12K Fans Grace Wrap Winner!

Oh you guys, I love you!!

THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH for all your help to reach 12,000 fans on Facebook! You guys are amazing. Remember the winner gets a lovely Grace Wrap…

And our lucky winner is:

NICOLE BOWEN!!

Congrats Nicole! And thank you again to everyone who worked so hard! Are you ready for our next goal? We need to reach 15,000 fans! Think you can help? You can? Well, awesome!! Want to know what you’ll win? Oh good, cause I want to tell you! :)

Once we reach 15k fans, I will give away THREE $100 GIFT CERTIFICATES to the shop! Whoohoo! So start telling your friends! I’ll be sharing pictures throughout the day from now on, and if you can share them, that would be awesome! Pretty sure we can do this! :)

Didn’t win the Grace Wrap? Well, now worries! We have some left HERE, as well as that gorgeous brooch HERE. And guess what? Perfect timing because….

Every order that is at or over $75 gets a brand new and completely FREE Gussy Sews zippered pouch, which is a $30+ value! I adore these things..I have one for my cosmetics and it’s awesome! But hurry, because we have a limited supply!

Want to shop? Click HERE.

LOVE YOU ALL! xoxo

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{Sponsor Giveaway} Sew In Love by Jen

Hello everyone! I’d like to introduce you to our newest sponsor, Sew In Love by Jen.

“I am a thirty something book worm, world traveler, dreamer extraordinaire, and wife par excellence. Musicals are a weakness of mine. So is coffee. I am the Martha Stewart type. I get a kick out of gardening, decorating, cooking, and crafting. I am also a procrastinator. Just ask the bolts of curtain fabric sitting next to my sewing table. The curtain rods have been up for nearly a year, bare, and abandoned.

Sew In Love by Jen started in 2012 as a vintage inspired baby boutique. Really, it is my creative outlet. I channel all my energy toward creating beautiful, functional items for ages newborn to two-years-old. I love to watch how Sew In Love by Jen transforms as I find my footing and carve out my niche. 2013 brings lots of new adventures and growth for Sew In Love by Jen. Look for us on Etsy and at street fairs throughout Northern California. There are lots of fun items coming in daily, so friend, like, pin the shop and stay informed.”

Jen has some of the cutest baby gear! I’m loving her bibs!

Jen sent my kids some of her darling Irish tees {HERE}, we had so much fun wearing them!

I was so impressed when I got the tees! They are so well made and very detailed, not to mention such a fun tee to have for St. Patti’s! You can tell Jen really loves to put her heart into her work.

You can find Jen here:

Shop

Facebook

Twitter

Blog

And here’s the exciting part…Jen has so generously offered to give one of our readers a $40 credit to her shop! All you have to do is head over to her facebook page and like it! And then you can extra credit for following her on her other social media outlets. Have fun and welcome Jen!! xoxo

Want to advertise with us? Check out our advertising rates HERE. Have questions? Email Nicole@evystree.com

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Annie Sloan Saves Our Dining Room {Part II}

House goals, house goals, house goals…it’s what we’re talking about on the blog this week. You can see the last three posts I’ve done on the House Goals HERE. If you want to read my original House Goals post last April, you can visit HERE.

Yesterday I talked about painting all my dining room furniture with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint {ASCP} and I thought I would do a little separate post on using ASCP in your house. I want to say upfront and loud and clear: I am not an expert!! But I will tell you that I am *slightly* obsessed with this stuff. I probably need to tell you why I am obsessed with it…well, the truth of the matter is: I’m lazy. Yup. See, I’ve known for years that I wanted to paint my Nannie’s side table and dining table white, but after reading through tutorials on how to do it, I pretty much froze around step 1 or 2 which would be : sand and prime. Uhhuh. Yup, lazy.

So I held off on it because seriously, who had time to do all that? And I kept thinking, “well, maybe I could save up enough money to have someone do it for me”. Ha. Save up money? Sure I’ll put that little project last in line with all the other things I need to spend money on after I finish with Evy’s Tree Manufactured goods. Which meant it would be getting zero money put into it. So I had to come up with some other alternative. I did a bunch of research and decided that if I ever wanted to get these things painted in my house, then I’d better use ASCP because God knows I’d never get it done with “real” paint.

I can’t remember when I first found out about ASCP. I kinda think it may have been from this blog, but don’t quote me. But I do remember looking for a local stockist and finding the paint right near me at this great store. Looking for a stockist? Annie Sloan has them listed on her website HERE. We have a stockist close to us, but I have heard that there are a bunch of great online retailers that sell it, so if you don’t have one near you, online may be your best choice.

After looking through the paint colors I decided that the Old White, although it is very white in normal lights, would look way too cream in my all white house. Thank God for the Pure White that Annie added, as it matches my house perfectly. The first piece I took on was the side board:

So I painted this side board two nights before our big open house. HA! Seriously, this paint is that awesome. I just laid down some drop cloths and started painting. I think it took me a couple hours max. The paint does not smell and it’s super easy to work with. I could only afford one can, but I was promised this would cover both top and bottom pieces…and guess what? It did!

