Talk Like A Pirate

It be talk like a pirate day. Arrrrr. Head on over to the art blog to see a piratey print and enjoy some good ‘ol pirate gab.




Blah Blah Blogging.

Sooooooooooooo. How have you been?

What does one say when one has been silent for so long.

Sorry. *sheepish grin*

Obviously it’s been a while. I have not been keeping up on my weekly post goal at all.  I had to figure out why it was so hard for me to keep such a simple goal and I finally found the answer.  I DON’T like writing How To’s, or DIY Tutorials or Step By Steps.  I did not know this about myself, until I suddenly realized that the reason I was procrastinating was because I didn’t want to write about The Thing I Just Did.  I am more of a Show and Tell kind of gal.  I just want to show The Thing The Smithocracy Did.  Not give a blow by blow account.  The real process was painful enough and to relive it in words is torture.

So time to change things up!  From now on I will still share my projects and general happs in The Smithocracy world.  If a project needs some clarification I will just refer you to the blogs and tutorials I used. Because yeah, that is basically what I do…google everything.

If it came from my brain, I’ll let you know and maybe, just maybe, then I will possibly give some instruction, but that is not a promise.

Enough about that. I am excited to do a Show and Tell today!

This past weekend I did something I have wanted to do for a loooong time.  In Texas there is this huge Antiques/Collectibles/Junk/Unique Objects fair in Round Top. So everyone just refers to it as Round Top.  Friday was finally my chance to check it out with some fun friends.  We had a blast looking throughout the miles and miles and miles (come on, it IS Texas) of tents.  Each one as unique and fun to explore as the last.

I scored some awesome finds and haggled the perfect price for each one. My favorite part about these things is the haggling! So here they are, my new favorite objects.

First up. Elk Antler, I have wanted you for a while but your price has made you a Hard To Get fellow. After a long search I have found you at last. The right guy at the right price.

Elk Antler | The Smithocracy Dining Room | The SmithocracyNext up is Coral. Coral I didn’t even know I needed you. But once I laid eyes on your perfect shape and sharp personality, I couldn’t say no. You complete the mantle Coral and you complete me.  What would we do without you.

Coral | The SmithocracyLast but not least is Driftwood with his sidekick Air Plant.  I knew I was searching for Something.  Something with texture, something that would stand out. Something to live on the Sofa Table.  Once I met you, I knew the search was over.  The perfect Duo, you two make my heart happy.

Drift Wood | The Smithocracy Living Room | The Smithocracy

That is the end of this weeks Show and Tell.  Mr. Dan the Man is currently installing the next one. He promised it would be done by Thursday, so perhaps you will witness the rare Two Posts in One Week event. ;-)

See you later! And if you have any fun finds you’d like to share, go ahead in the comments section! I don’t just like to Show and Tell, I also like to See and Listen!

P.S. Are you sad I was silent for so long? Did you know that even if the blog is quiet, the Facebook page is boppin’.  So feel free to follow for any extras!  You can also find me on Instagram and Pinterest.


Hey Tannie, where you been?

I be in my studio, studio!

That’s right, one of my life long dreams have finally been realized. Thanks to the hard work of my super duper handy Dan.

I finally have an art studio to call my own!

We have been working hard converting the front office into a full on art studio. JOY!! And now that it is FINALLY complete, I can share it with all of you!

Here is where we started.

before | The Smithocracy before | The SmithocracyAs you can see, it was kind of a hodge podge, not sure what to do with this space, type of a room. At one point it even became a gym. But I never took pictures of that. Just imagine empty room, with a TV and exercise equipment. Yawn.

Shall we see what it looks like today? Literally today, I just took these pictures.

Here is a not so awesome panorama. However, it gives a good idea of the space.

Art Studio |The SmithocracyLets look at the details, shall we?

Art Studio |The Smithocracy Art Studio |The Smithocracy   Art Studio |The Smithocracy Art Studio |The Smithocracy  Art Studio |The Smithocracy Art Studio |The Smithocracy

Art Studio |The SmithocracyI am beyond happy! It is so nice to have a space to work in. It keeps me from spreading my mess to every part of the house. It’s also nice having all my supplies out of boxes.

Logan was the first to give it a test drive.

Logan |The SmithocracyAs you can imagine A LOT of projects occurred to get to the final product. So my next few posts will be all about the things we did. Installing floors, building shelves, making curtains, etc. So much to share! So stay tuned.

Anyone out there have there own space to create in? Please share!

4 to Tabouret

This won’t come as a shock to my sleuth-like readers. You may have possibly put 1 and 1 together if you saw these pictures on Instagram.

Round Mirrors      Red Tabouret | The SmithocracyYes, I did indeed find some stools for my kitchen island.


