see ya real soon.

I’m super excited to be headed off to Orlando, Florida this morning with my sister!

She and I have been going to Disney parks for 50 years!  Our first trip was to Disneyland in 1969 when I was 5 and she was 8.

We’ve lost count of how many times we’ve gone since then.  There were some decades in there when life got in the way and we weren’t able to go, and there was also a period of time when we lived in Florida so we went quite a lot.  But lately we’ve managed to get to either Disneyland or Disney World at least every other year.

Debbie’s daughter (a.k.a. my niece Kris) usually joins us …

and sometimes my mom joins us too.

but this time it’s just the two of us.

We’ve been known to behave like complete dorks while we are there.

But of course, that’s part of the fun.  Everybody gets to act like a kid in Disney World, right?

We’ll be there for nine days.  I’m sure I’ll be totally wiped out by the end.  I may act like a child, but I definitely don’t have the energy of a kid.

We’re planning to adopt a more leisurely pace than usual though (we’ll just see if we can stick with that plan).

So, I’ll be back a week from Saturday and in the meantime I’ll be taking a break from the blog.  So try not to miss me, and I’ll see ya real soon!

the principle bedroom.

Are any of you fans of Sarah Richardson?  If you’re not familiar, she’s a Canadian designer and has had several decorating shows on HGTV.  This summer I’ve been watching her makeover her cottage on YouTube.

None of that is really relevant to this post except to explain that she always calls the master bedroom the ‘principle bedroom’ instead.  And the feminist in me rather likes that idea.  I googled it, and apparently this is a Canadian thing.  How about it my Canadian readers,  have you always called it the ‘principle bedroom’ too?

Well, today I’m sharing our principle bedroom as we continue the tour of our home.

If you’re new to my blog, you may not know that we totally revamped this room back in the summer of 2017 from the floors on up.  We started by hiring some college guys to refinish the floors.  I chose to go with a matte finish and I absolutely love how they turned out.

They aren’t perfect, but then again they are over 100 years old so how could they be?  Matte finishes are always better at minimizing flaws than shinier ones.  The same is true for walls and painted furniture too.

Next up we painted the room in Benjamin Moore’s Edgecomb Gray.  I’d seen so many people raving about this color online so I went with it.  In hindsight I wish I’d tried a few more colors and found a better choice for my room.  This color tends to turn a sort of pinky beige in both early morning and late evening light.  It just goes to show that you really can’t pick wall colors based on pictures you’ve seen.  You need to get samples and try them on your own walls in your own lighting conditions.

After painting, we added a faux ship lap wall (which is painted in Dutch Boy’s Cotton Blossom) behind the bed with the help of handyman/neighbor Ken.

We modified a full size antique Eastlake style headboard to fit a queen sized bed, and I painted it using Homestead House milk paint in Coal Black.

I also painted a pair of mismatched pieces to use as nightstands, but for them I chose Miss Mustard Seed’s milk paint in Grain Sack.

The bench at the foot of the bed is one of the rare instances when I chose not to paint something.

I used some of my non-collection of vintage advertisement hangers to hang a few of our travel photos on the wall next to the closet.

And in case you are wondering, yes, that is the only closet in the room and it’s pretty small.  It just contains my current season’s wardrobe.  Mr. Q has a closet in his study for his clothes, and we both use the guest room closet for our off-season clothes.  I just moved the summer clothes into the guest room.  Yep, it’s that time of year.

 I keep my non-hanging clothes in an old jelly cupboard that is also painted in Miss Mustard Seed’s milk paint in Grain Sack.  I added a couple of Prima Marketing transfers to the doors.

These are an old design called French Pots III.  Unfortunately this design is discontinued.  You may be able to find it online, but no promises.

I’ve made a couple of tweaks to this side of the room since we originally finished it.  I brought in a companion for Lulu (the black manikin).

Collette, the dress form, has been stripped of her original covering and then dressed back up with another Prima Marketing transfer called Catalogue (sorry, also discontinued).

I also hung the vintage laundry drying rack that I found at a garage sale this summer on the other side of the cupboard.

I find that I’m often adding things to a room, or moving things around from room to room so that a space just keeps evolving.  I’ll never be one of those people who decorates and room and then considers it ‘done’, never to be touched again.  How about you?

the cabinet of curiosities.

In early September I set a goal for myself of completing all of the large pieces of furniture that were being stored out in my workshop before the snow flies.

