Tuesday, April 23, 2013

More Fun With Chalk Paint

When a friend mentioned recently that she wished she had a luggage rack for her guest room, I said 'wish no longer'. With a luggage rack that I picked up a while ago at Goodwill for $2.95 in the basement, and a new jar of chalk paint sitting here calling my name, I got to work. 
With chalk paint, it doesn't take long to go from 'before' to 'after'. The paint I had was a mix of two reds (half Sedona Red and half Traverse City Cherry) by CeCe Caldwell.  I painted on three thin coats and finished it with a coat of satin acrylic sealant. The only store in town that sells ribbon didn't have anything appropriate, so I bought a bit of fabric and made the straps. 
Three days later, we were both thrilled with how it turned out. 

Bring on the house guests!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Another Trash to Treasure

The Commander is finally getting the spirit! 
When he recently came home with a chair he found outside a dumpster, 
I knew he had passed a milestone. It's hard to complain about an 
accumulation of stuff in the basement when one has contributed to it. 

He spotted this find outside the dumpster at our local Habitat for Humanity Store. He said he thought to himself - "somehow we can use this". (I love it when a family member starts to think like I do.) Our just married son and daughter-in-law are setting up their first real apartment and need 
additional seating, so this chair was just meant for them. I have been anxious to try chalk paint, bought a jar of  CeCe Caldwell's paint and wax [http://cececaldwells.com/] and got to work. 
As chalk paint does not require sanding or priming, I only had to clean the chair, paint on two coats and apply the wax as directed. The painted chair has a soft, nice feel. The Commander 
cut the seat from some plywood we had and covered it in foam; I covered the foam with fabric 
The Frugal Daughter bought for $.50 at an upholstery shop. 

It was a fun and rewarding project, and I really liked using the chalk paint. I'm on the lookout for more finds to paint. Hopefully, The Commander is, too!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Classic Trash to Treasure

When leaving a thrift shop the other day, I passed their dumpster and noticed a beat-up high chair beside it. Being that it was a wooden high chair, I stopped and asked a man who worked there if I could have it. He said sure, so I put it in the back of the car, and much to The Commander's dismay, brought it home. Home this month is actually our daughter's house in Florida, and her husband is about as eager for me to bring things there as The Commander is. I thought I would have an ally in my daughter, though, and I was right. We went right to work cleaning it up, doing a little sanding, using wood filler, and a can of spray paint, and within a few days the chair was transformed into a shiny new seat! And I just love reminding The Commander and The SIL where it came from.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Pallet Fence

The Commander and I just returned from a 500 mile pilgrimage across Spain called El Camino de Santiago, or The Way of St. James. We saw many beautiful and interesting sights along the way; this is just one that caught my eye. What a great way to recycle pallets.



Friday, June 15, 2012

Bucket Hats!

I've long admired the patterns from oliver + s. There are so many cute things to sew for girls, but not as many for boys. However, when I came across this pattern for a reversible bucket hat, and with our annual family beach week approaching, I knew I had to give it a go. Thanks to oliver + s for the free pattern. They turned out really cute! You can't tell from the photo, but the inside fabric is red bandana-like making them perfect for the Fourth of July.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Digging to China

Growing up in Norfolk, Virginia, I spent a lot of time at the beach. In my really younger days, a bucket, shovel and a friend or two would keep me busy for hours. We loved scooping up sand fiddlers and digging away. We never got to China, but that didn't stop us from continually trying.

Digging to China...it's one of those sayings that I don't remember who I heard it from and didn't even understand what it meant for years, I just know I spent a lot of time trying to get there!

AJ loves to dig. A lot. He seriously could stay outside digging all day. There is a corner in his yard especially for him to dig in. He has a fleet of dump trucks and hand tools. With his third birthday approaching, we decided to add to the collection and get him a sand digger toy. Picturing him on the new toy, I wondered if he'd be thinking he was digging to China. It just seems like an innate understanding. In case it isn't, I painted a sign so he would know. I wonder how long it will be before he thinks about what digging to China really means. I don't think I'll be able to tell him that no matter how long and far he digs, he would end up in the Indian Ocean. Did you know that Argentina and Chile are opposite China? Don't tell the kids.

Monday, January 16, 2012

A Frugal Friend

Splendid succulents.

We lived in Southern California from the mid-80's to the mid-90's. Last week, we went back for the wedding of our dear friends' daughter and I was reminded how many outdoor activities can be pursued year round there - including gardening. My friend Leslie of  3000tomatoes.com found a terrific set of shutters in an alley on trash day, and like any good trash picker, immediately stopped and loaded them in the back of her car. She had big plans! She took them home, and with her husband's assistance, backed them with plywood, mounted them around her patio, filled each louver with dirt and planted a variety of plants in them. Not only are they interesting and beautiful to look at, vertical gardening is a great plus in a community where yard space is limited. Bravo, Leslie!
What a lucky find - look how perfectly they fit the space.
Salad shutters just outside the kitchen door. Lettuces are on the right side; out of photo range are herbs and more.