winter market

Clover’s Winter Market on Sunday was a blast! As usual. The market always draws a fun crowd.  Now I am dreaming of spring when the outdoor markets return!

Save the dates for Spring Clover Market:

  • April 13- Chestnut Hill
  • April 27- Ardmore
  • May 18- Ardmore
  • June 8- Chestnut Hill

As for the Winter Market, I saw a lot of familiar faces and met a handful of new folks as well.  Plus, the 23rd Street Armory is such an interesting venue right in the heart of Philadelphia.

clover armory

I was thrilled to participate as a DIY workshop instructor. I brought a stash of Miss Mustard Seed’s milk paint and led an Introduction to Milk Paint workshop.

#mmsmilkpaint workshop @ Clover Market

We had a great time painting these adorable frames and talking about the fundamentals of what makes milk paint unique.

#mmsmilkpaint workshop

If you want to be notified of any future workshops like these, be sure to comment on this post and I will add your email address to my workshop list.  And if you can’t make it out to pick up some milk paint for your project (hello, winter storm alert!), you can always order online right here.  We’re expecting a big stash this week to replenish the inventory!

So, did you make it to Clover Market on Sunday…or shopping locally where you are?  If so, what treasures did you score?

alligator dresser

I fell in love with the texture of this little chest of drawers.

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

In its previous dark stain, you couldn’t really see the texture though. I decided to paint the entire thing in a coat of Typewriter which just happens to be Miss Mustard Seed’s milk paint color of the month for October.  (Tweet/instagram/pin/post/share your Typewriter painted pieces using hashtag #mmsmilkpaintcolorofthemonth)

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

Buuut I didn’t stop at Typewriter because that wasn’t very different from where the dresser started.  I went over it in a coat of mustard seed yellow.

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

I painted the coat lightly and wiped off any excess paint allowing the yellow to settle in the crevices and the black texture to pop creating an alligator effect.

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

This was a fun one to paint.  The texture of the previous finish really did all the work in creating the antique effect.  I applied a top coat of hemp oil and slightly distressed it further revealing more of the typewriter base coat.

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

I finished it off with shiny white ceramic knobs for a bit of a farmhouse feel.

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

The size of this chest seems perfect for a kid’s room.  The drawers aren’t too wide but are nice and deep.  Plus I lined them with maps!

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

Turns out the leftover atlas pages from our wedding place settings were cut to just the right size to fit 3 in each drawer snugly.

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

It is headed to Serendipity this afternoon…along with lots of other inventory.  The milk paint mixers are in.  You’ve got to try them for mixing a nice, consistent paint.  I’ll show you how next Saturday at our free milk paint demo!

MMS October flier

In the meantime, we’re getting ready for Sunday’s Clover Market.  Let’s just hope this rain goes away!

Before you go, I could use your advice.  I have a new little workshop space that I’m pretty smitten with. Last week, I instagrammed my newly organized paint brushes. Swoon.


Possibly more exciting though is that once I finish painting a piece, I can just turn it around, stage and snap pictures like this.  Except not quite like this.

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

I am trying to decide how to “decorate” the background so it looks less workshop-y and industrial.  I considered staining the raw wood with milk paint, of course.  Or hanging fabric or paper.  Maybe doors or reclaimed wood planking.  But my favorite idea is to layer all of those things so I can switch out the background according to what I’m staging.  Think paint, fabric and then wood.

Tell me, what would you do?  I’d love to hear from you.

mustard seed yellow & typewriter milk paint dresser by Circa Dee

pop goes the easel

Hi guys! As promised, I am back to tell you how we made our wedding table numbers.  I will also be sharing the secret to making them freestanding easels as I’ve been asked a few times now…

© Love Shack Photo

In case you missed them, the wedding tablescape posts are here and here.

So my inspiration for the table numbers came from those adorably rustic vintage school slates.  I originally planned to collect enough to prop them up as table numbers.  Well, I found two.  And then stopped.  Twenty slates seemed like an excessive amount to seek out.

vintage school slates

source: Pinterest

After collecting more than enough silver pitchers and aqua mixing bowls for the centerpieces, I figured it was time to straight up DIY something.  And in this case, definitely more cost-effective too.

© Love Shack Photo

With the style of the vintage slates in mind, Ryan cut plywood into twenty 5×7 pieces.  He then stained each walnut.  I love the color choice as it warmed them up just right.

DIY chalkboard table easel

He left me to the chalkboarding part.  I taped off an inch border on each board and painted the centers with chalkboard paint.

DIY chalkboard table easel

The internet is filled with chalkboard projects so I’m sure I don’t need to go into much more detail.

DIY chalkboard table easel

Speaking of the internet, this is the point where I started shopping online for little picture easels to buy individually.  I quickly found that it was going to run at least another $100 which seemed unreasonable for table numbers.

© Love Shack Photo

Enter Ryan again.  The man with the plan.  Refreshed and recharged from his bachelor spa weekend in Woodstock.  Riiight.

Anyway, his big secret to the freestanding easel…

drumroll…PVC insulated industrial staples.



Just hammer it lightly in the back, don’t staple it. These are intended for electrical use but sure do double nicely as an indiscreet easel!  I also like that they are permanently attached as it was one less thing to keep track of in wedding planning & packing.

The secret to DIY chalkboard easel

Plus, I will be using these chalkboards as price tags/signs at popup vintage markets moving forward.

So that is the answer to the million dollar question, my friends.

© Love Shack Photo