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pillows, upholstery & a dresser


I had a very productive day today and it felt great. I made three pillows, upholstered an arm chair, painted a piece of furniture and caulked and primed some trim.  Whew!  There are a few things that are contributing to the flurry of activity.  First of all, we have a big photo shoot happening over the next two days.  Second, I need to take some more shots for the cover of my book.  Lastly, we are soooo close to finishing some projects that have dragged on for years, so I’m ready to have things done.

Here’s one of the pillows I made…

A good friend of my mother-in-law gave this unfinished needlework piece to me and the colors were perfect for my house.  The second pillow is a tea towel with simple ties on each side.

I’ll show the pillow and the upholstered chair another day.  I ran out of light today.  I will share the piece of furniture I painted, though, since we were all missing my furniture projects.  Here’s the “before”…

…and how it looks now…

It’s a pretty typical “Miss Mustard Seed” piece.  I refinished the top in a dark walnut stain with a waxed finish and the base is painted in ASCP Paris Gray with Old White detail.

And here are the winners of my weekend giveaways…

Trish from Uncommon Designs  is the winner of the Haven Conference ticket


the winner of the $150 Post Road Vintage giveaway is Sarah (swade148)


If you would like to learn more about Heather, the woman behind Post Road Vintage, you can follow her blog and if you’re thinking about making a purchase from her online shop, you will get a 10% discount by subscribing to her newsletter.

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  1. You are amazing. I took a nap today. A long one. LOL But, I have been in your shoes. I remember the 4am mornings getting ready for my photo shoot. It will be amazing!

  2. wow…very crazy busy day….glad you got so much accomplished! Funny how @ times a deadline is the impetuous! I seem to be most creative when under pressure!
    Congratulations to Trish & Sarah! Yeah!
    Have a great week!

    • Terri Stewart says:

      I am the same way, I do so much better when I have a deadline. What’s up with that? Lol! I love reading your blogs everyday.
      Thank you

  3. Oh my gosh, you are one busy woman. I love the dresser redo and can’t wait to see the other projects

  4. Love those pillows! And that chair!
    Congrats to the winners!

  5. I love the cushions, but WOW the drawers turned out fantastic, you must be so pleased

  6. First of all it is incredible how much you do. unbelievable. And then my heart skipped a beat when I saw the pillow with pom poms. I make pillows and loooooooove pom poms but Americans don’t seem interested in them any more. Everybody wants knife edge pillows. Boring. But if you are showing pom poms I can only hope that everybody will want what you have.

    • I love pom-poms, but I’ve also got English on my Mother’s side and seem to LOVE all things English. I’m not very good at it, like my mother is, but I try. :) I LOVE color, esp. vintage. I agree, my heart skipped a beat, too! :)

    • Miss Mustard Seed says:

      Yeah, I love pom-poms, too! I think they look refined and playful all at the same time…especially in a bright green.

  7. That dresser is gorgeous. Have you tried the new chalk and clay based green paint from CeCe Caldwell? It is great…no voc, no odor and the wax has no petroleum and no odor. It has gorgeous colors too.

  8. The dresser is beautiful!

  9. I love the paris grey on the dresser! Crazy day, but it’s great to see all you accomplish in one day. I’ve been fighting with poor light for days. I hate when the light isn’t right when I want it to be.

  10. I think I would be afraid to be in the same room(s) with you when you are creating!! But I’d love to be a fly on the wall watching and learning. Be sure to take care of you!

  11. LOVE that dresser!! I just finished one myself using Aubusson Blue.

  12. Everything looks amazing, of course♥ I have an old door very similar to this, but mine is hanging on the wall:) You inspire me to the hilt Miss Mustard Seed! (Totally just made this saying up, I know it doesn’t really exist:) Have a wonderful night rock star!

  13. Congratulations to “Uncommon Designs” by the way! Lucky girl♥

  14. You are one busy lady!! Always love coming here to check in on you…motivates me to get my projects DONE!!! LOVE what you do!

  15. Wow, I’m amazed at the amount you can accomplish in a day! And everything looks great, too! Keep up the good work. It inspires so many people!

  16. Love the pillows!!! Gorgeous! And the dresser is fab!!
    You have me exhausted!! You get so much done in one day!! Wowzers girl!!

  17. Wow!! You go girl:) That is one productive day! The furniture is lovely, as always! And the pillows are great. Can’t wait to see the reupholster job too. Hope your photo shoots go great!

  18. I looooooove the wreath in the background! Could you tell me more about how you made it? And also I noticed the barn boards behind the dresser (i’m obsessed with bard boards), did you make that? Where did you get them? Thanks!

  19. Lynn Ehrlich says:

    Is the dresser going to Lucketts? I have missed your furniture projects!


  20. I love your pillows, especially that tie one and the piece of furniture is gorgeous – simple and elegant. Thanks for the inspiration.

  21. I am a novice at painting furniture and would like to ask you a few questions. Do you sand and prime
    when you are painting the furniture and not staining it. What kind of paint is the best for painting furniture.

