Category Archives: Home Décor

Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint

*This post has been sponsored by Behr Paint Company. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

It’s finally time to reveal that big furniture project I’ve been hinting at for the last several weeks! Slip into a fuzzy robe, grab a second cup of coffee, and settle in, folks, because today’s DIY tale in partnership with Behr Paint Company is a meaty one.

It all started with an extra beat-up old dresser. I had spotted it toward the beginning of the year at a local thrift store with the price tag of $79. I don’t mind admitting that I sort of balked at that price because the dresser was clearly not solid wood (the dated wood veneer on the outside edges had seen better days) and it was wobbly, too. I ended up walking away from it that day but just couldn’t get it out of my mind. So, I went back a week later to give it a closer look.

I got down on my hands and knees in the store to inspect the legs and found that a few quick twists of the tapered legs helped get rid of most of the wobble. Even still, I wasn’t totally sold on the price, so I asked the woman at the cash register if there was any room for negotiation. She went back to ask the manager, and we ended up settling on $60. Still not quite a steal in my book, but I was excited to shave off nearly $20 from the original list price.

After getting the piece home and giving it an even more thorough inspection, I decided that the dresser still needed extra TLC beyond a simple tightening of the legs—namely, it needed paint. So, with a little help from you guys on Instagram, I chose a retro-inspired teardrop shape for the drawer fronts and got to work making my vision come to life using the Two-Part BEHR® Chalk Decorative Paint System—all the supplies for which I purchased from the paint department at Home Depot.

Scroll on to learn how to get the same look on a tired vintage dresser of your own using my shopping list and printable teardrop template.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Here’s What You’ll Need

1. BEHR® Chalk Decorative Paint (I used Picnic Table BCP29 and Silver Celadon BCP40 for this project)

2. BEHR® Wax Decorative Finish (I used ‘Clear’)

3. 1.75 in. Chalk Decorative Paint Brush

4. 1.875 in. Chalk Decorative Wax Brush

5. Printable teardrop shape template (click here for the free download)

6. Cardstock

7. Scissors

8. Standard clear office tape

9. Level

10. Measuring tape

11. Pencil

12. Painter’s tape

13. Drop cloth or scrap cardboard

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step One

As I mentioned before, my vintage dresser came with a whole bunch of vintage scuffs and scars (including a dresser drawer that had actually come undone). If your piece of mid-century furniture is looking a little worse for wear, too, go ahead and take some time to clean things up. Use a damp sponge or plastic scraper tool to gently remove old dirt and grime, and you may want to spritz the inside of the drawers with a water and vinegar mixture to help get rid of any lingering musty smells.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step Two

Use a measuring tape to find the center of each drawer front. You’ll want to measure side-to-side and top-to-bottom to get the most accurate center point. Mark this lightly with a pencil, and repeat on all of your drawers.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step Three

Download the free teardrop shape template that I created for you, and print it onto cardstock as many times as you’ll need. Note that this design calls for two teardrops per drawer front, so I printed eight shapes for my 4-drawer dresser. Cut out the shapes along the lines using scissors.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step Four

Use standard clear office tape to attach the cut teardrop shapes to your dresser drawer fronts, with their points touching in the center. I included handy cross section lines on the template so that you can use a level to make sure the shapes are nice and straight.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step Five

Gently trace the teardrop shapes onto your drawer fronts using a pencil. Then, you can peel away and discard the shapes. You should now be able to see faint pencil lines marking where to tape in the next step to follow.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step Six

Pull out the drawers from the dresser and set them aside. Then, paint the entire exterior of your dresser using your BEHR Chalk Decorative Paint color of choice. In the example you see here, I used Silver Celadon BCP40 on the outside, painted on in three coats with a 1.75 in. Chalk Decorative Paint Brush. Make sure you allow the paint to dry for a couple of hours between coats.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step Seven

Meanwhile, in between the paint drying on the outside of your dresser, you can move on to taping off the teardrop shapes. Use small individual lengths of painter’s tape to make your way around the curves. I expected this step to take a really long time, but it only ended up costing me about 15 minutes per drawer! Put on some music or a podcast, and this step will fly by.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step Eight

When the paint on the outer edges of your dresser is completely dry, go ahead and gently push the drawers back in place. Use the same 1.75 in. Chalk Decorative Paint Brush to paint the teardrops in alternating colors; I used Picnic Table BCP29 and Silver Celadon BCP40 for this project.

