Saturday, January 8, 2011

Rusted Grunge: A Studio L3 Compendium Challenge

This piece was completed about 24 hours after Linda posted the Compendium Challenge for this week.

So, what took me so long to get it posted? Well, let's read a little story, shall we?

A couple of years ago I had found a couch, love seat and reading chair set at a local thrift store for a very decent price. I recognized that the set wasn't perfect -- it had some wear, but no actual damage and was ugly as hell.

Still, I've never been especially bothered by ugly furniture. In fact, if it's cheap, useful and our ferrets can't get inside of it, ugly is a kind of character enhancement, you know?

Anyhow, I lured My Guy to the thrift store to approve the purchase of ugly furniture he'd be stuck with (it's easy to lure either of us to a thrift store ... used stuff for cheap ... what's not to love?).

He agreed that it was ugly, but OK, if it'd serve the need we had and we could afford it ... go ahead.

Now, from the moment I'd seen this furniture I'd been planning to overcome a bit of the uglies with the addition of throw pillows and one or two lap blankets that were in storage from Before We Became Us. I thought the newer and older stuff might go together pretty well.

Plus, these pillows and couch accoutrement were not cheap, previously-used bits. These were rather expensive items I'd collected through many years to dress up my first set of thrift store living room seating. These items I thought beautiful: Made well of fine fabrics in deep, attractive colors.

I learned two things the day the ugly couch set and attractive storage stuff arrived together in my living room.

First, I was absolutely correct about my own stuff and the "new" thrift store furniture: It matches perfectly.

This led to the second thing I learned that day: I don't have bad taste, only a taste for ugly stuff. Ugly isn't an enhancement for me. Ugly is a requirement.

It's hardly believable, but all of this also explains my creation for the Compendium Challenge of the week: I know it's ugly, and I like it anyway.

Still, I'd held off on posting it because I thought maybe I'd keep this ugly thing for me, and then make something better for this post.

Turns out I'm perfectly comfortable sharing my love of ugly stuff. Yeah. You're welcome.

Now, let's see what kind of taste you have ... show off your creativity today with Studio L3's Compendium Challenge!


  1. I loved reading your post. I also think your piece is fabulous, the crown is just right.
    We have a local saying here that 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder' and your take on this weeks theme is great.

  2. not sure there is any such thing as Ugly eye of beholder and all that, so if this is ugly I'm stunning LOL. Love the tale of the seating XOXO Zoe

  3. LOL UGLY, no its most definitely not. But it does make me wonder what you consider to be beautiful....!! Loving your tag, you have terrific taste. Annette x

  4. I don't see what's so ugly about it, looks fantastic, IMO. I do love your story, though! lol!

  5. Ugly, I think NOT! More like awesome and very artsy! We are working with rusty grunge and your added rust pieces work so perfectly with your images and background. I love your take on ugly. I rusted cupid!!

    I am so curious as to your living room furniture and now you have us all wondering and we are expecting a blog post and picture beauty and the beast!

    You are a blast! Happy Sunday! I am taking an online class at Sugar Lump Studios so I can learn to be pretty!!!! I love learning something new!

  6. Beautiful!! Love the artsy look and the colors!! =)
    Hugs, SannaS

  7. I know I've said this before, but your stories are as fabulous as your art (and that's FREAKING fabulous, CB!).

    The thing is, "Ugly" is the LAST word I'd use to describe your rusted grunge card (which leads me to believe that your furniture is probably not remotely ugly, either). Or, maybe it's a translation thing, and in your language, "ugly" means what "beautiful" means in my own.

    Anyway, about the card. It's wonderful! The design is great, the colors are striking, and the embellishments are perfect. Did I mention how awesome the rusted grunge pieces look? Well, they do! I love how you did the lettering for "Queen," too.

    Someday, you'll have to come visit some of our thrift stores here in Boise. They've outfitted my home for years...

  8. I totally cracked up when I read this! On some level I can relate. I keep my furniture long after it looks worn or marked up. I figure I'd mind if the kids drew on or the dog barfed on a new one; whereas I could care less if it's on the beaten up one.

    I really like your card. Does that mean I have ugly taste too? LOL It has a really cool artsy vintage look to it.

  9. Nothing ugly about it at all.
    In fact its very Artsy and Artsy is a beautiful thing. Loved your story though!