Deuce Cities Henhouse

Entryway : Potentsch Rugs

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Happy Friday, peoples! I am in desperate need of a medium sized rug for the front entryway. I’ve been looking for a solid two months now and have found a bunch of potential contenders, but every time I think I’ve found “the one” I find an even better rug somewhere else. The space needs a rug mostly for practical reasons. We need a spot for boots and shoes to go when we’re having folks over during the winter months, so it needs to be durable. It also needs to be cute, because it will help to unify the space (aka tie that shit together).

Anyways, right now I have heart eyes for number 5, but a week ago it was 16, and a little before that it was 9. You get the picture.

Hopefully something will just feel right soon, and hopefully that will happen the same time as some sort of amazing sale. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

Simple Entryway with round mirror and midcentury dresser

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in Inspiration

My Favorite Spray Paints

+++ Blush | Black | White | Copper +++

Hello, I love spray paint. I’ve never been afraid of buying an Ikea veneered dresser, brown outdoor furniture, orange clearance aisle lamps, or a yellow thrift store vase because it doesn’t come in the right color. BECAUSE, spray paint gives me the power to make all of the things all of my favorite shades of flat black, chalky white, pale pink or copper. I’ve come to have a steady supply of these four essential colors oh hand, at all times, no questions asked. I know it can be overwhelming to stare down that hardware store aisle and see an abundant amount of color, finish and brand options, Imma help you wit dat. As a bonus, I’ll pass a long a few tips for achieving a perfect finish. I’d like to think that I have developed a pretty solid method.


Choose a ventilated location. I almost always spray outside, if I have to, I’ll do it in the garage. I try and save projects for the non-winter months, but since you can’t always know when you need a spray paint fix, you can use a utility room or something similar for a quick project.

Which brings me to my next tip, spray paint doesn’t like the cold. Don’t spray paint outdoors in cold weather, k?

Use a cardboard box to prevent overspray. Don’t want your grass to sport a cool outline of whatever it is that you are painting? Then use that large cardboard amazon box as a spray booth, dummy.

A spray paint job doesn’t necessarily mean a quick job, take your time to apply thin even coats of paint.

Hold the spray paint can at least 10″ from the surface of your project, this is the easiest and best way to avoid drips.

Don’t hold the nozzle down! Spray in short quick bursts.

Keep the can in motion, don’t rest on one spot for too long or bad things will happen.

Clean the nozzle with a pin or towel at the end of each project. I can’t tell you how many cans of clogged up spray paint it has taken me to learn this lesson.



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in Cool Things

Colors that Kill Me

Blush, Blue & Black

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I think I’ve been obsessed with blues and pinks for three or four years now. As time goes on the blues become darker and more dynamic and the pinks more less saturated and more muted with yellow undertones. It kills me, like seriously, I kinda feel weak in the knees when I look at some of these images. I’ve been noticing the change in my pinterest boards too, I nearly pin every image I come across with references to this ultimate palette.

I’ve been thinking the living room needs to surrender and give into my absolute need for a darker hue. As it sits, it’s a dark teal and it plays nicely with our dark wood moldings, but I think I’d love it even more if I could push it a shade darker, skimping on the green and upping the blue slightly. Probably worth the gallon of paint and the couple hours of work, don’t you think?

Blush, Blue & Copper

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Blush, Teal & Black

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My August Garden

Here we are, the last garden post of the summer. This year, I can honestly say that I am ready for the fall to come, and for that big autumnal change to happen. Not only am I ready for the colder fall days ahead, but this season change signifies big change for my day-to-day world. Finn started school last week, and today is Gus’ first day at his new school. Life will be different around here. I have time in my days now to begin to focus on the house, this blog, and to begin the process of figuring out how I will define myself in the future days, weeks and months as my full-time mom job winds down. I’m excited.

Okay, so garden stuff. The garden is all ready for the fall, some of the hostas have begun to yellow and I can tell chilly days are right around the corner. Somewhere around the beginning of August I give up on weeding and caring too much about the routine maintenance of gardening. I set timers for the sprinklers and I mow less often, we begin to spend less and less time in the backyard and more time on the porch, as we can all sense that the summer is winding down.

I had some successes this summer, and some fails. The Vanilla Strawberry peegee hydrangea tree has been a great addition to the gardens, adding height and color nearly all summer long. I was also pleasantly surprised by my rose bush, it responded well to not being cut back last fall, and as a result, is huge this year. I had a rough year with my veggie garden, and I know I’ll be reading up over the winter trying to figure strategies for gardening next year. I’m considering using plants from the nursery as opposed to sowing from seed in the spring, I’d love to hear pros and cons of this if you have experience. I have ideas of adding one more sunny vegetable bed in the spot on the side of the house where the orange day lilies are now. The day lilies burn out towards the end of the summer and I think tomatoes or peppers might benefit from the space better than the lilies. The soaker hose irrigation system sprung a leak early on and I never felt confident leaving it on a timer (in fear that I’d flood my gardens), and because of that the gardens didn’t get watered as much as they should have. Next year will be the year.