Here in Minnesota that could be sometime soon.  If you’ll remember, last year we had snow on October 14 …

It didn’t stick around for long, but still … that meant it was already too cold to paint in my workshop by mid-October last year and it looks to be going that way again this year.  Last I heard snow is in the forecast for Friday.

I had one especially large piece at the top of my to-do list.  Some friends of ours gave me this piece for free.  I meant to get to it last fall, but I never did.  Then it spent all winter being stored in the carriage house.  Then I spent all summer just looking at it and thinking ‘I really need to get around to that one!

Somehow the summer just flew by and I never managed to get ‘er done.

Here’s what was holding me back:

no. 1 – It’s really large.  This piece is just under 7′ tall and 42″ wide and for some reason I always procrastinate on larger pieces and then later wonder what I was worried about.

no. 2 – This piece needed quite a few repairs, although my handyman/neighbor Ken cranked most of those out pretty quickly.  But the veneer was in pretty rough shape and needed a lot of gluing (by yours truly) which just isn’t one of my favorite things to do.

no. 3 – I couldn’t decide how to paint it.  I went round and round trying to decide on a look for this piece.  Do I go with a color?  Do I play it safe with a neutral?  Should the inside be a different color or the same color as the exterior?  Should I use a transfer or stencils?  I just wasn’t feeling inspired by any of the ideas I was coming up with.

Before we get to the painting part though, I have to share this clever ‘fix’ that Ken devised.

  One of the shelves was absolutely loaded with cup hooks.

I was thinking it would be a colossal pain to unscrew each one of them by hand.  I mentioned that to Ken and he came up with a really creative solution.  He modified a wooden clothes pin to fit into his drill …

Then he cut a slit in the end of the clothes pin to fit over the cup hooks.

Throw the drill into reverse and it’s easy peasy to remove all of those hooks.  Seriously you guys, how clever is that?  And now I have a lifetime supply of cup hooks.

The top of this piece was in especially bad shape.  One corner in particular was completely broken off.

Ken did a fantastic job of repairing this spot, but I did a crappy job of smoothing it out with filler.  At that point I was starting to feel like this piece was going to be pretty quirky no matter what and it might be wise to just embrace the quirky-ness instead of trying to fight it.

And thus, the Cabinet of Curiosities was born.

I painted the entire piece in Dixie Belle’s Caviar and finished it with their Big Mama’s Butta.

I used several different stencils on it.

Including this Antiques and Curiosities stencil that I used in an attempt to draw attention away from my wonky filler job.

And I also used some of Prima Marketing’s knob transfers.

The glass doors have their original wavy glass.

One of the really cool features is the fold out desk top.  There is a support on each side that you pull out for the top to rest on.

Then you just flip it open.

So, yes, technically this is a secretary desk not a cabinet per se.  But somehow ‘the secretary desk of curiosities’ didn’t have the same ring for the title of this post.

And with the desk top folded back in, this just looks like your typical glass fronted cabinet.

I always have fun staging photos of black cabinets.

Pretty much all of my non-collections work well with a black background.

When we added the faux board and batten paneling in this room I figured it was up high enough to allow me to crop out the dark grey wall color for most pieces of furniture, but not the 7 footers like this one!

As always, many thanks to Dixie Belle for providing the paint and the Big Mama’s Butta, and to Prima Marketing for providing the knob transfers for this project.

If you’re wondering where to purchase the Prima Marketing transfers check out their ‘where to buy’ page.

If you’re wondering where to buy the Dixie Belle products, you can shop with them directly online or find a retailer near you.

And finally, if you happen to be local (Twin Cities, MN) and in need of a cabinet to house your curiosities, please check out my ‘available for local sale’ page for more details.

a thing for boxes.

I seem to have a thing for old wooden boxes.

Remember the one I found at the estate sale back in August?

I ended up simply adding a portion of the Prima Marketing Somewhere in France transfer to the front and then sprucing it up with a little furniture wax.

I was hoping it would work on the shelves in either our living room or piano room, but it’s just a tad too big.  So for now I have it in our bedroom.

We had a couple of my South Dakota cousins over for dinner a while back and my cousin David insisted that this box looks like a tiny casket.  It’s far too small to really be a casket for a person of any size though, so then he claimed it was a cat-sket.

Hmmmm.  Well, I guess it could work for that.  Luckily our cat Lucy is still going strong.  We did have a bit of a scare with her last week, but after a bunch of expensive tests her vet has decided she simply had a virus.  She’s doing much better now, knock on wood.  Plus all of those tests did show that she’s doing pretty good for a cat of 13, so hopefully we won’t be needing a cat-sket any time soon.

