Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Reupholstering Plans

Do you make plans or do you make decisions on instinct?
Rarely do I have a plan. (Does it show, much?)

However, the minute I saw this sofa, I had a plan:  I'd  live with this lovely blue until I could gather all the materials to reupholster her...Um, and maybe learn how to upholster?!

Nancy posted this on Marcus Design...Love the two fabrics and the contrasting piping  A Golden Touch, for sure.  
The Golden Touch

One year later, what is that I see?  Quite possibly a plan coming together!  

I'm off to learn how to upholster :)...yikes!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Fall Colors

We had a gorgeous fall weekend ...

 Looking for squirrels...
 ...wrangling leaves...

...and trying for "that perfect shot" at sunset.

Hope you had a lovely weekend!  And a Happy Week to you!

Friday, October 7, 2011

You've Got to Love It

Even though I grew up on a farm, I didn't spend much time in the classic "farmhouse".   My parents built a ranch-style 4-bedroom house in 1976.  We were spoiled farm kids in the sense that we didn't have to share attic bedrooms or endure steep staircases and layouts from a historical way of living.

While our new house was being built, our family of five lived in a 2-bedroom trailer house.  My brothers were three and five, I was four.  The trailer house was a practical, but cramped solution to living cheaply during construction.  Besides being cramped, not everything worked in it.  One of the interior doors would stick shut which resulted in my parents saying (a lot!) "Don't close that door!". 

Though I knew to keep to myself my thoughts about a door you shouldn't shut: "Well, what's it for then?",   I didn't know enough to actually NOT shut the door.   Somehow, my (younger, peskier) brother got locked in until my parents came and "rescued" him.  (He was never in any real danger and now he's really good at fixing things.)

The trailer house also allowed my parents to be close to the construction.  Though they hired local neighbors and family members for the general construction, electrical, heating, etc,  they did as much work themselves as possible.  (My dad was putting shingles on the roof when my brother came home from his first day of Kindergarten.)

My mom was responsible for selecting all the finishing products.  "Glacial till" field stones for one of the fireplace surrounds, cherry paneling in the Living Room with a lofted ceiling and exposed beams and (ya-ta-da-da!)...

this flooring (in green) for the kitchen/dinette area.
Armstrong Flooring Ad BHG 1976
You are probably not as shocked to see this as I was.   To see the floor that always made me wonder (to myself mostly!) "Why? Why this (crazy) pattern, Moooom?" (Because of course, that quiet, but testy, 4-year-old morphed into a teenager!)

I did (finally) ask my mom why she choose this pattern.
After a quick,  faraway look, my mom said simply:  "Because I liked it."
Of course!  The basis of all things "good" - design or otherwise.  You must like it!

P.S.  Are you loving the lantern and the hardware on the built-in buffet by the range?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

BHG in '76

I wanted to share the rest of the Better Homes and Gardens article with you, from, that's right 1976 (October!)  The magazine is oversized by today's standards and sold for 75 cents an issue - my grandmother subscribed and passed them on to my mom. Somehow my childhood is tucked here - in the crafts, recipes, decor, even.  
Check out what's still feels current...

Bold Patterns, classic pieces:  The pattern on the sofa feels really current - as does the Parson's table. I know some of you (really cool) people own these chairs!   The coffee table  and lamps could go almost anywhere today and look new.

Ceiling Height Bookcases:  We either have or want ceiling height built-in's - just classic.  The reds, blues with the graphic rug are my favorites here.  The upholstered pieces, even the painted trim is still "happening".  I shared my favorite part of this room earlier in the week - I also love the upholstered dining chairs (even the fabric)!

"Pops" of Color:
(Again, with the upholstered legs!)   
In the article below, "a busy teacher" lives here; take a look below at what she keeps on her shelves.

Metal penny banks (Uncle Sam, the Pitcher -that'd be baseball pitcher!)  Do you see the guy next to Uncle Sam? My brothers had a bank like that growing up - the guy is holding a gun that you load with a penny, which is flung into the tree stump.  We had lots of fun flinging pennies around!   

Remember Encyclopedias?   How about projectors and slides (on the table)?  
(Huh - those would be my initials on the shelf!)

