Curtain Call

When I first moved into my new apartment, I decided to hang my curtains from my old apartment in the living area. They worked to an extent – added some color, covered my window – but they were far too long, and when I bought my area rug they quickly stuck out like a sore thumb. I knew I wanted to replace them with something yellow or mustardy to tie into the rug. I scoured etsy, my go-to place for all fabric (really you can find anything on there). After many days of internal conflict (I’m telling you… the things I stress over are laughable), I settled on this guy.

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The commas just make this grammar nerd weak in the knees! After the fabric arrived, it sat on my kitchen table for nearly a month as do many of the projects I undertake. But finally this weekend, a fire was lit under my behind, and I broke out the iron and hem tape. I won’t bore you with the details of my no-sew curtains again. You can read how I made them here if you really want to. The only thing I did differently was used scrap fabric to make tabs at the top instead of threading jute through the fabric. Now let’s get down to the good stuff – the AFTER photos! (P.S. I know they look more orange, but I was shooting at night in terrible lighting and I just couldn’t get my white balance right.)

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Unlike my old curtains which had 4 fat tabs for hanging, this time I made 8 skinnier tabs. Not to reinforce society’s standards of skinnier is better, but it was definitely a better choice as they hang much more evenly.

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Comma comma comma.

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Have I mentioned I love my apartment?

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Gallery Additions

Those of you that know me best know that I’m a total junkie for live music. Getting to see my favorite bands live is a feeling that never gets old. There is something about each imperfection and the way the music fills every last inch of my whole self that always keeps me coming back for more. Each show is unique and memorable in its own right, so I like to keep reminders around me of those experiences. Pictures and videos are always good to have, but my favorite thing to take away from a live show is the set list, particularly if I’ve seen that particular band more than once. It’s nice to have a way to remember how each show was different from the last. Some of my smaller set lists I keep pinned in my cube at work, but two of my set lists from this year got framed and added to the gallery. I ordered two simple black frames when I ordered my bigger poster frames from K-mart. I threw on a quick layer of gray paint to match the rest of my gallery frames and quickly added them to the wall. Sorry for the low quality photos. I only had my iPhone with me.

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Adding the set lists made for some strange empty spaces, so I’ll be filling those in soon. I also added a sweet little banner above my headboard, which I think makes the space feel a little more complete.

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I’ve Been Framed

One of the first projects I tackled  in this apartment was hanging art above my recliner. However, after the art was hung it needed to be switched… and quickly! While I speedily made the decision to take that artwork down, it took me  7 months to finally decide on a replacement. Truth is I couldn’t be happier with my choice. Once again, my patience was rewarded! I had three posters from some of my favorite artists: the Wheeler Brothers, the Kopecky Family Band, and Shakey Graves. (Go on… give ’em a listen. You won’t regret it). These guys sat lonely on my kitchen table for months before I finally caved and bought 3 matching frames from K-Mart (surprisingly not ugly and affordable). I popped those suckers in there, did some brain splitting measurements, and finally got them on the wall. The result is spectacular.

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I could not be happier. I hope to add three more on the opposing wall at some point, but don’t have more posters to fill the emptiness just yet. If only I could get some from other favorite bands of mine ::cough:: Marmalakes ::cough:: Wild Child ::cough:: Anyways. Very much enjoying my wall. I find myself staring at it randomly throughout the evening. But I finished school, so I’m allowed to do that now.

Love At First Sight

One addition to my home that I have been desperately searching for was a small entry table to live under my new mirror. The hunt has proven to be quite the challenge. The table had to be just right – not so deep that it would interfere with opening my front door, not so wide that it would run into my electrical outlets, and tall enough to meet my mirror at the right height. I didn’t want to just buy any old table online and decided I would wait for the right piece to find me. And Saturday afternoon it did! I was browsing at the Ross near me, which usually has quite the skimpy furniture collection, but there she was. And let me tell you, she is truly perfect.

Here she is! Trying to name her because she really is name-worthy. Suggestions are welcome.

