Thursday, July 26, 2012

My heart goes all aflutter for birdcages. And how I made my birdcage chandelier.

There's just no denying it.  I have a thing for birdcages.

I try not to get my feathers ruffled about it (pun intented).

So, what, you might ask, does a junker do with a bird cage when there are no birds?
Well, make a chandelier of course!

I had this decorative cage hanging around the garage for a few years.  My keen-eyed-junk-lovin-sister gave it to me after spotting it at a garage sale.

It didn't have the rusty, aged and worn patina that I generally am drawn to so I bypassed it several times for other projects.  I knew it would be safe, right there in the garage.

Longing to have a chandelier in my bathroom, I finally turned to the lonely birdcage.  It had a light and airy look about it that I thought just might suit this project perfect.

I gathered up some bling from my stash, hanging crystals
(fake crystals, because fake = more $ left for other junk)
and some shiny Christmas garland I hadn't used in awhile.

I had a light kit from a paper lantern store.  They are super easy to use when transforming unexpected things into light fixtures.

I forced the cord to hang straight with a highly technical wrap method and some wire.  ;)

Then wrapped the cord in burlap ribbon.  Gotta love burlap!

Once I got the cord all tucked nice and neat in the burlap, I realized I had not added anything to actually "hang" the chandelier from.  I don't like using the cord to support the weight of a project, even if it's light. 

So I used a flyswatter super secret junker's tool to fish some jute twine through the burlap and secured to the top of the birdcage.

Notice all the bling?  It's maybe a bit much for me...I'm more of a burlap and rust kind of gal, but I'll give it a chance.

There she is...all pretty and shiny.  After trying a few different bulbs, I settled on one with low wattage, so it can be left on as a nightlight for those middle of the night bathroom visits.

What do you think?  Too blingy?

Now, you didn't think that proclaiming my love for birdcages meant I only had one, did you?

Here are a few more that have made their way around my home.

Isn't that a sweet pulley to hang another birdcage light fixure in my laundry/sewing/diy room?!

I've been waiting to do a before and after post on organizing this room. 
 Like that's gonna happen.

And this, my dear friends, is the sweet romantic corner where my husband and I enjoy a glass of wine and share our daily stories.


What do you use your birdcages for?

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Considering the JunkFest Friday Evening Event? What you need to know.

 The 2012 JunkFest Friday Evening Event will be held Friday, September 7th,
from 6:00pm-8:00pm.

Tickets go on sale for this event on July 28, 2012.


On or after July 28, you can order your tickets by emailing Missy at: or call 701-653-5707
(sorry, tickets will no longer be held without payment if the limited quantity has been reached)

There is a limited quantity, so once they are sold out...sorry folks, no more will be available.

A portion of the ticket proceeds will be given to a local family who's three sons have all been recently diagnosed with PKAN, a very rare genetic disease.

See a news clip HERE.

See their facebook page HERE.

Here are some tidbits from last year, and what you can expect to enjoy this year as well.

Browse and shop the JunkFest building.

Hor d'oeuvres to make your mouth water!

Refreshments to quench the shoppers thirst.  (Sorry folks, no alcohol this year.)

 Doorprizes!  And a gift for attending!

Happy smilin' faces (ok, tired, but happy smilin' faces)!

 Sales associates available to assist you.


And Junk Hunk's to help you carry your heavy purchases! 

So, you should bring your sister, and your Mom, and a few of your friends!

Because you might just find something you can't live without!

And whether you get a ticket to the Friday Event or not...consider attending the Main Event on Saturday.  Gates open at promptly 9am, and there will be something for everyone!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Before & After

Can you stand just one post about a factory cart coffee table?  Ok, good!  Industrial furniture has been on the home decorating "scene" for some time now.  I think we have Restoration Hardware to thank for introducing us to the ever coveted factory cart, as well as the sticker shock that accompanies the grand delusions of buying one from them! You can also find industrial pieces in Pottery Barn, Home Decorators, and Ballard Designs to name a few, but you'll still be shelling out a few bucks there as well.

Imagine (as I reminisce) the sheer joy and squeals of ridiculous delight as an overhead door to junk heaven opens and this baby is the first thing in sight.  MY sight....junk sisters were behind me, so I called dibs on this one!

That was two years ago, and she has finally made her debut in my living room!  What took me so long?  JunkFest....that's what took me so long!  Every junker knows you don't actually get to your own stuff until.....well...two years later. Or longer.

