Who is Orange Sink?

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She lives in a small town in northern Wisconsin with her husband and two dogs. She enjoys primitive wool rug hooking,teaching rug hooking classes, collecting and decorating with antiques and primitives. Orange Sink Blog is a journal of her interests and ramblings about life.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Another Before and After

Greetings dear friends on this fine late afternoon in August!  We are finally getting some summer weather here in the north land of Wisconsin!  The AC is running as I type.  Even with the air on I have been working up a sweat the last few days redoing some areas in my studio. One area that has always bugged me is the little nook where I have my cash register and check out counter.  It  seems dark and kind of blah. The cork board I put up is handy there but always gives me the feeling I'm in a poorly designed office space.  
My studio may seem spacious to some, especially those of you who would give your eye teeth for such a space to create and do hand-work. But anyone who is in the rug hooking/wool business will tell you that any size space tends to fill up quickly with supplies and the  hoards of wool we need to create our rugs. 
Clutter and darkness are my two worst enemies when it comes to the decor around here. So here's what I did to lighten up that corner a bit and add some storage space.

I painted an older taller cupboard  that was located just around the corner from this area, and swapped out the smaller cupboard for the taller one.  I also gave the cork board on the wall a coat of the same off white paint I used on the cupboard. I applied some antique toner to the cupboard to make it appear older and fit in with the chippy white of the other cabinet. The addition of a lamp on top of the cupboard gave much needed light in that dark corner. I still like the primitive look but sometimes the all dark wood and primitive colors are not doing it for me. 
So what do you think?  Should I hang out a shingle and become an interior designer?  LOL!  Just kidding!  I need to get back to my design work as a rug hooker!  I can hear Lisa and others in the background saying "YES Cathy G!  We are waiting for a new design to hook!"
Well, I need my area around me to be neat and organized so new designs have space to take root! And sometimes while doing other projects a design will all of a sudden pop into my head. 
There may be a small hint of a design in there somewhere, but now I have to get ready for a class I'm teaching here next week. There are 5 lovely ladies and possibly a couple more who are waiting in the wings to learn our fine craft! I am super excited to have them come and get those hooks in their hands!
I will be back to share some projects with you soon!

Have a lovely week and enjoy every moment of this fast moving month!

Cathy G

Thursday, August 7, 2014

A Ton of Cup Hooks and Old Contact Paper!

Yep! That's what I've been removing from this old cupboard that we rescued from my MIL's former garage!  It almost didn't make the cut when we were deciding what to keep and what to sell.   Then I thought...Hmmmm... it would really hold a lot of wool in my studio/shop!  So we hauled it home.  After a couple of days scrubbing, sanding, removing a ton of cup hooks and that nasty contact paper.. I hate that stuff... it was ready to paint.  The before photo was taken without the drawers which it does have.  I think it turned out rather nicely!
I painted it an off grayish white and  applied some antique toner.
The old glass knobs are original.
I love the old wavy glass in the doors!
I decided to remove the bottom doors so the wool is more easily viewed.
The cupboard has a little history as well.  It was used on the farm in the pantry to store dry goods.
My MIL doesn't remember where it came from though. 
All in all it is a very solid built piece and I am happy we decided to give it a new home!

I couldn't resist filling it with some orange, rust and red wools!  And a little bittersweet ( last years) and some little twinkling lights!  The smiling white JOL made his appearance and seems delighted with his new cupboard abode that matches his color! 
A busy week is ending with having to take the dogs to the groomers tomorrow.  They hate it so.. it stresses me out to have to take them!

Hope your week is ending well!

Cathy G

Friday, August 1, 2014

Some of the Loot we dragged home!

If you've been reading my posts of late you know that we've been cleaning out my dear MIL's apartment after moving her to assisted living.  It was mind-blowing to realize she had so much packed into a small two -bedroom place with an attached garage.  Dave and I really had to restrain ourselves as to what we hauled home fearing we are probably the next generation of hoarders. But...there were a few things of interest to both of us that we thought we could make use of and we've hauled away a few of our own possessions to make room for the stuff we decided to keep.

So here's a few pics of some of the loot... you may get a laugh or two from our choices!
The old trunk in the above and below photo.  No clue as to the family history if any. It is in wonderful condition and still has the inside tray. What we found interesting was the labels on the outside showing Sweden as the place it was originally from.  The paper pieces that gave instructions to hold for pick-up and to whom the trunk was to be delivered are still intact. 

Our excuse for bringing it home... it makes a good end table in the man-cave in the basement!  And we can store blankets and quilts in the off season.  

A knit granny-square afghan. Hmmmmm... for some reason this caught both of our eyes and I was kind of surprised when Dave said he liked it!  I don't think his mother made this... but was probably a gift to her. 

