Friday, July 30, 2010

Thrift Store Shopping During My Lunchbreak

So I just got back from the Garrett Thrift Store here in Walnut Creek...and I hit the motherload!  Well not really...but I ended up with some really great finds!  I got a few nice milk glass pieces, some great frames, some antique metal trivets, an amazing vintage book, some candle holders, and plates.  All in all, a WHOLE LOT of things that are gonna get some much needed spray paint!  And I think I am gonna use this to both try my hand at distressing a freshly painted piece, as well as listing some of this stuff on my Etsy page for the first time (I have been refraining from listing anything because I didn't want my Etsy "launch" to be a lonely three items listed )!  So there will be more to come from me..and I will post pics of my findings as soon as I get home from work tonight! 

FYI: this is my first posting that doesn't include any pictures...and I am not too sure how I feel about that yet.

Monday, July 26, 2010

A Few Things To Come...

I haven't had a lot of time to blog recently but I have been working on a few different projects.  A few of them for about a month now!  So I thought I just might do a quick posting covering some of my current projects.

The first project is also the oldest.  I saw an add on craigslist awhile back listing a bunch of frames for $25.00.  This is the picture that was posted in the craigslist ad:

I saw a couple that I liked and so I figured it was worth to just buy the whole lot.  When I showed up at the lady's house, she had 4 Trader Joe's bags stuffed full of frames...there must have been 25 frames.  So I picked out my favorites and started spray painting them.

And then I laid them out on my floor to figure out the composition I wanted for the wall...

Now all I have left is to put some artwork in them!  Hence the delay...

The next project I have been working on (or at least have done some work on) is a refinishing project for two antique side tables. 

I picked these up at the thrift store for $15.00 a piece and so far have only sanded and primed one of them.  I think this is going to be the first project in which I paint them and them immediately "rough" them up...I am a little scared...but wish me luck!


 Don't they have such cute detailing???

And the last project for this post is a little antique sewing box I picked up at the consignment store around the block from where I work.  I am thinking about it as a place to keep my dogs food...but it might also become home to all of the remotes that float around my house.


It has a really cute little ledge inside probably for knitting needles...but I thought it might be the perfect place to store a piece of chalk.  Then I could put a little chalkboard paint on the doors so I can label what is inside...because who out there doesn't love to label things???

So the first night I got it I happen to be babysitting Miss of course I put her to work sanding it for me!  I mean she has to earn her keep somehow right???

I hope you have enjoyed my little rendition of "things to come...."


Friday, July 23, 2010

Yay For Me!!!

Kathy over at The Far Fifty has given me the Sunshine Award!  Thank you so very much Kathy!!!

If you have never been to Kathy's blog before you should really check it out!  Like so many of us out there she has been tirelessly refinishing furniture and thrift store searching!  She has some great DIY inspirations and she has some very creative refinishing stenciling directly onto the new knows she included on a dresser! 

See her post here

Now back to the award!!!  The rules are as follows:

1. Thank the blogger who gave it to you.
2. List 7 things that people may not know about you.
3. Pass the love to other deserving bloggers that you have discovered recently.
4. Let them know that you gave them an award

So seven things you don't know about me...hmmm...

1. I love my puppy Bunny B like she is my child
2.  Previously I was a wedding invitation designer
3. I have a really hard time keeping plants alive...I kill almost all of them
4. My favorite TV show is Gilmore Girls...I love it and keep watching it over and over
5. My teenage sister got me in to the Twilight series...I am TOTALLY addicted
6. I have a slight obsession with Marilyn Monroe
7. I really hate cell phones...I have an iPhone for my own convenience, but I rarely answer it and I have not even set up the voicemail system on it because I don't want people to leave me messages!

I would like to pass on the award to three of my new favorite blogs:
Jessica at Sea to my Heart
Melanie at Oops! Redone

Please go check out these very talented ladies blogs!  And thanks again for thinking of me Kathy!  This award really made my day!!!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

My Kitchen...Now New And Improved!!!

So if you have seen my blog before, you have probably seen the some of updates that have been made to my kitchen.  But in case this is your first is the wall above my stove.

Isn't that hole lovely??? When I moved in there was a 4 inch metal tube going from my oven to my wall.  Its purpose appeared to be for venting...but it wasn't actually hooked up to anything so it was just there for "decoration" I I riped it down first thing.  And now I get to stare at this while I am cooking...appealing right?

It also left a hole at the top of my stove which I have not cleverly hidden with a cupcake shaped trivet.



So I knew I needed some artwork for my kitchen so I landed on adding a large chalkboard (for more on that click here) and some prints.  I saw this post on Stephanie's blog Under The Table And Dreaming.  I really loved the vintagey feeling of these signs and loved the "if you can't take the heat" message!  Too cute!

So I printed two of them out that I thought would look cute with the chalkboard.  And since the chalkboard was in a very ornate traditional styling, I thought I should choose frames for the other two prints that had that same feeling.  Here is a quick before-and-after of the chalkboard redo:


I picked up this frame awhile back at Marshall's for $8 bucks.  I originally picked it up for my Dad (sorry Dad) to use to frame one of his many family western pictures, but the shape is just too cute and so I kept it.

It got a couple of quick coats of ballet slipper pink spray paint and it already looked distressed. 

