Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Getting the Look for Less

Ballard Bellesol Mirror (Medium) 31.5" diameter

HomeGoods Mirror, 32" diameter

Thursday, January 21, 2010

How to Make Art for Zero Dollars

Wanted to share a few things with you. Do you like free art? Rhetorical question, I realize. Of course you do. I’ll get to that later. First, I wanted to share a quick “after” with you (the frame).  Don't judge me for not touching up the spots above the frame...we hung it too high and I HAD to have it lowered.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a “before” picture because I did this before I began thinking about blogging and obsessively taking pictures. This frame was a gift from an uncle of mine. He had many health problems and was giving many of us something to remember him by. One evening when we had them over for dinner, he brought an antique gold frame with him. Apparently, he had repaired an old frame in need of some TLC and decided to gold leaf it.

I loved the shape and detail of my new goodie, but the gold leaf, not so much. So I got out my trusty friend, white spray paint. I LOVE the results. Once painted white, the details of the frame really popped. This quickly became my favorite frame.

I hung the frame over our console table in the entryway. While I loved the empty frame look, when the holidays came, I thought it needed a little pop of color.

While shopping the house, I found a placemat I had left over from another project. (Another post for another day).

I pinned the placemat to the wall using some map pins I had on hand. Now I love how the pattern fits in the frame with a little wall border that looks like a mat. As of right now, I plan on leaving it up all year since the color fits with our scheme (or at least until I’m bored with it). I used the placemat because it was on hand and FREE, but there are so many options – scrap fabric, wallpaper, wrapping paper.

So have you ever used a placemat as art? What about any other kitchen textile? Do you think it’s working?  Hope you like it Uncle Al.  I think of you everytime I see it!  We miss you...

Linking to:
Metamorphosis Monday @ Between Naps on the Porch
Make it Your Monday @ The Twice Remembered Cottage
Trash to Treasure Tuesdays @ Reinvented
DIY Day @ A Soft Place to Land
Get Your Craft On @ Today's Creative Blog
Transformation Thursday @ The Shabby Chic Cottage

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Crap Has Hit the Fan

Ok, in all fairness, it hasn't hit the fan, just our garden.  Since we are in Florida, while most of the rest of the world is still getting hit with their winter storms, it's time for us to begin thinking about our garden.  Just so you know what we're dealing with, here's a photo from last year.

The first thing we have to think about is compost.  Yes, ladies and gents, I'm talking about manure.  Poo.  Crap.  As Snoop would say - shizzle. 

Last year I left this up the the hubs.  We have some friends out in the country that have about 1,000 acres and raise cows.  Hubs and my brother went out on a poo scavenger hunt.  Walking around the property with shovels in hand, they piled the piles (hehe) into the bed of a truck.  Needless to say, that took all day. 

This year, we thought about purchasing it from a lady who bags it.  That didn't sound like the best plan for us because 1) we need a LOT and it would probably get expensive 2) We'd have to manually spread each bag 3) it was a little drive from us.

So I decided to consult the best friend a girl can have...craig.  You know, I checked his list.  Yeah, craigslist.  In the farm + garden section, I checked for manure.  No dice.  So I did what I didn't think would work, I put up a wanted ad for free manure.  Amazingly, we received 6 emails with people offering their manure.  We settled on a couple that lives only a few miles from us.  On Sunday, we put our shovel in the back of the truck thinking we'd be shoveling for hours (but again, it's free!) only to be ecstatic when we pulled up to the house to find the husband in a tractor.  Score!

They were the nicest couple who gave us a heaping truck bed full of fresh manure and compost, no shoveling required.  Once we got home, the spreading went quickly.  Somehow, I managed to foget to take a picture of the weighted down truck - what was I thinking? (This is not our truck our our steaming manure, but you get the point)

Next weekend, we'll till it into the soil and be one step closer to the fresh veges and herbs we love.  We probably could have gotten another truck bed full, but this will do wonders for the nutrients in our soil.

So I ask, has anyone else posted a wanted ad on craiglist?  Was is successful or not?  We learned a lesson that I'm sure we'll use in the future.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

I Scarfed up this Tutorial

Ok, that was a cheesy title, I know, but I couldn't help myself. I've never claimed to be a very creative person, but I am a pretty good copier. I found a tutorial here to make a really cute and sassy scarf. For the full tutorial, go to Ruffles and Stuff.

