Friday, September 30, 2011

Steals and Deals

I left the house yesterday and had no intentions of spending hundreds of dollars, but my neighbor had other plans for me! "Hey, I'm going to the Pottery Barn Outlet today, wanna go?" she said. "Sure," I say. See, I'm really good at going shopping without buying. I tend to go and "catalog." I like to see what's out there and remember it for friends and clients. But lo and behold, look what was waiting for me when I walked in those doors...

West Elm
Friends, let me introduce you to the "tulip chair" in elephant gray. It's exactly what I've been on the hunt for and it was $200 less than what I'd pay for it on-line or in the store!

Check out the other colors available. Don't fall in love with the honey color unless you want to spend an extra $100! Why do they charge more just because it's a more popular color? It is really pretty in that color though, I have to admit.

We hit the jackpot on bargains, I tell ya! Here's my other purchase...

This is the Bobble-Knit Throw from Pottery Barn. It's no longer available, hence the $4.97 price tag. That's right, any guesses how much this hand-knit throw was sold for originally? A whopping $99.00! It would have never found a place in my home at that price, but I can certainly swallow $4.97!

Here she is in her new home. My camera's memory card decided it didn't want to play well with others today, so I leave with a grainy iphone picture. Oh well, you get the idea.

Have you found any steals or deals recently? Do share!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Random Act of Kindness #4

Yea! Today's RAK challenge is a pretty one. Your challenge, if you choose to accept it, is to brighten someone's day with flowers. Now, I'm the practical type and typically tell my husband not to bother with flowers because "they just die," but if there is minimal cost involved, it really is a nice little treat!

This RAK challenge doesn't have to cost much. You can go outside and find a few pretty, little flowers and put them in a common household item. Got an extra soda bottle? Use it!

This is one of my favorite things to do in the fall on our porch. Carve out a pumpkin and place a pot of mums inside. Don't these colors play well together? How cute would this be with a tiny pumpkin!

I think flowers can bring a space to life instantly. It's funny that this is a decorating tool we all have at our fingertips, yet for some reason, it gets overlooked unless we have company coming. So, today friends, pick a few pretties and place it on your coworker's desk or leave it as a surprise on a neighbor's doorstep! It's bound to brighten their day and make your heart smile at the same time...happiness all around.

If you're new and want to check out the other RAK challenges, you can go herehere and here.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Secret to Stripe Sanity

I promised you a how-to post on my striped entryway here. To those of you who made the pinky promise to come back and hear my secrets, thanks for being patient!

Here are the two secrets to my sanity:

Yes, a credit card.


Who knew this product had so many functions?!

Ready for the nitty gritty details? First things first...the math, oh the math. I'm not going to lie, I stink at math! If I can have someone do the calculations for me, I will. When I decided to paint my stripes, I saw this project as a mind over matter thing. I was out to prove something and I didn't want to ask for help (this time, at least). You see, I was in a horrible mood and I knew if I brought my husband in to help, I'd probably bite his head off. Poor soul, he totally wouldn't have deserved it either. Does he ever? Anyway, I digress. 

Back to the stripes. I measured the walls then divided the space by the number of stripes I was hoping to end up with. I knew I wanted the top stripe and the bottom stripe to both be the same color, so I made sure the dividing number was an odd number. I like the uniform look. This might or might not matter to you, it's a personal preference. Once I cried and growled figured out the size my stripes needed to be, I locked the tape measurer into that position. Then I painstakingly placed it on the wall and made a tiny pencil mark, over and over and over again in a horizontal manner. Time to break out the painter's tape. I used each of these tiny marks to line up the tape and keep my stripe from being all womperjawed. Now move up the wall and repeat this step. Continue until you have all your stripes marked. This is what it will look like at this point.

Did you notice the white strips of paper on every other stripe? This is how I reminded myself which stripes were going to be the lighter color. Also, to make that math thing even more confusing, I realized that the width of the painter's tape needs to be taken into account and be placed in the darker of the stripes. This probably doesn't make much sense until you start taping off your project. This next step is where the credit card comes into play. Take the edge of your card and press with all your might along the edge of the tape. Go back and forth and really get the tape into the crevices of the texture on the wall. This is time-consuming but totally worth it. The paint will have less of a chance of seeping through if the tape is pressed to wall as tight at possible. 

Next step...Modge Podge. Use a foam brush to paint over the edge of the tape, like so...

It'll go on white but dry clear. Genius I tell ya! It can do all the bleeding it wants and you won't be able to see it. This will create the sealant that will prevent your paint color from leaving those ugly, unsightly jagged edges. I gave the Modge Podge a little time to dry then proceeded with the paint. I worked on one stripe at a time. As soon as I finished a stripe, I removed the tape. If you let the paint dry completely, the chances of bleeding are increased.

So, that's pretty much it. It was HARD, but totally worth it! Let's enjoy some before and after shots, shall we?




So friends, are you ready to paint your own? Go forth and be brave, and make sure you leave me a comment or two to let me know if you used these handy little tricks!

Linking to the following sites:
DIY by Design                      The Shabby Creek Cottage
Someday Crafts                     At The Picket Fence
Trendy Treehouse                 The Shabby Nest
Blue Cricket Design              504 Main
House of Hepworths             Fingerprints on the Fridge
Project Queen

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Shopping at World Market

 Have you been to World Market recently? I stopped in the other day and was pleasantly surprised with some of their fall merchandise. Want to go virtual shopping with me? Here are a handful of items that I felt were worth sharing. (sidenote- I'm new to the blogging world so World Market has no idea I'm talking about them. Wish they did, though!)

Looking for an accent table? Here are a few great options:

                                                   Vance Metal Accent Table $139.99

When's the last time you bought new towels for your bathroom? This is a relatively inexpensive way to really change up the feel of the room. Bring in a new pattern or new colors. It might even inspire you to find a new paint color, beware! 

Aren't these pretty, friends? Find them here!

A few furniture pieces: 

This bench looks kinda blah here, but it's pretty in person. A great addition to your dining table or a sitting area. Thanksgiving will be here before we know it...anyone need this?

The color of this chair is really rich. This one's tempting me for my living room. Just wish it had arms. I sat in it and will report that it's comfy!

Lastly, let's peek at some rugs.

Jute Rugs are best known for bringing great texture to a room. One of my client's just purchased this rug and it looks great on her dark wood floors! I was a little worried that it might be too textured, in terms of how it feels on your feet, but honestly, it feels great! It's almost like getting a little foot massage as you walk on it, not scratchy at all.  Love me some foot massages!

Well friends, I hope you have an amazing day. Do something fun and make someone smile!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Only in Texas!

 I am fully aware that this room will not appeal to the tastes of the masses! Only in Texas and various other southern states, will friends appreciate my son's room. Yes, it does have guns (not real ones!) in it and yes, there are depictions of dying ducks. What's a mom to do? It was exactly what my sweet boy asked for when we moved into our house a handful of years ago.

My handy husband made the gun rack when he was in high school. Who knew it would one day reside in his son's room! Weird, huh? My talented dad made the hunter silhouette. He used foam board, so it's lightweight and only needed a little tack to keep it in place. Check out the crocodile...he made that too!
Here's a better shot:

Isn't it cool how the tail hangs over the baseboard? Mr. Crocodile was made out of a thin piece of wood.

Today's Roomspiration Party continues at All Things Bright and Beautiful. You guessed it...jump over there for great ideas for kid's rooms.

Disclaimer- no animals were harmed in the decorating of this room!

I'd love to know your thoughts...leave me a few.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Roomspiration: Dining Room Style

Today's Roomspiration lands at the blog home, Involving Color. Run by there and take a gander at all the pretties that are linked up. If you're needing some inspiration for Thanksgiving, this is a great place to start.

Want to dig deeper into my Dining Room? You may have seen pictures before, but today I'll share the details. Aren't you excited? Ha!

See that gorgeous chandelier hanging out in there? It's made of capiz shell and my father-in-law was kind enough to buy it for me for Christmas several years ago. It's still for sold at ZGallerie. Here's a picture from their site:

Funny thing about this chandelier... my air conditioning vent blows right on it, so when the air is blowing, the strands rustle against each other and sound like a wind chime! I thought this was going to drive me batty, but now I'm used to it and find it kind of calming. Who knew?!

