Thursday, April 28, 2011

Big Little Books

Before there were comic books (by one year), there were Big Little Books. I don’t recall ever owning a Big Little Book until I discovered four of them in a box lot of books I bought a few years ago.

These compact cuties were first published in 1932 by the Whitman Publishing Company of Racine, WI. They offered the reader a BIG amount of reading material in a LITTLE sized book. Though the dimensions have varied slightly over the years, the early ones measured 3-5/8” x 4-1/2” x 1-1/2” thick with over 400 pages and sold for 10 cents. The first BLB, The Adventures of Dick Tracy, was published just before Christmas in 1932. Production of Big Little Books spanned more than 50 years and spawned a number of similar-sized books by other publishers. Titles and content were influenced by motion pictures, radio, and comic strips. Source:

My oldest BLB is Donald Duck in Volcano Valley and was published in 1949. It’s a mere 286 pages in length and there is a black and white illustration opposite EVERY page of text. That 1:1 ratio of picture to text was one of the outstanding features that made the books so popular.

My 1967 Donald Duck – The Fabulous Diamond Fountain, is 249 pages in length. I actually have a hardcover and a soft cover version of this one. The hardcover is illustrated in color, the soft cover in black and white.

I’m sure my last book was inspired by the Space Race of the 60s. Major Matt Mason – Moon Mission was published in 1968 and told of his adventures with Moon Worms, Underground Caverns and Mysterious Explosions (according to the back cover of the book)!

It's ironic that one of the characters in the book was named Kirk!

Do you remember Big Little Books?

I’ll be linking to the following parties:

Vintage Thingie Thursday at The Coloradolady
Time Travel Thursday at Brambleberry Cottage
Treasure Hunt Thursday at Blue Creek Home
Vintage Inspiration Friday at Common Ground
Thrifty Things Friday at The Thrifty Groove
Inspiration Friday at At the Picket Fence
Fridays Unfolded at Stuff and Nonsense

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Creative Inspiration

Recently Carol at The Polka Dot Closet inspired me with her beautiful lacy-framed rose prints. I couldn’t believe it when only a few days later I found a couple of those lacy metal frames and some pre-cut mats at a thrift store. Using Carol’s tutorial, I primed and painted the frames.

It was much easier than I thought and I couldn’t wait to frame a beautiful rose print. Unlike Carol, I had no rose or floral prints of any kind. Of course, I checked in with Karen at The Graphics Fairy and in no time I found the image of a lovely rose wallpaper that coordinated with one of the mats. I printed it out and added the mat and glass to the frame. While browsing for the rose, I also found a gorgeous hydrangea that I printed and added to the second frame.

Thanks, Carol and Karen. I hope I will inspire you one day!!!

I’ll be linking to the following parties:

Tuesday Treasures at My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
Whassup Wednesday at Elements Interiors
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
Terrific Under Ten Tuesday at At Home with K
Pink Saturday at How Sweet the Sound
Brag Monday at The Graphics Fairy

Monday, April 25, 2011

A Whazzit and Other Finds

It’s been a good week for treasure hunting and I’ve found some fun things at yard sales and one “whazzit” that I hope you can help me identify.

I found some great cobalt blue bottles, a Chocolate Soldier bottle, an aqua TexasWare creamer, and a McCoy planter.

Kid’s books are always good sellers for me and I found several, even a 1931 copy of The World About Us by Inez McFee. Interesting chapters include: Behind the Face of the Clock, Celluloid – A Most Useful Product, Where We Get Salt and The Story of Aluminum.

I also found a North Carolina souvenir metal tray, a Pretzel open sugar, a red-handled tea strainer, a couple of pretty plates and an old aluminum measuring cup.

But what about that Whazzit?

If you “treasure hunt” a lot like I do, you occasionally run across an item that you can’t identify. I’m not talking about not being able to identify an item of glassware or a pattern of china. I’m saying… you hardly know how to describe it, much less what to call it.

So I hope you can help me identify this “Whazzit!”

In general, it’s a 3-D wall hanging made of wood. Each of the three “rooms” depicted have several miniature pieces of pottery, mostly mugs and bowls. There are 14 pieces of pottery, but I think there might have been a couple more in the bottom left. There seems to be glue marks that would have held something like plates or platters. The construction is very crude (dare I say “ugly”), but totally fascinating because of the tiny pottery.

Is this folk art, tramp art, prisoner art?
It's probably Trash, but could it be Treasure?

I hope you can help! 
Have you ever seen anything like this?


The Whazzit is a Whazzit no longer!!!
It’s called a Diorama and is most likely Latin American!

Many thanks to:
for identifying my mystery object!