As I said earlier, I am NOT an expert at all about this paint. I sat for many hours watching videos on you tube about how to properly apply the paint and the wax {we’ll talk more about the wax in a bit}. I really don’t have a favorite video for the paint…there are so many out there, simply google Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and tons of resources will pop up. And if you have a local stockist, they are usually pretty helpful too…mine gave me her cell and told me to call her anytime! I think think the most complicated part is the wax…so when we get to the wax part, I’ll give you my favorite video tutorial on that. But I wanted to tell you a couple things I learned through trial and error while working with this paint.

A couple of notes about painting this piece:

1. I did not sand or prime this piece. That’s kind of a miracle actually, and what makes ASCP so amazing. The top part of the side board had been left outside and there was a considerable amount of water damage in on the bottom corners. I started to sand it a little, but I finally got tired of doing it and just slopped on the paint. It went over it just fine, and today you can’t even tell it was damaged. I DID put three coats over the damaged area, however. Here is a picture of what it looks like today, a year later. There is *some* bleeding through but so very minimal.

2. I used the entire can on both top and bottom. I covered both pieces with two coats and a third coat in some areas, especially the water damaged areas.

3. I should have added water to the paint. I had no idea that you could thin the paint out a little with some water on your brush. I really could have used that tip as it was a bit thick for some of the more “weathered” areas.

4. I wish I had known that ASCP won’t go on perfectly at first, but it will dry nicely. I really spent a lot of time trying to smooth over areas. Don’t even bother…it will dry very nicely, I promise!! And the more sloppy you put the paint on, the better and more vintage it looks at the end. I promise!

5. I only put a little wax on the top of the piece. I was completely unfamiliar with how to apply wax. However, despite my lack of knowledge, it actually dried very hard! yay! With this piece, I used a soft shamwow rag to apply wax. I HIGHLY recommend getting the wax brush {more on that in a second}. But because I didn’t put much wax on it, the piece has gotten a bit beat up, but to be honest, it doesn’t bother me too much. I think also the lighter colors will show more wear than the darker colors.

My second project with ASCP was our bench. I love this bench. It was actually a bed a man here in town made into a bench and then listed on craigslist. He and his wife were so sweet and the bench was perfect for us! It started out like this, in a nice outdoor paint, as it was meant to go outside:

Ok, here’s where the trial and error comes in. I’m not going to bore you too much with the details, but I will be honest and say…this bench broke me in with ASCP! ha. First, as you can probably tell from my vintage desk post, I have a hard time figuring out what colors to paint things. I’m so programed in “white mode” that often thinking outside the box for me is hard. So sometimes it takes me a couple tries with colors before I get it straight. The Vintage desks took two tries…this bench…UMMMM…THREE. ha. I know, I’m crazy. :(

I’m going to quickly walk you through the process. I started with Duck Egg Blue. Oh boy this is a gorgeous color! I mixed it with pure white, as I didn’t want it to be too strong.

And then I distressed it.

It was gorgeous. But wrong color. I don’t know what I was thinking, but it sure didn’t match my pink, yellow and sapphire dishes in the dining room. Neither did it match the green and pink in the family room. UGH. So I sat and thought some more and came up with an even dumber idea… YELLOW!

huh?

I know, I really could have skipped this part, but oh well. Anyway, I had Arles for this desk project and thought I would give it a whirl. Again mixed it up with white.

haha…nope. It just ended up looking cream. Oh Lordy. After a couple good cries and nearly tossing the bench through the window. I finally confessed that I needed pink. I say confessed because I kinda knew it all along but my poor husband already has so much pink around here, I thought I would be somewhat creative and try another color. ANYWAY….Antoinette to the rescue!

There she is! This is actually after I was all done, I guess I didn’t get a picture of the before wax. And speaking of wax I DID wax this… wayyyy toooo much in fact. Before I tell you how you are supposed to wax a piece with ASCP, I’l tell you what I did wrong. haha. Why is this funny to me? Oh boy.

So I bought Annie’s book. I currently lent it out and don’t have it, but inside it says, “be liberal with the wax and wipe off really well”. Well, to be honest with you, that was a disaster for me. I think I went through nearly an entire can on this piece. NO NO NO. You will NOT go through an entire can on a piece this size. You probably will only use about a spoonful, but we’ll get to that in a second.

Anyway, in between each coat of paint I waxed. Yup. You are supposed to wax before you sand, or that’s recommended at least. While that is true, waxing in between coats is overkill. In my defense, I did think I was done with each layer {haha}. Anyway, the moral of the story is…I used TOO MUCH WAX! How do you know if you used too much? It will be sticky and gooey and won’t dry and the paint won’t harden. On the bench, I used a coat of clear wax, then a coat of dark wax, then a coat of clear wax again {OVERKILL}.

If you take anything away from this post take this video with you {HERE}. This is the BEST TUTORIAL EVER on wax. It saved me!! Watch this video over and over and make sure you do it like she says. Here’s my notes from her video:

1. A little bit goes a long way. When I did my dining room table, I used ONE SMALL SPOONFUL of wax on the top of the table.

2. Buy the brushes. I can’t emphasis this enough. The brush is worth every penny and if you take care of it, it will last you a long time. I tried putting the wax on with the shamwow, remember? So not worth the trouble. Buy the brush. I have two brushes, one for clear wax and one for dark wax.

3. Make sure you do a small space at a time and wipe off excess well with lots of elbow grease. Hopefully all know what elbow grease is…it’s what my dad always says to me when you have to push really hard, or work hard with your hands. ha. But really, you want to wipe that stuff off until your rag goes over the table smoothly

4. Let dry before you reapply. I would suggest letting the wax sit on a piece of furniture for a couple days, if not a couple weeks before you reapply more coats. A little really does go a long way.

5. Don’t be afraid of the dark wax. The dark wax is scary at first. It looks like pure car grease. Seriously. But it’s AWESOME. I adore the way it made the craigslist chairs look. the key with the dark wax is apply a little at first and in small areas, rubbing off right away. And make sure you get it in the crevices or else it won’t look legit…as it’s supposed to make a piece look old.

In closing, I want to tell you a couple things I’ve learned about using the ASCP, especially when it comes to the dining room table. I forgot to take pictures of that process, but I have to be honest here…you know my color issue? Well, silly me, I thought the dining room table would look awesome old white. HA. NO. After I painted it two coats of old white, I went back with a coat of pure. And then I waxed {more on that in a second}. And then Evy drew all over the table {remember I told you about that “art”, awesome right?}, so I repainted again. The dining room table has no less than 6 coats of paint on it!!! ha.

Here it is before paint. And yes, you just paint right over that lacquered top. NO SANDING OR PRIMING NECESSARY! Really!

And after, not bad right?

What I learned NOT to do with ASCP

1. Use the piece right away. My stockist told me that with a dining room table, the paint will need time to cure. Ugh. Cure?!? Good grief, who has time for that?!? Well, you need to make time. The dining room table is the only thing I let cure, the rest of the items were fine, but I really wanted a nice smooth finish. So I let it sit for two weeks, and then after that used table cloths. To be honest, it is JUST NOW starting to get super hard and it’s been three months. I’m sure the fact that I had six coats of paint didn’t help, but it did take a long time to cure. My advice if you are doing a table, is give it time. Lots of time. I feel as if my table STILL needs a little more time to cure.

2. Go ape on the wax. I can’t emphasis this enough. DON’T USE A LOT OF WAX!! It will never dry. If you use too much, take a soft rag and buff, buff, buff it off. It will come off, but you have to really work it off.

3. Use a towel for the wax instead of a brush. Use the brush! Amen. ha.

4. Leave the lid open for long periods of time. Something about the properties in the paint make it dry out quicker than most paints. So try to remember to keep the lid on the can. If you accidentally forget {as I have done} you can always help it thin out with a bit of water.

Lastly, I want to say one more thing regarding the wax….I have never used any kind of polyurethane over the ASCP. I’m kinda one of those people who doesn’t blend brands much {haha}. I know a lot of people have done it and it probably does make a thicker seal and more solid surface. Although, I will say this, my vintage craigslists desk and the white chairs in my dining room are HARD. So I really feel it’s how much paint and wax you use. Too much paint and too much wax= a soft surface. And the wax does leave a nice vintage-y finish.

I hope this helps some! Feel free to comment if you have questions! xoxo

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Annie Sloan Saves Our Dining Room {Part I}

Welcome back to our home tour/house goals regrouping! Are you enjoying it so far? If you missed the first two, you can see them HERE and HERE. If you remember, last April I mapped out some home goals. You can read them HERE.

So let’s talk the dining room now. This is by far my favorite room in the house, for many reasons, but I have to say it was this room that sold me on the house. The view is unbelievable and the slightly raised ceiling is so vintage and classy. Here’s what it looked like when we bought the house

And then after we moved in and painted, and I added our furniture {again, my Nannie and Gramp’s 1950 original Heywood Weightfield table and side table}, it became painfully obvious everything needed a paint job. And that is where we pick up and talk about how Annie Sloan Chalk Paint saved our dining room {hehe}. Here’s what it looked like when I did our house goals last year, after I painted the sideboard.

So much needed to be done to this room….the table and the bench needed to be painted, the parson’s chairs needed to be slipcovered, and some other decorative items needed to be added. Although I don’t feel we are 100% done {mainly feel I need a rug in here}, I think we’ve made good progress….

Having everything white is exactly what I had been hoping for. I have always wanted an all white dining room….probably since the first time I opened my Shabby Chic books. It just seems to refreshing and calming. And hosting dinners in this room is really fun. I have to say, aren’t the white slipcovers on the parson’s chairs amazing? My mom in law made them for me. She also did the wonderful one on my desk chair. I know, she’s awesome, right?? Boy I love that lady.

