Google+ House Revivals: January 2014

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

How to Make a Juju Hat Using Vintage Book Pages

Here is the promised tutorial for an African Juju hat knock off made using vintage book paper.  I shared a little history about these gorgeous ceremonial headdresses in this post.  Instead of using feathers, I used vintage book pages.

To make a Juju hat knock off, start with a round cardboard base.  I used two pieces of 24 inch diameter corrugated cardboard, glued together to create a really sturdy base.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Decorating With African Juju Hats

A few years ago, African Juju hats took the decorating world by storm. Ceremonial headdresses from Cameroon, Juju hats, are traditionally worn by prominent members of the Bamileke tribe.

These gorgeous round feather hats were discovered by the interior decorating world and things have never been the same!

Friday, January 24, 2014

17 Pretty Ways to Decorate With a Brown Sofa

Now don't gasp when I say this, because I know brown sofas are so five years ago, but I have a brown sofa and I love it!  Mine is actually a giant sectional out at our beach house, and I never worry about it looking dirty. In the Pacific Northwest, our sand is kind of grayish brown.  Also, dirt is brown.... and so is chocolate...  and those are the three things most likely to get on my upholstery.

Another reason I bought a brown sofa? I knew it would be easy to convince my husband to buy that color, and I wanted a new sofa. Plus, it's super neutral, so I have lots of options for the rest of the space, and I can change up the look of the room with a thirty dollar can of paint and a couple of throw pillows!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

How to Dress Up Those Plastic Nursery Pots

Last Saturday, after hitting all the architectural and building salvage yards in SoDo, I ended up at Home Depot. They have these sweet little potted primroses right now, in pretty pinks and corals and yellows for $1.25 each!

I picked up several, to add to my mantel, but I didn't have nice decorative pots to put them in -- actually, I don't really have space to store things like that in our little urban apartment -- so we got creative.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Remember When We Put Lipstick on a Pig?

That ugly, ugly wall was my line in the sand.  Phase one of the renovations was NOT going past that wall -- we had a new baby in the house, and we were just. done. with the disruptions of contractors everywhere. Usually they waited until at least eight o'clock to start working, but occasionally, we awakened to find the tile setter had let himself in at dawn. That's not creepy, right? Of course, he wasn't necessarily working. He was usually sitting on the edge of the tub texting... good times.

I needed to set some boundaries, and this crazy ugly wall was the first boundary.  The thing about an ugly wall is this -- it will still be there later, but tiny newborn grandbabies grow up. We threw some paint on that awful wall, and called it a day.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Awesome Ways to Re-Purpose Vintage Crates!

Do you have vintage crates in your home?  How do you use them? I have an old fruit crate I inherited from my mother-in-law -- she used it in her garden, but I'm thinking I'd like to use it to store extra blankets in the living room.
Here is a round-up of ideas for re-purposing vintage crates, as well as some craigslist crates I found this week.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Super-Amazing Ways to Up-Cycle Filing Cabinets!

Filing cabinets!  This time of year they fly off the floors of retail and second-hand stores. My friend who owns an antique mercantile says she always sells lots of them in January, because people make resolutions to get organized in the new year.

This is the year you really can get organized with filing cabinets!  Try adding a little style to your organizing to motivate yourself to stick with it. After all, who wouldn't want to file their papers in a cheery yellow cabinet? And don't stop with papers -- file cabinets are great storage for linens, dishes, tools, and craft supplies. Here are some ways to organize using filing cabinets that you may not have thought of before.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

How to Decorate and Organize with Vintage Trunks

I think I will never get tired of dusty old trunks and chests. They all have stories hidden away inside. As a kid, I loved looking at the old newspapers that had been used to line some old trunks that my mother had. I used to have a hump-backed trunk that was lined with lovely old wallpaper.  I used it to store vintage linens. Another trunk was used as a bedside table. We no longer have the hump-backed trunk -- it was a victim of a cross-country move years ago, but the other trunk still serves as storage. These days we use it to store Christmas ornaments.

