Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I'm Over At Beneath My Heart Today

Hey there! I'm guest posting over at Beneath My Heart today. I was absolutely thrilled and honored when Traci asked me to join her for Simple and Inexpensive Christmas Decorating ideas. I just love Traci and her inspiring blog. And I can't wait to see how her current home renovations look when complete.  
Hop on over to check out our Christmas tree and a few ideas for decorating for the holidays in a simple and inexpensive way.

Have a great day!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Vintage Cabinet Redo

Hey there!  Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.  I was finally able to work on this cabinet that hubby found and let me tell ya, it had me completely stumped.  I just didn't have a clue what to do with it.  
No matter how much I stared at it, I came up with nothin'.  
But after some time away from it, 
I finally decided to just try to bring it back to its original beauty.  
Here is the before pic.
The top had a huge hole in it, so I removed that and bought another top at Lowe's for around 10 bucks.  
We attached the new top and I applied two coats of Minwax Special Walnut stain.
I decided to just leave the tin sides alone, but I did give them a good cleaning.  We removed all the hardware and I spray painted them with Rustoleum oil rubbed bronze spray paint.  I also gave the entire piece a couple of coats of Minwax special walnut to match the top and when it was completely dry, I gave it a coat of wax.  Here's how it looks now.
I really love the darker color.  This pic isn't that great because by the time we were done, it was dark and the kitchen is the brightest room in the house.  But after being stumped for days, I'm happy with it and even happier that it's finished.
What do you think of it?
My hubby and I have some very exciting news to share very soon.
Stay tuned!

I have just listed more bread boards.  If you're ordering for Christmas, I'm accepting orders until December 16, to get them shipped in time for Christmas.  
Thank you lovely readers!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Warm Spinach Salad with Sweet Vanilla Bean Vinaigrette

Hey there!  Did everyone have a Happy Thanksgiving? 
Did you stuff yourselves silly like we did? 

We have been nursing our sweet little boy back to health so I wanted to make something fast and light today.  Although, with a stick of butter in the vinaigrette, I'm not sure it's light on calories.  But hey, all the healthy fruit and spinach cancels that out, right??  The warm vanilla bean vinaigrette is what makes this salad so special and I could seriously just drink it by itself.  It's that good. 

Also, this salad is a good way to get some veggies into your kiddos because of the sweetness of the dressing and the fruit added.   It's really a simple recipe and so yummy.  If you like vanilla or vanilla bean, you will love this salad.  Here's what you need for the vinaigrette.
Melt a stick of butter in a small saucepan.
To that, add 3 TBS of brown sugar and 2 TBS of honey.  Then scoop in the pulp of a vanilla bean and stir together until brown sugar is melted.  Now, I know vanilla beans are pricey, however, I buy my vanilla beans in bulk from ebay for about $15 including shipping.  I get about 30 beans and if you wrap them up tightly and store them in an airtight jar, they will last forever.  I use vanilla beans a lot so this is a pretty good bargain for us.  Much better than paying 10 bucks for 2 of them in the grocery store. 
Transfer entire mixture to a blender.  If you don't have a blender, just whisk for several minutes.
Add 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract and pulse (or whisk) until combined (about 2 minutes).  While pulsing, add 3 TBS of olive oil continuing to pulse to incorporate.  Pour into a small pitcher and keep warm.
I'm telling ya, I could drink this stuff without any salad.  Look at all those yummy vanilla bean specks.  So much goodness!  Set this aside and grab a 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts, toss them onto a small baking sheet and toast in the oven at 375 degrees for 5 - 8 minutes checking frequently.
Set aside to cool while you assemble your salad.  For the salad you will need a regular sized container of baby spinach, 3 oranges segmented (or a can or mandarin oranges, drained), a couple large handfuls of red seedless grapes and 2 red apples quartered and then cut into bite size pieces.  You could also add blue cheese crumbles if you like those, we do not, so I leave that out.

