Monday, April 26, 2010

A Charleston Preview

I hope this video comes out......Just wanted you guys to preview one of the many reasons we are uprooting.  I am having to remind myself of these very reasons on a daily basis lately.  Why is change so much harder when we get older?

Here is a little video of a typical day in Charleston, SC made by Olivia over at Everyday Musings.  If you want to be envious of someone's life just read her blog: beautiful student, amazing baker (works at cupcake shop where we got our wedding cupcakes), adorable boyfriend.......and great taste in music!  The world is her oyster!

My parents got us a Video Flip for our birthdays and I am so excited to document our journey.  Now, how does Olivia make everything look so dreamy?

Friday, April 23, 2010

Etsy Wall Art Finds

Etsy is becoming quite a treasure trove for all things original/vintage/cool.

I stumbled upon Berkeley Illustrations awhile back and fell in love.  You just need to be a kid at heart to hang these on your wall.

Raccoon print 8x10

Meerkat print 8x10

I think they'll go well with the Fantastic Mr. Fox stills I plan on printing.  If you haven't seen the movie yet, Go!  It is really great.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

DIY Stencil Project Continued

So, my big stencil project was to somehow reproduce this:

but with these lyrics:

I hear babies cry and I watch them grow,

They'll learn much more

Than we'll know

And I think to myself

What a wonderful world

As I mentioned, the initial trial run was a disaster.  I thought I could do a mock-up on paper and give that to the mother-to-be to unwrap.  The stencil kit I bought at Michael's was proving to be very flimsy and I did not have the correct stencil brush to use in this situation.  You'll see in the below image that the paint bleed through the stencil outline and was just one big mess.

Lesson learned: buy the good stuff.  It is worth the extra pennies to save what is left of your sanity.

We painted the background of the salvaged wood in Benjamin Moore Stonington Gray left over from a wall paint sample.  After some trial and error, we decided that the best option was to trace the letters in pencil and then hand paint the outline.    

This proved to be SO MUCH easier.  Not perfect, but I'm pretty happy with it:

I originally found a step-by-step guide online where they cut out the stencil on contact paper, placed out the wording, painted over everything, and then lifted off each letter so it was like a reverse stencil.  I can't find the link right now (anyone know of it?), but it seemed really time consuming.  I wish I had more patience.  If I did, I would have taken out the drop cloths before this project:

Ooops!  Luckily, this was a $49 find in the "as is" section of IKEA last year.  Great rug, but impossible to remove any type of stain.

Baby Zain Rhys Corey will be the recipient of this project.   Maybe I'll get inspired again for my own little one.  I already have some really fun art picked out for the nursery.  I'll share that with you tomorrow.  Are you just dying with excitement?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

DIY Stencil Project

I threw my girlfriend a baby shower in March and per usual had some hair-brained hand-made present I wanted to give her.  I always do this......think of something I WANT to do, but don't actually devise HOW I'll do it.  I attempted a mock-up of the piece prior to the shower, but it was a disaster.  Luckily, the party was out of state and I used the excuse that it was too large to transport to buy me some time.  Lots of procrastination took place and now I find myself 1 week away from moving and staying at her house for a night during our drive.  Ahhh!

Insert my artist sister, Molly, and all is right in the world.  Although, I didn't buy all the proper materials, we managed to improvise.  I'm almost done and will post ASAP.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A Blog Shout Out

Monday's post was dedicated to Wendy.  She ran her best time (4:41) in one of the most challenging marathon courses out there.  She is a constant inspiration and I owe ever stride to her.  Not sure how she got me out there, but I've been addicted to running ever since.  You rock!

Today's post is dedicated to my new friend, Ange, at "Chair Up".  Ange is one of my biggest cheerleaders.  Just when I think no one is reading, her blog comments always make me smile.  We have a lot in common and I'm hoping for an invite to Australia soon.  I was lucky enough to visit that great country during the 2000 summer Olympics and immediately fell in love.  She tackles much bigger pieces than I do and always makes it look easy.  Check out that gray couch!  I know she will be a constant source of inspiration and solutions for my future projects.  Thanks Ange!!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Happy Marathon Monday!

