Friday, July 30, 2010

The great fabric debate

Now that Brent and I have finally upgraded to a queen-size bed in the guest bedroom, I have the opportunity to do a project that’s been on my wish list for quite some time – a fabric headboard. I love the look of these headboards, and I cannot wait to have the headboard in the guest bedroom take center stage.

The only issue is that I’m fabric indecisive.

With all my other fabric choices, I just knew. And I think that’s the hard part. There are so many directions this bedroom could go – I can’t seem to be able to edit myself.

Here’s a reminder photo of the guest bedroom:
The only thing in this picture guaranteed a home back in the guest bedroom is the West Elm pin-tuck bedding, which is a pale, icy blue color. Everything else is basically stuff from college that I have no problems altering or saying goodbye to. And that includes saying goodbye to the paint color.

Here’s the fabric I like so far:

Paddock Shawl:
Zig Zag:
Opinions? Favorites? Bueller?

If you find any fabulous fabric, please post a link. Just make sure it goes with the duvet and won’t put me in the poor house. ☺

Thursday, July 29, 2010

My chair is here!

...well, my chair arrived several days ago – but I've been having some issues with Snapfish. (Today, I will be moving on and trying out Picasa).

Anyway, my chair arrived and it looks amazing. It was totally worth the money getting it reupholstered.


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The wet bar project is almost done

Remember the ugly wet bar we had in the basement?

Well, it definitely got a facelift.

The most important task was replacing that dated green countertop with the matching countertop we got for the bar. Unfortunately, pre-made countertops are one of the few things hardware stores will not cut (because of possible splintering), so this was a project Brent got to freehand. Yes, freehand.

Brent did 3 practice cuts on the extra material before starting on the cut. To help prevent splintering, he placed masking tape down the center of the cut.

I think it turned out great. And the best part? We only spent $60 on this update – and that was for the countertop. The mirror is one I bought on clearnace at TJ Maxx 4 years ago, and could never find a home for, and I already had the black paint.

We still have to get a mini fridge for underneath, since the former one was sacrificed for the kegorator. We have some Best Buy gift cards left over from the holidays, so hopefully we'll find something we like there.

And look how well it matches the bar:

Sunday, July 25, 2010

It's Challenge Day!

I'll be honest, I totally pictured having my half bath completely done by now.

That was, until I realized the oh-so-perfect hand towel I bought in December clashes with the paint does a piece of art I ordered online. Awesome.

So is my half bath done? Nope, but I'm okay with that. There are some projects you just can't rush. And at least, even unfinished, my half bath is no longer blah.


What I did:
- Painted the doors and vanity white
- Painted the walls
- Spray painted the mirror

- Switched out hardware on the vanity
- Bought towel ring

Other half bath projects to do at some point:

- Put in a pedestal sink, which means adding tile where the current vanity is (this will be a next year project)
- Switch out the faucet
- Find a more modern light fixture
- Find a hand towel that works
- Art above the toilet

I can't wait to see what everyone did. Everyone's projects were so inspiring during the last challenge.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Impromptu garage sale

Last weekend, my neighbor told me someone down the street was having an estate sale today, and she was planning on piggybacking off the traffic and having a garage sale. Brent was convinced we didn't have enough stuff, but last night I was on a mission and even went through taped up boxes in basement storage I'm sure we didn't even go through at the old house.

We made a decent chunk of money to add to savings, and most importantly for me, we have less clutter. We are down a rug, a dresser that even I found hopeless, a TV, an armoire, 3 Rubbermaid drawers, plus tons of small stuff.

There's a couple more things we'd like gone so we're toying with the idea of opening up shop tomorrow morning as well. But like today's sale, that will also probably be a game-time decision.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

My wine cork dresser

Remember this guy I scored on Craigslist for $20 several weeks ago?

Well, it found a new home behind the bar as a buffet.
I'm not positive for many wine corks I used, but I would say it's in the 800+ range.

At first I started out using a hot glue gun, but I was having issues with all of the corks properly sticking – so at Brent's suggestion I switched to liquid nails and those suckers aren't going anywhere now. Once the glue was done, I did 2 coats of poly over everything.

In the bedroom

I knew there was a reason Brent and I never used down comforters.

We’ve always used duvets with a back up comforter underneath. With 2 dogs, this was the most practical option for us, considering at any given moment our duvet was in the washing machine.

I’m now especially glad we had this system, because the Crate & Barrel duvet has kicked the bucket. Several months ago, part of it ripped, but we sucked it up. But after we acquired a giant stain smack dab in the middle of the bed, we knew it was time.

And so, comforter underneath makes it grand entrance.

Brent has never been a huge fan of this comforter, so something tells me it’s only a matter of time before we get another duvet to cover it up. When that time comes, I hope it’s this one.

I may or may not have already started an eBay watch party for it.

And with this change, I'm already planning some color changes, etc., for in here. It's a good thing I have a birthday coming up. :)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My husband, the hoarder

Brent and I spent the last day of all 5-day vacation together buying a queen-size mattress for the guest bedroom. We’ve been wanting to get one for awhile, and the deal we found was just too good to pass up.

The plan is to move the new bed downstairs into the guest bedroom, and move our full-size bed upstairs into the empty third bedroom.

Here’s Brent’s and my conversation on the way home from buying a mattress pad:

Brent: So what will we do with the old bed when the bedroom becomes a nursery?

Me: Well, we have two options. Get rid of everything…

Brent: No!

Me: Or, we can just part with the frame and box spring and keep the mattress in storage.

Brent: I want to keep it all.

Me: Why? Where would we put it?

Brent: (silence)

Me: You’re not being practical. We could fit the mattress in the extra room in the basement.

Brent: We can put it on the loft in the shed, once I build it.

Me: If that’s where you want the mattress to go, that’s fine.

Brent: I want it all to go there – including the headboard.

Me: The headboard?

Brent: Yeah, I like it.

Me: (laughing) You mean to tell me, whenever we have extra guests – you’ll not only get the mattress and box spring out from the shed and move them to the basement – but you’ll put the head and foot boards on as well.

Brent: You’re ruining my dream!

I wish I could say I embellished this conversation, but it’s definitely real.

Brent and I come from 2 completely different worlds. I have minimal from my childhood, and I’m completely okay with that. I have 2 boxes – one with memories such as diaries, yearbooks and favorite books and the other with keepsakes I’d like to one day have in a future nursery.

As for Brent, well, I’m not sure I want to know how many boxes he has. Between the boxes he has here now and the boxes his parents keep bringing over – my answer is way too many. I’m pretty sure we have every toy he ever played with.

Brent is definitely getting better about keeping things though. He even agreed to sort through some of his boxes with me tonight. Hopefully, he’ll also see the light with the extra mattress as well. He has plenty of time to make the correct decision after all.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

For the birds

I just discovered that Michaels sells birdhouses, and let me just say I am in love. There are castles, 2-stories, churches, schools, rocketships, etc. all for the amazing price of $4.99. Brent quickly realized my excitement could lead to 20 birdhouses in the backyard, so even armed with a 40% coupon, he limited me to one.

It was a tough decision, but I picked this guy:
And once painted and polyed:
Not bad for a $3 project.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Half bath painting begins

I figured it was time to start working on my Just Paint It Challenge project. And I am loving how it's looking so far.

Did anyone else work on their challenge project this weekend? Just a reminder, you have until Monday, July 26th.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Cookware gone green

The one thing Brent and I didn't register for when we got married was new cookware. While this is something we should have done, registering for vases, dishes and crystal was way more exciting.

We moved into our first house with identical cookware sets – the cheap stuff from Target that we both got in college. And, well, we've been using it ever since.

And so, it was time for an upgrade:

Thank you Cuisinart for making cookware in such fun colors. And thank you HomeGoods/Marshalls/TJ Maxx for selling it at such dirt cheap prices.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The hallway

Well, it's definitely not perfect – but it's an improvement.

Carpet removed:
I stuck with the Minwax brand again, but this time again I tried the stain and poly combo. It was definitely less time consuming, but I still find staining to be the most annoying process ever and hope to never do it again.

My only issue with the floor is that I don't like the way it looks when coming up in the stairs. I like the floors from every other direction, but for whatever reason – the glare from the hallway light makes them look super shiny in random places from the angle. I'm hoping once they get walked on enough, this won't be an issue anymore.

Happy Birthday Chip!

My little guy turned 4 today. I can't believe it's been more than 3 years since we rescued him.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

One Month

The beer-tasting party is a month away. Time to get serious.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Wine cork madness

The 500 wine corks I ordered all arrived in the mail yesterday.

Two hours into my latest project, I realized I didn't order enough. Awesome. Looks like I will be hitting up eBay for another 500 or so.

The wet bar project

Brent and I love the wet bar in the man cave, but there is one issue – it's kind of ugly.

The countertops, the cabinets, the mirror – it's all blah. Especially, considering this eyesore is 5 feet away from the bar.

So what's the plan? To make it match the bar, of course. The cabinets will be going black and the countertop will be replaced to match the bar's (it's hard to tell from the photo, but that countertop is currently green). And don't worry, that terrible mirror will be replaced as well.

Look what Brent and I bought over the weekend:
And I'm so happy we bought it when we did, because we discovered this pre-made pattern is being discontinued. (This is why we had to buy this large of a countertop – it was the only thing left). If we had waited another week – bad things might have happened. We picked this countertop for the bar based on the fact alone that Home Depot sold pre-mades in this style that we could use for the wet bar.

Luckily though, karma was on our side and not only did we get what we needed, but it was 50% off. Yay!

So another project to have done before the beer-tasting party gets added to the list. Ummm, yay?

(We used to have a mini fridge in the wet bar gap, but Brent sacrificed that to the keg box. We're debating between a wine fridge and a beverage cooler for the space. While it would be nice to have this for the party, we are in no rush – especially considering I'd rather spend money on other things).

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Penguins in July

When I think about Hallmark, I don’t think of cards or gift wrap – I think ornaments. And I love ornaments…especially those with penguins on them.

Hallmark’s ornament premiere is this weekend, and I’m sure Brent will be thrilled to learn my penguin tree will be growing by at least 4 ornaments this year.

While I'm not planning on going to the premiere, I do plan on hitting Hallmark up before long. I waited too long last year and didn’t get several ornaments on my list – that mistake will not be made again.

If you are a penguin ornament lover like myself, you have to check out the blog My Penguin Tree. Donald puts all other penguin trees to shame, with the amount of ornaments in his stash. So how many does he have? Enough to dedicate an entire blog to them.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Paper Fun

I love planning parties for the paper aspect alone. Sure, setting the menu and figuring out the decorations is fun – but the save the dates, invitations, napkins, place cards, etc., is where it's at for me. This is why I'm a graphic designer, because I know I'll always have the love of making paper pretty.

It's this reason alone, that Brent's beer-tasting party had a save the date:
I love the simplicity of the pint-glass theme, so I decided to stick with it.

The invites that are going out next week:

Since the purpose of the beer-tasting party is to try new beers, and hopefully find a few keepers – I want to have paper at each station so tipsy people can write beer names down to remember later. But why have blank paper, when you can do personalized notepads at Vistaprint? (Especially when said notepads are dirt cheap).

The notepads:
Yes, I know I am having way too much fun, but I really don't care.

Chair Sneak Peek

I got an email last night from my friend who's reupholstering my family room chair, and it included a sneak peak photo.

I'm so excited to see it!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Guess What's Done?!?!

Houston, we have a bar!

After:I am so proud of Brent. He did such an amazing job.

Sorry, I don't have more pictures at the moment. I am painting one of my Craigslist dressers down there, so there's a lot of craziness going on around and on the bar. I promise to post more pictures soon though.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Inspiration From My Dad

I’ve always loved the office at my parent’s house.

Since this room is my dad’s turf, it’s one of the few rooms he was actually allowed to decorate.
I was thrilled when Brent took inspiration from this room as well. We knew from the start, we had to do something like this in the man cave. With a plan in mind, the collecting started.

Here was the wall:

Once I measured the wall, I taped off the measurements on the floor and got to work.
That was the originally plan, until I realized I forgot about something important:
So, I played around with it some more. I’m really happy with how it turned out.
Tip: If you are wanting to do something similar, take a photo of the final layout on the floor. This way, once you start picking pieces up off the floor, you'll know their exact placement on the wall.

My favorite item on the wall:

Right out of college, I was the design editor for a newspaper/entertainment tabloid. This was the first cover I staged, which featured Brent and my cousin Taylor as the models. This is the cyan printing plate of that December 2005 cover. I’m so happy this plate finally has a home.