Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy Happy New Year's

Do you eat grapes on New Year's Eve??  Actually I have never heard of this tradition before but apparently, in Spanish cultures, you are suppose to eat 12 grapes in 12 seconds at the stroke of midnight.  I saw this on Pinterest last week and a party was born!!  It has been several years since I have thrown a party.. work, kids, something always got in the way.  When we built this house we had a visions of cocktail parties, intimate suppers with good friends, pool parties with neighbors, etc.  9 years have quickly gone by and I think we have had only 4 parties here.  So my New Years resolution is to get my Martha on and host some doozies!!  Starting with New Year's Eve!
So where does the grape eating tradition come from?? According this wine blog... "the tradition was invented by the grape producers! The story goes that around 1909 there was a bumper crop of table grapes in Alicante ( a southern Spanish province on the Mediterranean) and the farmers were going to have tons of surplus grapes that would just rot unless they could somehow get people to buy them. Someone had the bright idea to promote the idea of eating 12 grapes to celebrate the 12 rings of the bell to ring in the New Year and the rest, is history." 
Some other fun facts about New Years..
  • People wear red underwear in Italy on New Year's Day as a symbol of good luck for the upcoming year.
  • More vehicles are stolen on New Year's Day than on any other holiday throughout the year... so lock your car!
  • Stay away from bad luck foods like lobsters, because they move backwards, and chicken, because they scratch in reverse. It is believed that eating these on New Year's day might cause a reversal of fortune.
Although I don't know which cocktails I will be serving tomorrow night..
I do know that I will be rockin a sequin top like this, wearing an enormous smile because I will be with my friends & family, and of course I will be thinking of all of you.. Happy New Year's!!

update...  The grape tradition was a huge hit with the gang!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Mosaic Monday

Alas! How dreary would be the world if there was no Santa Claus!... There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence.

Goodbye jolly old Saint Nicholas.. until next year.  Well at least I hope.  It was in 5th grade that my Olivia, without warning, asked if there was really a Santa.  Yes NOW I know what I SHOULD have said but let me tell you, pre-teens know when you are lying.. she had me squirming all over the place until I finally cracked under the pressure.  She simply said okay and walked away.  My little baby boy will be entering the 5th grade next year so I still have many months ahead to plan for the inevitable day when he too will ask "is Santa for real?"

my favorite Santa picture of all time.. in 2003, Olivia's foot & thumbprint made up Santa and his sled while Brice's hand was Rudolph.

I don't want a repeat of the dramatic reaction when Brice found out about the Tooth Fairy, click here to read about that.  Thus, I am preparing myself in advance thanks to this wonderful blog post.  (Thank you Gail for sending it to me!)  The first time I read it, I cried realizing that my children are indeed, growing up. So Au Revoir you crazy white bearded man!!  We had an amazing Christmas morning keeping your spirit alive once again in the Dumas household.

This mosaic has been linked up to The Little Red House.  Vintage pictures of Santa were all found on Pinterest.


Friday, December 23, 2011

And the Winner is....

My assistant (10 year old son) chose Aimee as our winner for the custom IPhone4 cover.   Congrats Aimee!!  I have now added these to my online shop as well, $16 each.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Camera+ Wednesday

What is it about vintage glass ornaments that make me swoon??  Found these while junkin at my favorite store in Alabama and used my IPhone camera+ app!


Monday, December 19, 2011

Mosaic Monday

Mosaic Mondays are getting to be quite addictive for me... not so much in the making of them (which is fun too) but the amazing blog postings I find when researching for them.  This Mosaic Monday post certainly is a result from such search!  It all started with this photo found on pinterest...
and again on this fantastic blog called A Gift Wrapped Life.  I am now a fan & follower. Sande has inspired me to turn my presents this year into stunning pieces of art.  Not that my husband or kids would appreciate it, but it would make me happy.  For example her bows using scrap ribbon are beyond gorgeous.
Happy Everything indeed!  Here are some more pictures found on pinterest that will make my gifts stand out.  The first one was done with melted crayon on top of plain white butcher paper!  So pretty. 


Sunday, December 18, 2011

Birds on the Brain...

Well gang.. this is it!  24 birdies have flown out the door over the past 24 hours at the Corner Arts Studios.  Busy Busy Busy.  Here is a sampling of what we did...
My assistants were helping me greatly on day 2 with preparing boards and here I am teaching how one of the fusing techniques.
Many friends and families were taking the class together this time around. The smile on Reese's face (age 10) says it all!!
Not everyone did birds either.. some of our past students came back to try their hand at another painting.  Ashley & Jennifer did Poppies, Sally made Koi Fish, and Beverly painted with pictures of her grandchildren.
 Some finished pieces as they headed out the door!
Now I am taking a mini break to finish up my Christmas shopping.  I will work on more pieces for possible January/February classes at Corner Arts.  Make sure you are a facebook fan to find out when and what we will be making next!


Friday, December 16, 2011

Chalk Paint.. my new BFF

Since having my little booth at Rockin B' Antiques in Sharpsburg, I've heard over and over again about the marvelous time saving benefits from using Chalk Paint... Annie Sloan's Chalk Paint to be exact.  So I decided to do some research online and just by seeing the "after" pictures like the one below.. I was in!
painted dresser from Mustard Seed

One of the best blogs out there for "how to" Chalk Paint would be Shaunna's blog called Perfectly Imperfect.  Not only does she go through  the procedure step by step, but she also gives you the cost break down vs. latex paint.  (Trust me.. you'll first gasp at the $35 per quart price tag but after seeing Shaunna's comparisons, you'll gladly pay the price) 

Most importantly the chalk paint can be used on any surface w/o the need to sand or prime first.  The paint has low VOC's (volatile organic compounds) and has barely any odor.  The paint has a wonderful consistency so only one layer is needed, even though I usually do 2.  Finally it is so easy to distress your pieces and achieve an old world patina by using waxes.  It truly is that easy!
chalk paint choices from Annie Sloan
Gorgeous French looking creations all with chalk paint from Annie Sloan
My project this week was a tiny wooden table that I picked up at Rockin B' Antiques.  I painted the table with Old Violet. 
2 coats went on smoothly, then I roughed up the table with sandpaper for a distressed look.
 The secret is in the sauce.. well wax in this case.  Annie Sloan's dark wax was used on the table for a more weathered look.
 Viola.. the finished piece.  Simply beautiful!
Click here to find a stockist near you.  For my local peeps, Twist on Main in Senoia carries a wonderful selection of chalk paint.


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Camera+ Wednesday

Found this mural outside of Binders Art Supply in Atlanta.  Couldn't resist taking the picture with my favorite camera app


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

IPhone {Cover} Give-Away...

It is not very often when a new customized product comes across my desk that gets my attention.  I've been doing personalized gifts for over 6 years now and have seen it all.  So last week my rep sends me a new product for my IPhone.. "just give it a try" she said.  BA-BAAAM!!  I'm totally hooked!!
A custom cover with your business logo, monogram, school pride...
or your sweet children!  Any picture will work.
Want to win one???  To enter just leave a comment below. For an extra chance to win begin following Gillyweed on Facebook click HERE.  I will draw the lucky name on Monday,  December 19th.
Keep in mind these covers are only for the iPhone4 or 4s, (Verizon or At&T).  Also shown in the pictures are the clear case which will be back in stock after Christmas.  Available now are the white cover cases.  In case you are not the lucky winner... you can always order one here, only $16 each 
Also make sure to check out the other wonderful custom products available through Gillyweed such as glass ornaments, wood boxes, marble tiles, plaques and more!

Good Luck!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Mosaic Monday

Is it bad that it is December 12th and our tree is still not decorated??  Shame on me! If I could close my eyes and dream up the perfect Christmas decor for my house, it would be similar to this...
I just ADORE the old fashion, colonial Williamsburg holiday traditions.  Actually, according to, it is a misconception that fruit was used to decorate holiday doors in the American Colonial period. According to the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, it wasn't until 1939 that della Robbia-style wreaths became popular in the historic town's Christmas decorations.  Luca della Robbia was an Italian sculptor during the 1400s who was well-known for his fruit themes.  The fruits and foliage used on much of the Renaissance Italian sculpture work influenced the stylists at "House Beautiful" magazine in 1926.  Wreaths and swags were filled with fruit for holiday decorations.

The pineapple arrangement above the door proclaims hospitality to all who enter.

Oh maybe a trip to Williamsburg may be in my near future.. if it weren't so dang cold!  After I decorate my naked tree today, I may attempt one of these topiaries instead.  So pretty!!


*Forgot to mention that I am joining the link up over at Little Red House for Mosaic Mondays.  Check out the other blogs over there for some more wonderful Monday treasures.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

2012 Calendar..order yours today.

A retailer friend of mine tipped me off last week to these amazing daily journals made by artist Greg Johnson.  After a quick chat with him yesterday, Gillyweed will now be selling these gorgeous calendars at The Vintage-Flea for $22.  The calendar is filled with 64 uncoated pages ready for your note keeping and daily agenda. Front and back cover is embossed and the inside is designed with an antique journal in mind with ruled pages, weekly inspirational quotes and Greg's seasonal collage art.  Calendars should be in shop by Friday but don't hesitate to order yours today.  Call or Text 770-301-0409 or email me at
In the meantime, here are some more shots of the journal courtesy of Curious Sofa.


Friday, December 9, 2011

Beautiful Birds

The first of 3 Bird Classes that I have scheduled for December has come to pass.  I couldn't be more thrilled at how they all turned out and I do believe everybody had a great time learning a new Encaustic technique... Transferring images onto wax.  Yes, here is my secret...I can't draw very well so sometimes I transfer images onto the wax and then color on top of it.  Some artists use overhead projectors, some use graphite paper.. I use photocopies!  Here are few snapshots from my class of 8.  Look at their amazing detail!  Love it.
We had tropical birds..
Backyard Birds..
and even a Flamingo!
It was quite a Zoo.

My next class with availability is on December 17th from 10am-12.  Class is $25.  You can reserve your spot by calling Jenny Jones at the Corner Arts Gallery in downtown Newnan.  678-633-5705


Thursday, December 8, 2011

2012 Color Revealed...

My husband's favorite color is Orange so 2012 will be a great color year for him as the Pantone Institute has chosen their color of the year to be Tangerine Tango.  What do you think?  Orange doesn't look good on everyone but pops of it here and there would be so nice to see.

 If you aren't ready to try head to toe Orange, here are some other colors that Pantone has deemed worthy this Spring. 

Although my friends would say I love a good Margarita, I do not care for that color or Sweet Lilac.  Too light for my taste.  The rest I will wear proudly!!  Thanks Pantone!  Another great pick.