Friday, December 21, 2012

In New Mexico

We made it to Las Cruces! Peter has most of the pictures of our trip, so I'll wait until I retrieve those from him to post about the trip.

It has been such a relief to arrive in New Mexico and begin the slow process of "re-potting". When I moved to Reno I did not even take a single day off to move and settle in. In contrast, having THREE FULL WEEKS to move, unpack, do Christmas and maybe even take a vacation has been simply heavenly. Two days in to my time in New Mexico I feel more settled than I did after a month in Reno And yes, I have already located several good thrift stores, coffee shops, and walks for Zebulon.

So without further ado, here is a brief snapshot of my life here.

Having plants in the house really makes the place look like home. 

Um, hello awesome Craigslist find. The guy lowered the price with every item I took, so I ended up with some great items...

Like this bookshelf, hand built but sturdy, which will serve as a dresser with my newly thrifted suitcases. 

...and this awesome chair. I think it'll make a great crochet corner. 

This is the kitchen. I'm not wild about the faux wood laminate, but it is a full sized kitchen with plenty of storage, so no complaints over here. 
Its really fancy dining over here at Chez Sarah. The table and chairs were also part of my Craigslist treasure trove. I LOVE the wood flooring and large windows.

Kolby--this is for you. Part of my granny chic aesthetic. 


 I can't have a bedroom picture without a shot of Zeb on the bed. He spends 90% of his days here.
Doorway between bedroom and living room. For some reason I really like the doorway. 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Unfinished Projects

My short stint in Reno was frantic and very full. I had grand ambitions to rehab a few pieces of furniture, but that never happened. I thought I'd share a few of these projects and potential. upcycling options. Sorry for the bad picture quality, these are all from my craigslist advertisements.




China cabinet?

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Let's Just Hide

Zeb has been doing a lot of hiding recently. I think he is sensing changes going on around him, since we are MOVING TO NEW MEXICO.

I'll try to keep you a little more updated along the way, but to answer a few questions:

1) I am not taking my furniture with me. The table is going back to Winnemucca for safe keeping. Everything else is still there. I love all of those projects, but I want to own my stuff and not have it own me. By trying to limit my belongings to what fits in my car and a few shipped boxes, I figure I'll be forced to part with a lot of items that I don't really need any more.

2) Yes, I am looking forward to starting from scratch in a new place...I have so many ideas for decorating!

3) Yes, Zeb is coming with me.

4) Our last day in Reno is December 15.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Baby Gifts, Part II

Hello Friends!

After a long interlude,  I bring you baby gifts part two. I love maps. I love making them, in fact I've managed to make that a large component of my career. One day, while at work, I started to notice that often street lines can mimic the shapes of a bicycle. When my friends, Tim and Jill had their son, Jonas, this seemed to be a particularly apt gift for the clan. You may recall that Tim loves bicycles so much that he organized his garage using dismembered bicycle parts.

So here you go, bikes on a map.




Aren't they fun? And so easy to make. All you need is a map, a canvas (or piece of cardboard), and some black paint.

And as an aside, I will be the first to admit that, ahem, presentation is not my strong suite. By this I mean cute table settings, packages, and hairstyles just don't find their way into my life all that often. But I recently stumbled across a cute kids book at a thrift store which I quickly disassembled to make notecards. So the Engelhardt clan received a decorative package with a few wall decorations on the inside.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Baby Gifts, Part 1

I am moving into the part of my life where my friends are starting to have babies. I love the idea of a little handmade gift for the newly arrived little ones. This first piece of art is for Baby Jack, Maggie and Jon's little guy making his appearance in November.

Dino and I can't wait to meet him!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

That One Time I Went to Burning Man

However one may feel about the art extravaganza that is Burning Man, you have to admire the art that is produced for this event. Although the art will be burned at the end of the festival, artists from across the globe gather extraordinary and intricate structures on the Black Rock Desert playa for a week of celebration of art and community. 

This week a work trip took me to Black Rock City, the third largest city in Nevada for the week of Burning Man, and I was able to photograph a few of these amazing structures.

The Big Ego

The Temple is constructed each year as a quiet space. Participants leave photos of loved ones and decorate the walls with writing before the burn. 

The Temple was constructed of laser cut plywood and then assembled in the playa.

 Motorized vehicles are not permitted in Black Rock City, so Burning Man participants decorate bikes to travel around the city.

Because the event is held in the middle of a salt desert, frequent wind storms create white out conditions. Objects returning from the playa are distinct in  their coats of fine white dust.  

