Archives for May 2012

Family Room Update

Our family room is in need of some love.  The area rug and pillows are old. And the colors are dated.   Fortunately, our Pottery Barn couch and chairs are neutral and a give me a good base for updating the room.

I dug out some  yellow napkins that I hope to make into a pillow.  And I brought one of the doors in from the garage and propped it in the corner.  I like the added height and color that it adds to the room.  But Dan is a bit iffy about the door.   We’ll see if he can get used to it because I kind of like it!

And today I picked up a new are rug.  It’s really light so I’m hoping we don’t regret that decision {as we have two small kids who drag in a bit of everything on their shoes…}

I think the room is coming together.

What do you think?  Should the door stay in the room? Or go back out to the garage?

Jen

linking up to:

aka design, the shabby creek cottage, the 36th avenue  shabby nest, at the picket fence, house of hepworths, life rearranged, funky junk interiors, homemaker on a dime, i heart naptime, nifty thrifty things, the southern institute, between naps on the porch, debbie does creations, home stories a to z, my uncommon slice of suburbia, tip junkie, how to nest for less, savvy southern style

Guest Post – How to Build Simple Shutters

Do you remember last week when I mentioned a project I was working on?  I built shutters for my shed!!  Today I have the opportunity to write a guest post over at Lori May Interiors on how to build them.

Visit her blog to see how I took my ho-hum shed window….

and spruced it up to look like this!

 And if you want to see the not-so-pretty before picture, you’ll have to pop over to Lori May Interiors!!

Jen

Needing a little lift….

Awhile back. we swapped out our end tables.  We’d been using some antique round tables that were Dan’s grandma’s.  They’re pretty. And in good shape. But they are tall and round.  We’d been using them for years and I was ready for a change.

While I was hoping for a new look, I wasn’t ready to spend a great deal of money. So I shopped around my house (and garden!). I wondered if it would be crazy to use some barn wood tables that I use on my porch and in my yard. I cleaned them off and dragged them indoors. They seemed like shrinky-dinks compared to the old ones that towered over the arm of the couch.  But after doing some research on side tables, they were really close to the correct height of a side table!!

I figured it was a safe way to try out the size before buying new ones.  But I have actually grown to like the look! The color of the weathered wood has a nice gray tone to it. And since I already owned the tables, I didn’t have to spend a dime! I love a free update!

After living with the new {old} end tables, they still seemed a bit short to me.  I wondered if some casters would fix my issue! So after shopping both Lowes and Home Depot, I found some that would do the trick for only $2.50 each.

A few minutes later, the tables received a much needed lift!

 Now the end tables are about three inches higher and the size seems just right!

Plus, they casters look kid of fun!!

{And we didn’t get rid of the antique tables.  They were just relocated to other rooms in the house!}

Jen

linking up to:

savvy southern style, the shabby creek cottage, somewhat simple, aka design, house of hepworths, the 36th avenue, the shabby nest, finding fabulous, at the picket fence, miss mustard seed, funky junk interiors, homemaker on a dime, i heart naptime, nifty thrifty things, the southern institute, between naps on the porchdebbie does creations,home stories a to z, my uncommon slice of suburbia, tip junkie, how to nest for less

What I did today…

I have a ton of projects started and nothing complete. So today, I tried to make some progress.

Several weeks ago, I bought these great pots at Costco.  I knew the color wouldn’t look right with our gray house, but the size and shape were right.

so today I brought out the black spray paint…

Much better!

And now that the pots are painted, I can start planting all of these flowers!

Today I also started {and finished} making a little something…

Now this weekend I will get it painted.  {And then I can blog about it…so stay tuned!}

While I had the nail gun out, I took the opportunity to attach a missing piece of wood to the footboard of my unfinished bed! Slowly but surely, this bed will get finished! Today was a step in the right direction!

So it was a productive afternoon!!  Here’s hoping I can get a few more things done this weekend!

Jen

Gallery Wall

Today I was able to help a friend hang some pictures in her house.  She has a narrow hallway leading to the bedrooms that she wanted to fill with different frames and wall decor.

I always use the floor below the wall as a blank canvas.  By laying the frames on the floor, I can move them around as if it’s a puzzle. Trying one layout. Moving a picture here or there until I come up with a display that flows and fits the wall.

For example, today I started with this this arrangement…

{photo disclaimer: I only had my iphone today hence the low quality photo’s.}

The layout wasn’t working for me, so  pictures were moved around and a small cross added…

  That didn’t work.  So after a bit more shuffling, I ended up here…

And we have a winner!

Before I start hanging pictures, I always take a quick picture.  This will help you remember the spacing and exact placement of the frames.  And you will have something to refer back to if needed once you begin hanging pictures.

I then measured the center point on the floor layout.  And I measured the center point on the wall…then started hanging wall decor.

And here is the finished product.  {The pictures are taken at an angle due to the narrow nature of the hallway.}

It looks great! No more empty hallway!!

Jen

linking up to:

michele raven designs, savvy southern home, the shady porch, the shabby creek cottage, somewhat simple, house of hepworths, aka design, shabby nest, at the picket fence, stuff and nonsense, my repurposed life, chic on a shoestring decorating, fingerprints on the fridge, here comes the sun, tatertots and jello, funky junk interiors, my 1929 charmer, homemaker on a dime, nifty thrifty things, between naps on the porch, the southern institute, home stories a to z, debbie does creations, todays creative blog, tip jukie

Placemat Purse Tutorial

I love placemats.  In my opinion, they can be used for more than dressing up a table!  I’ve used them to make kids aprons.  I’ve thought about using them to make pillows.  And today I used one to make a purse!  This project is so easy (or SEW easy….sorry, couldn’t resist).

