Plates On The Wall + How I Overcame My Fear Of Granny Decor

Let’s recap my hopes + dreams for our living room walls.

Imagine, if you will, that this ladder has gone away:

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Bye bye, ladder!

But now what?

Well, let’s envision our TV’s  “going away”, too.

Making a long story (slightly) shorter — we could do this:

gallery-wall-with-tv-3

Pottery Barn!

gallery-wall-with-tv-4

Enter a caption

Nope.  Too scared of all those nails.  So I/we did this, instead:

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That’s great, but wait.

What about this empty + sad space?

Plates on our wall?  Yes, please!

And even better, these plates are on a TV wall!

plates-on-living-room-wall-part-2

While I have some white ironstone platters,

I also love blue + white plates.

Notice how they’re hung in a symmetrical (traditional) layout.

plate-wall-with-lots-of-blue-with-gingham-tiers-curioussofa

More traditional + symmetrical happiness:

plate-wall-traditional

LOVE IT!

But how on earth do I do this?  Where should I start?

No problem — here’s a tutorial to help make it less intimidating:

plate-wall-paper-and-tape-homestoriesatoze

But wait.  Needle scratch.

This is all fun, but here’s the thing:

 Everybody knows that plates on a wall are hopelessly granny.

surprised boy

Um, yes, I am a granny, but I don’t want my decor to be granny!

What should I do?

Um, maybe hang my plates in a non-traditional manner?

plate-wall-dark-gray-panelled-wall-with-blue-white-plates

 Look at this!

plate-on-wall-modern

decorfacil.com

I’m pretty sure these are decoupaged plates by John Derian.

plate-wall-john-derian

mysweetsavannah.blogspot

Here’s John Derian now, in what looks like his NYC work room:

john-derian-in-his-shop

http://www.johnderian.com/pages/browse-by-shape

But let’s get back to my plate hopes + dreams.

Would layering them be out of my comfort zone?

plate-wall-in-yellow

pinkstreetdesign

How about turning a corner with them?

plate-on-wall-around-the-corner

viewalongtheway.com

Okay.  Wait a minue.

Somebody needs to calm down, ’cause this just got crazy.

Does this mean I am still hopelessly indecisive?

Stay tuned — come back tomorrow.

 


Our Bungalow Is For Sale!

Hi again, sports fans!

Yesterday I blogged about our new art ledges:

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While photographing said art ledges,

I took a few more snapshots of our living room.

Let’s have a quick look-see, shall we?

First up, my awesome red + white target artwork:

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My friend, Alan, made it.

He has a new biz called Boxcar Home,

so look for him at pop-up markets in + around Chicago.

He + I may do one together, later this fall — stay tuned!

boxcar

https://www.facebook.com/BoxcarHome/

Exciting, no?  But back to our living room!

The top of our sorter is currently sporting my old RedBird sign.

I stenciled it on an old plank from a cupboard,

which we found in the basement of our brick bungalow.

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And look at that wonderful butter churn that G.O. bought last Sunday!

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A couple of close ups of our sorter’s original gray paint:

Here are a few photos of the sorter’s cubbies.

Our dad caught this foul ball at a Cardinals game in the late 50’s.

The display stand is from Land of Nod.

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I super love this miniature yellow ware bowl,

+ the small ‘pineapple’ patchwork ornament that my sister, Kathy, made:

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Just a few of my dozens of books,

with the cutest blue + white floral bowl, ever!

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I snapped some of our other living room happiness,

including this framed photo of my parents:

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I bought that sponged frame at a folk art show, years ago.

My parents are seated on my old twiggy bench,

on the patio of the house we built on a riverfront lot.

Yikes.  That was 2 houses ago!

We just listed our most recent past house!

Disclaimer: we accepted an offer earlier this afternoon.

It’s been sold!


At Last, Art Ledges!

Jeopardy! was just on, + I didn’t get Final.  The humanity!

Dunce-cap

But let’s not dwell on today’s heartbreak;

 let’s discuss my new art ledges from IKEA, instead:

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We have 4 of them on each side of that huge sorter.

I’m such a fan of art ledges — we had them at our old brick bungalow, too:

art ledges bungalow dining room

Art ledges are right up my decorating alley,

as they make it super easy for me to endlessly arrange + rearrange all my stuff!

They’re perfect for G.O., too,

as we don’t end up with Swiss cheese nail holes in our plaster walls.

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But why, you ask, did it take us 10+ months

to hang art ledges here at the Dutch colonial?

  Well, here’s why  — I suffer from CDI.

Chronic Decorating Indecision

dunce cap cat

Let’s go back in time, when all this indecision was taking place.

I sit here, on our new-ish couch, while simultaneously watching Jeopardy

+ pondering where to display all my groovies.

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Here’s my view while doing all that watching + pondering:

Disclaimer: I plopped that tall black ladder there just this morning,

so imagine this as an empty, blank space.

I just knew that it would be perfect for an epic gallery wall!

Here’s proof, all from Pottery Barn:

Yumm-O, am I right?

Yes I am right, but for some reason I just couldn’t commit.

Then, 0ne day, out of the blue,

I was struck with the idea of flanking our sorter with art ledges.

