Flea Market Finds with Matthew Mead {Book Review}

Hey all,

Now that the summer is winding down, I’m trying to quickly tackle all of my design books before I return to the daily grind of teaching. This week’s read was Flea Market Finds with Matthew Mead. He’s written several holiday decor themed books, but Flea Market Finds presents more as a bookazine than an actual decor book. It contains work completed by Matthew himself, but also his designer friends. Though there are not many fleshed out DIY projects within the pages, there is plenty of eye candy to fawn over.

 

The cover even pulls you in. Look at that milk glass and the greens/blues. Aren't you already in love?

The cover even pulls you in. Look at that milk glass and the greens/blues. Aren’t you already in love?

Each tip is given as a vignette, explaining different ideas and color schemes that work well in rooms. Each section has a main theme (like Mid-Century Matthew) and includes some description of what you’re looking at in the pictures. He also includes tips for how to place different pieces and collections to showcase their true beauty. Here are some of my favorites from the book:

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Okay, so brass and gold are slowly returning to my repertoire. I’ve always been leery of using it in different rooms, but this spread explains how to use gold leaf.

 

Shock of the century? I picked the page that is all green and blue. Plus, who can really say no to a vintage globe. That set of drawers was a thrifting find that was painted and updated!

Shock of the century? I picked the page that is all green and blue. Plus, who can really say no to a vintage globe. That set of drawers was a thrifting find that was painted and updated!

 

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Is that coral? WHY YES IT IS. See? It doesn’t have to be overtly beachy but can still have a relaxing vibe. I love the monochromatic tans and browns. But really, keeping that room clean seems nearly impossible. I do adore all the seaside finds though…

 

So, this book was great for a quick look through, a wetting of the palette you could say. It only gives you basic ideas for your own DIY. I would consider this more of an inspiration board type of book, rather than a how-to guide. I loved the ideas and the colors, but it wasn’t completely what I expected. However, if you need some inspiration or just want to oogle some lovely interior pictures, pick this sucker up!

 

XOXO,

Ashley

Nestled In {Colorful Nesting Tables}

Hey all,

After receiving some beautiful red chairs for my birthday (thanks Grant!), I realized that we needed a little table in between to finish off our patio space.

 

Where can I put down my drink? Oh...no where? Yeah that situation needed to be remedied.

Where can I put down my drink? Oh…no where? Yeah that situation needed to be remedied.

 

I’d been searching every time we go out bargain hunting and happened upon a cute set of three nesting tables. But man, they needed some serious help. The tables were left in the rain, to the point that the price was rinsed off the tag and there was a great deal of rust on the glass tops. The black paint was chipping or rusted in spots. I knew they would be a bit of work, but finding pretty intact, iron pieces with the glass isn’t always easy. So I picked up this trio for $30 and planned to clean them up at home.

 

Remember these lovelies? Well, I had all that spray paint left over, so why not match the tables to the rest of the deck!

Remember these lovelies? Well, I had all that spray paint left over, so why not match the tables to the rest of the deck!

So after scraping down the tables and cleaning off the dirt, I sprayed away! At first I thought about getting extra paint and doing different tables in different hues of the same color. But because I had all the left over paint from the potting project, I figured I could save some moolah and just use that. Plus, I knew that it would blend in well with the rest of the things on the deck!

The glass, however, was a different story. I soaked it overnight in soapy water, rust didn’t come off. I made a paste out of Comet cleaner and left it on there, using an old toothbrush to scrub off the rust, and it didn’t budge. Then I used good old fashioned baking soda and vinegar and that seemed to help some. It wasn’t a perfect job, but the rust stains are much better than when I purchased them. So, without further ado, I give you….nesting tables!

 

Super cute, happy, and just the right pop of color. I made the smallest table the brightest color so that it didn't overpower the other two. And because we really only have one piece on the deck that is the orange, I thought the tie in with the largest table would be best. And, do I really need to explain using blue on the middle table? I use blue for everything (everything that isn't already green...).

Super cute, happy, and just the right pop of color. I made the smallest table the brightest color so that it didn’t overpower the other two. And because we really only have one piece on the deck that is the orange, I thought the tie in with the largest table would be best. And, do I really need to explain using blue on the middle table? I use blue for everything (everything that isn’t already green…).