So anyway, this is really easy. I followed Disney's suggestion of using jersey pants as material. I went to my local Salvation Army, where it happened to be 1/2 off clothing day. Woo Hoo! I found the perfect jersey pants in an extra large. Tip alert - if buying clothes at a second hand store buy the biggest you can find that works for you. You get more fabric for the same price...hello obvious statement. I got an extra large for $1.50 (half off the regular $3 price tag). I was so excited that I forgot to get a picture, but I'm pretty sure you know what a pair of pants looks like...

So I cut the pants in 4 in x 4 in squares. My squares were nowhere near perfect, but in this scarf, noone will ever notice. (It did make me put a rotary cutter on my birthday list - hi hubs). I cut 60 squares and then pinned them together, with each point of the square matching up with the middle of the next square.

After that, all that's left is sewing down the middle. When setting it up to go in the machine, make sure you set it up so the first square going into the machine is on top. It makes it much easier to feed thru. I did a straight stich down the middle. When sewing, I made sure to straighten each square and make sure that the edges were all pressed down because they had a tendancy to curl up.

The 60 squares makes a really long scarf. I doubled it and it was still really long. Next time, I'd probably do 50ish squares. I love how it came out - I wore it once already and got a ton of compliments. Even for novice sewers this is super simple!

Blog Inspiration

There are so many amazingly talented bloggers out there, I want to point out a few of my favorites occasionally to give you inspiration or open your eyes to some new eye candy.

Here's a real-life room of a blogger that I can't get enough of. There is pretty much noting I don't L.O.V.E. about this room. It's the so functional and stylish. The ruffles, the colors, the syle, oh my!

This room has made me reconsider so many things I didn't think I liked....

  • wallpaper
  • cool colors - I've been a warm color girl, beiges, creams, browns. But I love this space
  • yellow (and black - without looking like a bumblebee)
  • open shelving for an office. Somehow it looks organized and not cluttered

If you haven't checked out Michelle over at Three Men and a Lady, you have to go RIGHT NOW!

While you are there, check out her amazing master bedroom transformation too. Swoon!

Monday, January 11, 2010

God, Can you turn the heat on please?

Let me explain something. I live in Southwest Florida. There are many reasons I love it family is close, beautiful beaches, great friends, I'm addicted to water. But do you want to know the #1 reason I'm here?

The weather. (Sorry mom & dad)

I H.A.T.E. being cold.

So imagine my disappointment at having below freezing temperatures for weeks now. We Floridians just don't know how to act when it gets this cold. Will our pool pipes freeze? What temperature do you set the heat at? How many layers can I fit under my coat without looking like the kid from A Christmas Story?

This leads me to my disaster of the weekend. I've officially learned a lesson. I'll admit I had cabin fever this weekend. I can't stand being stuck in the house because it's miserable outside. On Saturday, I decided to work on a few projects in the garage that are half done. One is a goodwill small glass bowl I was painting to use as a holder for my rings when I'm not wearing them. I've been looking at goodwill and the local thrift store for something like this (oh Eddie, you know I love you, why do you have to charge so much for these??):

but haven't been able to find just the right one, so I decided to make a cheap (read inexpensive)imitation one. The project was almost done, I thought I'd give it one more coat of white paint before putting a protective spray on it. I attempted this Saturday and ended up with this:

As I'm wondering what the heck happened, I vaguely remember a blog post I read recently where the poster said she brushed the paint because she couldn't spray due to the temperature. I think it's time to read the back of the spray paint can.

Oh crap. Who knew you weren't supposed to use spray paint in temps under 65 degrees? Apparently those who live in every state except for Florida. Lesson learned.

At least now I have another reason to love Florida - Less interuptions from crafting due to weather conditions!

So has anyone else had a weather related craft-astrophy lately? Do share so I can feel better. Thanks.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Grand Opening!

Since I just spent about 2 hours making my blog header, (go ahead, tell me you love it!) I figure I might as well make my first post so I stop feeling like a total blog stalker. By the way, I followed Sarah at Clover Lanes tutorial for making creating a header in Picasa. I HIGHLY recommend following her tut. Now the next thing on my list is to feel like I know what the heck I'm doing in Picasa. Okay, one thing at a time, Suzanne.

Here's what I have planned for the next few weeks on here:

  • Share all the projects I've recently finished (each one thinking - if only I had a blog to share this on!)

  • Reveal a few of our favorite meals - and their recipes, of course. I think you'll like these...I mean, we don't have to diet every January because I make tasteless food!

  • Begin a house tour, prob with a list of what I'd like to do to improve.

  • Most of all, figure out how you all find all your time to do all this blogging, renovating, painting, crafting, sewing...

For right now, I'm off to cheer on Alabama in the National Championship game. Sorry, Texas, gotta stick with the SEC!