Wednesday, March 21, 2018

A Walk Along The River ...

Hello my dear friends,

as so often these days, I am late sharing something again.

 It is now the second day of Spring and here I am quickly wanting to share photographs that I took a few weeks ago of  the Winter. As times before, I have taken many pictures and again can't choose which ones to share and which ones not, so I am sharing them all. That means there will be a part 2 to this post because I don't want you to miss out on how beautiful everything looked.

After all the snow had previously melted away and had caused a lot of flooding in the city, we had another Winter storm over night with new snow falling and temperatures dropping once again.
I have always had a thing of going for walks in the Winter and this time it took me to the river here in London, Ontario. It was early in the morning which was nice because not many people have time to go for walks that time of the day. I parked my car close to a walking trail and went on my way. It was fascinating by how much beauty I was met during my short walk along the river Thames. So if you have a few spare moments, grab a cup of coffee or maybe your favorite tea and ...

... come walk with me!

Whilst walking to get to the trail from the parking lot, I was already greeted by a Winter Wonderland.
Everything had been covered and hugged by the newly fallen snow. The skies were bright blue and the sun was shining and it was very cold but that didn't matter to me too much. I just wanted to walk and not miss a thing.

The first thing that caught my eye was the warning sign that coyotes were in the area. A good thing to know and beware of for sure but what what did worry me a little more was this!

The previous flooding caused by the first snow melt and a huge down pore of heavy rain a week before had made the earth crack and become somewhat dangerous at the edge of the trail.  

 The cracks were very deep and it the ground looked unstable, so I made sure to stay away from it.
After passing that part of the river, the paths were a little icy and covered in snow but otherwise good to walk on. I just walked and took in my surroundings and how beautiful it was.

The river was flowing fast but almost silent. Everything just looked magical to me and other than a few birds singing somewhere in the trees, there was almost no noise to be heard. I don't think many words are needed to tell you that this is Mother Nature at it's best in the Winter.

So just take a look at what I saw!

Wasn't it so pretty out there that day?

I hope you have enjoyed the first part of my Winter walk along the river Thames.
I am hoping to share the second part of it with all of you tomorrow.

I hope you are well my dear friends and life is treating you kind.

Have a peaceful and creative day.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

I Don't Plan To Shop These Days ...

Hello my dear friends,

I don't know what it is but as soon as I mentioned, that I don't go out junking/shopping very often anymore, all of the sudden I find the neatest things when I am out and about, that just have to take them home with me. These past few weekends I had been out spending time with my lovely daughters and I just by chance I found some very nice pieces! Some for me and some to work with and when you see them, you will understand why I just couldn't leave them standing on the shelf! Today I am sharing one of those pieces.

It is a vintage trinket/jewelry box that was meant to sit on a vanity.

It has such a lovely shape, a little fancy but not too much.

It has a great lid that can stand which is something I love.

This lid just couldn't get any better for me to work with.

The inside was covered in red "velvet". Well, not real velvet but a "lookalike" type of it, that wasn't nice at all and actually the only thing I didn't like about this piece, so it just had to go as soon as I got home with it!

Overall a very lovely piece, don't you think?!

Just like other times, as soon as I saw this piece, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it and when I got home, I started to work on it. Right now I am adding the final touches to my newest creation and then it is done. All that is left to do then, is take some photographs to share with all of you which I will hopefully get to tomorrow or in the next few days.

Thank you for stopping by here at Todolwen, it is always so nice when you do.

I hope you are well and life is treating you kind.

Have a peaceful and creative day.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Who Would Have Thought?! ...

Hello my dear friends,

gosh, I can't believe that it has already been weeks since I have posted last.
Where has the time gone?! 

When I create, I try as much as possible to use vintage or antique pieces or I try to recycle newer things. More and more these days I try to find unique pieces to work with but who would have thought, that the Dollar store would have something neat for me?!

I normally buy garbage bags, aluminum foil and maybe a few other bits and pieces at the Dollar store. At times I just like to walk through the store just for the sake of seeing what they have on their shelves. A few weeks ago was one of those times. I went for a walk with my daughter Ashleigh since the weather was nice outside. The sun was shining and it had warmed up a little. After a good cup of coffee and a nice chat at Tim Horton's we decided to stop at the Dollar store on the way home. The store had started to display it's Easter merchandise and amongst all the bright colored Easter eggs, fluffy bunnies, Easter baskets and all sorts of other Spring and Easter themed bits and piece, were some very plain wooden cutouts. They were bunny silhouettes made from 1/4 inch plywood and they actually didn't look bad at all. My daughter thought that I should buy them because they were perfect for me to work with, so I did.

And these are those bunnies ...

The were a little rough on the edges and in need of a good sanding.

 They have a base so they can stand upright and they were like I said just very basic, simple and "plain".

I had seen some of Matthew Mead's Easter decorations a few years ago in which he used "simple" white card bunny cutouts. They looked amazing and I loved that look.

(Photograph courtesy of Matthew Mead)

His white bunnies were the inspiration for my two wooden hoppers. 

