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Monday, March 31, 2014

Saturday's Trip Back in Time, Pt. 2


I'm back with more pictures from the wonderful day my daughter and I spent at the Dallas Heritage Village living history museum on Saturday.  

I normally enjoy things like this, and when it's over, it's over; but this one has stayed with me for some reason.  Maybe it's because we could go into most of the buildings, and they were furnished and outfitted as if someone still lived there and had just left the room.  There was a more personal touch to the whole place than a lot of historic buildings have had that I've visited.  Or maybe my alter ego, the one that thinks I was born a hundred years too late, felt at home.  (Though I did plan where my craft room would go in this next house that I'm about to share.  Including my very 21st-century computer.  Heh.)

Here's the lovely Blum House that I teased you with yesterday.  The super bright sun washes out the soft pink a bit, but it was a lovely pink and white confection perched on a hillside.  

The elegant parlor.  I learned on this tour that Victorian homes always put a lamp on a table in the center of the room, no matter how small the lamp, table or room.  Proper is as proper does.

Here's a different angle so that you can see the player piano.  They must have been very well off to have had one of these!  Katie had never seen one before.

The kitchen flooded with wonderful light.  The stove was very cutting edge for the times (sorry, not shown).

Then we go upstairs...

...and they're very interesting stairs indeed.  There are openings in the first several stairs, and I'm not really sure why.  The brochure didn't explain it, either, but I'm sure it must have been a very modern convenience.  Maybe for warm air to travel upstairs in winter?

Look at that gorgeous crazy quilt, though truth be known the Victorians made crazy quilts more for display and to show off the seamstress' skills rather than for actual use.  Still, it displays beautifully.  Look at the window and the nooks and crannies.  I do love me some nooks and crannies.

The other side of this bedroom.  Love the dressing screen.

The children's room.  More nooks and crannies.

And this was on the other side of the upstairs.  An attic!  And full of cool stuff too!

So remember yesterday I told you I'd show you what was in the turret?

It's part of the attic too!  I mean, whose attic nowadays can boast stained glass windows?  I was thinking the turret would be part of a bedroom, perhaps for a little girl, but nope, it's part of the attic.  Think of the ways this area could be finished out and decorated.  Nooks and crannies galore.  I had to lean waaaay over the barricade for this shot.

It was time to pause for a rest on the double swing in the front yard with my touring companion with a view of the small pink hen house to the right and a stately mansion further back.

Here's a repeat picture of the old schoolhouse. Renner School (ca 1888).  Not sure why I forgot to take an up close picture, but there's not a lot to it anyway.  They didn't spend the big bucks on schoolhouses back then.  

Looking toward the front of the classroom...

...and toward the back.  See those dark sections on the walls?

Those are the original blackboards, complete with ghostly remnants of chalk.  Because back then blackboards were, well, boards painted black!  Pretty neat, huh?

That is the stairwell leading up to the second floor.  (Sadly, visitors weren't allowed up there.)  The school taught children from 1st grade to 8th, and the second floor was for grades 7 and 8, thus called "high school." I always wondered where that term came from.

Time to visit the Living Farmstead (ca 1845).  This is a house with two rooms on either side of a central open area known as a dogtrot or dog run.  These homes were situated to take advantage of any prevailing breezes and can be found all over the prairie states.

Again I neglected to take a frontal picture, so this drawing will have to suffice.  There are several outbuildings including a barn, a blacksmith with a real live working smithy (he was a hoot), a farmer repairing the garden fence so the chickens couldn't get through, a kitchen, a pantry, a smokehouse and a root cellar.

That's a bear skin on the bed as well as a mosquito net.

This is where the family ate - the kitchen/dining/play room.  It was easily 20 degrees cooler in here, and the walls show why.  They had local rocks (limestone, probably) inserted between the logs and then they would have been mortared with mud.  

Checkers, anyone?  I think these were corncob slices.

This is General Sam Houston who was quite vocal during our visit...

...and this is Sharon who was spinning wool sheared from the sheep who are raised on the premises.  Here she's showing us how to card the wool to smooth it out and remove most of the debris that gets caught in it while it's still on the original owner.  She makes things with it, too, for sale in the gift shop.


