Home Decor

use the good china. dust off old records. give new life to old things.

Home Decor

Hometown Fixer Upper: Part 2

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Welcome back! Today we have part 2 of our Hometown Fixer Upper feature. Susan sent us more great photos of her renovation of her Great-Grandparent’s home and we wanted to share all the rustic goodness with you. Check out the before and after photos below!

The owners prior to Susan and Tyler tore out a few trees and bushes to add a porch to the front of the house giving it a more inviting entrance.

A new white sofa and revealing the original hardwood floors opened up this living room and gives it a bright, fresh facelift.

Is there really anything more beautiful than these original hardwood floors?


Remember the ivy wall paper we told you about? Here’s a little peek at what Susan had to rip down before they painted.

And the only thing more adorable than this house … These two!


Home Decor

Hometown Fixer Upper

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     Often times going back to your roots leads to a beautiful new beginning. Don’t we all find ourselves searching for time tested advice from our grandparents? But how often are we given the opportunity to share a dream, a space and a place to raise our children in the same place as our great-Grandparents. Not very often.
     Sure, we may share their values, their dreams and our hometown, but for our friend, Susan, and her fiance, Tyler, they’re also sharing the same living space. Back in April, Susan’s Dad noticed that his Grandparents house (built in 1942) was for sale. Flooded with memories of playing in the basement with his brother and sister, he asked to take a tour of the house. Susan and Tyler just happened to be looking for a house and immediately fell in love with her Great-Grandparent’s house. Not only for the charm of the construction, but the charm of its history.
Photo frames hold little pieces of family history throughout their home. Pictured here: Moonlight Gardens, a popular date for her Great-Grandparents, and a photo of her mom’s parents on their wedding day. 
In the time between Susan’s Great-Grandparents owning the house and Susan and Tyler buying the house in April, the owners turned a screened in porch into another indoor room, added stairs to a brand new second floor and built a garage. They also added a great big beautiful porch.
The last few months, Susan and Tyler have taken on the task of adding their own personal touch to the house and have also reintroduced pieces of her family’s history to the walls and shelves. They also inherited a few pieces from the previous owners. Books, a sewing machine and an old record player remain in the house to add to this beautiful home’s history. Although before they did too much, they had to tear down sheets of ivy wallpaper that plastered the kitchen walls. Susan peeled back a piece near the microwave to reveal the original yellow paint that was there when her Great-Grandparents lived there.
Swoonin’ for subway tile. Susan’s kitchen is chippy farmhouse fabulous. 
Once the wallpaper came down, subway tile went up (any other Fixer-Upper fans out there just drooling over this adorable kitchen?) Set aside Susan’s knack for picture perfect decor and farmhouse charm (seriously, she could give Joanna Gaines a run for her money, right?), the house itself has so much character it takes on a personality of its own. Stucco walls, glass door knobs and untouched hardwood hiding under the carpets throughout the house invite you in and make you feel right at home.
This table is actually original to the house. It was given to Susan by her dad and belonged to her great-grandparents. 
We love (and are just a liiiittle bit jealous of) what Susan and Tyler have done to make this house their own without forgetting who’s it was to start and we can’t wait to see the changes they make in the future. We’re sure that making their own memories and starting their lives as newlyweds in a place that already holds so much of her family’s history would have certainly made her Great-Grandparents smile.


Home Decor

Out With the New in With the Old: Our Recent Vintage Finds

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It’s finally April and that means a few things for us at Sincerely, Doris Jane. Blooming flowers, baseball season AND … last but certainly not least … antique show season! 

Be it Burlington Antique Show, Springfield Extravaganza or just a quick stop into a few of our go-to antique stores, we have a hard time coming home empty handed. We love to see how other people incorporate their finds and family heirlooms into their home decor so we thought we’d share some things we picked up at last year’s markets. We threw in a couple finds from our antique shop trips too, well, because they’re just too cute.

The first round of Burlington shows is coming up this weekend. Find all the vendor and admission information you need here. See ya there!

