Saturday, October 29, 2011

French Inspired Transformations

Warning ~
French inspiration ahead!

I've been painting like there's no tomorrow.

Well...I hope there's a tomorrow.

I've got more painting to do!

I've been working on some poor, ugly ducklings
for my friend, Georgina.

She owns Doster Emporium ~
a vintage grain elevator/lumber mill
she turned into a fabulously quaint antique shop
- full of trinkets and treasures -
with a very interesting history behind it.

The Doster family has owned it for over 100 years.
Georgina knows all of the history behind this beautiful old building,
and gladly gives tours of the building and it's beautiful surrounding property.

She's been giving me pieces of furniture and odds and ends to paint
so that she can sell them on Craigslist this winter,
as well as in the Emporium when it opens again in the spring.

(Or you can call her and she'll gladly open up the shop for you!

We plan on being vendors at the Allegan Antique Market at the May 2012 show
and will be taking a lot of my painted and her unpainted furniture with us.
Debbie will be coming down again and bringing some of her sweet things to sell, too.

Oh yeah, baby....
we're going to have the best booth there!

So....this is what I've been busy working on in my studio disaster-of-a-basement.

Project #1 was a historical desk that had beautiful French bones,
but was stained a very strange orange color.

I failed to take a 'before' photo of it.
You wouldn't have wanted to see it, believe me...

But this is how she turned out with a little ASCP-love
and a couple repurposed porcelain knobs that used to be on my kitchen cabinets.

ASCP in "French Grey" with "Old White" accents

Project #2 was a very old ho-hum rocker/glider.

Yikes!  Is that straw...or HORSEHAIR....?

With a little ASCP in 'Old White', Clear Wax, cushy new foam padding, and a piece of drop cloth,
it morphed in to a delicious French rocker/glider
with a faux grain sack seat.

I'm kind of getting into this reupholstering thing.

I love ripping into those old seats to see what's under there.

I loved the way she turned out,
and almost considered keeping her...

I used FabricMate pens for the first time on this drop cloth seat.
Those things are sweet!  
Very easy to use and much more realistic looking than fabric paint.

I didn't even have to use the painter's tape.
I just lined up my yardstick and drew stripes with the chisel tip.

Project #3 was a lonely looking, boring dining chair
(which I started painting before I remembered that I had to take a 'before' photo for you).

She morphed into a luscious French side-chair
with a faux grain sack seat made from more drop cloth ~
and yup, another FabricMate pen.

ASCP in "French Grey"

Are you still with me?

Ok, then.....

Project#4:  Can you say ~ "ugly pea-green mirror"?

Pea-green.  Really?
Good grief.
What are these people thinking....?

It was lovingly transformed into sweet French chicness.

ASCP in "Old White" with a drybrush of "Paris Grey".

Yes, believe it or not,
there's a Project #5.

Next up was an old gold frame that I whitewashed with ASCP in 'Old White'.
I added a French script piece of scrapbook paper,
swished a little chalk paint on the cardboard backing peeking out behind the large photo,
and inserted a couple vintage photos Georgina had at the Emporium.

The brown resin frame you see behind the picture
was just drybrushed with more 'Old White'
to create a pretty patina.

The old vintage oval mirror tucked in the back
was dressed with 'Old White' and a little distressing.
It's a beautifully made, heavy mirror. 

And last but not least,
a plain, old wood sconce was turned into a
sweet, Nordic inspired sconce
with a pretty blue tea light
(that smells like the ocean).

ASCP in 'Old White'

A little paint + a little layering of color +
a whiz of a palm sander + a rub of wax +
a lot of elbow grease buffing to a satiny sheen =

French inspired transformations
perfect for your home.

Like what you see?

Look for these treasures (and MORE!) at Doster Emporium 
 on Facebook.
We'll be listing them on Craigslist very soon, too!

(or just give Georgina a call!) 

