Saturday, February 26, 2011

DIY Key Artwork

Recently, while browsing at Restoration Hardware,
I saw this very cute Key Art which also came with a hefty
price tag of $199!
Then I saw them at Barnes & Noble for $129.

These prices aren't in my budget, so I started
watching for a frame
and key that I could use make my own.

I was inspired by a fellow blogging friend
who also likes key art, and designed her own version.

In the photo below you can see how
Fingerprints on the Fridge
made these pieces of art for her entry.

A few days ago, I posted about all my
great thrift store finds.

Do you remember the frame I purchased?

It's the perfect frame for the project @ $1.99 compared to $199!
Earlier I had gotten a purse at a
garage sale for .25 cents.
I didn't purchase the purse to use as a purse,
(it was grungy and an ugly green)
but rather for the little key that hung on the handle.

With my new frame and key in hand, I went to work on my key art.
First I placed a piece of cut to size
textured scrapbook paper
in the photo area.

I then hot glued the key onto the paper.

Simple and easy new key art created for a mere $2.24!

Here you can see it hanging.

I'm not sure if this is the place it will stay hanging yet,
but for now it has a new home.

I may paint the frame black also, but need to
buy some more spray paint.

What do you think...
should I keep the natural wood color or paint it black?

In my first blog post, I shared my office/craft room with you.
I also used keys as accent decor in this room.

Using a hook and ribbon I was able to display the
skeleton key from my grandparents old farmhouse.

(It's the larger key on the left.)

Keys are also displayed in the bottom half of this clock purchased at a garage sale for .50 cents.

Hope you enjoyed seeing my thrifty versions of
Key Art!

I'm linking this post to...
Tip Junkie handmade projects

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Great Thrift Store Finds

I had to run an errand this morning,
so took the opportunity to make a quick stop
at our local thrift store.

I came away with some great thrifty finds!

A set of 4 plates from Macy's - $ 4.49

Don't they have just the cutest design on them?

5 Kensington Ironstone bowls - .49 each

This cute little candle holder - .99 cents

A Paris Clock - $ 3.99

8 display doors - .49 cents each

I have great plans for some of these doors including decorative items for our home or gifts.

The remaining doors my craftsman/woodworker
husband will use on cabinets he'll be building.

This cute little frame was $1.99

I've got great plans for this frame that
I'll be sharing with you soon. So come back and see it's transformation!

(This frame was brand new, but had a very sticky -
sticker mark on the top. I used a little Goo Gone and the goo
was gone in a matter of seconds!)

When I arrived at the thrift store they were putting out a ton of brand new items(with store tags still on the items). I had to resist buying some of them, but took home a bag with 2 pairs of shorts, Capri pants and sweater for spring for myself. A new shirt for my husband and American Eagle blue jeans for my son.

The total savings on these new items alone was $74.38!!!
I've received a Stylish blog award

from Jessica @
Take Two Designs !

Jessica is a fairly new blogger like me. I'd encourage you to go check out her blog.

Thanks Jessica for the award!

The guide lines for this award asked me to tell you
7 things about myself.

1. I'm self-conscious talking about myself
and tend to be a little shy.

2. I grew up in the country with prairie grass
and rolling hills surrounding our farm.

3. I've moved 17 times and lived in 6 different states.

4. I'm a nurse by profession.

5. I'm one of 6 children.
My dad called us his million dollar family because
it's 3 girls and then 3 boys an even match!
I also had 6 children - 2 girls and 4 boys.

6. I'm afraid of mice!!!

7. I love the beauty of the ocean but also love the majestic mountains.

Now it's my turn to give the
Stylish Blog Award
to 7 other people.

I've chosen these blogs...

Low Country Living
Aquamarine Dreaming
Noting Grace
Parents of a Dozen
Attempting Aloha
Decorating Addiction
Design Intervention

Stylish Blogger Award....
-Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them in your post.
--Share seven things about yourself.
--Award seven recently discovered new blogs.
--Contact these bloggers and let them know they've received the award.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Progress on my living room makeover.

Slowly I've been gathering and working on my living room makeover.
When working on a limited budget you need to be patient while looking for the perfect pieces.

Over the past few months, I've been trying to find just the right curtains for the living room. I thought I had found them a few months back when I found brand new curtains from Target at Goodwill, but after taking them home and hanging them, I decided against them because they looked more like bedroom curtains.

The search continued until I ran across a pair at TJ Maxx that were just the right price and color for the room.

With curtains in hand, the search was on for new curtain rods.

This room has large windows (98inches),
taking up most of the wall.
Getting one large rod wasn't a great idea in my mind...
just to much rod showing on the 98 inch windows.

While doing a little blog reading I ran across this idea at
Thrifty Decor Chic's blog.

Short rods!

My search continued until I found 3 rods that would work great,
but not a 4th rod...sob..sob!
But then I found a tie back with the same knobs as my curtain rods, and a little light bulb in my head went on.

Create my own rod!

