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4 octobre 2011 2 04 /10 /octobre /2011 08:19

Fall, really? It's hotter around here than it has been all summer!

 

Sérieusement, c'est l'automne? Mais les températures sont bien plus élevées que cet été... Et j'e n'ai même pas encore pu crâner avec ma nouvelle veste de rentrée...

 

I've been kind of awol lately and I'm truly sorry I'm even too tired to read and comment your blogs.

 

The Little White House is living very hard times that I don't wish even to my ennemy's house!

 

So you may understand that I'm not in the decorating mood at all...

 

Je ne suis pas du tout, mais alors pas du tout, dans une dynamique de décoration actuellement, dû à un certain nombre de petits problèmes qui s'accumulent...

 

I haven't done any fall decorating...

 

Still I wanted to be part of Sarah's fall party... So here's the only "fallish" thing I did lately...

 

Mais quoi de mieux que cuisiner pour penser à autre chose... En plus, après, on a le droit de déguster!

 

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Apple pie. I love a warm apple pie any time of the year, but especially when the apples are just falling from my mum's tree!

 

So if you want a taste of autumn, head to your kitchen!

 

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This is what you'll need for the pastry:

1 cup flour

2 tablespoons sugar

70/90 g butter (I use salted butter, being from Brittany...)

1 tablespoon milk

water... enough to make the dough, I can't really say!

 

For the filling:

4 to 6 apples (depending on the size of the apples your tree is yielding!)

1/2 cup sultanas

1/2 cup nuts

1/2 chopped dates

4 tablespoons brown sugar

some lemon rind

1  tablespoon orange marmelade

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 to 4 tablespoons flour

2 teaspoons of butter

 

Mix all the ingredients and pour the filling in a pie pan.

Cover with the pastry.

Drizzle some sugar over it.

Bake for about 40 minutes (oven at 180°C/350°F)

 

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Enjoy!

 

You may want to serve it with vanilla ice-cream, but this is strictly forbidden for me... And we don't want to be sick on top of everything, do we? - using "we" to speak of myself may be a sign that problems are making me slightly insane!

 

Believe me, it's good comfort food! You may notice I was too eager to obey my sweet tooth and forgot to take a picture of the pie when it came out of the oven...

 

 

 

Magali, from the Little White House’s kitchen

 

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I'm bringing my apple pie to the following party:

Sarah's Fall In Love party

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18 septembre 2011 7 18 /09 /septembre /2011 20:56

Dear readers,

 

Chers lecteurs,

 

Good news: your comments about the remodeling going on at my Little White House have really lifted me up.

Bad news: there's a problem with over-blog lately and it's nearly impossible to comment... We're trying to fix the problem... Congratulations to the few people who managed to comment during the couple seconds a day when it's possible! Maybe you should play the lottery...

 

Bonne nouvelle: les commentaires récemment m'ont vraiment touché et fait chaud au coeur au milieu des difficultés que représentent les travaux.

Mauvaise nouvelle: over-blog connait visiblement un bug côté commentaires...

 

Good news: I've dreamed of a china cabinet for years now. And suddenly something looking exactly as I wanted my china cabinet to look like appeared on "Le Bon Coin" (something like Craig's List) and it wasn't even expensive! I contacted the seller and he said he could deliver it to me... Picture me here jumping all around the living-room... I may even have jumped on the sofa (I mean, since I didn't buy a new one, why not?)

Indeed my biggest problem when I find second-hand furniture is the delivery... I can't really lift sturdy furniture on my own nor fit it in my small European-sized car. That's when I think mariage could be useful...

 

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What are you saying? What's that smell? ... The seller was a fishmonger and he brought the china cabinet in his truck... Life on the seaside... It took a couple of days before the wood got rid of the smell...

 

I removed the curtains  the previous owner had added on the top doors, waxed the whole thing inside and out.

 

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And this is were you notice that something has (will have ) to be done with the table: the varnish on it make it way too orangey next to the waxed wood of the cabinet...  Also yes, I need to find wall lamps, but I can't find something I like enough to buy!

 

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The reason I wanted the cabinet to be light wood: I don't want to paint it because I love the way white china looks on it... Yes, believe me, it looks beautiful... even if the pictures are crappy because it's been raining for two days... My camera doesn't like that kind of light.

 

Now I should be the happiest cabinet owner in the whole world... Except for...

 

Bad news:

The drywall that makes the fireplace in the living-room (you may remember it from the previous post) must be torn down... I realized the workers "forgot" to support the old wall that's behind and that was in a piteous state... - Good news in the middle of the bad news: it's a good thing I realized it before the wall and therefore the house collapsed!

