First Christmas Post: Thrifted Santa Redesigned !

Whenever I am antiquing, thrifting or shopping in a regular store, I am always on the lookout for unique holiday décor. I can’t say exactly what I am looking for, but I know it when I see it. In the past, I have picked up a glass beaded garland in an antique store, beautiful mercury ornaments from Pottery Barn (end of season sale of course) and just recently an amazing wooden Santa from Good Will. It had great height and a lot of detail. I did hesitate for a moment before putting it in my cart, knowing I would be putting my own mark on it with paint. But in the end, I decided that any changes I made would be right for me and the piece would become a cherished holiday possession!

This is the original state of the Santa. It really is lovely, just not my holiday décor style.

I went with Waverly chalk Paint in Mineral, adding baking soda to give it a textured look. After it dried, I put on Waverly White Wax to lighten the color and act as a sealer.

This is where some of you may want to close your eyes!

No going back now!

After the wax was set, I lightly sanded the piece to expose some color. I was not a big fan of the results. I repainted it leaving the bow and the face as is.

I still wanted color so I pulled out my acrylic paints.

I added red to the gloves and highlighted with white and gold on the robe. Then used Annie Sloan Dark Wax to age it.

I wanted Santa’s pack darker. Before, I went ahead and painted it, I wanted to see what the actual color of the wood was. To my delight, it was a dark wood. I continued sanding until I was satisfied with the look.

I added some green and gold to the items in the pack so they would stand out.

It wasn’t an easy decision to paint the Santa. It was not only a beautiful piece, but I could have ruined it forever.

Luckily for me, I couldn’t be any happier with the results. It reminds me of an old family heirloom that has been passed down for years!

How To Organize Under The Kitchen Sink

I don’t know about you, but under the kitchen sink is one of my problem areas. I can straighten it up on a weekly basis and it inevitably goes back to its normal chaos. I have been meaning to do an organization makeover, but like a lot of things that are out of sight, its also out of mind.

I finally got motivated after seeing an Instagram post where trash bags were stored underneath the sink. It may sound like a little thing, but the trash bags in our house are not located near the trash can. They are in a utility closet and are a pain to get to. I have to take the entire box out every time I want a trash bag, which is an everyday occurrence around here. Along with moving the trash bags, I reorganized making it easier to get to everyday things like: dishwasher detergent, rags, hand soap, and cleaning items for the stove, counter etc. The first step was to take everything out and give it a good clean!

This is the under the sink area. I had to work around the pipes and electric boxes for the sink and garbage disposal.

I had the circular organizer already and purchased the other two from Bed Bath and Beyond.

I did not have room for a wide container, so I decided to take advantage of the height instead.

The circular organizer will be the ideal solution for all the cleaning supplies.

I also wanted a container with a lid in case I wanted to add storage in the future I could stack another on top.

Because the tall container has dividers, I was able to put large and small trash bags in there and still have room for the dishwasher pods.

I used the lidded container to store my microfiber clothes and scrubbies.

There is definitely room to add additional storage containers on top.

I was able to fit all the cleaning supplies on the circular Lazy Susan.

Just spin to find what you need. Fantastic!

Everything has its place and hopefully it will stay that way! One can only hope…

Next week I start my Christmas posts!

Memorial Art Gallery (MAG) Garage Sale!

In previous posts, I have shared some of the amazing venues we have here in Rochester, New York; such as the Rochester Public Market and the George Eastman House. I had planned on making it a regular part of my Blog, but because of Covid, that plan was put on hold.

Since, things are continuing to get better concerning Covid restrictions, I have decided to renew the plan of visiting different venues and share with you just some of what Rochester has to offer. Today’s post is about the Memorial Art Gallery (MAG)!

We are very lucky to have such a esteemed museum here in town. Since, the founding of the museum in 1913, the permanent collection has grown to more than twelve thousand works of art. The museum also holds many events throughout the year and offers creative workshops to adults and children.

One of the annual events they hold is the Memorial Art Gallery’s “Arts and Treasures” event. It is described as Rochester’s most prestigious garage sale where you can find gently used antiques, fine art, original artwork, jewelry, china, pottery, porcelain, silver, crystal, fine linen, housewares, books, wearable art, and small furniture items to re-purpose or add to your home.

Garage sale, repurposed items, art… it was my kind of outing!

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I have never been to this event before and was excited to see what it was all about!

The first thing I saw as I walked in were all types of artwork. There were paintings, sketches, statues, prints and more. They also had lamps and a few pieces of furniture in this area. I ended up purchasing two sketches and a Degas print.

I was drawn to both of these sketches. I find the detail and the loose movement very interesting.

I love the picture, but not the lettering on the bottom. I am going to cut out the picture part and frame it. For ten dollars, I could not pass it up.

