Things I Have Been Working On

With gearing up to do another market of course I set my mind to Valentine’s Day. It still seems so far away to me …wasn’t it just Christmas? …but when I thought about it I realized it is already January 12th! How did that happen?

Anyway, yesterday was a paint day and here are the things I came up with:

She Ran Away In Her Sleep and Dreamed of Paradise

This was a custom order. I was given free reign with the font and I think this one worked perfectly.

you & me

Perfect for a Valentine’s Gift, Valentine’s decor or even year round decor.

P.S. I love you

Who has seen the movie P.S. I love you? It’s one of my favourites. Of course, it comes to mind when I think of love. Another great gift or decor.

Home is wherever I'm with you.

This was actually a shingle my husband brought home. It has a natural heart cutout. I love when nature designs things for us! I have been wanting to put these lyrics on a sign for some time and this was perfect.

XOXO blocks

Recently someone was looking for XOXO blocks so I decided I should do some. Hubby had a 4×4 lying around so I put it to use. I love the rustic well loved feel to these. I made 2 sets.

Heart Block

I had one block leftover after making my sets so a heart it became. Rustic and lovely.

LOVE blocks

And, of course, I had to do a set of LOVE blocks, too. Also, rustic and lovely

Look for these in the shop soon! (Except for the custom order …that one is spoken for. Although you can always ask and I could do another one special!)

 

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Busy days

We have been busy, busy, busy. We are moving at the end of the month which is BUSY all in itself. It was also the girly’s birthday this week. She turned 4 and we took her on a super adventure. It was great fun! Four is such a great age (although I have been saying this about each age she has been, ha ha).

Last week I was working on a big custom order but I haven’t had time to write about it yet due to the busy-ness. The order was for two pieces …one was 25″ by 25″ and the second one was for 22″ by 28″. These are the biggest signs I have done to date.

First, after having the hubby cut the wood to the right size, I glued the wood together. I also put cross posts on the back and hubby stapled them in with his (super scary …have I told you about my fear of power tools?) staple gun.

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The boards glued together are finally dry and ready to paint.

 

Then I painted them with CeCe Caldwell’s Dover White to give it a white wash effect. I love it for the background to my rustic signs.

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CeCe Caldwell’s Dover White paint drying on the signs.

Then it’s time to paint the words on. Here is the first sign finished before I hand sand it for the warm, well-loved rustic finish.

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The words are painted. Time to let them dry before sanding.

Both signs are done! They took way longer than I originally estimated. Estimating is hard to do the first time round. (In this case, I hadn’t yet done a sign this big and with this many words). That is all part of the learning curve in doing business though.

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And, the lady who ordered them loved them so much she sent me pictures of them in her home (and she nicely agreed to let me use them in this post)! She is the first person to do that for me and I absolutely loved seeing them. It kinda made my day. It really makes me love what I do when I can make someone so happy with what I have made custom for them!

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Oh, and I almost forgot. Fall is nearly here which means I have broken out the hook and yarn and have been crocheting up some cowls. Look for those coming soon …as soon as I can rope hubby into taking some pictures for me. (I think it looks better if cowls are displayed being worn by somebody).

Ah, Fall …Glorious Fall

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I love Fall. Partly because it means an end to Summer which is actually my least favourite season. I can’t seem to handle hot temperatures which means a lot of Summer days I am stuck inside until it gets cool enough to be bearable. I actually try not to complain about rain or snow or any other weather because my real weather complaint is hot sun. I would take anything else first.

I don’t actually like the extreme cold either, though. (It’s a good thing I live on the West Coast because the weather really isn’t that extreme, not when you compare it to other places). So this is another reason I love Fall. It is an in between temperature season. I would say I love Spring, too except Spring means hay fever so Fall definitely wins.

But really, the reason I love Fall most of all is for those sunny, clear, cold, crisp days that smell so fresh. There is something about those days that make me feel so happy. Those are the days that I will drop what I am doing so I can be outside and enjoy it knowing there aren’t many of those days until the next year comes around. That’s when the piles get backed up around the house but I don’t really care as long as I can be outside.

Labour Day is really exciting for me because that is when the anticipation starts …the anticipation for Fall. I have to admit I got excited when I saw Halloween in the stores in the beginning of August …anticipation of Fall! So this past weekend while others were out having their last summer fling before the seriousness of the new year started (September, not January, always feels like the beginning of the new year for me) I made a couple of Fall/Halloween signs. I couldn’t help myself. And, I want to keep them all. I think I will display them on my shelves rather than add them to the cupboard of signs for sale …at least until someone else buys them to love. I also plan to make some more, too.

