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.

DSC_0082

DSC_0085

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.

DSC_0088DSC_0089

Ain’t she a beaut?

It’s Been a Long Time Coming

But a change finally did come! 100 points to Ravenclaw if you understand my Sam Cooke reference. But really. After three months of puke-orange kitchen nightmares, it’s finally gone. Completely gone. No more nights staring at my kitchen walls telling myself this would be the week – the week I finally paint my kitchen. And people, it feels oh so good. I’ve never felt so satisfied staring at a blank white wall. So here she was in all her puke-orange glory (sorry for the bad iPhone pic):

photo (4)

Kitchen BeforeAnd here she is now…

DSC_0003

DSC_0004Don’t get me wrong… there is still a TON of work to be done. And there really is just no hope for that awful tile. That being said, just getting rid of the orange has made such a difference. But, let me tell you, it was no easy feat. There was a lot of climbing on top of refrigerators and behind washing machines and under cabinetry… and on top of counters. You get the idea.

Half of my walls are also covered in some pretty nasty 70s paneling which had some pretty wild cracks from floor to ceiling. But what girl isn’t always equipped with a jar of spackle and a spackling knife? I ended up spending quite a bit of time repairing the cracks which delayed the process by about a day. But my spackle starts off purple and then turns white, which makes me really happy, so it was all good.

DSC_0066And if that stupid orange hadn’t caused me enough heartache already, it took nearly five coats to completely cover.

DSC_0060But after much hard work, a lot of paint in my hair, and some really sore quads, she is done. I can’t wait to find some curtains for the window and figure out something fun to do on all my blank wall space. So many options! Simply can’t wait!

Here she is… one last time 🙂

DSC_0004Love!

 

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:

Image

Image

Image

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:

DSC_0012

 

DSC_0015

DSC_0018

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.

Closet Curtain and Frames 004

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.

Closet Curtain and Frames 011

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

Closet Curtain and Frames 022

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.

Closet Curtain and Frames 023

(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.

Closet Curtain and Frames 025

The final product? Heaven.

Closet Curtain and Frames 039

Closet Curtain and Frames 038

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

Closet Curtain and Frames 043

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

Closet Curtain and Frames 041

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.

DSC_0005

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.

DSC_0003

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.

DSC_0007DSC_0008

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 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!!!

In Headboard Heaven

Yesterday I arrived back to Virginia bright and early after a lovely Thanksgiving weekend in my mom’s new home in Carmel, IN. While I’m loving the Hoosier spirit, I could totally do without the face-chapping, bone-chilling, where-my-hot-hands-at temperatures. But despite the weather the fam and I enjoyed a delicious meal and let’s be real… lots of sangria.

Check out our spread.

I made it home around 9:30 am to find my supplies for my headboard had arrived! While I had planned to go back to sleep immediately, I caught the DIY bug and next thing I knew my staple gun was in my hand. Here’s a quick rundown of how it went.

I started with an old upholstered wooden frame that used to hang above my bed in my DC apartment, 1/2 inch thick batting, and natural burlap.

Next I rolled out the burlap on the floor, followed by the batting, and finally laid the wooden frame on top so it looked like this.

Since the batting was so thick and I had doubled it up, I decided to secure it with a few staples first. Then I just pulled the burlap taut and stapled it to the wooden frame. After I was done upholstering, I hammered in a few nails and hung it behind my bed. I haven’t received my pretty new duvet yet (it’s scheduled to arrive today!) so please forgive the lame white blanket :/

I think once my duvet arrives and I have a few throw pillows it’ll really come together. The good news? It hasn’t fallen yet. That’s worth at least one point.

After it was finished, I gave my newly headboarded bed a good 5 hour spin. No shame.

Now for a new duvet and Christmas decorations! Let the season begin!

Small Addition

I had a much bigger project planned for today’s post, but it’s shaping up to be a much more complicated endeavor than I anticipated. Womp.

So instead I just made a small addition to my living area. I have a small nook/corner that houses my super comfy microfiber recliner that I got on Craigslist for $50… say whaaaaat. It was feeling a little empty, so I added a photo canvas I have of me and my favorite Texan. Loving how those brave girl boots are looking!

I’m off to Indiana tomorrow to spend Thanksgiving with the fam. It’s our first Thanksgiving not in Memphis. Thankful for these milestones and all the change around us. I hope to share some of our spread over the weekend. And hopefully when I get back to Virginia I’ll be able to share my face-palming, head-against-the-wall project.

Happy happy Thanksgiving! So very blessed!

Pinspiration

I love Pinterest. I’ve been a member since June 2011 and am equally obsessed now as I was then. So as soon as I got word that my little happy home in Old Town was in fact mine, I started pinning.

Recently, a number of blogs have popped up like Pintrosity and Pintester that test and often fail at the craft, recipe, etc they find on Pinterest. It’s a clever idea and fairly amusing, but what frustrates me the most about these sites is that the blogger will make a comment like, “I didn’t have any baking soda so I just used laundry detergent instead.” Then they gawk over the fact that their project was a total disaster. Granted this is an exaggeration, but the reality is there are a lot of creative and doable ideas on Pinterest. Anyone that’s heard of Katie and Sherry’s Pinterest Challenge knows that’s the case. In fact, one of my favorite Pinterest victories was my 4th of July flag cake.

For. The. Win.

As soon as I moved, there were two projects I knew I wanted to tackle sooner rather than later, but both depended on me painting my bathroom. Now that that’s done, I was finally able to check them off the list.

The first I mentioned when I hung up my rake head wine glass holder. I had also wanted to use a rake head to hang the necklaces I wear all the time. Here was my Pinspiration:

Via Pinterest

And here’s my final product!

I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out. It feels so very old, rustic, and girly – just my style 🙂 The second project was also a fun storage solution since I have so very little. Here is my Pinspiration:

Via Pinterest

Before I moved out of DC, I bought two apple crates at the Foggy Bottom Farmer’s Market that I’ve been saving for this project. Since they are fairly unwieldy, I cut out its shape on a piece of newspaper and marked where the slits in the crate were for the nails.

With a ruler and leveler, I marked off where the nails would go to insure the crate would be straight. I hammered the nails through the newspaper and then tore down the paper. The first one went up extremely easily. The second was much more stubborn. After a lot of improvisation and a few extra holes in my wall… I finally got that sucker up. And I am in love!! Final product:

Can you hear my heart singing? I am so so obsessed! It’s amazing what two small additions can do to my mood. I am so loving watching this place transform and am so excited to see what else is in store for my humble home.

Loving and embracing the changes around me.