August 01, 2010

Altered Life

"Click on photo's to enlarge"
The decorating of a home becomes an imagination of our life and the life journey we are on. This antique desk is a piece that I acquired from a wonderful aged old rustic antique mall, with all the perfect charm of inspiring you to buy kind of place. The desk was so perfect in every way except for the dark wood stained finish with a gloss to it that spoke in volumes that it dated a look that made this a hard selling piece. With that being said I was able to talk the price down a bit with the dealer. This was my treasured find, and I was taking it on my special hands on journey. It was in much need of added euro flea market chic-ness, with a little work and no fear of making it my own, it became a piece to love.

As I embraced each step in making this desk over, it needed to reflect my passion for all things chippy along with personality that added to its age without to much added new-ness. I stripped off the old stained finish to then add the new old painted finish to it. Taking the steps of priming it, layering of paints, and special techniques that sanding adds to it, as well as aged effects giving the piece a voice, and a place of belonging. The desk had to have a look of a well worn piece that evolved over time, with the appearance of water stained marks, and bubbled areas of pealed off paint to it.

One may say in the design and illustrating of ones home that it is a reflection of our life, and the journey we are on. As a young girl with a clam spirit and a passion to create, there was not a thing that I did not look at differently then my family of close would see. I would alter everything I laid my hands to, and I was enamored with paper, paint, and a necessary art to translate from what it was, to what it had become. I cannot resist great bones in a piece, this desk being not quite junk not quite valued for some, I saw much more in it, I saw a piece I can sit and be inspired to create.

Pictured here is my works of art, altered original pieces leaving nothing undone to the altered pieces while adding new life to them. I have been collecting those old brass wall pieces from the 70's that made there ways into our homes for years. Those brass villages, and cafes along with musical planes, you will now find them popping up everywhere with out someone to love them. I will take and alter there history with vintage paper book ephemera, covering the pieces of them giving them a new story to tell, giving me an intimate connection to each piece I alter. The elements of art for me is a critical mesh, a balance of what I love and the findings of great junk to add to each piece.

Inspiring junk and altered art to find its way into our homes, giving the pieces a voice, and a place.


Lara said...

I am so enjoying your blog!! :)

What a beautiful desk, and reading this came in handy because I have currently been researching these type of painting techniques as your lovely layered & distressed is done. Your art is so inspiring.. I love the birds and I love that you embrace your art~ you are talented!
xoxo, L

Anonymous said...

Oh Dore,
Your photos and treasures are absolutely wonderful! I always so enjoy your gorgeous blog!!
Have a fabulous week.

Confessions of a Plate Addict said...

What a beautiful old desk! I love what you have done with it, too...lovely! How fun to alter the old brass pieces! I wil look at them a little differently now when I see them in the flea market! favorite... the chair! Gorgeous! I hope you are having a great Sunday!...hugs...Debbie

Chrissy...The Apothecary Shop said...

What a wonderful sure do it all your photos! x0

Amy Kinser said...

So beautiful!

Beach House Living said...

Altered beautifully. I recall those metal cafe sculptures but haven't seen any for a while. Of course, you would find a way to bring them back.

Unknown said...

Oh how I wish to redo furniture as this one day. I keep practicing...
Your desk is absolutely perfect! Just wonderful.
Becky C
Buckets of Burlap

Tamra said...

Beautiful finish on that desk! And I love your artwork.

Barbara Jean said...

Beautiful post.


barbara jean

Romeo said...

Ah Dore Mon Aimee! How I have missed you! I have been meaning to stop by for three posts now and goodness how the time seems to leave always without me...

Your creative desk is beautiful! So fitting for beautiful you! You have such a way with everything you transform, giving it a new life and love of life!

Thank you for my purrsonal letter in French! It warmed my whiskers and made my eyes water from the kindness you extended to me - just a cat who adores you!

BTW - how are Mama kitty and babies doing?! Are you feeding them well so they have big hearts for love??? Please give them my share of fish sticks and milk purrlease....I am already big and strong and so don't need them like the little ones do!

