Monday, November 26, 2012

From now on my blog posts are over here on

Blogger was driving me crazy! So join me on my
new blog and yes, not everything is perfect design wise,
but one has to start somewhere. Soon all my
social media, etc. will be connected
& an email + some more "stuff"
that blogs must have.

I'm on a Wordpress platform and love so far!


P.S. McMaster & Storm
is still part of our brand!

Souvenir Lifestyle Holiday

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

It's beautiful! I love seeing all the amazing contributor's stories and the layout! I was excited to be a part of this issue.  It's always so fun to see it finished & in Heather Bullard's TA-DA layouts! {oh, the fonts!}

If you click on the above image there is a lovely preview to peek at........

Clickity-click here to get your online copy or order a printed inspired!
Enjoy your day---Thanksgiving is really next week?! Oh, my! Oh, boy!

Christmas Gift Wrapping Guide......

Thursday, November 8, 2012

 In just a few weeks we will be launching our first ever Christmas gift wrapping guide! Molly & I along with some amazing contributors will be showing lot's of eye candy on wrapping. More details with the next preview!

It's more than a magazine, part of the sales will go to the best gift: giving back to Barb's House of Angels. This orphanage is located in Uganda, the orphanage is Barb's amazing endeavor that she helped start by baking banana bread. One loaf at a time friends and you never know where your dreams might end up! Kimberly Taylor, the creative food stylist is her daughter for those of you familiar with Kimberly's work.

The wrapping guide is our dream to produce every year......

I'm s.l.o.w.l.y working on a new blog and it's getting worked on as we speak. However, here is the link to peek at B.H. Storm&Co. and although McMaster & Storm is our main company name B.H. Storm&Co. is our new brand we are launching and I'm hoping to launch a wholesale company by next fall! Yes, our new blog is still in the finishing stages and looks a little wonky as it's not done quite yet!

I have so much behind the scenes craziness going on, but ya'll understand, right?! We all have a zillion projects going on.....and why is it they happen at once?

Have a great day!

Original Hardwood Floor

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Some of you know my saga with my kitchen floor! I tried to paint the linoleum for a quick fix until 
our salvage wood floor was installed. Painting the linoleum was a painting disaster. Since painting the linoleum this past spring it has since chipped off in many places and with anything that was scooted across the floor, more of the ugly orange-ish linoleum came through.

Right before we left for Atlanta for the Country Living Fair, I had pulled the threshold up from our laundry room remodel because I kept tripping over it + knew it would come up anyway when the wood floor was installed in the kitchen.

I was suscipious that I saw wood flooring underneath the two layers of linoleum. The second layer of linoleum is straight out of the 50's or 60's. Matt said he didn't think there was wood under there.
So, yesterday I was beyond sick of the linoleum. I decided to pry up more of the layers and see for myself. Then deal with what to do if there was no wood flooring under there. {ever done something like this by yourself? I want to know!}

Right before Matt came home I discovered there was wood flooring under there. I squealed you would've thought I found gold or saw a mouse........Entire kitchen, intact wood flooring,  no glue and the wood still tightly together! Talk about a pick-me-up! We now don't have to lay salvage wood flooring since the original is there. {now for sanding & Waterlox treatment}

For those who have seen this on Instagram, I apologize it's just that I'm beyond thrilled. Yesterday evening with all the floor excitement our contractor sent pictures of the restored attic windows. Still hopeful the bulk of the attic remodel will be done by Christmas. {but then again house projects never are on schedule around here!}

Lots of updates from the Country Living Fair in Atlanta soon. We have a couple of fun exciting trips planned in November & December!  Heather Bullard's Souvenir {Holiday Edition} should be out before too long. Can't wait to see the layout of the wrapping project I did + all the other stories that will be in there.

Plus, Jeanne Oliver's Creatively Made Home is going on and have just seen a couple videos and they are great. So happy we can do the class at our own speed. I did a short presentation for Jeanne and doing a video of myself was hilarious & not as easy as I thought it would be! Honestly, it's really hard and thankful Jeanne has some editing superpowers. {Did I really, really say "plastic phenomenon".....Oh, dear me!}

Also, I'm on Instagram karagarber ---this is a fun way to keep up with tons of inspiring people/bloggers/friends. I love how fast & easy it is!

Jen at Cottage Nest has done a fab job with her kitchen update/redo......I am so inspired by her! Go over and cheer her on!

chat soon!

