Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Dunn Collecting

Hello, lovelies!
Today, I wanted to share with you a recent find (for me). You're probably way ahead of me on this.

If you visit often you know I am a Fixer Upper fan groupie. For a couple years I have coveted the simple, white mugs with black words on them that Joanna uses in the kitchens they remodel but had no idea who made them or where to find them. It never occurred to me to Google them. (I think my generation often forgets that just about anything and everything can be found that way.)

A few months ago a young woman in our church mentioned that she liked Rae Dunn ware.  I was not sure of what she was talking about but tucked that name away for a search when I got home. They had just moved into a new home, had another baby and I wanted to find something I knew she would like. Imagine my surprise when I did an online search and found the mugs I'd spied on Fixer Upper! If you've heard of Fixer Upper (and who hasn't...they're  were on People magazine last month), you know anything they touch turns to gold! Still, I was surprised by the prices I was seeing in my online searches. All the usual purchase places had the mugs but the prices were way out of my comfort zone;  online sellers are asking between $15 and $30! Crazy!

I did some research and realized that people selling online were called "up-sellers". They go to the store, buy all they can get their hands on, then resell them at inflated prices. Ugh. "Well, that's not going to happen", I thought. Then I read that these little treasures were sold in Home Goods, Marshalls and T J Maxx! That started a most unfruitful search. I walked out of every store empty handed and discouraged.  Then, a little ray of sunshine lighted onto my Facebook feed-not sure how or why... A local yard sale site popped up for people who liked the pottery but didn't want to pay crazy prices.

I just wanted a few pieces as gifts....

And that's how it began.

Turns out there is a huge following, nationwide, of people who collect and trade this stuff. It is more than mugs. There are bowls, plates, spoon rests, canisters, pet dishes, serving pieces.... you get the idea. Collectors call themselves Dunnies. If they see items in the store they will pick them up then offer them to the group at cost if it is not something they want to keep. If you're looking for something in particular just post it and you'll have lots of help finding it!

Now, I am old enough to know to not spend too much money or time on all of this. Cabbage Patch Kids, remember them?  I was the mom who bought every Holiday Barbie because "they were going to be worth something some day". I bought too many Dreamsicle figurines in the 90's. I bought "collectible" Beanie Babies for my child. They are all in my attic! Nobody wants them and my kids have long forgotten about them. So, with an understanding that my taste will change or that I will spend too much time arranging my cups into sentences I tread lightly into the Dunn-o-sphere. 
                            Image result for dreamsicles figurines                

My little collection makes me smile. I share my finds with others because I like to see them smile. The online group has allowed me to meet other people who live close to me. There are some pretty enthusiastic women there that spend their free time looking for ways to help others with their collections. They trade pieces, sell pieces, meet at different locations for coffee and exchange, ect. I have not paid above retail for any of the pieces I have gotten and in a world of opportunists it is nice to meet others who just want to help people make their homes happy places.

Decorating around the pottery has driven me a little bonkers.

To be honest I have been in a decorating slump lately. These last several photos were taken with my phone, hence the grainy quality. We do have some big stuff going on outside and I will share that soon. Inside, I have struggled getting my living room back in order since tearing the walls down.... And then there is summer and the beach that casts it's spell on me.

Now when I walk into my kitchen it talks to me! I am reminded by the first mug I bought for myself of my condition/status, whether there is one mug, 30 mugs, or no mugs at all. I am blessed; blessed to have a cup or anything to put in it, blessed with old friends and new friends, and blessed to be able to bless them. Mostly, I am reminded of my status before God because of Christ...blessed. 

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Free Tickets-My First Giveaway-And Still Holding On To Summer

I am enjoying summer and hope you are, as well. As the days fly by I am keenly aware that school starts for us in a mere four weeks! This will be our last year of homeschooling. It is hard to keep focused on the here and now with such a monumental year ahead of us but I am determined to squeeze every last drop of sunshine and beach weather from summer. Usually, I go into fall kicking and screaming but this year is a little different because it is our last year and also because of some happy news a friend shared with me a while back.

Trisha from The Vintage Prairie Home told me she had collaborated with some other local business owners to pull together a fall market in our area. I love Trisha's style, kinda farmhouse chic... I've shared her market with you before, HERE and HERE. She said an announcement would be made when everything was set. Two weeks ago I received a message from another friend, Kim, at Laurel Grove; one of the business owners Trisha had mentioned. She told me another Kim, from Purple Rose Home, was sending me some VIP tickets! (Happy dance commenced here.) Thank you, Kim, Michelle, Kim, and Trisha!

The market will be September 30 and October 1 at Kalon Farm in Lancaster, Massachusetts! 

I received the happy mail and decided to wait to open the box once in my happy place... the beach! You can see the video on my Facebook page

When I opened the box it was contained two tickets for me and two extra tickets to giveaway! Kaboom!

And so, that was the catalyst for my first give-away on the blog! Go easy on me...just some brief guidelines for this giveaway:

1) You must be local or traveling in the area the dates of the fair: September 30 & October 1. It would      be unfair for the tickets to go to someone who couldn't get there. 
2) Please follow me on Instagram, Facebook, or subscribe to the blog in the side column. 
3) You can ONLY enter through the blog. Enter by leaving a comment below. One per person please. 
4) If you win I ask that you kindly share a photo on social media tagging the pro.found vintage              market and While I Linger. ** This is not mandatory but please consider. 

Not terrible, right? 

If you agree to the terms please leave a comment below and I will assign each eligible comment a number. All numbers will go into a hat and the winner will be picked August 22nd! I hope to see you there! For now, you can find me at the beach.

**Updated 8/7/17

Friday, July 7, 2017

Gallery Wall Tutorial

Remember this?

Remember this?

In case you're scratching your head a bit, yes, I did post a gallery wall tutorial just a few, short, 9 months ago. Since then our living room has gone through a bit of a face lift. You can read why here. And you can see some of the progress here. I still have not done a final post on that whole thing-procrastination is the name of the game there.

The wall that my gallery wall was on now houses the television and I decided to move the gallery wall pieces to the wall behind the couch. This area is flanked by two windows, leaving me less usable space. Because of where the curtains will eventually hang (I haven't found them yet) I don't want this arrangement to go up as high as the last arrangement did. With all that running through my head I grabbed the painter's tape, measuring stick, tape measure, level and chalk. Go get yours together. I'll wait ....

Start by looking at the space you want to dress. My space has windows on either side. Because my couch sits against the wall I know that I will hang curtains only on the outside of each window (maybe).  I do not want my arrangement flush against the trim so I determined I should have a 10 inch space between the edge of the arrangement and the molding. There is no rule here; just what you are comfortable with. I measured out from the trim on both sides and marked the wall with chalk. I also decided I did not want the arrangement to extend too high. I measured up from the floor 84", which is where curtains will hang-once I find them (maybe). I marked the wall at that height.

A good rule of thumb is to have your main piece at eye level; a good rule for any piece of art work. In this case I want the center of my arrangement at eye level. My husband is taller than me so I tend to hang pieces just a little higher (inches not feet) but still at a good height to relate to objects below, like a table or couch, yet comfortable for the average viewer. Because the piece I am using as my center is larger I decided to hang it so that the top reaches just above the window molding but below the rod height and I marked the wall with chalk again.

Sitting on the couch, I took notice of where my arms were when I stretched or had my hand on the back of the couch. With that in mind I decided I wanted the bottom of my arrangement to be 10 inches up from the couch and again, I marked the wall with chalk.

Now I have top, bottom and both sides marked. I pulled out my measuring tape and measured the space I have to work with. I marked the center point of the space. Now, I move to the floor and measure out a space on the floor. Using painter's tape I mapped out the same size space as my wall space. This is my/your playing field. Here is where you are going to lay pieces out, arrange, rearrange and play with your pieces.

I am a lover of symmetry. I like balanced arrangements. I can appreciate others who can make asymmetry work but I have yet to master it or be comfortable with it long term. Try to keep your spacing between pieces consistent. Do not leave too much space between pieces as it starts to look disassociated. One to two inches works well for me.

I could not use all the pieces I had originally used since the area was smaller. I had to pick and choose and I know that the other things can be used elsewhere. Once you get it the way you want, take some pictures. This is an important step. Look at them closely, study them. Notice spacing, colors, ect. You don't want to get it up on the wall and then realize all your dark pieces are on one side, making your arrangement look like it will tilt. Take more pictures. Do this until you're satisfied.

Now that your are happy with your work, take that center piece to the wall. Hold it in place and mark where the top of the piece hits the wall. Measure where you hanger is on the back of the piece and use the measurement to put in your first screw or nail. Hang that piece!

