Monday, August 11, 2014

Tour Through Blogland

My friend,  Melody from My Passion For D├ęcor asked me to join in this Tour Through Blogland.  I met Melody at Haven last year & this year we got to spend a little bit of time together.  She is just as nice in person as she seems to be on her blog.  She is super talented but very down to earth!  If you don't know her, please stop by her blog, you won't be disappointed!

So now a little about me.  I am a wife, mom to a teenage girl (Lord help me!), painter, hoarder collector, dog lover.
I started painting furniture to sell 3 years ago & sold my 1st piece to an Interior Designer!  I was hooked.  I started selling American Paint Company paint last year when I used it & fell in love with the rich, creaminess of the paint & the amazing coverage.

What I am working on right now?
It might be easier to answer what I'm not working on! Painting vanities in master bath, redoing my daughter's "hangout " (because she is too cool for a playroom), painting the basement, adding pallet wood to the bar in the basement, painting picture frames for my booth & slowly getting ready for a Fall festival. See what I mean? Too many things going on at once & we are getting ready to demo our master closet & replace a vanity in the basement bathroom! Hopefully I can get this all finished before the holidays roll around!
How does my work differ from others in the genre?
I repurpose & build furniture, that's a little different than those that just paint.  I am not artistic, just creative so I have to use that to my advantage.
I built this bench from a twin bed & pallet wood, painted in American Paint Company Surfboard
I built this farmhouse table by myself
  Why do I write/create what I do?
I love to create!  It's my passion!  I was fortunate enough to quit my day job a few years ago and follow my passion (without the stress of trying to pay the bills).  Unfortunately writing is not my passion & I find it hard to put my thoughts into words (that's why I  share so many pictures).  I am working on becoming more regular at blogging.

Sometimes I sew just to mix it up a little but I am far from a seamstress!
How does my writing/creative process work?
Ha! This one is too funny not to share! I am most creative when I paint. I write the best blog post in my head while I am painting! Unfortunately that's where they stay, in my head! I need to start talking out load & recording so I can share. Also around 11-11:30 PM when everyone is asleep & I can't act on any ideas.

I recovered & painted these chairs in American Paint Company Limoge & Crushed Tea

Old drawer converted into a dog bed, modeled by my Howie
That about covers all the info on me!  If you have any questions please email me at & I would love to have you follow me on Facebook & Instagram!  Thanks for stopping by, please continue the tour by visiting my friends!

Now I would like to introduce you to my friend JannYvette (don't pronounce this southern Jaan-Yvette, you have to say it as if you were French Jannevette),  she blogs over at Confessions of a Junkaholic. We met last year through an Atlanta Bloggers group & bonded at Haven.  If you are looking to have some crazy fun, this is your girl!  She blogs, paints, decorates, is a great picker & hilarious to be around! 

I love this bench she redid!!

Next up is Susanne from BebeandJ (isn't that a cute name!?) she  is a fellow American Paint Company retailer.  We haven't had the chance to meet yet as she is a new retailer but I hope we get to soon!
This picture on her blog caught my eye.  Sorry!  I'm dreaming of Fall!!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Kitchen Remodel with Martha Stewart Cabinets

(My disclaimer: I'm sorry if you are hoping to see beautiful pictures of my new kitchen.  I staged it for the Martha Stewart rep who was coming to take photos.  I shot a few with my iphone while I waited for her to arrive.  I didn't worry about the quality because I knew she was coming.  I was very disappointed that she showed up with a tiny point & shoot camera & used the flash on every single picture.  When she left I forgot to look at my pictures to see if they were even good.  I've been too lazy to wait on the right time of day & stage the kitchen so I can get good photographs.  All the pictures are blurry so you can stop here if you don't want to be disappointed but there is a picture of a really cute dog if you want to continue)

It all started with a farmhouse sink. That's how this story begins. You've seen them, all these bloggers adding these big, beautiful apron front sinks in their kitchen. So you stare & drool & pet your computer. Ok, maybe that's just me but I LOVED them! I was smitten at 1st glance! So I schemed thought about how I could get my own sink to pet & drool on. My own lovely sink was approaching 14 years old (which is really old in sink years). It was porcelain, scratched & chipped. It was looking a little rough.  I was really tired of the whole kitchen, we built our house 14 years ago & it was so fun to design (with limited choices) our kitchen. Unfortunately after 14 years I was over the white cabinets. My plan was to paint the cabinets (if I could ever decide on the color). I knew it would be easy to change them using American Paint Company paint. So what I needed to do was find a sink that would fit into our existing cabinets without too many alterations. After weeks if research I found a nice stainless apron front sink that is designed to just fit right in to a 36" cabinet. Perfect! I ordered the template & finally found a company that would install the sink. They came out to measure & that was when I was given the bad wouldn't fit! Yes it was designed to fit into a 36" sink base but we had drawers on one side & dishwasher on the other & we would have less than 1/2" on each side of the sink. Insert tears & sad face here! I was so disappointed!!
We had also talked about removing our double ovens (they weren't vented correctly & needed some work), replacing them with a range  & making the hole they left behind into cabinets. My husband happened to be at Home Depot one day talking to one of the employees & was told they could do the sink, easily. So we ventured into Home Depot & I saw this:
The Heavens parted & angels sang! I was in love & the best part?? My husband really liked it, too!!
Martha Stewart cabinets!  They were the perfect color, the perfect farmhouse sink!  Loved it!  I could immediately picture this in my house especially the end piece to replace the desk we had & never used except to collect junk.  So when my husband suggested we sit down & talk with them about a new kitchen, I couldn't believe it!  He's not really one to spend large amounts of money easily & especially not without analyzing talking about it for long periods of time.  We chose a different cabinet style, Seal Harbor which is beadboard, in Ocean Floor (that is the color pictured). Once we decided to go for it, I spent at least 20 hours with Dan, our kitchen designer planning out every detail.  Dan was great to work with, he has been in the business for a very long time, once owning his own cabinet shop.   He had some great ideas & didn't mind entertaining mine & even allowed me to look through the book of cabinets so I could see every possibility.  I don't think most of his clients are as involved as I was but it really was fun! 

This is the before, before kitchen picture.  When I had a grape theme overkill going on!
This is the real before, I lost the grape theme for a backsplash that didn't turn out quite like we planned & we had turned the island & made a bar.  We also had started upgrading to Stainless appliances & had replaced the faucet.  It really wasn't too bad except for the backsplash. 

Other side of the kitchen with desk area.  We removed the wallpaper & painted Comfort Grey & added beadboard.

This is Howie.  His 1st day in my house was the same day we started kitchen demo!  He was a Furkid  & I was his foster Mom.  He was my 3rd foster & now he's a permanent member of the family.

Demo starts!!

All the boxes that had been sitting in my garage waiting to be installed.  You don't know how hard it was to not tear into all these boxes!

Demo complete!  It didn't take long!

First look at the new cabinets!!

I opted to have the island a different color from the cabinets.  I really like that look & I wanted a wood countertop somewhere in my kitchen.  I knew my husband wouldn't go for all wood countertops so we just added them on the island.  (the wood was actually more expensive than any other option!)

Everything in place.

Dan had the great idea to raise the dishwasher.  I had never seen this done & now that I have it I am absolutely thrilled! This area had to be custom built by the installer, Dan made the plan & the installer executed it perfectly!!  We added the wine rack on the side really as a filler.  We reuse our glasses & knew with the dishwasher raised, this was the perfect spot to hide them.  The wine rack was the perfect width although it will never be filled with wine!  This area is the most efficient area of the kitchen. The door to the right of the sink is our pull out trash can (this is where the dishwasher was previously).  It is so easy to scrape your plate, rinse it off & put it into the dishwasher that I no longer have to bend over to reach!

Love this sink!!!

The sink, the part that started it all.  It's perfect!  It's huge & white & beautiful!  It's a corian sink, the great thing about it is EVERYTHING comes out of it!  We've removed rust, scratches, sharpie (don't ask).  It is really the best product for a sink, I am glad we didn't get porcelain.

Lights in the upper cabinets & under cabinet lighting.  They are both on dimmers, one of the best features we added!

I love the double stack cabinets.  Our previous cabinets didn't go to the ceiling. I like this look much better & it was part of what I had always envisioned for my kitchen. I wanted an area where I could showcase some of my collections.  The lights again, were Dan's idea.  The contractor suggested the dimmers & that was awesome!  You can't imagine what a difference the under cabinet lights make!

Simple faucet, with pull down sprayer.  I was trying to minimize having lots of stuff behind the sink.

A double oven like this was hard to find without getting a larger one.

This turned out to be one of the biggest pains.  It measures exactly 30" wide & the countertops didn't, through several times!  They had to be sanded.  IN MY HOUSE!!!!  The dust & mess is unbelievable.  The oven still doesn't sit all the way back to the wall, there is a 2" gap & Home Depot has offered to have countertop added & I have REFUSED!!   I will never go through that again! 

The wood countertop was one of my favorite parts of the kitchen. 

Love this island.  I couldn't wipe the grin off my face when the wood top went on.  I know the installers thought I was stupid.  I did at least wait till they left to hug it!  The wood top was put in by Premier Surfaces & they were excellent to work with!  I would recommend them to anyone & they do so much more than wood countertops.  Unfortunately for me they don't install Corian so we used another company for that.

Corian countertop installers

Lots of people have asked so here's what the seam looks like when you install directional Corain & and there has to be seams.

I added lots of drawers to our design.  That was one of the things I already had in my head was lots of drawers.  I don't think Dan has seen so many drawers in a kitchen design before but I wouldn't change it.  There are 2 large drawers on either side of the stove & 4 drawers you can see here beside the refrigerator. 

Inside the top drawers are "hidden" drawers.  Just one of those features that I love! 

The silverware drawer is double stacked.  There are lots of great options in the Martha Stewart line.  I would recommend them.  All of the doors & drawers are soft close (except for the trash can).

 We chose Corian Rain Cloud for our countertop.  It was the closest thing I could get to Carrera Marble (our kitchen designer & installer didn't recommend Carrera for a kitchen that is used)
Microwave & cabinets above finally installed.

I wanted this cabinet built just so I could fill it with this china.  This pattern was my grandmother's, some of these pieces are from her but most I have collected over the years.  It really doesn't matter which pieces where hers, someone once loved these dishes & every single one of these reminds me of Mamaw. (and cabinet doors that won't close because they are too full)

I am glad we are finished with the remodel & I will say I would never do it again.   They always say you never know how bad it is until you live through it.  Well, I had expected a lot of things like not being able to cook or use my kitchen.  It's a pain to be without out if for someone who hardly ever eats out.  But this remodel when above & beyond bad.  Everything that could go wrong did & a 6 week remodel went on for 3 months!!!  It was unbelievable all the things that went wrong.  I wasn't going to do this blog post because I didn't want to relive all of the problems.  It was so stressful.  I am just not writing this & our kitchen was officially finished on February 13th.  This tells you a little about how bad my experience was.  I would recommend Home Depot again, I know that if anything is wrong even in 10 years they will fix it.  And if you live in Georgia, Dan is at the Brookwood Home Depot in Suwanee.  He is very easy to work with, I couldn't imaging doing this without him!  Premier Surfaces was also great!  My contractor was incredible but there were some things I would like to have done differently, not with the work, it was outstanding but with time management.  There is a picture of a company in this post that I would not recommend & if  you are considering using them, let me know & I will tell you why I wouldn't recommend them.  I  have decided not to air my dirty laundry publicly. 
Some of the issues we had were with backordered items.  The lights, the tile (that was a wild goose chase in itself & what a nightmare!!!).  But they worked out.  We changed the lighting plan & I am glad we did.  I really like the can lights we ended up with instead of the pendants we were planning.  The pendants were also a night mare but were coming from the Big Blue store & it was not handled properly & there might have been some yelling involved on my part.  If I sat down & told you everything that went wrong, you wouldn't believe me.  You would think I was making it all up,  it's that bad.  I am glad it's finished & we do enjoy our beautiful kitchen!
House on the Way
Savvy Southern Style

Sunday, February 2, 2014

2000 Facebook Fans Giveaway

I finally did it! I reached 2000 Facebook fans in just under 2 years! I didn't think I would ever get here but I did & to celebrate I want to do a giveaway. One lucky winner will receive:
3 sample sizes of American Paint Company paint in your choice of colors
1 sample of American Paint Company dark wax
APC color chart
3M sandpaper
O'Keeffe's Working Hands
Pyramex safety glasses from Ryobi
3M Lead Test Kit
3M Patch Plus Primer sample
3M Earplugs
Pocket tape measure

Leave a comment & follow the Rafflecopter widget for more entries & please share with your friends!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, October 14, 2013

Furkids Animal Shelter & Thrift Shopping


A group of creative and inspiring bloggers are getting together for our first annual Hometalk Thrift Benefit for Sheltered Animals Blog Tour.  Hometalk is a home and garden website that brings together professionals, bloggers and anyone interested in all things home. It's like Pinterest without the hair and nails!
(Be sure you follow the links at the bottom of the page so you can follow along with the rest of the tour.)  

Meet Aria, I rescued this sweet little dog, that's how I became involved with Furkids. 

Furkids is Georgia's largest no-kill animal shelter, housing 275+ cats per day.  Furkids was founded in 2002 by Samantha Shelton after she found a stray mother cat & kittens and was unable to find a shelter that would take them in.  They have rescued over 8,000 animals & every animal is spayed or neutered.  

Furkids established a thrift store in 2009 that is supported by donations from individuals in the community.  The store generates revenue and boost public awareness of Furkids and their valuable programs.  All proceeds from the store go directly to benefit the animals.

The Furkids thrift store is located at 4015 Holcomb Bridge Road, Norcross, GA

They have sales every week & unlike some other local thrift stores you can actually find the tags that are on sale!

I think this vintage suitcase set was the same one I had as a kid.  Lovely gold!

Great deal on this silverplate set from the 50's.  

I have seen lots of these pieces redone & they look fantastic.

I loved this vintage armoire!  Too bad I don't have a place for it, it was less than $100!!

They have several cats in the store that you will find cuddled up in the store.

Loved this chair & I may go back & get it.  It would look fantastic refinished!

These vintage chairs would be perfect with a fresh coat of paint & some new fabric.

Johnson Brothers Ironstone!  

Footed silver bowl, be still my heart!

This enamelware isn't old but it is from Crate & Barrel & looks brand new!

We had this pyrex when I was growing up.  My mom probably still has it!

More vintage pyrex, these looked brand new!

They have lots of clothes.

Tons of books!

All the books are organized by subjects!

This beautiful  kitty was found out behind the store, skinny & scared.  He will eventually be available for adoption.

Need a Halloween costume for your dog?  They had lots & they were new.

Here are a few of the goodies I purchased.  (sorry for the blurry picture)

Did you notice the cloche in the above picture?  I added a base & updated it with some paint.  How cute is it now?  I have never seen one with a metal handle on top, I might have to keep this one!

I also picked up this horse.  I have been really drawn to horses lately. 

Here's what I did with my thrift store horse.  I removed the base & used gold rub n buff to give it an update.  Now, would you pass this up in a thrift store?

This was the day I rescued Aria.  This poor baby had been abused & neglected.  She had no fur on her back end except for mats.  There was horrible smelling fur wrapped around her teeth.  Several of her teeth were loose & decaying, her breath was one of the worst things I had ever smelled & I am a dental hygienist so I know what bad breath is!  Her ears were severely infected & had probably led to her hearing loss.  When you reached to pet her she ducked, turned & went the other way.  

This is her now, watching me

She had a good life at some point; someone had loved her.  She had been spayed, was house broken (although she had forgotten) & loved to go on walks.  I reached out to several local rescue groups & Furkids was the only one who stepped up.  They took her in, provided her with all her shots, microchip & surgery to remove the loose teeth & a cyst on her back.   I have provided the love & she has come such a long way.  Now she wants to be with you all the time.  She follows me everywhere including to the bathroom.  She even got into the shower with me once because she couldn't see me through the shower curtain.   She wags her tail now & that is one of the things that makes me the happiest.  She will still duck slightly when you reach to pet her but she doesn't run away & I hope one day she will no longer duck.  She sleeps on the couch & loves for you to rub under her chin & on her belly.  Her fur has grown back & her breath smells great!  She doesn't see well at night due to some trauma to her eye but we keep a flashlight handy when we take her out at night & she is fine.  She can't hear except for loud noises such as my other dogs barking & if you clap your hands really loud.  She loves to go on walks & ride in the car.  She just curls up right in the back seat.  She is a super sweet, loving dog who will make someone a wonderful companion.  I will be devastated when she leaves (I am tearing up now just thinking about it) but I know we will find her the right home. 

Love this sweet face & little black nose!

This is my big dog blocking her from me.  He is part of the reason we can't keep her.

My daughter holding Aria at our 2nd adoption event.  She is a true lap dog!

She eats off a spoon!  I don't think she is spoiled :)

If you would like more information on Aria or any of her friends at Furkids, please go here

If you would like to donate to Furkids, please go here

  Thrift Benefit: Did you know many communities across the country have thrift shops that sponsor your local Humane Society or animal shelter? 
  Shelter Animals: There are so many animals in need. Shelters do so much with so little. 

 Here's the schedule: 

  Monday, October 14 
  Tuesday, October 15 
  Wednesday, October 16 
  Thursday, October 17 
  Friday, October 18