Saturday, December 1, 2012

JBS Mercantile December - Artisan Kit

Hey ladies! I would like to share one of my JBS Mercantile December layouts. This one was made with the Artisan Kit. I love this kit - it's got playful patterns mixed with elegant vintage stars and glitter alphas! And the embellishments are sweet too - decorative pins and fabric labels. I worked on this page and had a design I thought I was okay with and the more I looked at it, the more I felt I needed to make it more "special." This is a picture I really like of my grandma and Zane when she came to school with him for the morning for grandparents day. So the central design was on a cream sheet of cardstock all the way to the left with three sewn squares going down the right side with the stencil work inside two of them and journaling inside the middle one. It just wasn't right so I took a chance and cut out the pic/paper column and started putting it on other colors of cardstock. It was better but still not special. I happened to have a sheet of black Silhouette cut cardstock sitting there from a poster I had made for my son's birthday party. I sat the cut pic/patterned paper on that and it just worked! I took two of those paint stenciled squares and put them behind two of the letters and scattered a few more stars on the black. Then I journaled around the edge and when I ran out of room to say what I wanted to say, I journaled inside some of the letters. I'm glad I stuck it out with this one and kept working on it. I think the black alpha cut background really grounds the photo/patterned paper column, creates a great contrast, and makes it fun and funky!

Those stars are absolutely wonderful! I love them white just like they are. They are created so you can mist on them and have a resist design but they are so fresh just left white. You can see the pattern behind the R - that's the exclusive chevron stencil. I used thick white paint and then drew chevron lines with a gray maker between the lines. I used wire cutters to cut the pin head off and use it inside the stars. Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

JBS Mercantile November

Hey ladies, I hope you had a spootacular Halloween!  I'd like to share my JBS Mercantile November layouts with you. This first page is made with the main kit and Antiquarian. I thought the red on red was really pretty. I started out with the red and black flowers on one of the cream patterned papers but decided I like the slightly more subtle look on the dark solid red on the light patterned red. You know, I think this flowery layout looks masculine :) Do you think? I typed the text out on a 12 x 12 page template I made in Mac's Pages program then ran the red woodgrain printer through my large format printer to print the text directly onto the page (as I'm sure you infer). I had quite a bit to say but I didn't want it to stand out like for example by putting it on a white text block so that's what I came up with. It takes a bit of planning but it's worth it for a special page, I think.

Of course the flowers were cut with my Silhouette. I think there are probably about 5 flower spray cuts here then I added a few extra sprigs here and there to fill in. I also made copies of some of the vintage paper so it would be strong enough to run through my Silhouette so I could cut patterned paper titles from it. I didn't completely glue down the flower sprays - I glued a few key spots on there and left the rest to organically lift off the page. :)

This layout I really like. I like the stuff I mixed together here from the kits - kind of the stuff with kid energy I think :) I had the butterfly vellum already cut and just sitting in my floor so I grabbed that to act as a base for the rest of the collage style layout. I used the November Kit Cuts from Lisa Dickinson which are available for purchase at the Mercantile store. I've been really enjoying printing 5 x 7 photos lately because they're big enough to really enjoy the details and draw attention to the pictures (vs. the scrapbook goodies) yet still have enough room to play around with your elements and make a design statement or have room to tell a story, you see what I mean. Here I've used two 5 x 7's. This is a mixture from several kits: main kit, Artisan, and Antiquarian. And I love love how that golden yellow mixes with red, black, and white.

The expression on Ava's face cracks me up. It looks like she doesn't want to hug her brother which is so far from the truth. She loves him - she was probably scared he was going to make her stop :)

I love these black dymo label looking stickers from Artisan. 

My last page is showing Zane in his costume last Halloween. I've held off scrapping these photos because I think red, orange, and black is a challenging color scheme - I'm not sure why I think that. Anyhow, when I saw the JBS kit was red and black I knew it was now or never on these pics. I misted the file folder page from the mini album kit orange and cut in in half to bring orange into the kit. I kept the red minimal just to pull the colors from his costume. I really like the curve of that vintage billhead over the larger picture - so it makes a nice design in that spot. And how lucky was I that what I was saying in the title actually fit as the same width as my two columns??? I had it all laid out without being glued down so I did have fudge room but I really didn't need it much.

My Halloween village is still up on my dining table so I've had to move photography location. I'm absolutely totally nutso obsessive about taking pictures of my layouts. Ask my friend Doris. It's really rather bad. Anyhow, I was curious, do you like to photograph your pages just as the actual page with the sides all cropped or do you like to photograph it standing on a tabletop, etc.? I see most people photograph the layout only. I used to do that but I got to where I like to have it more 3D looking in the photograph. Anyhow, on the second layout I started out doing layout only, non tabletop, since my village is in the way but it just didn't look right with the other two layouts - this first one and the last one. Then I didn't want to re-do the middle one because the color was right along with the sharpness - it was too good to mess around with (especially after the minimal adjust layer with photo filer to like 20 percent strength to knock out a very slight green cast). Just curious what your take was on that. I personally think the top and bottom layouts look prettier the way they're photographed. Especially if the layout is white and you get the levels right - the white bleeds in with the website background. Thanks for listening to me ramble on that subject. Told you it was near to my heart.  Sometime I'll share my levels tricks with you (if you don't already have methodology there - that would be a good post showing straight out of the camera and what I end up with). Then I save for web then I open the smaller saved for web file and sharpen that one.

Well, see ya next time. I've got gift ideas to share using JBS next week.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Looking Like Halloween

I made this page to document our Halloween decorations this year. I've already told you how crazy my kids were for decorating. I really like these goodies on this light blue-ish purple. Part of this stuff is even more left overs I had from the JBS Mercantile Haunted House Mini-Album Kit. I added a German spider web scrap, a Martha Stewart spider sticker, and a Jolee's Boutique glitter flower. 

The journaling says: Halloween decorating - the love it. I brought all the boxes down from the attic and they went crazy grabbing stuff and decorating all over the house. They helped me set up the village and decorate the Halloween tree, decorate the hall tables. One of my fave things this year is the old skeleton on my new old mirror from Brimfield. I collected all the Halloween ornaments from before the kids were born 1. because I've always loved Halloween and 2. I loved thinking about my kids someday getting enjoyment from them. And now here we are all these years later, decorating together. 

Here's some of our decorations:

Our Halloween Village all across the dining room table.

My old mannequin dressed for Halloween. It's too bad I couldn't find my vintage black bustier :) She looks great in that. 

Here she is wearing vintage necklaces and a J. Crew orange necklace.

Our Halloween Tree - I really like this white feather tree - works for all seasons. This photo is a bit blurry but I used thick white embroidered white on orange trim. 

I got this old mirror at Brimfield - the perfect size for this vintage cardboard skeleton.

Just some stuff jumbled on the hall table. The lights look really cute at night.

And this girl. How cute is she???!!!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Cut Files Winner Announced from JBS Blog Hop!

According to the random number generator, my winner is:

Jennifer Cardwell said...
Awesome giveaway to go with my new cameo that I ordered and am waiting to arrive! My favorite costume growing up would have to be the glowing butterfly. My favorite cut above, I can't choose. They all look awesome! Thanks for the opportunity!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Epic Jenni Bowlin Studio Halloween Bonanza Blog Hop!

Have you seen this incredible Haunted House Mini-Album by Jenni Bowlin? Oh my, you have to see it.  I grabbed one right away when they hit the store. It was the only scrappy thing I took with me out of town on fall break. And I made the book just as the directions told me - cause you can't improve on a Jenni design! This one shown here is by Jenni. It's just a really, really cool little book. It's going to look so cute on my Halloween mantle. Wouldn't this one be so fun to put together with a group of girls on Halloween Eve? So, with that introduction brings me to the introduction of my scrapbook page:

This is the page I made with leftovers from the fabulous Haunted House Mini-Album Kit. If you want to be able to make Jenni's book and this page, then you will need to pick up one extra orange butterfly rub on in the store and grab some black and orange buttons from your stash. Everything else comes in the kit: the paper, transparency, bingo cards, labels, stickers, stars, vellum, and even some orange glass glitter.

This is a page about the kids and how much they love our Dept. 56 Halloween Village. Since Jenni's book is based on house shapes, I had this perfect bingo card piece that was the leftover after cutting out a roof so I used it here to make a house shaped frame for my picture - since it's a page about the village. 