Keep painting until you can’t see the wood drawer fronts beneath. Allow the paint to dry between coats as you did before. It’s easier to paint the teardrop shapes while the drawers are pushed into the dresser like normal, and they can dry easily there, too, since they’ll be up and out of the way.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Step Nine

Wait at least two hours for the paint to fully dry, then give the entire dresser—outside edges, legs, painted teardrops, and exposed wood surfaces—a few thin and even coats of BEHR Wax Decorative Finish using a 1.875 in. Chalk Decorative Wax Brush. Give the wax plenty of time to cure before styling it with everyday bedroom essentials—things like a lamp, art, a plant, and a dish for jewelry.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

Although the dresser had a nice shape before, it just felt so plain. Plus, the dinged-up surface looked really tired. It needed a refresh. The updated painted exterior helped hide years of wear and tear, and the teardrop shapes on the drawer fronts makes the piece pop. You can visit BEHR’s color detail page here to see the full collection of color names and numbers in case you’d love to try a different combination on your own dresser—maybe Carousel Red BCP04 and Vintage Mustard BCP13?

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

One thing I didn’t anticipate having such a big impact on the makeover was the BEHR Wax Decorative Finish. After finishing up the painting steps, I walked backward to check out the overall look and loved it exactly as it was. Not wanting to skip a step, though, I followed through with the directions and layered the wax over the entire dresser, too. That moment turned out to be a complete game-changer!

If you look at the before/after graphic a couple images up, you can probably see how the wax really brought out the grain detail and color of the wood drawer fronts. The BEHR Wax Decorative Finish will also help protect the paint job I worked so hard on. Our cats are always jumping up on the furniture, leaving claw marks behind on unfinished pieces in our house. The wax on this dresser has already helped prevent visible damage from their paws.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

So, what do you think? Are you as excited by this as I am? The best part of all is that I have a ton of paint left over, so picture me wandering around our house looking for other pieces of retro furniture to make over. In the meantime, let me know in the comments below what type of piece you would make over with BEHR Chalk Decorative PaintFind your nearest Home Depot for supplies by clicking here.

DIY Mid-Century Dresser Makeover Using Chalk Decorative Paint | dreamgreendiy.com + @behrpaint #ad

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Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Practically since the first day I started this blog back in March of 2011, I’ve had a running series called “Thrift Store Scores.” The concept behind it was to share vintage furniture, lighting, and other decorative goodies scored from (you guessed it) local thrift stores. That was all fine and good when we lived in Lynchburg, Virginia, where thrift stores were practically around every corner, but since we moved out of town to Waynesboro, it’s a totally different story.

Instead of thrift stores, we’re surrounded almost exclusively by antique stores, and of course there’s a pretty big difference between “thrift” and “antique.” So, lately I’ve been called out (rightly so!) by you guys for including things like a $500 mid-century cabinet in a series titled “Thrift Store Score.”

All that to say that this calls for a title change! Welcome to the revamped “Secondhand Score” series. Hopefully the shift away from thrifty-specific terminology will help shed more clarity on our collection of secondhand antiques. First up with this evolved series name in mind? Our new-to-us set of retro dining room chairs.

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

As you may remember from our home tour, we used to have a great set of dowel-leg dining chairs that looked an awful lot like the famous Eames molded plastic side chair. Since they were inexpensive knockoff versions, our chairs came in well within budget, and still gave me the mid-century vibes I was hoping for in our dining room.

The only rub was that I knew they weren’t really mid-century, and that bothered me probably more than I should admit. So, I’ve unofficially been on the hunt for authentically mid-century (as opposed to reproduction) chairs for the past year.

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Late last December while I was working on a little dining room revamp at our house, I really got serious about finding antique wooden chairs to replace our cheapo plastic ones. I scoured Craigslist, kept an eye on the Facebook marketplace section that everyone raves about, I watched for new arrivals in my OfferUp app, and I also was a regular at all of our local antique stores.

It wasn’t until a couple of days after Christmas that I finally found the perfect set of retro chairs. They came from Circa in nearby Charlottesville, Virginia, which (as you probably know) is a favorite spot of mine. The chairs are most definitely vintage, and I love the mix of their wooden frames with black leather upholstery. They’re comfortable, easy to clean, and, best of all, were within budget at about $250 for the set of five.

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

In case you’re wondering if you heard me correctly, yes, the store only had five chairs in the set. It’s definitely a bummer since we have room for six, but 99% of the time it’s just John and me eating at the dining room table, so we already have more chairs than we need with the set of five. Plus, we’re looking forward to keeping an eye out for that elusive sixth chair to round out the set. It’s our new favorite game when we’re out antiquing.

Before I finish up this story, I wanted to quickly mention the piece of art you may have spotted there between our new-to-us retro lamps (the ones I talked about a couple of weeks ago here). It’s a vintage Japanese architectural drawing that I found in this Etsy shop last summer.