Creatively Made Home

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Jeanne Oliver's Studio in her home//
 Creatively Made Home by Jeanne Oliver Designs
& 4 other talented gals; Tracey Leber, Jennifer Rizzo,
Present a 5 week online class + a community website
for members to share and learn about a well-loved home.
Sign up here 
Read Jeanne's insightful blog post about your home here 
I have seen the website and it's well done. There is a place for you to conect with people,
ask questions and be very involved in the course.  
This class will be a ball & it starts tomorrow!!!
See you there! xo
{What room do you want to work on this fall/winter?}

Heirloomed by IceMilk Aprons

Thursday, October 18, 2012

[The creator Ashley Schoenith was inspired by her grandmother's waffle & icemilk breakfast she had growing up ]

[a lovely discovery]

[Printed pastry bag packaging {oh, the red string}]  All pictures found here

Prairie Wedding

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

 Last Saturday we climbed into a horse drawn carriage that carried us back to the most darling tucked away prairie. {If I can say Ohio has prairies! Not quite like the Kansas prairies!} We didn't get there early enough to snap away lots of pictures of details. The weather was cloudy, but not freezing and a storm moved north, so no raindrops fell on this venue!
Hello! Dayton, Ohio Area vendors:
Wedding coordinator: Justine Worthington
Photographer: Molly Dues
Photographer: Andrea Dozier
Music: Wakelight {amazing talent}Do listen to them today!

 Our boys were quite smitten with the straw bale seating and sat upon them like kings. There was fidgeting, but with a what's-next-kind of curious fidgeting.
 A rare relaxing moment for my husband.....he is grinning at our kids and that makes it extra sweet.
Fall = mad for plaid.....
Birdseed scooped into vintage paper cones to toss at the bride & groom coming down the aisle.

Miss Vivian

 Programs tied up with twine and a pretty font. Even though I've been married for 15 years, I still get Martha Stewart's Wedding Magazine. I even pin some weddings/ideas that I like. There is something about weddings isn't there? xo

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint | Table | 8 Chairs

Saturday, September 29, 2012

I finally painted & finished 8 dining chairs + our table. Late summer Matt put Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in his sprayer and sprayed the chairs. That helped in getting all the nooks & crannies covered. Then the detail work began. I mixed mineral spirits with the dark wax recommend by Annie in her book. I'm so happy I tried that technique. I love the look of it!  Beware it's stinky, messy and took over hours to work on the chairs. {did I mention hours?} So worth it though!

Needless to say, I'm not fond of painting chairs. The table was easier, but still used 3 coats of paint
French linen, Old White {which was still too white for this house} then settled on the top coat of Old Ochre I loved the Old Ochre color, still fairly light colored, but fits in this house with our tone of woodwork. I sanded & waxed and then some.  {I'm going to try to make homemade chalk paint--my husband guessed it right, you can add plaster of paris to your paint} Thrifty? Yes, please, recipe here.

Our limelight hydrangeas have faded to a dirty pink | brown | limey green tones and I plucked off a basket full and decked out our table with nature's bounty!

It's time for our annual woods walk and we'll be be hunting & gathering nature's finest this coming weekend. Love fall......
p.s. have you been sipping pumpkin spice lattes? I heard painting goes better with your favorite fall drink in hand, no?

For the Record

Friday, September 28, 2012

Keep going no matter what

Our website was taken down on 9/27/12. We launched it in May of 2008. The last I had updated it was the fall of 2009. I launched an Etsy shop McMaster & Storm's Swan + Shears Fall of 2010 {Yup, we still have our Etsy shop!}. Our tech guy wasn't much help on our main website once he graduated from college. He was a great guy to work with, however you must hire someone that has an interest in helping you maintain it. {that's key, a big one!}

Once Vivian arrived 8/10, I was exhausted and the littles took most of my energy, in a good way! Zach & Vivi are 18 months apart! I'm tired of having inventory in our upstairs. Sure, we have an attic space plus another room, but missed having a "back room" like we had in our physical store. Plus, I needed time with my family and to enjoy the days when they are little.

As my close friend says before you know it it's the dating scenario with your teenager. HA. Really not so funny...we even discussed arranged marriages in a funny text! {told my friend she picked a good one, so I'm sure her daughter can too!}

Taking our site down made it official for me to start working on something I have wanted to try do.

Great advice.

In a few weeks we head to Atlanta for the Country Living Fair. I will be cleaning and making my office a fresh new space for new endeavors. It's time.  When I was talking to our former tech guy yesterday and he said "are you sure you want me to cancel your site"? "Yes"! Should've been done awhile long ago.

It's ok to drift if you know the reasons and when you are ready to really get down to will do so!
On the side bar on our blog, the "boutique" takes you to our Etsy shop now. 
Jay Roeder
Where will we get our staplers and refills?
1. On our Etsy shop; Swan + Shears! Just received an order today so all colors are currently available.

What are you working on? What are your plans?
2. To be announced! Must have some key things in place first & I've been working on them.
Everything just takes twice as long as I think it will!

What advice do you have for those of us wanting to start a business?
3. Do what you love & love what you do. I have a whole Pinterest board of inspiring thoughts!
Don't be scared, just start; one step in front of the other. There is a niche for everyone & enough room for all!

I feel I need to rethink my business path, any thoughts on this?
4. Always, always be flexible with your business! It's ok to change how & what your doing as long as you feel comfortable and confident about it. Sometimes change is the best thing!

Small business is BIG business!
If you have more questions--fire away! I will be happy to help! 
I promise to share more about shopkeeping, etc...... 

Want to read more on inspiring people? Nicole Balch is now the sole breadwinner in her family. {high-fve!} Her blog, Making it Lovely is well, lovely indeed!
Jami of Freckled Laundry wrote her creative business advice for you on Miss Mustard Seed.



Souvenir Foto School | Food + Foto

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Tristan of Besotted Brand

If October was not full of to-dos and of course our journey to the Atlanta Country Living Fair. Then I would sign up for Souvenir Foto School, pronto. I took a Foto class with Tristan of Besotted Brand earlier this year and her team does a fantastic job. Of course I still have a lot to learn (& then some), but it gave me confidence and I learned to really pay attention and put thought into shooting my pics.

I would highly recommend her classes. She is witty to boot. Sign up! You won't be sorry. Promise!

Snippets from Country Living Fair 2012

Saturday, September 22, 2012

/// Prop Styling///

1. Vintage rack from my mother's collection. 2. Patterns cut from builders paper. 3. I machine sewed black zig- zags on paper pattern pieces. 4. Vintage French clips hold vintage pattern instructions & pattern pieces in place.
///This created a division for one corner of our booth///
kraft paper + black thread + a touch of metallic gold + creamy aged vintage pattern instructions
= simple beauty.

 I'm intrigued by atelier studios and creative spaces. Are you?
A vintage box of tailor's chalk. lovely indeed.

Do you have a space to create? What's your favorite tool of the trade?

Country Living Fair {Columbus+Atlanta}

Thursday, September 13, 2012

My dad's shop was my inspiration for our booth at Country Living fair tomorrow! Plus, getting excited about the show in Atlanta as well. {Yup, we are doing the Atlanta Country Living Fair, crazy fun indeed!} This time we are in a group tent--so far it's ok. In Atlanta we will have our own tent/space.

I was able to photograph the shop right before my little brother started cleaning it up. New generation & plans for a brand new shop. However, I like the quirkiness of the old-school shop.
Love the door---

old commercial bread pans hold odds & ends....
work chair for working on equipment
I remember this tool box---
See you tomorrow, no?!!!
Have an amazing weekend ahead--supposed to be lovely weather.

European Garden Style////Factory Sink

Saturday, September 8, 2012

My Matt's completion of our garden sink
 Faucet below for the garden hose.
Matt laid a good sized area of pea gravel & deep as to not get muddy.

Love how Matt ran the copper piping on the back of the sink!.

Matt brought home a fig tree & hope it can handle Ohio's winters.

A place to wash produce & little hands & feet!

The limestone base came from our friend's cellar walls.

 There is also electricity under the sink, for parties etc.

 For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes. Revelation 7:17

Projects always take longer than I think! Next up is our attic, it is torn out now and the windows are being restored. So happy I found someone that loves history and is willing to work with the old......

Have a wonderful weekend!!!

Little Miss Shopkeep

Thursday, September 6, 2012

a wee girl's shopkeep set
linen fitted tablecloth with tim holtz's tape measure sewn on:::made by moi!
things to sell & merchandise to display for little hands + those simple receipt books!

white apron was her daddy's

petite play money from the party store

shopkeeper's essential::::a broom just her size

a dollar tree wastebasket:::

paper bags for her customers::pretty parcels make happy customers

tags to price with and red/white bakery twine:::
a joy to watch her in her play
sometimes the simplest, most inexpensive gifts are the most fun

Vivian's 2 year old present from us with love.
 She makes fine linen, and sells it; and delivers sashes unto the merchants.
Proverbs 31:24