Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Ten Decor Makeover Ideas for the New Year

I have some type of internal alarm clock that starts talking to me this time of year. It says, "It's time for a make over project. What's it going to be?" This time last year we decided to replace our ceiling fan in the den.
While we were at it and since we already had the 18 ft scaffolding, why not paint the ceiling? And since I have a professional faux painter at my beck and call (don't tell him I said that, I'll deny it) I thought, why not put a little texture on that back wall? Two years ago we knocked down a wall in our bedroom and made our formal living room an office. LOVE IT! I work in here (escape in here) every single day. Three years ago we repainted the kitchen including all the white laminate cabinets. See a pattern here? I have a project in mind for this year, but it doesn't involve painting. I want to organize my pantry. I told you it was a mess. Somehow, I have a feeling paint will be involved. Check out what happened when he was supposed to be cleaning out the garage? He painted the deep freeze
the door that goes into the house
and the cabinets

So, this time of year I thought if some of you would like to join me on the makeover journey I'd give you some food for thought. Here are ten easily doable makeover ideas to kick off your New Year.
1) Rearrange your furniture. It will make you feel like you've got a whole new room for zero dollars invested.
2) Go through your house and evaluate your window coverings. Curtains really warm up a room. While you are at it make sure you hang your curtains as high as you can get them to create the illusion of big windows and high ceilings. They should have at least a one inch break on the floor as well. Curtains that are too short are a decor faux pas.
3) Take a look at your cabinets. Cabinets can be jazzed up with new hardware. If that doesn't do it for you consider having them painted and glazed. You'll have a whole new look with out a huge investment.
4) Speaking of kitchen projects, resurface your laminate or tile counter tops with a concrete micro topping. It's about 1/3 of the cost of granite.
5) Replace that huge ugly mirror that runs the length of the vanity. You know the one I'm talking about and "No" this is not a mirror in my house. I found it on the internet.You can replace it with two smaller framed mirrors and add a huge style statement.
6) If you have any 80's brass light fixtures in your house make a commitment to change those out over the next year. Buy one new fixture (usually under $40 at Home Depot) each time you can afford it.
7) Take a look around your house and identify space you never use and create a new purpose for it. Many people who never use their dining rooms are turning them into libraries or reading nooks. You could turn an office into a scrap booking room or a spare bedroom into an office. If space in your house is at a premium like it is in mine make sure you are getting the benefit of every square inch.
8) Buy a few rugs and pillows. Talk about an instant face lift.
9) Create an outdoor living area.
10) Paint a room or rooms. Consider a faux treatment to add a little pizazz. Did you really think I could give you ten makeover ideas with out mentioning painting a room? Give me some credit for getting all the way to 10 without mentioning paint. O.K., technically I mentioned it in #3 but that doesn't count because that's painting cabinets not walls.

Hope this inspires you to get moving on your decor projects. Wish me luck on the pantry.

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Singing Cowboy Faux Painter

I spent the last week knee deep in an online romance about the Pioneer Woman and her one true love, the Marlboro Man. If you haven't read this and you are a hopeless romantic like me, I recommend you start here. Make sure you have the time to devote to it before you start because I can guarantee you will get sucked in just like I did. Reading her story about how they met reminded me of my own story of how I met Brooks, aka Faux Daddy. I'd like to share a little of that with you.

It was January 21, 1996. I was working for a radio station group in Louisville, KY. Our station was sponsoring a band competition at a local night club. It was a fancy schmansy event with girls in evening gowns and guys in tuxes. Bob Cat Goldwaith was the Emcee. A few of us from the station decided at the last minute to go and just wear jeans and try to blend into the crowd. The band contestants had to submit a music video to enter the contest. Our local cable network ran the videos and viewers called in to vote on their favorites. The top vote getters in each category were invited to the awards show to perform. When I saw Brooks perform that night I thought to myself, "That guy is going to be a star. I have to meet him". I had met and had my picture made with tons of music stars over the years that I had worked in radio. I was thinking, "Wouldn't it be fun to have my picture with a big star before he was discovered?" I asked our promotion's director to introduce us and she took this picture.
How many people have a picture with their husband from the night they met? I'm pretty proud of it.

Brooks' band was up for "Best Country Video", "Best Song", and "Best Overall Video". He won all three categories. I'm going to try and find the video and have it converted to a digital file so I can upload that too. The song was called "Under the Old Oak Tree".

So, at the end of the night Brooks asked for my phone number. I always wondered if it was because he thought I had some connections with the music biz since I worked for a radio station. As he would quickly find out, I had zero connections. But, he did call me the next day and the next and so on and so on. We were pretty much inseparable after that first night. After about a year my radio stations were bought out and I wanted to move out of the market. My dream was to move to Nashville to work for the BIG 98 WSIX. I landed a job at sister station 107.5 THE RIVER and soon began selling advertising for both stations. Within a year we were married and Brooks joined me in Nashville. Here is a picture of him singing to me at our wedding. He sang True Companion by Marc Cohn. I was crying so hard that I ruined all my makeup. I couldn't catch my breath to say my vows.

So flash forward 12 years and two kids with special needs later. Brooks made a go of it for over 10 years singing in bars and private parties, playing writers nights and trying to get songs published. Here is a song he wrote for me that will give you an idea of why I married him and why I can never stay mad at him. Click on the play button.
Nashville is a tough town to break into. Brooks' singing these days is limited to the choir at church and we are O.K. with that. We have always known that God gave Brooks a special talent and we have tried our best to follow HIS will for our lives. Right now singing in church is where he is supposed to be.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Finished Product- Holiday Home Show

In case you didn't get to stop by the recent Make a Wish Holiday Home Show, I thought you might like to take a peek at our work. As I have written about in the past we are extremely honored to have been able to provide faux finishes in one of the homes. We worked with builder, Bob Sloan and designer, Donna Henninger to create a real show stopper. Below are the rooms we worked on. First up is the dining room with a faux leopard ceiling with a banded metallic border. Also in the dining room is a black gilded niche. Next is the den where Brooks applied anagylptic wallpaper that was finished in a warm copper metallic. He also completed a faux limestone fireplace. In the study he did a stippled glazed treatment on the walls and an upholstered leather ceiling. Upstairs, he did a mural on canvas and a horizontal stripe of white board paint called, IdeaPaint. You can write on it with dry erase markers and it wipes right off. Brooks won awards for the "Best Make a Wish Room" and the "Best Child's Room" for this room.