Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Altered Keys, Altered Birdhouse and other ramblings

Where has the last six weeks gone since the last time I posted? I've been busy visiting with my very good friend, Kathy, altering keys, altering a birdhouse and celebrating my hubby's VBB (Very Big Birthday). Oh, and of course, going to garage and rummage sales. Once the kids go back to school in September, there is a deluge of these sales here in NJ. Everyone is rushing to get things sold before the cold weather arrives.
Kathy hails from Tennessee and is a world traveler. However, she had never been to NYC until last month. As part of her birthday celebration, Kathy came to visit and we had a total blast. One day, we visited The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.
It was an awesome day and we had fun researching Kathy's ancestors to see if they came through Ellis Island.
Kathy gifted me with the most fabulous fabric book that she made. Pictures just can't do this book justice. As you can see from the above picture, the spine is decorated with vintage buttons and charms and the cover is embellished with a photo printed on fabric, lace and a button flower.
The inside pages are made of fabric, vintage papers, and some of Kathy's beautifully painted pages. This book is breathtaking and I know just what I'm going to do with it. However, you'll have to wait to find out.

On another day, we visited the Garment District in NYC. We had a wonderful day exploring my favorite stores which you can read about here.

Of course, the Garment District isn't the only place to acquire really amazing embellishments and art supplies. NJ garage sales offer a wealth of possibilities as witnessed by the picture below. Yes, all of this came from one sale!

Are you wondering what I do with all this junque?
During one of the days that Kathy was here, another friend, Santa, joined us and we decided to alter keys. Making altered keys has got to be one of the most fun projects I've done in a long time. Using old keys and pieces from my odd assortment of junque jewelry, we had a laugh-filled day eating, talking, sharing and arting. If you'd like to read the article that inspired me to make these keys, go here. I plan on using my keys as pendants.
On Kathy's last day here in NJ, I altered a birdhouse. I had seen a picture of a birdhouse that Kathy had altered and was dying to try it. With her encouragement, I went ahead and had a go at it. If you'd like to see my inspiration for altering birdhouses, visit Kathy's blog here. As you can see, Kathy's gorgeous birdhouse is vintagey. I was aiming for vintagey but somehow my muse had other ideas. It seems she was in a glitzy mood that day hence the lace, sequins and ribbons.
One last thing, in addition to the beautiful fabric book Kathy made for me, just look at this fantastic wire mannequin she squeezed into her suitcase. I had been looking for something just like this to display charms that I have gotten in various swaps and it seems that a little birdie told this to Kathy.

On a family note, last month Howie celebrated his 65th birthday! It's hard to believe that young guy I married 42 years ago is now an official senior citizen. Here's a picture of him opening one of the gifts I gave him. Yes, it's Hostess Cup Cakes. I was trying to help him re-live his childhood.
I couldn't find an appropriate birthday card, so I made one. Here's the front of the card....
and here's the inside of the card.