Saturday, September 28, 2013

Repurposed Old Window

Hello and happy Saturday everyone! My next project I want to share with you is super quick and simple. It only took me about 15 minutes or so and that included cleaning!

Last year my twin sister was out garage sale shopping when she came across a couple who had redone all of the windows in their house and were selling all the old windows. A whole house worth of windows for super cheap! She called me up and asked me if I wanted them and I said yes of course! Ever since, I have been plotting on how to use them around my house. Eventually I want to make a headboard but the first thing I thought of was to make a fireplace screen with one. That is where this project comes in! (And read to the end for an extra tip!)

Ok, so enough of the back story, lets get started! All you need is

1. An old window
2. Two L brackets
3. Screws and a screwdriver
4. Spray Glue
5. Lace

Here is what I started with. An old dirty window with lots of potential. The first thing I did was CLEAN it! It was very very dirty. Once that was done I could begin my project.

The next step is to screw the L brackets to the back of the window. (I used the hammer to get the tip of the screw started)

 I was going to paint the brackets white but it turns out my tile is on the grey side so it actually blends in better being grey. You can also just pick up white ones as well, I just already had these. Once that was done I thought it needed something a little extra. I sifted through my stuff and found some left over lace from another project. Perfect! I also already had spray glue which worked out great for sticking the lace to the window. I laid everything out, sprayed glue where the lace sat and pressed it on! Easy right?

 Annnnnnnd your done! That is all there is to it. I love the end result!

It really dresses up my fireplace. You can also do without the brackets and put this on your mantel. However, seeing as I don't have a mantel, this worked out perfectly!

Now for the extra tip! Do you notice the two apothecary jars next to the window? Whats in them you ask? Dog treats! It's a stylish way to have them out and easily accessible. You can make almost anything prettier by taking them out of the store bags and putting them into a pretty jar!

I hope you enjoyed! Have a wonderful weekend and thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Easy No Sew Burlap Pumpkins

As promised I am sharing this easy tutorial on how to make these adorable fall pumpkins! It is one of those years where I am on a strict budget and have been really trying to find cheap and easy things to make for my fall decor. Everything I used in making these I already had at home! All you need is:

1. Burlap (You will need a large sheet, not the burlap banners)
2. Grocery bags (lots of them)
3. Scissors
4. Sticks
5. Paint and brush (optional)

Here is what I started with

I suggest using brown bags since it is almost the same color as your burlap. White will show through a lot more. If you don't have a lot of brown just stuff all the bags into one brown bag and that should do the trick. This was great because who doesn't have a ton of bags at home!? You can also use stuffing from the craft store if you like but the bags worked just fine.

For the sticks you can use whatever you like. I had these decoration sticks from awhile back so I just snapped a few into pieces. You can easily go outside and pick a few up.

Once you gather your supplies the first step is gathering your bags together. I found it much easier to handle if you stuff one bag full of the others. I also used the handles to wrap around the sticks to help hold them in place. Use as many bags as you want depending on how big you want the pumpkins. This is what it looked like before the burlap is applied.

The next step it to wrap the burlap around the bags and sticks. Make sure to cut off any extra burlap (I cut mine into a circle to make it easier). My circle was to big at first so I trimmed it down a couple of times before securing the burlap.

See how much extra burlap there was? Keep trimming until you don't have so much. 

Once you have gathered the burlap to the top (make sure the sticks are sticking out the top) you can secure it with a string from the burlap. I just pulled out strings from the extra pieces of burlap I had! It blends right in and you don't have to buy anything extra.

The next step is a little tricky and took some time. Using the same string I tied one end to the top and wrapped the string underneath and attached it around to the other side. You can see one of them here. (If your string isn't long enough, just knot two together). You can do this several times to get that pumpkin shape. You don't have to do this step but I liked this shape better.

Here is the final result!

I had plenty of burlap and bags so I made three different sizes. I decided to take the middle size one step further. I already had orange and white paint so I decided to try adding spots! I just took a little round brush and starting dotting away. You can try stripes or anything else to make them your own.

Burlap is rough so the paint isn't going to go on perfectly. I like the rustic look so it doesn't bother me but you may want to skip painting if you don't like that look. I put on the white first then went back through with the orange.

 Here they are! I'm so happy with how they turned out!

I just love how simple and easy this was! I will be holding onto these cute fall pumpkins for years to come! Heres how they look on my shelves

These will be a great addition to your mantle, fireplace hearth, dining room table, or anywhere else you put them. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and that you try this yourself! I would love to see pictures of your own and please comment if you have any questions! Thanks for stopping by!


Monday, September 23, 2013

Easy Bookshelf Styling

I recently posted a couple of pictures of my fall decor on my bookshelves and I got a few comments about my styling. I have been doing this for years now and I thought I would share a couple of my tricks since I realized that people don't seem to be aware of them.

For awhile I never displayed my books anywhere because I hated the fact that all my books are different colors. My house is all neutrals and the last thing I wanted was a shelf full of every color under the sun messing up my neutral feel. After thinking about what to do I realized there was a simple solution! Book pages are all white or off white. All I had to do was turn the books around. Heres what the result looks like.

