Dresser Re-Finish with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint

I can’t believe I haven’t posted since last July! I have a lot of catching up to do on here, I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had the chance to post but I have so many things I want to share. There has been a birthday party, a new house to decorate, a baby shower, recipes to share and a new baby room to decorate.

Today I wanted to share my before and after pictures of the dressers that I re-finished using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint. I’m so pleased with how they turned out, amazed at how easy the product was to use and how fun it was to do!

I love the fact that you don’t have to do ANYTHING to get the piece ready for re-finishing–you don’t have to sand it or prime it or do anything except wipe it down with a rag if it’s dusty.

I re-did the dressers that were in my guest bedroom for use in our second baby’s room (a little girl due in April!); originally they were a very light (almost white) oak with lots of knots in the dressers. When I told my husband that all you have to do is put a couple of coats of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint on to begin and that you don’t have to sand the knots down or seal them he was in disbelief. He really felt like the knots would bleed through, but not with this paint! It’s amazing!

So here’s the before shot (taken from when the dressers were in our old house):

Dressers Before

So to begin I just removed the drawer pulls and wiped the pieces down with a damp rag. I painted two coats of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in her Old Ochre color and let it dry. Later that same day I applied a very, very thin coat of Annie Sloan Clear Wax. She has a special brush and technique that she recommends but I just used pieces of my husband’s clean white undershirts to apply it with. I would rub a little on it in a circular motion and continue to rub it in until only a thin layer of it was left. (You can tell where you’ve applied the clear wax because it slightly deepens the hue of your paint color).

I let that cure overnight and the next day I took sand paper and roughed it up a bit because I wanted the dressers to have a rustic, antique feel to them. I emphasized the corners the most but used the sand paper all over the pieces too. Next I brushed off the pieces to remove any dust particles from sanding.

The final step is Annie Sloan’s Dark Wax. Again, she has a special brush for applying the wax but I just used a straight edged paint brush. I applied it on the piece and rubbed it in a bit with another piece of clean white undershirt. I let the piece cure for a week before putting the drawers back in and putting the drawer pulls back on.

Here’s the final product; I’m very excited about how they turned out! They are going to look great in our little girl’s room.

Dresser After

I did the mirror too on the dresser above but haven’t re-attached it yet.

Dresser 2 After

I definitely will be using this product again!Also, FYI you can’t just buy this paint anywhere, you have to find an Annie Sloan stockist. For me, it’s at Queen of Hearts antique store in Buford, Georgia. You can Google Annie Sloan stockist to find one near you though. Have fun!

So, I’d love to hear if you’ve used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint before? How did you like it?

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Mercury Glass Decorating

Are you as infatuated with mercury glass as I am? I became really interested in collecting some mercury glass right before Christmas, so of course that was on my wish list. Lucky for me, my mom and sis delivered…I got 6 different pieces for Christmas! Can you feel my excitement about this?!

I used all my new mercury glass to decorate my home in a “winter” theme using lots of silvery frosted branches, silver sparkly berries, and to brighten things up a bit I threw in a lime green glittery branch here and there as well. I also used pine cones and pine branches to add to this rustic wintery theme.

So I decorate my home in this winter wonderland that would be perfect for snow and of course we’ve had the hottest winter I can ever remember. I realize that I live in Georgia so I shouldn’t expect buckets of snow but we haven’t even had a FLURRY this year. I’ve only worn my winter pea coat twice and I’ve worn short sleeves more times than I can count. It’s been one crazy winter…if you can even call it that!

Do you like to decorate with mercury glass too? If so, I hope this has given you a little inspiration. I’m not tired of it yet so I’m thinking about keeping it out for spring too. I will just rearrange it a little and change out the winter foliage for pretty spring flowers and greenery.

All of these vases are store bought, but I saw on Pinterest that you can make your own mercury glass. I’m definitely going to give that a try. Click the picture below for the instructions. Happy decorating!

Homemade Valentines

Okay, so I know this holiday has come and gone for the year but I didn’t want to post this before Valentine’s Day because I didn’t want to spoil the surprise for the people I sent Valentines to. So…use these as ideas for next year or adapt the concept for upcoming holidays.

First you have to visit a craft store for supplies. I picked up silver glitter notecards, Mod Podge, pretty scrapbook paper, silver scrapbook letter stickers, a large heart shaped hole punch and small white lacy heart stickers. You will also need envelopes that the notecards fit in.

These are so easy and cute to do! Just punch out lots of cute hearts from the paper and arrange it however you’d like on your notecards. Use a paint brush and paint the back of the hearts with Mod Podge then glue to your notecard. Make words like LOVE, HEART, XOXO and KISSES with the silver scrapbook letters. Put the white heart stickers on too.

I was making these for my 18 month old son to give his grandparents and friends so the inside included a Happy Valentine’s Day note and also his handprint. I painted his hand with fingerpaint and put it on cardstock, then cut out the hand print with fancy edged scissors and glued it on the inside of the card.

Have fun making these Valentine’s Day cards! Just a thought: for Easter you could do something similar and cut out cross shaped paper or Easter egg shapes.

Decor Inspiration: Pirate Themed Nursery

I mentioned in my post about my son’s first birthday party that I had decorated his nursery in a pirate theme. Would you like to see a few pictures? I don’t know about you, but I just love decorating my home. The thrill of deciding how a certain room is going to look and then the hunt of finding just the right pieces to make everything come together perfectly…*sigh, it’s just plain fun for me!

It all started when I found the most adorable pirate bedding set.

Cute, right? I mean, just at look at the adorable pirates!

