I finally finished repainting my kitchen cabinets the other day. The finish was in terrible shape, but these have to be the most poorly constructed cabinets ever, so they really weren't worth stripping and refinishing. My standard operating procedure, in such instances, is to break out the craft paint and cover the cabinet doors with busy enough designs to distract casual visitors from the fact that the cabinets righteously suck. Hopefully the ruse will work:
I chose a garden theme for my project. All of the designs are based on greenspaces I know and love. These first two are based on Dave Dardis' Secret Garden in Makanda, Ill. In real life, the mermaid is more rust-colored, but there's a place on Route 66 here in Oklahoma that sells a silver variation, so I kind of morphed the two together. I always thought the guy on the bottom was a Green Man, but upon closer examination, I think he's actually a Dionysus figure; the ivy growing on the wall around him just gives him a Green Man aura.
An idealized image of our bee yard.
Loosely based on my mother-in-law's back flowerbed.
Two of our favorite haunts in St. Louis. (We used to live in Belleville, Ill., about 20 minutes from the city.) The top one is part of the wall around the parking lot at the City Museum; the bottom is the entrance to the Venice Cafe, which has the coolest patio on the planet.
These two doors are a tribute to the late Larry Baggett, whose Trail of Tears monument still stands along Route 66 near Jerome, Mo. The top image is not an extremely pale man. It's a painting of Larry's self-portrait sculpture, which is made of plaster or something and sits next to the entrance to his property. The wishing well is next to his long, winding driveway, which goes up the side of a bluff.
This is a painting of the liriope-and-ivy-covered earthen sculpture I am planning to construct in my garden this spring. Yes, I am the only person I know who would use one insane project to plan another.
View of my backyard, decluttered just a bit for artistic reasons. The wisteria really had that many blooms this spring, though. It was crazy.
This started out to be a picture of light filtering through the trees in the Shawnee National Forest, but it didn't look right when I finished, so I just stuck a lawn gnome in there. Lawn gnomes are awesome.
This weird little door, which is above my stove, was too small for anything very elaborate, so I just mimicked my china pattern on there.
Having gotten good results with the chalkboard paint I put on the back of my car, I swiped an idea from a magazine article I'd read years ago and put some chalkboard paint on a couple of the cabinets next to the stove so I could write grocery lists, to-do lists, menus, etc. as things came to mind.
The bottom cabinets on that side got chalkboard paint, too, because I know my young friends-and-relations will want to add their own artwork, and I don't really want them standing on the counters to do it.
And a couple of overall views. I brushed a coat of glossy Mod Podge over each door when I finished to protect the paint from spills and spatters.
The lantern hanging from the light fixture is going to disappear as soon as I get a hand free to install a new light, but the hardware store ran out of the fixture I wanted, and I wasn't really in the mood to do any wiring this week, so that project will have to wait.