Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Little Road Trip

 I hope that each of you enjoyed a fabulous Thanksgiving.  Ours was a bit unusual.  We left at 5 a.m. on Thursday and drove 10 hours to Knoxville.  (CG's Dad lives there and had just been moved from a hospital to a nursing home.)  Not knowing what we'd find open along the way, I'd  made sandwiches; turkey and cranberry sauce on  cranberry-walnut bread.  Delicious.
The weather was just beautiful.  Rather than fighting crowds and spending ourselves silly on Black Friday, we spent the afternoon touring the historic Mabry-Hazen house with CG's brother and his wife.  
The home was occupied by the same family from 1858-1987 and nearly all of the furnishings are original to the home. Since we were the only ones there, we enjoyed a private tour from the museum director.  
The Mabry Hazen  house served as headquarters for both Union and Confederate forces at times during the Civil War. 
Flash photography is not allowed, but my little Canon soldiered on as I tried to capture the beautiful details of this home. 

This day was a gift; a tranquil afternoon in the midst of uncertain happenings.  Sixty-seven degrees of sunshine hugs, (over twice today's temp here), to be remembered during the long cold days ahead.
The rest of the photos of this glorious home are posted on my Facebook page

I'm linking up with Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday.  Follow me there to see all the fun posts!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Countdown Is Over - Cyber Monday Sale Has Started!

 Countdown is over and our Cyber Monday Sale has started.
Simply enter the code
at checkout to receive 20% off everything in our

Sorry - does not apply to prior purchases.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

I wish each of you a joyful day of Thanksgiving!
For my hubster
my Mom
my two sons and their wives,  (my "daughters")
five grandkids
good health
wonderful friends
those who serve to keep us safe
for those who write the blogs that inspire me
and for those who read my musings
my customers
my dealer buddies
and most of all
thankful to be 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

This Annie SloanThing Has Gone Waaaaaay Too Far

I know it covers everything, but it's really time to put the brushes down and leave the deer alone!


(Photo from jsonline and this article gives all the details - click here)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Is Four Years Too Long to Wait for Annie Sloan?

Well, if I'm being honest, I'd never heard of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, (ASCP), four years ago when I bought this little wicker desk. Ive been meaning to cover the horrid avocado paint ever since.  The desk was just the right size for my tiny sunroom/studio/office and has provided a hospitable home to my laptop.  But really, this room needs to be pulled together.  Someday I'll show you the before & after of the entire room, as soon as there is an "after".  The walls are a soft green and my vision has always been to have this room furnished in a mix of the calming greens & blues of the sea.
Enter ASCP in Duck Egg
I carried the desk into the kitchen and started painting it this morning.
 This paint thickens up quickly once opened. I found it helpful to have two brushes handy. One in use and a second one "on deck" for when the first one started to stiffen up a bit.  I also found that covering most of the open can with Glad Press'nSeal really slowed down the thickening process.  I left an opening just large enough to slip the brush in easily.

Painting the wicker was interesting; I soon learned that a circular motion with the brush worked best. If I was doing it again I might pull out a stencil brush to use.  Here's the desk after the first coat.

The second coat is on and looking good, but it's too dark for pics at the moment. I've got ASCP wax on order and can't wait to finish it up..stay tuned, or check our Facebook page for updates


Estate Sale Finds

Last Friday I was up at 4:00 to attend an estate sale here...
Getting up early isn't my favorite thing to do, but I knew that this sale would be worth it.  As Time Goes By Estate Sales is owned by my friends Pam & John.  Pam's son Cody and my pal Margaret are among their very knowledgeable staff.  These guys spent weeks at this home, cleaning, sorting, organizing and pricing the multitudes of merchandise.   There was high-end silver, early furniture, fine glassware, homespun fabrics, ephemera of every kind, tables full of old hardware.... 

I'm still sorting through my finds; here are a few of my favorites:
If it's got letters & numbers you know I love it. This box is divided inside for holding type.

An almanac...nearly 200 years old

Blanks...lots of possibilities for these!

 Pages & pages of calligraphy and pen work samples

 Unusual keys

 1860's checks

Great advertising piece

Putz stable, complete with horses
...and more
To see more from this sale & elsewhere, check out the album "November Finds" on my Facebook page.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

First Chalk Paint Project

It's as solid as a rock and was obviously built by a skilled craftsman.  I found this great old spice box at a barn sale as I was on the way to Carter's Cottage on  Saturday.  The original finish was a mess.  It looked like someone had started to sand it down for refinishing.  

