Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A Golden Makeover

Meet Blanche.  She is the tall, thin, more risque cousin to Bertha from my earlier post called The Many Shades of Gray.  A little background on Blanche...

My sister (Lola) and I started an annual trip to the Chartreuse and Co. barn/yard sale in DC during the early weeks of summer.  We enjoy looking at the finished pieces, but find more success in the unfinished barn.  Unfortunately, this time we only found several accessories... no major furniture finds.  There is a reason Lola is our number one buyer... Even though we struck out at the initial barn sale, she had her list with Plan B ready to go.  We were on our way to another barn sale nearby!!!  After several twists and turns (and a few "where in the world are we" moments), we drove down the gravel driveway of the sale.  That's where we found this beauty sitting outside the barn with a neon pink tag that said.... Get ready for this.... $10!!!  I snatched the tag off the drawer and basically threw her over my shoulder.  This is what I was looking for!  A great piece for a great price! 

Blanche traveled down the road and back again (up top if you are now singing "Thank you for being a friend").  This Golden Girl had a little plastic surgery on her right drawer because someone took the time to rebuild it - and I'm pretty sure they hate me now for snagging her for $10.  She had some wrinkles on top, but her bones were still very solid.

I mixed a bunch of grays together (I'm pretty sure the real Blanche would have preferred something a little more colorful) until I had the perfect combination...

Then I found new hardware to update her look and give her a little bling...

Now she is sitting back, kicking up her heels, and waiting for someone to bring her home - preferably a strapping young man that doesn't mind a lady with quite a past.

Come on people...Her heart is true, she's a pal and a confidant.

Happy Junkin'!


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Caribbean Upcycle

Mr. Dump and I were headed to the beach a few weeks ago and (like we do on every road trip) did a little junkin' on the way.  It was a typical Saturday morning.  Mr. Dump was at the wheel and I was sitting shotgun with my eyes peeled.  With every neon pink, yellow, or green sign, my head would whip around as I grunted for Mr. Dump to stop.  Depending on how much coffee I've had, we are typically by the signs before I see them.  But not this time.  We were sitting at a light, and there it was - the dark black arrow.  "There, there!" I shouted.  Side note: We were not having much luck on that particular day and I could tell that Mr. Dump was losing steam.  Mr. Dump (who was also very anxious to get to the beach) screeched into the turning lane, hoping this would be our last stop.  After we turned, we kept driving, and driving, and driving until finally THERE SHE WAS!  This beauty was sitting in the front yard...

I HAD to have her and was out of the car before Mr. Dump came to a complete stop.  I have been looking for a piece like this since we started this crazy hobby.  The man running the sale was clearly ready to get out of the heat, open a cold beverage, and get his junk (my treasures) off his yard.  After some brief haggling, we carted this around all week at the beach and brought her home.  I decided to tackle this piece while Mr. Dump was at work.  This is how you manage a heavy piece of furniture by yourself...  (and now we all know why muscle relaxers stay in the front of my medicine cabinet!)

Her top was in pretty good shape.  I had hoped to stain it, but discovered that it was covered with a layer of veneer...

She was pretty grimy from her former life by the sea, so I scrubbed her down and let the sun continue to disinfect her drawers while I went to town on the rest.

Since I couldn't stain the top, I loaded on a layer of primer to give it a little extra protection (plus she was used to wearing sunscreen)...

Then came the hard part...  What color would I use???  I have been trying to use up some of the paint in our garage, so I looked at and thought about every color.  None of them were good enough for this piece.  I had a color in mind, and that color was not in my garage.  Even though I was sweating from head to toe, I made a trip to Lowe's to find the perfect color (and hoped that I wouldn't run into anyone).  The first color that I picked up was the color that I had in mind... Caribbean Splash.... PERFECT for my sunbathing beauty!

Pretty soon I was back to work... I lifted her onto the sawhorses (don't ask me how - I think it was my super-strength determination)... and painted several coats with my sprayer...

After painting the drawers, I had to decide... to distress or not to distress??

Here she is now... Perfectly blue... Perfectly distressed... and Perfectly waiting for a good home...

Her side view...

It's not the beach.... but here she is waiting patiently in our booth...

She seems quite happy with her new life...

Time to go outside and sweat!

Happy Junkin'!


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Half-Bath Makeover

Today, we bring you another installment of your favorite series: Bringing Mom's House into the 21st Century.  We had almost the whole gang here last week.  Mom and Dad came down to organize the attic and move more boxes to Virginia - which was so much fun during a heat wave in Charlotte.  When they left, Laura, Mr. Dump and I were free to tackle the real projects that we wanted to tackle.  Which brings us to the transformation at hand...

This is the half bathroom in the downstairs of Mom and Dad's house.  Twenty or so years ago, it was lovely.  Today, however, NOT SO MUCH (sorry, Mom...)!

The room is located in the center of the house, so there are no windows to let natural light shine in.  It has always been a little on the dark side, and the hunter green and maroon stripes didn't help.  The photo below is the result of the fabulous flash on my camera... It is much darker than this in person....

