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Spring Awakening

March 30, 2012

A couple of weeks ago, I started getting the itch.  You know the one, where the warmer spring air and the sunshine streaming in makes you want to totally re-do every room in your house.  What, you don’t get that itch?  Well, I do, and I usually try to ignore it, but the hubbie was gone on business for a week and I got a little crazy.  I basically took everything out of the living room and started over, using (mostly) things we already had.

Please note:  I don’t have any “before and after” photos, or tutorials.  The itch makes me manic, and I just jump in and DO, and forget to take pictures.  Plus, I still have a crappy camera.

My favorite part of the whole makeover is this bookshelf.  Our living room is small, but we have vaulted ceilings, so I try to incorporate height where I can.  We previously had our smallish leather couch against that wall, with a large mirror hanging over.  BO-RING!  I wanted a way to break the room up a little more without making it look smaller, but I knew I had NO budget.  Then I remembered this old jelly cabinet I had bought years ago at my all-time favorite thrift store.

(“STOPPPPPPPPPP!  Never, ever paint this!”  I can hear the store’s owner, Sarah, telling my younger self.  Sorry, Sarah, don’t think this piece is ever going on the Roadshow.)

This cabinet/shelf had been sitting in our garage, gathering dust and smells and serving as storage for all kinds of junk.  I cleaned it off, wiped it down, and proceeded to go through 4 or 5 half-cans of spray paint before I realized that wasn’t going to work.  “What to do, what to do, can’t spend any money”–I grabbed the gallon of bright white exterior enamel and coated that bad boy down.  (Aside:  if you plan to shake the can, and are holding it with the lid side down, be sure the lid is on tight, or you may drop the can, sending sprays of pant ALL OVER your garage.  Not that I did that or anything).  Then, when it was dry, I grabbed the burly, surly teen and together we hoisted it into the house.

Next came the fun part, decorating!  I have always wanted one of the scripture signs from Red Letter Words, and so I decided to try to make something similar on my own.  I took an old ClosetMaid shelf from Rick’s stash, and painted it the same white as the cabinet.  When it was dry, I stuck on the vinyl letters I had bought a long time ago on clearance at Michael’s.  Then, I coated it with a mix of  teal blue acrylic and the same exterior white, and painted over the letters.  When it was totally dry, I removed the letters.  I hand painted the “through”.  After that I sanded and distressed, and then sealed with a spray clear coat.  I love it, and it reminds me to remember one of my favorite verses, Ephesians 2:8:  “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God”.

The fabric tulips are in an old Crate and Barrel vase.  They were on sale at Michael’s for .79 cents or something like that.  I love the additional touch of orange they bring to the room.

On the shelf nearest the top, I placed pics of the boys.  These were all taken by my lovely sister-in-law, of Daly Photography.  I used a coupon for Wal-greens and printed them for a total of $3.87.  I put them in clear plastic box frames from Michael’s, which is way cheaper than the wrapped canvas idea I wanted to use, but looks just as good to me.  I added three glass birds, one is a special one from a friend, and the other two are blown glass I found at the thrift.

The next shelf holds shell balls from Crate and Barrel (have had forever), sand from some of the places we went when we lived in Florida, and two big jars, one with shells and coral and one with rocks.  These are large pickle jars that I wrapped with white garden string.

I am trying to keep my decorating more simple, for a cleaner look.  That’s why my favorite Hager vase is all by itself on the next shelf.  The other two shelves hold our devotional books, and baskets for the kid’s books.

I used the same teal, undiluted, for this “art” I made to complement the colors in the living room.  I was inspired by this large canvas from Crate and Barrel.  I love my version of that art, but it was funny when Rick’s buddy asked me if Thomas painted it.  Sort of.

All in all, for the living room, I think I spent less than 20 bucks.  I moved pictures around, took things out, de-cluttered, and cleaned.  I love this new look, and it is fun having the walk space behind the couch.  I also removed one big dirty brown recliner, and so our seating is more limited, but our living space feels much more ready for the sunshine-y days ahead.

How about you?  Do you have the itch?  Are you going to do something about it?  Well, are you?!!?!?

Have a great weekend!

Molly B.

I’m linking up to these great parties:

Friday Free For All at Five Days, Five Ways

The Shabby Nest

Tip Junkie’s Tip Me Tuesday

Tater Tots and Jello Weekend Wrap-Up Party

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One Comment leave one →
  1. lifewithkaishon permalink
    April 16, 2012 11:27 pm

    I love your fun spring projects! I want to make something fun soon too! : ) I just have to go to the craft store first and get some supplies!

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