Thursday, March 31, 2011

Link Party

On occasion, people ask me how I find good blogs to read.  Usually my answer is, I find one blog that leads me to another that leads me to another.  But, here is another great way to find fun blogs - a link party!  Check it out:

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Paint can transform anything....

....including the curtains for our master bedroom.  We desperately needed window treatments in our master bedroom, it is a large window facing the front of our house after all.  I'm sure our neighbors are sick of watching us walk around in our underwear by now ;) 

I knew I wanted something with a little interest and color on our windows, but I wasn't ready to introduce another pattern in the tune of full length curtains.  So I picked up some white cotton curtains and decided to paint them.  When trying to determine what to paint on the curtains, I remembered this blog post and loved the random sized stripes she had painted on her walls.  That was it, that was just the inspiration I needed. 

The process didn't go quite as smoothly as I had hoped.  The plan was to use the painters tape I had on hand, tape off some stripes, use a foam brush to pain the stripes and hopefully it'd take less than an hour.  Boy was I wrong - the tape didn't stick to the cotton - so 5 hours later, I had completed the hand painted, straight stripes across the bottom of each panel.  Good thing I love how they turned out!

Please excuse the poor quality cell phone picture, taken at night.  The colors aren't exactly accurate, either.  

I think I could have gone a bit wider/bolder with the stripes, but I still love them the way they are.  

The master bedroom is getting closer and closer to being complete:

- make artwork for the walls
- get lamps for the nightstands
- get large floor mirror: coming soon, hopefully I get to pick it up this week!
- paint trays on nightstands
- paint and maybe recover the chair
- paint the side table by the chair
- paint the dresser
- window coverings (2 parts)
   - curtains
   - blinds
- accessorize
- paint the trim white 

Since this post was all about paint, any suggestions on what colors to paint the chair and small side table?  

Friday, March 25, 2011

I did it!

As mentioned earlier this week - my mission (well, one of many) was to complete a mini bathroom make-over before Friday.  And, I DID IT, I was finished at 11:49 pm tonight (Thurs) to be exact!

It all started with replacing the window treatment - all I wanted to do was to remove the ugly curtain and make a roman shade.  Just that change would at least make the bathroom a tiny bit improved - I wouldn't want our guests this weekend to think I can't pick out a good window treatment ;)

But once the curtain was removed, it became apparent that the towel bar under the window was not centered and I wouldn't be able to look at that daily - it would drive me nuts!  So the towel bar was removed and created 2 holes that needed to be patched.  That lead to wanting to repaint the bathroom.  Afterall, I wouldn't want to have a house warming party with big holes in our walls **sigh**

We went from this:

(Note the reflection of the wallpapered mural on the wall above the bath, and the wall paper border surrounding the tub.  What you can't see is the 5, yes 5, wooden and ceramic towel racks on the walls)

To this:

A close-up of the simple DIY artwork - created in Illustrator, printed and framed in cheap frames that are spray painted a glossy white

The best part about the entire makeover was how cheap it was!  We already had the paint and decorations I put in there.  All I needed to purchase were new towel bars and a couple fluffy white towels. 

There is still plenty I would like to do in there (for instance, get something put up on the huge blank wall), but given the time frame I had to work with, I am happy with this mini make-over for now!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sneak Peak

I have some girl friends coming to town to visit this weekend and we are also hosting a happy hour at our place on Friday night.  Knowing we were going to have a fair amount of guests checking out the house, I just had to get rid of the hideous curtains in the bathroom (they were the only window treatments we hadn't removed yet).

Changing out the curtain led to the demolition of the towel rack...which = holes in the wall.  That lead to the decision to repaint the bathroom.  One thing lead to another and now I'm on a mission to complete a mini bathroom make-over before my guests arrive on Friday.  Wish me luck, I'll need it ;)

Here is the progress so far

More to come...if you don't see the reveal by Friday, you'll know I failed my mission!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Roman Shades

(ignore the mess, this was taken on move-in day)

Isn't that window covering lovely?  No?  Not so much?  We didn't think so either!  So I used a popular blogland solution to give our windows the pretty treatments they deserved - I made a roman shade from a mini blind.  Here is the tutorial I followed, it was really simple and quite cheap!

I thought the biggest challenge would be finding a fabric I liked that would also match the floor in the bathroom (I don't love the floor).  In fact, when I drug Dan to JoAnns he asked what we were doing there and the conversation went like this:

D: What do you need to get here?
B: Some fabric for our bathroom window, I want to make a new curtain
D: Oh, good, I've wanted to rip that ugly curtain down since we moved in!  So, we'll be in and out, since you know what you are looking for?
B: I know what I need fabric for, I'm not so sure what I am looking for though
D: **BIG SIGH**'ll be awhile.....

Fortunately, we walked in and there was the fabric, staring me down, with colors that would match our floor beautifully!  We were out of there in no time, it might even be a record.  I am known to go in to the fabric store, look at all the fabric, drool over a few of them and then leave empty handed because I can't make a decision. 

Anyways, here it is, our new roman shade:

And those holes in the wall.....they'll be fixed tonight!  Since we were saying good bye to the curtain, we also decided to say good-bye to the off center, never used towel rack.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Upholstering a Wooden Chair

I love Craigslist, it is my go-to when I am looking for a new project. So, as always it pulled through when I was looking for two chairs for our small kitchen table. In fact, it did one better, I found a new table along with the two chairs. Our previous table I picked up off of craigslist and I was going to refinish it to be black, but this new table came as a package with the chairs and was already black! Everything is in good shape, with the exception of the seats on the chairs, they were really scratched up. But, some simple upholstering will solve that problem.

