Archive for April, 2009
I’ve been pretty slack in my posting of late. I apologize. First of all, I was preparing for major birthday festivities…and also to head off for vacation in South Dakota. N’s family is from there, so we’re doing 9 days of what I’m calling my Wild West Adventure. We’ll be hitting up Montana, Wyoming, South Dakota and Minnesota in our journey. Hopefully I can show off lots of fun pics when I return. For now, you’ll have to settle for this postcard. See you soon!!
Today I’m having a little pre-birthday bbq. So in preparation I’ve been tidying up the house and doing little things to make it look more inviting from the outside as well…such as add some new flowers. Here are the pics. I love all of them so much…especially the blue salvia.
These are some hilarious lawn ornaments that Nick found. I thought I’d put them out as a laugh.
Last week while doing some work at the Morris Arboretum in Chestnut Hill, Philadephia I got to see Patrick Dougherty at work setting up his new installation. It’s basically a cocoon-like abstract sculpture made of twigs and sapling branches. It makes me think of hobbits & gnomes!! Anyways…check out his work at stickwork.net. I would love to see more of his work in person because they look absolutely fabulous…and of course, this one is jaw-dropping in person. If you get a chance, you should definitely stop by the arboretum and check it out!!
Meanwhile, it kind of reminds me of the treehouses that the Junior Society is currently featuring on their site. Head over there and check those out too!! Here’s a taste of their stuff. They have FOUR different features so…do your due dilligence!
I just saw this cockroach plate on Etsy. I’m strangely drawn to it, and repulsed at the same time. What’s your verdict? (This plate is made by Etsy seller Catherine Reece.) You know…I think it would be best as a platter. That way, once the food starts to disappear your guests would be shocked and a conversation would naturally erupt. I’m just saying…
Several months ago, my lovely boyfriend put a hot porcelain teapot & tea cup down on our teak mid-century coffee table, and the result was heart-crushing white “burn” marks.
He didn’t realize what was going to happen by that hot teapot, but nevertheless I was soooo upset! I tried several different things to get the marks off to no avail. I was mentally preparing myself for having to sand down the whole thing and re-do the top.
However, while visiting my family in GA this past week, I flipped through an old issue of Ready-Made magazine and they mentioned that an iron + cotton towel could solve all my white burn mark woes!
Lo, and behold they were RIGHT! After holding the hot [dry] iron on each stain for only about a minute, the marks were gone!!
I’m beyond thrilled right now! I feel as if I accomplished something really big tonight! Haha. I hope someone else out there has this same problem, and I make your night just the way that Ready-Made made mine!
Philadelphia’s art scene is always buzzing with something new, and on May 16th the NKCDC will be hosting it’s 3rd Annual Kensington Kinetic Sculpture Derby. Go to their website to enter, see previous derbies or become a derby sponsor. If you don’t live in Philadelphia, it makes you want to move here, doesn’t it? (I knew it would.)
After writing a post about Thomas Kral’s cut glass designs, a commenter Sarah pointed me to a Martha Stewart craft idea for etching glass. I really loved the Martha Stewart idea, but don’t need homemade cannisters, so I decided to use it to etch a quote into an old window that I had in the basement. Here’s how it all went down:
We took an old window that I happened to have in the basement…and looked up a quote that I wanted to use to etch onto the glass. The quote I decided to use is one by Chuang Tzu that states, “Look at this Window. It’s nothing but a hole in the wall, but because of it the whole room is filled with light.” I loved the quote and how it related to the old window…so it seemed perfect for our project.
After much driving around to find a Michael’s Arts & Crafts (in which I was cursing myself for not having an iphone in which I’d be able to look up directions while in the car), I finally managed to purchase all the items I needed to do my first glass etching project which were: 1) Armour Etch Etching Cream. (Available in Michaels stores, but not online apparently) 2) A cheap set of paintbrushes 3) Several packs of monogram stickers.
