I’m really loving this wonderful, yummy Cocoa color for, well….just about EVERYTHING.  In fact I seem to be stuck in a wonderful wintry palette and don’t want to leave.


I’ve painted several pieces in this warm griege shade and don’t see any point in stopping.  Just like case goods in warm natural woods these pieces create a consistent neutral backdrop for anything you put around them.  Look how nicely it goes with this lovely stone wall outside the store.   There are two of these camp style coco beds in the store, complete with headboard, footboard, and rails.

View More: http://americandreambuilders.pass.us/adb

via Tumblr

This room’s stone fireplace and wonderful beams set the tone for a cozy wintry mix.

It’s a magical palette of warmth, cool, ice and fire.chair-top

I’ve also got a set of carved chairs in the works that will be upholstered in a super soft wool plaid.


Can’t wait to sand them down and finish up with a nice brown glaze .

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via Tumblr


The color worked wonders on this sorry old dresser.  It has nice deep drawers but was such a mess in a sad dreary yellow green.


A little cocoa paint and some spiffy new hardware and you’ve got a slick new piece.   A client once told me she saw a color that was so good it made her want to lick the wall.   I think of that every time I find the perfect shade and it always makes me laugh.


 This shade is certainly pure YUM.

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I really like this functional, neutral, spiffy dresser and think it would look great in the toile bedroom above.

dresser and chair

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Hope you’re enjoying Winter’s Palette as much as I am…

Empire-Table-topWhew, the holiday whirlwind has passed!  The countdown to Christmas has ended and so a new one begins.  With 2015 and a new season of Downton Abbey about to start I thought it fitting to recreate this Victorian Empire Game Table.   This is an in-between picture on it’s way into 2015.

swivel empire table ruby laneThese gaming tables were designed to swivel and fold out when not tucked into a corner or entry.   Ingenious!  This lovely antique shows how the top swivels and folds out.   It’ quite a clever  idea for small spaces and occasional use tables.

antique game table topvia A Garden for the House   You must read Kevin’s delightful post and lovely picture of a fireside gaming table meal.

The inside compartment has a secret hiding spot for cards, dice, or anything else you might want to stash away.

Empire-table-redoneThe poor table I found was so busted up and not swiveling at all.  Time to recreate and modernize this baby.  I put on my clever cap and decided to bring it into the 21st century as a flat screen tv stand.

Empire-table-base-legsFor me the best part of this table is the elegant and curvy base.  It’s quite modern looking, don’t you think?

Empire-table-legsA mocha gray finish updates the look in a refined way.  Hmmm, stuck in the past or reaching towards the future.  Sounds like Downton drama to me!



Seven more days to Downton, ahhh but who’s counting…..


horse-wood-icingThese crummy iphone pics don’t really show well.  I had a fun time trying out Wood Icing on a fun little horse art project.  The frame is the back of an old victorian chair.

wood icing I’d been wanting to try out my new Wood Icing to make an artwork and decide to use it for a textured backdrop for a horse transfer.

horse-wood-icing-projectI also added some paint highlights to the horses, glazed it a bit and added some nailheads.

Can’t wait to try more Wood Icing projects!


bundle of wood lathSo here it is the humble bundle of imperfect wood lath.  You can get this stuff from your local Lowes, Home Depot, or lumberyard.  If you’re lucky you can get some really awesome reclaimed wood lath from somewhere really cool, like Brooklyn or anywhere USA where they’ve done a rip out or knock down.  I never knew how AWESOME this stuff was until I saw the work of Jim Collier at Yellow Finch Antiques.  He makes so tres cool stuff from the really good stuff of course.  The aged, yellowed, tattered, stained torn out Brooklyn stuff.

reclaimed wood lathYou can make art out of it.   This one’s from ETSY and it could be yours!

Arielle AlaskoHow about the brilliant work of Ariele Alasko.  You must check out her website.  She is sooooo living the life I’d love.  A workshop, a pile of wood, a bunch of chisels!  Admiration with a CAPITAL A!

wood lath tablesThese tables are really cute via Pinterest (don’t know who made them).

designspongevia Design Sponge

wood lath headboardvia Wrafterbuilt.com


via DesignSkool.net

slat-tableThis is one of Jim’s tables where I got my initial inspiration.  Then I made the bench which I la la loved!

bench-with-lathThis is my new medium, wood lath!  Ok, well maybe this and spackle.  I just love spackle.  I’m 1/2 Italian and I’m convinced it’s in my blood.

Round-wood-lath-tableAnyway, I had the opportunity to fix up this cool little table that had a cracked marble top.  Don’t you just love the brass scalloped edging?  This is the thing about Vintage with a Capital V that I love.  This is the thing that makes a room special.  Sorry , it’s a vibe that’s just not available anywhere else.

wood-lath-table-3I’m crazy about it.  It’s so raw and organic and different and fun and interesting and AWESOME.


wood-lath-table-6You can tell I love it due to the numerous weird angled shots.

Wood Lath – I Love You.

 I will seek you out and keep my eyes open for great old scraps to be rescued.  I promise I won’t walk by leaving you unnoticed and I won’t turn up my nose because you’re a little dusty and crusty.  I will bundle you up in my arms and whisk you away to new spaces and places!  SWAK


Small Things