That's the wonderful thing about trunks. They can live so many lives.  They start out going on grand adventures, and later retire to life as an end table or are tucked away in an attic, storing treasured items.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Flower Power and Getting a Little Love on the Side

Confession: I have a secret life. Sometimes I just cruise around on the internet hoping to hook up with that perfect... chair. Do you do this? I'm pretty sure, if I didn't have to come home and face my husband each night, I might become a hoarder. Actually, I'm pretty sure my husband and kids already think I am a hoarder. If they only knew how much I don't buy -- all those things I yearn for in my secret life.  Don't get me wrong, a classic Parson's, Louis, or Chippendale is great for the day to day, but sometimes a girl needs to step out on her wild side.

I think, if I brought home all that goodness and funkiness and weirdness that I sometimes want, I would end up in one of those TV shows, where your family and friends stage an intervention. And my secret life and fantasies would no longer be secret. (Seriously, though, if you staged an intervention on my behalf, I would not like it.  Don't do it. Just saying....)

The thing is, it's killing me not to get in the truck right now and buy these chairs. I am not sure I am strong enough to resist their Siren call.  Can you say flower power?  Holy macaroni, you could never be sad for one single day of your life if you sat in one of these happy chairs to drink your morning coffee!  (and you could still eat dinner with your tasteful Parson's chair -- the best of both worlds!) These are listed on Seattle's Craigslist right now!

Of course, if you shy away from giant purple and orange flowers, but still like bright color and retro lines, how about these chairs? Sleek and modern, but still fun and funky, right?

Now, this chair is supposed to be stylishly elegant in that 1967 kind of way, what with all the tufting and buttons, but somehow the horseshoe back makes it seems weirdly... strange.  That's kind of okay, because there are FOUR of these chairs available!  FOUR of these chairs, people, FOUR! 

This smokey little Lucite backed number is kind of cool. I spec'ed a similar set of chairs and a tulip table for a client about a year ago -- they are great "gender neutral" pieces, when flower power just doesn't fit the groove. The lines and Lucite material of these chairs make great conversation starters when you're entertaining!

And look!  More floral goodness!  If your taste leans more toward the blue and green end of the color spectrum, and flower power is your thing, these are the chairs for you.

Now, tell me, do you cruise the internet at night, hoping to find that perfect match? Do you constantly battle the call of Sirens? Do you secretly want to throw "good taste" to the wind, and embrace your funky side?  Do you love your classic chairs, but yearn for something a little different sometimes? Are you secretly hoping this will be the night you get lucky? Let me know in the comments below -- and don't worry, your secret is safe with me!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Ideas for Dressing up Inexpensive Roller Shades

We need window treatments. Remember all those new windows we installed after getting our energy audit last year?  Well, those new windows need new window treatments.

We waited to do window treatments until the new window were installed, which is usually not a problem out here on our little peninsula. We rarely worry about privacy out here (to the possible dismay of our neighbors), and the views are Uh-Maze-Ing.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Five Reasons to Shop at a Thrift Store Right Now

Seriously! You need to go RIGHT NOW!  Well, read this post first, but then GO!  Thrift stores are amazing places. Yes, you have to sift through a lot of junk, but the results can make it worth your while -- especially if you love a $700 chair, but only have the budget for a $7 chair.

Lots of items that are donated to thrift stores are very high quality items, and with a little refurbishing can look fabulous in your home.  Some items are perfect just as they are!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

2013 Favorite Projects

Sometimes I feel like a really lame blogger.  I wanted to do a post of favorite projects shared on House Revivals Blog this year, and realized I have close to twenty painted furniture projects that just never got shared. How sad is that? It seemed like one of those years when I was trying so hard to get it all done, the extras (like writing about what was getting done) fell by the wayside.

I did manage to eek out a few furniture posts, and several craft tutorials.  Here is a recap of some of the most popular projects on House Revivals in 2013:

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Word of the Year 2014

It's that time again! A few years ago, I was introduced to the "word of the year" concept and I was hooked. I always end up feeling like a failure when, come February, all of my New Year's resolutions have fallen by the wayside.

The word of the year concept is a bit kinder and gentler than a resolution. Instead of compiling a list of impossible goals, you choose one word to apply in all aspects of your life.