Saturday, November 28, 2009

Stay Tuned...

SewMamaSew's Annual Giveaway Day is coming up on December 2nd. It's a fabulous day when people all over the blogging world giveaway fabulous things, gifts, food, craft supplies. Anyway, this year I am going to participate! I've had a lot of fun with this little design blog and I've got a few little somethings I would love to giveaway to one of you readers so... check back on December 2nd and enter to win!

Friday, November 27, 2009

NYR #21, Laundry Makeover

Our laundry room has served us well and we are ever so grateful for all the many loads of laundry that have been cleaned in this space. But while it functions fine enough, it's never really lived up to it's full potential.
With just one shelf, there was a lot of unused space up above. And it was nothing lovely to look at. Thus I decided to take it on as NYR #21.
The first step was to buy a crow bar. Which made me wonder how we had we survived without one for so long?! Then we ripped out the shelf and the strip of wood that was supporting it. This left the walls looking pretty rough.
Thankfully I had a cute helper to do the spackling for me. Okay to be honest, he was the one wielding the crow bar too. I just can't handle hard labor with this bun in my oven.
Then my cute spackler went to the SBL Conference for the weekend. So I did the next few steps on my own. The liquid laundry detergent was leaking a few months back and we didn't know it until it created this nastiness. The floors were also rather yucky.
After I cleaned the mess, I primed twice and painted twice and we were ready to hang up the shelves when my helper got back from New Orleans.We located the studs in the closet and placed brackets on the shelves accordingly. These shelves were in the AS IS section at Ikea - $1.99 each! I was VERY THANKFUL for my husband who stayed up 'til 2 am on Thanksgiving Eve to help me hang them.
TA DA! Our Laundry Room makeover is complete!
Because we have so much extra space, we moved the cleaning supplies from the pantry and the extra toilet paper and extra tissues from the hall closet.Likewise, all the extra filters, paper towels, dish soap, shoe polish, etc. that were crammed in various places around the house have a new home here.
And did you see what's in the middle of the bottom shelf?! MORE SPACE!!!And with the extra space I made in the pantry...
I was able to move the cookbooks out of sight!
Thank you again to my cute helper for helping make this laundry dream a reality!p.s. I am tempted to make cute fabric covered boxes to hyper-organize everything and make it look cute, but based on this article I recently read, I will resist that urge. Besides the best part about this laundry room is that I CAN HIDE IT BEHIND CLOSED DOORS!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thursday Things I Love! (Gift from Christel)

One of my husband's best friend's is married to a fabulous gal named Christel. She is one of those people who gives thoughtful, completely personal and perfect gifts. They are always generous and ususally out of the blue. I wish I was more like her in this area.
Last week she sent us this postcard for a movie called FIX.** I just love it! The colors are perfect. Red is my favorite and yellow is Fix's favorite so it works with all our stuff. And I had a frame that I hadn't decided how to fill so this came at the perfect time! Thank you for thinking of us (again!) Christel!
I figured since I've been showing you all the artwork in our bathroom (see my last post), I might as well include a picture of this gem. My Grandma Carol died the year I was born so I never got a chance to appreciate her. But I've always loved this little cross-stitch she did for my parents. And I love that my mom let me have it for our home.
** - I can't say if I recommend the movie or not because we haven't seen it... yet.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Father's Day Gift

My husband feels very strongly about Q-tips. They have to have cotton on both ends, they cannot have plastic sticks and yet the stick must be strong enough to not bend while cleaning ones ears.
I have been schooled on which brands meet his standards yet, when I purchased some Q-tips last Spring from an approved brand, they had clearly cheapened their product as they bent when you used them. Fix sighed and said:
This made me laugh enough to ask Adrienne at Dingbat Press to design a custom piece of artwork to immortalize his quirkiness. And didn't she do a great job? I love the line of Q-tips at the bottom. It was Fix's Father's Day present.
Yes, I'm talking about the Father's Day that happens in June. And I just now got around to framing this art and hanging in the bathroom. Which is where we use Q-tips.
p.s. Yes, that is a skeleton made from Q-tips, and no, I didn't make it.
p.p.s. Just in case you are curious, our favorite Q-tips
are Target brand. They meet all of the aforementioned criteria.
The 'wedding picture' is from our fake wedding. A friend was trying to break into the wedding photography business so she took Fix and I out for a fake wedding about 6 months after we got married. We took a bunch of pictures all around DC. My dress is my wedding dress but just about everything else is NOT what we looked like on wedding day.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

