Saturday, March 31, 2012

Imaginary Friends

Bloggers just know how to have fun!  I 'stalked' many blogs for over a year, reading all the creative ideas for crafts and decorating and homemaking.  I was in my first tag exchange before I entered the world of bloggers and was matched with Sandy  Sandy is  from the Upper Midwest and we shared that when we traded tags last October.  This spring Sandy and I did a little tag trade on our own.  I made my Easter tag and added a few pieces of ephemera and some of my Saturday Evening Post ads knowing she loved vintage kitchen equipment.  

The mail carrier brought a box to my door on Thursday; not unlike this vintage story book illustration that I propped in an old brass post office box.  It was a surprise full of Easter goodies from Sandy!  I haven't had an Easter basket for more years than I am willing to admit so imagine an adult seeing a pastel bouquet of bunny suckers and giggling!  An assortment of adorable graphics, some stickers, toys, all wrapped in various colored papers.  Oh my goodness, BLOGGERS know how to have fun!  I have worked with so many folks who are 'fun impaired', what a welcome change!
Norman Rockwell Cover:  April Fools 1945
I'm not foolin!  This is the most fun I've had in a LONG time.  At Christmastime I swapped with Chris at   Chris sent boxes of goodies inside the box!  Vintage stickers from holidays past, adorable finds from flea markets in California!  Chris was so generous at a time when I had the blues... what an amazing community of folks!   Spring tag swap introduced me to Stephanie at comments are coming from new imaginary friends and I had no idea that being a blogger could be this much fun!  Take a look at this hysterical illustration from 1945; April Fools Day.
My imaginary friends who blog, you are FUN!  NO FOOLIN'!!
And now, a note about mailing:  THIS MESSAGE BROUGHT TO YOU BY ME:
"If it fits, it ships!"
If you haven't already gone to your local PO and picked up the small, medium or large size boxes that are FREE; you may want to start!  No matter how much your package weighs, if you can put it in the box, it's the same price; $ 8 something and $ 11. something...CHEAP and it's fast and easy.  You can even print your postage online; no trips to the Post Office to have things weighed!

"Save time!  Save Money! 
It's the new Johnson's water repellent Glo-Coat!"

Whoops, there goes that Saturday Evening Post ad in my head!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Sweet, Smooth and Sassy

I love this car; not all cars, certainly not the 12 year old Pontiac I drive year-round.  Just this one, the 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air!  Doesn't that grill look like a smile?  Or at least make YOU smile?  Admit it, it does.  I can't help myself, I go to the largest car show in the U.S.A in June and this is the only car I see!

Last year while at a Flea Market I found this little book that goes with the theme of summertime car rides.  After watching the movie "Cars" I have been dreaming of a trip on "The Mother Road".  For now, a trip using the graphics from this Elf Book and a few other sources will have to do.  The embellishments for these tags are October Afternoon "Boarding Pass" and the background paper is an old pocket atlas.

 Now take a ride with me and hum a little Nat King Cole...

If you ever plan to motor west, 
                 Travel my way, take the highway that is best. Get your kicks on Route 66

It winds from Chicago to L.A., 
                                                 More than two thousand miles all the way. 
Get your kicks on Route 66.

Now you go through St. Louie, Joplin, Missouri, 

 And Oklahoma City is mighty pretty. 

You see Amarillo, 
(Basic Training in San Antonio for the Airman rates an emblem)

Flagstaff, Arizona. 
Don't forget Winona, 
Kingman, Barstow, San Bernadino

Won't you get hip to this timely tip 
When you make that California trip
Get your kicks on Route 66!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

A Little Bird Told Me...

The calendar says March but it feels like the end of May in the Upper Midwest.  Time to change out the wintry scene window box for something more spring-like.  After creating the Johnny and the Birds tag book I seem to be into bird watching; it started with the arrival of the robins.

I found a little box and made my first diorama; I may need to garnish this a little more as soon as I found something else to stick in!  A vintage greeting card image in back, a little couple of buttons and some silk greenery is what I found in my stash, it will do for now.  This little birdhouse was a steal on Michael's clearance for 35 cents.  Glue stick and scrapbook paper worked just fine to accessorize a spot for this little bird to call home.
We're singing a little spring song, because for the first time in years, the grass is green, the trees have leafed out and after two weeks of temps in the 60 to 80 degree range, we have stopped thinking that it isn't going to last!  Spring is sprung!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

You Can't Catch Me!

