Monthly Archives: November 2013

Vintage Post Card Shower Curtain Happiness

Since I’m so prone to multi-tasking,

it was a natural for me to engage in just that, earlier this a.m.,

by shopping online while enjoying the Thanksgiving Day parade on TV.

Wheeee!  Look at this adorable Dachshund balloon

from the 1950 Macy’s parade!


Here’s a peek at my beloved Dachshund, Chloe:

chloe in bike basket

Awwww!  Isn’t she cute?

And don’t you think her vintage bike basket is terrific, too?

It reads ‘KELLEY CO. SINCE 1953’,

+ I found it at our antiques mall, right here in town!

* * * *

But I digress.

Let’s get back to my shopping happiness.

Since I’ve been thinking + blogging about our bathrooms,

I decided to look for a new shower curtain or two.

Here’s a close up snapshot of the one that is in our current bath:

Restoration Hardware.

HOT + COLD Roller Rings
from Restoration Hardware.

It came from the Mart of Wal + probably cost me less than $20.

I loved it for its woven blue stripes + general Ralph Lauren-ish-ness.

Methinks we  need a change, though.

I’d like to step it up a bit, style-wise,

+ spring for something a tad bit more unusual.

For example, I totally dig the vintage post card style of this one:

curtain of shower -- st. louis riverfront
DENY Designs

I do love my St. Louis + that arch!

Since I also love the Cardinals + their ballpark,

this one had me swooning!

curtain of shower -- ballpark + arch
DENY Designs

How’s that possible?

Last year I bought this very same image in a print

from this etsy seller:

st. louis print from etsy

My print came in red, as does the shower curtain,

which is what you might think I’d have ordered, stat.

I almost did.

However, I thought that, since I already own the print,

I’d opt to keep shopping.

Here’s the shower curtain I think I’ll buy:

curtain of shower -- close up of Chicago
DENY Designs

Once again with the vintage post cards,

+ what makes it even better is that it includes

lots of my favorite U.S. destinations!

Wouldn’t it be fun to be infused with a bit of wanderlust

every time we shower?

I think so.

If you think so, too, chances are they offer favorite your city.

curtain of shower -- Portland
DENY Designs DENY Designs
DENY Designs DENY Designs
DENY Designs

Or your favorite road trip:

curtain of shower -- california

Yay!  The Pacific Coast Highway!

Would viewing this render me car sick, though,

like what tragically happened to me

during my initial journey on said-same?

Lesson learned: always take some Dramamine

when you find yourself in a car somewhere outside of (flat) Illinois!

Windows, Siding + Foundation Musings

After we waited for weeks-on-end,

our replacement windows finally arrived at Home Depot last week!

We chose American Craftsman windows from Andersen.

We considered this grill configuration:

window grill -- farmhouse with 2 stripes

But we decided upon this simpler ‘Farmhouse’ grill, instead:

window grill -- farmhouse

We sprung for grills which rest outside the glass,

hoping it would make the windows look more original.


Here’s our kitchen window,

which was switched from its original single self

to a pair, side-by-side:


That item on the roof is a solar tube

for adding light to the kitchen below.

Next up, one of 2 large bays in our house.

This one is in the dining room,

which is next to the kitchen.


The front bay which is in our living room:


I know this is premature,

but for both bays, I would love to have old-school shutters

on the lower sashes, like here:

kitchen window #4

You don’t see these all that much, but I still love them!

I think they look good from both inside + out.

$ $ $ $  Stay tuned, though.  $ $ $ $

* * * *

Meanwhile, while the windows are fab,

the rest of the house is still looking pretty hiddy.

After foam, bats + blown-in insulation,

they’ll wrap the house before winter.

I can’t wait until spring, so we can add siding!


I’m still undecided on what color, although gray is my fave.

And seriously, wouldn’t gray siding complement

the colors of that groovy stone foundation of ours?


What's prettier than a Dutch colonial done right?

I’m a fan of shingle siding on a Dutch colonial:

certainteed -- granite gray shakes


It’s more spendy than clapboard,

but  maybe we could do just the second story gables, like here:

dutch colonial darker upper story

Hurry, spring — am I right?


Today’s big news re: our Dutch colonial project:

our replacement windows are here!

Now, THAT’S photo-worthy!

So where are the snapshots, you ask?

Unfortunately, I have none at this time,

but here’s a look-see at the profile we chose:

window grill -- farmhouse

They’re American Craftsman windows by Andersen

from the Home Depot,  + I blogged about said-same here:

* * * *
Meanwhile, 2 other ginormous projects are nearly complete, as well:
Sadly, I have no photos of said-same, because I’m sorry.
Plastic pipes are NOT exciting.
SO . . . let’s fast forward to bathroom stuff that is exciting!
Stuff like this:
Signature Hardware

Signature Hardware

I am in the midst of selecting groovies for our 2 downstairs bathrooms —
one full + another 1/2.
I blogged about our full bathroom here:
The coolest thing about it would be this pine cupboard
that we’ll be repurposing into an awesome vanity:
I don’t know about you, but to me,
that’s excitement ON A STICK!
Now, on to the 1/2 bath, or — as I like to call it — the powder room.
We only have space for the smallest of vanities.
By small, I mean 24″ wide.
Here’s what I’ve chosen, from IKEA:
bathroom vanity -- IKEA white
What do you think?
I think it’s plain Jane + Shaker style (right up my alley),
it’s modestly priced, + look at the drawers, people!
bathroom vanity -- IKEA with open drawer
They had me at ticking stripes!
As far as the vanity top is concerned,
those awesome Swedes DO offer something with the vintage style that I covet.
You can see said-same above, or here’s another view:
bathroom vantiy -- IKEA with country top
Nice, no?
I do like the style, but here’s the deal:
it comes with just a single faucet hole,
+ I’m  not the biggest fan of single faucets.
Even so, I forced  myself to search online for them,
 + I found a couple okay ones,
both from Signature Hardware:


Or brushed nickel?

Or brushed nickel?

But let’s face it — I’m trying not to settle for OKAY

for our Dutch colonial (even if our budget is tragically miniscule!)

Here’s what I want, instead:

Signature Hardware

Signature Hardware

Something widespread, please, with cross faucets.



Or metal with small porcelain accents?

Or metal with small porcelain accents?

While I’ve lost track of the # of bathrooms I’ve had over the years

with the porcelain crossi,

these days I am obsessed with the metal with porcelain accents.

They look more expensive.


* * * *

Lastly (is that even a word?), I will be tricking out our IKEA vanity even more

with one of these:

Pottery Barn

Pottery Barn

Yes, people, that’s the highly-coveted Carrera marble

with an under mount porcelain sink.

And speaking of highly coveted, look closely at the edge.

It’s called an ogee, + I couldn’t love anything more!

ogee edge

Talk about making something look more expensive!

We need to head to IKEA + get that vanity, stat,

after which,  measurements will be taken (by G.O., not me),

+ I can furtively order my faucet + marble top!

Stay tuned!


Hooray!  It’s mid-November . . .

. . . which means that my mailbox is overflowing

with the highly-anticipated December issues of my favorite magazines!

Yesterday, I received these 3:

Southern Living magazine


chrismtas -- magazine coastal living




Of course, of course — just like everybody on the planet,

I enjoy seeing the uber-fab holiday décor of the uber-fabulous.

Even better?

I get to go shopping!!!! — vicariously, of course —

via these mags’ annual holiday gift-giving guides!

Let’s have a look-see at this year’s favorite gift idea . . .

popeye -- coastal living

. . .  from yesterday’s COASTAL LIVING magazine:

popeye #4


Razor MD Popeye Shave Collection

How vintage!  How whimsical!  How adorable!

How red + navy blue!

I just have to get this for G.O.!


Of course, he’s not going to WANT IT or DIG IT,

but sometimes, isn’t that beside the point

when it comes to the yuletide gift exchange????

* * * *

HA!  I “KEED” because I LOVE!

* * * *

Anyway, I searched online + found it here for a mere $58-ish:

popeye #4

Here’s how West Coast Shaving Co. describes it:

This kit is a collaboration between Razor MD + King Features,

owner of the Popeye brand.

Popeye + his clean-shaven face grace all the packaging

of these shaving products.

The sandalwood scent is fitting for a sailor such as he.

This limited edition kit is packaged in a vintage-style Popeye signature tin.

2 oz. pre-shave oil

8 oz. shave cream lather

4 oz. post-shave lotion

popeye shave logo #3

All “keed-ing” aside, G.O. IS getting this!

If not for Christmas, then possibly for his 60th birthday in early December.

WHAT . . . A . . . LUCKY . . . GUY!!!

Stay tuned to see how it’s received!


Only 2 Days Until Our Christmas Cabin!

Our ‘really big show’ is coming up this weekend.



Look at the fantastic flyer that Stacey, of Kismet Junk, designed for us!

cabin christmas flyer re-do

I’ve been really excited, preparing for said-same.

Tonight I’m tired + realizing I’m not as young as I once was,

especially that one year when I did 12 shows

in addition to having my old retail store, Heart-in-Hand.

Omigosh, now that I think about it — that was exactly 20 years ago!

* * * *

But back from memory lane — I’m glad it’s TODAY —

because now, for inspiration, all I have to do is head to Pinterest!

