Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Nightstand and a DIY Lamp Makeover {for a girl's room}

Updating a Girl's Nightstand and Lamp

It seems as though many of my projects start as a result of a trip to Goodwill! This project is a true case in point. I spotted a coral striped sheet on the 1/2 price rack and when I touched it, couldn't believe the softness and quality of the fabric. Upon further inspection, turns out it was 'Made in France'!

Well, say no more! Je suis tombe en amour avec elle instantanement! Translation: I fell in love with it instantly. I was in love with the price tag too...$1.50 for a full size sheet!

I came home with my prize and mulled over it's new function while it was spinning through the washer. What would it become?

Friday, July 18, 2014

Painting an Upholstered Chair

Chair Makeover Using Paint

Do you ever decide to do something..and your family thinks you've completely lost it!

My family thought I was cray cray when I told them that I was going to paint this chair I found at our local Habitat Restore. Not just the wood...the fabric too!

If you follow other DIY blogs, then you know that this idea has been out there for awhile. But it was a new concept for my dear, darling family to take in...

So many really great chairs have outdated fabric. Like my orange marvel!

This chair has great lines, beautiful caned sides that are in mint condition and I knew the orange upholstery would be a perfect candidate for paint. I don't even mind the damask-patterned fabric...just the color!

I've seen some great painted chair transformations, including this one by 11 Magnolia Lane and this pretty blue painted chair by Artsy Chicks Rule.

Bonus: my chair had already been sterilized and cleaned so I didn't have to do anything to it first!

I started by taping off the edges and then painting the wood white, using a custom DIY chalk paint mixture in my new go-to country white color, 'Cotton Whisper' by Behr. A sample size pot is all I needed to do 3 coats.

Woowee, looking better already!

Once the paint dried, I sanded and distressed it to my liking and then taped off the wood to paint the upholstery. I've read that if the fabric is wet, it will absorb the paint better so I used a spray bottle to wet the fabric really well before I started painting. I decided to use 'real' chalk paint on the fabric itself instead of the DIY version. It's creamier, and I wanted it to look right.

I chose Yesteryear Chalky Paint by Americana Decor (sold by Home Depot). I poured out the paint into a bigger container and added about 1/2 the amount of water to thin it. It should be the consistency of chocolate milk. (*Note: my 8 oz container was enough for this chair, with a little leftover; if you're painting a chair with more upholstery, you'll need more paint)

Then I started painting. It went on so well and easily! I did 2 coats and then realized that the color was drying a little violet rather than grey. So I added several squirts of black acrylic paint to my container, mixed it well and painted one more coat with some additional touch ups where it looked like it needed it.

Here is the backrest painted with the darker grey; I haven't done the seat yet to show you the contrast.

I decided it would be fun to have a little surprise on the back, so I painted the back with Americana Decor's Vintage (similar to ASCP Duck Egg). Once dry, I reused my stencil and it was a perfect fit. One jumbo damask pop of prettiness! This stencil has made its rounds in my home...I've painted walls, curtains and even a tabletop with it!

The piping was painted in bright white, to really make it pop. The pictures don't do it justice; it is a really pretty contrast.

I also decided to bring the turquoise color around to the front and paint the cane. I brightened up the Vintage paint by adding a few squirts of a darker turquoise to a small amount in a bowl.

I very lightly sanded the whole thing, fabric included. It knocked the roughness out of it and made it feel really smooth. If you sand too hard, you will reveal the original color underneath!! Be gentle.

The very last step was to wax the whole piece.. wood and upholstery. Buffing it gave it a low sheen and makes the fabric look a little like leather. The damask pattern is very faded in the background.

It has such a different look now! It's fun and modern with traditional lines.

It's a great additional seat in my living room and blends in nicely with the other seating I have...

I love that it looks pretty from any angle!

Can you even remember what it used to look like? Let me refresh your memory...

Now granted, it's not the most comfortable chair in the world (but it wasn't before its paint job either). It definitely needs a couple pillows to make the sitting easier.

I was pleasantly surprised how easy this was, and it really opens up a whole new world of possibilites

 Great chair + ugly fabric = NO problem!

Have you tried this yet?

bringing beauty to the ordinary,

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Back to School Shopping

Are You Ready for School??

Can you believe that summer is almost over? In my neck of the woods, kids return to school the first week of August...which  means there are only about 2 weeks of summer left.

Yikes, I'm not ready! Are you?

There are new clothes and sneakers to buy, as well as school supplies, backpacks, lunchboxes and extra stuff for my son who will be a Freshman at University of Memphis.

Luckily zulily has a great Back-to-School sale going on right now!

Here are just a few of their back to school must haves and dorm room essentials that I'm looking at for my own kids:


They have a ton of great lunchboxes and food storage that will please my kids and make getting lunches ready in the mornings a breeze!

This dry erase calendar would help my son stay organized at University and be a great place for him to keep track of his assignments. The fluorescent pens are also available.

This metal bin shelf would be perfect for socks, towels or other smaller items that tend to get lost.

Of course, Little DIY will want new shoes!

These cute sneakers will fit the bill quite nicely, and for only $12.99 maybe I can get her two pairs!

And just in case you were wondering what the trends will be this fall, 

According to zulily, five of the top trends for the new school year include:
  • Northern Exposure – From faux fur capelets and moccasins for girls to hoodies for boys emblazoned with bold animal faces, wild looks are big for back to school

  • Galaxy – Starscapes, planets and are other galaxy themed prints make their way onto clothing and accessories alike for fall Sublimation is really big and should be said in here

  • 90’s Flashback – They say if you’ve lived through a trend once not to wear it a second time around, which is why today’s school kids are the only ones cute enough to pull off 90’s inspired looks, including acid washed jeans with bold bright 90's prints along with Harem pants - Can't touch this.

  • Camo Cool – From backpacks and binders to shoes and jackets, expect to see camouflage prints in a wide variety of colors in school hallways this fall

  • London Calling – Trench Coats and hooded jackets paired with textured wool and corduroy will keep kids on this side of the pond warm when fall’s crisp temperatures return

Be sure to shop these Back to school deals at zulily soon! It's always best to shop early, when the selection is good and you have lots of choices. Then your kids are happy...and so is your pocketbook!

Enjoy the rest of the summer...but remember, school will be here before we know it!! Best be prepared.

bringing beauty to the ordinary,

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Quick DIY Lamp Update

Updating a Lamp with Burlap

DIY beautify burlap lampshade {DIY}

Friends, if you have a hot glue gun, a roll of burlap and tough fingers...have I got an easy project for you!

When I saw this roll of chevron burlap at Hobby Lobby for 50% off, I knew I needed to do something with it. The colors are perfect for my home.

I was inspired by my friend Jessica's lamp that she had covered with burlap and decided to make-over this shade that I'd never really loved. Its slight bell shape never seemed to fit the style of the lamp itself or my own personal style; I'm more a drum shade kinda gal :)

All I did was measured the height of my shade and added 2 inches to allow for the top and bottom to be folded over and hot glued in place. I needed almost an entire 15-ft roll of burlap for my medium size shade.

DIY beautify blog Quick Lamp Update

As I pulled the burlap taut to hot glue the edges, the bell shape disappeared and I was getting that drum shape that I wanted!

Um..can you tell the above pics were taken on my dining table before it got its amazing new refinished top?

Other than burning my fingertips, this was a very easy and quick project. I think I was done in 30 minutes.  The hardest part was lining up my chevron so it matched...and as you can see it's not perfect...but we're trying to embrace a little more imperfection here in the DIY beautify household...so we're loving it just the way it is!

After all, it's a huge improvement.

DIY beautify blog How to cover a lampshade with burlap

Thanks for stopping by today. I hope your summer is going great and you're enjoying some relaxing, lazy days by the pool or beach.

I'll see you Friday.

bringing beauty to the ordinary,

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Friday, July 11, 2014

Refinishing a Dining Table

Refinishing a Dining Table Top - I Lived to Tell the Story!

DIY beautify blog

This is a lengthy post...with a lot of pictures...but if you like happy endings, then read on ;)

Awhile ago I wrote a post called Conquering My Fears of Refinishing Furniture. It was the story of my first experience with refinishing a piece and I'm so happy that my 'test flight' was on that dressing table and not this dining table! If it had been, I might have given up in disgust and never tried again.

This was a big project. My dining table has 3 leaves and I wanted to refinish all of them so when we had a large group over for dinner and I had to put all three leaves to use, the table would still look good. The good news is that I'd already painted the table apron and legs black.

The bad news...

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Ironstone Finds

Recent Ironstone Finds at Goodwill

Have you ever had a good ole fashioned swoon in the middle of Goodwill?

The other day while treasure hunting at Goodwill, I stumbled upon some antique English Ironstone 
that made me break out in a sweat! 

DIY beautify blog antique pitcher

Finding this Adams & Sons pitcher ($1.99) in the middle of the aisle of cheap trinkets and ugly vases was an absolute highlight of my Ironstone shopping experiences thus far!

It might be dark and splotchy with age...but that doesn't bother me; it tells me that it has lived a good life and has a story to tell; I love the character and charm that are evident in its surface. Even better? I already have the matching creamer!!

DIY beautify blog antique ironstone

This little trio of curved plates has me a bit stumped. Anyone know what they are?
My best guess would be butter pats. Their curved shape would enable them to fit snugly against a dinner plate without taking up too much additional space at the table.

But I could be totally wrong and their use is something quite different. I'd love to know for sure.

DIY beautify ironstone

And finally is this American Ironstone gravy boat with graceful curves and just the right amount of crazing. Not sure the maker...it just says USA on the bottom...anyone familiar with this pattern?
It's the perfect addition to my tiffany blue shelf and ironstone collection and I love using gravy boats in unexpected ways; to hold straws at a party or a collection of pens on a desk; ice tea spoons, etc.

DIY beautify blog ironstone display

I'm so excited with my new finds...not bad for $7.00, right?!

DIY beautify Ironstone finds

The creamy white and beautiful sheen is a lovely addition to my farmhouse kitchen and country hutch!

DIY beautify blog country hutch with ironstone

So...what makes you swoon these days?

bringing beauty to the ordinary,

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Friday, July 4, 2014

July 4 Wreath Makeover

Giving an Existing Wreath a Quick Makeover for July 4

DIY beautify July 4 wreath

It's July Fourth!! Happy Independence Day!

We've already celebrated with a July 3 Festival and our town's fireworks display last night and will be hanging out with friends and family today - pool time and BBQ probably - and maybe more fireworks in Nashville (depending on how tired we are!).

I got to thinking this week that I had nothing to hang on my door. 

For a DIY-er, that is almost a sin :)

Sure I had the vintage-inspired patriotic collage hanging I'd made...but it's not weather-proof so it
has to stay inside.

I didn't really need another wreath to try to find display space for...so I decided to give a quick little makeover to my shabby dropcloth wreath