Screened porch style: REVEAL!

Hello and happy Friday! It is absolutely beautiful today!  Praise God.   I spent my morning decorating a screened-in porch.  I'm sharing the before/after pictures here for you today. I hope you like what you see....and I can't wait to hear what the home-owners think!!! 

Here are the BEFORE pictures: 

before 2.jpg
before 3.jpg
before 4.jpg
before 5.jpg
The dresser used to be in the home-owner's basement, unused. I painted it black and put some new hardware on it. I also added a fun surprise inside (see below).  This dresser will be great for a porch "buffet" area!!  

The dresser used to be in the home-owner's basement, unused. I painted it black and put some new hardware on it. I also added a fun surprise inside (see below).  This dresser will be great for a porch "buffet" area!!  

drawer pulls.jpg
fabric drawers.jpg

The room had a GREAT start before I even touched it, with two large matching rugs that actually served as my inspiration for the color scheme. The home-owner also bought a few new chairs for the "new" and improved space.  (I gave her selections to choose from. They made a great choice).  They already had the table/chair set.  

This morning's project included:

  • Window treatments/rods
  • Wall accessories/pictures
  • Table accessories
  • Chair cushions
  • Floor lamp/table lamp
  • One accent chair (wicker)
  • Throw pillows/blankets

Here are the AFTER pictures: 

porch nook.jpg
nook 1.jpg
nook 2.jpg
nook close.jpg
wicker chair.jpg
east corner lamp.jpg
east corner and chair.jpg
chair blue blanket.jpg
table after.jpg
table scape.jpg
table curtains.jpg
place setting.jpg
white table corner.jpg
west corner.jpg
table dresser chair.jpg
table nook dresser.jpg
table nook dresser.jpg
wreath on brick.jpg
table and chairs.jpg
dresser 1.jpg

And that's a wrap!  This was such a fun project to design, and install for this family! I hope they enjoy their new porch as much as I enjoyed putting it all together for them!   

Doesn't this make you want to go and spruce up your porch now?  It does for me! 




See more Novo Decor make-overs and projects on the blog.....



Furniture make-over: 3 signs your furniture is worth it

How do you know if your furniture is worth a make-over?  What "signs" can you look for that predict a successful outcome, and result you love? 

Today I'm sharing three signs that will help you determine if your furniture is worth the time and investment of a make-over.    When furniture shows these signs, not only is the make-over outcome 100% successful, but the furniture owner is very happy! 

3 Predictors of a successful furniture make-over

1.  Recognize the potential

Most people have the ability to recognize that their piece of outdated furniture has potential. One thing that often gets in the way of seeing furniture "blossom" into something we love, is the temptation to get rid of it.   Next time you feel like tossing that old dresser to the curb, think twice.   Take a look at what happened to this dresser, when given a second look.....

duck egg blue geometric dresser BEFORE AFTER.png

2. Emotional connection & Value

It really is a great honor to be able to use pieces that were passed down in the family. Not only do these pieces hold sentimental value, they are typically well-made (see #4!). Displaying and using these pieces is a meaningful way to remember our loved ones who at one time, owned these same pieces!   A make-over enhances the beauty of these one-of-a-kind pieces, while at the same time, allows us to showcase our style and personality in new ways. 

chevron cedar chest.jpg

See the heartwarming story here: Distressed Chevron Cedar Chest

3. Functionality

Consider all possible uses of your old furniture.  Functionality is key when it comes to making decisions about painting a piece of furniture.   The more uses a piece potentially has, the more likely it will long live out its "new" and improved look (not to mention the many locations in the house to place it).  Consider a make-over, and you're one step closer to uncovering those pieces in hiding!

Giving pieces like this a second chance can be an eye-opening game-changer for the home.  See an example here: 


This hutch became a great place to store games and other "things" you don't want sitting out. The open shelving allowed for display of favorite accessories, too.  It's a win-win. 

And there you have it.  Three tell-tale signs that a piece of furniture has the potential to become a stand-out accent for the home!!   

What is your furniture telling you in 2018???


Hutch gets total make-over: See the story!

Greetings!  The day has arrived. The final reveal of the giant hutch I've been talking about lately!  It all started back in early January.  Valerie reached out to me and asked if I could find a hutch for her!  Of course I said "YES".  She gave me some specific features she was hoping for, and my search began!   

A hutch search can take anywhere from a single week to several months.  It depends on what you're looking for, and time of year!   Valerie was hoping for something with a buffet surface, doors, and a light inside the display area.    

This is an image Valerie saw on Pinterest that caught her eye. She sent it to me, and knew she wanted the hutch painted in either gray or white.  

image take from Eurofinishes.blogspot via Pinterest

image take from Eurofinishes.blogspot via Pinterest

Novo Decor's Furniture finding service

About 95% of the furniture I paint already belong to my customers.  But, did you know that I can also search for furniture for you?  It's a hassle-free process for you, and all it consists of is you telling me what you're looking for (like measurements, and other features you'd like), and me sending you pictures of potential pieces I find.   Once I have the green light from you, I snatch it up and the real fun begins. 

Finding "THE" one

The winter search was unsuccessful, as winter searches can be (people just don't clean out their homes in winter around here!)  But, once Spring hit, I knew we'd be seeing some great candidates.  And then one day last month, I found it.  When I laid eyes on it, I could immediately hear the theme song to "Dirty Dancing" ("I've had the time of my life") but with the lyrics, "I saw the hutch of her dreams". Really!  And the rest is history.....

Here's how she looked BEFORE:

Pay no attention to the lady in the picture....

Pay no attention to the lady in the picture....

And here she is NOW:

The transformation was a SO fun to share with Valerie and her husband.  They both love it.  And it looks great in their beautiful home.  Valerie chose gray, and it works so well!  And the patterned backing on the hutch really pops. 

Given me hardware!

Valerie was open to ideas for the hardware.  I love the look of old hardware, especially on pieces like this.  I decided to keep the old hardware on this piece.  It did however, receive a major washing before spray painting!  Holy cow do I love using baking soda and boiling water to do this.  You would NOT believe what comes off old hardware.   

TIP:  If you spray paint your old hardware, always clean it first!!!!

A successful ending to a furniture search, and a new friendship (double awesome!) 

And that my friends, is the story of how a hutch was found, and given a total make-over for a customer who knew what she wanted, but had zero time to do the searching.  While I was busy hunting and painting, Valerie was busy being a mom to her three littles and all those other things moms and wives do, and not thinking about a hutch! (though she may have been dreaming about it) 

Now for the fun part.  She gets to style her hutch and store things inside.   I would paint all our furniture just so I could re-style it all!  Seriously. 

Thank you Valerie and Nate!  It was a pleasure re-creating this piece for you!!! 

See more furniture make-overs below! 









Custom baby-changing station: Give me Accessories (and function!)

Hello!  Novo Decor is kicking off the 2017 blog with today's post about an amazing transformation and re-imagined piece of furniture.  Not only will you see the finished product (once again....I've posted this piece before, see that post here:  Baby Changing Station), but you will also see it NOW....after being used and accessorized.  

In June, I re-created a large armoire into a fresh new shabby chic baby-changing station for some new parents-to-be, (and neighbors, and former co -worker!)  Their beautiful baby girl, Maya, was born in October 2016. Since then they've had a chance (many chances, can you say DIAPERS?) to try out their new piece. 

Maya's mom, Brooke, enjoys decorating and she does an amazing job.  Her color scheme throughout the house is fresh and fun. The baby room is no exception.  With its neutrals walls, flooring, and furniture, the room is light and classically simple; providing a great backdrop for some fun accessories!   Here is what the armoire looked like the day it was delivered back in June: 

Using an old piece of furniture and re-creating it to serve another purpose is just plain genius. It can seem daunting to stare at an old, dated piece of furniture and re-imagine something beautiful.  But Brooke and Joe knew what they wanted, and together we shared examples and designs leading us to a successful end result.  

Ok, It's time to see this baby accessorized....the most fun part of it all! 

Because I love decor and accessories, I couldn't resist taking pictures of other areas of the room....

More cute wall decor....

