Kelly is a 39-year-old wife and mother to four dogs living in Falls Church, Virginia just outside of DC. After 15 years in corporate America she gave up her job as VP of Operations for Hooked on Phonics to start her own businesses: Stylish Patina and Jump-Start Consulting.
Stylish Patina is where Kelly shares her family adventures along with success stories of repurposing old furniture that eventually became a full-fledged business. Stylish Patina now has a dealer space in Falls Church, monthly sales at the Stylish Patina Barn in Frederick, Maryland, and an Etsy shop.
What do you love about repurposing vintage finds?
I love both the transformation as well as finding modern uses for vintage items. I love to mix vintage + modern together and create a personal yet functional space for clients. One of my favorite things is using vintage bottle crates and such for storage. You can even pop on a few casters and have amazing rolling storage with character or a lil’ patina as I would say:-)
What is it about a particular piece of furniture that most inspires you to recreate it into something new?
It’s all in the lines:-) They speak to me… If I can see the possibilities in a matter of seconds then I know it must be mine! I don’t choose one style of furniture or home decor element to look for either. I am really all over the place. I enjoy being open minded and not closing off possibilities.
How did you come up with the name “Stylish Patina”?
The name Stylish Patina was actually inspired by our 1976 Ford 150 that we named Ira after my husband’s grandfather. I used to always say that Ira has patina so when I was coming up with a name for the business, Stylish Patina seemed fitting since Ira did haul all the furniture! Plus I believe that repurposing and salvaging furniture and home decor elements is not just “green” but it can be stylish and beautiful as well.
What first inspired you to create Stylish Patina? Can you remember and tell us about the moment when you first thought, “I need to be sharing this stuff online”?
I think my “aha” moment was when I did a tag sale at my home with another friend and everything was all gussied up. Just seeing the response made it real. Plus my background is in marketing and business so I’m always looking for new business opportunities. At that time there was not as many people doing this type of thing in my area, but now with Chalk Paint™ decorative paint by Annie Sloan (which I sell online and in my shop) there is a new blogger and vintage dealer everyday.
What do you hope your readers will take away from your blog?
I want my readers to see how easy it is to refresh either furniture they have or inexpensive finds they acquire. I also want them to see that they can mix vintage + modern styles and have it look fabulous. Don’t be afraid to mix and match styles and textures in your home. This is what makes your home personal, please don’t just mimic Ballard Design, Wisteria, or West Elm. Make your home personal to you.