Archive | December, 2011

Merry Christmas!

23 Dec

Merry Christmas!

Happy Chanukah!

Whatever you celebrate, I hope its a good one!


Furniture Happy Dance

19 Dec

I totally was planning to post picture of my not-so-exciting Christmas tree today, but plans changed for the better.

Did you ever buy an item that makes you want to do a happy dance every time you see it?

Multiply that by 4 and you have my weekend.

I hit the jackpot on craigslist and it makes me giddy.  From one singular seller, I robbed bought 4 pieces of furniture for a grand total of 70 buckaroos.

My loot includes:

  • 2 dressers
  • 1 small cabinet
  • 1 desk (which came with a chair that may or may not be salvageable)

and I already have plans for all 4.

The story began as I perused craigslist looking for a mid-century dresser for my future nephew’s nursery.  My sister’s expecting her first child beginning of May and I’m taking responsibility for the nursery.  I have a picture in my head of mid-century pieces mixed with more traditional elements (much like the nursery I showed here), so off to craiglist I went.

I’ve been stalking craigslist on and off for a few months, but I wasn’t finding anything that spoke to me (or at least not anything that wasn’t ridiculously expensive).  Until this weekend.

My nephew will be the coolest baby on the block with his midcentury dresser and cabinet which will be custom refinished by his awesome auntie.

They both need some significant love, but the bones are there.  At $15 a pop, “no” wasn’t in my vocabulary.

The 3rd item from the same seller is a wonderful dresser that just screamed to me that it needed to hold tools and craft supplies in my in-progress basement work-area.  When furniture yells at you, you listen.

This vintage turquoise gem was also a whopping $15.

The last item is a flipper.  What I  mean by that is: I have no place for this desk, but it has too much potential for me not to bring it out.  It’s my responsibility as a designer to restore this amazing piece to its former glory and let someone else enjoy its beauty.  I’m being melodramatic and overly verbose.  What I really mean is that I’m going to refinish it and sell it. …and hopefully make lots of money.

Its truly amazing in person (I say that of course because I can see past the contact paper top and broken hardware to what it should look like), the picture really does it no justice.  Did I mention I got it for only $25?

After I found these on craigslist and contacted the seller, I was grinning from ear to ear, just ask Hubby.  We had to take 2 trips to get all my goodies, but it was worth it.  It’s probably a good thing that you can’t see me doing my happy dance.  It would be embarrassing.  For both of us.

I have to hurry up and finish my work space so I can get started on all my furniture refinishing projects- now I have even more motivation!

*All the pictures are from the craigslist postings, so please forgive the quality*

Pin and Tell: Be Bold

14 Dec

Welcome to my “Pin and Tell” weekly series. If you missed my previous “Pin and Tell” posts, check them out here.


This week’s Pin


Much to Hubby’s dismay, I’ve been so drawn to beautiful, big, bold, colorful, abstract paintings lately.   (The Hubs is all about impressionism.)  I love to see beautiful colors swirled together to create such a statement piece!  Those benches are to die for too of course, but I just can’t stop picturing that art (or something similar) above our piano in the dining room.  That’s the kind of piece that makes a space!

Until I can convince Hubby how amazing abstract art can be, I’ll keep dreaming about it.

ReStore the Basement

12 Dec

As I slowly chip away at my mountainous basement mess, I’ve been daydreaming of my fantabulous work space that the piles of crap stuff will eventually morph into.  It will be a wonderfully organized work/project area that is part basement, part creative inspiration.  So far it’s been all basement, but I now have a few items that will help bridge the gap.

I finally got a chance to go to the new (as of 8ish months ago..) Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Worcester (where my sister lives).  Since the ReStore is a new novelty in this area, allow me to explain.  It’s like GoodWill, but for all things house and building.  They accept donations and all the profits go to local Habitat for Humanty.  It’s a wonderful collection of awesomeness furniture, tiles, doors, windows, light fixtures, cabinets, and whatever other home or building items people have donated.  It’s a fun place to explore.  A few weeks ago, my parents had gone and told me about a piece of countertop that could serve as my workbench, so I had to check it out myself.

I left the ReStore with the countertop and a light for UNDER $10!!!  Nope, that’s not a typo.  Check out my loot and their prices:


Yup, it's purple.


