Oh hey, Blog... it's been a while... my bad! Instagram and Pinterest have been taking over my life, but I still like having this blog available for longer posts and DIYs. I put together this mini garden today for a booth I am setting up at Lexington Vintage in Athens, Ga and thought I would share it with you guys. I will be carrying the campers and kits, so for all of you local Athens peeps check it out! I am normally not a fan of faux plants, but faux succulents look just like the real ones to me and look great with the minis in my opinion. If you are not into gardening or just want something you can keep indoors and not have to worry about then this project is for you! Super easy and super cute, just how I like my DIY projects! So here we go...
Whew! Well, the Atlanta Mart was... Awesome. I took a different approach this Market and didn't stress too much about my portfolio or making a bazillion appointments. It's been a busy 6 months both personally and professionally, so I kind of just needed to regroup and figure out my game plan for the upcoming year. I also wanted to focus on the biggest project that I've been working on which is my Mini Garden collection with Magnet Works / Studio M!
We developed new individual mini pieces and also introduced KITS this Market (fun!). We continued the Gypsy theme using my bright colors and patterns, and also added in a little Zen and Coastal to mix it up. I about passed out when I walked into the showroom and finally got to see everything come to life with all of the plants and props... Y'all... It was incredible... Their showroom(s) blew my mind!!! They even won the award for Best of Floor for the second year in a row! Everything just exceeded my wildest expectations, and to see the pieces that I've been putting my heart and soul into for the past year finally here and ready to share with the world got me a little teary, not even gonna lie... I can't thank the store owners enough who have picked up the collection for their shops and who continue to place reorders. I really love this gig, and to hear stories from people of all ages and walks of life who are enjoying the line makes me a very happy gal :). So without further ado, here are some pics from the show...
Main showroom in The Gardens...
Mini garden in a guitar!!!
Mini garden in a vintage picnic basket!!!
Mini garden in a grill!!!
The back of the camper/display of individual pieces...
Me + Anne Brown, aka my fairy godsista, aka the best Art Director on the planet! Gypsy Garden would not have existed if it weren't for Anne taking a chance on me and my work, and her incredible vision leading the way...
I couldn't have asked for a better partnership... Her + Sue + Curt + the rest of the team at Magnet Works / Studio M really are the best... Can't wait to keep working with these guys and to see what the future holds! I'll end this post with my favorite quote, hopefully without sounding like too much of a cheese-ball... "DREAMS DON'T WORK UNLESS YOU DO." You gotta just keep on Truckin'...
P.S.- Just a reminder, you can find other updates and mini inspiration on my FB, Instagram, and Pinterest pages!
So, after moving into our new house about a year ago our "to do" list was pretty long... We tackled the main things like flooring, painting the walls, etc. and now have moved on to the little details that make our house feel more like our "Home." The fridge that came with the house works fine, but after painting the walls and kitchen cabinets a fresh coat of a creamy white, the fridge immediately stood out since it was a brighter shade and didn't quite match. There were also a few dents and part of the plastic handle was missing, but I just couldn't justify buying a new fridge just because I didn't like the way that it looked. Here is the "before" pic:
Hubs and I wanted to do a weekly menu for the kitchen anyway, so I decided to kill 2 birds with 1 stone and go with a chalkboard fridge makeover. I did some research on Pinterest and found a few tutorials on chalkboard paint and decided to give it a whirl, adding my own touches to the mix along the way... Here is what I used and how I did it... 1. Valspar tintable chalkboard paint - I bought this at Lowe's and had them do a custom color mix for me. The regular chalkboard paint is more of a blue-black, but being the color freak that I am I wanted a warm-brown-black to match closer to the color I used on the kitchen counters (another DIY that I probably won't ever attempt again in my lifetime, but that's another story...). There are about 10 colors on the paint box to choose from, so I picked the brown color and just had them add as many shots of black to it as the can would hold. There are some really fun paint options to choose from though, I think it would be so cool to do this in the pink or green or blue!
2. Mini roller (and plastic tray) - Lowe's/Home Depot/Hardware Store
3. Painters tape - Lowe's/Home Depot/Hardware Store
4. Jute rope - Michael's/Hobby Lobby/Online Craft Supply Store
5. Magnets (7) - Michael's/Hobby Lobby/Online Craft Supply Store
6. Unfinished wood letters (M, E, N, U)- Michael's/Hobby Lobby/Online Craft Supply Store
8. Mini tart tins (7) - I found some cute and inexpensive ones on Etsy
9.Chalk marker - Michael's/Hobby Lobby/Online Craft Supply Store. I really hate how chalk feels, these pens are a life saver! They also dry nice and don't smudge as easily as regular chalk... IMPORTANT UPDATE!!! If you leave the chalk pen on the fridge for an extended period of time it will not come off like regular chalk! This is fine for the quote part that I did on the left side because I want that to stay up there, but for the menu part it is back to regular chalk for me... Craft Fail. You live you learn, right?
Step 1: Clean fridge and tape off any areas that you do not want to paint (ice maker). I realized at this stage of the game that I would not be able to paint all of the fridge unless I unplugged it and could leave the doors open to let the paint dry... So, I just decided to live with seeing a white line in between the front of the doors and on the sides... Not a big deal, but just something to think about if that kind of thing would bother you over the long-term...
Step 2: Remove the handles and decide what you are going to do with them... I wouldn't suggest painting them, because after daily use the paint will more than likely rub off (like it has done on the door knobs that I spray painted last year- lesson learned!). You could leave the handles the original fridge color, or mix it up like I did with the wrapped jute. I knew the white was going to be too stark, and I had some jute I'd been hoarding for another project so I decided to try it... freaking LOVE the way it turned out! I simply wrapped the jute all the way around the handle with a little high temp glue gun action on the front and back to hold it in place. When I was done I sprayed a few light coats of Scotch Guard to protect it from dirt and every day wear and tear. I also added the chalk paint to the ends of the handles to blend into the fridge and figured that would be ok since that is not where you grab the handle to open the door. The verdict is out how these handles will hold up down the road, but it didn't cost me anything to try it so I'm super happy that I did!
Step 3: Ok, back to the painting the fridge... the online tutorials showed using Magnetic Paint Primer before putting on the Chalkboard Paint. I had bought the primer, got ready to use it, then decided I better read the small print directions and warnings before I poured it in my paint tray. Glad I did because apparently the Magnetic stuff can cause "Cancer, infertility, birth defects, etc." and although I'm sure it's a small percentage risk I didn't think that was something I wanted to use, and especially not on something that stores food. So, I skipped the primer step and went right to the less toxic Chalkboard Paint. I put about 5 light coats with the roller letting each coat dry about an hour in between. It did take some time, but I'm hoping those extra coats will help the paint stay put longer since I didn't use a primer... We'll see... *fingers crossed*
Step 4: Here comes the fun part... I went to Michael's (in between dry times) and found some wood letters to create the "Menu" part. Instead of buying all of the same style, I picked letters from different sets to give it more vintage-y feel. I painted the letters with cheapo acrylics and then distressed them with my Dremmel (sandpaper would work just fine too). Then I used the high temp glue gun to attach the magnets to the back. For the "Days of the Week" magnets I painted wood discs and hot glued those to the inside of the tart tins, and then glued magnets to the backs of the tins. If you don't have access to the tins, you could use smaller wood letters to represent the days, or even just the painted circle discs by themselves would be cute too!
Step 5: After all of the paint is dry, remove the painters tape, screw the handles back on, add the magnets, and chalk it up!!!
The finished product...
I'd rank this project on the easier side of DIY, and I'd say the biggest hurdle is having 5+ hours to spend between dry times, so I'd probably tackle it on a weekend. The other thing I should mention is the vent at the bottom of the fridge could be left as is, or if you want to paint it I would suggest an appliance spray paint. I think it would be pretty difficult to paint the vent with the chalkboard paint, so I just got a basic black appliance spray and put a few light coats on it. Since it's at the bottom you don't really notice it, and it doesn't bother me that it isn't a 100% match to the fridge color.
Ok, well if you have any questions please feel free to leave it in the comments section, and Good Luck if you decide to try this at home! I'd love to know if you decide to tackle this project or have any other unique spins on it!
Y'alls creativity never ceases to amaze me! Check out this incredible Wizard of Oz themed mini garden by Dana Foster. I have always been an "Oz" fan, but never in a million years would have thought to mix my Gypsy Garden mini pieces in a setting like this - so stinkin' cute!!!
Would love to keep seeing what you guys dream up with this line, so if you have any pics please shoot me an email or message me on FB!
P.S.- for all of my fellow "Oz" peeps out there, if you haven't ever seen this pop up book by Robert Sabuda check it out, it is AMAZE.
Artwork available for license. Please email for more information.
Search This Blog
Follow by Email
Please keep in mind that all images, artwork, and text are copyright of Genevieve Gail Swinford unless otherwise noted, and may not be reproduced in any way without permission. Feel free to link back to this blog or a specific post, just please give credit back to this site. For any questions please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks!