Wednesday, June 24, 2015

20 Things to Look for at Michigan Farmers Markets this Summer

As I did not have a chance to get together a new Farmers Market Friday post for you last week, I wanted to share with you this great rundown of Michigan farmers markets.  Our own local farmers market has added a new night on Thursdays in conjunction with their summer concerts - I'm hoping to be able to stop by and see my regular "egg lady" and give you a tour!

20 Things to Look for at Michigan Farmers Markets this Summer

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Dining Room Update

This dining room has come a long way in two years.  All the way from this...

You can see the beginning of the transformation here.  It’s one of those rooms that I only had a partial vision for and I didn’t really have much to put in there beyond all the dishes I had stored away.  My old dining room in the other house was too small and really non-functional so we mostly used it for projects. 

I knew this was one of the rooms I wanted to be a little more bold on the colors than other areas of the house and since my husband and I both like blue, we settled on this "Royal Gray".  

Once the light got a makeover, my mom donated the table and chairs, as well as the hutch and the giant picture (which I absolutely love) which were gifted by one of her friends. 

I asked my husband for plate racks for Christmas this year.  They have been on my wish list for years but I never really had a place to put them anyways.  

Some of the plates are ones I’ve collected over the years at thrift stores and auctions.  Others were passed down to me through my family.

The hutch now holds a collection of “the good china” dishes from my great-grandmother (my mom’s dad’s mom) and other treasures from several generations on all sides of my family.  Someday I would love to catalog these dishes and their stories.

I am still undecided on what to do above the hutch and on the east walls that lead to the library room (which is another project awaiting some furniture and inspiration…).  I’m torn between finishing the top part of the hutch in some fashion and putting it back on top or hanging a few treasures like the antique printing press drawer above it for bric-a-brack.  I’m on the search for a taller narrow table to use for serving and I have a mirror and some shelves to hang above it on the one side of the doorway.  Its a good excuse to go hit some auctions anyways...

Monday, June 8, 2015

Hutch Makeover

It’s only taken me about a year and a half to complete the hutch remake that I started when we first moved in – that’s not too bad, right? 

At some point in the home renovation process we lost some momentum – and some inspiration – and finishing some of the design touches were put aside as we just lived other parts of life a little more fully.  I’ve been inspired recently to start tackling some of these odds and ends – largely because I’m tired of looking at boxes and picture propped in the corners of those remaining rooms…  

And I also got tired of the guilt staring me in the face every time I walked into the garage and saw this hutch half scraped down.  When I started this project I had just envisioned sanding it down a bit and painting it again as I had helped my mom do so many other times.   

But this hutch has a story.  A lot of them actually.  And as I started to scrape off some of the more rough bumps of her top layers of latex paint, large flakes of it began to come off.  Exposing layers of colors, different types of paint, and even letters.  The bottom-most layers appear to be chalk paint or milk paint and had disintegrated into chalky hues of pale yellow and mint.  The chalky texture allowed the top layers of paint to release fairly easily and the more I dug in, the more I was determined to expose more of her story.

This hutch has always been special to my mom and I.  One of those special bonding moments where we scored her for just $12 at an auction, dragged her home and painted her.  And painted her over and over again as I grew and she aged and color schemes came and went.

She's been mint, soft yellow, pink, baby blue, mint again, silver, white, off-white, and who knows what else.  And you can see that the only spots that the latex paint did not want to come off are those where someone used stripper to try to get back to the wood.

So with the weather now warm enough to paint, I spent the better part of a day finishing this project.  I ordered some Ms. Mustard Seed milk paint in Mustard Seed yellow from Bungalow 47.  This was my first attempt with milk paint and I was not disappointed.  The milk paint gave me a great ability to play with the thickness of the coverage and show the marks of character on this beauty.

Three coats later and I was fairly satisfied with the look.  For those of you ladies who can sympathize – both my husband and son looked at it when I was done and asked if I was going to paint it…

This picture shows the more orange-ish goldenrod hue this really is – the other pictures are the hue I’m actually going for though and I'm undecided about how I feel about the flat finish of the milk paint.  So I’m debating a white-wash and wax to both tone it down and add to the aged look of it. 

But I put it in the dining room anyways and filled it full of the treasures I’ve inherited and collected over the years. 

Clearly some mischievous children have gotten their hands on it in the past - which I think just adds to her personality.

This top doesn't actually belong with the bottom but has set on top of it for several decades.  But I rather like the bottom on its own and now am trying to decide how to use this beautiful top as a display.  I certainly  have enough glassware to fill it up but am actually considering it as part of a bookcase in the library.  What do you think?

Stop back to see the improved dining room tomorrow…

Friday, June 5, 2015

Farmers Market Fridays - Nelson's Farm Market

It’s Friday and it’s June so welcome back to Farmers Market Fridays!  

I had the excuse a few weeks ago to make a day trip that took me past a Farm Market store that I have often admired 
but never had the chance to stop at.  

I had some extra time so I stopped for a quick tour and even though it was really early in the season, I still found some charming goodies at Nelson’s Farm Market in Newaygo, Michigan.

The store offered a wide range of goods from gardening to produce to fresh donuts and coffee.

Check out the handy planting chart…

And you know I love this display with the saddle…

Out at the barn, an array of farm animals greet visitors.  

Chickens, pigs, ducks, cows, mules, horses…

And let us not forget the goats…
this old guy seemed to think he owned this elaborate ramp system.

I hope to make it back when more of these bins are piled high with seasonal produce.
As it was I ended up leaving with jerky, dried pineapple, yellow potatoes, yellow onions, and a new fairy for the garden.