My dad installed the wallpaper shortly after the house was built.  My dad is somewhat of a perfectionist and this wallpaper was meant to NEVER come down!  It was a little heartbreaking to transform this room because I can still hear Dad's choice words and frustrations while making sure all of the lines connected perfectly.  (I love you, Dad!)   

Here are a few more shots of the bathroom before the magic happened...

Although the paper was never intended to come down, it did start to peel in a couple of spots.  Therefore, we tried to steam the wallpaper off with our handy steamer - we failed.  See our other bathroom transformation (where it worked) here.  The picture below shows our effort and failed attempt at taking down the "I'm never coming off this friggin' wall" paper.

Needless to say, we gave up.  We decided to prime the walls (over the wallpaper) with two coats of extra strength latex Kilz.  Between coats, we spackled a few spots where you could see the seams.  While it dried, we painted the mirror below that I just happened to have in the garage.

We stuck with a neutral color to help the room feel bigger and brighter. We added a couple of cute frames, a homemade towel rack (thanks, Mr. Dump) and voila... Here she is....  Updated and beautiful!

We left a picture that Mom had in the bathroom originally because it reminds her of her three babies - Awww...  However, we did update the frame with a little spray paint.  We also decided not to put the wooden shelves back in to give it a larger feel.  We still need to add a light fixture, change out the faucet, and put new electrical outlets in the walls.  More staging and updates to come! 

Happy Junkin'!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Estate Sale Find

I've been a little hesitant to write this next post... Not only do I want to keep the Ladies' Home Journal post up FOREVER, but I'm also heavily doped up on muscle relaxers - which in reality could make this quite fun.  My sister was in town this week... need I say more???  We worked non-stop on Mom and Dad's house which was the culprit for the pulled muscle in my back.  With that being said, I'm happy to have full functionality in my fingers to bring you lots of new projects while I sit on the couch and catch up on my daytime tv.  Is anyone else a little irritated that Sami and Carrie are still fighting over the same man???

That's a terrible segue into this sweet lady...  There is no drama here... Only a much needed makeover!

I found her at an estate sale in Charlotte, and she needed quite a bit of work.  The top had a layer of peeling veneer that had to be taken off.

I used a hammer and a putty knife to pry it off.  This took quite a bit of work, but it was totally worth it in the end.

The top still had several blemishes so I had to cover most of the top with wood filler.  I go a little crazy with this stuff.  It reminds me of my pre-school days of finger painting.  It was everywhere!

I planned to distress the piece, but I didn't want the light wood to shine through.  So... I painted all of the places where I thought I would distress with white paint.

I even did this on the drawers...

I painted the whole piece black, but didn't like the way it looked when I started to distress it.

Sooo... I mixed up my own chalk paint with a tablespoon of unsanded grout and a Cool Whip container of latex paint.  (Sorry for making fun of you, Mom, for saving them for all those years!)  Then, I slapped two coats on the piece.


While the paint was drying, I spray painted the hardware to give it an updated look.

This is what she looked like before I distressed her...

And here she is patiently waiting in the Sleepy Poet for a new home...

On a more serious note...  Thank you so much for your sweet comments and support during the LHJ feature!  You have all been so incredible during this surreal time in my life!

Happy Junkin'!


Linking up to:

Saturday, July 7, 2012

LHJ: The Amazing Dresser Do-Over

What do Ann Curry, an ad for chafing cream, and Dumped and Discovered have in common???  THEY ARE ALL IN THE AUGUST ISSUE OF LADIES' HOME JOURNAL!!!

I cannot believe that a business that started as a hobby has landed our little venture in the pages of a national magazine!  What an honor!

It all started about a year ago when I got an email from an editor of the magazine.  She found my little 'ole blog among the millions of incredible blogs out there and liked the idea of using paintable wallpaper on dressers.  How funny!  What we did out of necessity and peeling veneer caught the eye of people who actually know what they are doing!  Over the course of several months, we discussed logistics and pinched ourselves (many, many times!).  In April, a fabulous photographer named Mali Azima from Atlanta, GA visited our home and made us look like real pros.  I should say, I have to give credit to Mr. Dump for buying my dress that morning (I had a little wardrobe crisis the day of the shoot), and for holding/moving the screens/lights and generally being completely patient and letting the magazine pretend this business is all about me.  We all know this is a team effort!

Anyway, Mali spent the whole day staging, shopping the house for accessories, and Skyping with a stylist to get the best shots.  Those pictures are on page 28 (where I am pretty sure they Photoshopped a dimple on my cheek!).  The pictures on page 30, however, that show the process were all taken by Mr. Dump.

We were pretty sure the magazine would come out today, but called Barnes and Noble to confirm.  The 15-year-old who doesn't know Ann Curry from Jillian Michaels (July's cover girl) assured us that it wouldn't come out for another week.  When we casually stopped by Harris Teeter this evening to double check the 15-year-old's knowledge, we may or may not have done some squealing!  The policeman guarding the store looked more than a little alarmed!  We bought every copy they had and did cartwheels in the parking lot.

It is a big day for Dumped and Discovered and we couldn't have done it without you!  Thank you for your sweet comments, encouraging words, and patience with us when the school year takes over.  If you would like an autographed copy... :-)

Happy Junkin'!


Linking up to: