Wednesday, March 14, 2007

How do I Save this Desk?

I got an e-mail from a reader asking how to rescue this inexpensive desk found on Craig's List. Over all, it looks very shabby and not at all chic. The finish is worn and it appears to have unattractive cylindrical feet which are centered under each end. Not a pretty picture, but not hopeless.

The lines of the desk are simple and modern and I think with a few small changes, and a weekend's worth of elbow-grease, it could be quite attractive.

First, I would ditch the legs. A great solution would be a set of inexpensive pine bun feet. I would use 8 total - 2 on each side, both front and back. This will give the piece a more balanced look. Right now, it is very top heavy on those narrow, centered legs. A great resource for inexpensive bun feet is Vandykes.

Secondly, I would paint the desk with a oil-based or milk paint. It looks like it will need a thorough sanding and a coat of a primer like Kilz to ensure that the old finish doesn't bleed through the paint. A simple dove gray would be very fetching, but the color would depend totally on the room. I know painting with oil is a smelly, hazardous pain, but latex really can't stand up to the wear-and-tear of daily use (goodness knows I've tried), especially if you live in a humid area like Dallas. I haven't tried milk paint yet, but I hear that it provides a less porous finish than latex.

Thirdly, I would get some fun drawer pulls. For a simple piece like this, the contrast of a little frill or whimsy wouldn't hurt. Something like this acanthus bin pull from Charleston Hardware Co. would be great, though, in this case, it would require filling existing drawer-pull holes and drilling new ones.

Happy re-doing!

Free Coffee Tomorrow!

Get a free 12 oz. cup of coffee at Starbucks tomorrow (Thursday) from 10 AM - noon.

This has little to anything to do with home and garden, but free coffee is a very good thing.

Via the Bargainist.

New Features on Modern-Roost

Just wanted to call out a few new features I’ve added to Modern-Roost. First, I am now pulling the RSS feed from Shak in Style into a module on this site. Since I will be writing about decorating there daily I wanted to make it easy to get to new posts. Post titles will appear in the upper right corner of M-R and link directly to the articles on Shak in Style. Hooray for new Blogger!

I have also added the RSS feed for my Bloglines Clip-Blog just under the Archive section on the right. I see so many things in the blogosphere that inspire me each day that I couldn’t possibly do them all justice. The Clip-Blog allows me to post direct links to the items that have inspired me, but I don’t have time to address directly.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Cast Your Own Concrete Sink

My brother is about to renovate the kitchen in his Austin home. The style of the homes there is a casual mix of modern and rustic. As a result, he is leaning towards materials like slate and concrete.

He just sent me a link to the Buddy Rhodes Web site, which features concrete mix and concrete molds for creating your own decorative counter tops and floors.

The company sells 4 different sink molds (this is the work of the oval mold) from $640 - $800. I love the results, but this is work I will have leave to the more adventurous among you.

In the Pink

The Women's Museum in Dallas is hosting an exhibit about the life and work of Dorothy Draper through March 31st. Not only did I miss this fact, I also had no idea that she designed the penthouse of our Stoneleigh Hotel.

In the Pink: The Legendary Life of Dorothy Draper
tickets $5
The Women's Museum: An Institute for the Future
3800 Parry Ave. in Fair Park

Monday, March 12, 2007

Impromptu White-Bean Humus

Over the weekend, we hosted an impromptu BBQ - thanks in no small part to the beautiful weather that seems to have arrived to North Texas several weeks early. I need to put together an appetizer quickly with what we had on hand. I ended up making a white-bean humus inspired by a recipe I saw somewhere recently (forgive me, I have forgotten where).

I was pretty nervous about the results, but the dip was a huge success. Here is the recipe:

1 can Canelli beans, drained
1/4 cup low-fat yogurt
1 - 2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
1/2 tsp dried crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp paprika
salt and pepper to taste

Food process until smooth and chill for one hour. Serve with crackers, bread, or pita.

Big News: I'm Joining the Shak!

Last week I had a wonderful time guest-blogging for Shak in Style, the decor blog over at Shakadoo. Happily, they liked working with me too and Kristen has asked me to join Shak in Style as a full-fledged blogger. :) I will be posting my decor-related thoughts and ramblings there from now on.

I am so excited to be a part of the Shakadoo team!

But what about Modern Roost? I will still be posting here, though my focus will shift a little. I will be talking more about home-making, gardening and local sales and events for Dallas and Texas.

I very much appreciate everyone who takes the time to stop by Modern-Roost. You guys are the reason I keep writing. So please keep reading here and join me over at Shak in Style too.

Many Thanks,