Sunday, January 31, 2010


Okay. So that "thrifting temptation" that I spoke of in the last post? Yeah, I'm weak. I went. Even though it was Sunday and I knew it would be picked over.

But Joe spotted a solid wood twin bed frame, with rails (good eye, joseph), for $20. Upon further inspection, I noticed it was Ethan Allen. I told him that it was a good deal, especially since we've been looking for a twin bed like this on Craigslist for some time. I would have liked to have matching ones since we need 2 for our guest room, but mis-matched will be just fine. Originally I wanted to paint our bed frames white whenever we finally found them (the color scheme of the room was kind of counting on this...), but now that I have this one, it is hard for me to think about painting it. Because it's wood and doesn't need help in the shape it's in. So I'm struggling with that right now...I think it would look GREAT in a sunny, yellowish room with this duvet (being used for a picnic in this photo). But that wont happen, I'm sure, because we need a larger bed in our other guest room to accommodate our taller guests.

I also got 2 lamp bases. They both need shades. One is being painted right now. Before and After to come.

Okay, that's all. I have to pack for my trip to Illinois, now...where more thrifting action will take place.

Oh, and I was curious to see what I was doing on this date 4 years ago, seen here.


+Minnesota was fun. I didn't take photos like I said I would. My camera is just too damn bulky to carry around when I don't have my bag. I would like to get a new one soon.

+I want to go thrifting today, but I'm resisting the temptation because I am going on Tuesday with my Mom. The thrifting temptation is a daily occurrence.

+I start working again in less than a week. I'm ready. Even though it will leave me with little time to do things, mainly because of my long commute to and from work each day.

+In the past few days, I've finished 9 new pieces for Yellow Canoe.

+I'm going to start planning my garden and yard soon. It's intimidating, but only because I haven't made a plan yet. I have big plans for the yard, to take place over the next 3 years, but I have to decide what is important now (fire pit) and what can wait till the 3rd year (pond).

+Cement mix is on my "to get" list for the day...I am excited about this project.

+I joined 2 groups on yesterday, in hopes of finding some new friends. We haven't made many friends since moving to Madison 2 years ago. We miss game night, which we used to have every Friday with some old friends from "home". I may also start playing soccer soon, which would be really exciting. Fingers crossed that it works out.

Okay, off I go. What have you been up to?

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Potting Room

The potting room is at a standstill until I start working again, but I have been collecting photos for inspiration for the time being.

Since we don't have a shed yet, and most of our yard and gardens are in the backyard (where the door from the future potting room leads), I am going to do this for my tools. I've found that by making things have fun homes, it helps me put things away. Kind of like how I traded all my plastic hangers for wooden hangers and organized my wardrobe by color. Roy G. Biv , you are awesome. Whatever works, right?

I'm not entirely certain of the color scheme for the room yet, but I do have some awesome green things that I've been holding onto. Generally, I'm not a huge fan of green in decorating (i say that today...i'm sure it will change by next month) but I think it would work fine in a room like this.

Although I don't actually plan on doing this, I think that the salvaged gate idea is cool. So, I suppose if I come across a gate I might do this...but probably not, because I'd rather use the gate in my yard somewhere.

And, of course, much larger than my room would ever be, but I like the general feel of this space.

I've got 14'x15' to work with. I started drawing the layout on grid paper the other day, which is always exciting. :)


+Today is the last day I will be 24.
+I just found out that CB2 in Lincoln Park has closed. Bummer.
+Clementine and Moonshadow play fetch now. It's quite entertaining.

Okay, I'll return on Thursday with photos from our quick getaway to St. Paul, MN!

Monday, January 25, 2010


The ink cartridges for my Rotring Rapidograph finally came the other day.

It's a good thing that I remembered where I put the instructions, because those Germans have a clever way of engineering. Very sneaky but it also makes so much sense. The pen has an integrated "point extractor", which is awesome and clearly wasn't thought of by myself when I tried prying it apart with my teeth. And an awl...and finally, pliers. Oh right--instructions. And the fact that I knew exactly where the instructions were is impressive.

About a year and a half ago I switched from Koh-I-Noor Rapidograph pens. I was looking for my old photo in my flickr, and stumbled across my ramblings from then, too...

from flickr:
"oh, my sweet sweet koh-i-noor rapidograph pen.

we enjoyed many good times...and endured many bad.

we had a good thing going until you could not seem to sputter an even line. and so after many tribulations, i have decided to say goodbye.

and replace you with a rotring rapidograph which, by the way, i'm already in love with. goodbye."

