Friday, June 29, 2012

Up and Coming

Last night I drove down to New Haven to pick up a c.1920 dining set. One leaf, six matching chairs. and a sideboard. It's a gorgeous set, but the drive was a bear, and it was seriously the most I've ever put in the back of my truck. Thank God for ratchet straps! I've also got a couple projects in progress that I thought I'd give you a sneak peak at. If you're interested in the island, please let me know, as the islands usually sell fast, and once it hits craigslist (tomorrow afternoon) it will be everyman/woman for themselves. Have a wonderful weekend!
I love this set. The wood is in such perfect untouched condition that I really think it would be best just to reupholster the seats and give them a little buffing.

It blows my mind, every inch of caning is intact. I never see that. Now granted, these chairs are vintage, not antique, but still, such fine condition.

When I was stuck in traffic on my way to New Haven last night, I thought several times of just giving up, but the thought of this sideboard was what kept me driving. I just can't wait to get started on it!

Just look at all that detail. This is going to be stunning.

I had to take the legs off the table to get it in my truck, but at least this gives you a sense of the shape and scale.

This is a custom project that I'm working on for a client. I love how light and bright it feels, very delicate.

Another custom project, I adore this blue, and am secretly plotting to paint something of my own this color sometime soon. It's Benjamin Moore's Bayou Blue.

This kitchen island will be complete tomorrow. It started life as a c.1850 sideboard, very dark and visually heavy. I forgot to take before pics on it, but I'll take some very classy photos tomorrow when it's all done.

Look at the amazing brackets that are supporting the bar side hang over. Those are c.1890 wrought iron pieces that I got at the flea market almost two months ago. I've just been waiting for the perfect project for them. The top of the island is made from salvaged antique barn boards. It's available for purchase!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Seaside Cottage Decor

Sometimes nautical can be very Very heavy handed. I like a theme as much as the next person- usually helps to make a space feel cohesive and interesting, but all out nautical can just be so in your face cutesy, almost as bad as country cute, which makes my skin crawl. But being that it's almost the weekend, and beautiful weather, I'm thinking longingly of the shore, and all the decor that goes with it. More restrained, a bit of seaside cottage decor can be utterly lovely, and especially when the homeowner decorates creatively and with a sense of humor. Here are some great seaside rooms ~
I love the freshness of the mint green walls, the use of antiques, and the beautiful old wood floors. There are lots of nods to the seaside location of the this cottage - the whale, the anchor pillow, the shell lithograph over the chair, but none of it is too much. Fairly subtle and relaxed. 

The iron stone vase and white and turquoise towel create a wonderful impromptu vignette here. I like the assembled seating too- the white wicker and white windsor compliment each other well.

Vintage and funky meets seaside, and the result is pure whimsy. The maps on the wall are, of course, the real show stealer here, but I really adore the light blue metal chairs too. 

There is so much restraint shown in this space, and it enlivens the entire room with airiness. The one nautical element, the fish, ties the whole space together, and I can't help but think that the floors are just the color of beach sand.
Really wonderful.

Ooooo I just love love love this room. I love the chairs, I love the ship portrait, I love the farm table. It's almost too much for me, it's so perfect.  I encourage you to click on the link to see the whole house in Architectural Digest- it's equally amazing. 

Simple white with lots of natural tones. The oar coatrack is very clever, and it's always surprising what a little white paint can do for almost any vintage chair. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

French Rustic Dining Set

I firmly believe that some things happen for a reason. This dining set is a good example. When I found this beautiful solid oak dining table at a tag sale two Sundays ago, someone had already purchased the matching chairs. I don't know what the original chairs looked like, but I firmly believe they could not possibly coordinate better with the table than the set I found the day before. The chairs are solid walnut, c.1900, but in beautiful condition- solid as a rock. The dining table is more recent. I painted the chairs and the table a Bright crisp antique white, and used a sedona red stain on the top of the table, then put six coats of poly on it until it was smooth as a baby's bottom. I recovered the chairs in a rich earth tone canvas cloth to really capture the French rustic look I was going for. Before and after shots are below!
Forgot to take a picture until I had already started working on the table. In this pic I'd already sanded and stained the top, and juuuuust started to paint the legs. And look- you can see how messy my workshop is!

And here are the chairs paired with a different table that I had on hand at the time.

Really pretty lines, and no veneer- They're solid wood, which for an early 20th century Chippendale style chair is pretty surprising. Obviously that horrible green pleather on the seats HAD to go.

Painted and reupholstered and fresh as a daisy!

They're so long and lean they look almost modern. Hard to believe they're about 110 years old. And you'd never know it, they're so sturdy and solid.

And the table all finished.

See how the curve in the legs mimics the curve on the crest rail of the chairs? A match made in heaven.

Solid oak, and it took the stain so well- a really pretty rich color.

Not gonna lie, I'm really pleased with this set. It just makes me smile to look at this picture :)

Antique Tiger Oak Sideboard

I love this piece. It's gorgeous and so elegant. Really it can be incredibly versatile- use it as a TV Console, entry table, sideboard. The tiger oak is exceptional. My husband sanded the top and we re-did the surface. I painted the body and did a little work on the drawers and doors to ensure everything was working perfectly. This one's available for sale too. Just let me know if you're interested!

Antique Maple Desk Before and After

I picked up this pretty desk at a tag sale in Colchester two weeks ago. It was just perfect. I loved the lines, and I knew the top would turn out so beautiful refinished. Possibly the best part is that the desk is solid maple, all the way through, and even the back is finished and handsome. I painted the entire desk antique white (back included). I really like that the desk can be enjoyed from all sides, I think it greatly increases the options on how to use the piece. I just adore when a office or work room has a desk floating in the center of the floor. My husband sanded the top and then I stained it a very soft cherry, to allow the natural red undertones of the wood to really shine. The drawer pulls were really nice, and had aged to an attractive dark patina. The before and afters are below and the desk is available for purchase. Enjoy!

Yes, that's my reflection in the top- that's how amazingly perfect and shiny it is.