And that concludes today's visit.  Thank you so much for joining me.  I'm actually going to share the last few photos tomorrow - there was SO much to see at this place that two days just wasn't enough.  Hope you'll join me!


Blog Hop Reminder


Just a quick reminder that the collaborative blog hop between StampNation and Some Odd Girl is still going on.  There will be prizes awarded and there's still time to win, so get hopping!!

Full details are here.

See you there!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Saturday's Trip Back in Time Pt. 1


Today and tomorrow I'd like to share with you the little trip my daughter, Katie, and I took yesterday.  She and I used to craft together on Saturdays but are taking a break to explore other pursuits, so recently she compiled a list of places she would like for us to visit, i.e. historical areas, thrift shops, tea rooms, etc.  (We still craft on our own during the week!)

Yesterday we drove to the heart of downtown Dallas where skyscrapers abound to visit a wonderful little treasure known as Dallas Heritage Village at Old City Park.  I've lived in this large, busy metroplex for nearly 20 years and had never heard of it! It is a collection of old, historic buildings that were rescued from decay and disrepair in various parts of the state and assembled at this historic park for the education and enjoyment of locals and visitors alike.

The weather was gorgeous - warm, cloudless with a sparkling blue sky.  Perfect for touring though a little hard on camera exposures as it was often too bright to take great shots.  There were many "just one more's."

This is the layout of the living museum.  Lots of walking involved, so comfortable shoes were the order of the day.  

First stop is the Worth Hotel, dd 1904.  Can you imagine sharing a bed with a complete stranger?  That's what often happened at these tiny hotel/boarding houses found next to railroad depots throughout the state when they found themselves short on accommodations for weary travelers.  This hotel is one room wide.  

One of the bedrooms. That's a foldaway bed in the lower right corner of the photo.  Imagine fitting four peeps in here.  And check out how low the ceiling is. 

The dining room.  Running these places was hard work, and they were almost always full.

Next we visited the local doctor's office, dd 1890.  These darling little houses abound in the older sections of Dallas, and this one was a rental house until 1976 when the foundation for preserving these buildings bought it and refurbished it.  I could easily see me living in such a doll house.

The waiting room.  Note the wheelchair in the lower left corner.

The doctor's apothecary.  I'd never heard of many of the herbs and tinctures on display, but catmint was there, as were several others which can be found in many gardens today.

The operating room.  Yes, that's right, the operating room, aka the surgery.  The table was covered with a lovely damask.  Beautiful, but not so hygienic.    Out of sight are a collection of many of the operating tools of the day, many looking very vicious at best.

Here is the examining room which was also the doctor's study.  It's almost out of sight, but if you look at the far right, you'll see part of a skeleton hanging there.  It's a real one, and the story of the young girl who used to own it can be heard on the accompanying cell phone self-tour.  She had a headache which didn't go away quickly enough when she took the medicine given to her by her doctor, so she drank the whole bottle.  'Nuff said.

There's the old school house in the distance with some of the city skyline shooting up behind it.  What a contrast.

Tomorrow we will explore the lovely Queen Anne home known as the Blum House, dd 1901.  It was a modern middle class house of its time with many amenities.

Sorry about the tree, there was no way around it, and it's impossible to photoshop out, but I wanted you to see the wonderful wraparound porch.  I could see myself living in this house too.  So charming.  And I will share what's in the turret.  It was quite surprising.

Thanks for joining me today, and if there are any historical living museums in your area, I urge you to visit them.  History is alive and well.

Happy touring!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Simply Charming


Easter is fast approaching and I wanted to make a fun little piece of jewelry using some darling vintage egg-shaped images from Heather Hudson's wonderful Etsy shop at My Artistic Adventures.  The Victorian Vintage Easter Eggs lent themselves perfectly to this technique!

These little cuties are printed out on shrink plastic paper (one brand is "Shrinky Dinks") at 50% transparency, punched with a hole at the top and then shrunk.  There are so many images on these eggs from which to choose that it's hard to choose just seven!

Isn't this little bunny adorable?  I added little handmade charms between each egg for a bit of sparkle and glam.

This little chick, proclaiming "He is Risen!" to the world, is my favorite.

The eggs have a bit of a frosted look in the photos, but they don't really in real life.  No matter how I turned the lights, they still came out as slightly frosted, but that's just the texture of the shrunk shrink plastic.  Say THAT three times fast.

Thanks for joining me and here's wishing you a lovely day in which YOU proclaim good news to the world, whatever news that may be.

Happy crafting!

48 Victorian Vintage Medium Easter Eggs Shabby Chic Bunny Chics Digital Collage sheet Printable
Victorian Vintage Easter Eggs


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Big News at StampNation!


It's time for the big reveal over at StampNation!  Starting today, Catherine has added a new member to the fabulous and talented Design Team, and her name is....<insert drum roll>...

KRISTY, the creative genius behind the stamp company Some Odd Girl.  Kristy will be doing exclusive coloring and Copics tutorials for the members of StampNation, and I can tell you the excitement there is built to fever pitch! 

For the next FIVE weeks, every Friday, Kristy will be adding a new lesson to StampNation.  After that, you will find a new lesson on the last Friday of every month.  

Now with an expert colorist in residence, StampNation just keeps getting better and better.

The topics of her first five lessons are:

1. Intro to the markers (types, nibs, etc)
2. Color system
3. Smooth Coloring
4. Blending, 3 Color Basic Blend
5. Shading Basics

From there, she will create her lessons based on member feedback.  

If you haven’t joined us at StampNation yet, learn more about it here.

OK, on with the challenge and blog hop at hand.

First up we have the blog hop.  The SN Design Team is doing a blog hop to introduce and welcome Kristy to our team.  Each of us have used a Some Odd Girl stamp set on our project.  Follow the links below to see each of our projects...
Shea (you are here!)

Isn't she cute?  I colored her with Copics with plenty of airbrushing and stamping in the background, some custom colored flowers and a sentiment cut from my Silhouette Cameo.
That sentiment consisted of separate letters and I learned how to WELD my letters together to make a one-piece word.  It means I'll never have to pay the big bucks for a word die when I can just make my own out of any font I want!  I do love my Cameo...

I did it again to the rest of the "happy birthday" sentiment on the inside, this time using a different font.  
We’ve hidden TWO 1- month subscriptions to StampNation along the hop…comment on the blogs in the hop to enter to win.  The more blogs you comment on, the higher your chance of winning!  The winners will be announced on Monday, March 31.
We are also using SOG stamps on our StampNation Challenge cards this week.  Here's mine.  Yes, it was supposed to be a peek, but I got rather mixed up for some strange reason and can't remember which end is up and made the wrong card to be peeked at, so I'm sharing BOTH of my cards today.  Some weeks are just like that.

Same image, entirely different treatment.  This time I paper pieced the little cutie and colored the beak and legs with Copics.  I've popped the little rain hat up for a bit of added dimension.

One lucky StampNation Member that participates in the challenge this week will have her choice of one Some Odd Girl stamp set, or 3 Digis.  (You do not need to use SOG products to win, but if you have them we would love to see them.)  Winner will be announced on April 9th.

So hop along with us for the chance to win as well as to welcome Kristy and see what the rest of the team has created for you!

Happy hopping!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Something big is coming to StampNation...


Just a quick little blurb today about something big that's about to happen over at StampNation!  You can read Catherine Pooler's teaser below:

"Tomorrow, a new teacher is joining us on StampNation and we are having a great big party to celebrate!

Be sure to check back tomorrow at 1 pm EDT for the reveal and a blog hop complete with a video and tons of inspiration, and yes, someone will get a prize!
A few hints on our new teacher:
  • She owns her own company
  • She will be teaching something specific - something that I have been working on, but she is much better at it than I ever will be!
Can you guess what she will be teaching and who she is?  Leave me a comment!  
See you tomorrow for the big reveal!"
So there you have it.  Pop on over to Catherine's blog to give her YOUR ideas of who's being added and what she's going to be teaching, and then be here tomorrow to participate in the StampNation blog hop!  There will be prizes!

Happy crafting!