Blog Parties

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Stars & Stripes Mantel

Updated 7/20/10: Linking to the mantel party over at The Stories of A to Z. I know that the 4th of July was a few weeks back. But I still love my patriotic mantel and wanted to share it again. Plus it is still what is on my mantel. I haven't gotten around to doing my summer take 2 beachy one yet. And who knows if I ever will. Stay tuned.

Have you gotten sick of my 4th of July decor? I hope not, as now you get to see what I did with my mantel.

I told you that stars & flags were my theme this year. But only because I have a lot of stars and flag stuff. So this is my Stars & Stripes mantel.

It's hard to remember where I got all the stars from. The red & white one in front was Target dollar spot last year. The iron blue one behind it I've had for years. I think it came from the Welcome Home store at some outlet mall. I miss that store. The larger stars & stripes one I can't remember. The red one on the right was from Terry's Village a few years back. The Uncle Sam box was from Michael's last year.

I love these Uncle Sam's. Especially the ones on the box. I didn't see ones on boxes this year. This year, I only found Uncle Sam on a stick.

The wood flag came from ABC Distributing online last year. I think I paid $5.00 for it. I know it was less than $10 or I wouldn't have bought it. I used my vintage wood measuring tape to make a star. Pretty good for my first attempt at doing this. I need to find me more of these.

The rusty star was a new purchase. I got it this past weekend at Tai Pan Trading. It was free to me as I had a gift card given to me from Tai Pan just for blogging about them. Got to love free money.
The 3 glass vases were a thrift store find a couple of weeks ago. I think they were like 50 cents a piece. I loved them as they have embossed stars at the top. I filled them with some broken shells of some kind that I got from Walmart last year. And placed a tea light candle on top.

I love how this turned out.

On the left side are more stars and another Uncle Sam box from Michael's (last year). The larger red star I got from a local grocery store last year for $2.00. Why did I only buy one? I must have been 1/2 asleep at that time. The white one is the 3rd one that came in a set from Terry's Village. And again, I don't remember where I got the small stars and stripes star. I guess it doesn't really matter since I've had it a few years.

I love how each Uncle Sam is just a little different. As well as the box he is standing on.

Well I hope that you have enjoyed my fireplace mantel. I still need to finish up a banner I am making for the mantel as well. Hopefully I will get it done so I can show you tomorrow.

I promise that will be my last patriotic post. Unless, I get a tablescape done. But I doubt it as I haven't been feeling it this year.

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More 4th of July decor

I almost forgot that Kate over at Centsational Girl was having a Stars & Stripes Party today. All week I have been showing you my decor for the 4th of July, a little at a time. But with Kate having a party, I thought I better hurry up & post the rest of my stuff.

I will be posting my mantel separately. As this post already has too many photos. But I love photos.

Enough gabbing. Let's get on with the party. We will start with the table behind my sofa. It originally was in my living room. But at Christmas I needed that space for my Christmas tree. So I moved this table to my family room & put it behind my sofa. I loved it there. So there it has stayed.

This is what it looks like right now.

The star box came from my recent trip to Tai Pan Trading. I got it with my free money. I placed a stars & stripes fan that I made with the help of Martha inside. The bells actually belong to my hubby. I thought they went perfect with a little sign I'll show you in a moment.

This is the sign I'm talking about. Let Freedom Ring!!! So you need bells. I've had this sign for years. I picked it up at a craft show. It is made from a kitchen drawer front. It usually hangs in my boys bathroom which is decorated "Americana" all year round.

I made this flag holder this past weekend. I had seen a similar ones in blogland. I picked up 2 redwood fence post toppers at my local thrift store for $1.00 last year. I painted this one white, antiqued it a little with some brown paint. Got hubby to drill the holes. I could have done it, but why, when hubby was happy to do it for me. I'm all about getting other people to do my work when at all possible. Then I stuck the flags in the holes. The flags came from Target Dollar Spot last month. Three flags for a buck.

This America the Beautiful sign also came from Tai Pan Trading with my free money.

On the left side I have some cloches. I love cloches. The small one in front came from a thrift store for 50 cents. The small blue & white cup and saucer were also a thrift store find.

Cloches made out of old cheese domes are a little hard to decorate. They are shorter than most cloches. Plus the glass is so thick it sometimes distorts the image of what is inside. For this one I added a vintage flower frog & placed flag toothpicks in most of the sections. Another cheap, easy & fast way to decorate.

