Given the current situation, the dreaded coronavirus, we’ve seen an explosion in DIY and crafting — including a throw-back to Victorian hobbies, such as scrapbooking.

We’re no different; we’ve been putting in a lot more hours in the studio – and not just for custom pieces, but been listing items in our handmade Etsy shop, LunaTiqueBazaar, too.

And we’ve been keeping busy with our crafty-DIY supply shop, KindnessOfStrangers, including restocking with new old stock embroidery kits featuring kitsch-tastic wishing-wells, owls, & mushroom designs!

NOS retro vintage embroidery craft kits

But I, the wifey, came here to blog today to share some images of a sweet old scrapbook we once had in our possession. It was a book compiled by a woman who clearly had spent a long time in 1955 recovering from a hip injury.

vintage greeting cards in old scrapbook

Along with the kitschy old “get well” greeting cards, and an odd note from well-wisher about her icky toe (see below – if you wish!!), the maker of the book had created delightful drawings, including this “stepping stones to recovery” one.

Stepping Stones Leading To Recovery old scrapbook art

Note that this vintage scrapbook page below combines drawing or coloring with glued in images – charming & so much like today’s junk journals, right?!

It’s no wonder so many people today have joined in the junk journal craze!

For those who are not familiar with the phrase “junk journal” – it’s a handmade book, usually made & embellished with found & vintage items, the pages of which you fill with writings, artworks, clippings, doodles, stickers – whatever you wish! Rather combining the best of scrapbooks, diaries, & art journals. So many creative options!

red velvet junk journal
handmade vintage junk journal

(I’ve also written a bit more about junk journals over at The FARM’s blog – there’s a video too!)

The junk journals I sell are often called “naked” because they are created with plenty of blank pages to fill in. As you can see in this video I made. (I am so much better at making journals than videos lol)

Because so many of my extended family members are unable to see one another now (unless it’s on Zoom or something), I have spent most of April making nearly a dozen junk journals & mailing them out as gifts. In fact, we’ve often shown-off some of our junk journal pages in Zoom chats!

The journals were so well received, that I’ve spent the past few weeks taking custom orders for handmade junk journals their friends! Proof that everyone loves – & needs – a creative outlet.

Art is good for the soul.

Like Kevin Smith says,

Only someone who doesn’t understand art tells an artist their art somehow failed. How the fuck can art fail? Art can’t be graded, because it’s going to mean something different to everyone. You can’t apply a mathematical absolute to art because there is no one formula for self-expression.

It’s a quote I put into each one of the handmade junk journals I made for family & friends the past few weeks – hopefully, they find it as inspiring as I do!

For those interested… The icky toe news!

Dear Cousins - icky toe letter
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Sure, we are all about the vintage Valentines this time of year – but we are also enjoying the new trend: Valentine’s Day Trees!

We call this one the Sweet-Tree For Your Sweetie!

(In our space at Fargo Antiques & Repurposed Market; booth #26, dealer code YES.)

Also, what can be more romantic than weddings – and vintage photos of weddings? The entryway at Fargo Antiques & Repurposed Market is filled with them for the holiday!

And we’ve even got this sweet vintage centerpiece idea: a pink & gold metal mid-century modern bowl, sitting on a crisp white china plate, holding a pink Asian jade tree sheltering an adorable pair of vintage, made in Japan, china bride & groom candle climbers! About as romantic – and eclectic! – as it gets!

Discover more in glorious pink & white at the #isncollectorscorner hash! (And on the wife’s Instagram too!)

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In our spare time, we’ve been (admittedly slowly!) working on a series of tables made from vintage suitcases. This is the first one we’ve managed to finish and put up for sale. It’s in our space at the Fargo location of F.A.R.M.

This one is in shades of vanilla and white.

vanilla-white-suitcase-table

Yes, it opens! Spiffy blue satin lining, with plenty of pockets for hiding remotes etc. Pretty & practical!

vintage-suitcase-table-fargo

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‘Tis the season for spirit bottles!

spirit-bottles-halloween-fargo-antiques

Our spirit bottles are made from old glass bottles dug up from the ground. As such, these vintage & antique bottles have imperfections. We’ve added some magic to them, and used them to entrap evil spirits — then sealed them in with wax. Each bottle has its own spirit, complete with paper label. Artful creepy fun to display, excellent conversation pieces, and worthy of storytelling…

We’ve brought some into our spaces at the Southwest Fargo location of Fargo Antiques & Repurposed Market (F.A.R.M.), but if you can’t stop by that shop, we have some spirit bottles in our repurposed Etsy shop!

