I have a small problem with follow through. I went out of my way last year to declare that it was going to be the year of the Bedroom. I cozied up one little corner and I literally did nothing else. In fact, I’ve since borrowed the items I cozied up the corner with and moved them to different areas of the house. So, I’m totally still at square one. What I need is a plan. A plan that is broken down into bites I can handle. A detailed plan that will help me stay on track. I’m talking bullet points and due dates, people. First, some inspiration.
My main inspiration is that I want dark, saturated, navy blue walls. My furniture is dark wood and I want to offset all of that darkness with white curtains and bedding. I don’t know if I’m the last one to the Groupon party, but I found 800 threadcount king size sheets on Groupon for $39.99 discounted from over $200. I snatched those right up and I plan to look there first for a comforter or duvet when I’m ready to make that purchase. The sheets are due to arrive in a few days, so I’ll do some type of quick update about the quality once I’ve gotten my mitts on them.
I have a couple of DIY’s that I want to do for this makeover, too. I have a little desk that I want to keep in the room to act as a desk/vanity. It needs a nice update and I’m excited about figuring out what to do with it. I also know of an 80’s king size headboard that is gathering dust in a certain attic and just screaming for some bright white spray paint.
I also have several different textiles that I need to pick out. Curtains, comforter and throw blanket. Like this one.
Ok, on to the bullet points.
Paint – Ceiling and walls
That is a good start. Bullet points have some type of magic over me. I I bullet it, I will do it. Totally buying the paint this weekend.
It’s been a while since I’ve done a Buy It, Spy It or DIY It and Anthropologie did not disappoint. Lots of fun goodies to drool over, friends.
1. Star Sign Trinket Dish – $14 – DIY It! Some polymer clay and minimal artistic talents and you could totally make these. Need a polymer clay dish tutorial? Good news! I happen to have one here!
2. Velvet Lyre Chesterfield Sofa – $2498 – SPY It. I’m not saying you’re going to get the same luxury and quality of the Anthropologie sofa, but if you’re on a budget and love this look, you can get a similar style from World Market here for the sale price of $525.
3. Tiered Crane Sculpture – $328 – BUY It. For some special present to yourself. I’m obsessed with this thing. I know it might not speak to everyone in the world, but the point with this is, if something grabs you deep in your soul and it costs $328, save your pennies and buy it for yourself some day. I’m going to dub these special finds “Soul Grabbers”, ok?
4. Cluck & Coo Cutting Board – $48/$78 – BUY It. This one is also a Soul Grabber. Why have a boring old cutting board when you could have Cluck or Coo? Come on! Life is better when little things make you smile. My current cutting board gets no emotional reaction from me. Cluck would make me smile, even through the tears while cutting onions.
5. Cyprium Bowl – $98 – DIY It. Polymer clay and copper paint, anyone? You can do it, you know you can!
6. Raised Bloom Measuring Cups – $38 – SPY It. These are some very pretty measuring cups. The would certainly make me smile, but, here is why these are not in the “soul grabber” category. Measuring cups get a lot of sort of vigorous use. When I’m cooking, I’m sort of all over the place and I am very sure I would buy these expensive but beautiful measuring cups and break them in no time. Instead, I would buy something like these from World Market that are far less expensive!
7. Aldora Throw – $96 – BUY It. This is exactly what I meant in my cozy bed post when I was talking about adding texture to a bed. I want to turn this into clothes and wear it everyday wherever I go. I KNOW it would not itch. Ok, I don’t have anything to back that up since I haven’t actually touched it, but I’m 99% sure.
Ready to get your crafting supplies? And maybe your credit card, too! I’m in!
Okay, my title is a little misleading. This post is more about how to make a *cozy* bed, which for me, means it’s sort of not made. The perfectly made bed for me looks a little rumpled and completely unfussy. I am a lover of function over form first, so you will not see frilly throw pillows whose only function is to be tossed off the bed at night and then returned to the bed in the morning. That makes zero sense to me. I get it that some people love a perfectly made bed, but that’s not me. Here’s what makes a perfectly cozy bed looks like for me.
1. A fluffy comforter
How cuddly and cloud-like is that? If I’m in bed, I want to feel totally enveloped by the covers. This does it for me. My daughter has a stuffed cat that is called Mr. Fluffywuffykins. I want a comforter that is worthy of that name. Actually, she also has a bear named Cuddle Killer. That would work, too. The comforter above is out of stock at the moment on Overstock (irony, anyone?), but I will keep my eye out for this to become available again. My current comforter is not in this thing’s league.