Some pieces are easier to hang than others. My shelf, made from store bought brackets and an old shutter, is one of those pieces. I use a piece of painter's tape to mark where the hangers sit, making sure to line up edges and top of tape to the piece I'm hanging. I use my pencil to punch in holes where the screws should go. I hold the shelf to the wall, making sure it was level, and marked the wall using my chalk. I can then remove the tape and place it along my markings on the wall and drill exactly where the brackets will attach.

Now you can work out from either side using the same technique. Remember to keep your spacing in mind.

Before you know it your gallery wall comes together and you look like a boss! I don't know if there is an official, professional way to install a gallery wall but this what works for me and hopefully, for you, too!

You did it!

Thanks for stopping by and taking time to read through this post. If you enjoyed visiting with me please consider subscribing by email or following along on social media. All the links can be found in the column to the right.

Hope you have a great day! ~Jolena

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Monday, June 26, 2017

Arm Chair Makeover

A while back (like maybe early last fall) while utilizing my time wisely... okay, while perusing the Facebook yard sale sites, I found a set of wood arm chairs that stopped me in my tracks. I have been looking for a chair to pair with my grand-mother's French table.

I love this table. I am not sure what it was intended to be. My grand-mother purchased it when stationed in France with my grand-father. He entered the military during WWII and trained as a pilot. In the 50's they were stationed in France. My grand-mother loved cooking and she loved Julia Child! I suppose I can understand though my cooking crushes are more along the lines of the Pioneer Woman.  I imagine this table would have been lovely for rolling out pastry dough because of it's stone top but it is short. Perhaps it was a bistro table of some sort? I am just not sure. I do know that over the years it was used in different ways. She used it as a sewing table at one time. At some point it was passed down to my mother and she kept it outdoors on the covered patio adorned with potted plants. When my dad downsized, after mom went home, the table became mine. It has been to France, Korea, the Carolina's, Florida, Arizona, and now Massachusetts. It should have a passport!

Being so well traveled, I think she deserves a pretty chair that compliments her. Where do I go? I'm sure you can think of some pretty nice stores or online avenues that have beautiful, worthy options but that's not my first stop. I love the hunt... and a bargain and couldn't pass up the opportunity to buy two chairs for $30. (I think that is what I has been a while.) Where? On a local yard sale site on Facebook!  I have never reupholstered a chair before but figured I couldn't mess it up too bad. Right?

Life happens and these chairs sat for months without any attention. One day in December I decided to take off the cording and fabric. This is a tedious job! The little staples are a bear to take out but I persevered and eventually I was left with a naked seat. I kept the fabric, as I will use it as my pattern for the new seat cover.

Two months later...

I would paint the chair in a white chalk paint, I decided, one snowy afternoon.  I had paint from another project on hand and went to town until I ran out of paint. Ughhhh!

It turned out for the best. As the chair sat there mocking me for not having had enough paint to finish the project I realized she was not ever supposed to be white. I purchased some chalk paint from Lowes in black. This was an expensive can of chalk paint! I wanted to try the product vs. making my own. I don't know that I would do that again. The chair ended up taking three coats. Patience is the name of the game when tackling all the little cut-out area. I kept missing places that I thought I had gotten.

I allowed the chair to dry for a few days. After I was sure the chalk paint was completely dry I gave the whole piece two coats of a clear, satin finish to protect the paint. This chair will be used and I want it to last a while.

I went to my local fabric store, coupon in hand, and shopped for the perfect fabric. Everything I was looking at just wasn't appealing to me. I don't want the chair to compete with the table. I scratched that idea of finding traditional fabric and headed to the home improvement store. I purchased a medium weight drop cloth (hallway sized) and cut it in 1/2. I laid my fabric that I had removed from the chair onto the drop cloth and cut out a piece approximately 1 1/2 inches larger.

Using my regular old staple gun I stapled the fabric onto the chair; one staple on the back, pull taught to the front and staple. I did the same on either side and then started filling in, smoothing and tucking where necessary.

Now I needed cording. Ugh. Why didn't I think about this first? I know you can make cording by cutting your fabric on the bias and blah, blah, blah but I am not ever going to do that. I know my limits. How can I get around this??? Back to my fabric store.... They had nothing pre-made that would work with my chair and fabric. I don't want it to stand out. Finally, I grabbed some cording filler; this is the stuff that you cover when making your own cording...and, again, we all know I am not going to do that.

Instead, I am going to just glue this directly over my staples! Crazy? Maybe, but I am going to make it work.

First I trimmed the excess fabric close to the staples.