I’ve been busily re-pinning lots of photos

that evoke a ‘cabin Christmas’:

cabin christmas -- tree in bucket

Sorry — didn’t get the source!

Seems that vintage metal trucks are all the rage online,

+ I’m loving the red + white license plates.

Wish I could get my hands on some ‘scrawny’ trees like these.

Who doesn’t love an urn (or 3)?

I’ll have some similar glass pinecone ornaments to sell.

I’ll also have a vintage white watering can with a faded, red stripe at the show . . .

. . . and G.O. dutifully gathered fresh greens from his brother’s farm today,

so my can will be tricked out in a similar fashion!


Martha Stewart’s Anvil Gray

Speaking of G.O. — on Sunday afternoon he re-painted some screens

that were in my booth, back in the good, ol’ days.

They’ll be making quite the statement this weekend,

as they’re marching across the back of our Cabin Christmas booth.


Fingers crossed,

 he can somehow hook up these awesome red industrial lights, too.

(I know he can — I’m so excited to see them in use!)

Wish I had a few dozen old baskets like this.

And some ginormous pine cones, too, please?

Talk about your inspiration!

do have lots of old boxes to sell, + I have been making white with red pillows.


I prefer simplicity + not-too-Christmas-y when I decorate

 so I think these pillows fit the bill.


That red cross makes the pillows look a little like Christmas presents, doesn’t it?

Here’s something similar of the rectangular persuasion:

cross pillow

Right now, they’re listed in my etsy shop . . .

. . . but of course, come Friday, they’ll be in our booth.

* * * * *

Here’s a look-see at some of my other Christmas Cabin projects:


These boards were the original porch floor of our Dutch colonial fixer-upper.

Who knew? — that a long-ago owner of our house would love the color red, too!


Everything is vintage here — the chair, the slipcover, buttons + ticking fabric.


Wish I had dozens of neat buttons with words on them, like this one.


This vintage ticking stripe material is from an old cot cover.



* * * * *

I think I’ll have about 5 chairs at this show,

including this one, which is a ‘tad’ different than what I usually make:


It’s an old folding chair from the Moose Lodge, + I’ve added a chevron pattern.


I think it’s fresh + modern.

So, is there a chance you’ll make it to our show?

I’d love it if you stopped by + said “HI!”

G.O.’s + My Opposing Thoughts

Since I’ve always been the ‘different’ sister in our family of 3 girls . . .

(my college major? Art Education!  theirs?  Accounting!),

. . . I’m forever fascinated when 2 people see the same thing

but react to it in 2 totally different ways.

Take our backyard, please.


When I gaze out our kitchen window, I see a beautiful bed of golden leaves,

against which various + sundry items of my garden are ‘popping’ beautifully!

G.O., on the other hand, remarked,

“People will think I’m lazy (for not raking yet)”,

when he downloaded these photos for me this a.m.

* * * *

My sister, Kathy, remarked on our front yard’s Japanese maple,

loving the color + wishing theirs was as beautiful.


It’s beautiful, alright, but in my mind,

the color of another of our (3) Japanese maples

 has to be voted ‘Most Outstanding’!


Which one gets your vote?  Gold or red?

Notice how the scarlet leaves ‘pop’ beautifully against our dark brown fence:



More ‘popping’ against that fence:




Need I share that, when my friend, Alan, gave me this awesome birdhouse,

G.O. was crazy not digging it? . . .

. . . speaking of 2 people who view things in opposite ways!

To me, a vintage Purple Martin is an absolute treasure,

+ something I’ve always wanted!


To G.O., it’s just “more junk”.

Sadly, he does a lot of ix-naying my “junk”,  initially . . .

. . . but given time,  he’s usually swayed!

And this, ladies + germs, is what keeps our wacky relationship chugging along!


I’ll have to ask him if he, like me,

sees our Autumn backyard as beautiful . . .

. . . + his current thoughts about that Purple Martin house!

Stay tuned!

Awesomely Awesome GE Artistry Appliances

There’s some buzz going around

about stainless steel appliances’ finally being on their way OUT.

How’s this possible?  We ask?


Didn’t you (or your mother) have avocado green appliances?


* * * *

But fast-forward to 2013.

Meet my new, vintage-style appliance crush(es),

all from GE’s new Artistry Series:

artistry_iconic ge logo

As if those appliances weren’t awesome enough,

they pretty much had me at that iconic GE logo.

Hello!!  Who DOESN’T love an old-fashioned logo?

* * * *

But I digress.  Back to the appliances.

I first spied these beauties in my This Old House magazine,

+ here’s what they said:

High-gloss finishes, instead of tired stainless steel,

+ Americana design touches, such as metallic trim + analog clocks,

exude a cohesive, polished look

at a price that’ll leave you with enough cash to redo the cabinets, too. 

