Part One: Decoupage Over Glass? Yes, You Can!

Last week I worked on an old metal filing cabinet for my office. Next in my plan is a cabinet to hold all my chalk paint. Let’s just say I am not the neatest painter, and it is better for the cans to be behind closed doors. I have a cabinet, but it has glass doors which defeated the purpose of hiding my mess. I researched a little bit and found out you can decoupage over glass however I had not done it. I was a little nervous about it. I pictured myself using a razor blade to get the paper off, but I did not want to purchase another cabinet, so I went ahead with it.

Let’s do this!

This is the cabinet I was talking about. It is great, but you would be able to see everything inside.

The first step was painting the front including the glass with Zinsser primer. It created an even background for behind the decoupage paper.

I chose Karen’s Technicolor Bouquet from Mint By Michelle decoupage paper. It is so colorful. Just perfect to store all my paint.

To attach the decoupage paper, I used Roman wallpaper adhesive. There are other products you can use but this has always worked for me.

I ripped the edges all around the paper. This will give it more of a hand painted look once it is placed on the glass.

I took my time starting at the top and moved down. I added paste on the cabinet then laid the decoupage paper on top and smoothed it out with a large chip brush.

You are supposed to wait until the paper is dry before cutting. I know this but I did it anyway and this is what happened. No worries. I purchased a smaller version of Karen’s Technicolor Bouquet decoupage paper that I can use along with paint to fix the tears.

I took several cuts from the smaller version of Karen’s Technicolor Bouquet.

Then I matched them up and decoupaged them on the cabinet.

Using my acrylic paints, I blended them together.

The process took quite a while.

The results were worth it. You cannot tell where it was torn at all.

I gathered all my tools to do the next part. Using Annie Sloan Giverny, Antibes, and English Yellow chalk paint, several Craft Smart acrylic paints, the rest of the smaller decoupage paper and various brushes all to extend the decoupage design further onto the cabinet.

I started by giving the vase a bottom.

I started working with my paints to match the colors in the decoupage paper. I used a paint brush and ragging technique to blend.

Adding details like flowers as I went.

I knew I needed to keep going so I chose a color and went for it!

I took Annie Sloan Giverny chalk paint and water and started painting.

I wanted it to look like flowers had fallen from the bouquet, so I used the rest of the smaller decoupage paper to achieve this.

Cutting out the flowers and placing them along the bottom of the vase.

I used tape until I knew exactly where I wanted them. Then decoupaged them on.

I am very pleased with the progress so far. I am pushing myself out of my comfort zone and I like it.

If you enjoyed the post, please like it. Make sure to check back next week to see the before and after reveal!

Metal Filing Cabinet Transformation!

I am in desperate need of a filing system. I have papers that are currently being stored in a plastic bag (no judging please). It is annoying when I am trying to find something, and it takes twice as long as it would have if it was neatly filed away.

I decided it was time to get a filing cabinet and get organized! I started looking around and was finding ones that I liked but were too pricey which left me with metal filing cabinets. I really do not like metal filing cabinets. They are tinny sounding and usually come in either beige, gray or black. The decision was finally made when I found a metal filing cabinet in decent shape at Good Will for $2. My thought was for $2 I could try to make it a little more appealing and if it didn’t work it was only $2.

Let’s check it out!

Here are some of my papers. The rest are in my plastic bag.

The cabinet was of course beige, but the drawers were intact and worked well.

I forgot to tell you it was really a mess. Probably why it was $2.

There were also dinosaur stickers on both drawers that needed to be removed.

To combat the rust, some kind of dark substance, and of course the stickers that had to be removed, I pulled out the big three, Goo Gone, Soft Scrub with bleach and Rust Stain Magic and got down to business.

The stickers were pretty easy to remove. I put Goo Gone on top of each sticker and let it sit while I worked on something else.

When I came back I used a scraper to get them off.

I tackled the rust stains next. It took a little elbow grease, but they came off.

The black substance came off with Soft Scrub and more elbow grease.

Nice and clean!

