Saturday, November 26, 2011

Pottery Barn Knock-Off Idea

Ever since I started this blog, I've wanted to recreate and post tons of ideas, but I just simply don't have time to make them. So, I thought I'd just share the ideas I have and let run with it if you feel so inspired.

I see things all the time and think, "I could make that!". The trouble is finding the time. Generally, the only pieces I get to redo are ones someone either wants or I need and we can't afford the original.

This particular idea is one I've had for a little while because it's so easy! Ready?

via Pottery Barn
Plant basket, burlap, and hanging light kit...knock-off for around $25 versus PB @ $179.99!

Here's the materials list I'd get:

Black hanging basket for around $11.87.via Pinterest

Burlap via Amazon
$3 p/yd!

Pendant kit via Lowe'

Chain to thread cord through in order to hang basket from light cord. $8.98 for 10' but could probably get by with less at Lowe's. It would need to be adhered to the fixture cap at the ceiling and again at the end of the chain to the basket chains.

A simple lamp parts would suffice, but you'd have to take apart the top of the pendent kit to retro fit it with a metal ring like this:

This image clip was taken from the original pottery barn picture above so I can't get it any bigger.

Some hot glue and a halogen round bulb from Walmart ... and you've got yourself a beautiful chandelier that no one will ever know you didn't pay a fortune for (unless you tell them)! I actually like telling them and watching their faces:) Aren't I a stinker?!

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Friday, November 25, 2011

Thanksgiving Blessings

"Fall Leaves 1"
B.E. Photography

"Fall Leaves II"
B.E. Photography

Did you have a great Thanksgiving yesterday? Ours was wonderful although a little bittersweet. We had so much fun just catching up and hanging out with family we've not seen in a while, but were acutely aware of a certain missing couple. All of us had so hoped that hubby's grandfather would be able to join us, but instead he was readmitted to the hospital for a massive blood clot on Tuesday. Hubby's grandmother spent the day with him there having what he called a "Silent Thanksgiving". We really do have so much to thank the good Lord for. I know she was counting her blessings for having another day with him.

So, what did you do? Did all the family get together and cousins all play football/baseball/tag, etc while the grown-ups chatted away? That's what happened here! After a wonderful meal and even better fellowship, we all packed up and made our rounds to the hospital. It was truely a wonderful day that could only have been better if the grandparents could have joined us. Even my nearly 94 year old grandmother joined us! Amazing!

Life events have just not allowed me to blog much over the last month, and I have really missed it. Hubby has taken the three boys hiking for the day and I'm enjoying some much needed time alone. So, I though I would start catching you up by sharing photos of my dining room all ready for guests yesterday. The sun was shining, temperatures were in the 70's and it simply couldn't have been more beautiful! With the sun streaming through, I had a little trouble getting some shots in before everyone arrived.

My "new" dining room!

I wasn't sure about putting the love seat in the foyer, but everyone seems to love it there, so it'll stay. It's a nice extra seating area now. Scottie Dog obviously approves!

I bought these placemats a couple of years ago and have been waiting to use them somehow. I love the form and organic quality of them. They fit perfect in the "new" space.

I found these gorgeous little gold mercury glass votive holders and they made the perfect table "runner".

They just glitter when the tea lights are lit!

Like my last minute brainstorm for a buffet?! The palms had to be moved in from the screened porch as it's finally hitting below 40ยบ at night...thus no pretty urns. I need to get some if they're going to sit in here for the winter.

It's three pine beadboard, tongue -n-groove  planks (samples hubby was just going to toss!)
laid over some storage cubbies.  Linen fabric was stapled around and black/gold Greek key ribbon was adhered with super sticky hemming tape to hide the staples and add a touch of black to tie in with the lamp/accessories.

See?! Just cheap old storage cubbies turned on end underneath! It's actually a good place to hide kids shoes:)

Black ribbon with a gold Greek key pattern was added to the lampshade.

