Signs of Spring!

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I took a walk around my garden this morning. Of course, yesterday, when it was 50 degrees and sunny, I was too busy. Today, when it's cloudy and barely above freezing (33 degrees on my outdoor thermometer), I decided to walk around...go figure.  After spending most of the winter inside and experiencing only the bitter cold stillness of the Midwest  when I did venture outside in January and February, the first thing that I noticed was that I heard birds chirping.

In Search of "Rust"

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I know, right?! I actually had to "look for rust". It involved leaving my house. Who'd have thought?!!

As you may recall, I am giving a "face lift" to the cabinet that's in the corner of my bedroom.  This old gal has been with me for over 20 years. I bought her at a garage sale. She's been my china cabinet, linen closet, library cabinet and, most recently, she's been in the basement, housing my sons' collection of War Hammer figurines.

Bedroom "sneak peek"

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I can't really call it a "reveal because there are still chairs to slipcover, faux painting to finish and a cabinet to paint but the bedrooom is finally finished "enough" (my word for the year) to show it to you.
This was the "before" photo:

I loved the wallpaper and the drapes but it was time for a change.
Here's how it looks today:

The room looks larger and much brighter now that the ceiling is painted a pale powder blue instead of yellow and the  border paper has been removed. I think that taking down the dark brown drapes and the valance also helped to "lighten things up".

The wallpaper is probably my favorite paper of all time! Other than the two week while it came from the U.K., it is AMAZING!  Heavily painted paper with raised sections in the design and the fact that the instructions called for pasting the WALL instead of the paper made it a breeze to hang! Truly, it took me about 2 hours to do it by myself.  I also bought three old barn window frames from my friend, Diane Passi. I like the way that they act as a frame for sections of the wallpaper! 

The white pin dot panels (Rachel Ashwell Simply Shabby Chic) came from Target as did the white throw. The rest of the room was "repurposed" from the guest room and other rooms in my house. 

I'll post a few more photos later in the week....this is the corner that I'm still working on:

The cabinet may or may not stay. If it does, it's going to be painted...the chairs will (obviously) need reupholstery. The rest is anyone's guess. I do have a collection of frames to paint and put on the walls but I can't do that until I decide about the cabinet!



It's the little things.

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A simple nod. A single word. Tulips from my garden, clutched in the hand of my then two year old "oldest" son. An enamelled pin made by my "youngest" son. An unexpected telephone call. Good friends. Family. Faith. 

Today, my "gift" to you is a reminder, to each of you, to share YOUR special gifts (and yes, we ALL have some) with those whom you love and who love you. Your "gift" doesn't have to be grand,  carefully staged, or photographed. It doesn't have to be public. It can be as private as a glance between lovers, a giggle between friends or a prayer between you and God. 

Sweet Hearts

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I've been baking and making treats for family and friends. Care packages en route to college kids and a few sweet treats delivered to local friends. I LOVE Valentines Day!!!!!!

I have a (drywall taper's) knife and I know how to use it!

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....and it's a good thing that I do! 

When I built my home ten years ago, my builder assured me that his painter was "really good". Of course, I believed my builder.  When the painter told me that he would "prime all of the ceilings and walls and then paint one coat on the ceilings and two coats on the walls", I believe him, too.

About a year ago, when I had to redo the ceiling in my sons' bathroom because the paint was peeling off in big sections, all the way down to the yellow Sheetrock compound, I had a feeling that MAYBE the painter had lied to me. I chose, instead, to believe that maybe he had merely "missed priming" the ceiling in the bathroom. It could have happened that way.

However, when I started steaming the border off of the ceiling in the master bedroom and the paint was coming with it, all the way down to the yellow Sheetrock compound, I decided that I'd been "had".  This is what happens when a painter simply sprays on a single coat of "builder's grade, flat, white, ceiling paint and doesn't prime the brand new drywall prior to doing so. 
There's no way that I would have known because, unless there's steam or moisture, the paint "sticks" to the drywall and as long as no one touches it, it's "fine".  I've now patched, sanded and primed the entire ceiling and the tray (even the "good part" of the painted ceiling) because when I started to roll the primer on the patches, the adjoining paint began to blister and would have peeled had I tried to paint over it. The moisture in the new paint is enough to cause the first coat to "let go" of the drywall. 

With that part finally behind me, I've ordered the wallpaper and started to paint the walls and ceiling. More photos when there's something to show. 

In the mean time, I painted a baby gift for the soon-to-be-born son of my friend, Angie.  His name will be Gavin and the theme in his nursery is Noah's Ark. His walls are beige and his quilt has navy and dark red.

I'm pleased with how they turned out. I hope that his mom likes them.

I'm back to doing more painting, some baking for Valentines Day, and a few things for the Vintage Market!

Have a great week!


Bedroom update #2 and more vintage market

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I have about 12 feet of the border around the ceiling left to strip. I have held to my desire to use NO chemicals in my bedroom and am using only a steamer and white vinegar.  It's been incredibly slow and there will be patching, sanding and priming to be done prior to painting

I was really losing my desire for this project. It's been over two weeks, it's taking time that I didn't want to spend. I've been busy making a few things for the Vintage Market:

I had been looking for excuses not to work on the bedroom.  It wasn't just because it's been more of a mess than I anticipated but because, while I did know how I wanted the room to look and of the elements that I wanted to include, I didn't really have a clear idea of how it would all work together. Until today, at lunchtime, when I went to the paint store to talk about colors with a friend who was in my color theory class in college. I looked through a couple of wallpaper books because I'd been toying with the idea of putting a pattern back on the wall where the bed had been. After only a few pages in the first book that I opened, I found THIS:

Forgive the crappy photo. This is the most absolutely beautiful wallpaper that I've seen in a very long time. It feels almost hand painted. The colors are: two shades of blue, duck egg green, white, ivory, gray and beige. It has ALL of the colors that I'd been considering. It's from Anna French, "Wild Flora". It's more money than I wanted to spend, it's not prepasted, and it takes a couple of weeks to come in however, since I only need one double roll, and I'm nowhere near ready to wallpaper, I'm going to order it. 

Here's the Anna French Wallpaper Book shot of the full pattern:

They have it shown with in a house with very distressed gray/green/ivory/white and yellow wainscot and trim. I won't be able to do that to my window and door trim but I hope that I can faux something similar under the chair rail. That, too, is a long way off.  But I DID purchase the pale blue paint that I'm going to use on the tray part of the ceiling, YAY! (right after I finish stripping, and sanding and priming...yuck!)

Of course, while I was looking, I also found this:

 It's from Kenneth James "Domain"...and it would be fabulous in the hall and the master bath....and I know that I said that I wasn't going to touch those rooms, but I DO have a birthday in May....hey, a girl can dream......

Happy Ground Hog Day. According to a "reliable source" *wink*, Spring will be here soon!