Thursday, December 30, 2010

Approaching New Years Eve

As we are approaching New Years Eve 2010, my mind is filled with many things. Number one, where did the year go? I guess the saying "time flies when you are having fun" is true! What a lot of fun this past year has been. We both have had the opportunity to be creative over and over again, and our thanks go out to all of you for that.
Dan delivered this custom made television cabinet to a customer in Petoskey this week. It contains pieces of old doors, old kitchen drawers, old shutter, and old window latch, and old curtain rods(!) all painted parakeet green. You all would be envious of the spot where it will live, between 2 windows with a view of Little Traverse Bay and it's amazing sunsets.

We also added lots of new product to our space and Then & Now (in Petoskey). Any kind, size and color of bin cabinet that Dan builds from old pieces continue to be big sellers. Above are a couple new ones, one with a big drawer in the bottom and one on a great old iron stand. The white sideboard server is so shabby chic and has all of the charm of a wedding cake. It has been a pleasure for us to be in their shop and to make trips up there. It is always a double delight for us to combine it with seeing family as well.

I have been digging into my stash of old fabrics again and I am loving working with wool and velvet - must be the time of year - my knitting is calling me too............

We will be at the Grand Rapids Antiques Market Jan 8 & 9. We hope you plan on attending that beautiful show. I will be giving a talk on decorating with antiques on Sat the 8th @ 1:00 and again on Sunday the 9th @ 12:00. for more info go to
visit our booth @ either Bluedoor or Eastown Antiques for a flyer with a $2.00 coupon off general admission

Dan & CJ

Friday, December 24, 2010

From Our House to Your House - Merry Christmas!

From our house to your house -Merry Christmas!
Our wish for all of you is that your homes be filled with love and joy.
We are grateful for all of you, friends, family & customers.
We will be heading north to Then & Now in Petoskey this coming week with a new load of repurposed treasures and one custom order and then our next show is @ DeVos Place here in Grand Rapids, Jan 8th and 9th.
I will be giving a talk on Interior Designing with antiques - focusing on cottage furniture Sat @ 1:00 and Sun @ 12:00

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Xmas Tree Cutting and Elements

Yesterday was our annual Christmas tree cutting party. Some good friends of our (Dave & Pat) invite a host of people to join them for a trip up to Lenderinks Christmas tree farm north of Grand Rapids were we all tank up on free hot chocolate before heading out into the tree farm  to select just the right tree. The highlight of this event is always the feast of goods that Pat puts together for all of us in the parking lot after we return with our trees. There is always the most marvelous food and drink spread for us on tables that would make Martha Stewart proud. One of my favorites is the scotch eggs on a plate at the front of the above picture-to die for!

However, one of the real treats for me when doing this event is to be able to share this event with family. My son Eric(pictured above) was there with us and so was my daughter-in-law Angela (pictured below with CJ). I remember all those tree cutting excursions with my kids when they were little and and it is a joy for me to carry on the tradition with them now as adults.

The 2010 Christmas tree!!!

When we were doing our open house a friend of ours (Patrice) gifted us with the above paper ribbon. She has a real talent and love with working with vintage paper. She so inspired us by showing us the many things she is currently creating that the next time we were at our local book store we picked up the below book called, Playing With Books. It is all about the art of upcycling, deconstructing, and reimagining of books. We are both working on projects in this book and hope to post them when we get them completed. In the mean time if this kind of creating interests you check out the book and also check out Patrice's blog which is listed in our list of blogs that we follow. The name of her blog is Elements and she sells on esty under the name of The Trophy Wife.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Happy Birthday CJ !!!

