Posts Tagged ‘Vintage’
What better way to ring in the New Year than with brand new furniture? Okay, maybe not brand new, but at least with a nice new coat of paint. One of my friends gifted me this lovely dresser two years ago when she moved out of town. My plan was to paint it, rather than refinish the wood, since the veneer was chipped in places and needed some love in others. But of course indecision and general procrastination led me to finally tackle this two year old project now. With a few days off work and a husband to help me carry the thing out of our bedroom (clearly I’ll be milking the pregnancy thing for all I can get), I was set. I had always wanted to paint it a charcoal grey color, but thinking that might be a bit too dark, I settled on a slightly lighter shade. The final grey is a wee bit bluer than I had anticipated, but I think it’s a beautiful color, and especially lovely with the wallpaper remnant that I added on top for extra durability.
Here’s the before picture of the dresser. I neglected to take a true before picture with the drawers still in, but you get the idea.
Okay, here are the drawers post wood filler.
Ta da! I love the grey color against the vintage brass hardware. Such a pretty combo.
I don’t know if you can tell from this closeup, but the wallpaper is actually a kaleidoscope of mermaids. It comes from bespoke wallcovering company, Carolyn Ray, who makes beautiful handprinted papers with metallic inks. (They can also print on vinyl for you commercially or practically minded folks.) I love my “new” dresser and especially love the contrast between the grey paint color and my husband’s darker wood dresser next to it.
I took this weekend as an excuse to get out of the city and up to Brimfield. Last year we scored some pretty nice pieces (a gorgeous antique dresser and a nightstand in need of love), but this year I wasn’t necessarily looking for anything in particular. We have all the furniture we can possibly fit in our tiny apartment, so what is a city dweller to hunt for. The answer came in vintage dresses and jewelry. Easy to carry and easy to bring home on the train (yup the luxury of not owning a car in NYC). But of course while we were there, I couldn’t resist taking pictures of the fun and interesting things we saw. If you went to Brimfield, what did you see?
Ship replica. I’ve always wanted one of these in my house. Not sure where I would put it, but the craftsman ship on some of these vessels is amazing!
How cool is this bed frame? Too bad I just bought a new headboard!
This is a sign my husband would appreciate, not because he’s a gardener, but because he likes corny jokes.
All of these antique glasses and dishware make me wish for a larger kitchen and more opportunities to entertain large groups of people.
I do love me some antique door and cabinet hardware…
How amazing are those lady lamps? They would be perfect at a bar in Brooklyn for sure.
Good thing I didn’t go to Brimfield with my husband, otherwise this milkshake machine just might have come home with us.
These nesting bowls definitely bring me back to my childhood since my mom has and still uses her set daily. I’ve looked for a set of my own, but they’re more expensive than you would think!
Can you sense the nautical theme yet?
Just in case you were thinking about dressing up as Santa Claus this year.
Sock forms to go with the glove forms above
Hello stained glass!
As a fan of spin class, I have a special spot in my heart for this antique stationary bike.
For the winners in your life
More items for my giant fantasy kitchen
I was just in Minnesota this weekend visiting friends and family. I always have such a wonderful time when I go, not just because of the company but also because Minneapolis is a pretty forward thinking area. If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you’ll already know that I think recycling & reusing are the best and easiest way to be green. And turning old buildings or other historic structures into livable, usable spaces goes hand in hand with that ethos. One area that has done this particularly well is the Warehouse District of Minneapolis. Formerly home to flour mills, this area was booming in the late 1880s with factories stretched up and down the river using that water power. When technologies changed and businesses moved elsewhere, many of these mills were abandoned and left to deteriorate.
Fortunately for us there are people out there with the foresight to see an abandoned building and turn it into a museum, business or apartment. And from this, the Warehouse District was sprung. I’m doing something a little different today and posting pictures of the exterior of the buildings rather than the interiors so you can get a feel of what these building are like. Most of these have been converted from manufacturing facilities or office buildings into cool loft style apartments. But I also had to include a picture of the Mill City Museum which is a great place to learn all about the area and the manufacturing history in Minnesota. For me, what I find the most unique about the museum is that instead of building the facade back up, they left it as they found it and built a modern glass structure within. Such a beautiful juxtaposition. Enjoy!