Still it means more dust...

 

More on that later...

 

 

 

 

Magali, from the Little White House

 

Partying at:

Making The World Cutter

 

 

 

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13 septembre 2011 2 13 /09 /septembre /2011 22:14

Dear readers,

 

Chers lecteurs,

 

Thanks to all of you for visiting the Little White House lately... And thanks to all of you who tried to understand French enough to leave messages that were so nice to read.

 

I think I owe you a mini living-room reveal. Please keep in mind that it is by no mean finished... The living-room is just a work in progress... The sofa for example was supposed to be changed this summer but wasn't for budget reasons... I just bought a new slipcover for it... It's the sofa I had in my first student-studio in Paris, years ago. And no, I'm not telling you how many years!

 

Je crois qu'après les transformations de cet été un petit avant/après s'impose... Gardez cependant à l'esprit que rien n'est achevé... C'est juste un peu avancé.

 

So, let's rewind a little.

 

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Here's the living-room the first day I visited the house...

 

Voici le salon le jour où j'ai visité la maison pour la première fois...

 

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And the day I got the keys.

 

Et le jour où j'ai eu les clefs.

 

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I managed to fit my home office at the back of the room and a cozy enough living-room at the front for one year. Sorry the picture really doesn't show the space but at the time I didn't think it was important to take a picture of the room as it was. This picture was taken to show my mom what a clever end table I had done with a cardboard box wrapped in fabric and an old board!!!

 

Then, I clear everything...

 

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The living-room the day before the remodelling began.

 

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The living-room as it looks like today... A work in progress...

 

Et voici le salon tel qu'il est aujourd'hui... En cours d'aménagement...

 

With its beamed ceiling...

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On the list for the future days/months/years/decades/.../ goes on and on and...

- finding a nice carpet,

- having a stove,

- creating a mantel,

- finding a kind of bookcase for the TV (a TVcase, then?) so the TV is somewhat hidden... but still watchable!

- finding a lower bookcase so I can still store books, but the stonewall is more visible...

- finally having enough money to buy the desired sofa... with arms please so reading could be comfortable...

- finding a nice end table or chest...

- finding THE right paint colour for the walls and the fireplace.

 

 

Magali, from the Little White House

 

 

Even if it's by no mean a "big" reveal where everything is finished, I feel like partying!  linkparty button pngTransformation Thursday At Shabby Chic Cottage

Very Merry Vintage Style

good-life-wednesday-a-beach-cottage2

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12 septembre 2011 1 12 /09 /septembre /2011 09:00

Dear readers,

 

Chers lecteurs,

 

Here's what the living-room ceiling looked like a few weeks ago.

 

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Voilà ce à quoi ressemblait le plafond il y a encore quelques semaines...

 

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Here's what we discovered hidden behind... nice beams, but green beams...

 

 

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As usual with this house the sense of harmony the previous owners had is just stunning...

 

 

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L'harmonie des couleurs est comme souvent dans cette maison époustouflant...

 

And now (drum roll, please) ...

 

Et (petit roulement de tambour), aujourd'hui:

 

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It just gives such a peaceful atmosphere to the living-room, even if the room is still unfinished.

 

The chandelier I painted during the summer feels right at home there.

 

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Le lustre chiné en brocante et repeint cet été a trouvé sa place.

 

The Little White House chandelier by night.

 

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So can you feel the cottage vibe making its way in the Little House?

 

Bon, certes, c'est loin d'être fini, mais on a fait un pas dans la bonne direction...

 

 

 

Magali, from the Little White House

 

 

Me, my beams and Mr. Chandelier are joining those wonderful parties:

 

Embellishing-Life---Etsy-Button1  th wowuswedpartyWhite-Wedneday-ButtonTuesday's Treasure - Uncommon Slice SuburbiaMaking The World CutterPic for Body of Blog3Keeping it simple

 

 

 

 

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5 septembre 2011 1 05 /09 /septembre /2011 21:05

Dear readers,

 

Chers lecteurs,

 

This is only a very quick post (what? Did I hear you sigh with relief?).

 

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I wanted to thank all the people who have been visiting the blog recently and all those who left nice and encouraging comments.

 

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Je tenais dans ce court article à remercier les gens qui sont venus lire le blog cet été et tous ceux qui m'ont laissé de gentils messages encourageants.

 

The renovation is far from finished and the decoration part has barely begun (I count tiles as decoration, since it was an agonising choice!).

