Friday, January 09, 2015

The impact of customer reviews...

We LOVE our customers - they take the time to write positive messages about our products and service which inspire us to do our best. They appreciate the time and effort we put into the products we create and they recognize our love for creating. It also helps us to be our best in customer service from timely shipping, careful packaging and our attention to details such as a handwritten thank you. I love that Etsy provides this feature for us and our customers. So remember to tell your Etsy seller what a good job they've done - or what they could do better. There is always room for improvement!

See what they are saying about our products and service HERE.

Sunday, January 04, 2015

The best Christmas gift...

It started with the top of a hutch. My girlfriend (thank you Elizabeth!) no longer needed the top and of course she thought of us before getting rid of it. It had beautiful lines, of course my honey could build a base for it:) That was about 3 years ago...I think. And there it sat in the dining room, empty, collecting dust.  We always have a project or 2 or 4 going on in the house but my husband was determined to finish this piece for me as a Christmas gift.  Right up until the day before we were adding the finishing touches and I'm in love!  I could finally unwrap the china and I can finish decorating this room now. I just can't stop staring at it when I walk by this room.

Here is what the before looked like:

We wanted to have it resemble the top enough so it wouldn't look like they didn't belong together.
So my husband rounded the base and added corner round to the front corners. He also routed the center support to match the top.

We thought about purchasing unfinished doors but decided to make them. I realized that I might want to add fabric to the doors so we really just needed to make a frame.

I loved the finish on the top before paint but I knew I would not be able to match the base to the top so I had no choice but to paint it. However I gave the top accent moulding and the doors just a wash of french linen to tone down the stain but still appreciate it. I love the way it came out and the way it contrasts the Graphite chalk paint (Annie Sloan). I also applied a french linen wash (after a coat of clear wax) to highlight the detailed areas of the piece.  Just a little distressing on some of the edges and a couple of coats of wax finished the piece. Just in time for Christmas!

Now the chairs need to be painted. I'm thinking french linen for them.

I chose a neutral french toile fabric for the doors. My husband did a great job pleating and stapling! 

Some of the details. The hardware on the bottom doors were in my stash from an another piece of furniture. They were a perfect match in their antique brass finish.

I think this is definitely one of my favorite pieces we've done. I was a little nervous about the dark paint but I really LOVE this look!  I think it has a french country farmhouse feel to it.  Exactly the look I'm going for in this room.

I hope this inspires you to find new life in a furniture piece of your own. Let me know if you have any questions regarding technique.

Now I just need a little sideboard piece for the opposite side of the room....the projects never end!
If he didn't do such a beautiful job, I wouldn't ask!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Christmas Mantel

Finally coming to the last week of Christmas preparations. I hope I make it! Thankfully I've been busy with orders and just about done with the last few going out by the end of this week. So, the mantel is about all I have complete in the decorating department and wanted to share it with you. Next year, I promise myself to finish decorating Thanksgiving weekend! Which would mean designing the Christmas line by the end of summer...let's see how that goes:)

I like to change it up every year. It's just not fun for me to put the same decorations in the same place each year. So much nicer moving things around, gives it a whole new look.

I still always gravitate toward that natural, neutral, touch of color, rustic look with a little sparkle.

This snowman was a gift from long ago and a favorite.

I used to sell these bottle brush trees, another favorite to decorate with.
And the little sign, a gift from mom.

One of my purchases this year.  Mercury bulb garland on twine! Perfectly mine.

Even though I prefer real greens, this pine garland is just so pretty with it's snowy tips and mini pinecones. Looking so elegant over great grandma's mirror. Love the details on this mirror, especially the beading.

The furry stocking are new too! I have been looking for a while. And since I need 6, the price had to be right. These were perfect at $15/set of 2! They just need a little something. And since the little one demands personalized stockings, I burned our names into some birch wood slices and added a sprig of preserved cedar with tallow berries and some muted gold ribbon. LOVE!

The white feather trees, another item I used to sell, never grow old. And the large sugar cones have been dusted with glass glitter. 

When I spotted this printable from the movie Elf, I stopped everything to print one and frame it for the mantel. It's a favorite Christmas movie in our house! You can print your own at Eclectically Vintage.  You can find it in her Christmas house tour post HERE.