Special thanks to the hand model, Hubby

I don’t have a complete plan devised for the countertop yet.  It’s 36″x64″ and finished on 3 sides, so I could use it as a peninsula coming out from the wall, or I could cut it down a bit and put it against the wall.  Basically for $5, I can MAKE it be what I need it to be (once I decide what that is).  The light was a no-brainer.  I saw it when hubby went to grab a volunteer to help us move the countertop.  It was love a first sight.  When I saw the price tag, it was love at second sight too.

My new goodies will help keep me motivated through my basement archeology.

Must. not. let. couch. win…

Pin and Tell: Graphic Novel Antique Geek Chic

7 Dec

Welcome to my “Pin and Tell” weekly series. If you missed my previous “Pin and Tell” posts, check them out here.


This week’s Pin


Does this room look familiar?  If you watch Secrets from a Stylist it should.  I have a confession: I have a HUGE girl-crush on Emily Henderson (HGTV stylist extraordinaire and Design Star winner).  I think she’s fantastic- I love her personality, LOVE her rooms, I’m envious of her talent, and I want to be her bff. (Emily, if you’re reading this, I’m probably not a stalker, we should be friends!)

Anywho, today’s amazing room was her creation for a fantastically fun couple.  I wish I could take credit for the title of today’s post, but that was Emily’s genius concoction too.  It aired over the summer, but Pinterest reminded me just how much this room made me swoon.  Check out Emily’s break-down and sources here.

Why am I obsessed with it?  As always, her styling is flawless.  The chic vintage accessories seem effortlessly timeless.  Mix that with the graphic letter  on the dresser and the black and white sketched figures on the wallpaper and you have a space that’s got personality, sophistication, and just makes me smile.  I’m totally in love with mid-century dressers lately, so she gets major points for that amazing piece, too.

Bottom line? It’s graphic, its antique, its geeky (in the best possible way) and it’s sooo chic.  Emily hit the nail on the head again.

What a Hoot

6 Dec

Last month, I went to NYC  to visit my sister-in-law and drag her around antiquing/thrifting.  It was a learning process, so I didn’t come home with the thrifted gold I was hoping, but I did get a few neat items.  One item that I adopted is this cute little owl votive holder.

I left him untouched by my DIY wand for a few weeks, but after much internal debate, I decided he needed bit of pizzazz.  Whenever I looked at him, I couldn’t help thinking of these guys from West Elm.  (I may be irrationally drawn to owls lately, seems to be a common ailment though…)

Now I obviously couldn’t turn him into mercury glass, but I started experimenting.  I had been wanting to try silver leaf for a while, so that’s what I did.  My little orangey-brown owl got a coat of spray adhesive then I used a paint brush to apply the silver leaf.  It was kind of a big mess, so I’m glad I did it outside.  I was on the fence if the finish was worth the time and mess, and I may have ruined the finish a bit when I finished him with a matte finishing spray (live and learn).  He sort of looks like I spray painted him silver, though.

Despite my incompetence with silver leaf, I still like the outcome- he’s fancy.

Isn’t he snazzy?  I think so.

Even though he came out different than planned, I’m really glad he’s not orangey-brown anymore.  I’m not giving up on silver leaf altogether, but I think next time needs to be more strategic and researched for the best techniques.

Have you had any projects lately that didn’t quite end up as planned but still had a positive outcome?  Do you have any silver leaf tips?

Pin and Tell: Baby Chic

1 Dec

Welcome to my “Pin and Tell” weekly series. If you missed my previous “Pin and Tell” posts, check them out here.


This week’s Pin


Just because you’re a newborn, doesn’t mean you can’t be classically chic, right?  Style knows no age.

I’m not gonna lie, I’m totally jealous of this kid.  The first thing that draws my eye is the divine mid-century dresser/sideboard turned changing table.  This is a piece that he will never out grow.  The moody gray and bright pops of color are fitting of a kids room, but will easily grow with him as his tastes change.

The designer of this room also did good with the curtains.  Ask any of my friends, and they’ll tell you, I have strong opinions of where to hang curtains (which has also made me the resident curtain hanger).  If you hang curtains as high as possible and wider than the window, you’ll be surprised what effect it can have.  The height of the curtains will accentuate the height of any room (even if the ceilings aren’t high) and will make it feel more grand.  Hanging them wider than the window will accomplish 2 things: it makes the window look larger, giving it more presence, AND when the curtains are pulled back, it actually allows more light into the room because the opening is wider.

There’s really so much positive about this room that I don’t have time to discuss it all in depth.  The art is cute but not cutesy, the furniture styles are mixed so well, and get a load of the wall above the crib- it has painted trees and 3d branches elements above the crib.  Thumbs up chic baby room designer!