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July 31, 2012

Several years ago we inherited my husband's family scrapbooks which were compiled by
his mother and grandmother, the earliest dating back to the late 19th Century.  

Married in 1895, Bob's grandparents documented their life and the lives of their rural neighbors through newspaper clippings and photographs.  And, yes, we realize how lucky we are to have such treasures.

Hence, my latest project - preserving the family heritage and salvaging the fading photographs and yellowed, crumbling scrapbooks.  These books are a fascinating glimpse into one
of the most tumultuous eras in history and I feel the weight
of the responsibility.  One of the books, alone, is dedicated to
WWII and the sacrifices made by that small community.  


The hundreds of newspaper clippings are mostly  wedding, birth, and funeral announcements but there are human interest stories, too - a barn raising, reports on crops, rationing during the war.  Needless to say, the project has taken over the house but it's a productive and humbling feeling.

If you have family documents, I urge you to preserve them now.  I don't endorse many products but I suggest you purchase a handheld scanner if you're considering such a project.  The scanner has completely made this undertaking possible - otherwise, we would have had to disassemble the scrapbooks to copy them.  

Working on the photographs and scrapbooks is a lot of work but it's also a lot of fun.
Is it me or does Bob's great-uncle Bradley look just like the actor Casey Affleck?!

July 30, 2012

We haven't repurposed in quite a while, have we?

Below are two charming menu chalk boards made from
a kitchen cabinet door and a thrift store mirror:

Another darling use of a vintage shutter.

Looking to recover a lampshade?
Consider using a map.

Doesn't this vintage patio plant cart
make a great bathroom shelving unit?

A local thrift store has these insulators
for $2 each - a great gift idea.

The same thrift store also has containers of hand-crocheted
doilies, many for only $1.  Look at the charming table runner
made from such finery:

We need to get crafty, don't we?

July 27, 2012

The Laws of Physics state that the world would spin off its axis if
closets were used for purposes other than hanging clothes - NOT!

Several months ago I featured a post about concerting closets
into more useful living space.  I'm still intrigued by the wonderful
possibilities these often ignored mini-areas can provide.


A pantry can be so much more than
just a closet to store pots and pans.  

The repurposer of this 'closet project' retained the storage use of
the closet then enhanced the space with a reading nook.

Belgian Pearls
THE most clever use of small closets in a nursery!

Many of us are lucky to have a hall closet in our foyers in which to
hang guests' coats.  Here in Florida our guests rarely wear coats
(because it's paradise year 'round) so why not use that space
in a more decorative way?

Paneling adds even more depth and interest
to this former closet space - perfection!

Jamie Herzlinger
Designer Jamie Herzlinger  kept this closet's overhead lighting
intact to illuminate the beautiful commode and mirror. 

Verdigris Vie
The designer of this (former) closet simply wallpapered the
space to effortlessly blend it into the landscape of the room.

 House Beautiful
What a fabulous wet bar idea!  Grass cloth highlights the back
 of the closet and adds color and texture to (what could be)
an otherwise too-white palette. 

Take a look at your home and 'think outside the box' of your closet situation.
Have a great weekend!

July 26, 2012

Please accept my apology for being so delinquent in featuring
Before & After projects.  I've missed the motivation and inspiration, too.

Having obtained her permission, I'm so pleased to introduce you to Sharley
at Double Take Decor.  Her transformations are genius: 

Uninteresting chest Before:

Contemporary and fresh After:

Tired, dull dresser Before:

Exciting, cool dresser After:

Ordinary 70's headboard Before:

Fabulous paint treatment After:

A dated, heavy credenza Before:

So chic after:
Stop by Double Take Decor for more of Sharley's brilliant makeovers.

One of the hardest projects can be trying to re-do a re-do:

                        Before:                                    After:
Repurposed Vintage Finds

Penny at flea market makeovers is known for taking on some
very distressed, sad pieces and completely transforming them
into charming, useful additions to any home:


I completely bow to the brilliance of Lindsay at better after.  She
scours the blogisphere in search of incredible re-dos to share with us:

Who could have imagined how spectacular this
hutch could be with a simple paint treatment?
 The painted knobs really pop.

We might walk right past this abandoned
little stool at a thrift store or a yard sale:

It sure would grab our attention now.  LOVE the 'dipped' legs:

Last month I came across an armoire almost identical to this one:

Had I seen these results I would have hauled it home:

Prepare to be completely 'wow-ed' by this next project:


And, lastly, painting and landscaping were just about all it took
to transform this dreary little house into a storybook cottage:

better after
I've always been a sucker for painted brick!
Have a great day.