Category Archives: DIY

One Room Challenge, Week Four

ORC

Welcome to week 4 of the One Room Challenge!  Only TWO WEEKS left to go.  This post is later this morning because the vanity came last night and my very patient husband was up late assembling it.  Here she is this morning with a little mocked-up mirror that I had in the closet (sorry for the shadows):

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I am really happy with the quality (for $130), the color, the size and the scale.  I am so happy with the big drawer for storage too.  I can’t wait to style her up!

Here is the sad news — the awesome bench from Home Goods is too wide for the vanity.  But, I moved it on the wall next to my end table last night and I didn’t hate it there.  I am going to play around with it because I really don’t want to return her!

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So, this week, was full of painting.  The ceiling got two coats of paint and is DONE!  Two of the four walls have two coats and tonight we are going to finish the other two walls.  Here are some shots that give you an idea of the true color of the walls:

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I am totally obsessed with this color (Benjamin Moore Fanfare).  I am thinking about using the remainder of the paint for our laundry room.

The little sheepskin rug for the other side of the bed came in yesterday, so I am waiting on the seagrass rug which apparently has shipped, but I have no tracking information (don’t you hate that?).  I have a plan for my DIY art and want to surprise you all next week.  This week, I am going to focus on the windows and pick up the white panels and the matchstick shades. Also, I need to find a suitable stool now for the vanity.  All with two weeks and $188.82 to stay on budget — eeeeeek!  🙂

Can I do it??  Stay tuned!

P.S. Check out my previous posts on the One Room Challenge: Week One, Inspiration Photos, Week Two, Week Three, DIY Art.

P.P.S. Also check out the other participants’ progress this week in the One Room Challenge here!

 

 

 

 

 

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Affordable and Easy DIY Art

Because I set a pretty strict budget for the One Room Challenge, I am going to try and DIY some art for the walls as placeholders until I can afford find the perfect “forever” art for the walls.  I definitely need an impactful, oversized statement piece for over the bed.

My super creative and thrifty friend Alyson, who is also participating in the One Room Challenge, posted last week about framed botanical wrapping paper (so genius).  And I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it.

It got me remembering some beautiful blog posts about framed marbled paper….

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Kristen F. Davis Designs via Little Green Notebook

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Danielle Oakey Interiors

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Centsational Girl

There are some tutorials on how to make marbled paper, but there are some really affordable and gorgeous “pre-made” options out there:

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Paper Mojo $6.15 for 24×36

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Paper Source $6.50 for 20×29

I think these would be beautiful put into simple oversized frames, with or without a mat.

Here are some other easy and affordable ideas I am considering attempting:

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via Flickr

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Style Theories

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the amazing Jamie Meares of i suwannee

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Thrifty Decor Chick

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With Intention

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Kendall Hailey

What do you think?  What is your favorite?  Can I pull this off??

In Case You Missed It….

With the hustle, bustle and rush-tle of Christmas upon us, you may have missed some of these great posts from my favorite blogstresses.  These are my picks from around the ‘net these days:

I loooooove what my friend Alyson over at Richmond Real Estate Mom did with her extra grocery bags.  I am totally stealing this idea — I love that it’s thrifty, green, and chic. 

Jackie at Sweetie Pie Style blogged about her 2011 Trend Forecasts, and she was spot-on.  I was going to do a post about my thoughts on the same topic, but decided that I may as well send you over there, because my post would have looked scarily similar.  I love her dot montage — dots are hot!

Speaking of 2011 trends, did you see that Pantone’s color of 2011 is Honeysuckle?  The selection seems kinda random and I am not sure that I am digging it (my girl Jeannine at Small & Chic in C-ville agrees).  Reminds me of: 1. a bad bridesmaid dress, 2. an overdone little girl’s room, 3. Pepto-Bismol, and 4. the Golden Girls.

Ok, maybe this will make me retract my previous opinion on Honeysuckle (check out the walls and trim below).  Anyway, I die for Tobi Fairley’s White Christmas Tree in her daughter’s playroom, and its all of its surroundings.  Serious design perfection.  

I loved Elements of Style’s post on winter boots, and her reference to Ugg wedges led me to these beauties.  Santa, I just added these to my list, okthanks.

For all the moms out there, this post over at the new Good Tots blog provided me with some inspiration yesterday afternoon.  We made a great batch of Christmas-y chocolate covered pretzel rods.  My three year old had a BALL decorating them with crushed candy canes and sprinkles.  They were so festive that we put them in tins with cookies for our neighbors!

I saw this awesome yarn ball & ornament wreath by The Dear Diary Stories via My Favorite Things and think it’s a great DIY for Christmas.

Stay sane out there, peeps.  We went to see Santa yesterday and got an eyeful of the stressed-out masses, especially the Type A moms who were equipped with lip gloss, hairspray and extra shoe options FOR THEIR FIVE YEAR OLDS’ picture with Santa.  Oh, and then the inevitable fight about taking the picture again because it wasn’t perfect enough the first time.  Most wonderful time of the year, indeed.  🙂 

Flatscreen Fix

So, I admit it.  I have a television displayed prominently in my bedroom.  {collective GASP!}  I am not ashamed to say that I love retiring to the bedroom, getting under my fluffy duvet and watching some television before going to sleep.  Or having little girl come join us in bed for cartoons on the weekend.  For a while now, I have been admiring images of how to “style” a flatscreen television.

Many months ago, I fell in love with this image over at Sarah’s Fab Day (original source: Style at Home)….

