Oct 31, 2012

weathered cabinet

Happy Halloween!

I never got my Halloween decorations out this year.  Too much going on, and no inclination I guess.
I've been really busy getting furniture pieces done, and this is the first of 3.

I'm getting better at not leaving pieces behind, and then having to go back and hope that no one else was more decisive than me!  

 This one was a retrieval though.  
I've been so focused on getting holiday items, that this one was more of an after thought.


This cabinet was in great shape.  
It's not vintage, but so useful, and it had potential.


The green paint needed a refresh, so I painted it in Miss Mustard Seed's milk paint, Linen.
It's a nice creamy white. 

One thing I really like about the milk paint is that like ASCP, you can paint over a surface like this without priming or sanding first.  
In fact, the dirtier and less prep you do, the better results for a chippy finish.


I also decided to try out the crackle medium that is part of her line of paint, and I learned a lot about it with this project!

The crackle medium comes in a fine powder form and you mix equal parts water with it.
Once it is stirred, you let it sit for about 20 minutes to absorb all the water, and then re-stir to remove lumps.  
I use an old mini whisk, and it works great.

Then, you paint on the crackle medium before the final coat of paint.  
With this first time use, I brushed it on using a sponge applicator.  
I let it sit until it turned tacky (about 15 minutes) and then painted on the final coat of Linen.

I wasn't seeing a whole lot of crackling going on an hour or so later, and was disappointed.
I started the distressing process (on the furniture, not emotionally)  ;)  using a scraper.  

It seemed that the crackle medium wasn't quite set up yet with the paint! 
 It was scraping off gooey.

I looked over some of the other spots and realized that where the application was a little thinner (less medium) it was crackling.
Bummer.  Just scraped off a bunch of it!

Lesson learned, let it set up, and don't rush it.  
It takes a bit of time (it was also probably a bit humid from working in the garage on a rainy weekend.)
But, the results where it took to the surface, and I didn't scrape it off, are fantastic!


I love it. 

Once it was waxed, I took some dark wax and went over the crackled spots to accentuate it even more.
LOVE love LOVE love LOVE!


The interior got a coat of Paris Gray.


New knobs and pulls for the exterior.
Love the fleur de lis knobs I found at Lowe's.


It will be a great piece for showcasing holiday stuff in my space.


Have you tried the crackle medium yet?  
What did you think?

****
It's a bit wet here today, but the fall leaves are gorgeous.  


I am so thankful for every season we get to enjoy in our home.  
The hillsides are beautiful, no matter what time of year it is.

Wishing you a beautiful, safe, and fun Halloween!

Oct 29, 2012

it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

This weekend was super productive for me- which was great since I've been nursing an injured back.
Friday, I finally felt like I was turning a corner on healing, and it was a relief - pain wise, but also because right now I can't afford too much down time. 

 The Holiday Heritage Faire is in 2 short weeks, and I have a list that doesn't seem to be getting any shorter!

I was able to finish up these cute stocking ornaments:


They are made from vintage cotton batting, wonderfully aged.  
French crinkle ribbon in red and gray- to match the original binding on the edge.
Some vintage buttons embellishing the ribbon also!

I went to a couple great sales and got some goodies too...
Two matching hutches!

So excited to have a pair of these to work with staging!
They have the first coat of paint on, Duck Egg blue.  The next coat will either be a cream or pale gray with a crackle finish.

A huge purchase over the weekend was a large art deco armoire.


One of the vendors at Aunt Bee's was laughing and saying, "no paint on this one?"
Nope.
I think she's a beauty as is.
:)

(I know you wood lovers just sent up a cheer!)




It needs a bit of TLC- it's missing one of the decorative foot fronts, and has a hole cut in the back, but the inside is super roomy with brackets for shelving or a closet rod for hanging clothes.


It's priced to sell, as is.
Isn't she purdy?

There's also a new bunch of English ironstone in my space, including 2 big platters- just in time for the holiday season!


I completed another cabinet over the weekend too.

This one was finished in Miss Mustard Seed's Linen
(just like the chippy dresser- which sold over the weekend!)

 I tried out her crackle medium on random spots. 
I am totally in LOVE with this stuff!!!
I could see myself needing this by the bucket load!

I will show you that project tomorrow- but for now, the sneak peek of 
the finish:


Yum.

Besides all the furniture purchases, I worked on more ornaments and pricing of vintage goodies.
Loved the mid century Santa mugs I picked up:


A prayer figurine:
(my favorite find of the weekend)


English inspired jewelry box:



There's lots going on around here!
Even though Halloween is this week, it's Christmas prep here at Chateau Pink Postcard.

Hope to see you in a couple weeks at the Holiday Heritage Faire, at Mission Mill in Salem, Oregon.
My Facebook page has a $5 off admission coupon for the pre-sale night.
I am hoping to get a few of those printed out for my booth as well.

