We snuck in a beautiful, sunny day here after several days of grey and rain, and just before--if the weather reports prove correct--SNOW tomorrow night! I was writing in my workshop and couldn't resist the lovely sunlight. Out came my camera, and I shot a few glimpses of where I work each day.
One look at these photos will help explain the name of this blog. I am a magpie through and through, collecting baubles and other interesting bits to use in craft projects, for creative gift-wrapping, or just to display. I buy up old jars of buttons and beads at flea markets and old keys wherever I can find them. Those old milk bottles in the top photo are from local dairies, and I use them to hold my knitting needles and antique clay marbles. In the photo below, you'll see a few of the keys in my collection, framed by a vintage sea-glass mosaic frame that I bought twenty-five years ago in a junk shop. In true magpie style, I've left some space to add more keys! The beautiful little watercolor of a lighthouse beneath the keys is by my high school art teacher, Sandra Crabtree.
Here's a close-up of one of those keys and that lovely frame.
My workshop steps up and out onto a pretty sunporch on the other side of that door. In the photo below, Dill is doing his best to ignore me while the watering-can bird seems ready for his close-up.
One corner of my little porch. The wooden E is an antiques shop find. I adore letters!
My workshop also doubles as a guest room, but I like to use the little iron and brass bed for doing some serious creative thinking . . . a.k.a naps. The print above the bed is by the fabulous Maia Larkin. The two watercolors at top and bottom above the table are by my dear friend and brilliant painter Nancy Nichols. That wonderful bear, Theodore, was my mother's when she was a baby.
My collecting habits include things like artists' paintboxes, old paintbrushes, and sets of vintage colored pencils. You can still find many of these things for a song at flea markets. The painted cabinet in the background below was a very, very beat-up medicine cabinet that I bought for almost nothing and then painted with wildflowers. It's now a curio cabinet on my work table. Next to that number 40 is a stack of vintage French embroidery-floss cards. I tell you, nothing escapes this magpie's eye.
My bookshelves contain books, of course, but also favorite items, like my miniature Gashlycrumb Tinies lunchbox, which I bought at the Edward Gorey House on Cape Cod. If you have never been to that wonderful little museum dedicated to the late artist's amazing work and collections (he was a magpie, too), I can't recommend it enough!
Last, but not least, a handful of fab buttons. I use them for everything: to top packages, to make jewelry, to glue onto magnets . . . you name it. If I can sew it or tie it or glue it onto something, I will use it!
My workshop is where I go to create, to write, and to work on photos, but most importantly, it's where I go to dream. Most of my best ideas are formed here amid my magpie treasures with the sunlight streaming in through the bamboo blinds. How about you? Where do you go to create and dream? What place inspires you most?