Bon Nuit Dore!



Anji Johnston said...

I am so glad I found your blog tonight - an absolute delight. This piece simply 'speaks' to me. You have taken such care and compassion in making this piece your own. How I love to do that with every object I acquire, be it for me or anyone who has the same love for it. Thank you for sharing this with us - I am so looking forward to reading all of your blog.

Marlene said...

What a beautiful Desk.. and a yummy finish.. a white swan!!! you have created! I love your altered art.. the bird apintings to hang are gorgeous! so sweet to hang a special place
you pass all the time to make you smile!
You inspire me Dore!!! Have a wondeful artful day! marlene

Elizabeth said...

Definitely a treasured find! You did a fabulous job giving that piece a new life! What a wonderful little spot for inspiration! Love your work I'm always so inspired when I visit your blog! :]

Seawashed said...

It is so beautiful. After reading how you created it to look so...I am in awe. What talent and patience you have. Sitting next to those flowing white curtains on pale stone tile is dreamy.

Ticking and Toile said...

That desk is just beautiful! Love love love the paint about a tutorial??? ;)

Everything you touch looks amazing....


Recycled Relix said...

Wonderful Desk! Great inspiration!! It would be wonderful to get a "How To....." so that we can have a go too!

Fantastic Blog

Cathy XX

Razmataz said...

Dore, I knew I should have had ypu paintm y island for me. Your desk is lovley. You did an incredible job and I love the way you styled it with your arty bits.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Bonjour ma belle,

Tu es la fée des meubles! Moi aussi, j'aime bien changer en blanc les meubles qui sont banals, médiocres et en bois. J'adore aussi le petit truc en métal sur le bureau...le petit café....l'as-tu confectionné?


Debby said...

Beautiful. Love the chairs as well.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful transformation, Dore! You have amazing vision!! The desk is absolutely gorgeous now!! I thought the same thing about my desk in the mudroom... I loved the lines of it and thought it would look great painted. Every time I mention painting it to my hubby, his first word is "No...". He lets me do whatever I want, but I respect his opinion. I think (I know) I'm just gonna go for it now.
As always, thanks for the fabulous inspiration!
Hugs ~ Jo :)

P.S. Your 3-D art piece is sweet, too. My daughters LOVE 3-D art, but I usually never see one I like. Yours is lovely!!

Simple Home said...

You have a very beautiful blog and this is a beautiful desk. Are you in the high desert? I only ask because that phone number looks like you might be.

Burlap Luxe said...

Anita, Anita Belle,
Vous êtes un plaisir d'entendre, je vous remercie pour tous les beaux commentaires de votre, que ferais-je sans eux.

Avoir une vie inspirante.
Dore »

Unknown said...

I always look forward to your post.....the desk is just beautiful. I think I could just move into your house and be happy.

Anonymous said...

Sweet, sweet altered art and a desk that quietly whispers "beautiful." The talent that runs through you, Dore', is so very special and so fun to look at!!

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Oh ma belle Doré,

Tes paroles me font un grand plaîsir! Eh oui, je suis d'accord avec toi; je changerais TOUS les meubles sur mon blog en blanc...oh, je suis folle de cette couleur!


Burlap Luxe said...

Bonne vie et de création semaine pour vous, rempli de passion pour le blanc!
votre ami

Rosemary said...

That is such a great desk!
I love it!
You did a great job!

Cindy Adkins said...

Hi Dore,
Oh my gosh, this is all so gorgeous!!! I'm swooning!!
Love it all and the chandelier is amazing!!!

Room Service ~ Decorating 101 said...

You DO have the magic... I love it! Your blog is wonderful.

whimages said...

This just takes my breath away. STUNNING!

Lisa said...

My first time over, certainly won't be the last. Just beautiful, ever bit of it, & I read quite a few posts! Lisa

maría cecilia said...

