Saturday, October 31

The last of the pictures from Monticello...

More from Monticello...

Monticello show booth for tomorrow (Nov 1st)

A look from the aisle of my booth. Enter through the archway and shop away...

This really is a wonderful and versatile patio set... could be used indoors or out. Can go spring, or Christmas time with ease. Perfect for a breakfast nook, 5 seasons room, back patio or front porch... The possibilities are truly endless!

A fun collection of french ivory dresser boxes, mirrors, brushes, hair receivers, etc. I had a lady buy one just the other day and her plan was to wrap each of the gift cards that she gets for her grandchildren in a special, keepsake box. A few of these would be perfect for that. I love the mirrored tray that is probably from the 50's.

I want to back cookies with my girls and use this little cupboard base. I think these things are so handy. I bought and sold many over the years.

I made this little sign for last week's show, but I still think it's stinkin' cute...


Friday, October 30

Today's finds... besides the tables

A man stopped by my shop early this morning with a flyer for a sale at his house in Mount Vernon. His wife was selling off her collection of head vases that she has been collecting since she was in high school. I bought just a few... I don't know much about them, but I think they are really fun and we often have customers in the shop who are looking for them. We can hope they move for me. If you know any collectors, send them my way, please. Thanks!

After we went harvest table hunting we headed to the girls' Halloween Parade. They were so cute! After that Bob and I spent a little time at Tommie's house sharing a pitcher of margs (It was 5 o'clock somewhere). It was my favorite part of the day!!! Tommie sent me home with a pumpkin pie to boot... my favorite breakfast in the world is cold pumpkin pie with whipped cream... guess what I'm having tomorrow?

We'll be setting up for the Monticello show tomorrow morning following the pumpkin pie breakfast. The show is Sunday and opens at 9am and is at the Brendes Center at the Jones County Fairgrounds. I have done the show many times in the past and always have had fun at it. It has a new promoter and I haven't done it for a few years. I'm sure hoping they have a good turn out. I'll be there with bells on with my linens and kitchen stuff, head vases, ironstone and more. I have a nice round light colored table (I'm pretty sure it's maple) that has 8 leaves. I'll be bringing that as well. It would be great for Thanksgiving.

Then Monday I'll likely take part of the day off then get started getting ready for my final show in the trio in Rock Island. I'll be taking different stuff, yet again to that show, so I'll have to unload everything and start packing the trailer from scratch again.

Harvest Tables... coming soon

Bob and I just bought five 12 foot long tables... the legs are awesome and after he works his magic I'm guessing we'll have a nice selection of harvest tables. We can probably make them to any size if anyone is trying to fit a certain spot. Very primitive and simple, but I love, love, love pine and these are going to be wonderful. I'll try to get a picture of one of them as soon as we have a little time to work on them.

Halloween 2009 at the Blythe's

My little Sacajawea! I found this old native american costume at a tag sale a few weeks ago and it fit my Lisa perfectly. She had some great furry leather boots and she made her own headpiece. She's a very creative little girl. I will try to get a picture of Kiki in her vintage clown costume up soon. They have a school parade in their costumes today. Looking forward to it!

My girls and their pumpkins... my 14 year old son decided to spend the evening with a friend instead of going to get our pumpkins and carving them together like we've always done... only the beginning, I'm sure.

Wednesday, October 28

What to take... that is the question...

I'm doing a small show in Monticello, Iowa this weekend and just can't seem to decide what to take. I have soooo much inventory right now as I've had so many wonderful buying opportunities come about lately. I have more furniture than anything, but it seems that my last booth, though very successful, really strayed from who I really am. I took things that I thought the customers for that show would like and they did! But I didn't have nearly as much fun playing with my stuff. I'm hoping I get motivated before tomorrow when I am at the shop packing so that I have some idea of which direction I am heading. I always love the blank canvas a show booth offers me, but sometimes I have a bit of a mental block in knowing just want to bring to make the booth sing. Last week I didn't take much color...

I think this week I'm going to have to punch up the color a bit...

