Sunday, October 28, 2012

Caution: low flying pig.....

Another frantic week with the necessity of earning a living cutting into the actually enjoyable stuff.  I was having a chat with my neighbour on the front veranda this morning and we both agreed it's almost time to come out of hibernation and blink in the evening light  of Spring.  Not as much evening light as those lucky ducks with daylight saving, but we mustn't forget that this is the land where cows fade and the curtains don't give milk if the clock is altered.  

But the evenings are getting longer and I'll have to squeeze as much in as possible.  To that end, I cleared everything off the back veranda, added some canvas shade for the anticipation of sunny days, installed new (free, via the verge collection) carpets, spring cleaned and generally made ready for lazing about on warm days. It's still a bit of a work in progress, but it will all come together and hopefully allow for even candlelit evenings.  Note to self: buy mozzie repellent - a lot of it.

Just to be sure, to be sure, yesterday we re-strung the clothesline - long overdue - as well.  Between the cleaning up and the installation of the shade maker and the baby-sitting of the baby girl's little dog it's been all go. I have a bruise on one arm from donating blood, and one on the other arm where I tripped over the blonde puppy and landed on the hammer.

On Thursday a visiting friend mentioned that the last suburb had still not had their verge outgoings cleaned up, so we paid one last visit for the year.  Surprisingly, there were even more treasures to be found and we managed to fill the car that one last time.  I was again very restrained and the only big item for me was a wooden sun lounger with brass fittings - refer lazing about on the back veranda, as mentioned above.  I knew there was a reason I picked up the down cushions last weekend...

I dusted off the Hymn board and brought it inside, where it has had envious looks and gasps of delight from all who see it.  One friend even said she would lose sleep, craving it tonight.  High praise indeed, I know exactly what she means.  The photo is pretty average but it's been a busy weekend.

I've been working on a few other things, here's a preview of my flying pig in a cage - I think the pig will end up another colour yet, so mark it down as a work in progress. There will be a heap of jewellery and some new fish in the next week or so, if I manage to make use of the longer evenings.

I just hope that staying outside later in the evenings doesn't cause me to fade.....

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The puppy, the witch and the industrial chic shelving

My baby girl has turned 18, in a veritable festival of dinners, party, beach and more dinners. It seems like only yesterday, etc, etc. I got to puppy-sit. 

While the puppy was here, she helped to put up the tent I found last week.  There were two reasons to put it up, one: to dry out any residual dampness, and two: to see whether all the bits were there.  I always enjoy a challenge and putting up a tent when you don't know what it should look like certainly counts.  OK, so the puppy actually just chewed a tennis ball and generally got underfoot, but the tent is a veritable townhouse.  I'm thinking that I may sleep there over the summer.

It's been the last few days of the verge collection.  It's also known as 'bring out your dead' for a reason and some of the piles of stuff were certainly past it.  In a veritable burst of energy we did the whole three days and found some great stuff; tied some brilliant knots; ate a lot of icecreams; packed a lot of stuff into and out of the car; went to places I didn't know even existed; met a bunch of people who drive too fast, really badly and right on the back bumper; lifted, carried, hauled, dragged and carted; and narrowly missed a snake under a rural pile.  Luckily, the person before us would appear to have dealt with that problem and what confronted us was a very recently ex-snake beside the pile.  There's a reason I make sure I wear heavy boots, socks, and jeans for the rural sites, even on the hottest of days.

The biggest disappointment was missing out on a huge and hugely kitsch flying bird made of steel, fibreglass and some sort of plaster. I left it behind last night due to the lack of room left in the vehicle, and just as we got there this morning a chap threw (and I do mean threw) it into the back of his ute.  I'm thinking that he wasn't going to carefully restore and repurpose it as an artwork, by the way he threw it (and the way it landed).  Probably just as well, the thing was enormous, but o, the possibilities! 

A slightly lesser disappointment was the range of couches, chairs and daybeds which were left behind due to lack of storage space.  One day I'll have the time and space to be able to re-upholster some of those beauties but I take solace in the fact that someone else has taken them to do just that. And if I ever find the moron who graffitti'd the two perfect club armchairs, I'll patiently explain the error of their ways while demonstrating to them an internal storage application for their markers and spraycans. 

It was a pity to leave behind the early portable record player, where the lid came apart with two speakers.  Very 60's. There were radiograms and some big units which would have made excellent industrial chic shelving.

The best and most unexpected score was probably the hymn board from a church, found literally buried in a pile of stuff.


There was that stop breathing moment of excitement, when you realise it's not just an interestingly carved wooden nob...but there's something fabulous attached to it.   I'm also excited about the long (about 1.7m) wooden ammunition box, which will be repurposed into some tall, thin shelves. There's an oak mirror, and some 50's/60's wire shop mannequins too.

And so many suitcases.  But I can't resist a suitcase.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

How to repair a market umbrella, and other useful information

Preparations for the girlbaby's 18th birthday proceed apace, and her list of requirements for the celebratory festival is getting longer... so far I've managed to find, amongst other things,  4 dining chairs (interior), 5 easy chairs (exterior), 2 sunlounges, 2 sunlounge cushion sets, (matching) chair pads for the outside chairs, a table, and 2 umbrellas, including one huuuge mint condition white canvas market umbrella, in full working order.

And some of this was done in the rain.

I also learned, incidentally, how to fix the problems causing most market umbrellas to be discarded.  If you take something to bits and see how it works, often the problem can be fixed with only minor attention.  In the case of umbrella #1, a 20cm piece of common or garden fencing wire.  This approach is not to be recommended with electrical goods.

The suitcase supply is still growing, my friend Obie takes a dark view of these things, and is watching like a hawk in case I disappear on holidays without him. I think the count for this year is 5 so far - or is it 6?  I'm particularly keen on the nice one with the initials, and the fabulous stickers for the airlines and shipping companies and destinations.

Found inside that one was what is known colloquially I believe as a 'ging' - imported from the UK, according to the label.  There was also an old cap gun which I rather like. 

I found some West German pottery, apparently in demand - who knew that the common description for the glaze is 'fat lava'? Apparently a mistranslation of the German 'thick glaze'.  ( Now you do.)  I have  2 large serving platters, one white, one clear glass, with a fine scene etched into the bottom of the glass, and  2 oversized glass brandy balloon candle holder thingys.  And continuing the kitchen theme, 2 Le Creuset French enamelled iron casseroles, large and medium. Yep, the gen-u-wine articles.

If this keeps going I'll end up cooking, which only leads to cleaning and thus is to be avoided.

Don't even ask about the virtually brand new lawnmower - we know what that leads to.

Quite a lot of the photos will count as the 'befores' in the before and after shots to come - if I ever get a minute to actually get some things done. 

This quilt rack was in pieces - do people not know about good glue?
I'm thinking of erecting the fabulous Black Wolf tent, found yesterday, to house the other projects while I get things sorted and put up the brilliant indoor/outdoor rollup sunshade on the back veranda.

Or maybe I'll just sleep in the tent - less housework...It would be like a holiday, without the suitcases.

Monday, October 8, 2012

The red leather skirt and the unexpected shortness of being a Sunday

If there is nothing so sweet as the Sunday of a long weekend, then there is definitely nothing so short as the weekend after a long weekend.

It's school holidays and the opshops mid week were full of parents who misread 'opshop' for 'playground for overly energetic and badly behaved children'.  It's very tiresome that they think its OK for the children to go completely feral while they browse at their leisure.  It was nice to see that my unhappy mummy scowl still works, even on those who aren't mine.    And here's a hint - if I (and everyone else) can smell your child's dirty nappy, it's a fair bet you can too.  Do something about it. Or everyone in the shop will talk about you when you leave - and it won't be in a nice way.

and after.
The weekend 
went in fits and starts.  I decided to finish my daughter's chair on Friday.  This was one I picked up at the Denmark tipshop a few weeks ago, in good condition, just needed an upholstery update.  The red leather was once a skirt (not mine!), and the flannel plaid was destined for a quilt.  The remainder still is.

I sorted out my frames, with the intention of framing some drawings and prints, but experienced unplanned brain fade and a crisis of commitment somewhere between the sorting out and the actual framing.  This caused me to retire to the veranda with a cup of tea and a book for a while, while I recovered.

I finally succumbed to that long postponed imperative, and got out the jewellery making stuff.  So far I've put the components for different projects in glasses on the window ledge and had a jolly good play with colours and stones.  I've covered the kitchen table with jewellery bits and made some plans.  With one's aging eyesight, it's necessary to sort out the colours in daylight, as in the night light bad things can happen. The window ledge looks nice, though, as long as no-one needs a drink.

Hopefully, by next week I'll have some more new things to show you.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Vintage tools and starburst clocks

 Vintage power drill the bucketload
(with instructions!) includes grinders, sanders, and interesting ways to remove a digit.

saw attachment for the drill

Woodgrainy plasticky beauty
Augers well for a new idea...

Just love the red Skippy, enamel (paint) on metal

the Hecla Turbaire...
it grows on you, reminds me of Fremantle in the 80's.

and the ubiquitous suitcase, this time in blue.

My body will be at work but my head will be treasure hunting!