It's overcast and the spring showers bring on thoughts of baking.  The vintage canister set came from a hoarder's estate sale, still wrapped in paper from the wedding.  'Boy am I glad she didn't re-gift so I could find them 65 years later!

Out comes the kitchen equipment.  The recipe calls for a Gingerbread Man tag book.
Not me baking, silly!  Her!

The nesting measuring spoons are 50 years new!  Found at an Occasional Sale, just like Mom's!
"How about a Girl Scout Thin Mint instead of me?"
The reason he ran, why to go to the grandchildren of course!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Spring Swaportunity!

As adults we don't get a chance to proclaim giddy happiness all that often.  Or maybe it's just my life in the long cold winters of the Upper Midwest that become a bit mundane... I signed up for It's a Very Cherry World spring swap to relieve the winter blahs.  Little did I know that I would meet a new friend whose name would light up my inbox before our swap was in the mail!

Our emails flew back and forth from the coast to the tundra as we shared our stories and got acquainted with each other the old fashioned way:  we wrote!  Letters, not texted abbreviations.  By the time her box arrived at my house it was as if we had known each other for ages!  Stephanie sent me lots of treasures from her collection of ephemera, she parted with some pieces that I  may just look at for a long time before I can bring myself to USE them.

Life is better when it's fun!  A gorgeous wall hanging made by Stephanie of  Stephanie, like me is a newer blogger but her talent is anything but novice!  It was love at first sight.

I opened the items in my box like a six year old at a birthday party and speaking of party, look at that chick complete with party hat and glitter!  Stephanie also parted with an adorable vintage Easter card that I sat on its own throne to display it.  CUTE, CUTE, CUTE!  She didn't know that when she showed a photo of the chick's brother (yup, she got one for me and one for her!) last week that I loved him!

Now here's Lil, a gal with great gams! 

Here she is again, more leg, what a Tootsie!

Check out all the fun stuff and imagine with me... Lil writes the Telegram to her sweetie, Eugene and says, "I'm coming to see you." Stop  "I'm taking the train." Stop  "Tickets for Coney Island." Stop

I'm a kid in a candy store with all my adorable gifts, and now, Dick and Jane and Baby Sally are loaded up and ready to go.

Heading out to the Ol' Southern Minstrel for the show at the Grange Hall tomorrow night at 8:00.  I have to go now too, I feel another 1940's project comin' on.  Thank you Stephanie or making my life so much fun!  

Thursday, March 15, 2012

For the Birds2

The robins returned to a whole lotta snow in the northland, a year ago when I first posted this papercraft story the weather was warm.  This year, spring seems to be dragging her feet and making us wait despite the fact that I would love to wear a spring frock for Easter!

With the arrival of the robins last week I decided to make a little tag book of birds.  The graphics come from a well read, ripped and tattered children's book line called Elf.  The title of this little book is:

As always, my paper crafts tell a story using graphics, scrapbook supplies and 'garnishes' from my stash.  Buttons, string, glitter glue, some silk greens trimmed from the tulips I just put in a vintage planter and a few stickers.  I don't necessarily complete projects in one sitting (or two or three) when there are multiple pages.  I will have a flash of inspiration and add more embellishments later.  Puttering like an old guy in his garage.  'Just a little more, just a few more bits of something.

Those noisy guys
The boys in blue
And just in case winter comes back, Johnny and his birds are back in the barn

Spring in Minnesota, well on the calendar anyway!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

You've Got Mail!

Keeping with the World War II theme, I went to the US Postal Service for inspiration.  I love getting mail, the real kind with envelopes and stamps.  The kind you look at again and it makes you think of the sender who took the time to choose the paper, sit and compose their thoughts and send it off.  I love email too, it's immediate gratification.  When my son was deployed to the Middle East, I loved to see his name in my inbox and that email was worth more than gold.  But the mail I'm profiling is paper letters sent back and forth from a mother to her son, a wife to her husband, a sailor to his sweetheart, a Fly Boy to his family.

The forerunner to shrinking a document was Victory Mail known as V-Mail.  The letters were photographed and a tiny replica went back and forth across the continents carrying news of the battlefront and the home fires.

M:  using her Palmer Method best penmanship we know she is sending her love to that guy in the goggles, her Army Air Corps fighter pilot.

