Monday, November 30, 2009

A Suitcase Full of Paper Wishes...

"It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan."

~Eleanor Roosevelt~
Have you ever wanted something and then when you got it you did not know what to do with it? Sort of sucks the fun right out of the pleasure of the purchase doesn't it? Well, be careful what you wish for or you might just get it and then not know what to do with it. That is what happened to me recently.I was browsing through a favorite antique store when I came across a very battered suitcase full of vintage ephemera. I nearly swooned at all the paper goodness it contained and I wanted it all. Yes, I am greedy like that at times. Paper projects galore swam before my eyes and I sort of lost my head. I picked out a few pieces and walked away, in body at least, my mind was still fixated on all that paper.A few days later I still thought about it, dreamed of projects to use it for, and wanted it even more.I talked it over with Handy Hubby and I talked it over with my best friend, Pam, hoping one of them would talk some sense into me. I decided to ask if the shop owner would sell the lot of paper to me and how much she would want. No harm in asking is there? I thought for sure the price would be too high and then I could put my paper fantasies to rest once and for all.The price was incredibly low for all that "old paper trash", her words, not mine! I gulped and knew I would soon be the owner of a pile of paper. I had to take the old battered suitcase in the bargain but I considered this a small sacrifice. One suitcase of paper does not look like so much when it is all contained. When it is sorted it is a whole other matter!The sorting was fun, looking over each piece, seeing dates from the early 1800's up to the 1960's. The variety of the contents was pretty amazing too, sheet music, old canceled checks, personal correspondence, vintage photos, handwritten recipes and old recipe books, old book pages, various fine art prints, bird images from an old book, vintage magazine ads, Weekly Readers from the late 60's and early 70's, vintage magazines and covers, old greeting cards, a few cabinet cards, a whole stack of misc. items from old programs for plays to property deeds, old maps and travel tickets, misc. envelopes from banks and church offerings, a few child's book pages and View Master pockets, post cards, old paper photo frames, school tablets and paper packages, even a reproduction of a 1908 Sears catalog!After it was all sorted it stretched wall to wall spilling onto a stool and the floor below. Merciful heavens! I was a little horrified when I realized I need to store it all somewhere and the old battered suitcase it came in was not the answer. One online search and a trip to Target later I was somewhat in business of stowing away my stash. I will never need another piece of paper as long as I live...I think, well, at least I hope, no really, I pray! Do they have a place for paper people like me? I think I need help.I was starting to get a bit overwhelmed at one point as the Mary Poppins paper holding suitcase seemed to be bottomless but my super cute cheering section kept smiling that I could do it. I kept wishing their little elf selves would get up and help but they just grinned cheeky little grins and kept reminding me to work faster because Christmas time would arrive, ready or not on my part, and they wanted to decorate the tree NOT sort paper with me. Elves are kind of like that.So, be careful what you wish for or you might just get it and not know exactly what to do with it. I don't regret the purchase but in the future, I will think ahead to ask myself if I have a place to store it until it can be used. I only wish I had planned better.Today I will finish the very last sort in the studio, well, all except the three boxes of pesky paper scraps I found squirreled away in various places. See, I told you I need some sort of paper therapy. Anyway, I hope you all have some sort of Christmas fun in store for your day. I promised the elves that we would decorate tomorrow...and there might just be a little paper involved!

Blessings,
Miss Sandy

Friday, November 27, 2009

Holiday Crafting Tutorials and Links.....

"Perhaps the best Yuletide decoration is being wreathed in smiles."

~Author Unknown~
I hope you all had a wonderfully blessed Thanksgiving holiday. We spent the day with extended family at my aunt's home up north and immensely enjoyed the day. Now that Thanksgiving is past I am turning my thoughts to some holiday crafting.

Last year I hosted several posts featuring step~by~step tutorials and links for holiday decorations and gift giving ideas. For those who may be new to Quill Cottage, I wanted to let you know that those links can still be accessed by visiting my Tutorial Link blog HERE or by clicking on the little birds nest photo on my lower sidebar. This blog links to all the tutorials shared here at Quill Cottage. You will also find sidebar links for sites that feature free graphics for your art projects. Just scroll down the list, click on any highlighted item of interest, and this will take you to the blog post where the tutorial is. Some posts have links to other blogs and artist to share their work also. Included at the end of each Christmas crafting post are also ideas for crafting with your kids. Enjoy!

Also, I wanted to remind you of the holiday goodness going on over at Joli Paquet. Free holiday craft tutorials began being posted last week. New posts will be up on Tuesdays and Thursdays. There are some super duper cute smalls already posted over there, like this little gift card holder by Lilia...This adorable gift box by Jeanne...And I love this Christmas card by Brandy...Mary Green (Green Paper), hostess of the Artist Class, is also sponsoring a great offer in connection with the Artist Class. Perhaps you were not able to join the class or were only interested in individual tutorials, well Mary is offering individual tutorials for sale. Photo below, courtesy of Mary, show a sample of some of the offerings... The list of individual tutorials as well as the pricing can be found at THIS LINK. Individual tutorials are priced from $10.00 to $15.00. A lot of these projects would make great gift giving ideas.

I hope you enjoy the links provided as well as a wonderful weekend!

Blessings,
Miss Sandy

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving...

"So once in every year we throng
Upon a day apart,
To praise the Lord with feast and song
In thankfulness of heart."

~Arthur Guiterman, The First Thanksgiving~Praying you and yours have a very safe and happy Thanksgiving filled with all the love, laughter, sweet memories, and blessings this day will hold!

Blessings,
Miss Sandy

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What's In The Boxes Guessing Game Winners.....

Oh my goodness what wonderful guesses there were for what was in the boxes on my shelves. I can only wish there were "love letters written in the 1850's, written in spidery script, tied in silky pink ribbon with a faint smell of lavender..." as Kathy guessed.

What fun it would be to find Grandmother's "elastics" for holding up her stockings like Mildred guessed.

Myrnie tickled my funny bone with guessing that there were pieces of wrought iron fences in one because they are beautiful and her aunt collects them.

Lala (sorry, no blog link) shared a precious memory of a cigar box filled with little plastic purses that held a rainbow of plastic rain caps.

LDH guessed precious remnants of babyhood might be tucked into one, "a small envelope with a milk-white tooth collected from beneath a sleepy head by a tiny fairy."

Nancy thought perhaps the rattling was a precious antique baby rattle.

Kathy B. thought there must be interesting buttons, lace, fibers, and trims, all the things needed for creating beautiful things.

Barb T. (sorry, no blog link) wished one held inventive ideas. Her paternal grandfather was an inventor and drawings, idea notebooks, and patents would be a fun find!

I loved each and every answer and the special little thoughts, wishes, and personal stories you shared. In my book, each one of you is a winner for helping to make an unpleasant task more pleasurable. Before I share the winners, I'll show what was really in the boxes. A dapper gentleman bows to a pretty little maid...Inside the box rests tiny crochet dancing slippers and pretty petals, gifts that were made for me by my dear friend Pam. This sweet lady was concealing...A trio of tiny silver plated trays, old tickets, vintage pale yellow velvet leaves, and a ribbon tied box of trinkets...This faded cream and gold beauty holds...Eggs... I wondered where these went. The paper mache ones are all ready to paint a pretty blue now that I found them and the shells were some I cleaned and saved for a project experiment. I must have put them in the box to keep them from getting broken.

A tiny trio of drawers...Tucks away itty bitty beads from broken necklaces...This diva had a fun stash hiding behind her fan...The card Beth gave me, a touch of lace, and a wasp nest...An Etsy purchase that I thought I lost...A card of lace...And lastly this old monogrammed leather mens wallet, I hope P.J.S. does not want this back as I am rather fond of it even if it is empty... A darling duck box shelters...A sweet stash... Of vintage post cards featuring more sweet tweets... Tick~tocks and tea pots... Cuff links, cameos, bobbles, and a mini photo...A baby bottle box...Holds a single wee leather doll shoe...A faded rose greeting card box holds... Nothing and everything, anything the imagination wishes to fill it with, dreams, hopes, desires...This satin handkerchief box hides bits of... Bitter sweetness, a small square of lace, a handful of shell buttons, and a card I found tucked inside my grandmothers Bible, a card given to her by a family I don't remember being in tact, myself, my mother, and my father. Our names are there, written together, a family. A handmade paper box...Filled with small squares of handmade paper, perfect for tiny watercolor paintings...A fancy floral box trimmed in satin ribbon...Spills out wide antique lace, dreamy creamy satin ribbon, and one lone shabby sheer ladies glove... A bonny blue Exquisite box...Houses a barley blue baby gown, a petite portrait, blue suede rose, and two tiny vials of vintage glass beads...A bright blue ribboned box...
Holds broken baby dolls, rescued from a dingy plastic bag, awaiting their turn on the work table to be put back together again.A satin padded glove box...Is full of blackbirds...Tucked in tissue paper...They escaped...And it started to get scary, kind of like the movie, The Birds, perching on the box rim...One poor bird lost his beak. I promised him I'd glue it back on...This one has a secret...He whispered it to me...
See his cheeky grin of glee?He loved each and every guess,
And could not choose one which he liked best,
This is what he suggests,
"Don't just give away prizes one, two, and three,
Include everyone whose name in this post you see!"
I wholeheartedly agree!

LDH wins the Mint Chocolate Dreams Paper and Ephemera Kit with added surprise goodies tossed in for her precious guess of babyhood memories!Myrnie wins the Anna Griffin Card Kit with added surprise goodies tossed in for tickling my funny bone with her wrought iron fence pieces guess.Kathy wins the Black and White Collage Kit with added surprise goodies tossed in for her romantic guess of love letters as well as her dreamy list of lovelies!Now, the rest of you listed will receive a little surprise handmade goodie from me too for your wonderful guesses.

If you will all kindly email me your mailing address, my email link is on my upper sidebar, and I will get your packgaes in the mail on Monday of next week. I will be taking a little holiday blog break to visit with family and will mail them as soon as I return. Thank you all for playing and a hearty congratulations!

I slipped one other box up on the shelf, a little gold foil one...It holds, JOY...Which is what I wish each of your holiday's holds too! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.

Blessings,
Miss Sandy
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