Sunshine in my shadows

Welcome to sunshine in my shadows. This blog is my space to share all the stuff that makes up my every day life. Family, friends, crafts, recipes, books and all the little things that add 'sunshine to my shadows'. We all have a sprinkling of sunshine and an equal sprinkling of shadows in our lives. Hopefully you will find more sunshine than shadows to read about here and on the days when shadows fall, know that the sunshine is peeking just around the corner!


Thursday, July 28, 2011

Just like the pied piper....

After 'mortgaging my house' to the scrapbooking shop yesterday I found the nearby op shop a calling to me! I was helpless to resist of course. This particular op shop is a little further afield than my usual but whenever close by I like to call in as they usually have some good books if nothing else.
Yesterday was no exception.
The first book to catch my eye was this lovely old Reader's Digest gardening book. Although tatty around the edges I was thrilled by the slipcover. When I saw the price of $1 that sealed the deal.
The book is filled with lovely old illustrations like this page pictured above.

Next to catch my eye was this old version of Arabian Nights. One peek at the flyleaf pages and I just had to bring it home with me!
A bargain for $2 and the whole book has pictures like this right throughout.
Next to catch my eye was a couple of Enid Blyton books, one of which has a lovely dustjacket. They were $2 each.

Then I found two wonderful vintage children's storybooks that just had to come home with me!
This one is filled with funny little ryhmes and the other ...well one look at the cover and I was in love with it.
I ended up paying $1 each for these treasures! The one with the little girl in red on it was perfect and had a $5 sticker on it (I would have paid the $5). When the man at the counter was sorting through my little pile of things he looked at it and said "That's not right, that's not one of ours, we don't use stickers" and to my horror he pulled the sticker off (tearing a piece of the cover in the process...he tore a strip right off). I could have cried! However for $1 I wasn't going to complain.  He was a little rough and actually damaged another of my purchases as well but I decided to buy it anyway. (explanation to follow)
The last bookish bargains I got were a small bundle of Little Golden Books for 50 cents each. I found some classics like Eloise Wilkin's Mother Goose, Tootle, Bambi, Handsel & gretel and a couple of others to add to my small collection.
I don't often buy things that hang on walls as we have very little free wall space in our home (too many bookshelves LOL) but this little plaque was calling my name and at $1 I wasn't going to leave it behind. It is made of tin and covered with some kind of plastic?
I love the little poem and that is the sunshine glaring on the photo not a camera flash! I took this pic outside this morning. The man behind the counter was a bit rough I mentioned earlier, well he was sliding my purchases around on the counter and he must have slid this little tin plaque over the top of my final purchase because it was perfect when I picked it up and when I sat it on the counter. When he was packing I noticed some damage to the foil. *sad face I think the corners of the tin plaque on the back must have rubbed against the face of the foil picture.

I'm not sure when these foil pictures were popular. 1950s? Later? I fell in love with the fairies in this one anyhow. I think I've done all the op shopping my purse can bear this week.......but you never know, that 'calling' is very strong!

wishing you sunshine in your shadows

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tuesday trinkets 12...

