Just a Minute Monday – Why Yes, I Might Be Mentally Ill

Well, there’s a prequel to this project, but it takes rather longer than a minute, and I don’t want to wait another week to get this little bit of weirdness off my chest.

You see, I have a pair of cute IKEA spice racks beside my stove, an addition from the light kitchen makeover of 2011. Have I not told you about that? Sigh, later, I promise. I do not have cute spices. I’ve been seeking cute little uniform jars, but have yet to find any small enough to put at least six spices per rack. For now, Kroger canned spices seem to be the most space efficient, with a problem: Not cute. When the text faces horizontally, the ugly bar code shows. I know, first world problem. But anyway…

Exhibit A:

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What, you don’t think it’s beyond offensive? I know, I know. But, it bugged me. The aforementioned secret project used metallic spray paint, and my first plan involved taping off the spice name and painting the rest of the can gold. Honestly, I don’t know why I changed direction. Maybe all the Washi tape hype…

…Wow, this is a lot of typing, basically to say – I wrapped my spice cans with Frog tape and I love it.

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If you need me, I’ll be in my rubber room.

Another Way to Wear a Men’s Button-Down Shirt

I’m sure by now you’ve seen the ubiquitous, “Step into a men’s shirt, pull it up under your armpits, button it as high as it will go, tie arms in front of waist and call it the cutest dress EVER(!)” Um, no. This is only cute if the wearer is freakishly underweight and you squint a little to overlook the distinctly shirtlike aspects of the “dress”.

This is all well and good if all your cute men’s shirts are hanging happily from your man! But recently, one of my own man’s shirts became mysteriously too small, and I hated to get rid of it as its tan/cream/blue scheme was a favorite of mine. The solution? Cute, well fitting throw pillow!

Um, before:

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There are dozens of envelope, zipper, and sewn-shut pillow tutorials on the Internet and this one isn’t much different. The exceptions are as follows:

1. Use a seam ripper to carefully remove the pocket. Or don’t, is you want you pillow to seem more shirty. It could be a cute place to keep a Chapstick.

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Carefully cut squares from the front and back of the shirt a couple inches larger than your pillow form. Put right sides together and sew. The awesome thing is that the button front of the shirt makes the cover removable and washable without any additional closures.

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And…That’s it. Cute, easy, and (if you have an old pillow and don’t have to buy an insert) free! The button detail is super-cute on the front or, if you rather have a more plain look, turn them to the back. Enjoy!

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Aside

I knew when we moved into this house that the journey to make it mine would be a long one.  There have been delays, setbacks, more delays, failures, disagreements…but slowly it’s feeling like home.  First a couple of small spaces, then a larger room or two.  I think when I finished our powder room this week, I turned a corner. More of this house feels like me that doesn’t.  I also just started feeling like inviting guests.  There is still a loooong way to go, and endless projects on the horizon but, well, at least there is a cute place to poop.

Before – Vomit colored walls (And the area behind the mirror and light fixture left unpainted.  What?) And just…not us:Image

After – Light replaced, ceiling paneled in pine and washed a light aqua, ceiling and window trimmed, wallpaper installed (HOLY HARD), mirror switched out for a hand-me-down antique, hand towel ring and toilet paper holder spray painted and rehung, and old baskets re-purposed for storage.  All I need are a new toilet seat and rug, but overall I’m enchanted.  Thanks for checking it out:Image

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Just a Minute Monday – Mirrors; The Crazier the Better

How many times have you seen weird, ornate, usually plastic antique gold framed mirrors at the thrift store? Lots, right? Recently I’ve developed a new appreciation for them. The great thing is that the mirrors are usually removable with a couple of screws, and a quick coat of glossy spray paint pushes the gaudy frames into cute kitsch. Here are two of my recent additions:

(I almost forgot to get this before!)