Ok, so I procrastinated enough today and need to get back to my sales tax return:( 
I will share a tablescape and the rest of my Christmas home after I finish my shopping!  
Good luck to you all with the rest of your to do lists!
And if you want to procrastinate a little:
you can see our home tour from last year HERE

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Rustic planter box ideas and a SALE!

They are great for holding seltzer bottles.

One of our most popular products can be used in so many ways and it's a simple box.  We've been creating them for over 4 years now. They may be customized by color and size. 
We can also monogram them for you. 
I've put together a collection of photos showing some different ways you can decorate with them for all seasons. And for 1 week 11/27/14 thru 12/3/14, they are 15% OFF!
No coupon needed.  Prices reflect discount.
Find them HERE.

preserved cedar and pinecones dusted in german glass glitter

on the mantel - with mason jar candles - evergreens - pinecones and berries

Burlap wrapped candles - cedar sprigs - dried pomegranates - dried artichokes and pinecones

with colorful fruits and some greens tucked in 

mason jar candles - berries and pinecones

for the fall table - mason jars filled with flowers and a bit of burlap

A wedding table centerpiece filled with preserved hydrangeas

mason jars over filled with flowers - pumpkins, and artichokes on a stick

I love them simply filled with baby's breath in mason jars and burlap

Filled with my favorite flowers - hydrangeas!

Purple wax flowers and burlap
looking beautiful with lavender bunches

 We can add words or monograms.

A few of our customer submitted photos:

Send us your photos for our inspiration page!  We would love to see how you decorate with these versatile boxes. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

3 simple arrangements for Thanksgiving

It's in the 30's today on Long Island so I was thrilled to stay in and create some pretty simple florals for you to recreate for your Thanksgiving table or to bring to your Thanksgiving dinner host. Most of these "ingredients" can be purchased at your local supermarket.  I picked out several bunches of mostly single type flowers, greenery and berries at my local Trader Joe's for a whopping total of $26!

You can also grab a bag of pumpkins/gourds at the market.

I love using dried artichokes in my arrangements, fresh ones from the market will also work! You can also use colorful fruits such as apples, clementines, or pomegranates.

I'm probably breaking some kind of floral design rule but I like to use dried hydrangeas in my designs. These limelights came from my garden.

Another thing I like to use from the garden - twigs for added texture. These birch branches are a favorite of mine.

Now for the containers. I love using a decorative rustic planter. Simply filled with mason jars, it makes arranging really easy. You can also used soaked oasis floral foam (set inside a waterproof liner) to easily make your stems stay put. The jars are just readily available in your home. I also save empty food jars for this reason.

You may also have a favorite pitcher, sugar bowl or creamer that your not currently using. These all make perfect floral vessels.  I love to use old tarnished silver pieces for that perfect vintage feel.

So let's start with the planter box and jars. Fill a pitcher with water and mix in the appropriate amount of flower food which should have come with your flower purchase.  Fill each jar with the water mix.
I started with the seeded eucalyptus which smells great and will also dry beautifully. I love the way this hangs over the side.

Because it's so top heavy, you may have to adjust them a little but they will be fine once everything else goes into the jars. (this is where the foam would make things a little easier)

Next, I secure bamboo skewers (from the supermarket) to the bottom of my artichokes and pumpkins. You can secure with a little drop of hot glue if you need.

So I added a few artichokes and pumpkins and a few top heavy flowers that are supported nicely with a  plastic straw.

The sturdy stemmed alstroemeria and green kermies add height and color to the arrangement.

And because this is "Hydrangea Home", I need to add in some of my dried hydrangeas.  I also tucked in some salmon lilies and berries. A few birch twigs were also tucked in.

Voila! So pretty and festive. A quick and easy one to put together at the last minute.

I used what was left of the bunches for the sugar and creamer. Just add water and tuck the flowers in.

This idea can be used on a small side table, or hutch. It can also be used down the center of your table. Picture maybe five different silver pieces in alternating heights going down the middle with little pumpkins scattered about. An old book makes a great riser as well.

My final idea is on an old silver platter. You can use ceramic or a wood tray if you'd like.  Stack your pumpkins in the middle.

Tuck in some dried hydrangeas, seeded eucalyptus and a few artichokes.


I hope this inspires you to create one of your own!

A couple of floral tips:

  • make sure you strip the leaves from any stems headed under water. 
  • keep adding fresh water to your vessel
*rustic planter is made by us and can be found in our shop in any size/color.