April 27, 2011

Ruby it is ....

I knew I could count on you girls to think up some awesome names for my newest family member !!
"Bertha" was definitely the name mentioned the most ... a lot of "B" names as well ... very creative ideas abounded. It was tough picking one ... with all the good choices I had!
When AndyBee from Brown Bee Studio said "Rubenesque" ... I knew that was it ... she is "Ruby" ... sweet, sweet Ruby ... maybe just "B" for an ultra short nickname. Ruby is truly a gem ... check her out below ... she's currently in the middle of her first fitting for a romantic prairie shirt ...
I've been concentrating on working in the studio day and night ... I need to get things done !! I've set daily quotas for myself ... The big Na-Da sale is only weeks away!! I'm so ........ excited!
Speaking of Na-Da ... here's something just released for the event,
Art on the farm
How cool is this? A mixed media class with Jeanne Oliver during the shopping event .... all set up in the barn out on the prairie!
{click on poster for more information and to sign up for class}

Okay peeps, that's my "allotted" blogging time for today ... back to the grind, Ruby is waiting!
Thank you for all your suggestions ... I had a blast reading them!

xo
Jill

April 15, 2011

I Need your Help .....

Yesterday morning was perfect for hitting the flea .... a perfect morning for the perfect find .... my long search was over ... I found her! 
I knew she was "the one" the moment we met ... true love at first sight.
 I have been searching for a plus size mannequin for months now ... it's hard enough finding one period, but it seems the big and beautiful ladies are even more elusive.
Now I can fill my orders for plus size gypsy wear.
YIPPEE!!
 And check this lady out ... she is GORGEOUS!! She has curves in ALL the right spots.
She definitely has the "3 B's" covered:
 1.) Boobs
2.) Belly
and ....
 3.) a BOOTY!!
Bootylicious for sure ... how sweet is that?
And what do I need your help with, other than welcoming her into our world?
She needs a name.
A fitting name.
Give me some suggestions ladies, please ... this mannequin deserves the best ... what can you think of?
Leave a comment below ... can't wait to read what you come up with!
Wishing you a happy weekend and hope you find some love too!

xo
Jill

April 14, 2011

French Grain Sack Inspired Bucket ... a tutorial

Here's a quick fun project to make with some old galvanized buckets.
My inspiration came from antique French linens and their clean classic stripes.
 Plus, I just scored a bunch of buckets at an estate sale last weekend ... only $1 a piece!
Gypsy junkin' tip #1
ALWAYS start your dig in the BASEMENT.
It's where the really cool stuff hangs out and often gets overlooked.
Gather supplies:
1.) Old bucket {the crustier ~ the better}
2.) Painter's tape
3.) Paint wash {I like a paint to water ratio of 2 to 1}
4.) Paint brush
5.) Stiff bristle scrub brush
6.) Polyurethane {optional}
7.) Various rags, cloths to protect and clean up with
 Start by cleaning your bucket nice and good ... although rust will enhance your outcome, dead bugs will not. 
Let dry thoroughly.
 Using painter's tape mask off a pattern you like, making sure to press tape edges firmly to bucket.
Perfection isn't a must ... we're going for a rustic look.
Apply your paint wash a little at a time ... it will be runny ... catch drips as you go.
For a time worn effect keep the wash light ... too much paint will look "heavy". Allow paint to dry a bit before removing tape {approx. 20 minutes}

This is my favorite part ...
Using an old stiff scrub brush to age and distress the bucket to perfection!
Make sure your brush is slightly damp and begin with gentle pressure ... you can always distress more as you go.
Pay special attention to distressing the areas that would naturally show wear first, like seams, rivets, etc.
Keep playing with it until you reach the desired look you like.
 Once I reach the perfect patina I like to seal the bucket with a light coat of satin polyurethane.
This is optional, depending on where you intend to use your bucket.
If sealed though you won't have to worry about the paint in a wet or humid environment.

 Here's a whole stack of finished buckets .... done in one afternoon.
I love the simple character this process gives the plain buckets ... looks as if they may have spent the last few decades sitting outside a beach cottage in the south of France ... or used to gather lavender in the fields of Provence .... ahhhh, a little imagination and daydreaming never hurt a girl's DIY project either!

 This last one I had fun adding a little extra embellishment ... a faux red monogram.
What can you dream up?
If I've inspired you to make a bucket or two, let me know .... I'd like to see how it turned out!

For more French inspiration check out the party at French Cupboard today ... it's buckets of fun!
... and Debra's Vintage Inspiration Party .... even more goodness! 
AND
A new party I've run across {via Fiona & Twig}
Photo Feature Friday at A Rosy Note
Taking photographs of my bucket tutorial was just as much fun as painting the bucket !!
Another party ... yay!
Springtime Craft Party.
xo
Jill

April 13, 2011

Will you be at the Na-da Farm Event?

I'm thrilled to say I WILL !
So, save the dates ... I'd LOVE to see YOU there...
click here for all event information.

I'm looking forward to visiting with old friends and making new ones.
Spending time on Anne Marie's farm out on the Illinois prairie.