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

The print had actually been saved to my “Favorites” list for months and months, and the purchase of those sleek mid-century chairs finally inspired me to order the print to help play up the cool monochromatic vibes of our new dining room setup. That Etsy shop has tons of gorgeous vintage art pieces to choose from, so definitely check them out here if you have time.

Anyway, that’s it for today’s “Secondhand Score” story! What do you think of the new chairs? Would you have passed on the set since it’s missing that sixth chair? Or do you think you would have, like us, fallen so hard for them that it didn’t even matter? Do tell in the comments below.

Secondhand Score: Mid-century Dining Chairs

*I earn a small percentage from purchases made using the affiliate links above. Affiliate links are not sponsored. Rest assured that I never recommend products we wouldn’t use or don’t already love ourselves.

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DIY Modern Minimalist Kinetic Pipe Sculpture

DIY Modern Minimalist Kinetic Pipe Sculpture

Question: what’s one project you’ve had in the back of your mind for ages that you’ve been dying to try out? I know you’ve got some sort of creative vision in there! I, for one, have dozens upon dozens of unfinished, not-even-begun DIY ideas racing through my brain at any given moment, but I’m happy to report that that list recently got one item shorter.

Case in point, my latest project for Hunker is something I’ve had on my list to make for years, and I finally had the motivation to bring it to life. Hop over to Hunker here to see the full step-by-step tutorial for my DIY Mod Kinetic Pipe Sculpture, including a linked shopping list to take even more of the guess work out of things.

DIY Modern Minimalist Kinetic Pipe Sculpture

DIY Modern Minimalist Kinetic Pipe Sculpture

I know I dub a lot (if not most) of my projects as “couldn’t be easier” to pull off, but I really, truly mean it this time. I was actually a little dumbfounded when I was able to wrap the whole thing up in one short afternoon. I remember setting the finished sculpture on the console in our living room, stepping back, and muttering a quick “Huh!” out of surprised satisfaction at the sight of it. Can you believe it’s made out of a couple of $3 pipes?!

Anyway, visit the Hunker website here for all the DIY details, and then I’d love for you to let me know about the project you’ve been aching to cross off your own list in the comments below.

DIY Modern Minimalist Kinetic Pipe Sculpture

P.S. Wishing you a very happy Valentine’s Day this week! In case you need inspiration for a romantic dinner at home, check back here to see the mini meal I pulled together for my own Valentine.

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12 Bold Patterned Throw Pillows

12 Bold Patterned Throw Pillows

There are a few things I’ve learned about throw pillows over the years, number one being that they’re almost always more expensive than you think they’ll be! The other thing I’ve picked up on, though, is that you can make your investment go much farther by curating a collection that’s color-coordinated and cohesive.

Of course, the same concept goes for practically any type of decorative accent you bring into your home, but if you focus on purchasing pillows that match each other and feel intentionally collected, then you can move them from room to room and never run out of combinations to try.

One of my favorite ways to update or refresh a space is to mix up the pillows I have out in the room. For example, I’ll pull the pillows I have on our guest room bed and put them on the living room couch (and vice versa) to give both rooms a mini makeover without spending a penny. Keep scrolling for links to a dozen throw pillows I’d love to work into our current rotation.

12 Bold Patterned Throw Pillows

1. Chickamauga Lumbar Pillow

2. Doerun Pillow Cover

3. 18″ Dream Pillow

4. Multi Bubble Geo Lumbar Throw Pillow

5. Dorado Handwoven Pillow

6. Diamond Throw Pillow

7. Crewel Geo Ripple Pillow Cover

8. Triangle Lattice Pillow

9. Sky Blue Throw Pillow

10. Jase Geometric Throw Pillow

11. Vintage Floral Outdoor Pillow

12. Kuba Cloth Pillow

Here’s a bonus trick for you: buy pillow covers instead! That way you can store the covers flat when not in use, and just unzip the old ones from the pillow forms when you’re ready to change things up. This is a game changer for my storage since I’m not trying to stuff a bunch of thick, fluffy pillows into a closet. Instead, I’m able to fold the covers away flat and place them lightly into the drawers of our linen dresser. Got a pillow tip of your own to share? Do tell below.

12 Bold Patterned Throw Pillows

*I earn a small percentage from purchases made using the affiliate links above. Affiliate links are not sponsored. Rest assured that I never recommend products we wouldn’t use or don’t already love ourselves.

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How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

I’ve been promising a look into our recently made-over living room, and today is finally that day. Now, I know you’re probably thinking, “How many times can one person redo a room in their house?!” and while I’m personally of the mind that a home is never technically “done,” there was a very specific reason for this most recent update.

You see, John and I had been thinking about investing in a second Samsung Frame TV for our upstairs living room for about four or five months. You may already know about the one we have in our downstairs family room, and that it’s easily our favorite piece of technology in the house. In case you’re just catching up, though, the Frame TV displays a piece of digital art when not in use, so the television literally transforms into a decorative accent the moment you switch it to its dormant art mode. Genius, right?

Well, anyway we wanted to make our upstairs gathering space just as functional as the one we enjoy downstairs, so over the holidays we finally bit the bullet and ordered a new TV (albeit a smaller version of the 55-incher we have downstairs). That’s it right there in the photo below displaying a cool monochrome print.

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

With the new TV in place, we decided to turn our attention to the furniture in the living room facing it. You know we’ve always been absolutely smitten with the vintage leather couch we used to have in the space, but it just wasn’t quite comfortable enough for lazy TV watching, so we ended up putting it in my office to turn that room into more of a lounge, and we put the overstuffed tufted couch that we had out in our sunroom in its place in the living room.

Since we had spent so much money on the new TV, it was really important that we find a way to redecorate the living room on a next-to-nothing budget, and luckily we already had that cozy sofa on hand to use in place of the leather couch, which was really more for show than longterm seating, if you know what I mean.

There were still a couple of hurdles to get over, though, which I’ll get to later in this post. The first problem was that I had never really loved the legs of the tufted blue couch as it was. You can see the original chunky block legs in the before/after graphic below. I was all for the cool teal color, the sharp lines of the silhouette, and the tufting—not to mention that it’s the most comfortable couch in the world. But those bulky legs had to go.

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

**Sorry the lighting is so off between these photos. I know it’s making the couch upholstery look totally different, but I promise that it’s the same couch in both photos.

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

Happily, the changing out of the legs couldn’t have been easier, and I’m now kicking myself for waiting so long. All we did was unscrew the old legs and put a set of new tapered legs that we ordered from Amazon in their place. The entire project took about 10 minutes, but the difference (at least I think) is pretty amazing.

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

The updated tapered legs make the couch feel a little sleeker and definitely more mid-century in style. I also love that the richer wood tone of the new legs matches the rest of our wood furniture better than the original almost-black legs did before. See how they’re almost an exact match to the antique teal side chair in the photo above?

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

The rest of the room came together from there piece by piece as I continued working to make it as comfortable and cozy as possible in honor of the new TV. I put together a mini gallery wall off to the side above the couch, making sure to balance the traditional pieces out with contemporary ones, and I also added a new wall-mounted sconce. The ultra modern shape of the new light fixture helps keep the couch and art from looking too “Grandma’s House.”

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

You might be wondering where our new leather side chair came from. It’s actually on loan from my parents who are downsizing a lot of things from their home before they move to our area in the next few months. While the piece isn’t exactly 100 percent my style, I do love the retro ’70s feel of it, and it’s beyond comfortable to sit in.

The reason it’s the perfect addition to this particular space, though, is that it swivels, so it can be shifted to face the couch for regular conversation and twisted toward the TV at other times as needed. I might not give the chair back to my parents after all!

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

Truth be told, the room took some getting used to. For the longest time this space was so much about looks. It was where we kept our favorite pieces of antique furniture (whether they were comfortable or not), and although we still spent plenty of time in the room before, it wasn’t exactly my top choice for lounging around any time of day. Now the living room is just as comfortable as the family room, and offers us a lot more flexibility in terms of gathering with friends and family.

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

What do you think of the “new” room? Do you like the new art and furniture arrangement, or would you have personally erred on the side of looks over function? My favorite part, of course, is that we didn’t have to buy any new furniture—just $30 worth of new legs for a couch we already had! Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments below.

How To Update Your Sofa For $30

*I earn a small percentage from purchases made using the affiliate links above. Affiliate links are not sponsored. Rest assured that I never recommend products we wouldn’t use or don’t already love ourselves.

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What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

If I were asked to pick one favorite type of thing that I love to search for at a thrift or antique store, my immediate answer will always be furniture. There’s just something so thrilling about being able to pick out a big statement-making dresser, cabinet, bed frame, or side table for our home.

The only problem is that we’re pretty close to set on the bigger furniture pieces we already own. Over the years we’ve been extra thoughtful about the items we’ve purchased, which means that we’re leaning more toward rearranging what we have when we want a refresh as opposed to going out and buying something new.

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

Since that mindset has put a hard stop on my time hunting for large furniture, I’ve had to shift my attention to smaller items that we have more room for—namely lighting. So, now every time I go to some secondhand shop I always keep a sharp eye out for pendants, chandeliers, sconces, and table lamps that we can switch our mass-produced fixtures (read: Target lamps!) out for.

Like furniture, though, there are certain things I need to keep in mind when purchasing vintage lights. Scroll on to peruse the little mental checklist I always go down before handing my credit card over to the store cashier, plus I’m offering a closer look at the antique lamps I bought for our dining room over the Christmas holidays.

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

Does it work?

Of course, the very first thing to check when considering a vintage light fixture is make sure it works. If it’s not plugged in already, take it over to any nearby wall outlet for confirmation. You could also bring the lamp up to the front desk, and ask the cashier to test it for you. If it doesn’t work but you think you might be able to fix it at home, ask for a major discount. Otherwise, it’s best to pass.

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

Is the cord in good shape?

The other absolutely critical thing to watch out for is a frayed wire. Unless it has already been through the hands of a skilled DIYer or electrician, chances are good that your old lamp comes with old wiring, too.

Put your fingertips on the wire right where it meets the base of the lamp and then pull the cord through your fingers until you reach the end. Did you feel any breaks in the wire? Do you see any visible kinks in the cord? You’ll also want to look the plug and its prongs over, and make sure the connection between the plug and cord looks good.

It’s not difficult to rewire a lamp (here’s a tutorial in case you want to learn how!), but if you’re not comfortable with the idea of doing that, maybe leave that particular lamp to the next potential buyer.

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

Is it stable?

After double (and triple!) checking that the lamp is in good working order and safe to use in your home, the next thing to check out is stability. When my sister and I were little kids, she was severely burned by a table lamp that fell onto her leg while she was reading one night, and that harrowing experience has taught me that a stable lamp is really important.

To check this, grip the neck of the lamp in question and see how easily you can wobble it around with a gentle side-to-side movement of your arm. If the lamp is broken or off balance, you’ll be able to tell right away, in which case it’s not the lamp for you.

Also take the time to inspect the bottom of the lamp where it meets the table, looking for any visible cracks or chips. Cosmetic scuffs are one thing, but you definitely want to steer clear of vintage fixtures that are too delicate to use everyday if that’s your intent.

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

I had actually been thinking about purchasing these two ceramic lamps for months after spotting them at a local antique shop back in October. I thought long and hard about buying them because they were on the pricier side, but a quick and encouraging poll on Instagram convinced me that you guys were right—I needed to have them!

They might not be everybody’s cup of tea, but in my opinion, that rich marbled green color and the deep texture on the sides (not to mention those extra tall custom shades!) was all just too good to pass up.

What do you think? And are you just as into retro lighting as I am? If you have vintage lamp shopping criteria of your own to share, do tell in the comments below. Oh, and stay tuned for a larger look into our recently revamped dining room, including the new Asian art I bought from Etsy and vintage dining room chairs we picked up locally (my one furniture splurge for the year!). I can’t wait to spill the beans.

What To Know Before Buying Vintage Lights

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A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

There’s no way around it: I’m a certifiable, 100 percent, school-loving, honor-student-type nerd. Whether we’re talking about high school or college, I was always in the front row with a stack of color-coordinated spiral-bound notebooks at the ready for the day’s lecture. I preferred writing my notes in pen ink, so I even kept a tube of Wite-Out within easy reach because I couldn’t just cross or scribble out a misspelling! Oh, no…Those notes looked like perfectly typed pages, complete with highlighted headings and immaculate bullet lists.

I know I shouldn’t be admitting all of this, but being in a classroom just made me feel so pumped up! Of course, I had off days and times when I didn’t feel like being there, but for the most part, I loved every minute of my schooling years. So much so that I miss it, and wonder about going back to take some ceramics classes now that I’m one year into pottery and feel like it’s something I really want to do for a living.

In the meantime, I’ve been dabbling in a little casual research of my own here at home using a couple of new books as my guides. I wanted to have something on hand that I could flip through whenever I wasn’t physically working with clay at the studio, and the two books I review below fit that bill to a T. Keep scrolling if you’re even a little curious to know more about pottery and what it takes to bring this type of creative art to life.

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

Amazing Glaze: Techniques, Recipes, Finishing, and Firing, by Gabriel Kline

One thing I definitely underestimated when I first started taking pottery classes was just how much goes into the glazing side of things. At our particular local studio, the makeup of the 6-week beginner wheel-throwing class is four classes making pieces on the wheel, one class for trimming and finishing work, and the sixth and final class is spent doing nothing but glazing.

The first glazing day I experienced was totally overwhelming to me as a beginner because it’s just as intricate as learning how to throw on the wheel itself. I ended up taking a full 6-week class later on just for glazing, and that opened my eyes even wider to how much variety there is in glazing techniques.