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Lots of Knots

 The past few months have brought marriage knots, anxiety knots, and my favorite, bread knots. I hope I am surfacing above the fray and will be back to posting more regularly. "Repotting" as Terry calls it, is indeed a slow and deliberate process.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Wedding White

I'm catching up on some of my pictures before the summer has completely sped by. Rob and Peggy's garden wedding was a simple affair; full of love, dog barks, and family.

Sunday, July 8, 2012


...has a new friend. Meet Zebulon.

Yes, that's right, I am a dog mom now. For the past month, Zebulon has joined me on hikes

Photo shoots...


and squirrel hunts.

He had me at hello, and I am so glad he's mine.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Lurking in the Shadows

So where have I been? What have I been up to? Recent art has come in the form of quiet, away from my computer, attempting a respite from my ever growing to do list of items to pack, discard, sell; friends to see, reconnect with, and say good bye to. Projects to finish or abandon.

All this to say, I have once again migrated to another part of Nevada. Back to Reno, back to hustle and trees and water. Into living by myself, a new job, and a different group of friends.

I already miss Winnemucca and my quiet artistic life there. Yet, I am curious to see where creativity lurks in this new environ. Other responsibilities will keep me busy, but I will certainly keep you abreast of the Sarah adventures.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friendly Friday

Hello, dear friends. I'll update you soon on my happenings and non-happenings, but in the meantime I have another "Friendly Friday"  for you.

Terry is a dear family friend, a mentor in womanhood, who continues to inspire me with her intentional and artistic endeavors. This post has been long in coming, so I'll just give you what she sent me:

A luna moth quilt!

Terry writes:

For a long time (decades) I have wanted to make pictures out of fabric. Until three years ago, I had no idea there was such a medium as "art quilts." I began taking a class here and there to gain some basic skills and learn what others were doing. When I found a 4-day workshop on making pieced art quilts, and I knew this was how I wanted to work. The luna moth is the first art quilt I made with these new skills, following the instructions of my talented teacher, Sheri Alcorn.
It is based on a photograph, but the design, piecing, and quilting are all my own workfrom selecting fabrics to adding original appliqued "eyes" and antennae. How can I describe the fulfillment I experienced as I worked with hundreds of tiny pieces to create what had been latent in me for so long? I enjoyed the process of abstracting the photo, cutting and piecing original patterns to fit my design, adjusting color choices as the moth began to take shape on my sewing machine. The pieced design was finished in four intense days of class time, but the finishing (adding a back, quilting, binding, and applique) took me several months more. Each step was a little scary: What if I did something that "ruined" my work? Would I still like my quilt if my novice skills did not match my aspirations? The outcome has been a delight to me and to my family for years now, and I have made two more quilts since then.
The most valuable lessons I learned from making this first quilt are these: It's never too late to learn something new. (I'm 50-something!) Taking a class does not negate creativity; it empowers it. Learning by doing is the only way to master a skill, so just do it!

Thanks Terry!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Love's Labor

Way back in November, I had a rare weekend by myself. With the roommate and the boyfriend out of town, I went on a little "craftcation" and began what turned into the mother of all projects. Here is Photo #1:

Note the yawn-inducing factory honey oak finish.  I also had 6 chairs of the same style but different  in stains and paints, so I wanted to unify the whole set. 

After weekend # 1 I was left with a jaw dropping table. It was a sawdust and fume filled craftcation, but I really couldn't have been happier with the result.

And then the whole project sat for 3 months. I knew that refinishing chairs was an intensive process (my mom  was once quoted $100+ per chair for a refinish job), so I wanted to wait until I had reinforcements (aka boyfriend labor).

One fine February day, the stars aligned and we did this for two weeks.

I'm not kidding. We sanded six chairs for two full weekends. Three chairs had multiple layers of paint in addition to cracks and dings that had to be repaired. Fortunately, I love a good power sander and the boyfriend loves to sand by hand, so we tag teamed the whole process very smoothly.

Two more weekends of painting and staining (solo) and I have this stunning piece in my dining room:

I am so grateful to my boyfriend and roommate for enduring a grueling process, but all of the painstaking steps to do it right were highly rewarding. That being said, I don't necessarily recommend a similar project. This was difficult, I had to force myself to take breaks so I wouldn't ruin the project in my haste to just be finished already. Sanding is hard. Excruciating at points in time. And loud. And messy. And also weirdly rewarding. Labor of love? Absolutely. And that is what (to me at least) makes a house a home, the intentional touches and personal stories that surround those who are lucky enough to enter a home, to find a home, to make a home, or to share a home. 

Monday, April 2, 2012

Chainsaw Art: Part Two

The best art most be displayed well. To that end, I am thrilled that the boyfriend made this gorgeous stand for the aforementioned chainsaw painting.