Monday, December 16, 2013

Stalking ebay

There has been a major void in my kitchen area.  I have cute little counter height bar area and no bar stools :(

Where are people to sit and chat with me while I slave away in the kitchen?

A few months ago, I found some amazing counter height chairs at St Vincent de Paul in LA, but they were $70!  Each!! They were just black vinyl bar chairs with tapered legs.  Cute, in a clunky way and very 70's.  I didn't see the big deal.  The tag said they had been there for almost a month.  I tried to talk the manager down and he actually budged to $85 for the set.  He said that obviously I knew what these chairs were (I did?) and that they would definitely be gone by tomorrow.  Naturally, I balked and refused to pay such an exorbitant, inflated price..... and then .....I couldn't stop thinking about them.  Aaand, sure enough, I went back the next day and they were gone!! wtf??  Who stole my chairs?

So, I searched ebay, etsy and craigslist and apparently they are kind of a big deal.  Here are a similar pair in orange vinyl for over $2,000?!? Which is totally insane, but kind of makes $85 seem more reasonable....

Gahh!  I hate when that happens!

So I search...for months on ebay, craigslist, thrift stores, even regular stores and ....nothing!  I want to kick myself every minute for not getting those awesome chairs!

And then, to make matters worse, I discover that counter height stools are way harder to find than regular bar height stools.  

Finally, I found a possible solution on ebay in brass (my favorite) and then I got sick and completely lost focus.  The auction ended and I forgot to bid!  

Luckily no one else did either and I contacted the seller and made a deal.  Not an awesome deal.  But I was so tired of looking and I did not want to see these chairs for $40,000 on etsy tomorrow so I bit the bullet and now I have new glamorous counter stools!


So far I've cleaned up up the metal with window cleaner and my favorite thing the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser.  This thing works wonders on scuffs.  Have you tried it?  You must!

Next up is upholstery and this is my inspiration:

They are going to be amazing.  Stay tuned....

Faux Snow.

I love a good flocked wreath!  It's just so fun and wintery and kitcshy.  Especially in Southern California.  Over the years I tried various teqniques to get the effect I was looking for.  I tried the flocking that comes in a can.  Total flakey mess.  I tried cotton batting.  Too bunchy and webbish.

Then, last year, I googled "diy flocking" and came upon several posts that had a recipe using grated ivory soap and spray starch from a can.  I modified slightly using the following ingredients:

1 bar ivory soap, grated on the large holes on a box grater

1/2 cup spray starch. I used this kind:

1/4 cup hot tap water.

Put everything in a large bowl and mix using a hand mixer. 

Mix for a minute or two until you have something that resembles soft butter~like when you over mix whipping cream and it gets almost clumpy

 I decided to flock an old wreath I've had in storage that I spray flocked a few years ago.  It's perfectly good wreath, just a dusty mess from the spray.  I tapped off as much of the dust as possible and wiped it down with a towel and was left with a slightly sage colored wreath which I really liked.  Then I propped it up outside and started the dabbing of faux snow. 

 You definitely want to do this outdoors or on a large tarp because this part gets really messy.   Last year when I did this I was totally perplexed about how to go about creating realistic looking snow. After a few tries I found my 2 favorite techniques:



Saturday, December 7, 2013