I hoped to make mine look nice and a little neat too and that without going over the top. I still like the less is more look very much and that is the way I went with my wooden bunnies. A good sanding, a few coats of white paint and a bow made from crinkled seam binding in a pale color and they were done! ... Simplistic but yet pretty and just the way I like them.

The are now my Spring decor for our family room fireplace mantle.

Who would have thought that two wooden bunny silhouettes from the Dollar store, at $2 a piece could look this nice?! One thing I do know thought, is that you don't always have to go all out with money or look. Sometimes a little less can go a long way.

Last but not least ... 

... don't forget to enter your name to my "Christmas To Come" giveaway! You will find my button that will take you to the original post on the top of my right side bar.

Thank you for taking the time to stop by here at Todolwen today and I hope you have enjoyed your short stay. Do come back sometime again and see what I have been up too. 

I hope you are well my dear friends and life is treating you kind.

Have a peaceful and creative day.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

My Vegetable Garden Gems ...

Hello my dear friends,

I LOVE making my strawberry pincushions but after finding the antique carrot pincushion recently, I thought it would be neat to make a vegetable pincushion instead of another fruit one. 

I can't tell you how happy I am even today, over 2 years after finding the large stack of cotton velvet samples. I can't believe that I even wasted a thought for a very short moment debating if I should buy it or not back then! I would have missed out on making some lovely pieces if I wouldn't have left the store without it but thankfully I didn't and I am still enjoying that buy today. 

Just look at all of those beautiful colors!

I don't have too much of it left anymore these days because I have made quite a few pincushions from it already but I was fortunate to have a dark orange/rusty colored piece of it left. Perfect to become a carrot in my eyes. Even though I was using velvet, I knew that my little streak of primitive would come out in this creation.

I also had this stunning sari silk ribbon in a nice shade of green. It is fuzzy sari silk ribbon because of all the threads that have been exposed when it was torn into strips.

Different ... isn't it?

The velvet and sari silk ribbon put together have now become my newest pincushion creation and I think that my newest creation worked out quite nicely. I just had to add something special as the finishing touch and I knew what that was going to be.

I had this large jar full of the most beautiful crystals from an antique chandelier and I am sure you know already where this is going!

And this is my newest creation, my first carrot pincushion.

I just love the little dimples I gave it!

But as you know, even carrots can become lonely after a while, so I just had to make a friend for it and this is that friend. It is a little smaller than my first one but just as neat.

It is a little smaller and this one is filled with crushed walnut shells so it is perfect to sharpen those needles and pins.

And last but not least ...

Before I end this post today, I would like to tell you a little story about myself when I was a child.
 It is a story about carrots and me. My Mom told it to me many years ago and I had to think about it whilst I was working on my vegetable garden gems.

... When I was little, about 3 or 4 years old, we visited my Grandma in Melville, Sask. for the summer as we did every summer. My Grandma had such an amazing garden filled with lots of beautiful flowers but also a vegetable garden, in which she grew many vegetables including carrots. Every afternoon she would go to her patch and pick some of her vegetables for dinner. One day she came back into the house looking puzzled. She said that she had wanted to get some carrots but found that several of them had been pulled out of the ground already and pushed back into the earth again. This went one for days until my Grandma decided to stand guard to find out what was going on. And this is what was happening ... apparently I would wake up at 6 am in the morning and being hungry, I would head out into the vegetable patch and pull a carrot out of the ground. If I didn't like it, I would push it back into the earth and pull another one out. Once I found the right carrot, I would sit down, eat it and then happily return to the house again.

Remembering this puts a smile in my heart. I was told that I didn't just stick to carrots though. Apparently I had a thing for peas too. I would open up the pods and take the peas out and eat them and leave the pods hanging on the pea bushes which puzzled my Grandma just as much until she again stood watch one early morning.

... Happy memories!

Thank you for taking the time to stop by today and visit me here at Todolwen. Make sure you come back some time again because you never know what I might have to share.

I hope you are well my dear friends and life is treating you kind.

Have a peaceful and creative day.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Little Metal Boxes ...

Hello my dear friends,

these days I don't go out shopping often anymore because I have done so in the past and that is why I have a several drawers and boxes filled with all sort of lovely bits and pieces hiding away in my studio. (At times, I think there might be a little too many of them!)

In one of those drawers I just "found" these two pretties again. 

Little ornate metal trinket boxes!

They are such pretty things that will hold all your tiny treasures. This is something I fondly remember from when I was a child. I was gifted such a trinket box when I was four years old and I still have it.

I had bought these two boxes last year some time and was delighted with the thought of working with them, whenever that would be and now was that whenever! I have lately and  still am working on a few new pincushions but it is so nice to have a change.

 I have only worked with one trinket box before and this is that little metal box.

Before ...

... and after ...

It was so much fun to transform the inside of it and now I am excited to work with these two!

They both had that typical red felt glued inside them which had to go and after a little scrubbing they were ready to be transformed.

Right now I am still at the stage of choosing which fabric to use for the inside and also on how to decorate them too which I will hopefully have the answers too soon, so I can start the actual work.
As always, once they are done I will make sure to share them with you.

So do come back and visit me some time again and see what I have been up too.

I hope you are well my dear friends and life is treating you kind.

Have a peaceful and creative day.