Right beside the Antique Castle was a dishware/china shop. This place is Fiestaware heaven. They had entire sets of retired colors and hard to find pieces. Unfortunately, they were out of our budget but, its fun to look. This is THE place to shop if you are looking for one or two pieces to complete your china set. I also saw the oddest water pitcher. Ever. Really. Odd.
Last but, definitely not least, we stopped at the Mercy Thrift Shop. This place was huge and well organized. It reminded me of the Guardian Angel Thrift in Fuquay. I found several deals. Donny found a recliner and took a nap. lol
Church . . . 3
Monet wall art . . . 2
Large basket . . . 5
Basket (which will be painted and make a cool milk bottle basket) . . . 1
Mini Milk Jug . . . 1
Pottery . . . 4
Toothbrush holder . . . 2
Salt and Pepper shakers (which go with a set my parents gave me) . . . 1 for the pair
Gravy boat and saucer , , , 1 for the pair
Large gray vase . . . 8
Blue and green candy canes . . . 6
In all we probably spent around 200 but, we have so many unique pieces that we will incorporate in our home. I don't have exact spots for majority of the pieces, yet. A few pieces may even end up in our client's homes. My main rule of junkin' is that if I like it and it's a good price - I buy it. I will figure out where and how to fit it in our house later. The worst feeling is regretting that one of a kind piece. I still regret passing on a $10 set of discontinued whimsical Christmas dishes at the flea market five years ago. I'd rather buy it and if it doesn't work out return it, sell it, gift it or donate it.
I have a confession to make... I am obsessed with antique/thrift/junk stores. I LOVE walking through a store with the anticipation of the perfect find. Sometimes I go in knowing what I am looking for whether it is for a particular room or specific pieces for a client or friend. My favorite time is when I am with my husband and we are just exploring for our own collection. Earlier this week, we took a mini vacation to Gatlinburg, TN for our anniversary. Of course we had to explore.
Our first stop was at Goodwill. Unfortunately, this one was a bit of a bust. It was heavily picked over and way overpriced. I was able to find a Christmas tree hand soap dispenser for $2. I followed a volunteer who was stocking the bare shelves with new donated items. Yep, I'm that girl.
Next door to the Goodwill was a store called Hammer's. It was very similar to an Ollie's with great prices but, maybe not the highest quality merch. What drew me in was this incredible deal of burlap coffee bean sacks for 99 cents. I bought a handful before even surveying the store. In my experience, burlap sacks go for $5-25 a piece in Raleigh. I am not sure how I am going to use the sacks but, the deal was too good to pass up.
While we were there, I picked up some glass milk containers, a cheerful little sign, a mat for Lexie and the Chis food bowls and a polka dotted pitcher My grand total was $25. YEYA!!
We also stumbled upon an amazing deal - vintage wooden Coca-Cola crates.....for 12.50!!!!!!!!!!! On top of that, FREE unlimited glass Coca-Cola bottles. I'm not a huge Coca-Cola collector but, I know anything vintage soft drink is worth picking up. I fantasize about having an open pantry with everything stored in vintage wood crates and baskets.
Once we scored the crates and the bottles - we ventured upstairs. OMG!!! I could have stayed for hours - china, milk glass, antique kitchenware (my FAVE), toys, quilts, etc. The deals were plentiful for those who were willing to dig for them. Like the other blogger mentioned - there was one booth with unbelievable deals. I scored a milk glass vase with top, a milk glass dish and a large round porcelain piece for less than 8 dollars!!! I was elated! It was as if the little cherubs on the porcelain container were singing in my ears.
Then I came across something I have been coveting for a while now. I have a bit of a thing for vintage fans. I love the industrial farmhouse style and the fact that most have beautiful patina. I believe they add charm to any space.
Just last weekend I found one almost identical at the Raleigh Flea Market but, the dealer wouldn't budge from his lofty $95 price tag. Downstairs at the Heartland Antiques I saw a few fans in the $60 - 85 range. I just can't justify that price tag on something that I will never plug in for fear of spontaneous electrical fire. I have an obsession but, I am frugal about it!
So anyway, I found a beautiful blue (yay!) fan for $30!!! We hemmed and hawed over the purchase because my husband doesn't share my affinity for rusted electronics. In the end, I went with my gut and took my prize downstairs. Now because we paid in cash (always pay in cash my friends) - we received a 10% discount. SCORE! We walked away with the crates, a fan, milk glass pieces, etc for around $60.
To be continued...I have some beautiful furniture to work on today. :-)
Good Morning Friends! Are you loving this beautiful Fall morning?!?! We are headed to even better weather in TN. This is the first trip that we are taking since starting the business three years ago. It's a huge milestone for us. We LOVE what we do but, believe me it's not the profession if you are looking to become a millionaire. lol
For two years we scrimped, saved, prayed and sacrificed a lot to make ends meet. I thought vacations were just something we would give up forever. It was a fair trade off because I'd rather have my own business and work alongside my husband. However, this year we have been blessed beyond belief.
We work hard 24/7 but, of course when you do what you love its hardly work. ;-) Being able to take a few days for a break and head out of town is a luxury that we are so grateful for. We owe so much to our followers and clients who have spread the word about our business. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
I already miss painting. My hand itches for a brush! I cannot wait to return on Wednesday to work on several beautiful pieces of furniture. In the meantime, I will enjoy recharging my creative energy with interior design magazines and doing a bit of junkin'. Yay!!
The only downside was leaving Lexie and the Chis!! We fortunately have a whole team of friends and neighbors looking after them. :-)
So I wanted to test removing and painting thermofoil cabinets for a few clients. You may or may not know about Thermofoil cabinets. Basically they are MDF boards with a hard plastic-ish wrap that is sealed with heat during manufacturing - thus "thermo" "foil." The main problem with thermofoil cabinets is that overtime the wrap can peel and expose the not so moisture resistant MDF. What can happen next is a disaster. MDF that comes in contact with moisture can expand or bubble. Once that happens - the integrity of the door is gone.
Back to my mission - to see if I could successfully remove the thermofoil wrap and paint the MDF board. My journey started by picking up a sample board - (insert plug for my fave store - Habitat for Humanity Restore).
Then I used a razor along the edge to start the peeling process.
I didn't get too far with the razor because there is a bit of adhesive between the wrap and the MDF. So I busted out the heat gun (I assume a high powered hair dryer would work as well).
What I found is that you have to work in small sections - heat gun, let it cool down a bit (or maybe wear heat resistant gloves), then peel until you start to feel the tug of the adhesive stuck on the board. Then repeat. It's pretty cool because you can actually watch the wrap bubble as the heat gun removes the bond between the adhesive and the wrap.
Eventually, and by eventually I mean an hour or so later - I had removed the wrap from the front of the door. What I discovered was not pretty. When I was carefully peeling the wrap - there were still spots where the adhesive was still bonded to the wrap. The result was missing pieces of the MDF! Now it was only a few small spots but, enough that I was not happy. The second thing I wasn't happy with was a good portion of the adhesive was still on the MDF. Remember when I said that MDF doesn't like moisture? Well that makes it tricky to remove the sticky grossness! Lastly, the MDF just felt cheap and vulnerable.
The verdict - I wouldn't recommend removing the thermofoil and painting the MDF board for your kitchen cabinets. Yes, if you paint the MDF you will seal it but, its your kitchen...I think about all of the cooking, the steam, the spills, the dogs, the little ones, the soda, the juices, eeeeeeek! It could be a disaster.
If you have thermofoil cabinet doors that ARE peeling - my suggestion is that we talk about ordering new unfinished doors. It is not as expensive as you think!
If you have thermofoil cabinet doors that are NOT peeling - you are lucky AND we can totally paint them.
This is my opinion and my experience. I am a cautious person and consider longevity in our final product. Big hugs and a bottle (or two of wine) if you decide to take on the peeling thermofoil challenge.
Creating a website is totally not for the meek. I am a procrastinating perfectionist with minimal techie skills. Thus my week long break to create the page has turned into last minute all-nighter to get it all together. However, I work best under pressure and when the house is QUIET.
Speaking of minimal techie skills - I have learned SO much since starting this process. Only one or two tantrums involving swearing at the laptop. :-) Developing this site has really energized my creative juices and helped me gain perspective of where our business has been and where I want to be. I hope that is communicated effectively through the site.
After much debate, I decided to create our website personally because I feel that our website is tremendously personal. I have enjoyed digging through photos of our first kitchens, pieces of furniture, our garage, our shop, our dogs, etc.
I will admit that I may have glanced at a few competitors' sites. I'm not sure if I wanted to compare or just make sure I was on the right track. I found myself getting catty and annoyed (hey, it's human nature). I immediately clicked the X and vowed to not return to certain sites. I went to a few of my idols/mentors' sites for inspiration instead. Go Sisterhood!
Our site is going to be a lot like our Facebook page. I want to continue with being 100% authentic and share bits of our personal life where I can. That's where this blog will come in. My goal is to post at least two or three times a week. Hold me accountable by leaving comments. :)
I am Ashley Hall - Owner/Designer of Lexie and the Chi. Every single day is an adventure. My husband and I often feel like we should SO have our own reality show. Since we do not have a camera crew following us around - this blog will have to do. The good, the bad and the sometimes really ugly. :)