Sunday, March 25, 2012

Guest Bedroom ~Plates and Frames

I always struggle with the accessories part of decorating a room. I usually end up trying a few things before I settle (or just plain give up!)


Our basement guest bedroom is currently getting a makeover and I shared a painted desk here, a Pottery Barn look alike paned mirror here and some progress here. The wall between the walk in closet and the bedroom door will eventually have a small flat screen TV on a little bookcase but for now it it has a honky big tube TV sitting on the floor. Despite the TV mess below, I still wanted to decorate the wall and after several attempts I think this trio of frames might work.


The frames are looking very gold in today's challenging light, but the colour of the matching mirrors, above, is much closer to their true colour.


A few years ago I bought these three frames, and two larger matching frames that I had made into mirrors, on clearance at Michaels for $2 for the 10 x 13 size and $3 for the larger frames (they were originally marked $40 and $60 EACH!) The white plates were from Home Sense clearance and cost less than $2 each.


Crocheted lace edging was used to tie the plates to the frame. I still think something needs to be added above them. I have a chippy white iron scroll piece that I might try here. It is not a tall wall as there is duct work above.


I neglected to take a wider shot (maybe I was just subconsciously avoiding showing the TV and wires sitting on the floor and the unfinished painting of trim and doors) but do you think this is working?

You can find me at the following parties....

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Guest Bedroom Desk Makeover

Another piece of furniture got a makeover for the guest bedroom in our basement.


Our guest bedroom is still evolving as I search for affordable items to use but today I am sharing the newest addition. I painted this desk/table with Benjamin Moore Cloud White in eggshell and mixed in plaster of paris to make homemade chalk paint. I read that the trick with using plaster of paris is to mix the powder in with the water really well first. Then add the one part of water/p.o.p. to 3 parts of paint. It worked great this way for me-no lumps! I waxed the top with Minwax paste wax. At this time I am choosing not to distress it but I may change my mind (I'm not sure if I want the maple showing through.)


Our carpet is more of a grey shade and will be staying for now (the lighting was challenging today.) The baseboard and door trim still needs painting too. 



This is the seller's before shot. I think it is a great piece for $25, solid maple and very well built. (Regional prices on sites like kijiji and Craigslist vary, but I find our local prices fairly high when comparing ours to many I see in blogland.) I hesitated painting it but the colour wasn't working for us. I switched out the wood drawer knobs for glass knobs ($1.50 each at Michaels last summer.)



It fits nicely in this spot in the guest room, but I have been known to move things around ;) This will be a nice little spot for guests to use their laptop or write a note. 


I am working on a mirror or chalkboard for the wall behind the desk and just need to decide which would look better. We also have a Windsor hoop back chair that would look cute painted and used here. White or aqua? hmmm


The little lamp is one I made from an old mason jar and a lamp kit. (The lighting is making the photos appear more yellow than they are.)


I think it turned out quite well for $25 and some leftover paint. I ended up selling the cute antique dresser I bought at the same time as this table. I got it for $60 and resold it as is for $180. I had trouble deciding where to put it and couldn't pass up the offer. In trying to get a little side business going I am learning that to make money you can't keep every piece that comes along. But for now I will be keeping this little desk.

I'm sharing this with...

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spring Shelves In Our Kitchen

I love spring and look forward each year to lightening and brightening our home with Spring decorating.



It might be that I was born in the spring, or just that after a long winter we so look forward to seeing signs of new life and growth.


Blues and greens are my favourite colours, and they remind me of Spring, so I shopped our home to add these colours to the whites and metals I normally have in my kitchen shelf vignette.


Turquoise blues show up in Crown mason jars, a few books, and faux speckled eggs. They go well with our turquoise painted barstools and mirror over the sink. 


I added shades of green with linen napkins, a book, more speckled faux eggs, two little leaf plates and granny smith apples.


I also used pieces of my ironstone collection, vintage crochet doilies, a vintage kitchen scale, a jar of silver spoons, a silver cake plate and my patenal grandmother's silver sugar scuttle.


 With Easter not long away I thought the eggs would work too.


Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed your visit to Blue Clear Sky! Happy first day of Spring!


I'm linking up to the Spring Fling Link Party at The Lettered Cottage. Layla is hosting the first party featuring Spring ledges, shelves and mantels. Looking forward to seeing lots of inspiration!


The Lettered Cottage
I'm also joining the fun at...

Saturday, March 17, 2012

A Charcoal Black Desk

I love taking an old or dated piece of furniture and giving it a new life.


This sturdy desk was a curbside find in our neighbourhood on the first 'big garbage' day after a long winter. This is the day that we are allowed to put out oversize items for pickup. about once a month from April 'till October. The stuff is usually set out neatly so others can claim it. It is funny to watch big piles dwindle in size and great to know that good stuff is not hitting the landfill. I'm not above curb picking and my husband hasn't minded since I showed him how I could make a profit.


Before, or during sanding (I almost forgot a photo), a very dated and rough mustard colour finish with glitter glue here and there.


I used Behr Premium Plus Ultra Paint and Primer in One in a charcoal black. Please ignore the stack of board and batten wood on our living room floor ;) It has a neat little pull out shelf and three dovetailed drawers. I decided not to distress it because that seems to appeal more to buyers around here.


I'm listing this desk for sale on kijiji, but the little Vilas maple one I bought is already sporting a fresh new white finish. I just need to find knobs and take some photos because I am keeping that one. We are enjoying beautiful weather this weekend, the end of our March Break, and I'm hoping to get a few more projects complete before I'm back to work on Monday.

UPDATE: I sold this within 12 hours of listing it and now I need to find something else to paint ;) Cost to me was less than $3 of mistint paint and it sold for $80.

You can find me at the following awesome parties...
SNS #125 at Funky Junk Interiors
Nifty Thrifty Tuesday at Coastal Charm
Cowgirl Up Link Party at Cedar Hill Ranch
SNS Special - Refabbed Furniture - at Funky Junk Interiors

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto

We took a trip to Toronto on our March Break this week to visit the Hockey Hall of Fame.


(Warning lots of pictures but the architecture sort of makes up for it I hope.)

Located in a former historic bank building in downtown Toronto the Hockey Hall of Fame/Temple de la renommée du hockey is a must see destination for hockey fans.


The HHOF is both a museum and a hall of fame highlighting the history of ice hockey. There are so many beautiful and informative displays and exhibits about players, teams, National Hockey League (NHL) records, memorabilia and NHL trophies. There is also lots of information and displays on Women's hockey, Olympic and International IIHF.


My husband and our youngest son, J, are always most interested in the memorabilia and trophies but it is the beautiful architecture of the old bank and vault that draws me in. The original Stanley Cup is in the original bank vault.


This girl loves hockey, but the metal, gears and wood detail of the vault and trophy room are even more appealing. Shh, don't tell my guys!


I guess I can't take one of these beauties home with me ?!!




More details and intricate woodwork.

With each visit I can't help but stare up at the gorgeous ceiling like a tourist, but c'mon, can you blame me?


We had an unseasonably warm and beautifully sunny March day (double digit warm, 17 Celsius, no snow and t-shirt weather in Ontario, Canada in March, are you kidding me?) and the light streaming through the stained glass dome was just gorgeous.


The Stanley Cup was out of the building until 12:30 but there were lots of other trophies to admire (we chose not to go back upstairs when it returned because we have seen it on previous visits and the crowds were growing.) 


The interactive area is always a blast, in this case shooting on a virtual goalie.


Our oldest son was up north this week doing farm things he loves so this was a special trip for J. My guys have all played minor hockey (as most boys and girls in my extended family do) and love hockey at all levels, from local to NHL to Olympic.


Olympic Gold for Canada's Women and Men.


International hockey.
Hockey legends (and Canadians) like Bobby Orr...


and the Great Wayne Gretzky.


Newer teams and the Original Six.


American and Canadian teams.


And did I mention great architecture? If you are in the area, and you like hockey, you might want to spend a few hours here. I hope you enjoy the rest of your week. Now back to painting my little desk.
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