Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Presidential Library

Perhaps this was what you were expecting?

By the way, I made the shower curtain and window treatment!

This is my hallway. A before shot. Sorry it's not a long view. This small chest was my husband's as a child. When we were expecting our son years ago, I stripped and painted it white. Haven't changed it since. But oh how I've wanted to. Now it's living in the dining room, a temporary home as it turns out because I bought the big honkin' furniture rehab to end all furniture rehabs recently. But shhhhh, that's all I'm telling about it for now... well, I will mention it involves a trip to Charleston next weekend! Hate me!

Now here's the after.

I moved a bookcase from my living room and purchased another to match. I was inspired by a small space decorating magazine to make a library corner in your home. I've been wanting to do that for some time but hadn't quite figured out where until now. My sweet Mr Darcy installed shelves in our living room closet to hold our various media. It was jam packed with books too. I hated it. I'm a little on the OCD side about organizing... So this library project affected three rooms in my home. I'm proud to say the media is alphabetized... or was until darling Mr D rearranged his side of the closet, argh!
Remember the ugly chair? I had bought it with an idea of placing it next to the bookcases but realized when I got it home it's probably way too big even though I never tried it to see for sure.

Can't really tell it from the pictures but this is my patriotic "room". I have lots of red, white and blue items displayed on the shelves, most from the Lobby. My darling Mr and I both proudly served in the 'Corps but that's a story for another day. This is where I proudly display the "Presidential" pictures of the Big Man and my darling Mr. I even have an autographed one with "Best Wishes, George Bush".

More "Presidential" pictures. I had a grouping made but split them up on either side of the door way to the dining room since I put the two bookcases in here. The small red mail box is from 'the Lobby. Wish I knew where to put it so it shows off it's beauty. The trophy my husband got for being high shooter out of basic training. The gun cabinet I put fabric in, I hate it. The cabinet not the fabric. I've since painted a few frames black and had new mats cut for certificates so it's a little different from these pictures but you get the gist of it. On the wall opposite is three big closets and the bathroom door. On the ends is living room and master bedroom. This hallway is the heart of our home so I think it's a great place to display pictures honoring our family's commitment to our great country. I'd like to stencil some stars and stripes around the top of the room as a border. I have the stencil but it's just another project on an already too long list. I hope you enjoyed seeing this close to my heart part of my home.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Weekend found treasure

As promised a peek at the treasures I found shopping last weekend. I've been wanting one of these for awhile. Haven't a clue where to put it.
Isn't she a beauty? Major vintage love on my part. All the keys work, she's fairly clean, the ribbon is readable. I love her. Would you believe $14 ?

I am fortunate to have a set of antique flatware found in the attic by my husband when he was a teenager and his family moved into an older home. Apparently the former owner left quite a few things in the attic, one of which was the flatware. My husband tracked her down and asked her just to make sure she hadn't left these things by mistake. She told him he could keep anything he found up there, said it was memories she could live without. Can you imagine? Poor soul! But what a fun treasure hunt that must have been for him! Years later he marries me and we start housekeeping with antique silver flatware, pretty posh for newlyweds. I don't use it for every day but I love it. So when I spied these pieces on sale half price I knew I had to snag them to help round out the serving pieces we have already. They don't match our set but who cares?

Since I've had rotten luck finding white plates at Goodwill I snapped these up the moment I saw them in the antique store. I love the creamy color, love the embossed design, love that they were half price! Plate hangers by Hobby Lobby of course!

I think the creamy white will look great against my Bungalow Gold walls in the dining room. If only I could be lucky enough to find a few more... Can I seriously get away with just hanging two till I do find more? What do ya'll think ladies? Can two work? I'm so bad they are still on my counter in the kitchen while I'm deciding so please help!

The rest of my loot was a wicker plant stand that I'm painting black for my front porch, a 1950's Singer Sewing Manual, major love as it shows all kinds of cool heirloom type sewing none of which I know anything about and a Griest button holer that fingers crossed will fit my vintage Singer. Quite a haul and my friend found a beautiful antique bed with rounded carved posts, headboard and foot board for $76 on sale! It's solid wood, heavy, lovely, and I teased her that it's actually going to be mine as it's for their guest room and I'm a frequent guest down Charleston way! Wished I'd thought to get a picture of it. Now we're talking about possibly making a quilt for it. Another project added to the never ending list. I'm not a quilter but I can do a rag quilt, which got me thinking... I truly need a bedroom makeover. Maybe I'll post pictures and open it up for suggestions and ideas.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Birthday Weekend

Do ya'll do this... Have a decorating frenzy in your home when you know company's coming? This is what I did on my birthday last Friday after I got home from the doctor's office. A bunch of last minute arranging and trying to make things look pretty. A challenge for me! Of all the rooms in my home, my dining room takes my money and attention. I just love it. So it's probably never going to be officially finished as I'm constantly changing things around. Here's my dining table, see my black wicker plate chargers? Actually those are paper plate holders from Garden Clearance at Hobby Lobby. As well as that pointy thing in the middle. See my birds? Dollar Tree spray painted white... Don't you just love the ideas you get out here in blogland? I know I do!