 Unimportant side confession here: I’m not very good at knick knacks/centerpieces/decorative items. It’m just too cluttered mentally to worry about changing things out for seasons, etc. I like to complete a project and then have it done forever. Not to mention that knick knacks don’t last long in this house…they get broken, tossed, shoved, I think you get the picture. :) With that said, I usually have SOMETHING on the center during special holidays or meals. You can see my Christmas yarn trees HERE and my Thanksgiving centerpiece HERE. I especially love it during the Summers when my roses are in full bloom…garden roses are my very favorite thing to put in the center of the dining room table.

I know I need to find something for this area:

And yes, I know this is crooked. I have a tripod, just need to bust it out and give a try. Can we all say LAZY? hehe…

Anyway, I pulled this darling wicker tea cart out of my parent’s garage when I needed somewhere to put the Hot Chocolate station for Jake’s birthday party. It’s pretty beat up so I covered it with a table cloth. When the party was all said and done, I realized that I really loved the cart and started considering keeping it in here. There are a couple problems with it, mainly, it’s super, super, super wobbly and the glass needs a very good cleaning  {really an easy fix} as it’s been duct taped together for the last 10 years. Anyway, if I can figure out how to stabilize it a little bit, I’m going to keep it….but it will need something on display there. So I need to rack my brain about that one.

A couple things that was on the House Goals check list for this room was paint the bench and get some new chairs. Well, we’ve done both. First, the bench:

This is really one of the only things that is waiting to be finished in this room. I bought some fabric to slipcover a cushion for this bench, as it’s a bit hard to sit on. But we’re still saving money for the cushion…so that project will come soon. The pillows are all Simply Shabby Chic from Target except for the one with pink and blue flowers. That one is vintage Ralph Lauren…like 25 years old! My mom has had it forever!

As far as the paint job on the bench, Part II about our dining room will be up tomorrow and I”ll share my thoughts on painting the table, the sideboard, the bench and the chairs all with Annie Sloan chalk paint…so come back.

Oh and yes, we painted these chairs too. Remember them from this post? Craigslist $40 find, thank you very much…with a little love from my father in law and a little pure white paint, and wah- lah!

So I think if I had to say anything about this room it would be this: Annie Sloan definitely saved it! As I said earlier, come back tomorrow…I’ll tell you my thoughts on Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.

So what do you think about the dining room? Anyone else love an all white room? xoxo

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Visit With Old Ice Skating Friends

Hi everyone, I’m so sorry…I realize I’m kinda bombarding you with posts this week. I actually sat down and scheduled a bunch of house posts {HERE} and wasn’t planning on having any other posts in there to make this a heavy post week, but I had something happen tonight that I HAD to document.

 I’ve mentioned this before, but my younger brother and I were ice skaters. My brother Brad started playing hockey when he was five years old and we lived in Lake Tahoe. When we moved to Santa Rosa, they have a great, somewhat famous, ice skating rink, so my parents got him signed up for hockey and I, naturally, took figure skating lessons. We loved it and it was pretty safe to say that the ice arena was our second home. You can read more about my thoughts regarding the ice rink HERE.

Anyway, we met some great friends through hockey and one of the families we were particularly close to was the Gerbec family. I wish had taken time to dig through my mom’s old photo albums, but we have tons of photos together. Ricky played hockey with Brad and his twin sister Leigh-Ann skated with me. We were pretty inseparable for years during hockey season…but as Ricky and Brad grew up and went on to college {Brad continued to play for fun when he lived on the East Coast and attended Dartmouth}, our families drifted away and we didn’t see each other much.

A couple years back Leigh Ann found me on facebook and we reconnected {thank God for facebook, yes friends?}. She, her mom and sister became loyal Evy’s Tree fans and  I’ve seen Leigh Ann and Susan {her mom} a couple times since we moved here. Susan and my mom decided that we MUST have a family dinner together sans kids so we could catch up, so tonight we had a lovely dinner over at my parent’s house.

Leigh-Ann, her sister Cory and me. 

We were missing Ricky and their older sister Tracy, they both live out of town….

My Mom and Susan

My Dad and Dick…the Dads

This one makes me cry. These dads spent years cheering on their boys in hockey…hundreds of hours driving their kids to tournaments, traveling to other country for all star teams {both boys were very good}, not to mention thousands of dollars on skating gear. Tonight they sat down and relived some of the moments while watching old VHS’s of their boys playing… so sweet.

We ate a delicious dinner together and laughed and laughed about old times. Susan made these AMAZING cookies and my dad’s favorite jello salad. He was so excited and hogged it all to himself. My dad loves food. We had a good laugh over him monopolizing the cookies

I am so very happy we got to all get together. We are so blessed to still have our families in tact. Please pray for Dick, as he has been fighting cancer in his body for the last year and a half and looks amazing!! He was only given a few months to live and has fought like a champ…he’s still here!

We love you Gerbecs! Thank you for coming over…what a treat!!! OH…and maybe one of the biggest treats of the night was the fact that Brandon and I were KIDLESS! Whoohoo! I even curled my hair for the occasion. ha.

xoxo

The Evolution of The Living Room

Welcome back to my little house tour/house goals regrouping. Our first segment was HERE. Later this week I’m going to tell you how I did this past year on all my home goals. If you haven’t read them yet, you can see them HERE. Anyway, today I want to talk about one of the items on that list which was “Revamp Living Room”.

Oh boy.

Well, I guess before I start I need to probably tell you a little bit about this room. First, this was not supposed to be the Living Room, it was supposed to be the Family Room, as it’s connected to the kitchen and smaller, more intimate. BUT, when we first moved in the room had carpet in it, along with a very interesting section of hardwood that obviously was an afterthought as it didn’t match the rest of the hardwood in the house. Kinda weird that someone didn’t take the time to match the hardwood…as it wasn’t that hard for us to do it. But ANYWAY, that’s neither here nor there, the point of the hardwood section, we finally figured out thanks to the overhead lighting, seemed to be for a piano. But since this house was a foreclosure, we really don’t know for sure. Here’s some before pictures:

Not quite sure why this photo is so twisted sorry! We took these really quickly after we made an offer. :)

And yes…we painted everything. It makes such a difference, doesn’t it?

Leading to the kitchen here;

And the opposite direction going towards the entry way:

Shot of the fireplace and my son who was having a meltdown at the time, ha

So here’s the thing…the door way to the back deck is the only access to the backyard except for the laundry room or our bedroom and all I could think about was how nasty that carpet would look after my kids had run in and out about twenty times a day. Plus we were planning on ripping up the tile in the kitchen {you can read about that HERE} and we felt the continuity would be best if we carried the hardwood through this room and connecting it to the entryway. AND…since I firmly feel the family room must have carpet, as in my mind it needs to be the place where we gather to watch movies, lay on the floor before the fire, play, read, etc, we thought well…. I guess this room, which was supposed to be the family room, will now be the Living Room, as the original Living Room would be the only room left with carpet.

Whew…did you get all that?!?! ha.

There are a few problems with our plan…but as we’re squabbling over first world problems here {amen} they don’t really matter now. The only one that does matter is this:

This room is VERY ODD SHAPED. Seriously.

I have played with my furniture in this room over and over and just can’t seem to get it flowing right. Here is how it started last year when I made our house goals:

Not bad. I actually really like the couches there as when you enter in through the entry way, it looks really nice. However, we never even bothered to use this room AT ALL when it was set up like this. And the beautiful fireplace was being 100% ignored. So a lovely blog reader {I’m sorry I can’t remember your name!} sent me an email suggesting I move things around. So I did. The above couches got moved around the fireplace and my Nannie’s piano got moved where the couches are. And then, my mom got new couches….

This is getting more and more exciting right? Totally daytime TV Drama. oh boy.

…and I got my mom’s old couches.

Ok, let me say this about these couches. They are very high end. From Pierre Deux in the city, and I will never forget when my mom bought them. I believe I was about 13. She loved them so much she bought them right off the showroom floor…and for good reason, they are down filled, super squishy and comfy couches. I’m SUPER honored to have them. BUT…that would make them, get this, 23 years old. Normally that’s really not a big deal, however, these are not slipcovers, so the fabric is SHOT. Like fading and splitting shot. They need to be washed desperately but I can’t get them off because the fabric is that fragile. And to be honest, the pattern is a bit loud for my taste, although if the fabric was in good condition I would keep it because it brings back good memories. And I agree with all of the thoughts that are going through your heads, it IS super vintage and cool.

So these sweet little puppies need the slip, very badly. As well as my parent’s vintage bright orange wingback chair.

Here’s the problem…I can’t find a fabric I really like to cover these with. Don’t worry, it definitely won’t be white! ;) I’m looking at a light tan/burlap colored with browns, greens, blues as accent pillows. It will have to be something that compliments both the entryway and the kitchen, and I just can’t find a nice heavyweight linen that I feel would wash well and look good. And the honest truth is, I can’t really afford it right now either. So it’s staying this way for now.

And Nannie’s piano…well I had every good intention to paint it, but when we got it here we realized it was a *gulp* Steinway. I couldn’t do it. Just could not. It’s too nice the way it is, so even though its much too dark for my taste, I will be slipcovering the seat and leaving the rest dark. It makes me smile….as it makes me think of my Nannie.

My plan is to cover all these walls with framed family canvases. I have been trying to get one made every year or so, and now I just have to figure out how to get them framed inexpensively {Have you priced out frames? Seriously, it’s like a sin to spend that much on a frame}. But my goal is to cover the walls, floor to ceiling if necessary, with all our family photos and portraits. 

So what do you think? Do you like the layout? I have to be honest and say I’m not super happy with it, but this room is really an awkward shape. I want to knock the wall out between the kitchen and the living room to make it one giant room, but that’s a HUGE thing and takes lots of moo-lah…which, oh yeah, we don’t have. ha.

