New look for The Burlap Cottage® coming soon!
After a very relaxing break with my family, I am back! I spent a lot of time catching up on my sleep, spending time with my family, catching up on movies I wanted to see, etc. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year! I had a whirlwind Christmas season on my ETSY site, I doubled my volume from last year Thank you, Thank you! I put in long hours, but not nearly as much as the first year. I had time to plan and prepare in advance this year. I also was able to hire an assistant this year, and she made all the difference! I have big and exciting plans for 2014, so stay tuned!
I am working on plans right now to remodel my kitchen. I have wanted to do this since we moved into this home 9 years ago, and have been saving up for this remodel.
Step one is cleaning our garage so we will have a place to stage the flooring, I am wanting to replace the sautillo knock off tile with wood plank ceramic tile, something like this:
Every update in this home prior to our owning it, has been a DIY, hodge podge, job. They tiled around things like the island (which we are removing for a better work triangle), toilet in the powder bath (we will also be remodeling the powder bath at the same time). They also went right over at least one layer of tile and linoleum that we know of so far. We will know more when we do the demo.
Besides the flooring, lighting will be one of the first things we do. Then, we will hide our popcorn ceiling with wood planks, leaving cutouts for the puck lighting.
Then comes the new cabinetry, concrete color quartz counters and built in appliances we are ordering from IKEA and will be assembling ourselves (all but the counters which will be professionally). Also why the much needed garage cleaning is so important. I have done research on installing an IKEA kitchen and the amount of boxes and parts are overwhelming.
Next will be the subway tile with dark grout going completely up the walls.
Finally, we will trim all of the cabinetry with crown molding.
We will be having our first ever garage sale, to raise money for some of the materials and clean our work space. Any tips for a successful sale?
I will be doing many posts and before and after photos during the process. Keep checking back for more posts!
Happy New Year and Thank you for your loyal readership!
I am in full production mode over at my ETSY store, filling orders. This is just the first wave today:
My mailman loves me this time of year, lol! But I treat him right and there is always a little something at the end of the year with his name on it. I’m lucky, our mailman rocks!
While I’m busy in my studio, my faithful assistant is hard at work as well:
My son has a bug so he stayed home from school today, but was inspired by the Christmas spirit and cold and rainy day to bake. This is rare footage, so I had to take a picture to record it for history:
He gets an “A” for presentation:
Now on to the second half of the day! Stay cozy!
No one was more surprised than me when I was approached by a San Diego Magazine to feature my Autumn front porch on the cover of “Front Porch Magazine”.
And here it is:
When you put your creations out there, you never know how it will be received. You hope to inspire the creative process for others.
I wanted to share what I have been up to lately. I have been busy designing and creating my products for my ETSY store. My friend Jennifer is a very talented professional photographer and does amazing work. She shot some product photo’s for me. Here’s some of the photo shoot:
That’s only part of them. Amazing aren’t they? She made my house look so pretty!
I wanted to share an ETSY site that I think is terrific: 2rustynails
I purchased this “W” (whenever I find a W, I am tempted to purchase!) from the young men at 2 Rust Nails, Justin and Erich. Be sure and read their profile and learn how they formed their ETSY shop to earn money for college. Not only are these boys fellow Texans, but they are such talented, responsible, Christian role models. So hard to find a great role model for our kids these days.
I received this amazing “W” from them:
It was terrific on it’s own, however, I can’t leave well enough alone, so I decided to embellish. On a trip to Blanco, I found these wonderful Rusty metal roses. I hot glued it to the letter and added some berries to it. What do you think?
Check out their shop at: 2rustynails
Have a great day!
I have been working on some projects around the house. We have very little closet space, every inch counts. So I decided to work on re-organizing my closet.
I started by removing everything and sorting, donating, organizing everything by season.
That got me to thinking. While I have everything removed, it’s a good time to repaint, so I painted the walls with my new favorite color “Slate” from Restoration Hardware. It made the closet look so much better, but it really made the old carpeting look shabby. So, while I was at it, I ripped out the carpet and installed a wood floor with the scraps left over from our kids bathroom remodel and voila!
Then I purchased a chest of drawers from Pier 1 in an antiqued mirror finish. I also had the husband hang a mirror I purchased at IKEA but it didn’t work in the space I bought it for, but I’m glad I hung onto it, it is great to check my accessories before I leave for the day! I also put a little bud vase with some orchids and some photos I already had on hand:
Then I purchased these pretty gray paisley fabric containers to hold some out of season items as well as some totes and handbags.
I found some taupe hangers at The Container Store and organized my clothing by color. I also had some shoe organizer’s I picked up at IKEA. I plan on making some tags to put on them so I know what each one contains.
I also plan on putting in a chandelier. I will share pics.
Like many of you, I have had an extremely busy summer. Now that the kiddos are back in school, I have started photographing some of my latest projects. The biggest one I have tackled this summer is doing a makeover in our living room. We used to have 2 large recliners that we purchased very inexpensively over 11 years ago. They have definately served their purpose and were literally falling apart. In addition to that, there was only one comfortable place to sit for our movie nights and we would be trying to be the first to claim it. This is when we realized it is time to not only replace the chairs, but to make our living room a comfy place for movie nights and for the family to hang out.
