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Online Crafting is fun too!!

The Estate of Things made a Snowflake

Just a quick line y’all. I haven’t told you much about the company that I work for! Its a fun Web Design Studio full of talent and love for the craft. For the holidays they have this super neato Snowflake maker made using Flash.

Please check it out. And send a beautiful handmade Snowflake to all of your friends and family!! Or – if you are still stuck in the office somewhere dreaming about the upcoming holiday, use this to soak up a little time.

Oh yeah, and while you are at it!! Here is another fun time-soaker for the Holidays!! My friends FRANK and Drew are the brains behind this one: Where is Santa?

Please don’t forget to drop us your nomination: The Estate of Things for Best Home Design Blog of the Year on Apartment Therapy!! We’re really excited to see the nominations coming in!!

Love to death,

B

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Happy Holidays from The Estate of Things

The Estate of Things wishes you a Happy Holidays

In case we find ourselves too busy to surf the internet and share our inspirations with you – I wanna go ahead and take this moment to wish you the best for the Holidays from The Estate of Things!

I also just want to say SUPER HUGE THANKS to everyone that has visited our blog and shared comments with us in 2008. We are really excited about getting geared up for this upcoming year. We realize that by the end of 2009 – The Estate of Things just might be famous on the internet. ;)

In the next year, we hope to expand the blog with hand selected advertising space for Crafters and Retailers that we enjoy. We hope to provide you with a carefully curated page of online resources for Home Decor Awesomeness. AND We hope to have found a designer that shares our aesthetic and we hope for that designer to help us build a beautiful branding identity. We also have discussed some new ideas for posts including guest bloggers and some North Carolina City Shopping Guides.

The point of all of this blog business is so that one day when we are a little bit older and wiser – we can set up shop somewhere and start selling our own inventory both online and in a radical little storefront in some town, USA. For now, we are utilizing this blog to share our ideas and inspirations with one another, and to make friends online!

So yeah! With that being said – Thanks so much to YOU, we hope that you will grow with us and Have the verybest Happy Holidays!!

Love,
The Estate of Things

Oh Ya! and I would’ve mailed you this card – but I don’t have your address! :) So, if you’re into it – join The Estate of Things mailing list and let us know that you love us. I promise – we won’t mail you anything that you don’t want.

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Reform School

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The Estate of Things chooses Online Retailer Reform School

I ‘m excited to share this great resource with you today – Its REFORM SCHOOL – a brick and mortar store located in Silverlake. In case you’ve never been, Silverlake is an uber-trendy area on the East Side of Los Angeles. It boasts tons of neato little shops, great dive bars, an annual streetfest and a host of hipster types galore. Its also got some of the best little bungalow homes. Definitely a great area to play ‘know your neighborhood’.

The Estate of Things chooses Reform School

Reform School carries all the right accoutrement for the hipster crowd, for me and for you! If you can’t hop your fixie and cruise down to Reform School this afternoon – no fear. They’ve got a great online retail shop.

I work in the internet industry and spend a lot of my life online. Reform School’s Site is definitely an interesting aesthetic for an Ecommerce Site. I keep running across these same realistic ‘workstation’ designs, you know where the webpage looks like the the top of your desk or an inspiration board complete with measuring tape, post it notes, scrap ribbon, etc. (think both decor8 & Design*Sponge).

Reform School has done something similar with some added playfulness. They’ve worked in the high school theme complete with report cards and notebook doodles. We likey!! Do you!?

A screenshot of Reform School Online Shop for Art Craft and Design

Oh and PS – Check out the “Student of the Month” Christine Schmidt . She’s the brainchild behind our previously posted recommendation for Yellow Owl Workshop .

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Kristen Szanto’s Design Blog

The Estate of Things chooses Design Blogger Kristen Szanto

I have the pleasure of working within the Los Angeles Office this week. (I usually work remotely from my home in North Carolina). Its good to be here with friends and I want to introduce you to one of those here today.

Mrs. Kristen Szanto is a Design Savvy Project Manager. When I was living and working here in the LA office I always made sure to introduce new employees to her and asked her to talk with them a little bit about Design Concepts and to share whatever she was working on at the time. I just really love her style.

I also asked Kristen to help The Estate of Things with our background image while we are working on a branding identity for our site. So you will notice the familiar style when you check out this post.

So, without further ado: here is the article that I want you to check out.
Kristen’s post about hanging artwork on the wall is excellent. Complete with photoshopped image guides and a sense of humor – she walks you through the basics of hanging artwork. Start with this post – but don’t neglect the other features of her site and keep it in mind as she adds to it.

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Etsy Seller of the Week: BirdversusBird

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The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller BirdversusBird

No, I’m not over birds, AND I’m also totally into Forest Creatures, so Etsy Seller Bird vs. Bird is my worthy pick for Etsy Seller of the week. I can’t imagine the joy I would get rummaging through my bag for one of the little guys every time I needed a coin.

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller BirdversusBird

Also, BvB has this great blog and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the sneak peek into her life. She creates her little coin purses out of recycled sign material that she brings home from her day job. I have a crush on her and her product. Can’t wait to see her grow more and more successful!!

From the Bird Vs. Bird BIO page:

I started making purses and other small accessories just for fun, and because I wanted to find a way to keep scrap materials from my workplace (a sign shop) out of the landfill. All my graphics, as well as my labels, business cards, and tags are printed on waste areas of big rolls of banner material, adhesive vinyl and poster paper. I also try to used salvaged, repurposed and recyclable materials for my packaging in order to reduce waste.
To learn more about my methods, inspirations and even my favorite movies, read my Featured Seller interview:
http://www.etsy.com/featured_seller.php?featured_user_id=5345305

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Etsy Seller of the Week: GooseGrease

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller GooseGrease

Sarah and I share an Etsy Account on which to mark our favs (as seen here in the right hand navigation column of the site). If any of you readers are loyally following – you know I have a little fascination with images of small toys. So I clicked on Sarah’s newly added Etsy Pick, an image of 3 dolls and thus arrived at: goosegrease.

Though the shop is all about selling these little hand painted dolls… I was immediately enjoying her marketing images as much as I was the idea of placing a symbolic Moyer Family up on my mantle. The photographs of these little families are so much fun to look at.

However, it is the actual little dolls that are for sale. Her latest note says that there is no more room for Hand Painted Custom Orders before Christmas time, but you can purchase ready-made little families on the Etsy site. On the other hand, goosegrease is also selling packages of unpainted dolls , so that is what I have purchased. I’m anxiously awaiting my 60 some wooden dolls to hit the front step so I can start playing around.

Here are some examples of the images that I liked. Click on them to visit the items for sale in the Etsy shop.

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy seller goosegrease

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller goosegrease

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller goosegrease

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller goosegrease

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Thanksgiving Holiday Cooking

This holiday is ALL about the food. I know you’re supposed to take a moment and be Thankful for things – a day to be reminded that we take things for granted all too often, Before we pray for our Turkey dinner, my Dad tries to get everyone to share something deep and meaningful that they are thankful for. I’m always thankful that there is a holiday that is completely devoted to overeating and napping.

This year I will also be incredibly thankful that I’ll be HOME for Tday. This will be my first Thanksgiving in North Carolina in several years and I’m looking very much forward to it. I’m participating in the food preparation this year by bringing the following items to our Mom’s Side of the Family Soiree. I’m including the recipes for you…

Tater Tot Casserole
This comes from my beloved friend and former roomate – Joel. He introduced this dish to me at our first LA Thanksgiving meal and I can’t thank him enough. Its my new tradition – I’m taking it for my own. You are ONLY allowed to eat this dish on special occasions – or you might die. I can think of several ways that you might die from this dish.

1 (32-ounce) package frozen potato rounds
1 (16 ounce) container sour cream
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (yeah I said 2)
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
Some Onion
Lastly – if you are into a little kick or just want some color – toss in your favorite kind of peppers. I’m gonna try chopping up some of those little yellow Chiles. Note: These peppers would be a deviation from the Joel Family Recipe.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9×13 inch-baking dish. Arrange tater tots in the prepared baking dish. In a mixing bowl, combine sour cream, chopped onion, peppers, cheese, and mushroom soup.Pour the mixture on the tater tots. Bake in at 350 degrees for 45 to 60 minutes

Sweet Potato Bread
I learned how to make this in High School Home Economics and well – its delicious. I used to skip on the nuts and use raisins instead. I think it might be neat to try it out with some Craisins…. You know what I’m talking about!? Little dried cranberries. That might give it an extra holiday kick.

3 c. sugar
3 c. flour
1 c. chopped nuts
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. soda
1 c. oil
1 c. cooked sweet potatoes
4 eggs
Mix enough to be well blended. Pour in well-greased and floured coffee cans (3). Fill half full. Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees.

Homemade Cranberry Sauce
Obviously its a simple recipe….. Just don’t fall victim to canned cranberry product. I must guess by the towering tree of cans in my local grocery store that many people do this and I just can’t let you. Here….

1 quart cranberries
1 cup water
1 3/4 cups sugar
citrus for flavoring (I really want you to shave the peel off of a delicious orange)
The general rule is: Use 1/4 as much water as cranberries. Add 1/3 as much sugar as cranberries.Wash and pick over cranberries, discarding any that are soft. Bring water to a boil; add berries. Cover and cook over medium low heat until berries have burst outer skin.

Add sugar and boil a few minutes longer. If desired, cranberries may be strained before sugar is added. A few tablespoons of freshly squeezed orange or lemon juice may be added along with a little grated citrus peel, if desired. They say a tablespoon of frozen orange concentrate is also a nice addition but I don’t know anything about that. You just gotta taste it as you go.

NOTE: I would not expect that this blog is going to take you into any kind of food/kitchen lifestyle categories on a regular basis – not unless Sarah and I are both magically transformed into uber homemakers…. and with that note – please also know that my recipes and their output is totally unassuming and easy. The focus here is on delicious, normal, good ole dishes that are easy to make and take to a potluck style Thanksgiving Dinner. That’s how I roll Eddie Ross – and I’m probably just using a plain old casserole dish, so there.

P.S.
Holy Crap… look at this Peach Stuffing . I think I’m gonna try this one too. What are you cooking?
The Estate of Things chooses Peach Stuffing from Martha Stewart

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Latest Obsession – Vintage Shasta Camper Trailer

BJ and the first Shasta

This is a baby Betsy in the early 80s.

I’m in the market for a Vintage Camper Trailer.

I got this insane idea that I needed one immediately and got to work bidding on Ebay yesterday. I haven’t won any auctions yet. I’m trying to slow my roll, do a little research and hopefully I will stumble upon the perfect camper trailer for me.

The Shasta is my object of desire.  There are many leftover 1950s, 60s & 70s models out there and they have all of the character a girl could ever ask out of a mobile home including Wings… Specifically, there is this 13ft model that is light enough for me to pull with little effort.

You can imagine the fantasies playing in my mind for renovating an interior and setting up a little homey home for me and my Newfoundland, Pollock that I can take on the road. I’m thinking that an epic 4 month cross country tour of the National Parks is in my near future. If not that, then a few good weekend trips here and there.

What’s better than a home that I can take with me on the road? I can’t wait to be a gypsy. I want to be a gypsy!!

Here are a few different Exterior & Interior Shots of on-the-market Shasta Camper Trailers that I’ve been salivating over. Do you think that I will be able to make this a reality?

The Estate of Things chooses Vintage Shasta Camper Trailer

UPDATE:

We made this a reality, two times. It’s funny to think that back in 2009, these were the best examples I could find in my online research. My dad and I ended up taking to the country roads around my small hometown of Hickory, NC and we found a 1968 Shasta Compact in an old field. It’s pictured below.

These days, there are tons of camper renovations available online, and lots of sweet Airbnb options for a weekend getaway. There are also some wonderful Instagram accounts to follow. I am documenting the best of what I stumble upon on Pinterest.

Here is a snap of the 13foot baby that I got soon after this post and a snap of the 16foot ‘canned-ham’ that I got my hands on with the dude, here in Los Angeles. Both are in the slow process of receiving their renovation.
GypsyShasta

vintage shasta camper betsy moyer

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My Dear TeoT. A Sneak Peak is all I have.

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I don’t know what else to do except to share these three pieces that I picked up recently for a grand total of $19.50. I have grand plans for each one. We will see what materializes. Your thoughts and ideas are appreciated.

Old Nasty Chandelier with copper and insano glass shade.
The Plan: I’ve already popped the glass out and am thinking of other uses for it. I’ll be spray painting this a high gloss white and popping it into my bathroom ceiling to hang over the toilet. I’ll replace the old amber glass sections with something. Not sure yet…. thinking maybe just some soft rice paper.

Old Office Chair for New Office
I thought this chair had a nice shape. I need a wide base – cause I spend about 20 of the 24 hours a day sitting in front of my computer screen, and I like to cross my legs up in the chair. As much as I’d love to slap a pretty patterned fabric on this – I believe it will stay as is for now. The only modification will be adding some casters for a little height and mobility. Not bad for $9.00.