Down the hall, they had purses, jewelry and linens. I found a set of twelve beautiful napkins. They were priced at nine dollars, but being the last day, there was a fifty percent discount and I paid just four dollars and fifty cents.

There was also an area with pottery, crystal and household items. It had been picked over and there was not much left. Next year, I will definitely come on the first day!

I use cloth napkins for everyday dinners all the time. After each use, I put them in the washing machine to soak overnight. In the morning I finish the cycle and have never had an issue with stains. It is much better for the environment!

As I was leaving the Memorial Art Gallery, I was delighted by the beautiful landscaping and works of art.

Each of the art pieces have a uniqueness of their own. I was especially taken in by the bronze and stone characters created by Tom Otterness. I attached a video at the end explaining the process and the meaning behind his work.

I hope , like me, you have been inspired to explore the many offerings of the Memorial Art Gallery. If you are not from Rochester, New York maybe you have been inspired to explore museums in your area!

The next time, I get together with my gal pals, I am going to suggest a visit to the museum and dinner after! Culture, friends and food; a winning combination in my book!

In my Instagram post today, I shared the end results of turning an old table cloth into beautiful napkins! This link will take you there!

Remember, if you enjoyed this post please “like it”! As always I would love to hear yours comments!

Family Room Refresh!

I decided to do a refresh of my family room. I rearranged the furniture by moving the couch in front of the window opposite the television and the two side chairs flanking the couch. I also switched out pillows and added some Fall décor. Everyone liked the new look including me, but the placement of the couch just did not seem right. I wasn’t sure why, so I turned to the internet and my stash of home décor magazines. I was looking for examples of couches in front of windows. In almost all of the pictures the drapes were hung so they framed the couch. In my room the couch went beyond the drapes making it look like the space was too small for the couch.

This is an example of the couch extending past the drapes. It closes off the space making the room feel small.

This picture has the drapery going beyond the couch. It immediately opens up the room giving the illusion of it being a much larger space.

To remedy the problem in our space, I just moved the drapery rod over eleven inches on both sides.

Just moving the rod that little bit changed the whole feel of the room. It feels much larger and the couch looks like it belongs now!

I really love the new set up. It is very esthetically pleasing to the eye. Of course the men in my family are in love with it for the optimal TV viewing!

I had been on the lookout for some Fall décor to display. My local grocery store had Artisanal pumpkins in beautiful shades. I liked the green and muted orange color. I surrounded it with a few golden leaves, tapered candles in an autumnal color, and my husband’s and my initials. L for Lori, M for Matt.

One of my dear friends gave me some berries from one of her trees. They had golden yellow, deep orange and red shades. I added some florals from Michael’s and it made a beautiful Fall arrangement.

Update: in last weeks post, I mentioned the green tablecloth on my dining room table and that I would explain it in todays post.


I have mentioned in previous post that I watch the Pottery Barn website for sales. Recently, I had been keeping a watch on their Belgian Linen napkins in dark green. They went on sale, but by the time I saw it, the green napkins were already sold out. Sad face...

I looked on other sites for similar napkins which were way to expensive. I started to think (which can be dangerous) about a table cloth I had that was old and had a small hole in it. With nothing to lose, I decided to dye it.

The first color I tried was Rit Dye in Kelley green. I liked the color, but thought it was too light. I dyed it again using Rit Dye in dark green.

It is not an exact match to the Pottery Barn napkins, but it is close. I plan on making napkins out of the tablecloth. I will keep you posted on my progress.

If you enjoyed this post don’t forget to give it a like!

Table Arrangements From Thrifted Items!

In last week’s post, I introduced you to three items I purchased from Goodwill. A silver-plated Lotus bowl that holds three candles, a small antique mirror, and a five votive candle holder. As promised, this week’s Blog shows you how I might style them to use in a tablescape. Lets get to it!

I will start with the Lotus bowl. I purchased some flowers from Trader Joe’s. You can not beat their prices. A bouquet of roses at my local grocery market was twenty dollars. I got the same bouquet for eight dollars at Trader Joe’s. With that price, I do not mind having to buy them!

I got the idea to use this plant from my front porch urn. I do not know what it is, but it will make great filler. If you recognize it, could you leave a comment below? It looks great and I would love to use it again!

I also used this variegated ivy for interest.

Since the vase came above the bowl, I tucked filler around the top to help hide it from view.

Then I added the ivy.

How amazing does this look!

It would be even more amazing if I had two, so I decided to look online to see if I could find another one.

Quite a few popped up! I picked out the one closest to the patina of mine. It was not three dollars like the one I purchased from Goodwill, but thirteen dollars was still a bargain.

They are almost identical. The one I purchased online is a little more shiny than I would like, but it will age in time.

If you are wondering about the green table cloth, I will address that in my next post.