Which inspired my to attempt glazing on the other two frames (more of that story click here)

And since I like this frame the best, I choose to put the print in it I like the best.  But what should I back it with to make it pop?

I really like the Japanese papers from Paper-Source so I thought I would start there.  and this classic cherry blossom print was very pretty...but I felt it was just a little too busy and not really the vibe I was going for.  so I tried out this one...

Again cute...but just not right.  The saying is "tough" so I needed a paper pattern to match it.

Now this was closer to what I was going for...but still not just right.  I felt it was too maybe a solid would look better...

Now I liked this the best!  But it just looks too flat...too one dimensional.  So maybe if I blew the print up larger?

OK I like this, but still too plain (I am a very picky woman...haha)

Then I remembered I had some leftover paper from some invitations I had done that had a great print.  So I grabbed the extras from my craft room...

I like that...but the print kind of gets lost because it it so light...

And this was good.  But it was still lacking maybe a combination of solids with a print...

And tada!  Perfection!  Now for the next frame.  I started using this cheapo frame that was part of a grab bag of frames I got from Craigslist for $25.00 awhile back, but it just didn't fit with the other two...

See what I mean?  The top one is too plain.  so I remembered that I recently acquired a few other frames from the thrift store (again purchased for my Dad and once again I kept them...sorry Dad).  And these have a much better shape to them.

So a couple coats of spray paint later...

So here is the final product hung up in my kitchen!

Pretty cute huh???  It is a big improvement!  This is much better to walk in to...

And the two framed prints look pretty good together...

So here is the final before and after shots...enjoy!


My First Attempt at a Chalkboard

*WARNING* Once again I have managed to include to many pictures in my post!

So I have known for awhile now that I needed a large piece of artwork for my kitchen (there is a large hole in the wall from the old stove venting hose). 

And I have really been inspired by chalkboards lately...and really, aren't chalkboards a great alternative to art in the kitchen?  so I have been on the hunt for a large frame with some classically inspired embellishments.  So while shopping at a local consignment shop at lunch one day a couple of weeks ago I spotted this little lady...

(Miss Bunny B in the corner)

Her coloring was pretty hideous, but she was heavy and substantial, had great lines, and the artwork was hideous enough that I wasn't going to feel bad about spray painting over it and then just ripping it out.


so I headed to my local Ace Hardware store and picked up some supplies...

A piece of scrap 1/2" plywood that they had in stock cut down to the correct size (I brought my frame in with me and the guy who cut it took it in the back with him so he could get the right measurements), some magnetic spray paint (which ended up being a money pit), some chalkboard paint, foam sponges, spray primer and pink spray paint.

Because I was using spray primer I didn't sand the frame at all; however, I did sand the plywood with a 320 grit sanding block before I spray primered it.

After the first coat of primer...

(Miss Bunny B again...she just LOVES to refinish things!)

So I then moved on to spray painting just the frame in Ballet Slipper pink.  (The house I rent was built in the 1920's and has a very cute vintagey feel.  So I have tried to keep in line with the feel of kitchen and spice it up with very retro feeling colors and artwork.)

The color came out beautifully but it had that I-just-spray-painted look and feel.  So I tried my luck with my first attempt at glazing (more on that here).  It came out pretty good in my opinion.  so I took to pulling the artwork out and installing my chalkboard painted piece of plywood.

All I had on hand were round staples for my staple I just went with it!  And once I was done, I tried nailing in a finishing nail at an angle to finish things off.  Now the first one worked out great...but the second one...went right through the plywood and not into the frame.  Oops!  Guess I didn't go in with enough of an angle...

So I just moved on and took it in stride!  I decided to no longer use the finishing nails and felt confident that my chalkboard was secure in its frame with the staples.  So I just touched up the blemish with some chalkboard paint (a pretty thick coat to fill it in, since the rest of the plywood got a three coat finish).

And it ended up being just fine...

You can barely notice it.  Now for my little rant about the spray paint magnetic surface.  I didn't want to spend $28.99 for the 1 quart can of the magnetic paint, so I opted for the $8.99 bottle of spray paint.  Now the coverage on the can says 2-3 square feet.  Now my piece of plywood is a little larger then that at just over 4 sq. ft. so I only sprayed around the outside edges and left the middle un-magnetized.  I figured this was fine since I would be the only person sticking magnets up there and i would know the limitations.  HOWEVER, after it dried, not even my super dooper strong magnets would stay on...the just slid right down.  So back to Ace I go and pick up another can, and go over the same surface area again.  After this can is exhausted I realized that the super dooper magnets would stick, but no regular magnets (AKA cute ones).  So back I go for a third can.  Now I have invested $27 in magnetic spray paint and should have gotten 6-9 sq. ft. of coverage out of the cans.  But after the chalkboard paint was added (which is fine according to the magnetic spray paint can), still only the super strong magnets will stick...and just barely.  Maybe, maybe they will hold a single sheet of paper up.  Long story short, don't waste your money on this!

Moving my chalkboard is finished!  Although in the end it ended up coating me much more then I thought it would...$96.00 in total!  But I guess I will learn from my magnetic mistakes.

All in all my kitchen looks much better with the chalkboard.  And tonight will be 3 days since the last coat of chalkboard paint was I can condition it and use it for the first time!

 and here is the before and after for all of you voyeurs out there!!!


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