A:  His reply sent from afar; he learned in the Saturday Evening Post ad that writing would help him know "How to Understand a Woman."  He used his Parker 51 pen and his Watermans Ink.

I:  "The baby had a check up and he's growing so big!  Here's snapshot for you to put in your helmet, Honey!"  The Dennison Company urges her to send V-Mail and "Keep it Light."

L:  She's got mail!  A letter!  A letter!  She looks at his photo and prays for him to come home safe, and she cries a little bit...The envelope graphic shows a post mark of 1945, it won't be long.

Love ya, miss your face,

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Saturday (Evening Post) Spinner!

The photo display spinner is something I eyed on the Creative Breathing blogspot.  Miss Elizabeth is the most artistically inspiring woman I have never met!  She's my imaginary friend as I stalk her blog and drool over the paper craft creations that I wouldn't have dreamed up in a million years.  Go visit the Creative Breathing blog for eye candy and craft tutorials galore.

Once again, my stash of 1943-44 Saturday Evening Post magazines are pulled into action.  I sorted through the ads this time in search of small graphics suitable for a cut and paste project.  Since this magazine was published long before the days of computers, cut and paste on this little artistic endeavor really used scissors and glue!   The photo spinner comes with index cards to mount your photos to  display a collection of relatives, travels or other photography subjects.  

My vision in creating my spinner was to top each card with coordinating scrapbook papers and mount the graphics from the ads in sections.  Women's interest products came first and includes ads for Pyrex bakeware, girdles, a new 'Coolerator' refrigerator, Palmolive soap (14 days to a lovelier complexion!) and Campbell's soups.  The men's section includes ads for ink pens, auto products and shaving tools and soda pop.  

Setting the tone for my crafting I played Glenn Miller's big band tunes as I furiously cut tiny details from the advertisements one by one on the card stock.  Listening to "Don't sit under the apple tree with anyone else but me,"  I thought of the women who had their sweethearts sent to Europe, North Africa or the Pacific.  I read the magazine pages and listened to the music they would have heard on their radios over the 15 hours or so I spent cutting and pasting.  Rosie the Riveter went to work day after day in a factory and dreamed of the time when her soldier would come home and they would start a family and probably, live happily ever after.

The woman saluting her husband had a note from her employer included in the ad, it said, "She's doing a great job, Boss!"  Oh my, see what 60 years has done for woman kind!?

Don't forget to ask for your FREE sample of Verithin!
I was intrigued by the advertisements.  There was a  war bond statement on almost every company's ad.  Rationing was another topic and I smiled reading the statement, "Due to the paper shortage we encourage you to pass your Post on when you have finished reading it."  The Verithin Colored Pencil ad gave a mailing address to send for a free sample of the colored lead you would like to try.  Little Lulu was spokeswoman for Kleenex tissues.  Fibber McGee and Molly had their photo on the Johnson's Wax ads.  

My history lesson includes 40 different advertisements, some for products that no longer exist.  I had so much fun I may decide to add more cards later.

So now I am signing off, 'bye bye and BUY BONDS!'

Friday, March 9, 2012

Pardon me, Boy!

"Is that the Chattanooga Choo Choo?!"

Our first home, a 1929 bungalow was a fixer upper.  We climbed into the attic to add insulation and found that a previous owner had already insulated it with newspapers and magazines from the 1940s! Bringing down the stacks of newspapers we were entertained for hours reading the war news.  The Saturday Evening Posts went into a box and I stored them for 29 years before finding the lost treasures again last winter.

Paging through the super sized magazines I was mesmerized with the adorable slogans, the bright colored advertisements and the clever product promotions.  I decided that the saving the magazines in the closet was not the way to really enjoy their charm.  I started dreaming up a little project that would focus on the fun I had hidden in a box for years...

First up:  a little railroad themed banner.  Most of these graphics came from railroad ads but there are a few garnishes from my paper crafting stash to add to the story depicted with each letter for the word TRAIN.

I cut the ads for several railroad lines and arranged the graphics to tell the story found on another advertisement that portrayed a young couple who met on the train.

Watch the couple and their romance as they share the bench seat on the train ride.
The plot thickens:

Meanwhile, elsewhere on the train another gal has a roomette, see what she missed!

Arriving at their destination it appears that the service man will have someone to take home to mother!

Don't you just love a happy ending?  Me too.