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About Me

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My name is Gerrie Wydeven doing-business-as Wydeven Designs. I have been conducting this small GREEN business since 2004. Wydeven Designs, based in the Atlanta, Georgia area, sells CHAIRS, LOVESEATS, CHAISES, SETTEES and other fine, well-constructed refurbished upholstered pieces. I love to travel, cook, take photographs and generally follow style and decor topics as well!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

It's Christmas at Scott's Antique Market

The world's largest yard sale - Scott's Antique Market (link to website - was held this weekend in two large buildings (and plenty of outside space) near the Atlanta airport. It is held during the second weekend of the month and I try to go each month and particularly if my cohort and friend, Bette, is available to join me.  We traveled to the site on Friday and "did" just the south building - our favorite. The crowds were down from other months and we saw fewer of our favorite sellers which is a trend we've observed before. It was still a wonderful visit. I did try to capture some of the great holiday decorations and ideas.

Love these little guys - they were $25 each.
Nice wooden Santa! 
This vendor was selling battery-lit (some with timers) candles that looked quite real. The prices were $8-12 each. We almost bought one or more. I would have liked these better if they looked less rustic. 
Holiday combo - the scarf was made of felt with fabric balls.
Oversized cones work in so many places - they are great fillers as well for more delicate ornaments. 
I can do this!  I love the look of fresh greenery in a simple mercury vase.
These santas were "wearing" antique fabrics/linens - really nicely done! 
A sweet looking Santa!
We saw a number of these which would work well in a cabin or minimalist setting.
This vendor had a number of playful gourds - love this one!
I'd like this year round!
Good sized ceramic snowman! 
I bought a herd of these last year and distributed them to family members - I have three in my foyer!
Beachy-looking trees!
This and the next wreath were displayed by our favorite "fake but you wouldn't believe it" seller - $89. 

I loved this deer!
On our way out - would love to see this little guy on front porch bench!
We had a nice visit and look forward to next month - as always!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

A Visit to Georgia's Governor's Mansion

Walking toward the Governor's Mansion on West Paces Road in Buckhead.
Yesterday was a cool but beautiful day in the Atlanta area of Georgia. We have had so much rain and dreary weather, it was glorious just to get out of the house. A group of neighborhood friends and I traveled to the Governor's Mansion in the tony Buckhead area of the city and took in a delightful tour of the public spaces and holiday decorations.
The Governor's Mansion is the official home of Georgia's 82nd Governor, Nathan Deal, and his wife, Sandra. The Mansion, a three floor, 30-room, Greek Revival style home built in 1967, stands on approximately 18 acres in northeast Atlanta. It was designed by Georgia architect Thomas Bradbury and officially opened on January 1, 1968. link to website
We joined a group of people at the front door waiting to get in and enjoyed looking over the grounds.
The pace of the tour was very leisurely which worked out fine on such a great day!
We were VERY impressed meeting the Governor's wife and she welcomed everyone entering the home - what a nice touch!
One of two trees in the formal dining room.
Mantle in the formal dining room - we loved the huge cones in the fireplace well.
The trees were decorated with many natural items such as these cones and the dried hydrangeas. All the trees were natural resulting in a wonderful woodland smell throughout the house.  
Gingerbread house in the rear of the foyer. 
Colorful formal living room.  I, of course, loved the chairs! 
Extra tall and broad breakfront - one of the nicest pieces in the house. 
More great chairs!
A collection of antique baby carriages were shown throughout the house. All the trees also had these large artificially-lit candles which looked very real. 
Tree in the lower reception area.
As we were leaving, we saw the area for demonstrations of woodworking and other traditional crafts.
This was a very pleasant visit I will want to repeat and only my second trip to tour this lovely home in over 25 years in the Atlanta area. We as a group were very impressed!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Newest Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Projects