Perfect!  I love symmetry!

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View from the front door. Our poor Eames-style recliner needs some TLC!

Let’s have a closer look-see at just a few of my groovies, shall we?

On the lower left side, I’ve incorporated some ‘leaners’.

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Beatles Revolver LP . vintage map of St. Louis . folk art measuring stick, made from an old window sash (by me)

Now let’s view the lower right side, with its own leaner + a vintage child’s chair.

I’m sewing a cushion for it, for my biz — but I kinda like it here.

Perhaps I’ll keep it.

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Cubist painting of Susie, our late great Dachshud by David Holsted of Harrison, AR . photo of our grandson with Susie . President Kennedy window cling

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A framed map . Blackhawk statue in Oregon IL . Hogue Hall (now demolished) at my alma mater, Greenville College . vintage metal weather vane arrow.

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Vintage letter cards . corresponding dictionary pages for ‘Oh’ (for G.O.) + ‘Kay’ (for me) . another vintage metal weather vane arrow

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Close up of a print of my beloved Busch Stadium, from an etsy seller

Oh, how fun!

So many groovies, so little room left in this blog post, though!

Perhaps I will share more on another day — stay tuned!

Oh, + happy Labor Day weekend!


Finally! Our Informal Hedge!

From the minute we closed on our Dutch colonial,

I have been trying (but failing) to design our lot line landscaping.

Then this happened.

Just last weekend, I found (my favorites!) Oak Leaf hydrangeas

at Menards, a Midwestern home improvement store:

oak leaf alabama

$11 each for one gallon size plants!

Can you believe it?

Yesterday we drove to a Menards about an hour away,

to find enough plants (7 total) to  make our informal hedge.

Like this, hopefully:

oak leaf hydrangea big hedge

Back to NOW — here we have our new plants,

marching along our lot line, at left (below).

Imagine, if you will, what our hedge will look like, in a few years:

Good things come to those who wait!

Oak Leaf hydrangeas grow to 6′-8′ tall by 6′ x 8′ wide.

This means our backyard will be less of a fish bowl.

Our hedge will begin + end  between 2 large existing trees —

a huge walnut (L) + a gorgeous maple (R):

Oak Leaf hydrangeas have cone-shaped white flowers

which turn a pretty, faded pink as the blooming season progresses.

Yes, those flowers are gorgeous,

but in my opinion, their leaves are the all stars.

Look at what happens in the Fall:

Is it any wonder that Fall is our favorite season?

Anyway, I am so relieved + happy,

after suffering through all those months of indecision.

oak leaf hydrangea 2

It’s hard to believe I found one of my favorites,

+ at such an affordable price!

Fingers crossed we’ll find the time to plant them THIS week.

Stay tuned!



Do + Don’t Curtains

We’ve happily lived in our Dutch colonial since last October,

although I wasn’t all that happy about that stupid sheet

covering our bedroom window.

I’ve looked + looked, but I just couldn’t find the perfect curtains!

Until Sunday.  Yes, Sunday.

We broke our “no IKEA on the weekend” rule + came home with these:

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The minute I saw that print, I was smitten, as was G.O.!

Prints are a thing, + I’ve been wanting to add more in our decor.

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So.  Mission accomplished, am I right?

But wait.  Not so fast.

I wanted them hung really high, like high above the woodwork.

How could I not?  I saw this on Pinterest!

curtain hung high do and don't

Oh, dear.  As I often do, I failed to give G.O. the heads up about this rule.

Oops.

.

cat fight

Luckily for me, that same Pinterest  has dozens of photos:

curtains hung high

HGTV Dream House

curtain hung high

Ms. Career Girl

Wait.  Not so fast.

On a whim, I popped in one of our living room cafe curtains:

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I like them because we can’t see our neighbor’s messy yard,

nor can he see us, + yet, there’s still plenty of natural light.

What I really wanna know is: are they hopelessly granny?

You’d tell me, wouldn’t you?

I shall stay tuned + wait for your recommendations.


Beautiful Stone

Another morning, another walk with Chloe the Dachshund:

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Here she is, admiring the tile sidewalk

at the entrance of a former movie theater-turned-church in our downtown.

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What a neat feature, don’t you think?

I wish I knew more about it, like what material it is

+ how it stays so good-looking through our area’s long, cold winters!

Next, here’s a church message board that caught my attention.

JAZZ?  Yes, please!

DSC00205

Actually, I’ve seen this post before — several times, in fact.

Each time, I make a mental note to attend said jazz service,

but I’ve not yet made it.  Stay tuned.

But back to the church.  Here is a photo of its front facade:

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Here’s a close up of one of its windows.

Notice the wedge-shaped stone in the middle, on top:

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Architectural fun factoid:

that feature is called a keystone.

Geography fun factoid:

Pennsylvania is known as “The Keystone State”,

+ the distinctive shape is often seen in various logos, like these:

keystone penn

keystone penn 2

Now we’re all set, just in case the Final Jeopardy category is State Mottoes.

You’re welcome.

Perhaps, if you’re really paying close attention,

you recall that our house’s beautiful stone foundation

is nearly identical to that of the church.

