Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Kane County: No Tricks, Just Treats

Be sure your Halloween weekend includes a visit to rhubarb reign at the Kane County Flea Market. Sure, we'll have candy, but we also have some of the cutest furniture we've had all year.

Plus we'll have our first round of Christmas -- lots of stuff for DIY, plus projects and plenty of seasonal color. In addition, we've got some killer smalls -- numbers, letters, science bottles, flashcards, chalkboards, glove molds, buttons, jars and LOTS more. Don't miss it -- details are listed on the show sidebar. xo

Monday, October 26, 2009

Ever have one of those week's when your cosmic basket of internal happiness is just overflowing? That was me last week -- just so much to love:

My first-ever Etsy order arrived from my new on-line crush, Emily Martin. I've always enjoyed her fashion blog, Some Girls Wander, but she's taking a little sabbatical, so I switched to her "regular" blog, and low and behold, I'm in love. The posts are really well written, and she seems just like Violet Baudelaire come to life. I'm going to try and read through the archives today if there's time. That's devotion!

I got home from work to find gifts on the table. My folks just returned from Savannah, bringing me this goodie bag from the Savannah College of Art and Design, full of fabulous stationery designed by the students there. My son Jack visited SCAD a while back and said he'd love to matriculate. I'm going to need to start working overtime if that dream's gonna come true.

Speaking of Jack, it was Fall Break this week, meaning extra face-time with Number One Son. We decorated the porch, watched some classic movies and tested this excellent Stovetop Mac and Cheese recipe from my new Everyday Food. We highly recommend it -- the Dijon and Worcestershire give the sauce some real depth, and it reheats well for lunch the next day.

The colder temperatures have given me my first opportunity to wear this vintage swing coat I picked up at our local thrifty ($5!!). Everything about this coat makes me happy -- the 3/4 sleeves, the finger-tip length, the softness of the fabric, the old LS Ayres label -- it's got it all. I'm not usually a big fan of blue, but the coat's color is so unusual, it's almost like a neutral.

And I was looking forward to the weekend's double-header of fun Ohio style -- SoBo on Saturday and Maddie Lisee on Sunday. We got to enjoy Katie's hospitality Saturday evening, hanging out with friends, watching Project Runway and eating the most delicious dinner ever. The smoked chicken was to die for. Sunday morning we delivered our load of furniture to the store, which was looking terrific. Check out Heather's recent photos. It was fun peaking through the Christmas treasure trove in Katie's backroom -- I started my holiday shopping, snapping up jewelry, books, cards, paper and more.

Sunday afternoon, we headed to Heather's house for some of her wonderful Pasta Carbonara and to pick up a great load of furniture and smalls. Here's her kitchen sideboard, all decked out for next weekend's Halloween party. We'll be spending Halloween at Kane County -- be sure to come and see us. We'll have candy -- plus the great finds that we just picked up from Heather and much more. Check back later this week for a preview. xo

PS: A quick thank you to Cathy McMahon for the yummy pretzels -- those didn't last long! (:

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

What's Your Favorite Find?

While browsing around this morning, we read that our on-line pal/customer extraordinaire Linda Crispell was "attending" a Blog Party hosted by the folks at Flea Market Style:

Being included on the guest list was seemingly easy -- just pick your favorite flea market find. But like a father with many children, how can you name one without your heart breaking over the others? If you've been a "flea marketeer" (their term!) for long, I'm sure you can relate.

However, out of many well-loved treasures, I have to say THIS is at the top or at least close to it. It's a hand-made shooting gallery target, probably from some type of small-town carnival. It has so much going for it -- I love hearts as a motif, but they have to be funky; I adore the color red; its brokenness is captivating; it was made by hand. Sigh. It makes me smile every time I see it.
Want to share one of your favorites? Just click to join the party! xo

Transformation Thursday: Crazy for Burlap

Ever notice that Andy Warhol's maxim,"in the future, everyone will be famous for 15 minutes," works for just as well for fabric? Since Joe and I have been working together, different fabrics have had their 15 minutes: vintage bark cloth and French toile to name just two recent celebrities. However we've noticed lately that the ever-humble burlap seems to have captured the cutting table spotlight.

We thought this antique piano stool would definitely benefit from a gunny-sack makeover.

First we stressed the stool itself using our pad sander to bring out some highlights and wiped it clean.

Next we got out our staple gun arsenal and two sizes of staples. We use 5/16 for most fabric jobs, with 9/16 to tack down the bulkier corners.

Then we cut the fabric with enough margin to just reach the lower edge of the seat's perimeter, ironing it on a cotton setting before attaching. We decided to go right over those lovely gold upholstery tacks, then covered the staples with some vintage trim. A little Tacky Glue works wonders for this application-- just be sure to remove all the pins once it dries.

And there you have it. A totally spiffed up vintage stool! Thanks for joining us for Transformation Thursday. Click the button on our sidebar to see lots of other great projects. xo

Monday, October 19, 2009

True Confessions

One of our sales goals is to turn all merchandise every 30 days, meaning we hope to not own anything for longer than a month. Usually, we're pretty successful at reaching that mark. However, once in a while, we run into a piece that is just plain reluctant to part company with us. Case in point -- this crazy quilt, which I still think is fabulous:

I have to confess that we've had it for over a year now, and I don't know why. It makes a stunning wall hanging, but would be great draped over a sofa, folded in a cupboard, tossed artfully as table-scape base -- dozens of places. It is currently gracing the wall of our booth at Midland, so dear reader, if you'd like to help us out and give it a new home, it can be yours for the amazing price of just $34. We're waiting for those phones to start ringing!

I was much happier with how the booth turned out this time than I was on our last visit; think it needed a little more color last time, but we just didn't have it.

Two favorite finds this trip were a pair of grain elevator auger coils (which would make fabulous table bases, but also look great just as arty objects) and

a collection of industrial gauges, several of which are pictured here. We restocked Midland Saturday, then headed down to our space at the Burlington Antique Show, just outside of Cincinnati. It was definitely a frost-on-the-pumpkin affair, but a beautiful setting Sunday for our last outdoor show of the season. There was a good crowd all day, although Early Buy was quiet. We sold a wide range of product, with small tables taking the cake. Wish we'd had a dozen more!

Sunday afternoon, we put the tent away for the last time this year. The end of the outdoor season always feels like a turning point. It used to be even more dramatic, as we literally were outside every show, all summer long. Now we have permanent space inside during the summer, too, but it definitely still feels like passing an annual milestone when the canopy goes into winter storage.

This was my favorite find from the weekend -- a vintage classroom piece, full of fabulous flashcards. What wonderful graphics. What you can't see are the contents of the bags behind the little guy -- they are filled with vintage Christmas ornaments, a true reminder that summer's over. I'm getting really excited to start work on our holiday items. We'll have them out for the first time at Kane in November. Stay tuned for details and come and see us soon. xo

Friday, October 16, 2009

One Season Ends, Another Begins

Join us Sunday at the Burlington Antique Show (just outside Cincinnati) for our last outdoor show of the season. The weatherman says it will be sunny and in the 50s -- pack a cozy sweater, some cute mittens and a toasty thermos of hot cider! It will be perfect weather for scooping up all the great deals you'll find there! Check the show sidebar for details.

For our Chicago friends who aren't able to travel this weekend, don't forget that the Wheaton Antique Market begins its season this weekend at the DuPage County Fairgrounds. We'll also be restocking at Midland, both this weekend and next. Do come and see us! xo

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Transformation Thursday: Pumpkin Pedestals

We recently ended up with these little metal film reels -- a "bonus" item in a bag of photography equipment. In my book, bonus item pretty much equals "project material." So, what to do with my little bit of lagniappe?

Since they almost look like miniature cake stands, I thought they'd make perfect Pumpkin Pedestals. With a narrow drill bit, we bore 3 small holes in the top of each one.

That made it easy to suspend crystals and voila, finis!

Our little pedestals would also be great for mini-trees, snowmen or what-have-you, as the next decorating opportunity is coming right up!

Thanks for joining us for Transformation Thursday. Click the link on our sidebar to see lots of other fun projects (after 8 pm CST)! xo

Monday, October 12, 2009

Grayslake: Contain Yourself!

Wow - I was so glad I grabbed my mittens Saturday morning, as a brisk wind brought a fore-taste of winter to our set-up time at Grayslake! Whew. I'm not ready, that's for sure. But it was totally cozy inside, with many booths packed full of seasonal decorations and Halloween eye-candy.

