© Stephie McCarthy

There was a Lady who dreamed of a new life in the country.
That Lady was me.
More
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Images from our Days

my Blog

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Foxglove and Strawberry Season are Coming Soon

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How to make Victorian-Style Gingerbread Fretwork, from New Materials

Gingerbread Video

See the How-TO Video here.

How to make DIY Gingerbread Fretwork Victorian-Style

The photo essay step-by-step is here.

DIY Victorian house trim

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Easter Candy Topiary

Easter candy faux chocolate topiary tree centerpiece

It's make-believe candy made with plastic eggs and lots of paint. See the photos here!

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Our New Seed Box Project is Here!

We made our antique-reproduction seed case with a cast-off cigar box and a collage made from copies of vintage seed catalogs. You can make a similar box using our free graphics, an unfinished box, or a similar size cigar box.

Get your graphics here. Read how to make this project here.

How to make a Victorian-style Seed Box

Buy an unfinished box for this craft

Our free design page is here.

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DIY Wall Decor with Playing Cards

This is an easy project! You will be amazed at the variety of playing cards in the world. There's something for everyone, and every room.

How to make wall decor with playing cards

Glue cards to paper and frame them for quick wall decor.

Playing Card Crafts

Cards are collectible and very affordable. They also are beautiful!

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Rescuing Chippy Wicker with an Easy Wax Paint Formula

restore painted wicker easy DIY

What is wax paint? It's a 50/50 blend of chalk or acrylic paint with Waverly Liquid Clear Wax. It will lock down chipping paint and make a durable, colorful finish on the most forlorn wicker. We should know … look how this chair started:

restore chipping wicker

We used a toothbrush to get into all those crevices and it made the process fast!

painting flowers on wicker

Buy our Waverly Chalk Paint Colors here:

Americana Chalk Paint chart

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Framing Valentine Cards for Sweet Home Décor

Frame Valentine Cards for Decorative elements at home

This is an easy project but really adds the loving touch, especially around Valentine's Day.

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Bringing New Life to a Stove,
Mantel, and Hearth

You'll be so surprised when you see how this fireplace
wall looked when we first bought this old house.

paintng a stove, mantel, and hearth

Paint made all the difference. See how we painted this
fireplace wall, mantel, hearth, and even the stove!
Read more.

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Faux Marble on a Concrete Floor

This was a dismal corner of our basement,
once upon a time!

How to Paint faux marble by Stephie McCarthy

But with our faux marble tiles, we're dreaming of a wine
cellar, a plant nursery, a media room … the possibilities
are many! Click here for the story.

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Faux bricks: a makeover on
concrete walls

This corner was a dull gray stamped concrete, but now is a
warm workspace we will love to use this year.

Painting 3D brick panels with realistic faux bricks

Faux brick wall, and faux marble floor

… and the concrete floor! Both were a dull moon gray.

Warming concrete with brick colors

We're loving the industrial chic effect.
Here's how we did this
faux finish with a roller and some paint brushes
.

We'll be posting about the faux marble floor soon!

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How to Paint Faux Bricks
on Concrete, Step-by-step

How to Paint Faux Bricks on Concrete with a stencil

The old house porch is edged in rosy bricks.

Faux bricks on concrete

The same edge 'before' our fool-the-eye paint techniques. See
how we did this project step-by-step here
.

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Artwork on a
Bland Concrete Porch

As we worked on the old porch this summer,
whimsy took hold.

How to Paint Concrete

Here's the compass that now faces our courtyard.
Yes! It really does point true North.

Painting Faux Bricks on Concrete

The back door now has a herringbone entry.
Painting this was much easier than we thought it would be!
Click here for how transfer these brick and terra-cotta
patterns on to this concrete project
.

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Preserving Leaves in Liquid Wax

Last year we invented a new way to preserve Autumn leaves
using liquid wax from Waverly. We still love this craft!

How to easily preserve autumn leaves

So, we set out to find more leaves this Autumn.

autumn leaf preservation for crafts

It's a wonderful chore!

preserving autumn leaves in liquid wax

Polishing leaves with liquid wax is super easy and they last
indefinitely. We even made a video, check it out here …

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boxwood babies by Stephie McCarthy

Boxwood Babies

Boxwood propagation by Stephie McCarthy

Starting with just one dwarf boxwood from Lowes for $17,
we now have four one-year plants, and eight more on the way.
Here's how we are making a garden full of dwarf boxwoods
from clippings
.

Watch the video how-to on HomeTalk:

Boxwood Propagation Video by Stephie McCarthy

click to open the HomeTalk site

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Apple Goddess by Stephie McCarthy

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Painting Green Marble on
the Concrete Porch

We've been marbleizing this porch for weeks and finally
have a reveal post we think you will love, here!

DIY marbelizing concrete

How to paint concrete

TIps for painting concrete

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The 'Unicorn' Deck

We're teaching ourselves to loosen up a bit and test out all sorts
of paint techniques … and we're doing it on our
old deck!

Rainbow painting on old wood deck

We call it the 'unicorn' deck. We leave our paints outside now.

Paint a deck or fence or picnic table with rainbow colors

This deck has been a wonderful photo studio and anything but bland.
Read and get the video link here.

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Faux brick and mural in progress at the old house studio.

FauxBrickShedInProgress

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DIY Rust Patina with Wood Ash Paint

We made this amazing rust finish with
wood ashes and paint! This is an original formula we
developed after years of trying to create rust with paint alone.

Amazing Rust Effect with Ashes and Paint

Learn our easy steps here …

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Fun Appliqués on Our Screen Curtain Door

How to Decorate a Screen

This was an easy project that makes a fun doorway to our deck,
while keeping flying insects at outside.

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WhiteWashing the Old Stone Wall

White Wash on Stone DIY

The stones of this 200 year old summer kitchen are handsome quarried
granite, but the repair someone made to the mortar years ago
was a very slap-dash job! It looked even worse in person …
until we white washed it with chalk paint. Here's how

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Make a topiary from living branches …

Beautiful for parties or for everyday decor, and so easy to
make. You can root these later to make new shrubs. They
live in water, in the meantime.

Topiaries from living branches by Stephie McCarthy

Click here to learn how to make these.

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Weave a garden obelisk on a tomato cage!

Very easy, you can make this in one day … click here.

Weave a garden obelisk on a tomato cage

Tomato cage obelisk plant support

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How to Color Faux Flowers
with Artist's Chalk

Coloring faux flowers with chalk by Stephie McCarthy

These faux roses looked pretty real but a bit bland in
plain white , until we livened them up with artist's chalk.
It really works! … here's how we did it …

Coloring faux flowers with artist's chalk by Stephie McCarthy

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©StephieMcCarthy

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Mini Tart Pan Garden Markers

©StephieMcCarthy

Fanciful and practical, I designed these hand-made
metallic markers stand up to all sorts of rough weather.
And … they are not very hard to make. Read more here …

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Easy Metallic Labels

©StephieMcCarthy

I love metallic tape for making quick labels for the garden. Here's
how I made even better ones for indoors. Read more

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Visit Our Archives for More Project Ideas

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©StephieMcCarthy

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Click to open my greeting card page

Greeting Card Universe

…in a new window …

©StephieMcCarthy

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©StephieMcCarthy

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