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Preview: Vintage Home & Garden

Vintage Home & Garden

Updated: 2017-06-21T21:31:12.524-05:00


I've got a brand new blog...and a giveaway!!


Yes, it is true...I finally did it!

After a year of plotting, planning, obsessing and second-guessing myself...I have a new blog!

And the best part??....I am having a fabulous giveaway to celebrate!

Now, come on...check it out right now, you know you want to!

Urban Farmgirl

(All future posts will be at


a tiny preview...


Yesterday definitely what I would call..."one of those days"It started out well..I got up early...went to a yard sales for a few hours and found a truckload of fantastic things - but then it started. The downhill slide that makes your wonderful day just totally crash and burn. You know the kind...where you feel slapped in the face at every turn. Ugh.So let me get to my point. I promised a preview of my goods for my booth at Kane County Flea Market this weekend...and I didn't want to disappoint. But lets just say an unexpected visit to the ER for my sweet man resulted in some stitches...and my photo preview idea to not turn out as planned. But, I came through - kinda. With a photos of a whopping 7 of the 78 pieces I am bringing to the show this weekend. I figured it was better than holding out on you completely. But brace yourself. You are about to view some of the worst photos in history. Bad lighting. Lots of shadows. And one very dusty floor at my warehouse. To sum it up...I had exactly 10 minutes to snap as many pictures as I could before the goods all had to be loaded into not one...but two...huge U-haul trucks. Did I ever tell you this 'painting-furniture-for-your-job' thing was glamorous? If I did - I soooo lied. But I love here we go.I am totally crazy, flipping out in love with this H-U-G-E ornate frame. I just finished mounting a mirror in it...and it is stunning. Seriously. I have tons of mirrors for this show, all shapes sized and colors, but this one is just over-the-top!And the desk...that old girl was rescued from the office at an old horse farm. The drawers were full of old ledgers from the 1950s. Those will be available at my booth at Junk Bonanza this September. Wouldn't you have been just over-the-moon to have a bed like this as a little girl?? It has wide wood rails, too. So pretty...this one is a full size, but I have 4 twin beds and one more full size coming with me, too!The desk on the left has a drop front- and the inside is full of little cubbys. Looks a little "Pottery Barn" to glad I chose those handles for it. And the bookcase...well, I never seem to be able to bring enough of those. I seem to sell They must be hard to find...hmmmm. There are actually 4 of the chairs on the left. Oh, and there is a matching chair with arms that I have priced separately. I have a dining table, too. The desk is soooo cute! It is curved...and I had a glass top made for it, too! It dates from the 1940s and is solid Mahogany. (don't freak out wood lovers - it was way beyond being able to be refinishd when I found it.) I have 7 or 8 desks going to this show. Not as many as usual, but I just couldn't seem to squeeze another one this month. But like always, I will be taking custom if there is something you are looking for drop me a line. I wish I could have photographed more for you! I will try to snap some pics at the show Saturday. I can't wait to meet all your girls that emailed to tell me you will be at the show! Remember, I will be in the Arena Building...right on the main isle. I have 4 booths so you kinda can't miss me and the sea of furniture. If you are the praying kind...please add a little thought in for me this weekend...there is a chance of rain! Yikes!Oh, and for my annoncement I mentioed the other day...hopefully later today. Just ironing out a few check back!Have a great weekend, girls![...]

come see me this weekend!


I love this time of year.


Green grass.



That's right, girls! This weekend marks my official start to Flea Market Season! I will be at the Kane County Flea Market in St. Charles, IL this Saturday and Sunday!

Just look for me in the sea of white painted furniture. I will be the tall thing with dark hair sticking up over a pile of dresser...vanity get the idea.

My booth location is the same it has been for the last few years, so most of you will know where to find me. On the main drag, right across from the Office/Bathroom area. I am in the Arena Building, right on the isle.
I will be trying to get photos of everything as I drag it out of storage to load the truck - so look for a preview on Friday. Oh, and a little announcement from me is coming on Friday, too! So do check back!

Hope to see you this weekend at the flea!

have you ever cried over a refrigerator??


I almost did today. And I am not a crying-kind-of-girl. Did I ever tell you one of my favorite salvage stores here in my town is in a huge old brick warehouse...and in that warehouse they used to manufacture refrigerators waaay back in the day?? Well, I have a deep love for old industrial warehouses, I always have. The architecture, the huge freight elevators...the creaky wood floors, the 25 foot ceilings. They feel so well used and well loved to me. I love wandering through them. The city of live in was once the manufacturing capital of the US - and yes, I am serious as silly as that may sound. Before everyone pulled up stakes a few years ago and high-tailed it for cheap labor in foreign countries just about everything you used in your home was made here in my city in little ol' Illinois. Every day when you open your kitchen cabinets, chances are your handles came from here...your washers, your dryers, your Rubbermaid totes, even your fine antique furniture. You name it, we made it here. So, back to the story about my salvage store. It has a home in one of the formerly-abandoned beautiful old brick warehouses that used to manufacturer refrigerators. Today when I was there, I decided to ask more about the building. What used to be made there? many years it was open?...I just like to know the history of buildings. I have no idea why.The story I was told was a short one, as the person telling me didn't seem to care one ounce about this building. So let me get straight to the part that made me want to cry.When the salvage yard took over the warehouse a few years ago, the basement was still full of retro aqua, pink and yellow fridges. BRAND-SPANKIN' NEW, and original to the 1950s. The factory closed before they were ever shipped to a store. There were over 100 of them down there, frozen in time. So....guess what they did with them............Did you guess?? They trashed every last one of them. Trashed. As in garbage. As in perfectly painted, never used and scrapped out for a landfill.Uh, HELLO stupid salvage people, did you ever think of putting them in your store and making about a million dollars on them??? Yeah, go ahead and sell scrap wood and broken windows for $2...and throw away the goldmine you had in the basement. Good idea!! (Yes, I said that all with sarcasm. Sorry. I am still a little bitter. I only learned this about 4 hours ago so have yet to get over it.)Ugh. Sick. Sick and very sad. Do you ever get the feeling you need to run the world?Today was one of those days I wished I could rewind the clock and take over.(photos # 1& #2 - Coastal Living #3 - unknown)[...]

how's it hangin'...