I’m a fan of white sheets and some type of mostly neutral bedding. In general, I’m a color everywhere kind of gal, but for the bed, I like something mind numbingly off white, maybe white, but that might be a little harsh on the eyes. Neutral is soothing and does not make any signals to my brain that might say, “You should stay up all night thinking about crazy ideas! That sounds fun, YEAH!”. That bedding above just told me, “Shut off your computer and go to bed. You know you want to”. Touche, bed.
3. No decorative anythings.
I’m looking at you, cute pillows at Target with rhinestones and giant sequins. Yes, you are adorable and I think about buying you every time I see you. But, no one can convince me that putting my heady down on a sequin pillow is going to be comfortable. Not happening.
4. Park your bed near a window.
There is something magical about feeling the sunlight stream in on your face while you are lying in bed. And lying in bed and watching it snow outside is the epitome of contentment. I wouldn’t necessarily jam my bed right up against the window, but it has to be within sunlight ray distance to my face.
5. Add some texture
A chunky knit blanket would work as texture, but I vote for some type of faux fur texture. I need something that has no possibility of itching and a knit blanket would worry me about possibly being itchy.
6. A dark, moody paint color on the walls around your bed
This isn’t really part of making a bed, but it is definitely part of the cozy factor. I don’t have dark walls in my bedroom, but I’m strongly leaning towards it. This is so dramatic and rich. It feels indulgent. That’s the feeling this dark wall color gives me. Just like sleeping in on Sunday or taking a nap in the middle of the afternoon.
A while back I posted a House Tour with before and after pics and a check list for what we want to do for all of the rooms on the first floor and the exterior of the house. I thought it would be fun to revisit the list and see what kind of progress I’ve made. This may just be fun for me, I understand. Most people don’t like looking at their own to do list, never mind a strangers. If you enjoy crazy before pics and would rather skip the to do list update, check out the House Tour page. Every time my husband looks at the before pictures he wonders out loud how I convinced him to buy this stuck in 1964 colonial. I remind him that I had a vision of what this house could be and then he rolls his eyes at me. It’s fun.
1. New siding – Not done yet, but we have a quote (20k! GULP) and we are almost ready to do it… This will be done this fall and I promise I will post about it. It’s a huge expense, but like the kitchen gut job, it is a one time deal for us. And when that one is done, it should be the last of the super expensive projects for us.
2. New windows – DONE! We replaced every single window in the house this spring. It was expensive, 8k total, but they look really beautiful and I am so excited to see how warm the house is this winter with windows that actually close all of the way. Novel idea, right? I will include the windows when I post about the siding because they are looking slightly unfinished at the moment.
3. New garage door – Not done, but we will have to do this once the siding is done or we are going to have a huge eyesore in contrast to the brand new windows and siding.
4. New stairs, porch? – Not Done – A small front porch is definitely on the list, but I think it will probably be pushed to the spring.
5. New deck (out back) – Not Done – We need a deck! No, actually, we really WANT a deck. Maybe while we do the front porch?
6. Numbers for garage and house – Not done. Why, you ask? Because I forgot it was on the list. Oops.
7. Outdoor lighting – Not done. I would love to have this done before Christmas. We have zero outdoor outlets which means our Christmas light display is super lame. Plus we really need to update our front door, garage and lamppost lights since I think 1 out of 4 of them work right now.
8. New roof – DONE! Another big expense off the list! 8k, but it’s done and we will never have to do it again. Huge relief.
9. Landscaping – Not done – This wasn’t on the original list, but the yard needs serious help. Grass won’t grow because we have 30+ pine trees surrounding the house. We have a few areas in the yard that are really overgrown with junk that just keeps coming back to haunt us every year. The yard could be really cool, but it’s totally overwhelming to us.
The Roku Room/Parlor/Living Room
1. Rug – Not done and I don’t think I will do this. I have accepted the fact that we are just not rug people. Way too many things that are spilled and/or brought in on our shoes for rugs. I’m giving up the dream.
2. Switch out the light – Not done. I had a vision the other day of what I want for that light, so I will be on the hunt for it. I will definitely be doing a post on that when it’s done.
3. Restyle the side tables – Not done – This one should be fun, but I haven’t gotten on it yet. I’ll have to do some searches and pin some inspiration.
