Friday, August 22, 2014

Summer Cottage Chair Makeover

Hello Cottage Friends,

I've been hearing rumblings that summer is over, but I'm not buying it. Not yet.

In fact, I'm kind of rebelling against that idea.

Case in point: my Summer Cottage Chair Makeover.

I've mentioned here at A Joyful Cottage that I gather with a group of crafty ladies at my church once a month.  

When we meet I always grab this chair because it's the most comfortable seat for me.  Lately I've been having some lower back issues, and this chair really helps me while I'm sewing.  Knowing this, my church gave it to me so I'd have a comfortable chair at home.  Very sweet, right?

The chair is very sturdy and serviceable, and with a little updating I knew it would work well in my studio.

On hand I had some ivory craft paint, and a yard of striped cotton upholstery fabric that I found at a thrift store eons ago.  

I took the chair apart, sanded the wood a bit and painted it, then stapled the new fabric onto the seat and back.  You may not be able to tell from the photos, but the paint has a whitewashed effect.

I made a panel to cover the staples on the back and add a little flair. The three buttons came from my button jar.

This makeover was completed in an afternoon.

I'm really happy with the way it turned out.  It will be nice to have a cheery pattern in my studio this winter, not to mention a comfortable chair for my back.

All I need now is to find a chair to replace this one at our church.  

Wish me luck.

I party with:
DIY Sunday Showcase
Amaze Me Monday at Dwellings
Tweak it Tuesday at Cozy Little House
Do Tell Tuesday
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
What's It Wednesday at Ivy & Elephants
Home and Garden Thursday at A Delightsome Life
Share Your Cup Thursday at Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson
Creative Ways at Posed Perfection
Home Sweet Home at The Charm of Home
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage

The Art of Homemaking at Strangers & Pilgrims on Earth

Saturday, August 16, 2014

The Laundry Room

Neightbor's Clothesline

Laundry rooms were a lot simpler when  I was a girl on the farm.

My mom used a wringer washer on the back porch for washing and a clothesline for drying.  In the winter she dried the wet clothes on chairs near the floor registers.  When my dad installed a propane gas dryer in the farmhouse "back room", clothes drying in inclement weather became less intrusive. Everyone was happy about that.

Today's laundry rooms are about as different from my mom's back room as lye soap is from HE detergent.  

I looked at several views of this room before I spotted the actual washer and dryer.

Aha!  There they are.

On the other end of the spectrum, consider the laundry area in our previous home.

Full-size units were stacked in a small corner of the mudroom to save space.  Honestly, I don't think my clothes would have gotten any cleaner in a laundry room ten times this size.  Although having room to roller skate while watching the clothes tumble may have made laundry day more exciting.

This is the laundry room in our rental apartment.  Uninspiring, but it beats going to the laundromat.

In our new cottage plan the laundry is adjacent and open to the bathroom.

Here's a sketch looking head on.  There's a window on the wall to the right of the dryer.

This is my inspiration photo.  The laundry area is compact and pretty, with a countertop for folding, storage above and a charming window.  

We're partying in the Laundry Room at Every Room In The House the month of August.  Come and be inspired by the laundry rooms linked there. And, please, share your laundry room, too.  We'd love to see it!

Sharing here, too:
Amaze Me Monday at Dwellings
Tweak it Tuesday at Cozy Little House
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
Home and Garden Thursday at A Delightsome Life
Share Your Cup Thursday at Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson
Home Sweet Home at The Charm of Home
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Emma's Quilt

Welcome Cottage Friends,

I'm  happy to tell you I finished the quilt I last showed you in my a bit of vintage quilt post.  

This quilt is the first bed size quilt I've made since I took my beginning quilting class last October, and is a gift for my granddaughter Emma's 13th birthday.

Memories flooded my mind as I worked on Emma's quilt.

My late husband and I traveled across the country to meet Emma and help her mommy and daddy take her home from the hospital.  Oh, the joy Jim and I felt gazing at our first grandchild. 

She was a beautiful baby, and had her Papa Jim wrapped around her sweet baby finger from the moment he laid eyes on her.  

We finally got our girl -- a happy, funny, bright little "Sweetpea".

Three years later she welcomed her baby brother into the family and took on her role as big sister with pride. 

When Emma was nine Oliver cut his finger and she nursed him back to health with ointment and a bandage. He didn't want to relinquish his finger to her, but she patiently, gently admonished him, "Now, Ollie, if you want your finger to get better you need to let me do this."  

I smile just thinking about it.

We were so proud of her when she started school.

She's always been a good student.

She plays clarinet in band, and in sixth grade was hand picked to play in a special jazz group.

Emma's a girly girl who likes to polish her toenails, yet she's not afraid to get her hands dirty and help around the house.

Quilt back
She likes the color blue, so I'm glad her quilt has some blue in it.  To finish Emma's quilt I did a stitch in the ditch around the quilt blocks. With each block I said a prayer for her.

Quilt Back

I prayed that God will guide her through the rocky teen years and that she will cross over from girl to young woman with grace and poise.

With every free motion machine stippling stitch I sewed on the borders I asked God to keep her safe and fill her with the knowledge of His love.  And I prayed that she will follow Him with all her heart.

I made a label and hand sewed it to the quilt back. (Oh, Lord, don't let my girl ever forget how much You and I love her.)

Emma's quilt will be packed up and shipped tomorrow.  I hope it arrives in time for her birthday, and that she'll enjoy it as much as I enjoyed making it for her.

Happy 13th birthday, Emma.  
From Nana, with love.

I'm sharing Emma's Quilt at these lovely blog parties:
Amaze Me Monday at Dwellings
Inspire Me Monday at Create with Joy
Make It Pretty Monday at The Dedicated House
The Art of Homemaking Mondays at Strangers & Pilgrims on Earth
Tweak it Tuesday at Cozy Little House
You're Gonna Love it Tuesday at Kathe with an E
Do Tell Tuesday at Mabey She Made It
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
Let's Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts
Home and Garden Thursday at A Delightsome Life

Share Your Cup Thursday at Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson
Thursday Favorite Things
Home Sweet Home at The Charm of Home
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

French Inspired Altered Clipboard

Bonjour les amis de chalets (Hello cottage friends),

Can you tell I'm feeling a little French today?  The reason lies with the lovely French mademoiselle on my altered clipboard.  She's patiently waited three months for me to embellish her. 

Right after I finished the French Script Bottle I found an old clipboard for 25 cents at a thrift store.  It was in the spring, and the song April in Paris was playing in my head.  I knew this was a sign for me to do another French Script Mod Podge project. 

I downloaded French Sheet Music and Antique Paris Fashion printables from The Graphics Fairy and did my Mod Podge thing.  I painted the clip a soft green, but I didn't like it, so I repainted it in ivory and I didn't like that either.  So, in my typical I'll-wait-until-I-feel-inspired-again fashion, I set Mademoiselle Clipboard aside. 

In the meantime I had collected some odds and ends for crafting -- a little doily, a baby food jar filled with old buttons -- all found at thrift stores (I'm frugal like that) -- and I dried some pink carnations (I'm frugal like that, too). 

Inspiration hit Sunday afternoon.

I like the way Mademoiselle Clipboard turned out.  A little shabby chique using crafty things I had on hand.

This project took about an hour to complete, start to finish.  I like that.    How much time do you like to spend on a project?

I like to party at these lovely blogs: 
My Show and Share Party

Ivy and ElephantsI would love to have you join me for my link party, Share Your Cup!button
PhotobucketgiveawaysFeathered Nest Friday

Craft Dictator

Friday, August 1, 2014

Every Room In The House Party - #8

Watermelon Propane Tank  - A clever disguise by Terry at Forever Decorating

Hello Cottage Friends,

Welcome to the August edition of Every Room In The House, the place where we party all month long in a theme room.  

Have you been enjoying the many pleasures summer offers us?  I appreciate the opportunity to slow down and spend more time outdoors, and  I enjoy the fresh vegetables and fruit of the season so plentiful in our area. Watermelon is a definite favorite, and how about Terry's sweet Watermelon Propane Tank in the header photo? Not for eating, but it certainly is a cute and clever disguise.

Today begins a new Every Room In The House party.  August's theme room is The Laundry. This is a chance to show us where you do your laundry, share laundering tips and organization ideas, or  inspiration photos of what you'd like your laundry room to be. After all, inspiration is what this party is all about.

Before we get August's party started let's take a look at the outdoor spaces that were shared last month.  

And, please, if you're going to pin. . .please pin from the blogger's original post site and not from here.  Thanks!

The top three most viewed posts


Jann at Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson has a knack for creating fun and inviting spaces.  Her outdoor living room from Making Room (s) part two. . .the Living/Dining Room is no exception.  I love Jann's use of color and whimsical vintage accessories in this delightful space.

I like sun porches, don't you?  Julie at Renaissance Mermaid gave us a tour of hers in Sun Porch Serenity.  This sun porch is filled with inspiration.  From the new paint color on the floor to the carefully chosen accessories, Julie shows us how to, indeed, create a serene living space that relates to the outdoors.  Oh, and don't miss the fabulous dresser that graces her sun porch.

One look at this mah-vel-us porch and the surrounding garden in Garden Sanctuary and New Lounge Chair Slipcover and I was ready to pack a bag and head for Kris's Junk Chic Cottage.  Her romantic porch and gorgeous garden is a feast for the eyes.  Really. 

More Outdoor Inspiration 

I have a thing for garden art and architecture.  It does so much to personalize and give character to outdoor spaces.   After Terry at Forever Decorating received some old windows from a builder friend she designed this cupola for her garden.  You can see how she made this charming garden feature at The Making of My Garden Cupola.

You can see more of Terry's lovely garden in Backyard Gardens 2013.

Stacey at Poofing the Pillows shared her outdoor living space in On Our Patio.  Reading her description of sitting with her husband on their lovely patio with a glass of iced tea,  "surveying" the surroundings and counting their blessings sounds like the perfect way to relax.

Old louvered bi-fold doors repurposed into a garden screen

And the inspiration just keeps coming with Old Louvered Doors Repurposed.  Marie at Interior Frugalista scored some free bi-fold doors from her neighbor and with the help of Mr. Fruglista built this very attractive fence.  Aren't the birdhouse finials neat?  This is so creative.

Jann's cute sink planter with the "dirty dishes" gives a whole new meaning to kitchen garden, doesn't it?  See more of Jann's quaint outdoor kitchen, including a vintage stove and herb garden, in her post Creating Rooms in the Garden part three . . .The Kitchen.


Jann created an outdoor parlor, too.  I can only imagine how much fun her grandchildren have when they come to visit.  That screen door is calling my name.  Now how can I get it out of there without Jann noticing?

The Queen of DIY Anne at Design Dreams by Anne showed us her blooms and potting bench, signs and gates, and even her pretty kitty at In the Spring Garden.  Wait until you see how she used an old door for her garden gate. 

Laurel at The North End Loft put her photography skills to work in A Peek Into My Summer Garden.  The photos of her lovely garden are breathtaking.  Obviously her gardening skills are just as fine tuned as her photography.

Kim's Summer Cottage Yard Tour at Exquisitely Unremarkable is a must see.  From the sparkling pool to the cool, green yard and cheery flowers, this outdoor space is a summer delight.  Kim's husband installed a pond and made a frog fountain out of an old cement ornament his grandmother had in her yard.  So sweet.

Since I don't have an outdoor space yet, I took everyone on a tour of 20 Cottage Gardens that Inspire.  

And that wraps up July's Every Room In The House party.  I want to say how blessed I am to have you share your lovely spaces here at my little get together.  You're all amazing, and without you I'd just be a wallflower at this party, sitting alone on the sidelines. So, thank you!

If you were featured, please grab this button.

A Joyful Cottage

To all who visit and leave comments, thank you very much.  It makes me happy to read them.

Ready to start a new party in The Laundry Room?

Every Room In The House is a monthly link-up party with a theme room for each month.  This month we're partying in

The Laundry Room

Show us your laundry room or share your laundering tips, organization solutions, or photos of your dream laundry room.  Whatever you have that fits the laundry category, we want to see it.

Please only add links that relate to this month's theme Laundry Room.

The party will be open all month.  Bring a friend!
Please remember to put a link in your post back to A Joyful Cottage.  That's necessary to be featured.

Sharing at these lovely parties:
Monthly Sunday's Best Part.ay.  1st Sunday of Every Month, 9:00 a.m.!