Anyway, would love your thoughts..1-2-3 go for it! :) xoxo

The Story Of The Vintage Craigslist Desks

Am I the only one who gets super wigged out when I see things from my childhood listed on Craigslist and ebay as “vintage”? ha. Seriously!!

I probably need to start from the beginning here…telling you why I needed “vintage” desks to begin with. It really all started with lovely “art” found all over my furniture and walls. You know, the kind that pops up while you’re in the shower or cooking dinner? Right, that kind.  I started to lose patience for said art when I found drawings all over my newly painted dining room table {that’s another story for another time}. It was at that point I realized I needed some sort of desk for the kids where they could practice this budding skill in a more…*ahem*…confined place.

The only problem was, I don’t have a ton of space in this house for a little school desk area. And I wanted something that was moveable…something that wasn’t cumbersome or planted in one place. It was then I remembered the desks I had in high school. You know what I mean…the wooden ones with the arm that is the desk? Surely those couldn’t be too hard find, right?

At first I had no idea what to type in the craigslist search bar and I finally decided on “school desk”. As usually is the case with craigslist, all kinds of things popped up. I’m pretty sure I saw every desk I ever sat in as student…from kinder to high school! ha. It was fun! But despite the fact I saw many desks, the high school ones I was looking for were no where! Finally, after a couple weeks of searching, I found this one:

It was listed in San Francisco, somewhat close to my friend Joy, who lives there. Thankfully, she loves me enough to go and get it, right Joy? :) It was $40….Joy and I met up later in the week and I brought it home. It was in excellent condition, and to be honest, the stain was really pretty. But I had a vision of painted desks for the kids…so painted it must be. However, I still needed to find a second one.

After some searching, and about a month later, I found a second desk. Unfortunately I accidentally erased it from my phone, but it wasn’t in super great condition, although pretty close to the same idea as the first one. It was a bit shorter and was older, so the hardware was a bit worn, and the desk had a very, very small hairline fracture in it. But overall, it was ok. At $50 the pricetag wasn’t exactly what I wanted to pay, and it was listed in San Jose {East Bay}, which was about two hours from me. Thankfully, my friend Monica lives there and ended up getting the desk for me and then my friend Heidi, who’s parents live close to there, brought it back home for me. Overall, I had been looking so long that I felt comfortable paying $10 more than I felt I should.

Once home, they sat in our family room for a while, and then in the dining room. They came in super handy over thanksgiving when we had a full table…the kids ate at the desks, and it was so easy for them! In the end, decided the desks needed to stay in the family room area, where we have our video monitor. It would be perfect for them color and draw while watching a video…or even serve as a form of TV trays, so they could eat while viewing a movie. Finally, after Christmas, and during my kids school break, we started organizing and I had my nieces start painting….

We first painted them pure white from Annie Sloan. I ADORE this paint in general and the pure white is probably the best color for my house ever…it really is a pure white. My plan was to have the first layer white and the second layer Paris Grey. Have you ever used paris Grey? It’s so lovely!! But unfortunately, when I put them in the family room, they looked REALLY washed out. I didn’t take any pictures of them, sorry! I decided they had to be green to match the rest of the room….

And because I love Annie Sloan Chalk Paint so much and because it requires NO PREP…I jumped on her site and chose the only green that really would match, Antibes Green. When I got the paint home from our local stockiest, I was SHOCKED at how green it was. YIKES!

Oh and FYI, this picture was actually taken AFTER I painted…that is ALL the paint I used. Annie Sloan is AMAZING.

So after a little research I found that if I mixed it half and half with ASCP Old White, the color would possibly be really close to all the Pottery Barn Kids green colors I have in the house. So I mixed and painted over the pure white and the paris grey.

Are you getting bored with this story yet? ha

After my niece painted the green I realized it was STILL not right. Oh boy. And Yes, I have no picture, but just trust me when I say, the green was very vibrant and just did not have the vintage-y look I was on the hunt for. So I did what I normally do when worried about something, set it aside and think, think, think, and research a bunch too, and then think some more {Brandon hates this process of mine. I’m pretty sure his words are “obsessive compulsive” ha}. Finally, I realized what it needed. A coat of Dark Wax. So I applied a light coat….and let me say, THEY WERE PERFECT!!!

The dark wax just gave it the depth they needed. I cannot tell you how much I love these! The first chair I bought is Jake’s…

The second one I got I gave to Evy, as it was a bit easier for her to get into. 

If you look closely, you see where we distressed the edges and the white and paris grey is peeking thorough. So great.

On Jake’s chair, the girls accidentally dripped some paint on the chair, but I adore how it gives the chair a older look!

I added these letters from {HERE}…I love these letters. I had already bought Evelyn from them for Evy’s room, so I knew I would like them on the chairs.

I forgot to purchase the ribbon to hang the letters, so I had this fun velvet ribbon I got on sale at Joann’s over a year ago. It was a bit wide so I cut it in half and tied the letters on. I love the way it’s fraying.

The light in this picture is really making it stand out, but Jake’s chair is a bit more light than Evy’s. I kinda got carried away with the dark wax. ha. But the difference doesn’t bother me, kinda like the way it’s off a bit.

PS…thinking about getting some new pillows for the entry way there. Just now noticing that the pink and blue may be off a bit. :( 

One final look, from the entry way. 

And that, my dear friends, is the tale of the craigslist desks! :)

This week I am hoping to show you some other things about my house, and go over our house goals from last year…telling you all what I have completed and what I haven’t. Ha. Not sure why saying that makes me laugh… probably has something to do with the fact that NOT MUCH HAS BEEN DONE. haha.

love you all. Happy Saturday! xoxo

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A Few Of My Favorite Things and A Discount Code

Happy holiday weekend friends! I hope your weekend has been filled with lots of love, fun and excitement….or maybe it’s just filled with rest, and sometimes that even better than anything else, right? :)

I’m not going to lie {and yes Mr/Ms Anonymous, so sorry, I’m going to complain for a second, so you might want to skip over this part ;)}, the last couple weeks have been rather tough for me. I have NEVER had a problem sleeping but my sleep has been hiding from me lately. Over the last two weeks, I think I slept about 4 hours every night…somewhere right around 2:30 or 3 AM I would wake up and not be able to get back to sleep. I know it’s probably stress…I had a spring photo shoot to worry about {although it turned about amazing, see HERE}, Spring items to get finished and launched {which is huge in and of itself} and then the kicker was we had some issues with Jake at school and we had to take a better look at his IAP {Individualized Accommodation Plan}. I have to be honest, although putting together a spring photo shoot and a spring line is huge, anything that has to do with our kids is huger, right? And then we had some other little family bumps in the road and WAH-LAH! No sleep! Ha!

All that to say, this four day weekend came at a time that I needed it most. Friday morning the kids had no school thanks to a teacher in service day, so Brandon let me sleep in while he took care of the kiddos. It was the first time I have slept that long in a really, really long time. And then yesterday we took the kids to the city {San Francisco, for you non locals}. The day was gorgeous, the weather warm, the sites rejuvinating. Just what we all needed. Yesterday after a wonderful church service, we came home and rested some more, and then had a family movie night complete with popcorn and a fire in the fireplace. It’s been HEAVENLY. Needless to say, I’m thinking come Tuesday morning I’ll be ready to conquer the world, how about you? :)

THANK YOU LORD. You knew exactly what I needed this weekend. You are our very present help in time of trouble and you are always right on time. 

We are headed out for another day of fun this morning, but really quickly I wanted tell you about a few of my favorite items from the Spring line. I didn’t get a chance to do a blog post regarding my faves yet, so I figured today was as good as time as any since…

the 15% off discount code is STILL active! Enter EMAILLOVE at checkout. It’s good through today and into the night. ;)

So some of my favorites:

The Carisa Brilla

I’m not going to lie, if I was to purchase a Brilla this season, this one would be it. I am in SUCH a huge grey and orange phase right now. And to be honest, it looked SO ADORABLE on Carisa {who it’s named after}. She came over a little later with flipflops on and had the hoodie unzipped, it still looked cute. Want one? Click HERE to buy.

