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Monday, August 31, 2009

Chicken feeder redux....

I posted this easy breezy project on Junk Market Style, but
wanted to share it here, too...follow me on a tour of mi casa,
birds-eye view.  ;-)

I discovered a super cheap stash of these
rusty old chicken feeders at my nifty neighborhood flea market.
How apropos that the flea market is held guessed old chicken barn!

There it is on the bottom row, 
hard at work on my china hutch, Big Orange Betty.

Hmmmm, where else could I put one of these? A-ha, I've got it!

A gal needs a place to stash all her toiletries
and fancy-schmancy girl creams
that keep her, ahem, "naturally beautiful", right?

Last stop, the kitchen....

Eat your heart out, William Sonoma!

Enjoy your week, one and all!


Sunday, August 30, 2009

Warrenton a newbie out!

I'm going to be making my very first trip up to Warrenton next month, and to say that I am psyched would be a gross understatement.

Sooooo....I am in serious need of advice, tips, any info you can spare on how to make my first trip to this Junk Mecca a memorable one!

I seriously want to meet as many of you there as possible,
but sort of feeling like I'll be crashing a private club
to which I'm not yet a member.

Yeah, I know. Note to self below...

Those of you who have been so wonderfully kind to me,
who have inspired me with your talents and motivated me
with your encouragement, drop me a line!
Let me know how to reach you/where to find you at Warrenton.
There's a great big Texas hug waiting for ya if ya do!


Friday, August 28, 2009

All I want for Christmas.... this~

Discovered this in the back room
of a favorite vintage shop yesterday afternoon.

Papeterie, French for "a box used to hold stationery and other writing materials".

It's all there....the ink wells, the stamp pad, the pen.
There are writing papers just behind the stamp pad, too.

Have you seen anything more glorious than this lately?
I myself have not.


Tree of Life....

I am completely mesmerized by this tree.
I pass it each day on the way home from work,
and it's long been my intention to photograph it and share it with my readers.
There's something so tragically grand about it ~
arms lifted Heavenward, spindly, thirsty fingers twisted
and reaching downward for sustenance.
Mind you, this is not the result of our recent drought,
it has been dead or dying for many years now.

By trade, I am a Respiratory Therapist in a hospital setting;
it has been my lifelong vocation to offer
comfort and healing to the sick and it perhaps for this reason
that I feel empathy, daresay even a kinship with this tenacious survivor?

It brings to mind the venerable words of poet Alfred Joyce Kilmer...

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.


Thursday, August 27, 2009

Loot, swag, booty....fabulous junk!

It turns out that the big 50% off sale at the local antique store
was quite the event. I arrived 15 minutes before opening,
and there was already a line snaking around the building!
You woulda thunk Hannah Montana tickets were on sale. ;-)

I was about the twentieth person in line,
but hey, I'm still relatively young and fast and I knew what I wanted,
so I just shoved a few blue hairs out of the way
and made a bee-line for what I had scouted out yesterday.

Yep, I did score the precious little pink stool and the Windsor Chair...

I just finished touching him up
with a little dark walnut stain, and he looks incredible!

There was a wonderful selection of vintage suitcases....
my personal faves were the second and fourth from the top.

Been looking for a vintage kitchen scale,
and the one in the center fits the bill nicely.

In conclusion, I also unearthed a treasure so remarkable,
so unspeakably lovely, that I simply must save it for tomorrow's entry.
It will be worth checking back to get a peek....

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

BIG sale tomorrow, decisions, decisions...

There's going to be a huge blowout sale
at one of my favorite shops tomorrow....
they're celebrating their 2nd anniversary, and EVERYTHING
is going to be 50% off. I snapped a few pics today,
and thought I'd solicit a little input as to what you think I should adopt and bring home.

This beauty is $90, tomorrow will be $45...

I fell in love with this sweet little pink metal stool. It will be $17.50....

This little gem has potential, don't you think?
$40 if I get there early enough.

This Windsor chair needs a little TLC, yes? $18 and it's mine...

Darling pair of metal chairs....$12 for the pair.

If you were accompanying me, what would you fight me for?
That's the junkers litmus test, right? Awaiting your starts at 9am sharp!

Big Orange Betty

It's going to be tough to part with her
once I get a booth or shop off the ground and running.

Oh, my apologies, I haven't introduced you
to my newest family member yet.....this is Big Orange Betty.....

She's a little self conscious about her height,
being 7 feet and all. A chunky hearty farm gal
from the plains of Minnesota, donchaknow.
How she made it to a flea market in the Texas Hill Country
is likely a tale to rival the very best of Lewis and Clark!
And don't ya dare even think about calling her Ugly Betty...
why she'd just as soon whomp you upside the head
with a rolling pin as put up with that sort of sass.

