A Raised Dog Bed for Belka

Raised_bed_for_Belka

Belka needed a raised dog bed. She is small, 9 years old, has arthritis, and cannot jump. Belka is our third dog, our latest pet addition. Her name means “squirrel” in Russian. She is from Kazakhstan. She used to be a stray her whole life. Well, she stationed herself at a municipal garage, for the most part, where a couple of drivers cared for her, brought her food from time to time, and found adoptive parents for her puppies. But she was never inside a house and still had to roam the neighborhood for sustenance. This is how my husband first met her – she was searching for food. Then one day he was walking down the street and saw her sitting on the side of the road and nursing her front leg. He picked her up and took her to a vet and then to another, more capable, one. She ended up having a surgery to fix her broken elbow and another one to have her spayed. She was very ill and very confused. My husband cared for her day and night. And then- bam! she got on a plane (three, actually), crossed a half of the globe, and joined our family. Here she is. Everyone, meet our Belka!  Continue reading

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Mixing old and new in a modern interior

 

antique table and modern leather chairsJust a few thoughts on introducing old furniture pieces to modern interiors. If anybody told me just 5 years ago that I would become an advocate for vintage or antique furniture, I would laugh it off. I had a deep dislike for the traditional style, especially in the interpretation of such in late 20th century. You know what I mean – overstuffed couches upholstered in faux leather and just exuding pseudo opulence.  Nail head trim on a couch – no, thank you, I’ll pass that one. I was all for a modern interior.

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Spray painting again – a French style desk with Ormolu

spray painting desk

I’ve just started remodeling my guest room. So many upcycling projects planned! This is the room where my daughter stays when she is in town. Because she visits Europe, France in particular, very often, she loves old Europe flavor in interior design. So I decided to add some French flavor to the room while reusing most of the furniture.  One thing I had to replace, though, was a Shaker style, small desk. It absolutely did not fit in. Craig’s list, then! Sure enough, I found a very nicely shaped, French style desk with Ormolu (bronze ornaments on the legs) for $95. It was heavily nicked and scratched, especially the top and needed refinishing. A spray painting candidate? Will see, first I need to remove the old finish.

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DIY reupholstering a couch

DYI reupholstering a couch

I never thought about DIY reupholstering furniture until my dogs completely ruined the upholstery on my cheap but beloved armchair I used as my office chair. I found an upholstery shop, emailed them a picture of the chair and asked how much it would be to reupholster it in leather. I was totally clueless how much it could cost. They probably laughed hard when they saw my email. I never got a reply. Then I did a research on reupholstering prices, said “Oops!” and decided I would do the job myself. Nothing to lose, really.

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Upcycling outdoor chairs into lounge chairs

Upcycled outdoor chairs

I while ago, when we moved into our house, I imagined we would spend a lot of time outdoors, in the backyard. Our dogs would play with abandon, we would sit on the deck enjoying the weather and sounds of nature from the nearby woods. So, we invested a lot of energy and money into landscaping our backyard – building a deck, a paved patio, a pond, and getting other niceties. The niceties included a patio set from acacia wood consisting of two arm chairs, a small table, and a loveseat. Continue reading

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Upcycling Doors, Doors, and More Doors

My house was  full of ugly closet doors. Old, painted over too many times, chipped and nicked. Ugly. It bothered me. Every time I looked at one of them, it offended my sense of  beauty. I thought about sprucing them up by yet again painting them. Still ugly. I also thought about buying new ones, but decently looking doors are so expensive! $300 for a closet door? No way!

Then one day it hit me – I have a few wooden blinds with broken tilting mechanisms stashed in storage. Stained in honey oak, huge in size (36 by 74 inch each), and a perfect material for refacing the pesky doors. Best of all, I will be upcycling both the doors and the blinds!

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