BLUEBERRIES…..and a SIDEBOARD

#blue&white

#blue&white

         I just completed another commissioned piece.   It is another white sideboard (we, Quebecers, just love our furniture WHITE), so rather than blog about another white sideboard, I decided to focus on what is on top of it, B-L-U-E-B-E-R-R-I-E-S!  Yes, it's blueberry harvest time!

        It all started when I spotted these two blueberry ceramic baskets at Winners.  They came in 1 pt. and 2 pt. sizes and were around $6.00 and $8.00. 

#blueberries

#blueberries

        I just thought they were so adorable and it gave me the idea for my next photo shoot…….and since blueberries are at their prime right now, I baked some blueberry muffins.  They were so delicious so decided to share my blueberry muffin recipe with you.  These are the larger sized blueberries.  I just love them in muffins and with their bigger size, they are just so moist and delicious when you bite into them!

#blueberries

#blueberries

My Blueberry Muffins

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter (room temperature)

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

2 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. salt

2 cups flour

1/2 cup milk

2-1/2 cups blueberries

Topping (I omitted this, so it is optional)

1 tbsp. granulated sugar

1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Directions:  Heat oven to 375 F.  Grease 18 regular or 12 large size muffin tin or just line them with parchment baking cup liners.  

In bowl, mix butter until creamy.  Add sugar and beat until pale and fluffy.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each.

Beat in vanilla, baking powder and salt.

With spoon, fold in half of flour, then half of milk into batter; repeat.

Fold in blueberries.

Spoon into muffin cup liners or in greased muffin tin and sprinkle topping (optional) on each muffin.

Bake 15-20 minutes until golden brown.

#blueberrymuffins

#blueberrymuffins

         The best way to store and freeze blueberries according to Quinn Farm, a local farm here in the Montreal area is as follows:

Storing and Preparing Blueberries
Blueberries have a fairly long shelf life, they will last up to a week in the fridge (sometimes longer) do not wash until ready to use. Before using them make sure there are no small stems or leaves by placing them in a bath of water (generally leaves and stems will float). Or pick out pieces by hand.

To freeze blueberries put a thin layer of them on a cookie sheet and place them in the freezer. Once frozen, transfer them to a freezer container (Ziploc or Tupperware) and back into the freezer. This way they will stay separate and you will be able to take out the quantity you want to use instead of thawing a huge block of blueberries.
— Quinn Farm, Montreal area
#blueberries

#blueberries

#blueberrymuffins

#blueberrymuffins

#blue&whitechina #blueberries

#blue&whitechina #blueberries

#blue

#blue

The sideboard is painted with Pure White Chalk Paint® decorative paint by Annie Sloan, some distressing to bring out the pretty appliqués and sealed with 2 coats of Soft Clear Wax.

#anniesloan #purewhite #sideboard #paintedfurniture

#anniesloan #purewhite #sideboard #paintedfurniture

I am finishing up painting some bedroom pieces and some random painted thrifted pieces and will show you soon how I pull them all together in a bedroom setting.

Have a great day!

Linky parties:

Nancherrow

Miss Mustard Seed

French Country Cottage

Craftberry Bush

Nifty Thrifty Things

Redhead Can Decorate

Dwellings - The Heart of Your Home

By Stephanie Lynn

 

IKEA HEMNES GOES COASTAL

PAINTED IKEA HEMNES END TABLES

PAINTED IKEA HEMNES END TABLES

Do any of you own some Ikea knotty pine furniture?  Well here is a custom project I recently completed.  If you do own some of this furniture, see how refreshed they can look with a coat of Pure White Chalk Paint® decorative paint by Annie Sloan.  My client will be using them in their bedroom with a modern white upholstered leather bed, but to me they had a modern coastal vibe to them and so that is how I styled them.  I painted two coats, wet distressed them and sealed them with soft Clear Wax.

[Coastal]

[Coastal]

Wet distressing with Annie Sloan Pure White Chalk Paint®

Wet distressing with Annie Sloan Pure White Chalk Paint®

A little blue like the ocean ………..

Louis Blue Chalk Paint® (interior)

Louis Blue Chalk Paint® (interior)

Painted Ikea Hemnes End Table

Painted Ikea Hemnes End Table

Some starfish……...

[starfish]

[starfish]

[more starfish]

[more starfish]

And of course, a pretty sea shell!

[sea shell]

[sea shell]

The "BEFORE" in knotty pine: - 

["Before"]

["Before"]

Can't believe summer is almost over!  Yikes!  It just seemed to have whizzed by.  I plan to take a little time off in August and enjoy some of Summer's last days.