Here is what the chairs looked like before:

Upholstering is one of my favorite things to do, it is so simple and makes a big impact! Here is the how-to:

Materials/Tools Needed:
- Foam (I used two inch foam, but you can use whatever size your bottom side prefers)
- Quilt Batting
- Spray Adhesive
- Fabric of your choice (thicker, upholstering fabric works best)
- Staple gun

Start with a chair that you can remove the seat of the chair from the frame of the chair.

Use the seat as your guide and cut the foam to be about 1/4" larger (on each side) than the seat itself. I'd recommend using an electric kitchen knife to cut the foam, but if you don't have one (I don't!) scissors work ok too.

You can see the edges of my foam are kind of jagged (due to cutting with a scissors) and that is ok :)

Using spray adhesive, spray both the seat of the chair and the foam, and position together.

Once the foam is glued to the seat, flip the seat over foam side down and measure/cut the quilt batting. Make sure there is enough batting to cover the seat; I made the batting about 5 inches larger on each side than the size of the seat. Pull the batting around to the back of the chair and staple in place. I started on one side and just worked my way around. Make sure to pull the batting tight as you go. If you used an electric knife to cut the foam, you can probably skip the batting all together. But since I had jagged edges, the batting helps to smooth it all out.

Taking the same steps as the batting, use the seat as a guide and measure/cut the fabric to size. Again, pull the fabric edges around to the back and staple in place while making sure to pull the fabric tight as you go.

It is as simple as that! Then re-attach the seat to the chair and the chair has a whole new look!

I'm loving the bold geometric pattern on the chair and my bum is loving the extra padding :)

Thursday, March 10, 2011


Somebody likes hanging out on the new chair in my office :)


My office is [thisclose] to being complete. One of the final touches is a new office chair. Since I work from home a majority of the days, I need a chair that is comfortable enough to sit in for 8+ hours a day. I also need (yes, need :) ) a chair that looks pretty.

I visit daily to check out their deals, so I was delighted when I found a pretty office chair in my price range on sale last week. I pulled the trigger immediately and the count down began for the arrival of my new chair! I was excited when Fedex arrived yesterday - only to be disappointed when Dan opened the package and found there was a missing part :(

How is a girl to sit in a chair that looks like this?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Good Bye Zebra

I love zebra print, so back in our apartment living days, it was an easy choice to cover our desk chair in zebra print to go with our black desk. But now the black desk lives in my office closet, holding the sewing machine, and the chair is going to live in my office as an extra seat (for my husband who complains he has nowhere to sit when he comes to my office to visit with me). Sadly, it was time to say good-bye to the zebra print.

Bye-bye zebra print

Hello green chair that matches my curtains:

Now that it is repainted and sitting in my office, I am kind of wishing I would have painted the chair black. I think it would have looked great against the curtains with the black trim. O well, I'll live with it for awhile and see if the white grows on me.

New Look

This blog needs a new look.  Sounds easy enough, right?!  WRONG!  Being a web designer, designing my own site/blog is the worst task to take on, I simply can not decide what I want to do!  **sigh**  So, for the time being it is going to look like this - plain and simple - until I figure out what I want the new look to look like!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Latest Additions: Master Bedroom

Now that we have the walls painted in our master bedroom, it was time we started bringing in some artwork.  In true DIY fashion, I decided to paint a couple paintings for above our night stands.  I am a girl that loves clean, crisp lines - as you can tell by most of the patterns in our room.  To balance that out, I felt the paintings needed to be more abstract/free flowing. I forgot to take a good picture of just the paintings themselves, so this will have to do:

In addition to the painting, I also hung up a frame.  I knew I wanted the artwork above the nightstands to be large, but making the painting as large as the frames would have been too much color for the look I wanted to achieve.  The "empty" frames were the perfect solution - at least I like to think so :)  Dan also agreed and loves the look!  

The lamps are also a new addition, bringing in the perfect amount of sparkle/shininess/bling! 

The best part about a DIY project is when Dan gives me the big two thumbs up once it is complete.  I always run my ideas by him, but he can't visualize the same way I can, so I love it when he loves the end result!  

And one more great thing about completing a project - getting to cross it off the list!


- make artwork for the walls
- get lamps for the nightstands
- get large floor mirror
- paint trays on nightstands
- paint and maybe recover the chair
- paint the side table by the chair
- paint the dresser
- accessorize
- paint the trim white


I picked up a couple serving trays at Ikea when we first moved in to our house, without having a purpose for them.  But, I knew I'd find a place to use them - and I did just that and love what a difference they make! 

Here they are in their before state, along with the materials I used to make them over.

I wanted to add a pattern to the middle of the tray, but I wasn't completely sure what pattern I wanted to add so I needed to come up with a solution that wasn't going to be permanent.  So, I cut out two cardboard pieces to fit inside the trays and covered them with left over fabric from our bedskirt. It was incredibly simple: measure cardboard, cut to size, measure & cut fabric about an inch larger than cardboard, hot glue edges of fabric to back of cardboard & place inside the tray!

I also spray painted the trays black, to add some contrast to our night stands. 

Turns out, I love the stripes, so I probably won't be changing them anytime soon.  But, in the event that I do want to change them, it will be super simple!