Tuesday, May 26, 2015


I'm thinking that the rhino is becoming the next hottest faux taxidermy darling.

Of course Anthro would lead the trend.


What about these wall lamps from Graham and Greene?  Fun.

Graham and Green

I can always be convinced to go with the gold.  This one's from Etsy.


This same vendor sells rhino bookends.


How cute is this rhino on wood from Shades of Light?

Shades of  Light

I've just heard that corrugated cardboard is the new black.

Cardboard Safari

I love this contemporary wall covering from Wall and Deco.
Tons of interesting designs on their site.

Wall and Deco

Of course I found a rhino covered butter dish at my favorite shopping destination, Home Goods.
It's fortunate, or maybe unfortunate that a Home Goods just opened waaaay too close to my home.
I bought it even though I don't even eat butter.

I'm ashamed to admit that I still have white formica countertops in my kitchen.
 I  won't miss them at all if we redo the kitchen, but I think I'll cry when I have to remove my snakeskin backsplash and nail head trim.

Rhino Covered Butter on My Kitchen Countertop

Since this rhino won't be covering any butter in my fridge,
 I placed him in a corner in my kitchen with some other accessories.

My Rhino in a Corner in the Kitchen
The pewter platter is a yard sale find, as are the urns.

The gravy server that now holds fruit is from a flea market.
 I didn't know it was Pairpoint until I got it home and noticed the mark.  I love those kind of surprises.

Of course the urns hold flatware with an animal print.

Urn with Animal Print Flatware

Will you be looking for rhinos next?


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Sweet Woodruff and Spring Blooms

If you've been reading my blog for a while you'll know that I've already written about my Sweet Woodruff ground cover and shady area garden solutions. It's one of my most pinned garden posts, so I thought I'd share again.  I've included some new photos so it's not a total repeat.

If you're looking for an easy-care, fragrant, and beautiful ground cover for your shady spots, 
Sweet Woodruff is my favorite.  A friend divided some of her Sweet Woodruff and shared it with me.  She told me that it was perfect at the base of a tree where nothing seems to grow.
  I used to plant impatiens in those spots, but the deer have convinced me to find something else.
Besides, Sweet Woodruff is a perennial and it spreads quickly.
 It also completely covers an area and keeps down the weeds too.

Flowering Sweet Woodruff

At first I planted it around tree bases.  Then I discovered that I loved mixing it in with the rocks and flowers in my garden along the walk way from my porch to my patio.

Walk Way From My Screened Porch to My Lower Level Patio

Beginning of Walk Way From Porch to Lower Level Patio

It's so easy to divide.  I can't believe that all these plants came from several small ones.  All I did was dig up a clump of the plant, then tear it apart into smaller pieces.  I re-planted the smaller plants in their new spot with some spacing in between.  They quickly filled in.

 This path is on the other side of my house and goes from my kitchen door to the patio below.

Path From Kitchen to Patio

Path From Kitchen to Patio, Looking Up

They really keep down the weeds around my ferns, nandina, lamb's ear and hosta.

What's your favorite ground cover?


If you're looking for more ground cover information, go here.  
Ground cover really helps control your weed population.

University of Illinois

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Painting Vintage Rattan

I have many pieces of vintage bamboo and rattan in my home.
 For me, they work as a neutral and can be used in many different rooms in many different ways.
 I've written about my vintage bamboo before here.

I usually don't paint my bamboo pieces because I really like the natural color variations on them.
I  don't feel the same way about rattan.   Rattan looks much better with a coat of paint.
A rattan chair and matching table were my candidates for an update for this week's vintage Spring Market at The Old Lucketts Store.  I used Benjamin Moore Advance paint in a white high gloss.

Painted Vintage Rattan Chair

I added a new cover too.  The geometric fabric is from JoAnn's.

New Geometric Fabric Seat

To me, the painted rattan looks much better than the original natural.

No before picture of the matching rattan table that seats four.
 I left the top unpainted and used the same high gloss white on the base and edge.

I think the table could also be used as a unique desk.  The chair fits it perfectly.


Hope to see you at Lucketts.  My tent is a vintage explosion.