Combine your salad ingredients and drizzle the warm vanilla bean vinaigrette over the top.  Enjoy!
Here's the recipe:

Warm Spinach Salad with Sweet Vanilla Bean Vinaigrette
For the Vinaigrette:
1 stick melted butter
3 TBS brown sugar
2 TBS honey
1 vanilla bean
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 TBS olive oil

Melt butter in small sauce pan and then add brown sugar and honey, stirring until melted.  Add the pulp of a vanilla bean.  Transfer to blender and add vanilla extract and olive oil.  Pulse until combined.  Keep warm.

For the Salad:
1 package baby spinach leaves
2 handfulls red seedless grapes
2 red apples, quartered and cut into bite size pieces
3 oranges segmented, or one can mandarin oranges, drained
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted

Combine all ingredients in a large salad bowl and drizzle warm vanilla bean vinaigrette over the top.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I'm Over At AKA Design Today

Hey all!

I'm guest posting over at AKA Design today and I've got a fun Christmas inspired wooden sign project how to!  Be sure to click here and check it out and also make sure to check out the rest of their amazing blog, such inspiration!

Have a great day!  I'll be taking the rest of the week off to enjoy the holidays with my family!  Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 21, 2011

DIY Christmas Gift Tags

Happy Monday to you!  Although I wouldn't actually call a Monday a happy day, it's a short week and Thanksgiving week, too!  I don't know about you, but that makes me pretty happy.

Tis the season, it's almost gift giving time, one of my favorite things to do ever, and that means lots of possibilities for pretty packaging.   When I saw these oh so cute vintage school styled gift tags at Anthropologie, I just knew there could be a way to DIY them.  So how lucky was it that I came across this easy tutorial for them over at Flamingo Toes.  It's super simple and cheap, my kind of project, so I spent an evening whipping these things up and I just LOVE them!  Here's my version.....
All you need is card stock, red thread, blue thread and thin hemp twine, or whatever kind of twine you prefer.  Flamingo Toes even provides you with a template to print off to make it easier.  For teacher and coach appreciation gifts, I picked up these fun kraft gable boxes, available here, and some red and white twine, available here.  
 They reminded me of a lunch box so I thought they would be perfect with the school themed gift tags.  Fill the boxes with yummy baked goodies and you have a simple perfect gift to show your appreciation for those that spend so much of their time teaching our children.  I can't wait to get to work on mine!
If you'd like to make these cute little tags yourself, click here for the easy tutorial!
Have a great day!!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Happy Weekend

Hey friends!  I apologize for the lack of posts this week.  What a week it has been!  I had hoped to work on this....
But it is still sitting right there, just waiting for me to spiff it up.  I'm fairly certain I've decided what I want to do with it and hope to finish it up (or at least get started) this weekend so I can blog about it next week!

Have a great weekend all!  What are you working on?

Monday, November 14, 2011

Vintage Cabinet and $50 Visa Gift Card Winner

Happy Monday everyone!  Did you have a good weekend? 
My hubby is in the process of cleaning out a few storage units he purchased so he has been bringing home fun things for me to play with.  His latest find is this cabinet that I've not figured out what to do with yet.  Here it is in it's original state.
I think it is beautiful but I'm not really sure what it is.  Does anyone know?  The end reminds me of a little pie safe with it's tin sides and shelving.
The hardware is beautiful but I'm not sure I want to keep the hinges.  However, I love the door handles so they are staying.
The top has a hole in it and will have to be replaced.  And I haven't decided if I want to paint it or just improve it's original features.  
 I'm also not sure if I even like the tin sides.  I love the aged tin sides on this piece from Anthropologie.
 I wonder if there is some sort of treatment I could apply to the tin to replicate that look.  
Anyone know?  Lots of decisions, huh!  What do you think?

P.S.  The random number generator has selected 199 as the winner of the giveaway and that belongs to:

Gail who's comment was: 
"I found the blog site, Yeah!!! LOl. I love the end tables...I must also say, I liked the swirl...haha But I would never have had the forsight to turn them into end tables with reclaimed wood. They are beautifyl!!!"

