Have you always wanted to learn how to paint furniture like you see in those adorable stores like The Lazy Daisy?  Well now is your chance.  We’ve lowered the price on our beginner furniture painting workshop!

Our 2-hour workshop is only $45 and includes paint, Websters chalk paint powder, a brush (for you to keep), finishing waxes, and the item we’ll paint in class. You’ll learn how to prepare, paint, distress, wax, and “antique” your furniture for a look you will love.

Our workshops are held in our private paint studio in Short Pump, Virginia, just minutes off Rt. 288, and only five minutes from the Short Pump Towne Center.

Have questions? Call the instructor, Teresa at 804-855-9371.

To reserve your spot in one of our workshops, call or visit The Lazy Daisy Gift Store in either Short Pump (804-364-2320) or Midlothian (804-357-2690). For more information and an updated schedule of classes, click here. Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/worthwhilerestyle

It was a busy weekend, and I was finally able to finish up a few projects that had been starting to pile up.

I got this cute curvy mirror a few weeks ago at my very first online estate sale auction – my new addiction.  I’ll write about it in detail sometime soon, but just think of it as eBay up the street.  You can check the items out ahead of time, go home and bid on them in your pajamas, and then pick them up the next day.  So much fun!!

I had initially intended to paint the mirror pink.  I’m just dying to paint something a soft pale pink – but it was calling out to be antique white.  The morning I was going to take it to the shop, I passed by my awful spray-painted-silver plastic mirror in our office and decided I’d keep the white one instead.

This weekend I also finished this cute retro mirror that my friend, Catherine picked up for me at the Goodwill Outlet.  You know, the “pay-by-the-pound” place hereafter to be referred to solely as “The Pound.”

I painted it a soft aqua color and lightly distressed it.

I think this would look awesome in a foyer or over a dresser, as I’m sure it was originally intended.  I think it could be cool in a bathroom as well instead of your standard frameless mirror (I hate those!).

Right now I have it listed on craigslist since I don’t have room for it in my little booth at the antique shop.  We’ll see how that goes.

I just finished this chair this morning.  I found her on the top shelf at a local thrift shop about a week ago.  I had to ask an employee to verify the price tag when I saw they wanted a whopping…are you ready for this… $1.98!

That’s how I found her!

The chair was in really good shape – no holes in the caning, and had very few dings on the legs.  I knew she’d look great with a coat of paint and some funky fabric.

Here she is when I got her home.

First I removed the seat and painted the chair a peacock blue.   (Kinda addicted to that color right now!)  I decided to leave the caning on the back natural because, well, I just like how it looks.  Actually, that’s only partly true.  The whole truth is that I’m such a sloppy painter, I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to control the drips that would surely find their way between the cane.  In any case, I left it au natural, and I think it looks great.

After the blue dried, I “dry-brushed” on antique white.  Basically what that means is that you get a little paint on your brush, then sorta dab most of it off.  Then you haphazardly apply it over the white, wiping it off as you go.

You can see how the blue shows through.

After giving the entire chair a light sanding, I distressed the edges and then sealed the finish with a coat of clear wax.

This morning I covered the chair with the aqua and lime green fabric from Joann Fabrics. This was my first ever attempt at recovering a chair, and I must say, it was harder than I thought it would be to get it straight.  The corners were the most challenging part.

It takes a lot of finessing to make the deliberately uneven finish look even.

This chair is being sold at my new favorite consignment store, Revival in Gayton Crossing in the West End of Richmond. It is a super-cute shop and the merchandise changes every day.

Here’s another of my mirrors currently for sale at Revival:

Yes, another mirror painted blue.  Perhaps I need to branch out to a new color family.  Any suggestions?!

So that’s what I was up to this weekend! Thanks for reading!

Have you heard of chalk paint??

No?  Well, as of a few months ago, neither had I.  Over breakfast, my friend told me about a very exclusive line of paint called Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint.  She extoled the virtues of this miraculous paint.  What’s so great about it?   You don’t need to sand before painting.  You don’t need to prime before painting.  It goes on smoothly, dries quickly, and with little effort, you get that popular vintage-y “shabby chic” look.  After hearing about it for the first time, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on some!

For years I’ve had furniture just begging to be painted… an Ikea bookcase, an outdated coffee table, and a tacky brass lamp… just to name a few.  But the work involved with the whole sand-prime-paint charade turned me off.  Until then!

This end table took 3 coats of satin-finish to cover and I obsessed over every brush stroke. With chalk paint, the brush strokes seem to disappear.

Where was this chalk paint months ago when I was 9 months pregnant on my hands and knees, sanding and painting coat after coat on this 70’s coffee table?

Where was it, you ask?!  Uh, only all over the Internet.   Doh!

You know how it feels when you show up late to a party and everyone else already has their buzz on? Apparently everyone in the blogosphere but me knew how great this stuff is and has been using it to paint the most amazing furniture.

My first thought: Must. Get. Some. Now.  You grab the baby; I’ll grab the keys!

But wait!  What?  This Annie Sloan stuff is $38 a quart!  A quart?!  On to Plan B.

Enter DIY chalk paint.  For a girl like me, with more creativity than cash, the make-at-home version was right up my alley.  Before I plunked down the dough for the good stuff, I wanted to see if I could make it myself.

The Internet abounds with chalk paint recipes that claim to be very similar to this Annie Sloan stuff.  Some very smart people out there figured out that if you take Plaster of Paris or even unsanded grout, and mix it with a little water and paint, you get a product with similar properties as Annie Sloan’s coveted formula.

For every decorating blog out there, there’s a different DIY chalk paint recipe.  For my projects I use roughly 1 part Plaster of Paris to 2 parts paint.

Basically I mix a little less than 4 oz of unsanded grout and water and then add it to a sample size of Behr (Home Depot) paint and primer in one product.

I have been thrilled with the results of my paint.  It is super easy to apply, and in some cases I only need one coat.  I attribute this more to the “paint and primer in one” paint than to the grout, but whatever it is, I love it!

 

This is just one coat of “Anonymous” paint by Behr – a very warm grey color.

I’m still looking forward to checking out “the real thing.”  Annie Sloan’s paint is only sold at a few select boutiques around the country and online.  Luckily for me, there’s a “Stockist” (the term for retailers who carry her line of paint) only 30 minutes from my house in Ashland.   As soon as I sell an organ to pay for it have the time, I’m going to get some and see what all the fuss is about.  Until then, I’m more than happy with my version.

 

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With the onset of winter, yard sale season is coming to a close, so I’m really relishing these last few Saturdays I have left.  This past weekend was the first really cold yard sale morning, so I busted out my wool coat and headed out.  There were only three within a five mile radius of my house.  How did I know?

Let me introduce you to  www.gslar.com  It is a free website that maps out yard sales in your area.  Once you register, you go in and add your zipcode and how many miles you’re willing to travel for bargains.  The site then pulls down all the ads from local papers and craigslist and sends you a report.   You tell them when you want to be notified.

I usually get my email on Friday night.  The site even allows you to plan your route so you can maximize your time out, like if you have a nursing baby at home and can only be away a few hours, or something like that.

So, as I said, there were only 3 sales within a five mile radius of my house, so I planned to hit all three of them.

The first one was actually in the back of my neighborhood.  My 10-year-old is really into cars these days and I found a car book and a model Mustang for him for $1.50 total.

The next sale was on River Rd.  River Road is where people with “old Richmond money” live.  So of course I had high expectations.   Let’s just say it didn’t live up to my expectations.  The old lady who was running the sales proclaimed herself to be “blind as a bat.”  But I tell ya what, she was keeping a good eye on those prices and was not willing to negotiate.  No worries.

Much to most seasoned “yard-salers” dismay, I seldom ask for a discount.  I appreciate the work that goes into holding a yard sale.  They obviously want to get as much as they can for their crap and sometimes I feel like asking for them to take less is offensive.  What’s a dollar or two to me in the grand scheme of things?  Not much.

Sometimes if I’m getting several items from one person, I will ask for a few bucks off the sticker price.   For example, if I have 3 items that come to $7 you may say, “Will you take five for all this?” as you’re handing them the money.  Most people will accept that.

From Mrs. River Road I bought a brand new pair of suede flats.  Apparently my foot grows half a size every time I have a baby, and this time was no different.  Anyone need any size 9s?   I have a closet full.

I also scored another Christmas sweater.  Ever since my bff Halle announced her annual holiday party was going to be a “Tacky Christmas Sweater” party, I’ve been obsessed with finding them.  You may remember the one I found at Goodwill Outlet and this one did not disappoint either.

It is a Plus Size woman’s vest and will look AMAZING on my brother-in-law, Glenn.  In fact, I can’t wait to see him in it.  As of this writing, I’m not sure he even knows about the party, much less the sweater, but whatever!

After I left River Road, I headed back toward my house and saw a sign for a sale.   The sign advertised tools, and since I’m in the market for a saw, I thought I’d stop in.

 

I knew just a little paint would make this adorable.

The first thing I saw was this shelf.  A friend of mine has asked me to keep my eye out for a display shelf for her daughter’s ceramic egg collection.  For a $1 I thought I’d get it just in case it would work for her.

It’s not the right size and doesn’t have glass, so I am going to use it as a display shelf in my booth at the antique shop.

I also scored 8 vintage silk scarves at this sale.  They were a quarter each.  I don’t know much about the value of vintage scarves; I just like them.  On Etsy, name-brand scarves can fetch up to $25 or more.  I think the most valuable one was an Oscar de la Renta.

The most unique and my favorite by far was this green and navy one.  It is labeled June Critchfield from 1979 and is a depiction of the National Mall in Washington, DC.  Its complete with the Capitol at one end and the Washington Monument at the other with traffic in the middle.  No wait.  That’s not right. Sorry.  That was my PTTSD (Post Traumatic Traffic Stress Disorder) rearing its ugly head.

Actually I think this scarf is super-cool and would awesome framed.  Not sure what I’m going to do with it yet.  I may give it to a DC friend for her birthday.

The last thing I bought were these two little handmade (in 1963) wooden stars for a quarter each.  I’ve already painted them a bright avocado green and think they would look adorable as Christmas decorations.  They’ll be going in the shop this week.

So all in all, my Saturday yard sale adventure, I spent $12 and had a whole lotta fun.

Thanks for reading!

 

 

Every time I find an amazing piece of furniture for my antiques booth with the intention of painting it, I pause and ask myself, “Should I paint this, or not?”

I love wood!

(Go ahead and insert joke here.)

I think it must be the tree-hugger in me coming out.  I mean, I do own, not one, but two pairs of Birkenstocks!

Seriously though, I really do love wood.  I love how furniture acquires more character over time.  I especially love dark wood.

Our house is full of it.  Every time I think I’ll move away from the dark-stained wood that fills our house, somehow I still end up with it.

Last year when I was planning my son’s nursery, I had the perfect opportunity to introduce a new stain into our lives.  I searched and searched and finally settled on a crib and dresser combination that I loved.

We loved the way the finish looked in the pictures online.

I bypassed my usual choice of “cherry” (progress!) for the finish they called “Tuscan.”  Well, I’ve always wanted to go to Tuscany; I hear they have good wood.  Oh, wait, that’s wine.  Whatever, I like them both.

The reviews said it had a beautiful well-worn, hand-distressed finish. Right up my ally.

So we took a gamble and ordered it online.  And we waited.  And when it arrived…guess what?  It matched all the other dark wood in our house.  So much for branching out (pardon the pun!).

 

Here it is in my son’s room. It’s a little darker than we expected, but we still love it!

I guess the one good thing about sticking with the same finish is that we can mix and match the pieces in other rooms as needed.

