Wednesday, May 30, 2012

California Pottery? What is THIS!?

Okay, it's shiny, it's beautiful, it has the look and feel of California Pottery and yet I just can't figure out what to put into google to figure out what this is!

rounded with hole in the middle

It's round with a rounded base and a hole in the center.  I'm relatively certain it isn't a bird house, could be some kind of planter but that seems odd.


Thursday, May 10, 2012

Vintage Thermos Lamp

So one of the things I do to keep my toddler in togs is buying random things at thrift stores, yard sales, etc. and selling them.  I seek out the retro, the bizarre and the interesting.  On my latest venture out into the world of hillbilly thrift stores I found an old Thermos from 1971 with a really cool design on it.

Of course, step one of selling the things I find is figuring out how much they are worth so I did a search for vintage thermos and immediately found a bunch of LAMPS!  Yep, apparently people make lamps out of old thermoses, which is not really a surprise since I've been making lamps out of all kinds of random items lately.

  • crafty tip, in general, there is no need to buy a "lamp kit" at your local hardware store if you want to make a lamp since you can usually find used lamps for about $1 at your local thrift store and voila, you have a lamp kit!  Lamp kits are usually between $7 and $11 so you'll save some bucks if you like to make lamps!
So...instead of selling the Thermos "as is", I figured I would try my hand at making a lamp.  A word of caution, however, most older quality Thermos products have glass liners so eliminate the surprise factor if you are drilling through the plastic layer by using a punch instead, it's still a real pain to get the glass out though.

Not posting step by step instructions yet...since this was my first attempt and, while I think it turned out beautifully, I know I'll be simplifying the process before too long!

So I had an old lamp that I bought for $1, paid $1 for the thermos and $1 for the cost for this super cool retro lamp was $3!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Commissioned Soda Can Wall Hanging

So the bears are now awake, making the daily trip to the recycle bin quite risky...but having just completed my first really large piece and it's been worth the risk!

Since it's being shipped up to New York tomorrow I needed to take some pictures so I won't forget...and this one is hard to part with!  My lovely customer on Etsy originally sent me a photo of a flower that I believe is displayed on a wall outside an antique shop in South Carolina, the challenge was that the piece she showed me was made out of large steel paint cans and other large cans, and she wanted a 36" diameter piece made with soda cans.  I would say it turned out beautifully!

My challenge on the MacGyver end was to make this piece happen and keep it stable so that it could hang on a wall...materials varied from chicken wire, to gutter guard, to finally yardsticks and pizza pans!

I will post more pictures soon, and hopefully I'll have a picture to show once it arrives and is hung on it's new patio wall far to the North!

The other fantastic thing about this piece is that it comes apart and is able to ship in a golf club box or similar...this aspect of it is something I am especially proud of, as if I start making more of these, they will be in "kits" so that they can be assembled by whoever buys them and they will feel that they are part of the artistic process as well!  Whoopee!

I have been getting crazy with the soda cans of late...partially because I am able to make these things for little cost and I'm a bit broke lately, but also because there are so many different things to do with cans and it's so much fun (except for my aching hand from tin snips and can crushing!).

So for now, I'll roll the dice with those bears and keep it up with the cans...

This guy was at the top of my driveway the other day...