Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Junk Hunting, Favorite Places, and Distractions

The junk beckons. It calls to me. That means only one's time for the bi-annual trip to the motherland of antiques and junk to cull through piles with the best of them. Most normal, sane, well adjusted people might think that this is a crazy endeavor, especially to do this twice a year. But to the crazy folk like me it's nothing more than the perfect Saturday. I can always find time to look for new old things. Stop. Re-read that last sentence, I promise it will makes sense the second time around.

It ended up being a completely gorgeous day when I headed out there. It was April so it was "not too hot, not too cold, all you need is a light jacket". For those of you that are up to date on Miss Congeniality quotes, you just missed one. That being said, you really didn't need a jacket. This is Texas after all. As always, the junk didn't disappoint. I'm becoming more and more familiar with the layout of the whole show and I can really focus on finding fun things. Well that, and of course the always wonderful world of people watching. Oh the people watching. That didn't disappoint either. All I can say on that front is fanny packs, black socks, and bikini's, in that order. That is all. Cue the photo reel:

How great would these be reupholstered?

Mid Century Modern is everywhere!

No matter what it may seem, this was a baby Barcelona chair replica...made out of stone. Not sure what purpose it serves but it definitely made you remember him.

A dance hall needs those.

I wish I had a good movie reference about hot air balloons for this one.

This Way!

Dictator chihuahua

Only in Texas. Skulls, a giant rooster, and pick up trucks.
JULIO!!! My junk hunting compadre! He's now become a landmark for me since he has graced us with his presence for several years now out in Warrenton.

Nuff said.

I adore this. The color of that natural wood and all the industrial circular mirrors...genius. Disregard me in the reflection.

I'm still wracking my brain trying to figure out where I could use a concrete flamingo...any thoughts?

LOVE..That's all I have for this guy...more love.

I don't know why dog portraits are so funny to me...but lets face it, you know they're hilarious.

Hello gorgeous Texas weather.

A reindeer, Donuts, and drinks. What ARE you waiting for?

I didn't always pull out my camera due to prying eyes and sneaky looking vendors so here are some pics from the phone:

I spy an alma mater in there.

Thermos... party of 12
That Good Old Baylor Line?

Drool for the stool.

I loved this guy a lot... check for his picture later.

Honestly.... I was really tempted here

My new prize possession.

At the end of the day I most definitely had some tired feet, but I also had some new finds. The sunburst clock (above) was something I've been searching for for over a year. **I still regret not jumping on a sunburst mirror I found over a year ago so this guy was a no brainer. I also found the bar cart (also above). He's going to turn into something marvelous lets hope. Something neon, metallic, bright maybe? Who knows, he could go all white lacquer and more classic, only time will tell. I also found a couple of mirrors and an old Baylor yearbook to round out the day. I know what your thinking. Your thinking "Hey big spender, what were you thinking buying so much random junk". Well I will tell you what I was thinking. I would like to think I can see the potential in things and bring out the best in them. Sometimes it works out better than others but the process is really the fun part for me. Sidenote: It was the last weekend of the show so I didn't pay what the given price was on anything that I ended up buying, and nothing more than $35!
Reward for a job well done.

And then I saw this in the yard on the way home. I don't feel like any words that  I could write could express the way I feel about this giant egg.

I ended up with two mirrors, a bar cart, a sunburst clock and an old Baylor yearbook. Here's a little peek:

I just have to add it. After few weekends after Warrenton I was able to soak up some sun in my favorite place in the entire state...

It's so wonderful. I mean really wonderful. It's my favorite place. I'll refrain from breaking into a song about Texas and the lake but just know I'm still doing it in my head. As great as weekends at the lake with friends are, it's distracting me from finishing the dresser I've been working on. Here's a little hint at what the color palette will be... I'm going for super summery and a more classic and preppy feel.
Looks good right? I thought so.

