Saturday Spotlight: Life Behind the Blogger

 Saturday Spotlight: Life Behind the Blogger is a feature done each Saturday that introduces you to a blogger you may already know or a new blogger for you to get to know. This feature gives you a peak into the personal life of the blogger.  Getting to know the special person behind the beautiful blog.

There is so much talent and inspiration in blogland so enjoy getting to know these talented bloggers each Saturday.

Mary from Orphans With Makeup

 Happy Saturday.  Love the week ends and Love that it is Saturday and time for  Spotlight.  This week I have Mary from Orphans With Makeup to feature.  Mary is one of our Northern neighbors and lives right outside Montreal.   Mary has a wonderful talented way with furniture reloves.   
So I am excited for you to meet and get to know Mary today.  Enjoy.

Hello new friends,

I’m so thrilled to be guest posting today.  Thank you so much Kris.

My name is Mary Vitullo.   I am a blogger at Orphans With Makeup in Saint-Hubert, Québec, a suburb of Montréal.  As the name implies, my furniture and thrifted finds are my little “Orphans” and my paint is the “Makeup”.  I have always been passionate about home decor and can never seem to quench my thirst for it.  My blog is mainly about repurposing vintage and antique furniture and styling the finished pieces to show them in their best light.

So, a little of where I live….. Saint-Hubert is a 25 minute drive from our beautiful City of Montréal.

Et oui!!  As you may or may not know, French is the official language here in Québec.  So if you were to come visit, French is the main language you would hear.  All of our public signs are in the French language.  Some parts of Montréal, like our Old Montreal, with its cobblestone streets, feels and looks like Old Europe.


Downtown Montréal comes alive in the summer months with our numerous outdoor festivals.

Our famous Montreal International Jazz Festival

About me……..  I am a wife and mother to three (almost adult) boys.  

This family picture was actually taken about four years ago, so my boys are a little bit older.  It is so hard to schedule a family portrait!

I left my job as a Legal Assistant about 8 years ago to be a stay-at-home mom.  A few years ago i had an odd piece of furniture to sell.  I thought the only way I was ever going to sell that piece of furniture was to style it in the prettiest setting and take beautiful images of it.  That seemed to work and that odd piece sold on the first day of listing it.  That slowly started me thinking of re-purposing furniture and selling them.  At the same time, I wanted to share my passion for decorating on a budget with like-mind people and that’s how Orphans With MakeUp came to be.

One of my first scores was this Ikea sideboard I picked up for $60.00.  I was amazed at what just a little elbow grease and some paint could do.

Some more of my favorite furniture projects.

Pretty in Pink

Re-purposed media cabinet into an armoire.

Robin’s Egg Blue Dresser

Chippy vanity.

Restoration Hardware cane-back chairs.  This was my first commissioned contract.  My client had ordered 4 of these chairs and had them shipped to my home to have them painted White.  At that time, Restoration Hardware did not carry these famous Louis XVI chairs in White.  I like to think that they saw my White version and then decided to now carry them in their line.  Ha Ha Ha!

Creating a stain with vinegar and steel wool.

(A refreshed tea-cart.)

(An elegant grey sideboard.)

(Sometimes you have to get creative when it comes to photographing a plain white table, so why not in the SNOW!)

(My driftwood-look dresser.)

(A dresser now elegant in Black.)

…….and some DIY projects.

(Up-cycled rubber mat to look like antique scrollwork.  I am always inspired by Pinterest.)

(Thrifted serving trays into plate chargers.)

So that is a little glimpse of what I do.

Hope you will come by and visit my blog  Orphans With Makeup.  You can also find me on FacebookPinterest and Google+


Thank you Mary for sharing a little about yourself with us.  Please take a few minutes and hop over to check out Mary's blog and Facebook page.  Have a wonderful rest of the week end.

Guest Post

Happy Thursday.  
I was asked by sweet Marty over at A Stroll Thru Life to guest post while she is away from blogging for a short time to help her son decorate his new digs.  I know she will have her decor charm on to make her sons new home so beautiful.

 I decided to post on my love of taking old vintage architectural  pieces that I have reloved back into my home decor. Any old doors, windows, pieces that are chippy and have some history and character will always find their way into my home decor.  

 So if you would like to see some samples of what I have repurposed in my decor hop over to Marty's blog to check it out.

Guest Post @

Have a wonderful rest of the week.  Be sure to check back on Saturday for another wonderful blogger in the Spotlight.


Entry Way Reveal

I am in the process of changing up my living room to a Pottery Barn Meets Cottage.  I recently replaced my slipcovered sectional with a leather sectional.  Just more practical with my basset hound and grand daughter  and family that love to lounge on my sectional.  I miss my white slipcovered sectional it just was not practical with that being the only piece of furniture in our family room.  We use this piece all the time.  So washing those slipcovers was not fun.

My challenge is getting a cottage feel to the leather sectional.  So I am working on that room and should have it ready soon to reveal.

In the meantime I did the entry way that is part of the living room.  Here is how it looked before:

The entry way is in front of my living room.  I had a lot of chippy shabby pieces in here.
The first thing we did was to take all the pieces down in the entry way wall.

The challenge is to get my pottery barn meets cottage look and spend $0 dollars and use stuff I already have.

Terry used pieces of mdf board to frame out the wall for the board and batten look.  Then we painted it white.  We had these hooks from another wall hanger in his office area so we used those.

I had these great old frames so thought they would look nice above the entry way hanger wall.

So far this entry way only cost $12 for the mdf board.  Everything else I had including paint.

I added another small white frame inside the bigger frame and then put this Count your Blessings sign inside for the middle frame.

Here is my umbrella re done from my last post.  I agree with a lot of you that more of the umbrella needed to be seen.  So I took out the hanging greens and rearranged the flowers.  Added this cute little bird.  Now this spring welcoming umbrella is hanging in the new entry way.

I added my summer garden hats and rain boots to the front entry decor.

In these two end frames I thought about hanging candle lanterns off chippy hangers and then I thought about putting chalk board behind the frames.  I think I might like that look better and I can change up the chalkboard art for different holidays and new sayings.

Here are some examples of chalkboard art work I could reproduce onto my chalk board frames.  I think this might be a good idea and I can have fun changing them up.

So here is my new entry way.
I think I will put the chalk board in these two end frames and then do up a cute saying for each one.  I think that will be a fun idea for these frames.
So for $12 I got a new look to my entry way.  Hope to have the living room to show you soon.  My pottery barn meets cottage is coming out very nicely.

Have a great rest of the week.
Come back on Saturday for Spotlight.  I have a great blogger for you to get to know.



French Vintage Umbrella

Happy Sunday.

Terry and I took a drive to Morris on Friday where all the cute little shops are that I love.  While shopping I saw this old vintage umbrella hanging in one shop with all kinds of spring flowers inside it.  It was so pretty.  I thought to myself I have an old vintage french umbrella at home in the closet.  Hmmmm.......

So this is what I decided to do with what I already had a home.

My vintage french umbrella.   I love this umbrella the wrap tie even has an old vintage button instead of snaps like today's umbrella's have.

I had some of these flowers from last Spring still in my storage closet so I grabbed them and made this Spring Umbrella.

This was my first version.  I used less flowers.

This is my second version.  I used a few more flowers. Which one do you think I should keep.  Less flowers or more flowers?  This will be cute hanging on my front door or maybe in my new entry way decor.  We will see.

We are having just gorgeous weather here in Chicago Land.  It is in the high 40's and going to 50's.  I know that is cold for a lot of you but for us this feels so great.  We have been at zero and single digits for so long this is feeling really great.

Hope we have turned the corner on Winter and we will see Spring soon.

Have a great start to the new week.
I am getting a lot done in the living room and front entry hope to reveal that soon.