Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Vintage Shelf Makeover - FINALLY!

Way back in the summer, I showed you these shelves which I was beginning to strip before painting... .. and then it all went pear-shaped. Ben took an interest in the shelves, gave me terrifying and seemingly endless instructions on how to paint them properly, took them apart to facilitate proper painting, and generally left me exhausted and traumatised at the very THOUGHT of all that work (which I would certainly have done badly). I just wanted them looking a bit distressed...
But Ben likes things to look GOOD, as I mentioned in my Advent post, and somehow, possibly realising what he'd done to me, but possibly because he knew I'd do it in a way he wouldn't like, he took over the work.
Wow - I couldn't have handed over a job better if I'd tried!
And as you can see, the results are very pleasing. He chose the paint ('moutarde') and I wasn't sure about it, but I really like it now. The idea was to hang the shelves over our sideboard, to relieve the incredible pressure on the sideboard storage, and to paint them in a colour that complimented but didn't attempt to match the oak buffet itself (which we bought in a troc shop shortly after moving in).
The big shelves are mainly practical, giving us space to store glasses in regular use, but I have been able to indulge in a bit of display on the top. Ben put a little bar along the front of each shelf to stop things dropping off, but he put a bar nearer the back of the top one too. I've used it to prop up the lovely shepherd plate my friend Ellie brought me from Germany whenshe was at university there, and also a blue Denbyware plate Ben and I bought around the same time in Windsor, and a hand-decorated bowl given to me by Ben's mum. The vase on the right came from Ele at Bit of Heaven, in our bird-themed swap. Do you note the number of Eleanors amongst those kind donors?
The little shelves have quite a lot of Portmerion on them - I really do like Portmerion when it's mixed up with other things. The Turkish cofee cups on the middle shelf were given to us by my mum earlier this year - Ben has always wanted a proper coffee set!
So there are my shelves, although perhaps now Ben and I are going to have to call them our shelves, don't you think?
These candid photos show a little bit of our pre-Christmas clutter (only a little bit of it!) There are three fabric-wrapped presents ready to go to my sister and her husband, and, if you look closely, a lovely needlecase and a fabric pen which give away a few clues about my Christmas projects.

16 comments:

Maria said...

Ben's shelves looking fantastic Floss, I would not have recognised them ! Job well done :)

marigold jam said...

The shelves look great Floss. I have a couple of shelf units in my kitchen too I painted mine a soft green colour and distressed them a bit and now I love mine too. Your "clutter" adds such a homely feel to the buffet top - who wants minimalism at this time of year (or any time of year)?

Jane x

Betty said...

I love the shelves - so pretty and you can change your displays with the seasons. Your pics are cluttered in a pretty sort of way, shows something creative is going on I think.

Isabelle - Suzy Gaby and Maud said...

Lovely looking shelves Floss. It is a very American Folk Art colour, really like it.
Isabelle x

Serenata said...

The shelves look fabulous Floss, Ben certainly did a good job on them and they looks so lovely with all your glass and china ware on them.

Freddie said...

Lovely shelves, well worth the effort.

Pink Feather Paradise said...

superb... love the mustard colour and the glasses and china are lovely... I love glass...

I have a cupboard that I want to put up... but I was going to paint it white... I am considering putting it up for christmas and then taking it down and working on it in the spring... I feel like living with it for a bit before I decide on colour etc...

at the moment I am struggling to fit in the Christmas tree!

x

Pom Pom said...

Well done, Ben! I'm the same way, Floss. When someone gives me too many suggestions I want to give up. I was just thinking about two shelves I bought at the thrift shop last year. I was going to paint them but I think I shall just hang them and showcase my favorite books (just for me! By MY side of the bed!) Great post, as always. YOU are fun, fun, fun.

Elizabethd said...

And very nice they look too.

TheMadHouse said...

Wow Floss they wook amazing and I am sure they will look wonderful each season with different things on!

Lululiz said...

Well, you got to give it to the man, he has done a great job!

Joy said...

What a great transformation with the shelving. They look great. Love the plates on top. Such a pretty touch.
♥ Joy

Angela said...

Great shelves- great man! I love the Portmeirion. I have one oval dish which I treasure [but USE nonetheless] - and we went to the amazing Portmeirion Village the year we got married. And I love the deep blue of the Denby plate too [went to the Denby village this summer too!] It is amazing how one plate or dish can bring back a raft of happy memories.
Advent Blessings xx

summerfete said...

Thankyou Floss, I do believe in sharing all that is good and s little that is bad when blogging.
Blogs which are eternally cheerful are a little bit sickly!

Love the shelves btw, lovely job!

Hope you are well.

Clare x

mrsnesbitt said...

Just starte putting up christmas decs - and in the new year we re-vamp the kitchen - yes shelves!

Purrfect Haven said...

they look wonderful and have given me food for thought... so beautifully arranged with your things. Love Helen xx