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Welcome to Love for a Country House

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Garden and Nature Lover Gifts

New! Bunny Cutting Board

©Stephie McCarthy

See our new bunny cutting boards..Bunny Cutting Board by Stephie McCarthy

 

New!Bird Art Pillow, Song Sparrows and Hydrangea

New bird art pillow by Stephie McCarthy

One of our Favorite Flags, Frog and Dragonfly

Flog and Dragonfly by Stephie McCarthy

Photo by Whitney

Our Best Selling Ceramic Tiles

.Delft style tiles by Stephie McCarthy
Bluebird Tile by Stephie McCarthy.Rooster Tile by Stephie McCarthy

New! Magnolia Pillows and Throws

Magnolia Botanical wide pillow.Magnolia Botanical Pillows by Stephie McCarthy

Magnolia Woven Cotton Throw Blanket

Magnolia Botanical Cotton Throw

©StephieMcCarthy©StephieMcCarthytea index

©StephieMcCarthybuy ceramic tilebuy garden flags

buy pillows©StephieMcCarthy

©StephieMcCarthy

buy Stephie McCarthy cards

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Love for a Country House Designs

New decor items

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… garden flags …

See our flag shop on etsy

©StephieMcCarthy

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… and much more!

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Our Blog

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Making Cement Paint, Fixing Steps and Statues

Part one with our cement paint recipe and photos of the steps we repaired ...

— watch the video here —

watch the video on how to make cement paint

See the Step Repair Here

Fix my old steps

How to repair concrete with paint and cement

See the Statue Repair Here

how to restore an antique statue

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Restore Outdoor Wood with Artist Oil Paint

We're starting the new year with fresh paint — here there and everywhere. See how we renewed our bird feeder with artist oil paint here.

restore outdoor wood

— check out the video how to here —

see the video here

how we restored our bird feeder

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©StephieMcCarthy
©StephieMcCarthy
©StephieMcCarthy

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Some Holiday Projects from our Archives

Building a Christmas Castle Centerpiece with Toy Blocks

Castle by StephieMcCarthy

— watch the video here—

watch the video here

See more photos from our project here.

Caste Centerpiece for Christmas Santa's Castle

Santa's Castle from Toy Blocks

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©StephieMcCarthy

Hydrangea Topiary from Dollar Store Christmas Trees

watch the video

Watch the full video

We made easy topiaries using Christmas trees that cost just one dollar each.

©StephieMcCarthy

Ready for display year round, for every holiday.

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Chrismas Decorating with Dollar Store Nail Pokish

Christmas Decorations with Foil and Nail Polish

Our keepsake Santa cost a little over a dollar!

Dollar Store Christmas Decoration

We made the lacquer finish with foil and nail polish over a Dollar Store figurine.

...

Painting with Nail Polish

... and we used more polish on more oraments for dazzling effect. This was Santa-in-progress above.

painting ornaments for Christmas

The nail polish worked on ornaments of all kinds, and on paper!

Read more here!

See the video here

Watch our Christmas ornament painting video

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Easy Stained Glass Lanterns

Easy Stained Glass Lanterns

Update Thrift Shop Lanterns with Stained Glass Paint and Gilding

See our Video Here:

Watch our Easy Stained Glass Lantern Video

Our thrift shop lanterns were just $3.00 each ...

Before and After Stained Glass Paint

... and look at them now! We upstyled these with high-end glass paint and copper-leaf gilding.

How to Glass Paint on a Lantern

Read more here --

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Ideas for Next Spring ...

Love for a County House by Stephie McCarthy

Make Faux Wicker with Foam Noodles

Watch our video here

 

Make faux wicker for your garden, easily!

It looks just like wicker, but it's much more affordable and durable!

To read how we made these beauties, click here.

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Lessons Learned from the Unicorn Deck

Text and video coming soon!

unicorn deck

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How to hand color photographs

Make Art for Gifts with Eyeshadow!

©StephieMcCarthy

How to hand color photos with eyeshadow

Watch our video here —

How to hand color photographs

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©StephieMcCarthy

Coloring Keepsakes with Soft Pastels on Plaster, Stoneware, and Bisque

— see the video here —

 

watch how to color keepsakes with soft pastels

We've been using soft pastels on thrift shop bisque and stoneware and love the results. Coming soon.

How to paint ceramics with soft pastels

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©StephieMcCarthy

Coloring Keepsakes with Soft Pastels, Easter Bunnies

— watch the video here

watch how to color keepsakes with soft pastels

We found a new way to color collectibles with soft pastels that we found was a lot easier than paint.

