Antique Hydrangeas...My Newest Obsession!

A few weeks ago a good friend was celebrating her birthday.  I decided I'd buy her flowers and went to our local Stew Leonard's grocery store.  Now I know what you're thinking..."You bought flowers for your friend at the GROCERY STORE?! "  Well it's not 7-11 and they weren't blue carnations.  This is a great store with amazing produce and the most gorgeous floral department.  I haven't been able to get flowers at a florist that are as beautiful as what they sell.  Back to the subject at for my friend!  The day I went in they had the most incredible antique hydrangeas.  I fell in love instantly with them, but didn't buy any for myself.  Well, I was back at that same store today and decided I'd had a rough week and deserved some flowers.  I was in luck because they had the antique hydrangeas in stock!  The floral lady and I gushed over them while she wrapped them up for me.  I came home and was giddy that I bought myself such a beautiful gift.  Silly I know, but trust me it's been one of those weeks and I needed a pick-me-up.  

I'm using this post to brag on these amazing flowers and as a 'sneak peak' of something I'm going to be working on in the next few weeks.  

Here's a sneak peak of  project I have coming up and those BEAUTIFUL flowers!!  They don't show up that great in this picture, but I still love it.  The dresser is a big more rough in person than it looks in this picture, but it looks great here!

NOW, this shows the flowers a bit better.  They have flecks of blue, pink, yellow and a light green with the cream in the background.  The floral lady made sure to tell me at least 3 times to make sure I dry them.  No worries these will be around for a long time!

They're so puffy and GORGEOUS!!!  

Here you can see how rough the top of the dresser is, but what a great backdrop for the spectacular flowers.  Hmmm have I used enough adjectives to describe them yet??

I love fresh flowers.  They really brighten my day.  Such an incredible reminder of how beautiful Mother Nature is.  Now I just wish I could grow these in my own yard.  I think I'd have them everywhere.

Enjoy your day and if you're having a rough one go buy yourself some beautiful flowers!  :-)

Flea Market Highboy....My Favorite Project To Date!

I love our local flea market.   It's a true feeling of summer when I go to the flea market on a Sunday morning.  It's an outdoor market with tons of vendors who offer a variety of different wares.  I'm not the best at haggling, but I'm getting better.  The Hubby says I'm not a very good negotiator so I've been working on my negotiation skills a lot.  I mean really why can't they just say there rock bottom price to begin with and save me the hassle?  :-)  Sometimes I go to the flea market and find so much I have to send the Hubby home to unload and come back to pick us up.  Other times I don't find anything I want to buy.

This weekend was the send Hubby home with a carload and wait for him to come and pick up Hunter and I.  I've had a lot of luck with one vendor in particular and this weekend she was back.  As soon as I saw her tent I knew it was going to be a good day and I was right!  I saw she had a gorgeous high boy dresser with the long spindly legs I love and I knew I couldn't leave with out it.  Of course it needed some work, but that's half the fun!

 Here are the before pictures......

Love, love, love all the details!!!  The curvy legs, the inset veneers and the original hardware always make me happy!

 Plus I thought the inside was unexpected and in great shape.  

I'm a huge sucker for a curvy, long leg on a dresser!  

Having the original hardware is a big deal to me because it means I don't have to scramble around trying to figure out what hardware to use that will go with the period of the piece.  I love these drawer pulls!!!  Why don't they make them like this anymore?

I'm also a sucker for these curvy spots at the bottom.  They give the piece such character!  You can see from all the pictures, there were some issues with this piece of furniture, but that's what makes this fun! I love taking something that needs some love and making it purty!!  

When I got the piece home I had no idea what I was going to do to it.  I thought I'd paint the whole thing, but when I looked at the top it was in good shape so I thought it was wrong to paint it.  I sanded the top down by hand with a sanding block and because the piece was so old there wasn't much on it to sand off.  There were a couple of small spots that needed a bit of stainable wood filler, but that was no problemo!  

