Tinker Verve

creating with spirit & enthusiasm…often with great results

I met a gal…

…and within a few short hours she became my friend!

We met at a baby shower…

She liked what I made for the mommy-to-be and I loved what she made for the mommy-to-be…

We visited our way through the shower and when it was wrapping up she invited me to her home which was just next door.

She and her parents have been friends and neighbors with my aunt and uncle for many years.  I had seen some of the exquisite tatting that her mother had done for my aunt several years ago and had thought, “if I ever could squeeze in the time, I would love to have her teach me how to tat”.  Unfortunately, I didn’t make that happen and she lost her mother at 95 just this year but it was so much fun to get acquainted with her equally fascinating daughter.

She showed me the treadle-turned-electric commercial sewing machine, which was the only machine her mother used. (I’m still drooling)

She shared  with me a hefty stack of  fabrics and pellon that belonged to her mother.

She gifted to me this beautiful, vintage coverlet which was given to her by one of her clients.

It’s simply exquisite!

We had such a warm, inspiring visit and I’m feeling anxious for our next!

I have a large collection of, what I call, china hostess snack sets.  She had two of these {hand-painted from occupied Japan} which belonged to her mother…she said “would you please take them?”

Oh my!  I would be honored!

January 26, 2010 Posted by | collection, friends, vintage | 1 Comment

A fun, fun find!

Did you know that there are collectors, associations, museums, shows, societies, organizations and more… all in the name of antique barbed wire?

If I wanted to, {and I really, really don’t}, I’m quite sure that I could get wrangled right into the excitement.  There is so much craftsmanship and history involved in this subject.

Yesterday, I purchased a box that contains hundreds of pieces of antique barbed wire that belonged to a collector…I paid $5 for the whole thing.  I immediately began to dream about the creations that I could make with such a find…creations that would pair 100+ year old barn board {from my own community}, antique barbed wire and rusty chicken wire with a lovely collaged piece of work, finished off with a silvery, soldered edge.

There I would have some more of that lovely, Chic Rustique!!!

Since there truly is potential collect-ability in these pieces, I won’t be bending and cutting anytime soon.

The piece that is pictured above was patented in 1868 by New York blacksmith Michael Kelly.  This is the first successful barbed wire that was produced.  Unfortunately, he lost the patent on this piece due to faulty patent language but  later he successfully patented a wire called ‘Pin Wire’ that today will fetch a 3-figure price for an 18″ length.

Can anyone say “WOW”?!???!

That’s really all I know about antique barbed wire and that information came from here.

But, I do know something quite personal about redcowboyboots, which I purchased at the same time.

I know that they are:


not-so comfortable


they make me smile!

January 5, 2010 Posted by | Chic Rustique, collection | 3 Comments

Incurable Collector!

incurable collector

Does this describe you like it describes me?

What are your favorite ‘trappings’ to collect?

June 13, 2009 Posted by | bespoke design, collection, soldered charms | 1 Comment

Skirts, Slips & Boots…

crinoline skirts

We added to our collection of crinoline skirts and slips over the weekend.  The place was crazy with them.  Every color, size, shape * on gals of every age (size/shape) * layered on top, underneath * used as chandeliers…  Cowboygirl boots were another favorite ♣.

Miss Libby

I think that Miss Libby thought she was the Belle of the Ball.

I didn’t tell her any different!

{Miss Libb’s picture was taken by Teresa @ French Poppy – thx. friend!}




1.a petticoat of haircloth or other stiff material, worn under a full skirt to keep it belled out.
2.a stiff, coarse cotton material for interlining.
3.a hoop skirt.


June 9, 2009 Posted by | antique show, collection, family, vintage | 3 Comments

Never the twain…

paper fun

I work from two {twain} creative spots.

My main workspace is where I charm from.  Here, I also work on a variety of paper crafting, including collage work. It’s where papers are my #1 collecting fascination.


Downstairs I have a completely different area for creative endeavors.   This is where my #2 collecting fascination can be seen.

maybe just a little variety

I find that I do the same thing in both areas –

I collect!

more varietyIt really is a favorite pastime.  We all know that it’s so much better that a whole array of other interesting addictions and most often it is more cost effective.

cost effective!

It’s so rewarding when I’ve had an idea formulating in my mind for days or even, at times weeks, to go down to my little area and rummage through the stash to find what I need to pull together this idea and coordinate a  theme and the colors necessary to bring it all together.

this amazing and beautifully worn barkcloth is so wonderful to work with

this amazing and beautifully worn barkcloth is so wonderful to work with

I am actually in the middle of just such a project.

sewing that luscious barkcloth

So there you have it, I am completely justified is much of what I do.

These two areas don’t often mingle, although I have been know to use snippets of fabrics and trims in my #1 area – so, I guess that my initial claim, as stated in my title, is not 100% accurate.

Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,…Rudyard Kipling

my all-time favorite piece of barkcloth - I've had it for several years and I just cannot cut into it

my all-time favorite piece of barkcloth - I've had it for several years and I just cannot cut into it

I do have to say that sewing, most often, fills that little creative spot in me more than so many of the other things that I work on.  I find myself smiling often as I work along.  🙂

February 23, 2009 Posted by | collection, craftiness, sewing, thrifty shopping, vintage, vintage{y} apron | 3 Comments

A Game Plan for {Normal}!?!?!….not sure what that means

Since December 20th we’ve been in ‘holiday mode’, which means… take it easy – play lots of games – go with the flow- play games – snack more – play games – excercise less – eat more – etc…..  We played 35-40 games.


I added a few slash marks here and there so no one would feel bad... 🙂

no more dull eveningsI should have posted this picture on the 20th because, as of today, we’re back to those dull evenings…sniff, sniff.  Truly it is bittersweet.  I am so very ready to try to find my ‘normal’ again ~ not that I actually even know what ‘normal’ is ~ in fact, it’s not uncommon for me to try to establish a new normal for myself, especially at the beginning of each year.  There are so many good {better, best} habits that need to be established in my life, and I have some plans to attack some of those…

  • …which is as good a time as any to reveal another ‘obsession confession’…


I am very drawn to vintage games.  I suppose part of that is because I spent a lot of time as a kid playing games…card games…board games…& never video games.  🙂  And it is such a wonderful, healthy way to spend time together. The ‘Authors’ game that you see on the top shelf is a game that I played as a kid with my uncle…a lot!  When I saw it at a g-sale, I was so excited because the only one I had ever seen was the deck we played with, so I snatched it up.

As I work my way into this ‘new normal’ that I’m dreaming about, I’m watching the snow fall heavy and fast and my heart is so full with love, laughter and wonderful memories that were shared with our children over the past few weeks.

January 6, 2009 Posted by | collection, family, home life | 7 Comments

Shoes for inspiration!

I get inspiration from a variety of sources and shoes can definitely feed into that as well.

1) It’s a secret! ssh!

2) Blogging is potentially dangerous (especially on the pocketbook). This is my largest financial casualty!

3) A recent splurge (this one with my husband’s knowledge)

4) My dad’s as a youngin’

April 22, 2008 Posted by | collection, Uncategorized | | 3 Comments