Monday, November 5, 2012

Before and After

It's very hard for me to buy something and not "modify" it.  Almost everything I buy is because it's almost what I need, but not quite.  It may need refinishing, or spray painted, or recovered.  I just can't help it.  So this post is dedicated to many of the "before & after" pictures I've taken of things throughout the years.  If you want to know more information about something, just let me know!

Before: $5 frame from antique store                                         After: Memo board in my entryway

Before:  Old gold frame                                                  After:  Artwork for my kitchen

Before:  Beat-up, bullet hole chair from the barn                          After:  Restored arm chair for back porch

Before:  White flea market wicker planters                              After:  Black planters for the front porch

Before:  Grandpa's old chairs from the shed                             After:  Cute, colorful chairs for back porch

Before:  $10 set of 4 benches from Craigslist                       After:  2 blue and 2 green benches for my firepit

Before: Dollar Tree frame                                             After:  Tiled frame.  Find this project here
Before:  Random cardboard box                                           After:  Boxes made into "Baskets" with jute string

Looking at these pictures I noticed 2 things.  1.  I love to spraypaint things.  It's so easy to completely change the way something looks with a few coats of paint.  So easy and so cheap!  2.  I like to spraypaint things in my grass.  =)  I probably shouldn't do that, but it grows so stinkin' fast you hardly notice.  If it makes it any better, I only spraypaint in the backyard where no one can see my spots. Haha!

Monday, October 29, 2012

My Home Tour - Part 2

So you came back for part 2?  Super!  We'll start out in the kitchen.  You pretty much saw the whole thing last week in my post about my hidden storage rack.  But in case you missed it, here is my "two-step" kitchen (meaning everything is 2 steps away from anything else).

Next up is the living room.  Let me preface by saying I am OVER the red couches!  I purchased this set back in 2005 and I loved red.  I still really like red, just wished I had picked a neutral color and smothered it in red pillows.  That being said, I'm trying to incorporate some cool blue and brown colors into this space.  The striped pillows & side chair are covered in a fabric that has brown and blue as well as the existing red, gold and green that are already in the room.  It took me forever to find it (almost 2 years) and so this room is currently a work-in-progress room that I mentioned in my first post.

Main corner of the living room.  Everything that is showing up pinkish is actually a tan color.  Something's up with my camera & lighting.  Sorry!

TV viewing area.  This is the poor chair that sat in ugly country blue and peach flamestitch fabric for 2 years (shudders).  Oh, and I bought it that way for $30 at a flea market - it had good bones, see?!

Up next is my guest/crafting room. This room may not look like much to you, but this is one of my favorite rooms.  I enjoy the neutral color palette, but what I like best is that it is filled with family heirlooms and found objects.  It truly is a "hodgepodge" of items.

I know I must explain the lamps!  These are what my family affectionately refers to as the "Naked Lady Lamps" (even though one of them is a male).  They are from my late great-grandmother's house. She passed away in 2010 and from the time I can remember going to her house, she had these lamps.  I couldn't let them go just yet, so now they live in my guest room.  I know that story doesn't make them look any better, but I like them!  If you stay at my house & they freak you out, then you can just sit in the dark.  =)

The couch is a pull-out sleeper because I very rarely have guests.  I didn't want to take up the whole room with a bed that never gets used.  This also leaves the whole floor for me to spread out my various projects and crafts, as well as wrapping gifts.

This side of the room has an old armoire from my bedroom when I was a kid.  My mom and I bought it unfinished & stained it together.  It even has scratches on the top where I sanded it against the grain.  I've learned from then - promise!  There is a TV inside the cabinet as well as more crafting "supplies" in the drawers.  The quilt rack was nabbed from my mom's attic and has some of my great-grandmother's quilts on it.  There is also one made especially for me by my ex-husband's grandmother, Mawmaw.  It's the one with the triangles on the highest rack. 

