Monday, April 17, 2017

Golden Cleaning Tip For Silver!

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter Sunday!  We had a lovely day with family.  
I just wanted to share a quick tip for polishing silver you may not have tried.  
All this silver was polished in five minutes using common household items!

For comparison, see the silver tray in the center of the table.  All the other silver was equally as tarnished.  


Easy Steps:

Line sink with aluminum foil

Fill sink with hot water

Add one container table salt

Add half box baking soda

Lower silver into sink

Wait five minutes

Remove silver and lightly wipe off any remaining tarnish

Rinse and dry!

That's it!  

No, really!


xo

Andie



Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Puddle-Free Puddles!

I love the look of puddled drapes but there is a certain cat who lives here who thinks puddled drapes have a different meaning.  I will not name names.  

I had to throw the drapes away, sadly.  

However, I could not keep the new drapes laying over chair backs forever. 

I devised a plot.


Beautifully puddled drapes!
Right?


Look closer...I pinned the drapes up so they are about an inch above the floor...I intentionally spaced the pins far apart so they droop between the pinned spots...
and this is where the magic comes in!

18 gauge wire.  I used copper, so it won't rust. I tripled it for more strength, then ran it along the bottom, bent it in toward the back at the ends to secure it, (pinching it closed) then "waved" it to mimic the look of puddled drapes...for my drapes I used four feet of wire, (tripled, just wound three lengths and looped at the ends, so as not to poke drape fabric), so the drapes would be wider at the bottom. Without the wire, the drapes would hang straight down. 
These drapes are lined and interlined, so they have body and fullness.  If yours aren't, just place crumpled tissue paper or paper towels into the "hemmed" area. 


This way I get to keep the drapes and the kitty!  lol  This is also beneficial to those with children or husbands who may accidentally step on puddled drapes. 

The illusion is enough to make me happy. 

I feel like an evil scientist but in a good way.  

xo

Andie





Saturday, April 8, 2017

Spring In the Dining Room!

Spent a few days brightening up the joint in preparation for Spring celebrations!  




Tea cups on the buffet! 

I was looking for a place to store them until the tea party but they are too pretty to hide!  The perfect touch of Spring! 

Flowers every color of the rainbow!  

Pussy willow branches adorned with glass eggs, hung by pastel velvet ribbon.

This secretary will never be finished.  lol  
I added birds and garlands.  

I am not very good at photographing in bright light.  This is really very pretty in "real life". lol  

The glass eggs look almost like dewdrops.  


Hallway by the back stairs with topiary bunny resting up for the big day!  


It is a beautiful Spring day!  Soon the gardens will beckon!



xo
Andie

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Zebra Settee; Earning My Stripes


This is a beautiful, well made corbeille sofa.  Solid too.  It would work well in a library with an English theme.  However, it needed a French makeover if it wanted to live in our home!  


I kept the upholstery. It was in perfect shape!  
This is two coats of Annie Sloan Old White, followed by Clear Wax, then Waverly Antique Wax. The gold detail is DecoArt Venetian Gold. 
I used over 20 different paint brushes to get at different angles around the upholstery. Good tools are important.  They also make the work a lot easier. 


Step one: No turning back! 


Whiter than white.  

Late at night, the sofa is done, except for clear and dark wax.  


In the light of day! After antique wax is applied. 



Delores approves!  


The Venetian Gold is my new favorite gold tone! 



View from Music Room...



This has to be my favorite project yet!  
Working around the upholstery took a great deal of time, but it is work I enjoy.  

I honestly don't know how I didn't spill paint all over the upholstery!  I kept envisioning that as I worked.  
Every time our new kitty, Delores, walked by, I held on to all my paint and brushes, as if I was in an earthquake.  lol  

I have lots and lots and lots more to share with you!  I counted 60 pieces of furniture that I painted in the house.  I couldn't sleep.  That's what I do when I can't sleep.  I don't count sheep because, frankly, sheep jumping over the fence makes me worried.  lol  Who can sleep if the sheep are all running away from home, I ask you? 



xo

Andie

  

   

Friday, January 20, 2017

Inauguration Day

Wreath on front door to honor the Inauguration of our Republic's 45th president. Blue velvet ribbon to signify reverence for our fallen police officers. May they rest in peace.


xo

Andie


To those who asked about the piano.  The pin board is damaged beyond repair. Well, it can be repaired but we cannot afford to do so. We would like to donate it to a museum if anyone knows of one who would like it.  

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Soul of The Maker


Every production of an artist should be the expression of an adventure of his soul. 
-W. Somerset Maugham



Our beautiful piano has breathed her last. My heart is heavy. 

The soul of the maker is in the wood. Perhaps an immigrant from another country? A man who learned his craft from generations before him? It was built in 1895. I can almost see the craftsman at work, carving the wood, the details, placing the keys, the strings. I wonder what he thought of as he worked? The Old Country? Did he worry about his children? Did he pray? Did he hum to himself to pass the time? His hands, stained and sturdy, deftly creating a masterpiece that would be treasured for over a century. 
When the instrument was complete did he run his hand across the keyboard? 

I yearn to reach across the divide and shake that hand, to thank him for giving his soul so perfectly.

What was the first melody that spilled forth from the soul of the piano's first owner, infused with the soul of the instrument, created by the soul of the maker, joined with the soul of the composer? 






xo

Andie

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

New Traditions: The Life and Times of a Christmas Tree

This year has been rough. There are no two ways about it.  Our family struggles with the tremendous loss of my adoptive father, father-in-law, grandmother-in-law, dear aunt and two beloved pets. Just writing this is difficult.  They are more than mere words on a screen, mere letters arranged in sequence. We loved them, leaned on them, needed them...and they loved us.  A large part of us left with them and we endeavor daily to be whole in their absence.

This Christmas Tree belonged to my in-laws. They bought it together years ago. Enormous and always covered in brightly colored lights, ornaments and a train circling its base. Sometimes the train would derail and Papa would gently place it on the tracks and send it on its way, to the delight of his grandchildren.

My mother-in-law was going to give the tree to charity. 
I blurted, "No. We will take it!"

I was intimidated by its vastness. Ten feet tall and over six feet in circumference. 

What was I thinking? 

It sat in the garage longer than I intended.  
The day I brought it into the house, I cried for so many reasons.
 I also did not know how to put together a million piece tree with no directions, cracked in some places. Daunted but committed, I wanted my mother-in-law to see the tree anew. 
Hundreds of trips up and down the ladder...

 Three days later it was fluffed. I sprayed the boughs with pine essential oil. My arms abraded, as if by some crazed cat, from reaching into the stiff bristles. 
I used floral wire to raise drooping branches.
It was actually soothing- coaxing each branch back to life.
I added 1,200 twinkling lights.
I ordered 200 ornaments from Amazon. 
Then I found 200 more at a local store.
Then 300 more.
All red, I decided, to represent the love of those who went before us.


I looked everywhere for a red finial for the tippy top. 
None existed.
I found a large finial ornament online. I merely pulled the cap off  and turned it upside-down and voila! 


Then I added more ornaments.

New traditions. This is how they begin. 

This is now our family Christmas Tree. We have begun to create our own memories around it

I never truly belonged to a family until now and was mystified as to the ways of traditions. Now I understand this is how they are made; Like Christmas Trees with intertwining lights, bits of wire, bright, shiny moments and love. Mostly love.
Sometimes the train derails and we must place it gently back on its tracks, just like Papa taught us. 

This post is dedicated to Robert, Michael, Mary, Anita, Faerie Princess and McGillicuddy...and all those whom we have lost but still have a home in our hearts.

We miss you. 

xo

Andie

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