One thing I didn’t like were the handles. They were too industrial looking.

I decided to try filling them with Bondo. I glued a piece of wood inside the handle so I would not have to use so much Bondo.

Bondo is amazing. It worked like a charm. You could not even tell that the handle had been there.

While I was at it, I removed the lock, placed a piece of cardboard on the back and then filled it with Bondo.

To make it look less like a metal cabinet I asked my husband to cut some trim to put on the drawers.

I used Liquid Nails to put the trim on.

It was easy to work with.

Love the way it looks!

I put a little spackle in the corners and let it dry overnight.

I put on one coat of Zinsser Primer.

I used Annie Sloan Aubusson Blue Chalk Paint on the cabinet.

I use the tops of containers to roll my paint’ It works just as well has the ones in the store and washes up easily

First coat.

It took three coats to get full coverage

I went through my box of cabinet doorknobs and found these. Also dressed it up with some very nice (but inexpensive) aluminum feet I found on Amazon.

So happy with the results! Can’t wait to organize all my files!

Secretary Desk Part Two: The Reveal!

After all the repairs I had to do last week on the secretary desk, I thought this week would be a breeze. Not so much! I took a video of myself painting the desk with Annie Sloan Oxford Blue paint and dry brushing with Athenian Black, Napoleonic Blue, and French linen. Unfortunately, I could not get the video to load. I also did not take pictures so there is no footage of me painting. Sorry!

I did capture the rest of the process so let’s get to it!

Where it started.

While painting the desk I decided to update the desk by removing the cubbies. I felt most people wouldn’t use them and it gave it much more space to work.

See what I mean about space!

I wanted to brighten up the inside so I decoupaged using Blue Flight by Decoupage Queen.

Trying to work in that small space was difficult. I had to pull the paper up and realign it a few times.

I just took my time and it worked itself out.

Once the paper was dry, I used a sanding brick to remove the excess and give it a clean line.

The paper is perfect with the colors in the desk.

In this picture you can see how I dry-brushed using Annie Sloan Athenian Black, French Linen and Napoleonic Blue to give it depth.

The big reveal! I love it!

I promise to work on being able to upload videos. It would be fun to share what I am doing as I’m doing it!

Remember to like my blog and share it with friends if you enjoyed it!

How To Do Dry-Brushing On A Secretary Desk Part One!

The first time I saw this piece I was smitten. The lines, the medallion and scroll work were a perfect candidate for dry brushing a technique I have been wanting to try. I know my wood lover friends think it is beautiful as is, but there was too much damage (which you will see in a minute) to be saved.

Like in past projects, there was a lot more prep work than I expected and also like the other projects, I did question why I had purchased it. In the end like many of my projects I am glad I did!

Let’s see what happened…

Look at that medallion definitely drool worthy.

I am not a fan of this piece of molding on top, so I removed it.

It had been glued as well as nailed in, so it took some work to get it off.

I had to use pliers for the stubborn nails.

Next was cleaning which is twofold. You clean but also check the piece closely for anything that may need a tweak.

This was the third rag, yuck!

I didn’t like the hardware that was on the piece, so I removed it. In order to put on the single knob that I want, I needed to fill the holes first.

I have seen this product used by other furniture refinishers on You Tube and the results were great. So, I decided to give it a try.

The directions were easy to follow. Scoop out puddy, add hardener, stir and apply. The fumes were very strong. Definitely use it in a well-ventilated area.

When I was cleaning the desk, I noticed that some of the veneer was lifting off. I used a putty knife to pull up the loose veneer then took it off. Once it was off, I filled it in with Bondo.

I also used the Bondo to fix two of the edges on the drop door that were chipped.

Everything sanded and ready to paint!

There were so many things I had to repair on this piece I did not have enough time to finish it this week. Make sure to look for part two next week I can’t wait to share!

Decoupage Art Part Two!

Part one of my decoupage art was Girl With A Pearl Earring by Johannes Vermeer. To create the piece, I purchased Posh Chalk Decoupage paper from Etsy, and I got the frame from Good Will. It was a huge success. It currently hangs at the top of my staircase, and I love it!

