Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Orbs, Cowhide, and Antlers

One of the benefits of being part of our multi-vendor store, Sweet Clover, is that every month I have the opportunity to shop along with our customers for fabulous vintage treasures from my talented fellow vendors.   This month did not disappoint.  I found not just one, but three of my favorite things.  I spied a cowhide rug draped over a settee covered in gray linen.  The mottled brown spots and the cream background were perfect and so was the size. 
 It found a home on my dining room table.  .

Cowhide Rug

In another booth I found some marble orbs.  You know me and orbs. 
 I bought 5 and then lined them up on a tray in the center of the table.

Marble Obs

Another of my obsessions is antlers.  
These faux antlers were candlesticks and perfectly matched the tray.  There were a pair.

Faux Antler Candlestick

Another View

I seasonally change my dining room table and had just packed away my mercury glass spheres and dough bowl.  As usual, I had no idea where any of these purchases would go in my home and no clue that they'd all be together, but it all worked out.  Good timing.  Good choices.

New Arrangement on Dining Room Table

This all started me thinking about my dining room and how it is such an unused space.  With the exception of holidays when I add all four leaves to the table and it stretches out to accommodate my friends and relatives , it's mostly ignored.  But, I have a confession to make.  I do use it as a place to plop my purchases when I return from shopping.  It's also where I inventory and price all my finds for the shop.  
And, very often it isn't this pretty, especially when something like this happens.  

Delivery From One of My Wholesale Suppliers

And this.

More Home Accessory Treasures

Then my table looks like this.

Home Decor for My Shop

Quite a difference.  But, I'm too OCD to let this stay here too long.  I'll get it all inventoried and priced.  I always mix new with my vintage finds, but these new accessories will be coming to the shop in dribbles.   I'm all for the mix, but I'm always heavy on the vintage side and the new just complements the old.
It seems I'm trending farm animals.

How do you use your dining room when you're not busy entertaining?
I think that if I ever win the lottery and get a new kitchen--mine is 1970's knotty pine--I'm going to knock down the wall between my kitchen and dining room and have one big kitchen.  
Yep, I'll ditch the dining room.


Come shop for treasures with us. Our next sale is February 21, 22, and 23.
More info on our website here.

Saturday, January 25, 2014


In design, odd numbers in groupings are good.  My favorite odd number is three.
 I do it in my home all the time.

These globes in urns are on our bedroom dresser in front of a map of Paris.

From my blog post, How I Use Spheres in My Designs

Rosemary topiaries with an iron grate background on my ever-changing family room mantel.

From blog post, Grates are Great

The threes don't always have to match either.  In the next image I have three matching books, but two french nail head orbs and a metal laurel wreath.

From my blog post, How I Use Spheres in My Designs

I also placed three prints on my window frame and three pillows on the sun room sofa.

From my blog post, Italianate Wall Planters

The three iron candlesticks are on the table in my screened porch.

From my blog post, My Screened Porch

Again, a mismatched group of three--two foo dogs and coral on my sun room mantel.

From my blog post, Favorite Finds

This was last year's Fall mantel with two pewter vases and a vintage frame.

From my blog post, Fall Mantel

I have three framed intaglios on my striped wall above my mirrored table.

From my blog post, My Saga of Horizontal Stripes

I decoupaged a copy of an old clock face onto three books.

From my blog post, Gilding the Lily

Three covered bottles on my screened porch.

From my blog post, Birds, Artists' Brushes, and Emu Eggs

Furniture can be in threes too.  Two faux bamboo chairs flank an Asian chest in my sunroom.

From my blog post, Coastal-Inspired Mantel

Take a look around your home.  I'll bet you'll see some groupings that add up to an odd number.


To see the actual blog posts, just click on on the image or caption.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Tweaking My Vintage Finds

For me, vintage finds always involve some tweaking.  I wanted to share my recent refinements that I'll have at this weekend's sale.

I scored a set of six vintage chairs.  There are two arm and four side chairs.  The seats were faux leather, which to me means that spills are an easy clean up.  Unfortunately, the chair back caning was torn and missing.  I filled the empty space with some black and white checked fabric.  I also added some cording and nail head accents.

Vintage Arm Chair

Detail of Repair
(Stencil in the corners is original.)

This chest is manufactured by Drexel.  I wanted to accentuate the graduated drawers so I taped off a rectangle with blue painters' tape and outlined the drawers in black.

Drexel Chest

I painted this Asian-style chest black then used my new favorite product, Annie Sloan gilding wax in copper, to highlight the trim and enhance the fabulous hardware.

Asian Chest

I wanted this vintage two drawer nightstand to pop.  I used my favorite color, citrine in high gloss.

Two-Drawer Nightstand

On top of the nightstand is a building model.  I thought some books would look good in the center between the columns.  I decoupaged an image of a clock face on the books.

Clock Face Decoupaged onto Books

I found a phone seat with a quatrefoil pattern.  You can sit and chat on your phone, or place it as a bedside table, add a lamp, and sit down to put on your shoes.  I had the elephant hooks and thought some elephant fabric would be perfect on the seat.  ( The telephone is a WWII field phone.)

Vintage Phone Seat with Elephant Fabric

Plexi folding chair is new.  I thought it needed some faux sheepskin.

Folding Chair, Faux Sheepskin Throw, and Corner of MCM Desk

I painted the trim around this ordinary cork board and used adhesive to attach some leopard fabric to the cork.  It can be a place for pinning messages or used for jewelry.

Updated Cork Board/Jewelry Display

I painted the industrial stool, painted and covered a small bench with polka dot fabric, and layered a glicee still life onto a drafting table.

I filled a unique iron basket with books.

I'm always on the lookout for deconstructed lamp shades with interesting shapes.  I added some wide checked ribbon and vintage buttons to the curvy chippy shade in the center.  To its right is a decoupaged shade.

Assortment of Dangling Shades

Spools and cord have become pretty popular.  I displayed them on a bottle dryer and on some Shaker-style nesting boxes.

Spools and Cording

I also arranged some small items.  These vintage brushes and a fan are inside a parfait glass.

Apothecary jars and labels.

Books balancing in an urn.

Covered bottles, tassel, bird cage feeder, and a unique cloche.

Clock parts.

Cash register keys and pencils in a flower frog.

All these tweaks will be for sale this weekend at Sweet Clover Barn.

To see what the other vendors will have and for directions go here.

I hope to see you there.


Sunday, January 5, 2014

One Kings Lane and My Statement Chair(s)

If you've been following the blog, you know that I have a thing for chairs.  They come in so many styles, don't take up much space in a room, can be changed up with paint, fabric or pillows, and for me, anyway, they're an accessory that makes a statement in any room.

Recently I was contacted by One Kings Lane  about an addition to their site,
the Decor Resource Center.

You can imagine how much fun I had on this new site where you can reference and research your statement chairs.

History of Chairs - One Kings Lane
One Kings Lane Home Design Resource Guide

Needless to say, I make many statements in many rooms with many chairs.  According to the site, statement chairs are "decor game changers" and I couldn't agree more.  It really made me think about how I use chairs in my home.  What I concluded was that I use them as I would an accessory for a bookshelf or a mantel.  They're the mobile addition that makes my room pop.

 I do love the Chinese Chippendale/Hollywood Regency Style.  I have a set of four faux bamboo chairs in my sun room.  According to the site, they're Faux Bamboo Fretwork Arm Chairs.  They originally were plain white.  I painted them Chinese Red and they became part of a coastal-inspired vignette.

Faux Bamboo Fretwork Arm Chairs

My favorites from this time period though are the Chinese Chippendale garden set and the Chinese Chippendale chairs around our patio garden table.

My Patio with Chinese Chippendale Furniture

 Since I'm a mix and match kinda girl, I don't stick to just one style. When I accessorize with chairs, I buy what I like--vintage, modern, new, old, weathered, sleek---and it all works in my mix and match decor. So, of course, in the room next to the sun room, which is filled with traditional furniture, I added these modern 20th C Italian chrome and leather chairs.  They flank an antique Duncan Phyfe table.  The black color ties them together with the other accessories and makes these modern chairs work in a room filled with antiques.

20th C Italian Chairs by Calligaris

In our bedroom, I have modern night stands next to a bamboo bed, and then mixed in with it all is a bombay chest, and of course a Bergere-style chair.  The chair and chest are the first thing you see as you enter the room.  The Bergere chair complements the dresser and ties into the vignette with a map of Paris in quadrants and some globes in urns.

Bergere Chair

OKL asked me to pick my favorite statement chair.  Boy was that a challenge, and I obviously didn't follow the directions.   I did decide that my favorite chairs were my French side chairs.  According to the site, they're from the 1950's.  I was really getting excited thinking they were French chairs from the early 1800's, but no, they're from the 1950's and are called Louis XVI-style side chairs.

French-Style Chairs in My Foyer

 They've moved around the house a bit like most accessories in my home, but I think they've found the spot that works best for them in the foyer.  They're the first thing you see when you enter my home and their lines, the striking leopard fabric, and their chippy frame and carvings get your attention.  I really like the addition of the sparkly glam copper pillows and the table.  Above all this frenchiness is a modern brass wall sconce on the contemporary striped wall.

I don't know if you saw my holiday posts, but a sneak peek of one of the chairs became my holiday greeting card.

As I said, I was only supposed to pick one chair, but how could I ever do that?
For me, chairs are the focal point in the midst of all the necessary furnishings.
 And, now that I think of them as an accessory, I don't feel too badly about having so many.

How do you use chairs in your home?
  Are they just for seating, or are they a decor game changer?


To research your statement chairs on OKL's Decor Resource Center, go here.

 ( She's the photographer who did the photo shoot of my home for HOUZZ)