Reflections…on 2020

The truth of the matter is, we’ve been masking ourselves – our true selves, our inner selves – to the world for quite some time.  But in March of 2020, COVID-19 hit our world, and the masks we began to wear were no longer hidden masks of our hearts.  They became (to me) a physical reminder of the deeper heart wounds that we try to hide everyday.

Four months into the virus, I found myself (probably like the rest of you) needing a haircut.  It was in that pandemic struggle that I found a person who was willing to share not only her skills in hairdressing, but she bore her heart, and I found something so precious and so refreshing that I sought her out more than once in the months that followed.

As I sat in her small one room salon, Erin shared many truths with me.  My heart sang at having found a sister in Christ to talk with…someone that shared my faith and love of Jesus, and who was unashamed to speak of that love.

On the wall across from us was this painting.  As I inquired about it, I learned that Erin was indeed an artist in more than one form!  This piece, called “Caged Beauty” spoke a story to my heart as she unfolded what she had painted, and why.  She practically breathed life into the creation as she recounted her affection and heartache for children caught in sex trafficking.  As she described this piece to me, I could envision clearly her portrayal of the children’s’ beauty, but the tragedy of them being trapped behind a world of lies, deceit and fear.  The story spoke so personally to me that it became my first purchased piece of true art for our new home.

As months passed, I learned of Erin’s new art studio space in downtown Brevard.  It was in my visit with her there that I felt a tug on my heart to purchase Erin’s pieces and to sell them at Burlap & Lace’s space within the Marketplace on Locust in Hendersonville, NC.  I loved her heart that was sketched into every piece, and I wanted to help expose her work to others.  In that vein, I asked Erin if I might video her telling of her work in her own words, and she was readily agreeable.  I also took notes (so glad I did!) in case my videoing skills were lacking.  As it turns out, my skills didn’t fail me, but this blog site has.  Video additions are not part of my “free” package.  So to the best of my ability, I will share Erin’s paintings and her stories behind them with you. My words of description will be as much hers as mine, as I wrote down exact quotes from her. And just so you know, her work will be offered for sale in my space after Christmas so spread the word by sharing this blog with your friends and on your personal pages.  And please understand….these are not Hobby Lobby reproductions and will not be priced as such.  They are creative, expressive, works of Erin’s heart.  Galleries will soon be promoting her work, and I am more than ecstatic to have her pieces gracing the walls of Burlap & Lace!

On the day I visited Erin in her studio, I knew I wanted to purchase all that she had available.  Above was the last piece I purchased from Erin that day, but the first to share with you here.  She calls it “Most Cunning”.

Many things struck me about this piece, the first being that it is entirely finger painted!  Erin told me that she painted this during the beginning of the quarantine period of the pandemic, having no foreknowledge when she began of what she would paint.  As she swirled her fingers on the canvas, she was meditating on the truth, the fear, the confusion and the heaviness of 2020.  That the serpent manifested itself was NOT her plan.   As she prayed and painted , she began to see the manifestation of the serpent and was shocked, as she didn’t want to paint something scary.  She remembered at once that although Satan is the most cunning of all creatures, yet the promise to every believer in Jesus Christ is that he, the serpent, is under the heel of the believer, and that God is ultimately in control of all that has been happening this Covid year.

This acrylic and mixed medium canvas painting is $895.

The above piece is called “Sanctuary”.  How often have you longed for a place of retreat?   A place where you could fall on your face and feel no condemnation, no shame, only comfort?  Erin found such a place at a time when she was not a believer.  Her Catholic grandmother, she remembers vividly, would always take her to church when she was a young child.  And although she laughingly (and somewhat fondly) remembers those cathedrals as much “greater” than what she has painted, the portrayal for her was the peace she felt when in that place.  It was as if somehow she knew when she was inside the church she was on holy ground.  Later, she explains, in some of the darkest times of her life, she would get down on her knees and pray, even though she didn’t believe.  Her faith began to grow through those hard times, and she stated that she began to paint a series of church paintings, always white and always bright.  Although painted some years ago, I’m so thankful she had this one left for me to purchase!  As with most of her pieces, this is an acrylic/mixed medium on canvas.  And with all of her canvas paintings, they are perfect stand-alone pieces, or would be stunningly attractive encompassed by a frame of your choosing.  This piece sells for $225.

Look closely at this next painting…I had to!  It’s called “Love Wins” and is again an acrylic/mixed medium on canvas.  When at a local art show, Erin saw a bronze bust with a glass rose coming out of the chest.  Erin was drawn to the bust, and explained that at the time, she was going through a divorce, which to her was the equivalence of a huge death that lasted several years.  It was during this time that she first began to paint, and to feel her grandmother’s gift of painting being passed on to her.   She wanted to paint a rendition of the sculpture she had seen….this is her first bust painting.  She indicates that the rose symbolized to her something beautiful….that she was going to recover and come through the darkest time of her life, all the while honoring her Father in heaven and remembering that love ultimately always wins.  Thus, the naming of her piece, which sells for $425.

