Monday, April 30, 2012


I am an artist, which means I am a dreamer.  Not a dreamer, as in what I dream of when I am asleep...which was very bizarre last night, I dreamt I was a contestant on The Bachelor and the bachelor was Steve Tyler. So weird, but made for an entertaining dream! 

Anyhow, I mean a dreamer by nature....I daydream.  All the time.  An old boss once told me that it seemed like when she was talking to me my mind was somewhere else.  Exactly!  I probably had far more lovely, dreamy things floating through by head besides Excel spreadsheets and closing ratios. 

Or maybe I was dreaming about a dreary day having tea, cookies...and today, hmmm:

So, ever since I can remember I have loved to walk and dream about what happens in people's homes, behind closed doors.  What is their family like, what does their story tell?  That is why I think I am so drawn to painting homes and doors in particular. 

Starting one last piece to have completed and include in my work which will be hung at Bean Hollow beginning next Monday.  And, once has begun with a daydream, and an old hinge which I am trying to figure out how I will incorporate:

This is a retired, thick, corduroy pillowcase which I have stretched, primed and used as a backdrop

PS....remember that beat up pink frame I got at Chartreuse for $1?  I got a piece of glass cut for it and a scrap piece of fabric for basically free and put a coat of paint on it...

and used some old sewing ribbon to glue around a photo of Leila:

And a few paper flowers to glue on the corners....Voila....$7 bucks baby!

She got into Mama's boots over the weekend...had to share:

Have a great week!!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Annie Sloan, meet SC Johnson

Found this old magazine table in my parent's garage:

And used it as a practice piece before I paint that dresser I found a few weeks ago at Goodwill:

My friend Jenny has raved about Annie Sloan chalk paint and she recently bought some to use on a cool buffet she found on Craigslist. She also bought the Annie Sloan wax which gives pieces of furniture that great, smooth finish.  Problem is, the stuff ain't cheap...sigh, as is everything I need want.  I had no idea this stuff was so day I hope to use it.  But, for now...

I decided to try my hand at concocting my own chalk paint and just buy a good, ole' fashion SC Johnson Paste Wax and see what happens.  I added Plaster of Paris to some paint I had lying around to give it that "chalkiness" want to add about 1 tablespoon per cup of paint.  And then add a bit of water as needed.  Here it is with the first layer:

I ended up putting on two layers and sanding with fine sand paper between each one...

I decided to use Martha Stewart's Antique Metallic Gold paint for the detail on the sides:

Once that was done, I distressed it to give it that vintage feel....and then came the wax:

It was soooo easy to use!  I don't know where this stuff has been my whole life....I used a brush to apply a thin layer, let it dry for about an hour and then buffed it out with an old t-shirt rag.

You can't tell unless you reach your hand through your computer and feel it for yourself, but it is super duper smooth, like velvet.  Me lovey!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Waterhouse and Milais

When my dad was a boy he lived in England for a period of time and went to a school called Little Hampden Manor located in Little Missenden...which is just a dot on the map.  He has told us stories of his fun there and how he used to sneak through a field with his friends and go to a local candy store and then run back through the field to school.

We were fortunate enough to visit England twice as a family growing up and I went back again when living in Italy.  I love England.  When my dad took us back to Little Hampden Manor, it turned out to now be someones home.  When we got there, there was a small prop plane in the yard and the door to the house was open.  All very quiet, still and strange.  I poked my head in and startled the owners (who were not the friendliest) and asked us to leave...saying that he was tired of people coming around looking for the old school.

Anyhow, the Tate Gallery in London boasts some of the greatest artists of all time.  I had been in love with the painting, Lady of Shalott, by John William Waterhouse and Ophelia by Sir John Everett it was amazing to me to be able to see these masterpieces in person when we visited.  If you are an art lover, talk about making your heart flutter.

So, I am quite jealous of my sister, who just got back from London and was able to make a solo trip to Tate Britain and soak up these pieces once more.  She is equally in love with them....and she got me a postcard...which I will take.  And frame.

Lady of Shalott:

‘The Lady of Shalott’

photos courtesy of Tate Britain



photo courtesy of Tate Britain

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

the break-up

The Break-Up DVD cover

I need a moment.  Thank you for letting me vent for a few sentences.  I can't seem to catch up....the artist in me seems to be a complete wreck lately and the little one and I are still getting over the mother of all colds.  I went to bed early last Saturday evening and literally did not get out of bed until 5:30 Sunday only because I needed to take medicine and make sure I was still alive. 

So Monday was spent with Leila sick and watching Finding Nemo 8 times and eating Klondike bars and Tuesday was spent with me moving in slow motion doing loads of laundry and I don't know what else and today so far has been spent going to the grocery store and meeting a lady who bought something from me on Craigslist and now I am blogging because I have time to...ur...scratch that. want to. 

I am tired and our house is a mess and I have about 100 million projects on the back burner at the moment....and I feel like I am complaining...but really I am just stating the truth of this last week.  So thank you for reading and listening to me.

In the midst of a blah week my husband wrapped up busy season last night (thank the good lord!) and we celebrated by doing what we do almost every night when we don't have busy season.  We watched a movie from our movie library which consists of about 200.  And, believe it or not, it was his turn to pick and he picked one of my faves...the break-up.  Not just because I love Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston together but also because I covet their Chicago condo and the art that adorns both Marilyn Dean's gallery and their pad.

One day, like Jen, I might have the bravery to have a cool wall in my entry way with some of my chalk nudes from school pinned up....or maybe the bravery to spend some real cash on another artist's work.  Either way, I could pause this movie a million times and never get bored.  Here's a peak:

{ all photos courtesy Hooked on Houses }

entry hall

entry door

living room-cleaned up

living room set - The Break Up

fireplace - The Break Up

Jen Aniston-bedroom 2

dining room

dining room into kitchen

Friday, April 06, 2012

hecht, yes!

I'm thinking of painting a pattern on the front and the top a contrast color....
hmmmm....what should it be?

I've been toying with the idea for a long time to purchase, refurbish and re-sell pieces of furniture...or just having people drop off pieces they already have but want to spruce up and I can do the work for them. When I had my shop I did that, but space was limited so I couldn't get into it as much as I would have liked.  So today, I decided I would make a trip to goodwill to have a look and possibly buy a piece if one caught my eye and re-sell it for a profit.

In the very back corner, behind two dressers sat this banged up, dusty, lovely lined, mustard in color FABULOUS dresser.  Smooth, dove tailed drawers and a brass tag in the top drawer reads: Hecht Brothers Baltimore.  At $35 bucks, they loaded it up, tied it down and I drove 30 mph home on the highway.  (thanks Kelley, Brady and Brett for helping me unload)....

Anyway, I did a little research and check out what I found out.  The Hecht Brothers store in Baltimore opened in 1885....I love a good story to tell about a piece.

Now, the problem is now, I think I am toying with the idea of selling our ikea bookcase on craigslist and keeping this gem for our living room....(my husband is just finding out about this idea of mine)...honey, what do you think? ;)

Happy Easter, everyone....have a great weekend!