I got to check a couple things off my 2011 To Do List today. I am SO very tickled with how everything turned out! I started out on the front porch with the cool porch lights T gave me for Christmas. As with so many home improvement projects, it all went so quickly once I got started, I couldn't figure out why it took me so long to get around to doing it!
First, I had to remove the heeeeeedeeeeeous brass ode to the '80's that was the existing porch light. I am sure it was the bees knees 25 years ago, but today? Not so much. They had pretty cool photo sensors so they would come on at night and turn themselves off in the morning, but that feature had long been rendered useless by the multitudes of mud daubers that made their home on the back side of the light.
I unscrewed the nuts and pulled the old light off. Once I quit being skeeved out by all the cocoons/webs/bug remains, I found this fine example of home improvement. The mounting bracket was screwed into the siding instead of an electrical box. I guess they must have just sided over the box at some point. I was somewhat flummoxed about what to do next. Eventually, I figured out how to make the mounting hardware that came with the new lights work.
It was not without some blond moments, but I got them up. Ta dah!
I was so pleased with how the front porch turned out, that I was inspired to get to work on the light in my entry way. (Also? It doesn't hurt that Chica is coming for a visit this weekend and I want her to see all my pretties!) The main sticking point on this project was that I had to paint a brass fixture black. Turns out I have spray painting anxiety. T kept saying he would do it (he's really good at it), but that was on his time table, not mine. The nagging necessary to get him to do it just wasn't worth the wasted breath. 'Cause I can do anything! Right? Right.
So spray painting. I know what all the right things to do are, I am just too lazy to actually do them. So instead of Naphtha and steel wool, I wiped down the brass with rubbing alcohol and called it a day. I did my best to spray light coats, but that is my downfall with spray painting. I did manage to avoid any drips and the final product looks pretty darn good! (Especially hanging from the 10 ceiling - you can't see the texture added by all the dust blowing around here in west Texas!)
Once everything was dry, I pretty much repeated all the steps I went through on the front porch, minus the insect-related portions of the festivities. Thank goodness!
Even without shades, the newly black chandy was a VAST improvement over the old light. I always thought that one looked like a big spider clinging to the ceiling. Blech.
But with the shades? SQUEE!! I am in love! This fixture is a lot more traditional that my usual style, but I think the beading and eyelash trim make the little shades over the top adorable. I chose black for the chandy to tie in with the wrought iron on the stairs. Usually, I'm a brushed nickel girl, but I don't mind mixing up my finishes some a bit. No need to be too match-y-match-y! (Blasphemy, I know, Sister K!)So here is the finished product of my entry way. I am quite proud of the antique, hand-dyed, hooked rug. My great-grandmother made that! The picture doesn't do it justice. It's gorgeous! I'm glad I found a place to use it! My entry table is made with four plaster columns I have had since college. I just throw a runner on top and I am good to go. Leopard, of course. I think every room can use a little animal print, and I often use it as a neutral.
I really like how the new hanging fixture adds some presence to the entry hall. It looks much more deliberate and not like some leftover the builder slapped up there. And better yet? This project was FREE! I swapped out my old kitchen hanging fixture with the one at the ranch, so the light was free. I painted it with high gloss black spray paint I had left over from some other project. The shades were a birthday present from Sister K for a fixture back in Small Town. Love that!