I used the back packing sheet from the JBS large Halloween Bingo Cards which has all these cute mini sized bingo cards. For the covers of Jenni's book she trimmed off the border of the bingo cards so I had those to use on my scrapbook page as you can see here how I used it to frame the butterfly/bingo card embellishments. 

I love this script font. It's called Burgues Script and it's a pay font - not a cheap one either. Although considering you'll get years of scrappy font usage happiness out it, you could consider it an investment in your happiness ;)

Still in the mood for more Halloween?? Get this . . . . . . .

In celebration of our JBS Halloween Treats Bonanza, Jenni is giving away this adorable house and the two eerie trees she made with one of the limited edition Halloween kits (the 3D house kit is sold out but there's still two other kits left, including the Haunted House Mini-Album Kit I shared above). Hop on over to Jenni's blog for a chance to win!

MY GIVEAWAY PART! So blog hops always have a prize, right? Well, here's your chance to win all four of these cut file sets designed by Lisa Dickinson for JBS Mercantile! Leave me a comment telling me what was your favorite Halloween costume from your childhood years. Or if you didn't dress up and do the Halloween thing then tell me which is your favorite cut set shown above! Or tell me if you're going to get that Haunted House Mini Album Kit. I don't care, just leave me a fabulously wonderful comment, lol! And leave me your email address, if you like, so I can get to you ASAP once I draw a winner.

ALSO, in celebration of JBS Mercantile offering cutting files, we have a special from Silhouette we're passing on to our friends in order to help you get started with a new Silhouette Cameo. The promotion runs from October 17th thru the end of October - or in other words - Halloween Night (insert crazy witch laugh)!
Halloween vinyl/CAMEO bundle:

·         1 roll 9-inch x 10 feet black premium vinyl
·         1 roll 9-inch x 10 feet orange premium vinyl
·         1 roll transfer paper
·         1 Silhouette hook tool
·         1 Silhouette CAMEO®
·         All for $269.99! (MSRP of $351.95)
Just enter the code "JBShalloweenbonanza" during check out! Here's the LINK. So even if you haven't thought about trying the vinyl, this is still a great deal on the Cameo. The Cameo retails for $299.99 and during this sale it's basically $269.99  and you could think of the vinyl stuff as "free" :) That's a 30 dollar savings!

One more thing! If you would like to know more about how to get the most out of your Silhouette, check out this class, Silhouette 101, at Creative Passion Classes, by our newest JBS Design Team Member, Amanda Jones Robinson. Our very own Betsy Sammarco will be making an appearance. There are lessons, pdf's, webinars, free Silhouette files, lots of good stuff and the class is 25 percent off through Friday.

AND . . . as  part of our Halloween Celebration we are offering 3 mega kits on super sale!
See details below! The stickers and embellishment kits would make great stocking stuffers. Make sure to leave a comment on the JBS Inspiration Blog for a chance to win one of these three kits!

Keep hopping on and check out the rest of these talented ladies' blogs for more inspiration, fun, and chances to win those cut files!

Amanda Jones Robinson
Amy Kingsford
Ashley Calder
Betsy Sammarco
Briana Johnson ------------(You are here! Comment for a chance to win the cut files!)
Connie Mercer
Corrie Jones
Doris Sander
Jenni Bowlin ------------(A chance to win the 3D Halloween House & Trees)
Jenni Bowlin Studio --------------(A chance to win one of the Mega Kits)
Jenni Hufford
Jill Sprott
Kerry Lynn Yeary
Leah Farquharson
Lisa Dickinson
Megan Klauer
Natalie Elphinstone
Shimelle Laine
Tina Walker


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Scrapping Vintage at JBS Mercantile Today

Check it out at the JBS Mercantile Inspiration Blog today for more details about this page! Don't you love those Maple Leaves - cut files by Lisa Dickinson are on sale at the Mercantile Store! And make sure to check out the Inspiration Blog tomorrow for something VERY fun and exciting - special Halloween projects, sales, giveaways, lots of good stuff - we'll be blog hopping tomorrow so check back!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

My Star-Pal

Happy Saturday! This is the last page I made for JBS Mercantile this month. I think there's a little something from all the kits. The blue tags and the airmail tape are from the mini album kit, the star label is from Antiquarian, the banners are from Artisan, and the glitter alphas and patterned paper are from the main kit. I wanted to incorporate lots of journaling on this one so I used the tags and the check stub (both from Jenni's new perforated papers). This page is a bit special to me because of all the journaling so when I started out with this one - I started out intending to focus on the photos and the story and just let the design fall into place however it would after the other two objectives were accomplished :) So I ended up with a collaged look in order to get some goodies on there as well. But my husband and I think this is a special one because it gives such a slice of who he is right now.