The Mill City Museum
Rock Island Lofts
What could be better than tacos & margaritas? Eating them in a LEED Platinum restaurant! Yup, Seattle based Little Water Cantina is expecting to achieve this lofty green goal all while serving up delicious Mexican food in their 3,000 square foot restaurant. Designed by Shed Architecture & Design, the restaurant has a hip and sustainable vibe. Green facts: Little Water Cantina is lit almost entirely with LED lights and they cut their water use (a huge deal in the restaurant biz) by about 70%. Plus energy use is down and reuse is up. Case in point, the cool light feature made of 800 reclaimed tequila bottles (and by reclaimed I mean individually dug out of the dumpster by the dedicated owners) and the awesome pendant lights hung over the bar made from vintage gramophones.
To go along with their LEED certification, Little Water Cantina serves local & organic food when feasible, uses only eco-friendly cleaning products and composts all of their food waste. If only I lived nearby, I’d be enjoying a margarita made from local & organic ingredients right now! (That means its good for you, right?) Plus the interiors are as hip as they are green. Enjoy!
The bar with the cool gramophone pendants. I also love the mix of textured wood with the tons of tequila bottles all lined up.
You can sort of see a detail of the pressed tin behind the bar where the beer taps are hung.
A close up of those cool gramophone pendants.
Bar top made from a plank of live edge wood. Gorgeous!
How cool is this mural? I wonder who all the people are in it…
Here’s a peek of the dining room and that 800-bottle tequila wall. Collecting those bottles and envisioning what it all will look like really takes foresight!
Photos from Little Water Cantina
After my successful weekend painting furniture and accepting delivery of my brand new chair (okay, I didn’t actually do any work on that one, but the result was fabulous), I’m that much more impressed with people who refurbish vintage pieces. They always make the “afters” look so easy, which, I can attest to, are not. Maybe that’s why I’m addicted to before & after pics like those on Design Sponge’s - it’s the raw possibility that exists in each and every piece that makes their transformations that much more interesting.
So with all that said, I bring you Mod Pieces, a restyled vintage lighting boutique, created by Lia Fagan. She salvages cool antique lamps and brings out their true awesomeness. They’re fitted with new (and modern) wiring, super fun shades and nicely lacquered bodies. Even the lamp shades are salvaged where possible, making these lights as green as could be.
Photos from Mod Pieces
I’m not talking about dogs or cats, but furniture! Yup, my new lounge chair arrived from ABC Home and I finally tackled painting our nightstands this weekend. So even though our apartment looks like a tornado ripped through the middle of it right now (hey, painting is messy work!), I’m pretty happy with this latest transformation. Take a peek for yourself & tell me what you think!
First off, the nightstands. I bought one at Brimfield last year and the other at Housing Works here in Manhattan for a combined total of $40. Pretty sweet, huh? The Brimfield one needed a lot of love in the form of wood filler but the small size & cool handles are what sold me on the piece. And both nightstands are narrow, a necessity in our bedroom because with the addition of a new and wider bed frame, we’re taking up every inch available door to door. Here are the before pics.
Brimfield nightstand. I love the shape, but the cracking wood and retro look had to go.
Housing Works nightstand. Even though drawers are so practical, I love the look of the delicate open shelves which help make the narrow area look not so heavy.
So, how to make two totally different nightstand shapes & styles look like they match? I painted both of them the same blue and topped them with the same wallpaper for a little added durability. The wallpaper was actually a leftover strike-off from Studio E. This company makes beautiful products, one of which is palm leaves pressed into plaster which creates a luminous and textural wallpaper. And because the plaster is troweled over paper, it can be installed just about anywhere, even furniture. So are you ready for the after pics?
The Brimfield nightstand. I have to admit that taking pictures later in the day, doesn’t do the best for bringing out the beautiful colors of the paint or wallpaper, but you get the idea. I’ll post more pictures on Facebook when the light is right.
And the Housing Works nightstand
Another view of the Housing Works nightstand
What about the chair? As I said, this modern wing chair is from ABC Home from their Cobble Hill collection. It’s made with a goodwood frame and manufactured by an American employee-owned, family and community oriented company. What I love about it is not only is it super soft and comfy, it’s also extra wide, so when we have people over it can fit two people (okay, two very good friends) perched on the ends instead of just one. While my husband is still getting used it versus the old Ikea chair, I have a feeling I’ll be spending a lot of time curled up reading here.
