Gateway to imperfection…

My Home-as-Scrapbook philosophy makes me constantly re-invent displays and vignettes around the house. I’ve been hauling this old gate around for years, but finally found a wall for it in my new home office.

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It has been so much fun pulling all my priceless treasures out of shoeboxes to display them. I’m using all kinds of things to connect them to the gate…binder clips, clothespins, S-hooks, a bracelet, and…vintage jewelry. Clip earrings are the most fun!

AND…it’s MAGNETIC! This is going to be a fun project for a long time!

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You can’t tell it, but it’s really BIG.  44″x 52″

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The New Glamp = Glamorous Lamp!

img_0780EASY LAMP HACK…

I liked this cool industrial/vintage-look lamp just fine when I bought it from World Market. But since I added pearls…I LOVE IT!  I’d never wear pearls (sorry, pearly girls), but I add them to stuff around the house all the time.  The trick: Only buy them at garage sales. I didn’t pay more than $1/strand for these gems…(there are a couple of mis-matched earrings thrown in there, too)…

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The fancy one in the center came from a roadside flea market in West Virginia.

Super-simple: Just drape them around the Edison bulb (only use a vintage-style bulb), and then wiggle the dome back on (because they’re pearls, they’ll roll). My kind of DIY (no work involved).

Homes + Gardens + Beekmen

(Is Beekmen the plural for Beekman Boys?)

Johnson County Home & Garden Show
Overland Park, Kansas Convention Center, 6000 College Blvd.
January 22-24, 2016

It’s January. It’s cold. It’s Kansas City. There’s no football that matters left. So it’s the perfect time to spend a day indoors at the beautiful Overland Park Convention Center, filled with home and garden vendors, design inspiration, and lots of free pens and candy.

The highlights for me were the presentations on the Ikea Main Stage (thank you, Ikea!). You may remember the Beekman Boys, Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge, from their “Amazing Race” win, but I’ve been a fan of the Beekmen since their original show “The Fabulous Beekman Boys,” which chronicled their adventures moving from corporate NYC to rural upstate New York, where they purchased an 1802 farmhouse (and farm!) and transformed their lives and the small town they live in. Hard work, smart marketing, Farmer John, and a bunch of really cute goats turned into Beekman 1802 “one of the fastest-growing lifestyle brands in the country” (Nasdaq). They tell their story honestly and adorably, and give me hope for a post-corporate life filled with genuine people, fresh air, and fun.

Josh & Brent talked about buying their million-dollar “weekend”  farm at the peak of the real estate boom, then losing their high-profile, high-paying jobs within 30 days of each other the following year. Their presentation was based on the “7 Lessons We Learned From Goats.” It turns out that goats are pretty smart. And super-cute.

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Change your perspective.

 

And so are the Beekman Boys. They were funny, sweet, interesting, and genuinely embraced (literally) the fans at the show, spending time talking to everyone who wanted to meet them after the show, signing books, and posing patiently for the obligatory selfies. A bright ray of sun in January!

 

Matt Muenster, host of HGTV‘s “Bath Crashers,” is a fun, charismatic speaker. Originally a Wisconsin interior designer, he reluctantly accepted the host position on an unknown HGTV show, and hasn’t come out of the bathroom since. Takeaway: Don’t be afraid to put the unexpected in your bathroom...a fireplace, a $3,000 espresso machine, a state-of-the-art sound system, a motorcycle vanity. AND…USE YOUR BATHROOM FAN — It will eliminate moisture in the air and reduce mildew and mold. If he and his crew approach you at your neighborhood Lowe’s…say YES as quickly as you can.

 

My favorite booth…(the word “booth” doesn’t seem to do it justice…it was a full-on kitchen and bath) (and full-on adorable)…from Cook + Cline Design & Build Company…

 

PLUS…all the usual Home & Garden suspects…

 

My favorite candy bowl…
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I don’t know who these women are. And they’re definitely not related to me…


This is exactly how I felt at the end of the day…
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MY PHOTO GALLERIES

Instant Shelves (just add junk)

 

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I don’t cook in my kitchen. My friends love to tell the story of the time when I asked the builders of my house for a credit instead of a stove, so I could install shelves in that space (FYI, they just laughed at me and installed the stove). So that, of course, meant that I needed extra shelves to display all my vintage treasures!
The easy solution: just remove the cabinet doors and hardware. It took about 10 minutes! Later, when I decided I needed MORE shelves, I went to Lowe’s and bought prefabricated closet shelves in white laminate, and had them cut to the proper length (Lowe’s will always cut things for you, usually at no charge).
BTW, the fish’s name is Floyd.

 

 

DIY- Guess who installed her own sliding barn door???

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…that’s right…me!  (+ one good friend) (+ one good handyman).

I’ve wanted to put a door across this hallway for years, to separate 2 bedrooms from the master bedroom (both of them off a small landing at the top of the stairs).  Since it’s an arched doorway, it was difficult to put in a traditional door, so I was thrilled when I saw so many great sliding doors on Pinterest.  After much research, I ordered a door kit and sliding track hardware from RusticaHardware.com.  They promised to email me when it was on its way and when I could expect delivery.  They didn’t do that.  Instead, approx. 3 weeks later, in the middle of a 2-day rainstorm, I accidentally discovered this package on the sidewalk outside my gate…

The metal track was encased in plastic but, surprisingly, the wood door kit was NOT.  I didn’t want to contact their unpleasant customer  service supervisor (who promised me a credit that I have still not received), so I left the wood stacked as packed and dragged it into the house to acclimate.  I thought that if I left it stacked it might not warp so badly, and I was partially right.  Two slats warped, but we were able to work with them, and sand off the mildew.

The door goes together with 4 LONG screws and is easy to assemble.  If the slats had not been warped, my friend and I would have been able to complete it.  We did really well and got it 98% finished, but just didn’t have the muscle to force it all the way, even after a trip to the hardware store for a rachet socket wrench.

Photo by Stephanie Roberts, http://ObsessiveHobbyist.com

We called in a great handyman to install the metal track, and he muscled the door the rest of the way and made everything look easy!  You can order the tracks with the holes pre-drilled — they distribute them according to the weight of the door, not necessarily 16″ apart, like studs.  Fortunately, I was able to install in a spot that had solid wood behind the drywall, so I didn’t have to worry about finding studs.  I was surprised, though, that they sent me 2 5’6″ track lengths, when I ordered an 11′ track; there’s a connector, but you have to be very careful about aligning them so the door slides smoothly.  I also had them route out the back of the door where the door pull is inserted, which saved a lot of effort.  Before painting…

Then we used two coats of Behr’s primer+paint, in Polar Bear White, semi-gloss latex.  I was surprised that lots of mill lines showed up after painting.  Nothing we can do about that, I guess.

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Also be aware that there were TONS of knots and splits in the wood, so you won’t want to choose this door unless you really want a rustic look.

Bottom Line:  I love it!   I would definitely order their track hardware again, but I would try to find another solution for the door.  Their instructions were pretty simple to follow (much simpler than Ikea), and they sent all of the necessary hardware, but NO extra screws.  One of their screws broke off while installing the floor guide, so I had to hunt through my junk drawer for another (luckily, I keep EVERYTHING).