Happily Better After: Episode 6

Remember ABC's Extreme Makeover that aired in the early 2000's? The premise of the show was that a team of professional "beautifiers" would give random pedestrians cinderella-like transformations. The chosen people would undergo hair cuts, makeup and cosmetic dentistry, all for a tearful "after" reveal at the end of the episode. 

Now we don't claim to have a contract with ABC but sometimes we rather feel like designers on on a similar show (Extreme Makeover - Furniture Addition). Many of these pieces require repair, paint, stain, new tops, and a lot of time and creativity. For this reason, we love taking our "before" pictures as a reminder of where the piece started. 

We hope you enjoy seeing the transformation as much as we do!

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Yes! We sell homemade candles too! ;)

Yes! We sell homemade candles too! ;)

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If there's a special style or color of furniture you envision in your home, be sure to ask us on FB or call the shop about "Special Requests"!

P.S. Don't forget that Vintage Joy Ride is this week May 21st! Click here to get more information on this fun event! 

As always, thanks for adventuring with us! 

Step into our Vendors' Homes: Sarah's Family Room Remodel

As part of an ongoing monthly series we will be entering the homes of our talented Ramshackled Treasures vendors. They will show us their recent DIYs, room remodels and favorite furniture refinishes. Prepare yourself to learn, share and be inspired!

Last month you met Julie and got a tour of her eclectic country home. This month we are so excited to introduce you to our fun-loving and crazy creative vendor Sarah! Over the past month, Sarah has been busy repainting and redecorating her dining area and family room in her Monticello home.

Sarah, her husband Ed and their four children have lived in their home for 12 years. 

Sarah, her husband Ed and their four children have lived in their home for 12 years. 

Before

The walls were previously purple in the family room and the entry had brown stenciled swirls. Sarah wanted an updated look that expressed her current tastes. At first, she was a bit nervous about painting the wood wainscoting in the dining/entry area, but now she loves it so much she can't wait to tackle all the oak trim in the house! 

After

"We've been in this house 12 years," Sarah explained. "It was the 30th house we looked at with the realtor and when I walked in and saw the arches--I loved it."

Sarah has painted her walls several times since moving in. This time, she choose a light gray paint. She had a very specific gray in mind so she actually brought her curtains into Sherwin Williams to have them match the paint color--how smart is that! 

"This was the very first piece that I ever did," Sarah explained about her antique buffet (above). "Your first project is like your baby. My whole house is matched around this piece. It's chipping but I think it looks cool."

Sarah's daughter, Elsie, hanging out in their cozy family room. 

Sarah's daughter, Elsie, hanging out in their cozy family room. 

Sarah painted, distressed and sealed the laminate floors (giving it a gray limed look) which turned out absolutely fabulous! The soft grays and splashes of turquoise in the family room make it feel very peaceful. Her father-in-law was kind enough to build a cabinet for the TV to sit on, and Sarah is slowly collecting hardware to fasten to the small faux drawers. 

With four kids and two dogs in the house she protects her couches with white blankets that she can easily wash, it's not her ideal solution but she wants to keep everything clean.

Sarah made their kitchen table from the top of an old wire spindle and the iron base of an antique sewing machine. Her next project will be to recover and tuft the back of the dining chairs!

Sarah is constantly on the hunt for cool, old junk. She bought this wood box last week at  flea market, painted it and planted succulents inside!

Sarah is constantly on the hunt for cool, old junk. She bought this wood box last week at  flea market, painted it and planted succulents inside!

She describes her personal style as: "Rustic chic, mixed with a little industrial. I love metal, florals and crystals. My style will probably change again in 5-10 years." 

Sara says that she gets most of her decorating inspiration from Ramshackled Treasures. "You walk in and see Michelle's room, Amy's room and Deb's room and see all of their unique styles--and then you go on Pinterest and you see a mix of them all!" 

After 2 1/2 years at Ramshackled Treasures, Sarah is leaving to make more time for her children. She is really grateful for the time she has had at the shop and the many friendships she has made.

Sarah looks forward to a fun summer full of projects, taking educational day trips with her kids and exploring all 30 of Monticello's parks!

 

Happily Better After Episode 5

This month we are super excited to show you our lovely Before and After photos. It has been a busy spring for us at the shop--with our Ramshackled team decorating a wedding (see last weeks post), preparing for spring Junk Bonanza next week, and Tattered Elegance we've had our hands full. (Oofta, that's a lotta links there! *Wipes sweat from brow*)

In short, this spring has been a full and blessed one and we are so thankful for our customers and readers who adventure with us!

Before & After

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Many of these "Afters" are for sale at the shop or will be at Junk Bonanza next week. Feel free to ask questions about special orders such as barn wood items (that table tho!) or other special requests!

Step into our Vendors' Homes: Meet Julie

As part of an ongoing monthly series we will be entering the homes of our talented Ramshackled Treasures vendors. They will show us their recent DIYs, room remodels and favorite furniture refinishes. Prepare yourself to learn, share and be inspired!

Last month you met Deb and saw her lovely home and pallet signs. This month we are so excited to introduce you to Julie another Ramshackled vendor who resides in Big Lake, MN and stages her creations in one of the upstairs rooms at the shop.

Julie's home is a sweet yellow house with a restful front porch that speaks of country living. Julie has her hands full with a full-time corporate job, 3 grandkids and creating for the shop, but she manages it all in turn. She describes her work for the shop as rather therapeutic--hunting and gathering treasures to upcycle. Instead of simply painting a piece of furniture a popular color, she will wait for it to speak to her personally--especially if its an antique.

An antique library table in Julie's home displays family photos. 

An antique library table in Julie's home displays family photos. 

She described her decorating style as eclectic. "It has to have good lines and good patterns...I'm not a pallet wood person, it has to have a fine finish," Julie explained. "And a piece has to be ugly in order for me to paint over it. I can't paint over beautiful wood." 

Julie's home emanates this mindset, it feels warm because it is collected. Her furniture isn't matchy-matchy, but all the styles and colors work together to give it a really harmonious, lived-in feel.

She has two gorgeous wood hutches that she uses to store and display glassware. 

“I’m a glass addict," Julie admits. "It’s terrible, terrible addiction."

She has collected her glass over the years--from delicate china soup bowls to 1940's tumblers to a crystal cranberry sauce platter. "I'm always on the hunt for glassware. To me it's homey, it (reminds me of) my grandma." 

Julie pointed out the miniature gingham child's rocking chair. "I bought this rocker when my daughter Ella was three. We were huge Shirley Temple fans and there was a rocking chair just like this one in one of the movies. I just had to buy it for her. Now my grandsons like to sit in them."

Julie sitting at an antique school teacher desk she found at a garage sale for $7. "I enjoy the process and letting something speak to me. Like this desk...it hasn’t spoken to me yet what color I should paint it."

Julie sitting at an antique school teacher desk she found at a garage sale for $7. "I enjoy the process and letting something speak to me. Like this desk...it hasn’t spoken to me yet what color I should paint it."

"I like that spot," Julie says about her wall shelving which displays old pictures of family, a vintage floral painting, and her love of birds. 

"I like that spot," Julie says about her wall shelving which displays old pictures of family, a vintage floral painting, and her love of birds. 

When asked what is her favorite tune to jam to while working on projects, Julie got a mischievous smile on her face and brought out a CD of nature sounds called “Songbird Symphony.” 

Julie's most recent Before and After:

"It was a dresser and then I had a shelf that I purchased to use for something," Julie explained. "I think it turned out pretty cool. I decided to eliminate the top drawer and add wood to make it an open cavity for storage (basket, tray). I changed the drawers hardware too so that it fits the era 'look' that I was going for.  Pretty cool and really happy with how it turned out!"

You should be Julie--it looks amazing!

Thank you for inviting us into your home, your creativity and eye for hidden gems is inspiring. 

 

19 Spring Decorating Tips from Our Artists

“After all," Anne had said to Marilla once, "I believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens, but just those that bring simple little pleasures, following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string." ~ Anne, Anne of Avonlea, Chapter 19

Something magical is happening just outside your window. Look outside your window, right now, yes, do it! What do you see?

Upon the writing of this post, a robin red breast is hopping around in the yard looking for a worm to spear from the cool dirt, vermillion buds are bursting from the maple trees, and the damp grass is gently turning green. These are, as Anne Shirley puts it, "simple little pleasures."

At Ramshackled Treasures we love and are inspired by the simple little pleasures life has to offer. We are more than just a shop, what we do is a way of life and an expression of the heart. We all love junk, the thrill of the hunt, the process of creating beauty. This process is often a journey, filled with ups and downs and serendipitous moments. Sometimes things don't turn out how we planned, other times, they exceed our expectations.

These creations and the creative process are our "simple little pleasures."

As spring nears many of us are mentally planning our gardens and spring cleanings--but don't forget to freshen your home with a little bit of the spring joy as well! 

Today we are going to share with you the hottest colors in the design world for 2016, 

Sometimes it doesn't take a whole room remodel to make a big difference in your space. Often its just a pop of color, something growing, a small end table, or a rustic knick-knack...to give your home the lived-in serenity you've been looking for.

1. Glass figures: don't keep them locked away--play with them! This nesting bird looks adorable in her basket. 

1. Glass figures: don't keep them locked away--play with them! This nesting bird looks adorable in her basket. 

2. White dish ware is timeless and looks so clean and sweet on the table. This rope place mat adds such a nice earthy contrast to the white, don't you think?

2. White dish ware is timeless and looks so clean and sweet on the table. This rope place mat adds such a nice earthy contrast to the white, don't you think?

3. Garden Salvage: This planter speaks to us of salvage and we love it! 

3. Garden Salvage: This planter speaks to us of salvage and we love it! 

4. Thinking outside of the box--candelabras can display more than just candles!

4. Thinking outside of the box--candelabras can display more than just candles!

5. Textured pictures and have them in various sizes and styles throughout the shop! And of course we love our greens! 

5. Textured pictures and have them in various sizes and styles throughout the shop! And of course we love our greens! 

6. Vintage elements. Whether on a front porch, in a garden, or in the corner of a kitchen these old milk jugs are a hot commodity for country design. 

6. Vintage elements. Whether on a front porch, in a garden, or in the corner of a kitchen these old milk jugs are a hot commodity for country design. 

7. All about those Blues! We need to write a separate post soon about the hot colors of 2016 because they are seriously so yummy!! This teal end table is a great example spring's color trends. 

7. All about those Blues! We need to write a separate post soon about the hot colors of 2016 because they are seriously so yummy!! This teal end table is a great example spring's color trends. 

8. Organic Elements: pussy willows in a milk jar and a clay pot with succulents. 

8. Organic Elements: pussy willows in a milk jar and a clay pot with succulents. 

9. Pallet wood tops are everywhere and we defiantly have fun with this trend. We love how Deb, one of our talented vendors, combine that awesome teal with the pallet wood. 

9. Pallet wood tops are everywhere and we defiantly have fun with this trend. We love how Deb, one of our talented vendors, combine that awesome teal with the pallet wood. 

10. Open up small spaces with a vintage mirror. This ornate design on such a large mirror is especially nice. LOVE! 

10. Open up small spaces with a vintage mirror. This ornate design on such a large mirror is especially nice. LOVE! 

11. Glassware. These dishes are a must have! We've seen other designers use these for little desert displays in kitchens--but eggs this time of year--brilliant! 

11. Glassware. These dishes are a must have! We've seen other designers use these for little desert displays in kitchens--but eggs this time of year--brilliant! 

12. Powder blue is another HOT 2016 color, and of course, this lace patterned top looks AMAZING!

12. Powder blue is another HOT 2016 color, and of course, this lace patterned top looks AMAZING!

13. Add some texture and height to any space with on of our handmade birdhouses. We love the salvage elements!

13. Add some texture and height to any space with on of our handmade birdhouses. We love the salvage elements!

14. Country Chic Paint "Aurora" color and it is much in demand this year. If you're a painter, ask about how you can get some at the shop! 

14. Country Chic Paint "Aurora" color and it is much in demand this year. If you're a painter, ask about how you can get some at the shop! 

15. Florals makes such a difference in a space and they don't always have to be real to be sweet and statement making! Plus, lace and sheet music? Your rooms will sing! 

15. Florals makes such a difference in a space and they don't always have to be real to be sweet and statement making! Plus, lace and sheet music? Your rooms will sing! 

16. Signage: These pallet Home and Love signs go like hot cakes at the shop. Feel free to call to place a special order. 

16. Signage: These pallet Home and Love signs go like hot cakes at the shop. Feel free to call to place a special order. 

17: Happy Chic! With the growing awareness of the environment, crafters and jewelers have found new ways to recycle junk and turn it into art. Do your recognize any of the elements that went into creating this sassy piece?

17: Happy Chic! With the growing awareness of the environment, crafters and jewelers have found new ways to recycle junk and turn it into art. Do your recognize any of the elements that went into creating this sassy piece?

18. Color Pallet. So much YES in this photo! The blues and yellows are a great example the color trends coming down the pike. 

18. Color Pallet. So much YES in this photo! The blues and yellows are a great example the color trends coming down the pike. 

19. Fridge bling. Do yourself a favor: throw away that 1-800 Bob-the-Plummer magnet on the refrigerator and buy one of these cutie-patooties made by our wonderful jeweler Kim! 