It has interesting colors and textured yarns.  Mutually agreed upon that the back of the couch in the man-cave was a good spot to display it!

I have a weakness for old ironstone. Especially old pitchers. This one is cracked but still holds water. I think it will be a nice vase for cut flowers and for now is in the living room being admired.

This old Postmaster cigar box was interesting. I am storing my postage stamps in it for now. I really don't have a nice spot to display it so it may live here temporarily. But isn't it fun!

Now here is a piece that has family history!  An old Red Wing sponge band batter bowl! It belonged to Dave's grandmother ( his mother's mother) and almost got sold on an auction they had when his mother sold their farm.  I noticed it on the auction wagon and mentioned that it had significant value. His mother snatched it back and proclaimed it belonged to her mother and wouldn't be sold on the auction that day!  I've had my eye on it ever since.  It took us awhile to unearth it from the tons of stuff packed away in that apartment.  But I kept digging and there it was!  
I am happy to add it to a couple of other pieces of Red Wing sponge band that I've collected over the years. Notice the wooden handle on the bowl still retains most of the original blue paint.  
A treasure indeed.  And one I've waited 23 years to acquire! 

There is more "stuff"!  Sigh.....  more photos to come!

Cathy G

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Quilt and Road Repair

I woke up this morning with a splitting headache. I believe the past few days have been too stressful with the moving of Dave's mom to assisted living and cleaning out her apartment from 20 plus years of stuff from the no-throw generation.  More about that later.  By 7:30 am was feeling a bit better after taking some medication and applying warm compresses to my poor head. All was quiet  but a few moments later the old familiar beep beep beep of the heavy equipment started in!  They are resurfacing the road past here and it's only a few feet from our house. 
I decided it was a good day to dig out an old quilt top I've had forever  to repair a few big holes it had when I acquired it. I needed something to work my hands and soothe my achey head.  And something to counter-act all the energy going on outside. 

The quilt top is a beauty of an old thing. Little nine patch squares all hand sewn together. The fabrics are what call to me. Old homespuns in mostly blues and browns. Look closely and you'll see a brown, blue and bittersweet plaid so faded and worn. 

My steam iron glides smoothly over the wrinkled fabric. The boys outside ( who by the way love their jobs... I asked them..LOL!) layer a load of sand and gravel.  My thoughts turn to the contrasts in our work.  It's kind of the same in a way too... we are both repairing something with skill and love. 

For my repairs I chose a reproduction civil war fabric with indigo blue flowers and creamy background.  On this all plaid quilt I thought the contrast of a flower print would be fun.  Then my thoughts turned to  the maker of this quilt. As she sat and hand-stitched her homespun squares what was going on outside her door?  Were the men-folk with tractors or perhaps horse-drawn equipment making her smile as her needle and thread made tiny and neat little stitches.  

The boys and their big trucks and graders work on!  Happy and content to be making another road safe and usable for years to come. 

Repairing my old quilt today gave me a sense of accomplishment. The hand-work soothes the mind as well. Perhaps now I can focus on tasks ahead. In another post I want to share with you some of the goodies we found while we dug through the years of accumulation at his mother's place.  I know... don't need to be dragging home more "stuff".  I did restrain myself for the most part.  But a few things were too good to pass up. 

Hope your day was filled with good energy and the works of your hands soothing as well!

Cathy G

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The Aftermath!

Things have settled down slightly after the whirl-wind of the quilt show this past 4th of July weekend. I'm happy to report the second day of the show was much busier than the first!  I sold a little of everything and met a group of gals who I think may be my next class of enthusiastic rug hookers!  
While at the show I was working on the rug in the photo.  My 1820 Sunflower design that I am hooking for a customer!  I was able to demonstrate and get a few loops pulled on this commissioned piece as well!  Multi tasking at it's best!
So now that the show is history....

....and my wool is stacked neatly on the shelves again here in the studio  ( you know how much of a twit I am about that LOL!) I can concentrate on a few things for Fall.
Yup... Fall!  It actually feels like Fall here in Wisconsin this morning.  It is 60 degrees with a crisp chilly breeze.  I know we are probably still in for some humid hot weather... hopefully... but there are signs of early Autumn about.  

And as you may notice... a few signs of it in my studio as well! 

A gentle reminder to stop and listen to the chimes singing in the garden in the summer breeze. 
The loons calling as they fly overhead.

I love Autumn but need to slow summers pace.  So many things yet to accomplish in the next few weeks.  Moving my 92 year old mother-in-law to an assisted living home....traveling with family to a deceased aunt and uncles inurnment in Milwaukee are but a few of the things which will keep me busy as July zips by.

Cathy G