Gothic Side Table Makeover with Dixie Belle Chalk Paint #dixiebelle #chalkpaint #gothicfurniture

My daughter moved back to town and needed furniture for her new apartment so I went scrounging around my house and my mom's to see what I could give her, after receiving a dark Gothic makeover, of course.

My girl is a mini-me. Our styles are similar on many things and she really loves the dark and spooky aesthetic. 

I found this old side table in my mom's basement, brought it home and got to work.

This is what it looked like before. Brown and boring. 

(Please ignore the mess in the background, it's a basement and there's a ton of junk we're sorting through in addition to all my crafty and Halloween things that are just kinda everywhere right now.)

I took it apart and cleaned it with Dixie Belle White Lightning and gave the top a light sanding because it was shiny.

I coated it with Dixie Bell Slick Stick which helps paint adhere to shiny and slick surfaces.

I painted it all solid black with Dixie Bell Black Caviar. I did several coats to get a nice even finish.

I coated all the side pieces and legs with Dixie Belle's Gator Hide clear coat.

The very top of the table and the front drawer I blended two reds- Dixie Bell Barn Red and Dixie Belle Honky Tonk Red with the black and ended up with a gorgeous Ombré look.

I sealed the table top and drawer with Dixie Belle's Howdy-Do Hemp Oil.

The drawer handles were originally a brass color.

I made them silver with Pewter Rub n Buff.

In the end the table turned out better than I ever imagined it would. I think it is my best furniture makeover so far.

I'm really enjoying the learning process - even if it drives me crazy sometimes.  My bestie, my mom, and my Obsidian sisters had to suffer through my complaints as this table gave me hell along the way. 

But the end result is WOW.

My daughter is super pleased. And I'm ready to tackle my next project.

Spawn of the Cataclysm by Robert Hoppensteadt

Spawn of the Cataclysm
Robert Hoppensteadt

Genre: Post-Apocalyptic Adventure

Publisher: Solstice Publishing
Date of Publication: March 2. 2020
ISBN:  979-8620552344

Number of pages: Print 227; Kindle 194
Word Count: 70K

Book Description:

Humans carelessly wielded their power to create new things, a power that far outpaced their understanding.  It was only a matter of time until something went terribly wrong.  Something did. 

Technology has been erased for millenniums, monsters spawned at the end of a world infest the forests and seas, and a new civilization has slowly risen from the long darkness. In sight of the looming ruins of what was once called San Francisco there is an evil growing. 

The people of New Gate are about to face their greatest challenge. 

Excerpt Chapter One

“We didn’t create the virus, it lived in the wild. We found it when Howler monkeys began starving to death even though they stripped every local crop in the area. The virus triggered their metabolism to speed up ... we were paid by the Defense Department to develop an offensive application, said we could keep exclusive rights to all its commercial uses if we delivered. It could have changed the way we grow food but they pushed us. It wasn’t ready to test, and when the earthquake hit… is out now. The death toll will be on their heads. And ours.”

Translated from the Cataclysm

Rik Arrowen leaned over the gunwale, his gaze following dancing green shafts of sunlight that plunged into the depths. He strained his eyes, thought he saw movement.  A huge shadow drifted slowly below the light. He knew the creature they Hunted was down there, a hungry thing that lurked unseen.
“It is here,” he muttered.
A school of silver fish darted upward, their bodies flashed like a thousand mirrors. Rik’s heart jumped in the instant before a sail-sized fin, jagged and scarred, cut slowly into the green twilight before receding back into the murk. He had no time to catch his breath, or shout a warning, when the great misshapen spawn rose fast and straight into the light, its gaping jaws filled with teeth. The thing ignored the weighted haunch of bloody meat they had drawn it in with, and hit the wooden galley on the port side with enough force to knock four Hunters into the bay.
As the hull rocked, the water turned red and raw screams filled the air.