19. Fridge bling. Do yourself a favor: throw away that 1-800 Bob-the-Plummer magnet on the refrigerator and buy one of these cutie-patooties made by our wonderful jeweler Kim! 

If you like what you see, Subscribe below to our little corner of the internet to receive weekly inspirations, stories, savings, DIYs and all you need to know about upcoming events! 

 

A DIY Trick I Wish I'd Learned Years Ago

For years, many of us have labored to add a bit of old-fashioned texture to flat furniture. We've stenciled designs. We've bought expensive wood appliques. All this trouble just to give it a little vintage look. But, what if we told you that a new product can make all your texture nightmares go away?! 

This is the front of a dresser that blogger "Orphan's with Makeup" created with Country Chic Embossing Plaster. It looks amazing! 

This is the front of a dresser that blogger "Orphan's with Makeup" created with Country Chic Embossing Plaster. It looks amazing! 

It will not only save you moola--but looks like a million bucks! Cha-ching! 

So what is the miracle worker?

It's Country Chic's "Embossing Plaster"!!! 

The top of this Queen Annes table top got the royal treatment with embossing plaster and now is one-of-a-kind! 

The top of this Queen Annes table top got the royal treatment with embossing plaster and now is one-of-a-kind! 

This bench would have been very flat without the embossing plaster. It added just the right touch of color and pattern. 

This bench would have been very flat without the embossing plaster. It added just the right touch of color and pattern. 

The plaster has the consistency of cake frosting--so it's easy to spread with a putty knife. It is also clay based with little-to-no odor. It is currently available in colors: 

  • Creamed Honey (light brown tone)
  • Praline (medium brown tone)
  • Roasted Chestnut (dark brown tone)

What you need: 

  • A stencil 
  • A putty knife 
  • Paint (we recommend Country Chic Paint!)
  • Embossing Plaster - color of choice

Watch this video or keep reading for a tutorial on how to get started! Feel free to Pin for later! 

STEP BY STEP TUTORIAL

Step 1) Paint the surface

Before applying the plaster, apply a coat of Country Chic Paint as a primer. If you are painting MDF or raw wood and you know for sure it doesn’t have some sort of coating, you don’t have to put a base coat on. It is always smart to use a base coat of paint just in case.

Step 2) Prepare your stencil

After the paint has dried, it's time to get your stencil ready. Before you put the stencil on your project, we recommend using a bit of stencil adhesive so that the stencil stays in place. Let the adhesive dry for a minute before putting it on your projects, as it might permanently bond if you apply it right away!

Step 3) Apply the plaster

Once the stencil is in place, use a spatula, pallet knife, trowel or putty knife to apply the Embossing Plaster over the stencil. You’re just going to lay it on and smooth it out a little. Don’t try to overwork it as you might end up with plaster leaking under the stencil. 

You can apply the Embossing Plaster as thinly or thickly as you like. Just remember that the plaster will crack if applied too thickly, which might even add to the effect, but it's something to keep in mind. Here, we're using a clean spatula to remove the excess plaster so that it's applied in the same thickness as the stencil.

Step 4) Remove and clean your stencil

Immediately after putting on the plaster, you’ll remove the stencil carefully. You’ll want to clean your stencil right away. Baby wipes work really well to clean off your stencil, or simply use a damp cloth.

Step 5) Let it dry

Dry time will vary and will depend on the thickness you applied the plaster, as well as the temperature and humidity. It’s always best to work with any of our products in room temperature..

Step 6) Sand the edges

Once the plaster is dry, you may soften the plaster by sanding it lightly with a fine grit sandpaper block.

Step 7) Finish your project

Once your embossed detail is dried and you've sanded it smooth, you can now finish your project! You can paint over it with one of your favorite Country Chic Paint colors, and then distress it. This will make the raised stencil outline show through without taking off your first base coat of paint (see photos of bench and end table for example). 

After painting it, you can also choose to finish with one of our other products, such as wax or Metallic Cream. The possibilities are endless!

*The Country Chic Embossing Plaster can be found at Ramshackled Treasures in Zimmerman, MN! 

Happily Better After: Episode 4

Trivia time! Did you know that the term do-it-yourself (DIY) has been around since at least 1912? (And we always thought it was invented by Pinterest!) But whatever the case, the concept of do-it-yourself is a tale as old as time. Humans love to create, to improve upon, and to feel a sense of satisfaction at a job well done. That's why we love to showcase some of our before and after photos each month and we know it inspires you too!

Do you have a furniture project that you've been thinking about redoing? Feel free to tell us about it in the comments below!

Before & After

Before & After

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Before & After

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