Friday, November 30, 2012

DIW: Misha's Rose Lights

Note: If you follow us on Facebook or Twitter you saw that Nate was going to write a post today; he was too tired when he got home from night school to get something done that he felt proud of, but he wants you all to know he will be writing next week! The man has things to say!

Do it yourself and do it right, then you can WRITE!

Today's DIW comes from Misha in Michigan.

Misha got the inspiration form her project here and man, am I impressed with the patience and creativity to whoever came up with this project. Egg carton flower lights.

She was nice enough to let me photograph her project and I have to say, I was blown away. Look at how these bad boys glow.

As the instructions are all found on instructables, we'll leave all the how-to stuff for them.

All you need for this project are egg cartons, paint, and an old group of Christmas lights. I think this project is perfect for this time of year because you can make them look like poinsettias and throw them into your tree!

We also thought this project would look great if you used white lights and painted the cartons blue to look like Morning Glories. Misha painted hers gold and red to look like gold dipped roses.

She said that while this was a very tedious project, it was one of those great things to do while you're watching your favorite shows or if you pop in a movie. She said it's also a great sick day project.

It doesn't have to cost you a dime, as you can usually find different size egg cartons on Craigslist (you can even post a wanted ad in the free section!)

Great job, Misha! I don't think I'd have the patience to do a project like this. Snaps!

Do you have a DIW you'd like to contribute? E-Mail us your project and photos to

Thursday, November 29, 2012


The other day, I got super geeky excited.


Because I saw this.

How freakin' spiffy is that?

I thought that putting mason jars in the bathroom would be a super easy and sentimental way to update the light fixture.

It is a simple, 4 down fixture, but for some reason it really, REALLY isn't working for me. I thought by using the mason jars it would add just that hint of rustic that we love.

Also, we happen to have an abyss of mason jars hanging out from a DIY project we did for our wedding.

Here's K, my niece, on our wedding day.

Then I got sad.


Because not only is this a total lie, because out of the three light fixtures we have in our house (as well as 10 I tried at Habitat trying to make it work) the Mason jars are about .25 an inch too wide to fit into the socket.

Oh, and also, a standard light bulb is too fat to fit in the said jars. Notice how in the picture, there is no light bulb in the socket.

I'm honestly really bummed, I thought maybe by using a candelabra bulbs that we could get it to work, but the jars are just too big to attach anyway.


If anyone can figure out a way to make this work, I will give them 10 brownie points.

Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

UPDATE: I've been told by one of my readers that Creek Line House did it to their front porch (link here) This makes me jealous and cranky and wondering why bathroom light fixtures are mean to me.

In other news...I did something I never do- I actually bought paint samples for the living room. The one time I do it and I was actually right with my gut instinct. I am having a hard time with the fireplace though because the retro tile is just so hard to coordinate with. I think we may have to do two paint colors. One on the walls opposite the fireplace, and one up against it. Me likey the bottom one (which is the Mermaid Song I've been drooling over for months.) I threw the seal up there too thinking it might be good around the fireplace...but I'm worried it may be too dark. The joy of this house though is the freakishly tall ceilings that make any paint color look brighter than they are.

I also really like the ice blue, but it won't work in here- maybe another room in the house.

Do you guys buy paint samples? Do you dive in? CAN YOU MAKE THE MASON JARS WORK?! (my life is full of uncertainty...)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Deck My Halls.

Today, because I'm sure all of you are sick of seeing blogs about Christmas, I'm going to quickly go through our Christmas trees so we can move on.


I just feel wrong NOT doing I'll be kicked out of the bloggy club or something.

First we have the bathroom tree. We got this little guy at Target last year on clearance and bought accessories for him. Just something about feeling jolly while you pee, ya know?

Ugh- so need to get that mirror framed.

Then we have our Charlie Brown tree in our entryway. Our Charlie Brown tree kicks major butt as he has evolved over the years to this joyous little guy. I think people underestimate the fact that they can customize them and still and enjoy the fact that they don't take up much room to store.

This is our new addition this year. When I was a kid, my Aunt made my dad a ceramic tree that lit up and I would sit in the living room and stare at it. When I was probably 15, it got misplaced and we hadn't seen one since. Since I'm creepy and go on Craigslist every day, I found this guy, negotiated him down to twenty beans and he makes my sentimental heart go pitter-pat.

And then of course, we have our "Tree, Tree" We have decided after Christmas we're going to grab a tall skinny one on clearance because ours is too short for Blue's big ceilings, but there's no point in buying a brand new one for 3 weeks at full price. We shoved it under a bulkhead so it didn't look too short, but at least it's pretty :)

We also bedazzeled the stairs.

And then we decorated the chendelier.

The record doesn't have to screech to a stop, we just did a little bit.

We bought ornaments already done as I have a fear of creepy crawlies emerging from things gathered from outside- but you could easily grab pine cones from your yard, roll them in elmers and glitter. Then we put a ornament hook on it and put it over each arm.

And other than a wreath on the door and Christmas lights on the porch, that's where our Christmas decorating stands right now.

What do you I need more trees?

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Gettin' Merry Up In Hurrrrr'

Now that we've gotten that and shop until we hate ourselves thing out of the way, it's time to be getting Merry up in hurrr' (y'all gun make me act a FOOL!)

If you remember, we rocked out our DIY Fall Apothecary and our DIY Fall Wall Collage for the fall season. The issue has sense presented itself that we aren't in fall anymore and we need to merry our merry.

Let's start with everyone's the favorite- changing the apothecary!

