A few weeks ago I just happened to hit one of my favorite thrift stores in time to see this beauty sitting out front.  In fact there were two of them, AND it was half-priced furniture day.  Price for two chairs? $25 total for both chairs.
Of course the chairs did not look like this then.

I have been on the lookout for chairs in this style forever.  One reason is that I really love a cane back or a cane seat chair.  And the cane is in good shape.

I also love the detail on the arms of the chair. 

The look I wanted to achieve is similar to these chairs from Ballard’s.
Or the spool chair from Pottery Barn.

In the catalogues these chairs are shown with the option of a white painted finish also, which I prefer for my living room.
This soft yellow seemed just right to me.  I buy a locally made chalk paint.  I love that no priming is needed for chalk paint.

I used a clear wax on top of the chalk paint to give a little soft sheen to the finish.

Another reason I like this style of chair is that a seat cushion is fairly easy to make.
After measuring very carefully I ordered high density foam from CushionXpress.  The website directs you to a video which helps to determine the density of foam needed for your product.  I highly recommend watching the video.
The prices are better than Joann’s.  I received my 4 foam pieces in a little over a week.  The total for all 4 was about $91.00.
The fabric is from Fabric Guru, which is my go to fabric store. Fabric Guru is having a 20% off sale until July 5 with the code july4.
 I usually sew my cushions and make piping to accent the edges.  This time I tried just folding the fabric over the cushion.  I’m still trying to decide if I like it.

The chair looked a little bare until I made the pillow for the back.

The other chair is a rocker and sits very low to the ground.  I have removed the rockers and am ordering feet so it will sit higher.  We will see how that goes; woodworking is not one of my skills.
In the meanwhile, have a great Fourth of July!
I was not compensated for any of the companies mentioned in this post.
Linking with Savvy Southern Style

The June Garden

During the years that my husband was on active duty and we moved around, I learned a lot about gardening in different regions of the country.  Different regions have peak seasons it seemed to me.  I moved from North Carolina to Boston one summer and I was struck by how beautiful gardens were in August in Boston.  August gardens in North Carolina are usually struggling, gasping for water and relief from the relentless heat.
In the DC area, where I live now, late spring/early summer is the time for our best garden.  We had a nice rainy spring that we humans complained about but the flowers loved.  And, we have not had a lot of super hot days so far.  Those are perfect conditions.

A few years ago I discovered Monarda or Bee Balm.  These spiky flowers provide beautiful color and drama in the shade garden.  They are vigorous spreaders and I have to thin them out or they would take over.  My hydrangea is complaining about the lack of space for her fluffy blooms.

The lacecap hydrangea has shot up also, almost obscuring the birdhouse.  The bird parents like it though, since it provides a little cover as they go to and fro.

I don’t get to sit down much during these busy gardening days.  But I love my time working among my plants and flowers.  It all goes by too quickly.

How is your garden doing these days? 

Living Room

Do you change up your living room for the summer?  The change in season does seem to call for less décor I think.
Also, I had moved some things around and felt like it was time for a few new pictures.
When you enter our front door this chest is the first thing you see.  It sits at one end of the living room.

Our living room is a long narrow room, which makes arranging the furniture a little tricky.  Not to mention there are two big doorways, one smaller door and a 9 foot window, plus that glassed door you see to the right of the mantel.
I’ve used this little basket all over the house.  Baskets just say summer, don’t they?

This is the best place in the house to read.  I push the pillows against those high arms of the sofa; it makes the perfect headrest.

Just looking at it makes me want to do that very thing.

And guess what?  This summer, for the first time I have joined an online book club.  We will read 5 books between Memorial Day and Labor Day.  So, it looks like I will be spending quite a few hours here in my favorite spot.

Have a great weekend, doing whatever relaxes you!

The Dining Room

Our dining room sits pretty much in the center of our house.  When you think about it, that is kind of perfect.
When we have a cocktail party there is great flow for guests as they can  go out of any of the four doorways that lead into this room.  It’s hard to get trapped in a corner in this room. Ha!
Below you can see two of the doorways: the one on the right leads to the entry hall and on the left is the living room.
And since none of the rooms are especially big, it’s good to have flow.

At the other end of the room you have a door leading to Tom’s library, which used to be an enclosed sun porch that no one ever used.  Now we keep the bar set up out there and that is very handy for parties and other gatherings.

This view shows the library again, but with the kitchen on the left side.
Plenty of light streams in from all sides.

As I look at this room I remember all the years and the many houses and the various tables we have had. But the one constant was just being together, laughing and enjoying our time together.  Of course.

Have You Heard About . . .

I found this interview article with Will Taylor very interesting.  Had you heard of the 60-30-10 rule when it comes to using color in decorating?

What a cute idea for a graduation party!  We are past graduation parties at our house (sadly, because they are such happy occasions).  It’s from Martha Stewart, natch.

Graduation Party Sign (and Guestbook)
Lately I have been loving the Eupicurious app.  You can save the shopping list for the recipes you want to make. Then when you get to the store, no searching for that elusive list (which in my case is usually still on the kitchen counter).  And the recipes are reviewed so you get a pretty good idea if you would like them.

Fates and Furies

I just finished Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff.  This book is like no other you have read, totally engrossing, with characters you want to strangle and hug.  I don’t know if I recommend it for the beach – you won’t be very social because your nose will be buried in this book!

Have you seen Ashley Whitaker’s work?  I especially love the rooms she designs for her clients in Florida.

Post Memorial Day, the summer has started!  I have been cleaning off the deck to prepare for the first real summer barbecue.
Are you ready for summer entertaining yet?

Have a great weekend!