I'm out... See ya in October Warrenton.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The lamp left behind

So I blogged about my cute little Easter Egg lamp that I just finished, but I forgot to mention that I had completely redone his slightly taller, slightly brassier friend also! I'm so mean, he's been waiting patiently to be shown off. Poor guy. I guess now's his chance. I bought him and the Easter egg at the same time at a Goodwill. If I'm remembering correctly he was either $8 or $12. Regardless of the actual price he was clearly an exorbitant sum to spend on a humble brass table lamp but I bit the bullet and shelled out the cash. I think this lamp is great, to me it kinda commands attention without screaming it at you- he's classy like that. But the brass?? Yeah, not so classy. It had to go, even though I just silver leafed another lamp and I'm currently loving all things metallic-I just couldn't stomach the 1985 I should have a burgundy and hunter green plaid lampshade in a study full of stuffed animal heads and paintings of red coats and fox hunts. Extreme? Maybe, but that's the image I had in my head. I had to get it out, sorry, but you know that you were thinking it too. So yep, the brass had to go.

I thought that the shaped lended itself well to a softer color because of the shape and size. It would still command the attention that it deserved but without the fox and hound look. So I used a Brillo pad to make the surface a little porous so that the paint would stick better.

Then I sprayed him with this soft sage color.

Sidenote: If I were telling someone how to spray paint, then I would tell them to keep an equal distance away and spray lightly and in lots of coats to get even color without drips. I on the other hand get overzealous on occasion and things like this happen:

Then came the task of finding the shade that would complement but also be a smide different, because who wants to be like anyone else anyway? I ended up with this linen shade from Pottery Barn. I will refrain for gushing about Pottery Barn, but I do love that gosh darn store. It's a great natural jute color and it's semi-see through due to the larger weave so I ended up with an Edison bulb that was a bit more decorative than just a run of the mill bulb. I have to say I love looking at that bulb through the shade! I was worried that it wouldn't last very long but it's now Feburary and I've been using it since September. When I say use, I mean everyday so I'm now an Edison bulb believer, i wish I could use them in multiple other locations... I'll have to start searching.

What do you think, does it look better now? It's just too bad it's to bright to see the Edison bulb shining through in this picture.

They might look a little funny as a pair now with this guy on the other side (see below) but they have character and I like them that way. End of story.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Easter Egg Chic?

Yet again, I've taken on a project that may be over my paygrade in terms of execution, but also yet again my stubborness prevailed and the final result is (almost) exactly what I had hoped for.

It all started with this rug,see here:

You can also see it here:

Isn't is the cutest thing ever? Yeah, I thought so too. So I have this rug and I love it, not because I have a current obsession with gray and a slightly bigger obsession with chevron stripe. Nope it's because it's light but still comfy and casual and it's the perfect size. Okay, okay, the gray and chevron stripe DO have something to do with it too. All that to say, the rug started this WHOLE thing. Because you see, I also have this lamp, see here:

He's the little egg on the left. He's kinda a tan colored ceramic egg. Don't let him fool you, that tall brass guy on the left is sorta dwarfing him. Speaking of that brass lamp, he's now a pretty shade of sage with a cute linen shade and Edison bulb.

Here he is again. Sorry about the terrible lighting in this shot.

I've had it for awhile, it was a thrift store find for $7.00. I love so much that it looks like an egg, but I hate that color with all my heart. Well obviously not that dramatic a hate but I was trying to add some emphasis. I've had many ideas for this guy, I didn't really want to paint him a solid color because I knew that utilizing the shape could make more incredible than just "better than it was before".  I had this idea of maybe doing something like this, but I was a little nervous how to achieve this but more chic:

So after multiple months of owning these two items, and other projects in between, the light bulb finally went off! White and grey chevron striped lamp! I immediately was in love with the yet to be refinished lamp and I knew that the stripes would look great on that curved shape. My love for this idea was so strong, it overshawdowed some very important things, namely drawing the straight level lines on a compound curve. Oh, and without chipping off the undercoat or making it messy. Yeah, it was a strong love.

Oh, yeah I also forgot to say that I'm having a current obsession with sparkly and metallic things too and I've been dying to try some silver leaf. I ended up using this one from Hobby Lobby:

You can find it here.

