Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Is It Spring Yet?

I have the February blahs!
I am sick of the snow and the cold weather, so I thought to cheer myself up and hopefully you as well.
I would do a post about some of my upcycling that I do outside in the spring and summer. Furniture is not the only thing I upcycle, I try to find a use for everything I have and find.

I picked this washing machine tub up at a salvage yard for free. I spray painted it and filled it with rocks and soil and it makes a great big flower pot. They are also great for fire pits too


I picked this bed frame up at a yard sale and I put the head board and the foot board at each end of the garden. when we move I am going to try to incorporate them into a gate.

Here is the bed frame in early spring just after we had planted half of the garden. Do you see something that looks like a person in the back ground.

Meet Mable, she is our garden scarecrow,and yes she is riding a vintage Raleigh 3 speed.
Mable's outfit was bought at a thrift store and cost me about $6.00. Her head is an old burlap sack over a gourd, and her face is painted on, her hair is fake peat moss.
Maggie watched me make her, but still spent the next two days growling and huffing at her lol


These flower pots were all found at thrift stores and the back ones are sitting on top of an old bookcase that I picked up for a few dollars

This area is decorated with an old wash tub and milk cans and old wine barrels
The chair was picked up at a thrift store for a few dollars
I popped out the seat and painted it and found a pot of flowers that fit into the seat area
(Can you see Maggie laying in the sun, she likes spring too)
I even have an old stand up ashtray in the yard with bird see in it
The birds seem to like it
This old bench was found at a yard sale as well and
as you can see Maggie approves of it in the yard
more thrift store and yard sale finds for the yard
I haven't seen this guy all winter, can't wait to see him scurrying all around the yard

And I miss the site and the smell of the cherry blossoms
Oh and we can not forget the gorgeous fragrance of the lilac trees
Yes this is the way I want my back yard to look, flowers blooming, birds chirping, and the sweet smell of spring in the air
Not this !!!
Come on Spring
Are you anxiously awaiting spring too?
March 21 is the first day of spring we are less than a month away woohoo
hope your having a great week
how are you fighting the February blahs ??
till next time as always
Happy Picking Happy Painting
and thanks for being here
and a very warm welcome to my new followers
and my sidekick
Apparently Maggie is dreaming of warm temperatures too

Saturday, February 23, 2013


To me upcycling is all about finding old pieces and giving them new life. At the same time trying to use what you have to make that happen. Yes I have to buy paint to accomplish this, but I try to reuse the hardware or find hardware that is not new. I shop thrift shops and flea markets and the restore to find these pieces of old and unique hardware. If I can not use what is on the piece or if it comes with no hardware at all.
Recently I was at the restore and I was very surprised to find that their hardware supply was so low. When I inquired why this was so, I was told they had taken most of it to a metal place and sold it. All of that beautiful hardware, handles, knobs etc melted. I wanted to cry right then and there, I could not believe it. My favorite place to go for hardware and they had just literally thrown it away.
When they saw how horrified I was they reassured me that they will be getting more. But in the meantime I would really have to scour the city to find what I needed.
That is why on my latest project I had to get creative. I will warn you these pics are not pretty or blog worthy but they are what they are.
I found this amazing desk at a thrift store and knew it had potential. And although the knobs had been painted I could see under the chipped paint that they were brass. And I wanted to save them.
I think the guy at the thrift store thought I had lost my mind when I bought this.

This poor baby was screaming help me, I don't know who would like this colour scheme
But I saw great potential in the desk
Don't worry darling, I will save you
But first I am going to save those handles
I am warning you now there is a not a completed desk pic at the bottom of this post
The desk is still a work in progress, this post is more about the hardware than the desk
pretty desk pics to come
I am addicted to pinterest and love to browse it at night to unwind
I saw this idea on Pinterest and decided this would be the time to use it
I want to save those gorgeous handles
And I am not a big fan of paint stripper, that's why I paint rather than refinish lol
So the idea on pinterest says to boil the handles in an old crock pot
So I picked one up at Sally Ann for $3.00
All you put in is water (please do not put chemicals in, you will inhale them in the steam
(not a good thing to inhale)
I put all the handles in the crock pot and put it on high
It says to let them boil over night, but I don't like to leave things on when I am sleeping
So I started them in the morning
A few hours in, my house stunk like paint, so I moved the crock pot outside
much better
I let them cook outside on a table for about 4 hours
I removed them one at a time and scrubbed them with a steel brush
Wear thick gloves people, hot metal !!!
You can see the paint is just falling off
You have to do one handle at a time and yes it is tedious
But once the paint hits the cold air its sticks to the handle again, so work fast
You will see by the pics that this did remove most of the paint
Some was still left in the grooves and such
So I put them back in the crock pot for another hour
I worked on the desk in between the handle process
And Voila
Beautiful brass handles with just water, a crock pot and some elbow grease
I polished them up with a little bit of brass polish as well
They are a very nice handle and they have a bit of weight to them
And I am so happy I can reuse them
But as I said isn't that was upcycling is all about
And now I just need to finish painting the desk
After a bit of patching a few nicks here and there
I feel bad that I can't show you the finished desk with handles
But I promise to post it as soon as it done
I wanted to share this unique way of saving handles that have been painted
Thank you Pinterest
I will be sure to keep using this idea in the future
Now back to my ugly duckling desk
Which I am going to make stunning and glamorous
Would love to hear any great upcycling ideas you have used
to re purpose furniture
hope everyone is having an amazing weekend
I am praying for nice weather so I can work outside
What are you up too this weekend?
Happy Picking, Painting and Upcycling
and my sidekick Maggie