I found the old architectural millwork in an antique shop in Woodbury, TN.  Love them!  The dried flowers are from an old bouquet and the "antique" picture is of my niece and oldest nephew.  In the corner I'm sure you'll see another project-in-waiting.  It's a 1970's mirrored shelf thing my mom gave me.  It just needs a little love.  I plan to hang it over the sofa bed when I'm finished to display more treasures.

So that's it for today's tour.  I guess the only room left is my master bedroom, but I'll throw in some pictures of my hall, foyer and bathrooms too.  I know you're just DYING  to see them - ha! 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

My Home Tour Pt. 1

A while back (like a year ago), I promised some pictures of my house.  Well, when it was clean I snapped some photos for everyone to see.  I always feel like my rooms are a work in progress.  I'm happy with them for a while, and then I feel like things need to be changed up a bit.  So today, these are what my rooms look like....

My Dining Room

My table is a hand-me-down.  It began life with a natural birch top.  However, I hated it and sanded off the original finish & stained it darker. Drapes are from JCPenney.

These plates were picked up along the way.  I bought the white topiaries from Hobby Lobby a few years ago on clearance & hot glued moss inside of them.  A project I will NEVER do again.  =)  Wall color is Sherwin Williams Softened Green.

This is my back door entry way.  I recently redid this whole area and it functions SOOO much better.  Please excuse my messy mail file...but I promise you it looks better there than piled up on my dining room table. I'm kinda proud of this wall because it was almost entire put together from things I already had around my house.  I did buy the mail sorter and the shelf supports, but other than that, I just gave everything a coat of white paint.

I found this oval frame at an antique shop about 2 years ago.  It, like many things, has been sitting in a closet waiting for it's purpose to be revealed.  After being painted white, I cut some super thick cardboard with my jigsaw to fit.  Then on a whim, I found this brown burlap remnant at Hobby Lobby for $1.19!  I used some of it here and the rest on a project in my kitchen.  The letters I found just a couple weekends ago at Bella Rustica  from a blog you may have heard of (Vintage Junky) and had to have them for my little memo board!

I got the free printable quote "I just want to make beautiful things, even if nobody cares" from a website.  You can get it here.  It comes in 4 different colors (blue, yellow, red, green).

And finally for today is my office.

My make-shift hutch is 2 base cabinets and a small bookshelf.  It may not be glamourous, but I already had the pieces and you get a little creative when you don't have much floor space.  BTW, that long picture is my high school graduating class! 

My awesome mom made me a super cute burlap pillow WITH PEARLS!  I have a thing for pearls.  Love it!

Well, that's it for today.  Up next will be my kitchen, guest room and living room.  Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Kitchen Secret Storage

I have a small kitchen.  It is by no means the smallest kitchen I've ever seen, but it is definitely cozy.  It's about 8'x12' and is U-shaped.  I actually like the layout, just wish it took more than two-steps to get from side to side. 

Most folks wish they had a bigger kitchen or at least one with a little more storage and I am no exception.  I have an adequate number of cabinets - however, I only have a couple of cabinets that have adjustable shelves.  Therein lies the problem.  I bought a little can rack from the Container Store.  I thought it was going to solve all of my can storage issues (can't stack them, 3 rows deep of chicken broth because you can't see), but I didn't take into account the fact that I can't adjust the shelves.  So that sweet little can rack is still in the box. 

Then I saw this link on Pinterest.  Lightbulb!  I had a total of almost 8" of space on either side of my fridge.  I scooched (technical term) the fridge over against the cabinets and got my plan together.  My birthday was coming up, so I convinced my boyfriend to purchase the supplies for me as my gift ('cause what girl doesn't want lumber and casters for her 30th birthday?).  =) 

Happy Birthday, Amy!  P.S. Some assembly required!  Love, T

My mom works at a school and she happened to be on fall break the week I wanted to start this thing.  It was Friday before we actually started building and I'm sure it took us WAAAAY to long to actually finish it.  Things aren't exactly completely square and "It's close enough" became our motto.  But after lots of fractions, nail gun incidents, sanding and frustration we finally finished!

