Sunday, November 28, 2010

Big Blue

As is my usual habit, I was one day last week browsing through the craigslist ads when I noticed an unusual post.  It said " very large chandelier."  Chandeliers are not hard to come by on craigslist, but they are usually standard, run of the mill, normal sized fixtures.  The measurements listed in the post were " 36" high and 42" wide."  I got out my measuring tape and tried to get an idea of how big this thing really was, because in the picture posted with the add, it did not seem that big.  My thought was to get it and re-sell it since it was ridiculously low priced, which was another thing that caught my eye in the ad.  Very large and low priced?  I was all over it!!  I called within 10 minutes of the owner posting and he said I was the 4th caller already.  But, as luck would have it, none of the other callers were able to come see the "very large chandelier" right away.  I was.  Within 30 minutes, I was standing before it with mixed thoughts on whether or not to purchase it.  It was kind of ugly brown and beige eighties looking and indeed VERY large ( the picture did not do it justice as it was bigger in person than I had imagined.) Would anybody buy it from me? Would I get stuck with this huge monstrosity?  How would it fit in my car?  Am I crazy to buy a huge chandelier?!  What am I doing here?  I finally decided to just bite the bullet and purchase the beast!  With some help from the seller, we got it strapped in to my trunk and I made it home.  I brought it inside and put it on my dining room table.  It was then that I decided I would be keeping it.  It made such a statement in it's size, I thought it would be the perfect over-the-top light fixture in my dining room.
In it's original color.
But the color was completely wrong for my space and very dated looking, so it was off to the hardware store for my go-to problem solver: spray paint.  Before I went though, I had a few tubes of craft paint on hand and decided to test out some color possibilities.


Some of the color tests.





I eventually decided on royal blue to match the chairs at my dining table.  Silver was a very close second and for a while it looked like it might be shocking pink and hung in my daughters room.  The thought of her jumping from her bed to the chandelier and swinging from it quickly determined the fixtures place in the dining room!

In progress

Four cans of spray paint later, I had blue hair, blue skin, blue boogers and a BIG BLUE chandelier!


Now to hang it........I needed help since it is pretty heavy, so I recruited some friends.  After measuring from the ceiling to determine the best height, we adjusted the chain length and set about devising a plan on the best way to get it up there!  I should mention, at this point I still wasn't completely sold on having a light that big over my dining table.  I have 10' cielings, but even at that, this thing seemed HUGE!  My friends convinced me that it would be such a "wow" factor, I had to do it.  So back to hanging.  It took three of us to hoist it up, get it on the chain which was already attached to the ceiling plate and keep it balanced while I snaked the wires up through the collar to the ceiling box.  Finally, everything was wired, hung and ready to go.  I set about putting all the bulbs in (there are 24 bulbs in this sucker!)

You can get some idea of scale when I stand next to it!
 I went out to the breaker box, turned the circuit back on and...............

Taaaa- Daaaaa!!

I put it on a dimmer.  This is the lowest setting....

......and this is the highest at 600 watts!

Oh. My. Goodness. It. Is. So. Cool!  This was one of the riskier design choices I've made, but I think it really paid off in the end.  And if I do ever decide to move it, there is always spray paint!


Any guesses as to how much I paid for it?

I am really happy with the way it looks, the drama it gives the room and the pop of color it brings.  And I will always have plenty of light for dinner parties!  These pictures don't quite show just how big this thing really is, but trust me, it is BIG BLUE!!  The only thing I lament?  Not getting a picture of it strapped into the trunk of my VW Jetta!

I hope you enjoyed your visit, I appreciate you stopping by!  Won't you please consider following me on the right side bar?
xoxo,








Sunday, November 21, 2010

Silver Love


I guess you could call me a Magpie as I'm attracted to any shiny thing.  Particularly silver and particularly round shiny things, even more so!  In fact, Freud himself might have something to say about my obsession with silver balls!  I have them in just about every room in my house, and never tire of looking at them!


Whenever out shopping, I keep a lookout for these beauties as they make great gifts, especially at this time of year.  In fact, I have been the instigator in several friends newly aquired obsession of all things round and silver!




I guess gold or bronze would be cool too, but I've never seen the same availability or selection in those colors.  What do you think?  Would you do silver, gold, bronze or a color like blue or green?  Also, do you prefer glass or stainless steel orbs?  The glass ones are available at most Mexican imports stores and the stainless ones seem to have the best availability at garden centers.  I like both, but stainless is more practical for me since I have kids.  Stainless = no breakage!  All of my glass orbs are up high, out of reach, nestled together above my kitchen cabinets.  While not usually a fan of over-cabinet-decoration (read: dust magnet!) I think these catch the light and lend an otherwise dead space some much needed life.