Hola Doré, it´s been so joyful browsing through your so charming home, and your home color palete is really amazing!!! I have loved everything in your wonderful blog.
Greetings from Chile,
maria cecilia

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Oh ma belle Doré! Oh, you are soooooo kind! I did see your comment, and really, it is true. We are new everyday in spirit, that which counts the most! My new post for this Friday actually touches on this; it is remarkable how Kerrie touched on this subject and your comments as well are along the lines of what I will be speaking about. We are all thinking about the same thing!!! All things "aged" have a beauty that is unique and classic! Oh, I just noticed on your lovely photos here, that the floor is painted white! I LOVE A WHITE FLOOR and my bedroom upstairs could use a white floor. What type of paint do you recommend for painting an old pine floor?

When you get a moment ma belle......Anita

Marie Lost Bird Studio said...

Hi Dore,
I'm speechless - GORGEOUS!Thank's for sharing.
Have a wonderful week.

Cielo Azul Jewelry said...

What a lovely desk. I'm so in love with this=0) It looks so wonderful next to that chain. You inspire me so much.

Hope you have a wonderful week. We have had a chilly summer. The beach has been mostly overcast and chilly. It has been nice to play in the sand, but Lord forbid you get wet! LOL! Inland has been comfy, so I'm happy about that=0)


Unknown said...


I had the distinct pleasure of stumbling across your GORGEOUS blog last night. I saw a comment you left on Flea Market Trixie's blog about my little desk re-do.

Your designs are so inspiring and beautiful. You are one talented lady, to be sure. I look forward to spending more time going through your archives (when school starts again..ha).

Your daughter has the face of an angel.

Again, I'm so glad I found you! Isn't amazing to be part of the blog community and see how woman explore their artistic sides and put a little beauty in each and every day?

Burlap Luxe is a perfect name for yoru blog. As you can see, I love burlap and actually have fringed burlap drapes (from Ballad Designs) in a couple of my rooms).

So nice to meet you,

Starview Sonnet

Anonymous said...

Such a lovely, quiet and almost romantic corner of the room. I like it!


A Shabby Moment in Time said...

Can I come and sit at your desk and just daydream for awhile??? How incredibly GORGEOUS! Love your blog and will take my time going through it. Thanks for stopping by my blog and following...I consider it an honor!

Sandi said...

I just want you to know that I LOVE your blog! It is so inspiring and gorgeous! Every single photo is making my mouth GAPE OPEN! You are so talented! Do you sell your signs online? I will definitely be back!!

Debbie~ said...

Stunning! I can see why you were taken with it, and how beautiful with the new life you bestowed upon it! Thanks for sharing! Debbie @ Cottage Hann~Me~Downs

Kelly Frances Dunn said...

Well dear, it might as well be you have touched it and how evident that is!!! Pieces are like people, they were made, intended and sometime just need to be adopted!! I was :) Maybe that's why I love the beauty found in what's not so obvious. LOVELY!

Elyse said...

so beautiful! lovely alteration. :)


Unknown said...

You are incredibly talented! I will never tire of shabby chic, and you do it so beautifully! Very, very impressed, love your blog, happy to be your newest follower! Cheers!

OneCraftyFox said...

Your creations are so beautiful!!

Have a wonderful weekend, darling :)

Willow Decor said...

Beautiful furniture and beautiful words - truly inspirational!
Thank you - you made my morning!

Cindy said...

Your desk is now very beautiful! Your art is very intresting, I really like it.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Oh ma belle, tes mots me font grand plaisir....c'est beau de vieillir surtout quand on sait que l'autre "côté" est plein de surprises, recompenses et mystè oui, moi aussi, j'aime bien ce pot en bleu!!!!! Bisous et bon dimanche, Anita

Unknown said...

Thank you for your sweet, sweet comments on my blog, I'm so happy we're friends! XO!

Faded Charm said...

What an amazing desk and chair. Perfect for holding all your creations. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you are enjoying your weekend.


Burlap Luxe said...

