Sunday, May 23, 2010


Let it never be said that I don't have some patience in me.  Granted, not a lot, but just a smidge.  I have had this fabric picked out for 3.5 - almost 4 years.  I lovingly refer to it as the perfect floral and have chosen all colors in every house I've ever owned around the hope of having this fabric grace my windows.  Two years ago my sweet husband bought me 31 yards for my birthday.  And it has been rolled up waiting for us to either take it to the workroom or pick a house to live in for more than 365 days.  I used to visit it in the attic, pull it down occasionally just to glance at it, and then drag the heavy bolt back up out of the way.

Well - NO MORE!!!

As an Anniversary gift for my husband, I made the draperies.  Fourth Anniversary is fruit & flowers - so it's perfect - and he wanted them bad too!  Now - this is where my non-patience enters.  I was sewing on the DL, so I had managed to get two of the panels done, but desperately wanted to see what they looked like in the room hanging.  Only problem - we didn't have the window hardware to hang them - so what did I do?  Tacked them up there with finish nails! ha!!  It did hold surprisingly well and I was so pleased, that I RUSHED to get the last two panels done and up so I could surprise Sam when he got home from work.

He actually noticed!!  Though, it probably helped that I left a note on the door telling him there was an early anniversary gift inside... ;)  I realize that it was my job as an interior designer to impress upon people the great qualities of window treatments - how much softer, warmer, etc everything feels when the windows are dressed.  But they still manage to surprise me every time I put them up in our house.  The living room just feels done now - atleast the furniture seating group of it - and it's so much more comfortable.  We are in absolute love.

And - in true form - we've already moved the blue frames to the left of the bookcase.  We added an armoire to the hallway for storage and all of our favorite prints had to be relocated and found a new home there.  I'm sad to see the blue frames go - in my head it looks perfect and done - but in reality it hadn't quite gotten there yet and pretty sure the Hubs was none to pleased with the idea in the first place.  Oh well.  It's not like we ever leave something where it is forever.  Ha!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

But We Left the Ironing Board Out!

The title is seriously something that came out of my sweet hub's mouth as a reason why friends couldn't come over for drinks after dinner out when we first met.  It has stuck with us for a year and half - which is wild - it feels like we've all been best friends forever...huh...anyhow.

Our ironing board was disgusting.  Years of burnt starch, fused interfacing, and probably a spilled diet coke or two.  But somehow, I could never stomach paying $15 for a new shiny cover... Funny how I pick and choose what's worth the money.  Though, it WAS probably worth it...

But to Sam's surprise and hopefully delight, I whipped this brand new one up for him the other evening.  Afterall, he irons everyday, so he's the one who has to look at the grossness and pray that it doesn't end up all other his Brooks Brothers shirt.

And, wow, was it easy.  I ironed the old cover, laid it on top of the new fabric, cut around about an extra 1/2", folded over and pressed a casing, sewed the casing shut except for a couple inches, and then threaded elastic cord into the casing, tied it in a knot, and put it on the board.  Should've done this years ago!!!!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

New, sort of, Countertop!!

We never go to Lowe's anymore.   We used to go almost every day and three times a day on the weekend with the Dream House.  If we were friendlier (ha!) I'm sure we would've been on a first name basis with every. single. employee.  We were there THAT much.  I think the paint guys would run when we came in.  Anyhow.

before we moved in

Pepito's room gets lit up at night by our inconsiderate neighbor's spotlight - seriously - why are you playing with your four dog at 9pm?!! In your backyard that is literally 5 feet from my baby's bedroom?!!!  Just saying.  So the time had come that blackout roller shades were necessary for our sanity - we don't work well together on only a couple hours of interrupted sleep and it seems that being on the same page is a good thing when parenting together... heehee.

Sam's test run on painting cabinets

Off we went to the big blue box to get some roller shades cut.  William will put up with errands in the cart as long as he is moving and has new things to look at.  So, while Sam waited with the shades, we rolled over to the paint section.  I love looking at all the spray paint colors.  I swear, one day, I am going to buy a fun color and do something fun with it.  One day.  Put it on the list.  But while I was dreaming of how to use the perfect happy green spray paint - lo and behold - there it was.

Laminate Countertop Paint.

OMG - I think I yelled at Sam I was so excited.  I absolutely despise our countertops.  Mint green yucky geometric disasterness.  And it was on our list to replace them, just with black laminate (money spent on granite, or even a solid surface, would not be recouped in our neighborhood), but we don't have tons of money just laying around, so there it stayed, on the list.  That infamous list.

This paint is $20.  Done and done.  We actually waited a whole week to buy it.  So proud of us.  Got it tinted in black and home again home again twiddly dee.  I had to go to a party a friend was hosting that afternoon, but by the time I got back, Sam had fixed the broken spots, sanded, cleaned, and painted two coats.

The surprising part about it was - it kept looking better and better the more days passed.  The instructions say to give it three days to fully cure and for once in our lives we obeyed the instructions - so I've gotten to assess the finish often.  We just tested it on the buffet for the time being.  We can't be without countertops for three days with pepito needing to be fed, constantly... so this was perfect.

We're still trying to decide if the backsplash should stay black or if we should paint it blue to match the walls.  I think we're leaving towards blue, but I'm not sure how the blue paint would do on the laminate and this stuff is MADE for laminate...anyhow - I'm waffling.  It would be an AWFUL LOT of black.  We'll see.

