Friday, February 20, 2015

a do-able a-door-able makeover

We've been having quite the winter here in Rhode Island. When prepping for the last snowstorm, in addition to making sure we were stocked with comfort-food essentials, I also bought some paint.

Backstory: The door to the basement was painted in an unappealing "flesh crayon" color by the former home-owner. Back when I was refreshing this small hallway, the Hubs advised skipping the door because he needed to fix it or something. But recently I thought, "what an eye-sore," plus I wanted to install some hooks to have an accessible place to hang heavy winter coats.

Which brought me to Home Depot on the eve of a snow storm. Honestly, when I walked into the paint department, my mind was a blank canvas. First I thought of lavender but my eye was drawn to an aqua paint chip. Time was of the essence and so I just trusted this first-impression, asked the attendant to mix some up, grabbed some brushes and off I went. Minutes!

It snowed and I painted... After two coats the door looked great! When the roads were clear enough, the Hubs ran out and brought home some white paint so that I could work on the trim which was also flesh crayon.

Before packing up the paint, I covered some cans and clothespins (of course).

To finish the project, I wanted a "fun" doorknob and decided on a glass type or "Nana-style," as my grandmother had these throughout her home. Unable to find the hardware-finish I wanted in-store and impatient as always (I want this door pretty NOW!), it seemed easier to spray-paint than buy online and wait.

So I put my boots on, used a giant mound of snow as my work table, and spray-painted over the brass finish with a metallic spray.

 Not optimal conditions but it worked.

Tips: Cover the glass knob well with low-tack (painter's) tape and allow enough time to dry (24 hours).

I came across this piece at TJ Maxx and liked the shape but not the finish so with a dry foam brush, gave it a few coats of the same white interior semi-gloss paint used for the door trim.

And then like any good blogger, took advantage of the sunshine and tidied things up to take some pics.

Sure, it's the same door that still could be fixed or replaced but I'm happy with it just as it is.

And this is probably how it will look in the summertime but for now it looks more like this:

And the backdoor row of wooden hooks can be left to handle the lighter-weight accessories of winter.

On the summer project list: Paint the radiator
Paint: Echo Lake Aqua by Glidden in semi-gloss
Spray-paint: Bright Coat Metallic Finish by Rust-Oleum

I'll save sharing about my next project for another post...

Thanks for reading!


Sunday, February 8, 2015

field trip: valentine workshop with matthew mead

"Do you mind if I take a photograph of the bathroom?"

Yup, I had to ask.

Yesterday my friend Nancy and I took a road trip to Matthew Mead's studio in New Hampshire to attend one of his Valentine's workshops and yes, even the bathroom was breathtaking.

Our project was the decoupage wall plate and the skill-level was just-right for encouraging lively conversation.
I would've been happy playing tic-tac-toe because the real treat for me was to see Matthew's studio and listen to stories from his brilliant career. I met Matthew and his wife Jenny once before over the summer when they were shooting and styling around Cape Cod.

Our hosts served the most beautifully presented array of snacks including this chocolate pretzel tart from his Autumn with Matthew Mead publication (2011).

I actually said, "Matthew Mead is serving us desserts from his books!" How crazy-awesome!

As you may know, Matthew was style editor of the much-loved CountryHome magazine. I told him about my very favorite issue which featured plastic chairs slip-covered in Annette Tatum fabrics on the cover and how it inspired my playing in the backyard blog post. Turns out that was all him and he still has the slipcovers!

Some of his collections were on display by color in open shelving, from giant bowls to the teeniest vessels in vibrant greens, yellows, white and glass.

See some beautiful styling up-close...
I found myself in awe not only in his talent but inspired by his relaxed, sincere and friendly demeanor.

And of course I thoroughly enjoyed meeting the other workshop attendees and making my plate.

Look for Matthew's newest publication (featuring my friend Danielle) on newsstands soon and check-in with him on Facebook to learn about upcoming workshops and events.

While we crafted, Jenny prepared heart-shaped brownies for each of us to take home. So delicious.

Happy workshop alums!

 Oh, one more pic from the bathroom...