Brace yourself, another challenge area for me is my mantel. I don't have a fireplace but I do have a collection of mantels. Sometime I'll show you the antique one in my Master. This one a friend gave me for helping them move, it weighs a ton! Some day when the house is paid off I want to have the chimney restored and a firebox put in. But for now I use black fabric.

Almost everything in the picture is from Hobby Lobby! On the left side I have two more floor standing wrought iron candle holders. Forgive my satellite clock I use it when I'm on the treadmill that you just see the edge of in the bottom right corner. The greenery basket has some twigs added to it by me and the black candle holders were from Walmart holiday clearance years ago. I found out I'm supposed to use the same sized candles on them, oops! I didn't know so I'll eventually get around to buying new ones. Would you believe I paid less than $9 for that black mantel clock? Hate me!

Here's a closer picture of my dear OLD friend and me, I'm on the left. We're both wearing some aprons I made since our guys were grilling, makes sense for us to wear them huh?

And we were doing the goofy thing of taking pictures of each other at the same time. You can see a little more of my dining room here. She's tied the apron on and promptly said she that's what she wanted for Christmas from me ~ an apron!
Next time I'll show ya'll pictures of the vintage loot I scored for my birthday, we went shopping earlier that day and I got to pick out some great to me treasures.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Goodwill Hunting

I'm not the greatest at finding treasures at my local Goodwill. The Goodwill fairy hates me. Where others find lovely white plates to hang on their walls for virtually nothing, I find, well, nothing. Then I hit pay dirt. This is my ugly chair I bought from Goodwill weekend before last. I paid $25 which may have been too much but I felt it had great potential. Even better it fit perfectly into the back of my Kia Rio. No tears in the fabric, no stains, just a little loved, very comfy. I thought I would whip up a slip cover for it but reality is that's another project heaped on to my already huge pile of projects so until that magical time when I'm project free I'll just live with the hideousness of the fabric. Plus we have a white haired kitty named Sissy who sheds like crazy so no harm no foul if she sheds on this chair some. You know what's funny though? It actually sort of looks good in a corner of my dining room... plus my husband and dear friend both like it! Just as it is! Good to know I don't have to rush to make a slip cover for it especially since I just snapped up some sweet fabric for a new shower curtain! But that's a blog post for another day....

Friday, July 18, 2008

Today is...

My birthday was spent waking up at 5 am so I could drive 45 minutes to my doctor's office for my annual exam without my much needed cup of coffee with cream! After that bit of unpleasantness I decided I deserved a treat...

So I went and got one of these!

Now my poor darling husband will be working quite late, such is the nature of the business he's in so no celebrations today, instead we'll celebrate tomorrow with a cook out and cake that I'm going to bake. Yes, I bake my own cakes but there's a reason for that. In another life I was a "pro" at all things culinary. My family circle is small, there's just the 3 of us plus our recent 4th addition of dear son's fiancée so my friends also serve duty as my family. One of my high school friends miraculously lives within a 3 or 4 hour drive depending on who is driving! She's coming up for the weekend along with her husband, this is my third birthday in a row we've spent together. I can't tell you how much that means to me. I am blessed we live so close to each other, YES, 3 or 4 hours is close and let me explain how this is so. We both grew up in Kansas! I moved to the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains years ago after husband and I got out of service and they moved to Charleston SC area when her husband retired from service. Pretty amazing for two girls from the Heartland to reconnect years later within driving distance.

Here we are last year, we split the difference and met in the middle at Columbia SC for a day spent in museums with our husbands, I totally loved it! She's the one on the left, it's a lousy picture but we're going to fix that this year. AND (insert drum roll here please) I'm much thinner this year! I've lost 70 pounds! Hmmm, maybe I'll skip the cake... 'cause I'm sure loving my weight loss.

