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Saturday, January 14, 2012

Great Textural Wall

Right before the shop I am a dealer at opened, my family took a trip to Northern California and my daughter and I came upon a beautiful gift/antique store that had cement floors and a lacy design on the floor.  I asked the shop owner how she achieved the look and she said she used old lace table clothes.  She arranged them on the floor like area rugs and painted over the pattern.  When Pat and Jeannie opened the store, they did a huge wall with different shaped table clothes and colors.  The customers love the wall and it's gotten a lot of comments over the years.  If you have an ugly floor or wall you want to do something creative with, you may want to try this idea.  You can still hang things on the wall and when you take the items down, you still have a perfectly patterned background.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Vintage Buffet with Glass Knobs

Isn't this vintage buffet beautiful?  I love the lines, the curves and the details.  It is finished in the perfect white,   It's another Valspar paint from Lowe's and is part of their Historic Preservation collection.  It's finished off with simple glass knobs and beautiful wreath appliques.  There is tons of storage and ample surface space.  I think this would be wonderful in a bathroom with a dropped in sink and some polished nickel faucets. 

I wish I could take credit for the transformation, but it was someone else's creation.  It's amazing how a little paint and a change of hardware can update a piece of furniture and give it a whole new lease on life.
Furniture Feature Fridays

Thursday, January 12, 2012

A Beautiful Mess (I think)

Finally we have begun transforming my space.  There is my husband working away patching and painting my Swiss cheesed walls after four years at Aubergine Emporium.  He thought he would just patch the holes and do touch up.  Yeah, right!!!  He has no idea how many things have come and gone from those walls over the years.  I loved the blue that he painted when the shop was brand new, but I am ready for a big change.  The new color is Churchill Hotel Vanilla made by Valspar.  It is part of Lowe's Historic Preservation colors.  I absolutely LOVE it!  It seems to look good with anything that it is next to.  That's a good sign.
But my oh my, I have a double-wide space and we have made a colossal mess.  I will be at the shop all day tomorrow finishing the painting.  I told hubby he could take a day and golf since he was so good today.
It's going to take me days to sort out the mess we have made.  I will be posting updates on the progress.  I used my new camera today to document the transformation.  It is a point and shoot since I am not ready for the big leagues of an SLR, but none the less I think the pics are pretty good.  I purchased a Sony Cyber Shot.  I think for a point and shoot it is pretty cool.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Farmer's Market

Now that the holidays are over, I am beginning to turn my attention to the garden.  I intend to display this sign as an awning, but it could hang as a flat sign as well.  Whatever your fancy is.  I constructed this out of an 8 foot 1x4 that I cut in half to make two 4 foot lengths.  Then I purchased wooden garden stakes that come in clusters of stakes.  You can purchase these at Lowe's or Home Depot.  For a lighter weight sign, you could even use paint stir sticks, but I doubt that would hold up outside in the elements.
 I painted all the wood with Rustoleum Blossom White.  This is a good paint for indoor/outdoor use.
 I laid out the 1x4s evenly spaced and straight and started laying down the pickets on top of them.  I used a right angle ruler to make sure the pickets were going on straight and were not at a slant.  Since I did this in the dining room on the hardwood floor, I protected the floor with an old towel to prevent scratching and glue runs.  As I laid down each picket, I put a good dab of wood glue on both of the 1x4s and then laid the picket on top.  I did this for every picket.
 When I had the whole row done, I very carefully started stacking books and magazines on top of the project taking care not to move my pickets.  As you can see, my addiction to decorating books and magazines serves two purposes.  They make great weights for gluing projects.  You want good contact so you get a good connection between all the wood pieces.  For good measure, I used a fresh 25 lb. bag of Cindy's dog food.  Use whatever you have that has solid weight that will apply pressure to the glue.
 I let this set up for 24 hours before I lifted my weights from the pickets.  Just for good measure, I had my husband drill pilot holes so he could reinforce it with some long skinny nails.  I know there is a particular name for this type of nail, but it escapes me right now.  They are the kind with hardly any head on them although nail heads would not bother a thing.  This is a rustic outdoor project.  FYI, my husband thought I was going for overkill with the nails since my gluing job was stupendous and even he was impressed.

Now that everything has been constructed, I set out to do some stenciling.  As always, I take an extra couple of minutes to map out the lettering on the goof-up pages from our copy machine.  Never discard these.  I use them for everything imaginable.  Once the lettering is mapped out, I lay down painter's tape so I keep the lettering straight.  Keep your sample lettering either above or below where you are placing the lettering on your sign so you know just where to place your next letter and use your masking tape as your leveling guide.  Once the lettering was done, I gently sanded it back and sprayed it with Valspar Clear Flat.  The can also says for indoor/outdoor so this is a great product for your garden signs.

Funky Junk's Sat Nite Special

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Miracle of Biz

On Sunday I did a post about vintage pot holders and I had a comment from a reader that she had some old pot holders she did not display because they didn't look good enough.  So it occurred to me that many of you may not know about the miracle of Biz. 

As a dealer and huge fan of vintage textiles I have been doing the Biz soak for many years.  It works great on the old summer cotton table clothes that are so popular, aprons, baby clothes, and you name it.  I take a very large glass salad bowl or I have a large plastic Tupperware type tub I purchased at the grocery store a few years back to keep my vegetable fresh after washing.  I fill it up with water (doesn't have to be hot) and pour the Biz into the water.  I use probably two to three times the recommended amount it would take to do a load of wash.  You want it to be strong.  I swish it around with my hand in the water to get it to dissolve.  Then I place my handful of old cloth napkins, dishtowels or whatever else needs a good soak.  I even do this if the item doesn't have visible stains.  Old textiles can hold a lot a residue from being stored.  If I have stained items, I will soak them for up to 5 or 6 days.  Each day I just toss them in the liquid with my hand just to keep them stirred.  As time goes on, you will see the water turn yukky grayish brown.  That's all the old stuff being pulled out. 

When the water is sufficiently grungy, I take my items and toss them in a large lingerie bag and throw them in the washer on a delicate cycle.  I usually do not machine dry them, but rather line dry them.  You will be amazed at the stains that are removed.  It really leaves the item looking clean and fresh.  I go ahead and iron the linens or baby clothes as I normally would.  They are ready for use once again.

This works even on embroidered items.  I have not ruined anything yet in all the years I have used this method and it does not pull the color out of the item, just the grunge.

Hopefully tomorrow I will begin painting my space.  It's ready for a makeover after almost four years at Aubergine Emporium.  I will keep you posted on the progress.  I also purchased a new camera this weekend.  New things are coming and I am working on a couple of projects to share with you soon.  Oh, and I also started my Pinterest bulletin boards.  It definitely is a new year!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Vintage Pot Holders

A friend of mine was cleaning out her vintage linen collection and passed these on to me.  I soaked them in Biz for several days and then washed them on a hand wash cycle in a lingerie bag .  They came out unscathed and practically like new.  I think they are wonderful.  Can you believe the work that went into these babies?  They may protect against some heat, but I doubt they are as heat proof as the new oven mittens.  I would imagine they were more a decorator item for the kitchen  Never the less, they are loaded with vintage charm and the colors are still as vibrant as can be.
Totally charming if you ask me!!