Wednesday, March 1, 2017

The Month of Navy Blue

In the last couple of weeks, I've made and shipped items to four countries! Now that's not an every day occurance (and my shipping bill this month will be crazy), but it is exciting to think about my handmade items being delivered to places all across the globe. 

For this girl who often stresses over her business and struggles with self confidence, I'm so thankful for everyone who puts their trust in me and let's me be a part of your weddings, decorate your events, homes, or  wears something I have created. Y'all are the best! I think about my small home based business, located on the back roads, outside a small country town and through the power of the internet (thank goodness my data is working again) I can connect to people all over the world. It really is amazing!

Navy burlap has been the most popular color this month! Almost every order has navy in it, although there have been several different color combinations. This red, tan, and navy bridal bouquet with rhinestones and pearls is on its way to Canada. 

Rustic wedding bouquet

Navy, wine, grey, and white bouquets are Italy bound. I'm also seeing more request for grey burlap included in bouquets.
rustic bridal bouquet, toss bouquet, and boutonniere
Navy with white lace has been the thing lately. Usually it's ivory lace 90% of the time, so February was a flip flop on that scenario. 
rustic bride's bouquet
Now, if you see me around town and think my hands look ridiculously dirty and have lots of brown spots, please know that I have taken a bath and washed my hands plenty of times, it's just a sign that I have been using eucalyptus recently. After I use the eucalyptus in arrangements, our well water (high in iron) has a reaction to it and I get these spots, wherever it touched my skin. It's kind of crazy. I can wash my hands in "city water" without spots, but when I come home and take a shower, the spots appear for a day or two. Anyways, long story to explain the spots on my hand while modeling a wristlet! Any scientist out there want to explain my reaction?!?
mother of bride / groom corsage 
Here's the culprit - a retirement party centerpiece. I love all the different types the euc and it holds up so well, that I overlook the spots it causes. 
If you've ever wondered about size comparison between a fresh red rose and a burlap rose boutonniere, here is the line up. Fresh Corsage and boutonniere, 2 mini rose groom's bout, burlap rose boutonniere.
rustic corsages

The burlap rose is smaller that an average size red rose.
rustic boutonnieres
Vintage cowboy pillows shipped to the land down under, Australia.  

Navy bridal and small bridesmaid bouquet with a touch of blush burlap.
blush pink and navy wedding
A wreath to honor a veteran... Always sad to make....

Red, white, and navy bridesmaid bouquets.
burlap bridesmaid bouquets
Large bridesmaid bouquets (this bride chose the bridal bouquet size for her bridesmaids to carry.)
Now for a couple non-navy bouquets! A medium size coral burlap, lace and tulle bouquet. 
coral burlap wedding flowers
And a camo, sage, tan, brown, and white burlap bouquet, without any lace. It's really hard to believe that I didn't make anything with turquoise this month.

camo wedding flowers

Love y'all lots and thanks for your support! As always, custom orders are welcome and I look forward to helping be a part of your special days! 

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Hello, Hello...

Testing, testing (tap, tap, tap) 1, 2, 3... is this thing working? Can you here me now? Hello, hello, are you there? 

Geez, it's been a crazy busy few weeks and I've been missing from blog land. A little continuation of the Keeping it Real post from last time - My phone has been giving me grief lately. The battery will say I have 30% left and shut off, then one time it said I had 1% and kept on going. Today it went from 70% to 17 in a matter of minutes, so I think the battery indicator has a malfunction and I must charge it multiple times a day. (Edited to add - I just googled this and I'm not alone. Lots of issues with the batteries.)  It did an overdue update and now my blogger app crashes every time I attempt a blog post, so I'm trying something different for this post. Many of my pictures are on my phone (or shall I say 12,000+) and I find it easiest to upload my pictures from my phone, then I can finish the blog post from my computer. Blame it on slow home wifi for not wanting to upload my pictures on my computer and shall we talk about data?  Uggghhhh, why can't we all just have unlimited data? My iPad is out of data for the month and just as soon as I find some interesting and inspiring pod cast to listen to while working, my phone tells me I should slow down my usage... 

But enough of that - the daffodils have been blooming and the sun has been glorious this week! 

I love the 70-85° weather we have had in February! If only it would forever stay like this.
The sunshine inspires me! 

 I'm happy to report I got the sealer on my church boards (see last post) and I'm working on a new spring line of decor. As soon as I can squeeze in a photo shoot, there will be some new things online!
To me the golden daffodils are the flower that brings hope that spring is coming soon and better days are ahead after a gloomy and dreary winter

We are working on weddings, had a few local events,  plus getting ready for the spring Backwood's Marketplace and can't wait to show you some of the stuff we have in the works. I got a new power tool and found some fresh and springy fabric this week, so stay tuned!

Save the date! April 8-9 is the Backwood's Marketplace! 

Blackstone Ridge - Vintage, Handmade Market

Vintage Market Style and History Gatherings

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Keeping it Real

So this is a keeping it real post for those that think creativity is always easy and fun. Most of the time, yes, but not always. 

I've been struggling with ideas for something new and different for our etsy shop, store booth, and upcoming Backwood's Marketplace and history gathering. If you follow along on Facebook or Instagram, you might have seen some of my church pictures or paintings. The church pictures were taken from my work and life on the Back Roads of Upshur County. I was inspired by old church paintings I have seen, but didn't want to paint, just a random or made up church, so I decided to paint some based on the local churches, that I had photographed. 

I'm trying to figure out how to best display them and unique ways to share the old churches. I painted them on canvasses, that were too big to fit in my scanner at home. One of my trips to Longview (45 minutes away), I found a place to scan them to my flash drive. Home later that night, I got them on my computer, but extracting the PDFs and saving as a picture (so I can resize and print) was no easy task. Figuring out the settings on my new printer, so I can mirror the image made me want to pull my hair out or throw a not so minor temper tantrum. 

Finally, pictures printed, but let me back track to finding, cutting, sanding boards for the photos to be transferred to. I found one scrap board, brought it inside and prepped it (sanded and gel medium applied) and placed picture on the board to let dry 8 hours+. Back outdoors to cut more boards, because I really need to be productive and assembly line these babies, to be most efficient with my time. Jeff comes to assist and 20 boards were  cut to size. 

Back inside, I get 8 more churches on boards to dry, before leaving for afternoon obligations. Home later in the evening, I started removing the paper with a wet rag. To my dismay, my church wasn't very visible. I wanted to cry. I had 8 more churches that were probably wasted on a failed new-to-me technique. 

I might have got a couple of "you should have just done one board to experiment, first, before you did 9..." I laid on my bed, upset, near tears again, staring at the ceiling fan and realizing I need to dust...

Anyways, I leave the others. Their 8 hours to overnight drying time was not complete and I was depressed about my ugly board and went to bed. 

I was gone almost all day to market, meetings, picking up supplies, etc.
After supper, I decided to start peeling the paper off the remaining 8 pieces. Wet it down, scrape, scrape, and scrape some more and pull up my stool to the kitchen sink, because this is no short process and my feet are tired. 

Much to my excitement and relief at 10:30 at night, the other churches were much more visible on the other 8 boards. That's when I realized that the first one was made on a different board. Remember, I said I found a scrap board for the first one. 

Here's the thing, if I hadn't had anxiety, been impatient, and felt pushed to get some production done, I would have just done the one board as a test (as others suggested I should've done), been dissatisfied with the results and never made another one, BUT that's not what I did! Now I've got 8 churches (2 of each different church), transferred to pecan wood, waiting to be sealed. 

I want to include a bit of the history on the back side of each piece and I'll probably print some to frame, or try a few other techniques, when I get a chance. I'm also wanting to photograph and paint a few more of the old churches in the area. Right now, I've got wedding orders that I've got to get busy on, so this will be continued at a later date... But first, I need tea...