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I love that I now have a place for my larger hardbacks. That Young House Love book has been begging for a better home! The hardware is also removable so I plan on finding something a bit anthro inspired to better match the rest of the space.

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Ain’t she a beaut?

Subtle Changes

I love how even the smallest of additions can make spaces in my home feel so much closer to complete. Over inauguration weekend, a dear friend of mine came to visit from NYC and with her she brought a darling metal “A” for my new place. Not sure if it was by chance or she is just extremely observant and thoughtful, but it matched perfectly with my new photo gallery wall.

This weekend, I finally added it to my gallery and it makes the whole thing feel so much more complete. Here’s what she looks like:

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Cute, no? I really really love how it turned out. Thanks, V for the awesome A! I’m hoping to add more frames in the future, but I want it to evolve slowly. Until then.

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

In my previous apartment I had a photo frame collage on my wall that I loved. The only thing I didn’t love? The frames were black. They always felt too heavy and a little too traditional for my style. So when I moved to my little Old Town haven I knew I wanted to spruce them up.

One of my January Cure projects was to paint my frames grey and finally arrange a new and improved photo frame gallery on my wall. So this weekend, I finally bit the bullet and tackled yet another project for January.

I started by laying out half of my frames out on some old newspaper, mixed my paint, and got a’ workin’.

Closet Curtain and Frames 028When they were finally all painted and dried, I decided to replace the photos inside to change things up a bit. Then I laid the frames out in a pattern that felt thoughtful but still a bit haphazard.

DSC_0001I then flipped each frame over and covered them with a big sheet of wax paper.

DSC_0002Using a gold sharpie, I traced the outline of each frame and marked a dot where the hook of the frame was.

DSC_0004Then I taped the piece of wax paper to my wall so that I could center the collage.

DSC_0007Next I hammered a nail into each of the dots I had marked on the wax paper (sorry neighbors), tore down the paper, and hung each frame. Here is the end result:

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I really love how it turned out, and I’m excited that I left myself room to allow it to grow. I’m so looking forward to making some 2013 memories to add to my wall.

Pay No Attention to the Clothes Behind the Curtain

FINALLYYYY! I finally finally made the curtain for my one baby closet that houses my entire life. I ordered the burlap months ago but never got around to actually making the curtain. But today? Curtain is hung and I am a happy girl.

I originally learned how to make no-sew curtains when I started reading Young House Love two years ago. Since then they’ve become a DIY love of mine. I made my current curtains for my old apartment and made my sister a set of snazzy yellow and grey curtains. So I was looking forward to tackling a project I had done before.

When I finally unraveled my yards of burlap I realized that I got less than I ordered and was about 7 inches short. So I started by trimming 4 inches off width wise which gave me a few extra scraps and the potential to get creative.

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After I trimmed the edges, I needed to hem them. I prefer to iron the hem first so I can see the edge without committing to anything.

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After I had the hem ironed down, I placed my Heat n’ Bond hem tape in the crease and ironed the hem closed.

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After I had both sides hemmed, I needed to add some length to my curtain. I started by taking my scraps and cutting them into four pieces. Then I just hemmed them to the bottom of the curtain, which created a cute striped detail.

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(And I trimmed that little bit of excess on the end). Then I took some jute string I had and threaded it across the top of the curtain so that I could hang the panel.

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The final product? Heaven.

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Here’s a better look at the striped detail at the bottom.

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And I just love how it looks next to my necklaces.

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Happy heart ❤

But s*** it was 99 cents!

I’m back. The hiatus is over and after a month of letting my hair down, lots of reflection, and a few key moments of clarity I am so ready to tackle this new year and enjoy all it has to offer.

My new years resolution? If it makes me happy I should do it. If it gives me butterflies I should buy it. If it makes me feel awesome I should wear it.

So I decided to start my year off with something that equally makes me happy, gives me butterflies, and makes me feel awesome… why a BARGAIN of course!

If you’ve yet to hear Macklemore’s Thrift Shop, here’s where I change your life.

