Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Before and After Minus the Before

My latest project was kind of a quicky. I bought these end tables on Craig's List. They were an ugly dark brown and reeked of smoke. They were so ugly, I primed them without taking any before pics. Kilz primer is a wonder...once coated in Kilz, the smoke smell disappeared. Hooray!!

After priming, I sprayed them with several coats of Ivory paint. Then, I sanded and added a glaze. I don't usually antique and glaze, but I thought it worked well on these pieces.

For my local friends, these are for sale. $25 each or $45 for the set. FREE local delivery.

If you want to see what real expertly antiqued pieces look like, check out these blogs:

European Paint Finishes


Miss Mustard Seed

Maybe someday I'll be able to paint and refinish like that!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day!

I hope everyone has been able to enjoy the three-day weekend. I know that we have. We travelled down to the big city, all five of us plus the dogs. Our beautiful niece Taylor graduated from high school. So, we've been enjoying family time with her family and my mother-in-law. We've also been able to take advantage of some big-city attractions that we miss living in a small town, such as the Science Museum and Zoo.

Not only does today mark the official end of the school year for us, it is also a day that honors those who have died while serving our country. I am so grateful for the individuals who have served in the military and have protected our country and fought for the freedoms we enjoy today. I have two nephews currently serving in the marines, my father-in-law was in the marines during World War II and my grandfather also served in the army in World War II. A big thank you to all military personnel!!

Now let's all go eat some of this:

Friday, May 27, 2011


Spring has been a long time coming in my part of the world. I live in an area where it is sunny 300+ days of the year, so we didn't really know what to do with ourselves when it rained for the past two weeks.

The best things about all of the rain:
and Flowers!

Source: google.no via Ida on Pinterest

Finally the sun emerged and I ran out to the backyard to take pictures of my favorite garden flowers, irises. I love irises because they come in so many beautiful colors and have really pretty spiky greenery that lasts for a long time. Best of all, for my brown thumb, they are nearly impossible to kill, need hardly any care, and return year after year.

Now go out and enjoy the three-day weekend. Here's hoping we all have good weather.

Happy last day of school to my big girls!

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Even more than I love saving old furniture, I love saving dogs. Tyler, a.k.a. TT, T, Mr. T or Ty, came to us last August from the Golden Retriever Freedom Rescue. T was on death row in Missouri when he was saved by GRFR. He then went to live with a nice foster family in Boulder, CO until he could be adopted. He was adopted out, but ended up being returned to the foster family. His adoptive mom couldn't handle his rambunctious personality. After a long adoption process of application, essays, phone interview, home visit, visit with other dogs, etc., we were finally approved for adoption and brought Mr. T home. At first, he was a timid, semi-shy dog. Now, he is full of personality and a great companion for our family. He is a purebred Golden Retriever. Why anyone would ever let such an amazing dog end up in the pound on death row is a mystery. Ty's story is not unique. There are literally millions of dogs like him around the country. If you are considering getting a dog, look at the various dog rescue groups. If you need any help, please let me know.

Here's Ty with our other dog, sweet Gracie.

Everyone loves Ty! Notice the paint splotch on his back. He was helping with a furniture makeover.

I was so proud of my smart boy when he graduated from doggie school.

Obviously, my dogs are important to me. Because I wanted my gallery wall to feature things important to our family, I knew I had to find some dog art. Here's what I've got:

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

This guy looks just like Ty.

Here's another:

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

He bears a striking resemblance to my smiling King Henry, who we lost to cancer last summer at age 12:

Click on the link below the pics to check out this artist on etsy. Or visit www.dogartstudio.etsy.com. His art is beautiful and he features tons of different dogs. He is also very reasonable...about $12-$15 for a high-quality 8x10 print. I've received things from him very quickly as well.

If you are looking for other dog-art ideas, here you go:

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sneak Peek

First, happy birthday to my awesome dad!

Without all of his love and encouragement throughout the years I would never have had the courage to do all of the things I do today.

Look what I just picked up. I saw it at a garage sale on the way home from dropping K off at school.

