Saturday, November 21, 2009

Egg Doll House

I have fond memories of playing with this house and family of egg dolls (not sure what else to call them!) The front and roof of the house would open up to see all of the rooms inside.

I had fun playing with the macro setting of my camera to get super close to the little people sitting in the living room.

Do you feel like you are being watched?

I did not realize until after I had taken the photos that the eye of one of my dolls was peeking through in the window!

I feel like a peeping Tom spying into another little world....

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Up in the Attic

This past spring, I went home to the farm where I grew up, just a mile or so outside of Quill Lake, SK. For an entire weekend, my two brothers and I worked to clean out the attic of the farmhouse.

Our parents were from the generation and the kind of people who never threw anything out. Over the years, my parents slowly piled stuff up into the attic. And after 30 years, it all finally saw the light of day.

I was amazed to find that my mom had saved a lot of my toys from when I was a little girl. I still love my Mr. Bunny, although he is dirty and in pretty rough shape.

I also found a box of shoes from my childhood. It is hard to believe that these used to be my shoes! I kept the red and blue plaid pair of sneakers (bottom left of picture). You may be wondering where I put all of these nostalgic items from my childhood. I store every treasure in a leather brown vintage suitcase that I found up in the attic.

I found this little guy squished and flattened by a huge box. He also came home with me.

Here are a few of the dolls I played with. My worst crime was always cutting their hair!

There were cardboard boxes, carpet samples and tons of miscellaneous crap. What we deemed garbage was thrown into the old blue truck and hauled off to the 'nuisance grounds'.

Good riddance!


Tea Time in Paris

I sneaked a photo of this beautiful fine bone china tea set from the Musee de Decoratifs in Paris (Spring 2007).

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Saucer Lady

I had the fortunate luck to visit an antique store called Heirlooms Antiques Calgary. When I saw shelves with stacks and stacks of saucers, I was absolutely in heaven. My eyes lit up like a kid in a candy store!

The store owners, Bill and Bente Picken were so kind to tell me about the lady who used to own them. About 5 years ago, they bought the entire collection of saucers from Mary Nielsen, who had collected more than 18,000 saucers over a 50 year period. They still have about two or three thousand left, with about 600 in the store.

She had always wanted to have her collection featured in a museum, but sadly, this never happened. So, instead, her home in Montgomery (N.W.) of Calgary, became her museum where she displayed her saucers throughout the entire house. The living room was known as the 'Blue Room' for its collection of blue and white fine bone china.

Believe it or not, the cost of admission to view the collection was a saucer; which Mary put the date and name of the person on a piece of tape to the back of the saucer, so she would remember where she got it. Complimentary tea and cookies were also served.

There were so many beautiful saucers to choose from, it was hard to not buy them all! But here are a few pics of the saucers I finally brought home. I will be making and selling ring holders that will be specially marked as from 'The Mary Nielsen Collection'.


A few weeks ago, I had time to kill while I was waiting for an appointment. So, I decided to check out the IODE thrift store on 1st S.W, the new and upcoming area with trendy stores and restaurants. It seems very odd that there is a second-hand store sandwiched between the Chocolate and Colours hi-rise condos.

Walking in, it feels like nobody else knows about this place but you; but I am sure I am not the only one who thinks this place is a little gem. There is the usual racks of vintage clothing and knick knacks. And after paying only a few dollars, I came home with pretty vintage buttons and a bag of used stamps.

I generally do not collect stamps for their inherent value but more for the creative possibility of using them in collages. And just by looking at the stamps through the clear plastic bag, I could tell that they were Canadian stamps of an older vintage; when stamps used to cost pennies!

So when I came home, I sifted through the bag to look at the stamps in closer detail. It was only when I started looking at the postmarks that I realized that they were all from Saskatchewan, and specifically from the towns around the area where I grew up: Wadena, Spalding, Watson, Wynyard, Naicam and on and on....I was in shock when I came across postmarked stamps from Quill Lake, the town I am originally from before moving to Calgary when I was 18. How bizarre that of all things, I would pick up a bag of used stamps from Saskatchewan in Calgary. And they are all dated from the 1960's. I wasn't even born yet! I am so curious as to who collected these stamps and how they ended up being in a second-hand thrift store.

I truly believe that for some inexplicable reason, I was drawn to that store, on that day, to find a true treasure that was meant to come home with me.

I Made It!

This is a much belated big 'thank you' for everyone who came out to support me at the Make It! show last weekend. It was a great experience and a huge success. I met lots of new people, visited with friends and family, and even reconnected with old acquaintances I had not seen for years.

A very big special thanks goes out to my dear friend Joan for helping me set up on Friday. She kept me sane and grounded (while I was so close to losing it!) when we had technical difficulties getting up my sign. And a very big, big thanks also goes out to my new special love Craig, who was the muscle behind loading and unloading everything.

If you were not able to 'make it' out to the show, here are a few pics (this is for Dennis, serving over in Afghanistan).