Monday, February 16, 2015

MegMade : Furniture, Family, Fun, Faith

When Amy asked us to write about our story we started to think about what we are about and what is important to us. Really when you break down our life, it boils down to four F words; Faith, Family, Fun and Furniture.  It wasn’t always like that, well the last F that is.

Both of us grew up in awesome families, ones with love for God and people. That is what attracted us to each other when we met on a random date after church one Sunday afternoon. We immediately were into each other (and our love for brown, not black clothing…long story and strange I know) and just six short weeks after that we were engaged and a year later, married! That was just over five years ago now! In that short time, life has been cray cray for sure, but in a good way. We have worked for and continue to work for 3 businesses, started 2 entrepreneurial ventures, had 2 kids, re-did our new house and got a dog…among many other things of course! Just saying it makes me tired.

So this is how the story goes though of how MegMade (the last F) was birthed.

When we first got married, Joe had just started a new real estate venture with his dad and brothers and as all new ventures go, there was not a lot of money coming in initially. I was working not-for-profit for an amazing organization called By The Hand (still do part time), also not making much. Therefore, all money was going towards needs and not wants.

However, my love for design and décor was growing. Then on Joe’s first birthday after we were married I bought him a drill and table saw. Though we didn’t know how to use them, we started some projects. After several, and I mean several failures, we got the hang of it and haven’t stopped!

Neither of us grew up in homes where we really built anything or did any creative décor projects. We both liked style, but had no experience decorating or making anything.  Once we started with Joe’s new tools, we for the first time in our lives, realized we were really truly creative and when you have the tools you can make almost anything that you can think up!

One day we needed a dresser for our second bedroom.  After shopping at our favorite stores (West Elm, Pottery Barn, Crate & Barrel), we quickly realized how over-priced and poorly made new furniture can be. Our neighbor that same week offered us one of their old dressers.  Knowing nothing about One Step Paint, we painted it.  The before and after of this piece was got us really excited about painting furniture and it really jumped started our furniture painting obsession.  This piece was a gorgeous piece, but it wasn’t the right fit for us so we decided to list it on Craigslist.  When it sold in less than 12 hours from list to pick up it got us thinking there might be something here.  So we decided to do it again, and again, and again, and again…and they kept selling. 

After six months of selling furniture out of our home we decided to make it legitimate business.  We chose the name MegMade for our business because every time someone came to look at furniture Joe would say, “Meg Made this…and Meg Made that.”  It was kinda catchy so we started to title all our listings MegMade. 

After forming a corporation we took a leap of faith and opened our doors in early November of 2013.  The leap turned into a small step because within a couple of months we had to add an 1800 square foot warehouse space.  A month after that we added another 900 square feet warehouse space for spray booths.  Today we have six employees and have turned out over 1500 pieces.  We average around 20-30 pieces weekly and our goal is to double that within the next 12 months.  We couldn’t have done any of this without the partnership of Amy Howard and her matchless One Step Paint line!

When we were decided on the paint line that we wanted to both use and sell, we considered several different brands.  What was important to us was the quality of the product and the quality of the company.  We first used Amy Howard One Step Paint line and we were amazed at how easy it was to use and how durable the product was and then when we met the people behind the paint, we were sold!  Not only did our passion for furniture and design coincide but our morals and love for Jesus made us instant friends. They are the real deal!

Family and Fun
It was once said by Joe’s professor that if you looked up enthusiasm in the dictionary, you would probably find a picture of Joe next to it. Our family aims to approach life with enthusiasm and joy. Sure, there are struggles, but to take each day as a gift and enjoy the heck out of it! There are far too many people who work their whole lives to enjoy retirement and don’t enjoy the process of getting there.

We love that MegMade has given us an avenue to work together as a family, have flexibility to be with our two sons and to provide for our needs and most of our wants!

And finally – Faith.  This is the most important aspect of our business. And our lives.  We keep our faith at the forefront of everything we do. 

There is nothing better than seeing a piece that was out-dated, rough around the edges and scratches everywhere, given a second chance-a new breathe of life all because of a little paint.   It is a minor reflection of the amazing work that Jesus Christ did for us on the cross.  He takes all our sins, screw-ups, failures, and mess ups and restores us back into the destiny that He had created us to be. With our restored pieces, they look like the old, but they are refashioned with a new breathe of life.  When our customers see it they can hardly imagine what it looked like, or can remember what it used to be and if they can they are truly amazed at the difference.  The same should be true for all believers in Jesus.  When He gets a hold of someone’s heart there should be a transformation so evident in that persons life that all who know that person are truly shocked by who they are today. 

With the amazing work that has taken place in our lives, now with our new found talent we long to be a blessing with all the treasures He lavishes in business.  We eagerly desire to be a blessing.   In the early onset of our business we went out of our way to donate a percentage of our sales.  I say went out of our way because there were many times we had bills coming and we felt it was our obligation to give back.   We don’t say this in a sense of religious obligation, but we donated because we were extremely grateful for all that was being bestowed upon us. 

God doesn’t need our money but there are many people that have needs and with God’s help we do our best and will continue to do our best to distribute it to them.  We see ourselves a funnel of God’s blessing.   Our desire is to have a wide opening so we don’t miss on any opportunity or blessing given to us but also that we don’t hold on to it either.  Freely give as we are given.  Hold nothing with clinched fists.   We are far from perfect in accomplishing all that our hearts desires are to be a blessings but we are grateful God has birthed within a desire to be a blessing.   