 

Make vintage Easter bunnies

We love the results on our DIY plaster figures and even tried eyeshadow and colored pencils on thrift shop goods.

Take a look in detail how we colored these Beatrix Potter themed bunnies here.

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© StephieMcCarthy

Chalkware Easter Bunnies from Candy Molds

Making Peter Rabbit and Other Beatrix Potter Type Figurines from Plaster

by © Stephie McCarthy

See the video how-to

  ˆDIY chalkware Easter bunnies video

 

DIY Chalkware Easter Bunnies EASY!

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©StephieMcCarthy

Make a Foil Bunny

©StephieMcCarthy

watch the full video

©StephieMcCarthy

We made these with recycled foil and glass paint!

We searched high and low for instructions to make foil bunnies. Finding NONE, we filled the void with our own step-by-step project.

Watch the video for full paint-by-number instructions and details on how to make finishing touches.

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©StephieMcCarthy

Customize a Cold Frame for the Garden

Buy a Cold Frame Kit

A great gift for gardeners, a cold frame kit is easy to put together and easy to customize to make it even better. We started with the kit shown above.

©StephieMcCarthy

Now it's full of beautiful cold-hardy plants … and cat proof!

©StephieMcCarthy

See how we did this project here.

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Summer Garden Ideas ...

Butterfly ©StephieMcCarthy

Make an Easy No-Dig Garden with Paper Bags

— watch the video here—

Watch the video here on the Paper Bag Garden

We think fellow gardeners will love this new way to garden, especially if you have problem soil. Read all about it here …

Easy lasagna gardening with paper bag containers

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Topiary ©StephieMcCarthy

Upcycle: Make Lamp Shades into Flower Pots

(with RapidSet CementAll ®)

We coated elegant lampshades with a cement slurry …

How to make your own flower pots

How to Upcycle Lampshades

… to make strong and durable, faux terracotta pots

Make Your Own Cement Flower Pots

See how to make these here!

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Tomato by Stephie McCarthy

Kill, Destroy, Combat, Prevent, and Fix Verticillium Wilt on Tomatoes

#KillVerticilliumWilt #DestroyVerticilliumWilt #CombatVerticilliumWilt #PreventVerticilliumWilt #FixVerticilliumWilt

— watch the video here —

watch how to destroy verticillium wilth

In the 1980s, experiments were done on potato patches adding lots of nitrogen and phosphorous. Verticillium wilt fungus was reduced by 95%!

Buckwheat is a great companion plant for tomatoes! It adds a lot of phosphorous and nitrogen, naturally and cured our tomatoes of Verticillium wilt. Read more here ...

Red Buckwheat Takane Ruby

Red and White Buckwheat

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#MosquitoBiteTreatment

Catch and Kill Mosquitoes & Cure an Itching Bite

#HowToKillMosquitoes #HowToStopItchingMosquitoBite

-- watch the video here --
#CureAnItchingMosquitoBite

Here's how to make a DIY Mosquito Trap that will match a cottage garden.

AND ... a new way to stop itching bites too!

#StopItchingBites

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Our Old House Projects ...

Sun art Stephie McCarthy'

Learning to Drive a Boom Lift

Have you ever wondered ... Is boom lift safe? Is a boom lift expensive?

— watch the video here —

Lady on a Boom Lift

It's a great deal safer than a ladder when working overhead, but much more expensive. I'd say the added safety is worth the cost.

Renting a Boom Lift

Check out our post on the subject ... here

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Spray Paint Tricks for a Vintage Look

spray paint fairy

See the video here

Watch our Spray Paint Tricks

We updated our wall clock from Aldi's to look like vintage enamel.

How to spray paint plastic for a vintage look

Now it looks like we found it at an auction. Spray paint made the job easy.

Our video shows easy spray paint tricks for working with two colors ...

Learn easy spray painting tips

... and how to antique your projects using textured and transparent spray paints we think you will love. We also found a great masking tape with a little help from brother, Marty who paints cars.

Read more here.

third

©StephieMcCarthy

Make a Pendant Light from a Table Lamp

You may never look at a table lamp the same way again.

first

Imagine a table lamp upside down as a pendant light.

second

It's lovely and clever, and it cost less than $20! Click here to read more.

fourth

VIDEO LINK

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©StephieMcCarthy

Build a Potting Bench (for Around $100) from Recyled Furniture

©StephieMcCarthy

We made this cottage style potting bench from a defunct futon … the bottom of which we used to make our garden bridge.

©StephieMcCarthy

It may look sweet, but it's designed for heavy duty gardening work too.

©StephieMcCarthy

Read the post here.

See the video here.

Watch the video

©StephieMcCarthy

Colorful Concrete with Fabric Dye and Sealer

See the video …

See our video here

It's been four months since a wild experiment with liquid fabric dye and concrete sealer. We glazed this patio with color!

©StephieMcCarthy

We kind of love it!

©StephieMcCarthy

Check how we did this here!

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©StephieMcCarthy

H O W - T O

Make Stain from Paint and a Water-based Wood Sealer

Here's something NEW in decorative painting — we blended craft paints into acrylic wood finish to make an easy-to-use stain.

the video is here

Stephie McCarthy on YouTube

Our antique toolbox got a bright new start thanks to Behr Waterproofing Wood Finish. It's water-based and wonderful!

©StephieMcCarthy

We had great success with this product mixed with paint on our lavender footbridge too and now we've used it on concrete, metal, and paper.

Buy Behr Wood Finish at our HomeDepot affiliate link

Buy Behr Waterproofing Wood Sealer

©StephieMcCarthy

The benefit of using this waterproofing finish (meant for outdoor use) is that the surface can withstand water, sun, and has built in UV protection.

Check out how we created the stain here.

 

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Preserving Cattails for Autumn Decor

Join us on a walk in the country hunting the perfect cattail.

VIDEO LINK

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© Stephie McCarthy

No-Dig, No-Mess,

LampPosts for a Bridge Garden

Solar Light Bridge

VIDEO LINK

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Easy DIY Leaded Glass Mirror with Metal Tape

We've added a mirror over the window on the stone porch. We used the same Pebeo Vitrail lead tape used on the window below, and it was easy!

The final look was beyond everything we hoped. Super pretty!

Check out our photos and a step-by-step of how we made this mirror project, here.

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We truly love this product and are giving away a free roll, a $30 value on our YouTube Channel. Jump to the post about that here.

#WinPebeoLeadTape

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Make an Indoor-Outdoor Window Hutch

As we worked on this window, adding lead strips, shelves, and styling inside and out, we realized how well it would work as an outside hutch … and how hutches could be made back-to-back … inside AND out! Read the post here

Now we are searching for the perfect base that will allow us to see the stone wall, if possible. Something like this:

For lots of tips on making an indoor/outdoor window hutch, see our video here:

VIDEO LINK

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Easy Leaded Glass with Metal Tape!

VIDEO LINK

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Birdbath and Garden Ornaments with Real Lace

As sweet as icing sugar, this birdbath is tough enough to stay out in the garden!

We used real crochet cotton lace and our own tinted wax formula to make it.

We hope you'll click the thumb icon on our YouTube channel. You don't want to miss the gnome's upcoming makeover!

VIDEO LINK

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Shortcut to a Fairy Tale Bridge

We've started a bridge garden and here's how it look so far …

Eight feet long and raised on a sturdy bed of cement pavers, it's hard to believe the bridge project began as a cast-off futon!

VIDEO LINK

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Easy Waterproof Rustic Basket DIY

Make this basket for your garden or porch and leave it outside in any weather …

… we made ours while watching Outlander …

Looking like a basket from Lallybroch …

… but with lots of secrets that will keep it looking good in all sorts of weather, AND help keep mice away too!

Check out the video here …

VIDEO LINK

Shop the Home Depot

Special Savings Today Only! Click for the deal of the day!

Shop the Home Depot

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Make Gingerbread Trim from Kid's Blocks!

This project was child's play with toy blocks, brackets, and a finial that looks like a juice extractor. See how we made this entry into a beautiful part of our stone porch, here.

How to Make Victorian Style Gingerbread Trim

VIDEO LINK

DIY Victorian Gingerbread

Victorian Gingerbread Project

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Our Amazing Bark Textured Flower Boxes made with Caulk

VIDEO LINK

Faux Bois easy DIY

Look how we upcycled our bland flower boxes with caulk and a plastic fork. This craft, also called Faux Bois in France, looks like realistic bark but is durable and easy to do.

How to make bark texture

We made a total of three of these wonderful rustic boxes. We used chalk paint and wood ash to finish the surface. Here's how …

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

VIDEO LINK

The photo essay step-by-step is here.

DIY Victorian house trim

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Visit Our Archives for More Project Ideas

©StephieMcCarthy

©StephieMcCarthy

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Greeting Card Universe

— fly to my card shop —

see what's new in our card shop

©StephieMcCarthy

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©StephieMcCarthy

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THANK YOU FOR VISITING

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