Archive | January, 2011

Vanity Affair, Part 2

31 Jan

Over the weekend I gathered a few more paint samples in various shades of blue to figure out precisely what color to paint the vanity.

Some samples have a bit too much white, others are a bit too gray or too baby blue. In the end, I decided to go with Martha Stewart’s Enamelware (the swatch on the far left). While this particular picture may not illustrate the exact color (then again, colors on computer screens never really look accurate), it’s the absolute perfect shade of light blue. The next step will be buying a quart in a semigloss finish and begin the sanding process. I have a feeling this is going to take awhile.


Vanity Affair, Part 1

28 Jan

The future is looking brighter for this vanity, literally. As you can see, it’s pretty beat up (the mirror to the right goes with it) and is currently being used to corral some of our tools. But this little vanity will soon be getting a major makeover courtesy of lots of sandpaper and a few coats of primer and semigloss paint. While I love the tiger stripe wood on the drawers, I’m painting it instead of staining it on this occasion since there are so many nicks, scratches, and dings and because I think it’ll look great.

And you should know that the vanity will be moving into the guest room and taking a place in the closet. Why the closet? Simply because there’s no more space in the room for another piece of furniture, but we could use more storage in there for my art-related supplies. Plus, we’d also like to provide our guests with a mirror and a in-room place to primp.

But first, I have to figure out what color to paint it. Here are some of the contenders:

I’m looking for a calming light blue to cover some of the vanity’s scars.

By the way, Lowe’s website has a great feature called Explore Colors that allows you to search Valspar’s paint line online. (I totally wasn’t compensated for saying this. I just saw this tool online and found it helpful.) You can search by color families—the Oceanic Blues are gorgeous. This is what it looks like:

Anyway, I’ve gotten some swatches and hopefully will be making the choice this weekend.

I also wanted to add these Anthropologie color swatch knobs, which I think are so artsy and fun, but I learned when I went to order the four I needed that they’re no longer available in stores or online. I called stores all over the southeast and had zero luck finding any.

However, following this slightly over-dramatic tweet where I was really just complaining…

…the wonderful people at Anthropologie contacted me to help in my search. I certainly wasn’t expecting that from my little tweet, but I’ve happily now got four of these gorgeous knobs on back order and due to arrive in mid-February. Thanks Anthro, for some fantastic customer service!

Tulips Are Blooming

27 Jan

They’re not really. Tulip season doesn’t start for a couple months, but today, in one of those serendipitous moments, I found a white tulip side table in a local thrift store. I’ve been searching for months, and today apparently was the day the search ended. Those days are the best.

My Favorite Bookcase

26 Jan

There’s something really magical about a bookcase. It’s a very telling glimpse into someone’s personality both by what’s on it and how it’s organized, and it can be a wonderful conversation starter when you discover books you have in common, shared favorite authors, and copies of new titles you’d like to read sitting on someone else’s bookshelf. When given the opportunity, bookcases are one of my most favorite things to look at in a person’s home (tied with the art on their walls).

About five years ago when I was living in San Francisco, I dreamt of the bookcase I’d buy when I finally settled somewhere. It was at the top of my furniture wish list (you can bet I had a list), and I even drew a picture of what I wanted in my sketchbook. This is the sketch:

When I moved to Birmingham and knew I’d be staying awhile, the bookcase I’d drawn was the first piece of furniture I began hunting for. It took months of searching, but I finally found the perfect one in a local antique shop that has since gone out of business (Crestwood Antiques for those who may be curious). Here it is in my old home (left) and my new one (right). It’s a pretty close match, don’t you think?

As I mentioned briefly here, this piece of furniture houses memorable tchotchkes from our travels, most of my favorite books (my Jane Austen and Armistead Maupin collections, some of my favorite art and illustration books, and other life-changing books I’ve read over the years), and my favorite magazines (a complete set of Cottage Living, copies of Domino, a handful of How magazines, and the new and utterly gorgeous Anthology magazine). It makes me uncommonly happy when I look at it.

And for those like me who enjoy browsing a little closer, here’s a shelf-by-shelf look at what makes up my list of favorites. Maybe you’ll find some common titles or ones on your to-read list. If so, let’s chat. I love talking about books.

Penelope Deyhle

25 Jan

I’ve had Penelope Deyhle’s website bookmarked for ages and often return to it to see her latest work. This New Jersey–based artist does landscapes and abstracts, but I’m most captivated by her fish series. The paintings of the goldfish in fishbowls are some of my particular favorites. I love how the water in the bowl reflects the colors.

All images courtesy of Penelope Deyhle.

Small Dog Gang

20 Jan

There are a lot of dogs in our neighborhood. It seems everyone has a dog and many just have the run of the area. They’re all sizes and types. Recently, I saw a pack of small dogs go running by on their way somewhere and I named them the small dog gang. Here’s my drawing of them.

Too Crisp?

19 Jan

Baking blunders are one of my favorite things to draw, and I thought up a variation of this one on the drive home from work. When I got started drawing, it morphed into this. I did the color version mainly so I could experiment with some new shades of Prismacolor colored pencils I received as a gift. They’re so delicate and fun to work with.