And, if you can't wait that long, Aunt Bee's vendors are already starting to trickle in some Christmas fun!

Oct 25, 2012

simple DIY necklace hangers

I am nursing a sprained back, (at least that's what the chiropractor said) so I've been laying low all week.  
Hoping it gets back to normal quickly, because I have a holiday show coming up, and I can't really afford to lay low much longer! 
: /

A couple weeks ago, I got fed up with my jewelry board.


It wasn't working for me anymore.
My necklaces have gotten bigger, heavier, and longer than a few years ago, and the simple little straight pins that were holding them on there just wasn't working.
I had more and more of them laying around the bedroom and closet until I could find a solution.


It's not fancy.
It's totally practical.
And it is working great for me!

I went to our local hardware store and picked up these hooks:


Using part of our closet's finish work, I marked off where the screws would go from the hooks.  I drilled pilot holes, and then screwed in each bracket.


Now I have a super sturdy, organized way to see and store my necklaces.


If I need to add more hooks in the future (I'm pretty sure I will!)
I plan on adding in some smaller cup hooks between the larger ones here.
A simple way to add more storage for everyday stuff!


Oct 22, 2012

vintage dresser in MMS Linen milk paint

I have been so anxious to try out Miss Mustard Seed's milk paint!!!

Last week when I was at Aunt Bee's restocking my space, I was getting ready to leave, and Belinda said, "Oh! I almost forgot! The paint arrived!"

{insert happy dance here}

I was so excited, and had a project piece waiting in the wings.
I chose Linen for my first color.


I'm just about out of wax, so I also picked up some to try.  
The crackle medium is something I've been wanting to test out too, so I took home a pot of that as well.
I ended up not using it on this dresser, but I have another project that I think it will be perfect for.

I am soooo in love with the wax.  
I am such a scent oriented girl- this is the best smelling furniture wax I've ever used!  
It has beeswax in it, so it has a nice, light, sweet smell.  Every time I walked through the garage after the dresser was done, I kept thinking how nice it was not to have a chemically smell trapped in there.
Super creamy, very easy to apply.

The dresser was something I picked up from a former high school classmate's family!
(thanks, Amy!!!)

It had great simple lines, dovetail joints, and was a solid piece.


The paint job wasn't great, but I kinda liked the vintage minty green.


The handle pulls had all been painted over, so I soaked them in hot water and then scrubbed the paint off with a scrubby pad.
Other than that, there were a few stains I wiped off the front.  
That's the only prep work I did, prior to painting.

I watched a couple of Miss Mustard Seed's videos on mixing the paint.
Round one, I mixed with a stir stick.
I didn't get the ratio right- too watery, and the stir stick wasn't doing it for me.
(I even tried a tiny whisk, still not to my liking)

She said you could also use an old blender to mix, so that's what I did.  
I went to Goodwill and bought a $6.99 blender.
I think I prefer that method for me!

But here's the yummy results after 2 coats of milk paint:


Do you see that scraper in the background just waiting for me after I took this shot?

Here's the after:


It's probably not the best representation of the color Linen, but I love that some of the mint is still peeking through, and the chipping is to die for!


I also distressed it a bit with my sander.

A couple times while I was working on it in the driveway, I had neighbors say how much they liked the color.  
With the Linen color over the mint, it gives it a very relaxed, beachy vibe.


I didn't even notice this cute little medallion on the drawer front until I got it home.
Now it's enhanced and a nice, simple detail.


I had so much fun working with this paint.  
I still need to work on getting my water / paint ratio perfected, but it was exciting to see how the paint reacted, and I am thrilled with the results.


I feel like it gives the true, crusty, chippy look that is hard to achieve with refinishing.

I'm looking forward to trying out some other colors soon, but I will probably finish up Linen on a cabinet that is my next victim project.

If you live in the Willamette Valley, you can find Miss Mustard Seed's paint at Aunt Bee's House.
We are carrying the full line of products, and there are a few vendors that will have furniture pieces in the shop soon for you to see the results in person.

This dresser was just delivered yesterday and is in my space at Aunt Bee's!

Happy Monday, friends!

Oct 18, 2012

how to restore scratched and worn wood

Every time I look through a Pottery Barn catalog, I always find myself scrutinizing the details.  Noticing how and what is staged in their photos, regardless of whether or not it is an item for sale!

Lately, I have been loving the wood boxes that they show in a room or shelving display- it adds warmth and a sense of groundedness to the space.

Not too long ago, I came across this wood box.
I loved that it had a hinged lock, aged brass handles on the side, and a simple, functional shape.


It looked terrible with all the scratches and huge watermark on the lid.

It didn't faze me one bit.

You can easily buff out stuff like this, and it is simple and inexpensive to do.


There are a few products out there- I used Old English. 
It's readily available in most stores where they sell cleaning supplies.

