Thursday, May 25, 2017

Our Little Cabin in the Woods-Part One

I hope you haven't been holding your breath waiting for us to finish the cabin!  Like most everything we try to tackle these days, it has taken about three times as long as it should have...and we're still not totally finished, but I'm going to share it anyway, because we're just sooo close to being finished, and I can't wait any longer!

When we purchased the land next door, this structure was already there.  The 16' x 24' building was built on sight.  It has a front porch and a gambrel style roof which allows space for two sleeping lofts inside, one in front and the other in the back.  It was covered in white vinyl siding on the sides and back, but had cedar on the exterior of the front wall, inside the porch.  The inside was unfinished, but had a small wood stove and a window unit air conditioner in the wall.

What We Did...

On the exterior, we removed the vinyl siding (I forgot to take a "before" pic with the vinyl siding.) but here's what it looked like after it was taken down.  See the door leaning up against the back wall?  We added that so that we would have a back entry.  We also removed the window unit air conditioner that was in the wall...you can see where the hole was filled in.


New back door with awning...


Front porch area is now trimmed in cedar to match the front cedar wall.


Color scheme that we chose to use is the same as what we used on our house last spring...more about that in the next blog post.


We needed to add new air conditioning, as we had removed the old window unit, so we went with a ductless system by Samsung, and we love it!  It works by remote control, and keeps the place at a constant temperature, even automatically switching from a/c to heat, when needed.   It's also energy efficient.  (Samsung did not give us anything for mentioning this product.)


We also needed to connect it to the septic tank so that we could add a bathroom. That required ditch-digging.  


We removed the ceiling fan. (I borrowed this picture from Hope Contracting's Facebook page...Hope Contracting did most of the work for us.)


Insulation went up.



...then the metal ceiling!  I was so excited about using corrulated metal on the inside, and I do love it as much as I thought I would!  Oh, and see the black wall up on the end of the loft?  That's chalkboard paint!  Just imagine camping out and playing tic-tac-toe up there while you're supposed to be sleeping!  I plan to add some funky picture frames to the wall so that kids can create their own wall art within the frames...


And, here's my sweet hubby hanging the funky green chandelier!



That's all I'll share today...this post is taking me three times as long as it should, too!  I only have about a thousand pictures to look through after four months of working on the place!  

Be watching for part two where I'll share the bathroom and some more interior work real soon.

If you've found yourself here by following a link, I would love to have you follow me on Instagram and Facebook!  Links here:  Instagram  Facebook


Tuesday, February 21, 2017

How to Make Envelope Using Scrap Book Paper

I'm going to a birthday party in honor of a great friend...I've made cute little earrings to go into the gift bag that I'm putting together for her.  I didn't want to just drop them down in the bag to get lost, so I needed a box or something to put them in. Searching for box...no box to be found.  I needed it now.  What's a girl to do?  Well, I figured, "How hard could it be to make my own little package?"  As it turns out, it wasn't hard at all, and I'm sort of proud of it, so I thought I would share it with you and show you how to make your own, if you should wish to do so.

I keep a stash of scrap-booking paper around the studio, so I went in search of a piece that would work.  Of course, it needed to match the color scheme of the gift packaging.  And, I was thinking thicker would be better.  I found a perfect piece of paper!

I decided that I should be able to cut the 12" x 12" sheet in half and fold it to resemble an envelope.  Using my self-healing cutting mat and metal ruler, I cut the sheet in half.  That gave me a strip of paper that measured 12" long x 6" wide.  I measured down 4 1/2" on the strip and very lightly marked a line straight across the strip with a pencil (on the white, back side) to indicate where the folding crease would be.  I used special tool for embossing.  It has a tiny ball on the end and works great for creating a folding line.  I pressed the embossing tool, using light pressure, along the line against the ruler to keep it straight and made the fold line.  


Here's the same piece, already cut and fold lines embossed, showing measurements...


I measured 4 5/8" from the first crease line (to form the back) and made another crease. Now it should fold over onto itself and have a flap that folds over the front.

I then made side flaps to fold around the back to attach the front to back.  I cut the excess strips on the sides away from the front flap and the back, cutting all the way to the fold line that is the bottom.  Using an adhesive gun, I rolled adhesive along the half-inch flaps and stuck them around the sides to the back.



