Friday, November 30, 2012

Entryway Makeover

Earlier this fall I decided to redo my entryway. I never get tired of looking through design magazines and books, and they always inspire me to try new looks.

So the entryway went from black furniture with red accents to pale blue and creams with gold.

 The little settee used to be in my bedroom, but I love it out here. Gold faux bamboo table adds a touch of glamour. And of course Stella thinks she needs to be in the photo!

 Black buffet has been painted with chalk paint and waxed for a tough finish on top. Chair fabric matches the settee. Mercury glass, some filled with paper whites for simple Christmas decor. 

Sparkly and serene.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Elf on the Shelf

My school teacher daughter, Sarah, told my daughter Robin (mom of twins, Jack and Lola) about this book. It comes with the story and a little stuffed Elf. The Elf watches over the children and returns to the North Pole each evening to report to Santa about the children's behavior. He returns every morning and the twins never know where they will find him!

My daughter and son-in-law are coming up with wonderful ideas that thrill my grandchildren. The fun part is that she emails a photo to myself and my other daughters each morning and we look forward to it. This morning she was a little late getting it out and was inundated with text messages asking where our morning cheer, aka Elfy, was!

Click here to order the book.

Here is where Elfy has been found in the morning!

 Fishing with Buzz Lightyear and Barbie! He is using candy canes, which were surprises for the twins because he reported their good behavior!

 Pretending to be in the Macy's day Parade. Hanging from the helium balloons!

 Riding Tyrannosaurus Rex and leading a parade of farm animals.

Hanging from a wreath at Grandma's house

But this was the best of all! 
The day after Thanksgiving we go tree hunting. My daughter told the twins that Elfy had a special surprise. When they got to the tree farm, there was Elfy waiting in a tree.

We walked around the corner and there he was!

 Lola was so excited to see him!!

Jack is still trying to figure out how he got there.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Putting a New Top on your Dining Table

As the holidays approach, I started thinking again about enlarging my dining table. We have nine people in our immediate family and growing. The furniture companies offer little in the way of large tables, and what they do have is way out of my price range. So my wheels started turning and I decided I could do it myself!

I documented the process with photos, it was not difficult, and the result is the perfect size table.

I started with a table I purchased from the Restoration Hardware Outlet store. It is a solid wood, double pedestal base and the price was excellent because the top was scratched. A $2300.00 table for $200.00.

I went to Lowe's and bought two sheets of birch plywood, at $44.00 each. They were very strong and heavy and had a nice real wood finish. I originally made a top that was eight by eight, but that was just too big so I cut 18 inched off one side. It made a huge difference in the feel of the table. Still large, but not too far away from each other.

I used strips of wood, 1x2's and 1x4's (extra pieces I had already) about three feet long and attached them to the underside with wood screws. This ensured that the the two sheets of birch stayed at the same level, held them together and provided stability.

I also bought five strips of trim to finish the edges of the birch sheets, here is a close up.

I applied these strips with a combination of wood glue and finishing nails, hiding the nails with a nail sinker.

I left all the imperfections because it is the look I was going for. Then I applied a coat of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint to both the tabletop and the base, followed by a coat of her Dark Soft wax and one more of her Clear wax.

 The wax, applied but not yet buffed.

The final product! I still have not buffed the wax, I am letting it set up for two days to ensure it's durability.

It very comfortably seats twelve, but can handle up to sixteen and still not feel over crowded.

The total cost for this project, less the original base, is about $120.00. 
Bon Appetit!