Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Benjamin Moore Amherst Grey???!!!! UPDATE

In all the excitement of starting more new projects and nary finishing one.... I forgot to provide you an update on the Amherst Gray (benjamin moore pain HC-167) room! See original post HERE

I tried the Amherst and ended up going back to BM and selecting one shade lighter - Chelsea Grey (BM pain HC-168).
After the room is totally complete - there is furniture to be moved out and pictures to be hung, window coverings to be chosen I will really spoil you with photos.  Until then, here is a sneak peak!

I can't believe I am sharing this messy room with you.... but I LOOOOOVE this color! How could I not share!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

TOLIX style chair for less than $150?! YES!!!!

I like to think of myself as the queen of bargain shopping.  In the right mood, I can find the most fantastic deals.  I am the quintessential finder of the needle in the haystack!  That being said it shouldn't surprise me that after coveting these chairs for years & waiting for a bargain, I finally scored one!

I considered this 1934 Dining Chair from Sundance Catalog

I considered the Tolix chair from Pottery Barn

I even considered (and I quite fancy) this Lyle Side Chair from  C&B

Instead, I am now the proud purchaser of these fantastic iron bistro chairs!
I know, it is a tiny photo...I can't seem to be able to make it larger.
Where did I score this fantastic bargain you ask?  Neiman Marcus's home store Horchow.
20% OFF!!!! OH MY $159 - 20% = 127.20 a chair! Plus $40 each for shipping, still a steal at $167.20!!!!  The discount almost paid for the shipping cost!  EEEEEEKKKK I'm so excited!  The thrill of a bargain has struck again!  You can see the real deal here & order your own.  They will look fantastic with the dining table I was supposed to be building today.  Thank goodness I decided to online shop for chairs instead!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Building another Ana White creation, or two or three.

Previously I built a version of Ana White's Narrow Farm House Table to use as a desk for my girls suite.
See my project HERE  

Now I am starting a dining room table.

I have been in love with Tolix chairs forever.  I know they are popular and I don't care (I tend to shy away from such popular trends).  I know that they are something I will cherish and use always, so trend or not they are here to stay as far as I am concerned.  The only trouble is I haven't a dining room table.  Not to mention it is hard to part with so much money for chairs. I have seen a knock of version offered at Overstock.com.  Sadly they are currently sold out.  My goal is to outfit and (mostly) finish my dining room before Christmas dinner.  Wish me luck.

Dining room IN PROGRESS

Needless to say there is no shortage of inspiration to be found on the web.
These are my favorites:
I adore this room! It makes me HAPPY!

This is another room that makes me swoon!

I imagine the table I build to look something like this (one could only hope)!

Maybe, just maybe, I will make a bench to go with the table too! 
I love, love, love this! ADOOOORABLE! Great job Creative Ambitions!

Or possibly something more simple like Ana White's Rustic Bench

Needless to say, I have my work cut out for me.  Did I mention I want to paint my kitchen black....
I covet, covet, covet this kitchen.  http://www.housebeautiful.com/kitchens/colorful-kitchens

Did I also mention that I am planning on building a version of this Ana White Kitchen Island?

Isn't this lovely?
I am planning on a kitchen island as a bar table.  I actually have a really old harvest table that sat on a screen porch in Maine for the past 100 years.  I tried to lengthen the legs by screwing in short legs as extensions to no avail.  The poor table legs have wood that is so brittle it was impossible.  I considered tearing it apart and replacing the legs only to build it up taller.  Then I figured why not resell it, as a lovely junque antique & build my own.  So, all of these projects have a 5 day deadline, starting NOW.  (Including finishing the master bathroom cabinets) do you think I can make it?!

I have a confession, I want to paint my kitchen cabinets BLACK!

If you have been reading along, I am sure you know I want to paint my kitchen cabinets black. I have been contemplating this change for almost 2 years!  Having never painted shiny stained wood cabinets before I was terrified to try it.  I finally decided to give a new product a try (details with the full post after project completion - stay tuned! This paint is supposed to stick to ANYTHING). I figured I would paint my master bathroom cabinets first as they are the same as my kitchen cabinets and if I ruined them it would be far easier and cheaper to rip them out and replace them.

Nonetheless as I literally sit here and wait for the paint to dry, I am sharing a sneak peak with you.  The cabinets started out like this....
Middle of the road, maple, warmly stained cabinets.  

I took all of the door hardware and doors off (which was surprisingly easier than I anticipated) and went to work.  
  1. I cleaned them all off with TSP & water.
  2. Let them dry.
  3. Painted
It was that simple.  This new cover anything primer works like a charm.....
Now I am having to make a hard choice: Distress or Not To Distress the cabinets.  eeeek I can't decide!


