Local Love // The Farmhouse Store

I’m so excited to share one of my absolute FAVORITE local businesses with you today. The hubs & I live in Northern New Jersey, and while we love the benefits of living in a city that neighbors Manhattan, we typically spend our weekends venturing out into the local NJ suburbs for great eating, awesome parks for Emma to play in, and fantastic shopping! (We also like to drive through all of the big fancy suburban neighborhoods & make believe we live in one of those gorgeous homes!)

The Farmhouse Store is located in Westfield, New Jersey – about a thirty minute drive or train ride from NYC. There is also a second location in Princeton, which I definitely need to check out someday. The shop is filled with amazing vintage finds and the wares of local crafters. The second floor of the Westfield store features the most beautiful, hand crafted barnwood furniture you ever did see.

photo 2photo credit – The Farmhouse Store Facebook Albums

I am so in love with the tables & chests built from reclaimed barn wood, the absolutely gorgeous fabric options for their upholstered furniture, and their beautiful collection of prints & statement wall pieces.

photo 4photo credit – The Farmhouse Store Facebook Albums

Those gorgeous prints framed in reclaimed wood are at the top of my wish list.  I could easily furnish an entire home right out of this store (it’s like I blinked and suddenly turned into my mother!)

photo 5photo credit – The Farmhouse Store Facebook Albums

The hubby & I have made several small purchases from The Farmhouse Store – and we stocked up on beautiful Christmas gifts this past winter as well.

Our latest spring purchases include this adorable gourd bunny:

bunnygourdand, if you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen this amazing goat pillow – which I am absolutely obsessed with. Do I hear goats yelling like humans every time I see it? Yes.

photo 4

One of the reasons I love this pillow (besides the fact that it makes me want to watch the Whitney Houston Goat Remix repeatedly) is that it was handmade in Bucks County, PA – where I grew up!

pillowback

Eric & Christopher make and sell all kinds of adorable farm animal pillows, among other great screen-printed items!

We also made a larger purchase – a hand crafted, reclaimed wood coffee table.

CoffeeTable3

We ordered it in January, and it took about a month to complete (they are custom built to order in Lancaster by Amish tradesmen). We just recently picked it up, and are absolutely in love with it! It has a beautiful & lustrous wax finish, tons of unique knots & imperfections in the wood that render it one-of-a-kind, and two sizable drawers that are perfect for holding our multiple TV remotes, candle lighter, & a few magazines.

CoffeeTable

Our whole decorating style is in a major period of transition – but I like where we’re headed. One day, a quality piece of furniture like this will travel with us to wherever we end up buying our first home – and I just can’t wait!

So, if you’re in the NY/NJ area you simply MUST make a trip out to one of The Farmhouse Store locations. And why don’t you go like them on Facebook, where you can browse through hundreds of beautiful pictures of the great pieces they sell. I promise, you will absolutely love it!

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Love and Storage

My dear husband loves me bunches. He knows that the occasional crafty-DIY project helps to keep me sane when work & life are stressful, and he knows that I have a habit of leaving half-painted projects sitting out for a week, or forgetting to put away the hot glue gun. He never says a word – just shakes his head as he walks by our dining room table covered in scrapbook paper – 5 days in a row. I just couldn’t resist jumping on the Hey Girl Meme bandwagon with this silly guy:

HeyGirl2Hubby cemented his permanent place in my heart this past Valentine’s Day with his unconventional choice of gift. He found a Craft & Sewing Cart that disguises itself quite nicely as a piece of furniture perfectly suited to our living/dining open floor plan in our 2nd floor apartment.

cabinet1The cabinet holds SO MUCH – I love it to pieces. Our space is pretty limited, so it was so nice to gain this extra storage space for my ever-growing collection of crafting supplies, and the cabinet found a perfect home in the transitional living-into-dining area of our apartment. Since it’s on wheels, it can be moved anywhere for convenience, and I could even see myself turning it into a faux bar cart for entertaining purposes!

sewingshelfI packed my sewing machine & Cuttlebug onto the bottom shelf, and then quickly filled the right hand shelves with loads of supplies.

craftcabinetshelves2The left hand door opens up to reveal a great little cubby area – perfect for holding rubber stamps, ribbons, paintbrushes, and other small items.

BinStorageThe extending leaf is great for creating a larger workspace, and the surface of the furniture seems to be very scratch & stain resistant.

jarsI love having this additional storage, I love having a new surface to decorate, and I LOVE my thoughtful hubs!

CraftCabinetWhere do you store all of your craft supplies (or supplies related to another fun hobby)? If you have some amazing organizational ideas, I’d love to hear em- I could totally use the help!!

Side Table Makeover

A few weeks ago, FH & I joined up with his parents to hold a little yard sale- emptying our homes of some extra & unnecessary stuff. While FH was chanting “purge, purge, purge”, I still managed to snag this little side table from my future in-laws goods.

The little guy was in great shape, with a few dings in the top. I knew right away the table would be the perfect chance for me to experiment with a few things I had in my craft bins but hadn’t found a use for yet. The most exciting part about this project is that I completing it using only things I already had, which means no late-night runs to Michael’s, and absolutely no cost! Can’t beat it!