 

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La rénovation est loin d'être terminée, la déco est à peine entamée (et encore parce que je considère le carrelage comme une partie de la déco!).

 

But I have to head back to school... The French government, being  in its "we-shouldn't-spend-too-much-money" phase, did not agree on giving me my paycheck while I stay at home putting things in order... Too bad!

 

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Mais je dois reprendre le chemin de l'école. Le gouvernement, plan de rigueur oblige, refuse de me payer à rester à la maison remettre les choses en ordre...

 

Of course, there will probably be small things going on at the Little White House, but the next big transformation will have to wait until next summer!

 

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Bien sûr, il y aura toujours des évolutions dans la petite maison, mais le gros des travaux va être en pause jusqu'à l'été prochain.

 

 

But, stay tune as I promise a ceiling reveal in a few days... and maybe a china cabinet reveal!

 

 

 

Magali, from the Little White House

 

 

 

  Linking with:

 

Domestically Speaking for a "Fall Party".

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31 août 2011 3 31 /08 /août /2011 21:42

I had to spend the day in Paris yesterday. "Had to" might seem a weird way to say it if you're dream is to visit the city. But I wasn't there for a sightseeing trip... unless you count Tenon Hospital as a must-see.

You could, actually, as it's an old historic building.

 

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Sorry, the picture is awful... Not centered or anything, but try taking a picture while doctors, nurses are running around and you don't want to delate them from whatever important thing is making them run!

 

So, anyway, there I was for a day for a medical exam...

 

When I left the hospital, I had an other four hour  to spend in Paris before my train back home... So I went shopping!

 

But I thought shopping was a sport that required some energy so I went to ... Starbucks. I Know, how very unFrench! But, just in case you're visiting Paris on your own someday, here's my tip. Near the Opera (which I NEEDED to see as it's my favourite monument),

 

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(candid picture taken while holding a very heavy bag of china I had just bought and a steaming cup of tea from Strabucks - wait - how did I even hold the camera?)

 

So, where was I?  Yes, near the Opera is a Starbucks set in the most perfect building: it's easy to eat on your own there, not that expensive (at least for Paris) and they have killer ceilings:

 

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Again, I swear I had tea and not alcohol while taking the pictures, but at 1pm it was crowded with people holding trays covered with hot beveragesand I didn't want to create an accident by standing for hours in the way (you should have seen the faces of people when I took out my camera - "an other tourist" they thought very loud).  I just snapped the pictures before going out, thinking nobody would believe me if I wrote Starbucks had the best ceilings!

 

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This is the arch leading to the restrooms... really makes you want to pee, hey?

 

Besides their ceilings, they also have yummy cinnamon rolls...

 

Very Parisianly yours,

 

 

 

Magali, back at the Little White House

 

 

 

 

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29 août 2011 1 29 /08 /août /2011 18:34

Dear readers,

 

I figured since I'm show you the remodeling going on at the Little White House, I should start at the beginning... The ground floor.

 

Phase 1

 

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Three different floors for three tiny rooms: living-room in white, dining-room in red and kitchen in orange.

 

Phase 2

 

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Digging the previous floor to get a proper draining sysytem...

 

Phase 3

 

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It doesn't even look like a home anymore.

 

Phase 4

 

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New concrete foundation slab.

 

Phase 5

 

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Same floor in the three rooms...

 

Sorry, the door just arrived so it's not painted and I can't decide on the handle, so it's handle free right now!

 

A close up, just because it makes my heart do somersaults:

 

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It's irregular so hopefully dirt won't show that much.

 

The two best compliments I had so far about it:

 

1) My dad said "it doesn't look new"... He didn't intend it as a compliment, but it was what I was going for!

 

2) My neighbour said it suited the old house so that she didn't remember how the floor looked like before.

 

So one more time, view from the stairs. Before:

 

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And now:

 

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There's still so much to do, but it's a start, isn't it? I'm looking for a buffet of some kind to put next to the entrance door, where the awful non-sliding sliding door cupboard was. I put a bookcase there, just to have a place to put keys and my handbag for now...

 

It feels it's cosier than before and it links the rooms together. What do you think?

 

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Square of sunshine (a rare moment this summer!) on the floor of the dining-room... that still needs decorating... badly!

 

 

 

Magali, from the Little White House

 

Now I think it's time to join some "floor warming parties"!

 

 

good-life-wednesday-a-beach-cottage2  White-Wedneday-Button

restoreditwednesdaybutton.png show and tell saturday RemodelaholicPartyFridaylinkparty button pngHappyHomemaker20111-39a-1th wowuswedparty

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21 août 2011 7 21 /08 /août /2011 09:24

Dear readers,

 

Chers lecteurs,

 

Here are some news of the renovation going on at the Little White House.

