Wednesday, September 4, 2013

A Farewell to Summer

Harleigh went back to college, and Chateau Gahan is now just me and little man. He got his summer cut way too late into the season, but Atlanta this summer was a weird, wet mess, a four-month stretch that never really settled into its typical hot and dry place.

Along with the end of every season comes a renewed energy to plug ahead with new adventures and projects. The hutch I bought off of craigslist was the perfect excuse to try Annie Sloan chalk paint (not chalkboard paint, and it contains NO chalk; it's named that simply because it feels like chalk once applied and dried and before you wax it). My name is Dawn. And I am an Annie Sloan chalk paint addict.

Not only do you not have to sand or prime, but the paint goes on beautifully, there's no fumes and clean-up is a cinch. I would recommend buying one of the round Annie Sloan brushes. I choked a bit on the price of the paint and so I didn't buy the brush at the time, but wound up going back and getting it (along with more paint in more colors), and I'm glad I did. It's a round, super dense, all-natural-bristle brush that pairs perfectly with the paint for effortless application and to get into nooks and crannies. It's an investment, but I'll use it forever. FYI, the hutch hardware got a coat of matte black spray paint.

I found the little Dutch-inspired lamp at a thrift store for $2.00, and it looks perfect for the English country cottage look I'm goin' for. The picture above the hutch had to find a new home, and so I moved it to the hallway "gallery." The cabinets below contain candles and vases, and the shelves house my cookbooks. There's lot more styling to do, including a redo on the dollhouse below, which will go on the very top of the hutch.

I've had a handmade wooden dollhouse in my garage FOR-E-VER, and the idea of actually getting into dollhouse crafting had me a bit overwhelmed — 1) I'll get hooked, and every extra cent I have will go toward minis, 2) I have enough projects on my plate right now, 3) my craft room is only so big, and 4) where do I store the doggone thing once it's completed (although I suppose with doll-housing, there is never really an end to it). On Pinterest, I saw these . . .

. . . and I knew that my dollhouse was heading for a different kind of life. Harleigh had a dollhouse bookshelf when she was little (it's up in my attic now, waiting for grandchildren to come into the picture one day), and I always loved it. There is something so comforting and quaint about playing house on a miniature scale; The Littles and The Borrowers were a childhood fascination for me. The picture on the top left embodies exactly how I want my dollhouse to look. Now, granted, my house has no windows or doors, and it's WAY smaller than the one in the picture, but I think I can make it work. 

My evenings have been busy with painting, repairing some loose wood, and I'm even taking a stab at cutting coffee stirrers to make a hardwood floor in one room (this last task is purely for the pleasure of it; makes no difference in the finished product since you won't even see the house floors from where it sets on the hutch).

On another note . . . 
I finally bought an asparagus steamer this past weekend. 
I'm turning 53 years old, and it's about time. 
I thought I could find one for like $9.99. 
But with a coupon, I didn't have to sell an organ to invest in one.

A few random IG pix from the past few weeks.

Made the banana bread for my church's bread ministry. Loaves are given to church guests. I think I might like gift-wrapping the bread with pretty fabric, ribbon and tag as much as I like the giving itself.

The vintage Florida map hung out in my paper and ephemera box 
until I finally found a frame at Goodwill that fit it, well sorta.
 Too dang cheap to have it framed professionally. 
Only problem was that the "FL" got cut off of the word "FLORIDA." 
It's been bugging the heck out of me, so I painted the "FL" onto the frame.

Harleigh came home over Labor Day weekend, an impromptu visit that was filled with Gilmore Girls, coffee in the afternoon, blanket snuggling as the rain poured, gabbing and more gabbing, book reading and a friendship-bracelet-making session at my request (I'm using them for an upcoming event).
I told her, with all my heart, that it was the best 24-hours I've spent in years. 

1 comment:

Christine said...

I never could figure out chalk paint!
This is the first time I have heard it explained and it sounds like a dream come true, for me.
You see, I too, have a hutch that is in need of a paint job. From what I see, you painted yours, on the spot.
I can do this, I think.
Light bulb moment!

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