Thursday, December 17, 2015

Christmas Time At The Cabbage 2015

The holidays kind of snuck up on me this season.  I started everything later than I usually do but this actually turned out to be a good thing.  It was a good thing because it required me to give myself two gifts that I hope to give myself a lot more of in 2016: Simplicity and Time.

Christmas ornaments in the dining room and on the tree,

So I didn't go all out with the holiday decorations this year.  Instead I edited my ideas down to what I could comfortably manage and then I took my time and enjoyed the process of implementing them as well as the results.

The Cabbage Christmas Tree 2015

Simplicity and Time, how nicely each of them makes room for the other.

I painted new wings for this year's mantel decorations

So, from our home to yours, Hippie and I wish you all the simple pleasures of this season and an abundance of time to enjoy them.

Just a little bit of holiday sparkle in my art studio.

Peace, Love, Art & Happy Holidays,


This year's simple chalkboard mural.

Click here if you missed my Christmas Time At The Cabbage post in 2014.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Bathroom Closet Makeover

I don't know if I've mentioned this before but home improvement projects kind of suck sometimes.  I mean sure, they're fine in the beginning when I am planning and picking out paint colors and they are great at the end when all the hard work is done and I get to add all of the finishing touches.  However, in the middle of these projects I often find myself questioning my sanity and wanting to pull my hair out in frustration.  

This was  definitely the case with my bathroom closet project.  It was supposed to be a simple weekend project but then real life, mercury retrograde, the laws of physics and my lack of math skills got in the way and it ended up taking five weeks!  However, now that it is done, I choose to tell myself that it was all worth it.

So here's what I started with all those weeks ago:

Before: Messy Curtain Covering Messy Closet

Unlike the other closets I've tackled in this house, this closet never had a door.  Hippie and I tried to come up with one back when we renovated the bathroom (click here if you missed that post) but soon realized the location of the closet made a door unfeasible. So I just threw up a curtain instead.  This allowed me to hide all kinds of things I didn't really need behind there and didn't look all that great, which got on my nerves.  So finally I just decided I needed to make it pretty and organized enough that it didn't need a door or a curtain.

The first step was cleaning out the closet (which took forever), then Hippie and I removed the shelves (easier said than done) and I got to work painting and (drum roll please) wallpapering!

Closet In Progress

Now, normally I am afraid of wallpaper but then I saw this Devine Peel And Stick Wallpaper at Target (affiliate link) and decided this would be the perfect place to try it out.  The most challenging part about putting it up was figuring out how to get the pattern to line up but once I did, it went fairly quickly.  I did have to peel it off and back on a few times to get it just right but that was the beauty of this stuff.  I can see myself using it again on other small projects.

That done, it was time to put the newly painted shelves back in, which proved to be even more problematic than getting them out.  Finally I just bought some pre-finished shelves and they went right in and looked so much better (lesson learned).

Then I got to do the fun part of organizing and decorating.  I put everything I didn't want to see in pretty storage bins and containers but was able to leave out many of the things I use the most.

Storage Bins and Decorative Containers Keep Shelves Pretty

Cotton Balls and Swabs Never Looked So Fancy. ;)

And then finally I was done!  Woo-hoo!

After: Open and Organized Closet

Of course the big challenge will be keeping it this way.  I'm sure some adjustments will be made as I go along but I think this will help me keep the clutter from building up like it did before.

Do you have any home improvement challenges or tips you'd like to share with me?  Please feel free to leave a comment below.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Cabagelow Creations

It's a busy week here at The Cabbage with Fall coming soon and football season starting but I wanted to take this opportunity to officially introduce you to my newest shop on - Cabagelow Creations.

Purple Patina Plate Collection - Available Here

I have been offering my art, graphic designs and photographs for sale on Zazzle products for over 10 years now.  In the beginning the amount of products was limited and I sold mostly art prints, greeting cards and t-shirts.  Then a few years ago Zazzle started making home accessories available and I got really excited.  Not only did this increase the possibilities for my business but I could now design custom items for my own home!

Fly Me To The Moon / Reach For The Stars Throw Pillow - Available Here

I created my Cabagelow Creations shop as a place to showcase the designs that are inspired by The Cabbage and our life here.  I have purchased many of the products with these designs and use them throughout my own home and garden, so I feel confident in the quality and value that Zazzle offers.

Samples Of The Purple Patina Fabric Collection - Available Here

I hope you will visit my Cabagelow Creations shop at often as it continues to evolve daily.  For new design and product alerts as well as special offers, follow @VLHproducts on Twitter.

As always, thank you for your support and encouragement.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

5 Favorite Thrift Store Finds + 3 Things I Still Buy At Thrift Stores

When we moved into The Cabbage several years ago, I had big dreams of how I wanted to furnish it but a very small budget.  Lucky for me, at that time my local thrift stores were full of treasures.  Below are a few of my favorite finds.

1. This Lovely China Cabinet:

Thrift Store China Cabinet To Hold More Treasures
(Plates and Drinkware available at the Cabagelow Creations Shop)

I really wanted a china cabinet for my dining room but didn't think I could afford one until I came across this beauty.  I couldn't believe there was something this nice at a thrift store and I really couldn't believe the price.  Score!

2. This Gorgeous Vanity:

This Vanity Resides In "The Fairy Nook " Of Our Guest Room

This vanity was another unbelievable thrift store find.  We were expecting guests in just a couple of days and had nothing in our guest room but a bed.  I was looking for a small dresser but when I saw this I had to have it.  It turned out to be the perfect solution, providing storage as well as surface space for our guests.

3. This Comfy Wing Chair:

A Favorite Corner For Me and My Cat Poe, The Table and Lamp Are Also From Thrift Stores

Underneath my drop cloth "slipcover" and the fabric covering the cushion and ottoman of this thrift store find is the ugliest plaid fabric that ever existed.  However, it is one of the most comfortable chairs I have ever sat in.  Sometimes I think I should replace this chair with something a little more put together or stylish but then I sit down in it and think, "Nah".

4. This Old Workhorse Of A Desk:

The Perfect Desk For My Art Studio

This amazing thrift store bargain was a little beat up when I found it which made it perfect for my art studio.  It is solid and sturdy with a ton of work space and even more storage.  I have been using the bottom right drawer as a junk drawer for 8 or 9 years now and have only had to clean it out once.  I seriously love this desk.

5. These Cool Retro Bar Stools:

Cell Phone Photo Of My Thrift Store Bar Stools

I ducked in to one of my favorite thrift stores on a whim a little over a year ago and these cool swiveling bar stools were waiting for me to take them home.  I was really excited because I knew Hippie was going to love them and he does.  We ended up splitting up the set, putting one in my art studio for me and one in the kitchen for Hippie.  However, it is our cat Motley that gets the most use out of that one.

Our Kitchen Supervisor

That was actually a pretty rare find, as the last few years it seems like thrift stores have less and less true treasures to offer.  However thrift stores are still the first place I look for certain items.  Here are 3 types of items I still buy at thrift stores:

1. Vases

One Of My Favorite Thrift Store Vases

I like to have a variety of different vases around for flower arrangements from my garden.  Almost all of my most favorite ones have come from thrift stores.  I like the quirky ones the best but there are usually some more classic ones to choose from as well. 

2. Lamps

This Charming Little Lamp Cost Me Less Than 3 Dollars

I don't really try to find unusual lamps at thrift stores but they seem to have a way of finding me.  When buying lamps secondhand I always try to find a place to plug them in to make sure they work.  If the cord is damaged at all, I will make sure that the lamp can easily be taken apart for rewiring before I purchase it.

3. Picture Frames

My Collection Of Vintage and Antique (Some Reproduction) Photos
See Cards Made From Some Of These At My VictoriaVintage Shop

It takes some digging sometimes, but if I need picture frames for a home decor or art project I usually check the thrift stores first.  As long as the price is right, I also don't mind doing a little painting or other work to upcycle frames with potential.

Do you have a favorite thrift store find or tips for finding vintage treasures?  I'd love to hear from you in the comments below.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Half Wall Living Room Makeover

Back in November 2014 I decided I was going to makeover my living room one wall at a time and started with our fireplace wall (click here for before and after photos).  After that I was still pretty much at a loss with what to do with the rest of the space but eventually I decided that I would tackle another wall.  However, part of this wall is mostly open to the kitchen, so really I only had to makeover a half wall.  Here's what it looked like when I started:

Before Photo Of  The Half Wall

Yes, that is a ceramic Elvis bust and a Velvet Elvis painting.  I actually am extremely fond of these items but I just wanted a change so I moved them to another room.  

The blue dresser we purchased not too long ago from one of our local second hand shops.  It is great for storage and I really love it except the knobs were a little too plain for me.  So I purchased some hardware from my Butterfly Collage Collection on Zazzle.

My Mix and Match Butterfly Designs on Carolina Hardware Knobs
(Available here)

I'm real happy with how these look and function with my dresser.

Butterfly Hardware On The Dresser

Also, just for fun I decided to line the drawers with my Butterfly Collage Wrapping Paper (available here).  It makes me smile whenever I open a drawer for something.

Butterfly Collage Lined DVD Drawer

Above the dresser I hung a couple of display shelves.  I had originally bought these for our guest room but they didn't work there.  I really like them though so I'm glad I was able to use them here.  I didn't want to buy a bunch of new stuff just to fill them so I used items I already had in other places in the house, such as one of my most recent paintings and a pair of butterfly fairy bookends without the books because I just how they look that way.  The great thing about display shelves is that it's easy to change stuff out so I'm sure I will have fun restyling them at some point.

My "Summer Wind" Painting and Other Items On Display Shelves

I kept the top of the dresser clear except for a runner and a book stand, giving us room to temporarily dump keys or mail here when we need to.  After that, all that was left to do was paint the door to the basement to add some more color and contrast and I was done!

After Photo Of The Half Wall

It's amazing what a big difference changing just a few elements made.  It's really giving me a feel for what I might want to do with the rest of the room someday.  

Have you ever made a small change in your home that made a big difference?  Please feel free to share your ideas and experiences in the comments below.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

5 Reasons To Love Zinnias

Tulips have always been my favorite flowers.  So much so that I was determined to grow a whole field of them here at one time.  Unfortunately, there were some other creatures around here who loved tulips as much as I do, so that turned out to be an impossible task.  Then one year, after our measly tulip crop had faded, Hippie planted the area with Zinnia seeds.  When I saw the results of this just a few weeks later I fell madly in love with Zinnias (shhh, don't tell the Tulips).  Here's 5 reasons why:

1. They're Easy To Grow

My Laid Back Hippie Flower Child

It isn't hard at all to plant and maintain Zinnias.  Hippie buys a big bag of seeds every Spring, spreads them around, covers them with a little mulch, waters the area occasionally and then we wait for the magic to start happening.  They are annuals in our climate but we harvest some of the seeds and replant them the following year.

Feeling The Zinnia Love

2. They're Beautiful

The Perfect Petals Of A Pink Zinnia

Zinnia's have a lot going for them in the looks department.  They are tall and colorful and have lovely, tidy petals.  We plant a mix of different varieties and they all look great and compliment each other.

3.  They Have A Long Blooming Season

Zinnia Blooms And Autumn Foliage

If you plant Zinnia seeds in Spring you should see them bloom by Mid-Summer and they often remain in bloom well into Fall.  The photo above was taken in Mid-October!

4. They Make Great Cut Flowers

A Variety Of Cut Zinnias In Thrift Store Vases Makes A Casual But Charming Display

The length, sturdiness and beauty of Zinnias make for perfect bouquets and long lasting flower arrangements.

5. Pollinators Love Them

A Busy Bee In Our Zinnia Garden

Zinnias are magnets for bees, butterflies and hummingbirds.  Every time I visit my Zinnia garden I know that I will be seeing one or all of these amazing creatures.

Hummingbirds Are Frequent Visitors To Our Zinnia Garden

Do you love Zinnias too?  Or is there another low maintenance flower that you'd like to recommend?  Please feel free to leave a comment below.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The Moon Garden

I'm so excited to finally be able to share our moon garden with you.  This project started back in December when I found a really lovely blue bench on clearance for an amazing price that I just couldn't pass up.  I had the perfect spot in mind for it.

Before: Weeds Over Concrete

You can't tell from the picture above but there is actually a concrete pad under all those weeds.  I'm not sure what the previous homeowners used it for but I knew it would be the perfect spot for a little garden room and of course, I was right.

After: The Moon Garden

The garden aspect of this new outdoor room is mostly potted plants, since you can't grow anything (except really stubborn weeds) in concrete.  Keeping with the moon theme I chose white flowers such as Jasmine and Gardenia as well as plants with silver foilage like Licorice Plants.

The gazing ball stand was once the base of a bird bath (the top was broken).

The Buddha Statue was a Homegoods find.

I also planted a moonflower vine behind the bench to grow on the fence where I added some mirrored stars (former Christmas decorations).  The metal table was yellow when I bought it on clearance, so I spray painted it blue.  The throw pillow I designed myself (available at my Cabagelow Creations Shop).

The Moon And The Stars

I guess I could have stopped there but then my local home improvement store had a sale on concrete stepping stones.  I used these to create a path to and from our new garden room.

The Path To The Moon Garden

Me, Walking The Path

That was a lot of work but I just couldn't call this project done until I had added some lighting.  A few outdoor solar light fixtures (affiliate link) did the trick.

The Moon Garden At Night

Then, finally, it was time to relax and enjoy our new moon garden.

Hippie and I relaxing In Our New Garden Room

I would like to dedicate this post to the memory of our neighbor Irving.  I will miss our gardening chats.

Thank you for reading.  Your comments are always appreciated.

Moonflower and Friend Note Card
Moonflower and Friend Note Card by time2see
Find more Victoria lynn hall Cards at Zazzle