Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Mortal Furniture Sins....

...are what I committed this week. According to Preston. I dug out two more yard sale finds I had been saving, and one is a bentwood chair that turned out to be almost a hundred years old. I painted it, and I thought Preston was going to stroke out. But to be fair, the thing was not in the greatest condition, and it was not extremely valuable. I checked, of course. And now, complete with a purple velvet seat, it fits with the rest of the store, which is taking on a look I can't quite pigeonhole...without seeing it all put together, it has a certain 20's vibe...purple velvet cornices, flat black details, some gloss lacquer-looking black...but by the time it's all put together in the next couple of days it will probably morph into something else entirely. I'll just have to wait and see. I started out with the intention of not making the place too girl-y, because I do have a lot of male customers. But, it is what it is.

The other yard sale find was only a minor sin I guess, it was a little plant stand not quite so old as the chair, but I needed to use it for my telephone so of course I had to paint it...gloss black, to match the chair. I only painted it because it was kind of beat up, even though it's going to be stuffed in the corner, because it might not be stuffed in the corner it's whole life. Plus I love to paint. Mind you, I'm not good at it, in fact I really suck at it. There's just no other word for it. If you look in the dictionary under "suck" there's a picture of me with a paintbrush in my hand. As I told Preston, why do you think I decorate everything?? I'm pretty good at that, it's just the painting of large expanses of one color that I can't seem to master. So please don't look too closely at the walls in the store.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Day 3, In Which We Have Second Thoughts About Our Color Choice...

...ok, not WE, just ME. It's just that I didn't think it would be so....bright! Or pink. I'm not a fan of pink. It's supposed to be lavender but in reality it's kind of orchid. I'm sure it will be fine once I get the window things up and all my stuff in there to break up all that wall space.
This was one of my yard sale treasures from a few years back; the woman who sold it to me said her grandfather made it, and it was my intention to sand it off and stain it, and paint some sort of branch-and-berry design on the sides. But it went into the basement, and subsequently got many things stored on it and has been there ever since. You know what they say about good intentions. Anyway, I need it for my shop so I have resurrected it from its mildew-covered anonymity, and painted it a deep and disturbing shade of purple. It seemed like a good idea when I was at Home Depot looking at paint, and it's just a much darker shade of what's on the walls. Perhaps it indicates that I'm deeply disturbed. Let's not delve into THAT too far.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Day 2, in which we begin to paint....

...ok, not paint, primer. But it looks a whole lot brighter in there now. This is what it looked like before we started; old nasty paneling which was badly installed and bowing out from the walls in places, and the previous tenant had put up stuff all over the walls using tape, which of course took a layer of skin off the paneling. Day 1 was spent in washing the walls and fixing what could be fixed with regard to the paneling. Being married to a carpenter for this long has given me an appreciation for a job well done; and the first thing you need to do when putting up paneling is to pay attention to where the studs are, so that you have something to nail the paneling to. If you don't do that, bad things will happen down the road. Bad things have happened in my store, and all of them can't be fixed but Preston did the best he could and sincerely hopes that I will have many things hanging on the walls. I don't think that'll be a problem.

This is the front wall: on the right side of the windows there is about a foot of space, then the side wall. It's very small, only 9' x 17', but it's room enough. The two desks were left there by the previous tenant; my landlady offered to get rid of them, but I said I would use them. After trying to move them, I can imagine how relieved she must have been when I said that; each one weighs as much as a volkswagen. I won't be rearranging my furniture very often.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Things That Inspire....

...did not work out as I'd hoped. Above are the velvet and organza that I'm using for the window treatments in my store (I still can't believe that. MY STORE!! Wonder if I'll ever get tired of how that sounds?), so I wanted to find a paint color that complements them (if you can't tell, the velvet is a deep royal violet). Also, I love those seaglass colors, and thought at some point during the summer I might want to change the window treatments (and they're not curtains, so I'm using that term for lack of a more descriptive one) to use those colors so I wanted to get a wall color that kind of went with both. As it turns out, that's not possible so I went with a light lavender, since those are the colors I use for all my printed stuff, and the colors I'm using for my signs. So I can't get my way all the time. This is an entirely new concept for me, and one I don't think I like. Can't quite get my mind to acccept it.

The town of Richmond approved my proposal for the sign on my building, so I'm good to go with that...just have to get the materials. So really, most of the time I do get my way.

The other thing that's going on with me is I'm trying to lose weight, though I don't really want to. Try, that is, not lose. I'd like to lose without trying, but there again, can't get my way. What's up with that??

My attempted weight loss, I have to tell you, is not prompted by vanity, or even health (though it probably should be). It was prompted by simple economics; my fat clothes are getting too tight, and I can't afford to go buy a new wardrobe. So far I have lost two pounds. Not a lot, but it was done with very little effort on my part which is the way I like it. But during week three, Preston decided we needed me to bake an apple pie. I must say I bake the best apple pie I've ever had. There'll be no false modesty with regard to my apple pie, and those of you who know me know I'm not in the habit of boasting; I really do make fantastic apple pie. So of course I made us one. So last week I didn't lose any more weight BUT I didn't gain any either, so I think I was lucky.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Taking the Plunge....

...For better or for worse! That's right, after years and years of thinking about it, I am opening my own shop! When I was sewing for Suburban Cleaners, I didn't get names and numbers of customers, just log-in numbers. So when I got three days notice that they were closing, there was no time to get the word out to people that I was still sewing! I have tried for a year now to just do it out of my house, but I really think people are put off by the prospect of having to come to somebody's house. A lot of them don't even want to call me at home, even though that's the number I give out! So I need a storefront. Above is my sign, for which I've reworked Georgia's design to suit.

I'm going through the process of applying, and submitting, and registering, with the Town of Richmond. So far so good, and if everything goes well (God willing and the creek don't rise, as my Dad says), I will be open for business by March 1. In addition to the tailoring, I will be selling my handmade stuff in there. There is only a small space, so I can't take in other peoples' things yet, but there is the possibility of expansion if it works out.

In other family news, PJ will be flying out to L.A. for a month this summer to film some sort of project he auditioned for a couple weeks ago. He's so excited! He's worked with this director before, so he's pretty stoked about the new project.

Other than that, I'm just getting mentally prepared for the upcoming powwow season. I have lots of new designs in mind, and I'm sure I'll get input. It used to be that I'd have several things to do one year, then nothing the next year, but as the years have gone by it's pretty much evened out to where I can usually expect plenty of orders. Which is just fantastic, regalia is my favorite thing to sew. So bright and colorful!