Today is my CJ's birthday!! I am so grateful that I get to spend my life with this special very thoughtful lady. A few things you might want to know about this lady-
1. CJ stand for Cathlene Joy.
2. Her favorite eating out food is a beer and a burger.
3. She like milk chocolate over over dark chocolate.
4. She loves Strawberry Cheesecake.
5. She is a great knitter.
6. She totally loves cats and has two-Hattiemae and Hannabell.
7. She once spent a winter on Nantucket Island for a design related project that she would love to tell you about.
8. She also once spent a winter on Mackinaw island as chief designer for the Michigan governor's mansion on Mackinaw Island.
9. She loves to collect primitive original painted furniture.
10.Most of all she loves me for which I am very grateful.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Dan has been looking for some elves to help him this week in his workshop. His re purposed furniture is selling faster than he can make it. It is a good problem to have.
We added Christmas magic last week to the 3 antique shops that we are in. Furniture, Christmas decor and gifts are all selling well. The Uptown Shop Hop is this Thurs. December 2nd from 4:00-9:00. It is always a good time with lots of food, drink and the best of the best holiday shopping. You will find us @ Eastown Antiques and then @ Bluedoor.
Please join us in ringing in the season!
As always Cj does a great job with our post but I have to add the above picture to her post. This was a file/map cabinet that I just got done repairing and have mounted it on a base made out of a kitchen table. We have just put this in at Bluedoor. It is one of many vintage items and re purposed pieces we are are trying to get into the malls before Thursdays shop hop.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Dan & I have so much to be thankful for. We find ourselves overflowing with gratitude.

* We are thankful for our gifts of creativity
* We are so thankful that we have each other
* We are thankful for all of our customers
* For all of  our antique dealer friends who have inspired and guided us
* For everyone who has "gifted" us with cast of materials and vintage treasures
* For everyone  who works the antique malls, Then & Now in Petoskey, Bluedoor and Eastown in Grand Rapids, who help to sell our products
* For supportive family and friends

We hope that all of you have had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We now look forward to the joyous holiday time of year.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sunday Night Review

We had a great open house this weekend. Everything we had sold well and we are very grateful for all who showed up and supported us. One of my favorite vintage items which sold was this great old original pink paint bead board door. The plaster dipped wreaths on the door, old picture frame turned caulk board, and the socks sewn from vintage ticking were just some of the many items we had at the sale. The response was so good that we are considering doing a spring garden theme open house as well.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Saturday - Today, the last day of the Open House 1-8:00

Please join us for the last day of the Open House
from 1:00-8:00 today
We have been having a wonderful time and would like to share that with you too!
Dan & CJ

Friday, November 19, 2010

We Are Having a Great Time @ the Open House - Join Us!

Please join us today Friday and tomorrow, Saturday @ our open house here
45 College NE
Grand Rapids
We are celebrating the warmth of the holidays!
Dan & CJ

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Open House Starts Tomorrow - Thurs!

Dan & I are excited about this years Holiday Open House and we hope that you all can come.
This week Thurs, Friday & Saturday
@ our home
45 College NE
Grand Rapids, MI
parking on the street or @ Central Reformed Church lot

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

2 More Days Until the Open House!

2 more days until the open house starts on Thurs!
Also Friday and Saturday
1:00 - 8:00
45 College NE

Monday, November 15, 2010

3 More Days Until The Open House

Tease number 3!
3 more days until the open house
Thurs, Friday and Sat
Nov 18,19 20th

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Just 4 More Days Until the Open House

Another sneak peak!
Just 4 more days until the open house
Thurs, Friday & Sat
Nov 18,19 & 20th
1:00- 8:00

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Just 5 Days Until The Start of The Open House!

I little sneak peak.
Our Open House
& Saturday
Nov. 18,19,20
1:00 - 8:00
Please join us and shop for unique gifts and holiday decorations.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Keep Calm and Carry On

I had to laugh when I read this old sign we found on the graphics fairy. It is a good reminder these days when we are so very busy. We are busy getting ready for an open house next week at our home address on College st. .  We have been trying to kept enough product in the local malls we are in. We also made a trip in the last week up to Then and Now in Petosky because in the few weeks we have been there we have sold almost all of  our repurposed furniture. We are so busy that I haven't be find time to blog like I have wanted to. The end of this summer I also purchased a camera hoping to document more of our mnay finds but I haven't been very good at keeping up with that either. I seem to run out of hours every day. So I guess I just need to stay calm and carry on.