I love everything about chalk board paint.  I know it has been done, and done and done.  Really though, how could you not love something that is so easily changed on a whim?  It brings out my inner child.

Recently I was shopping and popped into one of my favorite stores (Anthropologie).
I LOVE how they merchandise their stores.  I am sure you would agree that the holiday season is one of the best times to check out their crafty decor! Like most, this visit I found inspiration!

 I had already purchased chalk board paint and used it on some glass jars....

I had also painted the wall in a little nook area of my "pantry wall" in my kitchen. Only because I have been jonesing to paint my kitchen cabinets black.  Sadly, I have been waiting for my darling hubby to be out of town for a couple of weeks to do so (he doesn't agree with 80% of my projects, 100% of my starting and not finishing projects and 50% of the mess).
Again, I digress. I had no idea what I was going to write on the little chalk board wall. Then I saw this........

I snapped this photo at the Anthropologie store it took up a gigantic section of one whole wall! It was massive!  I scaled it down (A LOT) and recreated my version at home!
This is my ugly pantry wall.  Ok, so it is not that ugly the cabinets are as brand new as the house, just not my style or taste.
a little closer up.  You can see my started collection of white Ironstone, LOVES IT!
What I love most, when I am over it all I have to do is erase it and move on!  That is my kind of wall! Now if only my bestie would visit from Cali...she has the best handwriting I have ever seen! With a bottle of wine, her penmanship and some goofy girl time that little chalk board wouldn't be the same!

What have we been up too????

Cris and I have been busy decorating & trying to win contests, that is what!

As you may or may not know Cris and I are licensed Realtors.  We "play office" and get all dressed up to go be on call one day a week.  We LOVE it because we love previewing houses...we'd love it even more if we actually had clients and made money at it. I digress.

Our cute little town had a window decorating contest for the Holiday Season.  Cris and I volunteered and with a $30 budget from the office pulled off a cute display.  Down to garlands & a wreath made with coffee filter puffs.  Unfortunately, our town wasn't ready for our homemade version of a White Christmas & we didn't win any prize or bragging rights! :(
That is Cris....don't tell her I posted this photo, she will kill me!  We were so grubby as we worked so hard all day decorating, crafting, cleaning windows and trying not to ruin anything or fall off of the stool!

We also participated in a Wreath Design contest.  We designed a wreath to be auctioned off on behalf of our Real Estate office for a local Chamber of Commerce event.  
Luckily we WON!  We were awarded "Most Traditional".  We did a "past, present & future" theme around a Dickens quote from The Christmas Carol. Not to shabby with a $60 budget and some cleaver reuse of leftover muslin! Not to mention a gigantic fresh wreath that was over 2' in diameter! YAY us!

I would like to be able to announce that I have been M.I.A. because I have been decorating my home for Christmas.... I hate to admit after all that window & wreath mayhem I just don't have it in me....Although, I have been working on much better DIY things that will last longer than the holiday season! Updates to follow!

The last time I was at Cris's house she was getting ready to get in the spirit, so here is a quick snapshot of what is to come with the other half of this amazing duo....
Her and her awesome daughter brought home and installed this lovely tree all on their own (due to a recent  hubby injury) GREAT JOB GIRLS!  I can't wait to see her home all decorated, she always does such a fantastic job!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

I am such a newbie & so excited that we were featured as a "Fridays Featured Slipcovers" :)

Just found out that we were featured on a blog check it out.....
I am just beside myself with excitement!  Thank you Kristi at Pink and Polka Dot, you made our blogging YEAR!  Now we have inspiration to learn more about this blogging world and immerse ourselves in it...we have so much creativity to share why hoard it all to ourselves?!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Twin Sized Upholstered (slip-covered) daybed project completed!

The day I decided to turn my girls TV room (which was built to use later as an unfinished walk-in closet) into their "office", I also decided to ditch their cute iron daybed and build my own.  Only trouble was I had no clue how to go about such a feat.  Luckily for me I knew just where to turn.  Inspired by the toddler sized upholstered daybed (much love for Ana-White.com), I knew just what to do.

 I already had the twin sized mattress and needed a sofa style daybed.  I intended the new bed to work both as a sitting area for TV/Wii playing but also as an extra bed for the inevitable sleepover tweens love to have.  I also love a slip-covered couch.  Not to mention, having twin girls who love to use markers zealously as well as a incessantly dirty hairless cat, I needed the sofa to be washable.  Hooray for slip-covers!

 I love using painters drop cloth for projects.  Roman shades, pillows, duvets, shower curtains....you name it .  They are cheap, have a great weight, have a lovely neutral color and come in really large sizes. I like to wash them a few times to soften them up.  I took the toddler bed design and changed to to work for a twin mattress and slip-cover style (i.e. I added store bought turned legs to dress it up a bit).
I tried to document the progress.....

cut 6 2x4's into pieces as follows:
(2) 37" (I would actually add another inch or two as I did not allow for the padding on the headboard to push it forward)
(2) 71"
(4) 34" (if you adjust 37" board you have to adjust these accordingly)
(2) 25" 2x2
(1) 74" 2x2

rough layout before attaching

bought 4 pieces of 2'x4' thin luan as to not have to cut plywood down to fit (and also because at the big box store no one was around to help me get down the plywood or cut it for me and I lost patience waiting and just made do with the luan....it worked out famously!

5 yards of the thickest batting the fabric store had in stock....with my 50% off coupon - it was less than $30.

no nails, just pretending (and balancing)...making sure it is all going to come together....

bought 4 legs and the leg plates so I could have a more decorative leg showing

built the frame, attached the plates, painted the legs black

attached the legs

I probably over built this bed, but figured more support was better than not enough when it comes to 9 year olds and sleep overs!

once the legs were attached, I realized it was way taller than I had wanted, so I took the legs back off and chopped them down to the perfect height....easy peasy.

I built the back - I know the center support board is off center. That is because I only wanted to cut 1/2 of the luan sheets instead of all 4.

This is the back board (head board) laying on the bed itself.  The luan was nailed to both the front and the back. 

one side of the head board completed.

headboard attached to the bed

I attached the head board to the bed with bolts because I knew I was going to have to take it apart to get it up to the 3rd floor kids suite & figured I had more control reattaching it if it was bolted.

Backside of completed frame.

Moved it upstairs and added the batting.

added muslin fabric over the batting by stapling it all in place.  At this point if I wanted an upholstered look I could have gone straight to nice fabric or used nice fabric over the muslin.  I chose a basic muslin so it always has a base because I was planning on slip covering it.  I might change the slip cover someday or just upholster it.... you never know but I love having the flexibility to do whatever I fancy!

waaaahla, ready for the slipcover!

At this point I made sure the mattress fit, and it did, however I did not allow for the padding, so the mattress isn't as perfect of a fit as I would have liked.  Nonetheless, it works so I can't complain..... I am just a perfectionist so it will forever drive me crazy!

Now for the slip cover.......

I took regular painters cloth fabric.  Washed the cloths a few times to soften them up.  Then used the already sewed edge as my bottom hem.  I measured the drop around the bed, which in my case to cover the upholstered part I needed about 6" including a seam allowance.  I trimmed strips of 6" fabric on the already finished sides of the drop cloth to make my skirt.
Next I pinned the whole skirt in a pinch pleat type fashion.  every 4" & put a seam in it to hold the pleats in place.
The left over drop cloth was just enough to make a base for the slip-cover. I measured the bed (in this case it was 37" x 74" (the same measurement as the mattress).  I attached the skirt to the base on all three sides, leaving the back unattached.  Essentially I created a bedskirt.

I then made a slip cover for the head board portion, like an envelope.  A big piece folded in half and two strips sewn into each side as filler.  Pulled the envelope over the back to pin fit the bedskirt to it.

Then I pinned the back skirt onto the back - this way the bed could be floating in a room and would look just as finished - no need to be up against a wall.

Made the final seam and waaaahhhla a slip cover was born!

batting 20.97 (with 40% off coupon 34.95 without)
muslin  (1.99 45" width or 4.99 90" width a yard.... I already had it in my stash so it didn't cost me anything, I would suggest purchasing it with a coupon, the 90" width 5 yards should do it.... 24.95 without a coupon 14.97 with)
painters cloth 19.98 (I already had because I like using them for projects) it was a two pack at Lowes that contained a 6'x9' and a 4'x15' cloth - washed several times.

I already had the twin mattress (it was on a Crate&Barrel iron daybed that I "HAD" to have last year for my girls sofa/guest bed in their suite) I purchased a cheapo mattress for about $120 including delivery.
I already had the mattress cover that I purchased at Pottery Barn and spent waaaaay too much $ on (it was around $100) - If I hadn't already done that I would have made a slipcover for the mattress as well.
I purchased 2 linen euro covers on clearance at a PB store for $22 each & the Euro pillow inserts were 19.99 for two at Home Goods....I made the painters cloth pillow silk screened with EST.2001 with a Euro insert and scrap pieces of the painters cloth.

at Lowes:
two 2x2x8's @ 1.65 each = 3.30
six 2x4x8's @ 2.89 each = 17.34
four 1/4x2'x4' plywood luan@ 7.89 each = 31.56
four Waddell heavy-duty leg plate @ 1.98 each = 7.92
various bolts, nuts and washers (bolted back to base in four locations) = 5.76

Lowes total = $77.44
Fabric Store total = $35.94
Painters cloth total = $19.98


Total including everything on the bed right now = approx $427