Sunday, November 24, 2013

Medicine Cabinet Farewell

I spend too much time searching other DIY blogs.  I came across a couple tutorials on transforming a bathroom medicine cabinet into open shelving.

girl meets home
One House One Couple

Then I came home and stared at my small, confined guest bathroom.  The plastic, builder grade medicine cabinet jetted out from the wall and cast an ugly shadow.  While the guest bathroom is a full bathroom with tub/shower, 95% of the year it serves a powder room function.  My point is the medicine cabinet is very rarely used.

I wanted to find ways to make the small bathroom feel open and look aesthetically pleasing (pretty?).  After finding the above blog posts, I took a screw driver to the four screws securing the plastic, builder grade medicine cabinet to reveal, literally, a hole in the wall.

And then I found a problem. Why is there a wire behind the medicine cabinet?!?  I don't play with wires. I called an electrician/handyman and had that wire moved, which turned out to be an easy change to make.

Although, that did mean a small hole was cut in the drywall to move the wire  : /

I got my hands dirty on this project and went outside of my DIY comfort zone. I cut all the drywall, filled the hole with a backing board, used drywall tape, joint compound and made miter cuts for the trim. I won't lie, I made a LOT of mistakes, which means I learned a lot : )

I wanted the light to pass through the shelf so I spent the $ to order a custom cut piece of glass.  It fits perfect and has a smooth, beveled edge.

In addition, we changed out the mirror for a oval, framed mirror and added a basket above the toilet.  The photo's don't do the bathroom justice (no natural light means not the best photos). I think the new inset shelf helps achieve the open feel I am looking for and allows for small decor items to make the bathroom feel cozy.

That's all for this weekend.

Take Care!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Open Shelves: Yes or No?

This past week I came up with the bright idea to remove a couple of my kitchen cabinet doors for open shelving.  As you can see, my kitchen cabinets are very dark. 

Dark Kitchen Cabinets

I was seeking a way to brighten up the dark cabinets but did not want to make any permanent changes such as paint.

Bye Bye Cabinet Doors
On a whim, I removed two cabinet doors near the sink.  It was easier than I thought - just 3 screws per door.  I styled the cabinets with white and glass dishes/cups.  The white dish set is our daily use dishes so they are now easily accessible.

But removing the doors was not enough. I wanted the open shelves to look like they were meant to be that way.  There are many tutorials online about painting the inside of your cabinets turned open shelves or making fancy foam board backing.  My cabinets have adjustable shelves so I came up with a game plan to remove all the shelves and put a piece of thin poster board covered in fabric behind the shelves for color.  It would be thin enough to fit behind the shelves and at the same time, the shelves would help keep the poster board in place.

Measure and cut poster board to size
I used removable spray adhesive and removable glue dots to stick the fabric to the poster board.  That way I can change out the fabric at any time.  I added a few more removable glue dots onto the back of the poster board and pushed it into the back of the cabinet, replaced the shelves, and put the dishes back in.

Fabric is called Apples & Pears

Kitchen cabinet turned open shelving

How fun is that kitchen inspired apple and pear fabric?  This quick change was super easy, inexpensive and not permanent.

Only problem is, my husband is not digging the open shelf concept.  I like it.  What do you think? Open Shelves: Yes or No?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Treasure Hunting in Falls Church

Alisa and I checked out the treasure hunting scene in Falls Church over the weekend.  We both were interested in visiting the Stylish Patina Rough Luxe Marketplace and the retail store.  In addition, Alisa discovered a shop hop of a few other stores we were interested in.  Neither of us came home with lots of treasures but I found a few small gems.

A mini preserved boxwood topiary, old blue book and silver mercury glass style candle holder.  Both the topiary and blue book found a home on my pallet display.  I swear I change up that pallet display every single week!  I plan to use the silver candle holder in my main level bathroom open shelving when that project is finished (photo's of that project to follow one of these days).

A vintage soldered metal and glass covered box which I am using to store jewelry at the moment.  I think the box would be neat to store cotton balls in the bathroom too.

I did have to make an enhancement (fix?) to the soldered metal and glass box.

Missing leg

I found little wooden beads at the craft store that fit perfectly into the missing leg socket.  I sanded down the bead to make the dish level. Then I used construction adhesive (think liquid nails) to glue the wooden bead into the metal socket.

I painted all five legs with a primer before adding craft paint.  I decided to paint all the legs so they would look consistent.

I used craft paint in the color gun metal to paint all the legs.  She is as good as new!  At least, she is balanced on all legs now.

I am excited about the open shelving project in my guest bathroom.  I hope to finish it up this week so I can share photos.

Take Care!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Estate Sales

Inspired by friend and fellow blogger, Alisa with Five Eleven Decor, I checked out a couple estate sales over the weekend.  A while back Alisa posted on her blog all her favorite places to treasure hunt (although, I can't seem to find that post at the moment), and that is where I discovered  I've been searching my area for sales and found two near by.  Below are the items I picked up:

Vintage Tin Box
Skeleton Keys

My eyes were drawn to this old tin container and as I picked it up, I realized something was in it.  It was a nice surprise to find a bunch of old skeleton keys inside.

Vintage Iron
My grandmother has been looking for an vintage iron to use as a door stop.  She will get this one tied with a bow for Christmas.  Don't worry I did not spoil the surprise, she already knows about it.

I found a pair of small pillows with an neat design.  One pillow is on this red chair and its twin is across the room on the sofa.

Blue and White Decorative Pillow Shames
I've been wanting to change up the bedding in the guest room.  It was a bit too matchy, matchy if you know what I mean.  I found these two decorative flannel pillow shames at my favorite local consignment shop Carriage House Consignment. They are well within the pattern theme of the bedding but the darker pattern add a little contrast and they are super soft.

Previous Bedding
This shows the pillow shams that came with the bedding set and the matchyness (is that a word?) that I am referring to.

Hobnail Milk Glass
Hobnail Milk Glass
Vase With Clear Ruffled Edges

The milk glass collection is spreading to the mantel
I picked up the milk glass the consignment shop.  Carriage House has quite a bit of milk glass available but I am picky and search out the items at the cheapest prices.  My favorite type of milk glass are the pieces with the clear edges.  I put a few of the skeleton keys from the estate sale in the little round hobnail milk glass and two sparkly Christmas balls in the oblong hobnail milk glass dish.

And yes, I did break out the Christmas decorations.  I use the month of November as a transition month.  You will find both pumpkins and Christmas balls in my house right now.  Maybe it was the Christmas shopping over the weekend that put me in the holiday mood.

Have you started Christmas shopping?

Take Care!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Ikea Mirror Makeover

Last week I decided to make over a mirror that was sitting in the yard sale pile. This common Ikea mirror has been with me for many years. It is a heavy thing that has outgrown its welcome unless I could come up with a way to bring it back to life.

I decided to paint the mirror, with the idea that if I ruined it I could put it right back into the yard sale pile. First, I covered up the middle area that I did not want to paint. Question, does a better way exist to tape off a circle besides outlining the sides with tiny pieces of tape? That was not fun.

Use painters tape to protect areas from paint

I planned to use plain flat latex paint that I already owned. Therefore, I had to prime the mirror so the paint would stick to it.

paint primer spray

prepped and primed for paint

I painted two coats of paint to achieve the coverage I was looking for. I did have to take a small paint brush to get in between the little mosaic mirror pieces.

coat #1
Two coats of paint later

I did not put on a sealer because I am planning to hang the mirror on a wall where it would not get touched often. 
eat your heart out Ikea!
The mirror has not found a home on the wall yet. I am still debating whether to hang it in the guest room or the bathroom.

On a completly unrelated note, I picked up some ceramic egg crates from World Market.  I use them for jewelry organization.  My previous jewelry organizers had fewer pockets and a dark background that seemingly made my jewelry disappear. These little crates provide the perfect easily searchable white background with plenty of pockets to hold my goodies.

ceramic egg crates

I found a few treasures this weekend at local estate sales and my favorite consignment shop.  They will be the subject of my next post.

Take care!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Barn Sales

The time had come for me to check out the world of barn sales.  On a sunny, brisk and beautiful autumn morning, friend and fellow blogger, Alisa with Five Eleven Decor met up with me in Frederick, Maryland. We visited two holiday open house barn sales: Chartreuse & Co and Sweet Clover.  

Here are a few shots of the awesome handmade and vintage home decor goodies:

Alisa and I had an opportunity to meet a few of the locals at Sweet Clover.  These lovely horses were very friendly... at times, a little too friendly.

Anyway, let me share with you my finds from the barn sales.

I picked up two pieces of milk glass (the top and bottom piece) to add to my mini collection.  I added a little bit of greenery. I love the sharp, crisp and clean color of white milk glass.

A vintage floral frog.  The medal used to make the frog adds the perfect amount of weight.  I painted the frog blue and am using the frog as a card/photo holder.  Currently, the frog is holding the memorial card from my great grandmothers funeral.

A small silver bowl and three skeleton keys.  Thanks Alisa for the tip on the hydrangeas at Hobby Lobby. The skeleton keys are difficult to see due to the glare on the cupcake stand but they are leaning on an old thread spool my grandmother gave me.

This is a close up of the silver bowl in the above photo. If you look really closely, you can see a fancy calligraphy T in the center of the engraved scroll. How could I not buy this little guy?  It basically had a sign calling me... well at least a sign with a T.  Close enough.

A vintage folding yard stick, cute mini Brownie camera, blue book and a galvanized drawer.  The yard stick and blue book found a home on the wood pallet display. The Brownie joined a my vintage camera collection on the library bookcase. And the galvanized drawer is still looking for a perfect place in our home.

Last but not least, an old piece of white ironstone. Usually, I find ironstone to be rather blah but this piece had a little bit of personality with detailed handles and mini pedestal.

That is all for this treasure hunting trip.  It is hard to believe it is November already. Several stores are blaring holiday music. Dear stores, I need to ease my way into the holiday season, not get thrown into it!

Take care!