So, what does every good pirate have? A parrot of course! The bird cage I found at Hobby Lobby and the bird is from Oriental Trading.

And if you’re a pirate, you simply have to have a TREASURE MAP! I was thrilled when I found this hand painted treasure map on Etsy. So cute!

It’s fun to see a room come together. You can see that I painted wooden letters for his name and the curtains are a rich chocolate brown (bonus: closing the curtains and having the extra layer of the blinds really keeps out the sun =a baby that sleeps better and longer!) You can’t see it in this picture but there’s a red wooden sign above the window that reads “Red Sky at Night Sailors Delight.”

Instead of a changing table I opted for the kind that sits on top of the dresser. I found a little “treasure” chest to put on the dresser to keep all of the diaper supplies in. I liked the round mirror I found because it reminded me of a port hole on a ship–kinda “pirate-like” right? And instead of an expensive gliding rocking chair, I got a simple outdoor rocker. It works just fine for us and when we no longer need it in the nursery I can put it on the patio!

The treasure map sits on the wall above his book shelf where a pirate sword rests on top.

Of course Preston’s room looks a little different today; I had to purchase another bookshelf to hold more toys and some things have been moved around a bit. I’m trying my best to keep the accumulation of toys to a minimum but this little guy’s grandparents sure do like to spoil him!

Well, now I’m all in the mood to redecorate something…hmmm, maybe a trip to Hobby Lobby? You just never know what you will find! Have a great day.

DIY: Prayer Board

My sweet best friend gave me the neatest birthday gift! It’s a prayer board–it’s both beautiful and functional. With this board you just use a dry erase marker to write your current prayers on the frame’s glass–simply erase and write new ones as often as you’d like.  I hung it in my laundry room so I will be reminded of the people I’m praying for as I walk out the door.

A friend of hers has an Etsy store and you can purchase them here: Prayer Board. Or if you’re feeling crafty grab a pretty picture frame, some spray paint, fabric of your choice (I LOVE the burlap that my board is made with), some scrapbook letters and other stickers with sayings about faith and prayer and some notecards and thumbtacks.

Here’s my board…isn’t it great? These would make awesome Christmas gifts!

Do you have a great gift idea that is an easy DIY that you’d like to share? I would love for you to leave them as a comment!

Have a blessed day!

DIY Distressed Frames & Collage Wall

Do you ever get the itch to redecorate your house? I’ve lived in my house for 3 and a half years (which I know isn’t a terribly long time) and somedays I have to fight myself so hard not to go out and buy new furniture! Now I’m not saying that I don’t love and appreciate my current pieces…I’m just saying that sometimes you need a bit of a change. I satisfy those urges by redecorating my tables, countertops and other spaces seasonally; but lately, even doing those changes hasn’t helped.

So now I’ve moved on to changing up some of the art on the walls. Did you see my previous post where I made a fun piece out of an IKEA frame, a wooden letter, burlap and some black paint? If you missed it, here you go: DIY Frame Artwork.

My next project was creating a collage wall using distressed frames. I bought the frames from IKEA; they were white. To get the look I was going for I spray painted them (well, to be honest, the hubby painted them while I was taking care of the baby) a matte black. Later I took sand paper and started rubbing the frames in a random way…achieving a “distressed” look.

Here’s a few pics of how it turned out:

Here’s a close-up of one of the pictures so you can get a better look at the distressed feature.

I like how the wall turned out, but I think the space below it looks a little bare now…like it could use a cute little table with maybe a lamp and a few darling nick-knacks on it. Hmmm, may just have to put my decorating cap on and go shopping!

OH! and I learned a brilliant trick on Pinterest for creating a collage wall. Lay out your pictures how you want them on the floor. Then put pieces of wax paper taped together over it. Mark where all the nails need to go. Simply tape the wax paper to the wall and poke your nail holes. How easy and convenient is that?? Gotta love Pinterest!

Nature Themed Baby Boy Shower

I adore and have such a wonderful time planning parties! I’ve always had fun hosting baby showers, wedding showers, Christmas parties, dinner parties…you name it, but lately I’ve gotten even more excited about throwing parties due to an amazing party blog my best friend discovered.

Check it out sometime…Kara’s Party Ideas and trust me, you’ll be inspired too!

Today I’d like to share with you a baby shower my best friend and I hosted earlier this Summer. We went with a nature/forest type theme.

The wreath was also part of the the new Mommy’s gift so that when baby Liam arrives she can put it on her front door as an announcement.

The Mama-to-be’s mother made this amazing diaper cake! I’ve never seen one so elaborate and beautiful before!

Frog cake pops were the favors for the guests.

“Acorns”…aren’t those too cute? Made from a dark chocolate kiss, mini vanilla wafer, butterscotch chip and some icing.

S’more Kabobs

Open-faced cucumber sandwiches

We took baby pictures of the future parents, cut them out and glued them onto leaf-shaped pieces of scrapbook paper.

Sweet tea and lemonade was served in mason jars. The guest’s names were on labels to prevent drinks from getting mixed up.

The guests painted onesies and burp clothes. (TIP: We thought it would be cute to hang them outside on my fence to dry…we didn’t realize until later there was a slight breeze. The onesies got blown around a bit and it caused the paint to mess up a little. Moral of the story: lay them flat to dry)

Another tip when throwing a baby or wedding shower is to buy some cute thank you cards. At the party have each guest address an envelope to themeselves. Give the envelopes and thank you cards to the guest of honor to make writing thank you notes ten times easier on them!

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Hopefully these ideas inspired you for your next party! If you’d rather not plan a party by yourself and would like my help, contact me at AnneRains@gmail.com and we’ll discuss your party planning needs.