 

So? What do you think? With just a little elbow grease and some extra paint, these guys got a new life! I’m pretty satisfied with how they turned out. Anyone else updating their deck or outdoor spaces?

XOXO,

Ashley

I Brake For Yard Sales {Book Review}

Hey all,

I was very fortunate to receive MANY design books for my birthday this year.

 

So many options, where do I start?

So many options, where do I start?

 

For those of you who know me, and my addiction to HGTV, you know that I squeal with delight every time I am able to catch Flea Market Flip. I dream of being on that show, scouring the flea market to find different items to flip and resell for a profit. What a dream.

Well, Flea Market Flip is hosted by the lovely Lara Spencer, a veteran flea marketer and home designer/TV personality. Her perky, funky style is apparent throughout the show. So when I found out that she had written a book chock full of tips and ideas, I decided that I must have it. And so, it brings me to her book, I Brake for Yard Sales (And Flea Markets, Thrift Shops, Auctions, and the Occasional Dumpster).

 

Don't you already love it? Just based on the colorful, happy cover? Where did she get that fabric...

Don’t you already love it? Just based on the colorful, happy cover? Where did she get that fabric…

 

She begins her book discussing how she got the thrifting, picking, and flea marketing bug. This, for sure, is a familial trait. Her mother was very into thrifting and now, Lara has made it her own family activity (sometimes bringing her kids for the fun). What a sweet anecdote to get the ball rolling.

Lara then begins to discuss the ways to define your style. She thinks that most styles fall into several categories and most importantly, find the things that make you happy in your styling. Embrace the whimsy, glamorous, or whatever else makes you happy! Don’t walk away from things that you will regret later (a BIG flea market lesson learned on many occasions).

 

I love the juxtaposition of her buying the sign and then showing how she actually used it in her own home.

I love the juxtaposition of her buying the sign and then showing how she actually used it in her own home.

 

Throughout her book, Lara provides GREAT tips and encouragement. She gives ideas for where to go, how to remake pieces and give them new life, and how much some projects have cost. I find that some of the insets are the most helpful, with lists about raw materials to explain patterns or descriptors to help you identify REAL quality pieces that may need some help (check for antique stamping!). She shares these tips and ideas while showing how she has decorated her homes with her own finds. Lara even shows some before and after shots, highlighting just how easy it is to breathe new life into a tired piece. Though, she also gives you great warnings for things to avoid (peeling veneer, etc). There was just so much in this book that I loved. In fact, while reading, I couldn’t stop myself from Instagramming one of the most important pages!

 

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What a clever way to phrase the flea marketing essentials! Though I love picking, there are many times when I feel under prepared, rushed, or like I’m missing bits of the experience. This list is necessary. Don’t forget, cash is king in flea markets!

 

I don’t want to give too much away, but it’s a great read. Overall, I highly recommend this book. It’s a wonderful resource to just pull inspiration from the colorful pages or remember a great resource for flea marketing. She even includes a list of places she frequents across the country (I smell a road trip in my future). For my fellow DIY-ers, HGTV enthusiasts, and bargain hunters: this book is for you!

 

XOXO,

Ashley

Flea Market Find {Using Vintage Fabric}

Hey everyone!
I finally had the time to devote to some minor sewing projects the other day and figured I would share a quick update!

Several weeks ago, I scored some super cute fabric from a flea market. It had the original Lord and Taylor tags on it, but was such an odd size, it was definitely a remnant. For dirt cheap, and because it was certainly my colors, I couldn’t pass it up. Who can say no to vintage, floral fabric? I wasn’t even sure what I could turn it into! But that didn’t matter! I just took the plunge.

After delicately cleaning it and allowing it to air dry, I lightly ironed the edges and let it sit for a while. Eventually, I decided to update the pillows on our bed, moving many of the others into the guest room and making room for new funky pillows. I pulled one of the colors from the print of the vintage fabric and found a perfect, solid color backing fabric. I decided to split the fabric and make two pillows, the length of a sham but narrower in the width.

After measuring, cutting, and pinning the edges, I was ready to sew. These were actually a quick project with my handy dandy sewing machine and I was done in no time. The prep took more time than the actual sewing, of course! I just made a simple form, rather than a cover, filled with polyfil, and sewed up the last hole. What do you think?

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I think they fit right in!

Xoxo,
Ashley