of Craigslist- I forgot, as usual, to take a picture of our car).

And here it is debuting as the Mach 5.

From Ready for the After

I bought white shirts at Old Navy for each boy and appliqued the Speed Racer M on the front. I use the term applique loosely, because although I've done it the "right" way, zig zagging around the edges, and I have the fancy schmancy machine that will do it for you, I still prefer to iron on and just straight stitch around the edges. I only use Heat-n-Bond ultra, and never have a problem. Sometimes I will iron on, wear, wash, wear, etc. and then finally stitch down weeks later (sometimes longer). Fraying is minimal, but I do like the finished look of the straight stitch. I also made them little red ascot scarfs, which made my heart melt.

Now can someone please tell me how it is that I can make two Speed Race shirts and ascots, paint a junky plastic car to look like the famous Mach 5 race car, but I can't, for the life of me, make my firstborn smile on command?