Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Dumpster Dive - Door Decor

Door to start. Old dirty and damaged!
It's been quite a few years since I've physically thrown myself into a dumpster in order to rescue a "great find".  In my youth I had been known to pack my car full of miscellaneous items and have friends sit, arms outstretched, holding the car doors together as we got the goods home to refinish.  There also may or may not have been a 6 ft long dinosaur dumpster recue in the late 90's that resulted in the carnival sized prize animal, being strapped to my car top, head outstretched for the car ride home.... followed only later by it being decapitated from a low hanging tree and flung to the side of the road in my daring attempt to recreate the extinction of T-Rex... Through it all I've always maintained my love for old things, and making them new again.  Cheap is great - but free is fabulous! Follow below while I make my neighbors old wood door (used for target practice) into a flower box for my newly landscaped back yard!
Target Practice

First things first - get your neighbors to rent a dumpster and clean out all their old crap so you can steal it! Next I scoured for some cool wall mountable baskets for flowers and found this old iron sun in the garage from the home's previous owners!

The door needed to be prepped so I got out my favorite manly secret weapon "BONDO" and started patching and sanding to get a smoother surface while still maintaing the aged look of the door.


Mix the hardener.


Spread on with spatula. Hurry it dries fast!
Make-shift table!

After the door was BONDO'D and my house smelled like crazy fumes...I got out the palm sander and got to work sanding down the door. Once sanded it took about 3 layers of paint to even out where I had bondo'd and where the original door wood was.  You can prevent this many layers by doing a primer..but I'm cheap and just used what I had!

Here we go!
All finished...with painting that is!
So after the paint had dried the door sat for about 3 weeks just begging for me to pick back up the project I'd started and get it finished! I ended up flipping the door upside down, so there was more space to center the basket, and the flowers would hang higher in the backyard against the house. Note to self : have your drill charged because once you get the motivation to work, and the drill won't makes it really hard to sit and wait!

Screws in place.

Basket hung.
Now that the basket was hung all I had to do was plant the flowers and set the door in place.  See below for the pictures of what the area behind my house looked like before some extensive landscaping.  That project will be in a later post - Enjoy!

Dead grass, old bench, worn out plants...

Laying out the curve for the pavers to be placed.

All done except the door!
Door in place! So pretty!
Love my little green bird!
So much sun in this spot it's hard to catch the right light!
Now what to do with the other basket...

Friday, August 12, 2011

Paula Sands Live : Featuring Chicken Scratch Studio

Quick - take my pic! Getting ready to go on PSL!

On July 28th I had the opportunity to be a part of the TV show Paula Sands Live.  Now if you aren't from the QC area (which I'm not) you would have little idea about what this show is!  But let me tell you, if you're from the QC, Paula Sands is a local celebrity, a ton of people at the market have told me she's the QC's Oprah! So to put it simply...I was on Oprah (kinda) ;).

The Freight House Farmer's Market in davenport asked if I would like to be featured on the show, and I thought it would be an awesome experience, how often do you get to be on TV talking about a hobby you love!? So the weekend before I did some mad shopping to find just the right outfit to be TV ready, and something that would really pop with the jewelry pieces I wanted to wear! Once the outfit and jewelry was picked around 11pm, I started my practice display at home on my dining room table! Nothin like 1am for getting ready for a TV debut ;)!
Practice set up the night before.
So after the practice set up was complete, I packed the bins loaded the car and headed to bed around 3am! The next day I was a bit tired, but nothing a little concealer couldn't cover! My mom met me at my house around 2pm and we were on the road!  Along the way we joked about how I had come a long way since 4 years ago when this little hobby/personal business had started...
Set up on the set of PSL.
Long story short, the first booth I ever set up was at an outdoor boys basketball tournament.  I was so excited, wide eyed, thinking hundreds of items would be sold and my business would be off to a lucrative start.  My Dad let me borrow a bank tent to set up under and I used tables from my Mom's school.  We loaded up their van and drove to the parking lot where the "event" was going to be held.

I had carnival visions in my head the whole morning...our van would pull in early and set up in our "prime" location next to all of the other thriving business'. The smell of funnel cakes would fill the air as thousands of shoppers viewed my work, and of course all bought at least a few pieces.  Once there we realized the tent my Dad had brought was for grass use only, so my booth was now on the grassy knoll next to my "spot" the 1,000 of customers ended up being 1,000's of boy basketball players with their Dad's watching them play.

The heat index was 113, the asfalt was scorching and sales...well, sales were non existent. After spending 6 hours in the heat,  glaring across the parking lot to the only other vendor, who was beating me in sales with BALLOONS and GATORADE one very nice Mom, bought a pendant. $10.00 later, my pride a little hurt, and my vision of a thriving business sinking slowly to the pit of my parent's said, "Well it's only up from here!" We all had a good laugh and packed the van with just as much as we came with :)!
Tornado toilet, and getting ready to go on air!
So anyway, we get to the show, set up my items for PSL in about 5 minutes flat, then go back to the "green room" through a garage and into a bathroom that appeared to be lighted by only a night light.  I freshened up my makeup while my Mom and I laughed about the toilet sounding like a tornado...and we joked about how this must be what it's like to be famous.  In to the waiting room we went, where we discovered a chair that obviously has been waiting about 40 years for it's TV debut!
The chair waiting since 1975 to get on PSL.
The assistant came to get me, and flash, bang, boom I was on! Paula was really nice, and the interview went really smooth.  They dont really tell you much before you go on, just a hand up your shirt, a mike clipped on, and then seconds before she said, "Just look at me!"  So the whole time during the clip you can see me trying my hardest not to take my eyes off her face! I wasn't really nervous thank goodness! When all was said and done, I was really proud and glad my mom could be there to see, that maybe, just maybe, the booth at the basketball tournament 4 years ago was worth it!
The big moment! Moving my hand the whole time while I spoke!
When the interview was over, all of the stage hands just swopped in and took all of my stuff off the table! We only had about 2 minutes to clear it all away til Paula was back on live! So glass in hand, my Mom and I crept over to the weather booth to start the pack away process...little did we know that weather was going on air in 3 minutes, so Paula comes high-tailing it across the set telling us we have to move, and the NOT-SO-HAPPY weather man looks as though he wishes a bolt of lightening would knock us away from his area! :) Afterwards we loaded the car, I let out a sigh of relief and we celebrated with dinner and drinks at Cafe Indigo.
Drink please! Tasted great after a long day of nerves!
We joked that maybe someone would pick up the tab, being as though they had seen me on PSL (Oprah).  No such luck but the day was filled with awesome memories and will be a moment I will never forget!

If you get the chance, check out my Sister's blog, she wrote an awesome post about my experience (it made me cry) and she and her hubby have been doing a ton of work on their house with fun projects while getting ready for baby!

Also my Market friend Sarah Cutler from Seeded Earth was on PSL yesterday. She makes the most amazing flower arrangements! Check out her blog Seeded Earth or stop down to the farmer's market to buy her gorgeous flowers!

I've been slacking lately but taking tons of pictures, so get ready for more posts of my back and front yard redo, old door flower box project, closet clean out, and new dinning room chandelier!