Posts Tagged ‘reuse’

new art = new set-up

Mark and I were inspired by our friends Abigail and Stevens‘ decor, specifically, the way they display their art collection.  We even found out where they get their pieces framed and promptly followed suit.  The day I picked up the framed pieces, I was on my way out to pick up Mark for our date I wrote about in my last post.  When we got home, I got to show him all of the pieces all framed up.  Opening each one from it’s brown paper was a little bit like Christmas morning, and it prompted us to do our semiannual Purge and Rearrange of the house.  It definitely deserves to be capitalized.  Now this occurred on a Friday night.  Let’s just say that by the end of the evening Saturday, our entire living room had been rearranged to make way for the new art.  Also by the end of the weekend, we had dumped a van full of recycling and stuff off at their respective locations (Re-Use Ann Arbor for the furniture and household stuff)…and rearranged the entire living area in the basement.  Which included Mark’s music studio.  We felt like industrious squirrels getting all of the odds and ends in order for winter.  Whew!  I’m tired just writing about it!  Behold.

butterfly mosaic

Here’s one of the pieces that spurred the change.  All pieces framed in white are part of the art makeover.  This particular piece made the greatest transformation.  Formerly, it’s glass was old and dusty and it was in a thrift store frame.  Now this vintage butterfly mosaic is much happier. Here are a bunch of images of the new living room set-up with art in place.  We’re fixin’ to paint the walls gray and the trim white.  What do you think?


living room


Here’s the Mike McFalls sculpture installed in its new home in the dining room.  For the the time being, this is where it lives.

dining room

So in short, buy or trade for some new art.  Or invest in some frames for your art.  Your collection needn’t be extensive or expensive to spruce up and I think you’ll like the way it makes your space feel!

peace out

With the hectic beginning of the school year, I am finding that I need certain elements in my life to keep me sane.  These are constants, but somehow I always forget about them in the chaos of life and keep discovering them when I need them most.  I need quiet time, space to think, space to make, and to remember that there’s a big beautiful world out there beyond the little ruts I dig in the ground on my daily routine.

Today, we had the pleasure of hosting good friends for brunch (tofu Mark-muffins, potato pancakes with cashew creme and apple sauce and peaches), then headed out to some hiking trails with them.  This time of year is blissful.  Before the hike, we found a strange and amazing house out in the middle of nowhere that happened to be for sale.  We walked around the grounds and checked out the old musty outbuilding:

old chair

We hiked at Cherry Hill Nature Preserve that Mark and Chad found on a recent bike ride.

Lauren, Chad and Mark on the trail


autumnal hike

Queen Anne

Studio time, reading, hot baths, tea and yoga have all been very restorative to me lately.  During the summer months, we can use the three-season room as a yoga studio.  It’s nice because it has tall ceilings, a skylight that looks up into our black locust tree and the cats like to be out there with us.

summer yoga studio

summer yoga studio

black locust skylight

But with the coming of the Michigan Winter (which deserves to be capitalized), I recently reclaimed the guest room as a space for us.  After all, guests are only here 3% of the time, so why have a room that is completely dedicated to people who don’t live here?  I have been  inspired for awhile by the yoga room created by the author of the blog Beauty That Moves:

So I decided to fold up the old futon (only to be unfolded when guests visit) and make the space into the winter yoga studio.  yoga 1

Yoga 2

yoga 3

I don’t know what’s going on lately, but I am really drawn to sleek, white household items and natural accents.  So, the new studio reflects that.  There are plenty of candles, an old laptop that doesn’t work for much, but still plays music and videos, blankets, room for yoga books, dvds and blocks.  And it turns out that the folded up futon is actually a great place to relax with a book or take a nap.  I just need a lampshade and it will be complete!


I was fortunate to guest blog about none other than… rings (of course!) on my friend Lauren’s blog Dear Golden.  She also has a top notch etsy shop by the same name through which she proffers vintage wares, and I am guilty of taking home a lot of the bounty.  I suppose I could have composed the same post for this blog, but I haven’t really written about fashion much here, and since her blog is geared toward it, specifically vintage fashion from all eras, we thought the guest blog would be a fun idea.

Lauren and I like a lot of the same kinds of vintage clothing, though her scope is much larger than mine.  Her tastes never fail to inspire me.

We have been thrifting buddies for awhile now.  I think the reason I like thifting so much is getting so much for so little.  Thifting allows one to find seemingly unique items, often in very good or excellent condition, for a low price.  I really like purchasing previously owned pieces that have a history, and in doing so, I am not encouraging the manufacture of new goods, or so I tell myself.  I know I am not alone in this practice (which, if you’re not careful can border on obsession).  And it’s not just clothing that I find in this way, but also house stuff.  We have a thoroughly thrifted house.  What isn’t thrifted is often from craigslist, garage sales, or antique stores.

Of course, buying from Dear Golden means that I am buying thrifted items, but it’s even better because I am getting hand-selected, often carefully mended clothing, about which Lauren knows the historical context.  And I’m supporting a friend too.  I model for her from time-to-time and am happy when she sends me home with “payment” in an especially cool skirt I modeled that day, or a pair of shoes.