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a NEW old armoire…and a little more on chalk paint.

12 May

Here’s my next painting adventure:

Thrift store.  $20.  Ginormous.  Weighs about as much as my entire family put together.  I. adore. that. drawer.

More Annie Sloan paint.  This time Provence with a clear wax mixed with Old White paint.  Original hardware except drawer hardware (which I haven’t found yet).  I actually timed working on this piece to coincide with my brother coming to visit so he could help Will carry it in from the garage.  Sneaky, sneaky, right?  What else are big, strong, manly brothers for???  His sweet-as-molasses girlfriend Lindsay helped me paint it and I was eternally grateful.

The best part about this piece is the inside.  It smells just like my grandfather’s old dresser.  And it has perfectly sized cubbies and 3 pull-out drawers.  Perfect for our kids’ art supplies, paper, games, puzzles and library books!

Don’t you just love it?????  Cuz I sure do.

Several friends have asked about the chalk paint that I used for the hutch.  I thought I would give you the details, as well as more specific information so you can get to painting!

The Annie Sloan Chalk Paint is from the UK.  I first read about it on the Miss Mustard Seed blog and it’s exploding in popularity.  You can use it like a chalkboard paint, but obviously you don’t have to.  It comes in 24 colors and very few stores carry it in the US, so you’re probably going to have to order it online.  I ordered mine from the Southern Institute of Faux Finishing shop because they had the most colors in stock.  But I got the paint within a week.

Costs:  The paint is $35/quart.  Deep breath.  BUT!  Usually you can get away with painting one coat if you put on a solid medium coat (not too heavy though).  The paint goes a really long way.  One of the things I really love is the wax that you apply over it.  There’s a clear wax and a rustic wax.  Each wax is $25/can.  The rustic wax, you’ll have forever.  The clear wax goes a really long way if you apply it with a brush instead of a cloth.  The only other thing I’d recommend is the wax brush ($35).  The shipping is NOT cheap (plan on $15-25 per order), but it is oh-so-worth it.

It’s incredibly easy to work with and I really like using it.  You can use a soft paint brush for applying the paint.

Tips:  So before you start, wipe your piece down.  Fix anything that needs to be fixed.  Remove the hardware.  If you need to sand any rough edges, take care of that.  Otherwise, you don’t need to do a thing.  When you paint, the color looks a good bit lighter than when it’s dry.  Also, don’t stress too much about streaks because the beauty of this paint is that it has a really matte finish.  Let it dry for a good 12-24 hours before you start waxing.  BEFORE YOU WAX, read Miss Mustard Seed’s blog entry on waxing and definitely make sure you watch her Waxes 101 video.  You’ll probably put the clear wax on first.  Let that dry for an hour or two (until it doesn’t feel sticky anymore, sometimes it can take up to 24 hours) before you start with any other waxes.  I liked using the rustic wax on my hutch piece, but you only need the tiniest amount.  I ended up using steel wool to lighten the color up a bit because I was pretty heavy handed with the dark wax.  You can also mix the clear wax with paint, which is what I did on the armoire from last week.  I painted it the Provence color and mixed some Old White with clear wax to give it a lighter finish.  The hutch was done in the Versailles color.  The wax dries in a matte finish too.  If you want a distressed look, use a fine grade sandpaper and sand away.  As with applying the wax, when you’re sanding, work in a small section and then take a few steps back.  It’s easy to get tunnel vision working up close with a piece, and it really helps to take a step back to look at the big picture.

So there you go.  Please let me know if you have any questions!  I’m working on a couple of other pieces right now and will post those another time.  I gotta get to work!


The Hutch…after.

10 May

Here’s the finished project.  I’m a little disappointed in the photos, but it is what it is.  🙂  I absolutely adore this piece!  Inspired by Miss Mustard Seed, I took the plunge and invested in some Annie Sloan chalk paint, brushes and waxes.  Yes, it is a small investment, but oh so worth it.


This is the real deal.

There is no sanding, no priming, no nothing.  You wipe the piece down and paint the snot out of it.  It dries.  Then you brush on your wax(es) of choice.  They dry.  If you want to distress it, grab some fine sandpaper and the paint just sands right off in a fine powder.  I like the original hardware, so I stuck it back on and TA-DA!!!

I have painted several pieces of furniture in the past and nothing was as easy as this.  In fact, it was the project my mom and I worked on Easter weekend.  Oh how I love it.

I love the rounded details on the doors.

And the beadboard on the back of the upper part.


I’ve already finished another piece with some Annie Sloan chalk paint and I’ll post those before and after pics as soon as I take the after pics. 🙂

Summer is here!

15 Jul

Summer is definitely in full swing.  I tell myself daily not to feel guilty about not blogging, but for some reason I just can’t help it.  Things have just been crazy around here.  Every day brings a new adventure, and most days I’m just too exhausted to make myself sit and write.  So I’m doing it.  William is at Zoo Camp right now and Amelia is sleeping, so I have 5 minutes to myself while Zachary is picking up toys.  Ha.  Yeah, right.  🙂

So the latest…..well, we’ve been to Lake Gaston, NC for almost a week.  Zachary’s best buddy Cooper turned 3, so they invited us to go to Jessica’s parents’ lakehouse for the week.   Think me, Jessica and 5 children driving.  A 4 1/2 hour trip turned into 6 1/2 hours.  Multiple potty stops, a motorcycle accident that happened right in front of us (I stopped to help and was the only medical person around, so I had to stick around) and lunch all contributed to the additional 2 hours.

