The first thing you should know about me is that I am honest, not modest. When I say easy skill level that is exactly what I mean. I bought my little cottage house ten years ago, and it has indeed educated me on 'the trades.' People who work as contractors not only have a skill or skills but that it usually takes time to do what they do. Contractors are usually men but I do have some gal friends who have Martha Stewart skills across the board. They can build, repair, do plumbing etc. I work the best with what I have so I want to share some of my tricks simple though they be. My goal is to decorate vintage and make my house appear more original.
When I moved in here, it was move-in ready. The house was built in 1916 and through the years, a lot of the original features were long gone (tile, built ins...) but most importantly. it did have hardwood floors through most of the house that could be redone (by a contractor) but worth the price. Other than that, making the house "older" was up to me & my decorating. I did not have the money to restore.
I have done and continue to do little easy, inexpensive things. When I moved in, the kitchen and bath tile were pretty generic off white & in good condition. You can see in the bath pictures, that I glued little pink tiles on the off white tile. I did this around the tub and sink. My walls are pink so it added a nice touch. I also put old fashioned decals on the tile above the tub and on the cupboard doors (not shown). In fact, I did the same little tile thing in my kitchen with red on the white tile. The rest of what I have done in the bathroom is all decorating. I bought an older white cupboard and added my vanity items. I have hands and ladies and other touches--pretty much 1930's through the 1950's. Every room has floral and animals and this correlates to my website too.
I love lace; and linens are probably my favorite vintage category so I have extras. Here is what I have done...I have been buying the adjustable tension curtain rods and using my lace curtains to add some charm in different ways through out the house. The office/spare room photo shows my knotty pine book case (I have two one on each side of the window), and I put a lace panel on each one with the tension rod. Easy, and it adds charm and covers the books that sometimes get disorganized. It still keeps everything very accessible.
Yesterday in my kitchen, I did a yellow vignette. Again with a lace curtain and a tension rod (see photos) on an older yellow shelf. I regrouped yellow items to make things pop. The kitchen is mainly green and red but I do have some yellow and blue accents. Everything is vintage to give that older feel. I use cake plates and shelves as risers through out the kitchen to give visual interest. I think every room has some black to anchor.
Recap: tile, lace, decals, tension rods, every day items for risers for visual interest, older wooden cupboards or bookcases "reworked", an anchor color in each room, vintage items recycled and found in different places including flea markets, tag sales, thrift stores, garage sales and websites. And with that said, please visit my website graciouscottage.com. Just click on the pink cottage picture on my blog.
Please send me your easy ideas so we can add them to this blog...monah on Sunday morning.