Sunday, March 17, 2013

Humble Beginnings for a Reading Nook

There's a loft area on the second story of my house.  I love this area even though I never really knew what to do with it.  I suppose all of the possibilities of what this space could be is both what I loved and also what I feared.  It took about three years for me to decide on this.  Yes, I realize that's sad.

I don't have any "before" pictures of this space but just trust me, it was pretty bad.  Basically I used it as a dumping zone.  Quilting is one of my hobbies and I had so much fabric in one corner that it looked like a muti-colored/patterned avalanche.  I went through every piece of fabric and decided what I wanted to keep and what I wanted to donate.  That cleared up a lot of space.

I scavenged all of the pieces from other rooms in the house so at least this has a cost of $0 so far.  My mom actually did the painting in the picture above.  I have a few of her paintings which is a cool thing :-)

This is just the beginning for this space but I wanted a cozy place to read a book or just look out the window and the birds and flowers now that Spring is coming.  This nook will see many updates in the coming months but I'm going to take it slow so that I know I'm making the right decisions about purchases and color choices.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Yellow Record Holder

I don't have any records but I loved the color and the details of this little record holder.

Someone had already painted and distressed it by the time I found it but right now there's nothing I would change.

Of course the most obvious use for me is a book case.  And living in Atlanta, you'd better have "Gone with the Wind" as part of your collection ;-)

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Sunday, March 3, 2013

Rolling Desk Chair

I've been searching for a rolling desk chair for the longest time and I finally found one in my budget!

I liked the color of the wood but I knew I wanted to paint it.

The chair came a little "distressed" which was fine.

But overall it was in great condition.

I chose MMS Milk Paint in Boxwood.  I love green so this was an easy color choice.  Since I didn't want chipping, I also used MMS Bonding Agent.  And to bring out those distressed areas, I used MMS Antiquing Wax.  By the way, this is not a sponsored post.  I'm new to milk paint and refinishing furniture so when I found the Miss Mustard Seed blog,  I bought some of the products.  She has great tutorials on how to use them so it was an easy way for me to get started.  I have enjoyed using these products and I'm very happy with the results I've gotten.

The color is great and adding the antiquing wax just gave it that aged feel.

I love the way the green chair looks with the cream desk.

Linking with:
Savvy Southern Style - Wow us Wednesday
Miss Mustard Seed - Furniture Feature Friday

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Craig's List Side Table

Craig's List is a great source for finding deals on furniture.

I loved the cute shape of this table and the price was right since it needed a lot of work.  The legs were wobbly and the finish looked like a cat used it as a scratching post.  There was a square shaped paint "stain" on the top.  It was also just plain dirty.  My guess is it had been in storage in someone's garage, barn, or various other outbuilding for many years.  It had spiderwebs and their eggs sacks still attached.  But if you're looking for a good deal, you have to look past all that.

The first thing I did was clean it up with mineral spirits.  You know, get all the dust and spider residue off...

Next I stabilized the legs by tightening the existing screws where the top of the legs met the base of the top.  These were pretty rusty so I had to use a wrench, not just my hands.

I used wood glue where the bottom of the legs had detached from the base piece.  I secured the legs with some bungee cord since I didn't have any clamps on hand.  I let the wood glue dry overnight to make sure I wouldn't have any more issues with wobbly legs.  And voila!  The next morning the table was finally stable.

I went back and forth about painting or staining.  I knew this piece would look great either way but in the end I decided on paint.  There's a lot of stained wood in my house so I thought adding a painted piece would be a nice change.

I lightly sanded the piece then painted it with MMS Milk Paint in Linen.  After the second coat was dry, I used a plastic putty knife to remove the paint where it was pulling away from the surface of the table.  I then used MMS Antique Wax and let it sit for about 5 minutes before buffing off the excess wax.

This is the first piece that I've done with Milk Paint and I'm pretty pleased with the result.  My husband said, "That looks like those expensive pieces at the junk stores you drag me to."  High praise indeed!

Linking with:
Savvy Southern Style - Wow Us Wednesday
Miss Mustard Seed - Furniture Feature Friday

Chicken Coop Coffee Table

Last October I went to the Country Living Fair in Atlanta and bought this neat coffee table.

