Friday, October 18, 2013

showing off some before & afters...

Hello! It is a brisk fall morning here and I felt the need to sip some coffee and write a new post...

I've found myself doing a lot of upholstery work lately.
It seems that it is becoming "my thing".
Antique chairs and sofas can really be a work of art. The care and work that went into making these beautiful pieces of furniture is extraordinary! I have been lucky enough to work with mostly horse hair stuffed pieces.. To me, it makes the chair or sofa extra special.

I have always worked hard to leave intact and preserve as much of the original "innards" as possible.. After reading this quote from Upholstery Journal Magazine, I know I'm on the right track of thinking..

“You don’t pretend to be smarter than the furniture designer. They’ve done it a particular way for a reason, and you’d better have a really good reason if you want to change it.”

Despite the hard physical work it takes to remove old upholstery, it is the most exciting part! It's like peeling back layers of wrapping paper with giddy anticipation to see what the gift is inside.. This is where you can really appreciate the craftsmanship that went into making the piece.. 

I love when a chair or sofa is "naked" - It is a blank canvas waiting for me to put my own artistic stamp on its long history..

This Duncan Phyfe sofa had beautiful lines to it! It was a strong stately piece..

A lovely French chair, well made and gorgeous wood tones...

Beautifully carved wood. The cushions were shot and the fabric was (to be honest) gross.. The bones were great and I knew she could be loved again with the right look...

My most recent project. I have to say this was one of my favorites! The carved wood details were gorgeous!!

Thanks for letting me share my love of beautiful upholstered pieces! There is MUCH more to come.. In the workshop right now I have two channel-back chairs, another French armchair and a claw-footed upholstered bench ALL calling my name...

Sunday, March 3, 2013

and the winner is....

That is the word that keeps echoing through my mind when I look at all the amazing support I've received for this contest...

I am so incredibly grateful for all the kind words you have written... 
I wish I could give a sign to every person who entered! But, then it wouldn't be a contest... ;)

 Here are some other signs I have done in the past...

(not part of the giveaway, but just wanted to show some more examples...)

Without further ado...

The winner was chosen in a random drawing.
 And the winner of the custom sign is..........


Please email me to get the details on choosing your sign!


And thank you so very much!!!!

Friday, February 22, 2013

a giveaway with a choice

One of the most prominent emotions I feel regarding my business is gratitude! I have recently been lucky enough to have over 600 "likes" on my Facebook page... 
I am so incredibly grateful there are 600 people out there that are willing to have my posts appear on their wall and occasionally take a closer look at the work I do!
So... I felt like it was time to give a little back!

Hand-painted signs of many variety have been a back-bone of my business for many years. They have always been one of my favorite things to do. Not only do I enjoy painting them, the signs have been really good sellers for me.

So, I'd like to offer one in a giveaway!!

To enter, simply leave a comment on this post!
For a second entry, give me a like on my Facebook page then leave a comment letting me know.
If you are already "like" my Facebook page simply leave a comment saying that.

The winner will receive a hand-painted sign of their choice! I will choose a beautiful old door to paint on and the winner may choose any one of the designs in this post!
The giveaway is open to anyone in the continental US and will be shipped to your home!
I will draw a winner on Wednesday the 27th
Good luck and thank you so very much!!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

milk paint magic & a giveaway

Re-finishing a piece of furniture is really at the top of my list of favorite things to do. With some effort you can take a sad (and sometimes ugly) piece and turn it into something beautiful.
I'm sure you have heard of Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint. Milk paint is an awesome product that you can feel safe to use in your home especially around kids. It is environmentally safe, non-toxic and is odor-free. That being said, the reason I love it, is for the matte grainy look it has when dry. It pairs perfectly with vintage furniture and best of all, it gives that authentic chippy look to your piece!

I picked this dresser up at a yard sale in the fall. It had great details and was structurally sturdy. Plus the super hero sticker on the front added charm!
The top was in bad shape...
I'm really not sure what happened to it... I sanded and patched to make it a smooth surface.
I used an oil based primer since I didn't exactly know what was on the top (seemed like someone poured a can of stain in a pile!). I only primed the top to help smooth out the surface. The rest of the dresser was in great shape!

I used MMS's Bonding Agent. I chose to paint it on in strategic places first. Since milk paint can be unpredictable as to how much (if at all) it will chip, you can use the bonding agent to prevent the chipping and create a smooth finish. I wanted some of both on this piece.

You can see where I painted on the bonding agent. I simply dabbed a bit here and there...

The dark shiny areas are where I painted it on on the drawers. I was leaving it off in the places I felt would have naturally chipped on their own if it had original old paint on it.

I painted the body in Kitchen Scale and custom mixed the color on the drawers by mixing two parts Kitchen Scale and one part Ironstone.
The paint chipped and crackled beautifully!! I finished it off with MMS Furniture Wax (which is seriously my new FAVORITE wax! Its just like butter! LOVE it!) and some dark wax to highlight the chippy crackled areas.

I love how this dresser turned out!!

I will be hosting a giveaway in the next day or two to celebrate my 600 "likes" on Facebook!!
Stay tuned for details...

Furniture Feature Fridays

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

a big move...

You may have noticed, I've been missing-in-action in the cyber world lately.
I've had a lot going on and I'm writing up a quick post to catch you up!

First, in January I did my first out-of-state show!! It was a blast and a LOT of work! After heading out to Indy on Friday evening we were fortunate enough to stay with friends. Set-up started at 7am and we were certainly carrying LARGE coffees to get us moving!
It was a flurry getting set-up. And of course I always feel like I don't have enough and second guess my layout about a dozen times. Thankfully, my (better) half is very patient with me! ;)

Here are some pics of my space at the show..
Those vintage lockers drew a LOT of attention! They were in amazing shape with the original brass handles, complete with bins on the inside of the door and all the original hooks!

The sofa was quite popular as well! It has been almost as popular since the show as well! Thanks to Sarah the Thrifty Decor Chick for featuring my sofa in her recent blog post!!

I will be returning to the Indy Arts and Vintage Marketplace show on March 9th

So onto the "big move"...

Right after returning from Indy I was scheduled to move! I left a small ranch home built in the early 1970's (yuk - yes, I can say yuk, it was my zero personality house for 12 years!) to a big six bedroom farmhouse built in the mid 1800's!! YAY!! The farmhouse is exactly that - a working farmhouse. There is nothing very ornate or decorative about it and it does lack the big wrap around porches houses of that era typically have.. But, the kitchen and living room are HUGE, and I love the six inch plaster walls. The best part? All the original hard wood floors!! They are beautiful - sadly neglected - but beautiful! We will be doing a lot of projects around here and I'll be posting about the work we're doing. To start off, here is the living room...

It is a very spacious room with lots of windows. The previous people had painted over the wall paper! I can't begin to imagine WHAT they were thinking - but the damage is done and we've began to peel back the layers. Underneath I see glimpses of what I think is the original paper. An light olive green shade with a soft white demask print. The blue room is going to be my workshop - you can't even imagine how excited I am about having that room!! We are very much in the beginning stages, but it is exciting to think of all the potential this house has!!

Monday, January 14, 2013

a historic trip...

I was privileged enough this weekend to attend a beautiful military ceremony in historic Fredericksburg, VA for my cousin who is retiring from the Navy after 20 highly decorated years of service. He was a Lieutenant Commander for the Seabees and has traveled the world protecting our country putting his life on the line more times than I care to know..  I am so incredibly proud of him and the trip to Virginia is one I will never forget...
There was a stop we made on the way back north in Leesburg, Virginia that was almost equally exciting to see...

I was like an excited little kid when we pulled in!! I was actually at THE Lucketts - the place I had read about for years from Miss Mustard Seed!! It was a beautiful, very sunny day and I just took my time wandering though this massive place taking it all in... I took around 60 photos! Here are some of my favorites....

These were the outside vendors... How they styled and made use of old materials to create their little "huts" was pretty amazing!

The porch itself was packed full of goodies too...

Then I made my way inside... This large old house is made up of what must be hundreds of small rooms! You wind through it like a maze... You have to look in all directions with every step because there is something to see from top to bottom and in every nook and cranny!

The intense sun made photographing the rooms a challenge! And of course I was glad I got to see Marion's space before she moved out completely...

All of her paint products were 30% off which was a nice surprise! And of course I stocked up on a bunch of goodies!!

The entire trip was so memorable and amazing!

I am now in high gear getting ready for the Indie Arts & Vintage Marketplace in Carmel, Indiana! Less than two weeks to go!!