... I think I'll take some great 50's kitchen stuff and a bunch of linens. I love linens! Why don't more people use them? The vintage ones are so much funner and nicer than any of the new, mass produced stuff they sell at Wal-Mart and Younkers. The old stuff has character and history. I never pass by a linen when it has a small problem like a stain or a little hole... they just give me an excuse to use more linens together... it's called LAYERING and it's fantastic...
Well, that solves it, I guess. Kitchen and linens it is... thanks for your help!

Monday, October 26

Thank you!

A big thank you to all the wonderful people who stopped by our booth on Sunday at the Collector's Eye show in Cedar Rapids. I am truly blessed to have so many great customers I can call friends. A huge thank you to a new blog follower and long time customer, Carol E., who made the show even better by going to my shop and purchasing a table that hadn't made it out of my workshop yet. I will miss not having the opportunity to play with it, but am so pleased to know that her growing flock of grandchildren will sit and enjoy many a meal together at that table. I know you are going to love it!
A big squeeze goes out to Barb (simply iowa) who helped keep me grounded and focused as I tried to get ready for this show. She never lets me doubt myself and for that I will be eternally grateful. To Tommie... thanks for starting my show off right. Always a pleasure to get a "Tommie hug" and you have a way of boosting me about me like no one else can.
Dale F. was an awesome promoter of this show and even hired my son Robbie as a porter for the show. He says Robbie did a great job and was so helpful and always has been at this show. Colleen F., another fantastic promoter who values my opinion and sincerely wants to help make each and every dealer at this show successful... and to Daryl... what can I say? Thanks for the coolers, thanks for putting up with your extra "helpers" and for always treating me like I'm special. I love you all and am so blessed to have each and every one of you.

Centerpiece and the hot spot

This is what the center of my table looked like AFTER I sold the wonderful red, white and blue coverlet runner and the great set of dishes.

This was my "hot spot" for this show. I had a great hanging wall cupboard mounted where the throw is hanging from in the photo. It was beautiful and I am kicking myself for not having taken a picture of it. It sold in the first half hour of the show and I had three disappointed customers come back to buy it. At the beginning of the show there was a fantastic tilt top, three legged table sitting between those two chairs. A wonderful, loyal, long-time customer of mine snatched that one up to the dismay of the ladies who were seriously considering it when he "pulled the trigger". The chairs sold as did the oak "hat box" piece between them shortly after the photo was taken.
We went home so much lighter and so much happier!

Collections and displays...

I had a bunch of sewing items and buttons that I took to the show. I love the beauty of each little button. Some are so intricate. There is nothing funner than getting a new tin of buttons from an estate sale or garage sale. You just never know what you might find. The most recent tin I bought was full of wonderful treasures... victorian metal buttons with talons, cottages, florals, etc. and beautiful old glass buttons, some with enamel decorations on them. So much fun. There was even a neat old cameo pin that was missing it's pinback in that tin. I spent hours sorting and fondling each item. I love that part, but still hate pricing the little buggers. It's so hard to know what to ask for them. I detest pricing "little" items. I never seem to have the right tags, stickers don't work. Yuk! I put the buttons in little bags that look great now, but will look tired and old as soon as they get pawwed through a few times. Oh well!

I have been hoarding candle sticks and love how they look all grouped together. I hope to have the time this week to burn the candles down a bit to different heights. I have a mantle that I am saving for a Christmas display and can't wait to have candles and greenery with a back drop of frames and mirrors. In my head it looks stunning!

More from the show...

This little round table has 8 leaves and drop-down stabilizing legs. A lady from Wisconsin who traveled to the show with a dealer who was setting up wanted it in the worst way (the arbor, too), but couldn't figure out a way to get it home. I have a feeling I may hear from her again, but until then, I'll have tons of fun playing with this little beauty. I didn't have time to take any pictures before the show opened so you don't get to see the fantastic and fun set of dishes I had set up "for dinner". It was a really fun table to set and I know I will have something fun displayed on it at the show I am doing in Monticello next weekend. You should come see!

This is a great size little bookcase/cabinet that used to be a built in room divider. I love the detail of the door. I used the little white cabinet next to it for our "check out station". I had a great pair of miss-matched stools sitting next to it that my friend Tommie from Fuel, Mount Vernon's most awesomest coffee shop and funkiest antique/gift store, bought when she and son Beckett stopped in to the show.

A fantabulous Collector's Eye show!

This was one side of our booth at the show. A friend called me last week about this fantastic glass topped, round patio table and chair set. I recovered the seats in a red and white gingham and displayed the set with Christmas. I took this picture at the end of the show. I had a wire Christmas tree set up completely draped with ornaments. I was nice enough that I sold all four of the trees that I took. I didn't sell many ornaments, but maybe next week the crowd at Monticello will be looking a little more towards the Holidays. The table and chairs are still available, so I will have a chance to play with them a little longer... yipee! The arbor/archway I got a couple of weeks ago when my friend Gail was moving and I called me and I bought almost everything she was looking to unload. I had to have it fixed as it was missing a piece and had several solders that had come loose. Dale at Liberty Iron Works in Mount Vernon got it done for me in time for the show. He is an incredible metal artist and if you have some time you should really check out his website at or come out to Mount Vernon sometime and see for yourself. He does commission work as well as fantastic huge metal structures of moose, dinosaurs, giraffes, fish... anything.
I wish I would have had a little more time and a little more space to have decorated the archway the way I had envisioned in my head, but, because it didn't sell, I still have time to try to do it justice. I sold less in this half of our booth, but I was still really happy with how the booth looked. It may have been the wrong time of year for a fountain, cement urns, a patio set and archway, but I think it's important to lead with your highest card and those were the coolest things I think I had.

Friday, October 23

Plum tuckered!

It's 11:22pm and I can't do any more. I've been pricing, ironing, polishing, stuffing, schlepping, fixing, loading, etc. for too darn long. Hopefully it will all come together tomorrow... it will, it will!!! (I think I can, I think I can...) Y'all should come out to Hawkeye Downs on Sunday and check it out. Cool, cool stuff... including mine :0)

Wednesday, October 21

I'm exhausted!

Well, it's been quite a week. Friday was the rehearsal for my neices wedding which my kids all had parts in. Robbie was an usher, Lisa a candlelighter and Chiara the flower girl. Robbie had a football game on Friday night that Bob and I went to... thankfully it was a home game and only three blocks from the church. After the game it was off to the restaurant for their rehearsal dinner. Saturday, the wedding... a beautiful one at that. The service and the reception were fantastic, but I sure would have loved it if the cash bar had had a blender for a marg. We had the gift opening brunch at my brother and sister-in-laws on Sunday and then I napped on the couch in the afternoon. Chiara slept with us Sunday night and I woke up to a little furnace cuddled up next to me. I asked her if she felt okay and she said she was fine, but the thermometer put her just over 101 degrees. She's been home now for three days and I have THREE weekends in a row of shows and a million and one things to do. I've been pretty much stuck at home, but went to the workshop yesterday to bring home a load of things that I have been saving or the show to price. I got those done yesterday and have been pulling things out of the garage all day today trying to make something of a bad situation. I have some great stuff and some stuff stuff. I'm hopeful that tomorrow I can get the rest of it pulled together from the shop. I'm on the schedule, so Bob will have to be home with Kiki. She still has a fever, but, thankfully, she is the only one. She's an easy one to have sick in comparison to the rest of the family, me included :0).
One of the things I discovered while looking for things to take in my mile high, packed garage is that I don't EVER need to buy another textile, linen, blanket or piece of fabric in my life! There is no way I could ever get through all of them that I have now. I'm avoiding the inevitable job of working on them as I write this. There is some really, really neat stuff in those boxes, but I sure don't want to deal with it. I guess I better go get started.

This is just a drop in the bucket of the linens I am "processing" right now. UGH!

Wednesday, October 14

New Friends!

Meet Jan, summersundays-jw and two of her sisters, Judy and Jean and friend, Brenda. They came all the way up to Mount Vernon from the Ozark, Missouri area. I so enjoyed meeting them and showing them around my store. Hopefully they love all of the treasures they found. Jan and Judy raided my stash of vintage Christmas things Judy found a bunch of baby items to take home with her. They were so much fun to have and I look forward to the day when I can get down to Missouri to see their shop... I imagine it's fantastic. Thanks for stopping gals!!!