1940’s Ivory Soap makes a great shelf accent in a bathroom and have a little Cincinnati flair being made by Procter & Gamble. Found for $5 a bar at Venice Pavilion Antique Mall in Ross, OH. 
After seeing one that was out of her price range at an antique show, Jess searched for months for an antique ink well and finally found it last summer for $50 on eBay.
Remember this old Jergens sign Em found on Black Friday? It’s been waiting for the perfect place in her home and she found it. This hangs above an artificial plant holder (IKEA) and is the perfect addition to her guest bathroom. 
This little brass frame was just $5 at Burlington Antique Show last year. It holds a photo of our Great-Grandparents atop their 1930’s Majestic Radio in Emily’s house. The doily under the plant ($10 at IKEA) is also antique and belonged to our Great-Great Aunt Clara. 
Jess is drawn to anything blue and white and made of porcelain. This is a hand-me-down from our mom, but we’ve seen them at shows recently. 
This delicate painted salt pot now holds Em’s wedding rings overnight and perfectly matches the walls around her vanity. Just $5! 


We have stacks of antique books just waiting to be used. They are the perfect touch of “old” to a modern room. We’re not quite sure where these were purchased, but we’re sure we didn’t pay much for them. Usually $5-10 will get you a started on your collection. 



SDJ E-Signature copy

Home Decor

Happy Easter from Sincerely, Doris Jane!

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Spring is FINALLY here. There are buds on our magnolia trees, birds are singing and the temperature, although slowly here in Cincinnati, is rising steadily week to week. With Spring comes one of Em’s favorite holidays. Easter! She’s a warm weather girl and loves the outdoor entertaining that comes with it, so we celebrate Easter at her house every year. We spent this past weekend prepping food, baking and gathering anything and everything Easter, because we have zero self control when it comes to adorable holiday accents.

A few weeks ago, our mom found these adorable green gingham and bunny napkins at Pottery Barn (which we’re actually using as tea towels shown here) and we knew immediately we had to have a table runner to match. We found nearly the same fabric at Fabric Shack in Waynesville, OH and after a couple quick passes through the sewing machine we had the perfect addition to our dessert table.

Next up was planning the menu. Of course our favorite Easter treat is this carrot cake recipe. Last year, we had a much more formal dinner so this year we thought we’d offer some ideas for a more casual setting. With family needing to come and go to accommodate multiple Easter celebrations, we opted for an “open house” style.

We hope you all had a wonderful and blessed Easter celebration!

Home Decor

Breakfast Room Before and After

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As promised, we wanted to share the before and after of Em’s breakfast room before and after and the finished product of our drop cloth curtain tutorial.

IMG_6617curtains 1

Here’s where we found everything:

Drop cloth fabric – Lowes ($11)

Table – Pottery Barn Outlet (no longer available 😦 Sorry!)

Chairs – Pier 1 (No longer available, but these are pretty similar. Bargains and Buyouts also has an online option that is almost identical here)

Rug – Bargains and Buyouts ($44 … no. we’re not kidding. find a store and go today.)

curtains 3

Tree – It’s real! It’s a Fiddle Leaf Fig (about $40 at our local garden center), and as the lady at the garden center told us it is also “impossible to kill.” As someone who never remembers to water, it’s perfect! It only needs water once a week at best.

Basket – Ohio Valley Antique Mall ($40)

curtains 4

Home Decor

DIY: Drop Cloth Curtains in 10 Easy Steps


We love a good DIY project and that, we-can-do-all-things feeling we get out of making something ourselves. We may be a couple of girls, but thanks to our Dad we’re no stranger to a power tool. (Pass the drill, please.)

Em’s been kicking around the idea of hanging some sort of window treatment in her kitchen for about a year; always stopping short of buying fabric before changing her mind. Then she discovered drop cloth curtains. The perfect neutral shade, airy enough to let in lots of natural light and best of all …. they don’t cost a fortune and they’re a piece of cake.

We read a few different tutorials, combined them and then tweaked them a bit to fit the look Em was going for. The finished product is SEW worth the time behind the sewing machine (Or not, check out a “no-sew” option here  from, Thoughts from Alice.)

We’ll be sure to post before and after photos of Em’s breakfast room once we piece everything together. In the meantime, we wanted to share our own version of the Drop Cloth Curtain tutorial: 


6′ x 9′ drop cloths (We found ours for just $11 at Lowe’s!), scissors and/or pinking shears, measuring tape, thread and, of course, wine.

We also enlisted the help of our mom who tends to be the brains behind most of our projects.


Drop Cloths – $11 each at Lowe’s

White Pom Fringe trim – $6.99/yard + 50% off coupon from Joann Fabric

Total: About $25 per curtain

Let’s get started! 

Step 1: Launder your drop cloths – this removes dust and softens the fabric A LOT. It also removes that this-is-a-drop-cloth-not-a-curtain smell.

Step 2: Put any children to bed (very important. We stopped several times to restart Lion King, fetch snacks, give a bath and reset our sewing machine settings after pudgy little fingers got to them before we did.) This is where the wine comes in.

