Tag Archives: Home decor

Before & After: An Old Painted Dresser

First – Happy Saturday!

We’ve had several men working on our house for the last two weeks residing our house. (!!) The  old siding was rotted and peeling beyond repair. We also were able to knock out that awkward window in our shower and side right over it!

All this to say, they are working right outside of the window I’m sitting in front of and I feel a little rude. So this post will be short today.

Earlier this spring I posted another dresser that I was tackling – my mom’s dresser that she had when she was a kid.

Refinishing an old painted dresser

You can see more of the “before” photos and how I stripped the paint here in this old post.

It took me a long time to refinish this piece because there were many layers of paint, and also needed quite a bit of sanding to take out a lot of dings and scratches.

I am happy to say that it has spent the last month happily living in my bedroom!!

Today I’ll share an “after” and I’ll be back to explain the sanding and pre-staining process I tried this time around.

Refinishing an old painted dresser

Happy Saturday!!

What are your plans today? I’m getting together with one of my best girlfriends!

The State of Things: I love Americana Kitsch

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To my fellow Google Reader subscribers –  a sad day in the world is rapidly approaching. Google Reader will no longer function after July 1. This is just a reminder to subscribe via email (on the sidebar to the right), Bloglovin’ or an RSS feeder of your choice if you wish to keep reading!

My favorite holiday is a toss-up. Every time one comes along I get caught up in the spirit of things and convince myself that this one is actually my favorite. So take it with a grain of salt when I tell you how much I love the 4th of July. I love it so much I’m committed to putting it in my top 3, maybe even top 2.

Around this time of year I find myself wanting to surround my house with classic Americana kitsch. Americana can come in many forms – tea-stained thirteen star flags, Coca-Cola memorabilia or even Normal Rockwell knick-knacks.

My favorite Americana items come in the form of vintage state handkerchiefs.

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Clearly I’m not the only one. You can see on this website that some are selling for $80 a pop!

I’ve seen them made into pillows:

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And modern reprints on dishtowels.


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I’m not sure what it is about these sweet, nostalgic state-themed goodies that I enjoy so much.

There are also some kitschy embroidered pillows I’ve seen in a few stores – I always pick them up but never manage to talk myself into buying it!

vintage state handkerchiefs

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This post was sparked by a recent item I stumbled upon, dinnerware from Sundance Catalog.

I wouldn’t mind picking out a few of these!

I wish you could mix and match states though,  they come in sets of 4.

They also have matching mugs! Although, who in their right mind needs more mugs? Aren’t we all swimming in them?

And while I’m sure everybody is really tied to their gas station shot glass collection, these glasses would be a nice upgrade.

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Country Living has a great slideshow of vintage state collectors glasses – see it here!

When I was a kid I had to memorize a song that had all the state names in alphabetical order. To my shame I can only make it in the song to “Idaho”.

(I’m still not sure why this is need-to-know information. I also had to memorize all the Presidents in chronological order, I haven’t found that to be very useful either.)

I’m in a summer state of mind, how about you?

L.L. Bean (Love Love the Bean)

Maine. Vacationland.

A few weeks ago we drove up to the glorious state of Maine for a wedding. On our way home, we decided to stop in Freeport, ME to introduce my parents to the L.L. Bean flagship store.

It was then, in the height of summer Maine perfection, I declared that, if forced to live in one retail place (like in the children’s book Corduroy), the L.L. Bean home store would be my new home.

It might not be swanky like West Elm, or ogle-worthy like Pottery Barn, but it’s cozy and friendly.

In the unlikely circumstance that a mysterious woodsy benefactor should bestow an L.L. Bean-only shopping spree upon me, this is what I would like to get:

One wouldn’t think to go to L.L. Bean for furniture, but they actually have a fun assortment of bright colored pieces this year.

All rights reserved by Photo Nut 2011

This little clock might actually make me enjoy an early morning rise.

And I’d bring home just about every quilt there is, including this colorful Flying Geese quilt pattern.

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But the rugs. Goodness! Braided rugs remind me of growing up because my Mom had so many of them. The L.L. Bean ones are such beautiful colors. It’s so hard to find good rugs that aren’t Oriental style or contemporary.

And I know this doesn’t count, but someday I WILL get the deluxe Scrabble board where the pieces can’t move around.

And it will come with someone who will want to play it with me at my beck and call!!

If you had to live in a particular store forever, which one would you pick?

Turning Old Cabinet Doors into Art

Remember all those pesky kitchen cabinet doors that I attempted to refinish?

Well, since this space above our couch was looking pretty empty…

We decided to make a few additions to help round out the space above the couch…

I upcycled our old kitchen cabinet doors into custom artwork.

Since I refinished all the doors before we decided to were going to buy new ones, I didn’t want to let them all go to waste. (I tried to sell them, but since they were all such weird sizes (again, it’s an old house) they weren’t of any use to anyone.

It fits into my love for graphic art and it’s also sentimental – the dates of our engagement and wedding. It also doesn’t hurt that this project was 100% F-R-E-E.

The boards tie in with the rustic aspects of the oar (Many people ask if I made this -I wish! It is from Pottery Barn.) and pitted wood “matte/border” of the center artwork .

You may also notice, I spray painted the center frame a dark brown so it would pop off the walls more.

I’ll be back with a tutorial later this week!