Friday, May 29, 2015

On An Island

This is a story of a simple little project that has taken me months to accomplish. When the kitchen renovation was done we lived happily in the new space.  We loved the finished product but as time wore on we realized that we really did miss my little square butcher block on wheels. It used to sit in the middle of the room before the renovation but it was long gone to some lucky Craigslist shopper. Rats.

I wanted something that doesn’t compete with the cabinets but also doesn’t try to match them.  I did find something on line. It had a marble top. The price was right so I ordered it. It took two weeks to get here. Patience is not one of the virtues that I have spent time to cultivate, yet. When I opened the package the top was broken in two! The “all wood” pieces were so awful and thin.  I packaged it right back up and sent it back. Lesson learned.

We were back at square one.  Mr. suggested we find something we can recycle/upcycle. What!?!?! “Who are you and what did you do with my husband?”, I asked. Of course, I did that as I was grabbing my keys and purse- sprinting for the door! I did not want to give him a chance to question what had just come out of his mouth. A flood of ideas started springing from my brain as we drove. "We could...what if...I want... or we could...". I am beginning to think this why the music is always so loud in our car….. He says it is because his hearing is poor (he does have bad hearing) but I wonder if he isn't trying ignore me......naw!

We stopped at a favorite haunt, Bernat Antiques  and it yielded that piece we were looking for. It was an old dry bar. “We can fix it”, he said. Really? I like this new husband! I don’t know what happened to my old husband but I am sure I will miss him.

Here is the piece we bought. Pretty 1970’s, eh? That was in October.

We took off the top and ordered a piece of granite to match our existing countertops. It came in November. We took the chunky base molding off and replaced it with something a little more slimmed down. ( I hope you are understanding that “we” means “he”.) I also had Mr. put it on casters to move about the room freely.

A frame was made first to attach the new base molding to.

Not pretty construction but it got the job done. We are not furniture makers!

The corners were beefed up to make room for casters.
By the time Christmas had rolled around I had painted it white to match the cabinetry. We cut the doors up and replaced the chunky wood with galvanized metal sheeting. It still is not right, I thought. Still no drawer pulls. Functional, but not right. I was second guessing all my choices. Pinterest was confusing me even more. And, so it sat…….waiting.

I did not take pictures at this stage, really. Not sure what the strange coloring on the side is.??
A trip to another store in March introduced me to a paint product called Maison Blanche. I selected a lovely shade called Confederate Gray and scurried home. After two coats it sat. Functional, flat gray but not right. The paint did go on easy and covered well.

April brought the idea of adding molding. That idea did not come to fruition until May. And finally it was making sense-seven months later.
With chalk and a yard stick measured where I wanted the molding to be.

Mr. cut the molding for me. (And nailed it in place.) I set the nails and filled the holes.

Before painting molding. You can still see my chalk notes.

 Everything need another coat of paint. A coat of Annie Sloan wax and some sweet little drawer pulls from Target and finally finished it off. And now it is "just right"…..for now.

Linkin up:
French Country Cottage, The Shabby Nest, Craft Dictator, Just Us Four, The Cottage Market, The DIY Village, DIY Vintage Chic, Miss Mustard Seed, Chic on a Shoestring, My Romantic Home, Craft-O-Maniac, I Heart Naptime, The Girl Creative, Pieced Pastimes, DIY Showoff, Dwellings-The Heart of Your Home, Finding Silver Pennies, Thoughts From Alice, I Should Be Mopping the Floor, Huckleberry Love, Creatively Living, Karen's Up On The Hill, Create With Joy, Mad In Crafts, Carrie This Home, Coastal Charm, Skip To My Lou, Grace Langdon Art, Cedar Hill Farmhouse, Sand and Sisal, Cupcakes and Crinoline, Snap Creativity, Home Stories A to Z, AStroll Thru Life, A Bowl Full of Lemons, Our Home Away From Home, Cozy Little House, Tip Junkie, Julie's Lifestyle, Intelligent Domestications, The Pin Junkie, Between Naps On The Porch, Elizabeth and Company, DIY Dreamer, Just A Girl And Her Blog, Savvy Southern Style, Simply Designing, Gingersnap Crafts, DIY by Design, Crafty Allie, The Turquoise Home, The Dedicated House, Lambert's Lately, Common Ground, From My Front Porch To Yours, Joyful Homemaking, Sweet Bella Roos, Crafts Alamode, Blesser House, Imparting Grace, Too Much Time On  My Hands, AKA Design, Must Love Home, My Repurposed Life, Craftberry Bush, Pin Junkie, The Charm of Home. Life with Lorelai, Funky Junk Interiors, VMG206

