November 17, 2016

Remember Where the Power Lies

Lettering by Shannon M. Wilson, 2016

I don't know how other calligraphers choose their warmup words, but for me, when I sit down to practice, many times I just free-associate and see what comes.  The quick brown fox isn't often seen jumping over the lazy dog's back, if you know what I mean.  Oftentimes, I sense God's whispers in these moments and I wonder who is actually choosing the words on the pages before me.

The pre- and post-election mania has been something to behold, hasn't it?  It has affected my appetite, my sleep, my sense of well-being.  It has left me tongue-tied when speaking to my children. And when I take it too far (and arrogantly make predictions), it quickly moves me from a place of peace.  In the midst of all this unrest, and all of this fear and uncertainty, it's easy to get pulled under with it. Until I get out my ink and the words that come are: "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last."  -- Revelation 22:13.  Try writing that fifty times slowly and your breath will return, and hope will fill you, and you will remember that this is not the end of the story.

[I wrote the above on a Borden & Riley marker layout pad with a Zig Brushables brush pen.]

November 2, 2016

DIY King Headboard from Textured Art Panels

This is one of those "I wonder if this would work" projects that had no inspiration file or how-to video to accompany it. (I have learned since then that those are very helpful.)   I wanted a massive, interesting headboard for my massive, uninteresting bed.  So six years ago (yes, six) I saw these art panels (minus the chalk paint and distressed finish) at Tuesday Morning and said, "Yes!  These could work!"  Unfortunately, I don't have any before pictures of the panels but they had mahogany-stained wood around the perimeter and a patterned relief in the center in dark browns and gold.  With a little chalk paint and distressing they started to resemble tin and that was the look I was after for my mostly-white bedroom.  I lined them up behind my bed and didn't think about them again.  Fast forward six years.  "Hmmm...I wonder if I should actually turn these panels into the headboard for which they were intended?"  

Using a Kreg Jig I built a simple frame that matched the height of my bed frame and was low enough to clear the window above our bed.  With my staple gun I attached the panels to the frame.  Then I trimmed it out with 1x3's stained in Dark Walnut. Distressed the stain job with my sander and got my men to carry it upstairs.


I never actually attached the headboard to the bed frame because the weight of our bed is pinning it pretty securely against the wall.  (I would never be satisfied with that if I had young children sleeping in our bed with us, but that ship sailed a long time ago.)  Keeping it freestanding makes it a lot easier to move when I want to change our room around.  (You all do that too, right?)

My tip to all you home-decor bargain hunters out there -- keep an eye out for unique items on clearance that could serve a much different purpose!  If you get them cheap enough, you won't feel guilty ripping them apart, distressing them, stapling them...and then, voila, you now have a one-of-kind piece for your very interesting home!  This really is fun....