Lucketts Spring Market
May 15-17

details here

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Turquoise, Green, and Pops of Yellow

This month our sale is one week early so we can participate in the

My space at Sweet Clover is a real mix of colors and finds. 
 Yellow darts all around the booth and is complemented with pops of green and turquoise. 
 Mixed in with my vintage finds are new animal giglees in all shapes and sizes.

The hand-carved swan sits in front of vintage Italian metal wall art depicting branches on a lemon tree--
perfect on a patio or porch wall or in a garden room, kitchen, or dining room.
Above is a Mid Century Modern pendant light that's been re-wired and has a plug.
You don't have to hard wire it if you don't want to.
Also, all things scalloped are popular now.
The leaf botanicals are book plates.

The swan was carved from a single pieced block of wood.  The carver even signed his art.

I dry brushed this small cabinet, and "framed" a floral oil on board.
Don't miss the Italian chandelier that matches the lemon tree wall art.   I added checked shades.

"Framed" Oil on Board 
This double bed headboard wears its original hand painted art.

An antique dresser lost one of its drawers.  I decided that it makes a great shelf.
Books, an architectural fragment, and a boho pendant fill it.
Love the drawer pulls.

Blue and white dresser and Kantha quilt.

Deconstructed french books spill out of an olive bucket.

A yellow sphere hangs in front of some animal giclees.  
 Use the orb suspended inside or roll it into a garden flower bed.

I have another small vintage chest.  The color and apppliques are original.

Large Cow Giclee
Large animal giclees fill a wall.

An entire shelf is filled with Wedegewood dessert and dinner plates.  
There are matching sets of 6, 8, and 12.

Some of My Vintage Wedgewood Dish Sets

Vintage Vanity Bench with New Fabric, Fringe , Ribbon, and Nail Head

Assortment of Flower Frogs

Framed Oil--Fruit Still Life

Hope you can come.


May 8,9,10 from 10-5

I hope to see you also at the Lucketts Spring Market 
May 15,16,17

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

How I Dry Brush

Lately I've been experimenting with dry brushing on different pieces. 
 I chose to use the technique for different reasons, which I'll share, but my main motivation was that it's a fast process and the results charmingly update vintage finds.

My first attempt was on a metal ceiling tile.  The tile was a rusty brown and someone had used liquid nails to add a mirror in the center.  I chose to dry brush the tile because I wanted to add color without hiding the original patina.  Since the mirror was a bit raised up from the tile, I outlined it with some rope and used the same rope to create a hanger.

I used my glue gun to attach the rope to the tile.

Rope Outlining the Mirror

There already were holes where the tile had been nailed to the ceiling.   I put a link of chain through the holes in the top corners and then knotted the same rope through the link.

Rope Knotted Around Chain Link

The next piece I chose was a woven dresser. 
 I thought that the texture of the piece would work well with dry brushing.  Here's the before.


BEFORE:  Great Texture to Work With

If you're a regular reader of my blog you've already seen the dresser in place at Sweet Clover.
I think the dry brushing added a charming mottled look and updated the piece. 

A Closer Look at the Mottled Dry Brushed Result

Dresser Top
One last example. 
 I chose this bench for dry brushing because I knew its natural grain would work well  with this process.

Natural Grain Enhanced with Dry Brushing


AFTER:  Folding Bench

If you've never tried to dry brush a piece, it's pretty simple.


1.  Some pieces get better results.  I had success when what I chose had
 some patina, some texture, or some bold grain.

2.  Any latex paint will do.  
I was in a turquoise mood, but I'm thinking of using some creamy white on some
 plain brown folding camp stools next.

3.  After you've selected your piece and your color, find your oldest ugliest paint brush.  
You want to pick a brush that's having a very bad hair day.  Here's mine.

My Brush With a Bad Hair Day
4. Next, I dipped just the tip of the brush into the paint.  You don't want a lot of paint because----
da---you want a dry brush.  I tamped the brush onto a paper plate that I lined with a paper towel to get off most of the excess paint.  Tamping just means smashing the bristles into the paper towel until you have just a dusting of paint on the brush.

This is Where I Tamp

5.  Now apply the paint to your piece.  No prep necessary.  Love this.
I use a very light touch to apply the paint.  You might want to practice on a small piece.

6.  Have fun with it and send me pics of your experiments.  I'd love to see what you do.


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