Monday, July 20, 2009

new blog

I'm not shutting down this blog but I am doing most of my blogging at my mid-century modern life now. Please feel free to pop on over and check it out!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

A Mid-Century Modern Marvel

…in Cincinnati! Even though it's not in East Nashville, I couldn't resist sharing some photos of this beautiful house in Cincinnati. It belongs to our friends Renata and Sean who just recently moved from Nashville. Pardon the messiness of some of the photos. We were busy assembling furniture!

Unassuming from the front, on a sloped lot with beautiful, tall old trees.

original bathroom with cool slanted wood vanity

pale pink tile, boomerang formica counter tops, a laundry chute built into the vanity - so MC!

original wood doors throughout the house in great condition!
(I can't wait to see this room once it's decorated for Baby Benjamin!)

Great built-in cabinets everywhere!
Upstairs hallway open to the living room. (The house is 4 levels!)
Master bath is also original with green tile and a slanted wood vanity

View from the front door: slate tile floors, living room with 2-story brick fireplace and built-in shelves. The stairs go down to the kitchen, dining room and entertainment room or up to 3 bedrooms and a bathroom. The master bedroom and bathroom is to the left.
The dining room and entertainment room downstairs. More great built-ins!

Kitchen countertops with very unique Italian granite

So many cabinets to fill! Beautiful kitchen! (Not original obviously!)
Custom glass pendants to match the counters
More storage!! That bottom cabinet is going to become a secret hideout for Ben, I just know it!
Private patio and screened in porch. So relaxing!

Design Sponge

My favorite design blog of all time, Design*Sponge, featured our bench before and after project today! Check it out!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Before & After: Patio Seating

Before: (3 office chairs found in a dumpster):


(Also, notice the cute birdhouse Jason built and painted. It's inhabited by a cute little wren.)

Monday, March 9, 2009

New Front Door Color

Ignoring the results of the poll I posted on my blog Make a Good First Impression, Jason and I decided to paint the front door mustard yellow. We're still getting used to it but pretty sure we're happy with it. It gives the pop of color we were hoping for.

Side note: You may have noticed we pulled out the overgrown bushes that had been flanking the house. We haven't decided for sure what to plant as replacements but we're leaning toward a forsythia bush on the left side and a couple of tall, skinny evergreens on the right. Between the 2 windows on the right side we're still planning a screen block architectural feature.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Cobalt Creamer & Sugar Bowl Set

When I saw this at an estate sale, it immediately caught my eye. I was looking for items to resell which is a new venture for me. I know that I have to get a great price on something legitimately valuable. Although this set is beautiful and unique, it doesn't have a designer/maker listed on the bottom which concerned me. It also was priced a little high. I thought about it a while but decided to pass.

Two days later we went back to the estate sale (It was a 3 day sale) to see what was left. I was surprised to find that it was still there. Not only was everything reduced to 50%, one of the sale workers who we had spent some time talking to at our earlier visit kept giving us even better deals. We ended up getting this set for only $3. After Jason carefully washed our purchases and I photographed each piece, I decided that even if I sold this set for $20 I'd still be sad to part with it. Jason encouraged me to just keep it. After all, it was only $3 and I LOVE it!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Our biggest, heaviest MCM find yet!

Two weeks ago Jason and I found this beast at an estate sale. We fell in love with the design and color. It's big. It's long. It's a sleeper sofa. A mid-century sleeper sofa. Therefore, it is HEAVY! We're guessing it's at least 300 lbs. No joke. And in case you've never thought of it before—I hadn't—the people who work at estate sales won't help you load or move your purchases. Can you imagine Jason and I (who weigh less than 300 lbs. combined) dragging this sofa across a carpeted living room, shoving it through the front door and putting all the energy we had left into lifting it, carrying and heaving it onto a friend's borrowed truck? I still can't believe I was capable of that! The next 2 days my arms, legs and back were all sore. I'm so thankful that neither of us got hurt! The sofa is vinyl and needed a little repair but Jason did an awesome job! I helped to mix the colors from the vinyl repair kit—one of my specialties. By the way, this beautiful specimen cost only $25!

We went back to this same estate sale when it was almost over (reduced prices) and snatched up all the unique collectibles that were left. Most of those are now for sale on my brand new shop light hand design & vintage, with two exceptions that we couldn't bear to part with. I'll be blogging about each soon.

Monday, March 2, 2009

light hand design & vintage shop!

I set up a shop on to sell vintage mid-century modern collectibles AND some of my graphic design, craft and art creations! Check it out: light hand design & vintage.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Fondue Pot and Skewer Set

This fondue pot and fork set is another one of my favorite mid-century collectibles. Jason and I love fondue. We had 3 fondue pots already (for the parties when we had meat, cheese and chocolate fondues!) but when I saw this at an East Nashville estate sale last year, I fell in love. I love the color. Why don't they made colored enamel fondue pots these days? What's with all the white ceramic ones? (We have 2 of the white ceramic variety and 1 retro stainless Michael Grave's design.) The wooden handle on the lid is cracked and the base was nowhere to be found at the estate sale but I wasn't leaving without this fondue pot. I had seen a similar one last spring at Wonders on Woodland with skewers and it was about $30. This one was $2 and we got them to throw in 1 of their 3 skewer sets for free. We selected the set with the original box for extra fun.

