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Monday, September 24, 2012

DIY Dropcloth Oak Leaf Garland and Fall Table

Most of my Fall decorations are still buried deep in an unorganized garage, so I decided to make some new ones this year. First ... I am not into banners or garlands, but I really liked the garland that Lucy at Craft Berry Bush made last year. Check her tutorial on her oak leaf garland she made.

Google search brought up the oak leaf shape that I liked.
  I downloaded it to Microsoft word and using the original size, I enlarged it inch-by-inch to make different size patterns. I think I started out with a 4", then 5", and 6", maybe even had a 3". 

I cut a piece of fabric from a used painter's drop cloth and getting some areas where there was paint, was a plus. I cut out several of each size. I went by the directions that Lucy gave using a chenille stick to iron the veins in the leaf.  
Spray starching stiffens the fabric and caused it to curl a little. You can iron more curl into each point. I used an old dish washing fiber sponge to dab on some brown and yellow watered-down craft paint.  
Then with an old toothbrush, I splattered watered-down red paint on. I did not dip them in tea/coffee because I felt it would cause them to ravel more. A little ravel makes them look more natural. Then I glued them to sisal twine.
This year, I am really feeling "harvest" so wanted to carry out that theme on our dining table. Burlap runner, old kitchen crocks filled with fruit came to mind but what could I fill them with?   Most of my fruit and gourds were in my Fall Harvest Mantel and I did not want to buy more. I found two old grapevine pumpkins; painted some gosh-awful reddish-brown with some red berries on top; so they got a dry-brush of orange, some leaves, berries and raffia added to the tops.  Looked better. The piece of grapevine was pulled off the old wagon on the front porch and had just the right drape to wrap around the three crocks. The dropcloth oak leaf garland fit just fine. Wish I had made more leaves. Decoration looked okay ... but needed something more ... I wanted to keep it simple, but this was too drab, so added the blown glass pumpkins that I had collected last year and that helped. The one with the beautiful curly stem and the tall one came from Pier 1, about $17.00 each. Small ones bought at Thrift Stores for just a dollar or two.
The crock in the middle was my Mom's that she used to make yeast bread. I still have a picture in my mind of the rising bread and being tempted to stick my finger in it. That would have gotten me in a lot of trouble. She also made her biscuits by pouring a bunch of flour in the bowl, made a "well" in the center, added the salt, baking powder, shortening and milk and rolled it around, worked flour into it until she got it to the consistency that she wanted. She never used all the flour, but had this large ball of dough that she rolled out and cut her biscuits. Don't know how she got the right amount of everything. 
I have made biscuits like this too, but don't remember exactly how I did it. The rim of the crock was her whetstone to sharpen her kitchen knives. The rim of the bowl is still dark from using it this way. This big old crock brings back good memories. Happy Fall you'all.

Audrey Z.  

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Monday, September 17, 2012

Painter's Drop Cloth Drapes...Stamped Branding Irons

Saturday projects for my daughter and I have been working on drapes for the hunter's/guest lodge section of the ranch house which is over the garage. They are week-end ranchers and travel about 500 miles each week-end to take care of the house and ranch chores; so Saturday is the only day we could work on drapes. With all the other chores, we did good to get four panels done each week.

They have quarter horses and raise exotics.  We live about about one hour away.
This part of the house has two bedrooms, a bath and a "great-room". It is decorated with Western/Ranch and Mr. Scott loves the old actors from the Western movies.
We are using painter's drop cloths for the drapes and decorated each panel with ranch brands ... or other "brands" that we created. Circle 6 ... we used an old bed spring for the circle and the 6 branding iron.
This is a combination of the three, one and zero branding irons.     Just used a regular horseshoe for this brand. This Y in a square is a brand registered to Scott's great grandfather which we believe is Fork Creek Ranch. We cut a stencil for it. They have a Rockin' W branding iron, decorative only, not used for branding. This is the Ranch name. We added the  S, K and J to the brand.  
A small S for Scott (husband) and J for Justin (son) K for Kathie (Mom) ... and numbers ... don't know what the numbers represent.

We put a shallow layer of just regular house trim paint in a recycled aluminum pan and dipped the branding irons in the paint and then stamped them on the painter's drop cloth panels.  Some brands was made with a stencil. We also used black on some of the brands, just using regular craft paint.

There are six windows in the "great-room" that get a lot of  West sun. 
Look up ... the ceiling is done with recycled rusty tin roofing material.
Drapes are hung with a tension rod and fit inside the windows so they can be lowered half-way or removed when not needed for blocking the sun. My daughter draped a large bandana over the rod for a valance. Looks really good.

This has been a fun project ... learning as we go.
She is happy with the results and that is important. 

Thanks for visiting ... hope you are inspired to try painter's drop cloths for drapes. 

I made some Drop Cloth Drapes last year and so very happy with them. View here. 

Audrey Z. 

This is an email I received from Pat at Corn in my Coffee Pot

Hope you will pay her a visit.

She had already made a comment on the curtains, so I got permission from her to post this email that I received from her.

Pat saying:
Oh yes! I loved your curtains. I'm thinking of all the transfers you could do on them. Not just branding irons. You could use different sized round objects for a variation on a circle or bubble theme. You could use shoe prints for a sports themed room. Track or running shoes just across the top edge, you could use a little car and roll a wheeled pattern for a boys room with trucks... Or! a real tire that has been rolled through paint for a bigger effect.
The ideas are limitless!
I pinned this idea. Thank you for sharing them ! Pat

My reply:  
Oh WOW Pat ... these curtains really turned on your ‘inspiration button’ ... love all your ideas and all sound exciting, especially the track shoes and real car tire. What a great idea for someone into car racing. 