 { Hugs }

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Friday, October 21, 2011

A Bluebird in a Myrtle Tree

I'll bet you're singing a Christmas song in your head now, aren't you?

Well, this title was better than the one I originally thought of:
"Bird in My Belfry"
( comments from the peanut gallery,
thank you very much).

Anyway, Rosemary at Ozma of Odds once again,
in her fairytale-like way,
had me falling head over heels for another beautiful project of hers. 
(I truly think we're kindred spirits. I love everything that she creates.)

She recently posted that in many of the photos in the Jeanne d'Arc magazines,
there was some type of topiary.

source: Pinterest

Small, tall, round, thin.
Oh, so very French.

source: Pinterest

It got me gazing around the rooms in this old JDA-inspired farmhouse.

It was lacking in greenery.
There was no topiary.

I made a quick trip to Michael's.

(I swear I could spend all day pushing my cart around in that store.
On second thought...
I think I could just live there and craft all day...)

I didn't make my topiary as beautifully lacy and glittery as Rosemary's,

source: Ozma of Odds

but after loosely following her tutorial
I'm loving my rustic little olive tree topiary.

It fits perfectly with my rustic French country farmhouse style.

While on my new greenery kick,
I did discover a couple of charming myrtle topiaries on Ebay.
One for the frantle in a little galvanized pot....

and one for the bedroom,

where I added a sweet little bluebird.

I love opening my eyes to see this every morning...

Almost feels like I'm waking up in a French bed & breakfast...

source: myfrenchcountryhome


{ Hugs }

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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Crack in my bowl

What a difference a week makes here in Michigan.
Autumn has certainly arrived.
We went from two weeks of 80 degrees and perfectly clear blue skies
barely 50 degrees, cloudy, and hurricane force winds!
Knowing that I am completely OCD about having any leaf laying in my yard 
or floating in the water garden,
you should have seen me spastically trying to scoop leaves out of the pond as the wind pushed and pulled me every which way.  
It was a losing battle, I tell you.
Even after staking a net across the path in a feeble attempt to block the leaves 
from flying into the pond...
they found their way in.
Bubbler started for the winter months to keep the pond from freezing over.
I couldn't lay the net across the pond because of the frog residents hadn't taken their leave yet. 
 So, little old OCD-me kept scooping as the leaves whirled around me and pulled my hair into something out of a horror flick.

When will I ever learn.....?

On a happier note ~
remember this lovely thing I took home with me last month
from the antique market?

Wonderful, vintage chippiness....

Well, after some sweet-talkin' the sweet Hubby,
we finally lugged it out of the garage,
on a heavy-duty dollie of course,
and centered it in the backyard
in front of the rose arbor.
In the spring,
her pedestal will be embraced with a circle of fragrant catmint ~
my good old "lavender-stand-in".
As much as I adore lavender,
(and you know I do)
it just doesn't last more than a couple years around here
until it becomes woody and sparse.
So, I substitute my beloved catmint instead.
Catmint grows extremely well in our soil.
It blooms from spring through autumn -
big, full, and fluffy -
keeping the bees and butterflies busy,
and it smells so good.

Anyway, this poor girl had a few cracks in her bowl 
(something Hubby has informed me that I have... funny man...)
because of her age;
but nothing that couldn't be fixed with a little cement putty.
(I went nuts with the cement putty this year.
There's just something about having that caulking gun in my hand,
spying a crack in the sidewalk or garage floor 
and filling it with that wonderfully pliable gunk
that makes me happy.
I love caulking around windows, too.
maybe I DO have a crack in my bowl.)

The white butterfly bushes on each side of the arbor outdid themselves this year.

Yup...that's the newly weatherproofed deck...)

It only took two days for the first bather to arrive.

A robin sprucing himself up for his flight south
so that he looks handsome on his trip with his lady friends.
See ya in the Spring, buddy.
Have a safe flight.
Well, back to scooping.....

{  Hugs  }

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