Archive for the ‘DIY’ Category

The bathroom is cray right now.

bathroom progress with comments

It’s impressive that The Mister and I haven’t committed double suicide. The main thing getting me through is the thought of how much better it will be. Here’s what we’re doing:

  • Filling in the walls and fixing poorly done jobs in the past (jobs done by previous owner)
  • Removing everything from walls
  • Sanding the walls
  • Repainting the walls and the wall cabinet
  • Replacing the medicine cabinet, air vent and shower shelf
  • Replacing doors and hardware on wall cabinet
  • Glazing the tub (we’re hiring this out)

The main thing that has my attention is painting. I have purchased an unreasonable amount of paint samples (you can see some of them on the top shelf above the toilet) trying desperately to match our vintage blue tile and it ain’t gonna happen.

I don’t like the solid blue “treatment” that we’ve had and I feel like doing plain white is…boring. So, much to The Mister’s side-eye glances, I want to hand paint a wall treatment. I’d love to do something like this.

china seas hand paint wall


But I’m being realistic. So, I have a few other ideas. It’s either I go with something more formal (potentially stenciled) or I go with something more free form.

Option 1:  Something more formal or stenciled
First, we have Higgledy Piggledy Stripe. This wallpaper is by the amazing Anna Spiro for Porter’s Paint. I would do a “knock off” of this pattern. I think it’s the middle ground of free form and formal.


Second, we have Albert Hadley’s iconic Fireworks.

albert hadley fireworks in bath


Albert Hadley makes my heart swell. However, I don’t know if I trust myself with a stencil. They seem hard. I know there are DIY pins of them everywhere, but I’m not talking about a trellis pattern or some gloss paint over flat paint. I’m talking about a knock off of an iconic designer and print. I don’t think I can do it.

Option 2: Something more loose or free form

First, we have David Hockney painting his pool.

david hockney painting his pool


Then, we have samples of free form thin stripes.

hand stripe tshirt


Alexander hand painted stripes for Kate Spade

alexander henry painted stripes for Kate Spade


In either option, I  would likely do a white background with the darker blue stripes to match the top (gray blue) tile in our bath. Though this last photo of many different colors is quite pretty, it could easy become too much for all the walls.

So, what do you think? Free form or stenciled?


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Brass Menagerie

I recently found a set of brass deer and wanted them. However, I thought the $73 price was not only oddly specific but higher than expected.


The one on the right was around a foot tall. I would enjoy a larger set like below.

children room with brass deer via apartment therapy


I have a small collection of brass animals and I’m always on the look out for them. A little brass menagerie. Jenny from Little Green Notebook featured a DIY of spray painting animal figurines. (read it here) They could be cute in a children’s room on a high shelf. I doubt they could take much usage/touching and would need to be “look not touch.”

Here are some of my brass animals around the house.




We’re more liquor than wine. I just like the jolt of yellow.


I love this piggy.


You’ll see this dresser again next week.


We’re missing photos of two ducks and swan. Obviously I have a brass swan.

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Marky Mark

I find a lot of “knock around” shoes at Target. They’re a good place to find flats. Currently, they have some Mossimo brand flats for $14.99 in black and leopard print that are great. I bought both, and I’ll probably buy additional pairs to hoard in preparation for when they stop selling them, but wear the leopard most often.

Though I liked them, I wanted them have a hint of black. I realize that few people nobody noticed that I was wearing a black shirt and brown shoes but it bugged the hell out of me. So, I decided to take a Sharpie to them. I began on the inside, just in case it looked awful. Here is a comparison between Sharpie drawn inside (top shoe) and non colored on shoes.


I decided to follow the pattern where the dark brown meet the yellow. Here is a photo of me trying to point to said spot.


Here’s the same spot after I drew on it.


I like it. The spots look a bit sharper and clearer and I’m okay with that. So, I did the pair of shoes in about 5 minutes. Here they are done.


What do you think?

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I recently came across this image on Pinterest.

from Shannon’s blog here (You’ll get sucked in)

I’m a fan of that dresser and it’s not as easy as I originally thought to find a dresser with a similar shape/style. However, I found this on my friend Craig’s list.

It’s listed for $300 which is more than $60 and that is what I was thinking. Plus, I’d kinda hate to paint it. I’m going to stay on the hunt for good dresser to paint and someone needs to do it. Will that person be you? It should be.

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DIY: Curtain slip cover

This weekend I made a cover/second layer/slip cover/new curtains for our bedroom. I decided to tack the curtain panels I made to the curtains we already had hanging – kind of like a slip cover.  This kept me from having to line the new panels and gave the finished product some volume.

Here’s the finished product.

Here’s what I did to get there:

1. I purchased two king sized (112″ x 102″) flat sheets. The sheets I purchased were DVF’s Island Clover. I got them for $24.99 each at TJMaxx and made two curtains from each sheet. I like to buy flat sheets as fabric.

2. I cut the 112″ in half in order to get two curtains. Then, I ironed the hems so the rough edge was covered (aka so they were finished).

First fold over

Then, I folded this once more so the unfinished edge was “tucked under.”
This is what I used as hem.

3. I used white thread, it’s what was used on the hems that already existed on the sheets, to sew the one cut side. Then, I ironed each panel.