DSC09966

DSC00206

Interesting, no?

Once again, my curiosity is piqued.

What kind of stone is that, + was it locally sourced?

Is one person or company responsible for its installation?

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I also need to find out the year in which our house was built.

Stay tuned!


$3 Garage Sale Happiness

It’s Thursday, which means one thing in my little world:

GARAGE SALES!

You never know what treasure you’ll find!

Just last week I enthusiastically bought this homemade magazine rack:

DSC00112

SURPRISE!

 As you can no doubt tell, I shan’t be using it to hold mags.

Instead, I plan to use it to display some of my beloved platters.

Exhibit A:

 4 of my ironstone platters on our most recent past kitchen wall:

platters on walls bungalow

For our current kitchen, I wanted to do something like this,

on the end of our island:

platerack atticmag

atticmag.com

plate rack kichen island eclectically vintage

eclecticallyvintage.com

Normally, I would just ask G.O. to make me something.

He’s so talented!  But he’s just so busy!

IMG_4572(1)

Instead, I have been searching for one to buy, for months.

I liked this from an etsy seller,

Apple Tree Woodcrafts:

plate rack applewoood crafts overall view

https://www.etsy.com/listing/232695125/walI

$146

Since I hoped to find something more affordable,

my plate rack project was put on the back burner for a while.

Then, last Thursday — this:

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HA!  Yes!  $3!

When I spied it, I knew it would be perfect for my plate rack hopes + dreams!

I couldn’t buy it FAST enough!

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The bottom portion will have to go away so that it fits our island like a glove.

No worries, though — I know that super talented G.O. will be able to do that.

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The dowels have to go, as well, but that’s not much of a problem (not for Greg!)

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So.  Other than those few tweaks to make it perfect,

I must also decide what color to paint it.

The color must complement + contrast

with both the dark wood island + my light-colored platters.

Right now, I’m thinking this blue:

Chambray by Pittsburgh Paints

blue kitchen ceiling

 I think I shall distress said blue,

as our kitchen is skewing a tad too “new”.

Stay tuned!


Small, Charming Brick Houses

Another day, another walk with Chloe the Dachshund.

This a.m. we strolled through one of my favorite neighborhoods.

But first, here’s our girl at journey’s end,

enjoying a refreshing drink from our bird bath:

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It is one of those concrete bird baths with the pressed leaves design.

Its pedestal is actually an old, hollow log.  Genius!

Okay.  Time now for a few look-sees at that neighborhood I like so much.

There are about 5 charming brick cottages, including this one:

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Please.  They had me at the arch doorway.

Look closely at those lanterns which flank the front door.

I’m pretty sure they are original to the house.  Lovely!

Oh, + I like the brick’s basket weave pattern in the gable.

Meanwhile, here’s another “sister” cottage:

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I am a huge fan of the front bump out with that small window,

 which must mean that there’s a charming vestibule inside.

Chances are that the blank wall to the door’s left means there’s a coat closet.

It’s not just me, is it?

Doesn’t everyone think about such things when passing a cute house?

While we ponder that, further down the block

there’s yet another brick cottage:

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This house, with its “busy” front yard, was on a garden tour one summer.

What are our thoughts, regarding “busy” front yards?

Part of me is a fan, but I still want our house to be seen.

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Yes, that’s our front yard, + yes, it’s pretty much a blank slate.

That lonely evergreen may or may not make the final scheme.

Stay tuned!


My Old Store + Home Above It

In my last 2 blog posts, I’ve mused about having another retail store.

I say another because I did have one (in another lifetime!)

It was called Heart-In-Hand.

heart in hand front in snow

My first shop space was in a mall, but within 3 years,

I had the means to actually buy a building downtown.

How brave I was!

A few years after that, I decided to build an apartment upstairs.

This  “before” photo must have been taken on demo day:

heart in hand apartment disheveled

The “after” is the epitome of 90’s country style.

Oh, how I loved it (at the time!)

Look at my stencil border at the ceiling line!

heart in hand apartment tv armoire

My only real splurge was this gas fireplace,

enjoyed by my sons + our late, great Dachshund, Susie.

heart in hand upstairs fireplace with boys and susie

I bought that bench at an auction when I was only 18 years old.

Here’s another blast from the past.

I kind of wish that I had that pencil post bed back.

heart in hand bedroom

Honestly, I cannot imagine having another store,

no matter how many bouts of “retail fever” I may experience.


Imogene + Willie In Nashville

So.  We’ve had our look-sees at a couple of old gas stations

that were repurposed into awesome Ralph Lauren stores.

There’s yet another groovy gas station conversion in Nashville, TN.

It’s a high-end jeans store called Imogene + Willie.

imogene and willie neon sign and gable

I love their orange cross or plus sign logo!

imogene and willie outside people sweeping

The jeans are custom made + sell for $200+,

which is just another reminder that I’ve made bad life choices.

imogene and willie gas station sign and patterns

Still, I’d love to visit the store + soak up all the hipness.

It looks like a very fun place.

Have you been to Imogene + Willie?

Do you know of another business that began its life as a gas station?


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