Country style, country love, country life. Sharing my inspired, vintage, rustic DIY designs and decor on my blog.
As I sit here at 4am contemplating yet another snowstorm on the way, I am feeling a little down in the dumps and very uninspired. With little sunlight and mountains of snow obscuring our lives and making it just plain difficult to get around town, it’s hard to imagine that spring is just a few short weeks away.
What used to feel warm and cozy about this spare bedroom/office/study when I remodeled it a few (or maybe 10) years ago is now feeling dark and oppressive. With an antique oriental carpet in shades of reds and blues,
Every morning for the past few years, I have entered this room and switched on this desk lamp, relying on its ability to deliver light, but never really looking at the lamp itself. Because it is all black, the exquisite detail just does not show through.
Because it’s all black and has absolutely no contrast, that’s how. So what to do with the lamp to brighten it up in the wee hours of the morning? Lets start with some Americana Chalky Paint in Promise (a light pink) mixed with a touch of Relic (a deep gray)
just to protect the paint finish and add a slight glow when the light hits it. I have always loved this paisley shade, but the color combination with the black lamp bothered me, and the dark color dampened the lamp light.
I assumed that once I had painted the lamp, I would pop the paisley shade back on and be done with it. But, alas, the dark, squared-off shade does nothing to enhance the newly found beauty of the lamp with all of its florals and curves. So I swapped the shade out from another lamp and, although it is the right shape, its still not quite the right color. But now its only 5:16am
and HomeGoods won’t open just for me to find a new lampshade, so it will have to wait. (Wouldn’t it be awesome to have HomeGoods on demand, where you could call them up and tell them you need something and they would open the store just for you!? Now that would make me HomeGoods Happy : ) But for now, I am very happy with my new (old) much brighter lamp that has the appearance of alabaster or marble
Everyone know Coach has books. Lots of books. Thousands of books.
Although typically he is more inclined to pick up historical books and vintage magazines rather than novels or DIY manuals, he recently came across this Flea Market Decorating Book at a…where else…flea market, so he grabbed it for me. This Flea Market Decorating…Creating Style with Vintage Finds book by Better Homes and Gardens (*BHG) was published in 2000, but is even more relevant today than it was than a decade ago. Today, flea marketing is big business, and dealers, decorators and homeowners alike know the thrill of the hunt and how to create home environs with one amazing found piece as the inspiration. This book contains page after page of glossy photos with inspired decorating ideas utilizing all styles of flea market finds. Some are maintained in their original form, some are altered in the necessary way to fit the intended space, like this hospital gurney turned bathroom vanity.
The book is separated into chapters: The hunt (what to look for when flea market shopping), defining a style (which style suits you?
or Fifties Plus
Once you find your treasure, you’ll find the chapters bringing it home (integrating your newly found pieces into your existing home decor, both inside…
& can it be saved (with helpful DIY tips…everything from refinishing wood to rewiring old lamps)
to be most invaluable. At the end there is a national listing of flea markets and look here..my two favorite Massachusetts markets! Brimfield Flea Market and our very own Todd Farm Flea Market (April can’t come fast enough, my friends!)
If you are an avid flea marketer (like me and Coach) and love to decorate with vintage furnishings, this book could quickly become your flea market bible. So many inspired ideas and great design mixed in with helpful hints and information. If you are lucky enough, you can find it at your local flea market, or it is still available on Amazon.com. Now if you will excuse me, I have to go make a bowling pin trunk : )
Do you have a favorite room designs with flea market decor?? If so, please share it with me- just send a pic and I will post it here and on my social media pages : ) Have a great (& not too snowy) Sunday everyone!! Susan
Ever since I wrote the blog post about different paint companies introducing their “colors of the year” I have been asked again and again, “who decides that? and how do I get to be the person who chooses the color for the entire year? and why does it have to be just one color?” Recently, I was approached by Meredith Corp, the parent company of *Better Homes and Gardens to request that I take a look at their trending “Better Homes and Gardens’ 2015 Color Palette of the Year”. Unlike other publications and paint companies, I was happy to see that BHG chose not just one color, but an entire color palette for your design inspiration. According to the press release, ” The collection of six colors highlights the most current trends in home and fashion, in hues that complement each other through multiple combinations.”
The pressing question for me is how was this particular palette chosen? “To design the palette, Better Homes and Gardens editors scouted trend forecasts, runway shows, trade show booths, and spoke with color experts at the Color Marketing Group’s International Summit. BHG editors then fine-tuned the tones to offer hues that are modern, lasting, and most importantly, livable.” I believe the key word there is livable. I have seen many single “colors of the year” that I just could not imagine living with in my home. But this palette provides a much broader array of colors that could fit any style of decor, whether its country, mid-century or sleek and modern.
So, here are two room samples; the differences are striking, but the colors are exactly the same in each space. It’s the color placement choices that create the entirely different moods in the two rooms. You want deep and dreamy?
Choose the darker, richer color- in this case the Pratt & Lambert Stone’s Throw Gray- in the palette for the walls to envelop you and use the lighter colors for the furnishings and decor. Light and Lively is accomplished with the alternate approach:
So what are the six colors in this year’s Better Homes & Gardens’ palette?
Essential Teal by Behr…OCEANIC BLUE: Deep and dreamy with a refreshing intensity.
Stone’s Throw by Pratt & Lambert...SOPHISICATED GRAY: Dripping with drama. Rich, sexy and serene.
Panama Rose by PPG...FRESH BERRY: The perfect kick of color, bursting with life.
Salmon Rose by Valspar…SHAPE-SHIFTING CORAL: Like a chameleon – sassy, yet soft.
Naive Peach by Sherwin-Williams...WARM BLUSH: Romantic in the home and flattering on every skin type.
