Thursday, September 29, 2011

A Covey of Knobs

I took a break from painting yesterday to go with J to Omaha.  After she finished her speaking gig, we did a little shopping.  While most of the things in Anthropologie are out of my budget, it is so much fun to look at everything.  Their windows are always amazing and they have the most creative displays!  They also have great old furniture pieces that are used for display and are for sale.  Boy, did I covet the $6,000 1880s French Apothecary cupboard!  But I was happy to pick up some great knobs in the sale room for future projects.

I put crystal knobs on the little blue dresser and still like them a whole bunch.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Upholstery Project

If you are a regular reader of my blog (this would be you, Dad), you might remember my post about this  chair.

I got it at a garage sale in the spring and figured it would be a good "learn to upholster" project.  I took all the old fabric, insides, and lots of staples and tacks off,  painted it (a few times), and then have been waiting until I had the courage (and a pneumatic stapler) to continue on.

It's far from perfect, but I definitely learned a lot and will try another one.

Here are some "after" shots:

Sunday, September 25, 2011

White Lamp

I wish I would have taken a "before" picture of this lamp!  I bought it a couple of summers ago at an auction--one of those items that nobody else bid on--and it was a pretty dated looking thing with a really tall lampshade.

After Ben dismantled it, I painted it white and stripped the wood base back to bare wood . . .

I had planned on more painting and aging, but really liked how the white looked, especially with the wood.  Ben rewired and reassembled it (no easy job, but I don't think he cussed once).  I'm trying out a couple of lamp shades and can't quite commit yet.  This one seems a little short, but I like the linen look.  

Here are another couple of finished projects from last week.  The chair was painted charcoal and then stenciled with an old brass stencil.  The heavy wire basket is actually an old milk crate from--I'm not crazy about the stenciled numbers, so may re-do that.  I actually took the canvas liner out and sanded the numbers after I took this picture and it toned it down a little.

See the little dog in the background.  It's her 1st birthday and she's very proud.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Among the smaller items I hauled home from the auction last week were two old dresser drawers.  They were insignificant enough that the auctioneer forgot to sell them, so I paid a whole dollar for both after the auction was over.

Enter my husband who dismantled them at my request.   I took the two solid wood fronts and he took the rest.

Here's what I made (I know--you'll feel just like you're in Paris):

And here's what Ben made:

We love our hobbies.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Throne

This chair came from a recent auction.  This wood was solid and the caning in good shape, but it had definitely seen better days.  Also, it was unusually short--it's only a foot from the floor to the bottom of the cushion.  But it came home with me and after some repair, fresh paint, and a new cushion cover, I think it's kind of fit for a queen (albeit a wee one).

The before . . .

And . . . the after!

I had so much fun doing this throne, I mean, chair, that I made a little pillow for it, too.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Little Blue Dresser

Just finished work on this little dresser and am so happy with how it turned out.  The top was good, so I just sanded it lightly and gave it a couple coats of tung oil.  The base and drawers were primed, painted, slightly distressed, and then waxed with clear and dark wax.  I painted the insides of the drawers and gave them new crystal knobs.  I love what the wax does to the paint--really mellows it out and gives it such a soft sheen.  It's prettier than the picture shows, but I'm having trouble loading photos lately, so am thankful to get this shot up (I don't know what's going on with that--I can upload them from my camera to iPhoto, but then they do weird stuff when I try to put them on a post--any thoughts?).

Anyway, this is done and ready for a new home, if anyone is interested!

By the way, it's thanks to my very patient husband and helpful mom and dad that I can indulge in this little hobby.  Ben hauled home two dressers and a buffet that I bought at an auction yesterday.  We didn't have room for them, so Mom and Dad cheerfully rearranged in their garage so I could store them there.  Thanks, guys!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Little white nightstand

Picked up this cute little nightstand recently . . .

It didn't need a lot of "fixin'", but here's how it looks after sanding, primer, fresh paint, and a coat of clear wax:

Monday, September 12, 2011

Project Updates

I'm close to finishing I've made a lot of progress on quite a few projects during the past week.  We've been enjoying some beautiful fall days, so I'm either outside painting or inside sewing while the paint dries.  Thank goodness my husband feeds me and doesn't care what the house looks like.

Remember the sad little chair that I cleaned up and painted green?  After living with it for a week, I decided it wasn't quite right, so I found a wonderful blue and it was just what it needed.  It still needs waxing and a leather seat, but is getting closer.

This little dresser was hiding in a corner at Liberty House.  It had a very dark not-so-pretty finish, except for the top which someone had attempted to strip.  I gave the top a little sanding and tung oil,  and painted the rest the same pretty blue as the chair.  I tried some distressing, but it started to look a little off.  As Ben told me (he's so smart!): "It should look used, not abused."  So I re-primed the drawer fronts where I had "abused" them.  After they are painted, I'm just going to do just a teeny bit of sanding on the edges--and a small amount of dark wax.  I'm painting the insides of the drawers on this, too, to clean it up.

I'm so excited about my last two bags.  The one on the left is stenciled with an old brass stencil from the late 1800s that I got on Ebay, the other bag has parts from a seed sack.  These were fun!  (And for sale!)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A weakness for chairs

Had a great outing with J and my brother last Friday.  We drove south until the highway turned into a gravel road which turned into a dirt road which became the driveway of this wonderful farm.  The owner hosts a big sale a few times a year filling the barn, sheds, and yard with antiques and wonderful "junk".

Isn't this old chicken house neat?!  I love the trim paint.

I brought home a chair.  It was in one of the last sheds we were in and, being hot and tired at the time, I didn't really check it out carefully until I got home.  It's a very old chair and I think it had lived for a long time in a barn or shed along with pigs, chickens, or cows.  I felt a little like a character from a Mark Twain novel scrubbing up a dirty child!  It was bad!

Kind of hard to believe I paid money for this, isn't it . . .

After cleaning and removing two very deteriorated seats (attached with nails, tacks, and wire--and supported by old siding nailed underneath), a coat of primer helped cover any dirt I had missed--and I did start believing the chair might have a chance.

I tried some very pale blue almost white paint, but it seemed a little predictable.  After its checkered past, this chair seemed to want something more.  It's now a yellowy split pea green (Krylon Indoor/Outdoor Gloss Ivy Leaf spray paint)--very unlike something I usually go for, but somehow it suits the chair--or at least for now.  No seat yet, but some leather on the way.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Happy Birthday, Mom!

One of my favorite photos of my mom . . . Today is her 81st birthday and she still looks just as pretty--and I still depend on her a lot!  Some things never change!  Happy Birthday, Mom!