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Friday, November 25, 2011

Because Mamma needs a Toy Cabinet, too

I'm breaking my rule by posting on Anne Marie's blog again. Sometimes I can't resist entering into the conversation of furniture. Especially since I've recently moved into a new house. I've noticed, in these blog land conversations (a lot of you are my best blog friends and you don't even know it), it just so happens to present itself that many of you have the same weakness that I do. Shabby, pink, and french. I know I should have kept my cabinet just for my Garden Laundry shop [another one of my guilty pleasures]. But this cabinet crammed with pink and green flowery china has very practical storage space, indeed. 

On the other side of this room, there's a pretty painting I found at an estate sale for $3. it's from the 40's, too, and I bought it for the frame but soon fell in love with the aged magnolias.

I wasn't sure about the white frame, so I painted it a pretty pale turquoise. I was originally thinking coral, but you bloggers are rubbing off on me, what can I say? (btw can you see my lovely little antique foot rest which I've been using as a half bench in the foreground? It makes a great seat for 2 little sets of eh-ems when a gal needs extra seating). Ooh, and there's my high chair. Oooh.


On to other topics, the reason we moved to a new house was largely because of this room:

It's just a great big room off of the garage, which I use as my studio! Hooray! And yes, sometimes I sprawl out and paint on the ground. But I wanted to go into the whole idea of "creative business". That is, making money off of your creative endeavors. Most of you are in it, just like me. But it's been sort of an oxy moron for me--it's a release, but most of the battle is getting into the right frame of mind to create something successful, since it's a source of income. I begin to stress, and then I wind up with Kung Phooey. So, I want this room to be a play room for me. I want to be able to go to it, and not feel the stress of having to bring home the bacon. I've learned a lot from everyone's comments and blogs. There's a lot of wisdom out there. And, I really do feel like I've grown a bunch since we both started this blog 2 years ago. Anyhow, just wanted to say thanks to all you Simon Cowells out there. :) I kid. I kid. I am wishing for a Pick my Presto from Layla, as a sort of Christmas present, right Layla??? So, I submitted this here post to her PMP box. Cross your fingers. Do you guys have any advice? Note to self: DONT burn the room down with your candle.

Pretty junky, right? 

Everything's looking very... very hazey. Foggy.

  Hey there's fingerprints all over my camera. How am I ever going to keep my studio streamlined? *sigh* I need some cute junky furniture in this here studio.
Hope you all had a very blessed and peaceful Thanksgiving! Thank you for the moon, for sweet children, and for happy grandpa hugs. Thank you for old junky furniture and big fat tubs of juicy paint. Miss you, Anne Marie... hugs. :P Cara

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Lagoon Mirror

I picked up this large mirror at my very favorite thrift store for a pittance last week.  It’s one of those places that’s a little bit scary, and nothing’s marked with a price, so you have to ask.  There’s an 80 year woman who runs the place, and she’s a bit scary as well.  But I’ve been shopping there at least once a week for quite a while now, so she knows me, coos over my beautiful babies.  Ya know, I’m in!  So whenever I ask the price on things there, I usually have to physically hold back my gasp at how cheap it is.  And I can’t get my money out and get the piece in my car quick enough.  Yep…LOVE that place.  If you’re ever in Prescott, AZ, let me know and I’ll take you there.  But I might just have to throw elbows for the coolest pieces, just so you’re warned.  ;)

So here’s how the mirror came to me:


I knew I wanted to do a bright and unexpected color on this one.  I tossed around yellow and coral, but ultimately landed on using Lagoon from Rustoleum.  It’s a favorite of my bloggy pal Kirsty from A Little Bit of Sanity and a Lot of Chaos, and I’ve wanted to bust it out ever since I saw some of her wonderful pieces done in this color.  It’s a deep turquoise or a bright teal.  I haven’t decided which, and it varies depending on the lighting.  I noticed when I had it inside that it looked more on the teal side, but out in the daylight, it looked more turquoise.  I added a black glaze to deepen the color further and bring out the cool details.



Yes, our willow tree is still green!  This is AZ!!  It was 60 degrees yesterday, and I was actually sweating when I was working outside.  I love fall in Arizona!  It’s my very favorite time of year.

I tried to pair it up with the Metallic Herringbone Desk, but I think it’s just too large.  The scale doesn’t quite work.  But I do love the idea of a bright mirror paired up with it as a vanity.  I may try look for another that fits it better.  (By the way, I’d like to everyone for all the wonderfully beautiful and ego-boosting comments on the desk!  I’m so glad you love it as much as I do!)


Thanks to my friends Cassie at Primitive and Proper and Shaunna at Perfectly Imperfect for their features of the Herringbone Desk!  I love both those gals!

Also, I’m being featured over at Time Out For Women for the next few days, so please hop over and check it out!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Metallic Herringbone Desk

I picked up a waterfall desk from a local thrift store a little while ago.  It had black painted drawers, a sad and flakey wood finish, and no handles.


Now, I’m in love with all the two-toned painted/stained wood combo pieces I’ve been seeing around lately.  Here’s a few particularly lovely examples:


White Butterfly


Design Sponge


The Lettered Cottage


European Paint Finishes


European Paint Finishes

Since this desk was already going in that direction, I decided to run with the two-toned look.  I repainted the drawers with a fresh coat of black, but then came the special touch I’ve been teasing about on the Facebook page.


I used the above example as my inspiration.  I loved that the neither the verticals or horizontals were perfectly spaced or even.  It gives it a more organic and loose feel than the very geometric and measured chevron design we’ve been seeing everywhere.

So I started off by drawing the vertical lines with a pencil using a yard stick straight edge.  No measuring.  This is a time when you actually want variation in the spacing of your lines (if you look at the example above.)  Once I had the pencil lines drawn from the top drawers to the bottom (so the pattern would continue from one drawer to the next,) I used a silver paint pen to hand-draw the vertical lines.  Again, you’re not going for perfectly strait lines here.  The variations give it the look we’re going for here.  :)  Once your vertical lines are all drawn and dry, go back and add in all the diagonal ticking.  It sounds tedious, but it really does go very fast.


When I was done, I added some black cup pulls that I bought from Ebay.  It was a little tricky shopping, since the hole spacing was an irregular 2 3/4” c-c, but I found these cup pulls for $2 a piece and they worked out great!

The wood finish was extremely warn, and came off fairly easily with a little elbow grease. I used my orbital sander on the large, flat parts, and hit the details and corners with some sand paper and my hands. Once I had it stripped down to the bare wood, I used my favorite go-to stain, Minwax Dark Walnut.  I also plan on adding a satin Verathane top coat, but I’m waiting until I have all the projects I’m trying to finish this week lined up, so I can spray them all at the same time.  Efficiency of motion people!  ;)

And here she is all (well, almost) finished up!







I heart this piece big time!  Like look-all-around-my-house-for-someplace-to-put-it LOVE.  But I don’t have a place for it, so it’ll go over to Livy Lou’s as well.  There’s going to be a furniture open house there next week in preparation for Black Friday and the holiday shopping season.  I’ll make sure to do a proper introduction of the shop soon, I promise.  :)

My mother-in-law is coming over this morning to help out with the little kids while I get some furniture work in, including a whole lot of poly spraying.  :)  Wish me luck!

Linking to:

House of Grace, Sassy Sites, Primitive & Proper, Domestically Speaking, Somewhat Simple, Perfectly Imperfect, The Shabby Creek Cottage, Finding Fabulous, The Shabby Nest, Sassy Sites, Chic on a Shoestring, Miss Mustard Seed, Family Ever After, Tatertots and Jello, I Heart Naptime, Beneath My Heart, Thrifty Decor Chick


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Perfect Plum Dresser

Remember the post I did ages ago about wanting to paint something plum?  Well, I finally took the plum plunge, and it wasn’t so scary after all!  :)

I picked up this little dresser with a gloppy black paint job, but I could see that it was a diamond in the rough.  It’s got obvious age to it, with pretty brass keyholes (that had also been painted over) and caster wheels.


I didn’t need to sand it back down to the wood, but I did need to sand down the gloppy paint job, so I could have a smooth surface to repaint.  When I started sanding, all that black came off pretty easily.  Whomever painted it didn’t prime over the last paint job, which had been polyurethaned.  When the black started coming off, I saw this underneath:



Lovingly painted by someone’s mom before I was even born:


Someone had given it new life for their child in 1978, and here I was about to renew it again.  I love that!

Once I sanded the surface nice and smooth, I broke out my perfect plum, Folklore by Behr.  Mine was a flat enamel, paint and primer in one.  I picked it up at the mistint counter at HD for just $1 for the quart.  Gotta love mistints!  (I still plan on adding a satin Verathane top coat for added durability and ease of cleaning, but I couldn’t WAIT to share it!!)

I bought a big lot of old Victorian pressed brass pulls that I’ve been selling at The Hob Knobery Etsy shop, and I decided to put together a mix and match assortment of them for an eclectic look.  (I still have more of most of these in the shop, so hop on over if you’re interested.)  And don’t they look great with the brass keyholes!!  Ta da!!!





She’s a classy and sophisticated broad, she is.  It was a super fun project.  Can’t wait to get her in Livy Lou’s, hopefully later this week.

Got another great one for you, probably tomorrow!  Bustin’ ‘em out!  :)

Linking to:

House of Grace, Sassy Sites, Primitive & Proper, Domestically Speaking, Somewhat Simple, Perfectly Imperfect, The Shabby Creek Cottage, Finding Fabulous, The Shabby Nest, Sassy Sites, Chic on a Shoestring, Miss Mustard Seed, Family Ever After, Tatertots and Jello, I Heart Naptime


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

More new furniture

As I said in my last post, I’m feeling reinvigorated to start painting furniture again.  But I haven’t had time yet to start.  So I just keep amassing all these great pieces, waiting for the day I’ll be able to give them a few minutes of my stretched-thin attention.  But I’m hopeful!!  My wonderful mother-in-law has told me that she will come over one morning a week to watch my littlest two so I can get some painting in.  (I love that woman!)  So between that and maybe squeezing some in on the weekends when my husband is home, or on the off chance that the baby takes a good nap at sometime during the day, I think I may just be able to paint again.  Hooray!!

On other, related news, I’ve talked with the owner of a fantastic little boutique in downtown Prescott called Livy Lous about selling my furniture in her shop, and she (and I) are very excited about it!  It’s very Anthopologie-esque, and I think my stuff will be right at home there!  I’ll keep you apprised and post pics when I get some pieces in there.  Not having to sell my own stuff on Craigslist is such a weight off!  I was getting completely frustrated with it.  And now, I’m also feeling freed up to take some more chances artistically and create some awesome things, so watch out and hold onto your socks!!  :)

But, until I start moving things out of the workshop and into the store, I hereby resolve, NOT to buy any more furniture.  :)  It’s starting to pile up a little bit!  Here’s some more new pieces that have made their way into the queue…


Picked up this great waterfall desk at a local thrift shop the other day for a steal.  I’m really intrigued by the two-toned look of painted drawers with stained body (or visa-versa) these days, and since this is almost there, I think I might run that direction with it.  Of course with some fun surprises thrown in as well.  :)


This is a very large mirror!  It’s going to be over-the-top great painted in an unexpected color.


I might just decide to pair it up with the desk as a fantastic vanity.


This full size headboard was screaming my name when I decided to “just pop in” at my favorite thrift store this morning!  It hasn’t been here long enough for me to formulate a plan yet.  What do you think?


I’m going to pick up thus little three drawer dresser this afternoon.  No plans for him yet either, other than I might try and match it up as a set with this big guy…


Love so many things about this piece, the key holes, the original brass pulls.  Not so much with carved details on the drawer fronts.  I’m thinking I’ll probably fill and sand those before painting.

So there you have it!  Along with the pieces I showed you last time, you can see my space (and time) dilemma.  :)  But as the furniture pile grows, so does my anticipation and excitement.  I can’t wait to start working my way through it all, and sharing it with you along the way.  I can’t wait to start getting some pieces in Livy Lous and see where that takes me.  After a much needed and well timed break, it all feels new again, and I’m so thankful.

Thanks for sticking with me.  Can’t wait to show you what’s in store!