Tuesday, February 16, 2010

An Update Potpourri

Oh, my...reading my most recent posts, one would never guess that I started this blog with the intention of showing off my dollmaking efforts and nice close-ups of gorgeous handmade luxury soaps. I knew I'd have the occasional rant or brain dump, and likely a periodic moan about weather, and I hoped to share some helpful hints. Still, I've said little about all that really occurs here.

First, a helpful hint - remember that gorgeous primitive cabinet my Oldtimer gave me for last year's birthday?

He's oiled it and it is gorgeous, but we've found that when cleaning with dust rags, it gathers little hairs all over the rustic wood. BUT, by applying strips of shipping tape and yanking them off, it's nice and clean again. (Much like those wax strips for ladies' facial hair - oh - you don't know about them?)

I've been making lots of soap, too. Here are a few bars (untrimmed and unlabeled) of the most recent batch of Lavender Buttermilk soap. Yum...definitely a favorite.
No sooner did we finish working on the pantry than we started on the bedroom. The bedroom isn't too bad - it has a wallpaper that is printed in tolerable colors, but not really a pattern I would choose. However, it's getting worn looking, and we've lived with it for nearly five years, so have decided to make a big change. Here's a before shot of one wall:
Now, after the nightmare that was stripping the wallpaper in the smallish bathroom, which took several months, we've decided to NOT strip the entire bedroom - all four walls including bed nook - that are covered in this stuff. Since the look I'm going for is slightly upscaled rustic plank walls mixed with romantic, we've begun purchasing packages of pine planks and pickling them. (That was a mouthful!)

Here's a shot of the same wall with some of the pickled planks leaning in place:
Notice that Molly dog got herself in the photo. I love the paint color we're using to pickle (2 parts paint to one part water, applied, then wiped off). It's Laura Ashley (Valspar/Lowe's) Winter Oak, but if I were to name it, it would be "Malt." It's exactly what I wanted, and we got it right the first time! The trim will be done in my new favorite white - White Dove.

I'm also working on a Personal Challenge Doll via Sherry Goshon's new Yahoo Group, called "It All Started with a Cloth Doll." Sherry provides one piece of the doll pattern every week but this is an eye-opening new way to make a doll - from the bottom up. We did the legs and feet first, and here's my progress on that:
(You can't see it, but she has purple mesh stockings!)

And finally, my poor, lonely rocking chairs, still adding a cheerful spot of color on the front porch. I canNOT wait until I can use them again in the spring. Well, I could use them now, but I wouldn't particularly enjoy it.

If you look into the distance on that photo, you can see the "light snow" drifting down. It's supposed to do just that this entire coming week! Yay, Cleveland weather! Don't start spoiling us now.

And here are the illuminated icicles outside my kitchen window. This was taken yesterday - they are MUCH larger today.(See, I told you I'd complain about the weather...)


Shelly said...

What lovely planks for your walls. I like that idea and the color...the color is how I would like to refinish my kitchen cabinets. I'll have to dig though your posting to find more on your soaps...and watch this doll unfold...Shelly

Pam said...

Great idea to cover the paper instead of trying to rip it off. I like the planks-they will give the room a great look. Love the contrast of the turquoise chair and the white snow! Living in South Florida I like to see pictures of snow covered things-I miss the change of seasons. Can't wait to see the rest of the purple shoe lady!

Jennifer Rose said...

I am never wallpapering again! I hate it lol but a mixture of dish soap and water soaked on the wallpaper really helps get it off.

JudiA said...

Complain about the weather all you want - you deserve to. On the other hand, doesn't icicle formation mean things are melting? That is a great photo by the way. Your bedroom is going to be so romantic! I wish I had you to come here and help me with my old farmhouse. I love your taste.

Anonymous said...

And I see you got yourself in one of the shots, too! Ha...

Love the doll shoes. You are having too much fun.

Icicle shot is delightful.

BumbleVee said...

Molly's so funny.... in all the choice shots.... hahah...

AND.... love the doll's shoes. Apoxie Sculpt? whatever you used they are great.

Shashi Nayagam said...

That soap looks so yummy that I could eat it! Looks like you have your hands full with redecoration. Look forward to seeing it all finished. Love those shoes on the doll. I have just got my shoe stitched and no further.
Those icle pictures are awesome.

Denise in PA said...

I noticed Molly right away! Nice work, Sue!

rjturbot said...

I was just missing the old gang on Soapnuts and I wandered over to see what you are up to, Sue. So nice to see a bit of this and that...and Molly Dog to boot.
Jackie in Florida