The Boston Marathoners are well into the course by now and some should even be done before the 2 hour mark (crazy!).  One special runner is my best friend, Wendy.  This post is dedicated to her.  

This is her 6th marathon after an oath to herself that she'd run 5 before the age of 30th.  She is not only running for the sheer thrill of it, but also to raise money and awareness for the Boys and Girls Club of Dorchester.  Their mission is "To inspire and enable all young people, from diverse circumstances, to realize their full potential by providing opportunities for personal growth to become contributing, caring and responsible members of the community."  Wendy raised over $5,000 for them this year!

Wendy lives 1.5 blocks away from me.  I am really sad to move, because, really, when else can you live within walking distance of your best friend?  She started a photography career last year and has built quite a portfolio.  Sometimes she makes me pose for her, but only because I'll do whatever she says (her: "go stand under that sign and pretend you're crying" me: "ok").  If there are any Boston mom's reading, you should check out her Mother's Day Special Package.  If she can make a pregnant woman look good, imagine what she can do for your rug rats!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Welting/Piping Cord Tutorial

I always thought welting was such a luxurious finish to a project.  Then I learned how to make it during my upholstery class and I realized how easy it was.  Insert Christmas present from my mom and we have no excuses not to use it everywhere.....

To get started, you'll need a sewing machine, a welting foot (notice the channel on the left):

And welting or piping cord:

Measure the length of the area you will cover.  In my case, it was the perimeter of the ottoman (84") and cut 1 1/2" width of material that length. (OK, I only eye-balled the 1 1/2" and clearly went off track a bit.  I suggest measuring)

My material wasn't 84" long so I had to cut 2 strips and join them.  To do this, you angle the corners on top of each other and sew diagonally across from NW to SE corners. Trim the excess.

When you open it, it is a straight line

Then you wrap the cord in the cut trim

Feed it thru the welting foot channel

And sew about 5 inches at a time, making sure the cord stays wrapped the entire time.  

I should have used a different color thread, but technically that part isn't supposed to show anyway.

Now I have to measure and cut the top and sides of the ottoman and sew this trim in between.  I'm hoping it will slip right on like a glove......we'll see about that.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

A good egg.....

I had a great, sunny weekend and was sad to end it by skipping out on this great deal:

Some lucky ebayer got it for $200 AND without any competition!   Designed in 1958 by Arne Jacobsen, the Egg Chair ($5400) is pretty expensive today.  Although this chair was probably a reproduction, it would have looked just as beautiful with re-upholstery.

Unfortunately,  the husband has restricted any furniture purchases until we move. 

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Dear Murphy.....

your Law can SUCK IT!

Who wants to buy me this to cheer me up?

The Handmade Marketplace: How to Sell Your Crafts Locally, Globally, and On-Line

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Artful memories

Thanks to CasaSugar I discovered the perfect way to preserve a photo.  Don't you love when you have something in your mind and the universe throws you an immediate answer?  Modern Bird Studios "creates personalized, modern art from your photographs".  They will put it on a piece of wood up to 46"x46".  I love a big statement!

I had originally wanted to do something like Lauren from Pure Style Home and create a big canvas piece, but I'm liking the wood option better.  Especially for a beachy photo like this:

Harley's adventurous beach weekend

This may have to go above the, what to do with the tv.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Things I'm digging

Just glanced at the new West Elm catalog.  They are speaking my language this season.  I love the soft palletes and fun new lighting and mirrors.  Things on my wish list:

These mirrors make me want to do a DIY project like this:

Photo courtesy of House of Turquoise

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Chiang Mai Pillows

Look what came in the mail last week.....

Send me an email if you're interested in buying any......I have 5  2, although will probably keep 1.  They are 18" cushions with self-welting.  Double sided with dragon image on the front, zipper on back.  Insert not included.  Make me an offer ;)

More pillows to come....I'll give you a hint (really difficult, I know)