4.  I took the top of the created curtain panel and simply hung it over the curtain rod like you would hang a towel on a towel bar. To decide on the length I made my own measurement – when the wide border matched up with the top of the blinds. I made my first tack stitch there, making sure to attach the back of the panel through the hanging panel to the front of the front panel. Additionally, you need to start the tack stitch from the back so the long stings are not seen. This photo may make more sense.  

I decided to not sow a rod pocket on the curtain panels. First, I couldn’t come up with a way to do this that didn’t bother with the pocket in the already existing panel I was tacking to. Second, I like the previously hung curtains and wanted to sew to it as little as possible. So, I only tacked the sides. The rest of the fabric at the top is simply folded over, once again like a towel. I made sure to space out the folds and I think it looks more legit than it is.

5. Once I tacked the top of each curtain I did a long running tack stitch (if that’s not a thing I just made it into one) down the sides.

I attached the panel to the existing and hanging panel. You can see the thread on the back as this is me finishing a tack.

This is what the back looks like.

This what a tack looks like on the front.

I made sure to put the tacks on white spaces of the pattern. Additionally, I tried to put the tacks close to the hem of the original curtain. Once again, so I did less damage to the curtain underneath.

6. I was happy with them. They puddle a bit on the floor which is better than the curtains they are attached to. The original curtains are a pretty color, but I bought them from Linens N Things when they were going out of business. Therefore, when I got them home and they were too short I had to insert a panel into the bottom of them. That was my first sewing project – I was a little over zealous. They were still a smidge too short.  So, let’s admire the new curtains again.

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We got a lot done this weekend. We told the kitchen cabinet-maker to get real (more on that later), did some cleaning and even a few DIYs. A few days home will give a girl some energy.

First, our house was crazy dusty. It was sick. The Mister sanded the walls in our kitchen and had someone put drywall on the ceiling in our kitchen. (These things happened a few weeks ago.) So, the dust was plentiful. For example, this was The Mister after he sanded the walls.

He looks like a clown with his skin being pink from under the mask and everything else powder white.  

Our dining room had the most dust due to its proximity to the kitchen and had become a holding room for kitchen essentials. These were our shelves.


So, we dusted the entire dining room and Windexed everything we could. Then, vacuumed and I mopped the wood floors. It feels pretty great. This week I’ll tackle the living room. I understand I’ll have to do this a few more times to really rid us of the dust, so I didn’t style the shelves and they’re acting as a pantry still, but it’s worth it. The Mister was so inspired he told that the light switch by our front door bothered him and he purchased an oversized plate for it.

Obviously, this is a temporary fix and we’ll have to sand the walls in our living room too – someday. We had to do it in our master bedroom and we’ll have to do it everywhere we repaint. Speaking of painting, I painted these recent finds from Goodwill.

I’m not sure what they were originally, but they will become trellises for some ivy. They were $3.99 and $5.99 at Goodwill. Score! I’ll share them later. Did you do anything fun this weekend? The weather was pretty great here, unusually warm, hence me deciding to spray paint.

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Rest in hell

That’s right – hell. We’re telling our kitchen to rest in hell, not in peace. Our new kitchen cabinets are being installed the week of February 20. Unfortunately, I’m on the road every week until then. So, I’ve helped The Mister on the weekends and we prepped it some when I was in the week of January 16. I have mixed feelings about him doing “the demo.” Part of me really wants in on it while another part of me is concerned about getting a splinter. Here is a photo he sent me last night after he took down the crown molding.

He’s having to remove the molding as our new custom cabinets are going to the ceiling. Of course, we’ll share more photos of the kitchen. What it looked like, what the demo looked like, what we did and how we did it. First, I’m telling you why we’re so enthusiastic about killing replacing it.

1. I called it “The Kitchen of Many Colors.” The counters were blue laminate. The cabinets were light oak that I painted – twice. The dishwasher was black, the oven was white and the fridge was stainless (we bought it). The walls were a mix of browns and beige -as seen above. The vinyl was white with a light blue pattern that had multiple stains.

2. It was groddy. There is a reason you haven’t seen many photos of our kitchen. I believe this is it. I was fearful that y’all would call the Humane Society for The Colonel. The counters had mystery stains and cuts/chunks. The paint on the walls was peeling off. We’ve had to scrape the walls for months. They’ve been partially since 2009. Our kitchen has looked like/has been a Work Zone for years. It’s been clean, but it has definitly looked dirty.

3. The Magic Chef oven lost his magic. We were left with two burners and one of the remaining two was temperamental. Plus, with all the different finishes on our appliances it was a little odd-looking.

4.  Cabinets were falling off the wall. Seriously. Two came off the wall. One was the large pantry that was a single floor to ceiling unit. We were prepared for it and basically “put it down.” Every time we walked through the kitchen it would wobble, even after The Mister and my father had worked on it. Finally, we decided it falling down was too much to risk. So, down it came about two years ago. Under the cabinet we found a different patch of vinyl. You’ll see photos the next few weeks of what I’m talking about. Then, one night a few months ago the cabinet containing our dishes came down. The cabinets falling down didn’t surprise us after taking them down.

This photo has been our inspiration:


Mark Challen’s Handsome Bistro Kitchen
Photographer Donna Griffith
House & Home September 2011 issue


The pretty is on its way!

The pretty is on its way!

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