Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A look back at 2013 and serious plans for 2014, part 1

As usual, I've been slacking in the blogging department!  It's been a crazy year for sure, but let's face it, that's NO excuse.  Spending New Year's Eve thinking about the past year and the one to come has me feeling like I'm ready to put my big girl panties on and jump!  Jump where????? Jump into blogging regularly, and growing my business by implementing some of my hair brained ideas...as usual.

I thought I'd give you a glimpse of what went down this year just to refresh you memory.....

Awesome Buying/Road Trip to New York (twice)
Solo road trip to TN for The World's Longest Yard Sale....1400 miles

Stopping all traffic in New York...hehehe 
Police Escort from the Holland Tunnel.....I only had 3 axles!!!!!

Discovering Succulents......gardening LOVE!

Running out of gas on an incline on a major Interstate.

First professional photo shoot!

Selling at Chartreuse & Co, The Tacoma Park Street Market, and The District Flea
Adding some new shopping partners!!!

Wading thru mountains of bird poop to score the most amazing vintage barn wood for projects.

I've stomped through mud, awakened before the roosters, gotten sun-burned in the flea market fields, negotiated one too many port-a-potties, been forced to drink home-made wine to get the "deal".......truly the list goes on and on. Some things I've forgotten, and some are just to painful to remember.....hehehehe. (Just broke my toe on a chair leg.)

Why do I do it.....easy.....I LOVE what I do! If I could redesign my own home every 3 months I'd be happy.  Well I can't do that, mainly because my family would disown me.  So.......I search high and low for the most amazing vintage elements to put into the homes of my customers and design clients.

Stay tuned tomorrow for the high jinx I have planned for 2014!!

Hope I brought  smile to your face....
Have a good one,

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Bring up the "House Lights", BABY!!

This fall has proved to be pretty busy for me.  It seems as if the Chartreuse Tag Sales are right on top of each other!

I decided to take a little lot of time a snap some pics of my latest custom lighting projects.  A lot because I have still yet to figure out my Nikon D70, although I have purchased 3 books and 2 online classes.  No one told me I actually had to read the books and watch the videos.  I simply thought the knowledge was gained through osmosis.  (just joshin')  It's TIME I need, not more tutorials.  Sooooo, play I did!  Changed the ISO and fiddled with all sorts of settings. Weeellllll,  let's suffice it to say that my new best friend is Pic Monkey photo editing.  Well worth the investment!!!

I dragged 3 ginormous stumps from the wood pile and found my spot.  Rustled the leaves and got them situated "just right" and away we go!  All I needed was a French beret and I was really feeling quite the artist.  Don't know if I looked the part....  Having lost about 10lbs. recently, some of my jeans are starting to sag a bit.  During the "shoot" (term used loosely) I started to feel a draft  and realized that my "crack" was making an appearance!  Great!! A the cars (ok only 4) that drove by got an eye full!  Oh well, they say art hurts!

Now that I have embarrassed myself as usual, I leave you with the results of my efforts.

 1930s Heater Retrofitted into a Fan
Fan still works!
Vintage Inspired Wall Sconces

Electric Fence Transformer! The color....OMG
Vintage Check Imprinter....remember
the days before computers?

Be COOL with Vintage Heater
Table Lamps

 Vintage Radio...knobs still functional

 Magic Lantern....early projector
 Carnival Nickel Nudger.. dispensed coins
 for games and rides

Vintage Projector....
Still Works!

Vintage Hotel Servers....
from steaming hot food to
"Hot" Wall Sconces.
My poor electrician Don merely smiles when I walk into his shop with a new lighting project.  There's nothing I won't try to make a lamp out of.
Have a good one,

Thursday, October 24, 2013

My obssession with logs..... Nature Autumn style and a confession

If you've been shopping lately, you've probably seen the log trend.  If not, don't be a bump on a log (hehehe).  It's everywhere!  I've seen logs used in so many ways from table tops, décor and even furniture.  I've scoured the web to bring together some of my favorite design ideas.  