When up in Petoskey I also have the privilage of meeting Linda Longworth the owner of Lavender Hill Farms. The beautiful above picture is of the barn and lavender fields in mid summer. I had the privilage of creating a counter for her store out of old doors and pine flooring. We had an inspired conversation. One of the many perks of doing the business we do and meeting the many people we find on our journeys.

One of my most exciting find this past week was the acquisition of a number of large tin gothic arches that came off the steeple of a local church. I have always had a love of vintage architecural items. So I was very excited to find about eight of nine of these aches that vary in height. I am thinking about how to display and use these pieces.

In the mean time, tonight is friday date night with my wife. So we both get a break from our day and night work schedule. Tomorrow it is back to work. We just need to keep calm and carry on that is how we get it all done.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Being Published

I had had the good fortune to have had my homes published by Meredith Books which is Better Homes and Gardens in Des Moines, Iowa several times. Once the photos have been taken by them they own then, so the images could appear at any time in any of their publications. So imagine my delight a couple of weeks ago on a trip to Joann Fabrics I discovered this book with a photo from my previous home on the cover. In the industry getting the cover is "a good thing"! This book is BH&G 300 Cottage Style Decorating Ideas. Photos from what has affectionately been called "the pink house" ( because it was pink! ) appear as idea #19, 39 & 74. I love so many other ideas in this book. I feel like I am in good company.
This is another fascinating book that my "pink house" was in. There is a chapter in the book starting on page 48 titled "Cottage Style" that is about me with images of the interior of the house. This was so fun to do, the editor of the book, a field editor and 2 photographers spent 3 days with me, we started early on Sunday morning going to the Allegan Antiques Market together and then 2 days of shooting the photos in the house. There also are several random photos throughout the book of me shopping the market and of items that either they or I purchased that day. It was so fun and a little embarrassing having all these people (with cameras) following me around.
These 2 other BH&G books have images from a previous home. "The New Decorating Book" has a chapter starting on page 237 titled "House Tour House Dressing" that features the Interior Design of my own apartment again and the "Cottage Style" book features the breakfast room on page 196.
All of these books are full of all kinds of other great ideas for decorating using vintage, re-purposed items and antiques as well as new furnishings.
I am always on the look out for inspiration, maybe you are too.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Counting Down the Days Untill the Open House

Dan & I are counting down the days to the Open House event that we will be having here at the house. We are treating this like the most awesome "show" we will do all year! This is something that I have been doing for many years now in my Interior Design business. It is historically the weekend before Thanksgiving and always features hand made and vintage items. This year it will also include repurposed and up cycled items for holiday decorating and gifts.
So please plan to attend, we would love to see you.
Nov. 18, 19 & 20th 1:00- 8:00
Our new address is 45 College NE, Grand Rapids
13 days and counting! Can't wait to show you all of our creations and our new home!

Monday, October 25, 2010


#1  October is our wedding anniversary, Dan's birthday and several other family members birthdays.

#2  Autumn crafting, crating and re purposing.

#3  Pumpkin Pie!
Lynda Boyd gifted me with this pocket pie maker - so fun and yummy!

#4  Pumpkins, squash! Love all of the varieties.

 #5  We agree with Joe and Sandy of rhubarb reign that we Love the bluest skies of Autumn.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Some of this weeks projects.

From week to week I never know what comes my way for product. Occasionally, a local friend of mine calls who buys estate sales and lets me know that he has something that might interest me. This week was no exception. He called and said he had about half a dozen cupboards/cabinets in various state of disrepair that came from an estate.

Some of the cabinets I can piece back together, others get salvaged for parts and pieces to create new furniture pieces. I love doing this kind of work. The wood and cabinets I work with have a history that intrigues me. Many of these old cabinets were built very simple for a very utilitarian function. The wood has a quality about it that was found in lumber yards in the early 1900's but is no longer available. The hardware is often easy to work with and has a wonderful patina when restored. One can see and feel the history and lives that must have lived with these items for years.

