Tuesday, August 31, 2010

fall inspiration

fall is just around the corner.
it's my favorite season.

here are a few images that are giving me inspiration right now.

exterior fall table eclectic exterior

i love the simplicity of this tablescape

love the mix of textures here. pumpkins, leaves, galvanized bucket, basket. . .

rustic and charming and inviting!

these pumpkin colors are great. i have had white before but have not seen
green around here. i'll definitely be scouting one out  this year.

books under a cloche, love it!

** with the exception of the first, all photos are from pottery barn**

Monday, August 30, 2010

trash to treasure

i'm crazy busy packing, patching, painting, sorting, and purging for our move next week.

until i can get down to the business of documenting all the changes we
will make to our quinby cottage i thought i would share
a freshly updated piece of furniture going with us.

this beauty came to me free! after being passed around
by guys in seminary over the last several years the most recent owner
decided that she had to hit the curb. but first, he asked me
if i could do anything for her.

uh, yes, please.

initially, my plans were to fix her up and sell her.

i cleaned her up and put a couple coats of white raisen by sherwin williams on her.
i had this paint on hand, so another score.

i really liked the curvy, leafy detail of the pulls so i
just spruced them up with some hammered bronze spray paint, also in my stash.

and her she is, sitting in my shop garage but only because she is waiting to be
moved to our new home. i decided i couldn't get rid of her and that she would
be the perfect piece for a room that we plan to convert from a small
bedroom (by closing up the doorway and opening up the wall and framing it out. . . can't wait!) 
 to a sitting room.

we will desperately need the extra storage in our new-to-us smaller home
so this will work great while bringing a fun pop of yellow to the room.

you'll have to stay tuned to find out what other plans we have for the space.

can't wait to get in and get busy!

linking up with
cottage instincts
domestically speaking
life in the fun lane
funky junk interiors

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

what do you do with old window frames?

I threw together a quick project in between sorting, weeding and packing boxes today. its o the chalkboard variety which i know in diy world have become a dime a dozen. i thought i'd show you anyway.

I had an old window frame, I had a piece of masonite - amazingly already cut to size, and I had chalkboard paint.

So, I threw them all together.

the frame is painted plane ole' white.
hardware, too.

i like masonite for diy chalkboards because it is such a smooth surface.
any pressed wood will do, doesn't have to be the masonite brand!
you can pick it up at any LowPot and they will cut it to size for you, so make sure you take
some measurements.

i have had this can of chalkboard paint for a while, it has seen me
through many projects.

i'm thinking about painting the entire fridge in our new home with it.
too much?

i'm happy with today's spontaneous project. this window had three panes so it works
perfectly for our family. each kid gets a column for their daily to-do's, notes, homework assignments, etc.

okay, enough fun.
gotta go pack some more.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

south carolina moss

in between adding boxes to this stack and wondering why in the world i have held on to some of the items stuffed into the dark corners of our closets, i'm painting.

my goal is to get the furniture updates i am making for our new home done before we move because goodness knows i will have plenty to do once we are in!

again, i took one of the pieces i had in my green seed stash and made it my own. not exactly the best way to build my business but i'm confident i will restock my furniture-fix-up stash once i start hitting yard sales and flea markets again.,

pastor j and i will be leaving our cheap target bedside tables behind as we are almost certain they will fall apart if we try to lift them. they have served us well but have definitely reached the end of their furniture life.

this is a standard broyhill two drawer nightstand. the bottom drawer is made to look like two but it's one deep drawer. this was practically given to me by a friend moving to texas.

now it looks like this

i got totally lazy since this wasn't going in the shop and decided not to strip/sand and go straight to priming.
i used kilz because that stuff, well, it covers anything and everything seems to adhere to it! if you use kilz just give it a light sanding before your first coat of color because it has a pretty rough texture. it smooths right out with a little 220 grit sandpaper, though.

i am really, really liking this color

i used a mistint so i have no name for it and have had the hardest time identifying the color. but the more i walk by this piece the more i love the color. and today it hit me why. it reminds me of the beautiful moss draped across the haunting branches of live oak trees found around my state.

so, i'm naming it south carolina moss. :)

do you like the hardware? hobby lobby, of course.

ya'll know i'm a big fan of distressed, aged, chippy and worn out furniture but this just got a very light distressed on some edges.

this will go on pastor j's side of the bed to accommodate all his reading material and gadgets.

on my side i have a table that belonged to my grandmother with open shelves. i'll show you how that turned out tomorrow.

Friday, August 20, 2010


that's how many months it took us to sell our home. we went two rounds on the market . 6 months last year, took it off the market for 6 months, then back on last spring. finally, as we approached our 6th month this go round we got an offer that stuck.

i gotta tell ya. it is not fun trying to keep 2700 sq. ft. relatively clean with three small boys in the house! my first thought when we got the offer? "yes!! the constant cleaning and straightening up is over!"

in my last post i mentioned having to suddenly leave our mini-lake vacation. when we left for the lake sunday we did so with the knowledge that our home was under contract and the home we had a contract on (which we re-negotiated the previous week) was well on the way to being ours. things changed with the house we were purchasing rather suddenly. you can read about it on our family blog. in short, the contract fell through and we had to pack up our things at the lake and head home to find another house.

and we did.

our new house is approximately 1,000 sq. ft. smaller than our current home. so, now, instead of cleaning and straightening i am sorting and purging.

