Getting settled…finally

I’ve been all over the place….in my mind, in locations, in my decor antics…but it’s time now to settle in, take a deep breath, and enjoy the work God has given me to do…..again.

From my archives I chose the above pictures to give you a taste of where I have journeyed these past few years. From a window space on Main Street in Brevard, to a brick & morter shop of my own, to an underground basement space at The Garage on 25, and finally back home again….It’s been a journey of more than 1000 miles (you should see the odometer on my car!), more than 1000 smiles and some unnumbered tears along the way as things didn’t go as I had hoped and/or planned. But would I change anything along the way? Not one bit….

You see, I am learning that if I don’t praise God for the hard times, I’m not really praising Him at all. He is working ALL things together for my good because I love Him, so even through the heartaches, “It’s all good!”, as my sister would say.

My final landing place until God calls me to end this home decor journey is at The Marketplace on Locust in Hendersonville, NC. How thankful I am to be a part of Ilse’s own dream-come-true!

Ilse, along with her daughter, Hannah, have made me feel so welcomed here. They never fail to lend a helping hand to us vendors, and they are absolutely, hands-down, the BEST at targeting a shopper’s needs and guiding them through the store to find exactly what they are looking for.

Although the window in front of my space doesn’t boast the words here (I added them for the picture), it should! Step inside and see what I’ve created with you in mind!

January has me celebrating the beginning of my second year at the Marketplace on Locust. And spread the word….I’m blogging again! Stay tuned….2020 is underway, and with it so are my plans for a fantastic new year with you….at The Marketplace on Locust.

~Blessings

Connie

Inspired….but tired

No one could possibly know the planning that went into the event. The ideas had streamed endlessly, waking her before daybreak on more than one occasion. Sketches were made of the layout, backdrop was hammered and drilled by her skilled husband, furniture had been carefully hand-picked, painted and properly distressed. All was ready and months of hard sweat and labor were about to be put on display.

Vintage Market Days….for three 12-14 hour days she worked the event, restocking each evening and each early morning redesigning the space. Daily she went home tired, but inspired. And to all who have never experienced the event, and to those who have, you know the reason why she did it…..

Simply – you.

I love this bit of wall art I added to my space at The Garage on 25. It speaks volumns about the “why” behind what I do. God designed us each so individually, and His own creativity in design is what inspires and spurs me on daily.

Flowers are my fancy. I could spend hours in the yard pulling weeds, fertilizing, planting….you name it, I love it. One of the greatest gifts God gave me was my little slice of heaven on earth….my brick and mortar shop on Main Street. So many days I miss that place. It was my happy place….a work place I enjoyed going to daily, open or not.

It was a season that has now passed, but lingering on is my love of creating and designing spaces. Maybe it’s no longer in that perfect little house with the wrap-around porch and creaky wood floors, but I am blessed still to now occupy two spaces in different locations, each with their own unique blend of style and curiosity. I specifically design each to be a place you long to go…..and to linger in.

So I may be a bit tired after the Vintage Market Days event has passed, but I am even more inspired to create, using my own personal design flair to intrigue your sense of style for your home, office, studio or dorm space.

You can find my wares in two locations (see Where to Find Me page), and I hope you will visit often, and stay long.

~Blessings,

Connie

Focus….and be still….

My hopes for Spring are not dashed by today’s ice storm. God knows what He’s doing. And yet I feel very much like I imagine this bud of a flower must feel, if a bud had feelings. I’ve been anxious to push ahead to what must surely be “next” in my life, without the slightest clue what that may be, yet certain it will involve something of a bloom rather than the prick of thorns I’ve felt of late. Surely….. hopefully…

If you know me at all, you know I write things down so I won’t forget them. Or to put it another way, I write things down so that I will remember them!

This scripture verse has been over my desk for months….and I would do well to memorize it! For I know that the Lord is a light for me, and the “darkness” I have felt in this season of my life will surely pass. The things that were meant for my harm, God has used for good. And I praise Him. So instead of pushing ahead to “make things happen”, I choose to wait. I choose to be still and allow God, in His time, to reveal His plans for me. Ah, but waiting is hard, because waiting involves patience, and for me, patience is one fruit of the Spirit that I seem to have trouble allowing to grow and mature in my life. You see, patience often means I wait ….. expectantly…without arguing (“But God!”), and without whining. In stillness. Hushed silence. Much like that accompanying a new-fallen snow. Peacefulness. Calm. Quietness.

I buy candles and light them to evoke smells of spring forests. I add faux plants to give “life” to the dreariness of winter indoors. And I laugh at myself, because though these things make me feel like I’m doing something, the something I am actually doing is waiting. Waiting on God. To move, or move me.

And I would be wise to consider that waiting does not mean inactivity. No, while in the waiting room of life, we keep doing what we know to do. We continue the work already given to us to carry out. Eagerly. Expectantly. And for me, in this season of my life, it is….

…being the best HomeBody God has created me to be, all the while being the best wife, best mom, best Nana, best friend and best whatever else I’ve been called to be!

And so I keep hunting for the treasures that make our home a place we love to be….despite my HubE’s efforts to keep his shed “his” space!

And I paint and repurpose….to offer home furnishings to you so that you can make your home a cozy and inviting space.

I walk down memory lane with my mom as she recounts story upon story of the days of her youth….

I eat at favorite restaurants with friends and share stories of heartache and triumph…

I watch the chickadees as they make their home with us again this year in a home more shabby and chippy than I ever imagined they would enjoy!

I keep collecting the things I love and the stories they inspire…

And I realize that even when Spring finally does arrive, there will be “home work” yet to be done, and more lives to touch and be touched by, and I will know that the wait was worth it. For God is faithful. And no matter the season, He will still call me into times of silence, that I might know Him and be known by Him.

So may I focus….and be still….

And may you do the same….especially while we are in the waiting room of this life. Shhhh….I’m expecting something wonderful to be born out of this time of waiting. And I can’t wait to share it with you! So come ….. be still with me.

~Blessings,

Connie

The hushed, unhurried life

It’s no secret that if you live in Brevard, NC, the local grocery store (Ingles) is more accurately referred to among the locals as “Mingles”. There is no such thing as “running in for a few groceries”, because you are sure to meet more than one person you’ve not seen in a while, and you will stop to chat on an isle for a moment or twenty minutes before continuing on with your shopping. And just so you know, I am guilty as well. Nothing better than catching up with your neighbors between the milk and the eggs!

Last week as I was literally running in for just a few things before I had to hurry home to prepare dinner for our guests who were due in less than an hour (yes, I admit I crowd way too much into most days), I patted a neighbor on the back and tossed a hello over my shoulder as I marathoned out with my cart. Her words lingered at the back of my neck….”….always in a hurry. Never takes time to stop and chat…” Albeit true, the words stung me. Yet I didn’t turn around and stop to see how she was doing, because after all, I had dinner to cook and deadlines to meet!

Sadly, this was the second time in less than a week someone had said something similar of me. And I have begun to ponder the truth in the accusations.

I do tend to be about the moment I’m in. If that’s shopping, it’s shopping. If it’s merchandising my booth spaces, that’s my focus. And while that doesn’t mean I won’t stop to chat with you should you catch me in the middle of my frenzy, it just means that I may not linger, or my words may be edged with distraction, as my mind was in full gear somewhere else before the interruption, no matter how pleasant that interruption may be!

Even as I am squeezing in this moment from the fleeting minutes of my own self-imposed hurry of painting furniture, I am anxious to get back out and complete my task before the winds rise and the temperature drops. It is, afterall, February, and winter is still upon us.

For days the lyrics from an old Simon & Garfunkle song have tumbled through my head. Maybe you know it too

….Slow down, you move too fast.  You’ve got to make the morning last…

So this post is about just that….slowing down and looking at each moment as God gives it. To be cherished, embraced, bewildered by or simply caught in the gasp of delight as you linger in the breath you’ve just inhaled. Please allow me to share a few of this week’s joys with you from the booths of Burlap & Lace, located at The Garage on 25 in Arden and at The Marketplace on Locust in Hendersonville, and even a few from home.