“What a beautiful day to be alive.”
The voice blew away Rik’s memory and brought him back to where he stood, high above the countryside on the windy battlement of Stonehaven’s north wall.
“Oh, forgive me,” the voice continued. “Did I startle you?”
Rik did not bother to turn around.
“No, Jerold,” he replied. “I was watching the bay. It’s been six days since we lost those four Hunters to the spawn. I can’t stop hearing their screams as the thing ate them. Nothing we could do. We hit it with five harpoons and it still swam away. On the way down, it swallowed the bait haunch whole, and would have pulled us under if we hadn’t cut the rope.” He paused for a moment. “I have never seen one that big. I hope it has gone back out to sea.”
“May the Mystery welcome them all,” Jerold said. “I don’t often see anyone else up here this time of day. I like the solitude, the view calms me when the Council is crawling up my back about money.”
Rik scanned the horizon. The morning mist had burned away, and the sea breeze held a hint of pine. To the west rose a low range covered with giant redwoods, some of them hundreds of feet tall.  The ridge continued to wind its way from the south, ending in cliffs at the mouth of the bay. The wide channel reflected the blue of the sky, and ripples that ran counter to the waves marked strong currents that carried the tide out to sea. Across the water, the redwoods picked up again and became the great northern forest. Long ago, when the seas were lower, a famed bridge the ancients called Golden Gate stretched above the treacherous waters from shore to shore. Nothing was left of it now but a few worn mounds of concrete piles at each end.
Below the fortress, starting near the base of the hill, the city of New Gate sprouted like a garden. It spread down to the bay, a bright jumble of buildings and spires that tumbled to the busy harbor. There, sailing ships and galleys crowded together, bare masts bobbed within the walls of the breakwater. New Gate was home to almost twenty thousand souls and a passing refuge for a few thousand more at any given time. Now, it was bursting at the seams with wagons and people who could be seen crowding the streets and setting up stalls in the Market Square for the upcoming Equinal Games.
To the east and scattered around the bay were ruins. Most were settled into oddly geometric mounds and small hills covered in green, but in some places, they rose like monstrous patches of black lace from the dense hardwood forests that covered the lowlands around the bay. The largest cluster of these, called Lily’s Bones for reasons nobody could remember, contained broken and crumbling towers so immense that their ragged peaks were sometimes lost in the clouds.

About the Author:

Robert Hoppensteadt lied about his age and started working in Reno when he was fourteen, washing dishes on the late shift at a casino restaurant.  Since then he has been a grunt in the Forest Service, a carpenter, and, after receiving a degree in Information Systems, a recruiter and senior manager.  Now he writes full time.  He has lived on both coasts and several places in between but currently resides in Virginia with his wife and two seriously spoiled and obnoxious cats. 

Pre-Order Pumpkins and Party Themes: 50 DIY Designs to Bring Your Halloween Extravaganza to Life

Pumpkins and Party Themes
50 DIY Designs to Bring Your Halloween Extravaganza to Life
By Roxanne Rhoads

Paperback: 176 pages

Publisher: Skyhorse 

Release Date: August 11, 2020

ISBN-10: 1510751165

ISBN-13: 978-1510751163

Bring your Halloween party theme to life with these quick tips and tricks!

Pumpkins and Party Themes features ten unique party themes with five do-it-yourself pumpkin designs for each theme. The pumpkin projects have a variety of decorating ideas that include carving, painting, and mixed media craftiness and easy-to-follow steps on each creation. Author Roxanne Rhoads also includes quick ideas on how to bring the theme to life through décor, costumes, and activities. These fun party themes range from gothic elegance to Edgar Allan Poe, under the sea, let's get literary, and more!

With beautiful full-color images to illustrate the tools needed, steps to follow, and final products, this book makes for the perfect gift for Halloween enthusiasts and party hosts alike!

Pre-Order at 

Amazon      IndieBound      BN      Kobo     Chapters     

Simon and Schuster      GoogleBooks     Target     Books-A-Million

Creepy Doll Makeover - Now Baby Frankie Is Looking for Her Forever Home

Before and After

Created in the Bewitching Laboratory, Baby Frankie is ready to go to her forever home.

Turns out Frankenstein's Monster and The Bride of Frankenstein aren't good parents, so baby Frankie needs parents that will love a little monster like her.

Little Frankie is not a toy. She is a delicate work of art and should be treated as such. Put her in a little chair or on a shelf and admire her spookiness.

Frankie is a 16 inch porcelain doll hand painted and accessorized to create her monstrous appearance.

Frankie can be purchased on Etsy

A Few of My Quarantine Projects #quaratinecrafts #quarantineprojects

I haven't been around much, sorry. The whole COVID crisis and quarantine has ramped up my anxiety and made it hard for me to concentrate on writing.

So I have been creating. Crafting. Taking old things and giving them spooky makeovers.

Here's a glimpse of a few of my projects. I have several others still in progress and others that are still in idea and planning stages.