Sunday, November 28, 2010

100 Followers Giveaway!

Congratulations, TZel, you are the winner!

In keeping with blog-land custom, Red Hen Home is proud to announce the

100 followers giveaway!!

CSN Stores has been kind enough to offer a $35 gift card (in the form of a promotional code) to one of my lucky followers. CSN Stores features over 200 websites with one checkout! You can find anything your heart desires, from a briefcase to a toaster to a holiday garland!

The lucky winner can use the $35 gift code to any of CSN Stores wonderful sites.

There are two ways to enter; you may choose one or the other, or both!

  1. Be a follower of Red Hen Home, and leave a comment telling me that you are.
  2. Leave a comment telling me what gift you would most like to GIVE this year...the one you would give if money (or time) were no object!
Giveaway will end Friday, December 3, sometime before I go to bed (probably around 10 p.m. MST).

Good luck, and happy Christmas shopping!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The laaaasstttt set of chairs (this year!)

....otherwise entitled, "Chairs for the laaaassstttt table!"

Sorry to keep you waiting (if you were) for more about the table I posted last time. I was supposed to get to this post yesterday, but our family had an unscheduled stop in Rexburg, Idaho, last night! We were on our way to Montana for Thanksgiving, but we got caught in a nasty blizzard, and there was no going any farther!

So, without further ado...what is a table without chairs? I had an idea in my mind that I wanted eight different chairs around my table, and one day, I found SIX different pressed-back chairs for sale on

I am missing some pictures, unfortunately, but here are the two arm chairs that were with this collection:

Aren't they gorgeous? I hit up my friend at Di~Vine Consignment for two more pressed-back chairs, and she came through for me. Now I had my eight!

One of those, unfortunately, looked like this:

So I had to do this:

Which meant I had to order this:

So I had my first experience of re-caning a chair! (It wasn't bad!)

The chairs got wiped down with liquid sander, and although it helped, I can't say that I was overly impressed with it. I still resorted to spraying on some Zinsser 1-2-3 primer before the Sherwin Williams Creamy paint. I will frankly admit that it was almost a shame to cover up the beautiful wood on these chairs...but I was going for a look here!

I will also say that I sprayed a LOT of spindles! Well over ONE HUNDRED when all was said and done!

Here are the chairs after painting:

And here's a look after they've been distressed and glazed, and were just waiting a polyacrylic protective coat.

This set was *such* a lot of work, that I honestly wasn't sure I was going to be able to stand it in the end! Once the chairs were done, and the table was mostly done, however, I put the table together and placed six chairs around it in my garage and stood back and looked...and wow! It was actually pretty!

How nice.

Next step: put a leaf in and see how it looks with eight chairs!!

(((((crickets chirping)))))

"Houston??? We have a problem!"

Has anyone guessed what the problem might be? I certainly didn't. In case you're as clueless as I was, I'll spell it out for you.

Remember how this table has a beautiful, elaborate base that is separate from the table top? Meaning that when you expand the table, the top spreads apart, but the LEGS STAY IN THE SAME PLACE? Which means that when you put a leaf in THERE IS NO MORE ROOM FOR ANOTHER CHAIR BETWEEN THOSE LEGS??

Yah. Neither did I.

This was a deal-breaker for me, folks. If you normally only needed six chairs around your table, and only brought out the extras for occasional guests, it would be fine. But it you have to have eight chairs around your table every day, and you can't push those chairs IN!! Well, it's not gonna happen in my kitchen.

So, the table that was supposed to be for me...wasn't meant to be.

But here's what it looked like!

With one leaf:

With two:

With lots of pretty chairs:

Here's a full shot of the chair I re-caned:

And those beautiful legs:

One last beauty shot:

They may not have been meant for me, but they have found new homes...because, believe it or not, someone wanted the table but not the chairs, while another wanted the chairs but not the table!

And as for me...well I got some cash! (Which will hopefully finance a project I have in mind for my boring family room.)

We (me and my buyers!) have much to be thankful for.

Hoping each of you also have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving! May your day be filled with wonderful company and excellent food, and the chance to reflect on your many blessings!

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special

The DIY Show Off
Birthday Wedding cakes crafts parties
Furniture Feature Fridays

Monday, November 22, 2010

The laaaasstttt table (this year!)

Just about the time I was trying to clear out my garage, THE table came along. I thought it was the perfect table. It was big, it was solid wood, it was in terrible shape (meaning it was pretty cheap)!

Look at those loverly legs!

The table included two leaves, and it extended to something over 8 feet long. I love that! With a family of eight, we have to have a BIG table in order to put any company at the table with us!

The table was solid pine, which wasn't ideal...but not horrible. You can see from the pictures that the finish was shot, and it looked as if it had been used as a craft table for a year or two.

I managed to sand down to bare wood without killing another sander.

I have a little Dremel tool that is great for getting in the edges. When the sandpaper breaks and spins off the rotating head, though, it always makes my heart stop!

I was so pleased with how Minwax English Chestnut stain looked on the hand-me-down table that I decided to try it on this one.

I used Zinsser 1-2-3 primer on the apron and the legs. Another interesting feature of this table is that the table top is not actually attached to the just sits on it. It weighs a ton, so it wasn't in danger of moving anywhere! The fact that it is a separate piece should have clued me in to a potential problem...but it didn't. (Are you noticing the foreshadowing??)

My electric heater was drafted into service for this project. The temperature in October rarely got up to 65 for more than an hour or two, and the garage stayed much cooler than that! Although my heater couldn't really warm the garage up too much, it did keep the chill off enough to speed drying time a little. Not by much!

I love you, little heater!

The legs and apron got painted with Sherwin Williams Creamy, and then distressed and glazed with Burnt Umber craft paint. It's a combination that has worked well for me in the past!

Once again, though, a table top came near to driving me insane. Once it was all stained, I gave it a couple of coats of Minwax Polycrylic for protection. It was all going well, until I stood back and was too perfect! The color was glorious; the finish was shiny...and it wasn't at all what I wanted. I was going for a little more time-worn and well-loved...and it wasn't. It almost looked new again!

So...the next step:


Yes, it's true. I stripped the finish off my barely-completed table top! It was a mad, mad day. And I mean that in both the "angry" sense and the "crazy" sense!

Naturally in some areas I ended up back at bare wood again, but that was OK. I painted on stain instead of wiping with a cloth, and that gave me more of a streaky finish (that I mean in a good way) rather than an even color. I distressed the table top more, and then I painted MinWax Polyshades in Antique Walnut over top to give it a richer depth of color.

After two coats of Polyshades, I used two coats of Minwax Wipe-On Polyurethane.

The result?? was better. More to come!

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special

The DIY Show Off
Birthday Wedding cakes crafts partiesHookingupwithHoH
Furniture Feature Fridays

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Staging a shelf!

Donna at Funky Junk Interiors shared a great post about staging a restaurant near her home. Although I can't begin to compare my little experience with trying to decorate an entire restaurant, I had a fun "side project" this summer in helping a friend decorate a high shelf in the entry of her home.

I had completed several projects for "D", like the first Farmhouse table and chairs, this cute bench, and an antique coffee table, to name a few.

D has a lovely vaulted foyer area in her home, with a loft on the 2nd floor that looks down into the entry. There was an empty decorative shelf that was just begging for some personality.

I had been "collecting" items from garage sales and thrift stores and classified ads...things that I was storing in my garage but had no idea how I would use in my home! Believe it or not, almost everything I had seemed to work together perfectly for D's space.

Part of the wall behind the shelf was actual wall, while the other was banister for the loft area. I used one of my antique windows to fill the space, hung next to two not-antique plates that I bought on clearance at Tai-Pan Trading. The plant came from D.I. The laundry basket and the linens inside were different garage sale finds, and the little stool was a garage sale purchase that I painted. The bowl and pitcher are D's, and are family heirlooms.

I have to make a quick comment about the linens in the basket...when I first brought it over, I also brought an afghan that we received as a wedding present to see how it would look in the basket (I knew it was going to need a filler). It looked great!! I had to leave it with D for two weeks until I found a good replacement. I can see how someone could easily fall in to stripping their own home to make someone else's look good!

I had a silver star that used to hang on this window before I found my huge "B." I brought it over just to see how it looked, and we liked it...except that it was silver, and D wanted it to look more rusty! Would you believe, it had been rusty, but I painted it silver! I stripped the silver paint off to bring it back to it's "old" glory!

The ladder and candlesticks were more garage-sale finds, along with another pretty old linen apron. The wreath was something I made myself (my first wreath!) but then decided not to use.Italic

Neither of us were crazy about the statue of the lady, but it belonged to her mother, and she needed some place to put it! It didn't look bad, but it has since been replaced by a little fake topiary tree. The lady had to move on!

The milk can I purchased for a song at a garage sale. It was hard to let it go, but D loved it, and it looked great on her shelf.

It was so fun to see it all come together, and it made me feel better about my "impulse purchases," since they went to someone who really loved them!

Maybe I could be someone's personal garage-sale shopper. Do you think that could work??

In other news...this blog has almost gathered 100 followers! I can't believe it. I dragged my feet over starting a blog for such a long time, but it has been so fun for me to get to "talk" about my furniture/decorating obsessions with some people who actually care! Trust me, my husband....doesn't!

In keeping with Blogland tradition, there will be a giveaway when Red Hen Home reaches that magic number! CSN Stores has graciously offered a $35 gift certificate to one of you lucky people. Stay tuned!

Catch As Catch Can

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special