A Few Small Repairs

To mix things up a little, this week I thought I’d share the projects I’m about to attack for early 2007. You know the sorts of things-- the ones that nag at you… just a little… every time you look at a particular area of your home.

If they had eyebrows, these projects, they’d arch one at you, as if to say, “So we’re finally ready to get around to ME, are we?”

These are those projects. The projects that Guilt.

The plate rail
The arrangement on my kitchen wall grew organically, largely because when I began decorating, I had absolutely no idea I was powerless to resist a good, cheap Victorian whiteware plate. The little shelves up there helped, and while I’m not a stickler for things actually matching, I’ve grown to believe the unmatching shelves in this case draw attention AWAY from the plates, to the fact that the shelves don’t, well, match.

So this will be the solution. I hope. A couple of long plate rail shelves from Michaels. I’m going to add this William Morris-style trim to them, and stain them in Minwax Provincial, to match my lower cabinets.

And to help with this project, I got a stud finder for Christmas and everything. (Add appropriate off-color joke of your choice here.)

Floor border
Note, the lack-of. And why? Well, there WAS one, all right. But it was black and rubbery and peeling itself off of the wallboard. The irony of this is it that it was also coated with tubs of horrible sticky glue that, while apparently not enough to adhere it to the wall any longer, it was PRECISELY enough to attach itself firmly to my leg or sock every time I did dishes. So after one final dramatic sockless incident, I decided we had to part ways, the rubber floor border and I. But I do admire it for its spunk. On its way out, it did manage to stick to the floor, me, the stove, me, the garbage bag, me, and probably escaped long enough to bond with a few garbage collectors for good measure. Poor dears.

My plan for this area now is to remove the remaining goo, and stain this baby to match the rest of the kitchen so it will be subtle, discreet. Then add a small finishing bit of trim to the bottom. Plain wood is preferable to black rubber and socklessness any day, don’t ya think?

The House of Usher quality in my diningroom
These cracks bother me. A lot. They occurred when the pillars of my 100+ year old porch decided that after all those years, it might be so much NICER to move just a little bit closer to next door.

My new porch pillars so far are, thankfully, well-behaved and enjoy their view-as is. So I plan to prevent further ominous wall crumbling by spackling and then painting the room a nice antiquey cream. (If anyone has a nice shade of antiquey cream paint they’ve used and can recommend, I’d be glad to hear of it.)

Globe lampshade
I bought this lampshade at “Junk For Joy” in Jeannette, PA, knowing it needed a little flower-fixin’ but figuring it had potential since the glass itself was in good shape. This is not an emergency. But if I do not do it soon, it won’t get done. I don’t even imagine it will take long. So this has made the list.

Mirror refurbishment? Gesso! (That’s what I’ve been told to use to fill in the missing bits, anyway: gesso.) This was another “Junk for Joy” find-- I think it was $3-- and I’d like to see how far I can get it from being shabby to becoming chic. If it works out, I may put it in my entryway. Time will tell.

Two paintings
I have two “inside joke” paintings I plan to paint for two different friends. What I may lack in artistic skill, I hope to make up for in the element of surprise and whimsy. If these turn out all right, they will be a source of great humor and merriment. If they don’t work out… well, they’ll still cause humor and merriment, I imagine, but not for the same reasons.

Mystery project
What happens when you take three arts-and-crafts tiles and put them together with a salvaged window shutter? Ahhhh… wait and see, my friends. Wait and see...

So there we have it.
Any one of these projects is in the queue this year, for good or bad. We’ll see what happens to them together, I think.

In the meantime, take care, fellow crafters, thrifters and collectors-- and I’ll see you next Monday when...

...You know those framed hand-painted cameo portraits on ivory that go for big bucks in antique stores and auctions? Um, yeah, we won’t be talking about those. We can’t afford that... exactly...

Stay tuned.