Sunday, November 11, 2018

Old Radiator Upgrade Project

Like every other room in my condo, the home office has an old radiator in one of the corners. I got tired of looking at the old chipping paint, and instead of repainting, I decided to order a new metal radiator cover online in a clean, matte white finish.

Because it's a somewhat unusual taller size, I had to order a custom size cover, which took about five to six weeks to ship from the midwest.

The cover shipped flat in a cardboard box with instructions to put it together. The only tools needed were pliers and screwdrivers. It was a bit tricky, but only took about an hour or so. I think it's a definite improvement, and having an extra shelf to display more art objects is most welcome.

Radiator before

Radiator after
In addition to covering the radiator,
it also covers most of the wall's chipping paint.

Radiator with decor.
I look and feel much better now.

It's Showtime! Paranormal Provincetown Weekend

This was the first year I celebrated Halloween weekend in Provincetown, and despite a deluge of rain, it did not disappoint. As expected, crazy-clever costumes and diabolical decor were in abundance.

Though difficult to explain without photos, two of my favorite costumes were the four guys dressed as beach umbrellas, and the guys dressed in pink baseball uniforms from A League Of Their Own.
I didn't get to see much indoor decor, but many of the homes and shops on the outside transformed themselves into something fun and creepy...

A mildly creepy, classic New England facade.

Spooks are everywhere.
White heads with giant spider

Nightmare On Commercial Street

We have come for your art.

The BIG Bad Wolf

Just plain BAD.
Please pop this toxic balloon!

Giant beetle and black cat

Giant dynamic spider duo

The Spiritus in all of us

Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice!

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Orange You Glad October Is Here? It's So Spooktacular!

The season of the witch, jack-o-lantern, skeleton and owl brings with it autumn's earthy hues of burnt orange, caramel, rust red, avocado green, dirt brown – and, of course, every shadow of black.

Though the height of outdoor antiquing has passed, there are always new finds waiting at indoor venues, like one of my favorite vintage clothing emporiums in Cambridge, MA. A recent visit yielded a few fall finds, one of which I've already worn quite a few times: this must-have suede/knit sweater jacket or swacket...

The combination of genuine suede and acrylic knit is totally unique, and best of all, it fits me perfectly. The only thing I wish it had was at least one inside pocket, but it just has the two front hand-warmer pockets.

The back is mostly ribbed knit, except for the yoke at the top.

Back view. This photo is enhanced so it looks darker.
The first photo is truer to its actual color.

I also like the front's two vertical lines of cable knit and how the knit collar is framed with suede.

Here are closer looks at the tag. I'm not sure how old this piece is, though I'd guess 1970s. The inside lining and front zipper might be more recent updates, but I can't be sure.

I also found the perfect Thanksgiving sweater in warm knit virgin acrylic.

I like the combination of patterns, as well as the contrast brown ribbed hem, sleeve cuffs and unusual collar.

The original inside tag says Karson Sportswear De Luxe. This fancier tag suggests it might actually be from the 1960s, but I can't be sure.

The third clothing item I found is this saturated green button-front shirt with two chest pockets.

This might be from the 60s as well, based on its fancy inside tag, though the larger collar suggests 1970s.


Now for the spooky stuff...

Every year, my Halloween decor seems to expand, inching closer in scope to what I do for the Christmas season.

For example, this year's living room fireplace display is more elaborate than ever, with the addition of two glass jack-o-lantern votive candle holders, two mini bales of hay with votives on top, and the two vintage railroad lanterns (from my Dad's garage) sitting on top of a larger bale of hay.

This is the black wrought iron corner, complete with hanging lantern from Austin, TX (from this past March), five-candle floor candelabra, new art easel (from a local home store) and fruit motif gate (from Brimfield) leaning against the wall. The only item here that's from last year is the floor candelabra.

Also new this year is this 3-ft. black Halloween tree. Some of the glass ornaments are new, too.

Spooky Halloween tree.
The orange Edison lights are from Target.

I also bought a pair of black window candelabras from Target, with flickering flame bulbs. These help to counteract the brightness of the tree's large orange lights.

These two large black and white skull plates are also new this year...

I couldn't resist this spooky light-up pillow, also new for 2018...

Here's proof that you don't have to spend much to update your decor. These new paper wall hangings are from the dollar store...

Call me Jack.

Call me Frank.


On a recent visit to Connecticut, I visited the charming historic town of Old Wethersfield and took a few seasonal snapshots.

Had a Wicked – or is that Wiccan? – good time in Old Wethersfield.

Rogue skeletons and spiders, oh my!

Have a Spooktacular Helloween!

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Brimfield Antiques Show, September 2018: Mid-century Marvels & More

My final Brimfield outing of 2018 was a self-professed success, with cool temps and very few raindrops. My two antiquing companions joined me for a day of bargain treasures, surprises and fun finds.

Though unsuccessful in finding a mid-century TV console/buffet for my bedroom (I'll keep it on my list for next year), I did find a cool mid-century lamp that would look perfect on top of it...

The square marble base is marked "Made In Italy" on the bottom, with a brass center shaft and wood boomerang-like check mark (it looks a bit like the Nike swoosh), finished with a cone-shaped fiberglass shade. It measures about 11.5" tall. I bargained it down to $25, which I think is a good deal.

Here it is all lit up.
I placed it on top of a piece of bark cloth I found at Brimfield earlier this year...

Continuing in mid-century mode, I also found this 9" x 14" metal tray. The dealer had a stack of about a dozen of these for $2 each, so I bought three and gave the other two to my brother and sister. I especially like the crosshatched black and white center rectangle and rounded border. I also like that you can see dewdrops on the leaves if you look closely.

This trio of tie clips completed the mid-century treasures I discovered. The dealer had boxes of them for $1 each, so I could have gone crazy but kept my purchase down to these three.

These are all silver, and the "M" clip at the bottom is actually a "W," but I will wear it as an "M" for my last name, of course. It's marked "SWANK" on the back. The other two have no markings.


My next discovery was this black wrought iron panel/grate, which I bought for $15. I don't know how old it is or where it originated from, but I really like its scroll design and fruit motif.

I have it leaning against a wall in my living room next to my large, black wrought iron floor candelabra, underneath the black wrought iron lantern I found in Austin, TX earlier this year.

It measures 11.5" wide x 28" tall and is fairly heavy. I asked the dealer if she had a second one to make a pair but this was all she had.

Here's a closer look to show detail...


Naturally, a Brimfield day wouldn't be complete without "a little Christmas"...

These Johnson Bros mini china plates were a nice bargain at $5 each, and small enough, at about 3" round, to fit into this year's Christmas display.

The dealer had a number of different scenes, but these two were my favorite.

Don't look now, but winter will be here soon enough.
I need a little Christmas, right this very minute.

There's nothing cozier than a bit of English china in your home.


Finally, here are a handful of surprises and unusual sights to delight. 

The Sacred & The Secular
Time to look at some Swedish clocks
DON'T take me to your leader, but DO let me hang up some fantastic swingin' light fixtures.
The next best thing to SUMMER of LOVE

Looking forward to next year's Brimfield for more –  

Happy Treasure Hunting!