Monday, October 12

Beautiful oak table with 6 self-storing leaves

My hubby has been refinishing this beauty over the last few weeks. It is solid as a rock and is made of oak, excepting the two leaves that are made of walnut. The leaves store underneath it in a built-in little storage rack with a flip-up door. No more digging through the closet for leaves when you need to extend the table. The top of the table could have been sanded down to perfection, but I prefer it retain its scars so that its story and history can continue to be told. I wish I had a place to keep it, but I am hoping that it will fit into my booth at The Collector's Eye. I think my booth might be a bit on the full side! Oh well, nothing new!

A few of many weekend purchases

A lady here in Mount Vernon called me up the other day as she has sold her house and is going to be moving soon. She had many wonderful things that I purchased, among them these two old cement planter/urns. One has a chunk missing on the base, but, who cares. I have oodles of these things on my porch and in my front yard... my husband says they are all going in the spring. I think I will likely take some of them to the Collector's Eye show that I am doing on October 25th in Cedar Rapids. I have sooo many wonderful things that I want to take... A wonderful early wardrobe, a tilt top round table, a really cool old workbench, a kitchen cupboard base, a hanging wall cabinet, an old built-in room divider cupboard, lots of great old textiles and linens, ironstone, stoneware, graniteware, wooden boxes and bowls, a really cool tall work stool... I could go on and on. If anyone would like to see pictures of anything before the show, just comment here and I'll post more pictures.
My neice is getting married this weekend and all of my kids are participating in the wedding. Robbie, my 14 year old son, will be an usher in a tux, Lisa, my 9 year old 30-something wannabe child, is going to be a candlelighter and Chiara (Kiki), my 6 year old, is going to be the sweetest little flower girl ever. It's going to be a really busy week both this week and next getting ready for my three upcoming shows and the big wedding day. I need a good swift kick in the pants to get myself out of the buying mode and into the pricing and packing mode.
It's always so much fun to do a show and get to start off with a blank canvas and start from scratch. I always enjoy packing and imagining just how my displays will look. I have so much to choose from in great merchandise right now, I just hope that I will choose the right things for the crowd that will be there.

This is another purchase from the lady who's moving. This fountain isn't very old, but it has a nice start to being good and moss covered. I love the sound the gurgling water makes... we'll have to see if my hubby will be willing to haul it into the show for me. Sometimes those big heavy things get one move and he digs in his heels about moving them again. I'll work on him...

Sunday, October 4

So much fun at Barb's place...

Tommie and I had a blast at Barb's Fall Harvest Sale last week. Barb has such a great eye and you can tell how much she truly loves each and every aquisition. It's so much more than stuff to her. In each and every piece she sees history and love. Her gift is priceless and so is her friendship.

This is the favorite treasure I took home. Have I ever mentioned my love of cottage prints. I want to live in a thatched cottage someday... even if it's only for a week or two. I want to be surrounded by those gardens and flowers. It's such a magical picture, don't you think? Tommie found a bunch of great treasures and we had so much fun with Barb and all of her many helpers, friends and family. I brought a batch of my homemade margarita's to share and Tommie brought Barb some of her favorite "fuel" from Tommie's famous coffee shop in Mount Vernon called FUEL. Two of my favorite people. I was a lucky girl to get to spend some time with them. Wish I could have the opportunity more often.

I found this fun mirror at a garage sale a few weeks ago. The old guy selling it haggled with me over the price and I ended up paying more for it than I wanted to, but it was just soooo cool, how could I resist. I brought it home and Bob glued the curved veneer around the outside of the mirror and I found some hooks to put on that big wonderful space on the bottom. I think it turned out nicely. I was tempted to strip it and I was tempted to paint it, but ultimately decided that it had come to be in this condition through use and love and that if someone doesn't fall in love with it eventually, I can always strip it or paint it.

This little sweetie came to me on a little buying trip my honey and I took in Illinois. It's such a sweet little cupboard. I love things in miniature. I always enjoyed playing with little things as a little girl. I loved to sip anything from a fancy "little" cordial glass and refill it over and over. I still like doing that. I like to use smaller silverware and have a penchant for little chairs. My mom always liked to have "special" little juice glasses with stems for her grandchildren to use. I think every child deserves some of those extravagances.