Now here's hoping we can get the rest of the cabinets and countertops painted on the other side of the kitchen over Memorial Day weekend - any grandparents want to keep pepito?  Four days of fun for everyone!!!

Monday, May 10, 2010

For the Mommas

I'm sure all you moms out there have already thought of this - but I'm gonna put it out there anyway.  We are going through baby food like m&m's.  Well, maybe not quite that bad, but seriously - it's out of control.  And I feel so wasteful throwing away the containers, plastic and glass alike.  So I've been saving the ones that aren't stained orange from sweet potatoes waiting for my lightbulb moment.

At some point last week, I was searching for snaps or buttons or both in the blue container I'd just been dumping them in.  Which used to be a functional way to keep them all in the same place, until that container also began to hold elastic, grommets, safety pins, and all other random things that happened to be lying around when I cleaned up from sewing.

Now - I've got dozens of the glass baby food jars, but recently the plastic two pack Gerber foods were on sale, so I had accumulated dozens of those too and thought it would be easier to only have to unpop the top then to screw off a lid - plus, they stack a lot easier.

So - I found some scrapbook paper, cut tiny rectangles out, wrote with a sharpie on the top - and now I have individual storage bins for all my random sewing notions.  Ridiculously easy and makes my life so much easier to boot.  Just one of the many uses for these things - wonder what I'll need the six on the window sill for...hmmm...

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Unveiling of a Nursery

Today was the day by which the nursery MUST be done - J's big baby shower!  And her girls did the BEST job - the food was yummy, the blue pina coladas in bottles were adorable, and J is MORE than set for when little Will graces the world with his arrival in July.  And the icing on the cake -  the nursery is finito!  Except for a couple pictures on the wall and staining a bookcase - J has really made his nursery a place for a little boy to grow and be loved in.

(Now - I'll be honest - my camera is having some issues with autofocusing - as in, it won't do it - so these are the best that my photog bestie could get for me...)

Without further ado - Will's nursery highlights:

What we did: 
Completely custom crib bedding except for the crib sheet - "circles" & monogrammed blue linen crib bumper with stripe ties, stripe inverted pleat skirt.
Semi-custom window panels with stripe "skirt"
Hand-painted Sailboat Canvas by J - isn't she talented?! - with large stripe fabric sails
One of J's only REQUIREMENTS was that I find space for a RadioFlyer wagon - I think it's an adorable toy storage solution for in front of the window - unfortunately - the caboose that came with it wouldn't fit - but I bet it still makes an appearance later... ;)
J picked out the lamp and table and they both fit perfectly - once the slides are fixed - the dropleaves will come up and give her plenty of room for all the momma necessities
The chair is covered in a chenille and the pilllows, which I already showed, make the perfect spot to cuddle with sleeping babes.

And there IS an adorable deep chocolate fluffy rug that  goes in the middle - but who would want 30 people's shoes tromping all over it when there's a baby coming soon... 

What we did: 
J found the BEST resource for paper lanterns - so she ordered a bunch (seriously - like 30) and we suspended them from three little white hooks with fishing line.  Very free form but I could not be more tickled with how great it turned out!
J and her mom also scoured stores and the internet alike to find a dresser that fit the dimensions perfectly to act as their changing table.  The nursery is a good size - but using a dresser instead of a traditional changing pad would up the storage possibilities (and be a lot prettier and more functional later in little Will's life.)

What we did:
This is probably the EASIEST project - open back frame, monogrammed knob stuck directly into the wall, covered pretty hanger, and what do you have? The cutest way to display your little ones coming home outfit.  This has been on my to-do list for my William for forever, and I'd be lying if I wasn't a little envious that J got it done before me...but it's so cute - I don't mind! ;)

I could not be happier with how Will's nursery turned out and it was an absolute pleasure working with his momma to make her dream come true.  Much love and best wishes to you both!  I can't wait for his arrival!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

For the Mommas

Can you ever have too many bibs?  Well, maybe only when it's laundry day but otherwise, I know I like have drawers full of them (spreads out the laundry days...)  Reading around blog world - I ended up on Homemade by Jill - and if you haven't checked her out - go do it and come back...please.  :)  As fate would have it - the top tutorial (thankyou alphabetical order) was her bib tutorial.  Easy cheesey.

My sewing table happens to line up directly with my bin of "cute" (read - not in daily use) dishtowels.  And in that stack was KMart's Martha Stewart fruit set that I coveted for months until I finally gave in and paid way too much for them.  They're towels.  And they get dirty.  But I love them.  Which is also why they are in a bin and not under my sink....moving on.  In the name of things I have actually getting used - I thought they would make ADORABLE bibs.  Kids eat fruit - makes sense.

So I printed out the template, cut the towel while it was doubled over, sewed it inside out, flipped right side out, topstitched, added a snap (because I don't have white velcro handy and I'm trying to keep myself out of fabric stores this month), and voila.  I'm in love.  I can't wait to cut into the rest of the set.

This would be adorable with any cutesy set of dishtowels - and I may not be allowing myself in the fabric store but I'm pretty sure the dollar store is not necessarily off limits...just saying.  Or Target's dollar section might also get a visit shortly.  Plus, with all the scraps of fabric I have - maybe I should just pick up a bundle of washclothes and go to town.  The possibilites are endless!!  And these would make such a cute gift paired with a burp cloth!!   And be sure to check out the rest of that blog too - it's AWESOME!!


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