Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Vintage Bedspread That Wasn't.

Oh so close.
I spotted it at a thrift store.
All the tell tale signs of a vintage chenille bedspread. 
Heavy cotton. Perfect blue. Simple design. 
A miraculous $5.99.  
A shopper equally as awestruck as I helped me inspect it for holes. None. 
It passed the test. Sold.
As pulled it out of the washing machine I spied a non-vintage clue. 
The white chenille seemed a bit too pilly for a spread that would be old.

If it were truly vintage
The white criss crossy chenille would have surely lost it's cottony fluff by now.
There was just too much fluffy pill stuck to it as I pulled it from the washer.
Once dry, I inspected the back stitching further. It looked good, old.
I went around the edges looking for a tag.
And there it was.
A brand spankin' new 'made in India' tag.  Curses!

Perhaps it's a Laura Ashwell?
I'm not sure. Does anyone know what the brand it may be?

Oh well. No matter.
It still looks fab and the colors are good. 
For six bucks, I'm not complaining. 
(Well, maybe a little.)

xo jeanne.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Lucky Me. Chenille Stockings after all.

The elusive white Christmas stockings.
The goal: finding them vintagey white and fabulously on sale.  
(picky and on-the-cheap sometimes don't always mix. damn.)

This year, I painted the new 'have yourself a merry christmas tar paper project' 
and hung it above my mantel.   With defeat, I also hung the old country stockings.  
Resigned to resume the search for perfectly fabulous and perfectly on sale white stockings.

However, I have some very detailed friends. Very darling detailed friends. 
The kind that spot things before you point them out. 
They offer their help before you even ask. 
Along came a dear friend who took pity on my stocking plight and offered to sew white ones.
Really, truly? How do I deserve such kindess?

A week later, my mother-in-law's old chenille bedspread was found in a closet.
Ripped and begging to be repurposed, a cutter.  
A mere few days later... white chenille stockings hung on my mantel.
Giant grateful hugs to this wonderful gal who offered her wonderful talent.

A few of the kids gave me some guff.  "Plain white?!!  Boring!!"  
The whole chenille effect was lost on them. Sigh.
But as soon as they found out the new ones were just as big
 & would hold the same amount of loot, they relaxed.

"But how will we know whose is who's?" they cried. 
That's where the tags came in.
I made them with office supplies.  I'm handy with paper and glue.
They received the family seal of approval and Santa filled them to the brim.

That is the story of how my white stocking came to fruition.
They really are vintagey white & even better than on sale.
They were made by a dear friend.
Thank You SB!

xo jeanne.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Merry Mustache.

Our 2012 Christmas card.
He we are. Don't the children look thrilled?

He tried to put one on Truman, the dog.
He wasn't havin' it.

Merry Christmas to you all.
Enjoy your families, your friends & your mustaches.
Stay safe and warm and silly.

xo jeanne.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Too new Bottle Brush Trees? Bleach 'em White.

Do you know how hard it is to find decent
        bottle brush trees?

I haven't found them anywhere I've looked.   
I wanted some white ones, 
So I decided to research and see what I could find.
Lo and behold, I found I could make new ones look old by simply bleaching them.
Easy Peasy.

Since it had been done, I didn't have to reinvent the wheel.
Bleaching the trees was seriously the easiest project I've ever done.

They are simply christmas village trees I bought at Michael's.
The best site for instructions I found was The Beehive Cottage
She has super easy instructions and good photos.
Here a quick little instructions of my own:

You can brush the tips with paint to regain the snow effect, 
Paint on glitter or re-dye them any color.
Aqua would be fab, which I may try.
I took off the white plastic bases. Easy, they just twist off.
I popped them into some silver sugar and creamers and into my blue tonka truck.

My new little white trees are quite charming.
But I must say that my heart is with the Jelinek Family in their search for Dani. 
As well as heartbroken for the families of Sandy Hook School.

All my love and prayers.
xo jeanne.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Winter Schminter.

Remember when I said winter must be on it's way?
Maybe Old Man Winter took the ice skates on the front door way too seriously.
On Sunday, winter came and buried my fairy garden.
I hope the fairies have warm winter coats!

It buried my railing bench too. 
 Okay, it's pretty.  But still. 'They' said 4-5 inches.  I think they were off my 5.
The kids are praying school is closed.
What can I say. I'm not a winter girl. I admit it.

I had no choice but to stay inside, fold laundry, make gallons of hot cocoa,
venture out to shovel the driveway, unbury the cars, 
come back in and do a crafty project (I'll show you asap),
& play with my new adorable retro type writer!
Yay! The bright side. Retro Happiness to console myself.

Stay tuned for the craftiness.
(You're more than welcome to come shovel.The driveway needs another go.)
xo jeanne.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Story of The Snowman Family Carolers.

Found at garage sale 5 years ago run by two darling little old sisters
I remember it well. It made my day.
The sisters were darling and so was the snowman family.
It caught my eye right away with it's retro charm.

"How much for the snowman family?"  I dare asked.
"Oh, four dollars. Our little brother made it in 1964."  The darling sisters said.
"I'll take it!"  I was cool, tried to not look too giddy as I handed over my four bucks.

Since that warm July afternoon, it's been stored in the rafters in our garage.  
 I only used it the Christmas after I bought it.  
Why have I not pulled it out every year?? Crazy. 

I think I was worried it would get ruined.
But this year, it's perfect with the blue door and they are so very fun.
The sisters were super proud that it came with a sturdy stand. 
(made by the little brother 40 years ago.)
It was so cute that they asked $4 and not $5. 

They lamented because the dad snowman has a repaired head - thus the discount.
It's big, about two feet tall and thanks to the stand, sits upright on it's own.
I have not seen anything like it before or since.
This is one of my favorite decorations. 
Why have I not enjoyed it more?
It's like using not your wedding dishes or saving the good stuff.
Why do we do that? 

So this year, the Christmas lights and snowmen are out of the rafters.
We're enjoying them and hope the neighbors are too.

xo jeanne.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Skating into Winter...kinda.

It really must be true.
Winter must truly be approaching.
I know this because it's the only possible reason why I'd hang ice skates on my front door.
Being as winter in Minnesota isn't my favorite season, 
one way to get through it is to surround myself with all things adorable.
In this case, adorable made on the cheap.
With a pair of sufficiently aged white skates bought at Goodwill.
Greenery from Michael's.
A delightful little bird I'd saved that was originally on a gift I'd received.
Decorating Co-Captain Linda donated the vintage-y silver leaves
and the old photo to the cause.  
(tip: it's taped to a craft stick and tucked into the boot.)

And all put together in record time.
Paired on my front door.

They accompany the 2nd reason I know it's wintertime, 
the snowman family below:

Their story comes in the next post.
(they are adorable and how I got them is too.)
Stay tuned.

xo jeanne.

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