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Chinoiserie Chic • Mid Century Modern • Palm Beach Regency Vintage Sales & Rentals


Filtering by Tag: "paint effects"

My House Is Staring At Me

LeAnn Stephenson

There's something you should know about me, I have a shortage of personal restraint.  I can turn away from the computer, a book, or some task that I need to finish and see it.  Paint me, my bathroom walls so clearly pleads.  Pull me up, my nappy-seen-better-days carpet begs me.  My entire house, inside and out, can stare at me so intently sometimes, like it's on the verge of speech.  I haven't yet learned how to arrange my thoughts in that reasonable way other folks do.  Thoughtful arrangements like;  maybe you should finish the last project before you begin a new one.  Or, perhaps, you should evaluate your abilities before taking on a major renovation single-handedly. 

I have over the past year, begun and not yet finished a stair redo and a master bath renovation without having the slightest idea when I might finish them.  So, the only logical thing in my mind is to start another project . . . . . and for those of you who know my battles with Do-it-yourself Deficit Disorder, I enthusiastically invite you to STICK A SOCK IN IT! and play along.

My new project is my garage, also known as the dumping ground and my storage unit.  The mere thought of my over-stuffed garage makes my hands tremble and my mouth go dry from sensory over-load.  But no more, because I've begun AND finished the cleaning out process and am moving on to the patching, painting, and transforming part of the job.  So, I'd like to share a few photos to give you an idea of what I started with, where I'm goin' and measures I've taken to get organized.

See you soon with the finished project . . . . and for those readers who are skeptical . . . again, I enthusiastically invite you to STICK A SOCK IN IT! and have a little faith that I'll actually finish this one!

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A Hole In One

LeAnn Stephenson

I can handle going to the doctor because, in theory, they are supposed to help you and I like my doctor.  She's groovy and good at what she does.  Typically, I just see her once a year for physicals and the occasional Rx refill.

Well, as luck and my right foot would have it, I've gotten to see a lot of doctors in the last 3 weeks.

I'm pretty sure that my foot, the one that has seen so many doctors recently, was my favorite foot.

It usually behaves while carrying me from place to place with little complaint: a long, slender kick stand, located perfectly at the end of my right leg.

I thought the foot liked me, too.  I did everything I could to be kind to it, I bought it jazzy shoes, and scheduled pedicures for it and its brother, Lefty, now and then to express my love and appreciation for its never-ending hard work.

But being kind to something doesn't necessarily mean that it won't revolt someday.  My foot's revolt involved a rather large nail piercing the outer edge of my foot followed by a slight amount of blood escaping and a rather significant amount of swelling.  I wasn't doing anything particularly unusual when the revolution began; I was pulling up carpet in my master bath reno when a gi-normous nail that had anchored the carpet tacking strip down to the sub-floor of the bathroom decided to work its way through my tennis shoe and continue on into my foot and then on through the top side of my shoe - kind of a tennis shoe-foot-tennis-shoe-shish kabob kinda deal.  Well, long story short, as they say, 2 visits to a clinic, 2 visits to my own doctor, a tetanus shot, 4 different antibiotics, and trip to orthopedic surgeon I'm finally getting some relief from the pain, the swelling and I'm able to walk around again.

But, while I was propped up in my bed being a good patient and staying off said foot, I read . . . . A lot . . . I read books . . . I read labels . . . I read a ton-o-magazines and I read lots and lots of blog posts.  There was great inspiration in these posts as well great links to tons of marvelous products, artists, designers, etc.  Check out the photos and the links below- cuz  I'm  givey-sharey like that!

See you tomorrow with some pics of the progress on the master bath reno!

The Massey Bros. and their teams have imagined and developed public projects focusing on the human condition for 15 years now. Together, they have led social issues-related, public education campaigns dealing with women’s rights, education, pluralism, bigotry and extremism, civic engagement, social responsibility, and volunteerism, among other themes. They are the co-founders of the Portraits of Hope art, education and creative therapy program for children in hospitals and schools. A striking and very colorful public visual component is a signature of their projects and campaigns and I'm so very taken with their program and its concept and of course all of the beautiful color.