It’s crazy to think that in less than a months time, the gardens will all be put to bed, waiting for winter. I will be looking forward to seeing them next spring, hopefully bigger and stronger than ever, but I’m also looking to having one less thing to worry about, and instead enjoy spending time with the kids (now that I don’t have to see them all the time), being cozy and focusing on the house.


The impatiens pictured above are insane this year! I grew these “sunny lady” impatiens from seed. These impatiens can tolerate a little sun, and I had a spot for them that was a little sunny in the afternoons. These babes have thrived here and are taking over (in a good way) growing about 12″ hight and providing amazing salmon blooms. I will for sure be doing this again next year.


Strawberry Vanilla Hydrangea

This tree has been a great investment in lush-backyard-vibes. It started blooming towards then end of June, was white all July as its blooms continued to fill in, and its petals have turned muted pink.


Painted Ferns



These Southern Comfort heuchera that I planted along the border have been a great addition to the side garden at the base of the Japanese maple, they provide a good amount of color even when they aren’t flowering. If I could do it all again I would use heuchera as my go filler perennial instead of hosta.


Rose Bush

Now that I realize that I shouldn’t be cutting back my rose bush every year, it has thrived. It’s nearly as tall as I am, and up to a week ago was full of pink and yellow blooms. Hopefully I will have just as good of luck with my new peach climbing rose that I have plans of training to go along the back of the fence.


Front Garden Bed


Garden Beds

I’m worried about the Japanese Maple, some of the leaves have begun to curl and turn brown. Fungus was what led to the demise of my Bloodgood Japanese Maple last year, and I’m hoping that’s not what is happening to this one too. I have my fingers crossed, I suppose I’ll know next spring if it makes it or not. I might die if it doesn’t make it.


Autumn Joy Sedum


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in gardening

Entryway : Coat Hooks

Simple coat hooks made with dowels, leather and copper
Hey budz. The entryway progress continues slowly but surely! Our house has a lot of good things going for it, but one of the things it doesn’t have is a coat closet. Instead it has this really large (in proportion to our house) entryway that doesn’t serve a whole lot of purpose. It basically consists of our stair case, a weird wall cut in half diagonally by the stairs, a bay of piano windows, and a bench seat that covers a radiator. These reasons are why it has taken me six years to come up with a viable plan for the space.

In the winter time us Allens rarely use the front entry, we park the cars in the garage and we exit and enter only through the back door. We use our back mudroom to hang our coats, and we stowaway our boots in our shoe cabinet. When our friends and fam come to visit it’s a different story. They enter through the front door, and have nowhere to hang there coats. When this happens, the radiator/bench wears two hats, functioning as a coat collector and jacket warmer. Hooks were long over due, it was time to install some! My pals need a place to hang there shit. I need my entryway to not be a disheveled chaotic jacket den all winter long.

Of course this is something that I could have done forever ago, but because of this whole lack of a vision for the space thing, I never felt like it was worth doing. Now I’ve got a plan, and a new affinity for wood dowels, copper and leather. Put it all together and you get a wood and leather dowel coat hook with copper accents. Seems logical. Here’s how you can do it too:

Leather, Wood and Copper Coat Hooks

Screw & Dowel
Using a 1/8″ drill bit make a hole in the center of the dowel approximately 1 ½” deep. Insert one end of the dowel screw into the wood dowel. Use a pliers to help sink the screw. Stop when you’ve reached half way. Using a 1/8″ drill bit, pre-drill holes in the top and bottom of the leather (about a ½ from each end)

Anchors Away
In the wall, drill holes for the anchors using a 5/8″ bit. If you are drilling into plaster you may have to also drill into the lath. Use a hammer and lightly pound the anchor into the hole. Take the dowel and sandwich the leather (folded in half) between the dowel and anchor. Screw the dowel into the wall. Add the copper caps, if needed use an adhesive to hold in place :)

DIY Coat Hooks using Copper, Wood Dowel, and Leather Strapping
There’s still a bit more work to do in the old entryway. I am on the hunt for a rug and some artwork, and I might have to upholster one more bench cushion (have I mentioned that I’m not a fan of sewing), but we’re close, and it’s already improved the lack of function and general prettiness ten fold.

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in Around the House, DIY, How-To