Part of the reason it took so long was because I had to modify the plan.  My inspiration used 1x4's because she only had about 6" of space.  Since I had more space, I decided to make it work a little better for me.  I used 1x4's for the actual shelves and 1x6's for the frame.  I recessed the backing so that I have a 2" recess on the back side.  I am going to put hooks to hang my broom/dustpan/Swiffer as well as my aprons.  This dead space was where I kept those things to begin with and didn't want to have to find them a new home.

But enough of the details, wanna see the finished product? 
This is what it looks like next to my fridge.

Here is the can rack side.  I love how much extra cabinet space this has given me.
This is the recessed side where my brooms will hang. Just wanted to show you the pattern before I hung things on it.

Here it is with the brooms/aprons hanging.
So that's it!  I love it and so proud that my mom and I built this together.  It may not be perfect, but it is super cute and stores my cans and brooms and makes my life easier - and at the end of the day isn't that all that matters? 

In case you're wondering, I hand painted the design on the back side.  I got the stencil from this site right here and you can download the template and resize it for whatever your needs may be. Do you have some extra space?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Shabby to Chic Frames

 A few years ago, my sweet niece decided to hold an "art show" at her house.  She had drawn or colored pictures in a wide variety of subjects for us all to view and purchase.  The proceeds of this art show were donated to the Ronald McDonald House charity.  Told you she was sweet.  Although everything was adorable, I came home with these little crayon fish in plain white frames and they have lived on the counter in my master bathroom ever since.

The frames were not of high quality and being next to my sink, they got splashed a little and the frames were starting to look gross.  So I decided they needed a little makeover (after probably 4 years in this state).

First, I removed the art and cleaned the glass really well and set them aside.  I dug out some random paint samples that I had in my laundry room closet and got to work.  These are the samples I used to determine what color to paint my bathroom.  The color is Sherwin Williams Quietude.  I put on a few coats with a sponge brush and while they dried, I went to the hardware store to find some tile.

I ended up at Home Depot (because I had a gift card) and found the most beautiful, perfectly colored mosaic tiles!  They came in a 3" by 12" sheet with a mesh backing.  After a thorough search of their website, I came up empty on finding a link.  Sorry! They are shades of blue, cream and brown and have curved tops (not flat like most tile). Absolutely beautiful! Anyway, I cut them apart and started playing with the best way to arrange them on the frame.  The square frame was by far the easiest.

 But me being me, I didn't want to be able to see the mest between the tiles (I wasn't planning to grout these).  So I cut each individual tile apart - that's why you see all those little white things in the left side of that pictures.  Took FOREVER!  But I finally got them glued down and when it dried I put the glass and art back in. Oh, and I used regular Alene's craft glue for the tiles.  Your picture frame now weighs about 3x as much as when you started.

The second frame's layout was a bit tougher because nothing was equal.  I wanted the frames to look similar with the tile spacing, but just couldn't find a way to do it equally.  So I just tiled the frame as if I was going to set it vertically instead of horizontal.  I do plan to change out the artwork one day, so this frame will just get turned the other way.  For now it works.

A simple project that only took a few hours to do.  The paint and tile made the sad, white, DollarTree frames looks like they came from a department store.  The tile cost about $4 a sheet and I had to purchase 2 to complete my frames.  So even if you had to go out and buy some frames, you could do this for around $10 yourself.  Go glue some tile!  Make something pretty!  =)

Monday, October 15, 2012

I like BIG BOOKS tote

I got invited to a 30th birthday for a friend.  She's a relatively new friend and is actually the life-long best friend of one of my high school best friends.  Does that make sense?  Anywho, I couldn't show up empty handed and since I know she likes to read I whipped up this little book bag for her.

It was super easy.  I had the canvas bag left over in my craft closet (from Hobby Lobby).  I also had some random iron on transfers in my office (not sure how long those have been there).  They were Avery Ink Jet T-shirt Transfers.  I typed everything out in Word and printed it on the transfers, cut it out and ironed it on.  To make it a little cuter I added the books in the corner. 

To "wrap" it, I simply rolled the bag and tied it closed with a piece of leftover ribbon.  I cut a J (for Jessica) out of scrapbook paper, punched a hole in it and strung it on the ribbon before tying the ribbon.

That's it!  Super easy project that you can customize for any person or gift giving need.  Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Catching Up...

So yeah, it's been a while since I have posted anything.  I apologize for that. 

Shortly after my last post, I broke my foot and was in a walking boot for 7 weeks.  So not fun!  I think the post about the old lady shoes jinxed me or something.  How did I break my foot you ask?  Well, I was using the wand on my vacuum cleaner and while it was stretched out, the rest of the vacuum tipped over and landed on top of my foot.  Apparently it hit just right and caused a tiny fracture (and I mean tiny...the x-rays had to be blown up huge to see it) in what I guess would be the bone of my 4th toe.  It didn't hurt that much when it fell, but after 2 weeks of walking on it, I figured I should have it checked out. So that was my first experience with a walking boot. Hope it is my last!  But at least I got it off before summer because I can't imagine walking around with that thing on in 90 degree weather. *Shudders*

This post is just to let you all know I am still alive even though I haven't posted in about 5 months.  =)  I have been taking lots of pictures & have a list of things to blog about, it's just having the self-control to make myself sit down and write them out.  I've decided to just upload some pictures for now as a teaser for all the posts to come.  Enjoy and be on the look-out for my new projects!  Thanks!



Saturday, January 7, 2012

Total Failure!

Last year, I wrote this post about my goals for 2011.  It was kind of depressing to read that post again.  There was so much optimism and excitement for the year ahead.  Well, I'm sad to say that none of those goals were completed.  Yep, I failed at every single one of them.

It's been another rough year for me.  Let me take that back, the last 6 months were rough...the first 6 were pretty good!  I met my wonderful boyfriend, starting playing Bunco and met some awesome people, went on an awesome vacation with family from Kansas that I don't see that often, and was just overall very positive.  In June, I even found a new job in cabinet design and I was over the moon.  I was really excited about my life changing for the better.

And then August happened.  The new cabinet job I had taken ended abruptly and not on very good terms.  So all of a sudden after 5 or 6 weeks of super excitedness, everything just came crashing down.  Luckily, one of our suppliers asked me to come work with one of their guys to help design and sell cabinets from a warehouse in Nashville.  I agreed, but was nervous because this was a commission based job.  I hadn't ever been paid like that before and I was worried because I do have a mortgage that has to get paid.  So, I worked there for a month or two, but the owners didn't know how to communicate with each other and it also turned out to be not such a good thing.  In the midst of all this, I am still trying to get my last paycheck from the first "bad" job.  They were bouncing checks left and right and it was pretty stressful.  Finally, after 8 weeks and discussions with the state wage and labor board it was all finished.  Not something I'd like to experience again.

So, I've pretty much been jobless since August.  It's been more than depressing and stressful and my finances are a mess.  I feel like I've slipped back into that sad, depressed person that I was when I was going through my divorce.  When will I pull myself out of this?  Some days I feel like I don't even have the effort...other days I'm applying for jobs like crazy.  I just want to be a productive member of society and have a happy little life (or mostly happy...I'll take mostly).  I feel like it should be my turn soon.

All that being said, I don't haven't really made any goals for 2012.  Just to find a job and get myself back on my feet.  I'll still work on blogging, and organizing and maybe even take that cake decorating class someday.  In the meantime, I've updated the design to bring some cheer into my life.  I have a small obsession with chairs, and I thought this was super cute.

I'll leave you with an inspiration quote I came upon on Pinterest just a few moments ago:

"What a wonderful thought it is that some of the best days of our lives haven't happend yet". - unknown

Friday, January 6, 2012

I'm Officially Old

I came to this realization yesterday...I am old.  I know you are all just dying to know what happend to make me realize this.  Well, here it goes....

I chose flat, comfortable shoes over cute heels that looked better with my outfit.

Ugh, it hurts to even think about it.  It's all downhill from here.  =)

Are these next?