Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Befores and Afters with Faux Bamboo, Bentwoods, and a Bench

I don't always remember to take a before pic, but here are a few that I did.  
Paint and fabric and a little imagination=transformations.

Faux Bamboo Chinese Chippendale Side Chair  and Bella

After priming, I just used Benjamin Moore Cloud White in a high gloss to update.

Pair of Updated Chinese Chippendale Side Chairs

Vintage Bentwood Chair

I used the same BM paint for the chairs, cut a replacement seat, and reupholstered.

Pair of Updated Bentwood Chairs

I added blue and white fabric and purchased cording.
To see my previous post about how to make matching cording and attach it, go here.

This has to be one of the worst fabric choices ever.

Top of Vanity Bench

I added designer fabric by Lee Joffa.  Checks have made a come back so I made my cording with black and white checked fabric.  It's fun to experiment with contrasting fabric cording. 
 I also added over sized nail heads to the legs.

Vanity Bench for Sale at Sweet Clover

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

My Gardening Guru

When I was a new mom in my first home I was fortunate to have a lovely neighbor, Rhoda, who was an avid gardener.  I could always see her tending her garden when I was outside with my kids. We became friends and she taught me all I know about plants "over the fence."
I learned names of plants, which liked shade and which for sun.  She told me when to prune (never after July 1), when to plant, and most importantly how to divide and propagate them.  I"ll never forget how with her help and a little patience I turned a few liriope plants into a long border along a wall.  Over the years, the flowers in her garden spread over into mine.  She just wasn't my gardening guru, she was my friend, my teacher, my mother's helper, and a third granny to my children.  I've moved several times since then, but one of the things that always comes with me are my plants.  I make sure I have some cuttings from the garden before I move on.  They become the foundation for the gardens in our new home as well as a memory of friendship.

Some of these images are new to the blog and to my garden and others are long-time friends.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

How I Style A Space

Today I'd like to share some of the ways I style a space.  I'm going use images from one of my sales, but you can use the same ideas to pull a room together in your home.  In both spaces, I always start with an inspiration piece.  For this sale, black and white upholstered pieces and furniture directed the design.  You'll see black and white with pops of yellow, blue, and red.

Here's what guides my design:

Repeated Color
Out-of-the-Box Uses of Accessories
Mix of New and Vintage
Groupings of Like Items
Mix of Textures
Mix of Sizes and Heights
Books as Risers/Pedestals

I originally was going to give examples of each category with images, but what I realized was that all the vignettes contain more than one of the design elements.  You'll see as you follow along.  I've highlighted links to some other related posts.  If you have the time, it's worth taking a peek.

Notice the vintage slipper chair, re-covered in a black and white polka dot with contrasting black and white houndstooth cording.   I used the legs of an industrial stool as an easel and layered an Italian iron work wall art with branches and lemons across the window.  I'm all for hanging art onto window frames and layering on the front of bookshelves too.  Note pops of black and yellow.

Empty frames are one of my favorite ways to showcase unframed art or objects. I've been known to hang antlers, plates, another frame or two, and even a smaller piece of art within the empty space.   I simply leaned the art against a table--a wall would do too--then layered two empty frames and draped a scarf.  You could do the same thing on a mantel or a book shelf.

Obviously more black with the farm table and vintage vanity bench.  I repeated the black and white checked cording but introduced a new black and white fabric by Lee Joffa.  I leaned a tray onto the vanity legs and layered an animal print against it.  The large canvas cow wall art is a back drop and also layering.  You could use wallpaper, fabric, a quilt, large art or paint to create the same layered background.  What about some fun wrapping paper or unroll an architect's blueprint???

Another view of the bench and layering.  Also, grouping of like items and color.
Again, a mix of new with vintage.

More black and white repeat in this image as well as fabric repeat on newly-recovered chairs.  Texture too with the soft chairs, the metal table, and the straw boater hat.

I added more black to the design with the black marble top on the table and the black candle holder filled with rolled black and white sheet music.  I recently did the same thing with a grouping of maps and rolled up map pages.  Fun on a desk or shelf.

I like to repeat like items.  In the frame is a vintage scene of a Paris cafe.  Since the gentlemen in the photo are wearing boaters, I draped a boater hat over the frame.

Another grouping of like items--embossers and printers' blocks.  Black is repeated and an old leather book is a riser, adding texture and helping to vary the height of the objects.

More examples of repetition are in this image--the color black on the botanicals, the top of the MCM desk, and another framed black and white post card.   The houndstooth fabric is repeated on the MCM stool.  Arrows too, in the sphere and leaning on the wall.  I love to use accessories for display.  The rusty iron garden sphere rests on a vase and supports the very popular metal arrows.

I leaned an old chippy door against a pole and use it all the time for display.  It's a great backdrop and a unique wall alternative.    I wrapped some burlap cording around three gold leafed trays so I could hang them.  I filled them with animal gicleess, but you could put photos or art inside.  It's a different way to display trays and treasures.  You could do the same with empty wooden drawers.

I leaned this empty wooden drawer on the floor against a bar table.
 I believe it's an old cash drawer so it has sections.  You could hang it on a wall and have a rotating display of your favorite finds.

Stacked drawers can be shelves too.

I used a stack of matching Shakespeare books as risers, layered a real turtle shell behind a faux one on a pedestal, and grouped like items--shell bracelet, octopus, and a shell supported by the jewelry.

I know that the person who buys this lantern will fill it with a candle, but how fun to have a skull peeking out from inside.  I'm sure you have many accessories you could display under glass.

I placed an octopus inside the bottomless demijohn with a cork, repeated the "bottle" with the covered blue demijohn, repeated the blue in the Kantha quilt, the striped dresser, and the vintage willow ware collection on the bead board shelf.  The peg rack is a piece of ship lap.  I sealed the chipping paint and added hooks.  It's almost 7 feet long and perfect for a mud room or entry.
The peg rack adds texture and the quilt softens the display.

This cloche is wire mesh and filled with a crown that supports some deconstructed books in a bundle.
Again, the color black repeated, the wire mesh adds texture.

The London sectioned wooden tote holds weathered frames.  I removed the generic family photos they contained and replaced them with some chevron wrapping paper.  In the background you can see more of the long ship lap wall rack.  The mottled color goes from white to blue green.   The chippy frames repeat the texture and chippiness of the deconstructed books and the peg hook rack.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Chinoiserie Love

If you've been following along you know that things come and go frequently around here.  I have to say that my set of Chinese chippendale chairs are still safe.  I love anything chinoiserie and I've yet to tire of these wrought iron beauties.  When I purchased them they were white, but not for long. 
 I painted them a Chinese red. 
 I'm really not a fan of red, but these work for me.

My Chinese Chippendale Chairs
I re-covered the seats with the same geometric fabric I used for the draperies in the room.

Chair Seats With Geometric Fabric
When I purchased the chairs, I had a table in mind.  I found a fabulous iron table with an x base. Unfortunately, it was missing its glass top.  It's pretty pricey to replace tempered glass so I carried the table top measurements around for a while until I found a mirror with the same dimensions.  I think it's a pretty good fit.

Mirror As Table Top
I really love the x base and the knob.

My X Base Iron Table
What I place on the table changes frequently.  I filled a clear vase with some twisted branches from my yard.  I painted them with the same Chinese red.   I added some black sand and shells to weight it down and to support the gnarly branches.

Painted Harry Lauder Walking Stick Branches in a Shell-Filled Vase.
The faux clam shell, filled with shells and coral, is from Zgallerie.

Faux Clam Shell
I'm so happy with the mirrored top and its changing reflections.

Mirrored Table Top Reflections
No room is complete until you add an animal print.

My Zebra Rug
These chairs have some sentimental value to me too.
They're the chairs that Nate Berkus featured when I was a guest on his show.


Here's another view of the space from another post.

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