In addition to furniture, we featured a variety of containers -- old bottle of all shapes and sizes;

Totally cool industrial baking pans -- we've never seen them with these fabulous lids! Great for storage, but the tops would also repurpose into fabulous magnet boards;

A whole collection of vintage clock cases. These are fabulous for vignettes and any kind of assemblage project;

Industrial bolt bins -- again, great for storage; the perfect size for magazines, catalogs, file folders.
The show got off to a fast start Saturday -- many thanks to Lynda for her set-up help -- but slowed by mid-afternoon. Furniture held an early sales lead, but smalls carried the day Saturday. We were psyched to see many of our regulars, but also a few shoppers that we don't see as often. Sunday's pace crept along 'til about 10 a.m., when things began to pick up, but it wasn't 'til the very end of the day that we made our sales goal. Whew.
Some great news spiced things up Sunday morning: Zurkos, the owners of Grayslake, Wheaton and many other shows, will be doing a January and February show in St. Charles on the empty Kane weekend. Yes! We're so excited. Dealers were lining up at the office table to reserve spaces -- sounds like it will be a great show.
This week, we'll get a load ready for Midland, and then head to Burlington for the last outdoor show of the season. The year has blown by! Come and see us -- the weather is supposed to be sunny, but bring your mittens, just in case. xo

Friday, October 9, 2009

Don't Miss This Weekend's Grayslake Antique Market

Our Harvest Bouquets were a big hit at Kane -- come get the last of them at this weekend's Grayslake Antique Market. Show details are listed on our sidebar. Don't miss it! xo

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Honest Scrap Award

We'd like to thank our friend Judy at Tapestries of Nature for bestowing upon us our first blog award! The award criteria states that recipients must tell 10 things about themselves that not many people know, and then must select 7 other bloggers to be so honored.

We tried to pick blogs that have not received awards -- especially this one -- in the recent past. So, drum roll please. The winners are:

Green Oak Shop Talk
Linda Crispell
Maddie Lisee
SoBo Style Journal
VanDaff's Interior Design and Antiques
Adventures of an Invisible Woman
Musings of a Sea Witch

All these sites are listed on our blog roll, so please hop over and check them out!

And for our 10 things, we divided the list up, 3 for Joe, 3 for me, 4 for rhubarb reign:

Joe is 1/16 Ojibwa (Chippewa); almost tried to become a professional bass fisherman; is a terrific cook (you should try his Stuffed Brussels Sprouts)

Sandy has lived in a small town (Plymouth), the suburbs of a large city (Chicago) and a foreign country (France); is nicknamed "Squirrel" (by Joe!) and collects them (not real ones); loves coffee way too much;

rhubarb reign participates in an average of 42 shows per year, in addition to stocking Midland and doing appointments; logs 30,000-plus miles annually on its trusty van and trailer; is headquartered in what used to be a car wash; had its initial meeting on 9/11

Hey, that was fun! We look forward to seeing what everyone else has to say. xo

Monday, October 5, 2009

Kane County: Diane's Dress Form

This tricked-out dress form in our neighbor Diane's booth at Kane County was sooo cute, I just wanted to bite it. I'm not sure why cute things make me want to taste them, but come on! Isn't it adorable? Diane added a hoop skirt embellished with silk leaves to her peeled form, along with a lovely vintage corsage. This dress form is definitely the belle of the Harvest Ball.

Over in our booth, that great dresser from the Allegan post was the first large piece of furniture to sell, followed by a beautiful round, Queen Anne dining table. Small furniture and decor accounted for most of the sales Saturday, while big furniture, containers and industrial dominated Sunday sales.
We had a great time celebrating Joe's birthday, both during the show and at a party Saturday evening hosted by the Boyds. Lynda's Applesauce Spice Cake was to die for. Definitely bite-worthy! We always enjoy see our regular Kane customers and show neighbors, plus were really excited to see some customers that we don't get to shop with as often. Dan and CJ were a great addition to our show neighborhood -- their booth looked terrific. Come and see them -- as well as us! -- at next weekend's Grayslake. xo

Friday, October 2, 2009

Kane County This Weekend

We are excited for this weekend's Kane County Flea Market. Dealer friends from Michigan, Dan and CJ Zondervan, will be setting up in our building for the first time. Their former house (they just moved) was featured in "Flea Market Decorating," one of my favorites. Can't wait for you to meet them!

We have a great selection of furniture, plus smalls, projects and seasonal decor. Don't miss it. It's going to be a great show. Check the sidebar for details! xo