There are two stories on this page which both occur around the same time as this picture. The journaling on the check stub is literally about this picture. I talk about how my son has been taking this green basketball to school. He started doing that because the kids weren't really letting him play basketball (he's the new kid and he's not really a basketball player, he knows much more about soccer). So he started taking his own ball but not playing basketball - just dribbling around and rolling it down the slide. It became his recess security. I guess he felt like if he didn't find another kid to play with, he had his basketball to play with. And the jacket. This was the first time this season he got to wear his jacket and that gave him a little shot of happiness that day. He's always liked having his jacket and tries to wear it too early in the fall and too late in the spring.

The rest of the journaling tells the story of the game we play many nights before he falls asleep. The "I Love You More," game you all probably know. He always starts out with, "I love you all the way past Pluto." And then the other planets get mentioned and the sun and Heaven and on and on. But the solar system is always involved. So I thought the Star-Pak label would be perfect and it just hit me I could make it say Star-Pal instead by covering the K with label paper and using the red alpha letter L from the October Afternoon stickers from Artisan. Clever moment for me! :)

Here's a shot so you can read some of the journaling if you wish. Cracked me up with he said he loved me all the way to Heaven then Pluto then Texas then Great Wolf Lodge because we aren't very far from Texas and Great Wolf Lodge but that's a place he's always loved going. I know there's supposed to be a space after the colons but since my space was limited I just left those out - because they would've taken up mucho space and the story is still told well without them.

Thanks for checking it out!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

JBS Mercantile: Blessings Layout with Feedsack Rosette

This layout was made with the main kit and the feedsack quilt pieces are from Antiquarian (which has sold out). I love this peach diagonal gingham paper. I want more :) It really looks nice as a background. I also used the BONUS kit cut now included in the main kits!!! The doily you see here is the kit cut for October. Isn't it great! It's from the Wren JBS Collection.
This is a photo strip of me and my darlin' from a recent birthday party. Oh Ava cracks me up. I love her second pose - stunned. She does that one often. I used some of our new JBS Mercantile cuts! Blessings is part of a title set designed by Lisa Dickinson which is available for purchase at the Mercantile store. The cut file says Autumn Blessings but I just used the blessings part for this page.
So here's the pretty feedsack rosette I made. You can't really make anything ugly using vintage quilt scraps or pieces, lol, you know? They're just inherently beautiful. In the Antiquarian kit Jenni gave us two half round scalloped quilt pieces. I used embroidery thread to sew a running stitch along the inside of the first piece then used the same piece of thread and continued to sew along the second piece so I could gather them up together as one complete circle. I just knotted the ends of the embroidery thread together with a little slack in the middle and the used glue dots to attach one of the new JBS quilt stars to the center. I did hand sew the rosette to the page in the middle because I wanted the center of the rosette to be really tight against the page so the outer edges would pucker out better and look more full.

Here our our new cuts!
This is the bonus main kit cut!

And these are the Mercantile Cuts for purchase. I have loved working with these. I've got a page to share soon using the leaves that just makes me so happy. Lisa did an absolutely wonderful job making these. PS thanks Lisa for letting me steal your collage image from your blog :)

Now I must go pack for a Cub Scouts camp out weekend! Confession: I have never been overnight camping in my entire 32 years of life. Shameful, isn't it. I was raised by my grandparents and that was just not their kind of thing. Anyhow. It's supposed to be in the low 40s here tomorrow night. Any words of wisdom from the camping pros? I already got Doris' pearls of wisdom: baby wipes to freshen up, head lights for the cool kids, and clothes in a laundry basket or plastic container. We have a giant tent for 10 even though we are only 4 at Adam's insistence. This is going to be fun. I can't wait to watch him put that big dude up.

Monday, October 1, 2012

JBS Mercantile October Reveal - Woodgrain Chevrons!

Hey girls! Today is October 1st so that means we've got new kits up for sale at JBS Mercantile! Subscribers get to purchase add ons today and non-subscribers are allowed to purchase starting on the 2nd. NEW MERCANTILE CUTS FOR PURCHASE!! Today and tomorrow they are 25 percent off!