The flowers look beautiful, but you could also use small pumpkins. For Christmas, you could fill the bowl with ornaments. Easter could have grass and colored eggs, or a bunnies, chicks. The options are endless!

Next up, I decided to use the mirror and the votive candle holder together.

I placed the votive holder on top of the mirror and covered it with straw. The straw was left over from a Harry and David gift box we received. It worked perfectly to cover the votive holder base. I was also able to use the flowers from the Lotus bowl arrangements.

I cut the flowers so they would sit in the straw. I added filler and kept working it until I liked the design.

For this arrangement I would definitely not use real candles. Mine are LED much safer!

I love the simplicity of it.

Again, this too can be used for any holiday or event. Easter, Christmas, Hanukkah, birthdays, anniversaries etc. etc.!

I have to mention, it may not be a good idea to use left over straw from a Harry and David box. I was in the kitchen and I smelled salami. I traced the smell to my new table arrangement. Apparently, the straw still held the smoky goodness of the gift basket.

“Goodwill” Finds For Fall Tablescapes!

Fall is my absolute favorite season! I love the cooler weather, the beautiful colors of the changing leaves and of course the holidays!

Like a lot of people, our Thanksgiving last year was very different. We limited our celebration to immediate family. We were thankful to be together, but missed our extended family. This year however, we will be having our extended family join us and we could not be happier!

With this in mind, I am determined to make everything very special, starting with the table. Because, I am on a budget, I headed over to Goodwill. I was not looking for any particular item, just something that could be used in a tablescape. I could not believe my luck! I found an antique taper candle holder, a small rectangle mirror, and a five votive candle holder.

These items were all in different areas of the store. Each one gave me an idea for a tablescape.

I love this piece. It is so elegant and with a perfect patina

This small mirror has an antique look with wonderful detail.

The mercury glass votives are beautiful, but the base needs some work.

The only thing the mirror needs is a good cleaning!

Before cleaning I removed the sticker.

After removing the sticker there was adhesive residue. Out comes Goo Gone. It never fails!

Next, I tackled the little dust bunnies in the crevasses. My large paintbrush did the trick!

It looks great!

I started by removing the sticker and cleaning it up.

The detail is very pretty, but I did not love the silver color.

To tone it down I dry brushed it with “Rub n Buff Wax” in antique gold .

I dipped it in the wax, then used a paper towel to remove the excess for dry brushing.

The change is very subtle.

The added color ties in better with the color of the mercury glass.

The amber color of the votives reminds me of Fall.


I thought about adding some “Rub n Buff to this, but the patina is too perfect to take the risk.

Next post I am going to show you some tablescapes using these items!

Success At The Purple Painted Lady Festival 2021!

What an amazing weekend! The Purple Painted Lady Festival was a huge success. The weather was perfect, the music was fantastic, and the crowd was ready to have fun and buy things! Thank you Trish and Steven Kuntz for creating such a fantastic experience for Artisans and the community alike!

Opening the gates on Saturday morning, what a site!

This is just some of what they saw as they entered the festival!

As you were shopping and checking out the food trucks, you are serenaded by outstanding music! Can’t get much better than that!

My dear friend, Laura Abbott, helped me in the tent on Saturday. We had so much fun! She is also one heck of a salesperson!

This is a view of the tent on the first day. We hung the art work to break up all the white. We also added a couple rugs I purchased from Good Will to add softness. I really liked the over all look!

We sold all the artwork and many other pieces on Saturday! So much so we had to raid our house to fill up the tent for Sunday.

Sunday tent set up. People who have been in our house may recognize some items!

Funny story about these two pieces. I had them both for sale at the festival. A man came in and looked at a piece and said he really liked it. He was going to send his wife to take a look at it. His wife came and looked at a piece, but not the one her husband had looked at. The man had sent a picture of it to her so she knew which one he liked. She ended up paying for the one she liked. My husband Matt and I decided we were not going to get in the the middle of that. Later, the man came back to pick up the piece and he went to the one he liked. We told him she paid for the other. He left the tent and went to talk to his wife. He came back again, looked at the one she liked and left. Matt and I were wondering who was going to win out. Finally, the man came back with a friend and took the one she liked. We were just happy it ended well and that we made a sale! Which one do you think they bought? Leave a comment and let me know your guess!

The Purple Painted Lady Festival” is brimming with talented artists! These are just a few who were in the Red section with us!

To top it all off I was invited to talk to the Purple Painted Lady about possibly being part of their consignment team! Wow!

Show Time!

The Purple Painted Lady festival is this weekend and I am mostly ready! I still have to price and pack items that will be in my tent. I put everything in my front room that I am taking with me. It is filled to the brim with pieces I have been working on all year. I expanded my offerings this year to not only include refinished furniture, but also artwork and redesigned thrifted items.

This is what three days from the festival looks like. What is it they say about organized chaos? I’m going with that!