With my second attempt, I wanted to experiment with a different medium like a print instead of decoupage paper. I had already purchased some digital versions of prints from Etsy and had them on a flash drive. I went to Kinkos and had two printed. Girl Reading by Jaques-Emile Blanche and the other print I could not find information on, but it is beautiful. My thinking was that if the prints worked, I would not have to buy decoupage paper and therefore save money. The prints were $20 a piece versus $30 for decoupage paper version of the Girl With A Pearl Earring plus shipping. I ended up saving a little money, but the jury was still out as to whether or not it would work.

This is what happened:

I found four of these pictures at Good Will. I couldn’t pass them up. Each one has a very solid wood frame and is perfect for a print.

My original plan was to paint the frames in a faux wood finish, but it just wasn’t working so I went to plan B.

Plan B was to paint them with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Athenian Black.

I put on two coats of the Athenian Black. Once it dried, I sealed it with Annie Sloan Black Wax.

I used Roman wallpaper and border adhesive to attach the prints the same way as I do with the decoupage paper.

I started at the top, applying paste then placed the print on top.

As I worked my way down, I smoothed out the wrinkles with a brush. Then I applied paste on top of the print which turned out to be a mistake because it caused the paper to bubble up.

To fix the problem I waited until it was dry then put a slit wherever there was a bubble

Once the slit was open, I pushed glue underneath.

The bubbles smoothed down, but I still had some wrinkles.

I added gold around the inside of the frame and the outside to make the print stand out more.

I repeated the same process with the other print, but I did not put the paste on top and there was no bubbling.

I am glad I tried this method. The pictures are beautiful but, in the future, I will stick with decoupage paper. It is much easier to work with.

Those of you who know me won’t be surprised that I decided to redo the Girl Reading print. My family says it looks great, but I see all the mistakes.

Until next time!

How To Create Faux Metal and Cement Finishes!

I have had two lanterns and a milk- glass vase in my stash waiting to be refinished for a few weeks. Every time I saw them in my office, I said today is the day, but it wasn’t the day.

Well, I am happy to say that the day has finally arrived! I transformed the two lanterns using an antique metal treatment and the vase using a faux cement mixture. I had inspiration pieces for both and If I say so myself came pretty close to matching them!

Without further ado let’s get to it!

This Pottery Barn lantern was my inspiration the cost $129 not in my budget.

I picked my lanterns up at Good Will for $8 a piece (definitely more budget friendly).

The first thing I did was tape around each pane of glass. I normally don’t tape but, in this case, if the paint gets under the glass, you will see it on the inside of the lantern.

Ready to start!

I used Rub ‘n Buff antique wax as my first layer.

I squeezed some out on paper so I would not contaminate the tube.

Then started applying.

First layer done now for some dimension with dark wax.

Using a sponge and Waverly Antiquing Wax I tapped it all around to create texture.

Look at all that texture!

In some areas it was too dark, so I went back and touched it up with the Rub ‘N Buff.

I used my brush to spread it out then went back over it with my sponge and dark wax.

I also mixed green and blue acrylic paint and added it to the top and edges to add even more depth.

The great thing about this technique is you can go back and tweak it without having to start all over again.

The final result!

I plan on using them outside so when the weather is warmer, I will apply Polycrylic water-based sealer to protect the finish.

Here they are side by side not an exact match but pretty darn close.

This concrete urn is my inspiration for my next transformation. The price of small urns varies but can be anywhere from $50 to hundreds of dollars if they are antiques.

I purchased this milk-glass vase at Good Will for $4.99.

To get a faux cement look I mixed together Annie Sloan Old White Chalk paint, Waverly Chalk paint in Mineral and baking soda.

I made pouncing movements on the vase to make even more texture.

It began to really look like cement.

Using my sponge to bring out the detailing with dark and white wax.

I also used some sandpaper to distress it in some areas.

The finished product!