One of the local antique store Proprietoresses (is that a word?)
had her eye on Betty for a few weeks prior.
I know this because said Shop Owner is a friendly acquaintance,
and we've shared tales of our latest finds and acquisitions.

On the morning I picked Betty up from the market,
my trusty friend Junker Earl informed me that Shop Owner
had come by bright and early before I had arrived
to make doubly sure that I still wanted Betty and was
planning on picking her up. ]I know for a fact
that Betty wouldn't have left with her anyway....even though I got her for a steal at $85,
Shop Owner has a glorious shop full of beautiful but pricey treasures.
Betty, being a simple gal, instinctively felt more at home with me.

So, me and dutiful husband and dutiful friend loaded her up
and off we went. Got her home and began to play dress-up....

A little strip of burlap to temporarily cover the stains....

Enough lollygagging Betty, time to get to work!
Out with the unpacked wedding china,
into your watchful bosom, old girl.

She's going to be tough to say goodbye to on that fateful day,
but say goodbye I will. My shop will need a good-hearted,
big-boned sentry like Betty to keep an eye on things.....donchaknow?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Do they speak to you, too?

I do tend to anthropomorphize my belongings,
I believe I mentioned that in an earlier entry.
My divine Carol Hicks Bolton couch is named Babette.
And even though I most certainly do not
consider my cat Winnie a belonging
(she is my daughter, after all),
I do have the odd moment every now and again
when I feel certain she's a tiny little human inside a cat suit.

But it goes beyond that.....look closely at my small vase above.
Where the crackling is on the glaze, the slight darkening resembles
nothing so much as veins and arteries. "It's Alive" she exclaimed!
After all, I'm positive that she spoke to the very core of who I am
and what I love when she came home with me 12 years ago.
And she's been speaking to and inspiring me ever since.

They speak to you too though, don't they?
That whispery yet persistent voice which tells you
that home for them is whichever way and whereever place you're heading.
I mean, how else to explain the absolute "right-ness"
of that one very special piece we all own?
The one we were sure we couldn't afford
yet could not imagine leaving the market without?
It's their fault....they speak to us.

They can be pesky and strident little boogers when they find their mark....
even so far as haunting our thoughts and dreams
in the days and months to follow
should we not heed their supplications
and invite them back to our domicile.
Armed with regret and hopeful anticipation,
we invariably head back to the marketplace and find,
to our utter dismay, that they spoke a bit
more loudly to someone else....who listened.

Shhhhhh, I think I hear Babette.....
back for my next post after I learn
what's on her mind this fine Wednesday.

This post was edited to remove
any photos not taken by myself, Anne Lorys.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Coming soon, to an antique mall booth near you.....

Brushing up on the works of the Masters......

Thinking of adding a little Jeanne d' Arc Living to the library.
Pssssst, issue #5 will be in ENGLISH!

"New and Improved"?

Originally posted August, 2009

I recently scored an absolutely amazing vintage china cabinet
at a local flea say I got it for a steal
would be a gross understatement.
It was such a steal that I even felt a momentary twinge of guilt
as I loaded up my treasure, knowing full well
that what I got for a mere $85(!)
was going for upwards of $600 just a few blocks away
at the chi-chi antique stores in town.

Upon getting it home and placing it in the kitchen corner,
I began to fill my newfound gem
with wedding china and household wares
procured two years ago, but heretofore unpacked.
Hooray, I thought!
At last, a fitting showcase for my shiny, new Calphalon,
my glistening Corningware, my sparkling ivory Mikasa.
The new juxtaposed against the old,
the timeless contrasting sharply with the transient.

Would my designer label china have looked any more elegant
displayed in a modern, new Ethan Allen piece?
Some might say yes.

But like so many of you, the inherent beauty in what others
might perceive as junk is this:
my chippy, peeling, flea-market find has lived a life.
Not to anthropomorphize, but it has tales to tell.

Each chip, each dent, each coffee-stain ring
speaks to an existence
foreign to my own, yet strangely similar.
Utilitarian practicality is now sharing the stage
with stylistic functionality,
but to us junkers, the beauty has always been evident,
even if Farmer Jones and the Missus might not have fully
recognized it before relegating it to the storage shed.

Yes, my pristine Mikasa serving pieces
have a resplendence all their own,
but they have yet to live a life.

They still have much to learn
from the wisened old veteran
which provides them harborage.
I'm hoping they will confer,
as we would all be wise to do
in our own small corners of the world,
be they kitchen or otherwise.

*** this is a re-post from August 2009***

Portal to the unknown....

Those of us old to remember Let's Make A Deal" (that would be me) 
recall that the height of suspense during each episode 
was the revelation of what was behind door #1, door #2 or door #3.

