Farm House Fresh

Man, it’s stories like this one from Better After reader Bethany that make me wish I had bought a 136-year-old fixer-upper farm house. Too bad those don’t exist where I live.  The closest I could come is buying  a 25-year-old faller-downer meth house, which is nowhere near as charming.  No thankies.

But she scored big with this beautiful home built in 1878, which switched hands a few times before it ended up being purchased by her grandparents in 1972.  Eventually, it came into Bethany’s possession and she has been bringing it back to life ever since.

Luckily it had been lovingly cared for and only needed a few cosmetic updates, including new lighting and uncovering those original fir floors.  136-year-old floors! Wow, what a treasure.  Bethany, start a blog already, we need to see more!

farmhouse dining room makeover

farmhouse dining room makeover after


farmhouse dining room makeover floors




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Black Halloween Cat Makeover

I’ve got some spooky Halloween decor for you today, (if you follow me on instagram, you’ve already had a sneak peek!) The best part is you can whip up in ten minutes or less, assuming you have a super ugly cat sculpture lying around the house. And who doesn’t, am I right?

If you are fresh out of ugly cat sculptures, I’ll wait while you head down to your local thrift store where you are sure to find something similar.

*twiddling thumbs*

You’re back! Great! Let’s get started.

Step one: Spray paint that sad little thing black.


halloween cat before

black hallloween cat

Paint the eyeballs if you want it to look especially creepy. Boom. You are done.

I originally painted my cat’s eyes white, but everyone in the household was too creeped out by its soul-sucking blank stare and preferred the red.

halloween cat sculpture before


halloween cat after

What do you think? Red or white? Or maybe you’d do something else entirely.  I’d love to see your pics if you do, especially if you can’t find any cats and have to use like, ceramic geese or something. Oh man, Halloween geese! That should be a thing.

Happy Saturday!

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Ch-ch-chair ch-ch-changes!

Hello lovelies.  I’ve got a little chair roundup today that is sure to make both you and your bottom smile.  Most bottoms naturally curve into a nice little smile, don’t they?  That’s the ideal, anyway.  No one wants a scowling bottom.

That reminds me of this one time, when my daughter Mia was really small we were standing in the checkout line of a store, and the woman in front of us had a very rotund bottom, and to my horror, Mia couldn’t help herself, like a moth to a flame she reached out and lovingly stroked it and patted it and bounced her little hand on it like it was a basketball, and I could have died. I couldn’t stop her, because I was behind the grocery cart, and she was in front of it, and I was also busy pretending not to know her.

And now … makeovers! Lisa at Sweet Parsley Home wasn’t scared away by this chair’s total inability to perform its duties as a chair. She re-webbed it and jolted it back to life with some fearless fabric and pretty paint.


cane chair before


aqua - cane - chair superpost |


Jen at Girl in the Garage also went a step further than paint and fabric, she re-padded this chair and it looks so absolutely cushy, like if your bottom could get a massage.  I guess technically your bottom COULD get a massage, but this is way less awkward.  Remind me to tell you my awkward massage story sometime.


brown chair before


white - yellow gray fabric - chair superpost |



I always love a good MCM makeover, and this one stays true to form, with simple fabric and coaxing the beauty back out of that wood frame.  From Lisa at Lombardo Lagniappe.


midcentury green chair before


blue - midcentury -chair superpost |


These before chairs from Better After reader Kristen weren’t terrible to begin with, I mean, I’ve seen way worse fabric (so have you, like 15 seconds ago). But wow, they are something special now. I love the look of the delicate  script print paired up with the glossy black frame.  Mmmhmm!


striped chair before


script - chair superpost |


script - chair superpost |



This chair also had some script print happening.  Perhaps you’ve heard of Rebecca’s line of fabric? No? Don’t feel bad, her earlier work wasn’t that popular. That’s why Becca at Ivy & Co. chose to ditch it in favor of a graphic mustard print. And another black frame! I’m getting the urge to paint something black.

antique - scalloped - chair before


antique - scalloped - chair superpost |


Here’s a sweet one from Michal at Caspitweb. This one would be perfect tucked in the corner of a girl’s bedroom. It used to look like it came from a southwestern-themed restaurant that went out of business thanks to multiple health-code violations, so I’d say that’s a huge improvement.


sad striped chair before


white - purple/ blue fabric - chair superpost |

And one last beauty to feast your eyeballs on from Jen at Girl in the Garage.  It’s so lovely, and what a great touch to choose the rose fabric to echo the roses carved into the chair.  Not that the green microfiber wasn’t doing a great job of that. (It wasn’t).

brown chair before


white - floral fabric chair superpost |

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Deux Commodes

Despite the fancy soundin’ name, French provincial style furniture is a dime a dozen.  You can easily find some today on your city’s Craigslist or in your grandma’s guest room. In fact, if you are easily amused and have some spare time, please google “french provincial dresser.’ A whole world of french provincial makeovers will open up for you to behold.  Some are really good.  Some are … the eyeball searing opposite of really good.

But here are a couple standouts that rise above the rest. First, a mint and gold take from Bre at Brepurposed. Love the crystal teardrops. Sometimes people mistakenly think that adding sleek modern drawer pulls will update this type of furniture, but I say stick to feminine and flourishy.


beige dresser before


Green - French - Dresser - Makeover |


And let’s first stop and virtually high-five Christy for getting this dresser for a measly $25 when my local thrift stores would have priced it somewhere in the car payment range. Her printed fabric technique is shabby, chic, and so sweet.  See more at Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer.


wood dresser before


Cream Dresser - Fabric Inlay  - Makeover |

Fun factiod: did you know the French word for dresser is ‘commode?’  What I don’t know is how/when/why that got translated to mean ‘toilet’ when it reached America.  I think it has something to do with chamber pots. Feel free to use that nugget of info to impress your friends.

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