Monday, November 28, 2011

Hutch to Bar Renovation

Okay, so I'm pretty sure the below picture is how this whole hutch to bar renovation project came over me.  It's been a long time since I first got the idea in my head, but I think the below inspiration came to me via way of Cottage Living magazine (RIP).  I remember reading the story, and the owner stated that the piece was an old family heirloom.  She gave the outer coat a new shine and painted the inside this pretty shade of blue, and voila!  It was re purposed for a bar.

My inspiration

Once Jon and I purchased a home, I quickly became waaaay more than ever into the whole antiquing thing.  I couldn't keep myself away from flea markets, antique stores and the like, and so shortly thereafter I found the below piece at Sleepy Poet Antique Mall on South Boulevard.  This is the best place to shop multiple antique retailers all under one roof.  I immediately felt that it had potential.  The thing I liked most were the glass window pane doors.  I won't tell you what I paid for it.  I cringe a little now thinking about it.  I did ask if the vendor could do better than the sticker price, and he did, so that was a bit of a win.  However, I still could have paid much less.  In hindsight, it was a good learning experience.  The only way to learn and grow is through practice!

My Hutch

So, my new hutch sat in our equally not so pretty and empty living room.  For years, it was the only piece of furniture in the room, aside of all my son's toys.  Then, the time finally came when I would rip the band aid and get a living room!  Eh hem... this does not mean go out and get, this means make.  I did purchase a few of the main items, but there is a lot of blood, sweat and tears in that room.  At any rate, you can see in the below picture where the make over began.  The piece was terribly ragged in appearance... All's she needed was a little face lift, if you will.  So, I began by taping off the window panes and filling in all the little holes and indentations with wood filler.  Fairly time consuming...

My hutch with a little ace bandage and pimple healer.

Chippy all over

The hutch is two pieces, a top and bottom, so it had to be dismantled.  The next step was to sand and paint.  I decided to go with a darker color.  I knew from the beginning I wanted to do some fun color or pattern on the inside of the glass doors, and I wanted it to really pop.  So, I went with the color we have used on all of the doors in our house, Bronze Tone.  I had some left over, so yay, no money spent on paint!  I should add that at this point I really did not want to spend another dime on this hutch.  I LOVE all things pink, so I decided on this bright shade of coral for the inside of the drawers and lower cabinet.  I made it all the way up until this point before roping most wonderful man in the world into my project.

Jon getting involved is actually a VERY good thing.  The man can do anything, and he's kind of a perfectionist, so this means it will look even better.  All the hardware was showing its age, and he decided the hinges needed to go.

Dirty old hinges

So we head on over to our home away from home, Black Hawk Hardware, and went searching for new hinges. They didn't have a match. Wow... might be a first that they didn't have what we needed. Jon researched and found a group on line that would shine up our hinges like new for $8 a pop.  That's $64 in shiny new (old) hinges.  Thanks, but no thanks.  So, he kept on researching until he found a solution.  And...who knew that soaking your hardware in ketchup and scrubbing for 20 minutes with a Brillo pad would have your hinges looking so shiny and new?...

Holy Smokes!  Now, that there's a shiny hinge!

Might make you want to rethink offering ketchup at your next neighborhood cook out, but again, look at that shiny hinge!  Moving right along... the next step was to pick out new outer hardware for this really starting-to-look-handsome piece of furniture.  This is where I was prepared to spend a little bit of money.  I looked at all your traditional hardware stores and ended up going with these pretty natural bone and brass pulls and knobs from Anthropologie.

Pretty new hardware from Anthropologie

Next up was to tackle the back inside wall of the hutch.  This is where I was really hoping to have some fun.  I thought about covering it with wallpaper or even wrapping paper, painting a design or painting a stencil, which is ultimately the direction we went. My taste seems to be fairly ever-changing these days, but for now I'll call it "Boho Glam".  It's kind of like my dress.... a little bohemian, a good bit glam, timeless, not trendy.  I love the glamour and elegance of old Hollywood, and so after doing quite a bit of research on line, I found the perfect stencil at Royal Design Studio.  Appropriately enough, the stencil is named Hollywood Squares. I knew I wanted to use a metallic paint, either silver or gold.  I found the below Martha Stewart Living paint over at Home Depot. It was offered in a plethora of metallic finishes, and I decided I was going gold!