I used tweezers to help carefully place each letter, and the sticker packaging to help create a straight line. The tweezers were my life saver.
After putting on all the letters, I spread a layer of etching cream over the surface of the glass…covering each letter as well as possible. You have to wait at least 5 minutes for the etching cream to take effect. Also, note that Martha recommends vinyl letters, however I found no difference in using paper stickers In fact, rinsing the etching cream off the mirror surface will wash away 95% of the stickers anyways. (So in my opinion it’s better to use the paper versions.)
So in the end, I finished with a very subtle piece of “DIY artwork” for the newly renovated guest bedroom. I’m pleased with the results, but I do feel compelled to call out that the etching is quite subtle and depends on the light for you to really see the design well. Also, if you wanted to do this with just the stickers themselves and forego etching, that would also look really good. N and I even discussed not going through with the etching part because it DID look so nice…but in the end wanted something really “quiet and peaceful” for the bedroom.
I hope you liked it! Now maybe you can try glass etching yourself. One last tip: Make sure to wait at least 5 SOLID minutes before rinsing off the Glass Etching compound…make sure you’ve put a thick layer of etching cream on. Early tests came out sketchy if you didn’t wait long enough or the cream wasn’t applied thick enough in spots.
It’s kind of reminds me of a Mark Rothko painting…in a tragic, sad way of course.
The first thing that is important to understand about Philadelphia (for anyone who doesn’t live here) is the tremendous amount of [architecturally] beautiful homes there are here. The second thing to know is just how many of those homes are falling apart because the neighborhood is crap or because it’s just plain difficult to keep up with old houses. Anyways, the beautiful homes are one of my favorite things about this city. Everywhere I turn there’s always a more beautiful house…that I wish I lived in. (I mean, I didn’t name this blog House Obsession for nothing.) Everyone that knows me well, knows that I am constantly saying “Oh, I wish I lived there!” Maybe that’s why I’ve moved so many times in my life. There are always more houses to decorate, after all!
At any rate, today N and I took a walk to the “nice part of the neighborhood” so that I could torture myself with falling in love with every house. I’m sure the people who lived around there wondered why we were taking pictures of their houses, but it’s just something I like to do – dream of what the insides of those houses must look like. Anyways, here are my favorites from today’s walk.
I mean, how cute are those shutters? I can’t even stand it! I love them so much!
Is it possible to burn with porch envy? I imagine sitting out here drinking tea and rocking in a rocking chair. I think this is a former twin (like mine) where the person actually owns both halves and has turned it into a single home (not like mine). I also love that they painted the brick. I’m not usually a fan of that, but this house just looks so good in person.
This house is one of those that is so ridiculously huge that you have to wonder just who originally built the house. Was he an inventor or a banker? Nevertheless, I certainly wouldn’t want to have to clean this huge home…nor would I want to pay the gas bill, but oh what I wouldn’t give to get to live there just for a month. The owners must get lost in there sometimes!
There are so many things to love about this house, such as the curved porch and the two-color brick accents. It’s hard to see in this photo, but it also has real leaded glass windows too. Again, who built this house?! It’s enormous! I think you’d need an army to fill it (and clean it), but I’d love a house tour.
Okay, so this is not a photo of a house…but it IS a squirrel lantern in someone’s yard. It’s a shame that whoever owns this house has let the lantern (and the rest of the house too) get into this condition b/c it’s seriously one of the best pieces of lawn decoration / lighting that I’ve ever seen. The house itself was in such disrepair that I didn’t both taking any photos of it. Such a shame…it breaks my heart.
I can’t explain it, but this one is my fantasy house of the day. I love it’s lines…the porch…the stone wall in front…the overly bulbous top. I hope the owners love it as much as I do.
Walking through the neighborhood window shopping like this lets me forget about all the renovation projects for a moment in my own house, and just dream about the endless possibilities of someone else’s space. Now if only I could pick this house up and move it to the beach. Now THAT would be a real dream house! (more…)