Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Slipcover a Wing Chair With A Dropcloth

This old wing chair used to sit in Husband's office, but a couple years ago we downsized not only our home, but our business as well.
He brought the chair home and placed it in the family room, saying it was the only chair he could be comfortable in. 

OK, then, I better find a way to make it fit in and look good!

I spent some time playing with different fabrics, but I was not happy with any of them.

I already had a couch

 and a chair in the room slipcovered in solid white or off-white,
 so I wanted something a little different, but not too different.

I wanted to use a ticking stripe, but I had just done the rocking chair in this stripe and I didn't want it to compete.

So this is what I decided on:
a drop cloth with a painted stripe down the center.

That is sooo much better!

Next week I will write up a tutorial with the many, many pictures
 I took to go with it!

Monday, January 28, 2013

That Old House: A Walk Down Memory Lane

 I was looking through the pictures on my computer the other day and came across a file labeled "Old House", so of course I opened it, even though it wasn't at all what I was looking for. We sold that house 3 1/2 years ago, and I had almost forgotten what it looked like.

So this week I am taking a walk down Memory Lane.

I loved the kitchen in this house!
There was so much space and that huge island was great to work on. I miss that!

But I need to remind myself that the kitchen looked nothing like this when we moved in. There was no island, nor was the pantry/open shelves on that back wall. It was just a big space with ugly wood cabinets and really ugly old laminate countertops and vinyl floor. It took time and work to get it like this!

Here's a shot of my bedroom. It wasn't that large, but my room now is so small that I can't use the footboard of my four-poster bed. However, that gives me a good opportunity to do something I have wanted to do for a long time, make a new headboard from a door.

I loved this hall bath, too. It all started with some black and white toile boxes my daughter gave me.
Next came the toile shower curtain and the other black and white accessories. The walls are covered with paintable wallpaper that looks like old tiles. I am thinking of using this wallpaper on the kitchen ceiling and make it look like a tin ceiling.

When my oldest son moved out, I made myself a little office/library with robin's egg blue on the walls and so many favorite things in one place!

hmmm, I seem to have a lot of pictures of this room.

I really, really liked it!

I painted my bedroom in this house the same robin's egg blue.

And all these favorite things are still here, just in different places, so I can still enjoy them!


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Decorating is in the Details: Homemade Art

Sometimes I like to make my own art and make it personal.
 so I thought that I would show you a few of those things today.

Calendar pages are great to frame and use for art, especially in kid's rooms.

To "frame" these fairy pictures for my granddaughter's room, I used some scrap pieces of beadboard cut a few inches bigger than the picture, then just glued it on. (One of these days I am going to add some small trim around the edges.)

How about framing gift wrap?
This was gift wrap I bought at a quilt show years ago, a copy of a sampler from the 19th century. I can't tell you how many people have asked me how old it is, because they can't tell it's just paper!

Signs are something else that are pretty easy to make.
Choose a verse or quote that is meaningful to you.

These are made with luggage tags. See the how-to here.
The frame for this one is just an old cabinet door.

Make it personal by adding your own photos and mementos.

Last, try a shadow box. Get one at Michael's, cover the back with fabric or paper, and attach things with strong thread or dental floss. In this one, I used some items that belonged to my grandmother.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Repurposed Project: Using Old Crates for Office Furniture

I had a couple old crates sitting around in the backyard. I used them for outdoor tables, or shelves on the patio. Sometimes they made it up on stage as VBS props.

But I needed something to hold the fax machine and printer in my craft room when I sold the little dresser they used to sit on, so I had Husband screw them together and attach wheels to the bottom.
They make pretty good office furniture.

I left it untouched, in all its shabby glory.

The wheels came off an old office chair, nothing fancy.

I didn't bother to clean up, this is how the craft room usually looks, projects all over the place!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Furniture Project: Paint is Cheap

I wrote this post a week or so ago, and just before I took the furniture to the Antique Mall, I decided that I wasn't really happy with it. So I took the advice I give to my friends, "paint is cheap", and totally repainted them!

Here's the before
It's cute, but for some reason, I just wasn't happy with it.

Here's the after

Love the soft gray and chalkboard panels on each drawer.

Don't be afraid to redo something. What I realized was that I would rather take the time now to make something I was happy with, than have to face something every week that I felt wasn't up to my standards.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Decorating in the Details: January Mantel

Finally getting around to decorating the living room mantel. It has looked like this since I took down the Christmas decorations at the end of December.

I usually have a large painting of Plymouth, Ms above the mantel because it is too big to put anywhere else. Besides, I like it and it reminds me of a fun trip I took with my daughter.

But I decided I wanted to keep a quilt up there since I don't hang them on the wall any more (I don't really know why). So I decided on this one. I made it one year when my kids and I studied American history through my family tree. Each square represents some of my family and the historical events they lived through.
For example, the top center square is Burgoyne Surrounded, a design made at the time of the Revolution to celebrate the turning point of that war, and represents ancestors who fought there.
The bottom right square is a Log Cabin, representing those ancestors who traveled west during the mid-1800s.

I started putting some accessories on the mantel. I liked the lantern and pitcher right away, but tried out some other things to see what I liked best.

It helps me to look at pictures to get a better view, so I take lots as I work through the process.

This is what I finally ended up with.

 Long shot.

But now that I am looking at this picture, I think I might go for the second globe.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Art Project: Making a Sign From a Cabinet Door

This is a super easy project.
I used an old cabinet door, but you can use any piece of wood, canvass, or even heavy cardboard.

The first step is to paint your background. You have to think ahead a little, because the first color is going to be the color of the words, not the overall major color of the piece. Let this dry overnight.

Next, choose your quote. It can be anything meaningful for you.
Once you know how many words you are dealing with, measure your space and figure out the spacing. I was using letters that were just a little over 1" tall, so I spaced my lines 2" apart. Mark these lines with a pencil to make sure you have straight lines.

I bought these letters at an office supply store and they are reusable. The white letters above were used in a previous project. Some of them don't stick as well as they did the first time around, so be aware of that.

Once you are satisfied with the placement of the letters, paint your top color over the entire piece. Be sure to push down on the letters that are not sticking so well so you don't get paint underneath them.

Again, dry overnight.

Carefully peal off the vinyl letters.

Touch up any paint that needs it.
(The first time I used these letters, I didn't have any paint leakage.
 Not sure I will reuse letters in the future.)

You can leave it like this or add some character.

Add some of the under-color paint to any details or edges.

 Put a glaze over it.

Or distress the edges.