Paris Grey Etagere {China Cabinet}

I shared last week about the wonderful antique etagere that we found during our barn treasure hunt…..I thought I would share the finished project!

Here’s how we found her…inside the barn at this wonderful place…..

Found treasure - Vintage Etagere

You can check out some more before pictures here.

Painted with Paris Grey Chalk Paint…..

painted etagere

And filled with white dishes……

paris grey etagere main paris grey cabinet white dishes inside cabinet white dishes in etagere paris grey china cabinet

I did not use any wax on this piece, but I did slightly rough it up a bit.

We are loving it! It looks perfect in the dining room, and has opened up so much cabinet space in the kitchen when we took all the white dishes out of the cabinets.

Now…you know what I’m thinking.


You’ve got it.

I want to paint the walls.

I have some fun ideas……

This may or may not be a form of insanity.

I’ve always thought sanity was really overrated, anyway.

What are you up to?


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Vintage Etagere {China Cabinet}

A few weeks ago I shared how we were so very honored to be special Memory Keepers…you can read about it here.

If you follow me on Instagram you have been a part of seeing some of the wonderful treasures that we have been gifted with. {If you’d like to follow on instagram here’s my handle: cottageintheoaks}

We now have a huge storage room full of wonderful vintage and antique furniture and items that we have lots of fun ideas of what we’d like to do with……here’s  a look at the first one that we’ve tackled.

Here she is…when we found her.

Found treasure - Vintage Etagere

Forlorn. Standing on her head. Needing a bath and some TLC.

How do I know she was a she? It was the curvy legs.

She was missing her door…but that didn’t bother us a bit.

Found treasure - Vintage Etagere

Here she is in her new home….the dining room. Handsome has repaired her badly damaged, curvy leg…and built her two new shelves, and a new bottom, since her original ones were missing.

Vintage Etagere

We’ve scrubbed and cleaned her up….and was so happy to find out she has vintage, wavy glass! We’ve been letting her settle into her new surroundings for a few days now….and this week she will be getting a coat of Paris Grey. She’s excited.

Vintage Etagere

And then she will be the keeper of all of our white dishes and serve ware.

Vintage Etagere

Can’t wait to show you the finished product! {Actually, I can’t wait to see it myself.} 😉

What are you up to this week?



Valentine Mantel……..

We don’t decorate a whole lot for Valentine’s Day…but we do have a bit of fun in little places around our home.  I was in the mood to change the mantel a bit…and it was a tad too early to make it ‘springy’….so, I did a little impromptu Valentine Mantel.

valentine mantel

I gathered up all of the grainsack and red French ticking sachets that I could find around the house and put them in a little wire basket lined with linen. They are all filled with lavender and smell soooooo goooooddddd!

grainsack hearts

With three violinists in our home we have lots of violin sculptures….I thought they were perfect for the Valentine Mantel……..

cupid playing violin austin sculpture of violin and cello

Then I just filled in the rest of the space with all the white pitchers that I could find in the cabinets and on the shelves! I think I will fill them with roses for next week.

valentine mantel 2013

For the garland I used trim and ribbon in pinks, reds, and whites.

Valentine's Day MantelIt was fun to shop our cottage and pull this together. I love doing that. Didn’t spend a dime!

Do you do any Valentine decorating……or do you just sit back and enjoy the chocolate?

Hearts to you~


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Vintage Kitchen Chandelier…..

OK….I can already tell. This is going to be the ‘Year of Lighting’ here at Oak Cottage.

A couple of weeks ago we were out of town and found this gorgeous, vintage chandelier……had to have it!

We no longer have an ugly fluorescent square light in our kitchen…..woohoo! I detested that light…but just hadn’t found the right one to take its place. {Well, actually, I HAD found some…but since they cost more than the whole cottage, I kinda figured I better keep looking and keep my mind open.}

And, then, in walked lit up this lovely! {I’m going to be painting the black cord to match the chain so it doesn’t stick out so badly.}

kitchen chandelier

Excuse the mess…..we were in the process of a few projects……

cottage kitchen chandelier

One of the biggies on our list is to get rid of the popcorn ceiling. Why in the world do they put those things in???  Ugh.

vintage chandelier chandelier in kitchen

Lighting can make or break a room. Have you ever walked around your home to see if you might want to change out lights to change the feel of the whole room? That’s what we’ve been doing around here lately. The consensus? Yep…we want to change all of ’em!

Happy Tuesday~


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Ready Made Curtains {Using Curtains as Doors}

When trying to organize and make the best use of the space we’ve been given in each room we have found a wonderful way to add character and charm AND hide stuff!

Quite often we use curtains as doors…. door curtains, if you will.