Home Accessories to die for.....
 Log Bowls
Furniture I love..... 
Log Table my creation
Ok...what's the confession? I've decided to add a little log love to my shop for the holidays.  Think amazing cheese boards with vintage stamped cheese knife. (it's a mouthful....pun intended) Fortunately for me we had a limb come down this summer.  Enter hubby, chain saw and rented wood splitter. 

Robin: "I need some wood slices for projects."
Hubby: "Ok, but I need some help splitting, chopping, stacking all this wood."
Robin: "Sure, no problem.  (my motto, How hard can it be?, right???)
6 hrs. later...3 blisters, 2 splinters, and 1 seriously aching back!
Hubby: "All done!"
Robin: "Hey, wait a minute, what about my wood slices."
Hubby: " Sorry, forgot"
Robin: " But remember, I only want to cut the pretty logs..."
Hubby: " Do you realize how pretentious you sound?"
Moral......Even a hard core worker chick gets a little "girly" once in a while.

What do you think?  Are you feeling the trend??? I'd love to hear from you.

Have a good one,

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

I mustache you....."What's the deal with Mustaches?"

Okay, let's face it, (get it...so punny!), mustaches are everywhere you look these days.  It's find NOT to find something with a "stache" on it when cruisin' through your favorite store.  High end, low end, online...you name it.  No matter where you shop you are bound to run across some facial hair embellished products.
I thought I would do a post today that celebrates our moustache obsession.
Mustaches I will sadly never own, but LOVE to look at.....

Mustaches I want in my house......
Mustaches I'd love to eat....
cutter...I own this already
Mustaches I'd love to wear...
Gotta say.....I'm lovin' the stache!!!  Are you?  Love to hear from you!
Have a good one,

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Take your daughter to work day....VINTAGE STYLE

It's been a long hot summer here in good ol' Boonsboro, MD.  Our schedule was jam packed with trips, vacations, camps, work, blah blah blah.  You get the picture!  I'm sure it looked pretty much the same in your neck of the woods.  (Gotta love a little Al Roker reference, baby!) 

When my little birdies are out of school I find it difficult to focus on my vintage business.  I just want to hang out and spend as much time as possible with them.  My oldest birdy is 26 and my youngest is 13.  I know their time in the "nest" is coming to an end.  This being said...when I do have to work in the summer I try to include a birdy or two whenever I can.  (Sometimes bribery comes into play.)  This is the topic of this blog post.

Take your daughter to work day.....Vintage Style!

I've mentioned my good friend Kelly from Madison & Mabel many times who is my vintage road trip partner in crime. Well, she has a daughter, Paige, about the same age as my little birdie, Bella. Get two crazy gals to thinkin' and voila, a plan to bring our girls with us on a flea market shopping day up in PA. 
Lunches/snacks packed, check! Clothes laid out the night before, check!  Alarm set for o dark thirty, check!
My sleepy-eyed birdy moaned and groaned as we hit the road to meet up with the M & M girls.  Kelly and I looked at each other with a mixture of fear and amusement as we listened to our daughters complain in the back seat.  Although the trip had just begun and both of us had packed all our food for the day, a little bribery was certainly in order. 
Moms:  "Girls...hang in there!  There's a Dunkin' Donuts just off the exit before we get to the flea market."
Girls:  "How long is it gonna take to get there?"
Moms:  "About two hours....just go to sleep."
Girls:  "Are we there yet?"
Girls:  "Are we there yet?"
Girls:  "Are we there yet?"
Well.....true to our word our first stop was for donuts.  By the time we got to Dunkin' Donuts they were crabby, lazy, sleepy and hungry.  This did not bode well for the rest of this vintage shopping trip. 
Insert 24 donut holes....YES 24, between the two and presto chango they were riding the sugar train!  Really hopped up on the "junk"!  Like Energizer bunnies, Bella and Paige were ready to shop!  If you know me you know that I'm a bit of a tree hugger when it comes to food.  No fast food, whole foods, organic, you get the idea.  But shopping is shopping, I figured that one donut frenzy is not gonna kill her.
Shop, shop, shop......blah blah blah
The four of us shopped our way through PA and were on our way home.  Lo and behold, what do we find?  A bakery that creates custom donuts!!  Really..... 
Girls:  "please, please, please....let us get some!!!"
Moms: "You already had donuts this morning!"
Girls: "Pah leeeeeze.........these are custom made!!!!!!"
Moms: "What the heck, you only live once!"
How was the vintage haul for this trip????  It S-U-C-K-E-D! Neither Kelly or I found any treasures, and quite frankly, hardly bought a thing.  And yet, for me, this was one of the best shopping trips I've ever been on.  It was a blast watching the girls act silly and just being girls.  At the end of the day, I work for myself so that I can spend time with my family.  And that's just what I did!!
Have a good one,