"hello, you.

while you're not as pretty as my old rapidograph (sorry), i know that looks aren't everything. it's personality that counts, right? so prove yourself to koh-i-noor...i know that you'll be better.

no more ink spills. no more shaking and dotting and shaking some more, only to be whipped across the room and dealt with later. no more more frantically hoping that ink will wipe away from the apartment sink. no more maintenance or refilling only to find my fingertips blackened. you are going to be better than him, i know it. and by him i mean koh-i-noor. "


*notice the "finally" lettering, written twice...yes, anticipation gets me every time.

Anyway, the point is that I love my technical pen. Do you use them for anything? What size do you use? Okay, that's all.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

It's Raining.

Dining Room Wall:

Close up:

On, you guessed it, old barn wood.

Frames from Pier One.
Cursive monograms on old book pages.

An open tag, from Gracia:

Where is your phone? pocket
Your hair? growing
Your Mother? strong
Your Father? handy
Your favorite food? spicy
Your dream last night? baking
Your favourite drink? coffee
Your dream/goal? have
What room are you in? office
Your hobby? making
Your fear? aging
Where do you want to be in six years? here
Where were you last night? home
Something that you're not? organized
Muffins? banana
Wish list item? jigsaw
Where did you grow up? illinois
Last thing you did? painted
What are you wearing? hood
Your TV? background
Your pets? cute
Friends? few
Your life? curious
Your mood? anticipation
Missing someone? always
Vehicle? need
Something you're not wearing? hat
Your favourite store? expensive
Your favourite colour? all
When was the last time you laughed? saturday
The last time you cried? haiti
Your best friend? pretty
One place that I go to over and over? thrift
Facebook? yes
Favourite place to eat? hibachi

Hope you are enjoying your Sunday. Play along if you'd like.

Saturday, January 23, 2010


Display for February/March:

I needed a small table like this for a long time, so I built this one about 2 months ago from old barn wood.

The tall vase used to look like this:

But I didn't like the colors anymore and it gave me bad vibes whenever I looked at it. Pathetic, I know, but this is the kind of stuff that gives me anxiety.

So I painted it a glossy white and called it a day. It was only $3 (on sale from like $50) at Kohls, so I didn't feel bad about painting it.

Friday, January 22, 2010

New Guy

I made this guy today:

Barn Wood + Drill + Jigsaw + Paint = Owl.

I'll be offering a series in my shop eventually. This one has a few kinks, but I like it that way.

Oh. And in case you were wondering, yes- he does have a name. It's Herbert Whoover.

I like to name my owls and plants. I know, I know...


Pardon the glare, but here is the series of frames I hung yesterday.

Tutorial to come. Which I know sounds funny, a tutorial on how to hang frames, but it's harder than it seems.
We have company coming for the weekend. We usually host weekend guests every 3 weeks or so, which is nice because it keeps the house looking tidy. :)

My brother just called and talked my ear off for over an hour. Oh, the life of an 18 year old.

I just finished a piece for the living room. To be posted later.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Bookshelf = Finished

I am back! Again! Right after I left the library, Best Buy called and said my computer was finished!

So, here I am, with about 8 posts waiting to be typed out.

I just finished the bookshelf I wrote about a few weeks ago.

Cost: $12 for primer, paint, sand paper and more wood. We already had the shelf.
Time: About 7 hours, but that's because I changed my mind about things halfway through.
Changes Made: Flipped the original shelf upside down so the bigger spaces would be on top. Cut part of the original legs off and removed another piece. Added tall legs and designed front and side pieces to go over legs. Jigsawed the pieces, nailed, painted, finished.

As we're carrying the newly painted shelf up the stairs, Joe comments "you know what's funny? when we lived in an apt. you always complained about how much you hated white...and now, you are painting everything white."

Okay, here's the thing- there is a fair difference between white walls and white furniture. White furniture looks great against colored walls because then it can hold your colored things. You can't put colored things against colored walls, nor colored shelves, without them drowning into the drab tones beneath. Or at least that's MY case.

All of that being said, if I collected a lot of white accessories, then I wouldn't be painting everything white...I'd be staining everything walnut.

I'm sure I mentioned that we weren't going to hang any hang anything or really decorate the living room until it was painted. But it's been 5 months since we moved in, and I couldn't stand it any longer! T
he shelf has improved my mood significantly, so I decided to keep going and hung a big grouping of frames above the couch. Post and a tutorial to come!

When tax time comes, a new wall color is in order. If I can EVER decide on the right color- I have about 200 paint chips from 7 different brands, no joke. Also, new window treatments, a new media stand and a much awaited new couch. The couch is something I've been anticipating for 5 and a half years now. Ours are hand me downs from my parents, because my mom ended up hating them, too.

