Sunday, January 30

A Bakery Sign and Some Tea Buns

For months, I've been ooh-la-la-ing over the beautiful antique/vintage inspired signs that I've seen on other blogs.  For starters, anything old and distressed makes me swoon.  But I've also got a thing for signs and 'word art'.  For me, nothing adds instant personality to a room like a sign does.

I'm not a pro by any stretch of the imagination, but I'm also not a total stranger to painting and distressing wood (see my Vintage-Inspired EAT letters).  So, I thought I'd give an 'antique' sign a try.  Since my sign was going to hang over my stove in the kitchen, I decided on  "The Roche Family Bakery". 

First, I painted the board (just craft plywood) a deep olive green, and once that was dry, I painted that over with, um, you guessed it, turquoise! Once the second coat was dry, I went over it with a palm sander so that the green started to peek through the blue.

Then it was time for the lettering.

Well, sadly, my Cricut is now dead (that's another post, lol) and I haven't given in and bought a Silhouette yet, so that left me with the 'old-fashioned' option for the letters - stencils! I laid out the stencil letters to ensure they'd fit, and then I applied white paint with the typical stenciling technique. I used a small foam brush and applied it with a light 'pouncing' motion.  Once the letters were dry, I again went over it with the palm sander so that the lettering started to fade out as if the sign had been authentically weathered.  I also distressed the edges, and then applied a brown/sienna glaze to give it more of an aged look.

I just love this colour combination. 

Once my sign was completed and hung, I enjoyed it for a day or so and then I started to feel like a bit of a fraud.  You see, I am not a baker.  I mean like, REALLY, not baker.

I have a beautiful professional grade Kitchen Aid mixer sitting on my counter, but truthfully, all it has really ever seen is the mix from a cake box. I know, I know, it's downright shameful.

The sign just kept staring back at me, beckoning me to bake.  Like 'from scratch' kind of baking.

So, in order to feel better about my new/'old' Bakery Sign, I surely would have to bake something from scratch!  I found a great Raisin Tea Bun recipe, and went out and bought flour and baking powder. (Yes, I'm hanging my head in shame, because, no, I did not have these baking staples in my pantry, lol).   I think I did my grandmother proud.  They turned out YUMMY if I do say so myself!  I could really get into this baking thing!
Yup, I baked from scratch. Here's the proof!

 Until next time, happy decorating baking!

Click here

PS. I'm sharing this project at:


All Things Heart and Home

Copy Me Challenge

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Saturday, January 29

I'm a Finalist at Saturday Mornings "Best of January 2011"!

The "Girl Power" Gallery Wall that I created in my daughter's bedroom was selected from over 300 awesome project submissions as a finalist for "The Best of January" at the blog, Saturday Mornings!


The voting for the winning project opened today, and will continue until Friday, February 4th. I would be ever so grateful if you voted for me!

It's easy peasey! If you click the "Vote for Me" button below, it will take you to the voting page, and all you have to do is click on my project and then hit "vote".

And, you can vote every day until the contest closes!  Thanks so much!

Until next time, happy decorating (pssst...voting!)!

Tuesday, January 25

"Something Mommy Made You": DIY Nursery Artwork!

Click here

I was looking back through some pictures the other day, and came across some that I took while assembling a piece of art for my twin boys' nursery while I was pregnant.

My sweet boys!
(They're now 15 months old.  This pic was taken when they were 6 months. Aren't they sweeeeeeet?!? I know, I am biased!)

OK back to the project.

Must. Stay. On. Track. ;-)

That was pre blog days, so I'm not even sure why I took these step by step pics; perhaps I was thinking I'd scrapbook them some day?  (She says while rolling over in laughter!)  I was an avid scrapbooker when my 6-year old daughter was younger, but this twins' thing is a whole other ballgame!

I thought I'd share the little tutorial here, as I know how expensive it can be to buy large pieces for a child's room. I know, because I searched high  and low for a piece with 'mod' elephants (to match the room), but I found nothing large scale that was afforable. The space I was trying to fill was above a 6-foot wide dresser so it couldn't be wimpy. Plus, I have to admit, there's just something extra special about hanging "something mommy made" especially for them.

The room was inspired by Carter's Elephant Stitch bedding  which has the cutest little 'mod' elephants, so I tried to keep the nursery decor more modern than traditional.  However, I am definitely a sucker for traditional, so you'll note that my mod touches are subtle (mostly in shapes and graphical patterns rather than furnishings). 

You can see more of the nursery decor at HGTV by clicking here.

Anyway, back to the project. Must.Stay.Focused. :-)

I had some vinyl pieces leftover from this customized wall quote that I designed for their wall. (I designed it via thesimplestencil.com and vinylwallart.com, but if you have a Silhouette, even better).

At first, I thought about using the extra pieces in several smaller 8x10-ish frames, and creating a gallery wall over the dresser.

But then it dawned on me - why not piece scrapbooking paper together and create a larger piece?

So off to Michael's I trotted (yes I mentioned Michael's again!), and I bought a large 36x24 glass frame. I think it was regularly priced at about $50-ish, but I got it half price for about $25. (They always have great coupons, so don't buy anything there at regular price!). This size was perfect because six sheets of standard 12x12 scrapbooking paper would fit perfectly in the frame.

Next, I 'shopped' my rather large scrapbooking stash for six sheets of paper that would match the growing mod theme in the nursery.  I found some awesome graphical papers in greens, blues and browns that had a 70s kinda feel; just what I was looking for.

Next, I laid out the papers in a pattern that I liked, and my daughter and I applied the vinyl art which included the babies' names and a few little elephants. Soooo easy it's almost embarassing.

I used doubled sided scrapbooking tape to adhere each piece of 12x12 paper to the 36x24 sheet that came inside the frame.

Final step? Simply to slide the sheet back into the frame.

And voila, an awesome custom piece for a fraction of what you'd pay a retailer.

 My daughter tells her baby brothers that it's special because "it's something that mommy made you".

Until next time, happy decorating.

Psst...I'm sharing this at


Tute yourself tuesday red and white

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Friday, January 21

A feature and a thank you!

A huge thanks to Robin at All Things Heart & Home for choosing to feature my little corner of the world on today's "Friend Friday". It's so nice when successful, experienced bloggers out there take time to recognize and support newbies like me, don't ya think?  She's so lovely. 

If you haven't visited her blog, check it out. It's a real treasure!

And be sure to link up there every Wednesday at...

All Things Heart and Home
Happy Friday,

Thursday, January 20

Accessories Junky!

I realized today that I am a certified accessories junkie!

Is there therapy for that? If so, I need to get me some, lol.

If decorating is my addiction, then accessories are definitely my drug! Nothing gets my heart beating faster than (a) finding awesome accessories (at a great price), and (b) accessorizing something-anything!

Accessorizing - and re-arranging my existing accessories - is my absolute FAVORITE part of decorating.

The whole creative exercise of layering accessories on a shelf, console table or mantel is my bliss. I love the idea that the entire feeling of a space can be changed simply by introducing accessories from another room, be it pillows, artwork, books or baskets. Things that I've fallen out of love with in one room take on a whole new life in another.

I don't know if it's because I am never satisfied - or simply because I need creative stimulation - but I am always changing things around. I could be having a 'relaxing' cup of coffee in my living room while the babies nap, when a new accessorizing idea hits me..."hmmmm what if I just moved that there...ooh,ooh...then I could bring that over here..." and on it goes. Before I know it, my arms are filled with baubles and trinkets looking for a new home - and my coffee is cold. Please tell me I'm not the only crazy person out there who does this!

Well, today was one of those days.  While the babies napped, I scurried around my living area, and everything got a little tweaking here, and a little editing there.  And yes, my coffee got cold.

Good thing I have a Keurig!

Until next time, happy decorating accessorizing!

Psst...I linked this up at

Copy Me Challenge

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