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Wednesday
Mar022011

DIY: aged terra cotta pots

There’s a bunch of tutorials on how to “age” terra cotta pots all over the internet.  Most involve using fertilizers, lime powder and some even suggest yogurt.  The problem with these, at least for me, is that it also means leaving the pots to sit in the mixtures for at least a month before you start to see any change.  If you’re impatient like I am and need instant gratification, I’m happy to report that you can get the look of old, crusty, mossy pots in less than half an hour, with the help of paint and sand paper.

The key is to use a textured or faux stone spray paint.  I used this one by Rust-oleum in sand. 

First, I sprayed a light coat on the exterior of the pot, and let dry completely (I accidentally deleted the photo prior to sanding-sorry!)

Then, using some 80-grit sandpaper, I gently sanded away the paint in random areas around the pot, followed by a quick sanding with 150-grit sandpaper to even out the roughness.  Don’t worry about being uniform…you want it to look as though it has aged naturally, so the more random, the better:

And here it is with a plant and some moss:

 

(Tip: I used my pot for a plant, so I wouldn’t suggest spraying the paint inside, because it will kill your plant!)  Happy crafting! 

Thursday
Feb242011

showstopper

Rarely do I ever see something and decide right then and there that I must have it, but the second I saw this jawdropping sunburst mirror in the latest Ballard catalog, that is exactly what I did:

At 48 inches in diameter, this mirror is breathtaking and dramatic-sure to be the focus point in my family room over our fireplace (or in the entryway with my fabulous gray/blue grasscloth).  (And apparently, I'm not the only one who is smitten...it's on backorder until April :( ).  I always take ideas from magazines and catalogs and then try to replicate the look myself, and I won't lie...I'm already scheming ways to try and recreate this mirror, with the help of my new jig saw.  We'll see what I can come up with...

Thursday
Feb242011

eenie, meenie, miney, mo...

I've been pouring over six samples of grasscloth wallpaper for my entryway for the last week.  That's right, SIX separate samples.  Why is it that I can pick everyone else's paint colors, decide their furniture layout and accessories in the blink of an eye, but when it comes to my own home, I can't make a decision to save my life?  Honestly, the hubby thinks I'm crazy, but I'm just thrilled to have decided to go with a soothing gray/blue that's a shade or two darker than our wall color (Newcastle Gray by ICI).  I've narrowed it down to two and am going to bite the bullet and order tomorrow.  Here are some of the images that got my heart racing in the first place...

Kate Spade's bedroom, via Apartment Therapy and Habitually Chic:

Diane Bergeron via Decorpad:

Kate, who pens the wildly popular blog, Centsational Girl, hung a similar color in her home:

Frank Roop via Decorpad ...

And, my favorite, a master bedroom by interior design firm Mabley Handler, which I posted about here

Stay tuned to for updates on my entryway's progress! 

Thursday
Feb242011

holly farrell

I'm always drawn to artwork that is unique and unexpected, and, despite leaning towards a more masculine design aesthetic, lately I've been drawn to pieces that are both vintage and feminine.  These gorgeous oil paintings by the extremely talented Holly Farrell are no exception.  Her work has been all over blogland for a while now, but for those of you who haven't heard of her, here is a peek of her work:

Her cookbooks and children's books are my favorite...

  

...but her shoes come in at a very close second...

Aren't they amazing?

 I wouldn't mind any one of these, either...

To see more of Holly's work, check out her website here.   

Monday
Feb212011

luxe for less: pivot mirrors

The 70 degree weather this weekend is part of what totally makes living in the south so worthwhile!  The hubby and I spent ours cleaning up the front and side yard and re-sealing our deck.  Not exactly "fun", but it had to get done and I'm relieved to cross one more thing off my seemingly endless to-do list!

I finally had the chance to sit and flip through my latest magazines this weekend, too.   One trend that seems here to stay is pivot mirrors in bathrooms:

  Phoebe Howard via Coastal Living

Mark Cunningham via Elle Decor

Jacques Grange 

Randall Ridless

When building our new home, we had to work within allowances and it was a challenge to decide where we would splurge and where we would cut back.  One thing I knew I wanted in all the bathrooms was pivot mirrors.  I had my eye on the Dillon pivot mirror by Restoration Hardware for a while...

...but I needed them to be at least 24x32 inches, and at $375 a piece, four of these would have thrown me well over my allowance.  So, after an extensive internet search, I found this one by Signature Hardware.  Here it is in our guest bath... 

The best part?  I snagged them for $130 a piece!  I actually like the bevelled edge more than I thought and the company was so easy to work with and had all four of them to me within two days of my order. There are also a ton of options to choose from.  If you're looking for pivot mirrors, I highly recommend Signature Hardware.  Check out their website here.