I’ve been quiet, I know. It’s not that I haven’t been down on the square. I have. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned that we went down to get some of Goodie’s chocolates. They are wonderful, by the way, and they have my all-time favorite – chocolate covered orange peels. Mr. Lanio says he is working on getting a web site up for the store now.
The Anomaly Shop and Gigi’s Cafe & Bakery have both closed recently. I hear that there is a new coffee place where Gigi’s was, Coffee²? I have driven by, but I hadn’t noticed that yet.
But, I have an excuse. Two excuses, really.
My first excuse is a decoration I found at the Dollar Tree and bought to decorate my work cubicle during Christmas. It the Cobblestone Corners Christmas Collection. It was an impulse buy. They are all horrendously painted. The people are actually kind of frightening looking. At $1 a piece, though, it’s kind of hard to criticize the craftsmanship. I bought a collection of houses, people, and trees for $16. When all put together, they still look pretty cool, even if, individually, they all need to be repainted.
They’ve got a set of 61 that you can buy all at once for under $40 and I just happened to start looking around and found that there are a lot of people that are picking these pieces up and repainting them.
A lot of people have been painting them white. The 36th Avenue blog spray painted the whole set lightly for a wonderful effect. Eleventh House spray painted individual pieces and made vignettes. I’ve even seen them on E-Bay. Apparently, they make different buildings every year and they get to be collectible. Somehow, all the pictures I see on the Internet, the original paint jobs look better than some of the ones I bought.
So, that’s one thing that I have been doing. I’ve been bringing home a piece at a time and painting them. This has somehow become very time consuming.
I’m not a talented painter. Regardless, I figured that there was absolutely no way I could go wrong here. The house below was the worst piece and so the first to get painted. It’s not great, but the original windows looked like they might actually spell out something in Mandarin.
On the second piece, I made a terrible mistake that I still haven’t figure out how to rectify. I painted over the lettering that said ‘Post Office’. Since the letters are indented into the figure, I haven’t been able to get a fine enough line painted to make the letters look anywhere near decent. I’m thinking of using a straight pin instead of a brush but I hold out little hope. Any suggestions on how to handle this situation would be appreciated.
I’m really getting to where I enjoy the little details. Where my first thought was just to give them a quick, basic paint job, I’m now trying to think how to put a little frost on the windows.
My husband insists the church should be white but I didn’t think that it would have enough contrast with snow, even if I could come up with a reasonable off-white.
The latest piece I’ve been working on is the fire station. I’m still working on it. I’ve learned not to paint over the lettering. That wasn’t a big deal with the candy shop since the background of the sign was already white. This little gem has even kept me up the better part of one night worrying over the colors (the original red I put on the doors looked terrible).
So, this has clearly become an obsession and I’ve learned to just ride those out. I tend to get a little obsessed from time to time but it always passes. Thank God that there are a finite number of these little buildings and figures that I can buy and paint.
On the other hand, you may have noticed that some of the windows are actually little holes. Underneath the buildings, there is a hole for entering a small light and a groove for the cord in the back. This could potentially get a great deal more involved, particularly if my husband’s obsessive tendencies blend in with mine. He has expressed interest in a diorama and he knows how to work with electricity.
About the same time that I got to looking into the popularity of the the Dollar Tree’s Christmas village and watching YouTube videos for how to make realistic-looking water, I signed up for an account with Pinterest.com.
Pinterest, if you haven’t heard of it yet, is basically a pinboard site. You can request an account or be invited by someone who has an account. Then, you save a “Pin It” button to your Favorites Bar. As you drift along the Internet and see a picture you like, you click the button and pin the picture to your pinboard, collecting all the things you like on pinboards that you label. You can see what other people have pinned too and follow their boards to see their future pins. Although DIY crafts and projects are very popular on Pinterest, there’s a huge interest in photography, gardening, home decor, and fashion. In fact, Kendi Every Day, the fashion blog behind downtown’s Bloom, has been repinned a number of times.
Products and, more importantly, ideas have now found a new method of viral communication that is more effective than ever before.
I’ve been infected. I am newly obsessed. I’m not a crafter. But, now, I want to be.
So Saturday I went to Treasure Spotters over by the Historic Flour Mill. I’m new at this so, where I now realize that there were at least three great pieces I should have gotten, I got one. That’s fine though. We’ll start small (in case this bug passes quickly).
I found this great wooden box for $12.
The vendor said that it came from the estate of a man in East Dallas who used it to carry his tools. I think she said that he owned a neighborhood gas station. Maybe he was a mechanic. I can’t remember. He made a very good box.
My plan is to sand and paint and I’ve been googling a new word (for me). “Decoupage”.
I’ve got some work cut out for me.
Until next time,