Antiquey Chalkboards and Rasterbating

I picked up a few old frames for I found in an attic of a garage sale, and came to find out they are all non-standard-canvas size, when I got home. FML.

I paint on and off, and I find that frames make my painting look a lot less like bored- hour- at- the- 8th- grade- art- class, and more like hello- art- institute. So now I carry a measuring tape with me everywhere where an 18 x 24 frame might lurk; meanwhile, I had four frames that fit nothing. I thought briefly about adding “Making My Own Canvas” to the List, but I don’t trust myself to cut 45’ corners. Or stretching canvas well. Or tucking corners. Or, really, anything that has anything to do with canvas stretching. I hear it is cheap and easy. But so is making your own bread, and I ain't kneading my own bagels anytime soon. Instead, I decided to happen upon some thick backboard at Home Depot, and cut it into the given frame sizes. I was going to paint on these, but just then Jesse’s appalling lack of Russian vocabulary surfaced, and I decided to make two of them into chalkboards. Jesse got chalkboard paint, and painted the backboard.

Kitchen chalkboard of verbs (also doubles as grocery 'want' list)

The bedroom study corner

It looks awesome. It would prbably be better if my closet looked organized and Jesse didn't sound out lyrics from various obscene Russian songs on the board (Seryoga), but I guess it's in Russian, so only few people would find it offensive.

To get a really smooth coat, I’d probably need to sand it with 000 sandpaper, re coat, and rinse, repeat. But it works pretty well as is, so I’ve got one in the kitchen, and one in bedroom. That way, next time Jesse claims he doesn’t know how to say “already” in Russian, I can sigh theatrically and point to the board. Of course, right after I did this, I saw a Pottery Barn chalkboard at a garage sale, *just* like I wanted, but I was already pleased with mine. The remaining frames are currently hanging in the study, empty. One of these days, I’ll paint some sunflowers, and a kissy picture on some backboard.

They are a little too big, but I would love to do something like this (the wall art, not the entire dining room):

On a smaller scale. There’s a rasterbator website' that takes an image you submit and returns a “restersized” version of it, which you can print on 8x8’s, or what have you. If I had another blank wall, I’d love to do something like that, probably with a boatload of cheap Ikea picture frames, and one of our camping trip photos. It can be as big as you want or as little as 2 frames. I’m a huge fan of this idea.

Meanwhile, I have three old but big frames left over (in the neighborhood 20x25), all different. I was thinking of doing a painting, in three parts. Kind of like this one I did a while back:

But split into three canvases. Well, backboards, in this case. The only down side to this, is that, of course, the three would have to stay together and require a large chunk of blank wall, which I don’t really have in our two bedroom. Nonetheless, I think I’ll add it to the List. At this point, couple more canvases and I’ll have to start either rotating my artwork, or nailing hooks to the outside of the building. SoCal good weather and all..


Mid Century Modern

I saw these amazing ..ok, these ratty with amazing potential chairs at an estate sale in Corona Del Mar for a $100 a pair. And after looking them up online (Danish modern..what? They're OLD!) Jesse graciously agreed to go make an offer on them while I was at work. He called me and said that there IS a guy who would buy them and put in his furniture gallery (of old and haunted things, no doubt) but, unfortunately for the guy, and fortunately for me, $75 and a truck right there proved more lucrative than $100 and delivering the chairs to his gallery.

Really, most everything about these chairs was objectionable until you sat in them. They are as comfortable as the orange upholstery was itchy (and ugly). They reminded me of wood armchairs my grandma has in Ukraine, and of the fact that I have no wood armchairs, and, lastly, as usual, "we can always Craigslist/Ebay them". Jesse fell for it again.

So we dragged them home. The underside has "Conant Ball Co" burned/stamped on bottom, which I tried to research, and came up with not much else but that their other ugly for my taste furniture is relatively expensive. Win for my "we can always resell them" argument. They appear to be from the 40's - 50's. A fancy designer named Russel Wright designed a modern line of furniture for CB starting 1935, but my research indicates his fancy name is stamped on his fancy designs, which mine do not have. Then I got bored and gave up on trying to trace the royal lineage; I did, however, come across a guy trying to sell a really ratty one, sans cushions, on CL for $125, so my resale argument is as strong as ever.

They match nothing in the apartment. I'd have to find a place for them. The upholstery HAD to go.

The work in progress - you can see the original hideousness on the other chair. I think I was in such a hurry to strip them off the ugly, that I didn't take a picture of the two in all their burnt orange scratchy glory.

I went to JoAnn's and bought some obscene amount of $2/yd brown cotton fabric. I thought I needed 8 yards. I got 9. I used may be 6. The foam and batting wrap looked pretty good. I fabreezed the cushions, and sewed the covers.

The covers are basically rectangles, I cut up one of the orange hideousnesses and used it as a template. They look better. Or, at least, they try to blend in.

Jesse spotted some brilliant bright purple upholstery fabric at a San Francisco fabric outlet for $6/yd, and it is my plan to eventually make the chairs purple. And put them next to the green curtains (soon to be in progress) and a bright yellow painted wall (as soon as I talk Jesse into it).

Close up of the Purple Fabric lazily draped over chair. The brown set of covers, simple as they were, took me 5 incompetence filled days, so I'm waiting for the second wind.

I may, in the future, also replace the foam; that and a wood soap bath later they'll be like brand new. I love old stuff, but I also have an acute other-people-dead-skin-cell obsession that goes wild when untreated. I usually treat it by asking Jesse to refinish stuff (a good bath in Liquid Sandpaper leaves very little behind. Including your own live skin, if you're not careful), but he's backed up on projects, so I soaped it as well I could, and they're waiting in queue.

Update!! I was right, and the purple looks a m a z i n g against the Yellow Wall!



Simply, I want to keep a running list of chores, projects, and various affairs that pop into my head, to accomplish at some point in time.
I shall add new stuff on top, and write DONE when something is accomplished. I am hoping to look back and see a lot of DONE's. This would please me. :D

Make Xmas Tree Skirt
Sew Cover for Punching Bag
Sell something on Ebay DONE!!!
Figure out how to sell stuff on Ebay DONE
Paint the dining room wall
Organize Closet
Find a Dress Form
Make a Quilt
Re-finish Mid Century Tables
Polish Moto Frame
Get Motorcycle parts anodized purple
Make Another Duct Tape Dress Form
Make a Duct Tape Dress Form. DONE BUT FAILED
Sew new purple cushion covers for Danish chairs DONE
Stain Danish chairs a dark walnut DECIDED NOT TO
Paint sunflowers
Paint Palm Tree sunset
Make a dress Vogue 9015
Make a 50’s dress McCall’s 9777
Find the McCall’s 6015, or 6150, or 9740. The walkaway dress, or the Saturday Morning dress from the 50’s.
Find Remnants of Hardwood Floor on CL
Replace carpet with hardwood floors
Hang up TV DONE
Get Giant Frame for TV DONE
Paint Living Room Wall Yellow DONE
Make a Scrub Top DONE