I contemplating a quick spray-paint job, but decided the current metal finish was fine for our living room, and in perfect condition. So my makeover focused on the tabletop, which I decided to cover with a piece of brown damask fabric leftover from a fabric.com purchase.

After cutting my fabric to size (and admiring the way the damask design looks in contrast to our brown & white chevron rug), I coated the table top in spray adhesive & placed, flattened, and trimmed the fabric around the tabletop. Next I broke out my favorite product: Mod Podge, and set to work securing the fabric edge to the bottom of the table, as well as giving the table top a coat.

Doesn’t look so hot right now, but once the glue dried, I gave the tabletop a quick spray with Mod Podge Clear Acrylic Sealant:

Once everything dried, I moved on to my next step- adding nailhead trim! I purchased some cheap-o trim from Amazon about 6 months ago with a different project in mind, but when that idea fell through I was still dying to jazz something in the house up with nailhead trim.

Attaching the trim could not have been easier (it’s like a big long ribbon of “nail-head” looking metal circles, with a space to nail in a tack every 6 circles or so. You may already know how nailhead trim works, but it was a complete mystery to me. I now am obsessed with it, and want to attach it to every piece of furniture in my house. I wont, don’t worry).

The entire project took about thirty minutes (and did I mention it cost me NOTHING?) 🙂

Now the little guy has a new home, next to a big window that somehow always makes it impossible to take a decent photo. Sorry!

It feels great to have some free time for crafts & house projects- the table only sat waiting for its makeover for two weeks, which is pretty amazing by my standards. 🙂

Has anyone else been up to fun & easy house projects, or managing to spruce up something old or used with materials you already have? It’s a great feeling- right?

Temporary Solutions {Part 2}

As detailed in Monday’s post, FH & I embarked on a quest this past Saturday to purchase a new piece for our kitchen- to replace our old, small kitchen cart & help create some more counter/storage space in our small kitchen while we save & dream for a future kitchen renovation.

After a long search, we finally found two pieces of furniture at IKEA- which I then proceeded to spend the remaining afternoon building. FH is good at a great many things, but assembling furniture is not one of them. I single handily built the desk and wall to ceiling shelves in our second-bedroom-turned-office, and I assembled our TV stand/entertainment center as well. Most of our furniture is ‘temporary’ much like our kitchen- as eventually we hope to acquire some nicer pieces. Second-floor apartment living is not ideal for large, single-unit furniture, either.

I am a visual learner- so instructions portrayed by cartoon-like pictures are pretty easy for me to interpret. I would much rather see a diagram than read written instructions.

My tips for successful assembly of IKEA furniture:

1. Carefully separate all pieces, including screws/dowels/etc. & make sure you can tell the difference between each size item.

I use the top of the cardboard box to separate all of the small assembly pieces.

2. Accept help. While FH lacks the patience to carefully follow each step of the assembly, when it comes to lifting/flipping furniture pieces or screwing in the 100th screw when my hand is getting tired… occasionally I need to *ask for* help. When assembly IKEA furniture I assume a very independent, GIRL POWER mentality that often makes it difficult to remember this tip.

3. Your dog probably cannot help you very much, so enlist your partner/buddy to entertain said dog.

Or, your construction zone may look something like this:

3. Take your time & resist the urge to throw things. Sometimes, the pictures just don’t make sense. Or you built the entire thing & then realized one tiny piece was backwards. It happens to the best of us IKEA furniture builders. Take a break, eat a snack (Doritos for me), and before you know it, you’ll be done & proud.

My two pieces took about 3 hours total to assemble. It was a bit tedious, but we are very happy with the results:

Done!

Both carts have wheels, and the smaller one on the left has an extension. Putting the microwave (yes, it is a different, smaller microwave) on the shelf leaves lots of counter space, and our important every day dishes still fit on the one bottom shelf. (We purged a few extra items & relocated some bigger pieces to a cabinet in our back hallway). I will probably not store anything too heavy or breakable on the small cart, as I plan to move it towards the sink/stove/kitchen counter when in need of extra cooking space.

The best part about our new furniture is we that have created a separate working space in the kitchen. I can juice/blend/etc. over by the sink in the morning, and FH can make a bowl of cereal or pack a lunch on the cart next to the fridge. We hope to have significantly less elbow-bumping, frustrating mornings from now on.

I updated the chalkboard calendar...finally.

I love the nice bright white w/ the wood counter top.

I put the new rolling cart to use while preparing dinner last night. It served as a great place to lay out my ingredients.

Ingredients for a new Stuffed Peppers recipe

 

I often cook from recipes I find online (more now, thanks to Pinterest!), so I use my iPad propped up on a plate stand.

Works like a charm!

Dinner was absolutely delicious Turkey Stuffed Peppers from Skinny Taste.

This delicious, healthy, take on traditional stuffed peppers uses lean chopped turkey & fat free chicken broth for an amazingly flavorful stuffed pepper at 184 calories for one half-pepper.

Mine turned out SO great- FH loved them & I was super proud!

Delicious! I put a salad of mixed greens, feta cheese & craisins w/ balsamic vinaigrette dressing on the side. YUM!

Find the recipe at Skinnytaste.com & make them for yourself!