Monday, September 7, 2015

Why Fall when you can Stand Up?!

Oh my goodness. What a summer it was. 
Busy, hot and sticky here in Minnesota. 
Iced coffee has become a good friend.

There have been great garage sale and antique show finds.
I've kept them under wraps, but they're coming out of hiding.

I don't garage sale nearly as much as I used to. 
When I do head out, the finds have been fabulous.

I've been busy working, volunteering and making adventures with my kids. 
Finally inspired, I dusted off my weary heart and got creative this weekend.
Amen to a three day holiday!

I made this in my living room.
I find that I can't remind myself to be happy nearly enough.
And seriously, this little scene is pretty damn happy.
That's the goal. 

The aqua boots.  Goodwill, just thank you. I am not worthy.

Garage sale: The darling doll dress: $2.50. The chalkboard: $2.
The clock: $5 at an antique show this summer.

Metal letters: 60% off at Michael's. (love that app!)

You can always find your Happy
You can do it. Hopefully on sale. Even better.

The little doll clothes coat.
wool. little blue buttons. lined. 
I spotted it in a box of OLD doll clothes at a garage sale. 
It was at the end of the day. How does something so darling last all day?
It really was two dollars and fifty cents.
Love at first sight.

For a twist on autumn, I say to all my girlfriends out there:
Stay strong, no matter what your battle.

Why Fall when you can Stand Up?!
Try your best.
Read to the end of the book.
Your story is good.

xo jeanne.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Stove in the rough. Happy in the heart.

Sometimes when least expected, the best things happen. 

We'd plan to go garage sale-ing.  But my daughter and I woke up to rain, so we were bums and slept in.  I know better.  From experience, the best deals are found on rainy mornings when not many salers are out.  But on this day our Saturday morning pillows won the fight. Eventually we roused ourselves, rallied and headed out. 

The first two sales were a bust.  Those sales where I want to send mental telepathy to the homeowner; "Save yourselves and throw all this crap away."  Monica and I swiftly moved back down the driveways and back to the car doing our best nonchalant walking away moves.

We tried one more because it was closely and we liked the long driveway. (We're driveway choosey.)  Since it had rained, tables were damp and not everything had been covered.  I spotted a pink chenille bedspread.  $15, too much.  Oh so close, but it was damp around the edges.  The seller came up to us, handed us a paper grocery bag and said; 

"We're having a sale. Everything you can fit in the bag is $1, except for the collectable table." 

Hmmm, I think I'll take a second look around.

What item fit nicely all folded up tight in that grocery sack?  The chenille bedspread of course.  I added a few cool old jars, a fabulous ancient book titled 'The Impatient Virgin' that could not possibly leave behind, and a fab old Simplicity magazine from the late 50's / early 60's that is packed with vintage ads and artwork.  I thought for sure the seller would question the bedspread, but nope, she didn't. I handed over my $1 bill. 

Now energized, undaunted by sprinkles and only down by a dollar, we were off to the next sale.  We journeyed a few blocks and looked for garage sale signs. What we found was a darling neighborhood we hadn't known existed. Homes with giant shady trees, deep greenery and darling gardens. Not perfectly manicured, not new homes or even big. Just nice, well loved kept just right with families, retirees and homey coziness.  How had we not known of this darling neighborhood not that far from our own? 

We spotted a sign in front of a house so we decided to give it a try.  It was a charming house with a fantastic pathway with an arbor covered with a climbing hydrangea.  Heaven at first sight.  I ventured into the garage.  I spied a double sided child sized standing chalkboard, complete with trays and chalk.  $10.  I whipped out the $5 I had in my pocket and handed it to the owner (who was quick, clever and hilarious.) Monica knew to just take my keys, go to the car and get my purse so I could retrieve more cash. Gotta love her, she knows when I'm a goner.  I already had visions of it with a fab design behind my porch garden or at my son's graduation party.  Let the drawing begin!  

The homeowners were both darling people. The chalkboard had been their daughter's. She'd learn to draw and write on it over 30 years before.  The man offered to carry the chalkboard to my car.  By the end of driveway was another cute arrow chalkboard sign. I asked him about it and he said; "Oh that?  We use that for the pond tour. I'll take you back there and show it to you."  Pond tour too?! I'm in!  Plus, by the curb was an old handmade wooden child sized stove.  (No doubt once used by the now grown up daughter.)
It was free. Clearly, the nice man loaded that into the truck of my car.

 *silly happy grin*

Now on to that pond tour.  Monica and I ventured down that arbor hydrangea'd path we'd seen earlier.  YAY!  Fabulously overgrown, lush and loved. The nice merchandise-carrying-giving-me-free-child-play-stove man handed me off to his wife who was already sitting by said pond.  She was equally as delightful. Instantly darling and fabulous. The pond was big, filled with large beautiful koi, moss and beautiful perennials.  The koi had been alive for 5 years, even through winters and they've not lost one.  There was even a live frog sitting cozy in the rock fountain.  Dreamy. 

