Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Inspiration By Amy

When we built our small dream house eleven years ago, I (Amy) told my husband (Tim) that I wanted to have real fires in the fireplace all winter and fresh flowers in every room all summer. Well, it turns out that my boys have allergies!!! So, instead I bring fresh greens into every room which is easier and they last longer too :)

My favorites have always been hosta leaves, fern fronds and box wood but this summer I thought outside of the box and brought in things from my husbands's garden such as mint, kale, basil, aronia berries, peach branches and his leafy bamboo... But my favorite new idea is to bring in the clippings from my coleus plants on my front porch:)

I love the simple linear look of an item repeated down the center of a table. If this is too simple and plain for your taste, you can switch it up by adding a runner. You can also cluster the items into a bowl, compote or cake stand in the center of the table. (Secret--- I sometimes add fake posies to real greens for a pop of non-allergenic color;) ....because they are standing in water, nobody knows...shhhh!

Each of the previous looks can be translated into fall...

granny smiths... lemons on split peas...

In the photo below:
-Apples sitting on fall leaves (leaf stems are resting in water)...

-Mini pumpkins and gourds sitting on antique dessert dishes...

-Gourds sitting on red and black beans... can also use coffee beans, lady-finger popcorn or candy corn (to make these shiny, mix with a bit of olive oil or spray with a can of spray gloss)

All of these simple ideas can translate into each season (valentines day- red and white Christmas ball ornaments nestled in cinnamon hot candies, Easter- decorative eggs nestled into paper grass, spray painted split peas or jelly beans... The possibilities are endless!!!).

I sooo wish I had taken a picture of this library table before I painted the top and started adding details. It was so Plain Jane and nondescript...I broke a picture frame and added it's pieces to the table for details. I hammered in some upholstery tacks for interest. The bit you see under the drawer is a ruler I glued on to even up the front...

Painted a peacock blue, sanded, antiqued and WA LA! Transformed! I must add that I bought the table for $5 at an auction and the drawer pull for $7 ;)

Paint a velvet chair?!?!... Who knew!
This is a set of old velvet chairs that my uncle gave me years ago. I had already painted the ugly brown legs ivory then sanded them and rubbed on a pecan finish so I was fairly happy with them... but when Barb saw on pinterest that you could actually paint the velvet... I was game!

* Mix one part fabric medium (various brands available @ Joann Fabrics) and two parts acrylic paint (available @ Pat Catans). 

* Wet velvet by misting with a water bottle (it should be pretty wet).

* Dip brush in mixture then wipe off most of the paint on the brush onto a rag towel. Then begin painting onto the wet velvet with the dry(ish) brush. You'll LOVE the outcome... Velvet is still soft! If your changing the color drastically you will need to paint multiple layers lightly sanding between each.

I bought this ugly stool @ Save n Serve because I knew it held promise. I took off the ugly maroon corduroy, revealing a still ugly stool...painted the legs and reupholstered AND it still wasn't right... (too short for chair and white is too bright). Soooo... I added more cushion and PAINT! Yes, you can paint the fabric! I got out that handy fabric medium again :) Painting was an easy fun project to do while watching a movie(or two).. Just like Paint by Number :)
I wanted a summer pillow that I could flip over to become a fall pillow...so, Barb whipped up a burlap pillow in minutes (she is amazing) and I painted a peacock on it (love peacocks). I had never painted on burlap before and I LOVE the effect. If you are not comfortable painting freehand, you can try a stenciled design/letters/numbers...that would look cool too. A favorite scripture reference would look fabulous and a great conversation piece... I think that will be my next project for somewhere else in my house;)

Summer Pillow!

Fall Pillow!

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