Monday, February 16, 2009

I haven't fallen in... yet

Hello, hello, -- I am upholstering this poor tattered chair -- the same one Talia is sitting on over there >>>> It desperately needs doing, don't you think?

It's the last big thing I have to do in the living room. (Hooray.)

The poor hideous chair has been hiding beneath a veil of canvas and who can blame it? This chair has had a long and checkered past -- and you wouldn't believe what was found within. Mail... rocks... spare change and curiously, the collar to a cat whose name we don't recognise belonging to a neighbor we never knew. (Having experienced one teenager in the house you learn to not press for answers to the hard questions.)

The hard part of upholstering, after selecting new fabric, is stripping off the old fabric. Sheesh -- this can take days.

While we're waiting for the end result I wanted to thank everyone for voting for my sweet Talia in the Bissell Sweeper SpokesPet Contest -- somehow she didn't win. Go figure. Still, she remains Queen Bee in my heart. And we'll just have to think up a different way to raise a few dollars for the no kill shelter my youngest niece rescues for. We so much Thank You, Thank You, Thank You.

Now, I am back to that upholstering thing. Ick. (It'll be lovely when it's done, It'll be lovely when it's done... this is my new mantra. It'll be lovely when it's done.) Ok, here's a peek at where this is going, but don't tell a living breathing soul, ok?

Back At It,

Monday, February 9, 2009

What's not to like?

Some rooms come together in a flash... while others unfold bit by bit. That is so in the case of my dining room. I never thought of myself as a "formal dining room" kind of girl. In fact, quite the opposite -- up till now I'd considered myself more of the "mix-n-match" sort -- a couple of battered chairs, goblets from one era sidled up to various plates from another...

But I kept inheriting things... things I love... my mother's goblets and silver, my boyfriend's mother's linens... and then I acquired these plates, Franciscanware, Desert Rose. I've written about them before. Oh, how I love these plates. And they needed a place to be.

I looked and looked for china hutches... shelves, cabinets. Keeping the buffet was crucial, whether a hutch sat on it or shelves hung above it offered some wiggle room... but still, the answer did not come easy. The search was like being stuck in the Faeiry Tale of the Three Bears -- what I found were shelves and cabinets that were too big, too small, too glitzy, too shabby... nothing was just right... till I started poking around in my workshop where I have a stash of spindles. What I thought was that a set of shelves suported on spindles would be just right And then the process continued -- some spindles where too long... too short... too delicate.

Briefly I considered making the spindles myself. I said "briefly".

Finally it struck me that the woodworking store, Rockler, might be just the ticket. And it was -- it wasn't an easy fix -- their were strill length issues and it took several trips and a special order, but finally the picture in my head is now hanging on my wall.

My brother tells me that this open cabinet is known as a Welsh Dresser. I've since looked it up; Welsh Dressers generally feature open cabinets or shelves that sit on the buffet, as if attached. Strictly speaking mine isn't really like any Welsh Dresser I've ever seen... but whatever it's called, it's this cabinet, these dishes, this formal room that feels like home. Who knew?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Vote for Talia!!!!

Bissell Sweeper is looking for a new "Spokespet" and Talia wants to win! Vote over there>>>>

That is Talia, above and featured on the right>>>>, on the tattered blue chair. If ever there was a dog in need of a sweeper to pick up the white hair trail she leaves behind it is Talia. Oh, but she is such a dear thing it is really hard to mind a few million dog hairs here and there.
(Talia's not so fond of visitors -- particularly not cute besweatered ones like the spring-footed Miss Lucy.)

Talia is a rescue puppy acquired entirely by accident, as most rescue puppies are. I was at the vet's office with a foster dog when I happened to admire a deeply cute fuzzy puppy in the waiting room. I mentioned to his owner howe much I'd always wanted a long-haired pup just his size. The owner said she was supposed to have gotten only the one... but she couldn't leave the runt behind. From her coat she withdrew the very tiny sibling of the fuzzy dog I'd been admiring. "The conditions they were living in were criminal. No shelter, not even a blanket to lay on in all this snow."

She said there was another puppy left... in need of a home...

"I'll take it," I said, on the spot, sight unseen.

We made arrangements -- the puppies were owned and neglected by a co-worker of her husband. The transfer was made and I brought her home two days later.

Talia was then five months old, completely unsocialized, untrained, undisciplined. All she had going for her was cute, which goes a long way. The first night I brought her home she sat on my lap for four hours while the foster dog and my own dog took turns sniffing her. All over, back and forth, sniff, sniff, sniff. She has been my constant companion ever since.

Don't let the hard luck story fool you -- she's working it for all she's worth -- for all the steak and snuggles she can get her paws on.

What she most reminds me of now is a joyful three-year-old child. Talia spins and dips and twirls. She seemingly giggles. She snaps at the cat so's the cat will smack back -- it's a game they play. Talia really is a rags-to-richs girl and now she wants to be the Spokespet for a vacuum cleaner company -- makes sense to me.

Talia needs your vote -- the first listing on the right features a highlighted (purple) link to vote for Talia -- just click the link and vote for Talia.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

I Won, I Won, I Won!!!

Some weeks back The Slipcover Diva, Angie, held a drawing -- the prize being a lovely-exquisite-beautiful custom silk screen.

Be still my heart, I WON!!

And look, there are TWO!!!

For one thing I am thrilled -- they are so beautiful. For another thing, I haven't yet decided what to do with them... make pillows, frame them? Add fringe? Put them on the bed? The sofa?

It hasn't quite come to me yet... but soon -- I will get an image in my head of the right fabrics, the right trims, the right place. What to do, what to do?

For now I am content to simply gaze at them... and consider the possibilities.

One thing that keeps coming to mind is that I want to learn how to silk screen too.

Does it take you awhile to figure out how components should go into place? Or do you just know, right away, no hesitations?

(I'm thinking plaid... or paisley... I'm thinking I will think it out again.)

Thank you, Angie -- I am so honored and humbled to have a piece of your art for my very own.