Tagged: vintage

Shut the Front Door – Part 1

Painting your front door a great pop of color has been all the rage for a while ago – it can really add a lovely effect on your house.

When I first saw our house I knew right away that I needed to show some TLC to our front door, it was painted red to match the color scheme of the exterior.


#1 RULE: Learn to love your old wood! #2 RULE: Flat is bleeh. Add some sheen to that door!

Cute but the color scheme will be changing and the paint was way too flat for an accent like this.

Rather than waiting to paint the door when we paint the rest of the house I opted to strip the color and go back to the stain. I am a firm believer showing off wood detail with a stain instead of covering it up when you can – especially on a nice old house!

The door will pop off the hinges very easily if you are doing any kind of refinishing work. Just pop up the pins using a putty knife and hammer or some hinges unscrew at the bottom of the pin.


hinge pin will allow the door to come off and on easily

Once the door was off the frame and on saw horses it was time to strip! It took a couple coats of stripper but nothing too bad.


We put the door back up after the messiest part was over… having a front door is a good thing. It seemed as if most of the varnish or poly was still intact when the door was painted but there were some areas that definitely seemed like they had been weathered – maybe painting seemed like a good choice at the time.


it’s naked! ready to sand and stain

Just to let you know – if you have never stripped anything, the stripper just takes off the finish it does not bleach away any stain that was there before. It may strip layer after layer of paint colors or just strip the clear coat. Adding a fresh coat of stain helps liven up the color and condition the wood.

I decided to strip the varnish off of the interior side as well – the clear coat had allegatored and was just not in the prettiest shape. This led to a wonderful discovery! My front door was two-toned!


Before: door needs a spruce up


After: Stripping the clear coat gave way to a beautiful two-tone door!

The majority of interior doors in the house are similar in that they are two-tone along with my stair spindles and rails. Anyone else out there have this going on? We looked at MANY houses in the last year of the same vintage but this was the only one to have two-tone details.

After stripping both sides I matched the lighter stain to “Golden Pecan” from Minwax and the darker stain I used “Red Mahogany” mixed with the golden to get a closer match to the original.

I am using Spar-Urethane to protect the wood. For an exterior door it is important to use a product that can handle changing weather. Unfortunately there is a 24 hour drying time. I have the first coat on but will need to lock my door when working this week…sooo I shall update you next week after the final coats are done and I will show you my new window treatment!


Shoes! I’m in LURVE!

Generally the shoe stores and I do not get along… at all.

Today however I was pleasantly surprised with the fall styles coming in. When shopping I have 3 distinct things that my shoes must fill – size – 1.) 5.5-6 which is harder than you may think to find shoes that actually fit. 2.) Vegan – I just can’t deal with leather which limits my choices quite a bit. 3.) Comfort and Construction – why oh why are there always adorable ballet flats with no support that the fabric will just shred within 3 hours from at the toes?!?!?! grrrrrrr

Anyway enough ranting – I found something beautiful today!

Crown Vintage Pippin Flat | DSW


OH how I love that classic brogue style. Perhaps it just reminds my of my saddle shoes when I was younger. But look at them, classic, t-strap and small wedge! I am sadly not one for heels although I am quite lacking in the height department… I max out around 1.5″ heels. I did try on a couple of cute brogue styles but these actually had some nice support to them. Thank you DSW for showing these to me.

After my shopping trip I decided I would do a quick search for similar styles… I may also need these:

How About Wow? Flat in Sunflower | Mod Retro Vintage Flats | ModCloth.com

thank you so much MODCloth



The Good ol’ Standby


This morning while grabbing some fabric from my retired sewing room (attic), I discovered 2 things:

1. Our annual spring tenants, Doug and Lucy of the canadian geese variety have taken up their original nest from 2011 which happens to be right outside of my attic window (let’s hope the eggs hatch this year!)

and 2. My favorite sewing book was buried and hiding upstairs!

I love this sewing booklet from Simplicity Patterns – I got it from my mom but being from 1949 it probably belonged to my grandmother first.

I have a few basic sewing books (and many specialty) but by far the 87 pages of adorable illustrations is my go-to for most sewing needs. “Helpful Hints for Beginners and Experts” definitely sums up this book as it covers all the basics but leaves out some info that I feel has been lost in some modern publications.


While every sewing book has it’s place, I love the ease and chart-filledness of this one. What are your favorite sewing resources?