The man came back with the original knobs to the little stove.  He told me that if I'd email him the measurements, he'd make a new backsplash and and attach the knobs.  Why yes, yes I can do that. Thank you so much.

It was like garage sale nice people dreamland.  Monica was equally touched my these wonderful folks and this darling neighborhood which is just a hop, skip and a jump away.

Just wait till this little stove comes alive, finding new life at the end of my paintbrush!

Happy Summer Everyone.
xo jeanne.


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Let's play dress up!

Oh so lovely.

My family had one of these growing up.

There were seven of us, so you can imagine all the little clothes it had kept.
The one we had has been long since passed along to family members.

I was so happy to stumble across this piece, as I've been on the look-out for one to redo.
I pictured it's cuteness and childlike charm well before I'd even started.

You'll see the 'before' at the end of this post, but first:
This is the whimsy scene painted. 
A circus theme, courtesy of The Graphic's Fairy.
I turned it into a tightrope scene.
How could I resist that giraffe?

Since I started a few weeks ago, 
I've had visions of vintage baby clothes dancing in my head.
I found them at a local antique show.  Aren't they sweet?

The hangers, I had in my stash.
I knew they'd come in handy someday.

How can this not be delightful?

I seriously could have played with baby clothes and restyled this for days.
But alas, I have my own grown up laundry to do.
(not as fun.)

The Before and After.
So you can truly appreciate the transformation, here's the background story:

The woman it was purchased from said it originally had
 'bunny or ducks or something.' The original decal.

Tragically, she'd opted to completely remove that adorable scene
 and replace it with the Liberty Bell.

I've got to say I gave it my all and did my best to bring back it's charm.
Currently, it's filled with pretty dresses and in a happy home.

The paint is Miss Mustard Seed's - Apron Strings.
With Bonding Agent to resist the chippy-ness.
I tried it and I like it. (love.)

xo jeanne.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Bachman's Spring Ideas House 2015. Good Stuff.

Bachman's Ideas House - Spring 2015.
I am so glad I went! 
Here are some of my favorite take-away ideas:

A bicycle on the wall? Yes, please.
Cool bike and basket drapes?  Yeah, that's a shower curtain - restyled.
I say yes again.

The 'idea' was to bring the outside in.  
The designers certainly accomplished that.

After a long cold Minnesota winter, 
we're are anxious to get out, see lots of green and play in our gardens.

One of my favorite ideas was the wall lined with maps.
Pages and pages of maps.

A barn door, books and industrial inspired lamps to boot!
A nice focal point and a vignette on the wall.  Three dimentional effect.
I repeat, on the wall.
Why limit ourselves to a table top or mantel?
Use the whole dang wall.

N E X T:
Here's an aspect that I do like very much.

Notice the leaves. The are 'really' garden art. 
Each one is individually hung to create the headboard.
The creativity of that I really enjoy.
But then there is this; the dark parts of the 'leaves' are painted on the wall.
Not actually on the leaves at all. Nice 3D effect too.
Very cool.  Think of how that can be expanded on with other ideas.
Good Stuff.

The rooms were bright and the ideas were flowing.
I'm ready to rearrange a few things of my own.
To brighten up and dust. Do the windows too!
Put the boots away and bring out the sandals and gardening gloves.
Oh, it's time!

Thank you Bachman's for the invite!
xo jeanne.

The Spring Ideas House is open through April 19th. Go see! 

*the designs in the Ideas House are not my own. 
I was a spectator only.

Monday, March 16, 2015

She's so Vain.

Actually, she's just a really pretty vanity.

She deserves to brag a bit. She's chippy and new again.

Painted with Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint.
Eulalie's Sky. 
Such a great color! Thank you MMS!

**it must be noted** 
To take these pictures - imagine me a contortionist flattening myself to the floor and/or suspended from the ceiling as to not be reflected in the mirror. 
All while wearing my pajamas and my painting apron.
That alone would make a great blog post.

I sanded this piece within an inch of it's life and washed it down twice.
Still the drawers came out unevenly chippy.
Chalk it up to character.

I added white paint detail to the lower bottom of the 'shelf.'
Also, I added painted detail above the two top drawers.
I couldn't help myself.

These two fab finds.
The Hat box and The Ironstone. 
Possible to have too many?
as if.

I found them within the last few weeks.
One at Goodwill, one at a little antique shop.
Both whispered staging to me and I quickly agreed.

Have a great week!
xo jeanne.

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