4. New shades for the lamps – Not done. Sensing a theme here? This one is pure laziness.
5. Paint the window frame – Not done – This is a new to do since the new windows were put in. My carpenter brother built us some pretty cool molding, so this will be a fun after that I will post someday. When I motivate myself to paint them.
6. Fun wall hanging for above the sofa – Not done, but the tapestry post I did a while back is still in the back of my mind. This may be happening soon…
1. Add missing molding (Can you find the missing molding?) – Not Done – This will probably never get done. It’s one of those little annoying things that no one else even sees and it requires ordering things and it has no wow factor. I think this will be on the list forever.
2. Window coverings – Not Done – I’ll get to this. Just not sure when…
3. Light above sink – Not Done – I look at lights for above the sink all the time, but nothing has jumped out at me as “THE ONE”. So I’m happy to wait until I find Mr. Right Light.
4. New Door – Not Done – This is an addition to the list that I just decided on right now. The old door has seen better days and I feel like it sticks out like a sore thumb in the new kitchen. Plus it will be the door to our someday deck, so I think I’ll want something with more glass
5. Finish Painting – Not Done – Also not on the list and not pictured above, but there is a spot in the kitchen that needs to be sanded and painted. It’s needed to be sanded and painted since we finished the kitchen, almost two years ago. Oops.
The Dining Room
This room didn’t have a list in the House Tour Post, but there are a few To Do’s here.
1. Paint the baseboard heaters – Not Done – This will probably take all of an hour when I finally sit myself down to do it. So, just do it already.
2. Sideboard – Not Done – I want to get some sort of piece of furniture in here that will serve as a buffet and provide storage. I would love to buy some old junker and DIY it. My favorite yard sale in the world is this weekend, so perhaps I will find something there!
3. Dimmer switch for chandy – Not Done – OH MY GOD you could land a plane with the lights from my chandelier. They are out of control bright. I just realized this pic was taken before we hung the chandelier. Here’s a post about the chandelier I DIY’d.
4. Replace the flooring – Not Done – The floor in here is missing a huge chunk from when we ripped out a built in bookcase and there are pet stains on it, too. So gross. Some day. Soon.
The Living Room
I need an updated pic of this room. I haven’t gotten it quite right yet because I keep wanting to change everything. This is more or less how it looks now. Minus the gallery wall above the chaises.
1. Curtains or other window treatment – Done and then undone. I made curtains and then I took down the curtains and used them to cover a chair.
2. Fireplace makeover – Not done. Needs to be done. Badly.
3. Area rugs – Not done. I know I said two paragraphs ago that I’ve given up the rug dream, but I still have a DIY in my head for this. Maybe some day.
4. Pillows – Done! You can see them when I update with an after pic. Some day.
5. More or better storage – Not done – but #6 on the list will hopefully take care of this.
6. Window seat (some day!) – Not done – I have sort of a bench seat with storage for the back of the room in mind.
Ok, so that is all of our Living spaces. I need to seriously get on the ball because there were barely any DONE!’s in this list.
I have a confession to make. Fall is my favorite. Not glorious summer or precious spring. It’s fall. I know it’s the precursor to winter. I know it means less daylight. I know it means chilly mornings and leaves to be raked. I love it anyway. I love the coziness of fall and apple picking and foliage and boots and layers and indoor cooking. And soup.
It’s early for foliage in New England, but I have some gorgeous pictures from last year that I knew I wanted o make into to some type of printable that I could frame or just hang on the fridge, even. I love printables because they can be personalized and they are practically free, of course. If you’d like to use these pics without the text that I added below, you can find them in this post about last fall. Here’s what I came up with.
That line is from a poem that my daughter had to memorize for school last year. It’s always stuck in the back of my mind. It’s so sweet and old timey. The poem is by Solveig Paulson Russell.
How pretty is that haiku by John Bailey? It really epitomizes fall for me. Just calm and quiet.
Sweaters and boots! Yes! Fine, it was 90+ degrees here today, so the sweaters are a few weeks off maybe, but it’s just around the corner!
My plan is to get these incorporated into some type of fall mantel decor. I’ll be working on that and I’ll report back with pics!
I have had this little mid century chest that I bought at a yard sale for several years. It was a bit beat up, but I loved the shape of it and it has a good amount of storage. My husband, on the other hand, has been trying to throw it away since the day I brought it home. This weekend I finally dug in and gave it a lovely refresh. And I didn’t use a lick of paint!
