Simple. Beautiful.

My kitchen has a garden window.  I don’t like it.

For the life of me I have not been able to decorate it well.

And like many garden windows it has a wire shelf which we sometimes put on, and sometimes take off.  It’s ugly but functional.

I’ve put plants in there – like you’re supposed to.  But it looked like I was living in a rainforest.  And it got really dirty.  Also, in case you weren’t aware, spiders and other creepy-crawlies enjoy living in the rainforest.  Strike one.

I tried putting pictures in my window but they didn’t really look right.  In fact, I thought they looked a little silly.  Strike two.

For the last two years I have tried to grow basil in my window.  Two words.  Fruit flies.  Strike three.

And so, the garden window has been the perpetual eyesore of my kitchen house.

This is what happens when you give up.

A catch-all for clutter.  Pens, pencils, mail, coupons, knick-knacks, dust, dirt, a couple of spiders….  My husband also kept his emergency weather radio and mini weather station on there.  Which I find ironic, seeing as how you can just peer out the actual window to view the weather conditions.

This past weekend I resolved to tackle it once and for all.  Because in case you haven’t heard, our house is small.  And a small house + clutter = a cramped house.

One problem:  I was born without the home-decorating gene, which posed a bit of a problem.

So I channeled my inner Lacie, a friend of mine who is the absolute authority on all things beautiful.  She has been gifted with great instincts and an eye for beauty, so I thought to myself “What would Lacie do with this mess?”

I was fairly sure she would envision something simple and uncluttered.  I also thought she would veto the ugly wire shelf and instead find a way to use the vertical space without blocking too much sunlight.

After a couple of (uninspired) trips to the craft store and some frustrating brainstorming sessions with my husband (“Where will I put my weather station?” “Not in my window.”) I settled on a design.

It started with repurposing a vase that was collecting dust in our closet.  You know those vases that you get when your sweetie sends you flowers?  The ones that usually end up in the box to Goodwill?  Well, I Rusty spray-painted one.  [You should probably know that I don’t often do my own craft projects.  My husband is more of the get-er-done type.  We make a good team.]

Quick props to the hubs. I asked him to get metallic gold. He came back with copper because he thought it would look better. Eyeroll. But the color turned out amazing. Well done, Rusty!

I also bought some letters at Michael’s to spell out GRATEFUL because that’s how I’ve been feeling lately.  Some black spray paint gave them a really clean appearance.  Again, a great paint job by Rusty.

We staggered the letters and filled the vase with fake flowers.  Now, the fake flowers are definitely not Lacie, but since I didn’t want the expense of filling the vase regularly, or the effort of cleaning up pollen and petals all the time, fake flowers won hands-down.

I’m pretty happy with the end result.  I feel like my beautiful kitchen finally has a garden window it can be proud of!

[Quick vase-painting tutorial.  Wash & dry vase.  Spray paint inside vase.  Paint will drip down the edges, gently rotate vase so inside is coated.  Dry upside-down with mouth propped slightly so air can get in and excess paint can drip out.  Repeat with as many coats as necessary to get your desired shade.]

Today’s post is linked to “Works For Me Wednesdays,” tips to make your family’s life easier.  WFMW is hosted by Kristen at We Are THAT Family.


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