What has 'turned-on" your creative button lately? 

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Sunday, September 16, 2012

Painter's Drop Cloth Drapes.Antler horn buttons

This is a re-post of a blog I posted last year ...  especially for Donna Funky Junk Interiors SN 152 - unique window treatments party.

Last Fall I made these painter's drop cloth drapes for our living room French doors.
Good weight material, easy to make, helps keep out the heat and cold and still lets in a little light. We have a casual living room so these work in really well.

I was inspired by the ones Donna at Funky Junk Interiors had made.  Donna's drapes.
If interested, you can read my original post here........DRAPES
I draped them over the rods and folded part over to make a ruffle or valance. No cutting, no sewing. I left them like that for a couple weeks, then washed and ironed them to make them hang better. Just a couple days before Christmas, I finished them up.

I bought two 6' x 9' drop cloths from Home Depot for about $11.00 each. Lowe's had the same thing ... different brand, same price, same weight, but I thought the ones at Home Depot felt softer.

I bought swing-arm rods from Lowe's ... little expensive, but nice. If we want to open the drape for light, we can just swing it to the side.

I harvested some old drop/natural shed antlers from my daughter and son-in-law's deer ranch to make buttons for the drapes. They have tons of antlers all over the place because the deer shed them every year.  

September 2012 ... These deer horns are new growth and in velvet.
Here are the eight buttons ... unwashed, in their natural state. Some are Whitetail and some Axis, but work good together and look better when washed.We sawed the burr (curly piece that fits to the head) off the end of the antler to use as a button for the drapes. Sawing is neither fun nor easy. Not advisable to breath the dust when the sawing. Protect the hands too.

I randomly tacked four buttons to each panel catching both pieces of fabric in the tack. I also tacked along the outside edges. I used waxed button thread and left long strings to tie and leave some hanging down. 

Our family liked them very much and I expect them to be putting up painter's drop cloth drapes at their ranch pretty soon. Both our children have ranches.

... in fact ... my daughter and I have been making curtain panels for six windows in their "bunk house" section of their ranch house where the hunters and guests are housed. 

Check out these interesting drapes. 

Thanks for the visits .. I hope you are inspired to look outside the box when making drapes.  Painter's drop clothes are great.

Fun stuff. !!!!!!!!!!!

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Farmer's Market Fall Mantel, Old Country Store Price Tags

Farmer's Markets are always a busy place and so is my Fall mantel. The crows and mice are all over the place. 
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My vintage wire gathering baskets usually just sit around under a table; in a corner or some other unnoticeable place ... so I thought I would showcase them on my Fall Mantel. 

I just love the vintage County Store price tag
graphics that Angie at Knick of Time offered up in her free printable graphics and this inspired me to do the Farmer's Market Mantel. I just used what I had from last year.

I have always wanted to put these tall iron candlesticks on the Mantel, but they always seemed too tall and lighting the candles that high was a problem. Displayed with the rattan covered pumpkins worked out nicely.

The first two wire baskets are for real, antique gathering baskets bought from a person who actually used them. 

Left to right ... the tiny aqua fruit jar is filled with red seeds from our Mountain Laura tree. Bet you missed seeing that. 

The small basket with the 3for25¢ price sign is a wire basket used in a deep fryer. I bent the handle up straight so that it would hang flat against the wall. I copied Angie at Knick of Time 
She has them hanging in her Kitchen. I had mine hanging in my breakfast room with lemons before using it in this display.    
This is a better picture of the wire basket.

The basket below with the colorful pear is a crinkle wire apple gathering basket. The old crow decided this was a perfect place to sit and observe what is going on.
 Every Farmer's market needs a good scale.

This large basket in the center is very open and has holes about the size of a nickle in the bottom so the dirt from the harvested potato can sift through. I have it filled with old gourds and they are 26¢ each.
The last basket   
is filled with apples for 4½¢ each. I bought it off eBay many years ago because I thought it was a mate to my other apple picking basket ... but so happy and surprised that it was quite a bit larger. As I recall, I got a really good deal on it. 

The other tall candlestick balances out the right side. They are cast iron candlesticks, hand made, most likely in Mexico and was given to me by my dear friend, Katie.

My hand painted sign on old weathered beaded board ... the berry wreath and old chippy green garden gate set the center stage. Colorful gourds, acorns and hydrangeas fill in the gap between the baskets.

My daughter says she wants to shop my Farmer's Market ... she likes the prices, but I think she wants the baskets.  

This vignette is sitting on the hearth.
The little guy is so heavy, he does not get moved around very much.

Dollar Store mice are eating the corn. The crow left when the second mouse showed up.
One crow in nestled in the plant in hopes of getting some corn off the drying rack. 

Hope you enjoyed my first time to do my Mantel in symmetrical display ... has always been asymmetrical with a large picture; wreath or mirror to one side and some other large piece on the other side to balance it. I prefer asymmetrical, but I know the proper way is symmetrical. 

What do you prefer ? 
How is your Fall Mantel coming along? 

Oh my gosh ... I forgot Burlap ...
What was I thinking ????????
  Thanks for stopping by. 
Appreciate your comments.

Hope you days are filled with cooler weather and Fall is just days away. 

Audrey Z.
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