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Friday, July 8, 2011

Furniture, Paint, Whitewash and Scotch

There has been a lot of paint in my life this spring.

The entire beach house on Long Island was painted -- every room -- over 8 days.
I know, I was there and watched.

In New Jersey, That Old House was given a new wardrobe of white paint.
I know, I was there and watched.  

Time for me to pick up a paint brush myself
and put my own lazybones hands to work.

My sister Peggy and I need to haul our bottoms (and the rest of our selves) out to the beach house
and get to work on painting furniture out there.  She sent me a link to a company that sells
cottage and beach house furniture.  Oddly enough, it's called Cottage and Bungalow
 and it sells a coffee table called the Destin:

It's nice and roomy, beachy, would be great in our second floor great room.
It costs more than $2000.  Too many greenbacks for our beachy budget.
But in our upstairs family room out there, we have the coffee table you can see in the left in this picture:

Peg and I think that with a bit of paint, a little distressing and a slick of glaze,
we can give this old pine coffee table and its end table siblings a similar look to the
 Destin, and still afford to buy meat and the occasional small jar of Macadamia nuts.
Besides, that old coffee table holds lots of memories; it was in the family room of the house we grew up in.

Cottage and Bungalow also sells simple contemporary Windsor-style chairs:

Again, they are beyond our budget.
But painting these chairs, below - 1990s dinette chairs - currently in forest green and yellow stained wood, isn't.
Beyond the budget, I mean. If we don't go for Heirloom White, what do you think of turquoise?
I've got my crazy color flag flying this year.
Have you seen the new color on the front door at That Old House?
Wear your sunglasses.

There are quite a few older pieces of furniture out in the Southold beach house that will benefit
from a facelift of paint. If by quite a few, we mean a poop load.
I would love to use  Annie Sloan chalk paint for some of them,
as from what I've seen on the web that paint would give some of our pieces just exactly
that vintage bungalow-cottage-beach look we're going for.

But with our limited budget for the beach house makeover, and so many things that must
be purchased, chalk paint is probably not in the cards.  Have you used it?
I hear it does go a long, long way . . . .
Home here in New Jersey, there's more furniture painting to be done.
I've got a couple of demilune tables parked in the dining room,
waiting (for months) for their transformations.  I planned to paint this one black:

 and this one creamy heirloom white:
But now, after seeing this table, below, in lotsa color incarnations, on the Oomph website,
I am having second thoughts.  I'm telling you , crazy colors are calling my name.
This table is called the Palm Beach Console and it costs more than $1500.
You should check out Oomph's website for the fabulous, luscious colors they use.
Last time I checked, they were using the Sherwin Williams' palette.  Nice.

 Also here at home, there is a kick line of outdoor furniture waiting to be painted
and put back on the newly painted porch.  Luckily I've got a big bag of
spray paint, and I know how to use it.

 I've also got a shed packed full of cute little tables, waiting for their glam makeover.
I can't resist bargains in little old tables and orphaned chairs.
Get thee behind me, Craigslist!
I know so many of you have painted loads of furniture
in shades of white, and in black.
But have you gotten into using brilliant colors for accent pieces?

My Mom went the eye-popping color route decades ago, which is why I sit in a chrome yellow oak chair
that once belonged to the New York City Board of Education.
Only way back then, it wasn't yellow.
I'm not sure what kind of paint my mother used, but it's held up to countless bottoms for 40 years.

As for the beautiful pieces of furniture in this post that are for sale online, I'm not saying they
are not worth their cost.  They are lovely pieces, well made.  They aren't right for me because I can't afford them.
But I've linked to the websites so you can take a look and be inspired.

When we do get back out to the beach house, 
and can sit on the upstairs deck as the day begins to wind down,
the drink that may very well be in our glasses is The Muttini.

It was my Mom's signature fun cocktail, and it couldn't be easier.
My niece Alice blogged about it yesterday, so if you want
to read about its history in the family, you can check it out here.

I'm just going to give you the basic recipe.

Ladies and gents, The Muttini!
1 can frozen lemonade (pink looks nicest)
1 can of water
1 can of Scotch whiskey
A few ice cubes
Optional: a maraschino cherry, 1/4 slice of orange

Put the frozen lemonade in a blender.  Using the same can, fill it with water and dump in.
Then refill the can with your best not-so-expensive Scotch, and in it goes.
You don't want to pour the Glenfiddich or the Lagavulin into this, at least not if your husband is in the kitchen.

If you have a severe aversion to Scotch, you can use rye or bourbon,
but it will be sweeter, cloying, and not as delicious.  Otherwise, it will be fine.

Toss in a few ice cubes for slushy bulk, and fire up the Waring.
When it's all lovely and slushy and icy pink, pour into glasses.
Highball glasses work well, or you can use stemmed glassware.
Plop in a cherry, and add a quarter of an orange slice on the side for pizzazz.
No little umbrellas needed.

Pass 'em around on a beautiful tray, don't forget one for yourself, and listen to the compliments.

I've been trying to figure out how to go low carb with this using Crystal Light . . . .
One more thing I need to do, and soon --
make a new header for That Old House.
She isn't yellow anymore.
 Maybe I should wait till we have new shutters for all the nekkid windows.
 But that could be awhile!  Have a lovely Friday -- Cass

Link Parties!  Friday is a-popping with them.

At Designs By Gollum, it is Foodie Friday.  For today, my food is Scotch.  Click here!
It's Feathered Nest Friday at the French Country Cottage.  Click here!
Miss Mustard Seed is gathering Furniture Friday posts.  Click here!
At Common Ground, it's Vintage Inspiration Friday.  Click here!
My Romantic Home is home to Show And Tell Friday.  Click here!
At The Charm of Home, it's Home Sweet Home Friday.  Click here!


  1. great post--and inspiring--my kitchen chairs are waiting for a makeover and never though of the "two-toned" look. :-)

  2. What a nice post! & I have already checked out your suggested sites... there is some really great stuff out there. We just purchased a new lake house & it needs a complete makeover... your suggestions were/will be very helpful..
    And when we tire of painting...we can sit on our new deck & try out a muttini... sounds delicious! : )
    Thanks for sharing..
    ( & I think your newly married daughter looks like her Grandmother : )

  3. I'm sure whatever you and sis do... it will look
    L O V E L Y !!! :0)

  4. I think some bright colors would really pop at TOH -- and, of course, anything goes IMO at a beach house!!!! Have fun!!!! I was going to paint all of my porch furniture so it would be unified but I sort of like the "mishmash" so will leave well enough alone!!!!

    And yes, you need a new header for the old girl isn't yellow anymore!

  5. Oh the painting is so much fun and if you mess up, hey it's just paint! I have been dabbling with some turquoise and rockin' robin pinkish color. Can't wait to see what ya'll come up with, you have some great pieces to work with. Spray paint is easy peasy on those outdoor chairs..:)

  6. I like seeing where blog ladies paint chairs I have a couple waiting to be painted and this gives me ideas

    I love the house WHITE

  7. You are going to be a busy painter but I can't wait to see your bold color choices!


  8. A pop of colour would be great. She likely used marine paint on that chair. I have seen kitchen cupboards painted with marine paint and it is pretty darned permanent unless of course you take it to sea where the ocean eventually eats away at it.

  9. Cass, I love the bright colors for the beach house. The yellow chair is terrific! Go bright girl! ♥O

  10. I love painting old furniture bright and vibrant colors, especially for a beach house! Have a blast!

  11. I say go for the bright colors!! I have a lot of furniture to paint, too, so you are getting me off of my bum!


  12. Hi Cass~
    love all the things DONE and are being done..
    both at the old house and the cottage..
    have loved/enjoyed every post featuring/regarding wedding stuff!!
    don't stop!!
    new header?
    wait until the shutters are back in place..
    the porch furniture painted!
    gonna be just awesome!!!
    happy painting!!!

  13. Wow! A lot of painting, for sure. Love the white on your house! I can never resist little tables and odd chairs! I've been doing a lot of painting lately myself. Have a lovely weekend!

    Waving from Our Back Porch,

  14. Beautiful post, Cass. Love your painting ideas. And the turquoise chairs.....yummy! Gonna paint the dining table as well? Can't wait to tour the beach house when you and your sister-in-law are finished.

  15. Stumbled upon your blog and this post. You have a very nice taste for all things vintage. Things of the past are timeless so you made a great choice. Style does not fade. Fashion does.

  16. I think you and your sister are going to have fun painting, then standing back and looking at your wonderful job!

  17. Go for the turquoise - I think it'll be great!

  18. First of all, I have your green and wooden windsor chairs in my basement. Can't wait to see what yours look like painted. I like your bright color idea for the beach house. Turquoise just shouts seaside to me. Enjoy all you painting.

  19. Cass,
    Your house is beautiful! I love it white. I like all your furniture too. That could keep you busy all summer. I can't afford chalk paint either, but there is an alternative. I haven't tried it yet but I am going to soon. You can mix paint with gesso and it has been used for a very long time, think Michelangelo. I have tried it on a bracket and it is chalky. It would need to be finished with the wax for sure on the furniture. But, you can buy wax anywhere. Here is my post where I tired gesso.
    Thanks for linking it up to Home Sweet Home!

  20. Beautiful & inspiring post! love the white on the house - although the yellow was sweet too! The pops of red is so charming too! love it! oxox, tracie


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