AND, it boggles the mind there could be more but she said she's decided to make my gift this year so I'm going to have to wait for it. I adore handmade gifts, I think they are the bestest ever so this news was thrilling to say the least and I'll wait happily for it. She's a pretty busy chickie with little time for crafting so I was rather surprised by her announcement and it means all the more to me knowing how valuable her time is.
So that's my big day or rather big weekend, a little birthday, some house guests, a bit of celebration! I know this was a rather personal post from me but I'll resume with my usual bits of messy fluff blogging next post, I promise!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Clearance Aisle Haul

My boss is an enabler, he knows me well and uses that to his advantage...
My first task at work yesterday was to reduce the clearance aisle to 90% off and garden aisle to 80% off. Miss Barbara who is our floral dept lady and me armed with pricing guns went to work. After about an hour our boss walks by and says "ya'll shopping?" to which we reply "of course, we can work and shop at the same time!" He explains how he knew it wouldn't be a hardship for the two of us to do this particular job for him unlike the others who would only complain, plus it gave us an opportunity to shop a little on the clock! Don't you just love him?
My haul... Everything was minus 15% employee discount, I spent just under $25. In the back you can't really see the set of black wicker chargers in a basket and black wicker place mats.
The stretcher frames, there's a big square one in the back which I have plans to make into a square moss covered wreath maybe, those were free! Our frame shop guy, David, saves the customer cast offs for me.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The After

Welcome to my crafting room, come on in!
I made the panels to hide all my visual clutter on the hutches.
A little velcro holds my table skirt in place, a overlapping front makes it easy to get to my hidden crafting supplies.

With all the cabinets there's very little wall space for pictures so I hung this right over the panels. It's light weight and easy to move.

I need molding!

Pretzel jars with decoupaged tops holding ribbon scraps and decapitated flowers.
These cabinets hold most of my craft paints, needlework kits, box full of hermafix refills, stencils and various crafting supplies.

Top of my dryer, basket catches left in pockets items.

My soap jar, I love it.

Utilizing every single bit of space I can to store my crafting supplies.

The shopping bag holds emtpy SU containers.

My husband brought the window home from a job site for me. I filled it with vintage papers and a picture from Charleston, my favorite city!

Shelf over the door, taking advantage of every available space to decorate.

A little curtain I made from some scrap fabric, love the Eiffel towers.
Hmmm, where to hang a picture?

There's a good spot!

I added a little embellishment to my punch rack, rub on letters spelling "ART", blue and white striped ribbon hot glued to the front and a little flower in the corner. Next to it is a iron work crown hook holding a decorative key and my decorated paint can key. I could never find one when I needed one so now I always have one handy.
Remember the breakbox eyesore? I painted it and got cute Eiffel tower magnets to hold some of my postcards, some were from my dear friend Debs, and others I collected while in Japan.

Thinking I'll make matching panels to hide my under counter paper rack.
I've since painted the baskets under the sink shelf thingy.

My busy corner filled with wicker cannisters holding supplies and pictures of family and friends.

One of my basket make overs.

Inside view of uppers.

My new under counter light hubby installed so I could see. Lighting is a huge issue with me when I'm working.

OK I have a few supplies....

This is on a tiny strip of wall between cabinets and hutches, I made the altered canvas and plan to do a companion piece for below the photo frame.

I love this basket, found in a local antique shop, hubby says it is from a Hoosier cabinet, love the red chippy paint even if it doesn't match my room. Perfect size to hold vintage papers and 12x12 papers. Ooops, missed hanging that wall hook up.
Thank you for visiting my craft room! I hope you enjoyed seeing it as much as I enjoyed sharing it with you. You are very welcome to come craft with me any time! I love company!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Before, During, Wait for the After

After 5 years of not living in our home (employment reasons), we moved back in two years ago and were faced with a house destroyed by people we had called friends. I'll leave the horrific details to your imagination but suffice it to say we had to repair our entire home with a budget of about $1200 which covered the leaky pipes, leaky roof, major holes in the walls, and lots of other crimes committed to our poor house! I know everyone loves a before/after so here's one of my favorite rooms in my house, my creative space. I also share the 8 x 12 space with my washer/dryer. Major DIY work was done by my darling men folk to carve this space out for me. I'll spare you the gory DIY details. Our budget was like $20, seriously I don't remember what we spent exactly but I do remember we didn't have anything to spend so I'm sure it was under $100. The cabinets were completely salvaged from a friend's kitchen remodel. The work has been done in stages over the last two years.

Phase One which I call humble...

New countertop scored for $10 and my darling husband sanded my walls one weekend so I could paint. I repurposed the over the sink shelf thingy, great for holding more crafting junk.

This is Phase Two ~ A little progress but nothing pretty yet...At this point I was still figuring out how I wanted it to look...and that breaker box? Yeah, I know! Eyesore!

Hmm, I wonder where those stamp hutches came from? Anyone have a guess? I basically have no wall space now with the cabinets so in order to use these hutches dear sweet hubby installed them right over the only window in the room. I took a poll with my friends and everyone said Lose the window, keep the hutches! So I did and I truly haven't missed it because the hutches are awesome. Visually cluttered? You betcha but I love them. And they are the very first thing you see entering the room as they are directly opposite my door.

On to Phase Three ~ Wait for it, I will post those pictures soon!