Welcome to today's trinkets. I opened a new box of goodies today and found a real mixed bag. Enjoy!
This beautiful pendant necklace and earring set were the re-discovery of the day for me. Although unmarked this set is very heavy and has a high quality goldtone finish. I'm not sure of the vintage but wonder if it is from the 1980s given it's bold colours and 'heavy' style. I could however be totally wrong and it could be from an earlier time.
Next out of the box came this delightful little 'starfish' brooch. A tiny piece about an inch square it is marked on the back with the copyright symbol followed by the letters S.H.P Inc. I am unfamiliar with this mark and have no idea what vintage this brooch is.
This lovely clear diamante brooch is unmarked but I believe it is a 'Simpson' piece. (I own a couple of marked Simpson brooches and he has a particular style) Donald Simpson was an Australian jewellery designer and craftsman. He designed originally for Simpson Jewellery Pty Ltd  and later went on to design for Jewelcrest. In the late 1960s he went back to designing for himself. Many of his later pieces were not marked but sold with a Simpson tag or box. He was reknowned for using only the best quality stones. This piece is likely to be from the 1950s or 1960s. My photograph doesn't do justice to the clarity and shine of the diamantes even after all this time. Rhodium or chrome plated this is definately a quality piece of jewellery and was obviously treasured. Note the safety chain which has been attached. (I don't believe this is original to the brooch)
I so wish I could have managed a better photograph of this stunning art deco bar brooch. It has a lovely swirled design cut into the bar and the design is outlined by a mass of clear diamantes with a slightly larger diamante set into the centre of each 'swirl'. 1920s-1930s
This crystal cut necklace is from the 1950s and smaller aurora borealis coated beads are interspersed with larger glass beads that feature hand painted decoration.
Another cut glass crystal beauty in palest pink. Probably 1950s vintage and one of my favourites.
This unusual set multi coloured glass brooch is a bit of a puzzle to me. The claw setting and lovely goldtone finish is of a high quality. The stones are open backed. However I can't decide if it is quite old or a more modern brooch. If anyone is more knowledgeable than me I would love to learn more about this.
Pretty blue glass faceted necklace. Unsure of age.
1950s -1960s brooch Love the marquise shape diamantes!
Gorgeous chunky emerald green glass clip on earrings. These are large about 3/4 inch across. I'm unsure what era they come from. (Ignore the reflections in the photo please)
1950s vintage this lovely aurora borealis coated brooch features a variety of diamante shapes and sizes. The design shows obvious influence from the art deco period.
The last item today is this interesting necklace with cube shaped beads that appear to be some kind of natural stone. The catch on the necklace is quite an older style and it is on what appears to be it's original knotted red thread. If anyone can share any info on what the stones may be or the age of this necklace I would love to know.
I hope everyone had a lovely Tuesday!

wishing you sunshine in your shadows

Sunday, July 24, 2011

What day is it?

I'm really not doing a very good job with this blog of mine. I never anticipated blogging every day but hoped I could post at least 3-4 times a week. It just isn't happening for me right now. We have a lot going on and most of the time I am not even sure what day of the week it is!
When I start feeling stressed I tend to do several things:
  • comfort shop
  • eat too much chocolate!
  • start several new projects instead of finishing ones half done
  • procrastinating about even the smallest decisions
  • Lose myself in a good book
  • Withdraw
  • sleep too much in the daytime
  • don't sleep at night
  • All of the above
Please tell me I am not the only one guilty of the above sins?
That was a rhetorical question, I know from experience that many of us do all those things and more. I know this time will pass and I am endeavouring to have some fun in my life until it does!
I blogged recently about my discovery of zentangles and zendoodling and am still enjoying this relaxing art form.
I have also recently ventured into the world of ATC's. (artist trading cards) If you are unfamiliar with ATC's you can read about them here. You can see examples of ATC's here.
There are lots of ATC galleries online, I just chose one randomly for this post.

Swallowing my anxiety about being 'good enough' I joined swapbot.
Swapbot is a website for people all over the world to register and join in swaps of all different kinds of things. I am currently doing my first swap of an ATC with two friends who kindly offered to get me started. I was super excited to receive my very first ATC in Friday's mail along with some pretty glitter and ATC sleeves from my friend shabby-jules who also keeps a couple of blogs. Jules is a very talented and creative lady. You can see some examples of her work on her craft blog here.
You will be GLAD you did!
This is the gorgeous ATC I received from Jules.
Isn't it just lovely? Our theme was nature. I can't show you the cards I made just yet as the ladies I am swapping with haven't received them and they might be peeking at my blog. (and that would spoil the surprise) I am hoping with practice my art/craft skills will improve and grow!
Does anyone here belong to swapbot? Make ATC's?

wishing you sunshine in your shadows

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Tuesday trinkets 11...

I have some lovely vintage bracelets to share today.
First up this sparkly beauty that is 1950s vintage. The centre stone is plain black glass surrounded by aurora borealis coated teardrop shaped rhinestones that vary in colour from blue to green depending on the way the light hits them. The smaller rhinestones that make up the band are all clear. This bracelet is clearly backstamped with the mark Bijoux M.G. but I am unable to discover anything about the designer. The distinct style of the bracelet suggests it was made in Czechoslovakia .Jewellery of this type is relatively common but frequently unmarked or simply marked Made in Czechoslovakia.
This delicate bracelet is made up of clear rhinestones with the tiny flowers made from blue lucite and teeny blue rhinestone centres. I believe it is from the 1950s.
Another 1950s treasure this topaz coloured rhinestone bracelet is beautifully set with 'dog tooth' claw settings. The dog tooth claw setting was a favoured setting for rhinestones used often by the Weiss company. This bracelet is marked Weiss on the clasp.Weiss made some spectacular jewellery and it is quite collectible with some earlier pieces being quite valuable.
Marked 'Coro' this is a pretty example of their 1950s jewellery. This is a quality goldtone piece with pink and red rhinestone flowers adorning twined leaves. This bracelet was probably originally part of a set with matching necklace and earrings. (a parure)
Another Coro bracelet this one has seen better days. Probably 1950s or 1960s vintage.
This silvertone bracelet is marked Lisner and with it's aurora borealis rhinestones is 1950s vintage. Like the two bracelets above it was probably originally part of a set. Lisner jewellery is quite collectable and still relatively common. Like Coro many of their pieces have a fairly recognizable style.
This lovely leafy design bracelet is not marked but is definately a designer piece. I have seen complete sets of this design online. Memory fails me at this time for which company made it.

