Friday, September 20, 2013

S'more Fall Decorating Fun ~ Fall Chalkboard Menu


fall chalkboard with Fall menu

Part menu, part shopping list, this is my cooking inspiration board for Fall. Even though it is still in the 90's in San Antonio, I am craving all of the comfort foods. Time to break out the fall spices and cinnamon sticks!!!

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Thursday, September 19, 2013

Fall Football Inspired School Bulletin Board

Fall football theme school bulletin board idea
This is a football inspired bulletin board that I did a couple of years ago. I'm trying to come up with a new idea for this year. I need to put up a new one before our Fall PTA meeting. Any ideas?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Easy Fall Wreath

I found this painted grapevine wreath at Hobby Lobby 40% off. I loved the chippy light blue paint. I know it's not a traditional fall color but I thought that if I added some grapevine pumpkins that would do the trick.

This is what it looked like before.

I hot glued the pumpkins to the wreath. They are also from Hobby Lobby and had picks on the back of them. They were also 40% off. That's the good news about doing things at the last minute, you usually can get good deals.

Then I wrapped the wreath with burlap chevron ribbon hot gluing the ends to the back of the wreath.

Then I wrapped a cheap plastic wreath door hanger with the same fabric using hot glue.

The wreath was too thick to hang directly on the door hanger so I took some ribbon that I had saved from an Anthropologie bag and tied that around the wreath to hang on the hanger. It would also be cute with natural raffia, but I didn't have any. I added some grapevine around the door to finish the look. I have a few more projects for the porch so I'll be sharing those soon. (I hope!)

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Sunday, September 15, 2013

Anthro Inspired Owls



While I was out shopping Friday, I found these cute little owls that reminded me of Anthropologie.
This is what they looked like when I bought them. I was going down the Fall aisle at Hobby Lobby because I noticed that all of the Fall items were 40% off. I wasn't planning on buying anything until I saw these adorable owls. I actually liked the gold glass but they wouldn't really work in my dining room where I wanted to put them. Then I remembered that I had bought Krylon's looking glass spray paint for another uncompleted project.

With this paint you are supposed to spray the inside of the object, which is easier said than done. It actually was not making enough of a difference so I dusted the outside of them too and let some of the gold come through.

So, they are the first edition to the fall decor. Not bad at $8 each. I hope I can finish the rest before I have to start adding in the Halloween decorations for Gage's upcoming party.

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Friday, September 13, 2013

How I Recovered My Ottoman



Did you notice in the title I wrote, "How I recovered my ottoman" as opposed to, "How TO recover an ottoman"? It was intentional as there is a big difference here. Let me tell you the story of the ottoman...


This is what the ottoman looked like before. I purchased it at a model home sale for a great price. I loved the tufted seat and the nail head trim but I wasn't really crazy about the paisley chenille fabric. It just wasn't me but it was so inexpensive that I couldn't pass it up and bought it anyway. (hoarding tendencies shown here, gulp)This is exactly what I tell people NOT to do.

Trying to overcome the fabric situation, I covered up the poor little ottoman with a throw for years. Do you have any upholstered items that you cover up because of ugly or damaged fabric? Since I have owned it, I have been terrified to take it apart and change out the fabric for fear of ruining it. I don't know the proper way to upholster something and I knew that to professionally recover it would be as expensive as buying a new one. I'm a pretty frugal person when it comes to buying new things especially if I already own something similar in the first place. Also, I like the idea of giving something a second life. So, long story short, I threw caution to the wind and starting destructing the chair to see how it was put together.

I'm going to share with you what I found out so if you're thinking about doing something like this, you'll be a little more prepared and know what to expect.

As I contemplated my new endeavor, I was really nervous about reconstructing the tufting. As it turned out, that was the least of my problems. I started the project by unscrewing the legs underneath the ottoman and then removed the "grey stuff" to see how the buttons under the cushion were sewn in. That revealed another layer of "stretchy stuff" which I had to get through first. Here was my first mistake...


Instead of patiently removing the staples on one side of "the stretchy stuff", I cut through it. Don't do this!!! It turns out that stretchy stuff holds up the entire seat cushion. After recovering everything, I sat on the ottoman and found this out the hard way. Instead of sitting ON it, I sat IN it. UGH!!! The best way to get under this layer would be to remove the staples on one side and move over the stretchy stuff so you can work underneath it.