Anita, de belles femmes comme vous en faire une joie de vieillir avec.
Votre ami.
Bisous et câlins


Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Oh comme tu es gentille! BON DIMANCE MON AMIE! Anita

savvycityfarmer said...

you must spend every day figuring out how to charm all of us ...
i'd love to work with you for just a day ...


awal.ny said...

You did a really good job aging the desk, the wear and tear looks real, not sanded. I had a friend who had her shop next to mine, all the time I would go over and be amazed at how she painted. There would be globs of paint dripping on a piece she would be doing. Of course everyone would tell her she was sloppy, but that was on purpose, because when she sanded and rubbed, oh my gosh, you would have thought the piece was an antique.

Joyti said...

The desk is lovely, and very authentic looking...but I love that chair near it just as much.

Unknown said...

It's just gorgeous!!! What a lot of work to strip it first, but so worth really turned out fabulous!!! Great job!

I adore your style and your art is just beautiful!

:) T

Cindy Adkins said...

Oh my gosh, Dore,
I'm so happy you linked this up! It wasn't a party without you!! I'm so excited!
Love and hugs,

Unknown said...

Absolutely beautiful. What a great job you did distressing the desk. I love your peaceful blog and will visit often.

Have a great week.

Elizabeth Maxson said...

Oh, I have been wanting to come here FOREVER!! I LOVE your site!! Thank you, thank you , thank you for visiting my blog so I could run over here. I have been super busy and been here a couple of times, but no time to comment and now I am forcing myself to slow down to tell you how much I love your stuff.

I got your comment on my Where Women Create post and am just now catching up on my comments to that post...even though I have posted since! I will be back. Thanks so much again for taking time to visit. MAN...too bad we don't live that would be dangerous...but fun...but exhausting...but still fun...but would drive everyone around us crazy ...see what I mean????

Oh before I forget - LOVE the desk - you did a perfect paint job and I am SUPER picky about painted furniture - would move it right into my office if I could.

Take care,

Seawashed said...

Darling Dore~

You say the sweetest things.
If I could mail you some choc. croissants I would, but I'm afraid they would not taste very good once they arrived. Fresh is best! They are so easy to make. Go to Trader Joes and buy a pkg. of crescent rolls in the refrigerator section. Fill them with about a Tbsp. of your favorite chocolate(I used Ghiradelli double chocolate chips), bake as directed, and voila you have chocolate croissants! Eat them while still warm. yum. ox~ fairmaiden aka Kerrie

Farmgirl Paints said...

That desk would be so adorable in my kitchen. I love it! Your daughter is gorgeous by the way. You probably hear that 10 times a day:)

OneCraftyFox said...

Utterly dreamy!! You did an amazing job on the finish of your antique desk. And all the little trinkets... how lovely and charming!!

Robyn said...


Marie said...

That desk is magnificently lovable! I've just joined White Wed and so happy to find your blog...j'adore it! I'm now your newest follower and will have to leave now and check out your etsy shop.

Olive said...

Well done. I am smitten with it. olive♥

Anonymous said...

Completely gorgeous, as always, Doré!!!

Heaven's Walk said...

Dore - you not only gave that wonderful desk a gave it a new life. Just beautifully done! :)

xoxo laurie@heavens-walk

Joyti said...

Re: your comment. Thank you! I am sure I'll be back to your blog too.

LaLa said...

I'm sure you have heard this before, but WOW!! I just found your blog and it is awesome! I've just started looking and I can tell that you will become one of my regularly needed fixes. Soon to be a follower. Thanks for inspiring....


Sharon Leaf said...

Add me to your list. They say it all. Beauty beyond measure...I will come here for a moment of pleasure...ahh, Dore, take me away!

Musings From A French Cottage said...

Wow!! What a gorgeous desk. You did an amazing job on it. You've inspired me a great deal. I'm working on decor plans for my own studio to create and sew in. It's currently under constuction but my mind is swirling with ideas for decorating it. Your art is beautiful! Thank you for the inspiration here. Your blog is a wonderful find!!