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Anne Sloan and Ce Ce Caldwell Chalkpaint

Yesterday I had the opportunity to get away for the day with a friend Bobby Jo. I can not remember the last time I had a girls day out. I think after talking to my friend about going, we realized that we both needed a day out. So it was a last minute trip that started with a conversation about both of us being low on chalk paint.

We are not as lucky as most of you, we do not have a distributor for chalk paint where we live. We have to travel 4 hours through the Cascade Mountains to get it. Can you tell how much we love it, why else would we travel a highway called "Hells Highway" to get chalk paint lol. Actually the roads were not that bad the day we went a little snow covered in spots, and only one lane at times. We also had two coyotes run across the highway in front of us.
It was a little slippery at times and we did see one accident.
 And we only got lost one or twice
ok maybe 3 times
See we do love our chalk paint lol

I think you get the idea, pretty snow covered mountains, scary highway

But we made it safe and sound there and back

Neither one of us have ever tried CeCe Caldwell's Chalk paint and we wanted to try it. We both love Anne Sloan's paints and we wanted to make some comparisons. So our first stop was in a town called Mapleridge. We wanted to check out a little store called Welcome Home where the paint is sold.

It is a cute store and we loved browsing through the different paint colours and unique gifts, furniture and decor. We came out of there with some great scores and lots of test pots of gorgeous colours to try.

Look at all those colours
Here is my score from Welcome Home
I love my owl and my little metal bird sitting on a book
And I have lots of new colours to try and a new brush woohoo
Then we were off to Langley
If you are in Langley you have to stop in at this restaurant
The food and the service was excellent
And I loved the decor and atmosphere
Choo Choo's on Fraser Highway
Now that we had time to rest and had something to eat
It was off to The Passionate Home for more shopping
And to pick up my monthly supply of Anne Sloan Chalk paint
The Passionate Home - Langley BC

This is such a cute store, and trust me it is hard not to come home with a whole bunch of goodies
My favorite chalk paint Anne Sloan
And this is what I came home with
I know I was supposed to just buy paint
But I could not resist this little cabinet
I have no idea what I will use it for, but I had to have it
And the bonus to our day was Bobby Jo and I got to meet George
And I got to see Kristy again and Bobby Jo was able to meet her
I hope next time we have more time to spend with them
Kristy has taught me so much, just by sharing her tips
Her blog was one of the very first blogs I ever started to follow
You can find this talented and very down to earth couple
Kristy and George

We had a great day, lots of driving and shopping, left at 7am and got home at 8pm
But, it was a fun day and I can't wait to try all of my new colours and paints
And I got to spend the day with a great friend
And that is priceless
And although hubby was asleep on the couch when I got home
Maggie was glad to see me lol
I will be experimenting with the CeCe Caldwell paint this week
and I will be sure to post what I think and show my finished projects
And I can't wait to try some of the new Anne Sloan colours I picked up as well
And I also stocked up on my favorite colour
pure white
Hope everyone is having a great week
And thank you Bobby Jo for helping to make this such a fun day
ok thats not Maggie
but it sure looks like her lol

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentines Day

How will you spend today 

Will you be buying flowers for your sweetheart
or receiving flowers from a loved one
Or indulging in sweets
Will you go out for a romantic dinner
Do you have a valentine tradition
Or is it just another day
Whatever way you choose to spend this day
I hope you have an amazing day
And if no one wishes you Happy Valentines Day
Then let me be the first
I hope you have a very sweet day
Happy Valentines Day to all of you
I send my best wishes for a wonderful day
Maybe I should not have taken this pic at night when she was sleepy lol
But Maggie says yaya Happy Valentines Day
she is not big on this day
Because she can't eat chocolate
poor lil girl