The Marketplace on Locust: Salvaged barnwood bookcase complete with lots of home decor!

The Garage on 25: finds for your home, garden, office and loved ones – all in one space!
The Garage on 25: Vintage enamel table with pull out sides….check out all the vintage kitchen ware while there!

Marketplace on Locust: The perfect table for two!

Marketplace on Locust: The perfect side table for a bedroom, den or office. Paint done by Stephanie’s Creations (check out her spaces at both locations as well!)
Marketplace on Locust: Distressed antique ironing board stool is perched beneath an antique drawer, wooden scoop and crocheted table runner. What a pairing!
Garage on 25: Fennial decor tops a mantle decorated with seasonal candle-lamps. Love those old oil drip pans with seasonal florals on the wall behind!

And choose your own wall art saying from a basket beneath the mantle….easy to install, and won’t hurt your walls!
The Garage on 25: Love these hanging wooden bowls! Great in a kitchen for vegies, or in a bathroom for washclothes, soaps, etc. Also great in the garden for bird seed! Bird nest paintings done by local Brevard artist, Lynn Driver. Make great gifts!
I will lift my eyes to the hills. Where does my help come from? It comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth.

May you find your peace in the hush of a new day….

~Blessings,

Connie

Finding my place

I’ve felt about as scattered as these Fall leaves….praying consistently for the last several months about where to “land” with Burlap & Lace. I have longed to blog again, and until now, the time has not allowed for it. Time I’ve spent in other arenas, doing other things….

A team of three met together in August with the owner of a local florist and began building a dream she had of reviving her shop of 30+ years and turning it into something new. That dream came to fruition in October as the Co-op of Roosters & Hens was born (a division of Country Creations Florist). And the goal was that the three of us would revitalize, work and give our time and resources to the shop owner for a period of three months, then meet again to see what was next for us all.

Those three months ended with the close of 2018, and with the launching of a new year came the close of my time at the Co-op.

In weighing out my options through prayer and daily discussions with my HubE, we knew that 2019 was to be about scaling down….as that was the original goal in closing my brick & morter shop last August and helping someone else redesign theirs. So where, you ask, does that take Burlap & Lace, and what will this scaling down look like?

To be honest, I don’t know 100% but I’m excited to see where God leads me!

To be sure, it’s been a learning process for me these last few months….one that I’m confident is not over. I long to get back to writing…something I love and have neglected. And for sure I long to continue my design efforts, accepting new and more challenging opportunities to do so.

You will soon find me in a new location – The Marketplace on Locust in Hendersonville, NC while I will continue at The Garage on 25 in Arden as well, although my space will take on a new look soon as I continue my journey toward scaling back. Too many spaces has caused a disconnect between my brain and my body (meaning less creativity caused by a strain to be in too many places doing too many different things).

I don’t plan to leave my love of vintage. (My children still remind me that I AM vintage!) And you will likely always find me bringing nature indoors in my design antics. I’ll still search for the lost and forgotten treasures to see how I can bring new life and purpose to these timeless beauties, but you will begin to see a breath of “new” popping up in my designs as well. It’s nothing new to me, really, as I have always taken on a bit of an eclectic look in our own home. It just suits me….mixing the old with the new.

So here’s to winter’s passing and the looking ahead to fresh, new beginnings as we roll into this New Year. May you and I experience a renewal in our minds as well as our bodies as we seek to be all that God has created us to be. It is, afterall, all for Him.

~Blessings,

Connie

Finding the new normal

IMG_2851I feel a bit like that baby chick in the picture above…hiding and peeking out into the world to catch a glimpse of what it’s going to find….perhaps a bit unsure, and a bit curious all at the same time.

