Belgian Linen Arrives!

linen2Check out this beautiful Belgian linen!


A five-yard roll arrived last week during the great Minnesota melt, so it was delivered to a mostly dry front porch. (Yes, it IS time to remove the expired holiday decor of birch branches and pine garland!)

linen4The beautiful herringbone pattern in this linen is subtle, but perfect. This fabric will be used to create a slipcover for a Minneapolis client’s antique, drop-leaf dining table. The table belonged to her mother, but she doesn’t need it to function as such. We’re using it as a console instead.

A tailored slipcover in this wonderful fabric will impart a casually elegant vibe. The perfect match for the rest of the room.

This will be off to the seamstress soon! Can’t wait to share it with you!


Reclaim Project 1: The Entertainment Cabinet!

MEcabFIRSTEvery decor project has elements that make it unlike any other, and a three-room project I’m working on in Minneapolis is a great example! Specific challenges required us to go custom for a small entertainment cabinet that needed to house a woofer and other stereo components!

MEcartcollage2Our floor plan calls for placing this cabinet beneath a living room windowsill in the client’s early 1900s home, setting the height dimension for this piece. And because woofers require no impediment to sound waves, the cabinet front needs to be porous.


Radiator screening — lightweight and patterned — was a good choice for the door panels. Metal screening has another attribute I favor: the ability to be made to look old when it’s not!


Here’s that same aluminum radiator screen after it’s been painted and antiqued. It looks naturally aged with the appearance of patina built up over time!


I started with a coat of Rustoleum metal primer, then brushed on a first coat of Modern Masters iron paint. When dry, a second coat is applied. Then, an acidic patina activator is applied when the second coat of iron paint is still wet. A combination of spraying and sponging yields the uneven look that mimics a true patina.




This cabinet will also use reclaim elements. Here are the cabinet feet…


… which started their journey as stair spindles!

They received the same patina treatment.


For less than $4, this slightly curved handle — oil-rubbed bronze over a copper-lookalike finish — provides a lot of style. Handles will be placed vertically!

The aqua patination and touches of copper color will work great in this room, where we used a coral-y terra cotta on the walls, and touches of teal in the upholstery. More on those choices and palette later!

This piece is at the reclaim carpenter’s now! Can’t wait to share the finished piece! We’ve got a second reclaim project, a long, narrow console, planned for this client’s all-season sunroom. More to come!



Warming Trend On A Cold Day!


The Winter Without End has begun to wear a bit. I sat down to post about a chaise lounge project, and found myself thinking about one of my favorite upholstery fabrics instead,  simply because I wanted to look at something bright and happy.


I’ve used this fun Richloom”Wizard” fabric before — I love it here on this fun retro chair! — and even though it has a gunmetal gray background, it is anything but neutral.


The perfect, mood-perking fabric!


It certainly gave this chair a boost!


A solidly built estate sale find with mismatched seat and back materials, this chair nonetheless had swell lines. Too bad they were swallowed up in the cheesy gold velour!

Removing the tufting on both ends provided a much more modern look. I drybrushed the chair with French Linen Chalk Paint by Annie Sloan®. Before: The caning looked contemporary but the fabric was dated. After: the dry-brushed paint treatment gave the caning and wood frame an aged, more elegant look, making the contemporary floral print the frame’s perfect foil.

Love when that happens!

This chair has long since gone to a good home, but its good karma lingers. The bright, happy posies provide a harbinger of better weather to come!


We Have a Winner!

Becky Haugsdal of New Town, N.D., you are the lucky winner of the free copy of the latest Flea Market Style magazine!

Please contact me at!

I will mail your copy once I have your address!

Thanks to all for participating!

Watch this space; later this month we’ll be giving away a pair of Early Bird tickets to the Junk Bonanza at Canterbury Park, April 10-12!


Lark Nest on Vacation, Part 1


Lark Nest Design flew the coop recently, to beautiful San Marcos, Calif., for a few days respite in the beautiful nest of Fabulous Friend Beret.

FFB has only just moved in, but is already making the most of her one-level living, painting vibrant Palm Beach-style stripes on the wall…bh12

…and adding gorgeous cirtrus accents in her California abode!

Her love of kitschy figurines is everywhere! From vignettes on a side table…bh1

…to floral arrangments on the mantel…


…to  those tucked here and there as an accent. Kitsch isn’t for everyone, but her deft touch with this decor element is not only welcoming, but masterful!


That style extended to the guest bedroom (The “North Dakota Suite”), where we were greeted with this loving and comforting piece of needlepoint work.


Even the embroidered pillowcases in the guest suite emanated friendliness, beckoning weary travelers for a good night’s sleep!


The guest bathroom hand towel, rolled up and waiting sink-side, bore a lovely heart-shaped rock found at nearby Power Point Beach. Every touch in FFB’s house shouted, “We are happy you are here!”

A happy print from contemporary designer Orla Kiely updated a chandelier…


…and dried roses from a birthday bouquet from friend Bridget In Canada lent a welcome and loving touch to the baby grand piano in the living room!


Even the bar was fab! FFB clad her dining room walls in gorgeous coral!


