The Queen of Junk

Last week I had the sublime pleasure to spend the afternoon with Shelley Holm...  she is the supreme Queen of Junk...really...she has me beat by a mile...and then some! 
You may remember that I mentioned Shelley in the roundup of artists that I rubbed elbows with
at an art show in October 2010...
shelley holm    typewriter clock   october 2010

We both work on the same vibe of using castoffs to make artful creations...but Shelley takes it to the next level.  A couple of weeks ago I spied a photo of recycled boxes on Pinterest that I commented I thought I could make...in a flash, Shelley commented that she could help...we synchronized our schedules...and I arrived on her doorstep ready to create.

Before we could get to work, I was mesmerized by her inventory of possibilities...
others may see junk...but to the trained eye, its artistic fodder...

Eventually we got down to the task at hand...constructing a wooden box with some device attached to hang the box vertically...I brought along a stash of lumber...but these peely paint pickets that Shelley had in her yard seemed perfect...

oh, the beauty of having a table saw...clean, straight cuts!  I never seem to get a straight cut with my circular saw no matter how many times I pencil out a line...don't you love Shelley's bright red eye protection...

Shelley had a few tips that she shared with me that made the box construction much easier...first, stack up your pieces before starting...the two shorter sides stacked next to the bottom piece should equal the length of the two longer sides...

Second, nail together three sides, slide in the bottom piece
and nail the fourth side last...

Third, if the only nails you have on hand are too long, snip them off to the length you need, but snip them at an angle so you still have a sharp point for nailing...
this was a eureka moment for me - fabulous tip!

Since I was stealing away these white pickets for my boxes, I left Shelley with the load of lumber I brought as a swap...with my cut wood, a box prototype and a couple of handy pointers, I went home to my own little workshop to finish up the project...

Stayed tuned for part two...meanwhile, Shelley just launched her own blog - from the alley to the gallery
Stop by, say hi, and enjoy the junk!


  1. What a fun time!! Oh my gosh I am loving the white chippy wood and loving the tips that you gave us :) I cannot wait to see post #2 ~

  2. This is wonderful and so up my junky alley. I will be waiting to see the finished projects.
    Keep smiling and creating

  3. Hi Amy! Thanks! You are wonderful! I had so much fun. I KNOW when we make some thing again (soon) we'll have even more fun! You were such a trooper. I can't wait to see how your boxes turned out. Shell

  4. Okay Amy, I'm so jealous of your day with Shelley! Great tips!

  5. What fun! I LOVE the stash of junk! a wonderland for junkers!
    I can't wait to see your fabulous finshed work of art!

  6. Where do I find the 2nd part of this, I need instructions to hang the box. Please help!!

    1. the May 3 post has the finished boxes that can hang on the wall or sit on the table


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