$2,416 for the fridge, dishwasher, microwave, and range;

* * * *

artistry range

When I saw this stove, I told G.O. that THIS is what I wanted.

End of appliance shopping.


Meanwhile, when he started ‘yelling’ about needing a TIMER.

my heart sank a little bit.

However, my mind soon began racing back in time

to when we actually HAD separate, little timers

(problem solved!),

so I pressed on, somewhat undaunted.

artistry refrigerator

We didn’t get this far into the GE Artistry discussion.

but something tells me

he’s not going to want to give up

that in-the-door ice + water happiness that we have now.

Ooh.  Buzz kill.

artistry dishwasher

Surely he can’t object to this dishwashing beauty, can he?

artistry microwave

This microwave goes over the stove,

which is a ‘no-no’ in my house, anyway.

I’m too short, for starters,

+ besides, I’m a microwave snob

+ prefer them a tad more out-of-sight/out-of-mind.

* * * *

But whatevah!   Sadly, the whole point may be moot!


Last night, while I was watching a Tilda Swinton movie on Netflix,

G.O. was burning up the laptop,

furiously scanning Craig’s List for appliances!

When he showed me an entire set of black ones for $500!! —

I realized my GE Artistry hopes + dreams were officially over.

artistry range

I shall choose another battle to wage,

but not over our kitchen appliances.

Oh, well,

awesomely awesome GE Artistry appliances —

it was fun while it lasted.

Snapping Fall Color!

Our yard is popping with Fall color right now,

+ it’s everything I can do to keep from snapping photos all day!

Oak Leaf Hydrangea Every yard should have 1.

Oak Leaf Hydrangea
Every yard should have 1.

The weather was nice + warm, albeit drizzly, on Halloween,

so up went the hood on my Cardinals sweatshirt + outside I went!

Here’s what caught my eye initially . . .

. . . beautiful golden Chokeberry shrub leaves against our dark brown fence:



In a nearby corner is my vintage Purple Martin birdhouse:


(Past) time to move everything inside for the winter!

I dread this project so much!


Did I mention that, by now, I’d hoped G.O. would have moved my roof spire

from this garage to the one at our fixer upper?


Now on to the front of our house:


Okay, so maybe it’s (past) time to take down my Cardinals flag, too!


Every yard needs at least 1 Japanese maple tree, too!

We have 3.

Looking east toward our neighbor’s spectacular burning bush:


Back toward our house.

Those window boxes filled with begonias still look pretty festive!



Our friends, Stacey + Erik Olson,

surprised me with a pair of concrete “sausage dogs”,

one on our current porch

 + “his sister” over at the Dutch colonial fixer upper!


And, speaking of still looking (somewhat) festive,

take a look at the rose climbing our front arbor!


You GO, climbing rose!

Every yard should have roses, too.

I think ours has 12 climbers +/or shrubs.


Who knew? — that every Thanksgiving,

we’d still have plenty of roses

for our table centerpiece!?


My friends,

Stacey of Kismet Junk,

+ Alan of Patina,

are collaborating with me + my business, RedBird . . .

 . . . we are busily creating a CABIN CHRISTMAS

for the upcoming French Hens Holiday Market in Morris, Illinois!

french hens brochure

Three French Hens picture

Come see us!



Morris is uber quaint + only 1 hour s.w. of Chicago.

When I say quaint, I’m talking about a vibrant downtown,

filled with adorable shops + fantastic restaurants + pubs.

Here’s just one amazing boutique, WHIMSY:

cabin christmas -- whimsy front door

I’ll share more Morris shopping + dining highlights in upcoming posts,

but first . . . back to our CABIN CHRISTMAS!

I’m making banners for each of us:


Oh, look — there’s my Cardinals World Series shrine on our art ledges.


THAT World Series didn’t turn out the way I’d planned,

but as ‘they’ always say: wait ’til next year!

* * * *

On to happier thoughts!

Here’s a few sneak peaks at our CABIN CHRISTMAS offerings:!

First up, Stacey of KISMET JUNK:

cabin christmas -- stacey's tagscabin christmas -- stacey's spools

Awesome tags + vintage spools with baker’s twine!

* * * *

Next, Alan of PATINA:

cabin christmas -- alan's targetscabin christmas -- alan's scottie + cubbies

Fantastic vintage finds!

* * * * *

And finally, my business, RedBird!

cabin christmas -- kay's ticking stripe slipcover close upIMG_2225(1)

I’m slipcovering vintage chairs!

cabin christmas -- kay's army pillow

I’m making pillows!

This one is made from repurposed Army tents.

cabin christmas -- kay's tape measure close up

Here I’ve incorporated some cool measuring tape ribbon + vintage buttons.

Stay tuned for more sneak peaks!



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life in and around the garden


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