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Halloween! It’s a Date! (no really, it’s a date)

It’s Halloween Time at CoOp 28 (if you’re local please check it out!  Great store and terrific owner).

I’m working on the window display and trying to come up with some fun, new(ish) ideas.

I’ve been slowly collecting things to put in the window – a skull here, a hay bale there…. you know…Halloweeny.

But I got in my head that it would be cool just to do a big, wooden, 31 sign.

Easy enough!  I made a pattern and cut the numbers out of some HOME sign scrap wood.Wooden 31 Sign for Halloween Cheltenham Road

I sanded them and painted them black and……..?

…..and that’s when I got bit overwhelmed with (and perhaps a bit too excited by) the possibilities.

I could distress them! I could decoupage them! They could have pictures! patterns!

I kind of short-circuit when my brain goes off like that – stuck trying to decide which of the many options is the very BEST option.  You know what I mean?

So…….I decided to make them all.  Perfectly reasonable solution.

I wasn’t actually thinking of this as a product – more as an eye-catcher – but maybe…….

So, for version 1 I  went with classic black and orange.

I wanted that distressed, decrepit look so after a base coat of black I rubbed some candle wax all over the edges and front and then gave it a top coat of orange.

Wood Halloween Sign Orange and Black Cheltenham RoadMy intention was to use my new (to me at least) wax, heat gun and duct tape approach like I’d done with my distressed backgrounds.

But I discovered something interesting. The first time I did that I used flat latex paint. This time I used spray paint for both coats. Once it had all dried I used the heat gun but it turns out that the heat gun heats up the wax AND the paint and doesn’t yield very satisfying results. So it was back to my sander and a rough sanding disc.

Distressed Wood Halloween Sign Cheltenham RoadFor version 2  I left the letters black and created a collage of vintage (mostly orange – though they seem to be photographing as red) Halloween images and mod podged them into place.Vintage Halloween sign Cheltenham Road

Wood 31 sign for Halloween with Vintage Collage Cheltenham RoadVintage Halloween Collage Wood Sign Cheltenham RoadI think these might look good scattered around the store. What do you think?

These are 12″ high but I might make a really big one for the window (time permitting).

But they could be different colors!  Covered with poison labels!  Covered with candy wrappers!  Covered with Halloween scrap paper and on and on and on…..

See what I mean?  So many possibilities!Home Stories tutorials-tips-button

I’ve Fallen and I Can’t Catch Up!

Life is getting crazy busy and I feel like the guy in the movie who, while running away from the monster, falls and shouts to his friends:

“I’ll never make it!  Just keep crafting without me!”

………….OK, they don’t usually say “crafting” but you get the idea.

Every day starts with laying out a “To Do List” and every day ends with me looking at the To Do List and thinking – “how did I manage to work all day and do none of these things?”

So, I’m scrambling to keep up.

I swear my tombstone is going to look like this:

So, I’m a bit behind on all fronts – blogging, manufacturing, exercise, personal grooming (no, really, I meant to grow a beard!)

But I am getting some things done!

I had a request for GIANT version of my HOME signs to spell out a child’s name –16” high with a San Diego/Beach/Sailing theme.   I had to set them on the floor to get a (semi) decent picture of them.

I really love how they came out and wondering if GIANT Home signs might be a good idea.

 And, no, the poor child’s name is not NAART.

 Another custom HOME sign was for the great city of St. Louis

And yet another  for someone in Australia who must have really wanted it because shipping cost almost as much as the sign did.

(you can see I’m still struggling with how to photograph these dang things.  I don’t think I’ll do the mirror version again though)

And I made a delivery to my newest brick and mortar store!

If any of you are avid HGTV watchers you’ll remember Angelo Surmelis who hosted several of the networks shows (Rate My Space, 24 Hour Design etc).

Well he’s got his own line of home furnishings that can be found just about everywhere on the web.  But, clearly bent on decor world domination, he’s just about to open a new store here in downtown LA called, appropriately, Angelo HOME

He and his business partner saw some of my work, dug it and now I’m along for the ride.  I got a brief glimpse inside the store and it is going to be very VERY cool!  (Plus! Across the street there is a restaurant that makes amazing donuts.  So it’s a total WIN/WIN!)

OK, back to work.

Life’s a Beach

Well, that was quite a pause.  Sorry about that.

I’ve made myself a bit nuts by being a bit dim witted.  It’s how I roll.

Here’s what happened.

The Spring Unique LA show conflicted with the May Rose Bowl.  So I didn’t apply for a spot at Unique.

Then I lost my Rose Bowl space (boo!).

But then my neighbors sold me their spot for this month (yay!).

But then, for some reason, I asked the Unique Folks if they ever had cancellations (assuming they never did).  And they did (yay!)

And I said I’d take it (yay!)

…….And then I realized that Unique LA and the Rose bowl were (and I’m sure you’ve put this together already) ON THE SAME DAY (ack!)  which, of course, I knew earlier in this story but had somehow forgotten because I am a certified genius (yay!)

Sooooooo, that’s two spaces to fill and two places to be on the same day.  No prob!

I’ve been busy working away and trying to come up with new things.

I’ve long planned a Beach sign similar to my HOME signs.Vintage San Francisco Wood Home SignHandmade Wood HOME sign featuring Columbus Ohiovintage Chicago Wood HOME sign Do you folks ever make something, really like it and then find that you just can’t get a good picture of it?

I’ve always been pretty challenged to take a good picture of the HOME signs but I didn’t know “challenge” until I added two more letters.

I tried just a plain white background for that classic feelHandmade Wood Sign: Beach


I tried props for that vintagy, beachy, vacation feelBeach Sign

 I’m sorry, what does that spell?  And exactly how dirty is your “charming” prop suitcase?


 I tried it against a blue wall – for that blue sky/beach feel


 I tried it against a beige wall – you know, for that beachy feel


 Finally, I tried it near a door for that, “on your way to the next room think about the beach” feel


I think next I’ll try for that “on your way to take a class in how to do photography” feel.

But for the moment one of these will have to do because I have a lot of work to get done in the next few days (and that cloning experiment to undertake – please keep your fingers crossed).

My Color Blind Secretary

Ahhh I love the Monday after the Rose Bowl.

The build up is always so hectic (because I am disorganized!) and then on the day of it’s up at 4:45 to get there and get set-up by 6:30 or so and then pack it all up again, home, unpack the truck, return the truck, and collapse.

Monday always seems like a fresh, new start.

It turned out to be the best Rose Bowl yet!  The weather was perfect, I got to hang out a bit with Nicki of Nicki Huard Creations (whose husband assures me will soon blast into the 21st century and have her own web site so you can actually SEE her cool stuff – her teapot lamps are awesome!).

The little blue table I blogged about last time sold quickly.  Coasters flew away and a lovely woman who is just opening a store nearby pretty much cleaned me out of candle blocks!

I’d made a few new things as well like the Hello sign at the top of this post.

My scroll saw skills are getting better  (and by “better” I mean I made it without  cursing – so I guess that would make it a curs-less cursive) so I made another one in blue with a little more distress to it.

I’d jammed out some new letters and they seemed popular:

And I’d been working all week on my latest secretary desk and although it didn’t sell it got a lot of admirers.

Here are the before during and after shots.

She was in really good shape so all it took was some sanding

And then, as always, I got stuck on color.  My goal for this Rose Bowl was to create a kind of unified palette (I totally failed btw) – so I had some leftover Restoration Hardware Silver Sage paint and I decided that would be the color……so I painted the drawers:

And then the back seemed kind of bland so I added some paper (its what I do!)  to it.

Now, in the past I swear this paper has perfectly matched this paint color but for some reason…..not so much this time.

I like the final result but I’m concerned it may only really appeal to the color blind crowd (a distinctly underserved market don’t you think?!)

Shall we link up?

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