I’ll be linking to the following parties:
Flea Market Finds at Her Library Adventures
Thrift Share Monday at Apron Thrift Girl
Magpie Monday at Me and My Shadow
Nifty Thrifty Tuesdays at Coastal Charm

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Easter and Eggs!

I want to wish you all a Happy Easter by sharing a couple of
Easter-related projects.

* * * * * * *

First of all, I wanted some pretty eggs for Easter decorating but the colorful plastic kind just doesn’t do it for me. So jumping on the vintage sheet music bandwagon (because I finally found some), I decorated several plastic eggs with strips of sheet music using watered-down Elmer’s Glue. Of course, Mod Podge is perfect for this, too. It was a messy project, but I do like the result.

* * * * * * *

My second project made use of a piece of scrap wood left over from my Piecrust Chalkboard project. The wood was so dry that it splintered easily, but there was a piece just the right size for a small sign.

I sanded and painted it with two coats of flat white paint.

Sticking with the egg theme, I decided that the sign should say, “Fresh Eggs.” I printed out the words using my word processing program (Word), transferred the letters to the wood using carbon paper, and painted them with brown craft paint. After it dried, I distressed the sign with some sand paper and……..

Happy Easter!!!

I’ll be linking to the these egg-cellent parties:

Pink Saturday at How Sweet the Sound
Saturday Nite Special at Funky Junk Interiors
Creative Bloggers Party and Hop at Homemaker on a Dime

Thursday, April 21, 2011

"L" is for....

As I fluffed my booths yesterday at the antique mall, I realized that there’s been a lapse of several weeks since the last leg of my alphabe-tour. The next letter is “L” and I discovered several items that begin with that letter. For those of you that have become “followers” since March, this is part of a series of posts where I alphabetically show you items that can be found in my booths at Southern Antique Mall. You can find the other alphabet posts by checking the blog archive on the sidebar. Those of you that have been with me for awhile know what to expect.

So put down that laundry basket and grab a latte because there's lots to see!

“L” is for…..

Lamb on St. Mary’s Blanket box

Lamp w/lavender roses


Ladders and Luggage

Lazy Susans

Loaf pan


Limoges plate

That's it for "L".....  "M" should be ..............Marvelous!!!

I’ll be linking to the following parties:

Vintage Thingie Thursday at The Coloradolady
Time Travel Thursday at Brambleberry Cottage
Thrifty Thursday at Tales from Bloggeritaville
Treasure Hunt Thursday at Blue Creek Home
Thrifty Things Friday at The Thrifty Groove

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Piecrust Chalkboard

I went to an estate sale on a chilly day back in January. After looking through the house, I took a brief walk through the attached carport and from a distance something large caught my eye. It was on top of a table but leaning against something. As I got closer, I realized that it was a badly damaged pedestal table with a leather-covered piecrust-edge top. The pedestal was still attached to the top, but the four legs were either damaged or broken off entirely. How sad! This was once a beautiful mahogany table….too bad it was beyond repair….but wait, it was not beyond repurposing! It would make an awesome chalkboard! Since this was the second day of the sale, everything was half-price… cost me $1.50.

Here’s the table turned upside down in the back of my vehicle. My sweet husband is taking the broken pedestal off the bottom of the tabletop. See the broken legs sticking out of the end of the pedestal?

Once he got the pedestal off and I got the table top out of the vehicle and into some decent light, this is what I had to work with.

The wood was very dry, there was a bad split on the edge and the leather was extremely dirty.

Pretty sad, huh?

First, I glued and clamped the split edge.

Next I addressed the dryed-out wood by re-staining the edge. See what a difference the stain is making?

Originally I thought that I would just apply chalkboard paint directly over the leather, so I tried to clean the leather. Nothing worked! Since the leather was already trying to peel off, I just decided to take it off completely. That left me with raw wood. The chalkboard paint directions said that raw wood would need to be primed….. I sanded and primed…..

Finally I was able to apply the chalkboard paint….I used three coats, letting each coat dry thoroughly before applying the next. Then I broke-in the surface by rubbing it with the side of a piece of chalk and then erased.

I added a wire hanger system to the back, making sure that the wire would support the 12-pound top and that the screws weren’t so long that they would penetrate the front.

So a badly damaged mahogany piecrust-edge pedestal table…..

Becomes a beautiful Piecrust Chalkboard……..

I’m proud to be linking to the Chalk Talk Linky Party at Whisperwood Cottage!!!

I’ll also be partying at:

Nifty Thrifty Tuesdays at Coastal Charm
Tuesday Treasures at My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
Whassup Wednesday at Elements Interiors
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
Inspiration Friday at At the Picket Fence
Furniture Feature Friday at Miss Mustard Seed