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

Anyway, my point is that glazing is something that I really respect. I haven’t even come close to scratching the surface (pun unintended) of this part of the pottery-making process, so I was really glad to come across this Amazing Glaze book. The very first line of the introduction calls out the fact that opening a kiln is like witnessing magic, and I couldn’t help but smile when I read that. It’s so true!

The trickiest thing about glaze (at least for me) is the fact that the color you paint, brush, or dip onto any piece of pottery is likely to come out of the kiln looking completely different after firing. For example, black glaze first looks red, white looks gray, and even bright blue has a faintly grayish green tinge to it before it’s fired. I still have so much trouble visualizing the final product as I’m working on glazing, but this book really helped put things into perspective.

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

Amazing Glaze teaches you how to handle small pieces, delicate designs, how to pour and dip properly, and also how to mix up your own colors. There are sections for troubleshooting, and, of course, tons of photos to show you how it all might turn out if you follow the instructions to the letter. There were multiple times when I wanted to rip a page out to keep handy at the studio! I couldn’t recommend it more if you’d like to learn how to get from Point A to Point B with your glazing work.

Oh, and don’t worry if you’re not quite as into formal learning as I am. This book is really simple to follow along with. Despite all the important information it shares, Amazing Glaze still feel very conversational in tone, which makes it a quick, easy read. Nothing like those stuffy old textbooks you might still have nightmares about!

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

Handbuilt, A Potter’s Guide, by Melissa Weiss

As you probably know by this point, I started out learning how to throw on a wheel—in other words, spinning a ball of clay on a wheel to create a functional form. Hand-building, on the other hand, is an entirely different process (i.e. shaping clay with your hands instead of a wheel), which is why my wheel-throwing instructors rarely even bring it up in class. To learn how to handbuild, you either need to take a class specific to those techniques, or you could do what I did and kick things off by reading Handbuilt, A Potter’s Guide.

I can tell you right now, this book completely changed the way I look at clay. I learned how to turn a ball of clay into a fully functioning cup using nothing but a few hand tools, how to make my own platter from a slab, and also how to dig and process my own clay. I still haven’t done all that much physically with hand-building, but I honestly feel like I could do it on my own having now read this book from cover to cover.

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

Melissa Weiss, the author of Handbuilt, actually works just one state away from us here in Virginia (she’s based in Asheville, North Carolina), which makes her feel really accessible in some ways. Her writing style and the way she explains different hand-building techniques in her book, though, is what really makes her feel so approachable and easy-going.

As a visual learner, I loved how she took me through each process with step-by-step photos and numbered actions. Suffice it to say that this book is about to get completely covered with clay fingerprints—I plan on bringing it to the studio for in-person experimenting now that I’ve photographed it for today’s post.

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

I know not everyone who reads this blog is a professional potter or even a clay hobbyist, but ever since I started sharing more about the process here and on social media, I’ve been inundated with messages from people who want to know more about ceramics.

Today’s post is dedicated to all of you and anyone else who has asked for more details. Pottery is such a cool craft, and I really am making it my mission to encourage as many people as possible to seek out a class (or a how-to book like the ones I mentioned today!) if they’ve ever given it a passing thought. Let me know if you’d recommend any other pottery books in the comments blow.

A Pair Of How-To Pottery Books To Check Out

*I earn a small percentage from purchases made using the affiliate links above. Affiliate links are not sponsored. Rest assured that I never recommend products we wouldn’t use or don’t already love ourselves.

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How To De-Pill A Sofa With A Fabric Shaver

How To De-Pill A Sofa With A Fabric Shaver

Well, it has officially been two years since we brought a sectional into our home, and we’re still absolutely loving it. I know these types of oversized couches aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, but I’m so glad we decided to go for it because our sectional is easily the most-used piece of furniture in our house. Every evening you’ll find at least one of us humans sprawled across it to watch TV or a movie, and all four pets each end up finding their own spot on the 9-and-a-half-foot couch, too. Luckily, the entire family can fit, no problem, with plenty of room to spare.

How To De-Pill A Sofa With A Fabric Shaver

How To De-Pill A Sofa With A Fabric Shaver

The only problem with repeated daily sitting on this upholstered piece of furniture is that the fabric has started to get a little worn in. What I mean by that is, if you run a flat palm over the surface of the sofa, you’ll inevitably feel little balls of rolled-up fibers. Think about that beloved sweater you have that’s covered in pills—our sofa was starting to feel the same way.

The good news, at least, is that you couldn’t actually see the pills because of the heather finish of fabric, but it still felt a little less than nice under bare feet and hands. A quick call to my mom, who’s an upholstery expert (no really—she works at a high end furniture store!), left me considering the possibility of a fabric shaver to take care of the yucky texture on our sectional.

How To De-Pill A Sofa With A Fabric Shaver

How To De-Pill A Sofa With A Fabric Shaver

I borrowed one from her (pictured a few photos up), and spent about 20 minutes slowly working my way over the surface of the couch. It was a total breeze, and as you can see from the pill-filled shaver below, it worked like a charm! The sofa feels much softer and smoother now, and it took less than half an hour to fix what could have been a pretty big issue.

I’ve since returned Mom’s fabric shaver to her, but decided to order my own from Amazon just in case the issue crops up again. Really, though, I think it was just a matter of wearing in our newish sofa—I doubt we’ll have to keep this task up regularly over the years. That said, if I start to feel the pills come back, I know exactly what to do.

How To De-Pill A Sofa With A Fabric Shaver

Have you ever de-pilled a couch before? Did you use a different type of tool? Although I hated to buy another thing to have to store away in the closet, I’m glad that the fabric shaver I bought can work to soften lots of different fabrics around the house—from the sofa to my sweaters. Let me know if you’ve had this same issue in the past and (more importantly!) how you fixed it in the comments below.

How To De-Pill A Sofa With A Fabric Shaver

*I earn a small percentage from purchases made using the affiliate links above. Affiliate links are not sponsored. Rest assured that I never recommend products we wouldn’t use or don’t already love ourselves.

**RESOURCES: Sectional, Fabric Shaver, Vintage Coffee Table, Similar Inlayed Tray, Patterned Wall Rug, Similar Fur Throw BlanketPendant Light, Similar Round Pillow, Similar Triangle Pattern Pillow

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How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

I actually hesitated for a second before sharing today’s post because I’m very aware that drywall repair isn’t the prettiest thing to document or the most exciting thing to talk about either. But then I thought to myself that I would have really appreciated having a post like this to reference when I was doing the project in person.

I also feel like it’s important that I talk about all types of home projects—not just the “pretty” ones—here on the blog because they all go toward the greater good. That is, the greater good of having both a beautiful and a functional home to enjoy.

That was a bit of tangent, but I just wanted to preface today’s story by saying that, while it might not be the most WOW-worthy post you’ve ever read on Dream Green DIY, I’m hopeful that it will still be useful to those of you dealing with a dreaded hole in your drywall. Without any further hemming and hawing let’s get to it!

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

The hole that prompted it all was in our main upstairs bathroom. As you can see in the “Before” photo above (taken when we first moved in), the space boasted a flush-mount toilet paper roll holder that was built into the wall. I actually didn’t mind the look or functionality of it. What I didn’t like was that it was hung only 12 inches high.

It was uncomfortably low, so after three long years of procrastination, I finally decided to replace it with a new gold holder, which I installed a much more appropriate 26 inches above the floor. The only problem was that, once I had the old holder out and the new holder installed, I was left with a giant hole in the drywall that needed to be patched (see below).

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

The hole was about seven inches wide and six high, so it was a little too large for one of those handy drywall patches that you can pick up for about five bucks at the hardware store. In order to patch the hole correctly, I really needed to go the extra mile and cut a custom piece of new drywall to fit.

Before I could get to that, though, I needed to create a brace for the new drywall square to sit against. The wonky piece of wood you see in the picture is actually set pretty far back into the recess, so it wouldn’t work for my patch. After talking it over with my dad, I learned that I could use two pieces of scrap wood and a screw to create a brand new foundation for my patch.

I started by applying a small amount of quick-setting epoxy to just the top and bottom of one piece of wood, then I slipped it behind the existing drywall so that it spanned the hole. A second piece of wood was then screwed into the first (without glue!), this time on the face of the existing drywall, so that the epoxy on the wood piece inside was clamped against the interior of the drywall.

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

I left the two wood pieces screwed together like this for more than enough time for the adhesive to firmly set according to the epoxy directions, then I was able to remove the screw and discard the outer piece of wood. That left me with a firm, flush wood support over which to glue down the piece of drywall that I had John cut to size for me, seen below!

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

Next, I covered the seams around the cut drywall patch with mesh joint tape, making sure to press the sticky side firmly against the face of the wall. You might have noticed that I trimmed the edges of each piece of tape into an angle with scissors. That was so they didn’t overlap anywhere, which helped the next step go faster.

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

Time to spackle over the entire thing to create a smooth surface for painting! To do so, I used a putty knife to spread a thin, even layer of spackle over the patch, going a few inches beyond it, too, so that I could feather out the finish when sanding later on. I waited until the spackle was dry, then used sanding blocks to smooth out the wall.

Keep in mind that you might need to spackle and sand one or two more times before you get a really even finish. Luckily, this step isn’t too time-consuming so just be patient and muscle through until you no longer see the joint tape or seams between the patch and the wall.

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

With the patch complete, all I needed to do to finish was paint! I tried to skip priming and ended up having to redo my layers of paint to completely cover the patch from view, so please learn from my mistake. Always prime the patch with something like KILZ stainblocker before layering on your top coat color! It’ll save you from a lot of wasted time and paint.

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

Oh, and in case you’re curious about the newer, much higher toilet paper roll holder that you see in those “After” photos above, I ordered it from this shop on Etsy. I love the brassy finish (it matches our gold sink faucet!), and the one-sided L-shaped design also makes roll replacement much faster.

Let me know in the comments if you’ve ever had to patch a drywall hole before! Did you use a different method? I think I had put the project off for three years because I expected it to be a big hassle, but it was actually a lot easier than I expected. As always, shout out below if you have questions about the process that I explained above.

How To Patch A Hole In Drywall

*I earn a small percentage from purchases made using the affiliate links above. Affiliate links are not sponsored. Rest assured that I never recommend products we wouldn’t use or don’t already love ourselves.

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Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

I just love pottery launch days…They’re filled with so much anticipation and excitement because I finally get to ship these handmade pieces off to the homes they were always meant to be in. It’s so thrilling to me as a small business owner to picture you guys enjoying your DGD Pottery pieces all across the country. So, where will today’s collection of six new cups, dishes, and bowls end up? Let’s find out! But before we get to all that, keep scrolling to learn just a little more about the pieces in this latest batch.

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

One of my main goals this year with my pottery is to find a few shapes and forms that I’d like to repeat. In other words, consistency is something I’m still trying to master. I’m really eager to start honing in on the types of silhouettes that feel right for me, and the mug in today’s collection is a top contender for something I’d love to recreate. So, if it speaks to you, too, definitely keep an eye out for many more like it in lots of different colors and patterns. Maybe oversized circles next?

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

Like most gals in the age of Pinterest, I’m a sucker for green succulents and small house plants, so I’m also really excited to release my first-ever flower pot. I tried to be really intentional with the garden-inspired shape on this little abstract striped pot, and can see it sitting pretty on a nightstand or kitchen window sill playing host to live greenery. Can you picture it?

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

I hate to play favorites, but if I had to choose just one from today’s launch, it would be this mini bowl. As you’ve probably noticed over the past year, I’ve been really drawn to Japanese ceramic design, and this little dish speaks to that love with its ultra thin walls, angular foot, and the subtle ribbing on the sides. Make sure you click through to the listing here to see all of the intricate details, including that punch of minty green on the inside of the bowl!

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

While some pieces are on the more precise side, like that mini minty bowl, others are a little more abstract and free-form. Take that cup above for example. I wanted to give the simple shape a bit of pizazz, so I took a paint brush and went a little crazy with black and blue glaze on top of the white. The imperfect brush strokes give this one extra personality that makes it stand out from the crowd.

For some reason, I love, love, love the idea of using this one to hold makeup brushes or cotton balls in a minimalist bathroom. I may be biased, but I feel like that subtle pop of color is all you need to dress up a vanity or set of open bathroom shelves.

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

Speaking of minimalism, how about this rounded tea cup? I keep a small journal of pottery ideas within easy reach when I’m at the studio, and this design was one of the first I sketched out on my “must-make” list. Somehow it turned out pretty darn close to what I had pictured, with a tiny squared-off foot and exaggerated curved sides. My next (admittedly lofty) goal is to make a set of four with a matching tea pot, too.

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

You already know all about the mug above, but I’m so excited to chat for a minute about the carved dish you see below. This piece was actually sold before I even had a chance to list the collection on Etsy, which is just so humbling to me. Have I mentioned how grateful I am for the support you show my tiny little shop?! Well, if I haven’t conveyed that quite enough today, just know that it makes me feel on top of the world.

Anyway, I can’t wait to try recreating this mini dish in the coming months now that I know just how popular it is. Even though it’s sold, you should still be able to hop through to the listing on Etsy to see a few detail shots of the Asian-inspired floral carving along the sides. It actually goes all the way around the piece!

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

Well, there you have it. That’s everything! Click over to Etsy here to shop Collection No. 4 now. Whether you decide to invest in a piece or not, I hope you spotted something special in today’s set of six. Feel free to tell me what you favorite dish is in the comments below!

Reveal of DGD Pottery Collection No.4

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