Friday, July 25, 2014

Flashback Friday!

I've often said that the best part of my job is meeting Champs like you along the way.  What starts out as a designer/client relationship, often leads to a lasting friendship. The fun part about that is-I sometimes get to meet the whole family and other friends as a result of that good working relationship and that's how my business grows...word of mouth. 
This was one of my fave projects to work on several years ago already.  
My client turned friend, Lindsey and her family built a new house out in the country and I got to be her 'right hand man'(?) helping out with colors, selections, furniture, opinions.
Basically, I got paid to be the bossy older sister. 
She has an incredible sense of style so it was effortless on my part to assist. 
As a result, I have since had the pleasure of helping with one of her sisters houses, and helping her mom with finishing touches on her lower level of her beach house.

Here is a brief "Flashback Friday" of some of her rooms:
 Great Room overlooking the woods:
We chose furniture that could take a beating with her young family. Leather ottoman for additional seating is a practical choice for kicking back and relaxing.
 Because the setting is in the woods, we chose lots of greens, browns and wood stained cabinetry to give a rustic, but still clean feel to the rooms.
People often ask me if it's okay to mix wood with painted trim! The answer is a resounding yes!!


One of my favorite rooms in the house was the nursery at the time.  It has since been repurposed as an office-which I will try to post pics of sometime.

I'm pretty sure I have Lindsey to thank for snagging me this next Flashback gig too.  It's her neighbor Kate that was building on property adjacent to theirs.  I had just as much fun with this then 'twenty-something' gal as we turned her vision and dreams into reality for her new home. 
So fun to work with girls that are willing to take risks with color, wallpaper, accessories, etc. 

Flashback Friday to Kate's house: Circa 2011?

 Kate's salon off the side of her house: Can you tell we had fun with the wallpaper books?
 Half Bath on main floor:

 This past year, I've been helping with a house that is so similar to this floor plan, it's crazy. I'm scheduled to take pics of that one in a couple of weeks now that it is finished.
It was fun to do something completely different even with a similar layout. Stay tuned for that. 
I'm off to one of my favorite places this week. Our families' annual camping trip to Pentwater. Hoping to trek the nearly 100 miles up there tomorrow with Kennedy, Chase and Cole (nephews) on our bikes, but the forecast isn't looking too promising. 
I'm sure I'll snap some moments of 'forced family fun' along the way and bore with those personal pics too. 
Hope your summer has been wonderful so far! See you back here soon!



Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Black & White and Blue All Over

 After a long cold Michigan winter, and a near-miss with a propane heater in my garage, it feels great to be working outside again this summer! The air is cool, the sun is shining and I'm much more inspired to be transforming time-worn pieces in these conditions!

That being said, I've been busy saying 'yes' to your painting requests when I'm available.  My friend Cherie brought this piece over last week for me to paint.  It's for her daughter, Kylie's bedroom in her new college townhouse. 
She showed me the print and colors from Kylie's duvet and asked me to choose a paint that was a few shades lighter than the teal in the sham.  Here are the colors in the bedding: 
Here's the instagram pic I posted of the before/after:
(Shameless plug- if you're not following me on's "room4change_")
Here is the piece with hardware still on:
 Here is the matching headboard: ( I think Cherie said that they've had this set since they were married over 25 years ago)!

She thought the top of the dresser was  laminate, but after I got to work sanding it, I realized that it was actually wood but just really heavily lacquered. My orbital sander has never worked so hard.
Here's me and my granny hands washing off the surface with a warm damp rag to remove all the dust and debris.

I always use a soft bristled paint brush to cover the edges and beveled details of a piece. This pic shows the 'cutting in' that's necessary with the stain blocking primer.

I'm never a fan of seeing brush strokes on a piece unless it's super cottage-y and that's the look you're after. Once the edges are cut in, I quickly roll out the brush lines with a white foam roller.
Here's a pic after two coats of primer:

You can usually tell a big difference with coverage after the second coat of primer is applied. Especially on a dark piece like this. I always put two coats of primer on, sometimes three if the furniture veneer is bleeding through.
 With both the dresser, headboard and drawers, I primed them all and then put an undercoat of black on everything.  The picture Kylie had given me to use as inspiration had a worn topcoat with black showing underneath. I knew that if I just sanded the edges off, I would hit wood, not dark, so I chose to give it a black base coat and wipe off the top coat in select areas. This step didn't have to perfect.
 I still somehow managed to be pretty perfectionist with the dresser though and after this step, it looked like it could go out the door and be just fine painted black!

 But this was the fun part. Rolling on the light teal color and leaving some black areas exposed.

 Here's the final product.  I would have loved to have mounted the hardware for you to see the complete transformation.  We were thinking glass handles would look so vintage and fun!

 The headboard got the same treatment:

 Same song, second verse:
Cherie's friend Stacie was boating with her the weekend she picked up the furniture (above) and since their daughters are rooming together their freshman year of college, Stacie and her daughter Hannah thought it would be nice to breathe new life into this dining set for their new apartment for the girls to share.
Here are the traditional chairs (set of four):
 This truly was laminate on top. Sigh.  I can never promise the adhesion and durability when painting over laminate table tops, but I've done it a hundred times (with disclaimers each time, but no complaints) down the road, so I never shy away from doing them.

Here are the legs-super glossy and spindly-another painter's nightmare. :)
 Orbital sander being tested to the limits again.
 I just love what you guys come up with in the way of requesting.  Hannah and her roomies saw a pic of a table similar in size to this one and sent me a photo of it.  They wanted a black/cream stripe top with blue legs. Way out of my comfort zone...I'm a boring black, white, tan and gray gal but I loved the challenge and thought it turned out so trendy and fun.
First step after sanding and washing, was taping off the stripes. I measured it all out and determined 5 inch stripes made the most sense. The black Ben Moore paint I use has a self-primer in it so it saved me a step there-thank goodness, 'cause this was time consuming!
 All the black stripes done and drying. Three coats each.
 Now to re tape over the black and start priming the lighter stripes.
 This took two coats of primer and three top coats of "Inspire Awe"-cream color by Clark & Kensington.
 Hannah sent me a pic of a rug that they will use in the kitchen area. I color matched the blue in the pic and went a little lighter. Primed and painted these babies and then glazed them with a minwax stain to finish them off. (Early American-shade of stain). Can you see the difference?
The one on the left is washed with the stain.
 Here's the completed set. (Minus the two extra chairs-I was too lazy to haul them outside for the pic). :)

Thanks for sitting through my brief and sketchy painting tutorial.  I am hoping to get some time after a camping vacation scheduled soon to work on some of my own projects to showcase in downtown Zeeland's Fall Peddler's Market!  We had such a blast at the Spring Market, and I so thrilled to have applied and was asked back to this one-so save the date! It will be worth your while to swing through Main Street on Sept. 6! I'll be sure to post what I'll be peddling on Instagram, FB and here. Thanks for following!  See ya back here before I leave on vacay!