Johnny 5 lamp
I love you! He’s so cute huh? He came brown – I pretty much immediately took his head off and gave him a high gloss red shade. He’ll be sitting by my Crate & Barrel chair in the Office and one day you can see him in action. IF I can ever get that room finished.

Update on the office by the way : I’m on the lookout for shelving, window treatment, a rug and some time. Oh ya – and I have my artwork – but need to get it printed. I have tons of pieces that need framing. I’ll do a post on the woes of framing someday. I could totally write a book about that.

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Crate & Barrel Wingback Chair – Jardin

I don’t mean to brag and granted this did happen about a year after I might have cut this out of the Crate & Barrel catalog and pasted into my Journal with the words “I WANT THIS” drawn in girly bubble letters beneath it…. but I totally scored the Crate & Barrel Jardin Chair today at none other than the local HABITAT FOR HUMANITY store. AND………. It was marked at a price of only $99. AND… AND… Y’all.  It was 25% off day. So yeah. $75 for this:

The Estate of Things chooses Crate & Barrel's Jardin Chair in Garden Pandoras

Its okay if you are feeling jealous! Meanwhile remember that I do live in Hickory, NC which is a compromise of life all its own. At least there are insane furniture finds to keep me feeling alive. More to come on shopping for furniture in this blessed town.

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Stationery Design

Sarah has some good stories regarding her experiences getting fantastic stationery pulled together for both wedding and baby. She’ll tell ya about it sometime.

Meanwhile, Today I’d like to point you int the direction of a great online retailer of "Art for Correspondence" that a friend just shared with me. Meet Yellow Owl Workshop . I dig it and thought you might too.

The Estate of Things chooses Yellow Owl Workshop

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Home Office Renovation

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I’ve been living in my new home for a few months and slowly piecing together my decor. I must admit I’ve focused on the Living Room and Kitchen areas so much that the bedrooms and office are pretty much blank. I started from absolute scratch (moved back to NC from LA with what would fit in my car). It takes a long time and a lot of money to furnish a 1500 square foot home. BUT….. Yay – I’m finally ready to focus on the Office.

I think initially I was thinking of wallpapering the Office (or at least a feature wall) and I was leaning toward the EVERYWHERE Imperial Trellis Wallpaper cause Kelly Wearstler is worth emulating. Really the whole AVANTE GARDE wallpaper book is inspiring. See some examples here:

But, after writing the purple post I realized that I could go with flat paint for now and get a big bang for my buck with that hot PLUM color. Anything to get rid of this CAMEL color that is on the wall of every room in my home will help – but with this purple I can pull in this 7 foot long table top thats sitting in my garage – and piece it as a desk using those metal yellow sawbucks that whatshisname on BRAVO’s TOP DESIGN did.

Next I just need some inexpensive solutions for shelves and perhaps a rug and the office should feel much more inspiring. Meanwhile, I’m flying in a friend from LA to help me out with this and will post some before and afters once we are done. Here is a sneak peak at what’s to come using the ultra cool MAC application called GAWKER – that snaps a Time Lapse photo every 20 seconds to capture my painting progress. Wow – that really makes an hour of hard work look easy!!

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ART: Find what speaks to you

I love imagery in the home, its an important element that can’t be forgotten and a wonderful opportunity to really personalize your space and fill it with meaning. It seems many of my posts on tEot tend to lean towards filling your home with art.  Recently I added a post about Etsy Seller Erin Tyner for her interesting depictions of little people in ethereal landscapes. I would like to state for the record that I’m not a photographer nor am I an expert in anything really. But I was impressed with what she had for sale in her Etsy shop. I’ve been interested in macro photography and have my eye out for images like hers and I want to use this post to explore that journey and to illustrate my path to this aesthetic.

As an Art History student at UNCG,  Andres Serrano was a point of study and his acclaimed piece: Piss Christ was something that we touched on lightly in the History of Photography class. This image spoke to me. I spent a short time as a Development Intern for SECCA (South Eastern Center for Contemporary Art). It was through that experience that somehow I came to learn of the controversy that surrounded a 1989 traveling exhibit organized by SECCA and partially funded by the National Endowment for the Arts…. There was a Congressional outrage at the subject matter and it came to question what vision Tax Payers were contributing their money towards when an artist photographed a small plastic crucifix immersed in his own urine.