 I first tried it out on our coffee table in our family room.  

After I cleaned the surface dirt off of the box, I used a clean rag to dab the Old English onto the scratches and watermark.




Once those were covered,
I went over the entire surface of the box again, and then buffed it with a new clean rag.

It's hard to see where the flaws were, huh?


It took me all of 2 minutes to restore this little guy.
Old English comes in a light and dark stain, I used the dark for this restoration and for our coffee table.


Does this have you looking at thrift shop items differently?
Maybe next time you won't pass on something because it seems like too much work!
:)

I wrote this post out of my own accord.  
No one from the company has ever contacted me to write a post on their product.
I really like it, and wanted to let you in on one of my DIY secrets!

Have a great Thursday!

sharing with:
Wow Us Wednesday

Oct 15, 2012

easy homemade applesauce

There are some things in life that I never thought to make myself.  

You just kind of get used to the way it's always been done (pre packaged nonsense) and forget that a much tastier, home made version is an option!

Two examples: 
1.) Mac n Cheese.  
Yuck.  

I never, ever liked the boxed version.  
And then I discovered the amazing at home version, thanks to Martha Stewart.

2.) Applesauce.  
Ridiculously easy, and with more flavor than I ever dreamed.

If you've never made applesauce, you have to give it a try.  
Apples are in season at every farm stand right now, and it is so easy to make the most yummy, sweet, natural, comfort food!


Here's what you need:

4 apples (I prefer Gravenstein- slightly sweet and tart, great baking apple)
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon + extra

Peel, core, and slice apples.  Place in large saucepan and cover with water, sugar, and cinnamon.
Place lid on saucepan and cook on medium heat for 15-20 minutes, or until apples are soft.
Allow to cool slightly, and then mash.
I usually like to add a dash extra of cinnamon here because often it bubbles over a bit in the pot while it's cooking.

Serve warm or cold, you won't believe how yummy it is!

{Cover and refrigerate extras.}

French wicker trunk, giveaway winner, and a goodbye

Before our rainy season hit, I wanted to update some photos of our bedroom with a new piece I added in recently. 


This summer, I stumbled on this fantastic wicker trunk. 
I found it at a local thrift shop, and I approached it with a certain amount of skepticism as to what the price tag would read.
It seems like some thrift shops forget that they are a thrift shop, and not a retail store.  
(who is pricing some of this stuff, anyway?!)

I about passed out when I saw the price tag of $25.
I ripped that tag off so fast, it would make your head spin!


It is humongous, and it was very hard to find a spot to place it. It has some great features on the lid, so I didn't want to use it as a table, and cover up those spots.

A painted monogram, and a worn shipping label.


Honestly, I hope that in showing this piece, someone can give me a better idea of where it originated, if it is in fact, French (!), and some general history.  
I haven't found much online.

It looks like it has a U.S. shipping label.
I love the hand writing that is still visible.


Heavy duty metal clasps:



The bottom of the trunk has wooden runners.  
It is a prized piece!  I really try to not keep the stuff I find when I am out scouting.  But I knew I would never find a trunk like this again, for that price.
It was funny to open up my Pottery Barn catalog and see their version of it this summer!
(for $199!)

Pottery Barn Colton Woven Trunk
I am so excited to be adding in some character pieces to our home.  
Especially when they serve as extra storage!

Do any of you know anything about these wicker trunks?? 
I would love to know more about them and where they originated from!

****
Thank you so much for all of your comments on my projects for the My Color inspired by Pantone Painting Party last week!


The winner of 3 sample pots, selected via Random.org is:
Tuula @ The Thrifty Rebel!

I will be emailing you shortly to get your info so My Color can send you your colors!
Congrats!

****

 On a more serious note, no matter what I had planned to post today, it just seems trivial in light of our weekend.

If you read my Facebook page, then you already know that my father in law passed away Thursday.
I found out just after I had posted the vanity project.
It hit me hard- you just never expect to get the phone call that someone you care about, is suddenly gone.

We had a good weekend- despite the circumstances- looking through family photos, seeing words of sympathy in cards, flowers, and on Facebook messages.  
Recalling our best memories of Gene.

Even though we were stunned at his sudden passing, it is hard to be too sad, because we know that he is with his Savior in heaven.  

Gene had been wheelchair bound since 2006.  He had a brush with death in that year, and we said our goodbyes then, thinking we might not see him again.
He took great joy and amusement hearing our sorrow, love, and "goodbyes", after a miraculous recovery.
He already knew how much he would be missed when he left this earth.

Life will not be the same without him.  
His presence was felt at every baseball, softball, basketball, choir, orchestra, soccer, and volleyball game.
I was always amazed that he and Peggy came to every show I've done over the last 2 years.
He was a wonderful father in law to me, and I am grateful that I had such an amazing man in my life.
See you soon, Gene.
Love you.