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Transitional Palette: Driftwood

This time of the year, the waning summer leading into fall, brings a change -
The patriotic hues of midsummer aren't quite right now -
yet it's just not time for the deep oranges and golds of fall.

It's a perfect time to take a fresh look at your home, and let it reflect the changing seasons in a subtle way.

The photo above is one I took on a beach in Washington state several years back,
and it's a perfect example of how nature brings together a perfect color palette:
A gathering of driftwood on an island beach explores the range of tan, gray, and cream tones. 
Behind them, if you look carefully, you'll see deep green trees and tawny gold field grasses
that add contrast and texture.

From warm to cool, light to dark, that's a balanced palette.
amber, tan, cream   +   Cool: gray, green
cream, tan, amber, light gray   + Dark: green, dark gray
Photography of items within the palette like this old wood boat [or the driftwood up above]
extends the color scheme when used as framed art.
Pale sage green walls and light tan carpeting set the stage 
for rooms filled with white, creamy white, and tan accents & furniture. 
Golden / Amber wood and fabric tones are a natural fit.

[note: I actually disliked that green wall color. I wanted tan walls.
But the house - which we leased - was for sale, and I wasn't about to make it look better than it already did so that someone else would buy it before WE could. 
It didn't matter. It sold anyway. They wanted my furniture with the deal :/ 
Apparently I still made it look too good!]
Silver metallics reflect the gray end of the 'driftwood' palette spectrum. 
Sparkling clear glass imitates water, 
and the addition of canvas or sheet music in ivory warms up the combination.
[the canvas-covered dresser from my last post would look perfect in this setting]

The following images are great examples of a transitional neutral palette,
featuring displays that I created for the booths that my former business had at Vintage shows...
RETREAT at BarnHouse Marketplace . Battle Ground, WA . July, 2011
[and if you came here from the HOMEWARDfound facebook page,
the table that I showed a sneak peek of is in that shot...
oh, look, it's ALSO in the photo below!]
RETREAT at Retreat Vintage Market . Camano Island, WA . June, 2011
RETREAT 'Taj Ma Tent' at BarnHouse Marketplace . Battle Ground, WA . July, 2009

The aesthetic of that business was all neutral tones, texture, and seasonal focus
built on re-imagining and re-using salvaged materials in furniture & decor.

Now, I realize that my displays are MUCH more theatrical than the average home decor is...
but they offer some great examples of using a neutral palette and seasonal texture.
You can see the 'driftwood' palette in play in all of them.

And with the addition of more warm colors - golds, browns, oranges - in September,
this look transitions perfectly into fall!


Dresser ReStyle - with Canvas!

 While HOMEWARDfound is generally about seasonal decor ideas,
sometimes I like to pop in 'Fast, Cheap & Easy' TM ideas for furniture, too...
totally do-able projects for you, some from my previous business [RETREAT].

This dresser was found on the curb, for free, back in 2009.
With lines like the ones on those drawers, I couldn't pass her up!

The case was solid, but the veneer on top and on the drawers was just wrecked.
No amount of putty and paint was going to make her presentable...
she went beyond needing mere 'makeup' into the realm of 'plastic surgery'!

While I was sanding her down, I had a brainstorm...

The dropcloth that she was sitting on in the prep room had some great texture.
I looked at the drawers, and then at the dropcloth, and that light bulb went on:
I would cover the entire dresser with a new canvas dropcloth!

Dropcloths are a great way to get a LOT of fabric for a ridiculously low price
and they come in many sizes and weights. 
I used the heaviest weight for this project, which covered up all of the 'blemishes' in her complexion.

continue reading to see what i did!


I Have a Sink-ing Feeling About This...

Here at HOMEWARDfound, my goal is to provide you with as many ORIGINAL ideas 
and as much seasonal inspiration as I possibly can. I'll go to [almost] any lengths to do that.
Heck, I'll even throw in the kitchen sink!

 In my 35+ years of designing and styling home decor and retail displays, I've come up with some whopper ideas.
But THIS one is one of my faves - and it was a mistakeuh huh. a total fluke. great story, too.
But you don't want the story, you want PICTURES!
BRILLIANT IDEA, right?!!!!! thank you. thank you very much.

[it's really not brilliant... scroll down to the end of the post and read the story]
Perfect in your store or show displays. Or garden. or... while GLAMPING!

My friend Marybeth ended up with that sink for her sweet shop poppyseeds,
and did exactly the same thing with it.
[That shot on the left above was taken at her store in Washington in June!]
She also did something similar with another sink she has:
Can you say CLEVER?!
Long before Marybeth took my sink to her store, 
and before I sat it on that cart, I used it on top of a pedestal:
The top of the wood pedestal was hollow, so the sink fit right on top perfectly.
The addition of a bucket full of herbs was a charming touch, outside the entrance to my farm store.
I later added lots more buckets of blooming flowers & herbs...
Here's a shot of the whole storefront while it was being worked on:
That was a huge (tall, deep) garage, turned into a store on my farm on an island.
The barn door on the left and the double doors on the right replaced the regular garage door,
for a much more welcoming entry. The awning up above was found for $10 bucks at ReStore -
and it was a perfect fit down to the last inch. Some things are meant to be!

