Two sisters, two coasts, one blog

On The Road Again Part 2, and a DIY update


When last I left you, I was out the door and on my way to Chattanooga, to participate in the Chatty Crafty market. The drive turned out to be closer to 10 hours than 8 by the time we made a couple of pit-stops, ate a late lunch in Asheville (at Tupelo Honey, super yum) and hit traffic near Knoxville.

We arrived at the Chattanooga Choo Choo around 9 p.m. The hotel is a sprawling collection of buildings surrounding Chattanooga’s former train station, which now houses the lobby, bar, restaurant and gift shop. For a premium one can even book a room in one of the Victorian-style train cars which form two rows in the garden next to the station.

We stayed in a nondescript but large and perfectly serviceable room in ‘Building 2’, who’s heyday was, by the looks of it, the 1980’s, quietly acknowledged by a sign which read ‘please excuse our appearance while we work to better our hotel’.

Our manniquin sporting a Sugar Mountain dress (plus the Haden Designs necklace I'm coveting) Day 1 and a one-of-a-kind dress Day 2

We got an early start Saturday morning, joining the pre-market bustle, with vendors’ tents popping up all over the field like so many toadstool mushrooms.

Browsers started appearing well before the 10 a.m. start time, and the long day went by quickly, despite it being so hot and sticky that I lost a couple of potential customers who didn’t want to sweat in my clothes!

Liz and I took turns checking out the other booths. Folks had come from as far afield as Boston and Chicago, and I had to exert great power of will to refrain from shopping as there were some really beautiful products on display.

A talented duo from Chicago: gorgeous print by Laura George and painted brass filigree bracelets by Cefische.

The ever adorable Anita of Little Paper Crane was there selling her sweet line of jewelry, and Erin of Forget Me Knot who makes great summer frocks and is super fun to boot. I think I would have faltered in my resolve and purchased one of these sweet mini gardens by Ophelia Terrariums,

except that on Sunday a couple of hours before closing time, after a much cooler and more prosperous day, heavy gun-metal grey clouds rolled in causing all of us to hurriedly pack our products away and get booths disassembled before the rain arrived.

Alas we were caught in the downpour and after a few minutes of truly torrential rain and wind Liz and I gave up on trying to stay dry and threw our sodden gear and sopping selves in the car and took off for the hotel.

Despite this ungraceful end to the event, Chattanooga left a pretty good impression on me. I liked the downtown, which had a sort of gently gritty urban feeling mixed with aging brick beauty and a dash of bright & shiny optimistic new growth.

And what was K doing with his weekend, back at the ol’ homestead? Grouting! Remember way back in May when we began our big DIY sunroom remodel project? That was supposed to take us one weekend? K put in not one, not two but THREE weekends getting the tile laid down (with more help from Mike!).

I had promised to complete the last step, the grouting, upon my return from Chattanooga, but I think he just wanted to be done with the damn thing, and knocked it out.

So it’s finished. Well, almost finished, I still have a lot (a lot) of touch up painting to do. But I’m not going to wait, I’m going to give you those before and after photos I know you’ve been waiting for:



I ended up foregoing the hot pink (sorry Ru), for a warm yellow that works better with the tile

Most of the tile is 12x12, but there are some areas around the doors where we out little 1x1's because of the uneven floor

Still got painting to do....but our fence is done! here is our new gate (only one section is wood, the rest is chainlink)

So far all that hard work scraping up the carpet glue is paying off, and nothing is popping up or coming loose.

So that’s me for today folks,  I’m off to cuddle with Stella on the couch and watch a silly movie.


8 Responses to “On The Road Again Part 2, and a DIY update”

  1. ruchapowers

    Okay I DID like the hot pink but…the room looks great! Also, the hotel looks fabu and the showseems like a lot of fun. Your clothing is perfect with Haden Design’s necklace.Thanks for all the juicy links. LOVED the terrariums. xo

  2. Norman Ross Powers

    Congratulations on a successful sunroom project. The space DOES look great! I like the tiny tiles and the honey-mustard walls, and that bushy fern on the floor seems to appreciate the airy brightness of the room.

    • oami powers

      I forgot how dark and grungy it looked before until I looked back at the pics. We just shot a bunch of photos of my clothes against the white brick, the diffuse light and bright walls make for nice soft light. Almost like I planned it!

  3. frances Newcross

    Before and after photos do tell a story! Like the DIY project! Good work team Newcross Powers! Love.

  4. Aunt Diana

    Chattanooga Choo Choo….how cool is that. To actually have been there! Loved the dresses….hope something sold before the rain came, you didn’t say. And what a wonderful transformation the sunroom is. What a star that Keith is.

    • ruchapowers

      Wrong “K” Auntie D! I think Keith is a star but it’s Kirk that deserves credit on this one! xo

    • oami powers

      I did actually, sell a few things. Not quite enough to break even, but enough. The adventure alone was worth it! And it was great advertising.

  5. Mia

    The room looks great, what a big turn around. I can tell you both are enjoying being home owners, congratulations.


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