Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Wedding Gift

My cousin is getting married next month and I am going to see her this weekend for a family lunch.  Now I don't know about you but I love hand made gifts or something with a bit of personal thought to it.  So I decided to make something simple but thoughtful to go along with her registry gift I buy at the store.  Here is what we made and how we did it.

Every new bride loves a frame to show off at least one good wedding shot and if we can personalize it even better.  I took a scrape piece of barn wood we had from a 1800"s barn in Connecticut - ideal as she is from CT.  As I just had surgery on my shoulder my husband helped me out with the sanding and cutting.  He sanded the piece down till we had a light wood color so that the writing on the wood would show up better.  We then found some decorative trim and cut it to fit a 4x6 photo.

I painted the trim in one coat green and a second coat blue so that when I sanded it some of the green would show through the blue.  I assembled the frame on the board after measuring out the exact center of the board.  Then I secured it with a glue gun.  I used the glue gun as the photo will be added later and I needed to make sure there was room to slide the photo in.  I applied a thin line of glue to the outside edges of the trim and when pressing them to the board, I made sure to tilt the trim ever so slightly towards the glued side so there was that little space to slip the picture in.

One of my favorite new things to use is a paint pen.  I remember years ago when doing crafts having to paint words with a paintbrush and having to redo them many times.  The paint pens are so much easier to use and gives you a clean look.  When writing words, I always trace out what I want to say in Pencil so I make sure not to run out of room.  Since this was for a bride and groom I went with one of my very favorite love poems from E.E. Cummings - "I Carry Your Heart - I Carry it in my Heart".  Perfectly suited for newlyweds.

I then took some cut out hearts and painted them with Chalkboard paint then wrote their names and wedding date.  One was then hung by an antique nail from the top of the board and the others were glued down.

All it needs now is the perfect photo of the bride and groom - but for now I have added one from my wedding so you can visualize how it will look!!!

To order your own custom made photo holder, contact us!!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Brimfield Flea Market - Part 3

Happy Friday!!  I decided to end this week of posts with another awesome booth we stumbled upon in Brimfield.  It only seems right to speak about this company as it is located in my favorite place in the world - Chatham, Cape Cod.  I am not sure if I have mentioned this before but we go to Chatham every summer with my family - something that has been a family tradition since my mother was a child.  So many of my favorite childhood memories come from our summers spent in Chatham so imagine my surprise when I turned a corner at the flea market and saw a booth from Chatham!!

Atlantic Workshop is located in Chatham on Main St.  I happened to visit the shop this past summer for the first time.  My stepdaughter and my nephew were doing a scavenger hunt the town had amongst the shops and one of the sharks they needed to find brought us into Atlantic Workshop - which I have to mention here that Emily won the scavenger hunt and received an amazing basket of goodies from the Chatham stores!  The store, as well as the booth in Brimfield, is full of very creative re-purposed designs by owner Scott Feen.  From couches made out of boats to chairs made from lobster pots, you can find amazing one of a kind pieces for your home.

Emily testing out the lobster pot chairs this past summer in Chatham

photos in the booth of Scott's custom creations
This engaging piece below was actually made from some interesting historic treasures.  The block of wood comes from the Marconi listening station by Ryders Cove in Chatham.  The propeller comes from Brooklyn Wheeler Shipyard - the same place responsible for Earnest Hemingway's boat the Pilar - this particular blade came off a boat made not long after the Pilar.  

Owner - Scott - with his cool creation

Scott has a workshop in Chatham where he creates his very imaginative designs.  We had a great time learning about his shop and his passion for re-purposed items - something we at Barnwood and Bangles can completely appreciate!!  Please check out his website at or if you are on the Cape visit his gallery at 475 Main St in Chatham.  Thanks Scott for sharing with us and we will be by in the summer!!