 

Voici des nouvelles des rénovations qui sont en cours dans la petite maison.

 

Phase 1

 

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Phase 2

 

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Phase 3

 

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Phase 4

 

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Phase 5

 

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Phase 6

 

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The above picture was just taken a minute ago... It's already dark outside, so my very sophisticated camera can't take a proper picture... I promise to update this as soon as possible (which means it might take a while).

 

The fireplace isn't done by any means. There's just a coat of primer on it... And that will have to do for now... I'm back to work next week, so I'm out of time, as well as out of money.

 

I have ideas for it: panelling maybe or faux panelling as it would be cheaper... I'm also looking for an old fireplace frame or whatever it's called that I could find second hand and paint or wax... If the lack of money isn't my friend, the lack  of time is: it will allow me to live for a while with this new/old wall and see what's best for it!  Any ideas?

 

The place isn't decorated yet, as I'm sure you noticed but I just got some pieces of furniture back in... It already feels so much more like a home.

 

For those wondering about that dark stain on the sofa, it's the cat, meaning he's still there and seems okay for now after big health troubles... I keep a close eye on him... At least he seems to think the new living-room is very peaceful.

 

 

 

Till next time, with more to show,

 

 

 

Magali, from the Little White House

 

 

PS.: I haven't had time to take new pictures, besides the weather is gloomy today... So this is not an update on the house...

I just wanted to say that (even if I am usually not big on praying) all my prayers are with those living on the East Coast of America... Blogging has allowed me to "meet" people all over the world and now I find myself worrying for them. I can't imagine the state of mind you must be in. I sincerely hope you will all be safe and I'm keeping an eye on the news on TV.

I'm trying to send all of you hope from across the ocean, especially to Laura, from A Place For Tea, who had to evacuate her lovely home.

 

  Joining those inpiring parties!

 

Pic for Body of Blog3

Show Off Your Cottage Monday

  Keeping it simpleMaking The World CutterDIY Blog button

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19 août 2011 5 19 /08 /août /2011 20:53

Dear readers,

 

Chers lecteurs,

 

I'm back at the Little White House though the renovation is far from complete. I promise picture in the near future. I know I already wrote that once... It's just very difficult to post pictures of my house in its current state.

 

Je suis de retour à la maison. Je vous promets des photos de l'avancement des travaux... Mais c'est un peu difficile de publier des images de ma maison dans son état actuel.

 

Basicaly I'm camping in my own house and eating dust for breakfast, lunch and dinner!

 

Grosso modo, je campe dans ma propre maison et je mange de la poussière du petit-déjeuner au dîner.

 

During the day, I need to keep myself busy. Reading is out of the question with the noise going around here... I wish I could ask the workers to stop the noise but keep working!!!

 

So I'm doing small projects that don't need too much concentration and that make me believe I'm also working for the house.

 

Du coup, je me lance dans des petits projets qui ne demande pas trop de concentration (quand inventera-t-on les travaux qui ne font pas de bruit?) et qui me donnent l'impression de travailler pour ma maison.

 

I bought a clock a while ago in an attic sale, just because it was wood and cheap and I loved the diamond-shaped frame.

 

J'avais trouvé une pendule en bois pas cher dans une brocante.

 

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I really didn't know what to do with it.

 

Then I saw in a "Maisons du Monde" store a cute cream coloured clock that was too expensive for me and inspiration struck. Ouch!

 

Puis, j'ai vu une horloge adorable en bois couleur crème dans une boutique Maisons du monde et l'idée a germé!

 

So, before:

 

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And after:

 

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I would show you how it looks in my kitchen, if my kitchen wasn't the awful mess it is right now. I managed to get the fridge back in it tonight, but it's in the middle of the room as nothing can touch the unfinished walls! Still, it's more convenient than to have it in the garage and having to cross the garden every time I need butter!

 

 

Vu l'état actuel de la cuisine, il peut paraître ridicule de se consacrer à une pendule... D'un autre côté, faire le ménage de la cuisine relève du mythe de Sisyphe, alors...

 

 

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Magali, from the Little White House

 

 

 

 

 

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18 août 2011 4 18 /08 /août /2011 20:17

Dear readers,

 

Chers lecteurs,

 

Up until now,  I didn't have a coffee table. All my previous homes had been way too small. It was already difficult to walk between the TV and the sofa... Ok, I'm slightly exagerating, but you get the idea, right?