Don’t worry, it will all come together. It always does!

Don’t forget to stop by my tent and say hi! “Impulsively Creative” is in Red Zone #10!

Purple Painted Lady Festival 2021!

See you there!

Antique Cabinet Makeover!

Before we get to the makeover, I want to let you know what’s happening in my personal life.

My husband and I have always believed that things happen for a reason. Recently, that philosophy was tested to the max. My husband had a heart attack 3 weeks ago. It turned out to be a very serious one that they call a widow maker and he could have died. After the initial shock wore off, we looked at the situation and came up with this: We live in the Rochester N.Y area which has some of the best medical care available. The fast action of the EMT’s and the cardiac team at Strong Memorial Hospital are why my husband is alive today. As far as why it happened, according to the doctors there were no indicators that would have predicted it. He does not have high cholesterol or high blood pressure and he eats pretty healthy. What he does have is a history of heart problems in his family. Father, grandfather, uncle. As a result, the family has become more in tune to this history. Is this why it happened? I don’t know. All I know is that he is here with us, our family is now taking steps for a healthier future, and we are treasuring every moment together!

If you have been following my posts you know I have been preparing for the upcoming “Purple Painted Lady Festival” on September 18th and 19th. To be honest, with everything that had been going on, I had not been focused on the festival. But, when my husband came home from the hospital and was recovering, I knew I needed to make a decision to participate or not. I was leaning heavily on the not side. Even though my husband was doing well, it was hard for me to leave him for a few hours let alone two full days of the festival. My family had other ideas. Apparently, there was some sort of secret meeting and the boys and my husband decided I should do the festival. The boys offered to help set up and help in the booth. I am truly blessed!

Now on to the cabinet makeover, which will be for sale at the festival!

I purchased this cabinet on Craigslist a few months ago. I liked the lines of the piece and thought the medallions on the door were cool!

It had a back piece I did not like. Lucky for me it came right off really easily.

I used DRYDEK Spackling to fill the holes. It goes on pink and turns white when it is dry and ready to sand. So easy!.

The inside of the cabinet needed some work as well.

I painted the top, sides and interior of the cabinet with Annie Sloan Athenian Black Chalk Paint. I left the doors wood so the medallions would pop!

I liked the direction it was going! After I applied two coats of chalk paint, I sealed it with Annie Sloan clear wax and used Tung Oil on the doors to help restore the finish.

Here is the finished piece styled as a front entry table. A perfect place to set your keys on and drop the mail.

It also has storage underneath for purses, scarfs and anything else you may need.

The storage box also comes with a lid if you want to keep things tucked away. This is also an item I will be selling at the festival (wow two shameless plugs in one Blog post).

It would also make a very nice bar cabinet too. Plenty of room on top to prepare drinks and storage below.

The perfect set up!

Lastly, I styled it as a television stand. There is room in the bottom for all the components and even a couple of blankets.

I hope to see you at the “Purple Painted Lady Festival” on September 18th and 19th. Please stop by and see me at “Impulsively Creative”.

Simple Fall Decorating Idea!

I have never really been a person that decorates inside my house for every holiday. I will decorate for Christmas (probably over decorate). For Thanksgiving and Easter I will set a beautiful table. But, Halloween, St. Patrick’s Day, Valentines etc. I really don’t decorate. I am not sure why. Maybe, its because I put so much energy into the other holiday’s.

What I do try to do is change my décor for the different seasons. I will make changes through color and texture. For Fall and Winter I will pull out my chunky blankets, velvet pillows, and other accessories all in deep rich tones. Making it feel cozy, inviting and ready for the cold months ahead.

To scratch my Fall decorating itch without having to pull out all my Fall décor. I decided to make a runner for my dining room table.

I pulled out the drop cloth and got to work!

I always try to use a pattern or a template (in this case another runner) to make my cuts. If I did not, I would waste the entire piece of drop cloth trying to make a straight line.

Next iron out wrinkles.

To prevent fraying, I turned up the edge a quarter of an inch and pressed it.

Then I did a half inch seam all the way around and pinned it ready for sewing.

The runner fit the length of the table and was straight. Yeah!

I had been wanting to try stamping on cloth for a while. This was a perfect opportunity. I used just the branches and leaves stamps from the Iron Orchid Design, “Birds, Branches and Blossoms” stamps. It seemed a fitting choice for Fall.

I used green and navy blue inks to fit in with my décor(it was also all I had).

Iron Orchid Design instructions on stamping on cloth. First pre-wash fabric. After twenty-four hours heat set it with an iron. They also said it can be washed. Just to make sure, I washed a test piece of stamped drop cloth and it did not fade.

It was fun creating an original pattern.

I love the way it came out! I will most definitely be using stamps with cloth in the future.

I like the way it says Fall, in a subtle way.

Happy almost Fall!