Grace at Home     Welcome to Think Tank Thursday #99 The Dedicated House

grab button for The Cottage Market  

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


Trying to make some changes to the blog. Don't be alarmed if it looks different each time you click on it. I am having a hard time making up my mind!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Media Storage

It has been over a year since I started this blog. It all began with a kitchen and bath renovation. It was a big job to take on but we did it and I am thrilled with the results.  Immediately after that I switched the dining room and then we built a small screened in porch on the back. Enough! I took the winter off and enjoyed making cookies in my new kitchen and using my fabulous new dishwasher to help with the clean-up. Now that Spring has finally showed itself in our neck of the woods we are ready for another project but not quite as big.

House wrens love these!
We decided to go easy. For several years we have used an old dresser for our media needs; the tv and dvd player  sat on top of the dresser and the cable box was under the dresser on the floor. Our living room is long and "L" shaped and the television was too far away from the seating to get the high definition effects that the tv is supposed to give. Also, there were wires hanging out the sides and from underneath like a spastic octopus and I......couldn't...... stand it! Move the television! It did not sound like a terribly hard job, just move it, right? Easy-peasy!  Um, I wanted to mount it to the wall, " and I don't want to see the cords" I whined. That's where Mr. rolls his eyes (Yes , he does that a lot because of me). The messiness of them makes me bonkers so what's a girl to do? I shamelessly begged!

Not a great picture- but just looking at the cords under the dresser! Ugh!!!

 I know, of all the things to be bothered by, right? So, I mapped out a point on the wall where I wanted the tv moved to and Mr. got busy cutting a hole in the wall. He actually cut two holes, one long one to slide in a piece of pvc pipe that wires would be fished through and connect to the tv  and another low hole that feeds wires to the boxes and power outlet. We did not cut one channel all the way down because there is wainscoting (read painted bead board paneling) and a chair rail about 1/3 of the way up the wall that we did not want to destroy.

Not too bad, I thought....

Ummm.....that is going to take some serious patching! Horse-hair plaster is not ideal.

Pvc chase in attached to stud.
There are wall mounted tv wire kit things for sale in stores that leave a nicer presentation but honestly we just did not want to spend the money them. For a few dollars worth of pvc and two elbow brackets we were quite pleased with ourselves.

After inserting pvc into the wall and an elbow to direct the cords. A little caulking will make it look better....and removing the UPC

.....and all better!

I found a dresser on Craiglist for $35 and brought it home. It is solid wood; no particle board And, in true "me" fashion it sat for a week waiting for inspiration to jump in. A trip to my favorite antique and vintage haunts provided the push I needed and I rushed to my local home improvement store for paint. (This is where I should confess that have still not finished the island in the kitchen.)

Saturday I lightly sanded the dresser and had my daughter help by washing everything down with TSP and water. Once it dried I mixed my paint. I made my own chalk paint plaster of paris paint . The formula I like is 2 cups paint, 2 tbsp plaster of paris and 1/2 hot water. Stir well using a spoon or spatula to get the lumps out. Then paint! I painted two coats, lightly sanding after each coat.

After drying for 24 hours I sanded again this time through some of the paint to the wood, but just in areas I wanted distressed like on corners and high parts. When I was done I read the directions on my Annie Sloan Soft Wax (that is about 3 years old) and went for it. I put on a layer and wiped off the excess.... a lot of excess! I have to say that watching a few videos first would have been a smarter move. I used too much wax and made a lot of work for myself. I had used it before but with a cloth and had just lightly wiped it on leaving a nice finished product. This time I used a brush and got too happy with all that! Advice from videos I watched afterwards suggested putting a thin layer of wax on first then distressing then putting another layer of wax. If you haven't tried this before watch videos first. Pinterest is loaded with good tutorials. Cindy from Simply Reinvented has a good one here.

Give the wax a day or so to dry. Grab a clean old white t-shirt  or soft cloth and buff, buff, buff. I am incredibly happy with the results! I purchased new drawer pulls as it came missing one and others that were on the piece when I bought it were bent.

I should also mention the my dvd player was too big for space I wanted it to sit in-by 1/2 inch! I kid you not. Mr. just cut the sides out and the player fits in just fine. He covered the not-so-pretty edges with cleats that will hold a shelf for the cable box.

So, for $35, and the cost of paint and new drawer pulls I got a new media cabinet with a ton of storage! And....tada!

Linking Up:
French Country Cottage, The Shabby Nest, Chic on a Shoestring, Craft Dictator, My Romantic Home, The  DIY Village , Miss Mustard Seed, Whipperberry, Just Us Four, Tatertots and Jello, The Girl Creative, Craft-O-Maniac, The Cottage Market, DIY Vintage Chic, Snazzy Little Things, The Dedicated House. Pieced Pastimes,DIY Showoff, Dwellings-The Heart of Your Home, Silver Pennies, Coastal Charm, I Should Mopping the Floors, Skip to My Lou, Huckleberry Love, A Bright and Beautiful Life, Cedar Hill Farmhouse, Home Stories A to Z, Sand and  Sisal, Karen's Up On The Hill, Cupcakes and Crinoline, Creatively Living, A Stroll Thru Life, Cozy Little House, The DIY Dreamer, DIY By Design, Crafty Allie, Our Home Away From Home, Flamingo Toes, A Bowl Full of Lemons, Savvy Southern Style, Simply Designing, The Turquoise Home, Lambert's Lately, Imparting Grace, Snazzy Little Things, The Charm of Home, Common Ground, From My Front Porch To Yours, Too Much Time On My Hands, AKA Design, Remodelaholic, Life With Lorelai, Inside The Fox Den, Mad In Crafts, Between Naps On The Porch, Funky Junk Interiors

UPDATE 6/30/2015
Chalk Paint is a trademark of Annie Sloan.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Brimfield Antique Show (aka Eye Candy)

This past weekend brought about a harbinger of summer in our neck of the woods.....Brimfield! If you love antiques, creative decorating ideas, hand crafted works or just a mega dose of people watching this is a good place to be. This year qualified on all these points for me.

Mr. was a trooper. We got there around 9:30 AM and did not leave until closing at 5PM.  This post will mainly be a  photo trip for you in case you couldn't make it there.

We saw the ladies from Vintage Thymes and were thrilled for them that they were picked over and had little left in their booth. It does not surprise me, though!

We saw a lot of vintage-y industrial stuff. I could just imagine them being used in an episode of Fixer Upper!

No idea what this base was originally for but loved the nod to local history.

No idea where you would put one of these!

A lighthouse lamp!

Just the back end of a bus! Many ideas that this could be turned in to!

and just because I'm warped liked that!
 There was plenty that appealed to my style... pretty, girly and/beachy stuff.

Love the color on this frame.

Blurry picture but really cool...... Mr. rolled his eyes AGAIN!

A lace teepee!

Chippy goodness!
 I met some new friends.....

New friends with a lovely booth.

The ladies at Carried Away Antiques did really well at the show! They were pretty cleaned out by the end of it all. If you like their style follow them of Facebook!

No idea what that says but love her legs!
Wouldn't you love this in a nursery!

Isn't that color fabulous!

More lovely things found

We found a few lovely things at Vintage Bazaar's booth. I brought home a shelf for the back porch. I will put a post about that soon.

Couldn't talk Mr. into this one.....yet!
We also made it home with something for the garden and a little table for the office/music room upstairs. That, of course, needs paint! That will be for another post.