4 SepChalk Paint Coffee Table

If you’ve seen my recent post on the before and after chalk paint mirror you know I’m a big fan of the stuff. I decided to try to paint our old living room coffee table, which was in need of a facelift. What’s important to know is that this table is from Ikea. Can you say laminate, anyone? My point is, chalk paint has no problem sticking to that kind of surface and my prep included wiping down the top with a little cleaner just to get the dust off of it. So, I’ll walk you through this project step by step. Here is the living room before with the fake wood table.

I knew you’d want a better look at that owl pillow! Adorable, huh?

So my next move was to choose a color and get painting. A normal person might choose a neutral considering there is a lot of artwork in this room and there’s already a bright green wall. But, I’m not normal so I chose to go with red, green’s compliment.

With the paint in hand, I lugged the coffee table outside onto a tarp and got right to painting!

Chalk paint takes about a half hour to dry. To completely cover the wood surface, this project took about three coats. But the paint dries so fast, it really takes no time at all. Here’s the painted piece!

After painting furniture with chalk paint, it’s super important to seal it with soft wax. It’s easy to do. Just rub a bit on the surface with an old t-shirt and you’re done!

Speaking of done… Here’s the finished coffee table in the living room! I love the way it spices up the room. Chalk paint is a fantastic way to give new life to old furniture in a super easy and inexpensive way! Ta-da!

For more info on chalk paint and where to find it. Go here.



23 AugDream Come True

Today was a fantastic day. I know that women all over the world have different hopes and dreams for themselves and their children. For me, my dream was to have Cormier Creative up and running full-force so that my schedule would allow me to drop off and pick up Carmen from school, volunteer in the classroom and be home when my little Goose needs me most. Well, today was her first day of Montessori preschool and a day of strong emotions. Of course I had the typical reaction that I can’t believe my little one is at school (weep!). That one was a given. But as I pulled through the pick up line, I realized how grateful I am to be able to “do it all.” I work full-time doing what I love and I have the NICEST clients AND I get to spend time with Carmen. If that’s not a sweet deal, I don’t know what is. So here’s a photo of my little “free thinker” on her first day of school. AKA…My dream come true.



21 AugWhere can I buy cool paper?

Finding awesome paper is not easy. I know this from experience. When I ventured out to design my first wedding invitation requiring cool paper (my own) I realized it wasn’t easy to find neat paper in small-ish quantities. Yes, craft stores have paper, but you’ll pay an arm and a leg for 12 x 12 sheets, typically meant for the scrap-booking crowd. So what’s the solution? The average Joe doesn’t have mill swatch books laying around the house and your average printer may not have the time and patience to sit down with your bridesmaid dress swatches (you know who you are, girls). Well, I’ve got a solution for you! If all you need is neat-o paper and pockets… look no further than the Envelopments website. While I’m not at all advocating DIY design projects, there are times when you just need some sweet paper. Of course, most of the time, you need to hire a sweet designer, like me. But in the meantime…

When you click here you will be taken to the Cormier Creative Envelopments site where you can shop till you drop. Make sure you give Cormier Creative credit at the checkout. Show a girl some love! Have fun shopping all of the colors, patterns, shapes and sizes. It’s easy to get carried away! (I’m always here to help!)



11 AugBeth Bojarski Art Obsession

Back in July, I had the pleasure of attending the Ann Arbor Street Art Fair. It was my first visit and definitely won’t be my last. I’d like to think of myself of an original art collector… on a much smaller scale than you know, millionaires. I’ve got a few pieces in my collection that I am super proud to own. Signed prints from artists such as Charley Harper, Shepard Fairey, some Cincinnati locals, as well as a few of my own creations grace my walls. But there is one peculiar piece of art that disturbs my extended family and it’s by Mark Ryden. It’s a set of three pieces, the Blood, Sweat and Tears Microportfolio. You can see it here. I’ll throw this out there… I like creepy art. There. Done. I said it. So I guess that makes Mark Ryden super duper close to the top of my list of favorite artists. Goal: To own an original Mark Ryden in my lifetime.

But, this post is not entirely about Mark Ryden and those other guys. It’s about Beth Bojarski. I had the pleasure of stalking, I mean visiting, her booth at the Ann Arbor show. As soon as I entered her space, I knew without a doubt, that she was my favorite artist in the sea of little white tents… by far. Her work is absolutely amazing and totally reminds me of Mark Ryden’s but with a touch of goofy humor. Check out this piece below… hilarious!

And here is another example of her clever style.

I think what I love most about Beth’s art is that it’s so technically well done AND it’s clever. Anyone who knows me knows that I am big on clever. And to top it off, her art has that freaky flavor that I find so endearing. If you want to see more clever creepy stuff, you should definitely check out Beth’s website here. And, buy something. While you are there… make sure you click on the “laughs” link because you’ll find one of my favorite SNL skits… the Googly Eyes Gardener with everyone’s favorite… Christopher Walken.

I feel very lucky that I got to meet Beth at the show because I have a feeling she’s going to blow up (you know, in a good way). New goal: to own an original Beth Bojarski.



8 AugChalk Paint Project

Okay folks! I found some gems and I want to share them with you. And if you stick around long enough this post ends with a super cute project. Gem #1: Winsome Cottage in Waynesville, OH. I discovered this shop a couple of weekends ago. While I am a super modern, city girl, there was still something about this “shabby-chic” place that struck me. I mean look… super cute right? Party bonus… the owner is a sweetheart!

So, what was it that I liked? Drum roll please… Gem #2: Chalk Paint! Okay, so take a close look at those photos. Pretty much every piece of furniture you see there has been redone simply by applying chalk paint! Pardon my french, but this shit is like magic. It can coat just about every surface (fake wood veneer, yes!) goes on nice and thick and dries in 30 minutes to a lovely, buttery matte texture. You can paint on metal, glass, dark wood… you name it! So are your wheels spinning yet? Got something in your house that’s a little outdated and drab? Chalk paint it, baby! That chest of drawers that you neighbor left on the curb… swipe it at night ’cause you got chalk paint, and the neighbor doesn’t have a clue!

Alright! Are you ready for my first attempt at chalk paint madness? I swiped this mirror from my late grandmother’s house. It’s Gem #3 in my book. A gem because it belonged to my Grandma G. who I loved very much. And, frankly, it was the only thing in the whole house that was worth taking in my opinion. The mere fact that I found it was a feat in and of itself.

So, I’m going to walk you through my first attempt at using chalk paint. I chose 3 colors of paint at Winsome Cottage (yes, they sell it) seen here. It took me FOREVER to decide.

For the mirror, I chose to use “Florence,” a lovely, bright, turquoise. Then I got to work!

Looks like I need another coat!

Much better! I’m still keeping a bit of the weathered look.

That’s a shot of me through the Windex on the mirror… kinda neat! Had to clean it up!

So, here’s the final piece in all of its glory! Complete with a reflection of my beloved Shepard Fairey limited edition print of Cincinnati’s Contemporary Art Museum. Ta-da!

I’ll keep you posted on my chalk paint projects! Next up: Antique sewing cabinet!



28 JulShe Believed She Could So She Did!


When I decided to take the giant leap into operating my own design business, it certainly wasn’t on my own. I had been secretly snooping around for everyone’s blessing. Even the most strong willed, pumped up people need to feel as if they are doing the right thing. My friends were behind me 100% because they are awesome and super-supportive. I took an online mentoring course from Isa Maria Seminega and that girl was behind me 110%! (super courses, btw… I highly recommend!) My closest family members took a bit more convincing. How many times did I hear the warning “Don’t you dare quit your job, Sara!” from my dad? Ironically, my dad is a successful entrepreneur and so was my great-grandfather. But dad’s look out for their little girls and he knows first hand that running your own show is not easy. But as usual, I got my way and ended up with his blessing. Yay! My husband had valid concerns about being the only one with a “real job” and insurance… but if I have a number one fan, it’s him so it didn’t take long to turn him around either.

But let me tell ya about my mom. My mom has always been behind me 120%. I know, the percentage thing is out of control now. But really, my mom had my back all along and knew that Cormier Creative would be a hit! So, in April when I said adios to the steady gig, my mom made me a little artwork for my office (seen above). She might not always get a lot of props for being artsy, but she totally is. She can sew, paint, decorate and craft the hell out of anything she puts her mind to. “She believed she could so she did.” That’s my motto now. I can’t think of a better one… mom that is.



3 JulExperiment Boldly.

I was reading one of my favorite blogs recently, Zen Habits, and I ran across the phrase “Experiment Boldly.” I’m going to remember this whenever I try something new in my life or in design. I think it’s a great little motto! It inspired me to make this mini-poster for my office, which ended up looking pretty cool.

Because I’m feeling super nice today, I’m providing this artwork as a free download. Use it however you like.
Get your free mini-poster here!

How will you experiment boldly in your life?



9 JunCity Flea Cincinnati

It’s the second Saturday in June and that can only mean one thing: CITY FLEA! If you live in Cincinnati and you’ve yet to visit the City Flea, you’re really missing out. The good news is you’ll have 3 more chances to catch it this summer at Washington Park! The City Flea is an open market in which creative types, foodies, collectors, etc. sell their goods. It’s kind of a hipster’s playground, but you’ll find all types. The vibe is great complete with a DJ, food booths and really cute dogs. Today, the highlight for me was watching my husband blend his own smoothie via stationary bike at Coffee Emporium. What a sweet idea!

Cormier Creative is a proud supporter of the City Flea! We’ve helped all kinds of creative entrepreneurs and artists with their design needs… like City Flea vendor Nancy Stelzer and her small business Hip Huts. You can check out her project here. Fun fun!



4 MayCincinnati Wedding Interview

Cincinnati Wedding Magazine leans on professionals in the industry to provide up-to-date information about what today’s bride needs and wants. Since I have worked for Cincinnati Wedding for 7+ years up until my departure, it’s easy for them to hit me up for the inside scoop. My quirky answers to some of their questions about what pieces you need for your wedding ensemble can be found in the latest issue, seen above. But here are some nuggets I’ll share here:

1. Have fun with your save the date! Who says it has to match the invite? The wedding police?
2. You won’t have people come to your wedding without an invitation. Duh, right? Make it good.
3. What’s trendy this second? Letterpress, gray backgrounds with floral patterns, hand-drawn artwork…
4. This isn’t in the article, but my advice is ALWAYS… It’s your wedding. Do what YOU want!

Check out some invites by Cormier Creative here.