I've been looking for a piece like this; a handy place to keep all of my phone, iPad and camera chargers. I dove right into my ASCP Old White and got it going.

It didn't look that great after the first coat...

By the time the second coat had dried, it was looking much better.

No, it's not purple-y.  (We are in the midst of charcoal-grey days...this photo and the next were nearly impossible to get at all.) The one big mistake I made was painting the inside of the cabinet and all of the outside edges of the drawers.  I should have known better; the drawers would not fit back in.   Thank heavens for my mouse sander. I can testify to the fact that if you ever need to remove ASCP, it can be done with a sander.  I went through three sanding pads, but finally got the paint off and the drawers to fit back in place.
I'm not entirely happy with my distressing and may ultimately put on another coat of paint and try again.  For now there's one more little thing to finish.  I'm going to drill holes in the back of the frame and in the back of the third drawer so that I can thread my charger cords through and plug them into the wall.   My little 'charging station' is nearly complete.  It's true what I've been hearing; no prep before painting and easy cleanup.  I used a standard paste wax to coat this project but am looking forward to trying the ASCP waxes when they are back in stock.  I'm ready to tackle the next project!

Now let's all go over to Faded Charm for the 125th edition White Wednesday; (Congrats Kathleen on a great linky party!) I for one am looking for some happy whiteness to brighten this gloomy day!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Saturday Road Trip - Carter's Cottage & The Primitive Chic

Before going to the Kane County Flea Market on Saturday,  I traveled two hours to get to Carter's Cottage in Dekalb, Illinois.  I was on a mission to pick up some Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.  Many of you have been on the ASCP bandwagon for months; I haven't had a moment to try it out until now.  No one in Wisconsin sells the magical paint, hence my road trip.
Carter's Cottage is a delightful little shop featuring beautiful vignettes, many including pieces that have been painted with ASCP.  It was wonderful to see all the colors in person. 
 Pam was working on Saturday and was so helpful and informative.   Old White and Duck Egg Blue are the colors I chose to try first.  (The waxes are currently out of stock so I wasn't able to pick those up.)  Today I started my first little "test drive" of the paint.  You can watch my progress on my Facebook page.   
After leaving Carter's Cottage I stepped into a shop next door, The Primitive Chic.  True to it's name, it was filled with honest old prims.  
It's a multi-dealer shop and loaded with a nice variety. 
In one room, my attention was captured by a sweet old prairie dress. The dealer that it belongs to, Jane M., happened to be working on Saturday.  As we were discussing the dress, it dawned on me that it was displayed on an early dress form.  Jane was sweet enough to dismantle the display so that I could see "her".  

You've probably already guessed that I was captivated by it's charm. Jane quoted me a  very special price and I was able to bring her home. (Thanks Jane!)
 She's got the cutest shape, and is a nice complement to my other old gal.

Looks like they will be BFFs! 
If you ever get to Dekalb, don't miss an opportunity to visit Carter's Cottage and The Primitive Chic
I'm linking up with Linda at Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday. Let's all go see what other great finds surfaced this weekend!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Shopping the Kane County Flea Market

A beautiful, warm, sunny day in November is a bonus, never to be taken for granted. I decided Saturday morning that there was no reason to stay home, so pointed South and ended the day at the Kane County Flea Market.  I didn't purchase much, but had a great time visiting with friends that were selling.  It was a who's who of my favorite creative people.  I saw Jill,  Altered Ever After, with her fabulous jewelry.  (Her talented Mom wasn't with her...missed you Candyce!).  Mark, (Room 363) and Traci, (Whimsy) lit up the Sheep Barn with Christmas inspiration.  Janice had a fabulous display there, too.

The Robinson building was loaded with fantastic finds from the likes of  Joe & Sandy, (Rhubarb Reign), Diane Landry, Judy & Anita, (Iowa Junk Gypsies), Rosemary, (Villa Barnes), Michelle O, and Diane Passi. (I thought I was being sneaky getting loads of pictures of Diane's booth when she'd stepped away; sadly only one turned out.)

Enjoy the photos - (you can click to enlarge), and see my Facebook page for some random shots of the market.