And that is the story of how a really unattractive TV armoire became a beautiful and highly functional piece of furniture that will be used for years to come.  I also painted the doors for Brooke and Joe, in case they decide to re-attach them some day.  Until then, the giant changing station will remain as it is, feeling loved, once again.  

Do you have an old obnoxious piece of furniture that could use some TLC?  Think outside the box with ways to re-create, and re-imagine it, in your home!  

Wondering what to do with your huge obnoxious piece?  Post a picture of it to Novo Decor Facebook and I"ll shoot back some ideas for you!    

And lastly, you can see more posts like this one, when you "like" and "follow" Novo Decor on Facebook!   Thank you!!!

Until next time......


See related posts: 

4 most dramatic furniture make-overs in 2016

If you love color, or big change, you might be ready to take the leap and go BOLD in 2017.  In today's post, you are going to see furniture that went on to become one-of-a-kind conversation pieces.   With a vision, a fearless edge, and a readiness for change, almost any piece of furniture has the potential to become a knock-out statement piece for the home.  

Ready to see these rockin' pieces of furniture? 


This piece is timeless and modern.  The piano was painted in white, providing a classic backdrop for the geometric pattern and bold color.   We didn't go overboard by painting the WHOLE thing in pattern and color, but chose a section that would beautifully showcase the home-owner's style!   Bold, yet not too crazy....


A small piece it is, but one of the most challenging make-overs in 2016. The results were worth it.  And the best part?  The piece will continue to be passed down in the family, boasting a beautiful new color, and adorable vintage liner.  

The little kitchenette and I became good friends.....Is that dirt in those drawers?   Yes!  This photo is called "Study the piece" fitting! 


You would hardly recognize this hutch now.....Here it is before paint....

And here it is after:


Bold, yet still versatile and able to serve many purposes from art supply storage, to linens and baskets for tasteful and modern open storage.  

Armoire to baby-changing "table"

In search of a large armoire for a customized baby changing station, we found this big brown (and quite ugly!) piece that was perfect for our mission:

Why this piece?  It was sturdy.  It was HUGE.  It had the potential to become a gorgeous white shabby chic piece for a baby room.......and that's exactly what happened.......

And there you have it.  Four of the most dramatic furniture make-overs in 2016!  Each of these pieces was challenging for a different reason, but each memorable...and now serving as beautiful focal points in their homes!!!

Here's to dramatic furniture make-overs in 2017!!!!

Do you have a piece of furniture hiding in the basement?  Take a good look at it....where else could that piece work in your home?  Think function......and then think "BOLD"!    Take a chance on your furniture! 


Related Posts:





Antique painted chair: Part of a lake cottage...and a family

Hello!  Thanksgiving is....tomorrow!?  Today's post is fitting for the "Giving Thanks" theme, because it is about an antique chair that has some family history!   The chair came with the purchase of a beautiful lake cottage, back in the late 70's. The cottage and all the things inside it hold meaning to its owner, Dierdre, and her family.  

Today, after years of use, the chair needs a facelift.   Here is a picture of the chair BEFORE: 

A very cool chair with good bones, and solid wood, but the wear and tear over the years got the best of it!  See all the large areas of chipped paint in the front section, beneath the seat?  

A very cool chair with good bones, and solid wood, but the wear and tear over the years got the best of it!  See all the large areas of chipped paint in the front section, beneath the seat?  

I emailed Deirdre a few questions about the piece, because I love learning stories behind family pieces, and sharing those stories with you!   Here is what Deidre shared: 

1. What is the history behind the chair? 

"The chair came with the cottage, when we bought it in 1979.  We bought all the contents because there were so many wonderful antique pieces that we loved.  This chair is one of them"

2.  Why did you decide to have your chair painted? 

"The chair needed to be repainted because it was chipped from years of kids and grand kids use over the years.  I also decided to move it to a different location and the green didn't work there, so repainting seemed like the right thing to do."

"One of the themes in the cottage is rosemaling.  All the beds were painted that way along with several other pieces.  So I wasn't afraid to paint furniture as opposed to having it refinished."