This page, I love. I used my exacto knife to cut out random pieces from the chevron woodgrain paper. Since the chevron pattern is so small, I didn't want to take the time to try and line the back of each cut out so I just ran strips of paper down each row - plus I think it makes more of an impact on the cut outs vs. if they were all different and mixed up. Having rows of the same color/pattern makes the design cut out more visible and s"stronger" I think.
Here's a look at what the page looked like before the top layer went on. The only tricky part of this is getting the sticky behind the strips and getting the strips placed just so while holding the top layer in place so that you get these base strips placed just so. 
Here's a shot of the top page before I glued it onto the base piece. You can see the cut out random-ness here a little better here just to give you an idea in case this is something you want to try. Or this gives you an idea of how it would look just to experiment with solid colors behind the cut outs.

So then I had this fab idea to run the ticket strips down some of the rows and tuck them behind some of the cut outs. Man, I felt smart, lol. It's like giving it another layer of interest and I love how it made the ends of the ticket strips into angled ends. I typed a small bit of journaling on my photos in Photoshop before I printed them so all I had left was a title - that part is pretty self explanatory :) 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Making Memories Card Set Featuring Sarah Jane &

I was so surprised and excited to be asked to join the Making Memories design team! I am totally loving their new stuff! It's wonderful seeing them make a come back! The new lines are Sarah Jane (which has a boy line included), Modern Millinery, and their Christmas line, Believe. Here's a great link from showing a video of the new Modern Millinery goodies at CHA this summer (which kinda makes me drool, seriously love this stuff - fabric-esque paper, vintage millinery types of flowers, great FLORAL paper (my all time fave, I consider myself a connoisseur of fine floral paper), great trim, stickers, die cuts, and gorgeous buttons! Oh and the black and cream fabric flowers, mmmhmm, very nice). Sarah Jane is the line I'm sharing with you on my cards today.

Okay, now on to the cards :) I made this set of three cards primarily to share with you a new product called It's a QR code sticker designed to be used with your craft projects and cards! I've been seeing these little labels and stickers all over products everywhere and I knew you could use your phone to scan the code and it would take you somewhere online to get more info about the product you were scanning. I thought it was pretty cool when I saw it on the flower pots at Lowe's this summer to get more info about the plants. Well, Making Memories is now offering that same idea but now the QR code will take you to your very own spot on the internet to share all kinds of things with your friends and family and they can either scan the code with their phone or just go to the website and type in the letter code found on the sticker and it takes them straight to the content you have loaded. Pretty cool, huh?

I made this card planning to give it to my daughter on her 5th birthday. Right now I've linked a photo of her on my code but the cool thing is, if you change your mind, you can go back and change it! I'm thinking it might be fun to use a video of us singing Happy Birthday to her. I used the on a little white tag inside a sewn pocket using a Making Memories Sarah Jane label sticker.

Here's some more information from the Making Memories Blog. You should be able to find on the shelves of your local Joann's by mid October.

The white flowers in this card were cut with Silhouette. There are die cuts from Making Memories on here: polka dot circles, two large flower die cuts, and the little girls circle. I made the other circles with punches and the tiny flowers were made with a punch as well.

And this card was also cut with Silhouette. It's very simple - I really like this one. I used a few pieces of Sarah Jane 6 x 6 paper and finished it with a die cut.

Danielle has already shared some really cool ideas using on the Making Memories Blog this week. She's shared a party invitation with the girl's playlist on the and a "We Have Moved" card with a house tour on the! Click on over and check it out!

iPhone App Link

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Congrats JBS Ambassadors!

Congrats, ladies! I am so excited for JBS to have such a talented bunch and so excited for these new designers! What an impressive group! I CAN NOT wait to start seeing their JBS creations. The new JBS Ambassadors' blogs are all linked on the JBS Inspiration Blog today. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Brimfield Antique Market

Brimfield (Brimfield, Massachusetts) was awesome! We went for the July 2012 show (the smallest of the three shows, but was by no means "small"). I scored this treasure on day 1. And it's a good thing I nabbed it when I did because a lady had come back right after we handed over the money and had decided she wanted it - she wanted to take it to Boston and there were two Mercedes vans going through and getting all the good stuff! We later learned they were shopping for two stores in New York. I have to say, the man who sold us this piece ended up being the nicest man. His name is Lenny and he set up in Quaker Acres. We enjoyed talking with him about where he was from, where this piece was from, what shows he did. Later he offered us a drink and invited us back to a fish fry he was hosting that night. We met some great people there.

