Saturday, November 2, 2013

Bits & Bobs from Here and There

Howdy!  I know, it's been a while.  But I've not been idle!  Here are a few shots of what I've been up to:

I tore apart my close-to-15-years-old fall wreath and updated with some junk I had lying around:

We got Drama a bunk bed and I was banished from the room whilst the manly men in my life assembled it.

Decorating the yard was taken over by no less than 7 little boys from around the 'hood.  They had a blast!

And a trip to the lake for my Dad's birthday at the end of September.

I've had a few more things cooking, like working with Frog Tape Shape Tape for the first time, using my E6000 glue on a glass project, and trying to keep my pretty fall decor from being ruined by said manly men.

What have you been up to?

Monday, October 7, 2013

I'm okay!

I've not posted much lately. Even for me!  But I've not been idle friends. Oh no.  I finished up the towel bar for the boys bathroom. Its ginormous. It has 6 wood hooks, which I ripped from a 1x1, stained to match, and color coded for each kid.

The towel hanging success rate is up to about 65% now, which is awesome. The clothes on the floor rate hasn't budged, so I'm considering a laundry strike.

And in case you're curious, those vinyl decals are holding up well. Steamy showers and midnight fights with gobs of wet TP (don't ask) have yet to leave a mark.  Awesomeness.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Project Elephant, Part 3 & 3.5

five days five ways | project elephant

I'm so productive!  More things checked off the list:  Finish up my poor little abused tray - CHECK.  Spray paint frames & shelves glossy navy blue - CHECK.

Here's my little tray.  Just imagine it all sad, with cheap mahogany veneer over cheap pine and pockmarked with holes.

I do need to go back and touch up the stencils.  It started raining as I was working on Saturday, and I had to scramble to get my shelves off the lawn!  I may even decide to add a great big monogram to the middle.  I need to let that thought marinate a while first though.

As for the huge gallery wall, we went from this...               To this:                            
My chippy broken $5 estate sale frame.

I'm not showing it all yet.  It's blue and gilded and GORG!

And here is a non-glamorous painting shot - it's the only one I have of the shelves (3.  2 ledges & 1 shelf)  Many not-thanks to my sneaky Aidan for shooting this one!

And that's all we have time for today folks!  I'm going to be linking up at:

Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom

Project Elephant, Part 2

five days five ways | project elephant

I'm making progress!  Maybe what I needed was some long-distance internet encouragement?  No matter.  I'm making progress, and that's what counts.

The other day I showed you some teasers for this next project.  Well, here it is in all it's glory...

Yes my friends, that is a 6-foot long towel bar!  There are 6 hooks, which makes my fondest wish that each of the boys will HANG their towel and their robe up.  I know I know!  It's a total long-shot.  BUT, they are invested in this project as well, so I'm hoping the ownership factor will help.

I had them distress the back, which ended up splitting the 2x6 down the length.  I went with it, and crafted a faux-live-edge (top).  I also let them each choose a color for the end of the pegs.  Aidan has red, Logan orange and Gavin is blue.  I happened to have some sample pots lying around from yet another project that went belly-up before I really got started.  

I spent less than $20 on this.  We had the back piece, which was only a couple of bucks anyway.  I paid about $2 for the 1x1 I used for the pegs (and I only used half).  The cleat was the big ticket, coming in at around $13.  And I really don't even like the way it's hanging, so I may convert to a series of D-rings across the back.  The cleat just seems to pop it out from the wall too far.  I'm not sold, but I'm not revising yet either.

Here are few more (bad) photos for your viewing pleasure.
All stained up & ready for paint!

How do ya like that edge?

Blue & orange

Why yes, I did stand in the shower for this! (please ignore the crud on the floor, behind the door, it's there no more!)

Gavin was "helping" by "washing" the mirror, and keeping track of my tools.  Just keeping things real people!

Sharing at:

Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Project Elephant, Part 1

I actually finished this mini-project up last week.  For my first bite, I figured I'd better start small!

This is where my cute little yard-sale pewter tray ended up:

Can you see it?  Right, THERE.  Filled with chamois, staples and partially hidden by rags.  Yeah, I'm all over that.

A quick clean, and a shot of slate blue spray paint later, and here is where she's at:
Look at that paint line!  Love me some FrogTape!

Guess I got excited and bobbled the camera...

So, that's my first teensy bite of Project Elephant.  Not bad 'eh?  I think she's cute, and she's helping me corral all of my little sparklies, instead of them being strewn all across the vanity.

Here's a sneak peek at the next project on the list:

   What projects are you tackling this weekend?

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Tackling the elephant in the room

five days five ways </P>
<P>project elephant

So, Abbie over at Five days…5 ways, has an awesome new challenge for us. It’s called ‘Project Elephant’, and it’s all about eating the elephant of To-Do lists we all have. One. Bite. At. A. Time.

I’m totally joining in. I need this! I’ve got so many things lying around half finished, or just percolating in my brain because I’m so overwhelmed by it all that I can’t bear to take care of any of it! It’s time to take control of the list, and CHOMP.

