Living Room Deluxe Redoux

As promised, here is the living room in all it’s Maximalist glory, finally (mostly) complete since buying the house in October 2017. I completed all the painting and wallpaper in a busy two-day whirlwind of back-aching labor, and it was worth it! So happy to have this part finished. There will be a couple small odds and ends to come (like a proper curtain and rod and the main window) but it is for all intents and purposes Fini!

BEFORE

This is what the living looked like when we moved in, sans the previous owner’s furniture.

 

AFTER

livingroomafter10

I LOVE how the room came out! The paint is 3 shades of grey, dark eggshell on the ceiling, medium on the walls and pale grey semi-gloss on the trim and baseboards. The big splurge was the Ellie Cashman floral wallpaper (about $400) but so worth it for the big drama. Most everything was brought from the old Denver house; the sofa, ottoman, rug and 2 etagere are new, all found online at great deals.livingroomafter8

The sofa was a big mark-down at Z Gallerie ($699), the grey velvet ottoman $160 at Wayfair, the rug $140 on houzz (I don’t buy nice rugs because, dogs 🙂 and the brass and glass etageres were about $260 each. I did a lot of comparison shopping and it really paid off. (painting to the right by Sandi Calistro)livingroomafter6Almost all of our art is thrifted, gifts, and trades with other artists. The big floor lamp was an awesome free alley score! I found the portrait painting on the right on shopgoodwill.com.

livingroomafter7The big lucite sofa table and 2 pink side tables were all thrift finds back in Denver, as was the signed “Los Angeles” print on the left, the white ceramic pots, and much of the accessories. The oil painting on the right I found recently on shopgoodwill.com.

livingroomafter5livingroomafter2

Yes, there are 3 disco balls on the bookshelves 🙂 (and yea I know, I really need to hide the wires…) Herman the Peacock (A yard sale find) seems quite at home here among the flowers.livingroomafter3

Here’s where I really let my inner maximalist out to play. Inspired by the amazing art of Nick Cave, I bedecked our old chandelier in about 20 pounds of costume jewelry, most of which came from grab bags at the thrift store.livingroomafter9livingroomafter4livingroomafter1

Thanks for looking! Next up: the Holidays.

Kitchen & Dining Room Before and After – a Glam Makeover for under $500

kitdinafter5

I’ve finally been getting some of the big projects checked off the to-do list since moving to our new home last October. Without further ado, here is the kitchen and dining room redo!

These rooms didn’t need much so I focused on updating and freshening things up. I changed the cabinet hardware (new pulls and knobs, all for about $50 on Amazon), painted the walls and trim in lovely shades of grey (about $75 for paint and supplies) and finally added a high-end wallpaper as an accent (this is where the big money went, about $130 for a roll of this Cole & Sons paper. I love this as a fun alternative to a tile backsplash, and it’s a whole lot cheaper. (I did install clear plastic sheets over the wallpaper above the sink to protect it, $25 on amazon). This was my first time installing wallpaper and it’s far from perfect, but I did a decent job 🙂

In the dining room I changed out the ceiling light for a black chandelier. Can you believe it’s plastic? You’d never know, and it was just over $100 on Houzz.com. I also added new curtains and rods, both found on Amazon. Most everything else we already owned.

I will be changing out the ceiling fan and outlet covers soon to finish it off, and we will be replacing the dining room rug with a larger one. Someday I’d love to redo the tile…

BEFORE:

Screen Shot 2018-09-15 at 4.52.32 PMScreen Shot 2018-09-15 at 4.52.48 PMScreen Shot 2018-09-15 at 4.53.15 PMScreen Shot 2018-09-15 at 4.53.00 PMScreen Shot 2018-09-15 at 4.54.25 PM

AFTER:

kitdinafter5kitdinafter4kitdinafter6kitdinafter7kitdinafter1kitdinafter2kitdinafter3

Next Up: The Living Room

Artist House Tour: Marie M. Vlasic and Jiva Armetta Create Design Harmony at Home

Our home has been featured in Westword!

Artist House Tour: Marie M. Vlasic and Jiva Armetta Create Design Harmony at Home

Here is the link to the article: http://www.westword.com/arts/artist-house-tour-marie-m-vlasic-and-jiva-armetta-create-design-harmony-at-home-6631496

Lots of pictures of the house and artsy Q & A with yours truly. Here are some teaser images:

vlasiclivingroom3-1mb

Me and my Man Our Living Room.

vlasicbedroom1-1mb

The Glam Rock Star Bedroom, with Pugs.

vlasicartstudio1-1mb

My Art Studio.

