Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Hoppy Halloweenie

I don't know why I say it that way, but I do....

So Hoppy Halloweenie to you!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A Brief Interlude

Feeling the impending "busy" of the coming week, we decided to get out of town for a while on Saturday. Plus it was just too dang purty to sit at home and work...

Having discovered that we all 4 like road trippin' (no matter how close or how far) we decided that a brief excursion to a State Park would be in order. But then we remembered that Nathan had to help train a new bartender at Graffiti's that night, so our available radius was shrunk to somewhere only an hour or so away

Nathan is a big fan of "being" and I am a big fan of "doing" on trips - but we both enjoy the other experience as well... I think that is why we like road trips. They have a slower pace, but you still feel as if you are making progress... Wylie is a big fan of History & Museums (as are we) and Miles is a big fan of anything Wylie is a big fan of. So we choose somewhere that we had never been, that looked like it might suit us.

Des Arc, Arkansas and the Lower White River Museum. We took the back roads and drove by lots of rice and soy bean fields (ah, the fields...) and arrived at Des Arc, only to drive right past the museum. Seriously, I blinked and we missed it. It was about the size of our house and on the main road. Not at all how we pictured it would be, but there it was all the same, and (shockingly)we had it all to ourselves, with a personal tour guide.

The thing we loved about this museum and the adjoining log dog trot style cabin was that the nice tour guide let our boys touch everything and seemed genuinlly pleased to see us and our curious offspring.

Because of this the boys wwere able to truly interact with all the pieces - even putting on Civil War era clothing, sit in an old school desk and check out the outhouse - big fun!

Most of the items in the cabin were donated by locals and had labels on them giving credit where credit was due. It was nice to see that a community, even one as rural and small as Des Arc, took such pride in this teensy tinsy piece of history. It was great to be in a museum that didn't take itself too seriously and allowed it's visitors to have fun.
Speaking of fun... I found this poster of rules for new teachers from that era to be hilarious. I would not have made it as a school teacher if I had to follow these rules, that's for sure! Click on the picture to enlarge it and get a better look... You won't regret it!

After we were finished at the museum, our guide pointed us to a playground by the White River, where all 3 of my boys had fun playing on the equipment, most of which I am pretty sure my Paw sold the State of Arkansas Parks and Rec in the early 1980's.

They also had fun running (charging) down the big hill and throwing sticks and rocks into the river.

We all came home worn out just enough, very glad to have taken a brief interlude to discover something new and have some fun, just our little family.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Sneak Peak

Here is a sneak peak at what is going on in my studio as I get ready for the big switch-over on Thursday.... Lots of paper and glitter all over the floor... But at least it is the studio floor and not the dining room floor.... sigh of relief...

Some more of the Christmas Banners (Believe, Ho Ho Ho, and MC) are also already listed for pre-order over at Storia HOME....

Things have shifted so fast to Christmas that I haven't had a chance to get Thanksgiving Banners made and listed, so if you would like a Thanksgiving Banner (Happy Thanksgiving, Give Thanks, Gobble Gobble) please let me know and I will whip one up for you!

That's all for now... it's back to the crafting table for me!!

Friday, October 26, 2007


Look at me, I'm Sandra Dee...
and I've been featured over at Aged Vintage Papier!
Thanks Amy!!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Burried Under Inspiration

This is the start of my Christmas inspiration board. Notice Kate Winslet at the bottom - that is the Keeping it Real portion - the busy mom, reading scripts at a table covered with bottles and empty cereal bowls... I like the contrast between the dreamy and the everyday. That is what makes life beautiful to me.
I will be buried under big projects from now until next week, but I think (cross my fingers) that I have found a better pace... this new Studio arrangement has been my saving grace. And re- learning (again, and again) that too much Worry & Hurry does no one any good. Especially me.

I am officially turning on the Christmas tunes, popping in some Christmas movies and plugging away until we unveil A Very Merry Vintage Holiday (Storia style) at the Shoppes next Thursday night... I may or may not be around too much between now and then, but who knows. I am never great at predicting that.

For now if you want to get a jump start on your holiday decor you can pre-order Merry Christmas banners here... (I will be adding banners with other words in November) or if you are banner addicted you can check out my new Banner of the Month club - which is sort of an experiment ...

Happy Thursday to everyone!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Prize Movie

Well we did it, Sunday after church and some napping, we battled long and hard and finally we reclaimed our house and got it into fairly presentable shape! Nathan tackled our room,I tackled my Studio and the dining room, and the boys worked on their room and their things in the living room. By Sunday night we could see the both the floor of our room and the top of the dining room table. It was a truly rewarding moment for our little family. Between work, travel and illness our home was sadly neglected and we were all feeling the effects of a messy house.

One of the biggest things that we did was take down the bed in my Studio and move an extra table to act as my craft table until we decide which table/desk we want where for sure... For some reason we have ended up with about 3 kitchen tables and we are shuffling them around trying to decide which one fits best where. Also I am trying to decide if I want my craft table to be counter height or stay table height... But that is neither here nor there right now - the big news is that now my studio is truly that - my studio. Not a guest room, not a family office, but my studio and it feels sooo good (and it will feel even better once it is pink I am sure!)

Last night I had to cut about a million circles out for Christmas banners and a custom order, and I really wanted something new and fun to watch... While at Wal-Mart picking up grosgrain ribbon, printer ink and milk (that is what is great about Wal-Mart right there... despite all the things that are bad, that fact alone is wonderful...) I found this movie which I have been wanting to see forever. And it was a grand total of $3.98 - almost cheaper than I could rent it for. Nathan loaded it onto my computer and I watched while I cut and glittered the night away in my newly re-arranged Studio... And when I was done - miracle of miracles -the dining room table was still clean! I am pretty sure I heard the Hallelujah chorus being sung...
But back to this Prize of a Movie. Somehow I completely missed this movie when it premiered, and I just read the book last year. I guess I was living under a rock or something. But this true story about Evelyn Ryan is wonderfully written by her daughter and the movie does it justice - which is hard for any book turned-movie to do as we are all aware of.

This movie is for any Mom who has used her creative talents to add to the family income however she could; for any Mom who has wondered how she was going to afford even something as basic as milk, and for any Mom who has given up adventures of her own so that her kids could be safe and fly out on their own...
And for anyone who thought they were alone in their ambitions and passions, only to find a group of friends meant just for them, and lastly for everyone who believes that it is worth it to hope against hope no matter what the odds.
(Can you tell I was a little teary by the end?)

Of course knowing me, you know that the 1940-1950's setting didn't hurt any either... Julianne Moore's character has great style despite her circumstances, and I loved seeing all the aprons and fashions, right down to great shoes. Apparently Evelyn Ryan LOVED the color pink and Julianne actually wears some of her real dresses in the movie. I also loved the house all those colors... those wonderful faded colors....Look at the trim in the kitchen - fabulous! Even the high chair was adorable... There was great attention to period detail, which you know I ate up with a big ole wooden spoon. If you get a chance to watch it with the commentary on by Ms. Moore please do - it is worth it to learn all the bits about the characters and how intentional everything was, right down to the lighting of the pink jello...

So if you haven't seen it, and you are in need of a new flick to put into your rotation I would recommend The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio. It is worth a lot more than $3.98 in my humble opinion...

Banner Club

I am excited to introduce Storia HOME's latest offer -

This Club will allow you to plan ahead for all those special holidays and events in your life, and ensure that you have the perfect Banner to adorn your home or event!

Best of all the Club is going to give you freedom of choice - instead of telling you what you can get each month, we are going to let you pick! As a charter member of Storia HOME's Banner of the Month Club you will get your pick of any Banner in our selection, plus 2 Bonus Banners when you buy the Glitter Package or 1 Bonus Banner when you buy the Ribbon Package!

