Cheap Thrills on the Homefront . . .

We (and by that I mean Bill) are in the process of updating a 2nd floor hall bathroom. I get to pick out stuff and he gets to install it.

I like this arrangement.

But then what happens is I start looking around the house and find other things that need to be updated.

Our kitchen for example, and the dining room, and the . . . list goes on.


I have been looking for a kitchen island - for 2 years. 

Found this online (Facebook Marketplace)

and fell in love with this antique cabinet.

I bought it from Erin who owns

Cotton, Copper & Ash.

She has a storefront by the same name on Facebook.

Anyway, the cabinet had been refinished in it's natural state with a beautiful patina wood top.

But . . . I wanted an island.

So I had a top made that matched our current kitchen counter.

But . . . that's temporary too until we get other things in the house (bathrooms) updated.

(It will eventually be changed to either granite or quartz)

My counter guy had a great idea and didn't want to ruin the wood top of the antique piece

so he devised a way to secure it from underneath.

Patina saved and I got my island.


Then . . . the dining room.

It's too formal and opens a bit to the kitchen and family room.

I am getting rid of my queen anne table

(with 2 leaves, 4 chairs and custom table pads if anyone is interested)

and moved my kitchen table to the dining room.

Refinished the top of the table, painted a couple of old chairs

and this . . .


So now I have this formal dining room hutch.

I love the design but what to do with it?

Leave it?

Paint it?

We have a bar on the opposite end of the room that is black with a dark wood top.

Black? Would it be too much black?

Partially paint it?

I've scoured Pinterest, Houzz & many other sites and can't find exactly what I'm looking for.

Ideas are welcomed!

Maybe just a bit of black somewhere?


Here's another question for you:

I've painted the chairs black (they were dark brown stained).

I had two coats of paint on the chairs and missed a few spots.


But then I decided I liked it.

So do I sand more spots away? They look really antique-y to me.

And one more . . . 

Bill and I (and by I I mean Bill) refinished this piece for me last year.


I added Prima rub-ons on the top and sides

but it was super white.

So this morning I attacked it with Tim Holtz Distress Ink and a tiny brush

and now it's all distressed and toned down.


I love antiques.

Always have.

Always will.

Send me your ideas!

Sharing a Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts Halloween project . . .

At the end of this month, I'll be teaching this project at a private class. Can't wait and thanks Joanne for the invitation!

House in a box 1

I'm crazy about the witch weather vane Gina designed specifically for this workshop. 

House in a box 2

There's a house book inside:

House in a box 3

If you're going to my  October 2017 Girlfriends Getaway Crop

you will see this and many more samples using  Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts.

And, of course, shop 'til you drop all weekend at the Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts booth.

Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts Gypsy Wagon . . .

How cute is this!

GSLC Wagon copy

I have adored Gypsy wagons ever since I saw my first one.

I was 18 years old and traveling with my cousin and Grandparents through Northern Spain.

We passed a Gypsy wagon on a country road and I was in love.

The Gypsy life . . . carefree, traveling and seeing Europe on your own terms in a tiny house.

This 18 year old saw it as a somewhat romantic way to travel.

Now, the 66 year old in me wants a 5 star hotel room with room service!

(ok, it doesn't have to be 5 stars)

In any case, once I saw this Gypsy Wagon from

Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts

memories came flooding back and I was in love with this project.

GSLC Wagon 2

Of course, the perfect pairing for this project is

Canvas Corps' 7 Gypsies collections!

I mixed several collections, both old and new

and set out to decorate the wagon

as well as all the miniature furniture, banners, stars & moon and shutters from

Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts.

To paint the wagon, I used

Tattered Angels Naturally Aged Kits.

I chose the Weathered Bronze kit for painting most of the wagon

including the wood and the tint on the shutters.

GSLC Wagon 3

I added strokes of Glimmer Glaze to the roof

making the wood look a bit old with a dash of patina.

GSLC Wagon 4

Inside the wagon is a bed and table & chairs,

all from Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts.

I've created a tutorial so you can easily see the steps I took to create this project.

Find it here:

 Gypsy Cart/Wagon PDF

Contact Gina to get your very own

Gypsy Wagon and have a great time decorating!




A Great Time with beautiful Graphic 45 . . .

Yesterday at Checkered Cottage I enjoyed a full days class with wonderful ladies.

We made the Bird on a Box


Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts

and beautiful

Graphic 45 papers.

Fussy cutting those gorgeous papers.

We used Graphic 45's Botanical Tea.




Finished Bird on a Box


and the houses inside


What a great fun day!

Thank you so much to a wonderful group of gals!

PS: To those taking my workshop next Saturday,

you do not need a palette knife.

(I'm losing it!)

See what to bring on my class list here: