ART ROOM: Easy come, easy go

In 2011, I sheepishly asked my oldest son, who was moving to Nashville,  if he minded me converting his longtime bedroom into my art room.  He readily agreed to relinquish it lock, stock, and barrel.  (What does lock, stock, and barrel mean, anyway?)  

So, I immediately went to work.  First, I enlisted the help of my third son, Hamilton, and his friend, Wiley, to help paint.  It didn’t take long for Hamilton to comment on my out-of-character and bland choice of WHITE PAINT for the walls. “Hamilton,” I declared as we edged and rolled, “this is creating a CANVAS!”

A little kilz followed  by plain white latex paint

A little kilz followed
by plain white latex paint

We rolled only three of the walls, and left one alone since it was a nice sienna.  The sienna wall quickly gained a white tree.

I “drew” the tree on the wall using painter’s tape (after googling “tree silhouette”, finding the one I wanted to use as my muse). Of course I had to use KILZ first and then painted over that with plain white latex wall paint.

The other walls were nothing but fun.  Again, painter’s tape was my guide and then I free handed everything and created a colorful collage of all the many doodles that I have only done on the edges of paper over the years.  I chose PRIMARY colors for no other reason than: I like them!

I used painter's tape as a guide

I used painter’s tape as a guide

I used those same “doodles” as the design for the small shelves that I stored my supplies above my work table.  I am not a perfectionist so every mess up, and there were plenty, was easy adjusted.

I also found some display hooks from the clearance aisle at Hobby Lobby and did the same doodle art on them.  I dug out all the many satchels, cloth bags, and free makeup bags from my closets and used them to hang my fabrics and ribbons on the wall.  (It was soooo convenient!)

The next tree was another “plagiarized and greatly-altered” tree from a google search. (An art professor once told our class that there was no such thing as original art, only “creative plagiarism.”)  I was especially fond of the birds.

Next came the window treatment.  We had been to visit our son and daughter-in-law in Nashville and found this “look” in a storefront window.  I remember just standing there staring at it thinking, “I could make this.”  So I did.

My hippy window treatment

My hippy window treatment

My son drug home the branch that I found in a neighbor’s trash pile.  It was PERFECT .

I then starting cutting and hand-tearing strips of cloth, my husband’s old ties, and scarves that I never wore.  I randomly tied them from end to end and then onto the branch, running back and forth to the window to check and adjust the length. I even went into our attic and retrieved the “yo-yo” pillow covers that I had made for my grandmother back in the early 1970’s!  A few snips of the thread made a great addition to the long strands.

A dear friend, Lena, and her daughter Rachael, made a string of beads from their old necklaces to add to my hippified piece, and WA-LA: a great window treatment/conversation piece!

I found the bedspread at IKEA (clearance item), the sewing machine base was my grandmothers, and the cow chair is from Office Depot.

I used the room a lot from 2011-2013.  I made and sold potholders, the profit which was used to take out teenage girls (who lived in a group home in downtown Montgomery) to eat and shopping.  It served it’s purpose well.

It then came time to sell our house.  We showed the house as is, but finally decided to paint the room the same color as our halls.  However, when the house sold (to someone who had looked at it WITH the trees in tack) they mentioned to our realtor that they were disappointed we had painted over them.

Oh well, easy come, easy go.

NOTE: Click on thumbnails to enlarge and go thru gallery of photos:


Fireplace lost, repurposed shutter FOUND!


There are several things we miss since our move: our church family, our neighbors, and our fireplace!

We miss the beauty of a crackling fire (sans roasting chestnuts), we miss the heat AND we miss the place to hang our stockings with care!

Enter the shutters from the barn!  Not only were they the perfect size to cover the breaker box, but they provided the ideal to hang our stockings.

Ellen, a dear friend, knitted these stockings for us last year when our daughter-in-law arrived on the scene. (I didn’t want to simply try to match our old ones).

So I gave Ellen a color scheme (neutrals) and FREEDOM!  Since Ellen likes freedom and can knit nearly anything, she came up with six unique designs.  Each of us picked our favorite.

Though they are easy to tell apart, I knew I could not remember whose was whose from year to year.  So  I purchased some 100% cotton binding, some printable transfer sheets, and a hot iron to make the little tags for each stocking.  I sewed each on those on by hand.

Not only are they cute, but functional…they hold a LOT of stuffers!

The shutters are great but we are still hoping for our rock fireplace to be in place by this time next year.  So, maybe the shutters will put off heat after all….



A Christmas idea with no regrets

Ty's "Baby's first Christmas" Ornament Last year I gave  a box of ornaments to Ty and his new wife, Caroline. Actually, I had already given them to him…one each Christmas for the previous 25 years.

He was born in November of 1987. So his arrival was perfectly timed with Christmas. We purchased the “Baby’s first Christmas” ornament (but kept it!   Don’t tell him!)

Two extra boys later we decided to do something that was fun and created memories.  We bought four similar ornaments each year, one for each of the three boys and one for us to keep.

Some we purchased because of what they were interested in that year (i.e., deer).  Other times they were purchased on a family vacation or mission trip (i.e., African animals).  And other times that just caught my eye or because I like the materials used (note iron Indian on horse!)

I wrote the year and each of their names (or their initials) on the ornaments using a paint pen.

WaLa!  A great Christmas gift to the newlyweds!DSC_0633DSC_0638DSC_0636DSC_0637