The Lauren Brilla

This one is a no brainer. Who doesn’t wear navy and red during the spring and summer?? It’s the perfect outdoor activity hoodie. And Lauren, our little model, is precious isn’t she?
Oh and bonus! Dog hoodie available in this one as well. What could be cuter?
Adult hoodie HERE, Kids hoodie HERE, Dog hoodie HERE
The Black Diana Wrap
This one is an essential, in my opinion. And thankfully, I have quite a bit of the fabric {knock on wood} so we should have this around for a little bit, at least. Don’t have a Diana Wrap….um, I’m not kidding, do yourself a favor and buy one. They are by far one of my favorite items right now. Can be casual or dressy {I wore my navy one to church yesterday with a navy skirt, scarf and heels}…they are so versatile.
All Diana Wraps HERE, Black Diana Wrap HERE
The Grace Wrap
The Grace wrap is so so popular over here. One of the things that makes this one so loved is the juxtapose between causal and dressy. Its made out of repurposed men’s hoodie, but the high end ribbon and ruffles make it look like a runway item. It’s so very fun to wear.
Purchase the Grace Wrap HERE, The Mrs Darcy Brooch HERE
The Simple Hoodie
I think one of our most popular items is The Simple hoodie. I have people tell me all the time how its the hoodie they love the most because it’s plain, but yet not plain, if that makes any sense. :) And this hoodie is one of the first 4 styles to be included in our manufactured items. Although this is coming in our manufactured goods, it will not come in Navy this year {although we hope to produce it in a rainbow of colors in the years to come}…So I have to say one of my favorite items this spring is the navy simple. And I LOVE how sweet Cheyenne styles it…can you tell she is pregnant? Another reason to love Evy’s Tree the are perfect for you pregnant people. :)
Navy Simple HERE
Mrs Darcy Exclusively for Evy’s Tree
I am so very excited about this one. Mrs Darcy has LONG been an essential part of Evy’s Tree. If you have one of our simples or grace wraps from way back in the beginning, then you probably have one of Mrs Darcy’s brooches. I have to tell you a little bit about Mrs Darcy….shown here with her two darling boys.
Mrs Darcy is a lovely woman who adores all things ruffly and girly, but yet is stuck in a boys world {I’m sure there are other moms out there that can relate :) }. She started making brooches and headbands as a side hobby many years ago and her items are like little pieces of art, she hand makes each one and puts lots of love and care into them. She has an etsy store that she started a couple years ago, but this past year and a half has been difficult for her. Her beloved sister in law was diagnosed with cancer and if you know Mrs Darcy, you know that she loves with all her heart. This was probably one of the most difficult things for her to go through.
Shown above with her sister in law Kelly, taken last week. Kelly recently had surgery again in hopes of finally knocking out this cancer that is in her body. Through it all, Mrs Darcy has had to slow down on her creative side to help her family through this time. But she is back now and is hoping to gradually ease into the swing of creating once again.
To help her out, I offered to give her a spot in our store, as long as she made exclusive items for Evy’s Tree. And of course, she did! Have you seen what’s there? Some favorite pieces and some new pieces, I think you will love them!
All of them go wonderfully with our simples, grace wraps or the Army green Jackie Brilla.
To shop Mrs Darcy’s exclusive collection go HERE.
* * * * * * * * ** * * * * * *
Whelp, that’s it! Remember, use code EMAILLOVE to get 15% off the entire store until tonight! Yes, that’s even sale items! have fun shopping!
As for us, we are considering going to Ikea today. It’s been at least 12 years since I’ve been and Brandon has never gone. Do you think we should go?? We just want to know what all the hype is about, fill us in, what are we missing. :)
Happy President’s Day everyone! xoxo
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Handmade Spring 2013 Is Now Available!

I am so excited. Have you seen the website facelift?

Click on image to take you there…

I can’t even express how thrilled I am to introduce you all to some customers who love and adore Evy’s Tree. For now, you get to see and read a little bit about why they like our items, but in the next week or two, we will have a video up of them talking about their experience with Evy’s Tree. You are going to love it.

AND…you get to hear me talk. Yikes. Not going to lie I’m a bit nervous about that. ha. 

I hope you have a great time browsing the new and improved website. It was time for a clean up and of course my dear friend Brooke outdid herself, as always. Pretty sure I’d be no where if it weren’t for her. And Monika…her pictures rock, yes?? I’d also like to thank the lovely ladies and their families who spent an entire day a couple weeks ago volunteering their time for this project. Many people have asked if these are really customers or friends or family. Well, none of them are family {although you may see a few of my family members in some of the pictures since they were taken in my backyard ;)}, but all of them are people who I can now call friends. It’s a mixed group of ladies who were either customers who became friends or friends who became customers. Either way, these ladies are from the San Francisco Bay Area and have been a tremendous support of Evy’s Tree in one way or another. Most of them started buying our items waaayyy back when I first started and have been hooked since. Plus they tell all they know about Evy’s Tree which is pretty awesome. So thanks again ladies! We love and appreciate you!

Lastly, did you hear that our Handmade Spring 2013 will be available for purchase TONIGHT at 7 PM PST??

We have some beautiful and basic pieces available. Most of them bursting with the Spring colors and are meant to be a compliment to anything you buy this season. You can see the entire line HERE.

A quick note regarding this Spring line: I fully intended to have our manufactured goods here by now. Unfortunately they have been delayed again, for at least a couple months. The reason being is the fabric we choose did not hold up to my expectations, so we had to start over and weave the fabric again. I think you will be really happy with what I choose. BUT….

That leaves us with very little to offer in our handmade line. I had planned on having several thousand manufactured items here to make up for the gap, so when I went fabric shopping at the beginning of December, I bought only enough for a small line to compliment our manufactured items. And of course, as luck would have it, there is no manufactured line. That means that this handmade line is very, very limited. I mean VERY limited. I’m particularly nervous about the Striped Diana Wrap that everyone wants. Please know that it WILL sell out pretty quickly so if you want one I suggest you log on right at 7 PM PST.

I will have another upload of Spring items next month. It will be some brand new styles, not necessarily Diana Wraps or Brillas. I think you will be excited about it. Also, I will have something very exciting for boys and men debuting in April. So stay tuned!! Hopefully, after  that, the manufactured items will follow shortly. I will keep you updated on that.

So for now, your manufactured 50% off coupons are still on hold, BUT… there are some discount codes for the handmade items floating around {HERE, HERE, HERE}, so I would make sure you use that!!

Thank you friends! I love and appreciate you all. You guys make me smile and keep me going. Thank you for everything. Big hugs!

xoxo

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