Congratulations!!  Please email me your address info via the contact page and we will send this to you so you can enjoy it!  Have a great day all!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Kids Snack Tray Ideas

Happy Friday everyone!  Just wanted to share a fun idea with you in a short post today.

I came across these old metal trays going through a box of junk and I thought surely they could be used for something. 
They've certainly seen better days, right?  Anyway, I grabbed a can of this.....
And gave each one a few coats and let dry (after I gave them a good cleaning).  Here's what I did with them....
I thought it would be fun to use them for snack trays for the kiddos.  My older children are, well, too old to enjoy them, but my youngest is certainly having fun using them for his after school snack.  Include a piece of chalk and they can have a little fun while eating their snack or meal.  If you have a lot of them, they would also be lots of fun for a kids party. 

Have a great day and weekend!

P.S.  Our $50 Visa Gift Card Giveaway is still going on so if you haven't left a comment on this post to enter, be sure to do so before Sunday!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Reclaimed Flooring End Tables and a $50 Giveaway!

Hey there!  I'm so excited about today's post because I LOVE giveaways!   More on that below.

First, I want to show you a project we worked on over the weekend using the remaining section of this reclaimed bowling alley flooring leftover from our coffee table project.
I was afraid it was going to go to waste because I had decorators block and couldn't come up with anything to do with it, until hubby came home with a pair of these amazing iron nesting tables that he found.  The scroll work isn't my cup of tea, but, I knew we could remove that somehow.
Because I'm unorganized and get in a hurry when working on these things, the pic is just of one of the tables and I forgot to take pics as we worked.  To remove the scroll work, we just used a jig saw with a blade for steel cutting (and eye protection, there were plenty of sparks) and then I sanded down any sharp edges with sandpaper.  I liked the aged roughed up look of the iron tables so I just left them as is after removing the scroll piece instead of spray painting them.

After that, I simply placed the table upside down on the slab of flooring and traced around the outside.  Then we cut them out using a circular saw, cutting just inside the line we just traced.  This way, the piece would fit perfectly inside the lip of each table.  At least, that's what we hoped.....we did have to do some minor sanding to make them fit perfectly into the table.  After they were secure, I applied polyurethane to the top and sides and voila!  Two perfect end tables to go with our coffee table we made from the same slab of flooring.
I was so excited when we split the first piece and inside it were these letters stenciled on the wood.  I thought it was a perfect touch and really added to the industrial vintage feel of the table.
I'm so happy that we were able to use every inch of that wonderful slab of reclaimed bowling alley floor and none of it went to waste.
And I'm glad we were able to remove the scroll work.  I love the simplicity of these tables.  There is such beauty in that.
Now onto the giveaway!  I'm a true believer in paying it forward and we've been blessed with great friends who have always been there for us, so, we're giving away a $50 Visa Gift Card to one Our Vintage Home Love reader.  We love our readers so much and I LOVE giving gifts.  Making someone feel special is what life is all about.

To enter, just leave a comment.  (One comment per person, please)
The giveaway will end on Sunday night, November 13 and will be announced on Monday morning's blog post, November 14.

Have a great day!

***********************COMMENTS ARE NOW CLOSED*************************

Monday, November 7, 2011

Mini French Inspired Bread Board Set

Happy Monday everyone!  Did you have a good weekend?  We experienced our first earthquake Saturday night and let me just say, I'm not a fan.  Hubby slept through it but our boys were a little unsettled, as was I.   Pretty sure I'd rather poke my own eye with a stick than experience one again. :)

Anyway, I'm so excited to show you a few new bread boards that I've been working on that are now available in my shop!  I have always admired french cheese boards but they are always out of my price range.  So I decided to come up with a set of mini bread boards that are inspired by my favorites. 

I'm crazy about these and I hope you will love them as much as I do.  I also decided to add a large maple bread board to my shop.  I've started purchasing my maple from the same supplier that I purchase my walnut and I think the wood is just gorgeous.  I couldn't be more happy with it.  The colors running through the grain of the wood are stunning.

