Craftastic or Craftacky?

Crafts, like any other creative endeavor are subject to taste-- and sure, we’ve all have had our crafting mishaps. (If you missed it, you can read about some of my bigger oopsies here.)

But have you ever turned to crafting books for new ideas only to guess that the reason these ideas had been previously left untried were because-- either aesthetically or functionally-- they didn’t quite cut the mustard?

This week, I’d like to share with you a few projects of the non-mustard-cutting variety uncovered in just one craft book, “Fabulous Ideas for Flea Market Finds.” Now I’d like to preface this with the fact that these are my opinions only, so if you’ve had one of these projects in your home and it’s become a cherished heirloom... hey, that’s great. I can totally respect that. May it continue to be passed down from generation to generation...

...In a house that isn’t mine. :-)

I’d also like to mention there are a number of projects in this book that I can actually see myself doing...

Those are not the ones I’ll show you today.

Okay. Let’s get to it!

By now, you all know about my lamp addiction. And I do like a certain amount of sentimental clutter in my decorating. But some of these projects just really make me want to break out the trusty can of Pledge.

Like this lamp.

It’s a pocketbook...

It wears pearls...

It has a hat...

And a handkerchief...

And poor enough vision to require specs (which, frankly, makes me lose confidence in the lighting power of the lamp).

It also seems to wear a corsage.

And a marcasite pin.

And gloves.

Okay, I don’t know where this lamp is going, but I REALLY hope it catches its cab soon.

It makes me feel like my Great-Aunt Alda has been reincarnated by General Electric.

And can you imagine DUSTING this lamp?

I mean, I have my share of dustcatchers around the house-- but most of them don’t involve cleaning half an outfit.

Okay-- that’s just one lamp, right? Indeed!

So how do you like this one?

The caption reads, “A tabletop plant stand is attached to a wooden lamp base for a unique way to display old mismatched teacups. Antique floral stationery and crocheted lace trim embellish the shade.”

So that’s one... two... three... four teacups on this lamp?

And gloves?

And dried flowers?

And a hankie?

So, um, how exactly do you reach under there to turn the lamp on without knocking that top teacup into oblivion?

And while I kind of like the shade, did I read that right?-- did they use “antique” stationery to decoupage directly on this lampshade?

Just take this 100 YEAR OLD stationery and slap it on a lampshade?

Okay, well, maybe we’d be safer with a nice refurbished floor lamp, then...

...Or not.

This one reads, “A hand-me-down floor lamp can be brought back to life by attaching a watering can to the base and adding an abundant arrangement of blooms that appears to be stretching toward the light. A tiny birdhouse makes a ‘tweet’ accent.”

Can you imagine the look on the face of the husband who’s come home from work to discover the reading lamp beside his favorite chair has overgrown with “tweet” accents?

And any cats in the home would have a new personal playground.

“What is Mister Fluffy doing perched way up there?”

Why, looking for wrens in the “abundant arrangement of blooms,” of course!

All righty-- last project.

Who is that under the gigantic rosebuds and ribbon? Why it’s great-grandma Mildred and her sister Maureen! And we’d know that immediately, if they weren’t using those dried flowers as some sort of awning.

This caption reads, “Each pretty as a picture, ‘orphaned’ saucers become lovely little frames for antique photographs. Just cut the photos...”

Um-- excuse me one moment while my heart palpitations subside...



Okay. I’m back...

Did it say CUT the antique photos?

We’re CUTTING ANTIQUE photos to be glued to saucers and embellished with overly-large dried flowers?

CUTTING antique photos... CUTTING antique stationery...

Are you beginning to suspect these writers don’t own, say, a SCANNER? Or can't get to a PHOTOCOPIER?

Imagine-- a whole pictorial family history, converted to saucer art....

And possibly also cropping out half the relatives, just so we can have Grandma Betty’s pompador period displayed in full coiffure on heirloom china. I mean look at the SIZE of that woman’s noggin on that saucer...

Proportionally, something is definitely off.

So, in summary, what have we learned today?

--Scanning or photocopying antique paper products is SMART and GOOD and will not leave the relatives hating you for being scissor-happy with family history...

--Tabletop vignettes are a great idea for a romantic home-- but they don’t all have to be attached to the lamp...

--And crafting and functionality really can exist together in harmony, but never when blocking one’s path to the lightswitch.

I hope you’ll join me next week, when I share with you the flip side of this-- the inspiration photos I love.

Oh, and one more thing before you go. If you have an extra moment, you might want to click here to read about the recent internet Tag that sidled up and got me-- and travel with me to one of the Wonders of the World...

Otherwise, have a lovely week! And see you soon.