Here's what I did...
(it had to be low cost of course)

removed the knobs with bolts intact from the tie back -

keeping the bolts intact made the project much easier.

But now, what to use as a rod that will be inexpensive
and yet the correct size?

Then I remembered an old broomstick sitting in our garage...


All I had to do was cut it to the correct length
and drill pilot holes in the end of each end; followed by a few coats of metallic spray paint.

Here you can see the knobs screwed in
on each end of the broomstick.

I followed Thrifty Decor Chic's idea, and
shorten the rods to 23 inches.

Here's a few close up shots of the rods.

Here they are hung.

Please overlook the pink wingback chair -
remember I'm working on reupholstering them.

When I'm finished with them I'll share
the whole room makeover!

(Answer to the question -
Which rod is the broomstick?
the lower right rod).

Could you tell?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

DIY Tea Towel Curtains

Today I'd like to share with you a cute
and easy way to make curtains.

While visiting my sister-in-law over Christmas,
I saw these cute curtains she made for her kitchen.

Anyone who can sew a straight seem can make these curtains.

You'll need 1 or 2 tea towels, depending
on whether or not you want the same pattern on both panels.

Begin by cutting your tea towel in half

(or to the length you'd like for your curtain to be).

Turn the unfinished edge over 3 to 4 inches
(depending how deep of a ruffle you'd like of the top of your curtain).

Press with an iron.

Fold unfinished edge over 1/2 inch - stitching on the edge to form bottom of the rod pocket.

1 1/2" up from the stitched line, add another stitched line forming the rod pocket.

Run a curtain rod through the rod pocket,
and hang on your window!

What an easy project!!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Anyone Can Sew Knife Pleats

The fun part has begun on the makeover of my wing back chairs... the sewing!

I've decided to add a knife pleat at the bottom of the chairs. It will give the chairs added texture and a tailored look. Some of you may be asking "what is a knife pleat?" According to the definition it's ... a sharply creased narrow pleat, usually folded in the same direction.

If you have basic sewing skills and can sew a straight seam, you can sew knife pleats. Below you'll see instructions along with a few handy tricks for making these pleats.

DIY Knife Pleats

After selecting fabric, you're ready to begin.

1. Measure the distance around the chair that you'll be adding the pleats to. Multiply this measurement by 2, and add 18 inches.
Mine was 106 inches X 2 = 212
+ 18 inches = 230 inches

2. After deciding on the height you'd like your pleat to be, do these calculations. (I wanted mine to be around 2 1/2 inches high.)
Double this and add 1/2 inch seam allowance.

2 1/2 X 2 + 1/2 = 6 inches

Cut your fabric to the needed height and length.

3. Fold the fabric together lengthwise with edges meeting
(wrong sides together).

4. Iron the folded fabric with wrong sides together.

5. Determine what size pleat you'd like (I wanted mine to be between 1 inch to 1 1/2 inch), and begin the folding process.

6. Fold the fabric over to the pleat depth, and pin in place.

7. To make the pleats uniform in size without having to measure each pleat individually, I used a ruler as a guide (1 1/4 inch - pleat).

You could create your own tool for various size pleats using a piece of cardboard, plastic or flat piece of wood cut to the correct size.

Fold the fabric over the ruler and line the folded piece up to meet the edge of the previous pleat. Making sure to pin each pleat.

8. Iron the pleat - if you don't, the pleat will not keep its shape.

While working at my ironing board, I heard this honking noise outside my kitchen window. When I looked out, this is what I saw across the road.... Trumpet Swans! Aren't they beautiful?

9. Once all the pinning and ironing is finished, you're ready to sew. Join the pleats together by sewing a 5/8 inch seam on the unfinished edged of the fabric.

10. Completed sewing....

...waiting to be attached to the chair.

After completing the pleats, I moved on to making the piping.

When I'd finished my sewing for the day, I went to do a little blog reading.

I thought it was interesting(after just sewing my piping) to find a post by Miss Mustard Seed with a tutorial on how to make piping.
For any of you who would like to see an excellent DIY video on making your own custom piping, go to her blog to view this video.
(I'm not being paid to endorse this, but I enjoyed her tutorial).

Linking to...
Hope Studios : Tutorial Tuesday

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

CSN Stores

Have you found yourself thinking about summer and warmer weather
on these cold blustery winter days? Dreaming of sitting in your back yard watching your children playing on their swing set while sipping on a cold lemonade. Did you know that you can find everything from swing sets to back yard toys and furniture at CSN stores?

You can go to CSN which has over 200 online store offering many great items!

Here are a few things I found while browsing their stores.

Some very cute clocks.

Ashton Sutton Galaxy Wall Clock.

Enrico - Fulvi Gallery Wall Clock

I think these pillows are just adorable?

Jenna Pillow

Chelsea Frank Pillow

Thomas Paul - Oology Pillow

So if you'd like to do some shopping from the warmth of your home,
(while you're dreaming of warm summer days)
head on over to your CSN stores.

Have a great day!



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