Sunday, June 30, 2013

Time to Accessorize

The final touches to any remodeling or redecorating project take the longest.  My bookcases have been ready for quite some time.  Ready for just the right thing.

But as we know, those right things come along when they are ready.  No amount of shopping can make it happen, although "keeping an eye out" is what does make it happen.  Something often shows unexpectedly.  Holding off with this post until I find just the right items does not make sense so keep in mind some of the things you see might just be placeholders.

These letters, I must admit, came along prior to the completion of the shelving units and I knew I would be using them there.

My brother, Dan, pulled them out of a dumpster behind his house.  What a lucky find! There were a few "F's" and a few "L's" along with an O and a C. 

This is what I came up with as a way to use more than just one letter.

It took a little work to get them hung.  Thanks to Dan's ingenuity they turned out great.  One shelf down, seven more to go.   (this picture was taken before I moved the O one inch to the left and one inch higher....just in case someone spots that in the final picture.)

I knew I wanted a lamp on this shelf so I planned ahead with an outlet peeking out behind the picture frame.  I found this one at Home Goods.
I found the crane at a shop called Cool Stuff Real Cheap. The shop lives up to it's name. 
 The colors on the body were good with the tiles on my fireplace and the height of the piece was perfect for the top shelf.  But, it needed something to balance it off.
Turns out I had a frame stashed in the basement.  I had purchased it on sale years ago at Garden Ridge and it still had the cardboard corners on it.  Then I needed something to put in the frame.  Finally I had an opportunity to use a photograph I had taken in the early 90's in Louisville, KY.  I had even enlarged it to 11x14 but had never gotten around to finding a frame for it.  Makes me sound a little kooky since both pieces were somewhere in my house all along.
These two things took care of the top shelf on the left.
I picked up this frame at a warehouse sale at a very nice home furnishings store.  It was marked $89 but because the easel was slightly loose, I bought it for $2.
I had this packed away...something I bought a couple years ago thinking I would use it somewhere-sometime.
I added some sand for now.  If I think of something better I can switch it out later.
I found both of these at Home Goods on the same day but ended up returning the larger one.  It was a little more of a statement than I needed in a room full of statements.
Of course, most shelves have books tucked here and there.  I had some books, but these shelves are only nine inches deep so not everything I had was working.
 I found these encyclopedias at the Goodwill Outlet for 39 cents a pound.
I used gift wrapping paper to cover them.
 Here are a few more.
I also have had three sets of these Styrofoam books used for staging.  I decided to freshen them up with a little paint and use them too.
PS: I am adding another photo post publication.  As I mentioned, this is a project that will continue to be tweaked.
This was a rainy day project and today it is raining so I decided to work on the Styrofoam books on my shelves.  I tore some pages from my shelter magazines, cut the patterns to fit the spines of the books, and glued them in place.  (the glue is still drying so the wrinkles you see should disappear) 
  I almost forgot...I bought this at shop filled with repainted furniture, antiques, and junkables.  The colors worked for me and I liked the numbers thing.  The thought did cross my mind that I could make something similar myself.  Then I looked at the $14 price tag and decided I was not crazy enough to spend three days working on something I could buy for $14 already finished in my colors.
So, that about covers it.  Add a few family photos and you have...
 my shelves for now.  As other things appear on the horizon, they will be rearranged and perpetually tweaked...then again, they may look just like this a year from now.
Although it is not obvious in this photo, I do need to freshen up the floor.  That requires a light screening, touching up the paint, and then a coat of poly.
I'd rather not think about that now.  However, my house is part of a progressive wine tasting event in October and that is a mere three months away.
I am linking to:                    No Minimalist Here
                                                 French Country Cottage

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Two Birds, One Stone

About a year ago my niece and nephew gifted me with this mantel.

I was delighted, as you might imagine.  So why have I not shown it here sooner?  The fact is I had way too much stuff in my garage to even think about taking a photo. Finally, (two huge garage sales later), I was able to get to it and wipe off some of the black soot it had accumulated in the demo phase of the rehab house from which it came. 

Then two inches of rain in one hour yesterday prompted me take care of two things in one blog post.

My hydrangea bushes are lush this year and while they do love a lot of water...

that much at one time had them hanging their heads.
It was the motivation I needed to pull these two things together in a mini post.
I also had the chance to use the wicker rocker I found in the alley some time ago.
Oops, I move my car out of the driveway thinking that would be good enough.
I love the variety of color on a single flower.
I am hoping to find a permanent location for this mantel so I can use it for other photo shoots.  It is way too heavy to move around by myself so I need to find a spot where I'm not getting uglies reflecting in the mirrors.
Since I have glass panes in my overhead garage door this can be seen by all who walk by.  Unfortunately, it will only last as long as the hydrangeas do.
One thing is for certain, it's a better view than the paint cans hiding behind it.
It was fun to take a some time away from painting woodwork and smell the flowers. 


Saturday, June 8, 2013

Odds & Ends

It has been awhile since I posted and I am laying the blame on a that is.  But all is well again thanks to my son and his CEH friend.   I thought I'd begin with a post on some scattered projects.

First of all I'll show you a couple paint jobs that needed doing while the weather was still bearable.

This picture was taken of the back porch after the replacement siding was up and painted.  It is a little difficult to see here but the deck is stained a bluish color and the siding on the porch is green.  If you look closely you can see that the steps leading up to the French doors are new lumber as is the trim around the lattice under the porch. 

The new lumber needed to be stained and I wanted it to be similar to the siding.  Here we go again.  Yes, I restained the entire deck a little at a time.  We had a warm spell so I stained a little in the early morning and a little more at dusk.  This continued for several days until, finally, I could check that off as completed.

I knew I wanted to change the color of the studio door as well.  "One thing leads to another" should be the inscription on my tombstone.  I always liked this color because it complimented the shingles so well, but, with the changes to the back porch it no longer connected.

The most logical color was charcoal.

 I was not totally satisfied with the results and contemplated painting it again in another color.

However, I am becoming more comfortable with it now, and there are more pressing projects.

This chair did not sell at my garage sale.

It was an alley find that I striped down to bare bones.  Then it fell to the bottom of a long list of projects.  I realized it was going to be too expensive to restore this one.  I thought I might entice someone else to take it on, but when that didn't happen...

I painted it orange.

And put it in the corner of my yard.

With great relief, I can now cross that project off my list.  I'm thinking some purple morning glories might be nice to fill in the back.

With all the rain we have had there seems to be no end to the trimming.  I have buzzed the fire bushes, cut back the dogwood, and trimmed some of the ivy away from the 14 windows on the house it affects.  I'm doing what I can to keep up but there is still one project that is haunting me.

Originally this was Vinca vine, tulips and day lilies.  Then the Vinca went crazy and so did the most horrible prickly weeds.  Too much to weed with 23 days over a 100 degrees last year.
I thought suffocating it and starting over might be the way to go.  I left the butterfly bush and the monkey grass out of it for now.
The rest got black plastic therapy.  It is slowly doing what it was supposed to be doing, but the "every other day" rain storms are not really helping.

It may have to stay like this until I come up with an easy maintenance landscaping idea. (exactly what Vinca Vine is know for..prolific, easy maintenance ground cover)  I'm wide open for better suggestions.
 FYI: I usually cut the monkey grass once a year in the early Spring.  Not sure what to do with it this year. It is barely June and it is billowing out of the ground and spreading way too fast.

That's my update on the outdoor activities except for planting flowers in all the containers and keeping them watered.  Next post we will go back inside where hopefully I will have material for a fresh post.