Shabby Chic Cottage Giveaway!

Hi, everyone.
Before I begin, let me say how excited I was to be featured on Today's Creative Blog! So exciting - a great place to see awesome projects and really creative folks.
Secondly, this giveaway has been in the works since I hit 150 followers. I'm sticking to that so I can have ANOTHER giveaway for 200 followers right around the corner.
Without further adieu, let me introduce my wonderfully encouraging friend Gina, from Shabby Chic Cottage. You probably already know her if you like cute and inspired creations!

Gina's blog is wonderful - I've gotten a lot of inspiration from her cool features, like
- including Gina's own contribution - starfish ornaments! This is SO CUTE!!!
Here's another of my favorite tutorials - she makes it look EASY!

So Gina has been kind enough to help me celebrate 150 followers with a ... drum roll, please ...
$50 gift certificate to her Shabby Chic Etsy Shop!
She has her items grouped into several categories - maybe one, or all, of them fit your style:
Are you coastal cottage? country cottage? Paris apartment? urban farmhouse? shabby attic? the conservancy? the nest (love that)?
Here are some of my favorites:

I. want. these. starfish. wands. Seriously.

This reminds me of my cute beach cruiser, Coco. She wants me to ride her. Today!
Cream and black toile. What else is there to say?

I HEART birds. And I didn't even show you the bees. Gina has bees, too!

 I love the black Paris postmark on this little white pot.  My pencils want to live here.

So how do you enter? Here's the drill:
1) MANDATORY: please go to Gina's shop and tell me how you would spend your $50 gift certificate.
2) Follow me on Google Friend Connect and leave a comment telling me you did (or you are).
3) Follow me on Twitter and leave a comment telling me you did with your twitter name in it.
4) Heart (favorite) Gina's Shabby Chic Etsy shop and leave a comment telling me you did.
5) Follow Gina on Google Friend Connect and leave me a comment telling me did (or you are).

This giveaway will run through midnight on August 5, when my beautiful daughter turns 25 in New York with me there to celebrate with her.  I'll announce the lucky winner on August 6.  Good luck, everyone!


Old Road Sign Tutorial

My daughter is finding out about the lease on a Brooklyn apartment TODAY! To celebrate - and in anticipation of driving up there to help her move - I've been making some fun crafts and repurposing some things she left behind.

Meyerland is an area in Houston where my wonderful son-in-law Ben grew up. He is a screenwriter among other talents, and Meyerland is the name of the screenplay he and his friend Blake have written. They will be filming in October and want to screen it at the Sundance Film Festival next year. COOL!!!
My daughter loves greens, whites, creams, and lots of texture (and mid-century modern furniture - a girl can dream, right?). I thought this sign would be a fun addition to their new home.
EASY TO MAKE!!! Here's how I did it:

I bought a piece of balsa wood at Michaels for less than $4. The piece is maybe 4 inches wide by about 2 and a half feet long (GUESSTIMATE). I just picked a board that felt long enough. So scientific!

Then I banged up the board to "age" it. I used a hammer to gently knock some dents in it, a Phillips head screwdriver to make a few gouges, and I scraped some horizontal lines in it with a flat head screwdriver. I took it outside to bang the edges on some rough cement and ended up splitting the end. It wasn't bad enough to glue.
After that I slopped on a coat of dark brown acrylic paint and caught the edges with it too. The back is still plain balsa wood.

I used these chipboard letters, which I LOVE, from Hobby Lobby, because they have the simple shape of roadsign letters.

I wanted to trace the letters and make them even as well, so this was my solution. Regular tape is low tack and easy to move around while I was trying to make the letters spread out evenly.
Once I got the letters spaced out, I traced around each one with a pencil and used a cream (antique white) acrylic paint to fill in the letters. The easiest way to do this for me is to use a small flat artist brush. I dipped the brush in the paint, turned it sideways, and brushed inward from the pencil edge to the center of the letter. I turned the sign upside down to paint the other half of the letter.

DON'T WORRY if the letters aren't absolutely perfect - mine aren't either. My favorite grandma saying is "IT WON'T BE NOTICED ON A GALLOPING HORSE."
After I painted the letters, I went back over the brown with a dark avocado green. I left some brown showing around some of the letters because I didn't want to be perfect on them.

Next step: blurry sanding. I used a few sheets of sandpaper and sanded the heck out of the wood. I should have put a wood block or something inside the sandpaper; I was rubbing so hard my fingers were burning (TWSS). I wanted to sand enough paint off to show the brown paint through the green and cream.

Almost done! I wiped off the sandpaper with a damp paper towel, and then I applied some antiquing glaze. Love this stuff!

I brushed it on quickly, not worrying if I got it on every single centimeter.
I then learned how difficult it is to take an action shot by yourself. This is the end of the board after I wiped the glaze with a damp paper towel. I only left the glaze on a couple of minutes while I went to get the damp paper towel. It filled in the cracks nicely.
At this point you could coat it with a sealant to protect it. I would make it matte to keep the antique look. You could do this with any color combination, including, say gray and white (or aqua and red, yum!)
And that, my dears, is that. The simplest project I've done for my NYC-bound girl and her wonderful husband!

I'm linking to:

Trendy Treehouse

The Power of Paint  at Domestically Speaking

Whatever Goes Wednesday  at Someday Crafts

Show and Tell  at Blue Cricket Design

Get Your Craft On Tuesday at Today's Creative Blog

Tuesday Tag-Along

Life in the Pitts


Behind Door Number 2 or Door Number 3

Don't you just love a beautiful door?

Doors make me happy. They hold so much promise.

I especially love painted doors. They seem so cheerful (except black and gray, which look sophisticated and elegant).

I can envision the owner (a friend of mine, of course) opening the beautiful door wide for a welcoming sweep of the hand into her home. A big hug, a cool drink, and a chat. (I wish the owners of some of these doors were friends - Ireland, Venice, Greece...)

What better way to say welcome than WELCOME???

That's where Shelley's Wonderfully Wordy vinyl comes in. Great vinyl, and her blog showcases some very creative ways to use it.

Thanks to all of you who helped me to celebrate my birthday!
And now for the TWO winners of the WELCOME vinyl - you can choose any of the welcome script styles you'd like....

Using random generator, the first winner is 26 - Jessica Blood. Congratulations, Jessica!
The second winner is 56 - Cassie. Congratulations to you, too!
Now your doors will look even more inviting than they already do.
I wonder if you could convince your neighbors to do this???

I've got another giveaway in the works to celebrate 150 followers, which I met and passed all this last week...it's with Gina from Shabby Chic Cottage blog (LOVE IT) who has an amazing Etsy shop!

Happy Monday, all!


Orange Loves Aqua, Too!

Check out my giveaway - WELCOME vinyl from Wonderfully Wordy. TWO winners, so what are you waiting for? Enter by midnight July 25!

So I've been sharing the loveliness that is aqua blue - sharing that love with Martha Stewart, of course. Yesterday I showed you how beautiful aqua and red are together.
Today I wanted to show you how my absolute favorite color holds up with aqua - ORANGE!
Opposites on the color wheel, blue and aqua look fabulous together!

I. want. this. skirt. Don't you LOVE IT???

I am really into pendants, and I love the simple geometric pattern!

This is so cute - I love the striped tie closure. It's a great contrast to that cute and modern floral.

I would gladly replace my tomato pincushion with this little lovely - I think it looks great with chocolate brown.

Love the cheerful color and shape of these flowers. Orange makes me SO HAPPY!

I want this orange patterned star, but check out the clever fish hanging with the SHELL BUBBLES. That is awesome!

All of these beautiful colors do make me want to sew something!

I love this - I HEART birds, and I think I could put something like this together. Cute - cute - cute.

First of all, I want French doors in my bedroom (won't happen in the fifth wheel) - LOVE THAT FABRIC!

I want a ton of these tins. A TON!!!

This is not a subtle light wash of aqua, but it's gorgeous. This bedroom is also about the size of my entire upstairs - and about 5 times as bright!

Have I convinced you how great these colors are together? ORANGE you enjoying all this aqua beauty? What colors make YOU happy?

New Friend Fridays


Aqua Loves Red!

Check out my giveaway of WELCOME vinyl from Wonderfully Wordy. TWO winners, so what's keeping you? Hurry up and enter until midnight July 25!

Yesterday I shared some lovely aqua and turquoise loveliness with you. I am thinking about painting the inside of my entire fifth wheel (when I get it) pale aqua because it gives me some lovely color AND because it goes with so many other gorgeous hues.
I thought I'd share how wonderful aqua looks not only with RED but also a little PINK!

This makes me ready for a red and aqua kitchen!!! SO LOVELY!!!
Who loves red here? Anyone use red with blue in a room? How about red with another color?