Saturday, November 28, 2009

My Sanctuary and getting ready for Advent

Hi everyone, well Thanksgiving is over and it is time for Christmas. First though I wanted to show you the place I call my winter retreat, my front sitting room. No TV is allowed in here, it is my place to think in, my place to listen to music, and my place just to relax and read. We all need a place to just take sanctuary. I had a friend who had the smallest bedroom in her house as her retreat. Her rules on her retreat was no one was allow in her special room. I don't want to be that strict, I enjoy having others with me in my retreat, and sharing the peace.

Collected well loved objects. I truly believe in the Shabby Chic motto, less is more, I do not own anything that is not useful, beautiful, or well loved.

My favorite chair, it is so big and comfortable. I sometimes find myself reading and falling asleep. The throw on the arm is a good thing on cool nights. We all need a place all our own, where we feel "calm and can carry on".

Now on to Advent.....I love the Swedish blogs, especially this time of year. Seeing the different ways Advent candles are displayed. Using that as inspiration I created my own set of Advent candles. I cannot wait to celebrate Advent this year (being Catholic I'm ashamed to say I don't celebrate it that often). I love the white candles instead of the purple and pink. I think it is somewhat traditional using prayer candles. Anyway I will be happily celebrating Advent, thanks to the Swedish blogs.

See you next time......

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving and giving thanks

Hi everyone, well today is Thanksgiving and I have many things to be thankful for. First being a wonderful friend who decided to spend Thanksgiving with me. We are both far from home and they asked what I was doing when I said Boston Market and DVDs, They changed their plans and are spending Thanksgiving with me. Great friends are always a God sent. So I decided to put together a special table for the two of us. After all they cook (didn't get that gene from Martha Stewart), and I table set.

I like simple yet elegant tablesetting, everything here I own so I just cleaned it up and put it out.

Grocery store roses, always a good thing in a pinch. Some rose hips for some color also gives an autumn feel.

Finally one of my favorite pieces, this is an antique butter dish. I fell in love with her the minute I saw her. The dealer and I were really good friends so she gave me a really good deal. She said she wanted it to go to a good home. I love it and use it as much as I can.

I hope you can count your blessings today, because I will. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.
See you next time......

Saturday, November 21, 2009

French Blue Dresser

Hi everyone. Sorry I haven't blogged in a little while, I have been really busy doing design boards and I'm now just plain tired of hot glue and fabric samples. I didn't forget about you, the dresser from last post is done and looking quite lovely in french blue. She came out really well. You don't have to take my word on it see for yourself........

This is her with her primer coat, you can start seeing the potential there.

Here she is with all her coats of paint, but she is still getting more layers.......

And here all done, I think she looks great. Here are some more close ups......

And the final touch, lined drawers. Actually some toile wallpaper from a yard sale 3 rolls for a $1.00. I love transforming vintage pieces it makes me feel good to enhance their beauty.

See you all next time......

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Rachel Ashwell sighting

Quickie post: Target has a new style video with our favorite designer. So head on over there Sorry no pics with this post just a quickie.
See you next time........

Friday, November 13, 2009

Handmade cards and a dresser needs some TLC.

Hi everyone, I promised a quick handmade card lesson. Here it is, I go to Micheals or any craft store that sells stamps. I like silver ink, but any ink will do. You know the rest. What I like to do is stamp the back corner with the "Handmade with love" stamp. I love handmade cards because they are unique and show someone really loves you. I make them for all occasions, especially Christmas.

Next is a find.......... I found this girl at a thrift store, one of those great ones where you can get a deal. I was just cruising around and decided to go to my local thrift store. I have been here before and usually only find bits and bobs. This time I zoomed in on this classic beauty. It was love at first sight, you know what I mean. Anyway she didn't have a price so I had to ask. This can be tricky because if you seem too eager, they decide to up the price from what they originally wanted. So I slowly walked around waiting for one of the people to ask if I needed help. An older man asked and I said, "I'm curious about that piece?" He said "$75.00" and I said "I'll take it". At that point she found a home. She has great lines and good details, so I have a project this weekend. I'll take plenty of pics so you can see her go from drab to fab with some paint, glaze, and sandpaper.

Have a good weekend see you next time............

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Today I'm taking you to the Loo.....

I have been trying to figure out where to take you next. I thought hummmmmm, the one place everyone eventually goes in a house the bathroom. In my case here, the center hall bath, you know the one everyone uses. I wish I had before pics to show you, but the bathroom changed when I got here, and due to a recent accident (everyone else has their hot water heater on the ground floor, mine is in the attic, enough said). So the ceiling had to come down. this was my chance to change the fixtures and a new shower curtain.

The one thing I really wanted to do was change the mirror. It was an old sheet mirror attached to the wall. I went looking for the right size mirror. After coming home dizzy and madddddd (I don't know about you, but I'm not paying $800.00 for a mirror). So I went to work, I purchased some molding and corners (because if I mitered it, lets just say that it would be better done by a first grader). The framed prints I already owned. the shower curtain was more than I like to spend(I think $60.00 at Potterybarn-I know what you are saying" what did I expect?"-but I love it).

The sink got a good clean.....

And I added this lady to the WC back. I always liked her ($20.00 from my trip to New Orleans, she finally has a home). I wanted this bathroom to be spa like and I think it is. I lot of white though, don't go snowblind. Well now its off to make a thank you card for my neighbor for inviting me to her Halloween party (Sorry no pics, I didn't think about it, all the costumes were really good and I had fun). That's my next post hand made cards (I'm not just pretty you know.).

See you next time.......

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Swedish Room Dining Room

Hi everyone. Now it is time for the fun stuff. Lets start with the dining room. For years I wanted my dream dining room, you know the type. The really expense one that you only see in magazines, but no where else. Knowing my money was tight I decided to roll up my sleeves and get to work. First was a change in color, I thought my first wall color was going to be my only one, was I wrong. My dining room started a sage green, for a long time I kept thinking I hate this color, but I lived with it. One day I looked at the green, walked out of my house got some white paint and went to work.

Next was the slipcovers..... I always liked the look of Rachel Ashwell's slipcovered furniture, so I took a page from her book. The two arm chairs I made those slipcovers, the others were from Target ( after all why torture yourself, and I'm impatient). The armchair slips were not that bad. The Target ones were even easier.

Now for the table..... I know what you are saying, "You are talking about rolling up your sleeves, but look at that table." Surprise I built that table, it was easy. I saw the legs and the top at the flea market, I asked the dealer how much for both, he said $80.00 for the top and $40.00 for all the legs "SOLD". I asked him about them he said a furniture factory went out of business and he did a clean out. A trip to Home Depot (Thank goodness for all the DIY stores), coats of paint, and some wax for the top and I have a table that looks more expensive than it is.

Let me tell you the story of this pretty girl..... I had been looking at her for a couple of years in my local antique shop. At $2500.00 no way, so she remained homeless, but I would keep checking on her. As time went on her price kept going down, until she reached $500.00. Let just say I snatched her up so fast. She now holds my dishes and silverware. I LOVE HER!!!! She has her shabby chic/french look for sure. (Although she is Italian).

Last but not least is this gilded French chandelier. Another example of if you wait long enough you maybe surprised. A friend had this beauty, I always loved it and always had a compliment for it. One day I can across a large mirror that my friend wanted it, so I suggested a trade. Anyway this beauty was on its way home with me.

Well that's my dining room. Oh whats with the bird and nest? That's my signature almost all my chandeliers have birds and nests. It makes everyone smile and look at them weird. So get out there and look, wait, trade, and paint.

See you next time........

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Designers that influenced my style

This is my first posting, so I hope I get better as time goes on. So please bear with me.
I decided to do my first posting on designers who have influenced my style. I take a little from each of them. There are more designers and I will mention them as I continue to post. So I hope you enjoy my first posting.

The first designer to influence me was Rachel Ashwell. Lets just say that after buying her first book I was hooked. Her style combines so many influences, I always love going to her stores and to Target to see what is new. It is because of her most of the seating in my home is slipcovered. I also love white and pale colors because of her. She also taught me( not personally) not to be afraid to mix and match.


Next is Martha Stewart, ( and no I cannot prepare meals like her). I like the historic influence of her style. She and Rachel Ashwell have a lot in common. I just like the way she makes everything seem so easy. I would like to have that someday, but sometimes it is better to work on yourself by trying, then by succeeding. To be honest with you I will never have a Turkey Hill lifestyle, but I admire her for showing us not to settle for the ordinary.


Finally for now is Carol Bass from Maine Cottage Furniture. I love that furniture, I love the lines and I love the large scale of it. Her furniture is simple, yet artistic. I'm not a fan of the bold colors it comes in, but they have my white and pale colors which I love. You can see Maine Cottage Furniture at


Well that's it for my first post, I hope you enjoyed it. Next post is the fun stuff, home pics and maybe more inspiration. ( After all who doesn't like to peek in their neighbors windows).

See you next time.