I love the smell of laundry that has dried in the fresh air and sun. Sheets are so crisp and fresh...Growing up, we lived in the country. Laundry was my chore, and to be honest I secretly loved doing it. The smell of dryer sheets still make me happy. Weird, I know. Anyway, once April rolled around, I was stricktly forbidden to use the dryer. It was "the sun is free and we have to pay for gas" school of thought that my mother drilled into me. Now, as an adult with my own home, I totally understand. I love to pinch a penny now and then. It frees up more cash for my "junking" excursions, right?!(both photos from Country Living)So here is what I just gotta know...Do you "hang" your clothes to dry in the summer or still use the dryer?I would love to hear your opinion. I am afraid my neighbors would hate it...I don't live in a 'clothesline' neighborhood. Then again, it is also not a "paint furniture in your driveway" or a "run your palm sander at 10pm" kind of neighborhood either, but I have yet to have a knock on my door with complaints. Ha!So should I throw caution to the wind and do something as crazy as installing a clothesline in my backyard? Or would that give me the "hillbilly" label I have heard a neighbor or two mention? Oh, and I should clarify, I would never hang bras, undies or my hubbys boxers out to dry, just so ya know!Personally, I think they are pretty darn cute. Lets hear it girls, and don't hold back![...]

loving this...bathroom edition


I am on a bathroom kick today, so just thougt I would share my latest loves. I have 3 bathrooms that are in desperate need of a I am always on the hunt for inspiration. I love all of these...hope you will enjoy them as much as I do!I am c-r-a-z-y about the color palette in this one. I am all about neutrals and natural pine. It is just soooo "me". I am seriously considering this look for my main bathroom. But I am not sure if I have the heart to cut open the top of a gorgeous old pine dresser. Everthing just looks so casual and comfortable. I like things that are not too fussy. I can almost feel the summer breeze blowing through the window when I look at this bathroom. I would just die to have a bathroom this large! If I put a cabinet like this in mine, I would not be able to walk in the door! LOVE the grey walls and of course...the chandi! Oh, and the whitewashed floors. My flooring guy thought I was such a nut the other day when I called for a quote to whitewash my oak floors. What does he know, anyway??Loving this cabinet...I think I may have to do one for my show in May like this. The chicken-wire front is fabulous!And the storage in this bath - WOW! I would love to have all those cupboards and cabinet doors to hide things behind! Oh, and of course...I am swoony over the grey walls. This bath is my inspiration for my basement bathroom. I can't wait to do the beadboard walls...galvanized light fixtures...old farm sink. Love, love, love it!I am a girl that is crazy about old metal...and the top of this vanity makes me just plain giddy! I need to find one. This is not a want. This is a NEED! I really think I am going to end up with beadboard ceiling in every room of my house, too!Back to reality...I have to go clean the ugly bathrooms I have....and stop dreaming about the one's I don't. After bathroom duty and a little laundry...I am off to paint a french-style entertainment center and the most gorgeous french-style bedroom set. Anyone out there shopping for a little girl's furniture? This bedroom set makes me wish I had one. A french armoire, sleigh bed, nightstand and vanity with a gorgeous bench that is soon to be painted a beautiful soft, off-white. It will be at the show in St. Charles, IL in May!Happy Wednesday!(photo credit: #1 & 2 BH&G, #3 Remodeling Center, #4 Unknown, #5 Canadian House & Home, #6 BH&G, #7 House Beautiful)[...]

yard sale bliss...


Friday was a perfect day...70 degrees...the sun was shining...I started out early for my yard sale rounds. Now just a tip for you all in case you are ever driving in my town...if I see a sign that looks like this...I brake. Hard. If someone took the time to paint their sign like this...they must have fabulous things, right?When I see a sign like this I get that feeling...a few little butterflies...I drive a little faster than I should...and watch out if you think for a second you are going to pull out of a driveway in front of me. I will go over top of you. Because at the end of it all...I leave with my truck looking like this. And it is so worth it. I wish I would have taken better photos, but I was in a hurry. I had to unload my loot from Round #1 and head back out for the rest of the sales! There is so much packed in the back of my truck, I could not even label it all. I loaded up 3 was fabulous. And the back seat of the truck??Well, lets not even go there. It was full. As in c-r-a-z-y full. 32 ornate antique portrait frames, old metal objects, metal baskets and old french books...oh and a few beautiful old linens, too. It was a good day. I have to sort and clean everything up today and start painting those frames! Maybe I will be able to snap more pics tomorrow. Most of this is going to the show with my in May, so if you see something you like..come see me!Happy Monday...and hope everyone had a Happy Easter![...]

little miss sunshine...


My friend Annie, over at The House That Jade Built, graciously awarded me with the...Why thank you, is so nice to know I bring a little "sunshine" into your day! She has such a fun and colorful blog, speaking of sunshine, so pop over and pay her a visit!So I am adding my own little twist on this award post. I had many readers email me after my last post to as about my furniture painting business. So I am going to give you a few answers...but I'll skip typing out the questions...because it is late...and I am tired...and I inhaled a lot of paint fumes today so my brain needs a rest. Here it goes...1. I have been in business for 10 years - this month is actually my anniversary. Most of you seem interested in how I got started doing this, but that is a whole other post - long story. Lets just say it involved a car accident, a foot surgery that kept me from going to work and a girl that can never sit still. 2. Yes, I paint furniture as my full-time job. I give a makeover to around 60-70 pieces per month. 3. When I am not painting rest of my time is spent dumpster diving, cruising Craigslist, stalking the neighborhood on trash day, going to yard sales, auctions and flea markets, prepping, finishing and selling the pieces. I hope that helps explain why I hardly ever show photos of my work. It is out the door as soon as it is done...and quite frankly who has the time? I'm wiped out by the time it is ready for delivery or shipping!4. The color of furniture the most popular with my clients is...white. A crisp, clean bright white. 5. No, I do not spray my furniture. I have tried it in the past, may try it again in the future, but my clients have come to expect a certain finish from me...and I am not one to disappoint! I find the extra time it takes to use a good quality primer, brush and paint is so worth it. But who knows, I would love to spray to save a little time...but we will see. 6. Yes, my husband helps me. And no, he never complains. He has his own busy career, but if I need a repair or a custom cabinet built, he is right there to help, no questions asked. I swear I could never do this business on the level that I do it without a helping hand now and then. But I will say, he refuses to paint. He is my handy-man and my delivery help. It ends there. 7. Yes, I do ship my furniture and it is much more reasonable than you would think!8. The furthest I have ever shipped something is Asia...I have a store there that buys from me regularly. It is so weird to see my coffee table in an ad with Chinese lettering all around it! 9. No, I do not paint in my garage or my basement. Thank goodness! In the early days I did but I hated the mess and I never had enough room to work. I had to rent 3 storage units just to keep my stock in - crazy! So a few years ago I had to move the operation to a warehouse. Much better. 10. YES! All the furniture in my house is white. All but one gorgeous European pine sideboard from the early 1800s...I could never paint that! I think that should cover all the questions I received, if not...remind me and I will post the answer!I am off to bed. I have a list of estate sales to make the rounds to tomorrow and an afternoon date with an armoire! Sounds like a perfect spring day to me! [...]

weekend furniture painting...


UPDATE: Thanks to your emails....all the furniture and the frames shown in the photos in this post are SOLD! (Thank you Sharon, Elizabeth, Cammy and Barb, they will be shipping early next week!!) I will be posting more photos next week when I get the next "batch" of furniture done. I can't wait to show you...I have the most beautiful Frenchy bedroom set I am painting this weekend!It is going to be a busy month, I can just feel it...I have my first show coming May 1st & 2nd and I am starting to feel the pressure...but I am so excited at the same time! Selling at the show is always so much fun! I love meeting the people...and there is nothing better than seeing my furniture being loaded up and on its way to its new happy home! I sell quite a bit of furniture for little girl's rooms, and it feeds to soul  to see how they light up when the get a new dresser or desk. Never fails to make me happy...I am not so sure a piece of furniture would have thrilled me like that when I was a kid! Here is a little of what I worked on this weekend...A few vintage frames...and a few more...they always fly out the door on the first day of the show. I will have 30 or 40 there for the first show, so there should be plenty to choose from!a full size for a princess!and a gorgeous, solid mahogany tall dresserThis cabinet I actually did last fall but it never made it to a show with me. It will be there in May, but I take custom orders for these, too. They are the perfect size for an over-the-toilet medicine cabinet, or at least that is what most of my buyers tell me they are using them for! I use a salvaged window for the door, and build the cabinet around it. The old locking mechanism is the pull for the door on this one, but each one is different. And of course a bookcase...I can never, ever bring enough of these to the shows. I usually leave with a "waiting list" for bookcases. I think maybe I am should start building a few of those, too!And last...but not least...YES...I will have my letter necklaces there again this year! Thank you for all the inspired me to bring them again this year! I have a few in stock and ready to go...$15 let me know if anyone is in a hurry and needs one before May. I will be happy to drop it in the mail!I hope some of you "local" girls will stop out at see me at the show! May 1st & 2nd at the Kane County Fairgrounds in St. Charles, IL. I will be in my ususal spot...and have 4 booths stuffed with furniture! Things goes fast, so if you are looking for something specific, be sure to get there on Saturday!I have a date with my paintbrush again today, so I guess I better get away from my computer and get on it! I have a desk and a dining room set with 6 ornate chairs that need to be done before my head hits the pillow tonight!Happy Tuesday, girls![...]

diy kitchen love...