My love of old wooden boxes continued with my ‘find of the day’ from the St. Anthony Park sales.

I decided to give this one a paint job in Dixie Belle’s Drop Cloth, then I added an old Prima Marketing transfer called Memoir (the small size).  This transfer is no longer being manufactured but you may be able to find one online if you search.

Just about half of the transfer fit on the front of the box, and I put another section on the top.

I decided to leave the inside of the box alone.  I didn’t want to cover up the King Radio decal.

Those dividers pretty much eliminate any chance that this one is a cats-ket 😉

I used Dixie Belle’s Big Mama’s Butta in Orange Grove on both the inside and the outside of the box.

That freshened it up a little and gave it a fabulous scent.

I was having a bit of a split personality moment while staging the photos for this one.  I was initially thinking that it would be perfect for storing old family photos or other ephemera.

But then I switched gears and realized it would also work well for storing some art supplies.

Either way, it’s a fun little storage box.

Once again, it’s too big for my living room/piano room shelves, so I’ll likely take it in to Reclaiming Beautiful to be sold.

If you have a thing for old wooden boxes too, check out some of the others that I’ve done here, here, here and here.

the world’s smallest bathroom.

Today we’re moving on in our house tour to the one and only bathroom in the house, which is just off the kitchen next to the pantry.  In other words, a long way from the bedroom at 2 a.m.

Well, technically it’s a long way from the bedroom at any hour, but it seems especially far in the middle of the night.

That’s probably the biggest ‘con’ to living in an old house.  I don’t mind not having a dish washer, or central air, or an attached garage, or laundry facilities on the main floor.  But we sure would love to have a bathroom upstairs.  We looked into it once and we simply couldn’t justify the expense.  When we consider expenses like these we think ‘how many trips would we have to forgo to have a bathroom upstairs?’, and in this case it was at least 4 or 5.

So instead we make do with the world’s smallest bathroom.

I ended up having to recycle some photos for this post that I took way back in 2014 when my blog was new.  The weather has not been cooperating around here lately.  It’s been rainy and gloomy and generally not conducive to getting photos of a small dark bathroom.

But I haven’t changed anything in the bathroom since then, so good enough!

Much like many of the rooms in our house, this one has seen a couple of different looks over the years.  When we moved in it was wallpapered in pink and blue and had some hideous square stick-on linoleum tiles on the floor.  We swapped out the sink and toilet, added the wainscoting and re-wallpapered in a Waverly pattern of purple and green violets complete with a matching border.  Come on, I bet some of you remember when Waverly was all the rage.

Eventually of course all of that wallpaper had to go.  We took it down, had the walls and ceiling skim coated, re-painted, added a heated floor (absolutely one of the best things we’ve ever done, and not terribly expensive at all) with ceramic tile and some new light fixtures, all around the same time we re-did the kitchen.

The only things that have remained from when we moved in are the tub and the mirrored medicine cabinet over the sink.

I’ve debating changing the medicine cabinet out, but I’m glad now that I’ve kept it.

By the way, those light fixtures on either side of the mirror may look like they could be original to the house but they are reproductions from Rejuvenation.  If you have an older home and are looking for some period style lighting, be sure to check out Rejuvenation.

The tub sits in an arched alcove and I imagine it would be rather difficult to find a replacement of exactly the right size.

The shower curtain came from H & M Home.

You have to get creative about storage in a small bathroom.  We have one tiny linen closet plus the medicine cabinet and that’s it.  So I keep my makeup in that old metal tin, and makeup brushes and q-tips are in those galvanized containers hanging on the wall.

The wall mounted soap dish came from Restoration Hardware.

We use an old stenciled bucket for trash.

I debated even including a post about the bathroom in this Wednesday house tour series.  There just isn’t much to show.  But if nothing else, maybe it will make the rest of you feel pretty good about your own more sizable and luxurious bathrooms 😉

Be sure to check back next Wednesday when I continue the tour of our house with the master bedroom!

safe and reliable.

I brought this washstand home from the Mac-Grove sales back in August.

The finish was in pretty rough shape and it was missing a drawer pull.  The hinges on the little door were held on with nails instead of screws.  Otherwise, it was in fairly decent condition.

I started by removing the towel bar/harp thingie.  I find that leaving those in place really limits the usefulness of these pieces.  It also makes them look a little too 80’s country.  I do re-use these harps by turning them into shelves.  I’ll share a post on that soon.

Next I simply sanded down the top.  Most of the finish was already worn off and the wood was somewhat stained and beat up.  I was planning a rustic look for this piece though, so I simply sanded it well and then applied some of Miss Mustard Seed’s Antiquing Wax to the top.

I decided to paint the rest of this one in Dixie Belle’s Putty.

If you’ve never tried this color I want to encourage you to give it a try.  Just look how gorgeous it is.

If you’re familiar with other brands of paint, this color reminds me a lot of Annie Sloan’s Coco or Fusion’s Algonquin.  It’s a deep, rich, taupe and it pairs beautifully with a dark wood tone.  This is the first time I’ve tried it, but you can bet you’ll be seeing it again in the future.  It’s definitely a ‘safe and reliable’ neutral.

I thought it would be fun to play up the rustic nature of this little washstand by using Prima Marketing’s Fine Horseman transfer.  Here’s what the complete transfer looks like …

As you can see, I only used parts of it.  I cut out sections and re-arranged them where I wanted them on my piece.

Always keep this possibility in mind with these collage style transfers.

I was initially planning to use some clear glass knobs on this piece, but they really didn’t have the right look.  So instead I pulled out my stash of wood knobs and found 5 matching ones.  I filled the holes for the original pulls using Dixie Belle’s Mud before I painted and then drilled new single holes for knobs.

I really had some fun staging this one for photos.

That mesh dome on top of the books is actually a vintage horse muzzle.  I didn’t realize that when I purchased it, but later saw one in Flea Market Style magazine and realized that was what I had.  I have to admit, I never thought I’d actually have a specific use for a vintage horse muzzle but it sure worked well for these photos.

You also just never know when your non-collection of whisk brooms is going to come in handy.

What?  You don’t have a huge stash of old whisk brooms?  Actually, there’s a story behind mine.  I saw a wreath made out of old whisk brooms in Country Living magazine many years ago so I started grabbing them when I saw them at garage sales (and my picker, Sue, found quite a few of them for me too) so that I could make one for myself.  As it turns out, it takes quite a few brooms to have enough for a wreath.  Naturally, by the time I had enough, I no longer wanted to make the wreath.

But they look kind of cool piled into this canvas wine bucket.

I knew I had an old family photo or two with horses in them, so I dug this one out for staging as well.

My mom swears that is my Aunt Lu, but it sure looks a lot more like my grandmother to me.  She should know though.  Those horses certainly do look safe and reliable, don’t they?

It really was just a pleasure working on this piece.

If you’re a horse lover and a local, be sure to check my ‘available for local sale’ page to see if it’s still available.

As always, many thanks to Dixie Belle for providing the paint, the Big Mama’s Butta and the Mud, and to Prima Marketing for providing the transfer for this project.

If you’re wondering where to purchase the Prima Marketing transfers check out their ‘where to buy’ page.

If you’re wondering where to buy the Dixie Belle products, you can shop with them directly online or find a retailer near you.

my v.l.f.g. addiction.

My name is Quandie and I am addicted to v.l.f.g.

What?  You haven’t heard of this one?

It’s an addiction to vintage light fixture globes, naturally.

I see them at garage sales at ridiculously low prices and I just can’t stop myself from buying them.

The latest addition to my non-collection (because as we’ve previously established, I am not a collector!) is this beauty …

Isn’t that gorgeous?  I paid $5 for it at an estate sale earlier this summer.  I just couldn’t pass it up.  I purchased it hoping it would fit the fixture in my guest room but unfortunately it didn’t.  So if I want to use it, I’ll need to get a base that fits this size globe.  I’m still considering that move.

On Wednesday you saw this pretty pink globe in my pantry.

It was also a garage sale find.

Last year I bought this gorgeous wedding cake globe at the Linden Hills neighborhoods sales.

You can buy one of these at Rejuvenation for $180, but I paid $10 for mine.

I put it on my bathroom light fixture, but since I have the world’s smallest bathroom I’ve found it next to impossible to get a good photo of it in there.

Another of my favorites is the gorgeous black & white globe that I put on my front porch.

Using vintage globes is a quick and easy way to add some instant character to your house.  If you are safety conscious, as we all should be with electricity, you can put the vintage globe on a new fixture.  A basic flush mount fixture is usually less than $20.

So, I’m curious, am I the only one who is drawn to v.l.f.g.’s?