Sunday, October 23, 2011

Vintage Fall Mantle

Well, this is my first ever 'mantle post.'

We don't have a fireplace and I have always been jealous of all the bloggers with their mantles decorated for the seasons ;)  Especially at Christmas, I always long for a mantle to decorate for the holidays.  I'm not so much interested in the actual fireplace since we have a 2 year old and one on the way (although I'm sure it would be nice to cuddle up by the fire once in a while when the kids are in bed...)  Anyway, I decided that since I gained some new wall space with the addition that I would add a mantle to the room.  The main purpose of our addition is a 'playroom' for overflow of toys and other kid/baby 'things' that take up a lot of space but I didn't just want the room to be a toy pit.  I wanted it to have some style at least especially since it opens to the living room and is also in direct view of the kitchen.  So, I thought the room would be a perfect place to put my much desired faux fireplace or mantle.  Well, I searched and searched on craigslist and was getting nowhere.  I had a pretty strict budget for my mantle and none of what I was seeing was in my price range.  Finally, I decided to call around some local thrift and antique stores and I finally found one! 

It was perfect! ...or so I thought...  You see, the mantle is very distressed and old.  It is painted white and it is hard to tell in these photos but the paint is all crackled and coming off. 

It looks very charming and has tons of character which is why I fell in love with it!

But after we got it home, I realized that the shabby style of the mantle wasn't really the style of the rest of our home.  I'm not really sure how to describe our style but I have always considered it to be more of a sophisticated casual.  I like to keep it nice but not too nice.  I want it to be comfortable but stylish.  Anyway, our home is casual yes but shabby and rustic...not so much.  SO as much as I adore the finish on this old mantle, I think I will be painting it.  It will still be cute and old but not as shabby.  Although I couldn't resist decorating it with a little vintage vignette before I paint it :)  It definitely has character....but maybe just a little too much for our home. 

Anyhoo, back to my Fall mantle...

I 'borrowed' the old window I got for Ava's room and hung my homemade acorn wreath on it.
Wrapped it in some leftover burlap (don't ya just love burlap??)
Ahhhh, I love the stripes we hubby painted in there.  They look so great, can't wait to see how it looks when the floors aren't concrete....
So, our room is almost finished!  We are having the carpet installed this week!  Then I can 'move in.'  I'm excited to show off the room when we are done.  I am loving how it's coming together so far!  Remember my Ballard Knock-Off Drapes?  They will be in there (along with some matching throw pillows, maybe???)  Ahh, can't wait!

All photos taken by Kristen (blog author) unless otherwise stated. Do not copy/save or print without permission. Thank you!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Hayden's $25 Craigslist Dresser: From Drab to Nautical Fab!

Finally!!!!  I got this dresser months and months ago and it's finally finished!  I found this ugly old dresser on Craigslist and got it for a steal at just $25!

Of course, it needed a lot of had about 4 or 5 different kids of hardware on it and the top had some water damage on the right corner.  We worked hard on it and put a new top on it....
We added some trim to cover the edges...
used some wood filler and did some sanding and priming.  I didn't get a pic of the dresser primed but I used the grey gripper primer. 
Then, we painted it a navy color in satin.  It was very hard to find the right navy color.  I wanted something dark but not purple-ish or so dark that it looked black.  I started off with one color in a different brand of paint and a semi-gloss finish.  After several coats, I decided I hated the color and the sheen.  I chose a different navy and finish and used Valspar hi-def paint (our new FAV paint, we will never use another paint!!!)  The color is called Victory Blue and it's an Olympic color but we got it in the Valspar (literally THE only true one-coat paint I have ever used, it covers amazingly!! Have you seen the commercial where they used red paint to cover the black and white stripes?  That's this paint!!)  Anyhoo, we painted one coat of that color in satin and added the hardware.  We had to drill new holes for the six smaller drawers so that took a little time.  I added some brushed nickel hardware, I thought it went great with the navy as well as the nautical decor I am doing in Hayden's 'big boy room.' 
Anyway, here is the finished product!  I'm pretty happy with it myself!

Sorry for the not-so-great after pics....I had to take them in our partially-finished bonus room and it wasn't working out too well....

(the color variation in this corner of the photo is just from my jacked-up image, it does not look like this in real life!)

So, I sort of lost track of how much I spent total on everything but I would bet that I spent around $75 including the paint, primer and hardware (and the original $25 for the dresser.)  For less than $100 I got a great (solid, real wood) dresser for Hayden's new room!  Beats this smaller (and, in my opinion, less cute) dresser from Land of Nod for $799!

(source: Land of Nod)

Here is a before & after :)
I can't wait to see how it looks in his room once we get everything done in there (which, who knows how long that will be!) 

p.s. I'm linking up to Thrifty Decor Chick's Before and After Party!

All photos taken by Kristen (blog author) unless otherwise stated. Do not copy/save or print without permission. Thank you!