I miss it, and wish I was still there on my farm with my store and my show...
but then, some things are NOT meant to be
It was all dismantled when we moved out. The barn door now lives at a neighbors' house.
It looks like a garage again. (BOR-ing)

I've used some other sinks in displays, as well...
 *The sink on the left is a double-bowl + countertop unit that topped a bank of vintage metal cabinets.
I filled one sink with white holiday ornaments (that looked like soap bubbles!)
and it held white milk glass & ceramic dishes in our booth at the Farm Chicks show in 2010.

* The sink on the right is sitting on two wood sawhorses (out of the photo),
and holds the same holiday ornaments and clear glass dessert plates & cups
at the snack bar area of our Petite Retreat Summer Market in 2010.

What do I always say?
Don't think literally about the stuff you have. Move it around.
See it differently. Use it in a way it's NOT supposed to be used!

Sinks aren't just for kitchens and baths...
They are great in store & booth displays, and even in the garden!
I would NOT, however, recommend using toilets for those purposes. [wink]

ok, NOW here's the story of my sink:
I was at a vintage show, unloading the trailer, setting up the booth with furnishings and accessories
and I needed to move the vintage enamel sink from the trailer across the parking area and to the booth.
And I was tired. I didn't want to carry it. (those things are HEAVY) so....
I plopped that sink on the top of a folding wire cart that I had stuffed with burlap fabric in the trailer,
and then I rolled the sink over to where I wanted it - which was in a chair.

But when I looked at the cart, and saw the sink sitting there, and realized that it was TOTALLY secure 
because the sink's apron was wrapped around the top edge of the cart
and that it was awfully darned easy to maneuver it around like that, 
well, the proverbial LIGHT BULB went on over my head:

Leave. the. sink. on. the. cart, Deb!

I grabbed the burlap and wrapped the outside of the cart with it
- and that, as they say, was that.
BRILLIANT IDEA. from outta' nowhere. Gotta' love it!


Summertime Blues: DIY Party Decor

It doesn't take a lot of work or money to put together beautiful decor - 
and these simple decor suggestions for a summertime party will help you do it in style
without spending a lot...

Let me share a few tips and photos with you
from one of my own summer dinner parties in my yard:
Greet your guests with style:
This pretty floral arrangement sits on a table just inside my front garden gate...
It's where the appetizers and wine were served as guests arrived,
so I wanted to set the tone of the party right at the entrance.

The color scheme is established with the appearance of blue hydrangeas,
tucked into a collection of enamelware pieces. 
The vintage enamelware buckets and dishpan with lid stayed out on the patio all year long, 
changed up with various flowers and fruit/vegetable displays to suit the seasons.

Having go-to containers for quick decor changes is a smart idea for easy decor.

continue reading to see more easy decor ideas!


Thrifty Weekend Makeover: Part IV

Welcome to Part IV
of my Thrifty Weekend Makeover, 
where we're Re-Styling Rooms using items found in the house
and adding some thrifted elements!

 You've seen the backyard patio, the family room, and the wine bar and guest bath...
In this final of four installments, you'll see the
 Living & Dining Room Reveal!

Let's start at the front door...
The grapevine wreath that was hung on the family room fireplace is now on the front door.
I left the greenery on it, and embellished it with some easy accents:
two small bunches of faux orchid flowers, a little pair of zorie sandals
and a small beach sign [all from Dollar Tree
introduce the turquoise/brown/green color scheme and the tropical theme.

Talk about 'Fast, Cheap, & Easy'TM - this cost four dollars and took all of five minutes!
continue reading to continue your tour...


Thrifty Weekend Makeover: Part III

Welcome to Part III of my Thrifty Weekend Makeover, 
where we're Re-Styling Rooms using items found in the house
and adding some thrifted elements!

In the family room reveal in my last post, I hinted that there was something around
 that I was REALLY excited to share with you!
So, just peek around the right side of that wall with the hat and clock and straw bag on it...

 BEFORE, you would have seen THIS:
It's a regular-sized closet, refitted years ago to hold wine accoutrements 
(glasses, wine-related picnic ware, 2 small wine fridges, etc.) 
as well as the LARGE oak leaves for the dining room table.

 Well, that just didn't go with the Tropical theme, so I got busy...

 I took down the curtain, emptied everything out of there, and then painted it.
This paint is the wall color from the living & dining rooms in the house,
and I used half a gallon of it that was out in the garage.
[it took THREE COATS to cover the raspberry red!]

You can just see the edge of a mural on the garage door before
I painted that out, too - the trim is now white and the wall & door are tan.
[it's okay - I painted that mural back in 1991. I've hated it ever since.]

Then I put everything back in the closet, starting with the two wine fridges 
and the table leaves... only I laid one of the table leaves on TOP of the fridges, 
creating a totally usable counter area that wasn't there before.
And then I decorated it!

If you're ready to see what it looks like NOW, continue reading...