For the rest of the dresser I wasn't sure what to do.  I knew I had to work fast because I was going to be busy for awhile working on some other projects so this had to be done right away or it wasn't happening for a few weeks.  I had received a sample pot from my Annie Sloan stockist in Duck Egg.  It wasn't my favorite color so I had to figure out how to change it and make it my own.  Not sure I could ever recreate this color, but I took the small pot of Duck Egg, put in about 1/4 of a sample pot of Ochre, a bit of Coco, A bit of Provence, a bit of Graphite and topped it off with a bit of Old White.  I didn't measure anything, just winged it and OH HOW I WISH I WOULD HAVE MEASURED!!!  I love this color!!  It's a gray, blue with a hint of green.  I'm sure I could do it again, no???  :-)

Here it is with the top stained in Ebony and the rest done in let's call it Melody Sea Green :-)

I have to point out that this is with ONE coat of paint!!!  What other paint do you know that could cover this amazingly in one coat???  With no priming or sanding??

Once I got the piece painted I knew I wanted to REALLY distress the heck out of it.  So I got my sanding block and went to town.  I wanted all the incredible details of this piece to stand out.  I also wanted it to look it's age and well......SWOON because I am so in love with this piece of furniture! 

OK, here it is......

Now you will notice something different in this's staged and the above one isn't.  We hurriedly put the piece out to take a picture because it was sunny (we were supposed to have more thunder storms today).  Then the Hubby says, "Don't you usually put stuff on top?"  Well you don't want to know what I said to him after he said that!  It was 90 degrees with about 80% humidity and after moving this thing in the heat the last thing I wanted to do was run around grabbing stuff to stage this, but I knew he was right so I did :-)

Here it is 'staged'.....better???!

I can't stop staring at this piece of furniture.  If it's possible to fall in love with a piece of furniture, I think I have!  

Our driveway is on a bit of a slope so Hunter volunteered to hold open the door for me :-)  Anything to be in the picture!

I got that scale on top at the Flea Market last weekend!  

Don't you love how the little details in the piece just POP now?!

There's that amazing hardware!  I gave it a quick spray of antiqued bronze and they look like new!

Like always when I was done I asked the Hubby, "Hmmmm don't you think we could put this in the guest bedroom??"  His reply was, "Ummmm, NO!"  I honestly do have a bit of an attachment with each piece I redo.  I do think of it as rescuing the piece from a hard life of being dirty, neglected and ugly.  I'm doing my part to better our nations old and forgotten furniture!  I need to get a t-shirt made that says Furniture Whisperer....OK now I'm totally kidding!  This is definitely my favorite piece I've done so far, but no room at the inn.  This piece will not be staying with me and it doesn't have a home as of yet.  If you would like it to be a part of your home, please let me know.


Our New Addition!

No, we didn't have a baby or adopt a pet!  Although a dog would be a wonderful addition to our family don't you think?  That's not happening anytime soon with the Hubby's allergy to dogs!  I mentioned our new addition a few blog posts ago....Our Restoration Hardware couch!

I have to mention here that the Hubby is a big fella!  He's 6'6" tall and in the almost 15 years we've been married has never had a couch that he felt fit him and he was comfortable in.  About a year ago we were out shopping for a new couch and looked all over.  We found one at Restoration Hardware and one at a local furniture and design store.  In that year, we moved to a much smaller home and put the new couch on the back burner.  That was until a few weeks ago when the Hubby had a bit of a meltdown and said he was tired of our current couch and wanted to torch it.  I knew then we couldn't put off getting a new one.  Back we went to our local furniture and design store where we found a couch he liked, but I didn't like it that much.  I didn't like the fact it was fabric, which was what we already had, except it didn't have a slipcover like our current couch.  I knew from experience that someone would spill something on it or get dirt on it and then I'd be frustrated and be stuck with an expensive and ruined couch that couldn't be washed.  Then we went back to Restoration Hardware.  The Hubby sat in the couch we had seen a year prior and I must say in our almost 15 years married to one another I don't think I've EVER seen him so comfortable.  When I sat on the couch, well, I kinda sunk in with my legs stretched straight out and realized this was going to be tricky.  I found a comfy spot on the corner surrounded by pillows and decided I could make it work.  I cannot sit on the couch and touch the ground, but it is comfy!!!  The couch is 49 inches deep and I'm 5'5" do the math :-)

Here's a picture of the new addition.  The lighting isn't the best because it was pouring rain outside when I took this and had to turn on every light in the room!

One of the things I liked about the couch was the lovely, soft and aged leather.  I felt it was a good compromise for the both of us.  If something gets spilled on the couch, just wipe it off!  Also, I liked the classic details like the rolled arm and the wooden leg...not to mention the distressing on the leather!  