I'm doing a little happy dance for Kristin over at My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia!She just heard she is going to be featured in Better Homes & Gardens Special Interest Publication...Kitchen & Bath Makeovers!Have you seen her kitchen???Really, if you have have to.! I'm even giving you a little preview below...but you can get all the details on her blog. I was going from blog to blog a few months ago, and stumbled on her kitchen redo...and about fell off my chair. I could not believe the kitchen she has now started out so 'builder basic'. Since then her blog has become one of my favorites, I am always checking in to see what she is up to. The space was done on a budget...and was totally DIY...well, she had a little help from a painter friend, but who can blame her! Look at all those cabinets! It took a little time, as all good DIY projects seem to. But, she did it a step at a time and the space has evolved into an elegant, comfortable space. Can you even believe this gorgeous space... started out like this????And she didn't get new cabinets...nope...she used what she had an made them better. Not just better...incredible!Seriously, Kristin had a vision...and it was perfectly executed. I have seen a good make-over or two, but the change in this one is fantastic!It is so bright...and is it just me...or does it seem about 10x bigger than it started out?? I am loving her floor...and the big window above the sink is fabulous!On her blog, she even shows step by step how she created that gorgeous island!And the part that I find more wonderful than the kitchen is that she was lucky enough to have one of the editors from Better Homes & Gardens find her blog and fall in love with her kitchen like I did! That would be the best job ever! sit at my desk and blog-hop all day looking for rooms that make me swoon. Congrats, Kristin. I am glad your hard work is going to be shown off for the world to see![...]

old painted cottage giveaway!


Jen at The Old Painted Cottage is having a giveaway!

Laurie, from Bella Inspirations has offered one of her gorgeous burlap table runners to one of Jen's lucky readers.

Jen's blog is one of my favorites! I have been following her from the very beginning...and it is amazing what that girl can do with a room! I am in love with her kitchen and living room...this girl is amazing! Oh, and she has a little online store, too! Packed with some of the most amazing finds I have ever seen! I want one of everything! She has some serious eye-candy over on her blog, so click over and take a look!

But please, try not to drool on your keyboard.

So pay a visit to Jen's blog by clicking here and follow her instructions.
Maybe you will be the lucky winner of the burlap runner...
(but secretly, I hope it is me!)

Good luck, girls!

chandelier heaven...


Yesterday the hubs and I took a little "field trip". He needed a break from building and repairing furniture...and I needed a break from painting it. So...we headed over to see my favorite "chandelier guys". They are two men that clean and restore vintage chandeliers and sell them to women like us that just can't get enough of them! I was lucky enough to make it into the treasured storage space for all their chadis. I swear as I made it to the bottom step and into their basement angels started to sing...well, not really, but they may as well have!I was in h.e.a.v.e.n. Now, be warned. These photos are not pretty, but the chandis were. Taking photos in a basement just does not do these beauties justice, and I couldn't bear to ask 2 men in their late 70s if we could haul each one upstairs so I could get better pics outside. So, they are what they are...but I wanted you to see what they had. This was just one corner...the chandis went all down one side of their basement. There must have been 75 of them too choose from...and their prices were very, very good.All I heard from my husband behind me was "Oh, boy. Here we go."There were chandis that were all glass and crystal...I always love those the most.Some heavy on the crystals...some a little more simple. There were some reeeeallly cute petite chandis, too. I would LOVE a little one like this is my bathroom...or above my kitchen sink as a pendant. I am going to have to remember this one since I will be starting a kitchen reno in a few months.This one would be great in a does hang straight, but the crystals are so heavy it won't be straight until it is up on the ceiling. This is the one I bought for my office. I think it am going to paint it gray and distress it. My office is all white, so I think that will be perfect! And these two were my FAVS! Seriously, I stared at them for so long, my husband finally just said, "so why don't you buy them so you can stare at them at home". I love that man. He is just the best!But, I have a house with ceilings too low to handle these, and I am still sad about it this morning. I asked my hubs if we could move just so I could have a place for it. He agreed. Isn't she a beauty???The metal that holds the crystals is my favorite part. All made by hand. This chandi is stamped with the manufacturer name and the year it was made on the inside. I believe it was 1927. This style is called a 'wedding cake chandelier' that. Can you imaging the house this came from? It bet it was stunning!This little mini one matched it. I love the bits of old paint on the ceiling cap. I really, really, really wanted this one for my he didn't want to separate the pair. I love days like this when I can escape the paint fumes and sawdust and go look at beautiful things.A wonderful friend I have made here in blogland reminded me the other day just how lucky I am to be able to what I do for my job. I am so glad she did...because it is so true! I would be so unhappy working behind a desk all day. This is what feeds my soul. Searching through old barns, finding those out of the way junk shops, meeting people unexpectedly that sell great things out of their is so much fun! I can't see mylself doing anything else. My little biz is celebrating its 10 year anniversary April's hoping for another successful 10! Because I will take wearing my favorite dirty boots over heels any day![...]

weekend finds...


Ok, girls...I was at it again!I just can't help myself.This stuff seems to find me, rather than me finding it. I swear. I hit some estate sales and thrift shops this past weekend...and here is what I dragged home with me. Here's the low-down on what I am going to do with it all...The 3 white enamel dishes with lids will hold clutter on top of my desk...frames will be painted and sold at my first show at the Kane County Flea Market in May...the grain sacks will be used to upholster chair seats...the ironstone pitcher is going in my collection...I think the little ironstone sugar bowl without the lid will work as a vase for my kitchen window...the bottles are going in my bathrom...and the clocks, scale and fan will be at the May show, too. Oh, and I can't forget the vintage metal number 8 and letter G...I buy those whenever I find them, too.  And my favorite find of the day....drumroll please....22 MATCHING vintage locker baskets!Love the patina, love the cream color paint...within 2 seconds I had a project for them in mind! I just haven't told my hubs yet...but he is going to make me a long...low...cabinet to hold these in my work studio. Then my sister...she does all my sewing...gets the task of making me 22 liners that fold over with litte ruffles out of some white vintage linen I have been stashing. I hope they both still love me after this project! I think it will look fabulous...and will be perfect for sorting and storing all my fabric!I love the weekend. The junking bliss starts on Thursday & Friday around here...thats when the estate sales happen...and I usually make the rounds of my favorite little junk shops on the weekend when they are getting the most donations. Now, I am off to see the 2 guys I told you about a few weeks ago that have a basement full of vintage chandeliers for sale! I really hope it won't be too dark for photos...I know its going to be I have to show you what I find!Wish me luck![...]