I think I like mine better!

Do you like to use faux finishes? I would love to hear what you have done!

Don’t forget to like my post if you enjoyed it!

Easter Table Decorating Ideas!

When I woke up this morning, it was -6 degrees outside. My plan today was to play around with Easter table settings using spring decor I thrifted last week. I decided to go ahead with my plan and not let the frigid weather discourage me.

It turned out to be a lot of fun and even though it was -6 degrees outside, it made me think of Spring!

The first thing I did was iron my tablecloth.

It is so big I have to lay it on the table and pull it forward as I go. If there is an easier way, I would love to hear it.

I wanted a vase of flowers for the center of the table but did not want to go to the store to get some. I remembered I had some faux flowers in my stash and used those.

They were to long for the short vase I wanted to use so I used a wire cutter to trim them.

I cut three then taped them together.

Centerpiece taken care of… check!

To tie the flowers and vase together with the tablecloth, I placed them on the green tray I also thrifted last week.

I could not resist these bunnies at the thrift store. They are adorable.

I found four of these ceramic eggs and really liked them, but did not like the yellow bow it originally had, so I painted them gold.

I like the napkin tucked under the charger. It gives your guests easy access and looks nice.

Next, the bunnies and plates

glassware and silverware.

Here is the result!

I love the green and blue color palette it reminds me of spring.

I am really looking forward to using this design for Easter dinner this year!

Good Will Finds 2023 And How I Styled Them!

You know the days where everything seems to be aligned in your favor. Well, that happened to me on one of my visits to Good Will. It seemed like everywhere I looked there was something I could not pass up. Best of all, I did not have to fix, paint or tweak any of the pieces. They were great just the way they were!

Wait until you see what I found!

I will admit that I passed these vases up the first time. They were beautifully had painted, but I was not a fan of the content on the front.

I went home and told my mother-in-law Audrey about them, and she said just turn them around. I was lucky enough to go back and find both vases and purchased them for $10. This is the backside of the vases, and she was right.

I fell in love with this plate the minute I saw it. I have seen plates like this at Good Will, but never with detailing like this.

What do you see when you look at these?

I saw bookends but as it turns out they are shelves.

A woman was carrying this tray around and I was bummed that I did not get to it first. Then I saw her a few minutes later minus the tray and backtracked until I found it. Yea!

Lastly this beast of a mirror. The frame is wood, and the edging on the mirror is made of wrought iron. Hence the nickname beast because it is very heavy. I plan on replacing my current mirror in the foyer with this but because it is so heavy, I need to make sure I have the right hardware before hanging it up.

Now the Styling!

A trick I use often is placing a one-dimensional piece on a stand. It immediately becomes a statement piece that can be used anywhere in your home. I chose the dining room, but it could have gone on a side table, shelf. kitchen counter etc.

For now, I am using these as bookends, but I reserve the right to use them as shelves in the future.

I placed the vases on the buffet in my dining room and the colors go perfectly with the painting and the buffet.

I am excited about projects I am currently working on and can’t wait to share them with you all!

New Year Refresh!

What is it about the New Year that drives us to want to purge, reorganize and update our surroundings? Didn’t we have 365 days prior to the New Year to accomplish this?

Well, I am no different than anyone else. I too have fallen victim to the “New Year” need for change!

I started last week by organizing my Christmas decorations and the crawl space they will be stored in. If that was not enough, I also tackled a catch-all closet in the basement and this week I am working on the drawers in the buffet in my family room.

The buffet organization has been on my list ever since I changed the top drawer to a charging station and stuffed everything from that drawer in the others with no rhyme or reason. Over the course of the next few months, they only got worse.

With items from Good Will and Amazon I got to work!

I don’t usually show the inside of my drawers to just anyone. I am also pretty sure I have had nightmares about this, but you are like family so here it is!

Like I said, it was haphazardly thrown into the drawer.

The bottom drawer had all my exercise equipment and tapes.

This drawer is one of the worst. It seems like everything we did not know what to do with ended up in here.

I looked on Amazon for drawer organizers. I found a set of six wooden ones for $60. That was more than I wanted to spend so I went to Good Will.

I visited two Good Will stores and found these boxes at the second one. I couldn’t believe my luck. They were almost exactly like the ones on Amazon, but each of boxes came with a bonus liner. There were five in total. Three smaller boxes and two larger. The smaller ones were priced at $2.99 a piece and the larger were $3.99. The total was $16.95. Much better than $60 on Amazon. Another Good Will score!

The liner looks like it says Teleflora and they were probably used for flower arrangements. Whatever they were used for, having a liner will make it easy to clean and keep the boxes from getting marked up.

I wasn’t sure about the color, but they looked great!

I put the liners in and they were ready to be filled up.

They worked perfectly. The only problem was when I shut the drawer they slid forward.

I found these rubber tabs and put them on the bottom. Voila, no more sliding.

I put games in the bottom drawer where my exercise equipment was and moved the exercise stuff to the laundry room.

I finally sorted through the drawer with everything that you don’t know what to do with and was left with batteries, lint brush and flashlights. Yeah!

After weeding through everything in the buffet, I was left with a bunch of cards and needed something to store them in. I saw this organizer on Amazon and ordered it.

The box had five holders for cards. I used one for birthday cards, another for note cards and a third for miscellaneous cards. I put my address book, stamps, and address labels in the other two holders.

Maybe now I will get my birthday cards out on time!

Tips On How To Organize And Store Christmas Decor!

Happy New Year everyone!

I am back from my hiatus, refreshed and ready to start 2023 with a bang!

A top priority for me is organization. It was very difficult for me to decorate for Christmas this year because all my decorations were in various spaces around the house. After our house renovation, there was drywall dust still lingering and it made it difficult for me to go into our crawl space or the basement because of my allergies. This left my husband and sons the task of putting away the Christmas decorations last year (which I was very grateful for) but it resulted in me not knowing where anything was. I ended up opening a lot of boxes searching for items. Some I found, and others I did not.

This actually set the stage for a Christmas organization that I have been dreaming about for a long time. I know other people dream of exotic places with half naked men or women serving them Pina Coladas. I dream of organized spaces with everything labeled. Problem, I am not sure, Freud might have a field day, but it makes me happy!

This is the crawl space I was talking about that we gained from the addition. You can see how haphazard everything is. It is a large dry space that is perfect for storing items we do not use every day. My plan is to pull everything out of the crawl space and organize each box. When I am done, I will know what is in each box and have a designated area to store them grouped as seasonal, household, outdoors etc.

When I was decorating this wreath for the window in my dining room, I had trouble finding everything I needed. I usually store picks, battery powered lights, and ribbon separately. Which is fine, but I had to go through all the boxes in order to find what I needed.

To store it this year, first, I took everything off the wreath.

Then I took the picks and battery powered lights and put each in individual plastic bags.

I then placed the wreath along with the other items in a storage bag.

Closed the bag.

I bought this instamatic camera to help with my organization I (you will see what I mean in a minute). It takes a picture and spits it out instantly. Some of you might remember these when they were popular before we had color printers and cameras on our phones. They can still be pretty useful even today!

And finally put a photo I took from my instamatic camera on the outside of the bag. It shows me exactly what and where it was the previous year.

Next on list were the rest of the decorations in the family room and dining room.

I broke down the chandelier first separating each of the items and repeated the process with the other vignettes placing all the pieces on the dining room table.

I put the smaller items in plastic bags.

I placed the larger pieces on the bottom of a tote then filled it with the rest until everything was loaded.

Prior to breaking everything down I took pictures of each vignette with my instamatic camera. I took the pictures and tucked them inside a photo album sheet and taped it to the side of the bin.

It took longer than it usually does to break down my decorations but next year I hope it not only makes finding the decorations easier but putting them away as well. I guess we will find out next year!

I still have the front room where the Christmas tree and mantle are. I will tackle that next week because I want to enjoy the Christmas tree for one more week.