We also bought this piece from Lenny which originally came out of a court house and he knew the history on it/location/chain of ownership. I can.not.wait to organize all my vintage paper and labels and prints in this cabinet with each category labeled on the outside.

And at Brimfield you always ask for a deal, meaning you ask, "Can you do a little off this?" I'm not used to wheeling and dealing that way but that's the way it is there. We went on the evening before the show started to scope it out and on the way back to Southbridge (where our hotel was) we stopped at an antique place and the man there was so very nice and outgoing and told us all about it - he thinks it's practically a sin not to ask for a little something off. But, the downside of that is that some buyers are down right rude and insulting to the sellers about getting a deal. I overheard many sellers talking to each other in passing about how rude some buyers could be, what they had said. And I heard it for myself a few times, once pretty badly, a buyer practically berating a seller for asking more than the buyer thought an item should be. I'm the kind of person who wants it to be fair to everyone and by the end of the show I just kept thinking about how many of those people do this for a living from all over, mainly the central USA to the NE and the South. Those people go out and find the deals, go to the garage sales, estate sales, auctions, drive the finds all the way to Brimfield, pay to set up in the field, sleep there in their campers for days, take showers there, set all the stuff up (some had spent a great deal of time on their set up), bargain and deal with people, take it down, and do it all over again for the next show. We bought a table from one man who drove all the way from Miami and had three little kids with him - this is a full time job for many and I don't begrudge anyone for trying to make some money doing what they love. LOL, stepping off the soapbox now.

This is what it looks like on Thursday waiting in line for May's field to open (field openings are staggered). May's field boasts the slogan "Where everyone is an early buyer," or something like that. The dealers in May's are not allowed to get anything out of their trucks or set up before the gate opens at 9 a.m. So there is a line. And there is slight pushing, and there is running. While I was standing in this line a retired college theater professor started talking to me about how it goes down. You can see the police here keeping an eye on he crowd. What happens is people line up across the road and not in line and then when the gates open those people run across the road and cram into the real line (which is going both ways along the opening). The police stop traffic and let those people cross. My theater friend felt this was unfair and would not allow himself to do that - and I was in agreement. My point being, waiting to get the best finds at Brimfield kinda gets into serious business. So when these gates opened, people went running. People who have a history at these shows know where to go to the people they've done business with before and they head for those spots. My new friend said it was best to run to the back because the people in the front wouldn't have had time to get their stuff out yet and by the time you get to the back those people have some stuff out. It's really pretty awesome to see it all go down. People are buying quickly, people are calling out, "How much??" and dealers are yelling prices out - people buy or move on quickly (many times prices are not marked and you must ask), people are on cell phones relaying what they are seeing and talking prices. We made a very fast go around the field for larger pieces then went back for the "smalls."

Adam and I double teamed this field at first because I went through and chose some stuff leaving him to finalize the details. We had to get receipts on many pieces because we were being charged a percentage by our shipper. We also took photos of the larger pieces because after we bought them we let the shipper know what the item was and where to find it and they went back though and picked it all up for us (the large stuff that is, the smalls we took back to our mini van and grouped together and organized them before we gave them to the shipper. They don't really have time to pick up all the small stuff and that would be a tactical nightmare as massive as this show is). Sometimes the sellers don't really want to make up receipts in the thick of things while the rush is on but you can go back after things have died down and sometimes they don't really want to give you one anyway but when you tell them you need it for the shipper they're usually happy to help. (They have ATM's there if you underestimate your buying potential). I mean some sellers don't even keep receipt books but they can just use a scratch piece of paper, it's pretty informal. And make sure to ask them how long they are going to be in that field so you know how quickly you need to get the large stuff out of there before they take off. It's a good idea to get their cell phone number if you've bought a large piece and can't take it with you right away or if the shipper can't find the item and needs clarification later.