Marley & Lockyer giveaway!


I am taking this moment to spread the love...

Marley & Lockyer is having a giveaway!!

Her Etsy shop is loaded with so many beautiful things...

and she is kind enough to offer not one...but 2...of her gorgeous pillow covers...


a set of your favorite clay tags from her shop!

So head over to her site and pay a visit!

There is so much eye candy, stay a while and look through her past posts. Ness' blog was one of the very first I ever followed, and I love every second I spend there!



Ok, ok...I know I keep going on...and on...and on...about that slightly-oversized Opera House cabinet I have been working on for my living room, so thought I would give you a little sneak-peek. It is in the home-stretch...I have to do a little distressing...install new glass shelving...and put the sliding glass doors on the front. But I could not wait to show you a little peek. I am soooo happy I decided to leave the areas that were raw pine natural! It is such a beautiful contrast to my white ironstone collection that will be on display inside. I am in love with that bowl in the center. I have never...ever...seen another one like it. It is a rather large size and has a metal cool! Anyone out there know what it was for? Maybe it had a lid?? I am not sure about the handles...I left them in their original state for now. They look black in the photos, but they are old, and solid brass, so have a great dark brownish-bronze patina to them. I may keep them this way, we'll see. The inside of the cabinet has a little writing here and there. No idea why...but I love it. I could never paint over it. Now, did I happen to mention that my beloved cabinet seems a bit too large for my room?? Yeah. Just a little snag in my plan. It is just so massive, it makes everything else look a little small. I had a feeling that would happen when I bought it, but had to take the chance anyway. My room is 33ftx16 rather bowling-alley-ish. The scale of the cabinet really needs a much larger room...but it is what it is. And I love it. So it is staying. For now. I'm off for another day with the paintbrush. I have a coffee table, 3-drawer bombay chest and a full-length mirror to get done today. This is a piece I delivered yesterday. Let me tell you, there is nothing like a girly white dresser to make a little girl soooo happy!  Oh, and Happy St. Patty's Day, girls! [...]



You girls are the best, you know that?? Thanks for all the "where have you been?" emails...I really didn't think anyone would miss me if I was gone from blogland for a week! You sure know how to make a girl feel good!I have had a lot going on around here...some small things...and some really big things. I am trying to tie up loose ends on something super-exciting so I can make a little announcement to you all next week. It is something fabulous but scary all at the same time. Aren't those kind of things just the best??...ok, for me only when I look back on them, NOT when they are happening! I've been trying to get a few new projects projects started...and finished...around the house...I've been painting furniture for clients like a crazy woman...I just finished piece #13 this morning...I need a break. And some Girl Scount cookies. While the paint is drying on those pieces...I try to sneak in a little work on that g-i-a-n-t cabinet I told you about a few weeks ago...I am soooo close to having it done. Hoping to finish it tomorrow and so I can have new glass shelves cut and have it loaded by next week. Here's hoping...On top of house projects and furniture painting...spring is right around the corner and I am trying to figure out a landscape plan. Lets just say I am much better at painting furniture than designing a landscape. I decided today to hire someone. I just don't have time to do it all. I do need sleep, afterall!Note to self: Next time I buy a house, I will NOT rip out every plant, every bush and every weed until I have a plan on paper for how to replace it. My poor old house was being swallowed by bushes when I bought it, and I got a little happy with my girl-sized chainsaw. (all photos from here...I am totally obsessed with her work)Oh, and I am on the hunt for a spiffy new pair of Hunter rain boots...did you see the ones on Oprah last week with warm little liners you can take out? I fell in Zappos, here I come! I will be needing them when show season rolls around for me in May! It always seems to be cold and rainy that first show of the year! Now...what color to get...hmmmm....Happy Monday, girls. Its good to be back. [...]

weekend flea market finds...


I am a road-trip kind of girl. There are few things I like better than hopping in the car with my hubs and heading somewhere for the day. We always have such a darn good time! Saturday I had a delivery in the Chicago area, so we loaded up the trailer...hooked up the GPS and took off for the day. First stop...ESTATE SALE. I love, love, love seeing those words on a sign nailed to a post! Here were my finds at that sale...some are to keep...some are to sell...but hands down favorite was the galvanized metal tool box! How cool is that thing, anyway? I was gushing about it the whole way into Chicago. At one point, my so-easy-going-you-have-to-check-him-for-a-pulse-sometimes hubs says proudly "my friend's wives want designer jeans and expensive shoes...not my wife, she wants a dirty old toolbox she crawled on the floor under a workbench full of sawdust to get." He gets me. After breakfast at a little diner along the way..which, by the way, is a requirement for him spending the day "junking" with me...we were off the the flea market.First stop at the flea see Anita & Judy aka the Iowa Junk Gyspies! Now, I really shouldn't tell you this or I am going to create competition for myself, but if you don't get early, you will be sorry. Trust me on this. The things on their tables grow wings and fly out of there. They always have stacks of ironstone, tarnished silver, loads of old get the idea...really, really good stuff!I snagged the basket in the photo below...but why the heck didn't I get those finials?? I have a weakness for old glass bottles. I feel the need to buy every one I see. I controlled myself this time...I only came home with 2. That stack of white plates peeking around in the bottom right corner was another moment. Why did I leave those behind?But here is some of what I came home the vintage pig breadboard. He is going to look fabulous on display in my kitchen. And the ironstone bucket...don't even get my started...I am c-r-a-z-y about that thing! I can't wait to fill it with hydrangeas this summer!I was on a mission to find a chandelier...or two. I almost let out this really-embarrassing-for-my-husband squeal when I found a vendor that was actually from my town...and was selling chandeliers! Here is one that I think I might buy...if he didn't sell it. The prices were fantastic! (Yes, I knocked that crooked bulband broke it...I blame it on my excitement.)They had about 6 of them at the show...all ready-to-hang...they rewire when they need to, all the crystals are in place and this one even had its original ceiling cap! He wanted $150...I think that was a pretty good price!I didn't buy because I am going over to their house this weekend to see what else they have. He has 15 different chandeliers right now, so I can't wait to get over there to see what else screams "take me home". I am dreaming of an all-glass chandi with crystals for my office. If anyone is looking for one, drop me an email. I plan on taking more pics while I am there. I know how hard they are to find at a good price, so if you see something you like I can ship it!Happy Tuesday, girls. I am off to work on painting my giant 'opera house' cabinet. I am dying to get it done and in place so I can show you! You will never believe it is the same cabinet. Gotta love white paint![...]

