Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Bite Sized Sewing

I am over at Sara's Craft Snob today to share my "Bite Sized Sewing" tutorial. It is a very simple and fun tutorial using some felt. If you have been looking for Christmas gift ideas for your friends, neighbors, and sewing group this might be it!

Interested? Head over to Craft Snob and see how I made these.

See you there!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Mirror Mirror On the Wall...

I shared a couple pictures of part of my living room recently, they were a painted wall with group of pictures,

and pictures of my white collection around the TV area...

I was going back and forth about how I wanted to decorate above the mantel. There are many fun ways to do it, but I just love having a mirror above the fire place, so I decided to go with that. Also, a couple of my living room walls are covered with groups of small things, I wanted this wall to be more simple with one BIG mirror.

I have been looking around for large mirrors, and gosh... they are so expensive! One night while doing an online search, I found a perfect one at Wayfair but it was a pretty hefty price: $460!! Even though it was past 12 and I was tired, I didn't click the "add to cart" button. I knew in my heart that I could find something much cheaper.

And. I. did.

One day I was at Tai Pan Trading and strolling around with the kids, when I found the mirror. From afar, I thought, "Wow, that is the perfect size..." then I got closer. I saw a small chip on the frame, as I was rubbing the mirror I was thinking, "Well, this is nothing, I can fix it in no time...". Then, I found the 50% off tag... 50% from $199!! I had to grab it. Well, with my weak muscles I couldn't carry the mirror to the check out. I had to grab a kind store clerk to help me out. On the way home, one of my children had to sit close to the door and kind of lopsided, sorry buddy...

Ok, it is not the same as the one I saw online, but it was the size I wanted, has some nice trim work around it, and you can't beat that price. After applying wood patty, and a few coats of paint, it was ready to hang.

The mirror was so heavy, and our mantel is kind of high, there were a few times Mr. TRH and I thought the mirror was going to kill us if not send us to a chiropractor. It is happyily sitting above the mantel.

Just as I wanted. :)

Friday, October 18, 2013

Rachel's Nightstand Project and Stepping Out of my Comfort Zone

As my thrifty decorating mission continues on, I just finished Rachel's night stand. Before I show you the before/after pictures, let me share a little drama that happened during the picking out of the color for this project.

As you might already know, I love white. If I lived alone, I would probably have a LOT more pure white in my house and when I paint a piece of furniture, 98% of them would be white. Though in reality I live with my lovely family, one husband and three munchkins, who have different personalities and likes. So, I want to make sure that it is comfortable for everyone.

I have been working on the kids rooms little by little ever since we moved in. As with their personalities, their rooms look very different because I want to honor their likings...

I found this nightstand for Rachel at a thrift store for $10 over the summer, and I have been planning on painting this white. One day, Rachel asked me, "Mom, are you going to paint EEEVERY thing white?". I asked her why she asked such a question. Then she said, "Well, when I grow up and have my own house, I will paint my stuff with bright colors."

Hmm... that made me think. OK, maybe it's not such a bad idea to have more lively colors in her room...

At Home Depot, I picked out a couple paint chips for her to look at.

Aren't they pretty colors? Usually, I am always drawn to more soft, muted colors. Attempting to use bright colors like these for painting furniture is a BIG step out of my comfort zone. I was hoping that Rachel would choose "Coral Expression" but Rachel chose "Lip Stick". Which is more orange-y and brighter in color. I asked her several times she if she was sure; she was so excited and adamant about the color. Well, I have to admit, the color actually suits her for her fun, vibrant and larger than life personality. Oh, alright I will paint it with Lipstick.


After painting it, I kind of liked it. Ok, breath... it's not bad... I put it in her room. Then at night we turned the light on then to get her ready for bed...

"Ka POW!!!"

The strong hue of orange... I mean the Lipstick attacked my eyes. Wow. I wasn't expecting that. Also, right next to the muted light blue comforter, the strong and bright colored night stand looked really out of place. Though, I didn't say anything because I wanted to respect what Rachel liked. Then, as I was tucking her in that night I was gently stroking her hair and asked, "Rachel, do you love your new night stand?".

She scrunched her face and whispered, "Um... I don't want to say, you might get mad..."
What?? So I said, "What do you mean, I don't get mad, tell me what you really think." She was hesitant and then said, "I think the color is tooo bright... it's like KA-POW!!" and she made a hand gesture.

I just started laughing. Mother like daughter I guess we have some adjusting to do. Yesterday, I picked out a bowl which had both of our colors. My muted color blue, and her bright lipstick color. Putting that on top of the night stand has already made a difference. I am planning to make pillows and such in the future, and kind of excited to see what the room will look like. This is one of the small moments where the kids push me to try new things, and most of the times the outcome is great and I appreciate it so much.

Though, let me say this one last time... "Ka-POW!!" right in the eyes!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Rachel's Desk and How I made the Drawer Liner

I have been kicking myself lately... I am so focused on starting and finishing the projects for our home, and pretty much always forget to take "Before" photos and then start the project. I think looking at the nice finished project is fun, but it is always much more enjoyable to see how hopelessly ugly the furniture piece was before.

This is one of many projects that I started and realized that I forgot to take the "before" picture. Here is the "in the middle" picture...

I was looking for a desk for Rachel and found this one at a local thrift store. It was priced at $9.99 then, I used a 20% off coupon. Isn't that super?? So, here is the picture of "after", accompanied by another thrift store find that cost me only $2.99 (it was also an ugly duckling, but I painted it blue to match Rachel's bedding).


I added a couple hooks to hang bags and scarfs. Wouldn't that be fun?

Then, I also made drawer liners. The desk was in pretty good condition but the drawers weren't perfectly pretty, and to protect them from getting damaged from future use, I wanted to have drawer liners. At first I was trying to find a cute one at the store and online, but I couldn't find any with the design I wanted and the price that I was willing to pay.

Here is the drawer without the liner:

Here is the drawer with the liner:

Quite a difference, huh? I love how easy it was to make, and Rachel was so excited to see the fun colors inside of her drawers.

So, here are the quick instructions of how I made the drawer liner:

1. Iron the fusible interfacing on the wrong side of the fabric you want to use. Make sure that there are no bubbles between the fabric and interfacing. I used fairly thin interfacing, but it still gave the fabric good stiffness. If you want to create thicker and heavier liner, choose thick interfacing.

2. Measure the width and depth of the drawers. Cut the fabric from step 1 according to the measurement.

3. Lay them out and spray scotch guard to protect the fabric.

4. Insert the liner into your drawer. Spray adhesives on the back of the liner if you prefer to make sure that the liner won't move around.

I am going to decorate Rachel's desk area soon, but I just couldn't wait to share how I came up with the drawer liner. I do the same for the boys' desks too, I think I will have fun picking out the fabrics for them. :)

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

A Taste of the Good Life

I was originally going to share a part of my house I have finished decorating, but when I was going through the pictures, some of them were so blurry... so, I decided to share something I forgot to share several weeks ago. (I have a few things up my sleeves, you know.)

Meet one of my favorite prints by niftyswank.

When our family did a small getaway in August, we happened to book a hotel when Craft Lake City was going on. We had such a good time, walking around, trying out some food... and I did some shopping. The print was pretty much love at first sight for me, and I knew I wanted to hang it in my new kitchen. Because I am indecisive, it is still sitting on the chair, but hey, at least the colors go well together. :)

When I retake the pictures, I will share a part of my living room. Hold on tight!

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