fun with paint chips

August 6, 2010

Posted by in handmade

paint chip leaves

when i saw these paint chip leaves on skinny laminx, i definitely had a, “why didn’t i think of that?” moment.  i keep a stack of pretty paint chip cards in my sewing room for inspiration, and they are just asking to be cut up into pretty flowers, leaves and city silhouettes!

paint chip leaves

so to leave you for the weekend, i’ve compiled a list of some fun paint chip projects.  head to the hardware store and have some fun!

have any other diy ideas? hope you have a sunny weekend! love, bonnie

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pilli pilli fiber art

August 6, 2010

Posted by in handmade

pilli pilli fiber art

i was so excited when jes from oh, buckets sent this shop over to me, isn’t it a fun friday find? named pilli pilli after the bright red african chili peppers, this shop isn’t lacking in spice or color.  her handmade fiber art include purses and pouches, pencil cases, wall art and more- each to give you a pop of color and a fun accessory!

pilli pilli elsewhere :: {shop} {blog} {flickr}

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chalkboard planting pots

just in case you missed it, my diy chalkboard garden pots were featured on design*sponge yesterday!  it’s such an easy peasy, fun project, and it uses the same technique for custom color chalkboard paint that we used for our pantry door. budget friendly and finished in less than an hour, this project is an easy way to pretty up your home, patio or garden!

chalkboard planting pots


- terra cotta gardening pots (unglazed)
-1 cup flat latex paint in your desired color
- 2 tbs unsanded tile grout for each cup of paint (avail. at your local hardware store)
- sponge brush
- tape
- paper
- exacto knife (or scissors)
- chalk
- label template

chalkboard planting pots


1. download the label template and cut each shape out into rectangles that will fit onto your pot (you can increase or decrease the label size for varying pot sizes).

2. using an exacto knife or scissors, cut the templates out from the inside to create your stencil.  tape the stencil to your garden pot along the outside edges.

chalkboard planting pots

3. in a cup or bowl, mix one cup flat latex paint with 2 tbs unsanded tile grout, then stir well until all of the clumps dissolve.

4. dip the sponge brush into your ‘chalkboard’ paint and begin painting inside you stencil using brush strokes from the outside in.  fill in the stencil, being careful not to get paint under the edges of the paper.  let paint dry (about 15 minutes) and apply a second coat.

chalkboard planting pots

5. once the second coat is dry (another 15 minutes) remove the tape and stencil to reveal your chalkboard design!

6. once fully cured ’season’ your chalkboard by rubbing the entire area with a piece of chalk and wipe clean with a damp cloth.  now you’re ready to write away!

chalkboard planting pots

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caroline’s taking a little break today, so i’m here to share some useful gardening q&a with you!  we often get questions from readers, and caroline’s answers are just to good to keep from you!

gardening q&a

{abby lanes}

Question: Recently I have noticed that my tomato plants – all 8 of them – are not producing anything. I got a little concerned because they are 3 feet high – they look great and happy – but no fruit! Boo!! So, i asked my gardening girlfriend what she thought I should do and she suggested that my soil may be lacking calcium. Hmmm… since I’m new to this gardening gig I think to myself: “where do you get calcium? Do I give them a little milk?” (kidding) So, i called another friend that gardens and he said to try some osmocote (sp?). I have used osmocote in the past on porch plants and they love it- but is it OK for food?? I don’t want to put any chemically stuff on something I’m going to eat. Do you have any tips? Suggestions??

Also, I have an old brick coop in the back – that needs major cleaning up – its sturdy with a tin roof (made probably circa 1930) but the open windows will need some chicken wire – and the door opening has no door (rats!). I’m pretty sure there are black widows in there and there is no way this gal is going in there to tidy it up with those monsters in there. Any tips on how to get them out? – Kristen

Answer: Hi Kristen! Non-flowering tomato plants are usually a sign of too much nitrogen in the soil. Have your soil tested at your local cooperative extension center and let them know you are experiencing non flowering tomato plants. Calcium depletion in the soil usually shows up as tomato blossom end rot – so a calcium deficiency would not be my first guess. I’m thinking they will probably have you add potash or potassium to the soil, but don’t go guessing! You can also try stressing the plants a bit – lessen up on the water for a few days. I would not use osmocote on food products – that stuff is pretty toxic to ingest. Don’t feed them anything until you get that soil test done. At this time of year it should not take long at all to get results.

Black widows! How timely as well – I found some black widow carcasses in my garage this past week and I’m on high alert now….but I’m not going to do much more than diatomaceous earth, a flashlight and a long broom to clean up the cobwebs. You can spray the chicken coop with water or use a hose end sprayer with some liquid soap mixed in to flood/kill the spiders before you actually go too far inside to clean up. Neem is also pretty effective…but you knew I would say that, I’m sure! Good luck, go in the covered up…no flip flops for you, wear a hat and long gloves. Be careful and be brave!!! -Caroline

gardening q&a

{allison trentelman}

Question: I need help! I planted windowboxes, organic, with zinnias, sweetpeas, nasturium and cilantro. And they have bugs! Ugly little buggers, some look like beetles, others fly… but I need to get rid of them pronto. I was thinking maybe a salt water mix, or baking soda? But I really don’t want to try without advice. If you can help I would SO appreciate it! :) – Anna