We’ve used curtains as closet doors in our office… you can read about that here. {Made from printed linen}

ready made curtains

We’ve used curtains under kitchen cabinets and under our new farmhouse sink…..{Made from a painters drop cloth} You can view our cottage kitchen here.

ready made curtains ready made curtains

We used them on our sideboard in the dining room to hide the massive amount of storage that was created and to make accessing the stuff under there easy. {It also softens and adds warmth to the room.} {Made from linen} You can view the tutorial on how to make this sideboard here.

ready made curtainsWe also use curtains on our bookcases in the living room. {Made from French ticking} Our living room redo posts can be viewed here…..and it is ongoing!

ready made curtains

The living room is the hardest room in our cottage to take pictures in….weird lighting. I am determined to figure it out and master it one day. If you hang around long enough you might get to see it! {I just hope I still have my eyesight and all my real teeth when it happens!}

I love what it adds to the rooms……so much prettier than a door. Also, it’s much less expensive than adding doors to cabinets and bookcases, etc.

You can use ready made curtains purchased at a store, or you can easily make your own. I made the ones in our home and it was such a quick fix. For some of them it did not even involve sewing. For the ones that it did involve sewing….it was just a quick hem up the sides.

My favorite rods are the cafe curtain rods or the spring loaded curtain rods. Sometimes I slide the curtain right onto the rod…. using a pocket in the top of the material; but most of the times I use cafe rod clips. The clips make the curtains open and close so easily.

Have you ever used curtains in places besides windows?



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Motherism Bathroom Signs……

When the autumn Pottery Barn catalog arrived I fell in love with some cute signs that were in there. They were fun sayings on vintage paper and then framed.

I was about to purchase them for our new master bath…they were just what I was looking for to fill the big space left on the wall.

Then it hit me…how easy would they be to create myself!??

So, I uploaded a scan of some vintage paper and selected the size that I wanted the prints to be, added my phrases and fun wording, sent it off to my favorite printer, and Voila! For a mere $20 total I had my $100 Pottery Barn knock-offs hanging on the wall.

Can I get a woo to go with the hoo!??

motherism signs motherism signs in bathroom

If you would like to create something similar…you can use any free photo editing software, such as Picmonkey, Gimp, etc…you don’t have to have Photoshop. It took me about 10 minutes.

They are perfect in the big, empty spot on the wall.

I hope you have a super weekend!

Stay warm~


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New Year’s Mantel

What a great day we have had….doing nothing.

I love it….it has been a treat. I hope your year is off to a wonderful start.

Here’s some great New Year posts that I have enjoyed:

2013 Goals for Your Home

When You Don’t Want a New Year, But a New You

God Sized Dreams and the ‘Do What You Can’ Plan

20 Questions for Reflecting on Your 2012


I hope you guys had a wonderful New Year’s Eve. We threw a little fun New Year’s mantel together to be ready for the countdown.

new years mantel

I went on a hunt for vintage clocks….couldn’t find even one! ha! I usually see them all over the place at my favorite haunts. None. None to be found when I needed them most. Humph.

mantel for new years

I did, however, find a really neat Brownie camera to add to my collection. {Score!}

Great things can happen when you’re trying to do something else.

brownie camera

I try to remind myself of that often. If I just keep working toward the visions and ideas that have been given to me…..I can find great treasure through the unexpected. The ‘not what I was looking for’. Sometimes when I’m working toward something I find that just what I needed was not what I was looking for…..but even better.

With mantels. And life.

mantel vignette

Hoping you find just what you’re looking for this year…..

{for your home. and your life. ;)}

Happy 2013~


You can read about my word of the year for 2013 here.

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Top 12 of ’12 {Top Posts of 2012}

IMPORTANT NOTE:  If you subscribe to Cottage in the Oaks through a reader/RSS feed….within the next week we will be switching servers. This should not interrupt your feed, but sometimes it can. ugh. I certainly don’t want to lose any of you….I love having you here! So, if all of a sudden you don’t receive a post be sure to come back here and subscribe again so we can get back on track! 🙂 Fun things are coming in 2013….we’re getting an overhaul. 

Now, onto our regularly scheduled program…….

It’s always fun at the end of each year to see which posts have received the greatest views/hits over the past 12 months. Quite often it surprises me!

Today I pulled up our stats and made a list of the Top 12 posts of 2012.

Thought I would share them with you here in order {you can click on the name of each post to be taken to that particular one}…….

New Built-In Dining Room Sideboard

sideboard finished

Our Cottage Kitchen

cottage kitchen vignette

Winter Front Porch

winter front porch

Drop-Cloth Numbered Napkins

numbered napkinsSpring Front Porch

spring front porch

Our Cottage {Master Bath}

cottage master bath

Starting Seeds

seeds in trays

Painted Piano

piano after

Summer Front Porch

summer front porch 1

Chalkboard Lidded Jars

main pic

Chalkboard Chargers

chalkboard charger main

DIY Apothecary Jars

vintage apothecary jarsSo, there you have it…..the Top 12 posts of 2012! It was fun to see what was the most popular. Did you have a favorite?

I hope you have fun here on Cottage in the Oaks….it’s a blessing to have you as a reader. I’m honored and humbled that you guys like to see what we are up to and hopefully get inspiration while you hang out here a bit. 🙂

I hope you have a wonderful last weekend in 2012!



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Olde World Christmas Ornaments……

I’m really not in to ‘theme trees’….. so, it’s kind of funny that I have one. I’m consistent in life like that. This particular tree started by accident. About 16 years ago a friend gave me an Olde World Ornament as a gift…also a housewarming; and that started it all. We now have well over 200 Olde World ornaments….and most of them were gifts from people that have seen that we collect them. They each have a special meaning and stand for something…an event, a special trip, a favorite place, hobby, etc.

After a few years we had so many of them that we needed to dedicate a tree to just the Olde World ornaments.

olde world ornament tree

What are Olde World ornaments, you say? They are glass..usually mercury glass ornaments that are made the old world way. They are mouth blown into antique molds and then liquid silver is poured inside of them. They are then painted and glittered on the outside. I just love them.

varsity ornament old world ornaments

The olde world ornament tree lives in our dining room.

tree in dining room

Are there any type of special ornaments that you collect?

Jiggling Jingling All the Way~


Historical Christmas {House Tour}

This past weekend my three violinists provided the music for the Historical Society’s Annual Christmas Tea. It was held in a beautiful, historical home. I had so much fun wandering around {I’m a wanderer….just in case you ever invite me to your house, you might need to know…..but don’t worry, I don’t go through drawers or anything.} I’m so glad that the owner loves for people to wander around his home! {People with the gift of hospitality usually don’t mind at all if you wander…..they have made complete peace with the dust bunnies, imperfections…in fact, they’ve incorporated them into their style. :)}

I love history…so this home was such a treat to take in. It is not how I would want to decorate our home, but so wonderful to enjoy. And, even if you are in someone’s home that doesn’t have the same style as you… can always learn so much. There’s always inspiration to take away…..inspiration that you can put into your own style. I love that. You also learn so much about someone that puts their own style into their home. It’s warm, inviting, reflects them and their family, what they treasure….it’s a home that is full of things of meaning. So, I just love spending time in other people’s homes and learning more about them.

While No. 1 Son got himself and his sisters all tuned up….I began to wander…..


It was a treat just driving up to this lovely place…..

historical home

Aren’t the natural decorations wonderful? Nothing says South like magnolia greenery!

front door christmas decor

Since holly in the South is not always plentiful….it takes a really cold winter to produce lots of berries…..a great alternative is nandina berries.

outdoor christmas decor

Wonderful window decor with greenery and fruit……

christmas window decor

The owner of this lovely home is an avid clock collector…and piano collector. There were several pianos in every room!


One of my favorite parts….you guys know I just love the falling apart ceiling! It shows the historical construction of the ceiling…..they don’t do ceilings like this anymore.

vintage ceiling

A gorgeous chandelier graced each room….this is the foyer one…..

chandelier 2 chandelier

Check out the wonderful woodwork, complete with fabulous ledges! We plan to do this in our bedroom when we redo it. {Really soon, right, Handsome? Right? ;)}

ledges on walls

Being a historical home…there was a fireplace in every room. Be still my heart…..

historical fireplace

This bathroom was incredible! The ceiling was stained glass..and, yes, that is a working leaded glass sink!

victorian bathroom

I really need this urn. It would be perfect for cider. Don’t you think I need this urn?

cider urn

The finial on the stairway….the main stairway reminded me so much of the Titanic! This finial was almost as big as me! OK, maybe I exaggerate. It was very large, though….about 2.5 feet tall…..

stairway finial

The main parlor fireplace……

fireplace in historical home

One of the many antique pianos…..

antique piano

Another wonderful light fixture…..

victorian light

All of the fixtures in the ceiling had special framing..each one unique and different. The details were amazing.

ceiling around light

And another……

vintage light fixture

I love this tip for houseplants…….fill the top of each plant with ice cubes, and as they melt the plant is watered.

houseplant watering tip

It was a great afternoon….such a treat.


Have you gone on any great house tours lately?

Christmas Blessings~