Here’s how I did it!
Gel Stain – I bought mine at Michael’s
White Adhesive Shelf Liner – found at Target
1. Remove the drawers from the chest and lightly sand the portions of the furniture that you plan to stain
2. Wipe down dust from the sanding using a damp paper towel
3. Apply the gel stain to the dresser using a paper towel. I poured a line of stain along the dresser, rubbed it in with the paper towel and then repeated that process until the surface was covered. Use long sweeping strokes that go along with the grain of the wood. You will use a LOT of paper towels. Part of the rubbing process is really removing excess stain.
4. Repeat the staining process until you are satisfied with the depth of the color.
5. Allow the stain to dry and set for up to 48 hours before placing anything on it.
6. Now for the drawers! Remove the hardware from the drawers. Cover the fronts of the drawers with contact paper, wrapping the paper around the edges of the drawers
7. Replace the hardware onto the drawers. When you are reinserting the screws, you will need to poke them through the contact paper.
Guess what? You’re done!
How easy was that? And guess what? My husband says it’s the best thing I’ve made. I think I agree! Until I make the next thing, of course!
It’s been many moons since my last Buy It, Spy It or DIY It post, so I thought I’d stop in at Urban Outfitters and see what’s what. Remember the rules of this game? A Buy It is something that is a fair price or a unique piece that you LOVE. A Spy It is that thing you see in a retail store, but you know you’ve seen it for way less at Habitat Restore. And a DIY It is that thing you love that you could TOTALLY make. DIY It’s are my favorites!
SPY It – I love these tumblers. They aren’t badly priced at $12, but these would be so fun to hunt through a thrift store or two for!
DIY It – I like the rustic and old feel of these candleholders, but you could have fun DIY’ing these. Cut the wood to size, bang it up a little, maybe break out the wood burning tool, stain it and drill holes for the tea lights. Maybe not exactly in that order, but you get the gist.
BUY It – Take my money Urban Outfitters. This gorgeous headboard is worth every penny of the $329 price tag.
SPY It – I bought a coffee table at a yard sale that isn’t just similar, but is actually smarter looking than this one. Guess how much I paid for it? $5. And it’s actually vintage, not a reproduction.
BUY It – Alert! This fab looking sofa is $549! And it converts to a bed! Hurry up and buy it!
DIY It – You could make this right?? One trip to Home Depot and you could knock this out in a night. And you can buy the cord kit from UO or Ikea. PS, you could hang this from the ceiling as a pendant, too.
I have a question to pose to you all. Has the tapestry gradated from the dorm room? I have a room in my house that is very dark and I’m feeling much too lazy to paint it. I’d like to inject some color with something big, bright and lightweight. I present to you my tapestry picks. Let me know yea or nay on the great tapestry debate in the comments. All of these tapestries are from Society 6. Click the pics to purchase.
This is my favorite and I would be placing the order if it weren’t for the dark, saturated colors.
This abstract mountainscape is closer to what I’m looking for. The colors aren’t too loud and there is a lot of light and bright here.
And this pastel floral is too pretty for words. I don’t think I could put this in the room next to the dining room wallpaper, though.
Seriously? Where can I put this guy? Probably not the right option for the first wall you see when you enter the house, but there’s got to be a spot somewhere, right??
And I like this moody blue, but not exactly what I’m looking for.
These are my colors, but again, not right for the spot I have in mind.
So, what say you? Has the tapestry graduated from the Dorm Room?
I love a project that improves upon something that is important to me. I have this chair. It’s a very comfy little wing back chair. It was a hand me down from my husband’s great aunt Pal (that was her name, Pal. Awesome, right?) who passed away several years ago. Wait, more than several. In fact, I’ve had this chair for at least a couple of years before my daughter was born and she’s 10! It first came to live in my husbands apartment, moved with us to our first home, our second home and our third home. It’s the chair I nursed my baby girl in when she was a baby. I spent many sleepless nights in that chair in the summer of 2004 watching the Olympics. Live from Athens, cause babies don’t know about time zones. I swear I saw every event of that Olympics. So, tons of sentimental value packed into this cozy chair. The only problem was that the upholstery was not my favorite. I’ve used a Surefit cover in white on it for years, but I’ve been itching to try upholstering it. So guess what I did? I upholstered it!
Now, I’m not going to tell you that I can write you a tutorial on how to this. But, I do have a few tips to share. If you want a full tutorial, I would strongly suggest checking this one out from Four Generations One Roof. It was really helpful and it gave me the courage to try this project!