Craig’s List once more pulled through for me on this one. A local cafe was closing its doors in order to open new ones. In the process they were selling their old Tabouret Stools. At $25 a pop, I snatched them up before anyone could say “hey, are those Tabour….oh, they’re sold.”

Because they were outdoor stools, they did in fact have some sun damage. I took them over to the Official Smithocracy Cleaning Station.

AKA, Kitchen Sink.

Red Tabouret Stools | The SmithocracyPulled out the ‘ol Magic Eraser pads and Viola!

_MG_0569The one on the left has been Magically Erased, while the one on the right patiently awaits its turn. It took one Magic Eraser per stool. Yikes, quite the work out for my poor little arms. I decided for my own sanity to clean one stool per day. This payed off well, as I think doing them all at once would have turned into me hating them forever and just lighting them on fire. My patience payed off and I now have 4 fancy Tabouret Stools living at my counter.


_MG_6926Boring and colorless.

Red Tabouret Stools | The Smithocracy

Red Tabouret Stools | The SmithocracyRed Tabouret Stools | The SmithocracyJust the pop I was looking for.

I’m really happy about my find, and especially how well they cleaned up with just a Magic Eraser. I was really NOT looking forward to painting them.

They also receive 4 Smithocratic Votes of Awesomeness for the amazing convenience of eating at the counter. We never knew how incomplete our lives were before these fancy new stools. I don’t know how we managed before. ;-)

Any fun finds find their way into your life lately?

P.S. I like you, you should like me! Hop on over to facebook and make it official. :-)

Guest Room Update

Some of you that follow me on instagram may have seen this little sneak peek.

Round MirrorsYep, two delicious round mirrors. (reflecting another sneak peek, you little spies you)

You may have wondered what I was ever going to do with those two mirrors. Well I will tell you about one of them.

Today is the story of the Large Gold Round Mirror.

I have been redecorating the guest room. Now that it is no longer Vanessa’s Room *sniff* it was time to revert to guest status.  First let us open the vault and see where we were starting from. You may remember this photo from our very first house tour.

humble beginnings | The SmithocracyYikes! Plain Jane Galore. This is what I call Hodge Podge Whatever Is Left Styling. Well once Vanessa moved in, it turned into Teenager/Young Adult Chaos Styling. After she left it was time to give it an actual style. If you haven’t gathered by now I lean towards Mid-Century Modern. Emphasis more on Mid-Century then Modern. So it was time to make this room match the rest of the house.

First thing was a bedding switch.

IMG_0011The sheets are grey not purple. I can’t seem to make them do anything but purple in Digital Land. Anyway, excuse the graininess of the photo, it was taken late at night as a last minute thought.

The bedding was fine, but the whole rest of the room needed some more furniture. So I pulled some extra pieces from around the house, but it still needed something. So My Brain told me that a gold round mirror would be perfect. I thought My Brain had a pretty good idea. So I hopped on Craig’s List and Lo and Behold, someone was selling a large round gold mirror right down the street from me!

Fate had spoken.Guest Room | The SmithocracyTurns out the the Fateful Gold Round Mirror was the perfect touch.

Thanks to the wonder of iPhone, here is a panoramic.

IMG_0034Perfect for now. There is some more to do, but I am pleased with the progress thus far. Interesting side notes: The Print on the left was done by Dan’s Grandma who passed away recently. She was a very respected artist and Dan has many wonderful memories of her taking him to paint in a canyon by her house. The lamp on the right was made by Dan the Man himself. It was a Christmas present to yours truly. What a crafty guy. :-)

So there you go. The Guest Room is now open for business.

Hint, hint to far away friends. :-)

There can only be one…

We have a winner!

Random GeneratorUsing the True Random Number Generator from we find ourselves with lucky number 2. And who is lucky number 2 you ask?

WAYNE ALLEN, Come on down!!!!!!!

You are the lucky winner of the “Establish a House” Poster!!!

SubwayPoster_smallShoot me an email with your address and I will put that baby in the mail ASAP.

Congratulations Wayne! Thanks for being one of the first to like my page.

As for the rest of you…womp womp.

Sorry but you did not win. But I still appreciate you so so much!!!

And all is not lost. You may not get a free poster, but I am also happy to announce the opening of my new online store!

Ding, ding, ding, ding.

So head on over to to see what’s for sale. And yes, the “Establish a House” poster is on the list. So you can now turn that frown upside down. :-)

Have a great weekend everybody!!!

Living Room Update

I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend. I enjoyed mine, at least as far as enjoying my new succulent center piece. I feel so happy each time I look at it. :-)

Time to update you on a couple things, or thing. Depends on how you look at it.