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After!:

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If I can find the before for this guy, I’ll add it later. We call him the Snow White mirror:

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Fun, right? Also, including paint I have about $20 in these mirrors combined. Nice.

Just a Minute Monday

I promise not to have a kitschy theme for every day of the week, but I thought Monday, in all its, “Seriously, WHAT happened to the weekend?” busyness would be a good day to post those small, less-than-earth-shattering projects that just add a little something-something.

Enter, the book box.  I can’t remember where my parents got this old wood box, but it has been floating around my life for at least a decade, holding toys, shoes in my room, the boys’ old shared room, the hall closet…I think it served as a side table at one point even.  I don’t have a true “before” picture.  The box was originally an unfinished wood color with some random yellow and pink boards. Pretty cute now that I’m remembering it, and I probably shouldn’t have ever painted it to begin with.  Hindsight, right?  The dark green is from its turn as a shoe holding box in the boys’ closet in our old house.  Anyway, here, with our mobile little girl, little dog, and two stories, we need to have fun books on both levels.  Alice has a charming bookcase, but downstairs we needed something to just toss them in for a quick cleanup.  I think this box is just the solution.  I painted a fun, freehand zig-zag in gray and white, and aqua on the inside.  I think it’s a sweet little note in our current yellow study/playroom.

Before:

After:

Friday Rewind…Laundry Room Makeover

As I try to become a more regular poster (Hey, you over there, stop laughing!), I hope to share all of the things that are going on in the now – with the kids (Hey, we had a third!), the dog (Hey, we got a dog!), and the house.  But while I’ve been sitting on my blogging hands, I’ve been hard at work doing other crafts, projects, and updates.  I hope to share these in the Friday Rewind.  

Our “new” (as of today, we’ve lived here a little over a year) house was a downsize in the laundry room department.  Our old facility was large enough that, aside from adding a bookcase for cleaning products and some sorting bins, I never felt a need to do much in the way of organization.  Here is another story.  Let’s visit the “Before” look:

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YIKES! Messy, crowded, disorganized and, frankly, ugly.  The color was a weird, cold(!) yellow, the hookups were very prominent above the washer and dryer, and I just hated to go in for any reason.  Not good when laundry is pretty much a daily occurrence in a five-person household.

About the time I got completely fed up with this room, a miracle happened.  A good friend flooded her laundry room.  Okay, maybe not a miracle, but since her lower cabinets and floors were ruined, she was lucky enough to get a whole room makeover to turn her laundry into her dream utility/mudroom, and I got her old upper cabinets.  FREE, my favorite price point!

I drew out my plan and got to work.  I hung the cabinets high, only a few inches from the ceiling, to allow for a floating shelf beneath, and for the ceiling trim to tie directly into the cabinets.  The long bank of cabinets hides beach towels, cleaning supplies, craft supplies, and my steamer.  On the left, an open cabinet is outfitted with Walmart lidded bins, clearance priced at $2.50 apiece.  The labels were free printables from the Better Homes and Gardens website.  The bins hold sewing supplies, batteries, light bulbs, and an assortment of other “junk drawer” type items.  I trimmed out the window, which was semi-disastrous.  I learned a LOT about what not to do when I trim out my next window.  A floating shelf with a dummy front covers the washer dryer hookup, and a new IKEA drying rack and high hanging bar give me a flexible area above the utility sink.  The new IKEA light fixture is better centered between the cabinets and was a steal at $9.99.  I still have hopes to change out the unattractive vinyl floor and possibly add a sink cabinet and farm sink but, for now, a cute indoor/outdoor carpet runner and a home-sewn sink skirt are just fine.  I would estimate that the entire project came in for around $150, between the lumber, the paint, fabric, rug, and drying rack.

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Thanks for checking it out!  Laundry only sucks about 75% as much now!

Day Off

Today I took a day to do very close to nothing. No major projects, no laundry, no errands.

Now I have a to-do list as long as my arm, a dirty house, and a messy kitchen. Hmph.