What's a bit funny about the fields that open later in the week is that sometimes there are sellers who have originally set up at the early open fields and then set up again at the later opening fields. There were items I had seen earlier in the week being sold at May's because let's be real, the rush at May's is pretty cool and they have a good likelihood of moving those items in the adrenaline rush of opening gate. I think those people are called field jumpers - I don't see this as a negative though, just an observation.

After the crowds had died down a little at May's

The guy who sold us this Venetian Mirror was from New York and said this mirror came from Long Island. What was fun about this stop was that we met people from Dallas, Texas. I guess our accent gave us away and the man struck up a conversation and we found out all about his antique store in a high end area of Dallas. 

I can't really explain the love affair I'm having with Venetian mirrors. Obsessed. I look at them all over the internet, daydream about them. We went to Italy on our honeymoon 12 years ago and we couldn't really afford the kind of Venetian glass I would have loved to have sent home. But I remember the chandeliers - incredible. There's something about the patina, the etching, the attention to detail on these mirrors. I scored two Venetian mirrors in May's in one day. I think I must have found the only two on the field. 

Found some good paper stuff (ephemera I guess would sound better) at the Paper Barn. Yes, the PAPER BARN! I scored some fabulous billheads. And there were thousands of postcards. The Paper Barn was open the evening before the show started if you want to get shopping a little early.

Being the paper fool that I am, I was so happy to get this entire pack of French apothecary labels for 10.00 a set. This guy had a ton of old posters, lithographs, cigar box labels, you name it paper, he had it. He was set up at the very front by the road, can't remember which field but it was right on the highway.

This mirror was from young seller from New Hampshire. The mirror belonged to his grandma who had advised him what price to ask :) His grandma had many nice things, a lady of great taste.

What I love about Brimfield is the extreme mix of items you can find - which is just how I like to decorate my house - very eclectic. I like the shabby worn stuff with some industrial with some flat out pretty like this piece above which came from Howard in the NE Motel field. Like always we asked the history of the item and Howard was happy to share and even showed us photos of some of the other pieces from this fabulous estate on his cell phone.

Let me say, getting cell phone pictures of your pieces is invaluable if you are having them shipped home. If something arrives dented or messed up or scratched very badly or has some kind of white residue on them somewhere (which is what happened to me) you can flip out your cell phone and compare. Then the shipper can't say it was that way when they got it. And I'm not being a nut - old stuff has scratches and patina and that's why we love it - but sometimes real accidents occur and it's nice to have that photo of original bought condition.

I found this bowl in Quaker Acres I think it was. Anyhow, this massive punch bowl was something I was afraid to send home packed into the back of a shipping truck loaded with furniture and big pieces (because it's not just your stuff on the shipper's truck - it people from all over the US) so I used Packaging Store for this one. They are set up there right on the main road. They take the stuff back to Manchester, Connecticut (not too far from Brimfield) and pack it professionally. It was expensive, but I had them make a custom foam mold to ship this baby in and it arrived safe and sound. They do put it into the hands of UPS or Fedex, man, can't remember so it does leave their possession but they have packed it so well you can feel good about it. The Packaging Store ships all kinds of stuff - big stuff too but I only used them for the super delicate stuff.

Like I said, never know what you'll find at Brimfield.

A view of Mike's stuff from near Green Acres or Collin's Apple Barn - its right on the highway, can't remember which one, can't miss it. Mike has a ton of industrial stuff - lots of crates and wooden drawers that were used for shipping tools with great stenciling down the sides. He says he's there for every show, super friendly guy, great prices.

This is where we stayed in Southbridge, The Vienna Inn. The owners are very friendly and big on fab service but it can be very busy in the restaurant during the show weeks in the evenings. The food is Austrian faire. We had Chateaubriand there and it was so very tasty. They had quiche to go for us on the morning we left so early. I also had vichyssoise (soup, kinda) there and it was excellent. 

Yours truly.

Feel free to ask any questions you may have. Going to Brimfield was on my bucket list I guess you could say (I think that's the first time I've ever used that phrase :) ) And I was not disappointed whatsoever. I would love to go do this once a year. We went in the summer since it's hard to get away while the kids are in school (kids stayed back at Grandma's). It was hot but not as hot as I'm used to in the Midwest so it wasn't really complain-worthy for me. Still, everyone says the spring and fall shows are the best.

Oh, I've shared these youtube videos before on my blog but I want to put them here again since this is my official Brimfield post.