Remember this room?

beforeYep, that was my living room when we first moved in. Yawn. But then I added curtains as shown in this post. But I wasn’t satisfied with that addition and had to go ahead and PhotoShop a Dream Room if you will. See below.

dreamroomeh. Not my best work.

Fast forward to a year later and I have now taken the room one or two more steps to something that looks more complete.

Living Room: The SmithocracyTaDa!

Yep we now have a rug, much to the rejoicing of my cold feet, and some art on the wall.

For my facebook followers, remember this sneak peek?

canvasWell it became this.

Worldmap by Tannie M. Smith: The SmithocracyI was inspired by all the cool maps you see popping up these days. So I decided to make it my next art piece. The world with a Tannie twist.

Here is my signature, so no stealing it.

signatureAnd no DIY on that guy. I don’t DIY my original art. Hope you understand. Anyway, I love it! It added just the color I needed for that room. Then I found the perfect popcorn rug online and now the room feels  much more lived in. Adding the Living to Living Room. ;-)

Lets do some before and afters shall we?

The Empty Before.


The Kooky Dream Room.


dreamroomThe Fabulous After!

aftershotHere is what you see from the front door.

WholeRoomSo we are coming along. It could still use a little, and I mean little (minimalist here, remember?) more layering and then we could be looking at our first all the way complete room. How exciting!

So what do you think? Love it, hate it? Either way I would love your opinion.

Happy Monday!

P.S. Did that bother you that facebook people got a sneak peek into my map project? Well you can be a facebook person too. Head on over and like The Smithocracy!


Succulent Killer at Large

So sometime before Thanksgiving I got this beautiful pot of succulents to decorate my new table.

The real deal: SucculentsSo cute.

However, it turns out that I am a Succulent Murderer. Before Christmas came and went, each and every one of these guys was knocked off and sent to live with the fishes. It turns out that I am not so great when it comes to Indoor Greenery.

So what do you do when you are a Murderer of Succulents?

Get fake ones of course!

I normally prefer ALIVE things. But for the safety of all plant species it was time to wave the white flag. A quick trip to Hobby Lobby put all my troubles behind me.  And to tell you the truth I can’t much tell a difference.

fake succulent successHere is the full view.

Succulent in actionSo now I have the look I wanted, without causing Death and Destruction Galore. It is also nice to not feel so guilty every time I look at the table. However when I look at my fireplace mantle…that is a different story. Lots of Plant Death Guilt there. I will have to remedy that!

Happy Weekend Friends!


Chevron Tree Skirt Tutorial

Happy Wednesday all. We are mid week and feeling good! If you recall from this post, I promised a tutorial on that tree skirt. I know it is pretty much after the fact (the fact being Christmas of course.) But I am still going to provide the tutorial. Just Pin it and save it for next year!

Speaking of Pinterest, that is where I received the inspiration for this project. I am sure many of you Pinterest People saw this image floating around. (Not my image, it belongs to the site mentioned below the image.)

Inspiration by Project Run and PlayWhen I pinned it, the text read “Chevron Tree Skirt Tutorial.” However when I followed the link over to Project Run and Play, I discovered that it was NOT in fact a tree skirt tutorial, but a circle skirt tutorial. Like to wear…for people.  Not trees.

My first thought was, no problem, I will just adapt it. However I felt that the directions seemed a little time consuming for what I had in mind. Perfect for a skirt you might wear frequently, but not perfect for something you get out once a year to sit on the floor. So rather then adapting, I decided to just do my own thing and make it up as I go.

So here is my, FOR REAL, Chevron Tree Skirt Tutorial.

Chevron Tree Skirt Tutorial by The Smithocracy As established in my Christmas Tour Post, I was going grey and red this year. And probably will for the next few years. I am not one to mess with what works.

I happened to have some leftover fabric from some pillows I made.

Red and chevron materialLots of fabric, but no pattern. So I decided to grab my old tree skirt and make one.

cut out the shapeI measured, and folded until I got something that looked like this.

folded downThis gave me the basic shape I needed to work with. And since I was never going to use this skirt again, I went ahead and cut it down to size. Once cut, I set it on top of some newsprint that was to be my future pattern.

place on paperI knew I wanted the grey chevron on the inside and the red solid on the border. So first I traced the material and cut out the general shape.

Paper stencile for tree skirtThe I used the original fabric as a stencil to mark where the border and the top come in.

mark where the seam istrace the curve

curve on stencilecut stencilcut curve awayVoila! I know had a pattern for the inside, and the border. I set aside the small half circle shape and used the large cone shape first.