If you know me, then you know that this hands down wins as my theme song. I don’t pay full price for anything, and the Arlington Goodwill and I are well acquainted. One of my best Goodwill wins wasn’t even mine but was this killer bench I helped Young Scholar’s Life refinish. Macklemore also makes for a pretty killer bargain hunting soundtrack.

So the year began poppin’ some tags (at TJMaxx not the Goodwill but close enough) and by the end of the night I was home with an incredible new rug which originally cost over $300. I, however, only paid $120.

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The rug covers nearly the entire floor of my living area, which makes the space feel so much cozier and more easily allows for floor-living, which of course includes floor-DIYing, floor-reading, and floor-west-wing-watching. I also love how very anthro it feels without the anthro price. Because, let’s be real… who can afford a $20 teacup? Not this lady.

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My pretty new rug was not my only bargain that day. I also managed to snag this equally-anthro-feeling mirror that I’m totally obsessed with at less than half the original price.

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It lives right by my front door which is incredibly convenient in the mornings when I’m running late to work. I also hope to buy a nice, compact buffet or sideboard for the empty space underneath it. It’s on the to-do list.

The only problem now? My curtains no longer match at all, which means I’ll need to make new ones… oh shucks 🙂 So at the end of the day, I paid more than 99 cents (sorry Macklemore), but I certainly got a bargain. Not to mention I’m absolutely loving my new additions.

Happy. Butterflies. Awesome. I could get used to 2013.

A December Groundhog Day

About 2 years ago I bought an advent calendar on sale. And while I love a good bargain, this special price came with a caveat: there were 2 December 3rds.

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So finally, two years later I decided to fix it. I figured that if I finished out the star, it would cover most of the 3 and I could hopefully turn it into a 2. I used some paint left over from my bathroom reno. And while it wasn’t a perfect match, it did the job.

DSC_0157Then I took a silver sharpie (P.S. people, that thing wasn’t cheap) and continued the top of the 3 and turned it into a 2. I’m actually quite proud of that 2. It’s completely free handed. Clearly I’ve got mad number writing skills.

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I think it worked out splendidly, and I’m so enjoying the Hershey kisses inside. And as any of you who know me know, I desperately want to move to ATX in the near future, so it’s nice to have a small reminder every day of what hopefully lies ahead. Until then, I’ll just keep enjoying my chocolate.

Happy Holidays Y’all!

A Ruffled Winter Wonderland

About a month ago I made a leap and bought a new duvet cover that was way girlier than  anything I’ve ever owned, but I figured hey what the… hay? Bad joke. I ordered it through Ebay from a retailer in India. After about two weeks I still had no word that it had shipped, so I sent them a message to which they replied that they had had an entire week off to celebrate Diwali and my order had not yet been processed.

I was no doubt frustrated, but as festive of a person as I am, I couldn’t get mad over holiday celebrations. So I patiently waited for my new duvet. FedEx made their first attempt to deliver it the Friday after Thanksgiving, but because I was in Indiana they were unable to deliver it. The Monday after I returned I left the doortag signed on my door, but that evening still no package. I called FedEx and calmly explained what happened, so they made a note to the driver to leave the package no matter what. The next evening when I arrived home there was still no package. So I called FedEx and less calmly explained what happened. 24 hours later I had my duvet FINALLY!!!

DSC_0014DSC_0024I think the ruffles need some time to become less stiff and unwrinkle, but so far I love it. And it feels so cozy and welcoming. I need to buy two fuller pillows for the shams and some sweet throw pillows. On the to-do list. I also had to add a small buffer at the foot of the bed for my sweet sweet kitten. Okay she’s no kitten and a bit queen sized, but I love her all the same. I will be introducing her soon.

And although I still have quite a bit of holiday decorating to do, I thought I’d share a pic of my new Christmas tree. He is so perfect and fat and I love to see him twinkling through the window. Just love love love this time of year.

DSC_0012My little studio is really starting to feel like a home.

P.S. Check out my tree topper… HOW ‘BOUT THEM COWBOYS!!!