Check out Abbie’s blog, and decide if Move-It-Monday Project Elephant is for you. Or just hang around and encourage us…because I can tell you, I’ll need every bit I can get!

UPDATE: Here is my list of projects for Project Elephant, and my progress thus far:

1. Rescue cute pewter tray from workbench & make pretty in my master bath
2. Tackle the HUGE (we're talking 6'x20') statement wall in the great room (I'll be happy if I just START this project!) this includes a mini-list: a)take everything off the wall & clean it, b) attack old & new shelves with GLOSS Navy Blue spraypaint, c) argue with The Man over placement d)do it my way when he's out of town, e)bask in the glory of a finished wall that only took a year to do) THIS WILL NOT ALL GET DONE I PROMISE YOU! LOL
3. Frame & hang adorable inspirational art I've had in a folder for too long
4. Rescue little brass pot from garage workbench
5. Finish my rescued tray (another coat of paint, maybe a stencil?)
6. Sand & stain the backboard for the boys' bathroom towel bar.  It's totally finished, and hung!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Fabulous Closet Makeover

My gosh peeps, have you SEEN Virginia’s closet makeover? Her $50 makeover?! Seriously, I’m so jealous!

If you haven’t seen it yet, I highly recommend heading over to check it out. You can find Virginia at LiveLiveDIY.

Source: LiveLoveDIY

Monday, August 5, 2013

Big Plans, Teeny Budget

I can't believe I'm about to do what I'm about to do. Seriously. Our master bedroom is SO not fit for public viewing it's not even remotely funny. BUT, I'm hoping that the public humiliation will end this cycle of procrastination and get my butt in gear!

Without further adieu, the (shamefully un-decorated) Master Bedroom.

Yes, I am only showing you a teensy part.  I know. It looks like a college bedroom.  It's sludge brown and melted milkshake brown.  With two silly little eyeball windows on the main wall, and one big one to the left in the photo.

I know I mentioned that we moved into this house almost a year ago (has it been a year already?!) At the time, I had big plans for just about every room in this house. Alas, time and money got away from me, and some, ahem, design disagreements, between The Man and I.

A couple of weeks ago, we both pitched in and got things straightened up and (mostly) put away. I took apart the computer and re-wired everything to mostly hide the ugly cords and clear off the top of my vanity. I swear that someday I will use it for it's intended purpose!

Aaand now that I've bored you to tears. Here's where I'm going with this room.
  1. The "focal' wall with those two teensy eyeball windows (what the heck am I supposed to do with those anyway?) will become a gorgeous deep blue. Specifically, Medieval Blue by Pantone. I won the paint last year in a blog contest, and have yet to use that particular color. I've got almost two quarts, so I'm pretty confident I'll get it done with what I've got. The Pantone paints have given really great coverage on all of my other projects, so, I'm just going to go for it.
  2. The current headboard will have the legs cut off and then will be mounted to the wall with a french cleat, slightly higher than where it sits now.
  3. Nightstands will get a fresh coat of creamy white paint. this is going to KILL The Man.
  4. Replace the plastic blinds with bamboo shades. Yet another thing The Man is not quite on board with. I think he still sees those horrid bamboo shades from the 70's with the avocado green yarn and brown fabric ties!
  5. Replace the current curtains (which go with the bedding from 2 sets ago) with something else. Yes, they will be hung high and wide.
  6. Remove the mirror from the dresser, and relocate it to the wall below the big window.
  7. Re-do or replace the current lamps with something. Hanging lamps? Chandeliers? More lamps? Wall sconces? Who knows?
  8. Replace the ceiling fan. The light kit hasn't worked since we moved in, and it kinda sucks to not have an overhead light in this room.
  9. Purchase a wireless router for the computer (the only internet connection is in this room) and relocate the computer elsewhere in the house. Or just to the other interior wall in the room.
  10. Paint the other 3 walls in the room a creamy white.
  11. Paint the doors & trim. None of the doors or trim in the house have been painted since the house was built in 2003. With dirty boys, dogs, and being, oh, the fifth family to occupy the house, they are pretty beat up, dirty & dingy!
  12. Create a small sitting area across from the bed. There's just enough room for this if I keep the scale down. I've always wanted a nice little spot to sit in my bedroom. Ideally, I'd be able to move my bookcases up here (repainted & beautified of course!) and make a little library seating area. Not sure how The Man is going to feel about that though. He's not sold on the seating area yet as it is!
Here is my inspiration board for this gargantuan, most likely year-long, project.

Master Bedroom

How cool is that brass lamp?  Now, I'm not normally a fan of brass, but this lamp happens to look like ammo, and if there's one thing The Man loves, it's guns & ammo.  I've discovered that you can buy a kit for ceiling fans to make them accept pretty chandeliers.  Imma hafta get me one!  The slipper chair is from World Market, and is a smaller scale to work with the dimensions of the room.  My vanity and our bedroom furniture will be going white, with dark stained tops on the dresser and vanity.  Oh!  And here is part of the art, already done and waiting for me to paint...