So what’s a girl like me doing painting over all this wood?  Well, as much as I love wood, I also love bright colors.  And frankly, I just love to paint.

There is just something about a lime green table that makes me smile.

And in my defense, I only paint bad wood.  Well, that and ugly wood.  Actually bad, ugly wood from the seventies doesn’t make me feel bad at all.

Here she is “before.”

Take this little Queen Anne-style end table.  When I found it, it was sad and lonely sitting in a cold storage locker.  Well, it wasn’t actually lonely because it has a twin.  And come to think of it, it wasn’t really cold either because we’ve had a very mild September.  But she and her sister were gouged and the crevices were covered with glitter.  Glitter? Don’t ask.  I have no idea why.

But here she is now in all her painted and distressed glory.  She’s for sale in my booth, waiting for the perfect home.

I’m still waiting to paint her twin.  They’re tired of having the same identity, so we’re going to switch it up and paint her a different color.  Any suggestions?

Here she is “after.”

My latest acquisition that has me wondering, “Should I paint them or not?” is a pair of mid-century cane-back chairs.

I just love this chair! So glad there were two of them.

Don’t you love the soft sloping arms?  The purist in me thinks they should stay dark, but the creative side of me wants to paint, paint, paint them – slate grey perhaps – and cover them with a super-fabulous fabric.  I’ll let you know what I decide.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A few people have asked me what’s the meaning behind the name “Worthwhile ReStyle.”  I’d love to say I came up with it, but my amazingly creative husband thought of it after I told him what I had in mind for the business.

So let’s break it down.  First (well, actually second, but I want to talk about it first, is the term “ReStyle.”  What does this mean to me?

“Restyling” is taking something old, outdated, or that you might not like anymore and with just a little creativity (and usually paint), changing it into something you love.    Like when you score a tacky coffee table from the 70’s and then paint it and add new hardware like I did to this table in my son’s cruise-ship themed nursery.

I don’t have a picture of the “before,” but trust me, it was BAD. Now: I love it!

Since I get most of the items in my shop at yard sales and thrift shops, I restyle most, if not all of my finds.  Let’s face it: thrift shops are full of crap that people no longer want.  Sure, there are some perfectly in-style home accessories to be found.  But more often than not, these stores of full of garish brass, outdated furniture, and tacky tchotchkes.  The challenge is not to see the items as they are, but to see their potential.

Currently my four favorite things to restyle are:

1- Brass – so ugly in the 80’s – so awesome now painted and distressed so just a little gold shows through!  I love the peacock blue of these lamps.

Still a work in progress, but these brass lamps were in bad shape when I picked them up at a yard sale.

2 – Picture frames and mirrors – lots of great things you can do to these, like turn them into trays and chalkboards.

Cute frames with chalkboard paint are perfect to write notes around the house.

3- Vintage fabric – I love to make pillows out of old vintage sheets and curtains.

4- Small furniture (shelves, end table, stools)  – a fun, bright coat of paint is all they need!

As this little blog o’ mine progresses, I hope to inspire you to look at your things with a new eye and give you tips on how to restyle accessories around your house.   Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll share with you in detail what you can do with your thrift shop finds and show you some of my favorite projects.

Which one do you want me to show you first?  Leave me a comment below!

Now, on to the “WORTHWHILE” part of the name.  Well, to me, there are a few meanings behind this word.  First, it just makes good sense to reuse what we already have and keep perfectly good things out of the landfill.  I’m thrilled that consignment and thrift shops have grown in popularity with the whole “reduce, reuse, recycle” movement.   “I go green” sounds so much better than “I go cheap!”  Don’t you agree?

The second, and most important reason I call my business “Worthwhile” is what I do with the proceeds.  My sister, Barbara, passed away four years ago from diabetes.  In honor of her, I give a portion of what I make from the sale of items in my booth at Odd Balls Antiques & More to the Juvenile Diabetes Association – a very worthwhile cause!

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