{click calendar to enlarge}

Attending the boho ball on Friday night.

... and getting my hands on Fifi's newest book, Romantic Prairie Style .... and having her sign it for me!

Let me know if you're coming ... it will make it all that more exciting knowing who's going to be there, I hope it's YOU!

xo
Jill

April 11, 2011

A Productive Weekend ...

In between yard work and t-ball games I managed to get to work on creating some new bling this weekend.
I'm a HUGE procrastinator.
HUGE.
I have some really BIG barn markets coming up.
Dates approaching FAST.
These photos are some COMPLETED pieces for those sales.
How about you?
Were you productive, do you have a sense of accomplishment?
Feels good!

xo
Jill

April 10, 2011

Silver Sunday ...

What else is there to do when you wake up at 5am on a Sunday morning and can't go back to sleep? 
Take a little "Silver Sunday" shopping trip down Etsy lane.
Here's what I bought.
Not really ... just pretend.


 



Great! ... a shopping fix that didn't cost me a dime. Although I have to say, my picks weren't expensive to begin with.

xo
Jill

April 8, 2011

A Classic Giveaway ...

I haven't hosted a giveaway in a while {one of my favorite blogging activities!} ... so, when Shabby Apple offered to give one of my readers a FREE addition to their wardrobe, how could I resist?
I couldn't. 
But first I checked out their on-line shopping site.
They have a wonderful assortment of women's dresses, little girls dresses, and stylish maternity dresses...plus accessories. 
{only the best for you girls ...  I browsed every page and price ... I was seriously impressed!}
I was easily lured in with phrases like  ...
and
My favorite collection is the Roamin' Holiday line
Here are a few of my favorite picks.

Iconic Audrey Hepburn style as worn in the classic movie "Roman Holiday"



I was asked to pick out a dress for the winner
and 
here it is:
Do you love it as much as I do?
If so, here's the classic information on how to win.
I'm giving you many options and chances that I can possibly think of, pick any or all ~ each one counts as one chance, the odds are up to you!
Good Luck !!





*open to US residents only
Don't want to enter ... but want a 10% shopping discount?
Okay.
Shop at Shabby Apple and enter the code:
gypsybrocante10off 

I will randomly pick a winner from all entries on next Friday, April 15th.

Questions? Let me know.
Have a good weekend!

xo
Jill

April 7, 2011

My French Affair ....

I've been having a love affair with this French Settee for a few years now.
My husband didn't understand the attraction, but humored me and allowed the relationship to continue.
I found my amour hanging out at the curb one evening ... the hook-up was immediate and I threw him into the cargo area of my wagon.
I've used and abused him since.
Mostly as a prop for photos .... that's what he gets for being so handsome.


This past winter was hard on him ... and he had begun to show his age.
Too many cold nights sleeping on the back porch.
You didn't think my husband would allow him inside, did you?
Absolutely NOT!


Yesterday he met his fate ... my scissors ... I only needed him now for his parts.





Let me tell you ... he didn't disappoint me. He had exactly what I was searching for.
Completely loaded with rusty, dusty, vintage coils!


So all was not lost .... I'm happy with my new treasures {coils} to create with and my husband is happy not having to look at my unattractive {to him} guy sitting on the porch.


And ... Mr.French Settee .... Well, let's just say I kicked him back to the curb where he came from. Oh don't worry about him ... it wasn't long before his next admirer came by and rescued him.
Seriously.


What is your French love affair? 
I'm sharing mine over at the Voila! party at French Cupboard,
why not share yours?
*Also linking today to Debra's "Vintage Inspiration" party ... come on over, it's loaded with ideas!

xo
Jill

April 5, 2011

Porch ofthe Month ... April

 I love the unexpected ... especially when it comes to home decor and how talented gals utilize their spaces in unique ways. I knew as soon as I laid eyes upon Anne Marie's sunporch a few months back  I wanted to feature her romantic porch makeover as April's "Porch of the Month". 
I'm sure the majority of you are familiar with Anne Marie and her style, if not, please allow me the pleasure to introduce you ...
{all photography courtesy of Anne Marie}
 She is Anne Marie author of the blog "Na-da Farm Life ... with Anne Marie", wife, super mom, organic farmer, teacher, barn market entrepreneur, I'm not quite sure where or if the list ends ... consider it endless ... I think she's just a downright true and highly talented gal with a sense of style she can be proud to claim as uniquely all her own.
 What is so terribly unique about her porch is that she has completely outfitted the entire space as a special retreat for her and her newborn to relax and get to know one another. I could not imagine a more peaceful and lovely environment to welcome a new baby and spend precious bonding time ... take a look for yourself, I'm sure you'll agree.












 Anne Marie has all the details done to perfection and the result is a beautiful sunporch used in a least expected way .... a sanctuary for Mother, Baby, and maybe a visitor or two.
and introducing:
born March 31st
 Congratulations to Anne Marie and her entire family ... and a big "welcome" to Daniel !!
I promise you'll enjoy your visit with her.

You are welcome to link up anything porch related below ... let's see your porch love!