Archive for the ‘R•Home Column’ Category


learn how to decoupage paper onto furniture

July 8, 2014

Join me tomorrow on Virginia This Morning where I will demonstrate how to decoupage paper onto furniture. Or check the latest R•Home magazine for step by step instructions.






















Here are some other pieces I have done using this technique:






















Girly Cabinet



















Happy Cabinet




















Sweet Dresser



darling octopus and r•home magazine – map lampshade

November 11, 2013

Check out this months R•Home magazine to find my DIY article about making map lampshades.


It turns out maps show up all over the place in people’s homes. Here are some of my favorite creative map uses.

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darling octopus and r•home magazine – pug pillows

June 28, 2013

This last R•Home  article was maybe my favorite one so far. Ollie, my pug, got his 15 minute of fame! And I love how his pillow likeness turned out. The pillow are freakishly realistic and surprised me more than once as I walked by and caught the pug pillow in the corner of my eye.




I hope that some of you will make pillow likenesses of your pet and I would love to see pictures of them!

I also wanted to take this opportunity to tell you about some of my favorite pug things.

1. Pug Rescue. We got Ollie from pug rescue and it was a match made in heaven. Everyone we worked with at Pug Rescue was so nice and they really try to match up the right dog with the right family.

2. Richmond Pug MeetUp. Once a month the pugs of RVA descend on Barker Field for a playdate. If you have never witnessed thirty or so pugs frolicking together I can’t recommend it enough. It is impossible to be in a bad mood at a pug meet up!

3. Not Now, Ollie. I did not know about this book until a reader wrote in but not only is there another Ollie the pug but there is a kids book about him. I can’t wait to read it!


My Ollie the pug pillows will be for sale at Orange in Carytown. Go get an Ollie of your own!


Ollie thinks all this attention is exhausting.


darling octopus and r•home magazine – the november issue

October 31, 2012

This months do-it-yourself article for R•Home Magazine is all about chalk paint. If you pay any attention to DIY, Pinterest, or painted furniture I’m sure you have heard of chalk paint. But you may not have tried it – there seems to be only one producer of chalk paint, Annie Sloan. And although her product is pretty wonderful it is also pretty expensive (usually costing upwards of $40 a quart, ouch!) And it is hard to come by – only stocked by a handful of stores. It is now available near Richmond, in Ashland, at a store called the Thrill of the Hunt.

But crafty people everywhere have been making their own recipes for chalk paint and I share one in my latest R•Home article. It is super easy to put together and pretty close to the Annie Sloan version.

Here are some pretty chalk paint pieces to inspire you:








Annie Sloan also makes this amazing clear and dark wax. Even if you decide to make your own chalk paint I recommend trying her waxes. The clear is just a good finish for the chalk paint and the dark adds age.



darling octopus and r•home magazine – the september issue

September 5, 2012

In the new R•Home magazine my DIY article is all about using an overhead projector to paint an image onto a piece of furniture. This is a really fun technique because you can take an image from anywhere – a favorite fabric, a drawing, wallpaper, or an illustration.

For more details about the project read the article online here.

Here are some other projector projects that I found online that might inspire you!






make me pretty – my biggest project yet!

August 20, 2012

When I re-did this chair for R•Home magazine a couple months ago I knew that I had three more just like it waiting in the garage for me to work on. Along with a dining room table with a leaf. Oh my goodness, the same chair four times. This was not super exciting but seeing it all finished and put together is pretty awesome!

Here is the before:

And here it is all set up at the West End Antiques Mall.







The sad thing is that this dining set is so much nicer than the one I have at home (which could really use some work)! If I had a smaller family this might just have ended up in my house.


darling octopus and r•home magazine – the july issue

June 28, 2012

The new R•Home Magazine is out and my how-to article is all about creating a fun space in your backyard. I take an old window and make it into an outdoor chalk board – perfect to entertain your kids on these hot summer days.

Writing this how-to wasn’t much of a stretch outside of my comfort zone. And now I think it’s time for me to admit it. I have a chalk board obsession!

When I started to think about it I realize that with this new chalk board we now have a total of 4 chalk boards at our house. That’s kind of a lot, right? Part of the problem is that I am a list maker and the chalk board really comes in handy and it is great kid entertainment.

Here is our kitchen chalk board – and it gets the most use. We write down things as we run out of them so I remember to pick them up at the store. I recovered the top cork board section with a piece of fabric to make it a little cuter.


This vintage chalk board hangs in the office area of my mom cave. It has a picture for each letter of the alphabet and the “G” had a gun drawing. I found a goat sticker and covered up the gun. I didn’t want to deal with the “What is that a picture of, Mommy?” question.


And you might remember this craft project –  a kids table painted with a chalk board top. I will warn you that once you buy the chalkboard paint you will want to use it on everything.

And one more idea to leave you with. I haven’t made these yet myself but I think these wine glasses look like a fun project. Everyone could write their name on their glass so things don’t get confused. You can get the directions at Vivaciously Vintage.

Photo from Vivaciously Vintage.