Monday, 26 September 2016

Fall at the Farmhouse

HELLO AGAIN FRIENDS! ...and HELLO FALL!! My favorite time of year!!
Sweaters & flip flops! lol
Remember, I am Canadian!
 I was itching to decorate for fall so off I went with the plans of finding white pumpkins! and then I saw these guys! and I fell in love! Just that little bit of color but with a faded look. so pretty!
  and yes I did end up buying a couple white gourds & pumpkins but that's because too much color burns my eyes!
 I wanted to keep my decorating very simple! Simple enough that people will know that I'm participating but not so much that it starts looking like I might be selling the stuff!

 It's always nice when you don't have to go far to find some fall décor. Like right in your own flowerbed! Really, these hydrangeas are nice ALL year round!
OK!! So I know many of you have been following and maybe wondering where my farmhouse restoration posts are?
So I will explain a little. When we first got the farmhouse I was SO excited and my plans were to be blogging weekly and giving updates as we went because I see its a very big thing right now but I started to find it overwhelming! As far as posting about all of our work on the house and giving constant updates, I decided to do it later! When I have time, if & when I feel like it! Now I hope that no one will be upset with me for this. I mean I did promise updates but I have decided to SLOW DOWN! I really need to enjoy and LIVE during this process. 
 I think the main reason for starting to feel overwhelmed is I am technically supposed to be eliminating 'unnecessary extras'. It is something my husband and I have discussed and I have eliminated a lot of unnecessary things. I have a larger size household, being a Mom of 5 mostly younger kids and remember I'm married so..(really it's like 6 kids) LOL!  And we have 2 dogs and 3 cats and only 1 hamster now (one got away!) but believe me!!! When you ADD IT ALL UP they keep me very busy! I've been struggling with health issues and trying to resolve them and that in itself is very physically taxing. I'm exhausted right now! It's 1:45pm and I've been up since 3:15am. I couldn't lay down any longer because of GERD. ( Gastroesophageal reflux disease) so horrible! So sometimes you just have to do a process of elimination and prioritize your life!! This  whole process involved with the farmhouse is also daunting so I decided to eliminate that one extra pressure. I really don't NEED to take photos constantly and write about it and explain it away to everyone. Now don't get me wrong, obviously I LOVE taking photos and sharing and will be doing so but periodically when I really feel like it-LIKE TODAY!! I do post images more regularly on intstagram and facebook, but that's so much quicker and easier than blogging!
 I will tell you that a LOT has gone on and will continue to go on with regards to our farmhouse. And I can tell you I feel wonderful about it! Lots of smiles over here. I am sure what I am feeling is hugs from that old girl because I have such a feeling of comfort in it!! There is still a lot of work-years worth of work to do but we have to try to prioritize those jobs as well. I have a lot of WANTS but we have to work on the NEEDS first as my husband reminds me!

 (I hope you are enjoying my simple fall décor!!)
 My mom in law said WHAT ARE THOSE!? referring to my strange form of cabbage. I don't know WHAT kind it is, I just like the looks of it and it was cheap! $10 for the 2.

Time to bring out those comfy blankets & quilts!
 my kitchen plans have changed-I am not having open shelves, I am using some cupboards sections that we already had instead of open shelves. The cupboards are actually made from an antique upper cabinet that had been cut in 2! one half has a screened door so I assume the other door also once had screen. So on one side of the window the cupboard will be basically open shelving because there is no door and the other will have the screened door.  Enough about that! I will leave it at that for now. lol
 I have been keeping in contact with Robin Stubbert the photographer who did my other photo shoots and we plan to do another in the future! OH! and she also said the the INTERIOR PHOTOS of the fall shoot we did at my old house may have been chosen to be featured fall 2017. Of course I will keep you posted about that!

I have also been busy creating items for my etsy shop RusticFarmhouseWares.
you can visit my etsy HERE
I use antique & vintage textiles to create my handmade designs all with that simple farmhouse style! Due to the nature of the fabrics some items may have slight discoloration & imperfections which only add to their character. I will be listing more aprons, pillows, stockings & other goodies asap. Let me know if I can custom make something for you! I will also list the occasional vintage item. 

 I've been stock piling some lovely grainsacks and linens and have been creating some cute lavender sachets and pillows. I have some orders to fill but I will continue to list more items as soon as I can.

So a couple years ago I made these vintage grainsack & ticking insert style pillows (below) and they have been pinned over 21,000 times! I guess you could say they are quite popular!
If you go on pinterest and type in 'grainsack pillow' they are right at the top!
So I decided to design some MINI PILLOW lavender sachets  
they are made in the same style as those ticking insert pillows!

 And YUP! its that time of year again when I start working on Christmas stockings! I bet I run out of supplies sooner than later!
 Below are the textiles I am using to put together a custom order of 5 stockings. They will be so cute!
Well friends, I hope that this update-about not giving updates constantly is taken well! I love having all you wonderful followers and I don't mean to disappoint anyone but I just have to do what feels right for me. Just know that everything is going good.
Phew! I am in much need of a nap but I must start some potato soup and get the laundry done! Take care all! ~Mel

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Harvest Table Makeover

Hello again! We've been very busy with our 'rustic farmhouse' restoration. In the meantime, every day LIFE and the TO-DO LIST still need attention. A few of us took turns sanding our pine harvest table top. Those pine boards were given to us by my Father in law and are well over 100 years old. About 10 years ago we had a table made from them, the boards were 8 feet long but we had to shave off a couple inches to square them up. And before anyone cringes at the thought of all that patina being sanded off, it really did need it! It had YEARS worth of slopping, drooling, eating, drinking, colouring (with permanent markers), being used as a catch all, spilling glue & glitter, name it!

 And no all that stuff couldn't just be washed off, it also had a layer of stain and varnish worn off in some spots and not in others. It's like going to the hair dressers and saying "I only want a half inch cut off" and she replies "Yes I understand that ma'am, but you NEED about 3 inches cut off to remove all these dead ends!" and I may or may not be speaking from personal experience. I did't want to sand it completely flat, it has always had dings and chips and cracks and holes which gives it character and I don't want to remove that BUT I do want to give it a new look. A makeover.
Right now it is raw with a little stain and varnish and unrecognizable things left in the cracks and dents, the low spots. So I need to find a product that will get in there and gently wash it away. I will then need to FINISH it! I recently made facebook and instagram posts regarding this and I have had many suggestions and I am leaning towards WAX as it is more natural and let's face it one of the oldest ways of protecting furniture! I have seen some great photos on pinterest of tables coated with lime wax which adds some white in the crevices. I see that there are also colored waxes as well, which only confuses me more. I am also concerned about water marks being left behind.  Maybe some newer waxes don't leave water marks??
 Here is a photo of the table with it's warmer finish. OH! I just love this photo by Robin Stubbert for Prairie Style magazine. Oh what great memories on that farm! We are still living in the country on a parcel of land just shy of an acre. Just enough for the kids, dogs and eventually chickens to run around and I have plans for another nice garden and fire pit! Can't wait to make more great memories at our new place! I would LOVE to hear about your personal experience  with table top finishes and always open to suggestions! Thanks!

Thursday, 30 June 2016

Our feature in PRAIRIE STYLE Summer 2016!

 Hello Friends!

As you may remember we did a photo shoot a while back of our old farmhouse & orchard. The exterior shots will be featured in the upcoming issue of Country Sampler's Prairie Style Summer 2016! It was so fun working with Interiors & Lifestyle photographer Robin Stubbert again, I love seeing her work her magic! It's amazing the way she can capture a moment. When taking photos inside you can create lighting if need be but when working outside however, it's a race against time! I knew Robin had limited time to get some specific shots as the sun seemed to be going down quickly and I was in a panic! I remember trying desperately to get ALL of my family to do what they needed to do for the camera and of course when I had 5 of them doing it the 6th person wouldn't be, or someone would be missing all together and have gone back into the house! KIDS!! Oh it was a crazy night! Total chaos! Lots of fun though looking back! LOL       

                                                  link to Robin's website Robin Stubbert

I had made caramel & pecan apples and they kept melting and I was so upset that they seemed so sloppy! I wanted the perfect candy apple! Once I saw the photos though I realized how perfectly imperfect they were just they way they should be because this was really just another little glimpse into my world and everyone knows that's just how I roll in the kitchen! At the end of the evening, when it was all said and done we were really happy with what was accomplished in such a short period of time. We just sat at our table and smiled. It was late into the evening and we realized we were starving! We already had the fire going so my husband threw some chicken on the grill. They got a little charred but we ate it anyway! My family is used to (my) char but poor Robin!  It was the first time she had ever experienced anything like that, the combination of working with such time restrictions and all that chaos of such a large family.

In the end some amazing exterior (and interior!) shots were taken and I am forever grateful for such keepsakes and memories. Thanks so much to Robin for her amazing photography and also to the fabulous Fifi O'Neill for choosing to feature photos of my home & family not once but TWICE in Prairie Style magazine issues. Interior shots from this shoot will hopefully find a home soon and when they do I will be sure to let you know!
Visit Fifi Fifi
Order your early copy today!  Prairie Style Summer 2016

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Fresh Air & Sunshine

I am just loving this time of year. I find it really inspiring. It's not too hot or humid yet, but the sun is shining and there is just the right amount of warmth. I love spending time outdoors, as I look around I am noticing so much beauty. The bees are buzzing around as they do their jobs.  The mama birds are sitting in their nests, blooming flowers are in freshly manicured beds (ah except mine but I'm working on it!) And of course my favorite LILACS are out! The smell of fresh cut grass & spring blooms is in the air! The air just seems so FRESH! I opened the windows to let some of that IN and I opened up all the curtains to brighten up the interior spaces. I took duvets and pillows out for a good fluffing! The asparagus is ready and the local fruit & veggie stands are starting to get busy. And of course I'm finding super cute outfits & shoes for the girls and get to see their cute painted toes! Ahhhhhh it's a wonderful time of the year! I hope you've been able to enjoy the weather too!


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