Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Guitars and Cadillacs

It all started with De Ann rearranging at the shop (P20) and I helped her move some furniture around. Then there was this decorative guitar. What to do with it? I looked at De Ann and her mom and about the same time, we all said that it needed to be painted. Let's be real, it was u.g.l.y.

What if we paint it turquoise? add bling... or fringe... Guitars and Cadillacs! We need a new tee design and a window display! Oh yeah! The ideas were flowing! Let's Channel some Dwight Yoakum, meets Miranda Lambert, throw in some Chris LeDoux and MoMo (De Ann's mom) said she was even thinking Dottie West. We painted the guitar for her and she is working on fixing it up! 

Yeah my guitars, Cadillacs, hillbilly music
Is the only thing that keeps me hanging on
-Dwight Yoakum
Road Trippin' Texas Window Display


Brenna comes to work about that time and (gasp) she doesn't have a clue about Dwight Yoakum or the Guitars and Cadillacs song. I key it up on my phone and she shrugs... Well, Ok, I'm most definitely taking the designing role on this design! Fast forward through the day and I have visions of crowns, wings, guitars, and old cars. A Spotify Playlist was born and put on repeat. I was busy with orders and Brenna was at the computer working on some other projects. I couldn't wait till after 9:00 to come around. After garden chores, supper, and dishes were done, I knew I could sit down and bring my ideas to the screen. It was more like 9:45 pm when I set down at the computer, but my night owl self loves working in the quiet of the evening, after everything else is done. 




Music is medicine... but here's the thing, it's about so much more than catchy tunes, guitars, Cadillac's, or hillbilly music... You know, all the best designs have a story behind them and this is more than meets the eye. 


Back in the day, I drove 70 ish miles, one way, to college each week. It was the same time Chris LeDoux's 20 Greatest Hits came out and the tape (yes, I had a tape deck in my truck!) would get me almost to PJC and mercy, did I jam out to that almost every week! Cadillac Ranch was one of my favorite songs from that album and ranks right up there at the top of my favorite songs of all time.

Well the well went dry and the cow did too
And daddy didn't know what to do
The banker came by the house one day
He said he's gonna take the farm away
Then mama came up with a plan
My brother and me started up a band
My sister put a sign on the roof
And daddy bought a case of 90 proof
-Chris LeDoux Cadillac Ranch

 It's more than just a family building a bar in an old barn. To me it is about a family overcoming obstacles that life presented them. It wasn't giving up or giving in. It was getting creative and making a living. As I always say, "when life gets tough, get creative" and "keep rolling on." Those two phrases have kept me going the last few years. Life has thrown us a few curve balls and we've had to look for creative ways to keep going. 


(Please note, I am wearing a large in both tees. The tank is a ladies, more fitted style, while the v neck is a unisex style.)



Heck, just last week, we should have had our second farmers market of the year, but sadly it's been cancelled for the year. There was another show I was hoping to do this summer and I couldn't get into it... I'm not gonna lie and tell you we haven't been a little concerned about that... I took off one weekend, wondered what was next, what to create going forward since we wouldn't have summer shows... but by midweek, we were back to creating, worked all weekend, and have several things going on and we are brainstorming on some new things to come. (The Texas Farm to Market tee in the window was/is our farmers market theme tee for the year. We already had a big stack of them made, when we learned the Gilmer Market wouldn't be happening this year, so you can find them online and in the shop.) 




                                                                  Sometimes these wheels
Get a little heavy
And I can't stay between the lines but I'm rocking steady
When I can't fly, I start to fall
But I've got wheels
I'm rolling on
And when I find a place to rest
I'll stay just long enough to catch my breath
This life with you will keep me strong
D**n these wheels
I'm rolling on

-Miranda Lambert, I've Got Wheels

Wings, a crown, flowers, glitter... we needed all that in this design.


Look around and see how farmers are diversifying- maybe they have a pumpkin patch and hay maze in the fall or a YouTube channel to subsidize farm income. I know Jeff watches plenty of them!  Maybe we take pictures of our farm animals and use them in designs or some turn an old barn into a vintage market or wedding venue... we create our own version of Cadillac Ranch. 

Now the only horns around here today
Are the ones up on the grill
Of a genuine '59 Coupe Deville




Of course the caddy needed horns on it! Jeff said we have a 68 model instead of a 59, but the cool thing is that I actually had a 68 Texas license plate that I was able to use on the car.  Just a little editing turned into a car plate, instead of a truck. 

10-4 buddy, come on back
A horse trailer on a cadillac
Yeah, we're talkin' to the cowboy
In the coupe de ville
Chug-a-luggin' up one side
Slidin' down the other
Well I'm a lover of the other
Side of the hill

- Chris LeDoux, Cadillac Cowboy
Anytime Jeff or I either one says 10-4, the other follows it up with...
come on back
A horse trailer on a cadillac... 




So what started with a guitar an ugly paint job, led to so much more!
We will update when Momo gets done with her transformation and we will have to add it to the window when it's done. 

 We were had a Texas Road Trippin' theme for our summer window and Guitars and vintage Cadillacs just right in there with it!



Come see us at P20 at 100 Davis St. Gilmer, TX 75644 (My workshop is located in the back room of the store.) Some items are online or you can always message me on social media or my website (I don't always get notifications of blog comments or they show up as "no reply" so I can't always correspond that way.) It's possible that we may pick up a couple of events this summer, we just don't have any confirmation yet, so stay tuned. 

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

11 Years of GypsyFarmGirl

On a cold, dark winter night, 11 years ago, a girl took a huge step and established an Etsy shop, blog, and email address… she didn’t tell anyone she knew, because she didn’t think much would ever come of it. She was simply Janice from Texas - no last name or town… She worked a full time job in town, but wanted to make a little extra with things she created at night and on the weekends… the first year was really slow, but she kept making a few things along the way. She laughs and says she made her Christmas shopping money that year and it was just enough to buy some supplies to make Christmas gifts. She didn’t throw away her burlap scraps and a month later made her first burlap and lace bouquet with those scraps. It was the first of its kind online and now they have been shipped worldwide. She didn’t give up and kept trying and things have turned out to be more than she ever dreamed. Things have evolved, grown, pivoted, shifted, and the last year has been the best one yet… she thrifted her way into business, junked, made wreaths, started upcycling flannels, did a “one time” show that turned into something she really loves, learned a new printing process that opened up a world of opportunities and product lines. She left a job doing flowers, to only have y’all request her work… seriously, more than she ever dreamed that winter night, when she finally got the guts to open a shop.

Thank you to everyone who has been a part of this journey.




If she could tell you one thing it’s - don’t fail to do the things, just because you don’t know how. Research, read, research some more, and try, try, try. In this day and time, we have so much information at our fingertips, that we can learn so much...




P.S. I know it's been a while since I blogged... so much has been happening our our business has been growing so much in the last year. My niece Brenna helps me a few days a week now and we have a busy year planned. Honestly, I've been contemplating closing my etsy shop and having my personal website as my only online shop, so if you are reading this in the future, and can't find me on etsy, please refer to my website at www.gypsyfarmgirl.shop (You can also shop our website through Facebook and Instagram, as it is all connected together.) 

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Flannels and Fireside; Home for the Holidays - Our Christmas Window Display and Open House

Everything has a story and our window display at P20 is no different. 

“Flannels and Fireside; Home for the Holidays.”




 

Of course we have lots of flannels, mannequins, and love cozy plaid shirts and super soft tees… but it’s more than just that. 


 


I was already thinking about our window, when our friend Randy passed away. He built the mantle for us to use in shows and it had been in storage for over a year. I knew immediately, the mantle would be our focal point. 
 
“Flannels and Fireside.”
 


Back in the summer, I experimented and messed up a load of flannels and they shredded, because I didn’t process them quick enough… and they’ve been in a pile, just waiting for inspiration on how I could repurpose them. I created flannel rag garlands and used them on a couple of my trees. No matter our past and what we’ve gone through, we can overcome that and be something else. 
 

 


Of course we needed some trucks to carry our trees home. Brenna lent a black truck and Susann from Farmhouse Gourmet had a red truck. Angea brought an extra tree. There’s a burlap door hanger from Burlap Decor and More and wooden lanterns from p20. Jeff cut me some firewood. Brenna had a helping hand and ideas. It’s a collaboration. It’s “home” town makers and creators… and it’s reflections of our town in the windows and mirror on the mantle and memories of Christmas past…oh the memories….



“Angels appear, when cardinals are near.” Of course there’s all the pretty plaid ribbon, but there’s cardinal ribbon on one tree, in memory of all those not home this year… we know the holidays won’t be the same for so many this year and our hearts go out to you. We hope you find peace and comfort. 
 


It’s cozy. It’s warm. It’s home. It’s friends. It’s handmade. It’s memories… and we hope this holiday season will find you enjoying all of that. 

So much has happened since I last blogged... so much! In mid-August, I was able to rent the back room inside P20 as my workshop. I started moving most of my production to town (I do still make some things at home.) This has allowed me to have more room to work and organize my things, which has been very helpful. 




 The room has really transformed since we moved in (I'll do a before and after bog post soon, so you can see the difference.) The ceilings are still ugly and the floors aren't pretty, but I remind myself first and foremost, it is a workshop, so it's ok! We've got several rugs and floor mats down and don't look up at the ceiling much. 

This coming Thursday evening, November 11, 2021 is the Art Walk and Tree Lighting Festivities on the square in Gilmer, TX, so we have decided to have our workshop open house at the same time! We will have the doors open from 5-8 pm and you can come back to shop the extra flannels on the racks, before they hit the store front, we will have ornaments, mugs, and decor as well. Also, my mom, Diamond J Designs will have some of her leather work and crochet items, as seen in a few of the pictures. My sister in law, Lisa's Sweets and Such will have some of her toasted pecans and cookies available Thursday evening. If you've been to any of our shows this year, you might have tasted some of them and they are delicious. The orange glazed pecans are my favorite! 



You can get to my workshop by coming in the front door of P20 at 100 Davis St Gilmer, TX (corner of Davis and Tyler St/ Hwy 154, at the red light on the square.)
I do have a side door, that is located in the huge Live Gilmer mural painted on the side of the P20 building. We hope you'll stop by Thursday evening and see our workshop in person!