And the oh-so-talented Emily A. Clark recently created a gallery wall behind her family room flatscreen….

So, since doing my “custom” DIY rollerblinds (and admiring their awesomeness!), I have been looking directly at this blank wall:

I wanted to create some visual interest on the cheap.  I didn’t really want to purchase any new frames or wall art.  So, I decided to go into the storage closet and pull out all of my old picture frames that I really didn’t love anymore (love the pictures, hate the frames!).

Because there was no uniformity among the frames, I thought to pull out the pictures and the backing and spray paint the frames black to create uniformity.

But, once I saw the frames laid out though, I liked the visual interest that the different colors and textures provided, so I decided not to spray paint the frames.  The uniformity would be created by the wall color behind each frame.  I centered the dresser on the wall, got some little nails and started hanging.  And voila!

I really like the way it turned out, and I love that it was FREE and ZERO COMMITMENT!  I can easily take down the frames and do something else if I get tired of it.

What do you think?  Do you have the same problem?  Any other creative fixes out there?

P.S. Thank you for being patient with my CRAPTASTIC camera and iPhone pictures.  Hopefully Santa will get the hint and bring me a real camera at the end of December!

The Big Reveal: DIY “Custom” Rollerblinds

Tah Dah!  Our “custom” rollerblinds are finally finished.  Whew!  It took me a little longer than I had anticipated.  Pictured above and below is the first dormer:

Here is the other dormer:

I LOVE IT!  I am so glad that we undertook this project.  So, I had been thinking about this for a while, and saw a similar project posted on Emily A. Clark’s blog, and I decided to take the plunge.

We inherited hideous metal mini-blinds in our master bedroom and were looking for a (cheap) more aesthetically pleasing and room-darkening option.  We went to Lowes and bought two Levolor black-out roller shades (~$10 each).  The kind peeps at Lowes cut the shades to our measurements right there.

Then I made a trip over to Williams & Sherrill and purchased 4.75 yards of fabric (~$80).  I liked the ikat-y feel of this green damask.  Then I ironed the fabric and my sweet and patient husband, Matt, glued the fabric onto the roller blinds.  He only glued enough fabric to cover the blind when it was all the way down.

Naturally, I wanted to cover the hardware at the top of the rollerblind.  I planned on re-creating Jenny’s pelmet box idea made of foam core board (see here for one that I made in our hallway).  However, I needed a width of 32 5/8 and I couldn’t find any foam core board with a width greater than 30 inches.

So, we were off to Lowes again and bought a piece of birch wood (~$8 and the least heavy wood board we could find).  Matt measured and cut the “cornices,” and epoxied on L brackets.

Then we wrapped each cornice in batting (~$5 from Michaels) and staple gunned it into place.

Then we wrapped the cornices in fabric (which was a little challenging because we had to line up the pattern on the rollerblind with the pattern on the cornice), staple gunned the fabric into place and cut around the L brackets.

Then Matt screwed the cornices into place, and voila!

I priced out similar rollerblinds at Smith & Noble and even with a lower quality fabric, it was over $850 plus shipping for 2 similar rollerblinds!  This whole project cost me about $125 and I got to pick my own fabric.  The bulk of that expense was the cost of the fabric, so you could do it much cheaper if you chose a less expensive fabric.

Another thing to note, I chose a thicker gauge fabric and the rollerblind only retracts up by about 2/3 (which is ok with me), but I bet you could get around this if you used a thinner gauge fabric.

What do you think?  Would you try it?

Progress….

The “custom” roller blind project is underway.  Next step = building a pelmet box around the hardware and roll at the top.  I can’t wait to post pics of the “after”!!! 

{Thanks for dealing with these iPhone pictures, but it will make the after shots look even better!!  🙂 }

Reader Question: Mirrored Tray Makeover

A sweet Spark! reader, Elizabeth, asked about the mirror hanging in my hallway:

and I am so glad that she did, because I forgot to share its story.

A few years back, I found the mirrored vanity tray (like the one below) at a local antique store for $5.  I see them all over the place, and they are usually under $10.

The one I found was really badly tarnished and it didn’t clean up very well.  The patina wasn’t gorgeous, but I hung it in a small space in my bedroom.

By the time the hallway makeover came along, I was tired of the little tarnished mirror and decided to paint it black and hang it on the gray walls to accent the ornate “filigree” pattern and give it a fresh look.

So, I taped along the edges of the mirror, covered the mirror with two layers of paper bag (newspaper will work too), and spray painted two coats of Krylon black on the front (let it dry) and then turned it over and sprayed two more coats of paint on the back (just the silver part, not the backing!).  It was too easy!

Also, mirrors are so easy to paint because if you make a mistake or don’t get the tape exactly right, and paint ends up on the mirror, you can just take paint thinner and a rag and clean it up.  No harm, no foul!  Just be sure to wear some latex gloves when dealing with paint thinner!

When I was browsing for images, I came across this similar mirror vanity tray makeover from Miss Mustard Seed (a really cool blog):

She found her vanity tray at a thrift store for $1.50.  I love the cream version above and think that a few of those pretties would make a lovely series hanging over a headboard or settee.

So, go check out your local antique store, flea market or thrift shop for a gorgeously inexpensive and easy DIY mirror makeover!  Thanks for the question, Elizabeth!

Have a question for me?  Drop me a line: needsparkblog@gmail.com.

P.S.  Don’t forget to enter the Traveling Savannah Giveaway!