June ’18 Country Living Magazine Read-Thru

I’ve already confessed that I have a deep addiction to the colourful and glossy pages of magazines – I can’t think of  anything not to love about relaxing with a new issue, paging through and forgetting everything else – – just opening your mind to possibilities!  So here’s a rundown of what stood out for me in this newest issue.

Page 1 – Sherwin-Williams “The One-Gallon Challenge” ad

I am particularly drawn to the image of the silhouette of the tree.  I don’t think I’d do a wall like that, but I did makeover a bookshelf with a tree silhouette! The furniture was a curbside find, which I cleaned up and chalkpainted.  I used my Cricut machine to create a stencil.

Page 6 – Swizzle Stick Collection

What a great collectible! I’m not at all surprised to learn that there is an International Swizzle Stick Collectors Association! I’m almost sorry that I’m not a collector – they are small, easy to store, relatively inexpensive, and there are many ways to display them! Check out their Instagram account: houseofswizzle.

Page 19 – Lemonade Stand

I’ve been thinking about participating in pop-up vintage markets – and I have saved an idea for a folding ‘cashout’ area from pinterest, by The Little Frugal House….

…but I like this idea too!  The wooden crates would be good for transporting things back and forth, and I really like the bunting across the top.

Page 25 – “Collecting by Color”

I could look at this for HOURS!  I love the bright colours,  I just wish that there had been more details about the individual items.  Only a handful of the collectibles are actually identified, and only in the briefest terms possible. The ephemera pieces are particularly interesting to me – the advertisements, seed packets, boxes, and other vintage everyday bits – I want them all!

Page 69 – Strawberry Stitchery

Nothing says “June” to me as much as strawberries.  Recently, I’ve been intentionally looking for thrift/yard sale items decorated with strawberries.  I found a gorgeous little ironstone pitcher on Sunday with wild strawberry plants decorating it all over.  I don’t think it is vintage, I think it was modern, and I had to leave it behind, the $7 price tag was way more than I was willing to part with.  However, here are a few things I have picked up:


Page 84 – Make it Yours with Mismatched Furniture

Check out the vintage table cloth!  The pink floral pattern screams 1950s kitchen.  Vintage linens are very collectible – but tricky.  What makes a terrific find?  How should stains be removed? I have to IRON???

There are lots of sweet ideas for repurposing vintage tablecloths – so if I can’t get those stains out, I can possibly make them into something else: clothing, curtains, pillows, totebags, lamp shades, and one of the cutest things I’ve seen is an ironing board cover! Chistmas stockings, aprons, and all kinds of decor – check out Pinterest.

Page 89 – A Custom Playhouse

In just a few months, I will be 50 years old, but I still want a playhouse!  My boys had a playhouse when they were small, but they didn’t enjoy it as much as I would have!  I have vivid memories of pretending our back porch was the Ingalls’ Little House on the Prairie, and the dog kennel was reimagined as Pa’s barn.  I played “house” many, many sunny hours.  Today, whenever I go to Costco or a hardware store, I can’t help but check out the interiors of their floor model sheds.

This example of a playhouse is AHHH-Dorable!!!  The addition of the porch on the side is over-the-top! I wonder if the recent trend of “she-sheds” is an expression of an unmet little girl desire for a playhouse.  I continue to wish for a little place all of my own to daydream, imagine, and pretend.  I’m torn between the idea of a ‘she shed’ or a vintage ‘glamper’!

Page 102 – Set Up a Chic Shed

Okay – the galvanized feed trough hung sideways for a bookshelf is suuuuuper cute, but the rest of the shed?  Meh.  I like the idea that a she-shed can be constructed using a shed available at Lowe’s, but I would have chosen something with windows, and I certainly wouldn’t have spent $900 on fabric to decorate the walls. I don’t understand the symmetry throughout the project, or the lack of girly decor items. It feels hot and stuffy to me, despite the pastel colours.  I can’t imagine being comfortable on that swinging couch, and the bar cart? Nope.

In my perfect vision of a she-shed – there would be lace, and antiques, and a comfy reading area, and a desk space to work on projects.  Shabby-chic would be the overarching decor esthetic.  Light, flower boxes, and a little patio area in front (maybe irregular paving stones?) are must-haves!


I hope you enjoyed flipping through this month’s issue of Country Living Magazine with me – please let me know what resonated with you!


May 2018 Country Living Magazine Read-Thru (Part 2)

Page 31 “Modern Magpies”  Features full page exposées of collectors – I think I found a couple of kindred spirits in these pages: Jesse Lauzon’s pottery and ironstone are swoon-worthy, and Erica Swagler’s hand-coloured engravings are sooooo charming.