Tips for a (mostly) No Sew Reupholstered Chair
1. Pick the right chair – My chair is probably not the easiest chair to pick for this project. If I were to go scavenging for a chair to reupholster, I would check the likely spots that I would be stapling fabric to to make sure there was some wood in that spot for the staple to grab on to. The back cushion of my chair is, well, cushiony and it was tough to find places to staple into.
2. Speaking of staples, get a good staple gun. I started with a mechanical one. Forget it. It’s not worth the pain and effort. I bought an electric staple gun from Home Depot and it did the trick, however, it petered out at the end of the project and I had to suffer through with the mechanical stapler for a few spots. The electric will be getting returned.
3. Pick the right pattern – I would strongly advise against using anything that is geometric or would otherwise require matching up patterns. Unless you’re some kind of math wizard. I’m not, in case you are wondering. The bird pattern I used (which you might remember from my DIY Curtains. They aren’t curtains anymore. A girl can change her mind, right? Actually, that’s a post for another day) is sort of random. Well, not random exactly, but there is no up or down or any straight lines to match up. Also, I used maybe 8 yards of fabric. And I had a lot of scrap left over.
4. If you’re chair has a skirt, cut it off. Show off those beautiful legs!
5. Start with the small curves – I started with the front facing, curved portion of the arm. Basically, I held a piece of fabric up to that part, added a bunch of staples and then trimmed off the excess. I then did the actual arm rest portion of the arm, then the wingback parts of the chair. The trick to smooth fabric on these curvy parts of the chair is to deal with small, flat surfaces. So for instance, on the wingback portion of the chair, I did the two sides of the chair first, and then went back and did the front facing portion with nice folded edges. These were the toughest and once they were done, things moved much more quickly.
6. Strategically hide your staples. There are a couple of ways to do this. Any time it’s possible, hide them on an underside part of the chair. The other thing I did was hide the staples in the folded seams. In order to get a clean looking seam in conspicuous spots on the chair, like that front facing part of the arm, you will fold the fabric in about an inch or two, lay the fold down on the chair, but wrong side up, so that you have only the fold on the chair, all the other fabric is unfolded and off of the chair and then staple the fold so that you can then fold the fabric back over the arm and you won’t see the staples when you are done.
7. Don’t be afraid of the glue gun. – Ok, before you have a crafting heart attack, I didn’t use the glue gun to replace staples. All of the fabric is secured to the chair with staples. But, if a I had a folded seam that wasn’t in a high traffic area, I used a little hot glue to seal those seams. Strictly cosmetic, I swear. Time will tell if the glue will hold up.
8. One little bit of sewing – I don’t sew. I took a sewing class in 7th grade. I made a stuffed animal and a pillow. I had no idea how I was going to get the seat cushion covered without asking for help from my mother. Which is lame when you are 40. Then I had a stroke of genius and decided to just sew the fabric directly onto the cushion. I basically did a whip stitch around the perimeter of the cushion where there is a little bit of a corded detail.
Thar she is! The take away from this post, is I hope, sometimes you can just kind of jump into a project and learn as you go!
I did a quick update to my headboard. With a shower curtain. Yes, I’m fully aware of how insane that sounds.
So, where did this crazy idea originate from? Well, it really starts way back when I bought the original headboard 7 years ago. It was chocolate brown and tufted. I think I ordered it on-line from Target for a couple hundred dollars. It was fine. There’s nothing wrong with it. It was just sort of blah. There is a lot of beige and chocolate brown in the bedroom and I wanted something else. Here’s a before shot for you:
Cut to a few weeks ago and I found this shower curtain on clearance at Target.
It’s $19.99 right now, but I’m pretty sure I got it for less than that… I ended up buying two, so I spent some amount less than $40 for what would become my fabric for my headboard slipcover.
Once I had the fabric home, it was just a matter of lining it up so the pattern matched and wrapping it around the headboard. I will be staple gunning it to the headboard at some point (like, when I buy a staple gun), but it’s actually doing a pretty decent job staying put as it is. What I think is a very lucky benefit of using a shower curtain as a headboard is that it is sort of a different material than regular fabric. I mean, it’s not plastic, but there is definitely some type of coating to it that I think will make it super easy to clean. The old microfiber one was actually a pain to clean. It collected dust and it just looked dingy at times.