As I said in yesterday’s post, we spent last weekend in Charlottesville, VA for a wedding. We went a few days early so we could check out the town & UVA campus and enjoy a bit of time off in what we were expecting to be a charming and relaxing town. Well, C-ville definitely didn’t disappoint in that regard, but what I wasn’t expecting was how eco-conscious the residents are. There are tons of shops throughout the town focused on healthy living, locally produced products and organic food. But my favorite green shop was Sustain, Inc. Their products are colorful & chic mix of home goods, fashion and accessories all required to pass a rigorous check of their eco-friendliness. Each item sold in the store must meet a few of the following criteria: locally sourced, made in the US, fairly traded, organic, recycled, sustainable or from an eco-conscious company. In addition, Sustain donates 2% of their proceeds back to Kiva. Chic & green? Now that’s my kind of store!
A view of the store
I really fell in love with this art
Does that wallpaper look familiar? It should! It’s eco-friendly paper from Madison & Grow.
How fun are those rolled up rugs?
Located above Sustain, Inc. is a really nice stationary shop called Good Press Paper. Katie, the owner, has a great selection of cards and paper as well as an impressive array of custom invitation options. But my absolute favorite was her collection of vintage stamps that are absolutely usable for your own letters. What better way to recycle old stamps that would otherwise end up in a dusty stamp collector’s tome than reusing them as postage? How do you know they’re vintage? Besides the low postage rates, they’re the lick and press type of stamp. No stickers here!
The stamps are sold either pre-affixed on an envelope & notecard set, or…
Gathered together in a little package totaling the correct amount to send your own first class letter. Pretty clever, huh?
I was very sorry to miss Brimfield two weekends ago, but that doesn’t mean I can’t do my share of vintage sourcing on my own. One of my favorite things about flea markets is the dishes. In my dream house, I would have a huge kitchen with enough cabinet space for tons of antique dishes and a dining room big enough to use them all. Sometimes though, vintage porcelain can look a bit dated. Thankfully Sarah Cihat has taken those very same dishes and made them totally modern with her line of Rehabilitated Dishware. This makeover goes a little beyond my expertise as a do-it-yourselfer, so I’m even more impressed that she can rescue vintage plates that I wouldn’t have even looked twice at and turn them into something I would definitely want on my table. Now that’s the way to reuse! Sarah also has a beautiful collection of porcelain objects, vases and candleholders which are even more rockin’ so definitely take a look for yourself.
The before and after views. I mean, the original pattern is oh so dainty and the end product is totally edgy and cool.
A few of my favorite designs
Photos from Sarah Cihat
I’ve been in an industrial furniture mood lately. Something about the raw and textured metal together with beautiful wood full of character. That combined with it’s practical beginnings gives each piece such history and interest. While looking around for a work project, I stumbled on the fabulous collection of industrial chic furniture from Interieurs. They have a particularly good collection so I wanted to post a few of my favorites. Make sure to check out their entire antique collection online.
Photos from Interieurs
I was at the New York Design Center last week and took the opportunity to wander through the brand new 1stdibs showroom on the 10th floor. For those of you who don’t know what 1stdibs is, it’s an online shopping destination for one of a kind vintage pieces. It started out as a way to connect the numerous antique furniture galleries to potential clients and has since transformed into a marvelous curated website of all things beautiful. You can find anything from the aforementioned furniture to home accessories, jewelry and clothing, all of which is valuable and most of which is vintage. 1stdibs’ latest transition has been from an online shop to a real showroom full of real pieces. Each gallery owner maintains their own booth, but patrons can come wander the aisles and see everything in person. Such an important thing when the piece you’re buying is, say, $30,000.
I wasn’t sure what to expect from the showroom. I mean maintaining a website is one thing, but an enormous showroom full of one-of-a-kind furniture is quite another. It looks like it’s not quite complete (they were painting the entry area), but there’s plenty of furniture to spend hours wandering and dreaming. I took a few (okay, a lot) of pictures to show you what 1stdibs in person is all about. Enjoy!