Creative Freedom with Paints

Jason and I painted this masterpiece on the eve of Valentine's Day. We've been dreaming up solutions for our blank living room wall for the past 2 years. A few weeks ago, on the way home from a road trip to Philadelphia, inspiration struck and we agreed on a rough design which I sketched out on the back of a receipt. We salvaged a piece of plywood from another home project and Friday night we got out the paints. We had just finished doing our taxes and this was the perfect, freeing mental escape! We had so much fun being creative together.

Sorry I don't have a picture with natural light. I'll try to get a better one someday.

Orla Kiely at Target

I really like Target. I love that they offer designer products at affordable prices like Michael Graves, Dwell Studio, Mossimo and Isaac Mizrahi. I was just alerted by Jenn Ski's blog about a new line of home products Target is offering by Orla Kiely.

I love all these retro melamine designs! But this, this one I really want to own:

Help me Rhonda! If someone would really like to make my day, please send me a $100 Target gift card so I can get this dish and my rain boots. Thank you.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Before & After Bathroom... kind of

Our hall bathroom (originally the only bathroom) was already redone when we bought our house. The floor tiles and wall tiles (also in the shower) were all sprayed white. The walls were white. The cabinets and vanity were white. The original sink and countertop were replaced with a concrete countertop and a frosted glass bowl sink.* The toilet was replaced with a new white one.

We decided to lay slate tile on the floor shortly after moving in. Upon lifting up the toilet we found an unpainted section of the original pink and blue floor tiles. Based on that and the uniquely angled vanity, we have reason to believe that our bathroom originally looked like this:

Taken from the MLS photo of another ranch on our street.
I flipped the photo. This house is almost a mirror image of ours.

It's it much nicer now? I know pink and blue are authentic mid-century colors but... is anyone really willing to live with them today?

Photo credit: Beth Rose Photography

*My thoughts on the glass bowl sink: It is beautiful but impractical. Two years ago I would have chosen it myself without a second thought. After living with it for 2 years I would never choose it again. It gets dirty easily—drip marks show on the outside and toothpaste always ends up splattered in the inside and shows from the outside. More serious, though, it chips easily. We got a mystery chip on the front edge after about a year of living in the house. An accident with a metal can of cleaner made another chip on one of the corners. Considering a glass bowl sink? Please be advised.


East Nashville Atomic is now on Flickr! Check it out here.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Decorative Concrete Block

If you know of another name, please let me know! Our beautiful house was not blessed to have a carport or other architectural element made with decorative concrete block like many houses in our neighborhood. Jason and I are determined to change that. We've been planning out 2 architectural features for the front of our house. One as a backdrop behind our address sign and the other for balance and interest on the right side of the house. Here's the plan as of Sunday:

It might change! Also, we're thinking of painting a couple of them in the accent color that we paint the front door—yet to be disclosed. (We do have a swatch painted on the door though!)

On Saturday (the same day we scored our awesome new MCM footstool) we decided to check Hailey Salvage for retro concrete block. We found these! They have a bunch of it so we're planning to go back and get it soon.

Side note: on Saturday we also had those two over-grown, not special bushes pulled out from the left and right front corners of our house. I haven't taken a new picture yet. (The picture above is from almost a year ago.)

Rest Your Feet

Here's our mid-century find of the week! It's cream colored vinyl footstool with wooden legs. The legs match the style of our American by Martinsville end tables and coffee table. The stool doesn't have a designer or maker but I love the style and it fits with our IKEA Poang chair quite well. (Some day this chair will be replaced with a MCM this or this or
or this perhaps.) Jason did an awesome job repairing the small hole in the top. It only cost us $15. Well worth it, I think.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Make a Good First Impression

Jason and I are considering painting our front door with a *pop* of color. If you're interested in where we got our inspiration, check out this flickr photo, this flickr photo, this flickr photo and this flickr photo.

Orange (less brown than this)

Yellow (more mustard than this)

Lime Green

Red (a little brighter but flat)

Please take a moment to give your opinion!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

This ranch needs some dressing!

This mid-century ranch in East Nashville is in the process of being renovated.

The owners are discussing a color palette to paint the outside. The shutters will be removed. The roof will be replaced at some point also. Please give your feedback. Which (roughly-photoshopped) color combination do you like best?

Combination #1

Combination #2

Combination #3

Combination #4

Combination #5

If any of you designers or photoshop gurus feel inclined, send me your own color combination!