I hope the sun is shining on you today!

- Mary -

Linking to:

Finding Silver Pennies

A Stroll Thru Life

My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

Kammy's Korner

Stone Gable

Knick of Time

City Farmhouse

Mod Vintage Life

French Country Cottage

Liz Marie

Miss Mustard Seed

Dwellings-The Heart of Your Home

Craftberry Bush

 

DINING ROOM SET RESCUE

Here is a commissioned project I had worked on a few weeks ago.  My client's daughter rescued it from heading to the trash, literally!  Here is the before:

 

Isn't it the best "Before" picture you've seen?

So it was rescued from heading to the trash and brought to me for a makeover.  This dining room set is going in my client's country home to be enjoyed with lots of children and grandchildren.  They wanted a dark stained top and the bottom painted white.

So I stripped the tabletop, which had a light honey coloured top.  The yellow honey colour was actually painted on and varnished.  This is how it looked before it was stripped.


Tabletop was stripped to the bare wood.

Tabletop was stripped to the bare wood.

The wood was quite beautiful after I stripped and cleaned it.  My clients wanted a dark stain so we chose Dark Walnut by Minwax.  After staining, I sealed the top with three coats of Satin Varathane.  When I worked on this project, we were in the middle of a heat wave and so it was a challenge waiting for the stain to dry up.

After staining and varnishing, I painted all six chairs (yes, 6 of them, although not all shown here) and the bottom of the table in Old White Chalk Paint® and sealed it with a clear Soft Wax.  This table also came with two extra leaves (not shown in picture).  This table was so heavy and huge that we were only able to move it a few steps from my garage into my backyard to photograph it.  The light was getting away from me, so I only had a small window of time before the sun set to photograph it.

Minwax Dark Walnut stain

Minwax Dark Walnut stain

Old White Chalk Paint®

Old White Chalk Paint®

This was quite a big project.  These type of chairs with spindles are very long to paint because of the very small brush strokes.  It is difficult to get clean, even paint strokes so you have to spend quite a bit of time sanding down the Chalk Paint® to get it really smooth, unless, of course, you decide to spray on the paint.  It was very tempting.

In the end, it was worth it.  Don't you think?  This is a very sturdy set which my client can enjoy many great meals surrounded by her family.

Have you rescued anything from the trash recently?  I'd love to hear about it.

- Mary - 

Sharing at these linky parties:

* Embracing Change * Elizabeth & Co. * Finding Silver Pennies * Redoux Interiors * Miss Mustard Seed * Craftberry Bush * DIY Vintage Chic * Jennifer Rizzo * French Country Cottage * Stone Gable * City Farmhouse * Mod Vintage Life

 

 

 

"LUSCIOUS LIME" ARMOIRE

"Luscious Lime"

"Luscious Lime"

Today I am stepping out of my traditional white painted furniture!  I can easily live in an "all white world", but living in a house with three sons and a husband who are not always big fans of "all white", I decided to have a little fun with colour.  This armoire which holds a small TV sits in our family room situated towards the back of our house and so it is not a formal room.  We have had this armoire for at least 15 years.  It was purchased at Pier 1 Imports and it was originally "Forest Green".  At some point, it was later painted a different shade of green, more of a duller green and distressed.  I am now punching it up a notch and giving it a whole different look by painting it a second time in Luscious Lime by Country Chic Paint.  

Testing out the colour!

Testing out the colour!

This is how it started: -

"BEFORE"

"BEFORE"

Sorry for the blurred image!  As you can see, it was looking pretty dull and that is not real wood peaking through, but merely brown paint. 

I also had to address the back.  Sections had been cut out to hold an old tube TV.

I also had to address the back.  Sections had been cut out to hold an old tube TV.

So I was determined to finish this project in one day.  I had started early morning.  I wanted to clean up the back by adding slats of wood without having to do too much carpentry.  I had been keeping this broken wood blind and knew that it could be recycled somehow.  The slats were just the right width and just a few cuts need.

Recycled broken blind used to fill back of armoire.

Recycled broken blind used to fill back of armoire.

So I removed all the strings and just hot glued the slats in place.  I left a little space for venting.  The bright green colour is the actual original colour of this armoire.

Recycled wooden blind slats for backing.

Recycled wooden blind slats for backing.

I painted the interior Pebble Beach by Country Chic Paint.

140721_9165.jpg

You have to sand lightly before applying this paint to make sure it adheres well on an already painted surface.  It resembles more like a latex paint than a chalk paint but has great coverage and levels off really well with no odor. 