She definitely needs a lot of work. But I was drawn to the Greek-key motif on the center drawers and the V-inlay on the side doors. Gorgeous.

I need your help! What color should I paint her? I'm thinking about possibly leaving the side doors as-is (as-are?) so the V-inlay is visible and painting the rest light blue? What do you think???

Linked here:

Monday, May 23, 2011

Desk Before and After

I had been seeing lots of cute desks on the internet lately. I thought something like this:

or this would be so cute in C's room:

The only problem, where to find the desk? My neighborhood had a garage sale a few weekends ago and I found two perfect desks...but, they were already sold! I was so disappointed. So, I hopped on Craig's List and found this beauty:

Look at those legs:

I knew I had to make her mine. I never pick up Craig's List items on my own, so I waited till Big K got home and then we loaded the kiddos in the car to pick her up. The place we got her was a little strange. I had to endure the kids making comments like, "EWWWW, what's that smell?" (pot, I think) and "Somebody really lives here?" Who are these children? I swear I didn't raise them to be like this.

Decisions, decisions...what color to paint. I thought a baby pink would look cute in C's room, but she was determined to have turquoise. I wasn't too sure about that until we came across a gallon of oops paint at Home Depot in turquoise. I love a bargain, so of course we bought it.

Painting commenced the following day. First up, primer:

Looking better all ready! I use Kilz no-odor spray primer. It is so easy to use and worth a little extra money. Just be sure to use light coats and shake the can a lot, or else it can get kind-of bumpy or have a sand-paper like texture.

Don't forget to prime the hardware:

So fun to paint with a 2-year old (insert sarcastic tone):

Even Mr. T, the dog, had to get in on the action:

Spray painted the harware with some gold paint I had on hand:

Here's the final product:

You like???

The bad news, C has nothing else in her room to match this desk. Looks like more redecorating might be in our future.

Linked here:

Somewhat Simple



Weekend In Review

So yesterday was my anniversary. TWELVE years!?!?! Let's travel down memory lane, shall we? We got married in Aspen, Colorado and spent our honeymoon in Kauai. Two beautiful and inspirational places.

Source: google.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

Here's where we got married. The Aspen Chapel:

We had our amazing reception at the historic Hotel Jerome. Thanks Mom and Dad!

Here's where we stayed on our honeymoon. The Grand Hyatt:

What does this have to do with design? Actually, not a whole lot. But, these are inspirational places for me. While I'm not a big fan of the rustic, mountain look embodied by Aspen, nor do I have an Aspen-type budget, I love to spend time in Aspen and the mountains. I always leave feeling refreshed and energized.

Here's some art we purchased on our honeymoon. It's pictures of traditional Hawaiian quilt designs. These have been residing under my bed for the last few years. I just pulled them out to go along with the new shower curtain in the kid's bathroom.

Now, I can gaze at this art and be reminded of Hawaii. So, I know you probably can't jump on a plane to go buy art, so I've searched high and low on etsy for some pieces for you dear reader. Wait, do I even have any readers???

Ahhhhh, the beach. How I LOVE the beach. Here's some super-cute beachy decor for you, curtesy of etsy. I don't generally love a "theme" room, say a whole bathroom with shells, beach pics, sand on the floor, and the like. But, I do think this art is beautiful as long as it is not overdone.

These crabs remind me of my husband's Maryland roots and the crab boils he loves:

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

How cool is this coral? It's printed on a vintage book page:

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

Blue, my favorite color:

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

This would be cute in a kid's room:

Source: etsy.com via Suzanne on Pinterest

Click on the links below the pics to be directed to the etsy sellers of these pieces. Check out their other work too. I bet you'll find something you like.

What romantic gift did my sweet husband give me for our anniversary? Jewelry? Chocolate? Perfume? Roses? Nope. Wood floors!!!! and I could not be more excited! I'm definitely saving him forever, and he doesn't even need a makeover!

Are there any places that inspire you? Do you have memoribilia around your home from special trips you have taken?