We’ve sold some already at Etsy this season, and the buyer, Pete, actually tested them with an EMF reader, just like they do on Ghost Hunters! The results may surprise you… They sure surprised us! We’re sharing Pete’s story and photos with his permission:

Wanted to show you something.
I placed an EMF meter against bottle. Nothing at first, then meter goes crazy — then back to normal. Its done it again since typing this.
Sometimes a idea or thought or meme becomes real.
That’s cool with me lol.

spirit-bottle-emf-pete

emf-spirit-bottles

Naturally, we can’t guarantee such super — or, should we say supernatural — results. But it is a spooky possibility!

More vintage & antique Halloween decorating ideas from our space at F.A.R.M.

fairoaksantique-halloween

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If you’d have seen the wifely lately, you’d know a bit about what we’ve been working on due the color of her hands. *wink* For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure, we’ve just made these pretty (and rather large!) quilt block boards. Each board features a red, white, and blue star quilt block. The boards are stained either red or white. Each measure board measures 29 inches square. It was the best way to salvage the quilt. Perfect for quilt lovers, fans of Americana — and, of course, just in time for the Fourth of July!

vintage-red-white-and-blue-star-quilt-blocks-and-antiques-in-fargo-moorhead

Also shown in the photo from our space at F.A.R.M.

That 8-foot long primitive industrial cart, vintage Pigeon Forge Pottery racoons, and a collection of vintage handmade, wooden Hagar The Horrible characters!

Oh, and we’ve some of these vintage quilt block boards at Su Laine’s too. You can see what they look like in our booth with other vintage red & white items. (The whole thing is so Pennsylvania Dutch looking, isn’t it?!)

red-white-and-blue-antiques-and-collectibles-fair-oaks

Among the other things we’ve been doing…

We were on the radio again. This time, I joined hubby on KFGO and we talked about picking during Fargo-Moorhead’s Clean-Up Week.

Sometimes we’re so busy picking, cleaning, painting, etc. that we don’t blog as much as we should. We’ll try to do better; meanwhile, keep an eye out on our Tumblr, Twitter, & Facebook Page for some quick peeks at what we’re up to and what we’ve got for sale. (Follow us too, please!)

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Workin’ in our own workshop today — it’s equal parts storage, office & shipping headquarters, photography studio, and workshop or creative space. Just like us, this space is put to many uses! Since Antiques On Broadway closed, and we left Exit 55 Antiques, this is where we spend most of our work time. (If you see anything here that’s mentioned at being at either of those antique shops, please check our Etsy listings or contact us to see if we still have it. I’ve not yet gone about the business of updating all the links. But I’d certainly be glad to help you!)

Kind of embarrassing to show off the mess, but this is the first stop for all our estate shopping and picking hauls. I think it honestly shows just how much stuff — and work — there is in this business. How the sausage is made, so to speak. *wink* So come, take a tour!

Today we’re primarily sortin’ junk & rediscovering finds… Making piles of what needs cleaning, takin’ pictures of what’s ready to go… Busy, busy, busy! (That’s hubby there, taking photos!)

derek dahlsad fair oaks antiques photographer

This is our print station, where we custom cut, mat, and frame old prints — and those cool images we print on old paper and antique book pages. (We sell those in our new Etsy shop, LunaTique Bazaar.)

lunatique vintage print matting station

These are some — just some — of the old books we’ve rescued to recycle and upcycle for these projects. (We promise, no good books in good conditions are harmed!)

fair oaks antiques books and more books

We have lots of books; the wifey is even downsizing some of her cookbook collection!

vintage books cookbooks

And there are lots of vintage fashions and textiles to go through yet…

we have your collectibes vintage fashion and textiles

We’ve been rather focusing on the lovely vintage lingerie, lately… But who can blame us?

vintage lingerie from Fair Oaks Antiques

Soon we will begin working on larger projects, with furniture and the like. So stop back soon — and keep up with us on Facebook too. We share lots of photos and tips there.