flea market weekend - woohoo!!


FINALLY! I have been waiting...and waiting for my flea market to open for the season!Notice, I say my flea market...but it has become such a part of my life...I feel I can call it whatever I want! But really, its known just as the Kane County Flea Market in St. Charles, IL. I give 7 months of my year to selling there...but this weekend I am getting my shop on, so watch out girls!I'm bringing my husband...he's got the whole linebacker body style goin' he is going to block for me while I grab what I want to buy. Ok, so he will most likely be standing there with a coffee holding my purchases looking reeeaaaallly bored while I buy more stuff I don't need. Here is what I am on the hunt for...White dishes...all shapes, all sizes...I have a new 8ft wide cabinet to fill lets remember! Oh, and any old metal things...salt/pepper shakers, platters, pitchers...whatever. I want to mix a little in with the ironstone in the above-mentioned cabinet.(image: country living)Mirrors like these...I am filling a wall in my entry and need a couple more. Why oh why did I sell all I had last summer. Ugh. (image: country living)I will be hunting for 2 of these...why the heck are they so hard to find right now? Not one antique store in my whole town has one. Geesh! I need one for my office and the other for a guest room reno I am doing. Anyone have one they want to sell?...I didn't think so. (image: unknown)Oh, and if I could find one of these I could die a happy woman. I am searching the world over right now for a new farm table. I have one, but it is too small in my new home. I want a nice long one that would seat 8-10. This one may take a while....(image: Atlanta Bartlett)And no trip to the flea market would be complete without coming home with a truckload of this...I've got orders stacking up, and I don't like to disappoint!(image: me)Wish me luck girls! Hope you all get to go to a flea market this weekend! Here in IL it is going to be 50 degrees - WOOHOO!!! It is about time!Happy Friday, girls![...]

how sweet it is.....


Today I get to spend the day with a few of my favorite things...a fresh gallon of paint in my favorite shade...'cloud white'a brand new paintbrushand a radio playing my very favorite tunesI don't have much of a post today... because I have a dresserone gorgeous frenchy armoirea changing table grandma's beautiful old rocking chairand a side table waiting for a makeoveroh, and a chandelier I have to remove all the crystals from before I can paint it white, too...I think I have stumbled on my very favorite client...of all the clients I have worked with in the last 10 yearsa wonderful husband who is having me paint all the furntiure for a very important nursery...a nursery for his very first little girl(all photos from here...)  he wants to fill the room and surprise his wife when she gets home~ a nursery full of girlie delights ~I have a feeling the 3 of them are going to have a happy life together. That is one sweet man. [...]

i can feel the love...


I love Etsy...and it feels so good this morning to know that Etsy loves me,  too!I woke up yesterday morning to find this in my inbox..A few of my favorite things...white..grey...silver...and more I decided to keep reading...I am blushing...because that is my bed up there on display! My bed?? Are you kidding me?I am sure most of you don't even know I have my own business painting furniture. I sell to a number of designers, stores and my favorite...the Kane County Flea Market in St. Charles, IL...May-October. I don't even tell anyone I sell online...but I guess now my secret it out! I have only listed about 6 pieces of pathetic...thats why I never say anything. Not much of a show to put on with 6 pieces! I am embarrassed to even mention it, to be honest with you. I am so busy with custom orders...getting ready for my first show in the Spring...and trying to finish my own house...things just never seem to make it to Etsy. I put a piece up here or there just for fun.I want to do more...I really do. But picture taking in a nightmare for me...but thats a whole other post. Thanks to my new BFF Tara, I think I may be getting the hang of indoor shots in my "shady" watch out! If I do figure this camera out I am going to wear you out on home shots, project makeovers and furniture listings! So where am I going with this...I am blushing because I was featured in an Etsy treasury again and I feel a proper 'thank you' is in order! THANK YOU SUSAN! That makes 6 features so far...and I have only listed 6 pieces. How funny is that? I am really thinking...why me?? There are so many fabulous things on are you finding the girl with only 6 things posted?How awesome are those girls out there in Estyland, anyway??? They sure know how to make a girl in the middle of IL freezing her tail off with a paintbrush in her hand feel soooo good!I feel like I need to give a little speech like Sally Field..."you like me, you really like me!"Just take a look at the fantastic company my little bed is keeping up there! Those mercury glass bottles make me want to pass out...and that camera is the most fabulous thing...I just may have to have that for a shelf in my office!So again, THANK YOU SUSAN...maybe you have just lit a fire under this girl to get her act together and take more time to make her Etsy store pretty...and actually fill it up! Funny how we can do such little things in life, and they end up meaning so much. This has meant so much to trivial as it may be. Sometimes we just need a boost!Happy Friday, girls. Wishing you all a fun, sun filled weekend![...]

did I...or didn't that big ol' cabinet???