Then, I grabbed my handy-dandy glue gun I glued the cording over the row of staples. When all was said and done I was sort-of happy. I could see some of my glue and I could see raw edges still peeking out.

I headed back to my fabric store and bought some more cording.  I applied a second row and that was the trick! This is just a cotton and I am worried that it may pull and come undone. Using watered down Modge Podge I brushed over the cording, not to saturate but to just seal it and bind it to protect it against wear.  Perfect? No, but for my first try I am happy with the results. I will live with it for a while and see how it goes. I have the matching chair waiting for a makeover. My plan is the sell that one but we will see how well this one lasts first. Maybe I will sell this one and keep the second one...

My table and chair work beautifully together, now. I think my grand-mother would approve. 

Thanks for for hanging out with me today! I would love if you followed me regularly either by signing up to follow by email or on social media. All the links are in the right side column. 

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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Living Room Makeover

Do you ever think you need to spruce things up but don't want to just ditch everything? Or, maybe you do want to ditch everything but can't afford to do it all at once... Well, that is what I was faced with when a friend asked for help in her home. She will be hosting a bunch of guests in the upcoming weeks as her daughters graduate; one from grad school and the other from high school. I had a $1000 budget and went to work.

A few weeks ago I shared with you the fireplace makeover. This was an inexpensive update and an easy-peasy DIY project that took less than a day. The brick is actually brick-face and the surround sported a dated brass finish. Originally, I thought the style to be 1970's-ish but have since learned the house was built in the 60's. I do think all this was original and thus in desperate need of a face lift.

Without making the room look overdone she wanted a feel of the ocean in the room. I chose a soft shade of gray/beige for the walls. It reads more gray but browns work well with the color, too. I used Sherwin Williams Grayish for the walls and Sherwin Williams Pure White for the trim. I carried the color down the hallway and stopped at the adjacent dining room wall (for now). First, let's take a look at some BEFORE photos.

The living room has a large three piece picture window. Privacy is an issue. For convenience, maintenance, and economical reasons I chose faux wood blinds in a chestnut color. These were ordered to fit inside the framing. I purchased them on line through Home Depot. I framed them with four curtain panels. I reused her curtain rod and fed the panels to hang on either end as well as where the windows divided. These provide color but don't need to be moved as the blinds are more than adequate to provide privacy.

The mantle, purchased on line through Home Depot, was not finished as I wanted to try to finish it to compliment the blinds. I applied Minwax English Chestnut and two coats of polyurethane, allowing each coat to dry thoroughly.

I purchased an 8x10 area rug from Lowes. In my local store they have a section set up that has curtains, rugs, accessories and paint all displayed in complimentary groupings. This makes it super simple for people who are afraid to make those decisions.

Family is extremely important to my friend and she wanted to be sure her photos were a part of the space. There were over 30 photos! Frames can be expensive. I shopped in Walmart and craft stores for inexpensive frames. I did not want them to all be the same, I chose three colors/styles; black, white and gray.

I found a television cabinet on a local Facebook page for less than $100. I loaded that puppy up in the back of my SUV, brought her home, cleaned her up and she was ready for the new room.

Simple candle sticks and candles from a discount store adorn the mantle. I had a jar I filled with purchased 'beach glass' and some silk hydrangea from the craft store.

Soon there will be a family portrait above the mantle painted by one of the daughters. Presently, it is in an art show so I lent my framed poster print by Edward Hopper. I think it's called Coast Guard Station. I cut the poster to fit my frame and it hung in my bedroom for about ten years until I just recently redecorated in there. I think it stands in nicely until the permanent artwork is available.

I bought a throw blanket to bring some of the colors in the curtains to the other side of the room. A tray (which was actually a unclaimed lid to a box at Home Goods that I got for a few dollars) and a fake plant sit atop the two footstools doubling as a coffee table. A couple homemade art pieces rounded out the accessories in the room. A galvanized letter for the family's last name and galvanized clock are incorporated into the gallery wall over the television.

Eventually, my friend will purchase new furniture but for now this will work. It looks neat, clean and comfortable. She is happy with the results and so I am, also. As finances become available we can move into other parts of the house but for now we can all agree that this was a welcome and much overdue makeover.

Thanks for stopping by and taking time to read through this post. If you enjoyed visiting with me please consider subscribing by email or following along on social media. All the links can be found in the column to the right.

Hope you have a great day! ~Jolena

* This post was in no way sponsored by any of the companies or products mentioned in the post. Although, I would not be adverse to considering an affiliation. :)

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