    • Miss Mustard Seed says:

      It depends on the kind of paint you’re using. If you use a chalk paint, you don’t have to sand prior. If you’re using a latex and bonsing primer, you should sand to give the surface some tooth. It also depends on how glossy the finish is on the piece you’re painting. If it’s slick, it certainly won’t hurt to sand it lightly.

  22. I agree on the comments re: pom poms! I really like them but they aren’t popular here right now, maybe because MMS put this up, it will be all the rage and we can embrace the pompoms, lol!

    • I am excited thinking about it. I’m going to make some pillows now with pom pom. I’ve been told it’s women of a “certain age” that like them but I’m easily old enough to be MMS’s mother.

  23. Congrats to the lucky winners! Too bad I wasn’t closer to Haven, I would have participated.

    I’m happy to see a piece of furniture today and I can tell by the other readers, they are too! I love the transformation of the items you had on the top of the dresser too! Of course, the pillows are always pretty that you make. You had inspired me in the pillow dept. to start making them again & they’ve done well! Hope you get well rested for all your upcoming events!

  24. hey girl! i love your work!

    follow my new blog, if you wish of course….


  25. I love those super productive days! Love the dresser and the whole transformation! Gotta go get productive myself!

  26. Wow, now that’s a full days work! I love that first pillow from the reclaimed needlework.

  27. Hi Marian…I just love that needlework pillow. I am re-doing two antique furniture pieces (one a French upholstered bed and the other an antique piano bench – both have needlepoint on them. I could make some pillows out of them. Wish they were the colors of your pillow (beautiful – that would go in my house as well!!) – but that’s why I am changing the fabric on both pieces (not in love with the colors! Very standard pale beige-gray with pink roses).

    You are one workaholic – but when you have deadlines – it makes you scramble.


  28. Love that needlepoint pillow. I have been collecting old needlepoint canvases (already completed) with the dream of upholstering the seats or the backs of my breakfast room chairs, all in a different floral pattern. I almost have enough. Would love to see this old craft make a come back and it just might with beautiful pillows like the one you just completed.

  29. I agree with the comment above! LOVE the needlepoint pillow. Do you sell these at Luckets or on an etsy store? Would love to see more ideas of what to do with old needlepoint…I find these old things all the time, but just don’t know what to do with them…

  30. lorene halfmann says:

    I got tears when I saw the needlepoint pillow! I grew up in the middle of cotton fields in central West Texas, and I can’t look at cotton without thinking of my sweet farmer-daddy and my childhood. I want to agree with everyone’s comments, you are AMAZING! I have been following you for about a year, and I can’t wait to read your post each day. Super talented, but even better, I feel like you are an old friend!

    • PEGGY SMITH says:

      My thoughts exactly!!! I am a farmer’s daughter and a farmer’s wife. I even did this same canvas many years ago.

  31. Sandy says:

    MMS, you ALWAYS have such awesome projects….NOW if you could just rub off some of your energy upon me…I would be so grateful!
    Also, where in the world did you get that amazing wire bin with the clay pots, on yesterday’s blog???

    Thanks for the daily “pick me up”!

  32. great pillows and love the gate/fence? behind the cabinet. Wish I had an ounce of your creativity and energy. Looking forward to seeing your next project!

  33. Also, what brand of chalk paint do you use?

  34. I am so blessed to have won the Haven ticket! I never win anything and for me this was the giveaway of all giveaways! Thanks so much! I am just SO excited!

  35. It sounds as though you packed more than 24 hours into the day. Everything looks great. I really love the pillows.

  36. Margaret says:

    Late on this, but your hair is really nice, and so is the new blog photo.

    The right trim on a pillow makes it so much more interesting. I can remember my Home-EC teacher trying to teach us the fine art of tatting, and not one of us girls listened. Every little detail from our past, incorporated into our spaces, ones that remind us of our past, and can elicit a smile, is certainly a gift.

  37. I just finished an ASCP workshop on Sunday and Paris Grey is the colour I have in mind for a piece I’ve had for years. Love that I got to see a large piece so soon afterwards! It’s awesome, so I’m now feeling pretty committed to it. Thanks for sharing this piece!

  38. A very busy and productive day. I love the needlework pillow. The bureau looks amazing, too.

  39. Sharon says:

    Are you on crack? :)

  40. Cathy says:

    Love your stuff, and the post on his ways are higher than ours. Isn’t that the truth! Where did you get the tea towels with the stripe for the pillow?

  41. Thank you for the sensible critique. Me & my cousin were just preparing to do some research on this. We got a book from our local library but I think I learned better from this post. I’m very glad to see such great info being shared freely out there…

  42. My daughter has a table I am about to paint. The base will be black and the top is a butcher block now. I think it would look better to stain it a little darker like you did with this chest. Question – can I just add stain over the butcher block or do I have to strip it or something?


  1. […] by a piece I saw at Miss Mustard Seed’s blog,  I applied a stain to the top (don’t advise staining when its 30 degrees outside) […]

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