One of the larger projects I finished this week that also must have had an interesting story to tell was this wonderful old workbench. This has actually been a workbench project that has been in my shop for a long time.

The various pieces were scattered around the shop and finial were put back together this past week.

It is a rather large maple top work bench with two working vises and a great old cabinet for a base. It reminds me of a beautiful workbench I saw in a Shaker village I saw some time ago. The top has a look of wood polished and well used. The base is a pumpkin red color.  I just put it in at Bluedoor here in Grand Rapids two days ago. It would make a wonderful workbench again for someone or perhaps its new life will be that of a kitchen island. It still has more story left to tell.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


Happy Birthday to my hard working, loving, creative husband. Today is the day that Dan was born 55 years ago and I am so glad he was!
I am going to copy a blog post that Sandy of Rhubarb Reighn did this past year for Joe's birthday and list 5 things that you might not know about Dan.

#1 When Dan was a little boy he was fascinated with Indian lore and created a pair of moccasins for himself from salvaged leather from their dining room chair seats. His mother had recovered the chairs and that leather was just too intriguing. She taught him how to sew using the sewing machine and by hand. His first salvage project!
#2 Dan's favorite sandwich as a little boy was a ketchup sandwich!
#3 Dan's wood working shop is in a wonderful old industrial building on the second floor! with a huge old creaky elevator lift that all of the furniture goes up and down on. He refers to his work shop as Einstein's Hair! There are all kinds of wonderful salvaged pieces and parts just waiting to become "something".
#4 The antique shop that Dan owned a few years back was called Evergreen Lane, and Evergreen Lane was the name of his Grandfather Meyers farm in Minnesota. Grandpa Meyer was a German Immigrant and it was a beautiful farm. The only thing left standing today of that beautiful farm in the prairie are 2 huge wonderful cotton wood trees out at the road on either side of what used to be the driveway.
#5 Dan is the kindest, most loving, caring, creative, tender hearted man I have ever know and I love him dearly - OK maybe you already knew that!!!!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fall Glorious Fall !!

This is the view from our front steps today. Fall is truly in full swing. We have had such wonderful sunny days, great temperatures, and we are starting to see some great color. I always love the Virginia Creeper crawling up the telephone pole and wire in this picture.

This great pumpkin colored bin cabinet I just finish making out of old parts and pieces just got put in Eastown Antique Mall this weekend. Bin/Storage cabinets continue to be hot items for us. Any cabinets I can find or make sell quickly.

This wonderful cabinet I just picked up last week. It is a beautiful vintage storage cabinet that came out of a sewing repair shop. I think I already have it sold. Something about all those drawers and storage that seems to draw everyone in for a look.

I have included this picture because the two pieces of wood trim on the right are old vintage casing. The pieces on the left are tongue and groove bead board. The reason I have these piece of trim pictured is because I use alot of that kind of trim in my repuposing projects and I am running low on my shop supply of this kind of wood. If any of you out there reading this have this kind of trim and would like to part with it please contact me.

Now time to get back to the shop and enjoyment of this beautiful sunny fall day!!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Petoskey-Then and Now

We are just loving the Fall feeling and Fall color this time of the year. We both find that October tends to be our favorite time of the year. So we look for any excuse to take drives this time of year. We are therefore pleased to announce that when in a few weeks we are going to be establishing some permanent space in Petoskey,Michigan at The and Now Antiques. For most of the summer we have had items there on consignment but now we will be establishing our own space which will give us a chance to create our own look at yet another location. So sometime in the next week or two we will be doing a drive up north to stock our product. Because the leaves are just starting to change we are anticipating experiencing some beautiful Fall color. Maybe we will even find some pumpkin pie along the way.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

The Bluff's in St Joseph

Tomorrow we will be at the last antique show of the season for the Bluff's in St. Joseph, Michigan. We will be set up way at the southern end of the show. A few of the above treasures we purchased at the garage sale of a fellow antique dealer will be there with us. If you are in the area please stop in and say hi. It promises to be a nice Fall day.