I looked up "rosemaling" and here's what I found: 

Rosemaling is the name of a traditional form of folk art.  It is a style of Norwegian decorative painting on wood that uses stylized flower ornamentation, scroll work, lining and geometric elements.  Norwegian immigrants brought the art of rosemaling to the United States.

Giving Thanks

Owning a unique piece of history is definitely something to be thankful for.  A piece that has been in the family for years, is such a cool thing.  I was happy to give this chair a smooth, new finish.  Some day it might be re-painted, but for now, it is in great shape and looking good.  No more chips, a new color.....and ready for another 37+ years!     

Thank you, Deirdre, for entrusting me to this great chair.  I hope you like the new color, and enjoy it for many more years to come!

Do you have a piece of furniture that holds meaning to you, or your family?  These pieces are great reminders of where we've come from. They can stir feelings of nostalgia, memories of a particular family member that has gone before us, and even specific childhood encounters or events. 

In any case, I believe in giving pieces like this a little "make-over", so they can live on in our lives, and the lives of our children.....and grandchildren.   

Enjoy your Thanksgiving holiday! 


See related posts:  





Vintage find + family history = functional (and cute) kids' desk

Having a desk for the kids is ideal.  Before we had desks in our house, all the homework was scattered over the kitchen table, like constantly.  Then desks came....and life in the kitchen became much less cluttered.   Whether you need a designated place for your kids' homework, or a place to corral your paperwork, desks serve a great purpose.  There are many prospects out there........we just have to find them!  

That's what Tiffany did; she found the perfect desk she had been searching for.  But, it wasn't perfect when she laid eyes on it.   When Tiffany's father-in-law found a collection of vintage school desks in an area church, she immediately saw its potential.  The coolest part about it, is that Tiffany's husband's grandparents founded that church years ago......and now, Tiffany and her family get to hold on to a piece of that history with this awesome "new" vintage desk! 

Tiffany contacted me with a photo of the desk (this desk was the cool kind with real wood and chrome, and a cute built-in book rack!): 

The desk was in great condition, but the chrome was rusty, and overall it needed some TLC.   I decided to re-do all of it; the chrome, the seat, the desk top.  

The fact that the wood pieces (seat, desk top, and arm rest) unscrewed right off the chrome frame was a huge bonus, and later proved to be a time saver for spray painting the base.  Additionally, the screws were surprisingly cooperative (you never know with old rusty screws how well they'll come off)  I loved this project even more.  

Tiffany indicated she liked teal, but was open to other colors.  I kept her home interior in mind when deciding on color. It was going to be a surprise.....(love surprises!).....

Here's what I did: 

1.  Clean & spray paint the frame

Once those wood pieces were removed, I used baking soda and water to clean off the rust from the base.  I mixed half cup water with a bunch of baking soda to create a pasty texture. 

I painted on the mixture, let it sit a half hour,  then scrubbed it off with a light abrasive sponge. Most of the rust came right off.  The remaining spots were harmless, as they would soon be spray painted.      Once dry, I spray painted the entire frame using Rust-o-leum's "Oil Rubbed Bronze":  (three layers)

2.  Strip & re-stain

The desk seat and back needed refurbishing. Since they were authentic wood, I wanted to maintain that look.  I decided not to paint them. Once stripped and cleaned, they were ready for re-staining.  I used MInwax stain in "Dark Walnut".  

3.  Paint 

Two layers of teal chalk paint were applied to the desk top, and arm rest.  Light sanding followed for a smooth surface. 

4.  Apply Wax (antiquing) 

Finishing the project with light and dark wax gave the piece an "antiqued" look.  I did this to the desk top and arm rest.   For the seat and chair back, I used a clear Polycrylic sealant.   Done!

A Two in One Desk:  Score! 

Speaking from my own experience, it can be a challenge to find a perfect little desk for a "little" at home, not to mention a perfect little chair scaled to size!  I've been searching for a chair for Luke's desk.....they are either too wide, too tall, too short......Maybe I"m being too picky, but, the point is, if you can score a desk with a built-in seat, like this vintage find, that's a major win (hence the term "two in one" desk).  These desks are compact, and you can't beat the quality either! So, keep your eyes open for these at thrift stores or estate sales!