There are lots more pics at the link above. Thanks to Jeanne Connolly for the article, and Anthony Camera for the great photos.

Actually, a lot has changed in the house since these photos were taken. (for instance, we are almost done with a total revamp of the living room), and I’ll be posting all the changes and details here soon. Be sure and subscribe to this blog so you won’t miss a thing!

Fun Space-age Faux Fur Chair DIY Make-over on a Found 60’s Chair, plus Furry Ottomans!

furchairsidefront

I had a lot of fun with this one! A neighbor who moved left this awesome chair behind. It needed some work, but hey, it was FREE!

This is what it looked like BEFORE:

furchairbeforefront furchirbeforeback

Apparently someone’s dog had made a meal out of the legs, so my first step was to fix them.

furchairlegbefore furchairlegsbefore

After sanding all the wood, I used Magic Sculpt to fill in the nibbled bits on the legs. Then more sanding after the Magic Sculpt dried.

furchairlegfix

Then I sprayed them with a white gloss paint (primer and paint in one, about 3 coats).

furchairpainting

After the paint dried thoroughly, it was time to get furry! I used a long-pile Mongolian-style faux fur from Distinctive Fabric, combining white and black. Usually I would use a staple gun, but faux fur loves hot glue, it holds the fur like nothing else. Do be sure about your placement, as you will not be able to separate the fur once it dries. And of course, be very careful. Hot glue burns are no fun. Have a bowl of ice water on hand just in case, it really helps if you do burn yourself. I used an old screwdriver to push the fur into the cracks to avoid burns.

furchairbefore  furchairseat

I did the seat first, measuring and cutting the fur in place on the chair. You’ll want to pull the fur away from the backing when you are cutting as much as possible to avoid cutting into too much of the long pile. Fair warning, faux fur is really messy! It will cover everything, including you, so dress appropriately.

furchairglueing

The gluing was actually pretty easy, it just took some time. I worked in about 6-inch sections, laying the glue, pulling the fur into place and pushing down to stick it into the fur well. The great thing about faux fur is, the longer stuff covers a multitude of sins, so even a bit of a messy job will look great. And be sure and have a lot of glue sticks on hand, I used about ten long ones.

furchairpinning

For the upper part of the chair, I pinned the fur into place and then glued it.

furchairdone

And it’s done! What a mess. My pug Max doesn’t seem to mind.

furchairside furchairfront furchairsidefront

Here it is in the living room. Next up, the furry ottomans…

furchairwithottomans

This was an easy one. I was tired of the boring black storage ottomans, so I used a staple gun to give them matching faux fur tops. This time I didn’t use the hot glue so I have the option of easily removing the fur in the future if I want.

Here they are BEFORE:

furottomansbefore

I just removed the tops and stapled fur under the lids. Easy-peasy.

furottomancover

And here they are! The pugs love them.

furchairmax

New Fabulous Finds! Awesome Z Gallerie Vases from the Thrift Store…

New Fabulous Finds!

I love these big decorative vases from Z Gallerie. I found them at my favorite Goodwill this week, and they look great in the living room. They are in new condition, and still have the original price tags on the bottom ($49.99 each). I snapped them up for $14.99 each. Yay!

zgallvases1 zgallvases3   zgallvases2

Want to see the DIY on those vintage folding chairs? I found them in the alley and made them pretty.

That great acrylic cart came from Goodwill, too, and only $14.99!

What amazing things have you found lately? I’d love to hear about it in the Leave a Reply/Comments section.

Fun DIY Fornasetti Decoupage Ceiling Design for the Rock Star Glam Bedroom

I adore Fornasetti. I’d love to paper a wall with Fornasetti wallpaper, but since $300+ a roll is a bit out of my price range (and it seems to be discontinued at that) I wanted to create my own look with the Fornasetti “Julia” images. I’ve been looking for the right project to use the imagery on for awhile now, and came up with this fun design that I decoupaged onto my bedroom ceiling around the medallion. It was easy and cost almost nothing.

ceilinglightdone

Ceiling Before:

ceilinglightbefore

I started out by finding the images I wanted through a Google image search. In addition to the Fornasetti, I wanted to add a touch of color to the design, so I printed out these Damian Hurst butterfly images as well. I then sized the Julia faces all to 8″ and the butterflies about 2″ and printed them all on plain white paper and cut them out carefully. Then I played around on the rug with various layouts and finally decided on this one:

ceilinglightlayout

Now it’s time to decoupage! Just mix 3 parts Elmer’s glue (any basic white glue should work), to 1 part water, brush it lightly but thoroughly on the back of the image and on the surface to be covered and carefully lay on the image. This can be a little tricky as you want to avoid air bubbles. I start at one corner and smooth it gently to the other corner. If you get a bubble gently work it out with the damp brush.

And here it is finished! The whole process took about an hour and cost only the cash to cover the ink, paper and glue, so pennies!

ceilinglightdone2 ceilinglightdone3

ceilinglightdone

…I also had a little fun on the back of the bedroom door with some Fornasetti arms and a couple more butterflies…

bedroomdoor bedroomdoor2

A Note on Copyrighted Images: It’s ok to do things like this for your own personal use, but you cannot use copyrighted images on anything you are going to sell, or you can be sued for copyright infringement.

You can see some of the Rock Star Glam bedroom DIY’s here:

Ceiling Light Redo

Found Hipster Art Make-Over

And the rest HERE.

The Biggest Mistake People Make in Decorating for Halloween…How to Pull it All Together: Helpful Hints & Tips

What sets a well-decorated home apart from the rest? You know it when you see a well-done house, it just looks good. But what is it that sets it apart? There are a few things that tie together a good Halloween house, but the Biggest Mistake is…

Mistake #1: Throwing up the Halloween decorations on top of the everyday decor. (This goes for every holiday, not just Halloween!)

It’s messy. It’s cluttered. It’s hodge-podge. It looks thrown together, like you didn’t care. It looks like “Why did they bother”? The best way to get a good look for your Halloween decor is to put away the everyday stuff (at least some of it) and create holiday vignettes where you want the decorations to shine. (Usually the best places to go all-out are where people will be gathering: The porch or patio, the front entry, the dining room. I have a huge antique trunk in the dining room. This is where all the “every-day” decor and tchotchkes are carefully stored away for the holiday season (Halloween-New Years) so I can get crazy and look good for the holidays.

Mistake #2: No theme.

All kinds of stuff, from different eras, tossed randomly around the house. It doesn’t really work. Organize your spooky goodies into themes, by area. I have all sorts of different goodies that I’ve collected over the years from thrift stores and yard sales, but I make it work by grouping by color, era, or subject matter. Do you have an awesome collection of vintage pumpkins? Group them on a table for a delightful vignette. Have a bunch of cool skulls? Display them together on the mantle. Collections have a much greater impact than objects placed individually. Have a bunch of miscellaneous Halloween stuff that’s just all orange? That works, too. And lastly, if you are into the scary stuff, keep that together as well. Cute and scary don’t get along so well in the same space. Try creating a theme in each room, or at least in different areas of the same room. In my main room, I have several different vignettes: The white and black stuff is together on the tall cabinet; the Devilish stuff is on, in or near the short cabinet, and a skull collection resides by the window. All my Dia De Los Muertos decor is grouped on the front porch.

Mistake #3: No unifying factor.

The unifying factor is what pulls it all together. It’s what makes the eye flow easily from one space to another. My unifying factor is sheer black fabric. It goes with every vignette in the house, and even though the displays may be different in the room, the use of the black flowing from one to the other pulls it all together.

Here are a couple examples:

halloween2014insidediningroomcabinetbefore2

BEFORE: the Tall Cabinet

fall2014cabinet

AFTER: the Tall Cabinet

I removed the purple glass collection and grouped all the what and black items here, with some of the “unifying” sheer black fabric.

halloween2014insidediningroommantlebefore

BEFORE: the Mantle

fall2014mantle

AFTER: the Mantle

Again, all the regular every day decor has been packed away for the glory of Halloween.

halloween2014insidediningroomcabinetbefore

BEFORE: the Small Cabinet

fall2014cornerdining

AFTER: the Small Cabinet

All the “devilish” things are in this corner. I cleared out the cabinet and put my devil head in there with some red lights. Instead of packing away the candles, I decided to just use them differently. You can never have too many candles, they create a great atmosphere. You’ll notice the sheer black fabric repeated here as well.

See all the Halloween decor here: The Front Room, The Entry & Stairwell, and Outside.