It seems like we anticipate summer all year long living in Cape May. All of the seasons are beautiful here in this quaint coastal town but summer takes the cake. The town swells with visitors. The locals are busy working their craft whether it be retail, hospitality or agriculture. The energy in the southernmost point of New Jersey is amazing. Yet there is still time for a sunset bike ride by the bay, an afternoon nap on the beach or an early morning walk in the garden. The days are so long and full of possibility.
This year I don’t want to solely consume myself with work and miss out on what the season has to offer. I may have been guilty of that last summer. We put together a summer bucket list to keep ourselves motivated to enjoy all that life has to offer. We may even spend a few days acting like tourists as we did prior to moving here on a full-time basis.
With July rapidly approaching, I challenge you to make a summer bucket list too. Keep track of your goals whether on a piece of paper, a chalkboard, email, whatever works for you. Simply challenge yourself to fully enjoy the season without any regrets.
What’s on your summer bucket list?
While discussing bucket lists and goals, I should mention that I was interviewed in June’s issue of Cape May magazine. We talked lighting. Of course, I was happy to discuss all of the upcycled lighting we’ve created and posted about over the years.
Earlier this year, I made a goals list and included “contribute to a regional magazine” amongst what I wished to accomplish in 2015. And wouldn’t you know I did just that two months in a row! I am convinced that there is really something to putting your goals in writing and therefore releasing them into the world. It holds you responsible for accomplishing the tasks, even if only as simple as doing yoga on the beach just once this summer.
Aside from being Earth Week, turns out it is Administrative Professionals Week a.k.a. Secretaries Day. Calling a person your secretary is so passe but you can still refer to your furniture as your secretary without any raised eyebrows. This, my friends, is a secretary desk. A beautiful serpentine one at that.
It was a hand-me-down from family friends. I was so sad that it didn’t fit my own secretary nook where we have a more petite version. The ample storage and curvy base are something to be envious of regardless of the missing support. Low and behold it fits perfectly in the entry of my parent’s cottage. Yes, the cottage. Remember that fixer upper we’ve been working on?
When you enter the house, you walk directly into a room larger than a foyer but smaller than a living room. It is actually a porch that was converted into a room. We’re calling it the parlor as it opens up to a larger family room. It is the perfect space to store beach towels, kick off your flip-flops, drop your keys and pen a postcard. All of which can be done with the help of the secretary. Who says you don’t need a secretary at the beach?
This little gem was one of the first pieces of furniture we moved in months ago. It needed to be lightened up for this cottage space. Pink seemed like a fun and unexpected choice yet MMSMP Arabesque is not overly feminine. It received 2 coats of Arabesque with bonding agent added. I played around with the waxes and worked in both white and antiquing wax for some depth while also lightly distressed.
The drawers were painted separately from the body and you may notice that they have a slightly peach hue to them. This is the fun that milk paint can offer. Slight variation like this is what I love about it.
As for the rest of the cottage, it is slowly but surely coming together with the addition of another bathroom being the major project which is subsequently holding up some of the others. Not to mention this has been a part-time project for all of us. However, we finished painting the oak kitchen cabinets but have yet to choose hardware or make a few other updates in the kitchen. I’ll snap some pictures soon so I can share details about the process of milk painting cabinets.
Finally, I’d like to mention that I’ll be in Doylestown on Sunday demonstrating milk paint to those who are interested! Join us…
The spring edition of Cape May magazine is now available. Aside from featuring everything we love about this town, the regional magazine also offers a regular decorating column called Interior Motives. Earlier this season, I was asked to contribute to the current column’s theme of refreshing the bathroom.
Bathrooms? I can talk bathrooms!
I met with the editor and we discussed redecorating the bathroom for the upcoming season using new paint, fixtures and accessories. Naturally I didn’t stray far from the themes of repurposing and styling with vintage. The cottage bathroom that we completed last year in our home was mentioned in the article (as well as one we’re currently working on using that pretty brass fixture).
Here’s how that cottage bathroom looks today with the addition of sconce lighting that we recently added over the sink. For months I was on the hunt for just the right vanity light fixture. Then, at the flea market, I came across a pair of gooseneck, task lamps. Thinking outside of the box, it was clear to me that these lights could be the finishing touch that we needed in this bathroom. Insert light bulb pun here.
Ryan worked his magic dismantling and reconfiguring these task lights into sconces. He took off the switches and exterior cord and hardwired them to work on the light switch. We also sprayed them glossy heat-resistant white.
And voila, a custom vanity light for our bathroom. I like how the lights have a gallery vibe to them as if they’re illuminating the heirloom mirror like a piece of fine art. If you’re curious, you can see how we constructed the vanity out of a dresser here.
The magazine article also references ways to use Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint in the bathroom. We talked about using tough coat as a protective top coat to preserve wood surfaces around water and humidity such as the mirror.
Check out the magazine next time you’re in Cape May. You can always purchase online too.