Monday, August 29, 2011

Wild Things Chair

One of my favorite things to do is to donate my work to fundraisers and this normally entails painting something that either a non-profit has given me or something that I found and repurposed.

Well, one of my favorite items was a chair I painted for a non-profit called "The 25 Club".  The club consists of 25 wonderful women who raise money for neo-natal research and care in Pittsburgh.  This particular fundraiser was called, "Please Take A Seat" and each designer was given a chair to paint, recover or do whatever they wanted to do with it.  I chose to paint the chair I was given.  I first spray painted the base after giving it a really good sanding and then used acrylic paints to complete the design.  A top coat of polyurethane and it was complete.

I was unable to attend the event but was thrilled to be able to paint this special chair to help raise money for a "Chair" at Magee Women's Hospital.  Little did my good friend Peggy know that the chair she "won" in the Silent Auction was the one I painted.  I love the animal print details and the touch of green and the pink pansy just add a special touch.

Here it sits in Peggy's kitchen...Voila!

Let me know what you think...

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Slipcover Stools

I often find myself perusing the clearance aisles of TJMax and Marshals and every now and then, I score a great find.

Well, one day last summer, I stumbled upon two stools that were priced just right ($20/stool) so I put them into my cart and took them home.

They sat in my basement for some time until I found an amazing P Kaufmann wheat, tan and taupe animal print ribbed cotton. 

So, I tackled my first slipcover project and with some help from Miss Mustard Seed's custom piping and cutting fabric tutorials.  With her assistance, I was able to complete my first slipcover project and voila...

Let me know what your think!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Baby Olivia Pillow

So many of my friends are having their first grandchildren and Amy is no different. Baby Olivia's birth was the muse for the pillow that I gave Amy in celebration of this blessed event.

Aunt Anne sent me a beautiful photo of Baby Olivia and I used it as my inspiration.

I used Photoshop to convert it to black and white and then added her name.

I then used directions from Between Naps on A Porch to make the piping.  Susan's directions are detailed and easy to follow.  I made a small pillow insert and 3 hand sewn flowers from the remaining linen fabric.

Here are all the pieces waiting to be sewn together. is Baby Olivia's pillow!

Let me know what you think....

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Auction Floor to Bedroom

I love attending auctions and always manage to find some great buys.  Recently, I was lucky to score a fabulous little cane chair for my daugther's bedroom.  Unfortunately, I did not take a "before" picture but you can imagine a pecan colored chair with chipped finish, torn cushions and arm rests and you get the picture!

Well, as you all know animal prints are a must and my daughter's room is no exception.  I was fortunate to have a large remnant of a pink ocelot fabric that was perfect for her newly decorated room. 

I spray painted the frame and cane back, black and then recovered the cushion and arm rests. It just didn't look complete so out came the glue gun and a bit of leftover fringe and decorator trim.

Complete with monogram pillow and mohair throw...Voila!

PS. Notice the picture above the chair...yes, it's a calendar print!

Come see me at....

Let me know what you think....

Monday, August 15, 2011

Calendar Girl

I love collecting art calendars and some of my favorites are museum quality calendars like those sold by Cavallini & Co. at various retailers across the country and other as displayed below.

I have used them to decoupage plates, armoire, tables etc.

One of my favorite uses is as artwork around my house. It is an inexpensive way to create attractive affordable pieces of art. Using stock frames from Michaels and custom matting,
I have managed to fill some of my walls with very economical art alternatives.

I love my animal calendar prints in my living room that I had custom framed and are featured in my living room along with an original 1895 Georges Fays Theater poster, an original oil painting, an original pastel and hand painted photography.  You would never know they weren't limited edition prints!

My bird nests from another calendar were cut an placed on cardstock and
then matted on leftover grasscloth from my powder room.

And, lastly a number of architectural calendar prints that I framed.

Wallpaper can also be used as art as displayed  on Isabella & Max...

Let me know what you think!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Animal Prints

Growing up my mother had stunning leopard print pillows on a white silk sofa.  Yes, I did say a white silk sofa!  I always loved those pillows and they still sit on that same sofa although it has been recovered many times. 

I took a page from her book on decorating and insist on having an animal print of some sort in every room of my home.  Some, of course are very bold, others subtle.  The one place that I did not have an animal print was my dining room. I had planned on recovering my dining chair seats with a gorgeous grospoint animal print but just haven't gotten around to it. 

So, the single tall candlestick lamp that sat on my small Baker side table was given the treatment.  With a little bit of black, umber and gold paint, the lamp is totally updated with animal magnetism. Voila!

This photo shows a close up of the painting technique I used.  You can use a piece of wrapping paper or fabric as inspiration.

I also like to use animal prints on lamp shades as shown on this Monkey Lamp in my family room.
Are you seeing a pattern here!!!

Now, given this is only my second postings, I attempted to use some of the photography hints provided in a recent posting by
I have followed Miss Mustard Seed for some time now so I was thrilled to receive her blog posting on photography and blogging and I tried my best.
Dear Miss Mustard Seed I hope I did you proud!

I'd love to hear your thoughts....

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

French Blue Chest


Give me a can of paint and I'll do something with it.  If it doesn't work out, I figure I can always paint over it again.  So, needless to say a number of my friends were shocked when I told them I was going to refinish an Ethan Allen Medallion Collection chest of drawers that I've loved for years but had grown tired of it's finish. 

My inspiration was a lovely french blue chest of drawers from one of my favorite catalogs, Wisteria.

And here is mine....

I used a lovely blue gray paint combined wth cream and accents of gold around the drawers and top.  I then finished it off with a brown wax.  This was my first attempt at the distressed french antique finish.  I hope you like it.!! Let me know what you think.

One last thing, take a closer look below at the handmade votive.  An inexpensive yet dramatic effect accomplished by hot gluing tulip petals to the bottom of a votive and voila....