Thursday, March 29, 2012

~Jasperware or Annieware?~

Hello friends...happy Thursday !
I feel as though I have been neglecting all of you. 
I am preparing for my BIG weekend with Annie and also fighting off a cold.
I have popped so many Zinc lozenges that I have lost count.   
I do believe they are working because my cold never really peaked.
I am feeling much better after I took one whole day and did nothing but sleep.
My mantra these last few days has been
"I will not be sick..I will not be sick"

So Friday I head to Leesburg to set up for Annie's arrival and Saturday is the big 
I am so excited about meeting all the participants that have registered.
Also to see all my fellow retailers again.  
The Leesburg Workshop is going to be so special because we have a unique treat for Annie to enjoy.
Many of the area retailers will be showcasing a few of their best
 and most creative painted pieces for Annie and all the guests to admire.

Our wonderfully loyal friend
Marian Parsons aka Miss Mustard Seed 
will be displaying one of her inspiring painted pieces.
I can't wait to see what she brings.
I am looking forward to finally seeing Marian and Annie meet each other.
A match made in Heaven!
I feel very honored to also be showcasing a painted piece.

My little Gypsy dresser will be on display 
along with the story I have written about her.
I am in charge of the Leesburg vignettes and because of that 
I have been privy to all the photos of the pieces to be displayed.
Let's just say that this is going to be so special and these artists will knock your socks off!
Many of the pieces will be available for purchase, so be sure to bring an extra check.
You might see something you just HAVE to take home with you.
Although I have been super busy and not feeling too well, that has not stopped me from playing with my Annie Sloan Chalk Paint™ decorative paints.
Time for a little show and tell.

I spotted this Jasperware lamp on an auction site.
It sold for $100.
You might remember the lamp I painted to mimic the look here.

Last week I attended my local SPCA charity Rummage Sale.
Boy...did I find some fabulous bargains!!!
The minute I saw this metal lamp, I knew it was destined for greatness.
Annie Sloan Chalk Paint™ greatness that is.
Is it perfect or What????

Here she is after two coats of Duck Egg Blue

Then I did a little dry brushing over all the raised details with Old White.
A nice coat of Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax™

(I love saying Voila!)
Instant Jasperware.

Not too shabby

So ladies...what's your pleasure
The $100.00 lamp...

Or the $11.00 thrifted lamp I picked up at a rummage sale?
Yeah...the shade is thrifted also...cuz that's how we Sloan Rangers roll
You might also be interested to know that I used exactly 3 tablespoons worth of 
Annie Sloan Chalk Paint™
With all due respect..You ladies who love your canned spray paint would have used up a whole can of 
that non environment friendly stuff to get the same coverage I achieved. 
And you most likely would have had to spray prime also because it was metal.
I'm guessing $5.00 for the can of paint and another $5.00 at least for a spray can of primer.
I also had no odor...worked on my kitchen stovetop and did not have to work outside
I rest my case.
Can you tell I am not a spray paint fan.
Yikes....I probably lost at least 50 spray paint loving followers just now!
Oh well...such is life.
That's it for now...I will most likely not post again until I get back from 
Boston, where I am playing with all my painting friends again.
I am so excited to meet
 Shaunna from Perfectly Imperfect
Jami from Freckled Laundry and
 Amy from Maison Decor 
If you are in the Leesburg,Va
or Boston area come join us!

Until next kind and stay creative!                                               

Thursday, March 22, 2012

~Virginia Dogwood Season Revisited~

Hello friends...well it's Springtime here in Virginia. 
Since my part of the country is in full bloom,
I thought I would revisit a post I did a couple of years ago.
So many of you are new to my blog and maybe have not seen this post.
I think it's a keeper... enjoy!
So hop on your bike and come along! 

Lovely Lees Ridge Road, Virginia
Proud to say "I live here"

Hello friends... I thought you would like to see what  Dogwood season here in Virginia is like, I will take you on a little tour of my country road. The road I live on is lined with gorgeous horse farms and old stone walls (not as old as yours Gretel). Many beautiful homes dot the landscape...some new and many dating back before the Civil War. The Redbuds are at their peak with their lovely lilac pink flowers. Once the flowers fade they will don wonderful heart shaped glossy green leaves.

All the pink and white dogwoods are just coming into full bloom. Although the dogwood is the state flower of Virginia, they are very hard to grow..go figure. I have been babying one for ten years and it is only about 6 feet tall and just started blooming. Those lucky enough to have them on their property are rewarded with delicate blooms that seem to float in the air. 

These beautiful trees have a story behind them. It seems that during the time of Crucifixion, the dogwood tree was known for it's strength and hard wood. It was chosen as the tree that would supply the timber for the cross Jesus would be nailed to. To be used for such a cruel purpose distressed the tree greatly and Jesus sensed this. Jesus told the mighty Dogwood that to ease it's guilt, it would never again be used for such a task. From then on the dogwood would never grow tall and it's trunk and branches would be twisted and bent. The blossoms would be in the shape of a cross with nail marks of rust red at the point of each petal with a crown of thorns at the center. All who see this shall remember.

I love how the flowers seem to float in the air. This is actually a side street a few minutes away, but I love the stone house as a backdrop for the delicate flowers. Great contrast.

I love this whole row of pink and white Dogwoods

With the grass being so very green, it makes for a wonderful contrast.

This is a neighbors long driveway..all the tiny white dots are Dogwood blossoms

I really adore this large blooming cherry tree...seems everywhere I look I see pink and green!

Right behind me is a lovely estate called Hunting Ridge, owned by two beautiful ladies that I am so happy to call my friends. The main house on their property is a very cool pre Civil War house with little doorways, gorgeous original wood floors with wonderful creaks and great history. They even have their own tiny cool is that! In the back yard their mother planted two rows of lilacs some 50+ years ago.

I love how they have grown together creating a natural arbor.

I wish you could smell the old-fashioned, romantic aroma of these wonderful old lilacs...pure heaven.

All along the stone walk these little Johnny Jump-ups are growing through all the crevices.

This beautiful show of pinks, whites and mauves does not last very long and I make a point to take time to appreciate the beauty all around me. It always makes me smile. Soon it will be azalea, peony and iris season...that's a whole other post!
I hope you have enjoyed my country road here in Warrenton,Virginia. Be sure to come back again real soon.

Until next kind and stay creative.

Friday, March 16, 2012

~Annie Sloan Leesburg Workshop Giveaway~

Hello friends!
I just spent two fabulous days with all my fellow stockist and with 
Annie Sloan herself.
What an incredible time I had.

Believe me when I say
Annie Sloan
 and her wonderful family
are the Real Deal!
The same goes for the entire Jolie Design & Decor family.
Lisa amaze me.
 So much business smarts in such a classy package.
That's Lisa and Annie in the photo above.
The company hosted a wonderful evening of great food, drink and good company where a great time was had by all.
After two very full days of Annie, savvy business tips, color and fun painting techniques, it's time to do something fun.
How about a Giveaway!!!

Are you aching to be a part of the Annie Sloan 2012 American tour?
Well here is your chance.
If you are in the Mid-Atlantic area or any area for that fact and want a chance to play with the queen of color,
 Ms Annie Sloan,
 listen up.

Miss Mustard Seed herself will be our 
Guest of Honor 
at the Leesburg Event on March 31st.
is giving away a free Annie Sloan 
Leesburg Workshop ticket,
courtesy of the 
D.C. Metro Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Retailers
Celeste Blumenauer of Catfish Studios
Kelly Thompson of Stylish Patina
Denise Nolan & Bobby Norris of Repurposed & Refined
and of course
A $350.00 value !
A fabulous 
Annie Sloan Chalk Paint
 prize package.
Who would not want to win this:
A tin of Annie Sloan Clear Wax and a tin of Dark Wax
the new Craqueleur System
a Fabulous Wax brush
and a very cool Annie Sloan Official Apron

So what are you waiting for???
Get on over to 
Don't worry if you want the Prize package but cannot attend the Workshop.
If that happens we will be splitting the Prize!!
How awesome is that!!!!



Friday, March 9, 2012

~New Orleans or Bust~

The Queen has arrived!!
All hail the Queen!

posing for a quick photo
in between magazine interviews all day in
 New York City.
Get ready for a media blitz in the coming months,
 thanks to ASCP Public Relations wiz,
 Melissa Riche.
Annie is now on her way to New Orleans
for the annual
 Annie Sloan Stockist Meeting.
Guess who is going to play with Annie in 
New Orleans??
I am so darned excited I can hardly function!
I can't sleep!
I can't think straight!
I can't eat.....
ok, that 's a lie, I just polised off a Reese's Peanut Butter Egg.
But I polished it off because I wasn't thinking straight!!
As if that isn't exciting enough,

On March 30, I head to Leesburg,Va
to prepare for the March 31st
Annie Sloan Workshop.
I get to play with Annie a 2nd time!!
But wait...I am not done yet...
Immediately after the Leesburg Event,
which by the way is going to be 
Have you heard that the one and only
is going to be our guest of honor.
How cool is that?
There are still a few seats available, so if you are thinking about 
attending and meeting Annie..
Now is your chance..don't get left out.
Just when I thought my little painting heart 
couldn't take any more excitement..
I get an e-mail telling me that I am going to be
At the 
Did you hear me?
An Instructor...OMGosh!!!
Somebody Pinch me please!!
I had to go clothes shopping today
All my clothes have ASCP on them!
Have you noticed all the exclamation points in this post?
It's because
I'M EXCITED!!!!!!!!
Have I said how excited I am???
I can't wait to come back here and share my fun with you guys.
See you next week!
had to throw in one more (!)

Until next kind and stay creative.


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

~Meet Me at the Neptune Bar~

Hello friends...hope your week is moving along smoothly.
I just returned home from NY for a quick visit with my Mom.
Seven hours up on Friday and seven hours back on Sunday.
Before I left town, my good friend Connie from Hartwood Roses
had come to Warrenton to help me move some newly painted pieces
over to my shop at the Fox Den.
Thank you Connie!

Excuse my son's feet..He was deep into a book and looked very comfy and Darn...thats my silly foot!
So here is the first Salvation Macy's piece. 
A very pretty console/bar from what was probably
once a full dining room set.
It has nice large casters underneath the bottom trim.
Very easy to roll around, which is a good thing since this piece 
is very heavy..solid wood.

I love the versatility of the interior.
Shelves and a nice drawer.
Bifold doors on the left and single door on the right.
Good storage piece.
It is hard to see, but she has very dated painted flowers on the doors...
not a fan of this design and those will be covered.

Even the back was finished, so the piece could be used as an island or movable bar.
The top is in pristine condition.

So... what to do with this piece.
I needed some inspiration

Well it came in the form of a TV documentary about 1950's Miami Beach's vintage hotels.

images via Google images

I loved all the images of Art Deco hotels and the gorgeous guest pools.
Oh...and those gorgeous watery colors.
When I look at these images, I see Annie Sloan's beautiful colors..

Aubusson Blue
Country Grey (the sandy beaches)
Louis Blue

Can I have that car please??

I wanted to try to catch the striated ocean colors 
and the cool Art Deco hues

I base coated the piece in Country Grey...two coats and painted right over the hardware.

Then I applied a very watery wash of Aubusson Blue all over the piece
 and immediately wiped off any excess with a soft rag before it could dry.
I poured some watery Versailles, Henrietta, Louis Blue and Aubusson
into a few bowls and just started to brush mix and apply the colors to my piece
in a very slip slap uneven way.
I overlapped colors...added darker hues in the corners for depth.
I paid no attention to even brush strokes...just the opposite
I wanted streaks and lot's of brush strokes and variation.

So lets see if I even came close....
Grab your flip flops and meet me at the Neptune Bar!

Not perfect...but not too shabby.

I like the fun touches of Henrietta which mimic the Art Deco colors of the Marlin Hotel

Soft and watery

A little distressing and clear wax to give my piece the glow of the Florida sunshine

I love all the highs and lows of may not be for all tastes, 
but for this piece I think it works.

I never take doors off the hinges anymore...Annie's paint never gets tacky or sticky.

I lightly sanded down to the Country Grey in areas to mimic the sandy beaches

Mimosa anyone?

Lovely ASCP soft wax buttery smooth.
Waxing before I distress always yields such a silky smooth surface.
I love the way the paint will build up onto the sand paper...
then that build up almost starts to act as a buffing's amazing!

County Grey interior and a pretty pop of Aubusson Blue in the drawer.

I applied two coats of Annie's clear wax for a good protective finish and
 my oh my...
just look at that glow!
The top has a pale blue wash over the C.Grey.

Hope you enjoyed your visit at 
'The Neptune Bar'

My next piece was found for me by a picker..thanks Carol!

This is a pretty vintage dresser which had a good coat or two of shiny latex.

The top had some loose latex, so I decided to sand down those areas.
ASCP sticks to latex, but it will not re-adhere peeling paint.
That had to come off...guess what..
The whole top ended up peeling off which is testament of a lousy latex paint job.
I ended up removing the top paint and the drawers.
The sides were stuck on really well so I left them.
I wanted this dresser to be a unisex design.
Great for a girl or for a guys room.
After some thought...

This is what I came up with.
A custom ASCP mix of Olive/Old White/Versailles
The dresser top is painted in ASCP Graphite
which I manipulated to look like a slab of slate.
Graphite is a gorgeous deep charcoal with blue undertones

I am getting ready to crown myself 
'Queen of Brushstrokes'
I love seeing the texture of a good brushstroke!!!
Don't you think this looks like a flat slab stone?

I love it!
My little bird was made and gifted to me by my dear friend Karen, from Classic Wall Finishes.
Karen is Patty Seaman's sister and 
was one of my fabulous ASCP Certified Instructor trainers and a very talented artist.
Thank you Karen!

I decoupaged the inside of the drawers with a great thrifted wallpaper depicting French labels.

My favorite feature on this dresser is the beautiful tomato red porcelain knobs.
They just make this piece
My dresser was lightly distressed and clear waxed.

A shot prior to adding the knobs (Hobby Lobby) and you can see the classic two tone strips.
Hence the name..
'Johnny Buys a Striped Suit'
Both of my new pieces are looking for good homes.
You can visit them at the Fox Den in my shop
The Empty Nest

If you would like to create your own painted pieces,
 be sure to get yourself registered for

Seats are becoming very limited, so don't wait and get left out.
This is going to be a fabulous and fun all day event!

Want to meet Miss Mustard Seed???
She will be there..all day as one of our guests of honor!!
Speaking of MMS...she will be doing a fabulous
So stay tuned for that announcement very soon.
Don't want to take a chance on missing Annie?
Go here now and register...go..NOW!

Until next kind and stay creative.