Here Are The Selection Options:
Happy New Year
Auld Lang Syne
Happy Valentines Day
Be Mine
I Love You
Happy St.Patricks Day
Happy Easter
Happy Mothers Day
Queen Mother
Happy Fathers Day
Dear Ole' Dad
Happy Birthday
Happy 4th of July
Let Freedom Ring
Grand Ole' Flag
Back 2 School
Happy Halloween
Happy Thanksgiving
Give Thanks
Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays
Let It Snow
Ho Ho Ho
Custom (1 per member only)

There are 3 membership options:

1) Glitter Membership for $240.00 which gets you 14 Banners total, including Shipping.

2) Ribbon Membership is $120.00 and gets you 7 Banners total,including shipping.

3) Paper Membership which is $60.00 and gets you 3 Banners total, including shipping.

FAQ - (Or Rather Their Answers )

*Holiday Banners will be delivered 30 Days before the specified holiday so you can get the most out of them.

* Custom Banners MUST be ordered 30 Days before desired arrival.

* After purchasing you will be sent an email prompting you to choose your selections and collecting mailing info.

If you would like to join at any level please email me at and I will send you more info!

Many Happy Returns,


Saturday, October 20, 2007

Day Dreamin'

Last year I had a client whose home I decorated for Christmas who had just built a room onto their house that looks a like this. It was a combo mudroom/wrapping room/ laundry room. It was fairly large, and had a great center island like this, and each family member had their own cabinet where they could hang their backpacks, and jackets and soccer shoes. This was a room, where everything had a place, and everything was in it's place. To say that I was a tad jealous is an understatement. A huge one.
I am not usually envious of BIGGER or NEWER or MORE EXPENSIVE houses that I come across -whether they are the homes of my friends or my clients. But my clients all purpose room took the cake, and made me drool... So when I saw this room in the new Pottery Barn catalog I got to thinking again about craft rooms/studios and about my ongoing space problem in my office/studio.
Now, I am not complaining overall. I think our house is just the right size for us - and even though there are some remodeling projects we need to tackle (the kitchen, the additional bath, the back porch...) overall the house is perfect for us. Not too big, not to small... Just right. BUT it might not really be big enough for our life and my work... At least that is how it has begun to feel lately, as my Office/Studio/Inventory Room has taken on a life of it's own; a very messy, barely organized, & frustrating Life of It's Own. Which has made working in it very demoralizing and scattered.
All this set me to thinking about how I can change things to where my work room functions as a Creative Place, an Inspiring Place and as an Office Place (complete with filing cabinets and bills to be paid...) instead of the maddening Pile of Stuff Room that it is now all at the same time, without them overflowing into the other parts of my house constantly.
I think the first thing that will have to happen is that we are going to have to give up all hope of the Studio functioning even a little as a guest room. This means that when we get around to buying a much needed new couch, it will need to be a sleeper sofa, so that on the (sadly) rare occasion that someone stays over we have a place for them to lay their weary heads.

The next thing that became clear as I searched the Internet for inspiration, is that the walls need to be pink. I mean, they REALLY need to be pink. I feel it in my bones. I need pink to think. End of story. Soft pink, has a soothing affect on me and I can't think of anything I need more these days in my work space than Soothing. When I found this picture on Flickr, I knew I had hit on it, the perfect Storia Studio color...

The next element that will be essential is a crafting area. Right now I do most of my crafting in the dining room because I can spread out, and I can see the TV. Both key elements in my artistic process... But again, work is invading my home life, and I would really love to be able to decorate my table seasonally again, and I don't mean with piles of banners... Currently in my office I have a huge table that acts as my desk, but with some great big wheels added, it would be a wonderful work table for sewing or glittering or whatever I wanted! Once we move the bed there will be plenty of room for this sort of extravagance.... And we will simply find some other piece to work as my desk. Another table perhaps... ? Or maybe an old desk will find it's way to me... Oh, and don't forget a TV/DVD combo. I will need to be able to watch certain movies when short on inspiration or when I am just in need of a little company...

Finally I will need a pegboard or cork board (or both) wall area for creative inspiration and organization as I work on projects for clients, the web and the shoppes...I am very visual and I would love to be able to set up little vignettes and groupings where I could work out ideas and thoughts for new products and creations (I love this Anthropologie window, it is so perfect and dreamy don't you think?)
So to anyone who may be trying to think of what they can get me for Christmas: Think Pink Walls and Big Wheels! I promise you won't regret it...

Friday, October 19, 2007

Last Glimpse of Fall

Here is a brief - and last -look at fall in the Shoppe. On Nov 1 we move Christmas in... Next week begins the Christmas crafting madness. I should have started 2 weeks ago, but life has gotten in the way... Hopefully next year we will be ahead a little more - a lot more in fact... I am starting work on Easter in January and staying ahead from there on out!!

Goodbye Halloween! Now 50% Off...

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Things I Love Right Now

Don't you just feel happier for having looked at all that yumminess???

I know everyone else is still on Halloween and Thanksgiving, but inside, where I dream, I have moved on to Christmas... and red. Lately, this year more than last, I am drawn to red again. Red and White. Very French and Scandinavian... But still there will be glitter... I promise!
PS- I think that is the color scheme I want for our house when we get around to the outside...Isn't it lovely?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Wanna Swap?

2 more things:

Chelle is thinking of hosting a great "bits and baubles" swap, but she needs some more encouragement...

Also, don't you hate it when you get to the bottom of a really, really great milkshake? More! I Want More!

(I can't remember where I swiped this picture from, but oh how I want a ribbon center like this...)

Tuesday's Loose Ends

Well I didn't get to it on Monday, so I guess I will do it today... Just a few assorted odds and ends.
First, I wanted to show you this great bracelet that Kim made me for our Halloween swap! I wore it just the other day to the pumpkin patch and loved it. See how she shrunk down vintage Halloween images and turned them into charms? Precious! She also sent me some other goodies that my kids have already claimed... Thank you again Kim - I love it!

In other news, I am excited to say that I have my first official offer up at the Women Take Wing Market. WTW is a great place for any woman that has a small business (or who is starting a small business,) to find support, ideas and resources. When the opportunity came along for me to offer a service to other members I jumped at the chance, and now I am featured right alongside the incredibly talented Miss Amy of Inspireco! My business has started to take a turn this fall, and I am focusing more on my Shoppes and have begun offering Web Design and E-Newsletter Services... I am still doing some interior design work, but I am only taking jobs I really love at this point. Soon I am going to completely re-vamping my website and sharing more about all these changes, but I wanted to go ahead and advertise the E-Newsletter service with WTW because I am so excited about it! (Btw, I also offer this service for non WTW members too - so if you are interested feel free to contact me!)

Finally, I just wanted to share for all the Victoria fans out there - that they have launched their new website and for all us non-subscribers (well not yet anyway) rumor has it the new issue will be out on October 30 and it is all Christmas!! I love their new site, it is very user friendly and very pretty, both very important I think!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Happy Birthday Daddy

Thanks for all the love and support you have given me and Nathan.
Thanks for being the BEST Obi to my boys.

Thanks for always being game for all the crazy things we do - Pirate costumes and all.
Thanks for never telling me I shouldn't follow my dreams, and for thinking that I am smart.

If I could give you anything in the world I would you give winning seasons- championships even - for the Hogs, Cowboys and Yanks.
I would you give you a complete set of 1st Editions of all the Nero Wolf books,
a writing contract with Myrrh or Maranatha or Vineyard,
and I would give Mom a live-in housekeeper so the she would be always be happy, which always makes you happy.
Plus you would rule supreme over Fantasy Leagues, and none of your children or extended family, or friends, or local newscast persons would use poor grammar or syntax ever again, and your food would always be piping (and what I mean by that is scalding) hot. Even at fast food joints.

But instead of all that you are going to get this. Which Nathan swears is almost as good as all that other stuff combined...
Plus you get a lifetime supply of hugs and kisses from the boys - and me too of course!

I love you Daddy! Happy Birthday!!!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Pumpkin Patch Day

Fall is here - finally!!!! - and to celebrate we went on the annual Pumpkin Patch/Hay Ride excursion with some pals...
Here are a few pics of my boys (especially for Jemimah and Judea...)

For more Pumpkin Patch pics click here
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