Earlier this year I moved to Washington, D.C., into an apartment long on charm and views, and short on size. Much to my surprise, I'm loving living small. No more clinging to boring or unloved items; I feel free to throw things and out and start afresh (as I mentioned on the Great Couch Hunt). So I have. And, I decided that, other than upholstery and textiles, I'm decorating vintage as much as possible. EBay, One King's Lane, and antique stores are my new best friends. Thrill of the hunt! Here are a few first finds.

Pattern play - I had fun piling up the kitchen linens for a colorful effect atop the newly painted table!

BEFORE:  I scored this diminutive table in a vintage shop down South for around $100. It's English-made, and I fell in love with the delicate bamboo carving. Since I live in a studio, it was the ideal size for dining in - but not the ideal color. By painting it a high-gloss black, it would make a nice set with my bamboo fretwork dining chairs from Ballard Designs.

AFTER! A coat of primer and some black enamel, and it's a matched set! I love the way it turned out (much better than I loved painting each and every carving...). It makes a sweet little seating area, and when I move to a larger home, a nice side or card table. I'll need to learn to play...

BEFORE:  I found this sideboard on eBay for $145. It's by Broyhill, and not exactly inheritance material, but I loved the mix of bamboo carved border and turned legs. In a rather bold, but ineffective effort, the previous owner had attempted to go Asian country with cream paint and slate blue hardware. Hmmmm...

AFTER:  a lot of elbow grease later (stripping hardware is a pain!) and with a new coat of paint, it's reborn. Decorating is still in process but I particularly like it flanked by the green foo dogs. Best of all? It has a TON of storage - perfect for a small space.

My new place is a work in progress. I'll update you as things move along!
All images, my own.


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