Doctor visits, afternoons at Grandma’s and the park, updating the exterior of the house and refinishing 2 chairs keep our days full.  Next Wednesday is Zachary’s birthday party.  His actual birthday is Sunday and my baby boy will be 3.  Tear.  Then the following week, we head out to LA for the Wedding of the Year.  Very exciting times!!!  I have so many photos to post, but for now, I’ll leave you with Zachary’s party invitation I designed.  I’m pretty proud of it.  Plus he’s a decently cute kid.

Kate’s Shower

28 May

I have literally been planning Kate’s bridal shower since the day she was born.  Maybe not so much in the teenage years, but since I’ve domesticated myself, it’s been on.  And this was the year.

The theme was pink, pink, and pink, with a little more pink.  But not just any pink, “Titanic Pink.”  Well, at least that’s what the 10 dozen roses were named.  We had everything from paper topiaries to 20 yards of pink tulle to her name spelled out in wooden letters on the mantle.

Each guest was asked to bring 1/4 to 1/2 yard of quilting quality fabric to be a part of a wedding quilt for Kate and Brandon.  They were also asked to pre-address their thank you note.  Probably not something Emily Post would approve of, but hey–c’est la vie.  (That’s life, for you non-Southern Louisiana or French-speaking folk)  Engagement photos of Kate and Brandon were placed throughout the house.  And then we had fabric charms for favors.

We played bridal shower bingo, where you filled in the gifts you thought she would get ahead of time, and then played normal bingo.  Kate also pulled two thank you notes out of the basket for prizes!

We served all desserts–a blueberry cake, a chocolate truffle cake, chocolate covered strawberries, nuts, lemon curd tarts, fruit skewers and cheesecake bites.  Brandon’s sister Amber also made these beautiful cupcake pops.  They were adorable and completely delicious!!  Then we had rose petal punch, coffee and iced and hot tea.  So much fun!!!

Chocolate truffle cake


The serving bar

Fruit skewers


The rose topiary (think 8 dozen huge roses in ball form!)



And the lovely beautiful bride


Here is the link to the rest of the shower photos.  Enjoy!

A Few More Things…

30 Apr

This week has been much calmer compared to last week.  I’m trying to finish the quilt for Kate’s upcoming bridal shower, and that takes major focus and drive.  Fortunately I was able to do most of the quilting part yesterday, so there’s just a few more hours of work on that.  I’ll post photos after I give it to her, but since she’s one of my greatest readers, I don’t want to spoil the surprise.  I’m DYING to give it to her.  I designed it in my head, down to paper, and then to many dollars worth of fabric.  It’s so beautiful I just want to keep it for myself.  Why does that always happen???

But now Amelia is the sick one.  We made it through an entire week without sickness, so it was bound to happen.  She’s got the crusty eyes, nose drip and NASTY cough.  But I know she’ll survive, just like the other 2 did.  I admit she’s even beautiful with crusty eyes.

I posted some new photos of Zachary on my photo blog.  But other than that, I’ve been laying low.  I can barely survive with what I’ve got!

I thought I’d post a few more of my favorite links, Amelia version.  It’s just a couple, but why not?

Belle’s Bowtique

These are my absolute favorite bows.  When Amelia was born, I told Jessica I would just probably save money and make all of her bows. 

No.  Not worth it.

So a friend gave me some as a gift when she was born and I fell in love.  She has a ton of different designs with bows, flowers and everything in between.  She even has tutus!  (Now that I DID make.)  I don’t know what she does to make them so perfect, but it works.  They’re not that expensive (especially considering how much you would pay in any other store) and they just LOOK like they’re better quality.  I guess that’s because they are.  Anyway, order some.  Tell Billie (Belle’s mom) I sent ya.


This girl has a shop on Etsy, one of my very favorite websites.  It’s sort of like Ebay, but no bidding.  And everything is handmade.  Maybe it’s like the web’s largest craft show.  Except everything is really cool, and there’s nothing that involves a duck cross-stitched onto a wreath. 

So anyway, I LOVE her pinafores.  I ordered 2, and I swear Amelia wore them for 9 months.  First, she wore it as a dress, then as a top with jeans.  In the fall and winter, I put a long-sleeve shirt on underneath.  Now I put nothing under it and just put a cute diaper cover on her cute little behind.  Now I see she has skirts that are totally precious.  I think I might have to go order one….

Amelia’s Quilt

23 Apr

I have some of the very best friends in the whole wide world.  We didn’t find out what Amelia was before she was born, so they threw her a “coming out” party a couple of weeks after she was born.  We needed lots of pink to invade our house!  In a stroke of genius, Claudia, Jessica, and Renee asked guests to bring some fabric in green, ivory and pink to form a large quilt for Amelia. 

What made the quilt most special was that my mom brought some dresses that I wore as a baby.  They used some of the fabric from the dresses in addition to all of the fabric that the guests brought. 

So on my birthday, they gave me the quilt.  Or they gave Amelia the quilt.  Well, it’s really for me anyway.  They want it to be dragged, washed, snuggled and loved until it’s literally falling apart.  I love my friends!!



Amelia’s Got a Brand New Bag

22 Feb





I made Amelia’s diaper bag before she was born, and I love love love it.  It’s the Amy Butler pattern “Nappy Bag.”  I totally love it, but it’s ginormous.  Time for a new bag. 

So I found this Japanese Wizard of Oz print canvas a couple of months ago.  I completely fell in love with it, so I ordered a yard not knowing what I would do with it.  Jessica made this bag last week for her mother-in-law and I thought it would be perfect for Amelia.  It’s another Amy Butler pattern.  PERFECT!  I had the polka dot print lying around just waiting to be cut, and Jessica had the pink linen sitting there, very lonely.  And 2 days later Amelia has a new diaper bag!!  Granted it’s not very big, but it’s definitely big enough for a diaper, wipes and a change of clothes.  Plus she can carry it as a purse in a few years!  I’m so happy with it!

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