The Estate of Things chooses Andres Serrano

I can’t personally deny the beauty of this image. We won’t delve into it any further than that… but I will say that it set the tone for an aesthetic that I’m not yet over. Fast forward……… Years out of college and feeling perhaps an era away from idealism – I rest myself in enjoying art more for its aesthetic value (love a reference here and then – but Bible-Belt outrage is no longer a requirement to get me hyped up). Now its more about my surroundings…. what will make my day to day life more enjoyable. I stumbled upon Etsy in late 2005 – a few images – photographs of Toy soldiers caught my eye. Can’t remember the artist, didn’t buy the prints… but the point – was that I felt inspired and I took that with me. I’m a DIY wannabe so I bought some toy soldiers to try my hand at some macro photography. I took them to work (a web studio full of photographers. My friend Eva Gronenthal , who writes for the blog – Parallels through Image took interest and we shared a few other artists that we both enjoyed. I still check out her blog). So instead of getting together with someone and learning how to properly emulate this macro style – I ended up pairing up with my photographer friend Bregan and launching them over the cubicle to the new guy with Shock and Awe tactic. How quickly I forgot why I ever bought them in the first place.

Bregan introduced me to another photographer to check out: David Levinthal . His depictions of toys and miniatures span subjects from Hollywood Glamour, to Hitler, to Blackface Memorabilia. For me, the image below evokes an Edward Hopper feeling.

Recently I’ve done some more searching for images that speak to this fun aesthetic in a different way. I’ve found some interest in an artist, Naoki Honjo. Study this image below. It looks like a Miniature – but this craziness is real. Honjo has a few tricks up his sleeve for creating these images (aerial, large format, tilt shift, narrow focus) – but what strikes me is that b/c of this the human brain perceives the image as a miniature set. What? Awesome.

So just this week, aforementioned friend Bregan surprises me and shows me some photographs that she took just recently of some gems from her toy chest. Look at this and tell me its not beauty. She’s sending over the files now so I can get them printed in large scale and soon they will be hanging on my newly painted purple wall. :) I’m so in love.

Conclusion:
I just wanted to share a little glimpse into how and why imagery can translate into a choice that you make for your home. An unabashed approach to filling your space with imagery that means something to you will have positive results no matter how hot your wall color is or how many duckets you dropped on your sleek sofa.

LoveLove!
B

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ETSY Seller of the Week: I’m Smitten

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The Estate of Things chooses Im Smitten

Holy Crap this is FantastyFunStuff. Its like zany children’s storybook illustration with good color choices. A great surprise should you send such a beautiful card in the mail but I’m thinking of framing up one or two and grouping with some other random collections of bizarre art.

I’ll let the illustrations do the talking. And click ’em to see them in the ETSY shop!

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller Im Smitten

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller Im Smitten

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller Im Smitten

The Estate of Things chooses Etsy Seller Im Smitten

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COLOR: What’s your prediction for 2009?

The Estate of Things chooses Purple - Color Trend

Today I read this article:
http://lasvegasmarket.com/wmc/press_room/feb-1-2008-trend-guru-mic.shtml

Purple. It snuck its way into my wardrobe here and there throughout the year and the jury was still out on why it was popping back up in my life. Sometimes its hard to tell if you intuitively pick up on trends merely b/c they pop up in the world, if they are force-fed to your sub-conscious, misleading you to believe that it was your own original idea. Either way – I do have love affairs with colors and like most of my relationships they sneak up on me and last way longer than they should. Does this mean that its time to break up with Turquoise? I’m just not sure I’m ready for that.

Pantone 18-3943 Blue Iris

Pantone Selects Color of the Year for 2008:
PANTONE® 18-3943 BLUE IRIS

Blue Iris was Pantone’s color of the year for 2008 – I am preferring a more pure purple myself… they’re almost there. I think in 2009 we’ll be seeing more and more and more on the purple side. What I am interested to see is what the market will provide in terms of color palettes. I think that purple can be all wrong if not paired appropriately. I’ll be thinking about this while you check out this collection of fun Purple Inspired Designery.

The Estate of Things chooses Purple

Also, If you are a color nut like me

Use this totally Kool Tool to help you come up with your own palettes. http://kuler.adobe.com/

or – Rate your Color IQ with this fun test !

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