Friday, December 2, 2011

Last Best Craft Fair - Come get your Christmas Gifts & Decor!

The Last Best Craft Fair - Henry T. Wing School
Saturday, December 3, 10 am - 3pm
Come check us out tomorrow at the Henry T. Wing School at the Last Best Craft Fair!  The fair is from 10 am until 3pm.   The main craft fair is in the gym but we will be setup in a long hallway upon exiting the gym.

Below are some of our handmade goods we will be selling:
  • Sandwich Signs
  • Christmas Decor
  • Holiday Gift Tags & Cards
  • CaraMae™ pillows
  • Kristen's custom furniture 
  • And more!!
One of our handmade Christmas stockings.  So many more to choose from!

3rd Annual Craft Fair at The Fitness Company for Women
Sunday, December 4, 10 am - 2pm
If you can't make it tomorrow, we will be setup at the 3rd Annual Craft Fair held at The Fitness Company for Women in Mashpee. The Fitness Company is an incredible facility promoting womens health and fitness!! All vendors fees were donated to girlygirl P.A.R.T.S. - an organization setup with the goal of creating awareness of ovarian cancer!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

It’s been awhile! One month actually! Cara and I have been super busy with holiday craft fairs but I thought I’d take the opportunity to talk about our signs and share some recent projects. The holidays are right around the corner and these make excellent gifts!

I’m a sucker for a great quote or song lyric and have collected these for years! I come across a ton of driftwood and old weathered wood from barns, farms, yard sales, the side of the road. You’ve seen these everywhere and I love the ones in the pages of magazines but I’m not a fan of overseas mass production. I went to work one day on a piece I found on the beach and loved what I created. Why not make more on authentic driftwood and barn wood? They’ve really taken off and I love the ideas that people come up with!

Here are some of our recent projects:
  • A realtor friend of mine gives her clients a sign with their new zip code on it. (see picture) 
  • One of my best friend’s wanted a lyric from a country song- I painted this on an old door panel (bottom left)
  • Another friend had me do the date her friend got married (similar to zip code  07.17.11) 
  • SNK stands for Sandy Neck Beach, someone bought this for her sister who spends the summers there (and the wood happens to be from this beach!
  • “LOVE IS BEAUTY FULL” hangs on a neighbor’s shed- this piece is super cool, I found this in an old barn

The possibilities are endless and they make great gifts! Email me if you’re interested. Guaranteed by Christmas and under $50.  

Monday, October 31, 2011

April's Chair & Bench Cushions

After seeing Kristen's and my first project together (Desk, Farmhouse Chair & Cushion), a good friend of mine (April) had asked me to make her two chair cushions and a bench cushion out of the same fabric we used for this project.   I was so excited to get my first "real" fabric order and to begin working on this!  

Typically to begin, I would trace the chair and bench seat with paper to create a pattern, but since April lives all the way in Colorado, she sent me the measurements and some pictures.  I decided to use foam for the cushion since it is fairly rigid and holds a nice shape.   For the seat cushions, I used filler so that they would be more flexible in case the chair's edge had a curve or if the measurements were slightly off. 

April decided to nix the ruffle and studs I had put on the farmhouse chair cushion and go with a more classic look.   We chose to make olive cording to accent the olive in the fabric.  Her bench and chair are stained black and I think this fabric will look fabulous with it!  I have a black bench in my home so I was able to grab some pictures to get an idea of what the fabric will look like in her home.

 And pretty packaging.... to April's new home, they go!

Adventures in Picking

To say the hunt is my favorite part of "reinventing" furniture may be an understatement. I know I've written about it before but thought I'd share some new shots of a barn sale I came across in Sandwich and Scituate. Signs with "yard sale," "rummage sale," or "estate sale" really really excite me... but "BARN SALE" has almost gotten me in a few fender benders. More than looking for furniture, I love exploring old barns and homes.

A few weeks ago on 6A in Sandwich, I checked out a barn sale at an old home I drive by daily. I was really excited to go inside because I've always admired this property. The barn itself was beautiful but even cooler was the blacksmith shop out back. Although I wanted to pack my car, I restrained myself. I couldn't resist an old oak filing cabinet and Martha Washington sewing chest though. Can't wait to get started on them!

I was meeting a friend to take her engagement pictures in Scituate a few weeks back. Katie and Bennett were sitting in traffic and I happened to drive by an "Antiques" sign. I had time to kill, so I stopped. Here, I met Harold and Audrey, antique dealers for over 60 years! Not only did I come across TONS of beauties, I had to come back with a box truck to get it all! Teresa (owner of Tres Chic where I'm currently doing my work at) and I went last week to pick up all my finds. Not only did I get a great deal, but Harold offered to show Teresa and I his 'attic of treasures'...

It was like an episode of one of those picking shows... it was amazing. He saw the look on my face and struck a deal with me. If I come back and help him clean the attic out (he's in his late 80's), he'll give me a good deal on anything I find. I jumped at this offer and the box truck and I will be back next week! Check out the gorgeous dining room set I picked up... and a ton more! Yahooooo!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Project: Paris Gray

With our latest collaboration, we joined creative forces with Tres Chic owner Teresa Morris. The three of us decided to do a whole set of different pieces that complimented each other. We chose Paris Gray as a base and Cara's gorgeous gray damaske fabric. Included are a really cute bistro table and two upholstered chairs, french-esque plant stand, dry sink/cabinet and unique cabinet (that we believe was once a sewing cabinet). I'm thinking the table and chairs would go great in a kitchen, small dining area (for two of course) or porch area. (Please excuse my pictures in the studio... this is my workspace... paint on the floor, etc. Not the best backdrop!)


Monday, October 17, 2011

Paper Studio

Not only can we design fabric and reinvent furniture, we also work with paper!   Invitations, thank you cards, wedding programs, favor tags - we can do it!   Below are only a few examples of the invitations I've designed.  Kristen also makes beautiful cards that are more dimensional than my work, and you can buy them at Sandwich Crafters. 

Here is the most recent invitation I designed and put together for my cousin's wedding.  I really like the whimsical-ness (is that even a word?!) of these invitations.  My favorite part is the rhinestone - hard to see in the picture, but look close and you'll see a little sparkle :0)

Baby shower and favor tags below....

And I can't leave out my wedding...

And some other designs.  Hope you enjoy!


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A Rare Find

I was having a conversation with a friend about what Cara and I were doing with vintage furniture, and she responded with, "Well, I have a bunch of crap in my basement if you want to clean it out for me. There's an old vanity and some desks I think".  I've seen pieces in shambles, covered in dust and spider webs, smell like rotting vegetables, nothing scares me anymore... so I was intrigued in checking out this "crap". Needless to say, I was in her basement the next day... and sitting in a dark corner, covered in old sheets, was this vanity. I almost fainted. Dramatic, a little maybe. But, I was the happiest girl in the world that day. I dug it out, threw it in the Jeep and drove it on down to the studio.  The lines on this piece are beautiful and so feminine. And the original hardware was in great shape and really unique... I couldn't wait to work on it.

The same day our good friend Jen (and neighbor at Tres Chic) came in, saw it and bought it on the spot, once finished of course. She said it reminded her of her Grandmother's vanity and when she was little, she used to brush her hair for hours in the mirror.  Jen brought in fabric, a traditional black and white damask, for the seat that reminded her of what was once in her Grandmother's house. I love doing pieces with meaning and I love the old stories that come out of them. Can you imagine who looked through this mirror years ago?  

Stay tuned for more pieces Cara and I dug out of Rebecca's garage and basement... next up is a gorgeous vintage couch!

Linking to:
Miss Mustard Seed

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Brimfield Find: The Lady's Chair

Remember our finds at Brimfield - well, here is our favorite piece - the Lady's Chair -  from worn, dark and shabby to fresh, happy and classy.   Kristen and I came across this unique piece, and we both immediately fell in love.  We had to have it!   We're not really sure what it's called or what time period it's from, but we recognized the potential and there was no hesitation in buying it.   Although neither one of us had ever upholstered anything in our lives, we thought we'd give it a shot, and we think it turned out pretty good for our first time :0)

We began the process by pulling off the old trim, prying out the rusty nails and removing the fabric.   We  added some batting to give it more cushion and tightened up the strapping.  Kristen primed, painted, and disressed it. 
I created a new fabric design for the chair.  I started by hand-drawing a motif on paper, scanned it onto the computer, brought it into Illustrator and traced it to create clean edges.   We decided on white motifs against a gray textured background.

Applying the fabric to the chair was a little tricky, especially around the corners, but we found a way to make it work. The last step was applying the gray frilly trim.  This was the fun part as we got to see our first upholstered piece come to a finish!

I made two pillows to adorn the lady's chair.  Both with ruffles - one with matching fabric and the other with the frilly gray trim and sparkles!

 And ta-da, the finished piece!

Linking up with

Friday, September 30, 2011

Jewelry Chest Seeks Jewelry-Loving Owner

Cara and I made a trip to the the Brimfield Antique Market a few weeks ago, where I picked up this adorable little jewelry chest (this is what I'm calling it). It looks like it's in decent shape, but the back and drawers were falling apart. It had great brass detailing though that immediately caught my eye. With some negotiating, I threw it in the back of the Jeep and we were on our way! After debating what color to paint it (I sometimes let a piece sit for weeks because I can't decide), I chose a new color I haven't used before... Painted, waxed, I'm in love... again. Thank God I live in a 100 square foot cottage, otherwise I'd keep half of my pieces! I try to stick with historic/vintage colors and I love how vibrant this blue is against the brass detailing.    -Kristen

Monday, September 26, 2011

A Little About My Fabric... A Little About Me.

When people see my fabric, they often ask how I design it.   Well, sometimes, I start with a pencil and paper and other times, I head straight to the computer.   I use nature, found objects, and other designs as my inspiration or I use just my imagination.  And how did I get into this… I've always had an interest in sewing and home decorating.   And as a graphic designer, I thought it would be cool to design my own fabric.   After taking a few classes in surface design through UMass Dartmouth School of Visual Arts, I was taught the skills to enable me to do this.  I learned how to design in repeat and how to hand screenprint.   Although I enjoyed screenprinting my fabric, I felt that it was far too time-consuming.  And then, I learned about this amazing company called Spoonflower.  Spoonflower digitally prints fabric and has made it possible for individuals to design, print and sell their own fabric designs via the web.  The company was started in 2008 by two Internet geeks who had crafty wives but who knew nothing about the textile business. One of the founder's wives thought it would be a really cool idea to design her own fabric and make curtains.  She wasn't the only person wanting to do this and now the Spoonflower community has grown to over 150,000 members worldwide who print their own fabric to make curtains, quilts, clothes, and much much more!

I really love what I am doing and hope that I can turn this into my new career.  Being able to balance work, home, and being a new mom is a challenge, but one that I know I can take on.  The design process takes a lot of time and even more so now that I have Soleil to raise.   It's difficult to find uninterrupted time to design like I used to and even when I have childcare, there is still mom stuff to do - whether it's pumping, scheduling an appointment, or a task around the house.  I am adapting to this and am still learning how to prioritize in the most effective way.   Each day is a learning experience and although being a new mom and starting a new business can be overwhelming at times, it is the best thing that has happened to me, and Soleil is a new source of inspiration to my work.

Below are some of my fabric designs.  Hope you enjoy!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Happily Ever After: A French Provincial Buffet Story

Once upon a time, back in July, I was searching Craigslist for a piece of furniture longing for a little love and a new home.  I came across this beauty and knew it had to be mine. An 80's baby, this piece reminded me of my childhood bedroom furniture: that hideous gold color with darker gold trim, shiny veneer, just plain ugly. I picked it up (it was love at first sight) and took it home... and started striping it. Then two weeks later, I primed it. Then a week later, I painted it. Two weeks later, I painted another coat. And then the trim... and on and on and on... did I mention how MASSIVE this piece actually is? This is my biggest project to date and it literally took me almost three months. I'm a big fan of instant gratification and this simply wasn't doing it for me. I'd do a little at a time, then do something else... but finally, this week, I finished it. And, I have to say, I love it. I distressed it a bit, painted the trim Duck Egg Blue and painted the handles Antique White. It's happy, I'm happy, it's happily ever after.

The End.

By the way, a little note on Craigslist. This can be an awesome place for GREAT deals. Most people just want to get rid of stuff and you can really bargain with them. However, it is definitely sketchy meeting people at their homes. I prefer the buddy system! From the picture below (the actual picture from Craigslist), use your imagination at the type of place I picked this up at! 


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Hunt

People often ask me where I find my pieces? Well, the answer is, literally anywhere! I've stopped traffic on the side of the road because people are throwing things out, I've woken up at 5 am for flea markets (why does the antique world start so so early in the morning?), I've rummaged through yard sales (although this is not my favorite place... something about looking through people's belongings, with them staring right at you, creeps me out big time), people have even given me pieces they simply don't want anymore (do you know there's a company down Cape that actually gets PAID to clean out basements, garages, and attics, then turns around and sells it all? Why didn't I think of that!!). You name it, I've done it. I've even gone in abandoned houses, which is probably one of my favorites... not necessarily for furniture, but just to look around... there's so much history here on the Cape, I just love it!

Anyway, this brings me to the Brimfield Antique Show... this place is the Disney World of the antique world, one of the coolest places I've been... I'm almost positive it's one of, if not THE, biggest antique markets in the country. It happens three times a year in the Western part of Massachusetts. It's a great place for ideas, inspiration and a few good deals. I say a few because apparently re-doing antiques is hot again (I've been told it goes in waves through the years) and prices have definitely increased since May. Cara and I went to the last one of the year two weeks ago and picked up some unique and cool pieces - along with muddy feet!  Check out Cara's pretty pictures to get a taste of Brimfield.   And stay posted for makeovers of the items below!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Our First Project - Desk, Farmhouse Chair & Cushion

Hi, this is Cara and Kristen and we’re teaming up creatively to bring to you some really cool and unique pieces for your home.  Kristen’s task is to give vintage pieces a new life with sanding, painting, waxing, or whatever it takes! Paired with fabric designed by Cara… we’re creating one of a kind pieces that we hope will inspire you. The purpose of this blog is to showcase and share our projects with you. We’re starting here and hoping to expand to a big beautiful retail space someday! Dream big!  

Our first project together is an old secretary’s desk and chair. It needed a lot of love… sanded, painted, distressed and waxed… we then added a wooden embellishment to give it a little more detail. Cara took one of her previously designed fabrics and made a seat cushion for the farmhouse chair. We choose a fresh color palette to compliment the Duck Egg blue inside. The studs add a bit of our personalities and give it a modern flair. Of course, we both love anything girly, the cushion is finished with a mint green ruffle. 

It's for sale too!   $275.  Email or message one of us on Facebook if you're interested!