A chapter in my life’s journey ended as I closed the door of the shop last Saturday.  But another chapter was already being written, its complete revealing unknown to me as of yet. But still I journey, curiously yet cautiously.  Constantly clinging to the One Who wrote out the story of my life long ago.  “For (I) am His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that (I) should walk in them.”  (Eph 2:10)

Walk on, Connie.  Walk on.  “For (I) walk by faith, not by sight.” (2 Corn 5:7)

IMG_9848The shop at 244 W Main Street may have closed, but Burlap & Lace is still going strong. Vintage Market Days of Asheville is just around the corner and I am busily preparing for that event.  August 17-19 at the Ag Center in Fletcher you will find 100 vendors from all over the US boasting vintage and farmhouse wares such as you cannot even imagine.  But that’s not all!  There will be soaps, candles, food and so much more.  I am anticipating seeing many of you there!

IMG_6263My sweet sister will be with me again at VMD, and may I remind you that without the “lace”, the “burlap” would be lost!

IMG_3516And while you are waiting for VMD to arrive, find me at The Garage on 25 in Fletcher.  Well, not me personally, but my booth space.  New items are going in next week!

IMG_2989Look for where this sign may pop up next, for the dream is ongoing of places where I can meet with you again and share this amazing journey we call life.  But until that time, I leave you with…

~Blessings,

Connie

 

 

 

 

No crying allowed!

IMG_2884She thought she was ready for the day until….she wasn’t.  It was a big move.  A change.

Life does that to us, you know.  Brings change.  And I am learning it’s not the change that is the problem, if there is to be one.  It’s our attitude toward the change.

So with that in mind, I have decided to make a celebration out of a difficult decision to move out of my brick and morter shop and into a small booth space again.  And that decision has made all the difference.  So no crying allowed!

Sure, I’m sad to leave behind an amazing shop space that God granted me a year ago (truly the desire of my heart and answered prayer), but I am keenly aware that we have life seasons and this season I’m currently in is ready to give way to the next.  So here I go!  And I’m getting very excited about it all.

Welcome to The Garage on 25!

I moved in this week, and although you will see some of the same wares you saw at Burlap & Lace on Main St, I am excited to be showing you these things through a different lense.  Go check it out!  There are some amazing vendors there and you will fall in love with a whole new store!

IMG_3481For the rest of this week and for Thursday – Saturday next week, I will be at Main St waiting to give out hugs and smiles!  And my friend and fellow-vendor, Stephanie Schuster of Stephanie’s Creations, has kindly merged her wares with mine into the downstairs of the house so that we still have amazing, sweet finds for you!

IMG_3558Like these end tables!  Perfect for a bedside or by a chair….$184.95 each or $340 for the pair!

IMG_3572This antique dresser with beveled mirror is marked at half price – was $324.95, now $162.95.  So beautiful that I chose not to paint it!

IMG_3555Drop leaf table just $224.95.  Set of 6 chairs for $100, or $36.95 each.  And that sweet little black desk and chair in the background?  Just $75!  Help these pieces find a new home this week!

I’ve opened back up the dining room and kitchen this week in preparation for our July 28 celebration so there are plenty of “small” items to choose from as well.  Let’s finish this journey together and thank the Lord for all He has done in this place this past year.  What a journey it’s been!  Stay tuned in because there is still more news to come as I journey one….step….at…a…time.

~Blessings,

Connie

Goodbye is the hardest thing to say….

IMG_1245It’s raining….figuratively.  Blessings have a way of doing that….pouring down on you when you least expect them.

Such was the way of God when He led me to “this old house” on W Main Street.  And I’ve been dancing here for a year now….literally dancing!  Dancing with joy over the news of babies being born and weddings taking place.  And I’ve embraced a few storms along the way, dancing all the way through them because of your prayers and hugs and words of encouragement.  For those reasons alone, it is hard to say good-bye to this dream-become-reality.  And yet it’s time.  Because God has something else in mind for me now.

As early as next week, I will be moved into The Garage on 25, and I couldn’t be more excited.  I’m not closing Burlap & Lace, but I am relocating it to a smaller space where I will be “one” among “many”.  And I am inviting you to come find me and discover others within that amazing space.

And it would honor me if you would be my guests on the very last business day in this location – Saturday, July 28 – 10:00 – 5:30.  There will be music, and maybe some dancing even!  There will be tons of last minute deals so you will want to shop those as well.  There will be ticket giveaways all day for Vintage Market Days of Asheville….so come on by and enjoy the party!  And above all, let me give you one final hug on the front porch, and a bottle of water as you continue on your journey.

Thank you for making this last year something very special.  I hold each of you dear in my heart.

~Blessings,

Connie

Showcasing Smalls

IMG_2851Have you ever been standing, gazing into thin air, as if you were asleep?  You were very much awake, but in a trance-like state, focused on the enormous task before you and how little you felt you were accomplishing?  Possibly, you wonder why you ever began!

That’s where we find Zerrubbabel (now that’s a mouthful!). He had been having a conversation with an angel, and apparently, he had to take in what all had been told him….

“Then the angel who had been talking with me returned and woke me, as though I had been asleep.  “What do you see now?” he asked.

The angel and Zerrubbabel continued their conversation of what had suddenly become visible to the eye, and what it all meant.  Zerrubbabel had been given divine direction to build the Lord’s temple.  He must have become a bit discouraged that the work was extensive, and that he was laboring alone (or so he thought) to do the work set before him.  But the angel spoke to him….

“Zerrubbabel is the one who laid the foundation of this Temple, and he will complete it…..do not despise this day of small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin….” (Excerpts from Zechariah 4)

Wow.  My take-away?  Don’t despise what the Lord has given you to do no matter how small it looks to you in the beginning.  He is surely working His purpose out in and through your obedience to Him.  And that is key….obedience.

So with that in mind, I have decided to focus on “smalls” in this blog….those seemingly insignificant pieces that adorn your home and work spaces.  The fact is, without those small pieces, the rest of your very large space would appear dull!  (Boy, that could preach too!)

IMG_2885At least once every day, you and I take an article of clothing from a hanger.   But how often do you and I use silk hangers???  These beauties are a thing of the past, yet every closet/home should possess at least one!  Why?  They absolutely will not wrinkle your freshly ironed clothing, they have nothing on them to snag or tear the fabrics you place on them, they work for any item because you can slip a pin into the hanger to hold a skirt in place….I could go on and on.  And oh yes, they’re pretty!  Suffice it to say, these are new and fabulous.  You should take one (or two) home with you!  Oh, and did I mention that they make great gifts?!

Let’s talk tissues….what has become of putting those much-needed items in a pretty shell to hold them?  These two are beauties for sure.  I really like how the one on the left shows through the color of the box!  But oh, those roses on the right….

IMG_2880Who doesn’t need more storage?   These floral canvas tote boxes are ideal for the car, the closet or to put by a chair.  Guess what?  They will also hold a tissue box!  Just sayin’….

IMG_2867 I admit I’m missing my granddaughters more than normal today.  I’ve had several “Mimi”s come in today with their grandchildren.  These little enamel cups and bowls are the perfect size for them to enjoy “baking” or having a tea party with.  And the good news?  They can’t break!

IMG_2876Need a small gift to let that special friend know you are thinking of her?  This may be just the ticket!

IMG_2868These zipper bags come in four sizes and just as many patterns.  Perfect for carrying a cell phone, credit cards and keys in, or makeup in the largest size (it’s lined to wipe clean!).  Lightweight and pretty….the perfect combination!

IMG_2863 I keep a bottle of olive oil on my kitchen counter for easy access.  This holder would be a gorgeous accent instead of a plain bottle!  And I love that Biscuits Tin!  I had to ask my English friend what our equivalent to biscuits are….any idea?  How about cookies!

IMG_2856These etched sherbet dishes are the perfect size for a taste of dessert!  Lovely, yet practical….again, a great gift idea or a wonderful addition to your own kitchen collection!