No element was too small to escape FFB’s loving ministrations! Love the ND cowboy strumming a guitar among the spiritous libations!


FFB hosted a dinner party for eight during our visit. No detail was spared, from the hand-strung kumquat embellishments on each napkin, to the beautiful orange tulips wrapped within!

Making one’s guests feel happy, welcome and at home is an art worth perfecting!

FFB  is unparalleled in this!

We’re home now, and lovely memories cloak us like a throw made of finest cashmere!

A loved guest is a happy guest!

Wishing you wonderful experiences in your next role as host or guest!


Spring Will Come!


Snapped this pic quickly on my way out the door to a client appointment this morning!


A large vase of cherry blossom branches holds court over my dining room console right now, a joyous and riotous tangle of blush-colored petals and swelling buds.

To me they say, Spring will arrive!

So while snowbanks hold sway outside my window, inside, these bright branches warm my heart.

Happy Valentine’s Day!


Win a Copy of the Spring Flea Market Style Mag!


I wear a lot of “hats” at Lark Nest Design, including one as social media director and project builder for this chic publication, packed with utility, ideas and gorgeous homes exemplifying the repurposing life!

The Spring issue of this fab mag is not due on newsstands or in stores until Monday, but my box of copies has arrived from the publisher, and I’m eager to share!

To win a copy, just:

1. Like Lark Nest Design on Facebook, here


2. Leave a “like” AND A COMMENT on my Facebook page, here!

The contest is open until 5 p.m. CST Saturday, Feb. 15!

 I’ll pick a winner via random number generator and announce it via FB and this blog!

Happy junking!


Office Reno: Update!


A very quick update on the St. Louis Park home office renovation in progress! You’ll remember all of the “hot” fabric and paint colors on tap for upholstery, draperies, fabric board, rug and accent furniture.


 This post is about the perfect foil for all of that wattage!

Pictured up top are the three high-end laminates that were being considered for the wall-t0-wall custom desk and storage piece.


The winner is this Wilsonart mottled marble lookalike, Italian White di Pesco. The finish is matte, and a lot of style for the price.

It will pair with a “greige” Color Stories paint by Benjamin Moore for the walls, Old Soul CSP 65. I love the Color Stories line because of its higher-than-average number of pigments in each color. The process makes for rich colors with lots of depth!

lhfpaint2It really is a spectacular look, rich and neutral at the same time, and a wonderful counterpoint to the vibrant, modern fabrics.

The carpenter is putting finishing touches to several projects before painting commences. There will be more to share in a few weeks!



An End Table Shows its Mettle!

 DGmettleHere’s another piece of the guest bedroom makeover project in Edina. And yes, the bones of this table also mimic the cool geometric pattern of the Thom Filicia fabric in the curtains, above!

(Just like this table from an earlier post!)


The look of this silvered end table was achieved using MetalTech, a Texturline product. The color is Mercury, and while this light has it reading a bit blue, it’s actually a truer silver, as you’ll see in a later picture, shot in natural, outdoor light.


I started with this  butler tray-style end table  from Threshold’s line for Target, brimming with style. We needed something with a very slim profile for the compact space, and the lines of this piece fit perfectly. At $67, it was also budget-friendly! (While this was a good-looking table just the way it was,  the room already had its quota of espresso-colored wood. So lightening up was in order!)


The beautiful metallic sheen glimmers in this paint!

While I used MetalTechfor this job, a good over-the-counter choice for DIYers is Benjamin Moore’s Molten Metallics line. While MM is advertised as having the look of hammered metal, I think the finish is even more random and subtle than hammered, which I love.


After a good deglossing, a first coat of paint prepped the table. It took two coats and a touchup to finish. I used a relatively light hand in order to let the original grain show through.

MM4In natural light, its true, matte silver finish glows. With a coat of water-based seal, it was good to go!

It’s a perfect foil for the guest bedroom’s darker-hued walls, and pairs with a chunkier West Elm end table with an aluminum finish. Can’t wait to share pictures from the finished project!



Hot! Hot! Hot!



Maybe it’s the relentless onslaught of Midwestern winter, or just a yearning for more tropical temps, but this gorgeous Ikat screamed “take me home” last week, and so I did!

Admittedly, I’ve been in a “hot” color state of mind. You’ll recall the plum and  fuchsia palette from this post last week on a home office renovation!

I unearthed this fabric on a road trip to a favorite textile haunt last week. It should be perfect for this armchair, which has been presiding over a pile in the garage since last fall!


The chair was a gift from pal Shayne Barsness, a vintage maven who has recently focused her considerable talents onto the jewelry-making arm of her business. Shayne & Coco uses castoff and vintage elements to create the most amazing necklaces, bracelets and earrings! Check out this cool Shayne & Coco bracelet, created around an old Oddfellows Lodge medallion with vintage cabochon pearls:


Love! This chair, like the bracelet elements, will be re-created as something fun!

It needs a coat of paint (still mulling! Sand? White? Palest apricot?) and a new cushion, front and back. I may reshape the profile of the seat back, too. This fabric will rock the new look!

Stay tuned for the final product, destined for the fabulous Foxglove Market and Studio on Grand Avenue in St. Paul! Wishing you warm temperatures and hot fabrics!