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Quotes and Inspirations

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I saw the quote “And a mistake repeated more than once is a decision” by Paulo Coehlo on my sister’s blog and I wanted to paint it on a sign. It really resonated with my recent experiences. I had four boards painted white and ready for something so I started to look for more quotes to paint on the remaining three.

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I really enjoyed The Alchemist written by Paulo Coehlo so I decided to look for some more quotes from him and found “You are not defeated when you lose. You are defeated when you quit.” This also resonated with me and I went as far as transferring the words to a sign. But before I got to the point of actually painting the words on I changed my mind. I liked the idea of not feeling defeated but I realized that I am a person who holds onto things long after I should have walked away. I have done this many times in my life. So, the idea that you are defeated when you quit didn’t sit well with me because sometimes you need to quit to succeed. Sometimes you really aren’t doing the right thing and no amount of trying is going to make you successful. Sometimes you just need to walk away. In those instances I would not agree that you are defeated if you quit. So, I sanded the board and started again. This time I just painted the simple word “delightful” on it. It is the one word I would chose to describe my daughter if I was only allowed one word.

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Another quote that struck me is about making time for things. I have long realized that the words “I don’t have time for that” are not true. Really it should be “I don’t make time for that.” We are so busy in our lives that often we get caught up in the busy-ness. I have learned that if something is important enough then I have to make time to do it. Sometimes that is difficult to do and sometimes it takes me a while to realize it. If I catch myself saying the words “I don’t have time for that” I try to stop and ask myself if it is something I want to make time for or not and then make the decision whether to add it in to my schedule or let it go. I came across this quote from Charles Buxton “You will never find time for anything. If you want time, you must make it.” It was perfect. I painted it.

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As for the last sign. It was a smaller board that kept telling me it should say hello. After trying to think of other things to paint on it I gave in and hello it became. I think it is a cheerful alternative to welcome.

Wedding Date Custom Order

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I received another request for a custom order and they just picked it up today. Any time there is personal information on a sign I like to make sure that I ask if it’s okay to post it on my blog. You never know.

I had seen a couple of these signs with the Mr. & Mrs. and established date before and think they are great.  What better way to commemorate your coming together than a piece of art to hang in your home? I have a vision of the couple looking at that sign fondly many years in the future. Plus, it provides a great reminder for those prone to not remembering anniversary dates.

Paisley and Flourishes

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An idea popped into my head. It involved a flourish painted on a huge piece of wood and hung above a bed. I don’t have a huge piece of wood at the moment but I thought I could still paint a flourish on one of the boards I have hanging out in the backyard that are waiting to be transformed.

So, I started searching the internet to find examples of flourishes to inspire me. At the same time I came across paisley. And I thought …how could I have forgotten paisley? I love paisley. I have always loved paisley. I am drawn to anything paisley. I should paint paisley.

And so you have it, my two newest paintings.

The Girly and I Had an Artsy Day

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Our art from today laid out to dry: The girly painted two boards with lots of colours, one for her Dad and one for her brother who is here for a 3 week visit and then she did a paper version meant for me. I decided just to paint colours in stripes for a beach effect on wood. I am trying to decide whether I will sand it for a rustic look, too. And then I did rainbow stripes on wood and a cat and a butterfly on paper for the girly. It is fun playing with paint without trying to do something perfectly.

I do not tolerate the heat well at all. In fact I would quite happily skip July and August every year if I could. So, on these very hot days when the temperature creeps over 30 degrees I find myself hiding away from the sun during the peak hot times in the day and planning our outings for late afternoon or even better, after dinner.

Today was one of those days so when I asked the girly what she would like to do she replied without hesitation: “paint!” My husband had cut me some wood pieces a while back that I hadn’t got to yet. And it is these particular pieces that my daughter had been begging me to help paint. So far I haven’t let her use any paint beyond the safe, washable kids paint but I am a big fan of teaching our kids how to use things properly so I thought I would give her a chance.

The first thing we needed to do was paint the pieces with my white chalk paint I use for the background. I nervously set out newspaper everywhere as I explained as clearly as I could the importance of not getting paint everywhere and how this paint did not resemble her paint in any way. It turns out I needn’t have worried because she did great. Of course, there was a little too much paint on her brush and some paint globs here and there but considering she is a beginner she did very well.

After we let the white dry I got out some tubes of watercolour paint I have and we each painted two boards. The rest I kept to do some signs I have in mind at a later date. We weren’t done with the paint yet so continued painting on paper before the girly declared we were done. It was a super fun activity and now I have a vision of having an excellent assistant in the future.