It now has a back, a front, and a front flap, so it looks like an envelope!


I decided to cut a scoop shape out of the front under the flap to make it easier to reach in and find whatever is inside.  I used a bowl as a template.  Slipping the envelope over the corner of the cutting mat, I put the bowl down and cut around it with an X-acto knife.  The front flap is hiding under the corner of the mat.


I placed the bowl so that the scoop would start about one inch from each side...it will make sense when you see what I do to the front flap.  


...and this is what it looks like at this point.


Now it's easy to pull out a card (or whatever) but I'm wanting to do a little something more to the front flap.  I think I want another curved cut, but it will need to be larger than the one I just cut so that it will cover it completely.  So, using the same bowl, this time I centered it so that the cuts would go all the way to the side edges of the flap.


Now, this is what I have...


Next, I'm thinking of many ways to close the envelope--you could go with a little sticky dot on the flap, or get really fancy...

I decided to use a hole punch and run a pretty ribbon through the hole, and then tie it around the entire little package.  Here's the final result.



This could work for a card, too!  It was a fun little, quick project, and it was perfect for holding the earrings.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Is it tile? Or Paper?

I'm kicking myself right about now, because I forgot to take a pic of this little table before I hit it with paint!  It's SO HARD for me to remember to do that....oh well, I do have a shot of it right after I put the white paint on it, but before I added the bits that make it pretty.


My plan was to decoupage some pretty scrap-booking paper to the top, making sort of a collage that resembles tile.  There are so many pretty papers out there in Michael's and Hobby Lobby...I could spend hours there just looking through them. But since I didn't have hours, to make the process go a little faster, I took along some other things that are going into the space.  That was a huge help in finding perfectly coordinated papers for the project. 



Here are the three that I chose.  For some reason, I couldn't get the top paper to photograph with the true pretty green that it is, but the other two look exactly right!


You can see from the first picture--the top looks sort of rough.  Originally, it was topped with a piece of old vinyl tile that was glued on, so it pulled up splinters of the plywood when I pulled it off. I probably should use some wood filler before I do the decoupage, but I'm not going to.  I believe the paper is thick enough that it will harden to be flat.


The table top measures about 14" x 14".  The paper sheets are 12" x 12".  I played with them until I found my favorite for the center.  I brushed the decoupage medium (glue) directly onto the table and carefully put the sheet of paper in the center, just eyeballing it. Using a brayer, I rolled over the paper applying pressure to push out the extra medium and flatten the paper. Working quickly, I used a paper towel to wipe up the excess glue.  I let the medium dry completely before I did the strips around the edge.

I measured around the edge to see what surface area was left, and made the decision to leave about a 1/8" white showing between the bits of paper to give it the grout look.  I used my handy paper cutter to get nice straight strips of paper.


Using the same process as with the big center sheet, I added the strips.  Once they were dry, I added the final little squares at the corners.


Once it was all completely dry, I covered the top with a layer of the decoupage medium to seal everything and give it a finished look.  The medium comes in several different finishes to include matte and gloss.  I went with the gloss.


Here is the finished table, shown in front of the other things that will be going into the space. The actual space is small, so I'm trying to stick with things that will easily fit.  This little table will be perfect beside the daybed to hold a lamp or cup of coffee.


I will be posting more as the project comes together.  Hope you'll come back to see the progress!

Monday, January 23, 2017

Something New...

My customers asked for more "Gypsy style" merchandise, and I listened...

As well as making more custom banners that will be available at all of our markets, I have also created some paper place mats that feature original custom collage artwork.  These products can ONLY be purchased through Down in the Delta.

Your first opportunity to see them up close will be at the Vintage Market Days event in Mobile on March 17-19.  I look forward to seeing you there, and I hope you like the new Gypsy products!

They were created on a chalkboard-like background.  (The heart is just a watermark, so try to ignore that!) They come twelve to a package for $8.  All twelve are one style.  I thought about making some assorted packages, but that would just cause problems, as some folks would be looking for multiples to fit a table for four, and others would be looking for six or eight.  This just keeps it simple.  You can just purchase the ones you like.

*Please try to ignore the heart/circle watermark...they do not appear on the actual product.





As always, remember that you can get "first looks" at my pickin', new creations, etc. over at Instagram...follow me here.