It has been over two years since I started using the great Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (ASCP) - link to company website. I have refinished dozens and dozens of pieces by now - some for my own use and most as part of my Wydeven Design refurbishing projects. Other than the Emperor's Silk that I purchased several months ago and used extensively immediately thereafter - see link, I have been using the colors I pretty well started with including:
 Old White (now on fourth can), 
Old Ochre
Chateau Grey
Paris Grey
Here are my most recent projects. I continue to be very satisfied with the ease of application and results. I do my work in our garage (poor husband does NOT appreciate cars being forced to stay outdoors during these spurts of activities). It has been cold and damp lately here in Atlanta and I have found that these are not ideal conditions for optimum results. Therefore, I have slowed down somewhat but hope to get back into full gear in the early spring (late January?).
This sweet chair is actually a pretty good size and very versatile piece with beautifully carved legs. The finish is a a simple ASCP Cream with a clear wax finish. It was chosen to complement the fabric which is a cream and off-white fern pattern - the cream highlights the darker of the colors.
This is my most recent project. The chair and ottoman were painted and distressed originally (Calico Corners) but the finish had not been well applied and was flaking off. I covered the darkish white with the ASCP cream which has a hint of pale yellow/vanilla. In lightly distressing the pieces using a medium sand-block, I uncovered some spots to the wood base but others only to the original white. The result was an interesting textured look mixing the white, cream and wood views.   
This elegant channel-back had woodwork that looked very tired but is clearly interesting in scale and design. After applying my go-to ASCP Old White, I had intended to do a clear wax followed by a dark wax to highlight the crevices. I changed my mind and decided to retain this more "clean" look and love how it turned out with this pale gold/taupe linen. 
This chair's original finish was a nice deep color but not in great overall shape so I decided to use it to experiment with gilding. ASCP does sell a gilding wax but I choose to stop by Hobby Lobby and get a cheapie (less than $6) product which worked very well. The ASCP finish is Graphite with a dark wax seal to make it as black as possible. I did find that it takes some practice to get the hang of using the gilding. Only a tiny amount is necessary and once applied, it is hard to reduce or move too much. I like the result and plan to use it again.  
I had a very hard time trying to decide which color to use on this chair and had initially selected another fabric. This is ASCP Paris Grey with clear and then dark wax. I also distressed the finish. I choose a neutral linen fabric and like the feel of this piece. 
These are my latest and I like how each turned out. I am working on a small set of Henredon chairs (mid-century) and have three more chairs in my van to check out. If the woodwork on any of these is not up to my standards, they will be amongst my next projects.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Giving Tuesday - Goodwill Industries

I had not heard of "Giving Tuesday" until I saw it promoted by our local Goodwill Industries of North Georgia - a very worthwhile charity/cause. Since this is in fact Tuesday and this is the day of the week that the stores offer a serious 25% discount on all purchases to seniors aged 55 and older, I thought a visit to several stores would be appropriate.

I just returned and am posting to report on my experience and promote this day which seems like a very nice follow-up to the frantic consumerism of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. I thought I would research this day's designation but found no history or origin information. I did find that all charities/causes seem to be promoting the day to support their particular interests so it is clearly not just a "Goodwill" thing.

My first stop this morning was at the Buckhead (Roswell Road) store which is probably my favorite. As readers of my blog know, my purchases at Goodwill stores generally fall into the following categories:

Heirloom quality (good bones) upholstered furniture ready to be refurbished and sold
Down/feather pillow inserts in good condition 
Paperback books 
Brand name purses 

The premium bag display (behind counter - you have to ask to see them) was not well stocked - I am guessing that there have been a lot of sales there lately. The store was a little quiet this early in the day but you can see how well maintained and organized it is.

A sign which always makes me smile is their goal sign - to put people to work and give them workplace skills - simple but powerful!

The Sandy Springs store (Mt. Vernon Road near Roswell) was a little busier and had several interesting pieces of furniture. Probably the nicest was the camelback sofa but too big for me - I don't do anything over the size of a moderate chaise or loveseat. I did see several people buying holiday trees.

The Dunwoody store (Abernathy Rd) had some great accessories and gift type items. The jewelry box on the bottom was in great condition and I loved the tall glass pieces - I would definitely have bought the latter if it was a pair. A friend is looking for a set of family room tables (and loves chickens) so I do plan to share those ideas with her.

I was getting ready to leave (sort of congratulating myself on not buying anything), when I spotted one of the stock people walking around with this tall (22-24") metal holiday centerpiece which looked new.  It was marked $14.77 (25% off!) and I loved it but have NO SPACE in my already decorated house for this piece. The employee put the piece down and I immediately photographed it and sent it to my daughter who is off today. I asked if she was interested.

I stood my ground near the piece and several potentially interested buyers walked over to admire it as well. That did it! I picked it up and carried it to the cash register rehearsing what I would say to my husband and reviewing what I would need to get rid of to make a space for it. I did discover that there are three places for tea candles to illuminate the windows. WOW!

As I carefully walked out with my treasure, my daughter responded to my text and said "sure" she wanted it. So I just drove over and dropped it off. She lit the candles and we stood around admiring it. She also started walking around looking for a good place and has even less space than I do to work with. BUT, a good buy for a good cause!

If anyone knows the origin/history of this Giving Tuesday tradition, please let me know!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

I Love Craigslist!

I have previously reported on my experiences with Craigslist and how I approach buying (and selling) on this free site. As I review my current inventory, I am surprised by the high percentage of items (35% or more) that came from a Craigslist ad.  As a matter of fact, over the past week, I have added the following items - some photographed below in their "before" state:

  • Pair of North Hickory (of Hickory, NC) French style leather wingback chairs with extensive woodwork - I plan to have reupholstered in a cream matelasse fabric just bought through eBay
  • Pair of compact Drexel Armchairs with wood that will be refurbished using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (ASCP) on woodwork and a cream linen-like fabric (probably) on the frame - this great set and the next item were bought from a woman who looks almost exactly like famed English actor, Judi Dench - she hears it ALL the time
  • Calico Corners leather wingback chair and ottoman (from same seller as above) she hadn't even listed the set but I offered to buy it while picking up the other chairs and she agreed
  • Calico Corners French Country chair and ottoman - wood with rust bottoms and cushions on top and back - the woodwork is already partially redone in ASCP cream and the cushions are at the shop to be recovered in a beautiful blue and white damask chintz-like fabric
  • Sam Moore chair and ottoman in a vaguely French Country style but a little more rugged in details - to be redone in a "masculine" large-scale navy and cream plaid with some wool content
  • Pair of Lee Industries wing back chairs - to be redone in a retro-looking cream twill fabric
SO, I have again overbought!  Sales this time of year are a bit slow and I had told myself to slow down in making additional acquisitions. Who can stop themselves, however, when these types of options present themselves!  Not me!

Here are some pieces in my current inventory that were originally Craigslist purchases. As I've said cautioned numerous times - be careful when selecting used furniture to refurbish to make sure the high cost (and time commitment) is worth while. Clearly, however, there are wonderful pieces out there to be discovered!

Monday, November 18, 2013

The Power of Red

Love these chairs - the best red color - see my pinterest board referenced below.
I don't know if the fact that I have started wrapping holiday gifts and thinking about holiday decorations has me fixated on the color "red" or whether it was my recent burst of activity with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint's (ASCP) Emperor Silk link to recent posting. It may also be the reds (and oranges and yellows) that I am seeing everywhere in our Atlanta area fall. Nevertheless, I am seeing "red" all over and loving it!

I have been saving images of red used as a primary or just a "pop" color on my pinterest board - link to board. Red is bold and passionate and I love it! I have reds in my living and dining rooms (a LOT) and as a pop of color in several other rooms. Over the holidays, of course, it will be a major focus of attention!

Here are some of my favorite images - all from my pinterest board.

This is an amazing sofa - see pinterest board referenced above.
I wish this chair were mine - see pinterest board above. 
This sofa just pops - see pinterest board above. 
Definitely a statement chair and statement color - see pinterest board above.
I reviewed my current Wydeven Design listings (eBay, Etsy, Chairish) and found I only had two pieces that were squarely in the red family - beside the wood finishes of the pieces just completed in ASCP Emperor's Silk.

Here is a set of oval French style chairs not included in recent posting - love how these turned out.

Well, clearly, I need to go out and find more red fabrics and add to this collection - particularly in advance of the holiday season!  I enjoy the power of red!