Friday, August 9, 2013

Worlds Longest Yard Sale, and the verdict is.........Part 2

Ok, fresh eyed and ready to start day 2 of the World's Longest Yard Sale. Now I just have to figure out what time it is.......I left off at Crossville, TN in the central time zone.  I stayed in Harriman, TN in the Eastern time zone.  It took me about an hour on day 1 to figure out what was wrong with Penelope (my GPS). I wanted to get to Crossville around 8:30am so after a few mental calculations I figured out what time to leave my hotel.  I grabbed my stuff and headed out the door.  I was instantly greeted by an old dude in the parking lot loading his trunk.  No big deal right?  Well, he had no shirt on and a big suntanned silver haired belly was staring at me when he shouted, "howdy". All I could do was say...."hi".  I tried my best not to giggle until I got to the truck.

Not the guy but you get the idea......
Shopping day 2 proved to be much more productive than day 1.  Instead of giving you a long narrative I thought I would just post a few pics to let you see what I saw/bought.
Need a 15ft. giraffe anyone???
A little pricey...but I can see it now. 
 Food warmers into amazing sconces.
I will only make 1 trip to the car!!!
This vintage beauty will be so hard to part with.  Patina to die for!
CRAP....won't fit in the trailer!
Some of these beauties headed to the shop!
Ahhhhhh....perfect way to end a long, hot, sweaty, dirty shopping day.
I woke up the next morning still longing for sleep, but gathered my stuff /loaded up and headed home.  I still had money to spend so I was ready to shop my way home.  I hit several small little flea markets with no success then set my sites on Black Dog Salvage in Roanoke, VA.  HGTV show...thought it was worth a stop.
I hate to be a "hater", but I was really disappointed at Black Dog.  Maybe I had built up it's greatness so much in my mind...not sure, but not impressed.  One whole side of the huge building was filled with vintage/not vintage/interior designer dealers.  I expected an amazing mess of salvage treasure, not wholesale products and new rugs....ok, I'm off tangent, sorry.
I did hit a couple of amazing Virginia flea markets that finished off my trip with a bang.
Now $64,000,000 question???  Would I go to the World's Longest Yard Sale again? Yes and No. 
Yes... I would absolutely go if someone else went with me.  No...I would not go by myself again.  It's such a long drive so you're tired to begin with.  Top it off with sensory overload seeing so much stuff for sell.  I'm sure I passed on some great pieces because I had lost my marbles in the heat and crowds. 
All in all, I had a great time.  I'm so glad I did it.  If I hadn't, I'd have always wondered what the hub bub was all about.  Who knows....might have some takers for next year's sale.
Have a good one,

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Worlds Longest Yard Sale, and the verdict is.........Part 1

Well as you all know I took a little trip last week.  Little is not the word I really mean. Headed down to Chattanooga, TN for the World's Longest Yard Sale, aka the 127 Corridor Sale. I drove 1360.2 miles in 4 days.  Needless to say, I was P-O-O-P-E-D when I got home. 

The drive was long, but entertaining due to hubby's audio book.  It really was/is (30 hours, folks! Still listening!) a great Steven King!  Being by myself I decided not to shop on the way down just to make sure I'd not get too tired and feel like I had to stop for the night. Chattanooga here I am!!  Hotel was fine, but I left my pillow.  I woke up super early so I could get the best goodies.

It actually took me about 45min. to get on the Yard Sale route.  You can't actually plug in.....Rt. 127 Corridor Yard Sale Route into your GPS.  Believe me, I tried!  Finally I stopped at a gas station and asked the "Coke" distributor guy. (I figured he know for sure). Problem was, he had a thick southern accent.  I was in the valley, you see, I needed to go up onto the mountain!! What???  Can't plug that into Penelope (my GPS) either.  Go to Signal Mountain Rd. off Rt. 27,  finally I can plug in! (btw...a for "real" mountain, I'm just sayin')

Don't know if it's a regional thing, but yard sales up North start EARLY!  Not so in the South....where is everybody???
It was going on 8:00am and people were just pulling off plastic from tables and setting up.  Heading straight up a winding mountain road I made my first stop...Guess what I saw?

A lawn jockey and a peeing boy fountain.  Really???  The sell did offer a few goodies, suit cases, mirrors, frame and the shelving from a vintage Frigidaire ...not sure what I'm gonna do with that.

Tally ho...off to the next sale.  I hit several then came upon a big sign for a barn sale a few miles off the route.  Longest 3 miles ever, but the signs every few 100 yds were so intriguing!  "Don't You Turn Around", "Best Barn Sale Ever"...you get the picture.  Weelllllll......not the best barn sale ever, crochet toilet paper cover....but certainly the most strange and beautiful.  I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

Fluffy chickens for sale...Really????
I know freaky...truth be told, kinda wanted to buy this. Text to friend....."You are a freak!" OK, no to this fine specimen of taxidermy.
I ended day 1 of the Worlds Longest Yard Sale with an eye full, but most of it did not end up in my car.  Head 35 miles to the east to hotel #2. Check in, get to room.  I take a long shower and get into my jammies.  Try to turn on bedside lamp, nothing! Try to turn on tv, nothing! Try to call front desk, nothing! No wireless so no Netflix.  I don't know about you, but I gotta have a little media to wind down before bed.  OK...throw on some clothes and head to front desk.  I got 2 guys climbing all over my bed/room to get everything running.  I just wanna go to sleep.........
Maybe tomorrow will bring better results!
Have a good one,

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Where the bleep is Robin?

Wellll......once again, I'm MIA!  I feel like I'm a jack of all trades.  Hey, I'm a mom, wife, interior designer, vintage furniture dealer, painter, fixer, cleaner, shopper, problem solver,  accountant.......yada yada yada!

 Like most of you it's so hard to balance my time between all these duties.  What can I say....I do the best that I can.

Ok...now that I've gotten that off my chest and don't feel so guilty about bailing on my blog, let me tell you about my latest crazy scheme!
Ever heard of the one and only...World's Longest Yard Sale? It's a crazy long yard sale spanning 690 miles, from Michigan to Alabama!  Can you believe that??  I have a friend that has actually shopped this for the past 2 years.  She invited me so of course I said YES! Not so crazy right?  Well, maybe a little bit. Split the hotel, gas and driving, hey I can do this. It's 4 days of vintage amazingness...so worth it.
Now for the twist....friend can no longer go.  Trip is off.  How can I do it by myself?  Nine hour drive each way, paying all the expenses myself.  No fun, giggles, and blabber along the trip.  Ugh!
Then course, my crazy brain starts to kick in.  Why can't I go by myself?  Robin's famous last words..."How hard can it be?"  I sit down with hubby, plan my route, cash in some points to pay for 2 nights at mediocre hotels (word used loosely here), and set my sights on Chattanooga, TN! Hubby swears his 30 hour audio book will keep me company...please know that I've threaten his life if it doesn't!

 So at O dark thirty I'm hitting the road tomorrow morning!  I'll be loaded with food, packing blankets and hopeful dreams of the ultimate vintage mega score.  Be sure to stay tuned.......
Have a good one,