We are a nation of gamblers, of fearless risk-takers; 
from our forefathers right down to the 
preposterously costumed contestants on the aforementioned game show, 
all the way down to a medically trained gal who has 
nurtured a lifelong dream of opening her own antique shop.

I am presented with only two doors before me now....
the door on the right, door #2, represents the life I now live, 
the comfortable, safe, predictable choice. 
I enjoy what I do, and I feel that I'm good at it. 
My patients seem to agree, and I make a comfortable living. So far, so good.

But what if.....

What if I dared to peek behind the door on the left, door #1?
Gosh, it looks like there's some sort of obstacle
just on the other side, through the glass.
Do you see it? Do you think it's jamming the door shut?
Do you think someone's already in there? Do you think they might deign to help me?
Do you think there's room enough for me, too?

If I go ahead and chance it, if I proceed through the door on the left,
will I be able to regain entry into door #2 if I am unwelcome, if I fail?

So many questions, more than a few doubts,
the odd fear every so often.

And so it begins.
I stand on the threshhold and prepare to enter door #1, the portal to the unknown.
Building a business of my own is a dream I've kept tucked away for far too long.
I've received much support and encouragement from my fellow bloggers here,
and for that I thank you all.

I mentioned to someone earlier today that my blog, hopefully,
is going to be a chronology of the birth of a business....
as I said in one of my posts, y'all are getting in on the ground floor.
I hope to be able to share the excitement of someone just starting out,
but I also plan to be brutally honest and not sugarcoat things
when and if discouragement sets in and I ask myself
"What the heck did I get myself into?!"

Many blogs here are filled with wonderful, inspiring examples
of those who have made this dream come true....
this one is very much a work in progress.
So what say you? Will you accompany me as I make this journey?
Hopefully, once I am comfortably ensconced behind door #1,
I will be able to welcome the next trepidacious traveler
who dares to follow their dream.....

This post was edited to remove
any photos not taken by myself, Anne Lorys.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

You oughta' be in pictures, kid....

Uh, yeah.....
That's the idea here, but I am severely stymied, hampered,
vexed (oooooh, that's a fab Jane Austen word!) by the lack
of a decent camera these days. Now, one might ask, how can
a newly minted blogger hope to sustain a readership,
cultivate a business, make friends, build a fanbase (as if, LOL!)
without pretty pictures of shabby treasures?
And shabby treasures I do have, some so lovely
that only a picture will do them justice.

Just imagine if no one had been around to snap images such as this....

Or this......

What fanciful stories these photographs share with us!
And what stories I wish to share with all of you,
the way you have shared your lives and loves and treasures with me, 
inspiring me to leap head first into the wonderful world of being a shop owner.

But first, a camera. Tips? Recommendations?
After all, a picture speaks volumes, and I have a lot to say......

photos c/o creative commons

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

mon petit chat

This is my diva-esque cat, Winnie.
She's soaking up a bit of sun in a chair
by the dining room window, looking every bit the still life subject.

My fledgling shop, fiona and twig, is named after two other cats,
both female, both calicos, both long since gone.
My friends have asked me "Why the name fiona and twig?
Will you be selling items FOR cats?
Cat knick knacks for grannies with fanny packs?"

No to both, she answered ruefully.

I have just always found myself fascinated by the fierce,
independent spirit so nobly embodied by felines.
My husband, a dog person to the core,
is perplexed by the feline nature,
never having lived with a cat prior to marrying me two years ago.

And he thought he was only getting ONE
opinionated female when he swore filial loyalty to me.
Guess we fooled him.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

From the quaint little town that gave you Carol Hicks Bolton and Homestead...

I'm aware that many of you bloggers and shop owners are well acquainted with the enchanting work of designer Carol Hicks Bolton and Homestead. I'm abundantly blessed to live just a short 20 miles down the road from this iconic store in Fredericksburg, Texas, and have been inspired by the creativity of Carol and her husband Tim for nigh on 20 years now.

Please allow me to introduce you to yet another inspiring shop nestled in the Texas Hill Country, Red.

Link to store:

Link to blog:

So what are you waiting for? Click on their links and go get inspired!


Monday, August 17, 2009

Fiona & Twig is born!

Greetings All!
Welcome to the misadventures of a budding shop owner.
My fully formed blog space will be awhile in coming, but just a little info....

Fiona and Twig were two pretty special calico cats in my life.
This blog as well as my shop are dedicated to them,
although you'd be hard pressed to find
any cutesy cat knick knacks among my wares.
Dont get me wrong, I adore my felines,
but my tastes run more to vintage, industrial, retro,
architectural salvage, French ephemera, etc.
I am a Respiratory Therapist by trade, a frustrated,
wannabe writer/vintage shop owner/erstwhile superhero by night.

Welcome to my humble corner of the web.

This post was edited to remove
any photos not taken by myself, Anne Lorys.

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