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Category Archives: simple living

Tools…Juan’s Perspective

One of the things that gives our art work a unique character are the tools we use. These aren’t just any run-of-the-mill hardware store tools. These tools have a history. A soul. Many of them belonged to our parents and grandparents. We don’t simply enjoy using them because of their family history. It goes much deeper than that, because we each grew up using these very same tools. And, each of them has provenance. Each of these tools were used in a professional trade.

Here are a few examples of the tools we currently employ in our tin work. The two dollies were used by my Grandpa Smith in his Radiator/Body Shop in the 1920’s, ‘30’s and ‘40’s. Back when cars were made from actual steel. If you needed to shape a new body part or re-shape a damaged one, you would place the appropriate dolly behind the piece of steel and pound on the other side with a hammer, until the desired shape was achieved. These dollies are made from solid blocks of steel. After they were retired to my Grandfather’s personal workshop, I used them for many “important” projects when I was a kid. I even used them to pound out a few dents in friend’s cars.

One of the ball peen hammers belonged to my Grandpa Swinford. He used it in his carpentry business and I used it when I first learned to hammer nails (it was a lot lighter than a claw hammer and I hit the wood as often as I hit the nail, so it really didn’t matter if it was the right tool or not).

The other ball peen hammer belonged to Shawn’s Mother, Phyllis. She used it in her Art Gallery. Shawn spent a lot of time working in the gallery and used it to hang pictures.

Each of these tools were originally used professionally, for years, in artful endeavors. Over time they developed scars and wear and characters all their own. These very tools were used by our parents and grandparents to teach us skills and pass along a little bit of their knowledge. We are carrying on that tradition by using them in our own artful endeavors. Used together, they shape our tin work and give each piece a unique appearance and a little bit of history all their own.

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Top "Clicks" For February

Wow…we are now in March! My Mom always said time flies…

I always like to start the first of the month revisiting the “Top Clicks” for last month. I am so excited and happy with all the views, responses and feedback you all provide.

There will be a lot of changes in the coming weeks…I’ll keep you posted. Until then, if you missed one of these posts…here they are.

I Am Addicted To Pinterest
Gotta LOVE Salted Caramel
A great day…
Happy Valentine’s Day
The Calm Before the Storm

Thanks again for stopping by for a spell and reading one of my posts….it certainly makes my day!

 

Upcoming Artist Equals Cool Furniture

Thinking back on the past…I LOVE the 1960’s and 1970’s style furniture. It had such style and “swankiness” about it. One piece I remember well is a “sweater chest” my father had. It had two sliding doors that opened up and had adjustable shelves for your cool sweaters. I loved when he would open up the sliding door and reveal what super cool style sweater he was pulling out for the day.

I feel at times that we have lost the art of “swankines” when it comes to furniture. Sometimes I feel we are just trying to get the basics accomplished…”Yup, this can hold a lot of stuff!” and call it good.
However, now there are wonderful new artist out that there that are trying to combine small space living, multi-purpose furniture and art all in one…and here is a great piece of furniture created by Edward Taylor that I keep seeing in FX The Business of Design, ICON, AnOffice Magazine, and most recently in Design Milk.

He calls it “The Show Off and it truly is a show piece. What a great way to combine some fun and organization plus “swankiness” in a beautiful piece of furniture. On his website it states…Iit’s quite unlike anything you’ll have ever seen before. What it represents is a new breed of furniture – one that refuses to comply with convention, or adhere to tradition – in order to give you, the user, exactly what you want.
Constructed from oak, walnut, laminate and ply, the Show-off provides the missing link between formal and informal clothing storage. Most at home in the hallway yet able to adapt to any given context, the Show-off is no ordinary cabinet. (taken from his website)

I have to admit…the main storage piece reminds me a lot of my father’s sweater chest….That right there had my attention. Yet the addition of the “tree style” stand really adds some fun and uniqueness to the piece.

I think this is a cool piece that would look great in any room! Be sure you check out his website.

 

A good, HOT cup of coffee can change your attitude!

Well…it’s a chilly Sunday Morning bicycle ride. I know…we are a bunch of “pansies” (living in Phoenix AZ) complaining about the cold when I have family and friends freezing in the Northwest and of coarse the East Coast.

However, Juan and I are on our bicycles early this morning and needless to say my hands are frozen by the time we reached out destination “Lola’s Coffee House”. I wrapped my popsicle fingers around that warm cup of happiness and instantly my mood changed. (wink wink smiley face)

CHANGE is my New Year’s resolution word. It can mean so much for so many and yet can accomplish all my goals with that one six-letter word.

I have read several articles regarding one word goals. So I chose “change” because this year…for me… It’s about change. In the coming months, Juan and I are really going to make some BIG changes in almost every aspect of our lives. (I’ll keep you posted)

For me the word change is perfect. CHANGE my eating habits to have a healthier body, CHANGE my exercise regime to make it a part of my life, CHANGE my attitude towards things in my life and how I react, CHANGE my professional direction….CHANGE!

So…Juan and I will sit here a little longer…warm up, enjoy the hip downtown sites and head back out on our bicycles.

Happy Weekend Everyone!

 
 
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