Terrell said...

What a gorgeous blog!! I can't get enough of it! I'm happy to be your newest follower of your delightful blog and would love to have you as a friend at FFD! I'm also hosting a link party/giveaway every Friday and would love to have you link up your finds/creations! Hope to see you there!
~Terrell @ FrouFrouDecor~

Debra@CommonGround said...

What a total transformation! I can imagine what it was like before, because I think we all have seen it. You are a master at paint technique and patience, and I will never look at a little brass set again without thinking of you. You have wonderful creative ideas and a keen eye!

Sharyn said...

Oh my - you know how to make a girl dream of a shabby white desk just like this. Seriously drooling right now. Love your blog too!! Sharyn @ La Vie en Chic

Jenni said...

It is a beautiful desk, perfectly shabby and lovely! I like the way you arrange furniture and other objects~ you have a good eye! :)

I wanted also to say thank you so very much for your dear comment about the kitchen island. You always leave the kindest words when you visit, and it always makes my day when you stop by! :)

I hope you have a beautiful weekend!


CIELO said...

It looks great... I wish you'd had the instructions on how you did it... ;)

Lovely transformation


Fiona Designs said...

absolutely stunning - so glad i found your blog - i look forward to seeing more of your delightful creations!


erin's art and gardens said...

just found your beautiful slice of bloggy heaven! gorgeous desk and birdie art (I am a huge fan of the little tweets).....i too look forward to more creations! new follower here......
happy weekend to you,

Stephanie Suzanne Designs said...

This is just the birdie collage art and your open mind towards expressing your passion.

I'm visiting for White Wednesday {a bit late}

Happy Day,
Stephanie ♥

Funky Junk Interiors said...

Oh my gosh, this entire shoot was absolutely stunning! I loved everything I saw. The chair patina is incredible! I need to go look again. :)


Mary Ann said...

i enjoyed adoring your photos! this is the perks of blogging! have a great sunday! verbena cottage

Chari at Happy To Design said...

Hello sweet lady...'s been way too long since I have been by for a visit, my friend! I seen a comment that you left on a fellow blogger's post and just wanted to come by to say hello and see what you've been up to! I'm sooo glad that I did...I wouldn't have wanted to miss this fabulous piece that you breathed that breath of new life into! Ohhh Dore, this fabulous desk is simply fabulous...french and chippy perfection rolled into one! I don't know what it looked like before you redid the finish but it's perfect now!!! I just adore the beautiful chair as well!!! My friend, it was so much fun peeking about your desk! Hehe! I certainly can see how this beautiful piece inspires and encourages creativity! I love, love, LOVE the beautiful bird art!!! Of course, I think you know how much I love all sweet birds! wink! Thank you so much for sharing more of your pretties with us...this was such a treat, sweet lady!!!

Well my friend, I do hope that my note finds you and your sweet family all doing well! This has been such a busy summer for me. My youngest daughter and five grandchildren were here last week from Texas! We had such fun! But this is the first day that I've had to get back to my blog and do a little visiting! Come by when you get the chance! I'll talk with you later...

Warmest wishes,
Chari @Happy To Design

Stacy Rajab said...

I'm not sure what I appreciate and love more - your amazing and tranquil creations or your great photography style. I am in awe! I am a new follower from FFC and am looking forward to your posts.
:)Happy Friday

Kim B said...

I do love all your stuff. I did see the sign. I would get it if I could.
I will be back to see you though, I love your creations and style.
Smiles :)

Tatieva art said...

Wouah, merveilleux, c'est merveilleux !
J'adore ce petit secrétaire pour des moments de solitude créative... et la petite devanture de boutique à la française, trop, trop mignone (so cut !), j'aime, j'aime, j'aime !
Kisses from France,

Gaby Bee said...

I found your blog today and love it!
Your art is very intresting and I love your photography style. You are a very talented lady!

Enjoy the day!

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