Awesome light fixture in the shop in Chatham last summer

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Brimfield Flea Market Part 2

As we only spent one day at the Brimfield Flea Market this year, we probably only saw a quarter of the show.  After going for many years, I do know what my favorite fields and booths are that I make sure to see.  So I was happy that this time around we happened upon new vendors that I had not seen before.  Part of the fun of the Brimfield Flea Market are the people that you meet.  And at this show we met two really fun vendors that I want to talk about - one will be featured below and tomorrow we will post the other.

The first booth that I want to tell you about was situated toward the beginning of the flea market near the Brimfield Town Hall.  What drew me to this tent at first were two of my favorite things - bottles and old wooden crates.  When I went inside his tent I could have stayed there all day looking through all of the wonders there were.  My husband was immediately drawn to the burlap sacks that we were excited to find.  My younger step daughter, Emily, stumbled upon some interesting oriental coins that she can't wait to make into a necklace.

Bill Yost has been coming to the Brimfield Flea Market for 17 years. Something I find charming is that he does this with his daughter.  As Bill saw our arms piled high with items he struck up a conversation with us and what an interesting man he is.  Currently living in Kentucky, he has traveled all over the world picking and as he told us he is a real picker sometimes going into some scary places!!  His "real" job is in oil, however collecting and picking is what he loves to do.  He had a little bit of everything in his tent, from olive pails to wooden shutters, to wooden boxes and vintage signs, a large assortment of colorful bottles, and the list goes on.  We spent a good 20 minutes talking to him and in that time we were able to tell that he had a true passion for collecting and traveling to various shows around the country to share his finds.  We came home with a large pile of burlap sacks, some interesting vintage flour sacks that were in mint condition form the 1960's, antique metal hooks, pieces of rustic tin, wooden bobbins, some Asian inspired carved wood moulds and a few other things.  Wow would I love to see his warehouse in Atlanta!!  You can check Bill out on Facebook at and we hope to see him again at the July show.

Here are some pictures from his cool booth taken by my favorite photographer - my step daughter Emily - follow her blog at

Bill, his daughter and a co-worker

Monday, May 19, 2014

Brimfield Flea Market - Part 1

This weekend my family and I went on a road trip to the Brimfield Flea Market - the largest outdoor antiques show in the country.  Which for me is actually going home, as I grew up in the town next to Brimfield so I am no stranger to this amazing show. I am dedicating this whole week on my blog to the Brimfield Flea - showing some of our discoveries we took home, meeting some cool people we came across and some history on the show itself.

Brimfield is a rural town - just like the towns surrounding it. It is the quintessential New England small town with farm land, beautiful antique homes and many friendly faces.The town was founded in 1731 and has roughly 4,000 residents.  It is located pretty much in the center of Massachusetts not far from the Connecticut boarder.

Growing up in the area, the Flea Market was not something we typically looked forward to as that meant all of our small, quiet towns would now be overpopulated with "Fleas" as we called them.  We would now have to worry about traffic something none of us worried about on a day to day basis.  However it is a great source of revenue for people living in the area - including myself as a teenager who would scoop ice cream at one of the food booths.

The Brimfield Flea Market began in 1959, when one resident decided to open his field to vendors selling antiques.  It is now comprised of over 5000 dealers on about 21 fields -each being roughly 3 to 5 acres - and hosts about 250,000 visitors.  Residents turn their fields into parking lots, food concessions and dealer booths 3 times a year for this show.  It is about 1 mile long on RT 20 and goes about 500' deep on both sides of the road.

From collectors to individual shoppers - People come from all over the world to visit this event!  I have even heard from some dealers that top brands such as Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger come at the start of the show to purchase items for their stores!

You can find just about anything you are looking for.  From vintage clothes, to antique odds and ends, to reclaimed items and loads of furniture - if you can't find it here you can't find it anywhere!  In my opinion it is impossible to see the show in one day, even 2 days - especially if you are going for your first time.

The Brimfield Flea Market takes place in May, July and September each year for 6 days - rain or shine!  So if you are in the mood for some serious antiquing, I hope you get to visit as for a collector it is a dream come true!  Here are some of the things we came across!

Beautiful French Provincial Fabrics