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Back Porch Makeover

I seriously considered titling this post “What You Can Do In Thirty Hours”.

This makeover was a quick one, but it turned out beautifully, and it seemed to be just the happy, colorful space the clients requested.

And the clients?  None other than this sweet couple.

Remember them?  I turned their honeymoon photo from the 1940′s into a canvas for my closet turned laundry room update.

When I got married, I received a beautiful thing – grandparents.  And this pair is near to my heart, I just adore them.  A few weeks ago, we went for a visit (the kids LOVE visiting “the farm”), and as I sat down with Granny, she was telling me about some fabric she had gotten to make some cushions for her back porch, along with some vibrant, striped chair cushions.

It was bright and colorful, but I chuckled when I told her she had been telling me about what she wanted to do to the back porch for over a year.  (she sounds like me, ha)  It was at that very moment I decided we were going to make it happen.

We did not have much time, but I knew it would not take too long to get things going for Granny…especially since I knew the power of spray paint.

This project began on a Saturday afternoon and ended Sunday afternoon, and you can see the before photo below.  The green glider swing you see in the background has been in Granny’s family since she was a little girl, and it is special so we decided to give it a special pop of color.

With the color scheme of the cushions and fabric Granny had already purchased in mind, I drove “to town” and paid visits to Home Depot, Lowes, and Pier1.  After loading up the car with spray paint, plants, pillows, and a few decor items, I headed back, and that evening, we started painting.

We painted into the night, and Granny was right there with us, spray painting away.  (not too many eighty somethings doing that!)  Kent and I did not let Granny and Papa Z see their new back porch until we moved everything back in and unveiled the space, and they were so happy with it.  Doesn’t it look lively and cheerful?

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A Storied Style on “Tiny House Nation”

courtesy of FYI Network

courtesy of FYI Network

You may have seen an Instagram I put up last night about “noticing something familiar” if you were watching Tiny House Nation on the FYI Network last night.  (formerly the Biography Channel)  The show is pretty interesting, showcasing people living in homes that are around 300-400 square feet from what I have seen of the show.  Here is the show’s description from their site.

In “Tiny House Nation,” renovation experts and hosts, John Weisbarth and Zack Giffin, travel across America to show off ingenious small spaces and the inventive people who live in them, as well as help new families design and construct their own mini-dream home in a space no larger than 500 square feet. From a micro-apartment in New York City to a caboose car turned home in Montana to a micro-sized mobile home for road tripping – this is a series that celebrates the exploding movement of tiny homes. From pricey to budget friendly, “Tiny House Nation” is not a typical design show, but one that proves size doesn’t always matter – it’s creativity that counts.

So a little while ago, one of their producers emailed me and said they wanted to use the photos from this post in one of their shows as a reference for ideas.  I thought that was neat, and figured they were painting a chalkboard backsplash or something like that in their tiny kitchen.  I wanted to make sure the photos would be credited so I made sure they would be credited to “Grace Mitchell, A Storied Style” and signed the release.  The producer was not sure at first they could fit the whole “GRACE MITCHELL, A STORIED STYLE” in since it is technically two lines.  But she eventually said it was okay after a few back and forth emails.  Therefore, I was pumped that my ideas would be on the show, and I was excited to watch it.

Within the first two minutes of the show (actually at the 2:06 mark), you see a photo of my kitchen for a couple of seconds, and it is gone.

However, it was not captioned, and I thought “hmmm, kind of a bummer, but maybe they will credit me at the end”.  I watched the entire show waiting to see how they were going to use the photo, but it was never shown again.  They did not do a chalkboard backsplash or anything looking remotely like my kitchen photos.  So…why did they want my photos?  No idea…other than to show a “full kitchen”.

Please know that I realize it is difficult to see my smile and hear my chuckles as I am typing this, but I think it is all quite funny, and do not worry, I am not sad at all.

But here’s the real silly zinger.

Remember how I told you about the back and forth emails on how I wanted the credit to say my name AND the blog name?  “Well,” I thought, “at least it will be neat to see my credit at the end of the show”.

And then, the credits started flashing.  Wait…do you even see them?

It seriously took Kent and I three times of rewinding to find my name in that garbled, tiny print.  So funny.  This is a huge fail if I ever saw one.  You get a giant gold star if you can even find my name in the above photo.  Yeah, I figured you couldn’t.

So I zoomed in for ya.


Do you see it at the bottom of the “Special Thanks” list?  There I am, Grace Mitchell.  Grace Mitchell WITH NO COMMA “A STORIED STYLE”.  Hello BREACH OF CONTRACT!!!  GOOD THING I HAVE TWO ATTORNEY BROTHERS.  ; )  haha.

So yes, I was on Tiny House Nation for two seconds, and my name was credited in Lilliputian, totally unreadable print.  (I know my graphic design friends will cringe over this : )   )

A banner day yesterday was, I tell ya.

Pretty funny, right?  But the good news is I have a fun before and after post coming Monday that belongs to a couple near and dear to my heart, and their space turned out great!  See ya next week.

Written by Grace

A Walk Through Home Fabrics & Rugs

I like to do walk-throughs every once in awhile to show you interesting finds or introduce you to new places, but I also think it is helpful because I hear so often from people that they wish they had “the eye” to spot something good.  If you have been reading awhile, you know that I love a fruitful trip to Home Fabrics & Rugs.  I wrote about my fabric find from HF&R here, and they have stores all over the country.  See here for all their locations.  

Come on a walk with me…

One thing I noticed on this trip was that they have way more rugs than the last time I was here.

This could be a fun playroom rug.  (and all of those colors would help hide kid-ness)

They have everything from more traditional rugs to more contemporary rugs.  They carry lots of sizes, and if they don’t have the size you want, I believe it is free shipping to your door.

These jute/seagrass rugs looked like nice quality at fairly affordable prices.

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DIY Tutorial: Watercolor Paint

diy watercolor paint

Something you may not know about me is that I used to be teacher, a teacher of the Deaf.  I taught children ranging in age from pre-K to high school for a few years, and then I became a language therapist working with families of hearing impaired babies ages 0-3 in their homes.  I loved my students and families and still remember them fondly – I often sign things in my head when I am talking, it just comes naturally after awhile.  Teaching the Deaf is a very visual and expressive experience, so I think my love of color and styling really helped with that.

While I was going through some old boxes recently, I found some of my teaching materials and this paint recipe, and it inspired the theme for my Home Depot Challenge this year.  I knew my kids would really enjoy making the paint and mixing the colors.  I took advantage of this project to teach them about the color wheel, too.

This process is really easy, and all you need is probably in your pantry right now.  Here is the recipe…

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