I am glad you chose to visit! My blog is a compilation of the many hats I find myself wearing. On any given day I may be an encourager, an instructor, or just a lady who is venting. You, dear reader, will probably identify with my triumphs and my tribulations! These snapshots fit into my Life Scrapbook I have named A. McInnis Artworks. I hope you will find something worth your while.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Treasure Broker

There are many benefits to being a Treasure Broker (words used by Cari...Cash for Cari on HGTV). I like that title. It sounds exotic...but that is exactly what I do for a living now. After retiring from teaching, I took on the occupation of someone who searches for "treasure", cleans it up and presents it to others for their enjoyment.It is more fun than I ever knew.

 This week I have not only found special treasures, but have met the most interesting people. Thursday a young man entered the shop and stayed quite awhile. He was quiet and unassuming but once engaged in conversation, was fascinating. He is a maker of mid-century modern furniture; he lives in an Airstream; writes fiction and has a great appreciation of all things vintage.

Then there is the "Toy Man" as I call him. He drops by the shop every week to see if we have any new toys to add to his massive collection. His dream is to find a curator and a town to house the toy collection strictly for others to enjoy. My son's old record player is now in the collection!

There is the lady who is about my age who enjoys collecting to help re-kindle "good times past". I so look forward to her visits (whether she buys anything or not!)And the younger woman who LOVES furnishing her house with as many vintage items as possible. She has a VERY understanding husband.

 Due to our location, we meet people from all over the United States every day. They are so different, yet so much the same.

I have divided our customers into several groups:
1. People who are on a mission. They enter, survey and either buy immediately or leave. I call them the "Tunnel Vision" folks.

2. People who are bored at home or need a break and come in just to browse and may or may not find some little something to purchase. Potentially could become Hoarders.

3. Hard Core Collectors, the purists, who put narrow constraints on themselves and don't look to the right or left...they only want what they want....period. Price isn't really important..they buy what they treasure. They want their purchases to be in v.good to excellent condition.

4. Then the group that is the most fun of all...the people who really "get vintage"... "The Visionaries". They make a round the shop once, twice, maybe three times. They "take it all in", they start bringing their finds to the counter...they ask questions, make comments, and tell stories. They may or may not be purists...but most are folks who love "the old ways"...dovetails, square nails, rusty enamel, gears, old screens...the items don't have to be perfect. As a matter of fact, they like a little chip or dent or scratch. Perfection isn't their goal...their goal is finding a treasure that will evoke fond memories for both themselves and their family.

This week I sold a wheat penny album to an older gentleman. He was delighted. We also made a gentleman's day who was looking for an old hoe with a wooden handle.

I bought a yellow push reel mower because it reminded me of a friend's daddy who mowed his lawn every week with an old mower like it. A good friend's husband picked out his birthday present...a vintage oak ice box...I've never seen him smile so broadly.

Yes, I think I like being a broker of treasures. Even broke treasures...lol. To hear people tell others about how "grandma used a dipper just like that" and then take it home with them to re-kindle memories of days gone by is something I am enjoying very much!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Happy 85th Birthday, Daddy!

Today, eighty five years ago,
my daddy, Robert Alexander,
was born!
Wow! 85 years!
That's a very long time ago...
imagine all those decades
and all that has
come to pass in them.

Here he is as a Naval Aviator.
Of all the things he enjoys,
 remembering his Navy days
and his Navy Pals
is one of his top "likes".
He left Tulane University for the service.

When he was gone in the Navy for my first birthday, he sent me this drawing.
I still have it!

My favorite remembrance of him was in my eighth grade year.
He had been taking pictures
 (he has been a professional photographer for over 60 years)
somewhere and while driving through a town he spied a department store
with a mannequin in the window.
The mannequin had on a pink dress.
Long story short...
he bought it for my eighth grade graduation dress!
Right size, right color...hit the bullseye dead center.
I was delighted!

Here's the dress, second from the right.

When I was a senior in high school, I was co-Editor of the high school yearbook.
I was also taking a Home Economics III course,
and in those days we had "home" projects that were due every six weeks.
Another long story short...
I had an annual deadline AND a reversible vest due the next morning.
We had both completed at 8 a.m.
Daddy sewed the vest.
(I hope my home ec. teacher, Mrs. Davis, isn't reading this.)

Daddy gets up every morning with something to do.
He never just sits (I think that's genetic.)
After a Burger King breakfast...he's out and about.
Always on the computer, taking pictures, doing something..
He just purchased a saxophone (he played many years ago)
and has formed a quartet to entertain his friends at his apt. complex!

I could go on and on, but I will part with this...
Daddy, thank you for all you have done for us over the years.
We love you and wish you a wonderful day today!
Happy, happy 85th Birthday from us all!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

From Light to Light...with help from Annie Sloan

Look what I spied in a dusty corner of the shop!
A vintage light fixture!
I had a vision of something better.
Even after her transformation, she can still be rewired and used
as a ceiling fixture.

After cleaning, a coat of Annie Sloan Coco was added.
Then clear waxed followed by a dark wax...uh, oh...
too dark.
So I re-painted the fixture Coco
and rubbed off enough of the paint to let the brass show through.


The detail is so pretty.

What about some candles instead of light bulbs?

Or maybe some pretty crackled glass ?

Maybe some feathered candle rings?

The early morning hours were spent trying on new toppers!
I loved these etched glasses..

What else could be done with this dusty old thing?