Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Covering Books With Script Paper

In trying to clean up for staging my study, I decided it was time to deal with the books.  The room is dark and the old leather books seemed visually heavy.  You see many trendy book covers that are very plain.  They can be linen or paper.  Below are some photos from Restoration Hardware.

The photograph below reminds me of a project my daughter told me about.  She helped a friend stage an apartment and used brown paper sacks to make dust jackets.  It would be so easy to use a wax seal to embellish your work.  Below is a photo from Restoration Hardware.
From Restoration Hardware.  I love the wax seal!   
Juniper Books has many books to choose from.  I love this one:
Custom Printed Elephant Spines
From Juniper Books.  Isn't this soo clever!  It's pretty artistic to me!
 There are some wonderful sources for beautiful vellum look books.  The real thing is quite expensive--an antique vellum book can easily have you let go of several hundred $$.   Click here for an article Willow Decor did on antique vellum books.  The reproduction books also look nice for a fraction of the price.  I googled script vellum books and found these two sources:
E. Lawrence LTD.  


While I'd love to buy some of these beautiful reproduction books, I'm afraid I don't feel like spending the money to do a bunch of books in my library - I'd need about 200 books!  Someday I'd like to purchase some of the "books by the foot" for my pretty antique secretary.

  I thought perhaps I could copy some old documents and make some interesting dust jackets for books that way.  It seemed like alot of work, and I haven't gotten around to it.  I then found this paper on Ballard Designs.  It is called Document Gift Wrap, and it is $24 for 3 10-foot rolls.
Document Gift Wrap - Set of 3
I wrapped a few books -- and now have a trendy shelf of books.  It's perfect!  The shelf looks cleaner and less cluttered.  I also was going for a lighter look.  The 33" shelf below shows you  how much one roll would cover.  The tallest books took a 10" high strip of paper. 

Ballard Designs Document Wrapped Books

I'm off to continue working on the bookcase--and staging all those shelves!  In addition to doing the books,  I thought about papering the back of the bookcase instead.     

I hope someone else will enjoy my inexpensive decorating tip!  

Monday, December 19, 2011

Fabric for Wingback

Today I am going to the upholsterer.  I selected a fabric for the wingback chair.

In the running was a Schumacher fabric:

This seemed kind of old-lady ish to me!
The Highland Court Fabric, always a better cost selection:
Same problem as #1, and it had too much yellow in it.
Groves Bros,

It turned out to be too dark.  I don't have a nearby showroom, have to send away for more colorways.
This was the runner up
and a Brunschwig fabric.
The Winner!

The winner was chosen because it is the softest effect, pattern wise.   The project is this really old wingback.  It's English in origin, and looking at the frame dates from the early 1800's, or earlier.
What a sad mess!  Can you believe I see potential in this?
The huge wings on the side are really fun!

If the fabric looks familiar, it is because it was in the April '11 issue of Veranda.
April '11 Veranda, design by James Michael Howard
The fabric is on the valences.   I really like the effect of this.  The Bennison fabric was a more crisp design, and at the last minute I thought I'd go for a more subtle design.

Unfortunately, the fabric is thinner than I'd like, I'll see if the upholsterer thinks it should be knit-backed.  I've never done that before, I usually just pick a fabric that will work.

I had written about the original upholstery that would have been on the chair here.   However, I didn't feel like spending the money for a Chelsea Editions fabric.

This would have been a cool choice too!

Off to battle the traffic!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Merry Topiary Christmas

There's nothing that says Merry Christmas like a topiary reindeer.

They don't eat your roses either!  Wrap one up and send it prancing over to my house!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Pinecone Deer

I was out shopping and stumbled across a pinecone deer in a store window. It actually is a dik dik, made completely out of pinecones.

I came home and hunted around on-line, and I found the artist!   

Here's the website, Catherinegreenup.com, and a better photo.

Some of the other photos on the website were really fun!

I wanted  to take the little dik dik home for decoration, but the $1680 price tag meant it stayed in the store.  I guess my deer won't have a companion this season.   However I did get to enjoy a beautiful piece of art!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Needlepoint Christmas

I just pulled out a needlepoint pillow I made.  It is probably the only modern canvas I have used.  I love the effect of a sampler with a happy reindeer bounding through it!

Winter Sampler - by Birds of a Feather
I think I should take the fringe off the pillow for a fresher look.  I might even put a trim of toile instead of gimp.  

Stay Warm!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Stockings, Nutcrackers and Mohair Snowmen

Some of our favorite things about this time of year is pulling out family christmas collections.  With a German background, we like collecting many handmade christmas items.  My favorite collection is our Steiff snowman collection.  They are the cutest mohair snowmen!   Steiff comes out with one almost every year.   Every time I get them out, I have to giggle about how it all started.....My husband left my daughter and I to entertain ourselves in Munich.  We were to meet up with him by taking a train to Paris later that week.  When he opened his suitcase of casual clothes...it was filled with teddy bears and snowmen!

Between a trip to Rothenburg and Katha Wolfart, and the huge sale at Kaufhof in Marianplatz, we wound up putting Steiff creatures in dad's shoes, and every nook and cranny in the suitcases.  It was great fun!  (My husband keeps saying, if only I didn't have to share my doll with my 5 sisters while growing up, I wouldn't have buy many toys as an adult!)

This year they are standing guard over the cute needlepoint stockings....
Russian Santas are standing on each stocking holder.   They were a souvenir from a trip to St. Petersburg.   

Cutest Quimper Couple Needlepoint Stocking!  I purchased at Pierre Deux
 in Carmel after Christmas last year.  (I'm so sad that they are bankrupt... )

My daughter wrote a guest blog about her nutcrackers that she pulls out for Octoberfest here.   I thought that I should try to limit my collecting to shepherd nutcrackers.   My favorite ones are by Ulbricht.
Shepherd Nutcrackers
My daugher has a collection of santas with reindeer.   Isn't this one cute!
She has this one on loan to me for the holiday--the beautiful white Santa

Ulbricht White Santa in Center
We were in Gumps on Sunday and spotted this nutcracker by Ulbricht.  Isn't he cute!  OK, maybe I need to start another collection!

And for my favorite wall decoration, who can resist this reindeer?   He is about 5 feet tall, and traveled half way across the country to settle at home with me.
I must continue my hunt for boxes of decorations.   We really enjoy all the handmade German ornaments.   It is a way to enjoy the holiday with craftsmanship reminding the family of the old country.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Fresh Look with Kitchen Paint

Before the holiday, I posted that I was painting the kitchen.  Well, we finished the job, jumped in the car, and left.  We have been gone so I have to rely on photos I literally snapped as we were walking out the door.

The reason we decided to paint was that the house didn't seem to flow very well.  The kitchen had a toile wallpaper that was an aqua shade with the adjoining room in a stripe.  I really love the color, and it is very cheery in anotherwise dreary climate.   For those of you who haven't lived in the northwest, we only get 60 sunny days a year!  

So I decided to do 2 shades lighter than the paint on the main floor.  Looking from the living room, through the doorway, you see the contrast I am talking about.

The color is brighter than the contrast shown above.  I thought that going with a lighter shade of the living room would make it flow better.   

"Before" with 2 different wallpapers 

After is below.

Freshly painted walls, and moved island.  I couldn't decide whether I wanted an island, so I made it so you can move it.   I'm thinking I should change the cherry barstools.   Perhaps something black?  I love black in a room, and tend to do it with trays.

I love my cabinets.  They were made by my dad who is 83 now.  He copied a Smallbone kitchen photograph for me, how sweet is that! 
Yes, I know the photo over the chest is too big.  The problem is I keep moving furniture to the other house
as this one is for sale, and I forget to move the photos.  This will have to do til I get back.
 On the paint color:  I went 2 shades lighter than the living room.

Living Room Color - BM Richmond Gray

Misty Air / BM OC-44
Kitchen Color - BM Misty Air

The color on the walls looks yellower to me.  I checked the sample and it does match....but that does show the difference in what happens when you add the variable of lighting.

At night, the color looks a little more intense, but not by much.

Wall color at night
The color seems to be more complementary to the granite on the counters.   Check out my nice Thermador wall oven.  The first time I turned it on, it didn't work.  I was in trouble because I was out of warranty...hee hee, that meant that I hadn't turned it on for over 2 years!  Cooking, not my favorite thing.

So why is it that I can pick someone else's colors in a flash, and my house gets loads of indecision.  That's why the settee in the above photo isn't reupholstered yet.  I'm waiting...

On my jaunts this past week I did manage to swing by George Smith for some Bennison fabric samples.   Wish I'd remembered to pull out my camera, their showroom floor was awesome.  All the upholstery was in white, so you could really see the lines of the furniture.
downloading image...
George Smith Chair

So should I repaint?  I miss the old color.  I thought about painting the beadboard the Richmond Grey color.  My husband said I shouldn't touch the beadboard as all the trim on the main floor is a creamy white.  I was thinking that something half way in between

BM - Abingdon Putty
The screen colors are lousy.     I was thinking about going a little green-gray with November Rain, but at the last minute decided to go to the similar shade as the living room.

What do you think?