Saturday, December 2, 2017

How to Make a Beautiful Loopy Bow

When I learned to make a bow using this easy technique, I wondered why I hadn't been able to figure it out on my own, a long time ago.

I tried, many times, and not very successfully, to make bows using the old technique where you loop the ribbon, holding it tightly in your fingers, twisting every loop, trying to hold it all together as it slipped and slid around...never did work very well for me.

So, without wasting any more time, let me show you how easy it is!

1.  Gather together your wire edged ribbon, some scissors and a piece of mat board, cardboard or a hardback thin book to use to wrap the ribbon around.  You'll want the board/book to be approximately the size that you'll want your finished bow to be.  This book measures (longest side) about ten inches, so I'll end up with about a ten inch bow.

2.  You'll want to start out with a "tail" that will hang from the finished bow (you can't see the tail in this image, as I've folded it in the back so that it's out of the way) so allow that length at the beginning and then start wrapping your ribbon around the book.  One complete turn around the book will create two loops.  I wrapped around the book five times to make a ten loop bow.  Also, at this point, you'll want to reserve a piece of ribbon to use at the end of the process to tie it all together.  I used a piece about 24" long.

3.  Once you have the desired number of loops wrapped around the book, you'll cut the ribbon.  Allow another length for the second tail that will hang opposite the first tail.  Very carefully slip the loops from the book and hold it all in place with your finger.

4.  Now, fold the loops in half, pinching it all together between your thumb and fingers. 


5.  Cut a little triangle off of each side where it's folded in half, being careful not to cut all the way through the center.  This step takes away some of the bulk of ribbon that makes it so thick at the center.

6.  Now, once you've cut the triangles from each side, flatten it back out and it should look like the next image.

7.  Using the reserved piece of ribbon, simply tie it around the center where the triangles were cut away.  I like to tie twice, forming a knot that will not come apart.

8.  Begin forming the bow by pulling each loop up and shaping it.  Continue until you have a shape you like.  The wire really helps each loop hold it's shape.

9.  You should end up with something that looks similar to this.  For this tutorial, I just made a ten-loop bow so that it was easy to see the steps.  Using the same technique, you could make a really full bow with more loops if desired.

Now, go forth and put bows everywhere!!

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Easy Fall Home Decor Tip

This one is so easy, you'll be thinking, "Now, why didn't I think of that?"  

I frequently gather old books at our library when they have their sales for non-circulating and damaged books, usually paying a quarter for each one.  I love to use pages from books in different ways in my mixed-media art, and for whatever else strikes my fancy, so I always have a few in my stash.  

While contemplating fun ways to display my little pumpkins around the house, I decided to fill a dish (ironstone, of course!) with some shredded paper to form a little "nest" for the pumpkin.  It's a fun way to recycle, and it's waaay more interesting than regular old colored shredded paper from a bag!  So, I grabbed a couple of my old books with slightly different tints of discolored, old, white paper pages, and I headed to the shredder.  I ran the pages through so that the cuts would run parallel with the print.  I thought it might be fun if you could still read the little words on the strips...

Once I had enough, I scooped up some in my hands and scrunched it, then scrunched some more until it was all fluffy.  Then, I put it all together and it worked exactly like I had hoped!  

This one ended up on the coffee table atop a stack of seasonal magazines.

Here's a closer look...

...and, now, a couple of CLOSER looks!

It's so much fun to reach in and mix it all up, and then, well, I could just sit there and look for words forever!  It's actually a lot of fun...

I'm using an ironstone bowl, the shred, and then the pumpkin, but I'm just thinking of all the different ways you could use this!  In a gift basket (just like you would use the regular kind that you buy at the store) or around plants...It would be so pretty in a silver plated bowl, too!  Oh well, you get the idea.  

If you decide to play in shredded pages, I would love to see what you come up with!  

Please, just make sure you don't shred a book that's still good or valuable in some way.  

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Fun and Easy Halloween Project

Hi everyone!  Since I'm supposed to be packing to head up to Fyffle, AL to the Vintage Pickin' Barn Sale, I really have to hurry!!!  But, I just HAD to share this with you, because it was so fun and easy to do!  Let me get right to showing you how to do it.

You'll need:  An old window
                   Glass cleaner (I used Sprayway, which is GREAT, and made in the 
                    Paper towels
                    Razor blade
                    Sharpie markers-Chisel tip and fine point
                    A big, scary, fuzzy spider

So, you'll need to clean the window really well on both sides.  Mine had paint overspray on it so I had to use a razor blade to scrape in places.  You'll flip it over several times, cleaning on each side, until it's squeaky clean.

Decide which side will be your front, and then flip it over.  The marker will be applied onto the back side of the glass, so that it's all shiny and smooth on the front.

Now, using either your imagination, or a sample spider web (free clip art from the web...sorry, pun intended) as a guide, start drawing your web.  I used the fat marker first for the bones of the web, beginning in the bottom corner and fanning the lines out across the window.  Once, you're satisfied with the fatter lines, simply fill in with the small marker to complete your web.

If you mess up, don't worry.  Just grab another paper towel, spray glass cleaner on the paper towel, and very carefully wipe away the messed up marks that you don't like.  You can also use the razor blade if they are stubborn.  

Once the web is finished, flip it over to see it from the front!  This is the fun part...

Now, go to Michael's or Hobby Lobby and find yourself a big fuzzy spider to hang from a string attached to the top edge of the window.  My window has a finger lift piece of hardware, so I will use it as a hanger for my spider.  

To see the completed project, come visit me at Vintage Pickin' in the big white tent, where this piece will be offered for sale!

Don't forget to send me pics of your Halloween spider web window!

*I received no compensation from any of the manufacturers mentioned...they are simply great products that I use.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Shopping The World's Longest Yard Sale 2017

Wow!  What a week.  The World's Longest Yard Sale....

My friend, Natalie, and I hit the road on Tuesday, as I always like to get ahead of the crowds that clog those two-lane roads on the weekend during the official sale days.  We started in the Fort Payne, Alabama area, but were disappointed in the lack of vendors.  In previous years, they were already set up and ready to sell the week prior to the weekend, but apparently, some of the vendors are getting older and have jumped off the WLYS merry-go-round. Younger dealers are beginning to set up, but they work "real" jobs during the week, so we were told that they would be setting up for the weekend...oh well.  So much for early shopping in Alabama and Georgia.  

We stayed the night in Fort Payne at the Holiday Inn Express and the next morning, Wednesday, jumped back onto I-59 and headed into Chattanooga.We had met some shoppers the day before who told us that things had been going for an entire week in Tennessee, so we figured we would get off where Hwy. 127 starts and begin our treasure hunting there.  Vendors told us that they had been set up for days already...

We went as far north as Clarkrange, Tennessee, and that's where we started.  I have never been up above Clarkrange, but I just can't imagine that it gets any better than what's available in this particular area.  Our first stop Wednesday morning was in a huge field full of fabulous vendors.  We actually shopped this one place for over two hours, and that was running pretty fast through every tent.  We made many trips back to the car and ended up opening the trailer to start filling it.  That was a great stop, probably my favorite.  There was a little bit of everything available for sale.

I didn't take many pictures because we were so busy shopping, and I didn't even think about taking selfies!  We shopped with no make-up and "not fixed" a matter of fact, one male vendor told us early Wednesday morning that we looked like we had "just rolled out of bed."  Yes, he did!  We just laughed...and looked the same way the next day.  I'm telling you, all that mattered was finding those treasures!

I don't want to forget to tell you about this amazing little place with some great smoked b-b-q sandwiches, near Signal Mountain, Tennessee-Off The Grill II.  As we got out to shop, intoxicating smoke filled the air and we decided we were starving!  And, then we heard the singing.  It was Gitlo Lee, live, with some of the best blues I have ever heard!  We decided right then and there, this would be lunch.  It was one of the best stops of our trip.

Photo credit-Off the Grill II Facebook Page
Here's a sampling of some of the treasures that I brought back for my upcoming markets...

There's so much more, but I still haven't unpacked everything to take pictures!  I also bought some larger pieces-an industrial factory cart, a Victorian settee, and a couple of other pieces.  To see more pictures, follow us on Instagram!  Link here.

The World's Longest Yard Sale is always fun, always different, and always overwhelming.  If you've never been and you love junkin', you need to do it at least once--but before you know it, you'll be addicted, just like me, and you have to go over and over again...

I will still go early, as always, but I'll now have to modify my itinerary a bit and just head on as far north as I want to go and shop the trail as I'm heading back down toward Alabama, hitting the lower part at the end.  As we were told on that first day, many vendors did indeed join the sale on the trail near Fort Payne, Alabama while we were shopping Tennessee.
There were some great treasures in that area too, but by the time we got there, my trailer was almost full. I passed on a great farmhouse style table that was $100, because it wouldn't fit in the trailer...that hurt a little.  

If this sounds like something you would like to experience, put it on your calendar for next year.  It's always the first weekend in August.  Hope to see you there!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Peachtree Vintage Market Recap

Hello everyone! I just returned from the first ever Peachtree Vintage Market, in Clanton, Alabama. I was fortunate and honored to have been invited to attend as one of the ten vintage and antiques dealers participating. It was a beautiful event, and well attended. Elizabeth (Elizabeth Ann’s) and Lana (Micah’s Treasures) were the talented duo who presented the event, and they’re already planning TWO markets for 2018. I am planning to attend those too, so my market schedule for next year is already filling up. The shoppers who came out to see us were a fun group, and oh my goodness, hanging out with the other talented vendors was just so much fun! I’ll stop “talking” now and share some pictures of my space at Peachtree Vintage Market.

Don’t forget to follow us for up-to-the-minute pics of my running around at Instagram @downinthedeltavintagemarket.

I will not be setting up at any markets during the month of August, as I'm going to be having surgery next month to remove my thyroid gland.  My next market will be Vintage Pickin' in September, so I'll begin posting sneak peek pics soon on social watching if you want to see some goodies that will be heading up that way with me.

Thanks for checking in!