Now, you might be thinking, "Does she have enough pillows on that couch?!"  And the answer is NO!  It's so deep you need lots of pillows when you're short like me to nestle in and make your nest.  
Speaking of pillows....the pillows I had on our other couch weren't all working with the new couch.  I've been searching for 2 weeks for pillow covers.  I finally found these striped pillow covers last night at Pottery Barn.  They used to be denim and they were used as floor cushions in the basement, now they have new covers and are a much needed addition to the new couch.  

I took this picture to give you an idea of the depth of this thing!  I told my friend it feels like a twin bed and it really does.

The day the couch was delivered the Hubby had to work.  I knew it was driving him crazy not to be there when his new 'baby' was delivered!  When he got home he came in the house so quick he left me standing out on the driveway!  He was so excited!!  I came in and he was sitting on the couch with that look of comfort on his face that I hadn't seen since the store and I knew we made the right choice with our new addition.  I must admit at first I was very uncertain about this couch, but after living with it for the last 2 weeks I can say without a doubt that I'm in love <3

Flea Market Dresser That's Open For Business

Yep, if you haven't figured it out I have a dresser obsession.  I love dressers of all shapes and sizes, but they have to be old, ugly and unloved.  There's something about their versatility that inspires me.  I think of all the things I could do with them or places I could put them.  I wish I could keep every dresser I makeover, but that's just not possible now is it??  I'm kinda hoping someone will message me and say, "It's OK Melody you can keep them all!!"  I know....cuckoo, right?

Mother's Day the 3 of us went to a local flea market.  I've had some luck here in the past, but nothing that exciting.  Well this particular day the flea market gods were on my side!  We were there 45 minutes, including loading time and that's another story all together, and we only went in about 3 rows before I spent all the money I'd brought!  It was one of those days I wanted to yell, "SCORE!!!"  I didn't yell it out loud, but in my mind I did!

I found a dresser that needed some love, but there was something about the shape I loved.  The reason I loved it so much was the fact I have one just like it at home.  I've had the dresser since I was a kid.  My dresser is still sitting in the guest bedroom with "FIX ME!" written all over it.  I bought the flea market dresser instead, makes sense, huh?  On the way home I had already figured out what I wanted to do to it and couldn't wait to get started.

Here it is once I got it home....and well maybe just maybe I forgot to take a picture before I started sanding and painting.

You can see here, the top is a mess.  I have no idea why it looks so odd.  It was raised up in some areas too, but with some sanding it leveled out nicely.

Because the top of the dresser was such a mess I couldn't stain it.  It felt so strange to paint an entire dresser and not do any staining.  

Here are 2 of the 3 drawers.  You can see the hardware didn't match so I knew I had to fix that, also the drawers were a different color stain than the body of the dresser.

From the pictures below you can see I decided to go with a dark grey color from Annie Sloan called Graphite.  It's her version of 'black'.  I really like this color a lot so expect to see it more!  I painted the top and the drawers in 2 coats of Graphite and the body of the dresser in my favorite Old White.  I have to mention here that the paint on top isn't dry in this picture.

I've had lots of people ask me about waxing the paint.  I took this picture to show you how the wax changes the paint color.  The clear wax doesn't really change the color, but it does give it a sheen and a bit more depth.  The dark wax really can change the color a lot.  This picture shows you the difference. One half of the drawer is waxed with just clear and the other half has clear and dark wax on it.  Look at how much darker the paint gets and how much depth it has.  It really brings out all the texture too.

Two coats of paint, and some clear wax on the body, some clear and dark wax on the drawers and top and it was done!  Thankfully today we had a break in the weather and I was able to get some nice outdoor pictures.  The dresser is on casters so it was easy to move around by myself.

You can see I changed the knobs.....more on that in a minute.  

I only lightly distressed the body of the dresser and didn't do any distressing on the dark parts.  I really love how it all turned out!

Now you can see a bit of the new case you can't see it they say "OPEN" on them.  

From the curves, to the legs, to the knobs....I really do love this one.

Here you can see the light distressing up close.

And the cute knobs!!!  I bought these about a year ago and the dresser I'd bought them for was all wrong for them so I put them away.  When I figured out my color scheme on this one I knew I had to use these knobs!!  They are a nice ceramic knob with a bit of shine to them.

You can see the top looks a lot better with some paint and wax.

 Is it just me or is this a great color?!!!

I had to get one picture in here of the legs...really love the curves.