IMG_2854Who remembers these potholders?  These particular ones are quite special because they are hand-crafted locally by a 13 year young man.  This young man’s grandmother saved old socks from when her children were small, made the dye herself and then crafted the loom for her children in their youth to use in making potholders themselves!  Her grandchildren are now reviving this past art with their grandmother’s help while having fun “going vintage” with me this summer!  Don’t miss that each one of these crafted items has a uniquely different design woven into it!  (And my personal testimony is that I have taken one home to use and wash…..all of which worked beautifully!  They are made from socks so of course they launder well!  Thicker than most, they also won’t allow a burn to the hand when using them.)  And again, a great gift idea for anyone on your shopping list!

IMG_2838The season is ripe for picking flowers to bring indoors.  Choose from a collection of vases and allow the beauty of the buds to enhance the use of the vessel.  And don’t let your imagination wane….anything can become a vase!

IMG_2837I often marvel at how well-thought-through were the older household items.  Take these silver encased glasses for instance.  The silver is not only attractive, but it holds the chill of the beverage!  The glasses remove for washing.  Yep, I’m tempted to take these beauties home with me!

IMG_2359Some small things are just plain cute!  Love all the vintage planters, and succulents are hard to kill so I’m liking these even more!

Thanks for considering the “small” things this week.  Drop by sometime and I’ll show you a few more of my favs!  Until then, remember that obedience to the “small” tasks God has given you matters.

~ Blessings,

Connie

Summertime’s Calling Me…

 

I think it’s the flowers.  Or maybe it’s the things that remind me of the beach.  No, it could be the spring breezes turned warm under the heat of the sun.  Perhaps, just maybe, it’s a reminder that almost a full year has circled the calendar since I opened Burlap & Lace in its current location.  Let me just suffice it to say…..summertime’s calling me….and I’m listening.

I’ve come out to the porch to blog this afternoon, rain finally giving way to sunshine after weeks on end of deluge.  And the coolness of the breeze brings a surprising pleasantness to the day.  So I’ve snipped back flowers, tip-toed through the dandelions overgrown in the grass too wet yet to mow, and I’ve chatted with friends on the porch.  It’s a lovely day in every way.

IMG_2584This is my perching post today.  Why not come join me?!?  Check out the succulents and plants….all for sale at Burlap & Lace!  Think my scrabble wish for them to “grow up” will work?  Sure hope so!

Most of you likely dream of tides at the beach and flowers in the spring, but do you wake up having dreamed of how to use this tobacco bookshelf in a new way?  I did!  I think it would be fabulous on a porch with those garden succulents and inspirational books and magazines that make you want to sip lemonade and view your magnificent garden after a hard day’s labor!

IMG_2586I finally gave up on dumping rain out of my wagon and brought it into the dry.  And how neat that I can just pull it out when the rains stop!  Love these pinks with the red of the wagon….

Step into the cool with me for a minute and take a peek at these great chenille pillows!  What I love most about them is that they are made from bedspreads….so if they need washing, just slip the covers off and throw them in!  They come out just as beautiful as before!  These pillows are statement pieces for sure.

IMG_2605Stephanie is rocking it this month!  Her English style soothes the senses.  Come browse her room and see for yourself!

So much I love in her space, from the furniture to the smalls…..

IMG_2612Stephanie has displayed two pairs of lamps….ideal for any room in your home.  And don’t overlook these ladder back chairs….great accent pieces in any room as well! French Country never looked so good!

This wardrobe is my newest addition this week.  In near-perfect condition, it’s the perfect piece for the guest room that always needs more space, the bedroom that doesn’t like clutter (tuck it away in here!), or the kitchen/dining area….yes, you heard me correctly!  Hang those table linens, use the tie rack for hanging up odd utensils rarely used but handy when you need them; store that crock pot and other cumbersome items on the shelf and tuck away candles, cookbooks and other odds and ends in the drawers.

IMG_2627Take in the above shelf….perfect for the kitchen, the bath or the bedroom.  Small books will fit between the posts if needing a bedroom piece, and perfect for displaying the things you need daily like cream pitchers in the kitchen and toiletries in the bath.

IMG_2589When you’re all done browsing, come sit on the porch and take time to still your soul.  I may even join you there!  And until we meet again….

~Blessings,

Connie