I have a 14 year old teenage boy. Teenage boys are dirty. Mine has a favorite chair that he sits in to watch TV. I'm going to be straight up with you here...he sometimes uses the chair arms as a napkin. The chair is so dirty. It's a pretty off-white and grey IKAT cotton (when clean)...and it's desperate for a cleaning.
So, yeah...I could go buy some Resolve and spray it on, but I am on a mission. A mission to use only natural products in my house. So, I get to thinking about how I'm going to clean this chair...of course, I head right on over to Pinterest to find some concoction someone already tried and is deeming it best. The first one that catches my eye is this one titled Homemade Upholstery Cleaner - 3 Simple Ingredients. Awesome. Vinegar, Alcohol (yes, alcohol), and essential oil. Hmmm, I can do that. I have all 3 ingredients. And the alcohol! Who knew! I've never even considered cleaning with it! AND...it will sterilize this dirty chair, too! So, I follow her recipe, make a batch, put it in a mister bottle, and spray it on. Wait a few minutes and take a sponge (one side has a roughness to it...this is the side I use to start. I mean, this chair is dirty.) And I scrub away! ...and all the while, thinking there's no way this is going to get this chair clean...it's ruined forever!
But....Oh. My. My chair and ottoman look almost brand new! I now wish I had taken a before picture. I'll share my after picture with you. (I was so skeptical...well, because, ya know...the ingredients are so simple...and it's homemade). This is the real deal, y'all. Give it a try. You'll be happy (and healthier!) that you did!
It's been a while since I wrote a blog here...and I'm looking forward to getting back to it with a renewed sense of vigor. Since closing the shop in November 2015, I've been busy with marketing and selling, at wholesale and retail, my art, WiLDWooD CoLLeCTiF. You can check it out here on the Artisan East site, and on ETSY.
For more reasons than I can list, the time came to close my sweet little artisan shop. Some of you who are local know that very soon after opening Artisan East, my son's father passed away, and my life (and of course, my son's life) was forever altered. (This was 4 months after my father passed away suddenly one month after I had opened the doors to the shop and right at the point that I felt my grief was easing). As a small business owner, especially a new business owner, the work is 24/7. My son needed me...and the guilt I felt being away so much was just overwhelming. I feared not being there to talk to him right when he had intense feelings of loss and sadness would affect him dramatically and be irreversible. With both the emotional burden and the financial burden of having a business and being the sole provider for my son being so heavy, I decided to close and regroup...
It's been about 10 months since I've closed Artisan east and it feels like 5 months. Time has flown by. It's been just over 2 years since my son's father passed and my Dad, too.
That's the bitter. The shop was always my goal. It was my horizon through my 20s and 30s and I was sure it's what I would do until I retired. Letting it go has been hard, has made me dig deep, soul-search, and re-examine. But, I have discovered the sweet. It's a longing that I didn't know I needed filled...to be present for my son even more so than I ever was. The shop was not my utopia, like I had always imagined it would be. It just didn't fit anymore. My life course was changed for me...and the irony is not lost on me. It's exactly where I want to be.
But first....goodbye, February!
You were COLD and gloomy...unlike any February I remember here in Nashville. You made for some beautiful pictures...
icicles hanging from the shop awning & planters, and iced-over trees glimmering in the sunshine that ONE day.
I do the loVe the brightness that envelops our surroundings when there's snow all around...it makes the world so serene and beautiful.
But, good riddance! Come on spring! It's time for sunshine and flowers!!!