Once the stretchy stuff was removed, however, I was pleasantly surprised to see round plastic disks that you use to attach the buttons. I thought that I was going to have to sew but you can just pull the metal prongs that are on the back of the buttons through the disk to tighten and secure.


This is what the buttons look like with the prongs once removed. I hot glued the new fabric over the top so I could reuse them.


I also wanted to reuse the nail heads. When removing them, you have to be really careful because they want to break off between the nail and the round part making them unusable. I ended up saving less than half that were removed.


As for adding the fabric,I wanted to keep the original shape of the ottoman. If I draped the fabric over the top of the ottoman and then stapled it directly to the bottom (like you would do for a seat cushion), I would loose the "muffin top" shape that I think makes it so pretty so I had to come up with a way to divide the fabric into two pieces. I started by draping the top and stapling that part to the sides just under the muffin top. Then I wrapped a seperate piece of fabric just above the staples and secured it at the bottom and at the sides with strategically placed staples. (See below)


When wrapping the bottom half, I used the raw edge of the fabric because I liked the way it looked. I measured out equal distances for the staples because I was then going to cover them with the reused nail head trim. (You could also do cording here to cover your seams.)



Gage shown here helping with the tufting. We just measured, marked and stuck the metal prongs through to the other side. Once it is through, you just put the prong through the plastic disk and separate the prongs into two directions. It helps to have a friend help with this to provide resistance so you can pull the buttons really tight.


On the feet, I painted metallic gold and then used walnut stain over that to give an antiqued look.

Here it is completed. I did manage to fix the bottom of the chair by sewing the two pieces of "stretchy stuff" together and re stapling. It is now the ottoman that I always knew it could be. I have to say, problems and all, it was worth it. So, if you have an upholstery project waiting to be done, maybe now you can see what you're getting in to and just go ahead and take a leap of faith. You can do it!!!

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The Shabby Nest






Monday, September 9, 2013

The Closet Dilemma

My plan to redo my closet isn't turning out quite like I was expecting. I have all of my projects lined up and things selected and even a couple of plans completed. Here's the predicament....

This weekend while recovering an old ottoman, my husband comes in the bedroom and says, "Where's that going?" I proudly say, "in my closet." His reply, "Why are you wasting it in there?" With just a few words, he had burst my bubble. He's right. Why am I wasting it in there? I wasn't expecting it to look that good. It looks better than the one I have in my bedroom AND the one in the living room. This should be a good thing, right? However, I feel like I've just opened up a can of worms. I can't blame him completely because I already moved the trunk that I refinished (for the closet) into the master bedroom. Ugh! I see where this is going.



The trunks that I'm moving to the bedroom ~ sorry closet

While shopping the other day, I found this beautiful and well priced chandelier. I was really excited until it dawned on me that this fixture was prettier than the one in my kitchen. How can I buy a new light fixture for the closet when now I really need this for the kitchen? Uh-oh.

It's amazing to me that it took my husband about two seconds to confirm the thoughts that I evidently was already having. What do I do now? This closet might never get finished! HELP!!!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Closet Project ~ Trunks

The most important thing about a closet is organization and its entire reason for being is storage so my first priority in redoing mine is to come up with inexpensive chic containers that Anthropologie would be proud of. (since they are my inspiration) I really wanted to add some vintage touches to the closet so I went antique shopping and found one of my favorite things ...an old trunk. This one needed some love. It was an ugly shiny black but the price was right at $17. Trunks are great for storing seasonal clothing or items that you don't need every day.

anthropologie inspired vintage cottage trunk
This is a before shot. One of my mottoes is that there isn't anything that a little paint can't fix. I started off by taping off the brass.

There are some awkward rounded edges that you can tape completely over and then cut around with a matte knife....



Ready to paint...

After painting the red, I thought it needed a little something so I taped off some stripes to add interest. I chose this color combo to compliment the rug that will be going in the closet.

Here it is in its temporary home until I can get the closet painted. Since taking the picture, I cut off the front handle since it was just plastic and not real leather and I don't need it to function anyway. If you want to do a project like this, I think I have seen these trunks in places like Academy too that just need to be painted. If you see one and it's less than $17, please don't tell me. I don't want to know.LOL