Answer: Hi Anna. Thanks for your question. I would advise you to never ever use regular salt in your garden. Salt is actually really toxic for your soil and not a good idea to spray on plants. Epsom salts are a different story, but they are not effective as bug control. I would recommend knocking the beetles into a bowl of soapy water and then spraying with Neem. Here is a link to a safer, organic Neem product I have found very effective.  Beetles are tenacious and you do need to spray every few days to control them.” – Caroline

gardening q&a


Question: I have something eating the leaves and new buds of one of my pansies and one of my dianthus in my small flower garden…guessing they are slugs since I can’t see them during the day (better go out one night to see if I can spot ‘em!)…anyway, read to put epsom salt around the plants…did it today…think it’ll work? any other tips? (update): Went to the local landscaper today b/c the epsom salts did NOT work AND I caught one of the little buggers this morning…at the other end of the garden! anyway, she is ordering me “sluggo” – said it is safe for kiddos and pets! hope it does the trick…- Jes

Answer: Jes answered her own question! Sluggo is great for slugs and safe around kids. – Caroline

gardening q&a

{pink princesses in the garden}

do you have any gardening questions? leave your questions here, or visit the ladybug landscaping facebook page to ask caroline directly!

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Posted by in handmade

good morning lovelies!  ready for my big exciting news?  i’m am so thrilled to announce that i’ll be teaching a 7 week e-course this fall!!  i’m wrapping up the weekly shop help posts and moving on to a more in depth look at growing you business in the handmade market.  my new e-course is called selling the handmade way and will cover all the basics (and more) of growing you handmade business.

selling the handmade way
i have wanted to teach an e-course for small indie businesses for a very long time, and i am beyond excited that the day has finally come!  you’ll feel right at home in this workbook style, hands on, personal approach to learning about selling your goods.  you’ll not only have the opportunity to learn and grow your business, but also to meet other inspirational business owners and get personal feedback and advice from me, along with a few very special expert guests.  visit the new e-course site for selling the handmade way to learn more about the class, topics we’ll cover, faq and a whole lot more!

visit the new e-class site here!

registration begins today and will end friday, september 3rd.  the class will be held on a private (password protected) blog from september 6th – october 22- just in time to get you and your business geared up for the holidays.  you’ll be accomplishing tasks, putting together an action plan and improving your business, one step at a time.  we look forward to getting to know you!

free e-book the best of shop help series

want a sneak peek? after sharing small business tips here for over a year, i’ve compiled a free e-book highlighting the best of the indie biz advice!  it gives you just a taste of what’s to come, as we’ll be discussing business topics in much greater depth during selling the handmade way, enjoy!

download the free e-book here!


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ghtr has a newlsetter!

August 3, 2010

Posted by in bonnie forkner

make a wish

{make a wish}

hello lovelies! after all this time- going home to roost finally has a newsletter!  sign up to receive occasional news about ghtr, upcoming events, sales, discounts and more.  many will be exclusive to subscribers only, so you won’t want to miss out (no spamming and no worries- i’ll never sell or distribute your info)!  there’s a new sign up box over in the right hand column (see it?), or you can sign up below.  i promise not to bombard your inbox – this will only be for exciting or pressing news!

Newsletter Sign-Up

i’m (sort of) signing off for the rest of the day- i have some very exciting news to share with you tomorrow, and i must get busy on the final touches! wink wink- see you then! xo, bonnie

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the maiden vintage

August 3, 2010

Posted by in vintage finds

the maiden vintage | vintage apparel

welcome to the maiden vintage! i think lindsay riddell has done an amazing job of capturing the essences of long ago.  yes, pictures are everything because she has completely made me want all these dresses that i probably would have passed up on the rack!  that shows my lack of imagination- as she’s turned each of these once-loved treasures into something truly desirable. best of all? she’s having a sale! visit her blog for all the details.

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hi lovelies! did you have a good weekend?  i spent most of mine prepping and canning green beans with my grandma!  oh if only i could download all of her knowledge into my wee brain… i think she knows everything there is to know about everything- it’s so fun to spend time with her!

today i want to introduce to you a very special guest poster, amanda joy! she sent me the most delectable looking garden salsa recipe and i was so eager to share it with you.  with seasonal veggies this catch-all salsa recipe is the perfect addition to our summer recipe collection. make sure to stop by amanda’s blog joy ever after for inspiration, handmade goodies and diy projects!

garden catch-all summer salsa recipe
Hello! My name is Amanda and I’m super excited to share my recipe with you. Bonnie has been so informative and such an inspiration to eating more local and seasonal foods. My personal strategy involves small, subtle baby steps towards a more sustainable lifestyle, as the lifestyle does not come naturally for me. This recipe is one of my favorites and is perfect for summer produce.

garden catch-all summer salsa recipe

With gardening you suddenly have twenty tomatoes, right? Or in my case, my lovely neighbor has plenty of peppers, onions, and tomatoes so she gladly gives me a bag full. (Lucky, I know!) The great thing about this salsa is I like to think of it as a “catch all” recipe. Basically you can add more or less of any ingredient and it still comes out great. And every time I make it, I think of another meal that it can be used for. Below is the basic recipe, but remember, you can be creative!
garden catch-all summer salsa recipe


4 large tomatoes, chopped
2 medium peppers, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 avocado, chopped
1 can corn, drained
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp fresh chopped cilantro
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp vinegar
2 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1 tbsp chili powder
dash of hot sauce

garden catch-all summer salsa recipe
garden catch-all summer salsa recipe
garden catch-all summer salsa recipe

I hope you make an opportunity to taste this versatile deliciousness! And I would love to hear what ingredients you added or meals you used it in. My most recent was an amazing taco pizza. Thanks to GHTR for letting me share with you!

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