Sometimes You Just Need a Sticker

Sometimes You Just Need a Sticker


A couple of weeks ago we were cleaning out the attic.

Because we are super-exciting and cutting edge and live a jet-set lifestyle….

….this is what we do for fun.

It’s actually an adventure up there.  Treasures that you forgot about hidden away in the eves and forgotten pieces of junk just waiting for a project.  You never know what you’ll find.

This time was no exception.

There, in between a 10-foot wood map of Kentucky and tiny ballerina dresses and and my Dear Abby mirror sat this.


A tiny wooden chair from a time when tiny people still wore those ballerina skirts and had tea parties.  This was the chair from the twins’ preschool classroom.  The preschool sold them off when new plastic ones arrived and I took four home with me.

It was a little rough and chipped and craft paint splattered.

Along the way someone had added a few stickers for decoration.


Here’s a close up of the archeological remnant from our sticker days.

Apparently we were really into encouragement.

And hula hooping dogs.


I smiled and turned away and starting filling boxes from the attic to donate when I spun around and looked at those chairs again.

They smiled back at me.

They knew what was coming.


They knew I had a blank wall in the gate house that I had been looking to fill.

I could have added a picture.

Or a mirror.

Or a gallery wall.


But why?

Why settle for ordinary or sufficient or regular?

Why be like everyone else when you have four chairs sitting up in your attic just waiting to be painted.


I took them downstairs and we cleaned them off and sanded them up and spray painted them in different colors of blue.

And hung them on the wall in the gatehouse.

Then I added some pumpkins in this tool box from my friend Susie who has a story that made my heart break.


I was so excited about how everything turned out and I called the twins over to show them their old chairs partying it up in 2016.

They looked at the chairs and looked at each other and rolled their eyes.

“Mom,” they giggled. “They’re cute, but you are so silly.  Everyone knows chairs don’t go on the wall.”

I smiled and told them of course I knew that, but there are times when it’s really hard to keep a good chair down.

They laughed, grabbed their phones and walked out the door and down the steps of the gatehouse.  Then, just as I was about to close the door,  I overheard one twin say to her sister, “Aren’t you glad Mom isn’t like anyone else?”

Those funny, sweet, encouraging daughters of mine got it.

They understood.

They gave me the thumbs up.

I’m so happy those stickers are still working. 🙂


PS  In super exciting news they are coming to film a commercial here today at the house for Window World!

And if you live in or around Kearney, Nebraska, I’ll be there on Thursday.  Be sure and stop by, I’d love to meet you!

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  1. Precious post. As soon as I saw the first photo, I thought “Oh! Chairs on the wall! I get to see more about KariAnne’s gatehouse!”

    I think it’s soooo fun that you have a gatehouse 😀

    Happy Monday to you!

  2. Cute story. It brought a smile to my face this morning.

  3. Those chairs are my new friends!!
    Absolutely love them!! Too cute!!

  4. Pleeeeeeease bring your cute self, fabric line and even those chairs to Minnesota!!!

  5. Love those little chairs. Have a wonderful time in Nebraska! I’m sure you will come back with much inspiration…and memories that will make our day. Safe travels, friend!

  6. I have one of those little wooden chairs and love it!! What a great idea hanging them on the wall. That right there is why I love your blog… many fun ideas and you think outside the box. Who wants a wall full of pictures when you can have cute little chairs!

    Are you planning on coming to Nashville, TN anytime soon to visit a fabric store?

  7. Thanks, KariAnne, you always make my morning brighter.

  8. I love the little chairs on the wall. But you missed your chance at an “educational moment”. The Quakers hung chairs on walls to keep the floor clear. Much easier to clean too. They had pegs along all their walls and hung most things. Just my tidbit of info from history trips. What a useful display too. Doesn’t everyone need an extra shelf here and there? Love your girls. Glad they appreciate you.

  9. Tina Matteson :

    This is just darling.

  10. Haha! Silly on!

  11. Don’t you just love those old wood schoolhouse chairs? My Son made a table for my Grandson by taking the base of a stool and constructing a top onto that. Then he stripped two schoolhouse chairs and refinished all three pieces to match, rustic and perfect in my living room. I also have an old schoolhouse desk with chair and a chair with desk top attached. You did an amazing refinish on your chairs and the creative display is so YOU!! Love it! Your daughters are so clever, just like their Mom. Thank-you for a lovely Monday morning post. P.S. I so missed Thistlekeeping on Saturday and kept checking until I remembered that you were at Chapel Hill. Hope is went well.

  12. Adore the hanging chairs and the story even more!! Wish I was closer to Nebraska – would be there in a skinny minute!

  13. Cute story…love the chairs on the wall! I need an attic! 😉

  14. Karianne, please tell me what became of the stickers? Did you paint over them, or remove them or possibly left the tops unpainted? I would not have been able to give up the stickers! Thanks for this fun adventure!

  15. Cute idea! I love the stickers and the chairs on the wall. Right now I’m sporting some stickers on my nice stainless steel fridge someone stuck on while the babysitter was there. Goo Gone…we have a date.


  16. I think it’s a great idea. I have some old slatted wood folding chairs that may be headed for the wall.

  17. I love this story so much. The keeping of the chairs and your fearlessness in painting them! I would have spent so much time arguing with myself about doing it (only because they are sentimental pieces, and should you, or shouldn’t you?) that I would have given up and put them away. And you gave them life with such vitality and have them on display. I love this!!! Keeping the past and keeping it relevant. Thank you so much for sharing this!

  18. I sure hope my twins still think I’m cool like that when they are older. LOVE the chairs on the wall.

  19. I have a thing for little chairs and think they shine up on that wall…and they are right at hand if you need to pull them down and use them. Your daughters are really sweet!
    PS I love the look of orange pumpkins against that blue paint…

  20. Yes ma’am! They look adorable on the wall (makes me wish I still had my kids’ chairs!). And your twins are right — you are a one-of-a-kind trend setter, not afraid to look outside the box 😉 So happy for you, my friend, and the exciting life you’ve created for yourself (yes, even rummaging through the attic!) and all the wonderful things happening for you. You are an inspiration to all of us in so many ways!!

  21. Your daughters are so right and I’m so happy to follow you. . .one extraordinary person! I love the chairs!

  22. The chairs are simply fabulous!

  23. The chairs look so cute on the wall in their new space! A sweet memory reimagined.

  24. My boys tell me all the time I’m one in a million:) I’m happy they see humor in who I am.
    Oh the stories our kids will have for their kids.

    I love the chairs…what a fun way to display and a memory or two to go along with it.

    Have fun in Kearny. I was just in Lincoln NE seeing my kids a week ago…both in grad school at UNL. I wish it was this coming weekend…I would have come down early just to see you:)
    If you get to Lincoln you MUST stop at Lemars Bakery. The best out there!!!

  25. Oh those stickers, so much memories !
    And those chair, it’s sure is a surprise, but it works well and it’s the perfect place to display some more bulky items !!!

  26. Aaawwweeee!!! That made my mommy heart smile!! ?

  27. My heart swelled too…but of course chairs can go on the wall…such silly girls. Love it, KariAnne.

  28. I also have 4 children, 2 girls and twin boys (now 41). My 4 have given me 16 grandchildren, ages 4-18. I rarely respond, but I love your blog. It is the first one I read every day. As a just-retired English teacher, I appreciate your writing talent as well as your emphasis on family and faith.

  29. Such a cute idea, cute post too!!

  30. LOVE the chairs!!

  31. KariAnne!
    You are so cute!!!
    Yes, I am so glad your daughters love that you are not like anyone else!!!

    This post prompted me to say this: one day we will meet, and I will be so excited I want to hold hamds with you and jump up and down!!! Like kids coming back to school from vacation and meeting old friends!

    Hugs, darling!

  32. Those wee chairs have never looked happier, I bet! I LOVE that you found a way to take items which are sentimental from years past that you no longer use, beautify them, and display them proudly! In this way, you can always keep the memories attached to those chairs close at hand. And, I must say, they look absolutely stunning on your gatehouse wall! This is sooooo much more unexpected to the eye, but such a visual treat!

    And I agree wholeheartedly with your baby girls…I’m glad you aren’t like anyone else, too! Happy day, Rock Star! 🙂

  33. Smiles-Tears-Thankfulness:

    Smiles- My daughters, (now grown with families of their own), each had wooden twin bed sets. They used their headboards to display EVERY sticker they could get their hands on… for YEARS!
    Each sticker, or groups of stickers, held memories. Needless to say, by the time they outgrew those beds… there was barely any wood showing. It was ALL stickers!
    They agreed to give their precious “memory” beds to a falmily in our church. A family with TEN children! The lucky recipients of those tricked out sticker beds were over the moon with delight! New memories were in the making!

    Tears- For your friend Susie and the devastation that she, her family, and her community are experiencing.

    Thankfulness- For stories that remind us that we have MUCH to be thankful for.

    Blessed day to you and yours!

  34. use to live in Kearney NE- have a great event!

  35. Great idea and love having items with family history hanging around, and unexpected as wall decor. What I truly love is your daughter’s comment as they were leaving. They realize their red lipstick, curly haired, with the memorable smile, quirky humor, talented mom is a priceless treasure, accepted and loved. Congrats!

  36. I have two Queen Anne dining room chairs hanging in my garden room. I bought them for extra seating but have only taken them down once for a large gathering. And then they were too difficult to rehang. So now they are just sculpture. Love your little chairs.

  37. I never like to do things just because “that’s the way everyone does it”, either. That’s probably why I like you. Those chairs need to stay on the wall! 🙂

  38. There are chairs and there are chairs and I like these chairs just saying

  39. Ah, your wonderful girls!

  40. Ah, those sweet chairs remind me of my time in the preschool classroom. So sturdy and cute. Love how they look on your wall.

  41. Oh gosh, my girls collected stickers by the dozen. We had so many it was ridiculous!

    The chairs are lovely and what a perfect way to preserve a memory!

  42. Love the sweet story and I’m glad you found such a great use for those chairs! They are too cute to be stuck up in the attic…it’s nice when our children give us a thumbs up!
    Whee! A commercial. At your house! Wow! Congrats!

  43. Hey, did you see the idea on Pinterest to use these chairs on the wall like this as a closet? Hang your clothes off the rungs and then use the seats for the “shelf” that is near the top of the closet. I wish I were so creative like that. You are an inspiration to us all and I am so glad you are not like anyone else either!

  44. Chairs on the wall will be all the rage now!!! What a great story. Your girls are adorable. My daughter covered the side of her nightstand (closest to her bed) with stickers. Now I wish we still had it….for HER daughter!

  45. LOL! My first thought was “Oh, Kari’s put chair stickers on her wall,” and I thought they looked awesome. But no, you had to hang the real thing up there!

  46. Karianne,your the only friend that has a gatehouse. Your the only friend that has chairs on the wall. Your the only friend that has a book being published. Your a one and only amazing friend to all your fans.

  47. Love that story and love the chairs on the wall!

  48. Lanita Anderson :

    Love those chairs and their new “home” on the gatehouse wall… clever! I know they bring back good memories and will now be a great reminder of those memories. They look pretty cute “sporting” pumpkins, too! 🙂 Thanks for sharing…..

  49. I wish I could take off from work and go to Kearney. Close and yet so far away.
    Have fun!

  50. Joyce P Wright :

    So wonderful to read your delightful stories & see pictures! Hope all is well with your family (loving school & making new friends). I feel privileged to have met you & the girls! Keep up the good work & hugs to you & the twins!?

  51. Kimberly Bruhn :

    You know how you do something kind of quirky and wait, wait, wait for confirmation that it’s “cool” or “clever?” Well, you just made my confirmation day (without the white dress)! I know it’s a bulky, weird habit but I have been collecting children’s chairs for years. I have maybe a dozen (or more, gulp). About 5 years ago I decided to figure out how to hang 7 of them on my family room wall…sort of like decorative shelves. My kids made such fun of my “chair wall” that when I painted about a year ago (a nice change to gray from Tuscan gold with barn-red accent wall) I decided I could remove those chairs and do something else. I know I took a picture of this weirdness so when I find it I will share it with you, my “chairs on the wall club,” friend!

  52. Hula hooping dog stickers;) Not often you read a story about that. I’m so glad you decorate so creatively. It always brings a smile to everyones face. And your hula hooping dog encouragement stickers must have worked, your daughters seem so fun. Or maybe you are just a really great mom;)

  53. Love the chairs on the wall!

  54. So, where were you when I had all those chairs in my storage, to the point of me giving them away? Do you have a 911 Call Junk number avail? I LOVE this look!

    Featured you this weekend’s DIY Salvaged Junk 350. Thanks for linking up!


  1. […] Chairs on a wall and toolbox fall pumpkins, by Thistlewood Farms […]