Sale at the Sunnyvale Lace Museum

Sunnyvale laceOnce a year the Sunnyvale Lace Museum has a huge clearance sale. I was ready for this year and wasn’t disappointed. Most everything I bought was 50 cents or a dollar. Sometimes I spent $4 for a dozen pieces of something.





The handkerchiefs and doilies are my favorite.


Sunnyvale lace handkerchiefs

I also got a grab bag for $2 of all kinds of ribbon, pieces of lace trim, embroidery thread and random pieces of lace samples. I love it all. I’m thinking I’ll be using at least some of this for a journal or two.

lace grab bag

My favorite was this piece of material from a French court dress. Who wouldn’t pay $1 to own a piece of something from the 1760s?

1760 silk court dress

In case you are ever in the area, go to the museum. It’s run — all by volunteers — by some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet.

The Lace Museum

552 S Murphy Avenue

Sunnyvale, CA 94086

Get out the tripod

ROTU tripod

Since I’ve started making videos I’ve been looking for ways to improve the quality of the image on the video. The last time I tried to make a video of my latest journal, I realized that the camera wasn’t focusing correctly and decided I would try to use a different kind of camera. So I switched to a USB-type camera that plugs directly into the computer.

Usually these kinds of Logitech camera’s are the kind you hang on a laptop or monitor and use for video conferencing. Once I figured out how to record on my computer I needed to mount it on something so I wouldn’t have to hold it.

I’ve had my grandfather’s tripod sitting in my garage for a few years now. Before that it was in my dad’s garage. My dad, and my brother who likes to take pictures, and my husband who also likes to take pictures all have tripods of their own and didn’t need this old one.

I’m not sure this is the tripod my grandfather had when he was taking pictures of his home in Los Angeles in 1937 (he’s visible in the mirror), but it certainly could be.


The markings on the tripod say ROTÜ and then PHOTO KÖNIG and NÜRNBERG. Since Nurnberg is the city my grandfather is originally from, it’s likely he bought it there when he lived there and brought it when he moved to California. 

photo konig

Well anyway, I needed it now for taking videos, but I had a problem – how do I mount my USB camera on to the screw on the tripod? I could probably find something on Amazon to help me but I knew someone would have come up with a hack and and I was right. Basically, it comes down to using superglue to affix a nut onto the base of the camera (1/4 – 20 size). So that’s what I did.

USB camera with a nut

And it worked just fine.

camera desk setup

I wish my grandpa could see it.

My Czech-Slovak junk journal

vintage junk journal

I’m catching up posting the projects I’ve had complete for a little while already. This one is a pretty simple junk journal with not a lot of embellishments. I kept it simple because I want it to be actually used as some kind of notebook where you write things in it.

Last year when my family and I traveled to Slovakia to visit relatives, during our stay I was setting aside various papers I could use for decorating a junk journal. Things like sheets of a newspaper, TV programming schedule, maps, store flyers, crossword puzzles, receipts, etc. Then, I needed to find a perfect book for turning into a journal.

I visited with some former colleagues in Bratislava and ask them to recommend place where I could find old books. They directed me to the Antikvariat Grosslingova, an antique bookstore on Grosslingova Street.

grosslingova antikvariat

It looks like this inside.

grosslingova antikvariat

I did some hunting and managed to find a book that would work perfectly.

These are pictures of only the pages that I embellished. All the rest are essentially blank.

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I sewed the pages in with a cross stitch on the book spine and decorated the cover with a lace sticker. That’s all the dressing up it gets. I like it simple.

A Journal made from junk

junk mail junk journal

Lately I’ve gotten into this hobby called junk journaling. A junk journal is a book that is made of scraps or other papers that would otherwise be trash but when assembled together makes art. A junk journal could also be a book where you collect the ‘junk’ one accumulates through life.

Now I’ve been working on a book made entirely of scrap book pages pages, left over scrap papers, junk mail, and food packaging boxes. I can’t say it was easy. It took me months to accumulate enough of the right kinds of material.

Here are some pictures; these aren’t all of them.

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Because I wanted the book to present a kind of organized chaos, I took extra time to make sure the layout was as I wanted.

For sure it’s a strange collection of things. I’m not sure if I will make another of these. I have a shoe box of papers I collected and so I still have plenty of paper to work with.

For now I’ll just flip through this one once in a while.

Here’s my youtube video of the flip through:


A New work space

Recently we’ve gone through a partial remodel in our house of the master bedroom and both bathrooms. After 3 months we are done. It was a long process but it wasn’t terrible. It’s amazing how patient one can be when one knows how wonderful their home will look at the end of the project.

One of the closets in the master (there were originally two) was taken out to make room for a larger shower. There was just enough room, from what was the end of the removed closet, to add a small work space for a desk and light.

workspace nook

It’s a pleasant little nook with enough light that is in part provided by the solar tube in the ceiling above.

solar tube

I had some prints done to decorate the walls. Of course I picked images of Vienna. This one is from Heldenplatz looking towards the Rathaus. I didn’t take this, by the way, just looked for and found it on Flikr.

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 6.31.33 PM

The other print above the mantle is of the Rathaus. We’re very happy with the changes. I’ll have to think about what I want to put on that mantle; probably nothing.


A Great haul of vintage papers

Vintage paper haulLast month my kids and I went to Salt Lake City to along with my husband who was attending a conference. The conference provided day care for children of attendees so I essentially had 3 days to entertain myself. Our hotel was in downtown, about 7 blocks away from an antique mall.

Over the course of 2 days I combed every stall, through the contents of every vendor. It took about 3 hours total. I was looking for vintage papers; things with interesting illustrations, color patterns, etchings, photos, hand-written letters with pretty writing, maps, paper currency, etc.

Here are some of the more interesting things I picked up:






And I loved this postcard from 1906. It cost me 50 cents.

cheap post card

In all I spent about $40 and enjoyed myself thoroughly. What am I going to do with all of it? I’ll explain in my next post.