Sorry about my rambling on all my current design obsessions but I really do have a point. Basically it's that I chose to combine all those things I just rambled off into one clean, sparkly, chevron stipe lamp that matches my rug to sit on my new nightstand:

I blogged about his transormation here.

I had to start by getting a little rust off of the top of the lamp.

All I did was try to buff it out with a brillo pad and that seemed to do the trick.

Now, getting down to business. I wasn't quite sure how to achieve the look I wanted but I knew that I did want a white base, so I went ahead and sprayed it with a white lacquer spray paint.

From Home Depot. Now that I see pictures, I used the Krylon brand, but I'm sure they are very similar.

Before the first coat. I taped the top and the wiring with paper towels and electrical tape. I also used a little painter's grease on the parts that couldn't get taped just to keep the paint off. Hint: you can also use Vasoline to achieve the same thing.
The change already helped in his apperance!

First Coat
Second Coat

Soooo it was Thanksgiving weekend when I did this. So at this point I got pretty distracted by this:

So the lamp was white. Whoo hoo? It was a least an improvement over the dingy tan. Cue moment of panic. I had a realization as a was ready to start the next phase of the project that I still had no idea how to accomplish those oh so trendy stripes that I had been yearning for. **This part of the story is long so bear with me** I started with this pattern I found online:

I may have gotten distracted by something else at this point:
She loves to snuggle-especially if you still smell like turkey.

I was thinking that I could just trace the pattern on the lamp and just make sure that it was straight and that the rows were even. WRONG. Because the lamp is more or less an oval shape (it gets wider in the middle) that just didn't work. So after lots of trial and error, I had to basically trace one zig (for lack of a better word) and then mark off the whole lamp to get the stripes that I was wanting. Pictures speak louder than words for this part.

The making of an Easter egg


Whew! Once that was over I erased all the extra marks I was ready to start the silver leaf but I didn't want to tape off all the stripes, because really it would take forever to get all those angles right so I tried this mastic. It's a product that artists use to keep paint off of certain spaces without using tape.

 I just painted the masking fluid on the stripes I didn't want the silver leaf to get on as practice but it didn't work out so well.

It comes off really cleanly normally. My experience was ok with this stuff but I think the nature of this project wasn't so good for this because it took the spray paint off.

So basically at this point I was just desperate to try the silver leaf and get this guy done so I just started the leafing process without anything protecting the white stripes (I would later find that this was a mistake).
The whole silver leaf process was fairly easy. You just paint the adheisive on the parts you want the silver leaf to go on to, let it dry, and then stick on the silver leaf. After that all you have to do is add a sealer and your done! I make it sound a tad easier than it actually was. It was really thin and hard to keep off your fingers, and it did unfortunately stick to some of the white stripes.

So this part got done and I was happy but I still needed to fix the stripes and the bumps and nicks and silver flecks that the white stripes had gotten along the way.
Annnnd then Christmas happened...

And the Alamo Bowl...

Then finally I had a break down (well not really but I was reluctant to do this) and taped the silver leaf with painter's tape (knowing full well I would have to do touch up silver leafing later), and re sprayed the white stripes. I sprayed it so that all the color would be even and there were no paint brush strokes showing. I know what it looks like from the picture... (hint: Easter is still months away but yet there's an egg looking lamp in this picture)

It did take me hours to tape this guy (literally hours). Impressed??? You shouldn't be I should have taped before hand so that this didn't have to happen. I learned my lesson, but let's face it I will always be too eager to start something to make sure everything is in place first again, and inevitably something like this will happena gain..oh well.
I had to reverse the tape so that I could touch up the silver leaf now, and again it took me hours.

I added the silver leaf sealer at this point too.
Finally just a few touch ups with the white and it was finally done. I feel like J.R.R. Tolkien and that I could have written three books about the shiny spherical object and my quest to get it.  (except I'm not a hobbit nor trying to save a mythical shire with the help of ridicoulsy good looking elves like Orlando Bloom).
So finally here ya go, finished lamp!!!
Sorry for the lack of good photos.

I do want to get a new shade but other than that I'm pretty happy with this guy!