i'm excited about downsizing. i'm excited about living more purposefully and intentionally. i'm excited about creating a space that is both functional and beautiful. ideas are swirling around my cluttered brain and many of them are starting to come together.

right now, i am getting rid of furniture left and right. we have some big pieces that just won't work in our new, smaller space.

the piece that has pained me most to part with is my blue armoire.

if you want to check out the before, it's here. but, please, i ask you, ignore the distressing. while it didn't look as bad in person as it does in the pictures i ended up going back and painting over a good bit of it, leaving just the edges distressed. 

i do love this armoire but we just can't take it. it's for sale on craig's list. but, we still need a place for our tv. and downsizing as much as we are we need as much storage as possible.  

so, while i am getting rid of large pieces i am having to replace them with smaller pieces and get a little creative with what we have.

i just painted this piece. it was going to go in my shop but now it's going in our new home.

it will go in a small sitting room and play double duty as our tv table and storage chest.

i'm also working on these two pieces.

these two guys are going to serve as our master bed side tables. mismatched pieces are great when pulled together by paint or other accessories.

and, as luck would have it i found some great mistinted paint at lowe's that i will use to do just that!

my photography skills suffer so i'll just tell you, this is a soothing grayish green with a hint of cream. because it's a mistint there is no name. i asked the gal at the lowe's paint counter if she knew what it was supposed to be, thinking that might help me identify the color. she looked at me like i had three eyes so i just moved on and call it creamy gray-green. what does it look like to you?

anywho, check back soon to see the finished pieces. they are sitting in my garage right now waiting on their second coat of deft, and i heart them!


also, we close on the house in three weeks. three weeks!!!

so stay tuned! once we arrive we will be knocking out walls, closing up doorways, removing cabinets, putting up horizontal planks, doing board and batten treatments, turning a tiny kitchen into a functional space for a family of five, and painting, painting, painting.

it'll be a blast and i'll document it all here. hope you'll join me for the fun! i'm pretty sure i'll need some feedback!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

lake side

pastor j and i took the boys to my aunt and uncle's lake house last week. our plan was to spend the week but that was cut short. really short. we had to leave on day two. more on that in a later post. before we left i was able to crank out a new look for their dinner table. i did this for two reason's. one, as a thank you to my aunt and uncle for their generosity. they make their lake home available to us on a regular basis and  i have been wanting to do something for them as a thank you. when she told me she really liked the treatment i'd done on my own table i knew just what to do. and, two, i, apparently, cannot go a day without painting something!

their table is a bit different than ours, different grain and it had vertical and horizontal grooves. i changed up the treatment just a little for that reason and because it's at the lake. i wanted it to have more of a coastal feel, rather than a farmhouse feel, like mine.

my view while painting. foggy and beautiful!

i decided to do a white wash technique.
here's what i did. . .

1. lightly sanded everything. not a lot, just enough for the paint to grab hold. and i wanted to maintain the color for it to peak through on the table top.

2. painted the legs. two coats.

3. dry brush technique on top. using 1/3 paint and 2/3 water, dip the brush and wipe most of it off then run the brush in the direction of the grain.

4. i let that dry and did a second coat, then a third.

5. using my palm sander i roughed up the legs. using a 220 grit i hand sanded the top until achieving the look i wanted.

6. because it's a dinning table and it's white i used deft wood finish to finish it off. deft won't yellow like polyurethane and leaves a nice smooth finish. it is glossy so you may want to run some 220 grit sandpaper over it ever so lightly if you want a more worn look.

it really brightens up the room and fits the rest of the space beautifully!

this 'after' shot was taken as we were gathering our things to run out the door. kids were in the van, pastor j was grabbing last minute items and i stopped to take a quick shot. pastor j doesn't even say anything anymore. he just looks at me and shakes his head.

i'll tell ya why we had to make a dash for it next time!

i'm linking up with cottage instincts, between naps of the porch, domestically speaking, mustard seed creations, life in the fun lane, and funky junk interiors.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

speaking of the little things. . .

when we moved into our home three years ago i was itching
to get started making it our own.
removing some of that "builder" look and adding
a bit of interest.

i think we had been in the house all of 8 hours before
i bought some new switch plates for our kitchen.

most people over look switch plates. and why wouldn't you when
there are always larger projects to attack.

but the little things can really pull the larger picture together.

our old switch plates

everybody has them. white and plastic.
there is nothing wrong with them.

but isn't this better?

these are tin with a brushed nickel finish.
and they averaged $1 each, depending on the size, at Lowe's.

they are much more decorative and for a small
price add a touch more interest to any space.

it's been three years and i have only changed out our kitchen
but will finish out the downstairs this year if we don't sell our home
by the end of this month.

in the days to come i'll share a few more "little things" we did around here to
warm things up.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

it's the little things, y'all

while i was watering some plants on our front porch today
i got a good look at our doorbell.
in a word. blah.
it's just cheap yellowed plastic.

suddenly it really bugged me. i mean, really bugged me.
i know, i have issues.

so what does a paint obsessed person like me do?

paint it!

i just unscrewed it, disconnected it and put a coat of primer on it followed by a coat of black.
i sprayed the screws, too, so they would blend better.
i even put a couple coats of wipe-on poly on it to protect if from my boys sticky fingers.

so much better, don't ya think?
i'm sure no one, including my husband, will notice.
but that's okay.

it makes me happy.

now i can water my plants in peace.

linking up to domestically speaking and shabby chic cottage.