The first thing we did was to purchase a bracket for our t.v. that would make it possible for everyone to see the movie no matter where in the great room they were sitting. We also really needed more storage for our electronics and DVD collection, but I wanted something that would not only be functional, but asthetically pleasing since this is one of the first things you see when you enter the room. We found a piece we both agreed upon in Restoration Hardware that is really a side board and not a media cabinet. It is from their print maker collection and has a reclaimed/vintage vibe to it. This has been fantastic for hiding all of the ever important home theatre equipment so important to the husband.
Originally, this antique bar from Portugal sat below the T.V. I have had this piece for many years, but it was really too small under the large screen t.v. we have. I put all of our crystal in the antique bar, moved it to the other side of the great room, and this is how it looks presently with the Rembrandt reproduction and the dried artichokes to bring in some natural elements:
While at Restoration Hardware, I fell in love with the color they have in the showroom called “Slate”. It is a dark color and is a deep gray with brown undertones, so it goes with virtually any wood finish you can imagine. We have a wood beadboard ceiling and it is so rich and sophisticated with the wood tones in the room. I put it on the fireplace wall and I love it!
This room is always very difficult to choose paint colors for. Our home has a north/south exposure so it is very shady which casts a gray hue, add many oak trees on our property that give off a green hue, as well as Sautillo tile which can tend to cast a bit of a pink shade on the walls even though it is a terra-cotta color. In addition, since we moved here, I have always been trying to lighten this room up. I have learned that sometimes when you have a design challenge, rather than fight it or try and hide it, embrace it, and really play it up. This is why I went with such a dark color on the one wall. It seems to be much more harmonious to the eye. We also added a gray/taupe background rug that is both dog friendly in color and pulls out all of the warm tones in the room.
The color looks good with all of my wood pieces, yet it really makes our stone fireplace pop! I placed some ferns in the fireplace for some color and interest. Here is a shot of how I currently have my mantel styled. I put some of my antique books as well as a green plant to soften the hard surfaces and edges.
Here is a closer view of the mantel:
While I had the china cabinet out, I took the opportunity to restyle it. I put all of my favorite pieces on display and softened it with greens.
Now here is one of the biggest reasons we redid the room. A comfy place for everyone to enjoy, began with a new sofa. We went with a sueded leather sofa with down wrapped cushions giving it not only a soft feel tactily, but a comfortable place to sink into. In addition, this sofa is actually two recliners for added comfort for two more people. I ordered two large down pillows for even more comfort and put one of my monogram pillows from my ETSY store on it.
We got my husband his own chair in the same fabric. It also reclines and is the favorite chair in the house:
Of course momma got a new chair as well. It is made of a very soft fabric with velvet piping, and a matching ottoman (not in the picture). This chair tilts back making for an extremely comfortable chair. Great chair for reading and coffee! The coordinating down lumbar pillow makes it even more comfy,
We also added some platinum color dupioni silk curtains with an aged hammered dark bronze rods on all 4 of the windows.
I put my grandmother’s wing chair on the other side of the bar to create a good conversation area. I put my faux mink aka “the fink” draped over the chair with one of my coffee sack pillows on it to combine the rustic and the refined.
Behind the sofa, I added a sofa table and a new lamp of salvaged wood and burlap shade. I created a little vignette with a framed photo of my babies, some floral, and two candle sticks.
I still have a bit more to do: I am working on a gallery wall and a smaller china cabinet as well as a bit of paint and perhaps a coffee table.
That’s it for the moment, I’ll keep you posted on my progress.
O.k. Now that we have our new doors, I felt I could finish my Styling for our front porch.
First, I whipped up two pillow covers with some outdoor fabric. I fell in love with this design and was my inspiration for me to style my porch in all natural tones: chocolate brown, white and moss green. It was a bit spendy, but to keep cost down, I only bought one yard, and used my 40% off coupon. I used some chocolate brown broadcloth I already had on hand for the back envelope closure:
Looking to the right side of the porch:
Some flowers I picked up at the grocery for $5. Couldn’t pass that up! The impatients looked a little small for the larger planter, so I supplemented them with shhhhhhhh don’t tell anyone…silk hydrangeas…….shhhhhhh. And English ivy (real) I already had in this planter, to get this look:
Next, my daughter and I created this wreath. I already had the grapevine and the “W” on hand. I did purchase the green florals for this wreath to go with the color scheme.
A closeup of some of the floral elements:
We basically started with the two large flowers, and worked our way out on either side creating symmetry, which is pleasing to the eye, at least to mine, it gives me a sense of “order”. I used florals, greens, vines, berries and curly willow. to create this look.
Next, I created a new arrangement in the wire basket for between the rockers. It also holds the lamp I keep on the porch that gives off warm, welcoming lighting on the porch:
I tucked this lovely cross I found at our local car wash. Believe it or not, the carwashes in town have a great gift shop inside. Multi-tasking as I often do, I shopped and found this distressed cross with the metal flower on it, all while they were detailing my car!
In front of our home we have several Texas Live Oak trees. Two of them are in a large planter where we have flowers planted in them. In addition, I like to put a “little somthin’ ” inside of the planter for interest. This year I put our garden flag and some flowers I picked up at the grocery in a pot to add a touch of color.
I change the flags out each season, or holiday, but of them all, this is my favorite. It has a scripture that reads “In everything give thanks”. Not easy to do, but it is a lesson God has taught me over the last three years. There are blessings we are given in spite of circumstances, or even through our circumstances. I found if I looked for those each day, I am so truly grateful.
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