Moving on...

These prints were a great way to fill a large wall. I found them at IKEA, as well as, several other items in the room. The shelves and vases in the first picture were cheap finds there. I love the simplicity and the symmetry they add to the space.

What about the other accessories, you ask?

The deer head was actually a Christmas decoration I bought last year. My husband and son are avid hunters and think this is probably the coolest thing in our house. As I was packing up the Christmas decorations, my husband asked, "Do you think that deer head would look good somewhere else in our  house?" That was my que...leave it there! I love having accessories splashed around the house that are symbols of those living in it. The tray and the ceramic bowls were a Tuesday Morning find.

Lastly, the table, bench and chairs...

This is a hard room to photograph, for a novice like me. So much light! Anyway, you get the idea. I purchased the dining set at a 4 Hands Warehouse sale here in Austin. It's my favorite place to shop for furniture. You wouldn't believe the bargains you can walk away with. Need proof? How much do you think I spent on the whole set...5 chairs, 8ft. table, and bench? Prepare yourself. $869.00!! You can hardly find a table alone at that price. This was the deal of a century. 4 Hands holds this sale quarterly, thank goodness, or else I'd be broke.

The drapes, oh the drapes. Those are long story and let's just say, I learned a hard lesson about custom pieces and those, my friends, were not such a bargain. Ouch! Paid too much and I'm not even happy with them. Can't win them all, I guess.

I'd love to know your thoughts. I'm honestly not the biggest IKEA fan, so it's funny that I used so much of their stuff in one room. Does it look IKEA cheap to you?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

RAK Challenge #3

Okay friends, today's Random Act of Kindness (RAK) challenge won't cost you a penny but you'll become rich off of it! As I was out and about yesterday, I took a look around and started to really look at people's faces. You wouldn't believe how many people were frowning. I saw an opportunity knocking at my door and wonder to myself, "Self, what would happen if you smiled at every person you made eye-contact with today?" So, I put on a little lipstick and accepted my own challenge. It was so much fun watching how contagious a smile can be! Most of the time, my smile was accepted and paid back. Isn't it kinda funny thinking that the other person is probably wondering why you're smiling at them?!

If you're new to my blog and you missed the first two challenges, you're not too far behind to start. Check them out here and here.

If you're brave enough to accept this challenge, visit back and tell me about it!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Cork Trivets turned Corkboard!

Okay quick, think of a young girl/tween's bedroom and tell me the first thing that pops into your mind when you access her needs in a bedroom. Did you answer "corkboard?" It's an essential item, right? I mean, where else is she going to hang her drawings, pictures, and movie stubs! There are many really cute corkboards available to purchase, but some cost a pretty penny. Like these from Pottery Barn Kids.

This is a precious idea that I completely intend to duplicate some day as a DIY project, but honestly, I don't have the $299.00 to spend on it. Can you believe the price of this baby, friends?!

This one seems simple and wouldn't lead you to believe a huge price tag was attached, right? Well, think again, it's currently on sale for $139.00. Wow, what a steal! (Please hear the sarcasm dripping from my words.)

Don't get me wrong, if you've got the budget to buy these, then I say "do it." They're cute and most likely really well made. But if you're in the same boat as me, don't have all that extra cash and know that your daughter's taste is going to change, then let me show you the alternative I came up with.

I used these cork trivets from IKEA...

And various shades of this paint from Hobby Lobby

To create this...

close up

We added a few pieces of white trim on the top and side to frame it out.

After painting the background solid pink, I started nailing the trivets to the wall, one by one, until it was at a height I was comfortable with. After that, I painted the acrylic paint on random trivets to add some interest and bring in the other colors in the room. Easy and simple, and I promise it didn't cost anywhere close to the costly catalog finds.

Have you created your own version of a corkboard? I'd love to see your creations, send me a picture!

Linking to the following parties. You're just a click away from more inspiration!
Hope Studios: Tutorial Tuesday                      The Shabby Creek Cottage
Tip Junkie                                           Chic on a Shoestring Decorating
Blue Cricket Design                           The Shabby Nest
Trendy Treehouse                              Finding Fabulous
I Heart Nap Time                               The DIY Showoff
Lil' Luna
House of Hepworths

Pillows made easy

As a follow up to yesterday's post, I thought I'd help you out with some pillow sources. Those of you who are lucky enough to actually have pillows on their couch, that is!

Finding pillows can be a difficult task. It's fun to have that mixed/matched look but hard to achieve. So here's what I've got for you friends. A sight that does the hard work for you! Check this out.

Sold as a set of 9

Sold as a set of 9

Sold as a set of 9

This savvy etsy shop owner has taken the guess work out of coordinating pillows and sells her goods in sets of 9. They cost $180. For those of you reading this early in the morning and don't feel like busting out your math brain, that's only $20 per pillow. That's less expensive than buying pillows at places like Marshall's, Homegoods and TJMaxx. The above photos are just a few of the colorways offered, there are tons more! Ready to shop? Click here.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Dear couch,

Dear Couch,
I know you have dreams and aspirations of living up to your potential of being a beautiful place of comfort. I feel like I have failed you by not helping you reach your goals. I leave you naked! How dare me? I really do have a good excuse though. I beg of you to please just lend me your ear for a moment.
You see, I love my dogs and you know them well since they send a lot of time on you. They're furry little creatures aren't they? I made you plush leather when I brought you home, many years ago, because I could just give you a little brush and knock the dog evidence right off of you. But, Couch, I did not anticipate this...

The invasion of the lickers.

That's right, as you know, they lick you to death! Do you think it's as gross as I do? Honestly, it drives me bonkers. I've tried to put pretty pillows on you and an occasional throw, but those crazy tongues just have a way of making them crunchy and disgusting. Can you imagine my embarrassment when friends come over to sit on you and go to lean against a pillow that makes a very unnatural sound? So, dear Couch, this is why I leave you bare. It's not that you don't have potential. I really could give you some pretty new accessories, but as long as my 4-legged friends are around, this is the way it has to be. When the time comes for us to part ways, I hope your new owner can treat you the way you deserve!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Party in the Bathroom!

Today's Roomspiration party continues at Homemaker on a Dime. If you're just joining the party, stop in here and here to see what you've missed. Today is all about bathrooms. My master bath has a very masculine feel. My husband has some cherished duckies (not the yellow kind) that served as the inspiration when decorating. This duck was owned by his grandpa and I loved the color scheme. So there ya have it, we decorated around the duck!

 Check it out- black, grey, brown, rust and cream. How does this translate to the rest of the room? Lookie here...

I solicited the help of my mom to make the window treatments. She did the sewin', I did the stylin'. I love the texture they add to the room. Eight cheap-o belts were purchased from Target, in XXL size, then pieced together to add a little lift to the fabric.

Let's take a look at the mirrors. I think the easiest way to add a special touch to a bathroom is to replace the huge, builder mirrors and bring in something with more personality. I love Hobby Lobby's half-off mirror sales when I'm tackling a bathroom project.

Lastly, let's add a few accessories...

That's it for today, friends! Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Look for Less

There's no denying that gallery walls and wrapped canvas portraits are trending right now. I absolutely love the look below, but can you imagine how much it would cost to decorate your own house this way?! Crazy money, I tell ya!

I worked with two friends recently and have found myself suggesting they attempt this look through do-it-yourself projects. There are so many creative ways to obtain this look without going broke. Here's my luck, I save and save, then finally pull the trigger only to realize that a week later it's no longer the trend! Anyone else realize you can drive yourself batty trying to stay up with the trends? Friends, find a trend you love, love and run with it. It won't matter when it changes if it's something you enjoy looking at or living in everyday.

Here are two great tutorials that will help you make a gallery wall that's just as beautiful.

Just click on the link for a step by step, how-to and find out what supplies you'll need to have on hand.

This tutorial really surprised me when I read the supply list. That nice, thick look is achieved by wrapping inexpensive black fabric around insulation foam! Time saving tip- have the friends at Home Depot cut it in the exact sizes you need so that's one less step you have to do on your own. Don't you just love those Home Depot guys?!

Feeling inspired yet? I'd love to see your project. Send me a picture!

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