 I wanted all the edges distressed and so I used Vaseline which I applied on all the edges to act as a resist.  After the paint dried, I wiped the Vaseline off carefully and it looked like random chipping over time.

Random chipping by applying Vaseline on all the edges.

Random chipping by applying Vaseline on all the edges.

After it was dried I applied some Country Chic Natural wax to seal the exterior.  To add some depth, I also applied some Antiquing Wax along all the perimeter and edges.  I am in love with their Antiquing Wax.  It goes on much more subtle than some of the other dark waxes.  

The interior doors and shelves, where it was painted grey, were alternatively sealed with the Country Chic Satin Topcoat. 

New pulls purchased at Rona Hardware.

New pulls purchased at Rona Hardware.

Armoire gets a great pop of colour with Luscious Lime Country Chic Paint.

Armoire gets a great pop of colour with Luscious Lime Country Chic Paint.

This room has no morning sun, only afternoon, and since it opens onto our kitchen (which is to the left), I now find this bright colour is very pleasant to look at sitting down at breakfast.  The Antiquing Wax helped to tone down the colour just slightly without looking "dirty".  I'm in love with it!

Here is a picture of the interior, which holds a small TV, CD's and my cookbooks.

Armoire hides all the wires from all the media equipment and stores my cookbooks which stay clean and close to the kitchen

Armoire hides all the wires from all the media equipment and stores my cookbooks which stay clean and close to the kitchen


Some green accents were added.

Green plants & various shades of hydrangeas.

Green plants & various shades of hydrangeas.

A few cuttings from my "Snowball" hydrangeas.

A few cuttings from my "Snowball" hydrangeas.

Bowl of limes, lemons and green apples.

Bowl of limes, lemons and green apples.

Luscious Lime!

Luscious Lime!

I guess I can live with some colour!  How about you?

Disclosure:  I received compensation in the form of products from Country Chic Paint in exchange for writing this review.  All opinions are my own.

Sharing this project at these great linky parties!

* DIY Vintage ChicNifty Thrifty Things * Finding Silver Pennies * The Interior Frugalista * Redhead Can Decorate * By Stephanie Lynn * Home Stories A to Z *  My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia *  The Dedicated House * A Stroll Thru Life * Knick of Time *  Not Just A Housewife * Ivy & Elephants * Savvy Southern Style * Embracing Change * Elizabeth & Co. * Redoux Interiors  * Miss Mustard Seed *  *  Liz Marie *  Craftberry Bush * Jennifer Rizzo *  Nancherrow * French Country Cottage *  Stone Gable *  City Farmhouse * Mod Vintage Life

 

"PRETTY IN WHITE" SIDEBOARD

Sturbridge White - Homestead House Milk Paint

Sturbridge White - Homestead House Milk Paint

We added some new "planked walls" to our living room to show off my newest sideboard and antique mirrors.  I love textured walls and this will serve as an additional background to photograph my furniture, as well as adding some visual interest to my living room.  It is a very long wall and a few frames never looked right.  This is much grander in scale and kind of acts like a mural.  I will eventually post some pictures of the full view of the living room.

So I did end up selling the last sideboard which I had painted a few months ago  (Paris Grey Antique Sideboard).  This one is a  little shorter in height and just feels like it is a better fit in my living room.

I painted this sideboard Sturbridge White from Homestead House Milk Paint.  I wanted just a little bit of distressing and no chipping, so I added some bonding agent to the paint.  To get a chippy look, skip the bonding agent like in this vanity I painted.  Same paint, two different looks, although with milk paint it is always a mystery whether it will chip or not!  I finished with a few coats of Clear Soft Wax.

I love the original trophy appliqués on this sideboard.  This piece was in excellent condition so there were no repairs at all to do.  I switched the wood knobs on the bottom to glass ones for now, but I'm not quite fully satisfied with them.  If anyone has any suggestions, I would welcome your comments!

Sturbridge White - Homestead House Milk Paint

Sturbridge White - Homestead House Milk Paint

#white #sideboard

#white #sideboard

#seashells

#seashells

#summerdecor

#summerdecor

Keep dinner napkin sets together by tying a ribbon or twine. 

Keep dinner napkin sets together by tying a ribbon or twine. 

Pretty detailing

Pretty detailing

My collection of mirrors below are all vintage and antiques, except for the middle grey one which I purchased at HomeSense.  I found adding a different colour adds contrast.  I may add some more colour to this vignette, but for now, this is her summer look! 

#summer vignette

#summer vignette

Here is the "Before" picture.