Here, though, is where I imagine myself:  beautiful wicker chairs and a table (handmade, in my imagination, by my handyman).  Rolls of fabric awaiting my next inspired project, sewing notions organized in textural baskets, "just enough" white dishes and the green outside space.   Can't you see yourself spending a crafternoon here?   Then having a a Mexican Buffet?  (Quite possibly my favorite meal!)
Come back tomorrow for my favorite pic from the Oct '76 BHG - something's underfoot!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

More Upholstered Legs & A Quick Update (!)

Well, no wonder I love this style so much:
Check out the upholstered legs on the stool in this (much posted & gorgeous) office by Domicile Interior Design.
This photo hangs on my inspiration/someday/wish board:  subliminal:)...Have you bookmarked or pinned this image, too?
Domicile ID

More upholstered legs:
These are from Barbara Barry on One Kings Lane...Great inspiration - love the legs and check out the welting on the lumbar pillows, too.
Upholstered Chairs, Pair
Barbara Barry Upholstered Chairs via OKL
Love the curve and the detail work at the bottom:
Downtown Upholstered Sofa via OKL
(The detailing around the back is a beautiful surprise.)

Though matching the print in the stools below looks a little DIY intimidating, the idea that you could take a "black-brown, pleather" stool from any retail store (or a craigslist find) to something like this is exciting!  
Paisley Upholstered X-Stools, Pair
Lars Bolander Paisley Upholstered X-Stools via OKL 

Honestly, I didn't know.  But Christine's right, this is big!

I happened to feature pieces found on OKL in this scheduled post - because OKL is awesome.  How do I, country-gal-who-has-never-once-made-an-actual-purchase-from-One-Kings-Lane know this?  Because OKL is featuring our favorite Design Bloggers in an upcoming Tastemaker Tag Sale!  

Meet the Bloggers

Make a wish for me and Go there (psst..on Thursday!) and purchase some awesomeness of your own!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Upholstered Legs

Isn't it true when we're looking for something, we find it?
I'd been hunting for another Living Room chair a couple weeks back and found this on Craigslist.
image 2
Local Craigslist 
Good? Bad?  Definitely memorable!

I loved the curve of the chairs and the straight backs, and those upholstered legs!  I'd been wanting an ottoman too and this one I kept recreating in my head  (a new print; maybe two prints?; a little more bating on top; add some detailing around the curve?)  Hmmm...

Then Nicole (*adore her work*) posted this.

And then (cue the music, cue the drumroll) mom handed me an October 1976 (!) Better Homes & Gardens magazine she had recently cleaned out of the garage.
BHG Oct 1976
Either I've been reading too much of The Secret or my future includes a fabric-covered ottoman, *with nailhead trim*!
BHG Oct 1976
What a great project this would make!
(Have you tried this project already - or purchased something similar lately?)

Friday, September 30, 2011

He Makes Me Smile Like...

Having my picture taken is not my favorite pastime.   
I do love having my picture taken with this man. 
He's imperviously practical. 
He always has the right tool - often right on his belt (or in his pocket)!
He's careful & reliable.
He can build and fix all kinds of stuff.
He thinks in numbers.
He's really sweet to children.
He's devoted to his wife. (Yep, that would be me.)
I smile like a dork when he's around.  (As seen above.)  :)

Send some love to the person in your life who makes your life joyful.
Here's to days and days of dorky, happy smiles!

(Happy Everything, Husband!)

Thursday, September 29, 2011


This summer, I hit a streak of fearlessness and painted my buffet.

There was serious stomach-flipping when the first bit of primer went on...
After refinishing the top, I relaxed...this was my vision (lighter and less red tones).
 Now, it has a home in our living room...steps away from the kitchen!
I'd been waiting to get a really good pic to post - but this will just have to do for right now!  Why wait to tackle that "To Do" List, right?  Embrace the moment and go with it!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Really, Not Really

1)  I can paint like Sonia Delaunay.
Not. Really.
I did paint this on this outdoor 6x8 rug inspired by Patricia's post and Danika's work.  My knees and back are really happy this project is "finished".  

The last week was spent hoping around the rug, carefully placing furniture over the wet paint and saying things like "Don't move that chair!"  and "Whose footprints are these?!"  
(Update: The rug has gone to rug storage heaven. :)

2) I raise ducks.
Nope, Not Really...
These are my dad's ducks, whose arrival my daughter was eagerly awaiting.  She endured a day-long headache and fever at school (my apologies to those of you now infected with the contagion she carried around that day) because if she had come home sick she said I wouldn't let her go see "Grandpa's Ducks".   (Aren't Mommies mean?)

It turns out the ducks didn't arrive on the Headache Day and she was reduced to tears and a nap.  

3)  My Mother's Day gift was a nearly full grown boy in a box.
Um, no, not really...
He rocks my world...and even though you can't quantify the gifts of motherhood...Why don't we begin to quantify by giving the gift of a small air compressor?  Excellent idea, I say.  

4)  This post took me three weeks to write.  
Really;  Nearly and almost. 

Have a great weekend!

Friday, May 6, 2011

"Stuff" to Love

Here are some things I am loving this week:

This gorgeous can full of toxic chemicals; which my sweet husband graciously turned over to me...

...I used every drop to transform our buffet hardware.  
I'm sure he has his regrets in the form of a chemically-induced headache for the 2 weeks it took to get these polished (because finishing things is relative for me).  

Like a "good wife", I went to replace his "Brasso stash" and discovered Brasso now (30 years later) comes in a plastic can.  What will they think of next?!

Miss Moss featured Mr. Wheeler.  I love his red shelf and check out the bear...

...and this faux bois wall(paper?) ...can't get it out of my head, (still)!

Amy Butler's home (love, love!) was featured on Sabbespot and Parlour; these two little sofas and their covers, are among favorite details.
Apartment Therapy

After reading about Sonia Delaunay's exhibit on Mrs. Blandings, I am ordering every book I can about her work.  [And am torturing everyone in the house with my latest (although Brasso-less) project...]

Design Sponge featured O Brother Where Art Thou in their "Living In" segment. OBWAT is possibly my favorite movie ever (one of a few I've seen more than once); I own the soundtrack and the movie marks the first time I REALLY fell for George Clooney...the overalls, the scruff, the shenanigans = *sigh*  :)

Design Sponge
(Get your very own cane toad!)  

I'm off to strap on my big girl overalls and finish something - Have a lovely weekend!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Royally You

I loved every.single.minute of The Royal Wedding on Friday....(even Beatrice's & Eugenie's ensembles!)

As an eight year old, I watched Princess Diana walk down the aisle, with my mom.  It was fun to share the excitement with our Miss D.

We watched as much as we could squeeze in before school, then caught up with reruns in the afternoon.

Mr. Will had lots of fun being called "Prince William" for the day.  (Coincidentally, he actually prefers to just be called "William", too;)
William and Kate Royal Wedding print


My favorite royal moment came later in the evening.  Miss D.'s Dance Recital was Friday evening. 
(Thus, the need for reruns vs. getting a 6-year-old up at 4 am.)  

Watching 'my baby' (whose arrival changed almost everything about my life) becoming so much herself brings such peace. and joy. and hope.

Peace that our job, our work, our formation (as much as you can another) is not for naught.

Joy in the Hoorah! the Hooray! the You Did It! You are doing it!

And Hope.
Hope that the world is full of the goodness that is so much a part of her.  

Set the world alight, little girl!  We love you!

"Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire."
St. Catherine of Siena

To those who are remembered in tragedy, 
to those who protect America, 
and to those who have not given up the fight,
We honor & remember you.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

TLC Mouseover Trick

(Super-talented) Layla at The Lettered Cottage, recently posted a Mouseover How-To. (Love it when experts share their secrets!)

Even though my "afters" are more like "some progress" - I gave the Mouseover trick a try.

Really, my job here is just to make you feel better.

The blinds came down, received a good pressing, a dowel to prevent (some) sagging, new white strings and I "offed" the valances.

(I'll be repainting that cute little bench that said one day it wanted to be "blue", but didn't know that I'd make it "BLUE!")

Hope you're feelin' really good about your "After" today!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Benjamin Dhong

After a long and intensive search for the "perfect beginning" to "decorate my daughter's and son's bedrooms - I have come up with nada, zero, zilch inspiration.

Long after my perilous, fruitless search, (with exhaustion setting in:);  these wood grain fabrics kept calling me:
Thom Filicia Calico Corners

Then I saw the Benjamin Dhong article in the May House Beautiful.   And immediately began stalking/researching his work...and found this bathroom he did for the San Francisco Decorator Showcase.  

Now, this wallpaper is calling me.  :).