When I finally did start working on her, I was faced with the dilemma of what to do with the old planks on top.  It was one of those love/hate things.....I LOVED the patina of that old, weathered wood.  It definitely had a story to tell.  But I HATED the thought of bringing it into my home.  To use.  Everyday.  Because I knew I would have to seal all of that lovely worn wood in order to put our feet on it, or eat on it.  Yes, it happens....sometimes at the same time.  Don't judge. I said, I loved the patina of that old wood, and sealing it would ruin the character.  Seems like a crime, doesn't it?

So I decided to remove all the old planks and try my hand at distressing new lumber, so that I would feel better about mine and my family's feet resting comfortably on that new wood.  No slivers for my loves. And, I could use the weathered wood for something else...that we would not eat off.

 Yes, the pictures are blurry.  It happens when you're excited.  Just wanted to show you how she looked with the posts attached.  I felt really bad about removing those too, but I got over it quickly.  They're not conducive to t.v. watching. 

Here she is, resting comfortably in my living room...just waiting for the feet.

 Ah...yes! There are the feet!  And lanky legs of the resident tweener.

I wanted to add some height, so I found some square lumber (technical term) and adhered it under the newly stained and slightly distressed planks.  If you've never distressed anything (intentionally) I highly recommend it.  It's cheap therapy.

 I'm in love with the wheels. Now that they're clean.  And stained & poly'd.

 The whole thing got a coat of walnut stain.  Then I waxed the wood several times and called her good.

This is one of my favorite before/after's. Probably because I get to keep this one.  But now I have to get to work...JunkFest is just around the corner!  Linking up to Funky Junk's SNS143 here... , Miss Mustard Seed's Furniture Friday here, ...and here...and here...

Friday, July 13, 2012

Staying on task with junk...oh look a bird!

Well, as usual I haven't "actively" been working on repairing or redesigning any junk until this week. I generally get going on it after the 4th of July and after spending a delightful extra few days at the lake with kids, sibs, and good friends...I decided it's about time to get some dirt under my fingernails.

So I took a few days extra off work and my teenage son and I set out for the barn to see what trouble we could get in to.


Of course in our barn there are no longer cows or horses :( mulling around, but there's always still a multitude of animal activity to be found.  (Like the time I was out there late at night---all alone---and heard a ruffling unfamiliar sound coming from under a pile of solemn junk.  Then one, and soon another, salamanders gandered their way across the barn floor and out the door without giving notice to the fact I was there.  I was just thankful they weren't black and white with a fluffy tail!!  They proceeded to do this at about the same time every evening for a good week or so.  I was on the verge of naming them!)

However, this time was a bit different.   Throughout the day, I noticed not one, but 4 very young birds randomly appear on the grass near the door of the barn.  Unfortunately the dogs spied the first one and well, yeah.

So the moment I saw the second baby bird, my son and I immediately scooped  it up and put it temporarily in the safety of a bucket until the dogs would be in for night.  We dug it some worms, which it ate, and within a short time we had scooped up a total of three little fluffball birds.  All the while Mama (or Papa) Cedar Waxwing watched and chirped from the rafters...even scooping down into the bucket to feed the babies.

It was apparant they had taken flight a bit too early and we feared that putting them back in the nest would result in them venturing out again.  So at the end of the day we put them gently down on the floor of the barn and hoped for the best.

Morning came and there they still were.  Huddled together in the grass near the barn.  Not a favorable place when there's dogs around!  We scooped them up once again (A little more challenging this time, since they were on to our tricks.) and we placed them around the back of the barn inside a fenced area.

My son, who would usually rather be hunting than pulling nails and carrying projects around for me, actually admitted watching the baby birds and their situation was quite an interesting change from his usual interaction with the feathered kind.

All the while the Mama (or Papa) Cedar Waxwing had not given up on the babies...keeping them close in sight, feeding them, and singing to them as if to coax them to try harder at flight and get to a safer place than the ground.

I was relieved tonight to see they are still all there, and sitting atop a fence post.  I left them a treat of grapes and watermelon.  The stool has been waiting for it's turn at being given a fresh and junky will have to wait a bit longer.

And the weathered wood all around me here has inspired a few project treatments.  I can't wait to show you the wood table top I'm "aging" to have this very same time worn appeal!

 So my son and I got a bit off task with the junk projects, but that's the great thing about being a junker.  We appreciate staying in tune with the nature and raw elements around us, using them to inspire and feed our creativity!

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