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I’ve been busy writing a lot of eBay Guidesmy most recent one was inspired by this vintage Christmas tree stand my folks have for sale. I just knew it should be reborn and repurposed as a decorative piece! Other cool ideas and inspiration in that post comes from Laurel of Chipping With Charm. Her site is a real treat to visit!

ebaystandout

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Early in May, we sold a bunch (but not all) of our old dairy cream separator funnels or cones in our Etsy shop to a lady in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada.

cream seperators

The lady was Kat, called “Kat in the Hat” (she’s from Medicine Hat, remember — isn’t that cute?!), and she had a project idea based on something she saw on the side of the road…

roadside Whirlygig

Here’s the story from Kat:

My journey with The Whirlygig

It started out with a trip to the Dairy Queen with my son Chris when we spotted this thing on someones front lawn. I took a picture. I knew I had to make one. I had no idea where to start. I went to work the next day and talked to an old fella named Wayne about it as I had no clue what those cone looking things were. Within 20 minutes Wayne came and found me and said it sounded like old cream separators. Then to the internet and found Deanna’s photo from her Etsy Shop and sure enough that was them. I was so excited I ordered them right away. I scored 2 bike wheels off kijiji from a fella named Clark that fixes up bikes for kids in his neighborhood. I found the pipe in a dumpster of scrap metal at Bud’s Auto repair. I wanted a fancy weather vane directional for the top but those things are way to expensive so back to work (Value Village) and found a metal fish and painted it black. This whole project has been quite an adventure of meeting some really interesting people. Then came the build which wasn’t very easy as I had no instructions to follow but I persevered and step by step it came to be the most fun project I have ever done. My Name is Kat and I want to thank everyone who had a part in this most fun build.

beginning stage

spin test

taller shot

final close up

I think it turned out to be so cool looking, don’t you?

You can keep up with Kat and her projects by following her Pinterest board.

The copyright for all whirlygig photos belongs to Kat in the Hat; used here with her permission.

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I don’t like to throw anything out, if I can help it. I suppose that’s true of most lovers of vintage items and antiques… Many of these “old used things” can go on to live another life — if you can only see what they can be!

Sometimes, however, no matter how inspired I am, I just don’t have the time to make the things I see in my mind’s eye; those things we put up for sale. Like these antique wooden organ pieces. Wouldn’t they make great birdhouses? These are available at Exit 55 Antiques (Fergus Falls, MN).

antique wooden pieces from an organ

(More photos of these on our Facebook page.)

And these old spigots and turn-handles make lovely sculptural flowers — that last long after Summer has come & gone. These can be found in our space at Antiques On Broadway (Fargo, ND). (Another photo of these is also on our Facebook page.)

vintage outdoor faucet handles

If you have the inclination to get crafty and repurpose these beauties, contact the stores — or us, and we can get them to you!

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Since we collect records ourselves, we buy lots of records. But when you buy large lots of records at auctions and sales, you often end up with vintage records which are so scratched or damaged that they are unplayable. We don’t like to throw anything out. (Who wants to add to landfills?!) So we often try to recycle or upcycle old things to give them new life. We’ve made plenty of bowls and organizers from vintage “ruined” vinly LPs, but we’ve long wanted to make use of the smaller 45 RPM records. Since the annual Fargo Street Fair starts tomorrow, we thought now was the time to get our butts in gear and turn “thinking about it” into “doing it”. So we got out the scroll saw and made some coasters!

coasters made from recyled vintage vinyl records

Today, I just brought stacks of these coasters (and other items made from vinyl records) into Antiques On Broadway. As we make more, we’ll likely bring some to our other locations as well.

Along with the cool graphics and personal nostalgia tied with music, there are some song titles which seem especially well-suited to their new lives as drink coasters — such as Ed Ames’ My Cup Runneth Over. My personal favorites are the ones with marks from the original owners — like this one marked “I love Paul”. Of course, finding some stacks of wax by The Coasters that are too damaged to play would be the ultimate records to turn into beverage coasters! But still, there’s something for everyone, really, with these charming yet practical recycled vinyl pieces.

cup runneth over coaster I love paul vintage 45 rpm

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