My New Obsession

My mom introduced me to Annie Sloan Chalk Paint last week and I’m completely hooked. I want to paint everything! I see Annie Sloan potential everywhere I look.  I’ve already identified five pieces of furniture in my living room that I want to Annie Sloan (yes, I use her name as a verb…).

I almost don’t want to tell you about Annie Sloan Chalk Paint because I know how easy it is to become consumed by the painting bug. But, it’s just too awesome not to share. Visit her website to learn all the details about this glorious paint. Then, YouTube Annie Sloan, Pinterest Annie Sloan, and prepare to be inspired.

Here’s one reason why I’m obsessed with this paint:

Annie Sloan

My mom and I transformed this old step stool in a few hours. We had to sand down some puffy paint, but you don’t generally have to prep the piece before painting. Two coats of Duck Egg, a little distressing (that’s optional), and some wax turned a battered step into a pretty piece of furniture. The process is really fun and each piece turns out unique. I love that we were able to do this all in a day.

Reasons why I love Annie Sloan Chalk Paint:

  • The gorgeous array of colors.
  • You can paint inside because it doesn’t smell!
  • Infinite possibilities for customization of colors, distressing, and wax.
  • Indoor and outdoor uses.
  • Without wax, you can use chalk (like a chalkboard) on the paint.
  • Before you wax the paint you could wash it all off with water.
  • No wood prep needed. Just start painting.

My mom graciously shared her paint with me, so I now have Duck Egg, Old White, and Coco to start painting everything within reach. My next task is to get TIm obsessed, too :)


Fabric-Covered Christmas Balls

DSC_0504Since you have your fabric stash out after making some Christmas garland, why not use it to make these decorative fabric-covered Christmas balls?

  • Rip fabric into strips about 1/2″ to 1″ wide. The length doesn’t matter too much, but the longer they are, the less glue you will have to apply.
  • Use a dot of glue to secure one end to a styrofoam ball.
  • Wrap fabric around the ball until all the styrofoam is covered.
  • Cut excess fabric off and glue the fabric end to the ball.

The method is simple and can be repeated on different size balls (which can be found at craft supply stores).

My fabric-covered balls are in a ceramic bowl on the coffee table. Using the same fabric patterns as the garland ties the colorful decor together, creating nice Christmas cohesiveness in your house.



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In my efforts to simplify and down-size while Tim and I were still in limbo, I went through my possessions (most of which were already boxed and waiting to find a home wherever Team Gardner settled down).  I was still finding things I could let go of after the third round of sorting and decision making.

One box in particular, however, gave me some trouble.  In lieu of the typical tchotchkes, I like to buy tea towels from places where I travel.  A year abroad combined with a love of linens left me with quite the collection – 35 tea towels to be exact.  (I have a problem…) Most are unused, treasured for the memories they conjure not their practical purpose.

In order to legitimize keeping this bountiful collection, I needed to start utilizing these towels.  Since every room in our new apartment does not need five or so hand towels stacked, folded, or hanging about, I looked to my favorite source of inspiration – Pinterest! – for some crafty ideas.


Here’s some easy projects I ran across that might help me put my collection to good use:

  • Cute tea towel pillow covers that require only basic sewing skills.
  • Give Fido something soft to chew on with this easy to make dog toy. Great project for recycling old or stained tea towels.
  • Shoe bag. Beach bag. Makeup bag.  This is truly a multipurpose carry-all.
  • I go through a journal in a matter of weeks, so buying fancy ones get a bit pricey.  Creating fabric journal covers out of tea towels helps beautify cheaper models.
  • Wrapping gifts is half the fun of giving them.  Use a tea towel to wrap up a gift and the recipient gets two gifts in one!
  • I adore the simplicity and ease of using tea towels to create cafe curtains or a valance.  Plus, you can quickly change them out for a different season or color scheme.

If you’ve repurposed tea towels, please share your project!