The base is a chicken coop and the top is scrap wood finished with a warm stain.

I like this piece for its character and its uniqueness.  It's handmade and was made from mostly recycled wood and materials so it's at least sort of "green" :-)

Linking with:
Savvy Southern Style - Wow Us Wednesday
Miss Mustard Seed - Furniture Feature Friday

Sunday, February 17, 2013

A Splurge

Like many couples getting married my husband and I registered for some pots and pans.  Before we were married we only had the cast offs from relatives that we had used in college.  Well, our friends and family came through and gave us all of the cookware we could want.  We had registered for teflon coated cookware.  Teflon is great because it's really easy to clean.

But.... after five years of cooking acidic foods (I love tomatoes), the pots and pans had seen better days.  My husband, being the primary cook in the family (me being the primary baker) decided he wanted to get some nice new pots and pans.

We went to Williams Sonoma to look at what they had.  My husband was looking at some traditional metal pots when I spotted these gorgeous butter yellow (actually the color's name is "Quince") beauties.  Okay, had to have it.  The first thing we bought was the small pot in the lower right corner in the picture above.  But after tossing and turning all night dreaming about the rest of the collection, we went back the next day and bought the rest.

I also had to grab the matching bakeware while I was there.

The miniature pots are so cute!  I had to do something with them immediately so I made a vanilla and nutmeg custard.

What I love about Le Creuset is that it lasts forever!  My husband's grandmother actually gave us some of her Le Creuset which is pictured below.

This collection is from the 70's.  Proof this stuff lasts!

While at one of the antique stores I frequent, I found this for $25!!!  Are you kidding me???  Do they know how much this stuff costs new?  Major score!

At least I shouldn't have to buy any pots and pans for a long time (or for the rest of my life according to my husband).  But I'm still keeping my eye out for new items in the bakeware category ;-)


Disclaimer:  This is not a sponsored post for either Williams Sonoma nor Le Creuset.  These opinons are my own.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Tufted Velvet Wingback Chair

Have you ever gotten a piece from your childhood home and gotten a warm and fuzzy feeling?  That's how I felt when my mom gave me this chair.  When I was growing up, it was in the "formal living room" which meant that I didn't get a lot of day to day use out of it.  But come Thanksgiving or Christmas time, our family got a lot of use out of it.

I spent a few weeks in the formal living room trying to learn how to play the piano.  An investment from which my parents have never seen any return.

The fabric is in pretty good shape considering its age and the fact that the house was never without cats and dogs.  There are some scratches in the wood and I still remember which dog those came from.

The front of the pillow was embroidered by my great-grandmother.  It was originally meant to be a square in a quilt for me but it didn't really go with the other embroidered squares so my mom took it and made a pillow cover for me.

It's nice when you can use things in your home that trigger found memories.  I'm not sure if I will reupholster and paint it.  For now I'm going to be patient and feel out what I want to do.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Guest Room Reveal

Above is a picture of my guest room soon after my husband and I moved into our house.  I really love this furniture.  All of the pieces are 1930's Art Deco Waterfall.  My grandmother bought all of it and gave it to me for my college graduation gift.  Needless to say, I was extremely grateful.  Unfortunately, the bed is a double which makes it too small for the couples who stay with us.  My husband and I discussed it and finally decided we really needed a queen.

What I like about this headboard is its versatility.  The bed and the headboard are the only pieces I bought for this room.  Everything else was around the house.

I was ready to have some color.  I thought the guest room would be a good place to experiment because I don't go in here everyday.  So if I didn't like it, I didn't have to see it often.  I chose a bright blue and I really love how it combines with the warm colors in the quilt.

The sides of the day bed under the picture windows are two twin size headboards.  When I first got them they were an ugly metallic finish.  I spray painted them antique white and love how they came out.

The trunk was originally my great-grandmother's.  I'm lucky to have a family that doesn't throw a lot away.

Because the trunk is under the window, I covered the top with a quilt I made to protect it from fading.  I didn't make the quilt for this room but the colors worked so well.  Don't you love it when things just work out?  I guess that's what happens when you collect things that you really love.  Somehow it all comes together.

Linking with
Savvy Southern Style