NYR #20, First Quilt for First Girl

It's done. My very first quilt.
For my very first girl. It actually didn't take me too long to complete as it's made up of forty-nine simple squares. My neighbor Misty and I decided to enter's Quarterly Challenge. We each made a quilt and worked together and now we will enter it into the contest.
And by "worked together" I mean that Misty gave me a ton of help and I watched her work on hers too. I am SO glad that I worked on my first quilt with Misty. She is a real quilting pro and I greatly benefited from all her good tips - and her fabulous sewing machine!
And yes, the quilt is huge. Far too big for a crib quilt, but in the meantime perhaps I can use it for a floor mat for Fetus Fix #2 to play on?
It was so fun to pick out a bunch of pink fabrics for this quilt. The three pictured above were left over from this outfit, this dress, and this dress that I made for Addy.
I also made three squares from Fix's old pink checked shirt.
The back is made of just two big pieces of this pink fabric with tiny polka dots. Most of the quilt was sewn with a machine, but I hand stitched the binding to give it a more polished look.
Anyway, I love it and I can't wait to give it to Fetus Fix #2 when she arrives... or perhaps a few years after she arrives.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thursday Things I Love! (Powdered Sugar)

If you remember, my husband has a corn allergy. The only powdered sugar that I could find was made of sugar and cornstarch. Thus, for a little over a year, I've been grinding sugar in a coffee grinder and mixing it with potato starch. It's a tedious process. But I did it because I truly believed that ALL powdered sugar had cornstarch in it.
I stand corrected. And I am SO happy to stand corrected.
Whole Foods, bless them, has made a powdered sugar out of cane sugar and tapioca starch! It is all organic and it is GRRRRRRRRREAT!
Bring on the Christmas sugar cookies! I'm back in the baking swing of things!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

NYR #19, Cushions for Church

My mom works with the children at her church. They recently moved to a new building and my mom bought some gliders and a rocker for the nursery rooms. They were in great condition but the cushions were a bit... um... outdated?
What? You can't see them?
See? Surprisingly enough, the church wasn't going for the faded brown roses look in their new nursery.
There we go! Much better!
My mom decided to forego the back cushion on these in favor of a blue pillow. But since I didn't make that, I took it off for the pictures.
Again, this dingy pink wasn't going to work with the church's yellow and blue color scheme.
Again, much better.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Searching for a Tree Skirt

Every year at Christmastime, I search for the perfect Christmas Tree skirt. But the perfect one continues to elude me so every year we end up with the same old Christmas tablecloth bunched around the bottom of our tree. It's festive enough. But I'm looking for Fixfabulous!
This year I am starting the search early and if I can't find the right one, I think I'm going to break down and sew my own. I'm not looking for anything flashy or Santa-fied. That's why this one from xmastreeskirts4u appeals to me. But white? Can I trust my two year old to keep that clean? Can I trust myself to keep that clean?
This silver one from Frontgate is gorgeous but lacks a bit of the traditional Christmas feel. Where is the red and green guys?
Of course Pottery Barn has a beautiful option. I just love the crewel snowflakes. But $129.00?! Seriously? And this green reads a little too "apple" to me. Sigh. I'm thinking I've gotta get started on being Christmas Craftastic and make my own....

What does your Christmas tree skirt look like? Can you recommend a great source that I haven't found yet? Leave a comment and let me know!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Fix Can Fix

Although I am the one with the Design Fix blog, my husband Fix is the true fix-it man in our house. While I do light interior design fixes, he handles the hard stuff.
Like nasty rotting baseboards in our bathroom.
He ripped out the nasty old stuff, replaced it with nice new white trim and caulked it all REALLY well to prevent this wood from ending up damp and gross and mildewy too. Now our bathroom looks BEAUTIFUL!
For the record, he didn't do it on his own. Rock sat right at his side and used the screwdriver to work on the floor grate.
They shared a lot of trade secrets. Thank you Fix - I'd be lost (and mildewy) without you!

Friday, November 6, 2009

NYR #18, Lamp Makeover

The seeds of all these recent projects began so long ago. This one started at Model Home Interiors a few weeks after we moved into our house. We didn't like their color, but we loved their shape and the fact that these puppies are all made of real wood. We always planned to paint them. But two years later they weren't done.
Meanwhile, Rock knocked this one over so it had a nice crack at the bottom and a large paint gouge (can you see it?) midway up the side.
This picture better captures the before color. It was fine enough but didn't work with our room. Especially not with the new paint color. So, in the process of painting the room, we also repainted our lamps!
Again, no pictures of the painting process. But for those who care, first we repaired the bases (turns out they were both cracked). Then we applied three coats of primer with a small foam roller and a foam brush. For some reason I did the first coat extra light so it hardly counts -- normal painters could get away with two coats.
Then we bought a quart of the same Muslin White paint we used on the Living Room Art but this time used a semi-gloss finish. Turned out nice, no?
Then a few nights later my husband realized that the shade was sitting crooked on the top of one of the lamps. He tried to bend the bulb base just a bit to straighten it out. But he is a man of great strength and his gentle tug broke it right off. Then when we were trying to fix it, I dropped the base and cracked it again. Brilliant. We are waiting on replacement parts to arrive in the mail and then we'll fix the electrical work, repair the base (and repaint it?) and have her up and running. Again. Sigh.