Saturday, July 30, 2016

What IS The Tomato Shed?

New to The Tomato Shed page? 
What IS The Tomato Shed?

I'm Sharon. The Tomato Shed came into being in the summer of 2012. Since pretty much always I have been a collector of vintage things because I love the story behind them. And I'm born and raised in Yoakum Texas-once known for a bustling tomato industry. I just kind of put the two things together and POOF!! The Tomato Shed was born!😄🍅

The Shed is a mixture of vintage goodies looking for a new home and new life, as well as my tomato heritage 'brainchild' - homemade homegrown Yoakum tomato soap. 

Because I'm a full time teacher, I have weird hours at The Shed. I have posted hours of Mondays 5-7pm. I'm (almost) always here then. But-you can often catch me here on Saturdays, I just don't want to post Saturdays as open, because often I'm not...its just me so it's hard!

So-if you like to own old things with a story, or wanna try some tomato soap (I highly recommend it!) Stop by when I'm here. Or call/text me and we can work something out.  Let's revitalize Yoakum's tomato heritage and have some fun!!

Monday, June 30, 2014

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Something From Nothing

Today I cleaned and rearranged my 'stash' of furniture I've collected the past few years. I came to a definite realization.....I HATE PRESSBOARD! 

It's a downright shame when a decent piece of furniture (or one you thought was decent) comes in contact with a tad of dampness and absolutely ruins. My furniture stash is in our old barn. Therefore it is not a temperature controlled, water proof environment. (That would be every furniture collector's dream!)  But-hey-it's all I have. So I now have the beginnings of a bonfire pile...😢.

The worst thing is when furniture is made of a mix of good wood and pressboard. That's when the real frustration sets in. The piece could be good, except for the bottom of a drawer or the side of a cabinet. Yes, I know, the pressboard could be replaced on these pieces, but the reality is the piece isn't worth all that extra work. That's what I ran into this morning. So-here's what I did!

This little side table was ruined. 

This is an example of a piece that had some nice woodwork on it, but the pressboard had crapped out. So, I used a wonder bar ( which is wonderful by the way) and a hammer and took off the nicer wood architectural pieces. 
The pieces were nailed and glued on. The wonder bar pried 'em right off without damaging the wood piece. (It demolished the pressboard though, which in a weird way was kind of satisfying ☺️) 

So here's what I ended up with:
A nasty piece ready for hate bonfire pile. But also:
Some kind of nice little architectural pieces I can add to other furniture of upcycled salvage.  Kind of cool, huh?

Lesson for the day: even some of the yuckiest furniture can have some value, and can live on in part. I guess it's kind of like organ donation!!

Friday, May 3, 2013

New Home on Tomato Row

Since the Tomato Shed's 'birth' last summer, things have been steadily falling into place. And I'm having so much fun!! This year I have a garden full of heirloom tomatoes I grew from my own seed from last year. I've made several batches of soap, and am trying to perfect my recipe and the scent of the soap. This summer, in addition to soap, I intend to experiment with tomato lotion.

In the mean time, I have met some very nice people and found some wonderful vintage furniture pieces to paint and add some Tomato Shed 'personality'. I like to paint in bright colors, distress, glaze, wax -- whatever the piece of furniture tells me it wants. I also add patterns and textures once in awhile. I feel like it makes the furniture smile.  :)

Probably none of the furniture I paint has a high monetary value, but it's fun to think of the history of the pieces -- the people who sat in the chairs, ate from the tables, raised their children -- lived their lives with these pieces of furniture helping along the way. To me it's so much more fun to have furniture with a history than some that's 'Made in China'. Especially when the furniture is dressed to party!!

The Tomato Shed has now attended two Market Day Shows in Hallettsville with a fair amount of success. It is so cool when people actually like what you create. What fun to see someone fall in love with a piece of furniture in it's new 'clothes' and take it home to start the next chapter. The next Market Days Show is May 18, and we'll be there again.

And, most exciting of all, starting in May, I have an actual retail location!! The Tomato Shed is the first of hopefully many vendors who will inhabit Tomato Row in Yoakum. Many of the old buildings of Tomato Row are actual tomato sheds from the 30's and 40's. I can't think of a better location for my Tomato Shed!! Will be open on Saturdays soon -- 9 am to 4 pm. Probably in a couple of weeks.

Going to load the trailer to take more to the Shed. Come see me. Maybe you'll go home with some Yoakum Tomato Soap or even a new furniture friend! Either way, come by for a visit. The whole point of this thing is to have fun!! Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

February Market Days Show

In my last post I described how the Tomato Shed has expanded into recycled and repurposed vintage furniture and accessories. I will be having a booth at the Hallettsville Market Days this weekend, Feb 16 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

I thought I would post some photos of the 'offerings' I will have at the show. Sorry I don't have a nice staging area to take photos. I just hauled things out of my shed and snapped!!

First, here are only some of the accessories that will be there.

Some chalkboard doors, and this pretty pewter painted candle wall sconce.

This is a mirror wall hanging made from a mirror and a raisin bran cereal box! You gotta see it to believe it!!

I'm still trying to decide if I want to sell or keep the two panel chalkboard below. I just think it's SO cute!!

 Next is a little set that could go in a little girl's room or a guest bedroom to create some fun.
Well, I call them a set. I don't remember when the two-tiered side table arrived on the scene. It was a sad little thing with the veneer missing on the top and falling off in multiple other places. I glued back what I could, and then decoupaged on the top.
Don't ask me what made me choose the pink and charteuse color scheme. The little guy just told me he wanted some joy in his life. Do you see the tea set? It's a permanent little tea party right on the top of that happy little table!!
 The little doll cradle came from the trip I took this summer. She came from a trash pile in upstate New York. I can just see someone's little dolly taking a snooze in it. Or - you may have some ideas of how to repurpose her into something fun.
And this is an old trunk I salvaged. It's kinda bent and rusty, but look how pretty it is in it's new paint clothes. It would make a great storage container and could be placed at the foot of a bed or opened and used for display

 These are the biggest pieces of furniture I worked on for the show.
I have three of these vintage folding chairs. They came from an old church family hall. I didn't touch them, besides give 'em a wash off. Two are this chippy pink and you see the mint green one in the photo above. Aren't they cool?
 I bought this vintage coffee table in Moulton at their city wide garage sale. It was an ugly dark brown. I painted it a very light blue, distressed it, and waxed it. It is a wonderful, very heavy piece.
 This guy came from a house that was being demolished. He held canned goods and had wood nailed into the openings. I cleaned him up, painted him a pretty sage green and added chicken wire inside the door openings. What a great buffet for a country home.

This is a little shuttered mirror I painted to match either the buffet or the coffee table.

 I L-O-V-E these chairs and table. The ladder back chairs are distressed barn red. Although one has a couple of slats missing, they are both very sturdy and would work well inside or on a porch.

 This old wicker table is GREAT!! I picked it up at Goodwill and painted it with yellow tractor paint! It should hold up very well. It is a great mix of old and worn with new and updated color and finish. I may not be able to part with this one.

 And these....
They are repainted metal folding chairs. These are only two of the ones I'll have at the show.

If you see anything you like, let me know. I also have some old solid wood doors and six frame windows to sell. I haven't repainted or repurposed any of those yet.

I will also paint any of your furniture that you'd like to have refreshed. And I can take orders for jobs too.

I didn't even make any tomato soap for this show, I've been so busy in the Shed. My tomato seedlings are growing and will be ready to set out soon, so there will be lots more soap to come!

Hope to see you in Hallettsville this weekend! 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Start of the New Year - Start of the 2013 Tomato Crop

Tomato seeds should be planted in this area in a hotbed between Christmas and New Years. Well, it was cold between Christmas and New Years. And I was kinda sick with a head cold. Ok, well maybe not icicle kind of cold, but it WAS cold. Like, 40's for the high. It has also been overcast and somewhat misty most of the time. So-I just didn't get the seeds in the hotbed out in the garden.

So today I planted my Homestead seeds in a plastic tray. I followed Tomato Bob's instructions and planted them in a moist soil/peatmoss mixture about 1.5 inches deep and covered them with plastic. The seeds should sprout in 10-14 days according to Bob. I have them on the south side of the front porch, so they should be fairly protected from cold.

My main goal for 2012 was to go 'seed to seed' with heirloom Homestead tomatoes. Now the final step of that goal is to see if the seeds I harvested from last year will germinate and grow.

Other 2012 accomplishments:

Made my first cold process and hot process (crockpot) soap
Dehydrated tomatoes, tomato peels
Made and froze tomato extract to add to soap
Found some sources for essential oils
Sold my first soaps....around 20 bars
Licensed my name (The Tomato Shed) and register for a TIN
Expanded the Tomato Shed into re-purposing and recycling furniture and other vintage and salvage 'treasures'
Had first official booth in a show as The Tomato Shed and plan to have booth in future shows at least 4 times per year
Found Mr. junk benefactor
Cleaned out and organized the shed as the home base for the Tomato Shed business
Met Ruby Red........and named her the Tomato Shed mascot

You know, THAT'S NOT BAD!!!

 Now I need to come up with my main goal for 2013. I'll be thinking on that.

First mini-goal: germinate lil seeds!!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy 2013! Here's wishing all a year full of love, fun and tomatoes! Time to plant tomato seeds and get started on the 2013 crop. Here we go....