For this larger cloche I printed out a vintage 4th of July image from my computer. I purchased CD's off of eBay years ago that have vintage images for every holiday. It's a great way to decorate. I printed the image on card stock, cut it out & placed on vintage flower frog.

Then I placed fire crackers all around the bottom. Don't worry, I don't have little kids around. So I don't have to worry about the firecrackers. Except for sometimes the big kids (hubby & adult sons) will sneak a few & light off in the back yard.

There is a story that goes with the firecrackers. A few years back we were on vacation & stopped at this convenience store that was on an Indian reservation. They were selling all sorts of fireworks, etc. My boys wanted to buy firecrackers in the worse way. I told them "NO". They are not legal where we live. They were quite disappointed, but understood.

As we all got back in the car, hubby pulls out a huge bag of firecrackers & says "Look what I bought". I was so mad as I had just told the boys no. I guess I should have had the same conversation with hubby. I can't seem to win being in a family of all boys.

Next we will move over to the left side of my couch in my family room. Here I have a white trunk that I rescued from my sister in law a few years back. The top is quite uneven & makes it hard to decorate. I just picked up this huge wood tray from the thrift store a month or so ago. I still need to paint it. Just can't make up my mind as to what color. It will probably end up white, but I'm sort of leaning towards blue.

All I had to do to this cloche was add another vintage print from the computer & add a flag toothpick to the top of the ball. Instant Patriotism.

In this cloche I added 3 blue & white tea cups and saucers stacked on top of each other. I collect blue & white transferware. They were all picked up from thrift stores over the years. The white filler at the bottom is actually the edges cut off a few white coffee filters. I had to cut down some white coffee filters to use for my patriotic banner that I am making (and haven't finished). I then cut them into strips & used as filler.

This is a cloche that I made from a glass dome picked up from the thrift store & a glass knob. Inside I placed 3 vintage bottles (eBay find) & placed a small flag in one. Wrapped some grape vine on the outside.
Here is the shelf above the trunk. The mirror was something I picked up from a trade show when I was selling on eBay a few years back. I love the shape of it.

The larger star I've had for years. It came in a set of 3 different colors from Terry's Village. The striped wood star from Target last year in their Dollar spot section. Uncle Sam came from Micheal's this year on clearance.

The 2 bottles in the back were picked up from thrift stores. The shorter one in the front was from the Bargain Store for $1.50. But it was originally an Ikea item. The Bargain Store I go to gets left over stuff from Ikea and Target and sells them for less. The money goes to helping the needy. The 1st Saturday of the month, everything is 1/2 off. That is usually when we go.

And finally we have the small cabinet at the end of my kitchen cabinets. I switched out the white frame for this cream colored one that had been on my mantel.

I added my Coldwater Creek clearance letter balls to my apothecary jar. I just adore them. Another Target Dollar Spot star (last year). As many of you know, I collect white pitchers (preferably ironstone, but any white pitcher that I love will do). I found this pitcher at my local thrift store last week for $1.50. It has a lot of brown on the top & bottom, but that makes me love it more. Gives it character. Added a small flag & it is all spiffed up for the 4th.

Another cloche I made with a glass dome & glass knob. Placed a patriotic birdhouse inside sitting on some vintage ironstone.

My thesaurus wreath was moved from my mantel to this cabinet. I turned the frame the other direction to give it more height.

Changed out the ribbon for something more fitting for the 4th. And added a couple of toothpick flags.

I hope that you enjoyed seeing how I have decorated for the 4th. Most everything I used I already had. The few purchased I did make this year were either free or less than a couple of bucks. As you can see, it doesn't take much time, money or energy to give your place a punch of patriotism for the 4th of July. So what's stopping you?

Be sure to come back later as I will be posting my 4th of July Mantel.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Add a patriotic touch the fast, cheap & easy way

Don't have much time or money to decorate for the 4th of July? Don't worry, Martha & I will help you.

See? All I had to do to this little vignette to make it all patriotic is to add a little patriotic fan and a hat for my girl. Or is it a boy? I can't tell.

Remember yesterday when I showed you my red, white & blue hutch? I made a bunch of patriotic fans and I learned how from Martha. She even gives you the color pattern templates. So you don't have to go out & buy any special scrap booking paper. Isn't she nice?

I made this fan by using the stars and stripes template Martha provides. Instead of making a complete circle. I only glued one side & made it a half circle & placed it behind my new family sign that I got with my free money from Tai Pan Trading.

Instant patriotism. Can't you just hear the Star Spangled Banner?

Do you remember making these paper hats when you were a kid? We used to make them out of newspaper. Well I just enlarged Martha's stars and stripes template to full page & printed it out on regular paper. Cut it out & folded it and presto, a hat.

Now I couldn't remember how to fold the paper to make the hat. It's been a long, long, long, long time since I was a kid. So I cheated. I found this video on YouTube to show me how.

Now you know how to fold one too.

I couldn't make up my mind which side of the hat I liked better. The one in the photo before, or this one. This is the side that hubby likes the best. I think I do too. Shows more contrast.

Doesn't he look like Napoleon Bonaparte with the hat? That, or a patriotic pirate. I love it!!!

So now you have no excuse as to why you can't decorate for the 4th of July. If you have a computer, a printer and some paper. And we can't forget some hands in which to fold the paper, and a little bit of glue or double sided tape, then you too can do this.

And you have me to thank. Oh, and Martha too. But she gets enough thanks, so you can leave all good wishes and thanks here, on my blog. I'm sure Martha won't mind.

Now get busy adding some patriotic pizazz to your house.

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Monday, June 28, 2010

My Thrifty Red, White & Blue hutch

No, I did not paint my hutch red, white and blue. It is still black.

What I mean by red, white and blue is that I finally have my 4th of July decorating done. Well almost done. I still need to finish up my banner for my fireplace. But other than that I'm done.

I just love decorating for the 4th of July. But then what holiday don't I enjoy decorating for? I'm all about flags and stars this year.

My decorating tends to be pretty thrifty. I have to be. I'm poor. Don't you just love when in magazines or on TV they tell you something is a bargain or thrifty & it is like $100? Since when is $100 a bargain? I guess if it normally costs $1000, then $100 would be a bargain. But in my book, thrifty is less than $20.00 or 1/2 off, but usually less than $10.00. Maybe I'm just cheap.
Most everything on my hutch came from a thrift store. If not a thrift store, I still got it somewhere thrifty or at a thrifty price. So this hutch is definitely a thrifty hutch.

Normally I would display my blue and white and red and white transferware plates and pitchers for 4th of July. But this year I was too lazy to change out the plates. So I decided to stick with the white ironstone plates that were already on display. And just add some red, white and blue accessories.

Can't remember what last years hutch looked like? Here is a little reminder.

My 4th of July hutch 2009

Now back to my current 4th of July hutch. Want a better look? What better place to start than with the top.

In this cloche I added 3 vintage bottles that I got off of eBay a few years back. I got 10 vintage bottles for $10.00. I added a couple of small flags. And placed a wood star from last years Target dollar spot in front.

On the top right I placed a metal star inside this wooden bird cage and placed another small flag. The bird cage came from Tai Pan Trading store back in April. If you missed my post about my latest trip to Tai Pan Trading this weekend, click here. The metal star is actually off a star garland that I got on clearance from Big Lots last summer for $2.00. The garland had 7 metal stars on it. I actually got 2 garlands, but I took one of them apart to use the stars separately.

The only "new" things for the hutch this year are the red & blue metal buckets from Target's dollar spot (this year) for $1.00 each. I placed battery operated tea light candles inside. And the Uncle Sam figurines came from Michael's on clearance for like $1.50 each.

One of my latest obsessions is collecting vintage flatware. I love to pick it up for 25 cents to 50 cents at the thrift store. I place them in a couple of my white pitchers. This white pitcher isn't old & didn't come from a thrift or antique store. It came from Ross, but I consider Ross a thrifty store. I think this was only $3.00.

I love this ironstone tureen. It is the only one I have. It came from Salvation Army. I passed it up the first time I saw it as I thought it was too much. But when I was leaving the store I realized that everything was 1/2 off that day. So I marched my butt right back into the store and bought it for $3.50.

The small salad size plates are ironstone & I found an almost complete set of dishes for 6 at the thrift store for $15.00. That was dinner plates, salad plates, tea cups and saucers. The only thing missing was 1 tea cup, and the bowls. But who needs bowls anyways? They are so over rated. Who am I kidding? I need to find the matching bowls. And someday I will, at a thrift store.

This pitcher also came from Ross for about $3.00. And it holds some more of my vintage flatware. I placed the spoon on the shelf as it is too short to see if I put it in the pitcher.

The glittered pencil starfish were a blog win last year. I love how the silver glitter has tarnished over the past few months. The white ironstone pitcher actually came from an antique store years and years ago. This was the pitcher that started my obsession with collecting white pitchers and creamers. It is still my favorite one. I got it at a great price as it has a chip on the rim. But I don't care about imperfections. I'm not perfect, so why should my treasures be perfect.

The larger dinner plates are ironstone & made by Johnson Brothers. I got them for $1.00-2.00 each. I've found them at a couple of different thrift stores. This white ironstone pitcher was a thrift store find. I paid $5.00 for it. It is my 2nd favorite pitcher.

The Uncle Sam guys actually were attached to a long stick. I pulled out or broke off the stick so they could stand on their own. They were so happy. No one likes a stick up their butt. lol.

I love how they are dressed differently and look vintage.

Did you notice all the patriotic fans I made? This is my first attempt at making fans. I am now hooked. I learned how from Martha. She even provides the colored templates. You too can learn how to make your own by clicking here.

We are now down to the bottom level. I just found the shell plate at the thrift store a couple of weeks ago for a buck.

I found the star in front last summer while on vacation in Arizona. Yes, I vacationed in Arizona, in the hottest part of summer. Call me crazy. Except for the fact that I didn't have to pay a dime for our condo (stayed with my parents in a time share) so someone else paid for the air conditioning. Who's crazy now? Now what were we talking about? Oh yea, the star. I found it on clearance at a grocery store of all places. It was like a couple of bucks. I'm all about stars too.

If you have followed my blog for long, you know I love cloches and apothecary jars.

In this cloche I placed the little "Patriotic" creamer I picked up at a thrift store a few weeks back. I placed one of my Uncle Sam figures inside & placed on a bed of curly strips of music. Pretend that the music is from the Star Spangled Banner.

I have a hard time deciding what to put under the cheese dome cloche as the glass usually distorts what is inside. So I placed a larger fan I made. It's raised up by some more curly strips of music. It was my first attempt at making the fans & when I was holding the ends together waiting for the glue to dry, I held a bit too tight & made a hole. I thought the glass in the cheese dome would hide it, but no, it's right there big as day for the whole world to see. Would you have even noticed if I hadn't brought it to your attention?

For this cloche I placed a vintage stencil of the number 4 on a flower frog. I placed some patriotic paper behind it so you could see the "4".

I really didn't have anything patriotic to put in my apothecary jars so I filled them with game pieces and my number balls. I placed one of the stars from my Big Lots garland on the middle jar. I should really paint it red, as most everything on the hutch is red red, not burgandy.

The Scrabble letters in this jar came from the thrift store. Do you know how long I have been searching for them? They had 2 games, but I only bought one. Now I am wishing I had bought both of them. This jar could use some more letters. Just shoot me now. Oh well, you live and learn.

I still love my number balls a year later. They were a thrifty find from Coldwater Creek outlet last year on clearance for 1/2 plus an additional 20% off.

I just got the Dominoes from a thrift store. Whenever we go on vacation with my parents, we always play Dominoes. So I wanted my own set. And I wanted black & white ones. I found a brand new set of Double 12 Dominoes (the Tournament ones) New in the box (NIB) for $6.00. They sell for $15.00 new on Amazon. So for less than 1/2 off, NIB Dominoes from the thrift store is indeed a thrifty find. I probably won't really play Dominoes at home. I really just wanted them to put in my apothecary jar. Same thing with the scrabble letters. I'm not really a game person. Just when on vacation, with the parents. Am I the only one who does this kind of stuff? I didn't think so.

On this cake plate I placed one of my daisy flower balls that I made. And in front I printed out a vintage 4th of July print from my computer and placed it on a flower frog. I really should have added some glitter to make it more snazzy, but I was too lazy.

Well I hope you enjoyed the latest metamorphosis of my china hutch.

Be sure to check back later tonight or sometime tomorrow. I have more patriotic decor to post about. Not sure when I'll get it posted. You know how I tend to procrastinate and besides, the Bachelorette is on tonight and we can't forget the Housewives of New Jersey. There is suppose to be some fireworks on both shows. I can't wait. Who doesn't love fireworks????

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