Photos courtesy Portraits of Hope and Loren Philip

These photos from Interior Design Magazine above are of Karim Rashid's New York apartment and they perfectly illustrate his rosy world view.  Part of Rashid's manifesto states that design is about the betterment of our lives poetically, aesthetically, experientially, sensorially, and emotionally - And I could not agree more! 

Photos courtesy Karim Rashid, Eric Laignel and Interior Design Magazine

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A Stroll Down Owee-ka-bowee Blvd.

LeAnn Stephenson

If you plan on painting your stairs as a chosen DIY project, there's about a one-bazillion percent chance that you'll spend at least a portion of that undertaking in an urgent-care clinic at the corner of Owee-ka-bowee Blvd. and Lord Just Take Me Now.

I hadn't foreseen this inevitable possibility, thinking naively that it's just some paint and a little tape applied to some harmless looking risers and steps.  Sadly, I was mistaken.

As da Hubbs and I sat for what like seemed like an eternity in the "We Use the Word Urgent Loosely Medical Center Clinic," I comforted myself with the image of a steaming hot bathtub in which I could soak my bruised and bonked-up body parts.

I had worked so hard not to be here, I had held tightly to the hand rail when I scaled up or descended down the stairs, always being very careful to keep my "size boat" feet within the 6 inch space that remained unpainted on each step. It all went wrong, however, when the big toe on my left foot became snagged on the hem of the right leg of my "you-got-a-ka-donky-donk-butt" warm up pants.  I pivoted toward the handrail in order to stabilize myself with my other hand and it was at that point that I started tumbling backward down the staircase.  The scene may have looked something like a gymnastics routine but it sounded more like a shoe in the dryer - a big ol' six feet one inch long, one hundred somethin' somethin' pound steel-toed heavy soled shoe!!

Exactly one hour later the doctor was ready for us.  After a flashlight in the eyes here and a poke and a picture there and a "Yep, that's quite a bruise" statement or two, I was released to go claim my long awaited soak in the tub.  After 2 days of nursing all the sympathy out my family that I could extract, I'm happy to say the only things that are still bruised are my ribs, my tailbone, and my ego.  Oh, and the stairs? . . . . they're fine . . . .  not even so much as a scratch . . . . I'll let them know you asked after them.

So, as a result of all that mess, all have to show you in yet another installment of " The Project from Hell " is more in progress pics.  So here goes:


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Cloudy With a Chance of Scattered DIY Hissy Fits

LeAnn Stephenson

Hands up if you've ever worked yourself up into a big ol' DIY hissy fit trying to finish a project, doing, as my friend Deb says, your best impersonation of the dog from the movie Up? (Do you still say impersonation if it's a dog impression?) Oh, look. Everyone's hand is up. What's that? You, up in the back? Two hands up, huh? Oh, I know, my dear, just calm yourself and get those narcotics like I suggested in my last stair post and life will be grand!

Da Hubbs has begun offering little impromptu DIY intervention speeches throughout this past week showing concern as to whether or not I can complete this project.

"I'm honestly worried about your chances of your finishing the stairs before the kids start collecting their social security checks," he said, all "smarty-pants" like this morning.

"I'm honestly worried about your chances of living to eat your next breakfast," I responded in an "its-possible-I-might-have-to-smother-you-in-your-sleep" like manner.

The next fifteen minutes were filled with da Hubbs practically falling all over himself trying to back-pedal on his previous statement by saying things like, "You are doing a great job, don't get me wrong - I just thought maybe you would want to make an 'in progress' post on your blog or somethin' - that's all I'm sayin'!"

Okay, so maybe he had a point and I'll delay cutting off his oxygen supply for the moment . . . . so, without any further stalling here goes:


Hopefully, I'll have photos of the finished project posted on Monday.  So, stay tuned!  I know I said that last time but what can I tell ya' - I'm tease!