And so many of you have sent emails requesting me to make a longer version of my medium walnut bread board and a wider version of my large walnut board, so I did! 

All the info regarding my new bread boards can be found in my shop.   Click here if you'd like to purchase one of these.  And as usual, I've also added more of my other bread boards! 

I worked on some fun things this weekend that I'm excited to show you.  And because we can all use some extra $ during this time of year, I'm giving away a $50 Visa Gift Card later in the week!  I can't believe how fast time is flying.  It will be Christmas before you know it!  Has anyone started shopping yet? 

Have a great day friends!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Thrift Chair Redo

Hey there!  It's Friday!  Without a doubt, the best day of the week, yes?

A few weeks ago, I picked up this chair at a yard sale for 8 bucks.  It was marked $10, but I did a little bargaining...... :)
I don't know why, but I was really drawn to it.  Then when I got it home, I had no idea what I wanted to do with it, so, it sat outside, neglected, for a couple weeks.  And then finally, I had an idea. 

Because I sometimes get ahead of myself, I painted it white BEFORE removing all the fabric.  I knew I wanted it white, so, I thought if I got that done, I could figure out what direction I wanted to go in for the rest of the chair.

Because the wood was so old and porous, it sucked up the white spray paint like crazy, so it took A LOT of coats before it finally looked good.

THEN, I completely stripped the chair to find the upholstery webbing in pretty sad shape.
So, I removed all of it and replaced it with new jute webbing, available at any fabric store.  I used carpet tacks to attach it to the chair.  Why?  Because that's what was there before.  I am no expert on upholstering a chair. :)
During this time, the ideas were comin' and I decided I wanted to use light gray linen to upholster the chair, so I ordered it here.  I ordered two yards for this project.
When it was delivered, I was so happy because it was exactly what I wanted and you know how ordering fabric online can be a little iffy sometimes.  But it was perfect, so I got to work. 

I replaced the cardboard strip that was across the webbing originally because it was still in good shape. 
And over that, I added some low loft quilt batting to give a little extra cushion.
To make the slipcover for the chair, I used a piece of newspaper to create the pattern, making sure to leave at least a 3 inch overhang to allow for the fabric to be attached under the seat.
Then pinned the newspaper pattern to my fabric to cut it out.  I attached it to the chair by simply pulling and stapling with a staple gun underneath the chair.
That part is done!
Originally, I was going to stop here, but, that would be a pretty boring chair.  So, because ruffles are big right now and I'm a girl, I decided to keep it very similar to the original chair and attach a ruffle around the edge. 

However, I have never sewed or made ruffles before.  So, I guessed my way throught that part and cut 4 inch strips of fabric and hemmed one side.  Then hand threaded a piece of strong thread through the top and bunched up the fabric to create the ruffle.   I have no idea if that is the correct way to do it but that's what I did.

After that, I attached the ruffle strips with tacks around the edge and covered with a piece of trim.  I attached the trim with a hot glue gun.  Then I cut out 1 inch strips of linen to make ties for around the arms.  To make it easy, I just left them rough and didn't hem 'em or anything. 

It still needed a little something so I made a cushion to place on top of that by measuring the inside of the chair and cutting out two pieces of fabric accordingly, sewed it, stuffed it, and threw it in the chair.  To give the chair a special touch, I stenciled three very meaningful numbers on the top with some vintage stencils hubby brought home and gray craft paint.  Here's what it looks like all spiffed up.
This chair is a bit of a departure from what I usually go for but I. AM. LOVING IT!  It's super fun and I like to mix something unexpected with the expected every now and then.  And besides, I really believe if something makes you happy and smile when you're decorating your home, you should go for it and not worry too much about decorating "rules".
And I love the way it plays with the rustic bench we made.  What do you think?

Stay tuned for lots of fun things next week!  Have a great weekend my lovely friends!