Called “Grateful”, Erin’s most recently painted work came about as an excited, bright, happy and hopeful circumstance occurred in her life….the rental of the art space studio that she now occupies in downtown Brevard.  Erin recalled to me such an explosion of joy from her heart over having a designated space in which to do her art.  With my own love of flowers, and with the brightness of this work, it will be a favorite to display in my shop.  This acrylic/mixed media canvas painting will be offered at $395.

Unlike all the other purchased pieces that day, this gorgeous painting, done on wood, is likely the one that draws me in most to the story behind it.  And I might add here, that this is the video clip I hope to put on my IG or FB page soon, so look for it.  Erin’s heart speaks so clearly that I really want you to hear her words from her own mouth.  But until such a time, I will do my best to recount her story of this painting to you….

Being outside in her yard, setting up her easel, she had a birds eye view of the church that rents her home to her.  She unashamedly admits that on that particular day, she was dealing with her own emotions and feelings of anger, frustration and fear.  For a long time, she had been praying for a home that no one would be able to take from her.  She was angry at her circumstances, afraid of the church and feeling very frustrated as she began to paint.  What she felt  flowing outward from her heavy heart was nothing like what was unfolding onto the wood before her.  Erin very clearly recanted to me how God began to show her that she was to be aware of her feelings, but that she was to let her reflection be one of beauty and light, not darkness and fear.  Selling for $795,  I might add that when you buy Erin’s art, you are witness to a piece of her heart that is woven into every creation that pours forth from her fingertips, or from her brushes.

There are two more paintings that I walked away from Erin’s studio with that day.  Suffice it to say, neither will be seen at Burlap & Lace as they are now gracing the walls of our own home.  As you visit Burlap & Lace in 2021, my hope is that you will come to gaze upon these pieces (and hopefully more!), celebrating as I have that something so clearly speaks to your heart that it then becomes a timeless focal piece for your home.

May you be blessed as you spend time in the Reflections of 2020, understanding that God has gifted each of us in different ways.  Let’s choose to celebrate those differences as we move into the new year of 2021, sharing what we have to offer with those we meet along our journey.



Make way for Fall arrivals!

I can hardly believe summer is coming to an end!  Items are marked to move…come on in to Country Creations  Florist and get in on the fun!


This jam cabinet reduced to $85!  What a bargain!  Use it in a kitchen for dishes and recipe books, or in a bath for towels and toiletry items.  Or how about in the shed for gardening tools, gloves and paints?!?  The possibilities are endless!

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Dress forms are both useful as decorative pieces, or for a place to toss a jacket in an entryway.  You can take this dress form home today…it’s decorative enough to stand alone, or dress it up if you prefer!  Look for the 50’s poodle skirt coming this week…just in time for halloween (only $16 for this 2-piece set)!  Dress form reduced to $45!


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As the season gives way to winter, I imagine this vintage cradle (standing on end with pillow in front) on a large table at Christmas, full of holly and Christmas balls and lights.  Ummm….or perhaps nestled by a fireplace holding the yule logs would be the better setting.  It would also be a great addition to your daughter’s doll room.  Get it now, reduced to $35.  What a deal!

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Every room needs storage, so why not take home this chest and use it by a bed or in a kitchen for a coffee bar!  The uses are limitless, and the price has been reduced to just $60!


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Or choose this painted chest instead, in an office, by a bed, or in a laundry room to hold all those old cleaning towels.  Also priced at just  $60!

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I have several of these milk cans at my house….they are perfect for holding hiking sticks and umbrellas by the front door, or garden tools in the garden to make gardening so much easier!  Priced at $35, you will want this to end up at your home next!  It also looks lovely with a potted plant nestled inside the hole, and watering is a cinch because when the can gets full of water, simply remove the plant and dump out the water!

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With the coming of my first grandchild, I envision this window with black and white photos taped in each spot, or perhaps a finger-painted picture from that special child would mingle nicely with his or her photo?  Can be propped, or hung.  Priced at only $36!

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Are you like me….small kitchen and in need of extra work room or serving space when guests arrive?  Why not try this vintage ironing board as your solution?!?  Prop it up to hold the Thanksgiving turkey and dressing and take it down when the serving line dwindles down!  Or set it in a guest room to hold a suitcase, or a laundry room to use as a folding table!  Because is folds, extra space is readily available, and easily removed when not in use.  And it’s VINTAGE!  (and only $25)


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Bookshelves are often hard to find, especially wood ones that are well-constructed.  This small shelf is only $35.  Looks great in natural wood, or paint it if you prefer.


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And this is only the beginning!  Come in and find that still-working vintage peculator, or a crib bed spring that can be used on the wall as decoration, or hung  outside as a type of garden trellis.  Reduced to sell at just $30!  (The rust is free!)  Or how about a pepsi crate priced at only $24.95?  I have mine hung in a bathroom to hold washcloths!

Come on in before Sept. 1 and find lots of fun for your home, or gifts for friends and neighbors.  It’s never too early to begin Christmas shopping!  New inventory will arrive in September, so let’s move this out and have room for more!   Hope to see you soon, and happy shopping!

~ Connie

School days, school days…

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School days, school days – dear ‘ol golden rule days.  Reading and writing and arithmetic, taught to the tune of a hickory stick.  You were my queen in calico; I was your bashful barefoot beau.  You wrote on my slate, “I love you so” when we were a couple of kids.

My mother used to sing the song penned above to me every year as we were starting back to school.  She made the anticipation joyful with a special shopping trip to buy the needed supplies.

In celebration of those teachers who are preparing their classrooms for their children, and for the homeschooling moms who are desperate to find something new to grab their students’ attention, I decided to usher in my own vintage memories of school days gone by to my booth this month.

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Crayons were (and still are!) a favorite of mine.  This sign is a reminder to me that we don’t have to “color in the lines” to be an artist, or to appreciate the happiness we find in design.

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Chalk boards are coming back and while I never liked the sound of the chalk against the board, I am finding great satisfaction in displaying a Bible verse to ponder on the one in our own home.

The one pictured here is made from a vintage frame found in my grandmother’s attic. She being quite the artist, it was fun to find an assortment of frames in her attic that I have now crafted into various chalkboards.  In my booth space this month are 3 that boast various frames and sizes – perfect not only for the classroom, but for the restaurant owner to display today’s special, the mom who needs an organizing board, or the business man who likes to scratch out his thoughts before his board meeting.

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I searched high and low to find the perfect vintage school desk that reminded me of my youth. This one comes complete with gum stuck to the inside of it, and I love Billy etched in and scratched out again on the inside wood….which, by the way, made this the most exciting addition to my booth this month!

You will find perched upon the desktop a metal box filled with crayons and a toy giraffe for inspiration in art class!  The Abacus rests below the chair, awaiting those days of math and higher learning.  Take a spin on the globe when geography lessons begin, and use the vintage flower frog to rest the colored crayons you were using until you can return to your artwork.

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And speaking of art work, why not use this distressed window to display those pictures your child brings home?  Or take those black and white photos you have hidden in a box or stored on your computer files and display them here.  The ideas for this vintage window are endless….and can be changed as your child grows!

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Straight from the days of my childhood come these vintage suitcases (which my grandmother used to take along on our trips to the heated swimming pool in Chattanooga, TN).  Of course they were not painted when she carried them, but to me they represented all the fun of dressing up because I knew that is just what we would do on our trips!  My grandmother, known to me as Nanny, was a hairdresser by trade so it was not unusual for her to do some pretty remarkable things with my bed-head in the mornings.  In keeping with her style, the smaller cosmetic case comes adorned with hair ribbons and clips that any young lady would enjoy using.

The larger case is the perfect holding spot for those rainy day dress up outfits.  To get you started on your collection, I have included in the booth a poodle skirt and blouse or an “I Love Lucy” housewife dress to choose from.  And did I say these items are all unbelievably priced?!?  You may want to overlook the dresses completely and go straight to the dress form in the corner.  It’s a beautiful metal-cast form that would be great to put in any room even undressed!

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Grab an umbrella on your way out the door!  These vintage finds are actually more like parasols… open them up and you will find the most exquisite designs on the inside!  Use the milk can to hold them, or instead cradle a potted geranium in its mouth!  The can will hold all the water released from the plant until you are ready to dump it out and use the can in some other fashion. For those young men in your life, the milk can is the perfect resting place for bats, skis, hiking poles or fishing rods!

The distressed side table makes the perfect addition to a bedroom or den and could easily hold clothes, sewing supplies or everything necessary for scrap-booking beginners.

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These bottles are beautiful lit or unlit….why not use them as a night light in your baby’s room, or a guest bath, or on the kitchen counter for that late night snack attack?

And the wooden sign sums up my thoughts for today’s blog…The greatest gift you can give someone is the gift of inspiration.

May you leave this site inspired to go and enjoy the journey of helping to create memories for those loved ones in your own life.

~ Connie ~