Well, my coffee is gone and I have more things to paint. Today's culprit: an end table that I pulled out of a pile of things to be burned when I was about 15. It's been waiting for this day for almost 10 years.

PS: the kittens like the shelf, too.


I should be back soon.

Somebody from Sony called me yesterday and said that there is nothing wrong with my computer...

But anyway, I've been writing all of my blog posts on paper and will be typing them out as soon as I get my computer back. I'm hoping that I get a phone call on Tuesday to say that it's back, but I have my doubts. It is coming all the way from California, which will take awhile depending on how it's shipped. We'll see.

I've been keeping busy with lots of painting, which has been a nice cheap way to enhance our living space.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Tricked You

Ha. So remember when I said "Yay! I'm finally back! I got a new computer!" a couple weeks ago?

Well, that was a joke.

My brand new computer is in the repair shop and will remain there for about 3 weeks.

The other night it made a crazy noise like it was getting electrocuted. And then it smelled like the toy racetrack I had when I was 8.

Pair the lack of computer with being pretty much unemployed and you've got one long ass day. Times 21 (because this is how it will be for about that long).

Painting, playing with the kitties, cooking, reading and building things gets old after a bit. Although I do enjoy doing all those things, they turn into things that I feel like I have to do just to pass the time! Oh well, that's okay. I'm just not used to being bored. Such a weird feeling.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Press On

I spent most of the day in the basement, again.

Joe kept asking "what do you want to do today?"

To which I replied, time after time, "I'm doing it..."

"Press On"

So I'd have to say this is one of my favorite pieces yet. Best viewed "large" on flickr.

Lots and lots of layers. I think like 7 total?

And once again, no India ink on this one. But I was pretty excited to use a 1" deep wooden artist panel board- awesome!


I am getting something really cool on Friday...a Craigslist find that has been waiting to be picked up. No, it's not the rug I wrote about a few posts ago. It's a million times better. Stay tuned.

Friday, January 08, 2010

The Latest

I've been freezing in my basement studio most of the day, working on some new pieces for Yellow Canoe. The first ones I've made in over a year.

I managed to finish one of them, which is a little bit different than most mixed media pieces I've done, only because I don't have any India ink right now (it's on its way, though) so it was a little challenging for me to go without.

Definitely not my favorite piece, but that's probably because I didn't get to draw on it.

"the daily grind"

I started out small, 11"x12.75", but I am going to be working my way up to 3'x4' pieces soon. I've never made anything half that big, but I'm definitely looking forward to it. Slowly, slowly...I'll get there eventually. I want to ease my way into it all because I know it will disastrous if I try to scale my work that quickly.

Okay, well I am going to go lay on the couch with the kitties now. I'm feeling lazy and I don't really have to do anything today. Except reheat leftover fajitas from last night. :) Joe is out with friends right now. I'm kind of hoping he stays out because then I can have the couch to myself longer, haha.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

IKEA rug

While I'm on the topic of "rugs", have you seen this rug from IKEA?

It's the Alvine Ruta Rug for $149. 5'7" x 7'10". I think that 2 next to each other would be nice.

The rug that we have in the living room right now, a flokati, is 10' round. It's perfect for the space, but I have always dreamed of switching out all of my decor in the living room for spring and summer, and I think this rug would be perfect for that. I'm going to IKEA in 3 weeks, when we go to Minnesota, so I will have to look at it.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010


I'm going to look at this rug later this week.

I can't decide if I like it or not. The sage green is what's throwing it all off for me.

Our living room is sage green, and I can't say that I'm a fan of the color!

I'm looking for something that can be used in my potting room (which i'm making progress on, finally!) and also something that can be thrown on the deck for summer parties.

We'll see how it goes. I know I shouldn't be spending money on things like this, especially right now, but maybe I can get Joe to help me pay for it (yeah right!).

Monday, January 04, 2010


I have a day off tomorrow. Alone. For the first time in what seems like forever.

There is a lot that I would like to do. Need to do. But Joe will have the car so I will stay home.

I am on one of those over-thinking swings. I hate those. They only come when I don't have time to think.

Does that even make sense? I think it does. Or at least it does to me, anyway.

I just need time to reflect. To sort the thoughts in my head. They are a little shuffled.


Tomorrow I am starting on a new project. I'm giving a drab bookshelf a pretty extensive makeover, and it will eventually end up in the living room. It will involve some jig-saw action, too, which I'm looking forward to.

There is sure to be a "before and after" post to come, so stay tuned!

And PS- I just re-read my post and the first part sounds so depressing! Don't worry, that's not the case. :)