See my new draperies and side chairs? Aren't they just gorgeous? The drapes add the much needed drama in this room.

The back of the side chairs was done in a black fabric with gold & copper embroidered dots. Then a soft gold cording was added to both front and back of all chairs.

The head chairs were done in the reverse... black on fronts and plaid on the back.

I couldn't find a third coordinating fabric until I stumbled upon these 95" curtain panels in a faux silk plaid on clearance for about $12 each. They were perfect, so I just cut them up and used them on the chairs! Wha-la!
I fell in love with these large candelabra sconces and waited until
Hobby Lobby ran their 50% sale. Two for the price of one!

Gotta have some magnolia branches!

I was captivated by the flickering mercury glass!

Loving the way the light plays around in here with the chandelier dimmed and candles all lit:)

There's only a few more things to do and I can call this room a wrap! I'm not sure I'm leaving the ceiling blue, but it'll stay for now and a painting may or may not get done at some point. Regardless a rustic gold frame is being made for the boys current art as soon as I can get to it.

The four slipcovered chairs need to be reupholstered, but the slipcovers will stay on unless we're entertaining. The boys have been informed those are the only chairs they are allowed to TOUCH! I ended up with quite the headache when I realized (AFTER tearing off all the upholstery on the back of a head chair) that the back was not made as I thought. It was all one solid piece with a 3/8" groove for a staple gun to fit into! I don't have a gun with a nose for grooves, couldn't rent one, and couldn't install upholstery tacks in such a tiny space!!!!! UGH! What's a girl to do? Hot glue, baby! I decided if it could hold the piping on for ten years with three boys, it was good enough to hold on more fabric as well. So, I only pulled off the piping and just installed new fabric over the old with hot glue. That way it was glued to old staples that were going nowhere, added cording and called it a day.

To sum up all that has happened in this room over the last three months:

  1. ceiling was painted,
  2. chandelier was refurbished,
  3. chairs were upholstered,
  4. buffet was created,
  5. rug was bought,
  6. draperies were made (2x!),
  7. slipcovers were made,
  8. walls were painted (3 colors - 2 coats each)!)
  9. wainscoting and trim was painted (2 colors - 2 coats each!),
  10. lamp shade was trimmed,
  11. front door was painted,
  12. new wall sconces were purchased and hung, 
  13. furniture was repositioned (multiple times!),
  14. and several nervous breakdowns/tantrums were had!
Whew! Whoever thinks designers don't earn their pay, just hasn't walked in their shoes:) 

"Fall Leaves III"
B.E. Photography

Happy Belated Thanksgiving, Ya'll!

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Thursday, November 17, 2011

I'm so excited...

♩ ♪ ♫ ♬... and I just can't hide it ♪ ♫ ♬! I have been eyeing a fabric at Hancock's on the Red Tag shelf for a while to try for curtains in the dining room. I just haven't been happy with the lack of "umph!" in that room. It needed some drama somehow, but I wasn't quite sure how I could afford to bring it in. I get tons of ideas, but then have to toss most when it comes down to budget or what I realistically have the time to recreate.

Before I delve into that, I first want to share some photos I took two days ago. I got up extra early before the alarm went off and walked into see this out my dining room window!

"Be still...and know that I am God."
B.E. Photography

"Be still...and know that I am God." II
B.E. Photography

"Be still...and know that I am God." III
B.E. Photography
I felt such a sense of peace as I marveled at this gorgeous site. God was reminding me to not fret and worry about the events currently going on in our lives. To rest in his grace and as Psalms 46:10 states:

10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; 
   I will be exalted among the nations, 
   I will be exalted in the earth.”

Time has been super limited lately for me to work on projects, but I've been spending many blessed moments at the rehab center with my dying grandfather-in-law. No project or decorating can even hold a candle to that. I've been able to witness God working in our family lives in ways words can't describe. What a blessing!