I love this ruby red glass bracelet. The photograph doesn't show but it has gorgeous fancy claws holding the stones in place. I believe this bracelet may be quite old. It is marked sterling.

These last two I am unsure of the age or where they come from. I suspect they may be cheap jewellery from the 1960s or later. The second bracelet has an interesting dangle on the end. Hope you have enjoyed this weeks trinkets.
wishing you sunshine in your shadows

Friday, July 15, 2011

Inspirational crafty kids....

I was blog hopping today and came across this wonderful blog. It gives me hope that some day I MAY just learn to sew on my sewing machine! Go take a peek at these crafty and inspirational little people.
Clever kids!!

wishing you sunshine in your shadows

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Book fairy ....and treasure hunting

I think the book fairy has been looking after me this week! I am an avid reader and collector of books. In particular I collect vintage children's books with a sub collection of Christmas themed books.
I visited a couple of op shops this week and found some really lovely treasures. Sometimes my local op shops are a bit overpriced but I did get some bargains this time around.
This lovely old hardback Christmas book was sitting on a table all by itself. Priced at a dollar I snatched it up quick smart! I love the vintage illustration on the cover.
Next I found The Poky Little Puppy and a couple of other hardback golden books for 50 cents each. I think they are from the 1970s era. Lovely condition!
Next a baby and toddler treasury of stories. I usually wouldn't have looked at this probably but it was a hardback in beautiful condition for just $3.
Then I came across this book.... The Enchanted Dolls House is just gorgeous! The hard cover is velvet embossed and inside there are 4 different pop up houses from different eras in time. Each of the pages is filled with little pop ups, lift the flaps and other surprises. It is just charming and I know as a new book it is quite expensive to buy. How could I leave it there for just $3? I do hope I have grandchildren some day!!!
Next I came across a 2 book set of Readers Digest Illustrated Dictionaries. Gorgeous condition, beautifully gilded and embossed covers for the bargain price of $5 each. I snatched them up quickly lest someone else lay eyes on them. On top of all this I was given a 10% pensioner discount at the checkout as they were having 'pensioners day'.

Move along to op shop number 2 which is my regular op shop but more expensive than some of the others I visit. I often spot treasures I would love to buy at this store but often leave things because I think they are asking too much.

The first item to catch my eye in the shop was this darling little cup and saucer. It was in the locked china cabinet so I knew it would be a higher priced item but I had to bring it home as it was so sweet. It cost me $15 and is stamped made in Czechoslovakia. It is smaller than a normal teacup but rounder so I'm not sure if it's a demitasse cup or just smallish because of the shape. I don't know much about china and usually just buy pieces that I think are pretty.
More books! Another thing I collect is quotes and sayings and I pick up any of these little quotation books whenever I see them. $2
They had $3 on this little lovely. It's a small book approx 6 inches by 6 inches and of course the cover caught my eye. Inside there are lots more lovely pictures and interestingly the history of lace!
More yummy vintage illustrations! I think they had $1 on this one. I have never seen a book so cheap in this particular shop before!
You just know I wasn't going to leave this one behind right? $1
This one perhaps not quite so old but I vaguely remembered having read this as a child so picked it up as well.
I've spoilt myself considerably this week with a few ebay purchases which I will share later and a few more books for the home library from book depository. At this rate by the time our extension is built we will need a new library wing added to the house! ;)
I have had problems with leaving comments this week so to my regular blog buddies I apologise. I have visited and in many instances tried to leave a comment but Blogger was not co-operating! Lets hope the Blogger gremlins are gone again soonest!

wishing you sunshine in your shadows