Saturday, February 25, 2012

New Upcycled/Repurposed Furniture, Shabby Chic Interiors, and Stinking Thinking

We love to do upcycled/recycled vintage furniture out of the many parts and pieces we constantly find. There are many people out there doing the same thing so we are doing are best to try and stand out from the crowd. We are realizing that going the extra mile and spending a little more time paying attention to detail is a way we can set ourselves out from the crowd. The above cabinet is an example of a piece of furniture I created a week or so ago. I was inspired by an antique French cabinet I saw in one of our books. The back of the cabinet is a vintage beadboard door, the top and bottom trim is old house casing, the turnings running down the sides are vintage stairway spindles, and the door was salvaged last summer from an old pie safe. The arch in the top of the door was created after the fact to match the original cabinet inspiration.
Then the entire cabinet was finished with a base coat of black, two coats of linen white, then gently sanded so some of the black showed thru, then glaze was applied with a finale matte clear coat finish to give this an Annie Sloan chalk paint type of finish.
I wish I could tell you that if you want to see this cabinet you should go to our space at Blue Door to see it however, I put it there a few days ago and it has already sold. I think was are on to something and very excited about the current work going on in the workshop.
Another interesting project I completed in the last week was this vintage bead board mail/cubby type cabinet that came out of a railroad depot. I spent time making needed repairs and than refinished it using amber shellac to give it that vintage/original look of old finished wood. This is currently for sale at Blue Door here in Grand Rapids. I find that I have a real love of anything made of bead board. I am always on the hunt for it.
We also purchased this Rachell Ashwell -Shabby Chic Interiors book this past week. Rachell Ashwell has  been around for awhile and has often been credited with starting the trend of painting furniture white but this book shows some use of very soft colors which is very interesting. We loved her very simple vintage themes in this book. So if you get a chance check this out.

Over the last few years we have struggled to make a living in this new economy of ours. We found a few years ago that we just needed to stop watching the nightly news. We just didn't need more bad news and have looked for way to feed positive thoughts and ideas into our lives. In so doing we have noticed that there is a lot of negative in our culture. There are people on the radio and TV that seem to make a whole living out of being negative and angry. Imagine how we could change our world if we all decided to assume the best of others and not the worst.
We had a friend of ours the other day who was sheduled to go on a hike with a group of friends. They decided to stop for lunch first and during the lunch the conversation took a very negative turn. It seemed the conversation took a very negative turn into politics and than into bashing overweight people. Our friend excused herself from lunch and just left. This year we are getting alot of negative political messages already. So much email seems to assume the worst that is political in nature and most people don't even seem interested in making sure they have their facts right. A few years ago I remember hearing a motivational speaker talk about stinking thinking. Maybe we need to start with getting some of that stinking thinking out of our own lives and call it when we see it in our lives and around us. What if we could all turn are thoughts each day into creating things that inspire people, think of what a different world we would have. So today create something beautiful for yourself or those around you, even if it is just a positive thought. There is plenty about life that is good, so embrace it and encourage it in others.

Monday, February 20, 2012


One of the most fascinating aspects for me of what I do as and Interior Design professional is watching trends. It makes everything exciting. I love it that all of my clients have different taste and like all kinds of different styles and colors. Color is one of the most personal elements of design. We all react to color on an emotional level. One of the colors that has been trending is the beautiful blue green, sea glass color, weather it is pale and more blue than green or brighter, more turquoise. I love the variations on this color, bold to pastel.

Home fashion color trends also correlate to fashion.
I love this bracelet from Maryellen of Twist Style.
I saw this, this morning on Pinterest. Perfect for spring. By the way click on the pinterest is the previous sentence and follow us. We would love to follow you back!
Another color trend that has been speaking to me is the combo of mustard and gray! I have always loved gray - kitties, dogs, rabbits, wool.........! But now with mustard - wow!

Also love this combo in home fashions - not too crazy about the bold stripe walls but still way cool colors together.
We would love to hear from you about what colors are speaking to you.
Stay tuned I may have a new color combo next week or month that is my new favorite!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Happy Valentines Day and More Computer problems

Tomorrow is Valentines Day and we want to take this time to wish all of you a wonderful and happy day.

We have had more computer problems in the last week so we have been without our computer for awhile. Our computer guy and friend, Jesse has been so good to help get us back on line and find us a backup computer so that we won't have to be without a computer again if we have another crash. We have a number of ideas for blogs that we are planning as well as some great pictures of recent projects and of trips we will share with you. So stay tuned.