O.k. So, about that fabric. It's been calling to me quietly every time I've walked in Hancock's lately. Finally I just decided I was going to buy some, try it and if it didn't work, take it back. My curiosity was getting the better of me. Imagine gold taffeta flocked with a large black damask pattern all over! Talk about formal! That would be why I kept hesitating. It's about as formal as you can get and has some serious body to it as well. While I was in, I also decided to get a black crinkle polyester with what I thought were olive and copper embroidered small dots all over it as a second option to try as well as some black and tan silk plaid pre-made curtains panels on the 60% rack (off already reduced prices). I'm sure those girls hate me in there because if something doesn't work, I make sure and take it back. I can't afford not to! And I never buy small amounts, either:) Actually, they know me by name and start laughing when I walk in and head straight for the cutting table! They know I'm there to have something measured to return:)

I knew this drapery fabric would go wonderful with the new foyer rug, but was just really worried about the formality. I'd take pics and pop them on here, but I'm exhausted tonight and will do that tomorrow. Long story short, I felt that wonderful feeling of "Ah Ha!" come over me as I realized I'd found the perfect fabric at a price I could afford!!!!! Not only that, but the second option coordinated so well with the drapery fabric, rug, and slipcovers, that I decided to use it to reupholster the two head chairs and the plaid on the other chairs! WOW! Suddenly, I'm feeling immensely relieved as I realize this room is finally about to be totally done. And not just in a "O.K." kind-of way, but in an "I'm so happy!" kind-of way (even though hubby doesn't much care for the chair fabric - yet!)! I'm now frantically working to finish the four remaining chairs and get final touches done to show you before Thanksgiving.  See, I went and put myself on a deadline by offering to have the huge extended family meal here on Thanksgiving day! NO PRESSURE! Secretly, though, I work best when I've got deadlines to meet. That's why I self-impose them on a regular basis.

This meal will be extra special though. God willing, my grandfather-in-law will be able to join us for one more Thanksgiving. His diagnosis came back about two weeks ago as very aggressive stage 4 lung cancer that has spread to the brain, wrapping around the spinal column and into the lymph nodes. These are hard days right now, but I'm just praying that God will allow us all to get together one more time. There are no guarantees as we're on a day to day basis, but then again, aren't we anyway all the time? Some serious thanks will be given on that day if he's able to join us as well as thanks that everyone else can be there!

I can't wait to show you the finished product! I think you're going to agree with me that it just pulls it all together. Now, to get those chairs finished up...

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Monday Inspiration #5

Yes, it's really Tuesday, but let's pretend I'm not behind, shall we? I spent yesterday ripping upholstery off my dining room chairs only to realize that my staple gun won't fit down inside this odd layout groove on the backs to reupholster them! UGH! Now I have to either go rent a REAL staple gun or buy one. It's been on the list forever, but now I've gotten myself to the point it's do or die time (I mean, we're only going to be USING those chairs in a matter of days!). $$$...feeling a little sick as I think about draining more moo-la from the bank account. Oh, well. At least it's something that will get used A LOT and is really needed.

"Golden Glory"
B.E. Interiors Photography

"Golden Glory II"
B.E. Interiors Photography

Anyhoo, I finally got around to doing your inspiration board with my beautiful fall tree pic I took last week. Ready?

Brainstorming - what this photo brings to mind - my jumping off  point:

  1. sweaters,
  2. hot cocoa, coffee, cider,
  3. fires,
  4. picnics,
  5. jeans,
  6. gold,
  7. baskets,
  8. casual,
  9. rubies,
  10. topaz.
  11. rustic (just a little juxtaposition going on here!)
  12. pumpkins,
  13. wheat,
  14. warm sunshine

This picture is just Pottery Barn all the way. So, most of my decor items are coming from there today.  With all that running through my head, here's where I ended up:

Follow me on Pinterest and you can see all the sources for these images!
All my Inspiration Boards are posted on there as well.

There you go. A new board to inspire you. Hope you like it and it makes you feel all warm, cozy and totally inspired to get your family room ready for those cold days ahead!

Coming soon to a computer near you...
My ideas on how to reproduce a beautiful chandelier for the fraction of the cost!

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Saturday, November 12, 2011


My idea of a beautiful sideboard. Lots of storage, yet not flush with the floor. Curves and straight lines for both masculine and feminine appeal. Not to mention some gorgeous crotch mahogany!

A sideboard/buffet/server just completes a dining room. They are so practical! It's a serving piece, storage unit, beautiful accent, and if all else fails...a room filler! Add a stone topper and you can even set hot dishes on it! liking something practical! Shocker, I know:)

I got to wondering what the difference is in those three pieces? Are they all the same thing? I ask because whenever I refer to a "sideboard" I often get a funny look here in the south. I'm then asked if I mean a "buffet". The answer would be "Yes". They are three in one, although the proper name is apparently a sideboard that is used to serve a buffet meal. For those of you who already knew that, ignore my ignorance/confusion. I have a sneaky feeling I'm not the only one who wasn't clear on this:)

"Sideboards are also known as buffets as they may be used to offer the dishes of a buffet meal to guests.

sideboard is an item of furniture traditionally used in the dining room for serving food, for displaying serving dishes such as silver, and for storage. It usually consists of a set of cabinets, or cupboards, and one or moredrawers, all topped by a flat display surface for conveniently holding food, serving dishes, and even lighting devices. The overall height of the tops of most sideboards is approximately waist level.
The earliest versions of the sideboard familiar today made their appearance in the 18th century, but they gained most of their popularity during the 19th century as households became prosperous enough to dedicate a room solely to dining. Sideboards were made in a range of decorative styles and were frequently ornamented with costlyveneers and inlays. In later years, sideboards have been placed in living rooms or other areas where household items might be displayed.
In traditional, formal dining rooms today, an antique sideboard is a desirable and fashionable accessory, and finely styled versions from the late-18th or early-19th centuries are the most sought after and costly today. Among its counterparts in modern furniture styles, the form is often referred to as a server. Some of the earliest production of sideboards arose in EnglandFrance,Belgium and Scotland. Later, American designs arose.[1] Characteristic materials used in historic sideboard manufacture include mahoganyoakpine, andwalnut."
via Wikipedia 

I've wanted a buffet for a while, but... also typical of me....I haven't found one I thought was cheap enough. Darn my champagne taste! So, the search continues. China cabinets can be pretty, but since I'm not really in love with my china and wonder why I registered for it to begin with, there isn't much use for one in my dining room. A buffet would just be so much more useful for big family get togethers and having friends over. We aren't formal people, but we do use the dining room a good bit...for casual get-togethers. Everything is a help yourself concept around here when entertaining:)

My idea of a great buffet or sideboard is one with legs that doesn't sit right on the floor. When light is able to pass through underneath, it lightens the visual weight of the piece as well as creating more of an open feeling within a room. In order for it to not just be a console, though, it also needs to have good storage. Just because it's not flush on the floor, doesn't mean it's going to have a tremendous amount of space between the floor and bottom drawers. A good example is the Federal style sideboards that I love (apparently so does everyone else!). French Provencial runs a close second. In my hunt for the perfect piece, I've run across all kinds and styles, which I thought I'd share with you.

I SO wanted to keep this piece, but I needed it at the booth and of was gone in no time:)
B.E. Interiors
I love this idea of repurposing old card catalogs!






How cool is this concept of an extendable sideboard?

via restoration hardware





There's our lesson for today! I am like a sponge...constantly soaking up new info I run across, especially when it's related to home decor/design. I also discovered while image hunting that the subject of sideboards/buffets is quite a common post topic. BUT, what I didn't find was the main thing I was looking for...clarification on exactly what is what. Maybe it helps clarify the term for some of you:)

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