Posts Tagged ‘recycling’

 B. W. Harwell

Hat Show, 2005

Miniature Wedding Hat

B. W. Harwell

I learned that being a ‘hatter‘ in the early 1900s was a huge profession. Big city centers provided opportunities for immigrants and others  to support their families. It was a time when average men wore hats and spats. Women would not be outdone and demanded beautiful hats. They had to be designed, cleaned and blocked.

Nashville became a major hatter industry when Greek families moved here and set up shop near downtown. They bought homes in East Nashville, an historic area even today.

In 2005 a large number of very old hats, brand new, still in their hat boxes were put on exhibit by my artist friend. She remembers sitting in the window of the shop as a treat. We, her friends, agreed to make something to go in the show related to these hats. We each got one or two for “inspiration.”

I wanted to do something different from just painting. It was such fun to take to the fabric scraps (I am going to do something with this one day) and the beads and jewelry pieces to make mini art hats.

The day of the Hanging Around Gallery opening, we wore some of the old hats or in my case, I made a hat. It is immortalized in Nashville Magazine ‘society page!’ Little did the guests know that the large flower hat had a needle and thread still lost in it.

At least, I hope they never saw it!

Who knew?

I posted yesterday that I would share some of these little hats today. I just made it under the wire. When you say you will do something, it is best to follow-through. People will remember when you missed the mark more times than when you made it. And a child may never forget.

The British royalty and upper classes are putting on hat shows at every major events. I wonder how the fascinators stay on.

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A Child's Garden of Verses

Image via Wikipedia

Guest Reviewer Robin

On A Child’s Garden of Verses

When I was sick and lay abed, I had two pillows at my head, and all my toys beside me lay to keep me happy all the day.”

Bettye, reading that post made my day.  I was instantly transported back to my happiest parts of childhood.  You have now made it imperative that I find that book this weekend.  I’ve seen it in a box of books not too long ago, I just need to see where I put it.  That was my favorite book, I cherished it.  I read the verses over and over, recited them for class literature exercises, memorized them and most importantly shared them with my Nana, who wrote beautiful poetry and although she never said so, I knew she loved me madly.  Land of Counterpane was my favorite but My Shadow was my next favorite. Oh, how I hope Deliah will love it too.  Thank you, I can’t stop smiling, a little teary eyed smile but my heart is about nine years old right now.
(email received December 9, 2011 –  commenting on post A Favored Book Remembered.)
When we receive the unexpected proof that we have touched another person deeply, we are humbled and inspired. Thanks, Robin.

Hint 1 – One way to clean computer and iPad screens of those pesky fingerprints and cookie crumbs:

A scrap of ultrasuede fabric is soft enough not to scratch the glass and appears to remove the greasy fingerprints. Ultrasuede is a brand name and not cheap. Save money buy buying scraps.

An 8 oz. bag of scraps (enough to share with all of your friends) is available at:


Other online sites are listed under ‘ultrasuede scraps.’

Disclaimer:  This idea did come from trial and error, not Martha Stewart.

Hint 2 – Check sales for secondhand furniture:

In some cities, all  Goodwill stores have storewide sales on the first Saturday of each month. It would be a good time to look for high value items and furniture. Recently a man is said to have bought a small leather box just because it looked interesting. Inside was something very valuable. It doesn’t happen often, but it does.

More often you find something that you can perk up with paint or soap and water. An old frame may be more valuable to you than the art work inside. Get to know what you can use and not what your eyes tell you to buy.

In my studio is a child’s armoire. It had been painted a bright color with stylized flowers and vines on all sides. It is painted red inside. On the left is hanging space which can be used in many ways. On the right are drawers for separating art tools and computer supplies. A high gloss finishes the outside. This was in a Goodwill on a sales Saturday!

Who knew?

While the cabinet is a conversation piece and not much monetary value, it is priceless to me. Inside the original bill of sales and artist’s card indicated it was painted by a Texas artist. We looked her up on the internet. Her history will be the subject of another post.

Another unexpected happening

One of the recommended Related Articles looked familiar. It is. It is my poem posted 1 day ago. (see below.)

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"Bottle Tree"

Capturing Spirits



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One person’s trash may be someone’s treasure. (from an old saying)

The town histories available on the Internet Archives free website provide valuable information about the early times in this country. They describe  the difficulties in settling areas. The natural  beauty of the hills and rivers had to be balanced with the ability to feed and provide security for the families. They read as easily and as wonderfully as current biographies.

The pamphlet about  Cornwall, CT

Beautiful Terrain

"Lookout Vista

explains both the ways in which the settlers and the Indian tribes cooperated as well as the circumstances that tore them apart. The minutes of the first meetings to divide the land, organize the leadership, plan for schools and churches are mentioned in such a way that you know the individuals and their strengths and weaknesses. You understand the reason for starting schools for the Indians, who were considered as undesirables. Intrigue happens when love comes to Cornwall. And unrest develops between  the churches when war (Revolutionary War) and greed arise.

We also are told when the documents no longer exist because someone took or destroyed them. We are grateful for what remained and for the effort the authors took to preserve them along with interpretations of events.

Prepare to spend hours of delightful reading. If you are traveling, take the time to stop at some of these off the road places. See the covered bridges and the hills mentioned in these old town histories. Much of the beauty remains and the people will welcome your visit.

Who knew?

It is easy to put together  your own collections of papers in attractive hard or soft covers. There are still the ways of making books in as complicated a manner you are talented enough to do.  Materials are available at art supply companies, both stores and online. You can invest as much or as little. Artists and journal-keepers are altering books as a recycling and artistic endeavor.

Make a collection of related materials  (drawings, notes, instructions, etc.) as a way of keeping them safe. It says to you and those who come after  “I thought these were worth saving.” The binding machines sold as a craft project are efficient and the covers attractive. Several types of covers and costs are available to choose from. The cheaper ones also come in bright colors to delight and suggest subject matter.

What to save is a personal decision. Letter writing is quickly becoming a lost art and so a bound volume of grandmother’s letters could be a choice. Grandfathers seemed to have that flowing cursive as beautiful as a Turner painting. Most of us can not afford to have the Turner but a book of beautiful penmanship should be preserved.

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Your calendar has different markers when you refer to yesterday, last year, the tornado was, when the baby comes. Some are past events that are personal to you and some are in the future. The things most important to you in a personal way, determine how you plan.

List-makers who date what they plan to do each day are fine until the list gets crowded with unfinished goals. Journals are filled with intentions. Regrets that last month everything and everyone changed your plans? Joys when there is something good is unexpected.

What if your day goes from 6 a.m. to 12 midnight? If your calendar book starts on Monday and ends on Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.? The iPad Calendar days start at 1 a.m. and ends at 11 p.m. Exhausting just to consider.

Your week may start by remembering to put the trash out on Tuesday for Wednesday pick-up. Your month may date from some event, like a wedding that requires planning for travel. By the end of the year, many people experience great sadness looking back. Even New Year’s resolutions fail to lift the gloom and add pressure to perform.

What differences your timetable and calendar happen to have were probably studied! Morning person wants breakfast at 5:50 a.m. married to ‘lazy’ night person who wakes up at 10 a.m. Time to consider the validity of a personal calendar.

Who knew?
We have so many electronics no longer in use. When you look at the pile of cords it is impossible to tell what they were for. New cell phones are replaced with the latest jazzy looking smart phone. (Smarter than who?) Companies, like Staples office supplies, charge to take these off your hands. Now Hewlett Packard will send you a label for shipping and will recycle any used electronics for free. The shipping label is for you to ship at no cost. See their recycle plan at


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