Hassle Free Weekly Cleaning Schedule

As we head quickly toward the New Year, it will be time to revamp our habits and resolutions! In case the organization of your cleaning schedule is on that list, take a look at this handy resource! It will help reduce the LONG cleaning days and the frantic quick pick-ups when someone calls to say they are on their way. In just 20 minutes a day, you can make a huge difference. Feel free to download this weekly cleaning schedule and laminate for ease of creating a new habit!

Source: Fix.com

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery A craft that began thousands of years ago simply as a functional way to store food and water, pottery quickly became a true art form in all of the major civilizations of the ancient world.  The tradition continues to this day right here in our own community with local potter Shawn M. Grove.

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery

Nestled in the woods on the outskirts of the Village of Lucketts is where you will find the large wood-fired kiln, workshop, and gallery of local potter Shawn Grove, just behind his centuries-old farmhouse that he shares with his wife, Rebecca, and children.

“I came out here to be a part of this community. Historically, potters settled in a town and became the local potter.”

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery

A local high school art teacher by day, Shawn first began gravitating towards pottery during his college years.  Specifically, pottery provides “a little celebration that people can interact with,” Shawn explains.  He also enjoys the use of raw natural elements to create his art:  Earth, water, wind and fire.

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery

Shawn has studied the history, styles and techniques of pottery from different cultural origins, providing a heavy influence in his own works from England, Germany, Korea, and Japan.  This is one of the reasons Shawn’s style of pottery is more traditional and organic in nature.  No electric or gas-fired kilns are used.  Instead, Shawn built a large, traditional brick, wood-fired kiln in his backyard with the help of his friend Brian Mattrow beginning back in 2002.

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery

Shawn’s production process is done in two stages, seasonally:  First is the actual “throwing” or “turning” of the pots.  This is where the raw clay is sculpted on a potter’s wheel and then set aside to air dry.  Different types of glazes can be added, too.  Shawn usually spends the winter and summer months in this phase—turning the pottery and stock piling them for the second stage which is “firing.”

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery

The firing process is done usually only two times a year, sometimes three, due to the large amount of time that it takes—about 36 hours!  Shawn typically holds a firing in his kiln in the spring and autumn, firing all of the pieces that he has “turned” during the previous season.

A firing starts early in the morning on a Saturday and usually ends mid-afternoon on a Sunday.  Shawn enlists the aid of his friends or other local potters.  First, the wood-fired kiln must be pre-heated for 10 hours.  The kiln, packed full with around 180 pieces of pottery, is closed off by bricks and allowed to sit for many hours with temperatures sometimes getting as high as 2,500 degrees.  Finally, the pottery sits inside the kiln to cool down for about a day and a half.

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery

Shawn invites you to visit his studio and gallery open this weekend, December 12th and 13th, located at 41718 Browns Farm Lane, Leesburg, VA 20176, or you may call for an appointment:  703-477-7021.

Shawn Grove Wood Fired Pottery

Shawn’s works are also displayed and available for sale locally at the Waterford Corner Store in the Village of Waterford.  Says Shawn, “That’s a good fit.  The money they make goes straight to the Waterford Foundation,” which helps to preserve the village, registered as a National Historic Landmark.

Lucketts Fair 2015 Artisans and Vendors

  Lucketts Virginia Summer Series 8th and Home

It is almost time to wrap up our Lucketts Summer Series! This next post is a doozy, filled with some of our FAVORITE vendors and artisans who will be showcasing their talent at this weekend's Lucketts Fair! Will you be there? Stop by and say hello! Some members of our team will be at the Lucketts Elementary PTA Booth selling some AMAZING hand churned ice cream!


I am sea glass jewelry Talula Bea

Talula Bea Designs, Laurien Dowdy (read our post about her amazing creations) is the creator of unique and one-of-a-kind jewelry, and also the artist behind the "i am" pendant. A true labor of love, this piece was created using 3D imaging in the true organic shape of sea glass. Encouraging its owners to wear the piece close to their hearts, the raised letters “i am” allow the wearer to focus on the strength already inside them on a regular basis. Not all jewelry is interactive, or becomes a part of one’s daily routine, but we believe this Talula Bea Sea Glass jewelry DOES have a message and a purpose.


Swirladelic, John Bailey is a Harper's Ferry WV resident that has QUITE the amazing business! Swirladelic Lucketts Fair They say: “We have a tray of liquid; it’s a bit thicker than water. You drop paint on that, and with a stick, you can make designs — hearts, flowers or swirl it for something surreal and abstract.” After the liquid is prepared, a silk scarf is place on top of the liquid. “It’s really just a kind of print making,” Bailey said. “It’s fast, though. It only takes about 5 to 10 minutes to make a scarf.”


Wikiwood Naturals - A small family owned business located in Springfield, Virginia, the Blevins were inspired by a surprise romantic camping trip in 2012.  Sitting around the camp fire, roasting marshmallows, and listening to the relaxing sound of the bonfire crackling, motivated them to bring that same relaxing feeling, aroma and atmosphere to our home and they have re-created that same atmosphere when we burn our candles.

Polish Potter Lucketts FairTwins Polish Pottery - a little known fact about Jenny Puckett and Holly Trevino, the twins behind this beautiful polish pottery, their husbands built a "twin plex" where both families reside, and the sisters did all of the design work! They operate their business in the rolling pastures and vineyards of eastern Frederick County.



With You In Mind, Joette Dorosheff creates stunning wreaths made of natural materials. This artistic display will be a focal point of your decor. The wreath is created on a wire frame from pinecones, nuts and pods. This unique design will be a year round cherished feature of your home or office.


Back to Basiks Lucketts FairBack to the Basiks - What began as a single spice blend given to friends as a Christmas gift, has grown into a blooming business. The company was started by Anne Shomberg and Heidi Basik in 2008 out of a love for cooking and sharing food with others. Over a short period of time, the two moms were successfully selling Basiks Spice Blends to stores and restaurants around the U.S. They traveled across the country introducing people to their all natural spice blends at trade shows, women’s events, and craft fairs. f


The Larkin Tea Company was founded in 2001 with an initial focus on educational programs. Over the years, their high-quality loose leaf teas has become an important part of business from a sales perspective! Both Bill and Judy are certified tea specialists. Their teas are sourced from all over the globe. She says “We buy in small quantities to ensure the tea you purchase is as fresh as possible and hasn’t been sitting on the shelf for months. It is for that same reason we don’t carry a huge selection of teas.”


Sequoia Springs was started by Lorraine McConnell, an Interior Designer and is a line of luxury-inspired, pillows and throws continue to be popular to those seeking distinctive, beautiful, and wonderfully functional accessories for their home. In 2002, Lorraine's husband, Jamie, joined the business and they have expanded to include accessories that integrate the beauty of nature, using as many natural materials as possible including feathers (to pay homage to Jamie's love of fly fishing!)


Falling Bark Farm LLC - Syrup produced in small batches from select hickory bark and still involves the tradition of foraging and WILDCRAFTING in the Virginia forests.  Bark from the shagbark hickory tree is shed naturally, so the tree is not harmed during the process.


Shenandoah Crafts - John and Karin Tipton offer sewing crafts, needlework and painted crafts and refinish furniture. Staunton, VA. 540-280-5519, Fabric and Woodwork

Nola Watkins Collection - produces high quality hand-painted ceramic christmas ornaments, herb and flower pots, and many other fine gifts.


Gypsy Hill offers amazing rubs and spices! Margaret O'Neill says “We have always had some herbs and then about 10 years ago we took what had been our flower beds and my husband, when would find an unusual plant or herb, would start planting,” and because there are only a few herbs they can sell fresh, the O'Neill's dehydrate them with their dehydrating machine to sell later.


Designs by Grace, Grace Rochford is a stay at home mom of three, with a love for Early American History, which led her being making colonial american floorcloths.

Wood Eye Wood Products, Keith Schoonover operates this Frederick County based full service sawmill providing quality lumber and wood products from local, sustainably harvested or salvaged timber. The Sawmill also facilitates custom processing of logs into usable furniture products. Each of Keith’s pieces is a one of a kind by its very nature; no two custom wood-workings can be the same.

Rennaissance Lavender - Marianne Weitzel wanted a new challenge and began growing lavender on her farm in Virginia. The intoxicating scents and healing properties of lavender along with other botanicals have generated many popular products that will be at the Lucketts Fair.


The Lucketts Fair

42361 Lucketts Road, Leesburg VA

August 15-16, 2015 | 9 am-5 pm

Rain or Shine | $5. Children under 6 years old are free

Parking provided by the Lucketts Ruritan Club

Ready to search for your home in Leesburg/Lucketts, Virginia?

Map search here

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8 Classy IKEA Hacks

  IKEA hacks are among some of our guest blogger's favorite diy projects. Think the word IKEA is synonymous with cheap furniture? Meredith Greenberg joins us to prove that with a little imagination and some elbow grease you can create a look that pleases even the most discerning eye.

Get ready to discover some brilliant and somewhat easy tutorials to help you think outside the box when you're ready to transform your next IKEA piece in your home, whether you rent or own!

Check out how these Billy Bookcases were turned into a classy built-in bookcase with library ladder! Super classy and does not at all reflect IKEA. The Markerista really pulled off an amazing hack that would class up any home!

Billy Bookcase Ikea Hack The Markerista


The Green Little Notebook did a fantastic job decoupaging fabric and using a little spray paint on a $20 plastic rolling office chair from IKEA. It has a elegant, eclectic, and romantic feeling to it. I really love this project!

Ikea Hack The little green notebook

The Hunted Interior really classed up a glass top nesting coffee table with some gold spray paint and some marble contact paper! This is such a beautifully simple way to upgrade this nesting coffee table. Adore this hack.

Ikea Nesting Table Hack The Hunted Interior

Larissa at Prodigal Pieces stole my heart with her spin on the Rast Hack that every diy-er has been tackling in their own way! She took her spin on it as a vintage camera and added some really cool wire legs. A lot of hand painting details but totally worth it.

Ikea Rast Hack Prodigal Pieces

Style Me Pretty took a big leap with a laptop desk and converted it into a sassy an decent size bar cart! I adore this idea.  A bar cart should be a must have in any chic home that does some entertaining. The look of glass and lucite are perfect for smaller spaces, making them look less consumed by a bunch of bulky furniture.

Style Me Pretty Ikea Hack

The Krysmelo blog blew me away with this upholstered bench using some IKEA shelving turned on it’s side. I adore stripes so of course this hack had me at that. But I think this is a cute and clever hack for an entryway/mudroom to store shoes and other accessories that you put down when coming home.

Ikea Hack bench Krysmelo


The NW Homeworks site really takes hacks to a new level. I never would have guessed that this gorgeous bench was actually from IKEA. They did a wonderful job of blending it in with the existing cabinet

Ikea Hack NW Homeworks - Window Seat


I am a big fan of the Centsational Girl. She always comes up with really great and realistic projects that anyone could do in their home. This Besta & Billy bookcase hack is amazing. By just adding some crown molding to the top and bottom, it changes the entire look. I love that she used multiple bookcases together to create this amazing office storage space. Little details like this make a huge impact with this piece.

Billy Bookcase Ikea Centsational Girl

As you can see, all of these hacks were well thought out and executed, but not all of them are hard or require heavy power tools to accomplish your look.

It’s easy to decorate your home on a budget! You just need to dedicate a little time to make it happen. Would you try any of these projects?

Bonus: If you live in the MD / DC / VA area, check out Furniture Assembly Experts! They take the pain out of IKEA Furniture assembly! They will match and beat Ikea assembly rates and service homeowners, renters, small businesses, schools, non-profits and more!

Phone : 240-764-6218 / (202) 787-1978

Email : customerservice@furnitureassemblyexperts.com

Meredith Greenberg Arts and Classy

Meredith Greenberg is an Art Department Coordinator/Art Director for the film/tv industry by day and inspired blogger the rest of the time! Living in Los Angeles and currently renting, she loves coming up with ways to make her temporary space feel more like HOME!  Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook


Harp Design Co Stools


Clint and Kelly Harp of Harp Design CoYou've likely seen an episode or two of the hit HGTV show, Fixer Upper. If so, you've also been introduced to Clint Harp, the amazing carpenter and creative genius behind Harp Design Co. Along with his wife Kelly, they focus on creating and giving. Working with almost 100% recycled and reclaimed wood, their great hope is that each piece of handmade furniture brings people together in homes, carving out space for family meals, work, art projects, or sharing a cup of coffee.

Love, laughter, and connection—these are things we all need, and the vision behind every piece we create.

Back when I first start watching Fixer Upper, the timing coincided with the purchase of our new home in Northern Virginia. Because the kitchen island offered space to create opportunities to gather around, eat and even work and do homework, etc., I began searching for the perfect stools to complement the kitchen.

After watching a specific episode when Clint reclaimed wood from a razed building, I had a lightbulb moment! A few emails and many custom design discussions later, our Harp Design Co stools project was underway!

Harp Co Design Stools Fixer Upper Magnolia Mom

Jacob working his magic with reclaimed metal for the foot rests. Photo courtesy of @ckharp on Instagram.

Harp Design Co


The wood used for our stools came from the 100 year old Shear-Callan Mansion in Waco, Texas. Being able to provide new life for these beautiful pieces of wood is very meaningful to our family and we fell in love with the concept behind Harp Design Co's intention to blend recycled materials to offer a "purposeful reflection of human families, partnerships, friendships, and communities."

Harp Co Design Stools Fixer Upper Magnolia Mom

Do you see that hashtag, #100pieces? It's true! Each stool was created from INDIVIDUAL pieces (between 12-15 pieces per stool) that Clint glued together, then shaped, sanded and loved into the shape you see above.

Harp Design Co Shipment

We are thrilled to welcome these beauties into our home and respect the flaws and character in each stool. It reminds us that we are all on a journey, one to find the beauty in all that surrounds us!

Harp Co Design Stools Fixer Upper Magnolia Mom


Thank you Clint, Britt, Jacob and the rest of the Harp Design Co team for these amazing stools! We rave about them almost daily and are honored to have them hold space in our kitchen, where most of our life takes place!

Harp Design Co Barstools Fixer upper

For more information or to order your very own Harp Design Co barstools, visit their website or check out the Fixer Upper episodes on HGTV.