Finding rusty old junk is fun! Nevertheless, I have found that no matter how much "stuff" I find and collect, only God can fully satisfy my heart. Matthew 6:19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Antique Organ

Hello everyone on this very snowy Saturday! I was tagged on Instagram to post a special furniture piece. I've been meaning to show you my organ so playing the hashtag gave me a reason to go ahead and do this post. 
As you can see I have a very lovely organ in my music office (I'm going be doing an official reveal post soon) which has been mine since I was about four years old. I am a music teacher and this piece is one of the earliest influences I had toward that career. 
My grandfather was a music major and taught me piano from an early age. He bought this organ in 1976, at the time it was almost 100 years old. When I took an interest in music my grandparents decided the organ would be mine one day. This picture is just one of many wonderful memories with my grandparents that took place right around the organ. And just look at their gorgeous carpet! I always loved it. My grandmother had pretty things and I can remember appreciating them at an early age. When she moved to assisted living this past spring she wanted me to bring the organ to our house but I wasn't really wanting it yet. We had just moved here last December and I already had a piano in the music office and we had intentions to add built in bookshelves on the remaining walls. Nevertheless,  I really didn't have any other space for the organ, so we moved it in.

Turns out it looks stunning in its new home, the dark wood perfectly matches the old trim in our home. The organ is a fun and interesting conversation piece for my students and guests, and it still plays well! It has never been refinished and not is still gorgeous!
Pretty but needs...
Vintage junk!
I've been blogging and posting a lot about incorporating shabby chic, romantic and Frenchy styles in our current house which has dark woodwork and traditional style. I "shabbied" the organ with lots of beautiful vintage pictures and trinkets and I just love it as a display piece. 
You will see a lot of lions in my post from time to time. Both my maiden and married names are Scottish and have a lion on the crests. Of course the Lyon name is traditionally associated with the lion as a symbol. Lions just give me something else to hunt for on my treasure hunts. 
Here's my parent's senior pictures. Love them.The little rose compact is in my Etsy shop if you fancy pretty things!
This organ is everything I love! Antique, a touch of medieval gothic style, music, and memories!

Can you even believe these pedals? Look at those roses and florals, not a rip or run and it's over 100 years old. And believe me, many times I played that thing and 
pedaled and pumped til I couldn't breath!
 I almost contemplated putting the organ in storage because I didn't think it would "go" with the house but my heart wouldn't let me. I can always find a way to make a piece work if I love it. In this case it fits my current decorating model "Unified simply by being old and beautiful." It's not so much about making your home fit a particular decor style but more about living with beautiful things you love. ❤️

Here are the Instagram hosts for the hashtag party. 
If you have an Instagram I invite you to follow me there along with these talented ladies. 

Have a great weekend!

Also playing at:

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Old House Charm-It's All In The Details

Snow day!  I'm sharing a quick post highlighting some of the details that I love about our old home. I am an old door knob, key, and architectural salvage nut and what won me over about this house were lots of original details. The decor was dated but underneath the charm remained.

The knobs on EVERY interior door are original.  I mean how does that happen? You hardly ever see a 95 year old home that has all its original hardware. Also I was smitten by all the cast iron vents and returns and the discoloration and patina they had gotten over time. 

Here's a few photos I snapped today.
All of the door knobs on the bedrooms, closets, and two sets of French doors are original to the house, built between 1924-25. I've always loved the glass knobs and have several in my collections. 
The opposite side handle. Love the little keyholes! Old tarnished brass is beautiful, wouldn't you agree?

Even the little locks inside the closet are still intact.

It's like a step back in time, and you wonder why people ever took these off and put up cheap brass ones. Here you can also see the wallpaper we put up this past fall. It's a 1920's style paper and we feel it is perfect for this home. 

In addition to adding character with wallpaper, we added historic charm by painting the "antique copper" tiles in our music office. This is just a sneak peak of our music office reveal...
This ceiling! I'm still loving it every day.  Finding the right paint was the hard part. Actually it wasn't easy to paint either, but more about that in the upcoming post. This job and the wallpaper in the dining room were both pains, but more than worth the end result for the historic character they revived in the home. 
It's simply gorgeous looking up at night.

Looking down you can find more original beauty.
I absolutely love this. If I saw one of these thingys at a yard sale I would have bought it to use in some junky chic vignette or as a display piece in my booth. For it's primary purpose it's soooo warm to stand above! Old cast iron? I couldn't resist! Quick! Let's write an offer!!! I knew the outdated paint and carpet would be an easy fix but you can't always find these kinds of original details, a must have on my home wish list. And that's the hardwood floor that was under that carpet and we haven't done a thing to it.

These are the wall vents in every room. 
They are just the warmest and they really add charm to the rooms. 

You might be wondering about heat costs but somehow we almost tripled our square footage when we moved and our bill is less!
Love the butler door which swings from the kitchen to dining room. Here you can see the woodwork which isn't a perfect match but to be almost a century old and never painted, I'll take it! 

We loved the unpainted doors as well. Even when we were going to paint the trim we were going to leave the doors original. It took some getting used to, as I wanted to paint white everywhere originally. After we started moving in we realized the wood was just too pretty to paint, and since I had been doing the white thing for so long I was ready for a change, and we just couldn't destroy the integrity of the home. Don't get me wrong. I can definitely see this house all white and it might be "prettier" but it just seems wrong to do it.
Original French doors to dining room. I won't lie about keeping them clean, it's a chore. There are 60 panes of wonderful, wavy old glass between the two sets of doors, so it takes a day or two to get them sparkly but I do love them.

And this baby sealed the deal...
Look at the gorgeous woodwork and details on this mantel! Never painted, hardly a scratch. Alas, no white, but no regrets.

Original tilework

Yes, I do dream by the fire, of all the upcoming home decor projects on my wish list, traveling, spring gardening, and even right now I'm dreaming of the snow we are about to get. I love at least one big, magical snow each winter. Then give me tulips!

It wasn't hard to blend vintage, shabby chic style in this house after all. I came up with a motto for mixing decorating styles here: "Unified simply by being old and beautiful."  This lamp is a great example. It used to look perfect in a predominantly white room at our old cottage, but here it's even better. The details of the lamp seem to perfectly mirror the home details I've shown today.  
I love the soft light it casts in the evening. Perfect for a night like tonight as we keep
cozy while awaiting the predicted snowpocalypse that's supposed to hit between late tonight and tomorrow.

Stay warm and cozy dear friends!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Winter Living Room Tour

Well I've un-decked the halls for what I call "phase one" of transitioning from Christmas into winter. I find it too depressing to remove all traces of Christmas at one time, and since many decorations can work well for winter decor, I leave a few things out through Valentine's Day. Once again I missed an opportunity to participate in the blog open house tours, but I thought I'd invite you in on this blustery, snowy KY morning. 


This spot on the couch is my favorite way to wake up and start my morning right in front of the fireplace while watching deer out my front window. This morning it's the cardinals who are entertaining me while the snow gently falls.
 We love our home but it doesn't photograph well due to lighting. The snow gave me a bit more light than usual so I started snapping.
In contrast to our previous home with all whites and feminine shabby decor, this house is much more masculine and rich with lots of dark, original woodwork. And even though it is quite larger than our last cottage, it is extremely warm and cozy.

 I adore this bookshelf which belonged to my great, great Grandfather. It's had a recent makeover with chalk paint and no one can believe it's almost 100 years old. Standing beside is my favorite Santa who I think of as "Old Man Winter" after Christmas to give me a bit more time to enjoy him.
My adopted garden deer statue, old tarnished trophies and chalkboard vignette is out all year but it works especially well for winter.

The deer urn is one of my favorite yard sale finds. 
My mantel is decorated with an assortment of antique frames and mirrors as a permanent display, so I just change it up through the seasons for interest by adding little things. My bronze horse, a wintry German Santa and a vintage postcard of children playing in the snow are my early January touches. 

I haven't done many posts on this house yet. We just had our one year anniversary of living here and all the decor just started coming together in late fall, so this may be the first tour for some of my readers, and some may be surprised that I chose such bold wall color. Our living room color was chosen after researching period accurate colors for mid-1920's homes. So different from the neutral grays and greiges that are popular right now. I originally tried out several trendy colors but they did nothing for the house. I actually had to hand mix a few colors to get the color to look exactly like the historic color I wanted and it was the right choice for this house, it truly came alive with a historic feel once the walls were painted and I love how my shabby peices pop.
This old buffet is my favorite statement piece. Actually it's my favorite piece. I can't believe I've never posted about it before, but I digress. This year I displayed my German Belsnickles for Christmas along with vintage tinsel and shiny Brite ornaments in the garland but I replaced them with the large snowballs for winter and decided to keep the Santas out a bit longer.

Icicle ornaments, silver Mercury beads, woodsy greenery, rusty bells and rustic antlers evoke a winter feeling.

Love these sweet vintage deer wishing us all a Happy New Year!
One of my favorite gifts this year is this hand carved gnome door that my father-in-law made. Intended for outside but for now it makes a lovely addition to my winter woodland scene.
I also keep my greenery on the banister for winter. I just remove the ribbons and bulbs and anything that is too Christmasy. An old sled and skates are quintessential winter props in any vintage junk decorator's home.

On the other side of the staircase is our office which I will show you in an upcoming post. My blogger app is acting up so this seems like a good place to stop for now. I hope you enjoyed the living room tour today! You can see a bit more of what we've done in other rooms in previous posts. I hope you'll check them out. Not only did I use a bold wall color in my living room, but I also used wallpaper in my dining room. No regrets!

Come back and visit soon!