I just love the uniformity it brings to my book shelf. 

Now if your one of those people who likes to be able to read what books you have at all times theres another trick I used when styling my sisters shelves. You WILL get all the colors but this will make it seem put together. What I did was take down all the books and stack them by color. I put all the blues together, all the reds, all the whites, etc. After that I put them up on the shelves in their color groups. Here you can decide what order you would like. You can put them in the same order as the rainbow, or light to dark. Make it your own! Heres how my sisters looked during the process (excuse the stack of dvds in the middle). I set hers up to be more subtle. 

 I hope this helps give you some ideas to apply to your own shelves at home. I would love to hear your own ideas and tips! Have fun! 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Tree Trunk Table Take 1

I shared my upcoming project a few days ago and its taking a bit longer then I expected with everything going on in my life at the moment. I thought I would go ahead and share my progress so far! I am loving how this project is turning out so far.

Let me refresh your memory on what I started with.

Don't worry if the bark has any markings. That part will come off during the process. 

You will need the following:
1. A crowbar or flat head screwdriver. 
2. Hammer
3. Sand paper (You'll want a course grit and a finer grit)
4. Table legs (You can buy legs at ikea for pretty cheap)
            -I am still deciding on my legs
5. Stain (if you want the wood a darker color)
6. Shellac or polyurethane to seal the wood once your done. 
7. Paint brush('s)

I researched how to do this online and I found several people saying you need to dry out your stump for a few months. This might make it easier but you don't have to. I started within a week of the tree being cut down. 

The first step is to remove the bark around the edges. It took a little work to get the first piece off, just keep at it. 

 Just put the edge of the crowbar (or whatever you are using) where the bark meets the middle of the log. Don't be afraid to really hammer it! It's going to take some muscle. My poor puppy did not appreciate the loud noises!

This is her cowering in the corner of the couch! 
To make it less noisy I simply wrapped the end of my crowbar with a washcloth and hammered on the wash cloth. It helped a lot. Just be careful you don't slip or get your finger.

Here is a picture of the first section I got off. Progress! That first section coming off was so exciting.

Here is a good couple of shot of where to put the edge of your tool on the bark. You'll be able to tell where the bark ends. Be careful not to scratch the wood to much. I didn't really mind since I was going to sand it a little anyways.

Continue to work around the trunk until all the bark is off. Heres what your left with! How cool is that!? I love the coloring so far.

Once you have finished removing the bark, the next step is sand, sand, and more sanding! Seriously, it's taking forever! To be fair, I do NOT have an electrical sander so I am doing it all by hand.

This is where my project has stopped! I didn't get a rough enough sander for the top. (You can see when they cut it, it caused a lot of marks). I want to smooth out the top so I can see the rings of the tree. Needless to say I will be making a run to the home improvement store soon to pick up the other supplies I need. 

Keep an eye on my blog for the rest of this tutorial! If anyone has tips or questions, feel free to share or ask! 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Tree Trunk Table Preview

I promise I am not ignoring you out there in blog land! I have been super busy getting ready for an interview coming up and haven't done to much in the past week. I did want to give you a little sneak peek at my next project coming soon.....

Check back to learn how to turn a wood stump into a lovely side table! I can't wait to finish it up and share the end results!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Fall Bouquet

It's that time of year, the weather starts to cool down, the leaves start to change and the holidays start rolling in. Its the start of my favorite time of the year. I love, love, LOVE to decorate my house for the seasons and this year I am doing it on a budget. I am going to walk you through how I made this wonderful fall buoquet with stuff I already had around my house.

My adorable dog Sophie trying to distract me from the project

The first thing I did was go online and search for some leaf outlines that I liked and would be easy to cut. I printed off a few different ones to use as my templates. Then comes a lot of tracing and cutting. I used some scrapbook paper I already had and an old book. If you don't have any of these things, you can go to a thrift store and buy a cheap $1 book and you can pick up some scrapbook paper at Michael's in whatever color or patterns you want.

Heres my pile of cut out leaves.
I stuck with the same color orange throughout since I liked the effect.

After I cut everything out I had to figure out what to use to make the bouquet. The easiest and cheapest solution was to go outside and collect sticks! You can also buy long uniform sticks at the craft store but like I said, I am trying to make everything as cheap as I can. Twigs worked just fine for me. Just make sure they are straight and not to flimsy.

Now to get the leaves on the sticks! The easiest solution for me was to use scotch tape. Yep, good old fashion tape. You can probably use hot glue if you want a cleaner look but it didn't bother me since you can't see it anyways.

I had a hard time making it look good with each leaf on a separate stick so  I ended up taping sticks together for a better look. It was easier to arrange this way.

As a vase filler you can use pretty much whatever you have around. I used small clear glass that I had already (pictured above). After you arrange the leaves in the vase you can always add leaves after to fill any blank spaces.

After everything was arranged I decided to spruce up my vase with a little bit of lace I had lying around the house to make everything pop.

I just love the end result! It will make a great centerpiece for my fall table this year. Now go try out your own and let me know how yours turned out!