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How to Avoid Do-it-yourself Deficit Disorder

LeAnn Stephenson

Because I didn't just fall off the DIY turnip truck, I'm now ready and willing to share with those of you who may be new to this do-it-your-own-self deal, the single most valuable piece of advice that anyone could ever give you.

And no, I'm not talkin' about all that junk about always prime first or make sure you have the right tool for the job, etc.

I'm talkin' real life-altering wisdom here, the really useful junk. And here it is. Commit it to memory, write down somewhere, do what you have to, but always remember these words:

When starting any home improvement project you must make sure to have a constant supply of Schedule 2 narcotics.

That's it. I know it sounds severe but you can plan what looks like a perfectly simple project, and then life and Diet Dr. Pepper consumption, and an addiction to surfing design blogs get in the way and, before you know it, you have 14 other projects swirling in your mind.

This is what I call Do-it-yourself Deficit Disorder - and this is where the narcotics become handy.

A person with DDD may have some or all of the following symptoms:

• easily distracted by irrelevant stimuli and frequently interrupts ongoing tasks to attend to, like taking the opportunity to pee without anyone else in the room, or sit on the sofa with an unblinking stare accompanied by a small saliva thread dangling from the corner of your mouth like a cellophane noodle while the kids are at school and the Hubbs is at the office.

• frequent shifts from one uncompleted project to another - like testing out how the sofa looks against the opposite wall or tending to your last unfinished painting escapade that won't stop heckling you from the kitchen.

• procrastination - well, I'll talk about that later.

• getting up frequently to stand back and admire the 3 inch by 3 inch square that took you 45 minutes to perfectly paint.

• often dancing excessively trying to perfect your "All The Single Ladies" dance moves all Beyonce-like.

• forgetfulness in DIY activities (for example, sitting down for a break on the wet stair step that you just painted 2 minutes before and ruining your best pair of "I-got-a-ka-donkey-donk-butt-from-eating-too-many-Christmas-cookies" sweat pants).

• frequent shifts in conversation, trying to change the subject when the Hubbs asks, "How are the stairs are coming?", not keeping one's mind on task, and painting your knee caps, your elbows, and hair instead of the stairs.

Just thought I'd share my insight, cuz, knowledge is power, y'all - Am I right?

So, hopefully, the next post that I do about the stairs will be accompanied by jaw-dropping photos of the finished project. But its time for my meds and a little drool time, so, I really must go.

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Girl Friday: Get-over-your-freakin'-self

LeAnn Stephenson

I have an aversion to change - it scares me, I question it. Even if the "same old, same old" is bad and stressful, at least it's predictable - I know it, so, its comfortable. This mentality reeks of stupid, and as a matter of fact, it might give a stupid thought the will to live - so, its time for change, and lots of it!

In thinking about my new year resolutions, it occurred to me that my life, more often than not, seems constantly embattled, waiting for the next crisis. This tends to be corrosive (this constant stress). Life needs peace. Peace needs balance. And, balance begs a certain amount of "get-over-your-freakin'-self." Recently, I was reminded of an old Swedish proverb; "Fear less, hope more; Whine less, breathe more; Talk less, say more; Hate less, love more; And all good things are yours." After a year of suffering through my mood swings, it was the Hubbs who reminded me of this mantra. So, for Christmas he bought me a mood ring figuring it would be helpful in monitoring my disposition. We've discovered that when I'm in a good mood, it turns green and when I'm in a bad mood, it leaves a big red mark on his little forehead!! Seems I've become a bit of a wench-lotta!

I've decided to resurface in 2010 a new LeAnn, after a year of being plagued with what the Hubbs claims, are peri-menopausal symptoms. (“Peri-menopausal” being the much less sexy version of “Menopause”) But, to be frank and honest here, there is no new LeAnn - its just the old LeAnn with less caffeine, a taller stack of self-help books, a mani/pedi appointment, and lots of ideas.

My most recent idea involves my stairs, some paint, bloody fingers, and mild streams of profanity. I'll have photos of the finished project in a few days - stay tuned!

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