Step 3: Lay your drop cloths out on a large table (you could also use the floor, but Em has a very hairy, very high maintenance yellow Lab so, kitchen table it was for us.) If you’ll need to do any hemming, fold the top of your fabric down rather than cutting off the bottom.

***Our drop cloths did not have true 90° corners. Be careful that this doesn’t throw off your measurements. We had to rip seams and start over*** 

Step 4: Create the pocket for the curtain rod. Our curtain rod is 2″ diameter so we measured and marked 2½” from the top, then pinned our fabric.

Step 5: Start sewing! Fire up the machine and follow your pins to make a pocket.

Step 6: Refill wine glass.

Step 7: Add the trim – We decided to dress these up a bit so Em found 1¾” white pom fringe at Joann Fabric. Just pin the trim vertically down the side of the drop cloth, then head back to your sewing machine.

Step 8: Hem and trim loose threads – if necessary! We had to cut one large drop cloth in half for two smaller windows so that one needed a little extra love, but the two on the larger window did not.

Step 9: Break out your iron/steamer – we also read that this step is more effective to do when they’re damp, but we ran out of nap time so we decided to just do it while they were dry.

Step 10: Hang ’em up and let everyone ooooh and aaaah over how creative and clever you are.

This project took us about 6 hours, but that includes chasing around a toddler, wine refills and having to restart once because we’re rookies. Depending on your skill level, we’d guess it would take about 3-4 hours. Happy sewing, friends!


Doris Jane


Naptime Decorator

Thoughts from Alice

Farmhouse 40

Liz Marie Blog

Home Decor

Fit for a “Princess”

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As a little girl, our co-author, Emily, watched Disney’s Cinderella every chance she could get. She dreamt of big dresses and beautiful shoes and going to “the ball.” Whatever that is. Fast forward a couple decades and not much has changed. Emily still loves Cinderella. She still dreams of big dresses, and actually has a wall full of beautiful shoes, and she’s definitely home before midnight. She never really outgrew her love of dressing up and feeling like a princess.

So, when she and her husband were building their home, she knew she needed some serious space to house her shoe collection – Her glass slippers, you might say – and she knew exactly how she wanted her favorite room in the house to look.

When working with a small space, it’s important to keep things light and airy when it comes to paint colors. We chose Dogwood by Sherwin Williams and we think it’s the perfect shade of light pink for a woman’s dressing room. Feminine, yet mature.


We found an antique Statton Trutype dresser on Everything But The House that just happened to fit perfectly into a niche in her closet (by perfect we mean within 1/2″ on either side. She was so excited to find this piece she bid, and won, before she remembered to measure.) One of the things we love most about aged furniture is the solid construction. This dresser was a steal at just $70! A solid wood frame and 9 dovetail drawers mean this little find is strong and reliable. We refinished it with a coat of homemade chalk paint in a very fair, almost-white pink. A metallic monogram (topped with a crown, of course) was just the elegant touch this piece needed. A little back sanding for just a touch of distress and ……

We like to let our antique pieces do the talking so we kept the top of the dresser nice and simple with an antique vanity set, a glass lamp (Pottery Barn), and one of our favorite candles from Flores Lane. We love these hand-poured soy candles so much we have one in every room. They’re small, simple and the scent is never overpowering, perfect for a small space. Besides that, who doesn’t love the way candlelight fills a room?


Finally, we finished with another flea market find, this gilded antique mirror for just $45! We love the way it anchors everything together … and the way it reflects the light from our crystal chandelier (also Pottery Barn) on the ceiling. A few personal touches like a silver framed wedding photo and this happy little place is fit for a princess!

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Home Decor

“Five More Minutes….Please?”

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By Sunday afternoon we start to get the itch to get things ready for the week ahead. Meals to be planned, grocery lists to be made, and that ever-growing mountain of laundry beckoning from the wicker hamper in the closet.  We know laundry day may seem daunting to most, but for us it seems to be one of our favorite chores. There is something oddly therapeutic about folding basket after basket in front of re-runs of Golden Girls with a hot cup of coffee just like our Grandma Jane used to. We love the smell of clean laundry and the way it seems to freshen every corner of the house, we love big fluffy towels warm out of the dryer (sometimes we have to resist the urge to wrap ourselves in all of them at once like when our Mom did the laundry and used wrap them around us until they went cold.) But what we love the most? FRESH LINENS. Is there anything better than climbing into fresh sheets after a long day at work or a full day of chasing your children? We say no.

Featured today is our co-author, Jessica’s, bedroom with welcoming touches of old and new and a dreamy white palette that oozes that “come get comfy” feeling. Her bed frame was literally plucked out of the mud at a flea market. She came, she saw, she had to have it. A little TLC and minor repairs from our handy-dandy Daddy-O and it was as good as new.



Pillows and linens were all purchased from our favorite antique shop around, Ambassador’s Antiques & Fine Linens, in Lebanon, Ohio. That store is our happy place. The owner has a perfect mix of new and old, and really embraces the way a ruffled bed skirt or lace-trimmed pillowcase can soften a bedroom. If you’re nearby, we highly recommend a visit. She and her store are both lovely and we promise you won’t be disappointed.


We, of course, recommend following the laundering instructions on all of your linens, but for an added just-five-more-minutes scent, we absolutely adore any of the Downy Unstoppables scents. throw in a cap full with your sheets and blankets and let your linens freshen the entire room.

Blog, Home Decor, Recipes

Happy Mother’s Day from Sincerely, Doris Jane …

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A mother is a delicate balance. She is strong enough to be the cornerstone of the household and the matriarch of her little family, yet gentle enough to offer her shoulder to tiny crying faces. She is confident in her maternal wisdom, both inherited and instinctual, yet humble enough to remain in the shadows to let her children take the spotlight. She is beautiful, sometimes in ways only a mother can be, whether it’s the light in her eyes when she plays with her children, or the beaming “glow” radiating beyond the round, firm belly of pregnancy, yet she lacks enough vanity to put her children and her family before herself. She is the first friend. The loudest cheerleader. The kisser of bumps and bruises. The steady hand when learning to walk. The phone call for reassurance. The first card on your birthday. The giver of hugs and kisses and rides to elementary school. She is both uniquely and wonderfully herself, yet a perfect combination of the mothers and grandmothers who have come before her.


Home Decor, Recipes

An Elegant Antique Easter


Our favorite holiday of the year came with lots of preparation, and plenty of opportunities to incorporate our favorite heirloom pieces and other antique accessories. Our Elegant Antique Easter post will provide a peek into our family’s Easter celebration, with a recipe for the best carrot cake you’ve ever tasted as an added treat.

Let’s start with one of our favorite accessories. Easter is a time for feminine frills and floral touches, a favorite, yet often forgotten Easter accessory of ours, are a pair of delicate white gloves. Here is a simple guideline to “getting caught glove-handed” and wearing your shorties with style and grace:

  1. Always remove your gloves when they are at risk of being stained. In general gloves should be removed before eating and may be put back on after you are finished. After dinner cocktail? You may keep your gloves on, unless there is a high chance that you may spill your beverage onto your gloves.
  2. Need to powder your nose or reapply your favorite lip gloss? This should be done in the privacy of the Ladies room with gloves removed. At these parties there will be a lot of meeting and greeting, in this situation you should not remove your glove unless it is someone of high religious authority.
  3. Speaking of religion, going to church Easter morning? Don’t get caught with your gloves on if you plan to take the Eucharist by hand. If receiving by mouth gloves may remain on.
  4. Have fun with your gloves, we enjoy searching through antique shops who often have them for as cheap as 3$! But, be careful how you handle your new found accessory as there used to be secret meanings in the Victorian Era!
Shown here, a favorite pair of gauntlet-length white gloves, just $6 at an antique store in Lebanon, OH. 

Our dinner table this year held an extra special gift from our Poppy. Our Great-Great Aunt Clara’s rose floral china was the focal point for a beautiful Easter table. Though we had to bend the table setting rules a bit (rearranging the utensils for example) to fit everyone we could, it still turned out exactly the way we planned, and the “bunny-fold” napkin tutorial we found here was the perfect touch.


Now for dessert. A staple at our Easter table each year is carrot cake. We’ve found this sweet and dense, but not too rich recipe to be absolute Easter perfection. The recipe is also relatively simple. Display on a glass or delicate cake pedestal for added elegance. Serve with a cup of hot coffee or a glass of cold milk to ensure every crumb will be gone by the time your guests leave. Our favorite recipe from Taste of Home can be found here.

This glass cake stand came with a beautiful cut-glass dome, a great find at an antique show for only $40! 

We hope your Easter celebration was as delightful as ours was and that you were able to enjoy the day surrounded by your family and friends. A blessed (and belated) Easter and happy fun-filled spring to all of our readers!