I needed to make sure each section looked the same. In order to do that I lined up the center of my pattern with the down line (I am sure there is a better word for that) of the chevron.

line center of chevronThen I pinned it in place and cut away.

piecesAs I cut, I set each piece down so I could keep track of my success. Soon I had the right amount, which is 9 btw, and already it was looking cool. :-)

all the piecesWorking with chevron was tricky. I had to use more fabric then I thought, because of the pattern. One way to offset that was I would alternate the direction. So if I cut one panel with the small end of the pattern at the top, then I would cut the next panel with the small end facing down. That way I could take full advantage of the material I had. Does that make any kind of sense?

stencile on fabric

Now time for the Red. This time I folded the fabric several times before pinning. That way I could cut more then one section out at a time.

pin the curvecut the curveOnce those were cut out, it was time to sew, sew, sew. You know what that looks like right? Well I hope so, because I couldn’t take a picture of myself doing it. First I sewed the red panel to the chevron pattern. This was tricky since there is a curve involved. But I found that if I just treat it like a straight line and go super slow, it works just fine.

sew curve to chevronOnce the two colors were together I began sewing the panels together. I would take two panels and lay them on top of each other, pattern facing inward.

Then I just kept on keepin’ on. sew panels togetherSoon I had all 9 panels sewn together. However remember, it is a tree skirt. So I did not connect the front and the back. That is left open in order to go around the back of the tree.

Next I seemed up all the edges using the ‘ol turn and flip that I show here.

seam all edgesThen I stole the velcro from my old Tree skirt to use on the new one.

velcroThen Ta Da! A tree skirt was born.

Chevron Tree Skirt Tutorial by The SmithocracyChevron Tree Skirt Tutorial- by The SmithocracyChevron and Red Tree Skirt - The SmithocracyI was pretty happy about it, especially considering how I literally just made it up in my brain. I will be honest, it most likely can be done better. I would not do a super close up inspection of anything. But for what it is, it totally works.

Phew! Glad to have that out-of-the-way. I always feel like I go through the process again when I write these tutorials. I feel as if I should have a second tree skirt sitting here on the counter! Oh well. :-)

Hope you enjoyed it and maybe will want to try it for yourself next year.

Hasta la Pasta!

Christmas Tour 2012

Hello Friends!

A Merry Christmas and Happy New Years and Happy Holidays to you all. In order to live Good Days it is time to continue on with things that make me happy. And something that makes me happy is Christmas! I love decorating for Christmas. I always feel like it makes my house feel more homey. It seems to bring Warmth and Coziness each December. Of course my inner Monica (friends reference!) requires that I take everything down the SECOND Christmas is over. But up to that point, I enjoy it. ;-)

This is the second Christmas in our home, but the first I was able to decorate for. We moved in December 15th last year and so it was rather minimal and stark First Christmas. Which is saying a lot since I am already a Minimalist! This year is a different story and I was excited to decorate the new space. The first thing I discovered was what worked in my old house, did not necessarily work in this house. So a lot of Purging, Rearranging and Sewing occurred. Which, lucky for you, resulted in a tutorial, but that will come in another post. Lets begin the tour, shall we?

Here is the front door.


and a close up.


The red cranberry wreath came from my old house, and was purchased on clearance at H.E.B. (a local grocery store) of all places. However on my much larger front door it got lost, so I added some garland that was having trouble staying on the fireplace. This really helped beef the little cranberry guy up and a much better solution for the gravity prone garland.

Next up the dining room.

Christmas Dining Room - The SmithocracyChristmas Table - The SmithocracyRed Burlap and Pinecones -The SmithocracyI had some left over burlap from a project yet to be seen…

I love how red burlap and pine cones look together. It seems so cozy to me.

Now for the living room.

living Room - The SmithocracyChristmas Living Room -The SmithocracyI saved my grey chevron pillows from Halloween and added that fun tree pillow from Target on the couch. I loved how they went together, so it immediately inspired the rest of the room. I made a red slipcover for the bench by the fireplace, just like before. I made the tree skirt from left over material and then made the stockings by the fireplace. Here are some close ups.

Fireplace - The SmithocracyChevron, Red and White Stockings - The SmithocracyChevron and Red Tree Skirt - The SmithocracySo basically one thing led to another and I was soon consumed in a Sewing Frenzy.

I have survived the frenzy and declare myself the winner!

I really like the grey chevron and red together. Something about it just feels so right to me. I will soon share a tutorial for the tree skirt. Sorry no stocking tutorial. It was super last minute and I really winged it. I got so caught up in said frenzy, I forgot to take pictures! **hangs head in shame** I will tell you that I used our old stockings for a stencil then just cut and sew. It was super simple. Just tedious.

Thanks for taking a Christmas Tour with me! Do you have any favorite holiday things that make you feel Warm and Cozy?

P.S. Don’t forget to enter the Stella and Dot giveaway. Today is the last day! Winner will be announced tomorrow. Maybe it will be you!! :-)