Vintage find + family history = functional (and super cute) piece for the home

And that is how recognizing the potential in a piece of furniture, can turn into a highly functional piece of furniture, that not only enhances the home interior, but has a family history that can now be represented and enjoyed for years to come.

Thank you Tiffany!  You did good, girlfriend! Did you put little jars of school supplies into that handy book rack on the desk yet? I bet it looks so cuuuute!  Study hard, boys. 

See Related posts/Furniture Reveals: 







Ugly table to Fall front porch feature

I recently found a pair of side tables that were really dated and un-attractive! But of course there is usually something special about a piece that attracts me, and it ends up in the back of the mom van.  Today you're going to see what happened to these tables..... 

Since I could not stop myself from painting one of these tables immediately upon arriving home, I almost forget to take a "before" picture! But you can at least see the "before" ugliness x1.....

See what I'm saying?  Not attractive.  BUT, the chunkiness of it is what drew me in.  During fall, I am drawn to rustic, wood, and chunky decor.  These tables are perfect for outdoor fall or Halloween displays.  They seem low for side tables, but for benches they are golden!  

How I made ugly tables not ugly

  • I used chalk paint (see this easy tutorial for home-made chalk paint HERE!).  I opted to make my own for this job, because I impulsively decided to start painting these tables, and therefore did not want to get on-line to order chalk paint, or go to Home Depot to buy some. 

Why chalk paint?  It sands easily, no need to prime before painting (if the piece doesn't need "fixing" first), and quick dry time.  

  • For a more rustic finish, I used quick light brush strokes (so the dark wood would show through the paint), with light layers of paint.  Two layers were enough. 
  • I let it dry and lightly sanded.  Done! I chose not to apply sealant.

How you can make ugly tables not ugly 

1.  Do it Yourself! For you diy-er's, here's how:

  • Get a small, ugly wood table (like a bedside table, or living room end table)
  • Choose your color.  Use "home-made" chalkpaint. See tutorial HERE, or, buy chalk paint at the store (Home Depot, Hobby Lobby).  You will need only a single tub of paint (8 plenty).  If you make your own chalk paint using the tutorial above,  use acrylic craft paint at Hobby Lobby for your base.  
  • Paint brush (cheap brush under $5 will get the job done)
  • Fearless determination to paint your table.  Be sure to use quick, short brush strokes, with light paint application. Light paint application with two layers is better than heavy paint in a single layer.  You can complete two layers in about 40 minutes, allowing dry time between layers.
  •  Once you are satisfied with your paint coverage, let dry.  Apply sealant (recommended).  Outdoor/indoor clear polyurethane or polycrylic will work.  
  • Sand lightly for a smoother surface (320 grit sand paper) 

2.  Leave your ugly wood table alone: Don't paint it.  

The tables in today's post could could still have accomplished the "rustic" vibe for a rustic front porch display without paint.  I probably wouldn't have used the tables that way inside the house, but for the porch, yes.  Can your tables accomplish your front porch goal without paint?  Something to consider. 

3.  Contact Novo Decor! For those of you seeking a totally hassle-free process with no paint brushes, chalk paint,'s how: 

  • Click the button below to contact me with your questions, information about your table, or photos of your table.  I will get back to you pronto.  If you wish not to do-it-yourself, you are not alone!  We will discuss a plan and I provide an estimate.  Easy. Hassle-free. 

There you have it.  What once was an ugly and forgotten table (like seriously forgotten in a lonely corner at the store), is now a centerpiece on our front porch this fall.  Yours can be too!!!

From ugly to fall fabulous front porch feature.   And no trees were cut down in the making of this piece. Smart. Resourceful. Inspiring.  Second hand....what else? 

Thank you for tuning in today!!! Hope you feel inspired to give that old ugly table a second chance! 

See more furniture transformations: 




Bar cart: simple update; big result

Bar carts! They are great pieces to have around the house.  Today's post features an antique bar cart that has received paint and personality.  Tiffany, its owner, recognized the potential of the piece, and contacted me with her ideas.  

 Bar carts are "hot" accessories for the home.  They are all over the stores......

They are even better when styled: 

image from Apartment Therapy

image from Apartment Therapy

Use a cart for a fun (and mobile!) coffee bar

Use a cart for a fun (and mobile!) coffee bar

These carts are mobile, and versatile, allowing them to serve countless purposes (not just for "bar" related items as the name implies).  They are highly functional....and pretty. 

Tiffany's bar cart has character, and is wood, making it a perfect paint! 

Tiffany's Request

Tiffany requested a neutral gray/"gray" wash effect.  I chose a warm gray hue consistent with her warm color palate preference.  Why a "warm gray"? Tiffany mentioned she didn't want it "too silvery shiny". To me, "silvery shiny" implies cool tones, so I went with warm.  

I first painted the tray that goes inside the cart, then I sent Tiffany a picture of it in order to gt her feedback on the look: 

Tiffany preferred a more subtle effect then what this picture shows (less white brush strokes). Perfect.  Easy fix.  We also agreed that a distressed finish would show the original dark wood underneath beautifully. The plan was solidified. It was time to get to work. 

Here is the bar cart BEFORE:

Drab cart to fab cart

Tiffany recognized the potential in this bar cart, which is important when deciding to paint a piece of furniture.  Equally important is consideration of two other things:

1.  Good bones (is a piece sturdy, able to with hold a make-over?)

2. Functionality (What purpose can a piece serve, can it be used in non-traditional ways?) 

Good bones and functionality are two excellent qualities that make a piece of furniture make-over worthy!   This cart definitely fits the bill.   

Finishing touches to come this week....with REVEAL to follow. Stay tuned! 

Do you have an old piece of furniture that meets these guidelines?  Take a look at what you have.....I would venture to guess that there is potential in at least one piece of furniture you own!!!

See Related Posts:


Bathroom vanities: Vision + Paint = New Bathroom

It's a good day for a bathroom vanity reveal!  You're about to see a master bath that has taken on a completely new look.......with painted the vanities.  The home-owner had been unhappy with her vanities for years. The dark red mahogany finish wasn't living in harmony with the tile work, neutral walls, and dark gray counter tops.   The primary concern of the home-owner was there was just "too much" going on in the space.   

We're happy to report that this problem has been solved!  Christine, the home-owner, knew the look she was after, and with a little help, she chose the perfect color for her "new" master bath cabinetry.  A combination of wax finishes completed the job, for a gorgeous antiqued look that Christine is really happy about! 

Here is what the vanities looked like before: 

Vanity #1

Vanity #1

Vanity #2. No before photo of vanity #3. Shoot! 

Vanity #2. No before photo of vanity #3. Shoot! 

You can see the bathroom has an abundance of beautiful tile work.   Christine liked the tile and knew it made a lot more sense to change the vanities, rather than spend thousands and thousands (not to mention the mess and time investment!) of removing all the tile work! 

Now, the vanities look like they belong in the space, and they are no longer a pain in Christine's side!  The whole room looks and feels much more cohesive. But one other detail in the room still needed attention.....

The hardware.  Christine was not loving the silver finish of her vanity hardware (the knobs and drawer pulls).  Additionally, the other fixtures in the room had a different finish; shiny silver chrome.   While she liked the hardware style, she wanted a darker finish to tie in the dark counter tops.  What to do? 

I suggested spray paint.  Believe it or not, any bathroom fixture can be spray painted, even faucets (if done correctly!).  I provided several color samples for Christine, and she went with "oil rubbed bronze".  A great choice.  

Wow. that's a lot of drawer pulls.....

Wow. that's a lot of drawer pulls.....

Here they are now.......

This picture reveals the new color most accurately

This picture reveals the new color most accurately


I really enjoyed sharing ideas with Christine, and working together as a team.  She had the vision, and I am thankful for the opportunity to have helped make it happen.  Thank you Christine! I hope you love your "new" bathroom for years to come....

And that's a wrap for this make-over.  Thank you so much for reading, and for following me! I appreciate it more than you know!  

Do have a "fixture" in your home, like a vanity, that has the potential to change?  When something bothers you about a room, consider what can be changed and what cannot.  Even the smallest of changes, like painting your hardware, can have a dramatic effect in a space!  

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