Hope you enjoyed sharing my silver love/obsession with me and as always, won't you consider following my blog on the right side bar?  Thank you so much for visiting!

As ever,

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Color Outside the Lines

http://www.niagaranovice.blogspot.com/

Glass Grapes and Raindrops

Anyone that knows me knows I'm a Goodwill devotee. I'm usually in there twice a week because you just never know what you'll find.  Last Monday, there I was, cruising the aisles but not seeing much I had to have.  I was just getting ready to leave but decided to check the knick knack aisle again on the way out.  Something round and cobalt blue caught my eye.  I went over to check it out and discovered it was a cluster of glass grapes like the kind that used to be popular in the 70's.  They must be regaining popularity because I'm seeing them everywhere!  Anyway, there were two sets and I instantly picked them up and put them in my basket.  I had no idea where I would use them and they did not have a price tag so I thought if they were anything above $2.99 a piece, I would walk away without them.  I took them up front, pointed out that they were not priced and the cashier said "$1.99."  So.... each, or for the pair?  "$1.99 for the pair."  Cool!  So, I scored a pair of glass grape clusters, but still had no idea how I would use them.         

The blue just glows in the light!
I got home and started playing around with them and noticed they were strung together with wire and if cut apart, I would have a whole bunch of cobalt blue pendants to string up somewhere.  My first thought was out on the patio, where the sunlight would make the blue glass glow.  But for some reason I wanted to use them inside.  I looked around and decided over my kitchen island would be the best place.  I found a length of bamboo I had left over from some other project, some screw-eye hooks and some fishing line and got to work.  I wanted to have it look like giant raindrops falling indoors.  I really love the color it adds, the unexpected element, and the fun!  My kids have decided it is a giant Newton's Cradle and I will frequently catch them standing on the island playing with the hanging jewels.  I love the way it turned out and it goes to show....from glass grapes to giant raindrops, you just never know what you will find!

Happy Hunting,

Friday, November 5, 2010

Cloud Nine

Ok, so the show has aired, the excitement has turned to possibility and I'm thinking "that was fun!.....what next?!"  I still need to post about the whole experience of being chosen to go, going, what happened, who I met and all the other pertinent details.  It feels a little like I just got off the tour bus!  I'm exhausted, excited, nervous and confident all at the same time.  This video clip is of the little extra segment I got to do with Nate!  I had only just found that morning when the producers called to let me know I would have "segment 6" all to myself and that I would be "leading" the segment based on the fabric stenciling I had done in my own room.  Can you say thrilling?!  I'm pretty sure I screamed out loud as soon as I hung up the phone....I honestly don't remember.  Suffice it to say I was beyond happy.  So, that is just a little of my experience on Nate's show....to be continued.

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Monday, November 1, 2010

Textiles and Technology


I was recently complimented on the header here on the home page, and asked how I did it.  Well, I'm sure many people out there have done this too: I scanned a beloved piece of threadbare fabric I've had for years. It originally looked like this


It is one of my very favorite motifs, and in any graphics program you can tweak the color scheme to whatever combination you can imagine.  For the header, I did a grey on grey scheme, but bright colors would be awesome too!

Can't you just see this on a Louis XVI chair?
Super feminine boudoir
Sweet in a baby's room
Super Mid Century
Classic Black and White
Multi Cultural Color


 As you can see, the possibilities are endless!  This is but one example of a scanned fabric....I have done dozens of patterns over the years.  Find one you love and change it up with scaling the pattern bigger or smaller and swapping colors.  You'll love the results.  Happy Scanning!

Edit: If you're reading this now, you probably noticed the header has changed. I like to switch things up every once in a while!


Tucson Home Magazine Feature

Since I'm so new to this, I'm just going to start posting stuff, and see where it takes me.  About a year and a half ago, I entered a contest sponsored by a local lifestyle magazine and ended up winning the Grand Prize!  See the article here:http://www.tucsonhomemag.com/diy/diyawards2009.html  It was an amazing experience, unfortunately my husband filed for divorce at almost the same time I'd found out I won.  Talk about highs and lows!!  It knocked me off my feet for a while, but now I'm back up and ready to take this thing on!  With my recent trip to New York to be on The Nate Berkus Show, I think I'm on my way!  (more about "the Nate Experience" later!)

See you soon!
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