One baby step at a time.  Now that I've put all of this out there, maybe I'll have more motivation to actually DO something about it!  Accountability people.  Help a girl out.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Dealing with funky frames

Did I ever show you the frames I picked up earlier this summer?  Yard sale find, solid wood, 25 cents each.  But of course, I failed to note the size of the openings (10x12 and 10x11), and, when I got home, had nothing to put in them!

Fast forward a couple of months.  I've painted the dingy frames bright white, and called upon Costco Photo Center to fill those pretties.  I chose 4 vintage advertising posters, and had them printed up in 8x12.  Cost me all of about 3 bucks, and they were ready at my local warehouse in about an hour.

Then the prints languished in a folder, next to the disassembled frames, for several months.  I just couldn't figure out what to do about the empty space.  I could have matted them, though that would have required covering parts of the prints.  So that was out.  I thought about painting the backer boards, but they were just heavy cardboard, and I knew they'd curl up like a cooked shrimp as soon as any paint hit them.  So, we waited.

Until yesterday, when the angels sang from the office supply aisle at the DollarTree.  Foam core!  It was exactly the depth I needed to fill the back of the frames, and I could get four from one sheet.  SOLD!

I hauled that thing home, and laboriously cut (anything done with the help of a 3-year-old is laborious) four backers.  But I wasn't loving the white.

Remember the mixed silver craft paint from the pillars?  Yeah, it called me again.  I used a crusty old sponge brush to dry-brush the outside 2-inches of the long sides of each board.  Because I was dry brushing, the paper did not curl or soak up a bunch of paint, and I could really work the medium, getting a nice, matte sheen, while covering the white completely.

Then it was just a matter of centering my print over the foam core, and pressing the whole thing into the frame.

Some of my frames still had the staples, so I used those to hold the core in where I could.  And, because I'm lazy, the frames that did not have staples got a few lengths of FrogTape along the edges.  With the foam core, the frames are actually lighter than they were before, so I'm not too worried about things falling out.

They are really crappy cell-phone photos (dang camera battery won't hold a charge!), but you get the idea.  I had originally planned to put these in the great room, but I think they will be awesome in the master once we get the room painted.  I love all the blues, and just those few pops of orange & coral.  I think they'll be perfect.

If you are wondering what happened to the fourth frame, it defected.  I found an incredible vintage firefighter graphic, and just had to have it.  Since The Man is a (former) firefighter, we are doing up the large wall in the great room with his memorabilia.  I'm about to tear it all down and re-do, since I scored those yard sale ledge shelves, and we found his vintage alarm bell (it was in the attic at the parents' house).  My mom also gifted me a few vintage finds from her stash of grandma's stuff, so, this wall is going to be in transition very soon!

Yes, it really is that toasty brown color.  I live in a loaf of bread.

(Just ignore the fact that nothing is centered on this wall...there are two matching windows flanking, with the couch dead center.  The ceilings in here are really high, and I haven't decided on window treatments yet.)

Thanks so much for stopping by!

*disclaimer: I was not paid or given product by either Costco or FrogTape.  I doubt they know I exist, I just love their products!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

More inspiration boards!

I just love playing around with my Olioboards.  It's an easy way for me to pair photos of my own stuff, with gorgeous things I'd like to have in my spaces.  Take a gander at my dining room inspiration

Dining Room 2

Or how about a little family room action?

Fabulous Family Room

Give it a try, its FREE.  And you all know how I feel about free :)

A quick makeover with BIG impact

I've had these two pillar candle holders kicking around for years and years.  They've moved several times, and have just gotten kind of beat up in the process.

They were ok as they were, but, since I'm so surrounded by brown all the time, I thought I could brighten them up a bit.  Here is where we started, brown and goldy-bronzey:

Ignore the hot mess of my kitchen in the background.  And Stanky's breakfast...I felt crafting was a better use of my time today!
And here is where we ended up...even my guys like them!  
Obviously, we haven't painted the hallway yet.  BROWN.

Crisp paint lines, thanks FrogTape!

I used my trust FrogTape(TM) to cover all of the goldy-bronze bits.  It took some doing, as my tape was too wide, but I'm a use-what-you've-got kinda girl!  

Once it was all taped off, I could really get in those tight joints with my detail brush.  Otherwise I just used a cheap foam brush and white acrylic craft paint.  Because they were so dark, and I skipped primer, it took about 6 thin coats of the acrylic.  BUT, that allowed the grain of the faux leather to really pop, and I like the texture the foam brush left behind.

I was tempted to call it good once the white dried, but, I had two bottles of silver craft paint calling me.  I just mixed Pure Silver (a little darker & more aged) and Silver Anniversary (very metallic/high sheen) 50/50, then pounced it over the raised details with my detail brush.  For the smooth sections, I just dry-brushed some of the silver paint over the bronze to get a really cool mixed metal effect.

For ZERO dollars, I've got two brand spankin new pillar holders.  Which means I've got to find a better place for them than the bottom of the pantry...

Look at those crisp paint lines!  Thanks FrogTape!