{1}

Select a place mat (for the purse) and ribbon (for the strap).

{placemat: crate and barrel} {ribbon: black grosgrain}

{2}

Fold the place mat in half and pin edges together.

{3}

Sew the edges…

and turn the placemat so the right side is facing out.

{4}

Cut the ribbon to the appropriate length.  (I wanted to sling my purse across my body, so I cut the ribbon 47″  long.)  Singe the edges of your ribbon with a lighter to keep it from fraying.

{5}

Sew ribbon into the desired place.  I sewed mine onto the side seams.

Wasn’t that simple?!  And it only took four runs of stitches!  You could also add a snap, button or velcro closure.  And maybe an inside pocket.

The placemat purse makes a great gift! It can serve as a mini diaper bag when checking your little one into childcare. Or maybe a bag to hold your bible on Sunday morning.  How about a birthday gift for a little girl that loves purses!?

I’d love to see your placemat purse creations!  Are you going to make one!?

Jen

linking up to:

a simply klassic home, homemaker on a dime, between naps on the porch, skip to my lou, my uncommon slice of suburbia, home stories a to z, todays creative blog, tip junkie, how to nest for less, michele raven designs, savvy southern style, the shady porch, the shabby creek cottage, placemat purse tutorial, somewhat simple, house of hepworths, aka design, shabby nest, at the picket fence, stuff and nonsense, my repurposed life, chic on a shoestring decorating, fingerprints on the fridge, here comes the sun, tatertots and jello, my 1929 charmer, homemaker on a dime, nifty thrifty things, the southern institute, debbie does creations

HGTV.com Announcement

Today I treated myself to some flowers.

After all, they’re pretty.  It is spring. An I felt like celebrating because I  just found out that my blog is going to be featured on HGTV.com!!!

Isn’t that exciting?!  I received an email this week requesting permission to use the blog post on my $7 personalized doormat.  Do you remember this tutorial?

It will be featured this December on HGTV.com!  They are doing a Christmas countdown from December 1st through the 31st.  And my doormat and blog will be highlighted on one of those days.

So stay tuned!  I’ll certainly pass on any news or udpates as I find them out!

Jen

Cabinet Door Chalkboards

I realize I am not unique by making something into a chalkboards.  But when I was down at the Habitat for Humanity Restore a few weeks ago, I couldn’t help but purchase a few inexpensive cabinet doors for a project.  How can you turn down a perfectly good door for only $5?!  After thinking of a few upcoming events, I decided to turn them into chalkboards and give them as gifts.

I turned these….

into these…
Here is a quick and easy tutorial for making one of your own…
1.
Use frog tape or blue painters tape to section off the area that you would like to paint.
2.
Using chalkboard paint, apply paint to the cabinet door.
3.
When the paint is dry, remove the painters tape.  Keep in mind that you may have to touch up a few places where paint crept through the tape.
4.
Rub chalk all over to ‘cure’ the chalkboard. Then wipe it off with a dry cloth.
5.
Attach D-rings to the back of the cabinet door.
5. 
Hang chalk from string to give as a gift or hang the chalkboard up in your house!
And your project is complete!
Jen
linking up to:

Crate and Barrel Aspen Dinnerware

We did it. After 15 years, we finally bought new dishes!  I went to Crate and Barrel and came home with their white Aspen dinnerware.  It’s nothing fancy. No intricate patterns. No fine detailing.  It’s plain and it’s simple. And it doesn’t have any chips or dings….yet!

 

The aspen dinnerware is porcelain, which is the most durable.  Since these are our everyday dishes, they needed to be sturdy to be handled by two busy little kiddos.

Here are some helpful hints when shopping for new dinnerware…

All you have to remember is E.S.P. (as in extrasensory perception).  But when talking about dinnerware, ESP stands for:

E – Earthenware: This is fired at the lowest temperature.  Therefore it is not as durable and chips the easiest.

S – Stoneware: Fired at a bit higher temperature, stoneware is a bit more durable than earthenware.

P – Porcelain: This is fired at the highest temperature, therefore it is the strongest and less likely to chip.

I do love color so switching to white dinnerware will be an adjustment for me.  My sister-in-law just purchased new dinnerware as well (coincidentally, from Crate and Barrel)! And she reminded me that food looks much prettier when served on a white plate. And I love that the white doesn’t compete with the place mats and napkins either! So I think I’ll adjust to my new white dinnerware quicker than I thought!

And since our silverware is also 15 years old, I also bought Crate and Barrel’s scoop flatware.

Now here’s hoping that it Dan likes it all as much as I do!!

Jen

linking up to:

savvy southern style, the brambleberry cottage, the shabby creek cottage, somewhat simple, house of hepworths, aka design, the 36th avenue, shabby nest, at the picket fence, my repurposed life, chic on a shoestring decorating, funky junk interiors, tatertots and jello

My Favorite Things…Magic Sliders

Over the next few weeks, I am going to share with you some of my favorite things…things that I can’t live without when decorating.

Today I’ll highlight my furniture movers. {Or furniture skids. Or ez sliders.  They have several different names.}  I own a set of Magic Sliders, which were purchased at Target.

{target}

When I get the urge to move furniture, I don’t like to wait for help. That’s where these little numbers come in handy!

Does your dresser seem impossibly heavy? Just lift up each corner enough to slide one of these underneath…

And it will glide across your floor ‘as if it had wheels’. {that’s the tag line for Magic Sliders}.  And I’m here to tell you, IT’S TRUE!   I can redecorate an entire room all on my own, thanks to my Magic Sliders!

If you like to move furniture around and you don’t own a set of furniture movers, add it to your shopping list.  You won’t be disappointed.

Jen

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