 

And then, I moved to the very tiny fisherman's house that is the Little White House... where as tiny as it is, there's room for a coffee table.

 

Only I couldn't find one that I loved and was affordable.

 

Jusqu'à présent, je n'avais pas de table basse: une planche sur deux cartons remplaçait comme elle pouvait une table que je ne trouvais pas. C'était soit trop moche soit trop cher.

 

So I used the Magali method: I find an easy "good til now" solution. I put two cardboard boxes that I wrapped in brown paper in front of the sofa and put an old wood board (leftover from a deceased cheap desk) on top of it.

 

I did look everywhere for a picture of that masterpiece but couldn't find any.

 

I thought I would buy a new one later.

 

But with the big troubles (read here) I had at the Little White House, it soon became out of question.

 

Avec les problèmes qu'a rencontré ma Petite Maison ces derniers temps, il était utopique d'acheter une table basse cet été.

 

As I was at my parents during the worst of the renovation of my house, my mum and I took a habit to surf on "Le Bon Coin" (a site where you can find things second hand) every evening.

 

I found a cheap coffee table in a town really close to my parents'.

 

Sauf que j'ai trouvé cette table basse en pin pour vraiment pas cher sur Le Bon Coin.

 

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Now, I know there's a hate fashion towards pine on blogs... But that's where I beg to differ... I love pine, always have and maybe always will (I said maybe).

 

Le pin, c'est pas la mode, mais moi, j'adore depuis toujours.

 

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What I don't love, though, is varnish on pine as it tend to make it look yellowish and shiny... But well, the lady selling it aggreed on 20 €, so off I went home with the varnished table!

 

Sauf que j'aime moins le pin vernis: ça donne un aspect jaune et brillant au bois... Enfin, à ce prix-là, je l'ai emportée pour faire mes armes dessus.

 

I told my parents I was going to work a little on it and they looked at me with their eyes saying "it looks perfectly good as it is".

 

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The sanding process began (all by hand, with sanding paper, yes!)... Up there, you can see how different the wood looks without the awful varnish.

 

And a few days later...

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And, yes, it was sunny at least one day this summer!

 

The top is not varnished (how did you guess?), nor stained really. I applied four coats of a old-English-pine wax. I bought it from the very famous brand Libéron that I had never dared to use before... I felt like someone who just had her driving license and drove a Porsche...

 

 

Pour la première fois de ma vie, je me suis offert une cire Libéron... Et je ne regrette pas. J'avais ce sentiment bizarre de conduire une Porsche avec un permis tout neuf, mais cette cire fait vraiment la différence. La quantité de pigments gris permet de donner une jolie couleur au bois, pas jaune du tout.

 

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But clearly, a good wax makes a world of difference: this one has a lot of grey in it, which gives the wood a nice colour, not yellowy at all! And not shiny!

 

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The remodeling of this table would not have been possible without all the blogs around here that showed me it was possible.

Special thanks to:

 

- Ikea (I never thought I would say thank you to a store!): a few years ago they had white and wood furniture that I bought some item from... They no longer sell the said fruniture, so I have to make my own... and now, it's real wood!

 

- Pottery Barn: on their site, there's a gorgeous white and wood coffee table, that I dreamed of but couldn't afford at all.

 

- Sarah, from A Beach Cottage, whose coffee table caught my eye the first time I saw a picture of it!

 

- My parents who have been very supportive, even if a bit sceptical at the beginning, during the whole process... and now keep an eye on the table until it makes its debut at The Little White House!

 

 

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Un grand merci à mes parents qui m'ont soutenu pendant tout le temps des travaux de la maison (pas encore finis!) et qui du coup, ce sont retrouvés à poncer des tables et à hésiter avec moi des heures au rayon cire entre 3 ou 4 pots promettant tous la même chose... Merci aussi de garder un oeil sur ma table avant qu'elle ne fasse son entrée officielle dans la Petite Maison!

 

Magali, from the Little White House

 

 

Joining inspiring parties:

 

  Miss Mustard Seedshow and tell fridays

  linkparty button png

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RemodelaholicPartyFriday 

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Welcome, Dear Readers!

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  • I've been looking for a house for some time now... And I think I found it! The thing is it needs a lot of work to be transformed from a house to "my" home. I've been looking for ideas on everybody's blogs, so i thought I could begin one of my own...
  • I've been looking for a house for some time now... And I think I found it! The thing is it needs a lot of work to be transformed from a house to "my" home. I've been looking for ideas on everybody's blogs, so i thought I could begin one of my own...

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