Page 68 “Americana Pickers”  A great article about the 1 MILLION antiques sourced for Cracker Barrel restaurants.  We don’t have Cracker Barrels in Canada, so we visit often when on vacation south of the border.  Hubby always orders the chicken fried steak, and I crave the Apple & Cinnamon Oatmeal.  On our last visit in February, we had breakfast at the Cracker Barrel in three different states over nine days.  But I digress – this is a really interesting article which will answer all of your burning questions about “I wonder where they got that…” You can read the article online HERE: Cracker Barrel Antiques Warehouse.

Page 80 “Because it’s a Designer’s Secret Weapon”  Designers predict what is going to be the next big thing in vintage.  Wouldn’t it be really fantastic if we could make such predictions?  I’d love to be able to source the next big thing before it catches on, in order to get in on the ground floor and find the best example at the cheapest price now.  It’s shocking to see how prices for THE piece of the moment (think Pyrex sets, and rusty old kitchen scales) have exploded.  I went to an estate sale a few weeks ago, and the asking price for a full set of Primary Pyrex bowls was $175!!!!!  I’ve been seeing photos on facebook of equally astronomically priced finds in thrift stores, irrespective of condition in even incomplete sets, and more modern designs.  I’ve also been finding really inexpensive depression glass, right next to turn-of-the-century (that would be the 21st century!) Corelle. It’s just bizarre.

Any ideas that you think are going to be the next big “thing” in vintage?

Page 93 “Cooking with Collectibles” Gorgeous photos of popularly collected kitchenalia: jadite, copper, wooden bowls, cast iron, and Dansk cookware, accompanied by equally yummy recipes.  I like using my grandmother’s kitchenware in my day-to-day cooking, and Hubby has become an aficionado of cast iron. He regularly whips up something new in his treasured vintage pieces.


My Greatest Weakness…

Confession time.  My greatest weakness….is magazines.  And they are so damn expensive…but I can’t resist.  Those glossy covers, and beautiful photographs, and exciting and interesting ideas advertised on the front covers alluring and bewitching me to dive in.  My most recent guilty pleasure is the May 2018 issue of Country Living.  Would you like to have a read through with me?

The cover – – oh my!  The pastel pink and turquoise , the beautiful horse show ribbons, and the call to “Let’s Go (Bargain) Shopping” – how could I resist?

The theme for this issue is “The Thrill of the Hunt” – – definitely speaking my language!  I have absolutely experienced a frisson when locking my fingers on a beautiful, or rare, or very, very underpriced.  Country Living…you get me.

Page 8 “Editor’s Note”  invites us to antique alongside Editor-in-Chief Rachel Hardage Barrett’s Instagram account @rachelhardagebarrett.  While you’re on Instagram anyway, why not follow my account too?

Page 12 Sherwin Williams Ad  written in tiny letters in the corner is a call to “Download our ColorSnap app for color inspiration in the palm of your hand”. (You have no idea how painful that was for me to spell colour incorrectly twice! LOL).  I can’t believe the incredible features of this app – ColorSnap.  These are heady times indeed people! I’m absolutely GIDDY with the possibilities!

Page 17 “Wild for Mint Green”  yaaaaaaaaaaas! In the vintage world we often see turquoise and pink as the “must have”, but nothing says “retro” to me quite like mint green, in all of its shades.  The gorgeous jadite tea cup filled to the brim with wild daisies made my heart skip a beat.  And turn the page and there’s a handy guide to how to spot genuine vs. repro jadite with illustrations of maker marks.  Alas, no jadite, but here’s a few of my recent finds in mint:

Page 22 “Polished Party Barn”  My eye was immediately drawn to the collection of vintage hardcover books in the bottom left corner. But $59 per foot?  I can copy that for about a tenth of the price – but I had to check out boothandwilliams.com to see what is on offer.  Check this out!  I am SO stealing this idea! Paper & String Books by the Foot. But if you think you can stand an explosion of vintage eye candy – check out the ColorPaks. whoa…I can even tolerate spelling colour and pack wrong to share that l’il linky poo!

Vintage books are irresistible to me.  Pop onto Pinterest and poke in “DIY Vintage Books” which is TEAMING with dreamy ideas.  I often use vintage books to style my painted furniture for photography. I’ve sold the books used in staging along with the piece of furniture a couple of times too, because the buyer liked the look so much. I also incorporate books into my crafting.

Page 24  Ellen Christiansen  A short feature about the set decorator for The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel – a series which takes place in 1958 New York City.  I haven’t seen (or heard) of this show – but I’m going to be checking it out! Okay …who am I kidding…. I found the first episode on YouTube and I’m watching it right now… OH THE PYREX!!!

Okay ….so that’s enough for one day. My mind will explode with all of the great finds, websites, images, and information in the first 25 pages.  I’ll share some more of this issue in the coming days.

Please leave a comment to let me know what you think about this post, and if this sort of content is something that you are interested in reading.  Also, are you as much a sucker for magazines as I am???