Monday, April 19, 2010

Thrifty Treasures: Art and Side Table

First off, thanks so much for all of your sweet comments and encouragement about my fireplace surround makeover! I am beyond thrilled with the transformation! Here's a shot of the area now with the furniture back in place:

My dad stopped by last weekend to deliver my nearly complete mantle for the basement family room (it is looking so good! I can't wait to show you!) and he was all ready to tear into me about what a dumb idea it was to spray paint something so large at all any less in the house- I mean what was I thinking and i was really going to be sorry when the paint dripped all over and paint flecks flew all over the house.... and on... and on...

And then it happened. He saw the project in question and gave it a good once over while looking for something, anything to fuel a big 'I-told-you-so', but he couldn't find a thing wrong with it! And he really tried! Finally he had to give up and admit that he was impressed!

If you've ever met my dad, you'd know what a big deal this was to me. My dad is an awesome father, but he's an engineer which means he's all about being precise.

It's probably not a great idea to spray paint indoors (I wouldn't have done it if I had found a paint with a similar texture in a brush-on) but if you're nuts enough to try it anyway, here are my tips for getting a finish that will pass muster with the pickiest engineer around:

  1. Don't do this with small children or animals around.
  2. Tape off carefully and cover a wide margin of floor and wall all the way around whatever you're painting. Seriously, like 8 feet on all sides especially on the floor (spray paint doesn't really seem to travel upward, so you're okay with less coverage on the walls)- my dad told me a story about when he spray painted something indoors roughly 30 years ago and the over spray carried toward the A/C intake vent and landed on the drape hanging next to it. Yuck!
  3. Open all the windows and doors.
  4. Wear a mask and try not to inhale the fumes.
  5. Take frequent breaks to step outside for fresh air.
  6. Work in 3 foot sections in light coats and let each section dry for a few minutes (you can work on another section in the meantime) before adding another coat.
  7. Remove the painters tape as soon as you're finished

Okay , now back to my thrifty treasures! Did you notice something new hanging above the fireplace?

Now that the tile is more muted, I decided to hang a piece of art centered on the wall. It really is centered (I've measured several times!) it's just the camera angle making it look lopsided! I'm considering adding some other items (plates, perhaps?) to this wall, but I'm enjoying the uncluttered look for now. Plus, eventually I'll have a new mantle here and I'll be able to perch some taller items on either side of the artwork.

I found this trio of watercolor paintings at an estate sale a few months ago. I purchased it for $3! I didn't look too closely at it at the time. I just thought the colors were nice. When I got home I noticed a tag on the back that read "Rudolph Lesch Fine Arts". I did a little research and found similar single pieces by the same artist listed on ebay for $375 each ( That would make my trio worth roughly $1125!) They haven't sold at that price, and I know things are only worth what someone is willing to pay for them, but I still think I got a pretty great deal!

The artist's name is Charles De Montfort.

Here are some closeups:

This one is entitled "Rue St. Vincent"

"Les Quais"

This one is a little harder to make out, but I think the title is "HV. V. Hugo"

And here is my other thrifty treasure. A pretty side table found on craigslist for $10. I love the raised lip around the edge of the tabletop and all the pretty carved details.

Love it with a vase of my favorite flowers (ranunculus- so sweet!) on top. Thanks, Mom!



  1. Love love love! :) I do think it would look neat with some plates up there...something rounded with all those "sharp" corners. But what do I know? Great deal! :)

    You have the best Craig's List!!!

  2. The table is beautiful. What a great deal you got on it!

  3. Raununculus are my favorites!! Your living room is looking really great! I love all the work you're putting in.

  4. I just can't get over how great that looks!!! You probably already answered this in your original post, but did you have to sand down the tile first? I love it.

    And awesome deal on the watercolors. That's something you only hear about on Antiques Roadshow (one of my favorite shows!) I love them too!

    You are just amazing! You make me want to spray paint something - lol.


  5. I love it all! Especially the watercolors - swoon!

  6. It all looks fabulous! And what a great find and deal on those paintings. I also love ranunculus- they are so pretty!

  7. Love the finished product -- and the great deals you got! Love a story like that; am always hoping that my thrifting will yield the same results some day!

  8. Oh, Pam, I just can't believe how well your fireplace turned out. It's absolutely wonderful. And your thrifty finds look great. You are an amazing woman!

  9. Wow, I love it! It turned out so great! Who would have thought it was possible? I like it with the furniture all put back together, it looks really nice.

  10. I have only recently found your blog, but I am quickly becoming a fan. What a steal on those watercolors! I love when that happens!

  11. I love your fireplace makeover your hard word payed off. Your little table is so cute and a great find.

  12. That fireplace looks SO much better!

    And I love the shape of that table :)

  13. Hi, I've just found your blog, and love what you did with the fireplace tile. Great find on the Paris pictures, they're gorgeous. I wonder if the third picture is of Victor Hugo's home/street in Paris? Gorgeous.

    :o) Laura


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