Sadly, I am not an organized person.
When I was reading a book on organizing/decluttering
the home, most of it seemed too strict to me
except for a little gem of advice.
The author said that if the only time you really
get your house picked up is when company is
coming, then have company over often.
About the middle of the month, we decided to have
friends over for a party on Memorial Day (end of month).
This meant completely cleaning out the carport
that had become a depository for things that could
not fit in the attic. I am talking about only the front end of
one of the cars could fit in the two-car carport.
And, of course, to try to finish any home decorating
project that had been started or almost started.
Aside from my job, getting the house ready for the
party completley took over my life (blogging fell by the
wayside but I did take pictures along the way to post later).
The party was fun! No one seemed to notice that some
of the projects were only half-finished. At least the carport
was totally cleaned out and was "Grilling Central".
I had wanted to "French-i-fy" my living room more to go
with the print over the mantle but here is what I ended up with:
Instructions for making the burlap covered bottle can be found here.
To tie in the pops of orange in the Eiffel Tower print/painting,
I made a couple of pillows with orange also.
To save money, the fronts of the pillows are a nice
tapestry fabric but the backs are some left over linen.
I think that weird crease in the middle came from the fabric being folded so long
waiting to be made into a pillow. Maybe it will go away.
My French milk maid "bronze" (I found out after I bought her at an
auction that she is only ceramic) got a more substantial base (but
not a matching color yet) for the party. She is standing on
my book by Annie Sloan "Creating the Frech Look".
Another "bronze" statue that got a base makeover was this
man in a circle I bought at Stein Mart. I think he was a
very reasonable price because his original base was a
funky black and blue combo. I painted the base to match better.
He is standing in front of two posters that I got half off at
Hobby Lobby. I was ready for a change from the
architectural prints that had been in those frames for a
couple of years. The prints had glass over them that were
quite "glare-y" certain times of the day. I used the same
method of making a print into a painting with these but I
also tried to add a crackle medium to them. The crackle
didn't work too well but it did add great dimension to the prints.
I got the Eiffel Tower print because it was obviously French but needed a partner for it.
The hot air balloon was a companion by the same artist. I remembered that the first hot air
balloon trial was actually IN France...animals were used in the basket as "passengers".
With the clear gel medium and the crackle medium over
these colorful posters/prints, they don't need glass over
them. They remind me of the carnival canvases that
Frank and Mike on "American Pickers" found.
I used some antiquing medium to try to get the crackling to
show up on the posters. It didn't work for that but I did
brush it on the frames to try to knock down the shine of
the gold leafing that I had put on the frames a while back.
For fun, I tried to add the crackle medium on a old calendar print
of a French painting. It didn't really work on it either...
...but it still made it look similar to a real painting.
I am trying to catch the glare in this photo so you can see some of the dimension.
In the living room I also re-worked one of the bookshelves
to have less books and more interesting objects.
Some changes happened in the dining room too.
Finally a chandelier got hung...
...even though it is not finished.
After years of pondering, I AM going to paint this bookcase
but I ran out of time. At least I took the books out for a
lighter look. The sconces that have been gold with black
candles for years got a coat of white paint but they,
too, are not completely done.
I "made" some more milkglass with inexpensive glass vases
and bowls I have been collecting for "such a time as this".
The master bedroom also is sporting a less-than-finished
chandy now. I don't have very high ceilings so working on the
light fixtures while they are hanging is not too hard.
More background on the master bedroom is available by clicking on
The long pillow on the bed is another project that I
have had the material for for a quite a while .
Since there were already patterns going on in the curtains,
bedskirt, coverlet and pillows, I had a hard time deciding
on what to make the long pillow out of. I like this material
because it is more like embroidery than a pattern
and picks up the other colors in the room.
This pillow is very simple to make; sew shape you want,
make Turkish corners if you like, stuff with polyester batting.
This pillow is still a little lumpy but (and you won't be
surprized) this pillow still has the stuffing opening not
sewn closed so I can work with it some more.
When party time came, I stopped being crazy about getting
projects done and just had a great time.