Using galvanized metal containers around the house.Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can easily use galvanized metal containers, buckets and decor around your house.

Since we moved into our stone cottage, my decorating tastes have changed. I think that it’s a natural progression, tastes change, but I also think the style of our house had something to do with it.

If I had to use three words to describe my style right now they would be rustic, cottage farmhouse. I still lean toward a clean and simple style, but I think our 1946 stone cottage, and all of it’s rustic charm, has rubbed off on me.

One good example of my changing style is my use of galvanized metal containers around our house, both inside and outside. It’s a pretty popular trend right now and you can find them almost everywhere you go.

I’m finding myself drawn to slightly rusty containers that you find at flea markets. A little rust and a dent here and there is fine but it has to be sound enough to hold a plant (or small herb garden), my preferred way to use them right now.

What started this mini obsession was a beautiful large olive bucket that I found at an Illinois flea market. It’s one of my favorite things and it’s always out where I can see it.

Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can easily use galvanized metal buckets and decor around your house.

I kept it on the front porch all winter long with a mini evergreen in it. Once spring rolled around a Kimberly Queen fern (my favorite summer plant) took up residence.

Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can easily use galvanized metal buckets around your house.


Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can easily use galvanized metal containers around your house.


Another flea market find was a large galvanized metal tub. A few holes drilled in the bottom for drainage, potting soil and herbs, and I have my own mini garden. I even added my DIY garden markers, so I know where everything is as it grows.

Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can easily use galvanized metal containers around the house and in the garden.

The trough is a little beat up but that’s part of it’s charm.

This is my test garden (to see what does well) and I like that I can have everything together. Hubs has a tomato garden and wouldn’t let me put herbs in it so this was my solution.

We’ll see whose garden does the best. It’s so on! 😉

Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can use galvanized metal containers around the house and in the garden.

My latest flea market find that I’m using inside is a small galvanized bucket I’m using for Leo, the fiddle leaf fig. It’s simple but I like the contrast of the old metal and the green leaves. Plus it was the perfect size for our Leo.

Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can easily use galvanized metal containers and buckets around your house.

Although I did plant right in my trough, which has holes drilled in the bottom, I like to take care so that my galvanized metal lasts. The olive bucket and the small bucket that holds the fiddle leaf fig have a plastic plant liner to keep them protected from water. The plants are also planted in separate pot, which makes them easier to take out to water.

I do love a great, rusty bucket to hold a plant but there’s so many other ways to use galvanized metal. We found the cutest little shop in South Carolina last month and they had a lot of cool pieces made with galvanized metal.

I loved the mix of the old wood and the metal in this table. For a moment I thought about bringing it home for our front porch. An awesome piece!

Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can use galvanized metal containers and decor around the house and in the garden.

This old galvanized metal trunk turned shelf caught my eye as well. It’s a great way to reuse and showcase an old piece.

Galvanized metal is a hot trend right now. Check out how you can use galvanized metal containers and decor around the house.

There’s so many cool ways to use galvanized metal in your home. Although I do love the look, it won’t take over in our house. I’m perfectly happy with the pieces I have. Unless, of course, the hubs wants to surprise me with that awesome table. 🙂

How do you feel about decorating with galvanized metal?

Check out another way I used my much-loved olive bucket.

A quick and easy DIY. Make a cool plant stand from an old tomato cage and spray paint.

Tomato Cage Plant Stand

And how I use a galvanized metal container to organize my kitchen supplies.

Do you have a small kitchen? Here are my easy organization tips to keep you sane when you are short on storage space.

My Favorite Organization Tips for a Small Kitchen



It was a beautiful weekend here at the cottage and we took full advantage of it.

We haven’t done a lot of projects outside since we moved in last July (besides yanking a couple of bushes out) because we’ve been busy with our long list of projects to do inside. All of that’s about to change though because, like the inside, there’s a ton of things that need to be done and we can’t put it off anymore. This was our first winter here so it’s the first time we’ve really gotten to see the whole front flowerbeds and back yard without all of the leaves, weeds, trees and bushes in bloom. Wow, it was a rude awakening. We knew the yards were a mess but we didn’t realize how bad it was until this weekend.

The list is long, and overwhelming, but we’ll do what we did when we lived in Illinois and confronted that messy yard…take it one project at a time.

This is the house before we moved in. The front flowerbeds were sparse and in need of care. The pine tree at the corner of the house would drop needles at the slightest touch (plus I just didn’t like it).

Spending a weekend to clean up the front flowerbeds to prepare them for new plants.

I won’t bore you with the whole list just yet but I’ll fill you in on what we accomplished this weekend. I don’t have any of my indoor projects done, and I’m still working on painting the kitchen windows black, so today is all about outside progress.

Starting in the front of the house, I took the scraggly bushes out from one of the front flowerbeds and left the boxwoods, liriope and hydrangea (that I planted last fall). The little pine tree that was losing it’s needles also came down.

Weekend outside DIY projects

One of the previous owners planted azaleas everywhere on our property, even in the middle of the back yard. We had six around our oak tree, all in poor condition, so I dug them all up.

Weekend outside projects

The next bed to get the treatment was the one in front of the porch. There were a couple of junipers that I removed last fall (too many memories from our Illinois house 😉 ) and a few dying bushes. The rest of the dying bushes were dug out this weekend and all we’re left with are a few nandinas.

Weekend outside DIY projects

The last flowerbed that I cleaned up was the one on the side of the front porch. Tons of weeds and 3 scraggly azaleas used to live here. Now it’s a clean slate and ready for something new.

Weekend outside DIY projects

I’ll rake the beds out next weekend and then they’ll all get fresh pine straw. I’m going to take my time to decide before I plant anything new.

This is my ever growing pile of junk, misfit bushes, an unused satellite dish that was still on the roof and some rocks and cinder blocks.

Weekend outside DIY projects

One bright spot was the pretty daffodils that are popping up.

Spending a weekend to clean up the flowerbeds to prepare them for new plants.

I also have a beautiful red camelia bush on the side of the house with tons of blooms.

Spending a weekend to clean up the flowerbeds to prepare them for new plants. Adding curb appeal.

Another surprise was this bird bath that I unearthed in the back yard. After a good cleaning, it was ready for visitors.

I didn’t take any photos of the back yard this time. The only thing we did was rake the leaves and pick up some of the bricks scattered around the property. So many bricks and rocks…

It will take us years to pick them all up.

It was a full and busy weekend that left us tired and sore. If it’s nice next weekend though, we’ll be right back out there.

I’ll keep you posted on our front flowerbeds.

Have you been able to get out and work in the yard yet?

Check out some of the outside projects we did at our last house.

Hanging Outdoor Cafe Lights

Front Flowerbed Makeover


Happy Friday my friends! It’s been a quick week here with lots going on in the kitchen. I have more updates to share, but I wanted to give you a break from all of the kitchen projects I’ve been posting lately, so I thought I’d just share some other happenings going on…like fresh tomatoes, spray paint and all night flea markets.

Fresh garden tomatoes. |

We had a cool and somewhat wet start to summer in Illinois this year, and it’s greatly affected our garden. We’ve been running a few weeks behind but we finally have some tomatoes that are ready to be eaten. The cherry tomatoes are abundant and so sweet and delicious while the big tomatoes have struggled to grow, but we are enjoying every one that we are able to pick.

Fresh garden tomatoes and a robin's egg blue stool. | chatfieldcourt.comThe stool that the tomatoes sit on was a recent $5 garage sale find and it’s, hands down, my most favorite thing right now. It was a lovely shade of green but I wanted to put it in my new kitchen so I could sit and talk to my husband when he’s fixing dinner (yes ladies, he’s not only handy but he likes to cook too 😉 ), so I painted it in this pretty shade of robin’s egg blue. Love it!

A $5 garage sale find painted a pretty shade of robin's egg blue. | chatfieldcourt.comThe wall in this picture is one of the very last ones to get painted (which I’m in the middle of right now). When we moved into this house, every wall was painted in this pinky beige flat wall color. It marks up if you just touch it and forget about wiping it off. I’m so glad to see it go.

A $5 garage sale find painted a pretty shade of robin's egg blue. | chatfieldcourt.comLast weekend we went to an all night flea market, a first for both of us. It opened at 3 p.m. Saturday afternoon and went all the way until 3 a.m. Sunday morning. Crazy, I know. We ended up going around 7 p.m. and it was already crowded, and not at all what I was expecting. I saw a few things that I liked, like these cool vintage pulleys, but the prices were outrageous. The only thing I ended up buying was an oil painting for $2. It was a bit disappointing but it was fun to look around.

Vintage pulleys at the flea market | chatfieldcourt.comThere was fair type food, music, celebrities and lots of vendors. I go to a flea market to look at vintage items but there were a lot of vendors selling things you’d find in a dollar store. Nothing wrong with that, if that’s what you’re looking for, but it’s not for me. One of the vendors had this cute little vintage camper that she lives in. She even let me take a peek inside. It was tiny but so adorable.

Flea market |

Flea market | chatfieldcourt.comWe hit every vendor (I peruse very quickly) and walked out the gates at around 9. The lines to get in were outrageous, hundreds of people, and a lot of them were complaining that they had to wait 2 hours to get in. No thank you!

That’s what’s been happening around here lately, between all the projects in the kitchen.

What have you been up to lately? Have you ever been to an all night flea market?

I share a lot of what’s happening around here on Instagram. I’d love to have you follow along.

My latest project is a DIY mason jar lamp. Have you checked it out yet?

Tutorial on making a DIY mason jar lamp with mirror effect spray and a lamp kit. |


 A rustic flower window box with vintage charm.

rusty flower window box hanging on garage with petunias

I showed you my new, rustic window box that I found at the flea market, and I promised to share what it was and how it looked planted with pretty blooms. It’s taken awhile for the weather to warm up but the flowers have finally grown enough that I can show you.

rusty window box hanging on garage window

rusty window box hanging on garage window

So, what is this thing?

When I posted this earlier, asking what you thought it was, there were a lot of good guesses. One of you smarties knew exactly what it was.

It’s part of an old corn crib conveyor system that carried grain in the cups and was chain driven. I found it at the flea market and knew it would be perfect for a window box for the garage window.

I didn’t want to lose its rustic-ness so I kept it pretty much as is. It did get a good cleaning and a couple of holes in the bottom for drainage, but that’s it.

drilling holes in rusty window box

To hang it up, I put two screws under the window sill and hung the curved edge right on the screws.

After I hung it up the front was hanging low and, when I watered the plants, the water would run out and onto the ground. To fix it I put two small pieces of scrap wood behind it to keep it level. The wood keeps the front up so the flowers could get a proper drink.

rusty window box hanging on garage window planted with petunias

It may not be everyone’s cup of tea but I love that it’s rustic and different.

How many people can say they’re using rusty farm equipment as a flower window box? 😉

rustic window box hanging on garage window with petunias and trailing vines

rustic window box hanging on garage window with petunias and trailing vines

Talking about repurposing…I took an old, metal tomato cage and turned it into a plant stand. Check it out here.

Have you reused or repurposed anything lately? I’d love to hear about it.

Thanks so much for stopping by.

rustic window box hanging on garage window with petunias and trailing vines



This month marks 2 years since we moved into our house and started making it into the place we call home. We had a lot of projects we wanted done on the list, still do, but we’ve been able to cross off quite a few in those two years. The outside of the house, the yard and flowerbeds, was in the roughest shape when we moved in and it’s been slow going getting them looking decent but I think we are finally ready to reveal the front flowerbed. This is what it looked like the day we moved in.

Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

As you can see, it’s not really a flowerbed. Just a bunch of 60-year-old junipers and some trash that always accumulated underneath. Mr. C spent 2 summers removing those bushes. It was back-breaking work but we’re so glad that they’re gone.

Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

The first summer here was spent on the front flowerbed and last summer we worked on the side. Once the front was cleared of bushes and debris, I slowly started adding plants.

Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

During the summer this bed doesn’t get much sun, the front faces North, and we have a huge tree that shades the area, so trying to find plants that do well in shade and need little maintenance (Mr. C’s requirement) was a challenge.

Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

This is a huge bed so I planted it in sections when time allowed and funds were available. The plants I went with here were boxwood, daylillies, hosta, hydrangea and some reedgrass. There were a lot of hosta and daylilies bunched together in the side yard so I brought them out front and replanted them. Last Fall I planted some Allium bulbs here and (to my surprise) they actually came up. I love their purple heads when they bloom and, come next Fall, I’ll be planting some more.

Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

A few weeks ago I finally planted the final section and we added mulch, 4 truck loads of it, for the front and side flowerbed. I also, slowly but surely, edged both flowerbeds. It took me a couple of weeks but just doing that made a huge difference.

Before…Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

After…Front Flowerbed Finally Finished |

I’m still trying to decide what to do with the evergreen that needs a major cut. I like that it provides some privacy and height to the street side of the house but the back is in rough shape and the Mr. does not trim bushes…so he tells me. The rest though is done and the plants I put in last year are already filling out.

Once the side flowerbed is done I’ll share the results.

Have you done any gardening projects lately?

Happy weekend!

Before and After Flowerbed Makeover |



A couple of weekends ago Mr. C ² and I planted some tulip bulbs in our flowerbeds. When we moved in this house in June of 2013, the only plants here were some hosta and about 8, 60-year-old junipers…not exactly a lovely, colorful garden. Well, the junipers are finally gone and now it’s time to plant.

Planting Tulip Bulbs | chatfieldcourt.comI have planted a few bushes in the front of the house but I was waiting for all of the junipers to be removed before we made any big plans. I did know that I wanted to plant some tulip and Allium bulbs so we would have something pretty to look at in the spring. As you can see, I chose yellow tulips and Allium.

Planting Tulip Bulbs | chatfieldcourt.comWe just started with two packages this year, since this is the first time and we’re not sure how they will do. I know that my neighbor has had her bulbs dug up by our nuisance resident squirrels so we had to come up with a plan to protect the bulbs too.

We started in the back where the hosta are and just dug a hole 5 inches deep by about 12 inches square. It was slow going because there were a lot of roots to deal with. We actually dug a bit deeper that 5 inches to loosen the soil some and to make sure there were no big roots in the way. Then we just filled the hole so we had a depth of 5 inches. Next I placed 5 tulip bulbs in the hole, point sticking up.

Planting Tulip Bulbs | chatfieldcourt.comPlanting Tulip Bulbs | chatfieldcourt.comWe started to fill the hole back up and once the hole was almost full, we placed a piece of chicken wire over the soil and covered that with remaining dirt. This is supposed to keep the squirrels and other critters from getting to the bulbs. I’m anxious to see if it really works.

Planting Tulip Bulbs | chatfieldcourt.comI sprinkled some slow release bulb fertilizer over the dirt and covered with the mulch we laid earlier in the summer.

Planting Tulip Bulbs | chatfieldcourt.comWe planted the Allium in the front flowerbed, near the front door, the same way. A few of the bulbs had to be thrown away because of rot but most of them were healthy. After we were done they all got a sprinkling of water. That’s all we need to do until early next Spring when I’ll pull up the chicken wire so the flowers can bloom properly. Once they die back, I’ll replace it (if it works like we planned).

Not an hour after we were done planting I caught the squirrel digging where we had planted. He didn’t get very far, before I ran out the door chasing him like a fool, but the bulbs were ok. 😉

I can’t wait to see them bloom in the Spring!

Did you get to do any Fall planting this year?

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Planting Tulip Bulbs |