Friday, January 27, 2012

Federal Style Buffet - Before & After

Remember awhile back when I mentioned a few projects that I've been working on? Here's one of several.

A very thoughtful aunt of mine called my parents to tell them she had a buffet in her house that needed a new home, and I was free to do whatever I liked to it (paint it).

No kidding, I've been debating styles for awhile but pretty much settled on this one.  Didja' see Michelle Adams's (the editor of Lonny) buffet last year?

Enter federal-style buffet / sideboard.  Thank you, Aunt B!

Lovely bones. A little worn. But that's why we wear makeup, right gals?  That's all she needed...

So that's what I gave 'er. :)  My sweet dad sanded the top of it for me where he noticed some deep scratches, and I appreciated this head-start for sure.  But don't get too jealous, because (like any DIY project) I inevitably ran into some obstacles.  Durn obstacles!

The first of which was this...  I kept getting distracted with all these adorable pets that were enjoying beautiful weather with me on the deck.  Case in point: Sammy. A.K.A. Sambo or "Crybaby Sam" (because she's always meow-ing about something, even if it's to say "hello").
By the way, don't mind her beat up ears and nose.  It's not because she's neglected. It's because she tries to attack the birds and they attack her back.  

Obstacle to conquering project #2: My wonderful mom with Scooter-man! (Funny story... Scooter recently went into the vet for a teeth cleaning and came out with his top front teeth gone. My mom had no idea until she was back home.)  It's not often that I get to spend one-on-one time with my Mama anymore so it was hard to focus on the project at hand.  
Obstacle #3: To make matters worse for my short attention span (but much better for my afternoon), my wonderful dad joined us for a few minutes. You remember this super-DIY-er from awhile back? I'm lucky daughter.)

But back to the buffet.  (See what I mean? I couldn't focus with all this family action.)  

I bought a spray painter for this job because I was working outside of our condo for once and was eager to see how it might speed things, but it was no good.  I really had my hopes up, but here's how my initial "test spray" ended:

(*Wop, Woooop*) So I primed and painted it the way I've done before, with some flocked rollers that are not as quick as a super-high-end sprayer, but are great for creating a beautiful finish.

I've tried a couple different kinds of rollers for furniture, but these are the best!  They're the same ones I used to refinish the dresser last year. The guy at the store where I purchased them, who mostly does work for decorators and contractors, said one of the contractors asked him to stop using them for samples because the customers were complaining about the finished product (without the special rollers) not looking as good as the samples (that my paint guy made with the flocked paint rollers)!  They look like this. (If you need to know the brand name, leave a comment and I'll try to get in touch with my guy at the store.  I tossed the wrapper.).

After sanding everything down with sandpaper, wiping it down, and priming it, the buffet looked  bit like this:

Now for the paint color.  Interesting reasoning for the choice here, I think.  I realized it was getting colder this fall and I had a very limited time frame to paint this buffet outdoors (on my parents' deck).  If I dilly-dallied around choosing a paint color, it could get really cold outside and the paint would be drying in not-so-ideal conditions.  So I decided to jump in, without thinking much about it, and use some paint I had on hand from painting our bedroom accent wall. 

Kind of a weird angle (for a reason... I was trying to hide the new dining room table... which we'll get to soon), but here it is.  Sanding, priming, two coats of painting and some polishin' later:

I have to admit: this is a really bad "after" shot/angle. I'm kinda' mad at myself. But you'll see why.  I'm saving another reveal (hint: it may or may not  be a successful project) that was in the way of getting a better shot.
So I want to know what you think.  Liking this makeover?  Do you love some DIY projects but find it super easy to get distracted like I do sometimes? Any painting or projects going with you? What do you think of the color?  

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Celosia Love

I recently developed a love for Celosia.  You know how I adore magenta and fuschia flowers, right? So it's no surprise that I've thoroughly enjoyed having a living plant in our home that brought that color in for awhile.

Celosia - Magenta.  Image via me! (Dwell & Tell)
Anyhow, they died. I tossed 'em. But take a look at these pretties while they were here (a couple of months, totally worth a few bucks).

I bought these the weekend after Thanksgiving and loved them until they bit the dust.  Apparently Celosia is very finicky, especially inside.  It needs a LOT of natural light, and even re-potting can cause it to die.  (By the way, this is all Google talkin'... if I'm wrong please let me know!).  I put our little plant in the sunniest spot in our home and they hung around as long as possible.

Any experience with Celosia? What's your favorite indoor plant?  Or favorite way to bring color indoors?  Do you have difficulty with indoor plants?  Let me know! *I love your emails! But leave a comment and let everyone know about your ideas/thoughts/love!  

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Bedroom Idea: DIY Painting?

I love how this large painting brings so much life to this bedroom.

Leslie Strauss Designs Via Decorpad
I've been considering something like this for awhile, but haven't been able to find a large painting that was  perfect and within a reasonable budget.  So now I'm wondering if I should approach some relatively unchartered territory by going the DIY route and making my own painting...

I've played around with painting in the past, but other than my Rendering (for Costumes) Techniques course in college (which I loved, but have mostly forgotten) I'm "self-taught".  And by that I mean "I don't know what to do"! :)

It's kind of risky. Considering the cost of some nice paint and a big canvas... if it's a disaster you're in the hole.  But what if  it's not disaster, I wonder?   

Any artists with tips out there they would like to share?  Or not-so-artists with tips, stories, ideas, and so on?  Considered trying anything like this? 

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Here's to 2012 *cough, cough*

We had a wonderful Christmas.  And I had a week-long stay-cation full of plans for shopping, blog catching-up, relaxation (including a massage scored from Groupon awhile back, mani/pedi, and so on)....

But this happened, to both me and the hubs.  

I'm tellin' you it was a super-cold.  Half-flu, half-cold kinda' sickness that trash-tv only makes worse... and only Chicken and Stars manages to make a little better (yes, I know it's marketed towards kids but whatevs, it's the best.)

The first really sick day, determined to claim a small amount of enjoyment for time I was using precious vacation days for, I spent at least a few hours on Pinterest on the sofa.  Which turned into a couple of days.  And at that point *gulp* (dare I say it) even that got a little old.  For a second.  But an hour later I returned and pinned some more. 

So here's to hoping that in 2012 we enjoy much more, well, enjoyable vacations... and healthier ones too (healthier lives in general, eh?).  That we conquer more DIY and decorating projects that make our homes feel more like our own, on our own budgets. Cheers to inspiration. And to more time with family and friends.  And to growing closer to God. And cheers to my readers!

Happy New Year!  How did you spend yours?