(a few) MegMade Projects:

Rescue, Restore, Redecorate™


Friday, February 13, 2015

Before & After Projects

Today, I have a few new Before & After projects to share with you! There are so many ways to use the Amy Howard at Home products to Rescue, Restore, and Redecorate your furniture.


Adagio Antiques inside Cotswold Marketplace
One of our retailers shared this before & after with us.
The chairs were finished with the Amy Howard at Home Kumquat Lacquer.

Side Table
This little table was restored using the Bauhaus Buff One Step Paint. It was then finished with the Light and Dark waxes.


Adagio Antiques inside Cotswold Marketplace
This little table was finished with Amy Howard at Home One Step Paint in Linen and then waxed with a mixture of Light Wax.

Rescue, Restore, Redecorate™

Monday, February 9, 2015

Featured Retailer : Shawna Jeannine

I am excited to share with you our Featured Retailer, Shawna Jeannine, with two locations in Virginia. Shawna shared, "My business is named after my first and middle name: ‘Shawna Jeannine.’ In the beginning, I wanted to create a separate Facebook page dedicated to the furniture that I had painted. After successfully selling furniture via Facebook, my business continued to expand - but the name stayed the same. Currently, I sell both painted furniture and Amy Howard At Home products at ‘The Robin’s Nest Antiques and Collectibles’ located at 8371 West Main Street in Marshall, VA – Near Haymarket, Gainesville, and Manassas. 
Above, outside of the Robin’s Nest
inside the Robin's Nest
Amy Howard at Home Painting Workshop pictures from 12/9/2014. Lots of fun!!

"For me, painting furniture combines my love of yard sales and thrift shops, the desire to “fix” things, and the calming presence of a paint brush in my hand! I love seeing the transformation that takes place in a piece after it is painted and the gratification that comes from knowing that I was a part of it. My motto is: “See the Potential…” I think at times we can all identify with those overlooked pieces of furniture. However, the potential is usually already there - we just have to see it and believe. I enjoy working with Amy Howard One-Step paint because it glides on so smoothly and does not “drag.” I also like how versatile it is and how I can achieve a lot of different “looks.” The wax is also very easy to apply and doesn’t streak compared to other waxes I’ve used."

Some of her Before and After projects include the following: 
For the above China Cabinet, I painted the interior with ‘Selznick Grey’ One-Step and the exterior with ‘Remis Grey’ Toscana over ‘Linen’ One-Step. I then finished the exterior with Light & Dark wax as well as Dust of Ages.
For the above chair, I also used Amy Howard ‘Remis Grey’ Toscana over ‘Linen’ One-Step. Everything was then finished with Light & Dark Wax as well as Dust of Ages. 
This dresser was painted with ‘Cote d’ Azure’ Toscana over ‘Linen’ One-Step. Gold leaf was also applied to highlight the medallions at the bottom. Finally, Light & Dark wax, and Dust of Ages were added. 
I am always touched by how friends think of me when they have furniture to get rid of. I take it as a compliment that they figure I will know what to do with it. I received this Hoosier Cabinet from a friend who had it stored in their barn for years. Needless to say, it was in rough shape and did need some sanding where the old paint was peeling off. I used ‘Tick Tock’ One-Step and the end product. 

Shawna Jeannine
Shawna Jeannine's Facebook page

Friday, February 6, 2015

Amy Howard at Home | Before & Afters

It's Friday which means that time to share before and after projects from our wonderful customers! I hope you are inspired by the beautiful projects that our customers are creating.

Kitchen Cabinets
Before & After:
 These cabinets were restored using the Linen One Step Paint
and finished with the Clear Wax.

Side Tables
In Process:
"I used Black One Step paint, then I mixed the Pearl Shell Mica Powder in with Clear Wax to finish.  All girls need a little sparkle!"

Side Table
Mary shared this beautiful restoration saying, "I just posted about this Frenchy nightstand on my blog.  I used One Step in Atelier and light and dark wax.  She was in good shape, before but now she has personality and reminds me of a French antique!  I name all my furniture, so I would like to introduce you to Juliette.. :)"

 This kitchen was completely transformed. 
The cabinets were painted with the Luxe Grey One Step paint and finished with the Clear Wax.

Rescue, Restore, Redecorate™

Monday, February 2, 2015

Featured Retailer: Back Road Relics

I am excited to share with you our Featured Retailer, Back Road Relics, located in Boliver, Missouri. When I asked Crystal about the store she shared, "Our store is called Back Road Relics and we are a family owned and operated flea market located just outside of Bolivar Mo, about 20 minutes north of Springfield. We have been carrying Amy Howard paint since last October and are loving having it in the store! For the last year or so we have started carrying a large (and growing larger!) variety of painted furniture pieces. Right now we have three individuals who are bringing in painted pieces on a weekly basis as well as others who bring things in monthly."
Restored Piece
Restored Cabinet
Painted Buffet

Back Road Relics
4741 S 131 Rd
Boliver, MO 65613
(417) 326-6577
Back Road Relics's Facebook page
Store Hours:
Monday thorough Saturday 10am until 5pm