A hub for all things to do with design, furniture painting, photography, style, event planning [and some foodie bits for good measure].  

Mountain Modern Style: Plaid Headboards [+DIY your own!]

It's the holidays, so I want everything to feel warm and cozy and plaid and log cabin-y. I want to envision myself in a gorgeous ski chalet, nestled up to the fireplace [preferably with a plaid flannel wearing man..!].  Then again, I live in Atlanta, where it's not exactly snowy, and there are no nearby ski chalets for me.  But maybe, just maybe I could make my house feel a bit more like a mountain house, with a modern feel. I was sifting through one of my favorite sites to shop on for clients, Lulu & Georgia, and saw the glory that is this black and white plaid bed [pictured below]. I want. I need. I have to have you in my life.  

But alas, this bed is pushing $1000 [though they do have a great discount on the entire site that ends today, so do check out their site for holiday gifts!]. I own a very lovely bed as it is, and I can't ever picture that bed leaving my second floor. There's also the very likely possibility that though I'm craving all things plaid right now, I may get tired of plaid-palooza after a few months. The solution? Get this look for less, and recreate so it doesn't have to be a permanently plaid fixture in your home!

The nice thing about having an upholstered headboard is it can be fairly easy to recover it in a different fabric.  Amazon and other sites sell headboard rather inexpensively [I believe the upholstered one I have in my guest room was under $200]. Buy a blanket large enough to cover your headboard [doesn't have to cover the back, but should be enough to at least wrap around.  For a casual, quick restyle, you can simply drape the blanket over the back of the headboard and affix it with some safety pins.  If you're wanting a more fitted, semi-permanent effect, pick up an industrial stapler, hole the fabric taught, starting from one end and working your way around until you cover the entire piece.  Here's a post I did transforming my bright chevron headboard into a much more subdued, beachy look! There are endless plaid blankets out there, but I really liked the print on this one from Orvis.  I prefer a larger block pattern when it comes to plaid, but choose any plaid you like! It also looks to be a nice thickness, and is large enough to cover any size headboard [again just measure your headboard to double check!].  

Halloween Makeup Fun: Jem Eyeshadow Palette

Just because we're not little kids doesn't mean we can't play dress up on holidays like Halloween!  I wasn't really in the mood to buy a costume, but I was perfectly content with spending a bit of money on makeup [shocker!]. 

If you weren't born in the 80s and aren't a girl, you might not be familiar with Jem and the Holograms [here's a little taste of Jem if you're curious!]. 

Being a girl born in the 80s, I absolutely ADORED Jem and wanted to be a futuristic rock superstar, naturally. I happen to have a fair bit of clothes and accessories that fit the 80s rockstar bill, so all I needed was a bit of colorful makeup to complete the look. 

I figured I'd test out Sephora's line of Jem makeup products [because of course they have a line of 80s cartoon inspired makeup].  

The good news about this palette is it's HIGHLY pigmented and allows you to create all sorts of crazy, bold looks. 

For me, I stuck to the 'traditional' Jem look: LOTS of pink and purple and glitter. For Katie, we decided on greens and blues with an ombre effect. 

My friend Jedd [who sadly wasn't dressed as one of Jem and the Holograms], took photos of us getting ready. I love being able to see the process. It may even be better than the actual results!

I wish I had more excuses to play with makeup and crazy hair colors [the pink extensions took some work but we figured them out!]. 

I had so much fun playing with this palette and playing a bit of dress up. Our finished looks turned out pretty great! 

The bad lighting actually made for even more 80s fabulous photos I'd say!

As a final review on the palette, our makeup managed to last through two parties and A LOT of dancing, so I'd say it was worth the investment!

Okay, Halloween's officially over [I've watched Hocus Pocus AND Nightmare Before Christmas], so now it's time to get excited for the next big thing...THANKSGIVING! [shall we dress up like pilgrims?!]

Instant Art: Floral Papers in Vintage Frames

Sometimes you pass by Paper Source on your way from picking up furniture and sometimes you buy all of the things.  I was a little more frugal this time, just grabbed some birthday and wedding cards I needed...and A BUNCH of Rifle Paper Co. papers!  I needed to do a quick shoot of my latest desk masterpiece [which you'll get to see tomorrow!], so I thought, why not make some pretty bits to style the desk with? 

I suppose this is a DIY, though it's so dead simple, I really can't take any special credit for this.  I do have a knack for finding cheeky little frames at Goodwill and other thrift stores, so I guess that where my craftiness comes into play.

I simply cut the appropriate sizes of paper for the frames [just use the frame's back insert to determine how much to cut], slid them into the frames and VOILA! 

So lovely and autumnal, wouldn't you say? I can't get enough of Rifle Paper Co. patterns and papers. My little brass dog friend made an appearance today in honor of my beloved Kona Bear whose birthday is TODAY! My baby is seven, and for a year it was just me and her.  She's my guard dog and best bud.  Complete ramble, but I love her so much I just can't help myself! 

A Peek into Chalk Painting Class

Playing with paint. Munching on cookies. Sipping cocktail or two.  Chatting about furniture and design. Learning something new. Sounds like my kind of party! I love spending a day working on furniture, reinventing and being creative. The thing is, working solo gets a little lonely. I have infinitely more fun when I get to paint and play alongside friends, family and my students!  I'm awful at remembering to take photos during class, but here are a few quick iphone shots I snapped during a couple different classes.  Right now, I've just started with my Chalk Painting Basics, where we do all of the above and students can bring something small to work on [check out the frame a student painted below, it's GORGEOUS!]. I'm getting ready to post my September class schedule, and I'm also posting a few slots for one [or two!] on one furniture painting classes! Now, you'll get to bring a piece to work on in my studio so I can show you my painting techniques on your own furniture! Nothing is posted just yet, but stay tuned!

A Modern Take on a Mid Century Nightstand: Navy and Gold

Finally finishing up some painted pieces this week! I've been wanting to play more with gold paint since the French Provincial dresser I 'dipped' in gold a while back. 

The nightstand is a Dixie, a well known furniture maker with a great deal of mid century pieces. For being on the petite side, it's a solid, sturdy piece of furniture, which is always what I try to purchase whenever possible.

This mid century nightstand would have been great to keep in its original state, but there were bits of veneer damage all over it, and I basically would have had to strip all the veneers off and start all over. [too much work and $$ for Jo!!]

 I decided to give it a second life with paint. I opted for a combination of navy and gold, to give it a bit of a modern take. 

I also find the two toned effect helps play up the unique features of this piece. The light gold legs feel like they're floating, taking away from the heaviness of the dark navy. 

I painted the top in my own special mix of navy chalk paint [but if you're wanting to get a similar color, I'd go with Annie Sloan's Napoleonic Blue]. I'd originally planned to keep the blue on the lighter side, just using clear wax to coat it, but I felt like it needed to have a richer feel to go along with the gold, so I opted to seal it with dark wax first. 

Dark wax does a phenomenal job of deepening navy blue [or graphite and red, just to name a couple other colors!], and immediately makes any piece more sophisticated. 

I'm putting this one up for sale later today in my shop and on Craigslist, but this would make the PERFECT side table [it would look gorgeous with one of my oversized vintage lamps!], or just as nicely in any bedroom. I'd love to see it in a guest room flanked by a pair of twin sized beds. No matter how it's placed, I'm certain it will bring a bit of stylish, mid century modern flare wherever it goes! If you want to see more of my work or keep up to date with what pieces I'm currently working on, follow me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram!