Showing posts with label Fab Finds. Show all posts

Spotted: My Favorite Ever Thrift

Last weekend I drove to see my sister in Florida…just me and the fetus girl.  It was a spontaneous trip and a little babymoon for me before we are, once again, in the throes of having a newborn and I loved every minute of it except those first few minutes right after I left home.  I’ve never been away from all three of our kids for more than a couple of hours and it was SO. HARD. to leave.  I wanted to go so bad and I knew it would be so revitalizing but the thought of being without my little leeches for a few days was hard.  So weird, right?  I mean, there are days I think “man, I love you guys to the moon and back but I need a break!” and then that break comes and I get cold-feet and all sappy and emotional and I rethink my decision a thousand times and force myself to keep on driving when really all I want to do is turn around and forget about it.  Human beings are so complicated.

On the bright side, I have two sisters I love dearly and so getting to spend the weekend with one of them was just the best.  Farrah and I are Irish Twins – born 10 months apart.  Yep, 10 months.  I was born three weeks past my due date in February and at my mom’s 6-week post-partum visit they told her all the usual stuff and dropped the bomb that she was pregnant again (I’m guessing the whole routine urine test gave it away?)  Surprise!  Farrah was born two weeks early in December and so now for two months of every year we are the same age.  It’s as awesome as it sounds.  :)

We had lots of fun this past weekend doing things Irish Twins do – sewing, crafting, eating, relaxing, going on a 5-mile bike ride along the beach, and thrifting.  I didn’t really have a list of things I wanted to do while I was in her neck of the woods because all I really cared about was taking advantage of that little “break” I was on and spending time with her and her cute little family but I did make it a point to hit up my (our?) favorite thrift store.  We have to go everytime we visit her because it is hands-down thee best thrift store I’ve ever been to.  I don’t even know the name of it but we’ll just call it ‘My Favorite Ever Thrift’. 

Here’s what I spotted on this trip:

There are always a bundle of light fixtures when I go in - light fixtures I don’t need and that I have to convince myself to walk away from.  There were a few that caught my eye (and I actually did buy one that will be going up on our front porch one of these days) that had those great geometic lines I love and would’ve made great fixtures in a grand entry, over a dining room table, in a master bedroom, or used as a terrarium or decorative bowl.
This minty-green couch was something like $20 (50% off $40) and I wanted it.  Bad.  It needed it’s skirt removed to expose it’s beautiful legs underneath and to be set in a little girls’ room or a light and airy living room.   IMG_3416
This piece of art was really cool looking.  The colors got me at first.  With a white mat and light wood frame it could be the life of a room.
IMG_3417However, it was marked at $60 so that turned me away.  I didn’t do any research on the artist but my guess is that, at that price, maybe it was someone semi-well-known?

I thought this bamboo wine rack was cool:
IMG_3418With a coat of some bright paint color, it be the most fun your bottles of wine ever saw before they hit the recycling bin.

This fireplace set was gorgeous and in pristine condition.  Not to mention that the gold color was the most perfect champagne-gold.  I think it was around $10.  I would’ve snatched it up if our fireplace wasn’t gas.
These glass bottle toppers were all gorgeous.  There were about 30 of them in two baskets and I wanted a few so bad but had no clue what to do with them.  Now I think they’d be great just piled high in a glass jar on display.  If you wanted to be a little more aggressive, they’d probably make great knobs after a little trip to a glass store for a snip and the addition of a threaded rod and nut on the back. 
Cute little bamboo chairs get me every time:
And this wood bar stool was really cool too.  Set in the corner of a room with a cute little lumbar pillow or sheep-skin throw, it could hold its own.
More bamboo…
IMG_3423The color on this one wasn’t the greatest so it’d could definitely use a coat of paint but I liked the shapes on it.

And I’m still not sure how I feel about the curvy top of this one but in my head, I thought it’d be fun to paint and style all those shelves.
This was a cool little miniature rocking chair that could’ve used a punch of geometric fabric instead of that boring green.  I really comtemplated getting it because it was so different than your normal rocking chair…and then I pictured the fight over it and it tumbling over with a twin and…nope.
The best score of this trip:
IMG_3426Seven princess dresses – Belle, Snow White, two Aurora’s, Rosetta (from Tinkerbell…my girls are obsessed), Rapunzel, the Brave girl – and one white flower girl dress.  They were ONE DOLLAR each!  I know…take a minute and let that soak in.  A few of them needed a little TLC in the form of some hem and seam fixing but my sister and I did that in ten minutes one night while watching a movie.  Needless to say, my girls haven’t worn normal clothes since I’ve gotten home and I don’t see an end to that in sight. 

This chair was stylish and simple:
IMG_3427It needed a little bit of cleaning but it was microfiber so that would’ve been fairly easy.  I liked the straight edges and it was something like $40.  A little bit of nailhead trim might do it some good too.

Oh my gosh, this table:
IMG_3428Had it not had a sold sign on it I would’ve hard a really hard time walking out without it.  I would’ve figured out a way to somehow take it apart to fit in our little Corolla and take home with me.  Painted white?  A dream it would be with that gorgeous fretwork and my dining room’s first love.

This solid piece of butcher block was incredible:
IMG_3466Again, if I’d had the room, it’d be waiting to be installed as our bathroom countertop or on an island in our next house.  It was in excellent shape, the color was oh-so-good, and it was huge.  I loved the thin strips of wood too.  It had no price on it but it was probably worth every penny they were asking.

Last but not least, we found this faux leather jacket:
IMG_3456I couldn’t tell if it fit me well with this big ‘ole belly in the way so I selflessly let Farrah get it.  ;)  (Being selfless is super easy when you know she’d let you borrow it anytime so don’t worry, no holy points were gained over in this direction.  Ha!)

They have the best prices on clothes out of any thrift store I’ve ever been to and speaking of clothes, they had lots of great stuff but since my current state is stamped “pregnant”, I didn’t spend too much time sifting through those treasures.  I did very much regret grabbing a faux suede shift dress that I hemmed and hawed over though.  :( 

Anyway, it’s back to the old grindstone that I love and will probably never leave again (I’ll just take them with) so Happy Tuesday to you and yours!

Target Clearance Rack to You

I went to Target last week and thought I’d do the usual, quick fly-by on the clearance racks on my way out and that fly-by landed the three tots and I in the fitting room (the regular small size since someONE was in the large room…you can imagine how pleasant that was) and then landed me in the check-out lane with four items I found for at least 50% off.  So, I thought I’d share and bring the clearance rack to you.

Let me back up though quick and tell you how I shop.  I’m usually a year behind on trends, or so it would seem, since I buy “trends” when they’re on their way out via clearance racks to make room for the next season’s line.  But, since I don’t really care too much for what’s in and what’s not, I don’t mind one bit.  I probably spend about $20 a month on clothes and shoes for myself which, most would think, is pretty low.  But, it’s all I can afford and I don’t feel like I sacrifice style by not spending a lot.  And then if we want to get technical up in here, in all actuality I spend $0 and some months recently I’ve made money buying clothes.  That’s because I’ve been purging my closet and saving or spending that money on new clothes.  Also, I have a rule that if I buy something new, something else has to go.  I have too many clothes to be accumulating more.

So, back to the virtual clearance racks below, I know a lot of these things would classify as spring/summer wear (duh…why they’re on clearance Sheena) but most could easily be transitioned to fall/winter with the addition of a cardigan or kimono and some pants.  The sandaly shoes will be great for next summer!

(And PS, most of the links below are affiliate links.  If you click and purchase, I’ll get a small referral fee but that fee won’t raise your price one penny.  My intention is not to make big bucks off referring stuff to you, be sure of that!  I really just want to share the goods and I hope you can find some stylish stuff to add to your wardrobe for a bargain.  So, whether you go through my links or not, I wish you good shopping!)  :)

To see all the finds, just click the arrow at the right (or left to go back) of the image and click on the image to take you to the product on Target’s website.  :)



And there’s more…I couldn’t find the tops I bought last week in-store on ShopStyle (the affiliate program I use) but I found them on Target’s website for you.  Some of them aren’t clearanced online but check your local store because it might tell a different tale!

This Merona top is awesome.  I bought it for 50% off which is usually a bit much for cheap little me but it’s going to take a lot for me to return it.
17301661I got it in the kelp green color.  The fit is just great and I love the length and that it’s the perfect amount of loose.  

I got this Mossimo top top in the geo print but it seems that print isn’t online anymore!  I remember seeing it there last week so it must’ve gone quick!  No surprise though since it’s this uber cool black and white geometric design with some florescent orange, wine, tan, and red thrown in.  The fit is great though and it’ll be great under a cardigan, blazer, jean jacket, or even by itself.  I found it and another Mossimo top on the 70% off rack.  I can’t find the second one online but it’s in the running to be my current most favorite shirt.  It’s a long, flowy, creamy white number with an aztec design in two colors of gray sequins on the front.  It had a lot of makeup along the neckline so I think maybe that’s why it was so discounted but that doesn’t scare me.  A toss in the wash and that’ll come right out!

Call me crazy but I am no stranger to wearing maternity tops when I’m not pregnant.  That’s why I bought this Liz Lange top:
16928981I have some faux leather leggings that I can’t wait to pair with it.  Without the baby belly, it just fits like a long tunic.  And did I mention how comfy it is?  I could sleep in it… 

And last but not least, I found this Mossimo jumpsuit and spent my whole monthly $20 on it.  I found it a month or two ago though on a different trip than I found the above tops on so hopefully you’ll still be able to find it in your store.  I love it because the legs are longggg and I have the worst time finding those in jumpsuits.  Usually I have to pull the crotch down to my knees for the bottom hem to graze my ankles.  Pity because I love jumpsuits.  I’m voting they stay in for a long while.

.           .           .

I hope you find some good (cheap) stuff!  Like I said above, some of the stuff I listed online might be cheaper in-store so GO!  Hop over and add to, swap out, and/or treat yourself!

Spotted: Goodwill

I’ve always had this desire to go to thrift stores on a regular basis and take a picture of everything that catches my eye, only to come back home and blog about what exactly went through my head about each item or why it was so great.  My hope for you, my loveliest readers, is that I can inspire you to go into a thrift store with an open mind and sharp eyes and find some treasures for yourself.  So, I’m doing it and I’m starting on this lovely Saturday night.  The tots are sawing twigs, football is on the tube, and my better half at my side.  Consider this the first of the series.  Hopefully I’ll stick with it but that all depends on how often I can get to the thrift store alone or how often I can get to the thrift store with kids in tow and snap some pictures.  It’ll all be nice and spontaneous-like.

So, the day was yesterday.  The kids didn’t really nap and by the time they could’ve, it was too late and a nap would’ve eaten into bedtime so, we hit up Goodwill. 

Here’s what I spotted:

These two, lidded dishes:  IMG_1835They were both vintage glass and the colors were amazing.  The green one had a small piece chipped off the very top of the dish but a little strategic placement would’ve hidden it nicely.  I came thisclose to buying the yellow one to put jewelry, bobby pins, and other little things in next to my bathroom sink but then I didn’t.  I wasn’t a huge fan of the picture on top so my thought was to spray paint the lid either copper or gold to match the metallic trim around the actual dish.  Either one would look beautiful on a shelf though on top of some books or just by themselves.  They were both $2.99, if I’m remembering correctly. 

These glass votives:
I loved how vibrant the colors were and they were thick, bubbled glass.  They didn’t have a price tag on them but I’m guessing it probably would’ve been under $5 for the whole set.  They’d make a pretty addition to a spring or summer tablescape.

This little vase:
I think I just love all things geometric so the shape stood out first but the color of the glass was so beautiful and could bring an earthy tone into a space.  I thought it’d be really sweet with a succulent living inside and placed on a windowsill.  I think it was $1.
These brass beauties:
Brass is in people and these three were the epitome of why.  They were beautiful!  All three would make one bathroom countertop very happy…or a shelf display…or anywhere really.  Seriously beautiful. 

These two lamps:
Gosh, I love lamps.  I don’t know that there’s ever been a single time I’ve gone into a thrift store and not spotted at least one cool lamp.  But these two…I loved the idea of painting the thin, silver and gold one on the left copper or even a more champagne gold.  Or even keeping the silver and painting the gold copper?  I mean, even in some bold color it would exude ‘sleek’.  It’d make an amazing desk lamp.  The soft green color of the one on the right was beautiful.  And there’s that brass again and it was such a gorgeous hue of it.  The soft green plus the brass?  Got me.  Set it on a bedside table or dresser paired with a creamy white drum shade and it would hold it’s own. 

This oval bowl:
This is another one I almost bought.  The silver was so pretty and I thought it would be look great somewhere on our living room shelves…and then I heard a crash two feet away which sent me wondering what the…my kids.  Plastic office supplies.  Everywhere. 

Forget the bowl.  We are leaving.  But then on our way out I spot…

These vases and goblets:
Argh…the colors got me at first sight.  I wanted them SO BAD!  But I didn’t need them so I walked away.  Not to mention that my kids were done.  Upon (a very quick) close inspection though, I realized the vases had been painted on the insides which got me thinking about how many clear vases there are to be found in every thrift store that could easily be transformed into vases as pretty as these with just a little paint.

And that was it.  Had I been alone I might’ve moseyed into the clothing and taken some pictures there but we’ll just have to keep that for next time. 

Happy Saturday night.  Say a prayer Notre Dame can come back and beat Clemson, will ya?  ;)  

Mini-Bar in the Toddler Room

Hey good and faithful readers!  If you’re reading these words right now, I love ya!  You are the bestest and sweetest and have stuck with me after a two point five week (unintended) break!  Christmas prep (read, the play kitchen) kicked mine and Anthony’s butts and then right after the big reveal Christmas day, we started packing and headed out and up to St. Louis for my best friend’s wedding!  Then we all decided to get sick and we’re still sick and trying our best to recover.  It’s been crazy around here and I don’t think I picked up my computer once in that span!  But, never fear, I’m back and I’ve got some good stuff to share and lots of catching up to do! 

As much as I’d love to take up a whole post writing about how great 2014 was and all the highlights and lowlights and in-betweenlights, time is precious around here and I think we’ll just skip right into 2015 without a look back.  What a better place to start than one heck of a DIY – the play kitchen.  You guys.  This little kitchen we were so excited to make became the bane of our existence for three days straight.  What was supposed to be an easy and fun DIY turned into a problem-solving challenge.  It was one thing after another.  Not to mention the fact that we did this with the three kids running around!  We had it locked up in our bedroom and we’d take turns watching the kids and being locked in with it, working hard to get it done before Christmas!  But, we got to the end and we’re so happy with the way it turned out!

diy play kitchen

In case you didn’t read this post, we found an entertainment center at Goodwill for $5.99 a few weeks ago that matched our criteria for a future play kitchen.  We had been on the hunt for one for months and were willing to spend up to $30 so this one was heaven-sent at 1/5 of that price.  The structure itself is made of laminated particle board and in great shape and the doors are solid wood and beautiful!

It all started with a simple plan - use the basic structure of the entertainment center as is, separate the large compartment on top into two by adding a partition down the middle, add the double doors (refrigerator) to the left side of the large opening, create an oven in the left compartment under the fridge, add a curtain for storage over the right compartment, plant a sink and faucet above the curtained compartment complete with some faux penny tile and a faux window on the back wall above the sink.  Add some paint and little details here and there and bada bing, bada play kitchen.  And then alllll that changed.  On second thought (and right before we started), Anthony decided our initial plan wouldn’t be very conducive to play.  It was too small of a space to accommodate two little girls + their friends + the occasional mom/dad/little bro bomb.  So, we decided to remove the top of the entertainment center, repurposing it as a fridge.  I’ll get into that more later.

Once we had our final plan and all of the supplies were accumulated, it began.  (I know that not every entertainment center is the same so I know that the way we did things won’t apply to everyone but I hope that in some way, a tutorial will help inspire you to create one yourself and maybe help in the how-to area.  Also, I’ve included affiliate links to some of the products we used.  We purchased everything we used ourselves so if you click and purchase through an affiliate link, we’ll get a (very) small kickback.)

The wood doors of the entertainment center were unattached when we bought it from Goodwill and had a good amount of tape residue on them.  Also, all of the hinges were very rusted and needed to be removed and tossed.

To remove the tape residue, I sanded down the gunky areas with a medium-grit piece of sandpaper (soap and water didn’t cut it).  Then, to roughen up the doors a tad to ensure maximum paint adhesion, I sanded them down quick with a fine-grit sanding block. 
    photo 1 (10)

After all was sanded, I vacuumed up all the sawdust and used a damp cloth to wipe everything down.  The last thing I did to prep the doors was fill in all the hinge and hardware holes.  I used the same technique I used with filling in the hardware holes on this desk awhile back – over-fill holes with wood filler, let dry, sand, wipe, over-fill holes with spackle to make them smooth, let dry, sand, wipe.
photo 2 (12)

Post-wood filler:
photo 3 (6)

I also took the fine-grit sanding block to the rest of the cabinet to prep for paint.  (I had some issues with primer and paint sticking even after sanding.  They must’ve used some sort of spray adhesive during assembly at the factory because there were areas along seams that resisted paint and crackled when painted.  I’m assuming it was glue overspray.  I didn’t have time to backtrack so I just painted a few coats over those areas and eventually it covered even though it’s still rough in some areas.  Next time I paint anything laminate like this, I’ll probably wipe the entire thing down with some Goo Gone or something like that.)

After everything was sanded, it was prime time.  The oven door and fridge doors were going to be spray painted silver so I primed them with some gray primer we had left over from way back when.  The inside of the oven also got primed gray.  Everything else would be light or white so it got primed white.

Let’s break it down now (imagine the musical notes emoji):

The Fridge

Instead of the built-in fridge we had first planned, we went with a standalone.  To build it, Anthony sawed off the entire top 2/3 of the entertainment center and took it apart, piece by piece.  In the end there were around 10 different pieces of wood trim, the sides, the top, hardware, etc…  The sides of the fridge are the original sides to the top of the cabinet and the top and bottom are the original top of the cabinet cut in half.  Get it?  To connect everything, he used the existing L-brackets and pocket screws.  (I didn’t take any pictures of this part!  So sorry!  We were so involved with this thing that snapping a still or two was the last thing on my mind!)  The existing backing wasn’t large enough to cover the whole space of the new fridge because the girls had knocked out a large perforated area so we cut and taped together a couple of pieces to fit.  You can see the seam above the top shelf.

(The doors look a little splotchy in this pic because they are.  Explanation to come…)

To give off the feeling of “cold”, I painted the inside a cool blue (Sprinkle by Valspar).  The shelves are the existing shelves that came with the entertainment center, primed and painted to match.  The outside is white and the doors were spray painted with Design Master’s super silver.  I was so excited to try this DM spray paint because I had read great things about it and how it has the best reflective quality and as much as I loved the color, I’m disappointed in the quality.  I only used 3/4 of a can to spray paint all of the doors, front and back, plus the stove burners but there seems to be a lingering residue.  It was all over Anthony’s hands the day after they were painted, as he was attaching them to the kitchen.  We chalked it up to the fact that they had only been drying a day but days later there will still be a silver residue on our hands if we rub the doors.  I wiped them down to see if it’d help and not only did it not help but it made the doors a little blotchy.  Such a bummer for a comparatively expensive spray paint.  Anyone else use DM spray paint and run into this issue?

Back to fridge construction though, the box Anthony built was a little too large length-wise for the doors (intentional so that he didn’t have to cut off the ends where he could reuse the pocket screws, so he added a piece of trim from the original structure to the bottom to cover the gap left there when the doors were closed. 

Attaching the doors took us a couple of hours and earned us lots of patience points.  We purchased four new hinges (two for each door) and it was matter of me holding the doors up to the cabinet, Anthony measuring, re-measuring, measuring again, drilling, screwing, having two screw heads break so, redoing, blah, blah, blah.  I’m not including the links to the hinges we used because of the crappy screws they came with but these are similar and hopefully better.

On the left side of the fridge there are four holes along the top where trim was originally attached so I screwed some Ikea knobs through the holes so the girls could hang their aprons.  :)

The long bar hardware on the doors was purchased on eBay.  I got all three bars for $15; a fraction of what I would’ve paid at Lowe’s.  They’re nice and heavy and the quality is great!  I’d highly recommend this eBay store if you’re in the market for some!

The Stove

The stove is on top of the left compartment on the bottom half of the entertainment center (mother’s sister’s friend’s wha?).  To serve as a countertop, we bought a piece of 1/2 thick plywood from Lowe’s, sanded it down so it was nice and smooth (no slivers to be had here!), gave it a couple of coats of clear Polycrylic, and attached it from underneath with some screws.  Originally, my plan was to paint it white and give it a faux marble look with some gray streaks (like Jesse’s countertops) but I kinda liked the butcher block look in the end and so for now, natural it stays.

For the burners, we used two sizes of round wood plaques I bought at JoAnn Fabrics and some square wood rods that Anthony cut into pieces (also found at JoAnn’s).  The knobs are made out of small wood rounds and pieces of the square wood rods cut down to size and cut with a point at one end (he cut an extra knob dial just in case I wasn’t happy with the points on one…good hubby knows his wifey.)
photo 3 (7)

I spray painted the burners silver, painted the small rods black, and attached the two with Liquid Nails.
photo 4 (8)
The striped black background of the stove area I drew on with a ruler and hand-painted black.  It wasn’t necessary but without it, it looked a little funny with just some random burners glued to a countertop.  The striped area helps to define the stove.  :)
On day two of the kitchen’s existence, Basher Smasher (Sebastian) managed to remove half of the little black rods we worked so hard to make and the stove area looked like this:
photo 5 (5) 

So in a bag they went, labeled “for more mature days”, and I went back in and painted on the burner lines.  The knobs I have yet to reattach but I’m trying to figure out how to Seb-proof still.  They actually spin, which is super cool.  We used Young House Love’s technique to make that happen.


I still want to add a HI and LOW around the knobs but for now, here’s where we’re at: IMG_5688
(The oven door and countertop look a tad warped in the above picture thanks to the camera lens.  They’re straight in real life…promise.)

The Oven

The oven was our biggest challenge.  Painting it was simple.  It was when we went to attach it to the cabinet that we had some issues.  I primed the entire inside with gray primer and painted it with the gray paint I had leftover from stenciling our entry rug (Cathedral Stone by Valspar).  The door was primed gray and painted with the DM silver.  We grabbed an 8 x 10 piece of plexiglass from Lowes for the window that Anthony cut out of the door and attached it with some Liquid Nails (and then C punched it out during a temper tantrum three days later and we’re in the process of a re-install that’s tantrum-proof).  The wire rack is the one that belongs to our actual microwave (we never use it) and that happens to fit perfectly width-wise even if it is a little short depth-wise.  Anthony cut and attached two pieces of 1 x 2 to fit along the sides of the oven to support it.


Here’s where things got dicey.  We wanted the oven to do as ovens do and open from the top.  But, because of the trim on the very bottom of the entertainment center, it wouldn’t open more than a couple of inches before it hit the trim below (read:  scratch the paint I worked so hard at brushing on).  We realized this prob circa midnight the night before Christmas.  So, Anthony grabbed a leftover piece of trim, cut it down to fit width-wise into the bottom front of the oven and then sliced it in half length-wise so that we could attach the oven door to it and still have the door fit the space; not hit the countertop above.  The hinges we used for the oven door are strap hinges and more heavy-duty than those we used on the fridge.

It took a lot of last-minute painting and install but we got it in.  To hold it closed, Anthony installed a magnetic catch at the top center of the oven.  We also had to install some friction lid supports on each side of the door to keep it from opening all the way so that the kids couldn’t climb on it once open (which they tried) and to keep it from hitting the trim below.
We didn’t have a choice between brass or silver with the lid supports at Lowe’s but personally, I have a thing for gold and gray and so I’m totally fine with it.  :)

The Sink Area

The sink is actually a stainless steel mixing bowl we had laying around.  Anthony cut out a circle, lined the lip of the bowl with some silicone caulk, and dropped it in.

 photo 5

The faucet is our old, leaky faucet that we actually threw out, realized we could use it on the play kitchen hours later, and dumpster dove for.  Don’t worry, we gave it a thorough cleaning and cut all of the copper wiring and excess tubing off the bottom.  Anthony attached it just as it was attached to our countertop, with the existing nut and bolt.


I sewed a curtain out of this Nate Berkus fabric to cover the space below the sink and hung it with some curtain rings on a small tension rod.


And I think that just about does it!  Whew!  Right?  Can we talk about a labor of love?  This one takes the cake!

photo 2 (11)


>>> Budget Breakdown <<<

Entertainment center:  $6 (Goodwill)
Spray paint:  $3.75 (MIchael’s - $7.50 + a 50% off coupon)
Paint and primer:  $0 (used leftovers)
Bar hardware:  $15 (eBay)
Hinges and magnet:  $9  (Lowe’s)
Friction lid supports:  $6 (Lowe’s) 
Burners and knobs:  $10 (JoAnn’s – used a 25% off total purchase coupon)
Plexiglass:  $3 (Lowe’s)
Wire rack:  $0 (belongs to our microwave)
Piece of 1 x 2 for wire rack supports:  $3
Plywood countertop cut-to-size:  $12 (Lowe’s – they cut it for free)
Faucet:  $0 (our old one)
Sink bowl:  $0 (already had)
Fabric for curtain:  $9 (JoAnn’s – was on sale for 40% off plus used a 25% off total purchase coupon)
Baskets:  $0 (JoAnn’s – stolen from Sebastian’s room)
Knobs on fridge:  $0 (Ikea – bought years ago)
GRAND TOTAL:  $76.75 ($27 over our inital $50 budget but even so, not bad!)

We moved the kitchen to the girls’ room yesterday and I’ve got plans to still get in the faux penny tile backsplash I wanted along with a window and a light above the sink.  Oh, and did I mention that we moved the girls into our previous guest room a couple of months ago? 

Their room is pretty plain right now but I have plans yo.  They might take awhile to come to fruition but I can’t wait to see it evolve.

As you might’ve guessed, we moved Seb into their old room and he’s still living with half of their decor on his walls and their pretty curtains over his closet.  Progress is slow ‘round here folks.

Slow but with great results…usually.  ;) 


Just Say ‘Yes’ to Rugs

I have a “figure it out” personality, also known as an “if you can’t afford it/it’s too expensive, make it yourself” personality.  You might’ve guessed that if you’ve been reading my blog for longer than a month.  That’s how this project came along…and pretty much every other project over here too.  I wanted a bigger rug with a cool geometric pattern in front of the door in our entry way but the budget wouldn’t give me much to work with.  So I made one and it only cost me $7.  Yep.  Only seven bucks.  Here’s the story.


*rug (mine measures 3 x 4)
*paint (I used latex paint)
*foam pouncer/stenciling sponge or stipple brush (I used one of these <- and that there is an affiliate link fyi)
*plate for paint

photo 2 (11)

First, I made my own stencil.  I’ll detail how I did that in another post lest I stretch this one to novel status.  I started my stenciling in the center of the rug and worked my way out so that the entire design would be centered over the expanse of the rug.  To find the center, I laid two tape measures across the rug; one diagonally from one corner to the opposite and the other diagonally between the other two corners.  Where they intersected was the middle (I’m smarter than a first grader!).  I had already marked a center point on my stencil so I just laid the center of the stencil right over the center of the rug.  To make sure that my stencil was straight, I measured the distance of each end of the square pattern on the stencil to the end of the rug and when they were equi-distant, I taped down the stencil.

Next up was painting.  Before I started, I watered down the paint so that it was a tad more runny and would soak down into the rug a little better.  I didn’t add much water though, maybe one part water to eight parts paint.  Then I poured some paint on a plate and went along dabbing my sponge into some paint and then sponging along the stencil.
photo 2 (12)
As I went along I made sure to hold down the stencil with my free hand as I sponged with the other for a little added support.  The stencil I made had to be turned around/flipped over to produce a full circle/square design like so:
photo 4 (5)
All I had to do was line up the edges of the just-painted design with the stencil and continue sponging away.  Then I continued flipping the stencil until I had stenciled the entire rug.

When all the stenciling was finished, I wanted to fill in all the small lines throughout the pattern created from the stencil (their purpose was to hold the stencil together but more on that in the actual stencil-making tutorial).  It’s not necessary to fill these in but I was going for more of a cohesive look so I did.  With a flat paintbrush, I just went around and painted over the lines and filled in some imperfect spots like some of the areas where the stencils met.  So, it went from this:photo 5 (3)

to this:
photo 1 (10)
It might seem a little tedious but it only took me about 15 minutes and, if you’re like me and need a little mindless work to suck you out of the daily humdrum, it’s therapeutical.  :)

The only lines I didn’t go over and fill in were the ones at the intersection of all the circles in the pattern.  Over those I placed a simple square stencil and painted right over them. photo 4 (6)

Here’s what the whole rug looks like finished:afterlight (1)

Sooo, let me deviate a little and tell you it’s cool and I love it but it’s not exactly what I was going for.  The lines connecting the squares were actually supposed to be straight.  The aqua lines in the pic below show what I mean.rugcorrected

In order for them to be straight, I should’ve laid my stencil out the same way each time like this:shouldve

But instead I laid it out like this… did
…not realizing until I was halfway done that I was going to have a variation from what I initially wanted.  Does that make sense?  Luckily, it doesn’t look bad because there was no turning back.  I’m only writing this out in case you try this very stencil.  Lay your stencil out the same way each time (width-wise every time or length-wise every time) unless you’d prefer the accidental variation which is perfectly fine too.  :)

The last thing I did to the rug was add a non-slip drawer liner to the back.  The girls run past the entry way area a thousand times a day and the plastic backing of this rug made it slide all over the place.  Running toddlers and a slip ‘n slide rug make for surefire accidents.  So, I simply cut a couple of rolls of liner up so that I c0uld fit three strips along the back of the rug and attached them with some liquid nails like so:
photo 5 (4)

I let the glue dry for 24 hours before setting the rug down and away we/they went.  It ain’t going nowhere and trips to the ER for brick floor collisions we will hopefully never have…or at least they won’t be caused by a sliding rug.

[Sources and/or tutorials for –> the globe chandelier, the hook system, the roman shade, and the mirror.]

Cost breakdown:
Rug:  $5 (Old Time Pottery on sale from $7)
Paint:  free (Lowe’s with a free paint sample coupon from Real Simple mag – color is
Cathedral Stone by Valspar)
Foam Pouncer:  already had (Martha Stewart from Michaels – came in a pack of seven and purchased last year with a coupon for this project)
Rubber drawer liner for backing:  $2 (Dollar Store)
Tape:  already had
Total:  $7

[BTdubs…if making your own stencil doesn’t sound fun, you can find some fairly cheap wall stencils at Hobby Lobby that’ll run you back about $10 with a coupon or there’s always Royal Design Studio where you can find tons of amazing stencils with a little higher price tag.  Also, Target has some flatwoven kitchen rugs that just happen to be blank on the opposite side and perfect for stenciling/painting (not listed online).  My original plan was to sew a few of them together for an entry rug but then I scored the one I used at OTP.]

Here’s the view from the hallway:
[Frame collage tutorial here.]

And a good ‘ole before and after/progress:

Don’t forget, like I mentioned above, I’ve got a whole tutorial coming on how to make your very own stencil (mine cost me about $1 to make!!!) and I’ll include a free download if you want to attempt this one.  :D 

Have a great week!