Well girls...I have made a decision.It is not a decision I have taken lightly....because I guess when it comes down to it - I'm a cheap girl - In terms of what I want to pay for my wood furniture pieces, that is.  You may remember...a few days ago I did a post about this big, beautiful glass front cabinet...I wanted it soooo badly when I first laid eyes on it. Tall, dark and was just what I have been waiting for my whole life. The sliding glass doors...the original metal pulls...I But the price....$850...ouch-o-rama!So I talked to the owner of this lovely cabinet. I told him how I ran up and hugged it the moment I saw it. He either thought I was totally crazy...or was really crazy in love with it. I told him about how I wanted to fill it with my white ironstone collection. He said "no way could you have enough ironstone to fill an 8ft x 8ft cabinet!" And I replied "uuuhhhh....yeah, I actually do." From over my shoulder my always silent husband says "Yes, trust me...she does." Thank you, baby for helping me make my point! I love how when I want something, he always wants it to. Even though he could not care less about all these white dishes or a big old cabinet to put them in. Love that guy.  I wanted him to see...I need this cabinet...and this cabinet needs me. He told me there were originally 3 cabinets like this, and they came from a room of an old Opera House. He had already sold the other two for $1,500, and that was a deal. Yikes. The $850 was way more than I was wanting to pay, so when I heard the other two went for $1500...I knew I didn't stand a chance at talking him down.But, when I want something...I cannot be stopped. I will make it happen. No is not a word in this girl's vocabulary. So I went home and "slept" on it. But there really was not much sleeping involved...I was plotting and planning how to make this happen...So I talked to him again...I used a few tricks that usually get me the deal I want...and I think just to get rid of me...he sold it to me for one heck of a sweet deal! He knocked $200 bucks off...and this baby is officially mine!I pick her up Saturday...then the transformation begins. Now, lets hope she turns out as fabulous as this one...I just happen to have chairs similar to these...and I am on the hunt for a farm table like this one. Isn't it a tragedy there is no chandelier hanging above the table? That light is just wrong!(no idea where this photo is from...its been on my computer forever..if someone knows, please tell me!)Wish me luck on getting her home! I will be sure to show you pictures when I get her done! If I can figure out what all those buttons mean on my new camera. I can never get good shots inside my house!? Anyone that knows, feel free to come on over and show me how![...]

easily distracted...


Yesterday I set out with intentions of finding a dresser for a client. I swear. In my mind I kept telling myself "you are not shopping for yourself. Don't look for anything other than the dresser." The word "focus" was repeated in my head over and over.But it didn't work. Nope. Never does. The bling always catches my eye. I can spot a chandelier from 40 yards. And in one store today...I saw four of them! They looked so sad hanging there waiting to be taken home. The shop owner all but begged me to buy one. I could feel my mind start to wander. Within 30 seconds I had plans in my head. Which room, what color walls...the whole 9 yards, as they say. Why, oh why do these shop owners play with my mind this way??This one was my favorite...but it needs a few modifications...I would remove the hurricanes and shine her up a bit...but she is oh-so-pretty in person! And she is an 8-arm chandi, too! Those are a tough find!This little beauty was petite and had cute little details...see the little flower crystals towards the top? Super sweet for a little girls room.  Some were a little heavy on the "ornateness" for a simple girl like me...And my husband said this one reminded him of Vegas. He has a pretty good eye after tagging along with me all these years. I guess he has a point. It was about 3 1/2 feet tall and had tiers of crystals...pretty...just not "us". At this point, my neck had been cranked "up" for so long staring at what was hanging off the ceiling, I completly forgot about looking for my client's dresser. I needed to put these dang chandis out of my mind and get down to business. But then it happened. I locked eyes with the most amazing piece of furniture. Time stood still for a moment, and all I heard my husband mutter under his breath was "Oh man, I know that look." He knows just to stay out of my way and back the truck up to the door, because something is about to come home with us. Brace yourself...this is the worlds ugliest photo. It was taken in a junk shop, lets remember girls. It is a H-U-G-E vintage apothacary cabinet from an old store! You have no idea how much I love this thing. Seriously l.o.v.e. As in "if I could marry it - I would" kind of love.A majestic beauty...8 feet wide x 8 feet tall.But the price is killing me. $850. Yikes. I am the queen of the antique furniture deal. I don't think a single piece in my whole house cost over $100. I know that is a crazy good deal for what it is...but ouch!It needs a little "Mary Makeover"...and no one pass out when I say this...if I buy it - it will be painted white. I couldn't have it any other way. I am going to dream about this cabinet tonight. I just know it. In my mind it is already full of all my white ironstone and old metal pieces.  Oh, and I never gave a second thought to the dresser I was looking for. What do you think?? Should I do it?[...]

I heart Meadowbrook Farm...


I am in love with Meadowbrook Farm. Seriously. I want to move there. Or at least swing by the next time I am anywere within a 5 hour radius. Do you think Mr & Mrs. Meadowbrook would mind if they came home one day and I was sitting in that white rocking chair? Surely they have a guest room...I would promise to keep it tidy and even cook dinner and do the dishes while I am there. Teresa, the lovely lady that gets the pleasure of calling Meadowbrook Farm "home" has to be one of the luckiest ladies on the planet. Not only does she get to live in one of the cutest houes I have ever seen...She gets to enjoy a view like this...And have a unbelievably gorgeous greenhouse built just for her.* insert jealousy here*The inside of her house is just pure happiness. Ooohhh...and it has beadboard favorite! Look at those gardens outside the window - incredible! The little vignettes around her home scream to be int he pages of a magazine. Anyone out there an editor? If so, I have to tell you something. "Call Teresa. Now. I'm telling you, she is going to get offers, yours may as well be the first."Girls, I don't know about you...but I have a hard time growing a pot of petunias. Maybe when I pop in for that visit they can give me some pointers on how to grow a garden like this!*Once again, insert jealousy here* I saved my favorite part for last...the barn. I love barns. I grew up with one very similar to this, but it was white. There is something about the red...just so beautiful in every season!You have to read the story of their "new" barn. It just knocks my socks off. If you have not yet had the pleasure of reading Teresa's blog, click over and do it now! Read Not only is her home and land absolutely incredible eye candy, but she enjoys the love and happiness of a beautiful family and a simple life. I love that she went from suburban mom to living an out-in-the-middle-of nowhere life. She has a wonderful story...and her photography is out of this world!Thank you, Teresa...for letting me share your beautiful corner of the world. Happy Thursday, girls. Hope this brought a little sunshine to your day. [...]

double whammy in my maibox...


I know it is going to be a lovely day when I find something waiting for me in my mailbox...besides bills. Today was a happy-mail day because I opened it up to find these waiting for me inside!I love seeing those big blue letters staring back at me!First I tore into the big box...I always open the biggest one first, don't you?? I can't wait to see what is inside!Lucky me!...I was the giveaway winner the lovely Tammy of Tinsel & Company was hosting in honor of Valentine's Day!Isn't her wrapping just gorgeous!? I love knowing I can visit her website...order something for a gift and it will arrive just as beautiful on the outside, as what is on the inside!These are little beauties that were inside all that pretty wrapping...are they just the cutest!? 4 of the most adorable vintage-inspired Valentine's towels! Nothing like a little rik-rak and bright, cherry color to liven up a dreary February day! Thank you, Tammy!You really need to check out Tammy's blog...and her website! The new Easter goodies that are coming in look gorgeous!Package #2...well that one held the long-anticipated FLEA MARKET STYLE MAGAZINE! Did you get yours yet? If you didn't pre-order from Heather Bullards blog, it will be in stores on Feb 23rd. I was happy to see so many of the girls I have grown to know and love in blogland featured in the pages. I'm looking forward to reading every single word! If you are not familiar with who launched the Flea Market mag...visit their blog. You may see some familiar faces! Nothing this girl likes more than curling up in bed and dreaming my way through the latest and greatest in decor magazines. By the way, if you have not yet checked out the new Cottage Style magazine you see peeking out from your closest store and buy one! See all those green post-it notes marking my favorite pages?? Well so many of those pictures have been saved on my computer for soooo long. I was thrilled to find so many in one magazine!Have a great night girls...I'm off to do a little page at a time!  [...]

true love...circa 1945


Last month, I did a post about 92 WWII love letters I bought at a farm auction. I have been beyond thrilled to read through the words of Irwin & Helen...I read each letter he wrote her, then her is like being in their converstation. I love how he starts this letter...Just like everyone before and after it..."Dearest darling Helen"and then he calls her his "little ray of sunshine"...isn't that just the cutest thing ever??This letter goes on to talk about his daily life while he is away. What he does for his job on the ship, what the other guys are doing. He is careful to not reveal too much, the sensors would never send it on to her if he did. Can you imagine? Every single personal word your husband wrote you while you were apart being read by someone else? Yikes.Parts of the letters have me laughing outloud. Apparently she is a not-so-great cook, and he made a comment about not being ready for home cooked food any time soon. Umm....Hello, Irwin - I wish I would have been there to help you out. Someone needed to imform you that women are not amused by jokes like that. Needless to say, Helen did not find it to be funny at all, and he apologized for about 13 letters afterwards. And I have discovered Irwin has a little naughty side to him, too! He throws in a comment or two that I am sure they would not appreciate me reading. I guess years away on a ship will do that to a guy...wink...wink. But most of all, he begs to hear about the mundane, day-to-day things she is doing. He wants to hear details. What she did...who she saw...what they talked about. I admit, at first I thought Irwin may be just a little controlling.....but then he says why. When he lays down in his bunk at night, he falls asleep imagining he is there. Remembering what life was like before he was...somewhere in the South Pacific...all those miles away from her.He talks about how much he is missing the little things. Going bowling, mowing the lawn, fixing their car, even painting the house. The simple things in life really are the most important, aren't they?I love how he signed this letter..."sending all of my love and kisses now and forever, your loving, loyal but ever so lonely husband Irwin"I have been trying to figure out what to get my husband for Valentine's Day. Cologne? Dinner and a movie? A new watch? But really, when it comes down to it...we like the every day things in life just like Irwin. I think I will just cook him his favorite dinner...and he can build a fire. We will pop open a bottle of cheap champagne, drink it out of the wrong kind of glass and enjoy a night in. Happy Valentine's Day, my friends. Wishing you a Helen & Irwin kind of day...enjoy the simple things in life. [...]