July 27, 2018

Minnie Nolan's Boarding House

My grandmother had a habit of writing on photographs of family members. While maybe not great for the appearance, I do appreciate the documentation.

This photo was the kind that is printed on a postcard. It was identified as "Minnie Nolan's first boarding house in Kansas City."

I used the actual photo (rather than a copy) with its wrinkles, writing and a missing corner and applied a thin wash of off-white acrylic paint to block out the background.

It was mounted behind an Idea-ology Collage Frame dressed up with various pieces of Tim Holtz paper stash (the vines were cut from Wallflower).

The polka dots (Tim Holtz Dots & Floral) were stamped on his new Plain Collage Paper and layered over the upper left corner. I made dots around the oval with Scribbles (3D fabric paint) and distressed some metallic numbers to blend in with the overall color scheme.

I cut a piece of book board to cover the back and painted the edges. I trimmed the frame's border with lines of black and gold metallic inks.

The butterflies are some digital clipart that I printed on vellum and cut-out. The word "legacy" is a Remnant Rub.

I don't think Grandma Nell would mind what I did with her photo, it's better preserved now and her notes have been transferred to the back of the frame.


  1. I have an affinity for old family photos, too; I love the way in which you have preserved yours. It is a lovely inspiration!

  2. Absolutely beautiful love all the details and design -a beautiful use of an old photo and widh my Mam had put names to pics --the ammount we found after she dies with us saying I wonder who this is??? such a shame and they must have meant something to have been kept
    Carol x

  3. I love what you've made with your Grandma's pic it's beautiful and very elegant and I great way of preserving it, thanks for sharing, hugs.

  4. Beautiful! I love old photos and always wonder about the story behind them. It is good that your Grandmother documented them.

  5. Great photo. I like the penciled names over their skirts. Your vines really lift the neutral palette of the piece, thanks for sharing it. x Amanda

  6. Wow! This is absolutely fabulous, my new favorite of your works! love everything about it! Barbara