Martha Stewart paint from Home Depot

Using a roller, we (or rather most wonderful man in the world) first painted the back of the hutch wall with our Bronze Tone.  We then taped down the stencil with painters tape and painted over it with the metallic  paint.  When the paint was dry, we peeled it up, and this is what we got...

A big ole crackly mess.

At this point, I was starting to be a little concerned my stencil might not work out as planned.  So I called Royal Design Studio, and as it turns out, this is a common issue with metallic paint.  They actually sell a special metallic paint for stencil work.  Not wanting to spend any more time or money, I decided to just reverse the stencil.  So, most wonderful man in the world was back at it with the paint and roller, this time painting the wall with the metallic and then the stencil on top in the Bronze Tone.  And, Hurray!... Beautimous!!

Hollywood Squares Stencil by Royal Design Studio
Yay!  Gorgeous back wall of my hutch!

Time to start putting this handsome devil back together!  That's me gettin' down in my jammies... With two small children, we were working on this late into the night many, many nights. Thank you again most wonderful man in the world for sticking with me through all my crazed projects! xo

Watch out!
 Almost there, and totally loving the way he is smiling back at me...

Top half all dolled up
... and.... TAADAAAAAAA!!!  Super duper excited!!

What do you think??...      

Hollywood Squares Stencil at Royal Design Studio

Now I just need to get this baby stocked with all kinds of fun things to get the party started!  I'll bring you some pics of that in my next post.  Thanks for reading.  Hope you have an o so stylin' day!  Whitley

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Totally Bar Obsessed

Since Jon and I braved our biggest home project to date, transforming an old hutch for the purpose of a delightful entertainment system for our living room, I have become a little bar crazed.  That's right fellas.  We are not talking about the entertainment system in your head.  We are talking about something way more exciting than that.  All you ladies know just what I'm talkin' about!  Behold THE BAR...

The above is the finished product.  I will carry it to the grave with me.  Oh shoot, maybe that pretty lil' thing will BE my coffin!  I think it is just so handsome.  At any rate, I'm working on my next story, so in the meantime, here are a few images to keep you on your toes until I get it all together...

Do you like what you see?  Ready for a cocktail anyone?  Perhaps you are viewing this at, oh... top 'o the morning to ya!  Well, if that's the case, just add a little OJ, and you'll be all set and ready to go for your work week ahead.  I hope you and your family had a most delightful Thanksgiving holiday full of joy and love and lots of turkey and sugar!  

For the love of a most stylish bar... see you again real soon!  Whitley  

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Bar Cart Admiration

Moving along with my hutch to bar project, I decided to use the upper portion for all of our glassware and then use a butler tray to play host to the location where all of the shaking and stirring would take place.

Just a glimpse!

I did, however, want to share with you some images of various bar carts, as I have totally jumped on the bar cart loving train.  Most of these can be purchased right here in the Queen City, if not on line. Here are a few I enjoy...

I love this simple yet gorgeous acrylic bar cart.

Click Here to seeThe Sedgewick by Social Society.

Click Here to see the Caprice Metal Bar Cart by Pottery Barn.

This stainless steel version gets around well on wheels.

I love the shots of bright color in the
purple glasses, flowers and various bottles.

Here's a simple yet handsome devil from Williams Sonoma Home.

I can't remember in what publication I first saw this image,
but I love everything about it...
the room, decor, bar cart, everything.

I love how this bar cart from Social Society
plays double duty as a side table.

Click Here to viewWorlds Away Roland Bar Cart in Gold Leaf.

Do you have a favorite?  It's hard for me to pick just one.
Here are a few slightly more affordable versions that would also quite nicely do the trick.

Here is the Soho Round Beverage Cart by Home Decorators Collection

Here is the Ikea BYGEL Utility Cart

Lastly, we have this multi-functional utility cart from Target.

And to make things a little more fun I decided to venture over to mega antique warehouse Sleepy Poet Antique Mall to see if they had any vintage bar carts.  None quite as sleek as those seen above, but they certainly have a few... Nothing that a little paint and imagination couldn't transform!  Thank Heavens I already have a butler tray.  I do not need one more project.  Here's a sampling of what I found with my take on their styling...

Old Farmhouse

Sorta Victorian, no?

Slightly retro metal cart.

I took BOTH children on this whirlwind bar cart hunting tour. Yes, Hank wanted to touch every single thing in there, but he was such a good boy!  Beware of little Christmas knick knacks everywhere, right at little people's height!

Country cottage.

Going for the slightly glam look with the glass and gold leaf trim.



Whoa. Meat Cutting Cart???  The kind associate took me to
the back of the store to see this one already sold for $250!!
He said carts of this style are flying out the door upon receipt.

I'll be back soon with more on my hutch to bar project...

Toodles for now, Whitley

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Baby/Guest Room Details, Accessories and More Part II

Hi there!  I'm back to share the final details for completing Baby Worth's new room.  I already had a fabulous red and white print fabric which I purchased at Robyn's Fabrics.  I LOVE this print.  I think it lends a touch of whimsy to the room with the trees, little deer and birds on it that appear to be passing through a forest.  Fun for a child's room but also pretty hip for adults.  I first used the fabric to make a pillow cover for the bed using a lumbar insert I already owned.  Then, I used the same fabric to make customized letters for the room.  Truth be told, I'm personally kinda burned out on the letter thing, but I thought it would be another easy and personalized way to tie things together.

I spent some time determining how I would affix the fabric to the wood letters.  I decided I wanted to apply padding to the letters to add some depth, so I used batting I had purchased for another project which I never got around to completing--or starting for that matter!  Yay... free material for this project anyway!  I tried doing this first using a staple gun, and while the batting stretched fine around the letters, the fabric did not.  Total mess.  So, then I traced the letters onto the batting and cut them out.  Then, I traced the letters onto the fabric and cut that out.  I followed the instructions conveniently located on the back of the batting to iron it to the fabric.  Who knew?!  First time I've used batting, and it worked!  I then just glued the new cut batting and fabric to the letters.

I found a home for the letters right over the rocker.  I liked it but felt like the letters were kind of "floating" on the wall and needed some grounding, which you can see in the below picture.

So, I decided to glue add some black grosgrain ribbon around the edges of the letters.  The letters were probably only an inch deep at most, but again I didn't want to spend any money, so I ended up using some left over 2 1/4 inch ribbon I had for the bed skirt.  I wanted a nice edge, so I ended up attaching the finished edge of the ribbon to the edge of the letters then glued down the extra ribbon to the back of the letters.  It was pretty time consuming, and it definitely would have been easier using ribbon that was the proper width, but whatever... paid nothing, gained experience, super happy with the outcome...

Next, I already had both of the table lamps you see.  My mother-in-law gave me the cute little owl lamp as a Christmas gift last year.  Both lamps were purchased at Target.  So for the side tables, the white one in the above picture we purchased at Kid to Kid, also over at Park Rd. Shopping Center.  I think we paid $30 for it.  It was a brown, somewhat scuffed up nice piece of Pottery Barn Kids furniture I imagine would have run us at least $150 new.  So, we primed and painted it white.  Recently, I decided to swap it out for this little magazine stand I purchased one late, late night out of the women's restroom at Tautog's, a bar in downtown Virginia Beach.  Not my most thought out purchase, but I'm sure you can use your imagination as to how it made its way home with me.  I recently painted it this bright red for another room in the house, but I thought it would work well as a night stand in Worth's room.  It holds books and cd's.

Back to the white fabric. I had this little table with glass top stored in my attic, so I decided to pull it out for the baby room.  I had my fabulous seamstress make a table skirt and add black piping around the edge.

I also used some of my red and white fabric to jazz up the table top a bit.  I really like the way this looks.

It plays home to a few items given as gifts to baby Worth, including this precious little elephant from big brother Hank's classmates, which I believe was purchased at Cottage Chic over on East Blvd.

 And this pretty monogrammed velvet-lined keepsake container from Worth's Godmother.

Perhaps you've wondered, where is the changing table?  Well, it's hiding in the closet to allow for a more comfortable room.  We found it Craig's List, and it's in perfect condition.  The previous owners showed us their receipt for $600.  We paid $200.  I would have taken on another redo project and perhaps turned some other piece of furniture into a changing table, but most wonderful hubby and I both were pretty tired of the projects. I'd like to paint the inside of the closet a fun color and do a little better with my mess of off-season clothes on the top shelve, but no time for that right now... I've got so many projects!

 I'll spare your eyes of the mess, and close the doors.  Aaahhhh.......

I hope you have enjoyed this step by step tour of Baby Boo's room.  I think he's totally living in style!             Do you?  I hope everyone has a wonderful, safe and Happy Thanksgiving!!  Whitley