Paradise by Sherwin-Williams…RAINFOREST GREEN: A show-stopping jewel tone that looks and feels alive.
With a tropical flair and inspired by nature, these colors can be used in any combination or combined altogether to add a bright, cheerful, welcoming feeling to any room. According to designer Eddie Ross, Better Homes and Gardens’ East Coast Editor: “We’ve created a foundation that not only works well together, but allows readers to isolate a single color or combination to create a sophisticated, yet livable room. Color can be very personal, and while certain colors may be trending, we want to make sure ours have staying power. The colors we’ve chosen are meant to give readers the building blocks for experimenting with no-fail creativity,” he adds. “Modern switches in color can completely change the look and feel of anything from a container garden to a table setting. Even the right shade of glassware can elevate the experience of something as simple as enjoying a cup of coffee.”
You can view additional rooms and styles with this year’s color palette online or in the March Color Issue of Better Homes and Gardens, available on newsstands today. Or by visiting their Instagram page where they have been sharing pics of inspired decor from bloggers using the hashtag #BHGColor. So if I had to choose one of these colors for my color of the year, it would be Essential Teal by Behr-I do love my blues… How about you? Does this palette speak to you? Would you use any or all of it in your home? I am dreaming of color right now because all I am seeing around me is mountains of white snow!! Have a colorful Tuesday everyone! Susan
After I created my Times-Square featured Vintage Bedspring Marquee Light,
Coach quickly found a second bedspring that he thought I could transform as well. But, one giant marquee sign is more than this girl needs, so I had him cut the springs off of the frame to save for other projects. Like this cute little votive candle holder I created over the holidays.
Being trapped in the house this weekend while the snow mountains build, I figured I’d take another look at the bin of bedsprings and see what I could create. Here is my latest project, simple and fun with a cool, vintage look! So what do you have when you take an
Very simple project, actually. You take the cord and unscrew the flange from the base.
Insert the socket of the light into the top of the spring. Fits perfectly! Then you take the flange and screw it in from the bottom of the spring and turn it clockwise until you have a snug fit with a coil.
Screw in the lightbulb. (Remember that old joke about how many bloggers does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Yeah, me neither. But if you think of one, let me know)
Hang the cord from the ceiling hooks provided in the cord kit or use your favorite wall bracket or lantern holder. Twist and knot the cord to keep it from slipping, then plug it in. Voila! A DIY vintage light fixture-no wiring needed!
Hope you’re having a great Sunday everyone. If you’re in New England, stay safe. And if you’re in some warm, sunny place, then stay there. Seriously. Susan
Since I have discovered these French Typography stencils from Americana Decor
and snowbanks the size of small mountains in my yard…with more snow in the forecast! So, in the warmth of my home (and, I am indeed lucky enough to have a roof over my head and oil in my tank and warm cappuccino at the ready)
I am recreating Paris around me. First, with the Paris Hamper,
then with the Vintage Rooster French Commode,
1. I am sorry to say that I do not have a before pic of this little side table. It was another junk pick that had seen better days, but it had such nice lines and pretty legs and a top that needed some work (sounds familiar…). So, I cleaned it, then painted it with two coats of chalk paint I had mixed from some different paint pots I had handy. The trouble with mixing your own paint is that eventually you run out. If I decided I wanted to paint something else with this color, I am out of luck. So I took a camera shot and analyzed it with my Benjamin Moore Color Capture and it matched my home made color to their Mythic...a perfect color match!
This gold leaf kit comes with two bottles: one is the glue, the other is the sealer, and a package of gold leafing sandwiched between tissue paper.
This stuff is super thin and fragile (not the paper, the gold) and tears very easily, so you have to handle it very carefully. A little leafing goes a very long way. Mona Lisa knows the deal… You can purchase this kit at your local craft supply store, or if you don’t want to brave the snow, you can order it on this Amazon.com link.
It comes with the two bottles of adhesive and finish and 25 sheets of gold. I had this one kicking around my craft supplies bin for quite awhile, so not sure where I originally purchased it. But I’m guessing I used a coupon…
3. I painted the entire surface with a coat of Metal Leaf Adhesive Size.
This is the glue that holds the leafing in place. You paint it on, making sure you leave no bubbles or puddles, then allow to dry for 60 minutes or until the milky white glue turns clear. It really doesn’t feel tacky to the touch when dry, but no worries, it works great.
4. I started applying the gold leaf, one sheet at a time. This is a rather tedious process and takes a while to get the technique down. Basically, you have to almost “float” the sheet of gold leaf onto the surface, trying to avoid wrinkles and fold overs the best you can.
Once it hits the glue, it stays put. But it won’t be a smooth surface until you take a small dry paint brush and start smoothing it out. Once you finish one piece, you simply add another until the entire surface is covered with gold. As you add more pieces, they will only stick to the exposed glue and will brush off the already adhered sheets. You just brush the excess away to another area and smooth it down. Once completed, the surface will look like a gorgeous antiqued crackled gold finish, like this:
7. I added the stencil using my “no-fail” stenciling technique. Now, I really wasn’t sure if I could stencil OVER the sealed gold leaf, but I figured, why not give it a try? This particular French Typography stencil fit perfectly onto the top, so I simply set it into place,
8. Once that dried, I held my breath as I painted on the sealer because I just didn’t know if the stencil on the sealed gold leaf would smear or not. Yay-NOT! This is a clear poly-acrylic sealer from General Finishes.
These products have very little odor and wash up with soap and water. Love that, especially since I am working indoors right now. I painted the gold leaf surface, plus the bottom shelf with that, then treated the rest with Americana Creme Wax
9. Here is the finished Paris Inspired Gold Leaf Table. Loving the way the gold leaf top glows in the candlelight.