First, I emptied all the apothecary guts into a zip lock and into the fall bucket for use next year.

I followed the same process as I did for fall (attack endcap at JoAnns, use wire cutters, place prettily in the thing) and ended up with this fantastic winter apothecary for under $10 (but if you have to buy the apothecary plan for about $18.)

 Where did I put said apothecary? Well, naturally, it is still on the fireplace! Which has been very very merry-tized.

By the way, did all y'all know that 3M makes "decorator clips"? I knew they made the small, medium and large hooks, but these decorator clips have a clear background and clear 3M tape, are super duper small, and work perfectly for things like hanging shiny silver shit on your fireplace. And no, 3M did not email me and say, "Hey Emma, say this is good shit"- it just made me happy and I felt the need to spread the joy.

These little hooks are also great for hanging up the garland my mom and I made after hours of horrendous maths on her cricut.

Also, 4 guesses about who gets the Batman stocking, complete with cape (and it's not me or the dogs.)

Add sassy stuff, and you have an instant winter mantle- but I feel like I might want to put a wreath up on the second mantle.

Then we gallop over to our stair well, take down our seasonal frames, add new winter themed scrapbook paper in for about $2 and BAM. Winter Seasonal Wall.

How fun is that? I love when projects from awhile ago can be repurposed to go with a new theme.

What inexpensive Holiday decorations do you have up? Does your family celebrate Christmas or do you celebrate another winter holiday? If you celebrate other holidays, how do you decorate your home?

Monday, November 26, 2012

DIY Action Squad-- Assemble!

As you read last week, Tracie, Kenz, Stephanie and I joined together to form the DIY Action Squad- a group celebrating our love for the new Young House Love book, their authors (John and Sherry) and easy DIY projects. Remember, we aren't affiliated with YHL, but we did ask pretty please and got their blessing.

This whole thing was the magnificent Tracie's idea- we've all been doing so many big projects so it's been nice to take a break and do something fun and easy.

I decided to do a mix of two projects. I conquered #54 (Reupholster a dining chair) and #80 (Use a chair as a casual night table)

I scored this adorable ice cream chair at April's Second Hand Shop in downtown Lansing for $15.

I liked the cutesy lines of it (cute without being frumpy) and I liked how it had a firmer seat on it- which is perfect when someone is going to use it as a nightstand or in much of my family's case, somewhere to put a CPAP.

To spruce her up, all I did was wash her, take the cushions off, and put two coats of cheap white spray paint ($0.97 a can, and it works much like primer) and a few coats of flat white Rustoleum.

While the paint was drying, I attacked my fabric stash and grabbed some of this Waverly fabric I'd gotten for the family room. I didn't even bother removing the existing white vinyl because I figured if some water leaked on it having plastic under the fabric wasn't a bad idea.

To upholster a round cushion, cut a square. Then staple the four corners in (I did it on the stripes so that they would stay straight). Then pull the fabric tight around the bottom of the cushion and staple close to the edge. This makes it so if you have excess fabric it doesn't cause pleats around the circle. Cut the excess and reattach the seats using the old screws.

(Hint! If the old screw holes are stripped, you can either drill new holes or tap a wood golf tee into the whole and drill a new hole. The wood tee will give you new threads!)

I put the chair in the guest room. I love how it can be used as a nightstand or somewhere to put your shoes on- multitasking furniture- LOVE.

It was also so refreshing, as this project only took about 3 hours, including waiting on spray paint to dry. I'll admit it, I procrastinated a little bit and got impatient and didn't wait for my paint to cure for 24 hours. I recommend people wait 24 hours before bringing a spray painted piece into the house.

Now, the real question is, have you bought the book? Do you love it? What have you accomplished from it? Here's your chance to show it off on not one, but FOUR blogs (word, homie just make sure you link up on their pages too). This link party will be open for one week, please join up so we can all see what projects you have created from this wonderful book.

Also, if you don't read Young House Love (which, if you don' do you even know what a blog is, honestly...), please go over there and tell them we sent you.

DIY Action Squad- LINK UP! 

Featured and Shared over at LizMarie Blog

Friday, November 23, 2012

I spoke too soon.

I hope everybody had a Happy Thanksgiving (I had a happy not-going-to-work-and-getting-to-sleep-past-five-next-to-nate morning, which are my favorite types of mornings.)

But alas, I spilled too much, too soon. I showed you guys a floor plan the other day, remember?

And almost immediately, someone got on me for not showing pictures of our second bathroom already.

Kids. There are several rooms in this house y'all haven't seen yet. What? You want to see previous owner's design ideas instead of mine? WELL THEN I HOPE THEY BLOG. Sorry- outburst.

Anyways, yes, we have a second bathroom upstairs, it is again a mish-mash of beadboard they stained instead of painting white (poor man's paneling?) and a lovely wall-papered top and ceiling, complete with a border. Yes, they wallpapered the ceiling. Oi Vey.

Oh, yeah, hey, by the way, I have a clawfoot.

HA! Sorry, I know my regular readers would FREAK about my clawfoot so I wanted to leave it suspenseful.

So here's what confuses me about this wall paper too... the grass is growing and the background is the same as the wall paper they put everywhere else. So...wouldn't it have made more sense to do the border around the middle? Or am I just too literal for my own good?

But yeah, this is the only thing that bothers me about the clawfoot.

The shower unit blocks a beautiful original window.

RIGHT?! Rage with me.

I think when we get to this room we will just take the shower unit down and let the clawfoot like...sing in the glory of it being a clawfoot. We'd buy a hose attachment so you could still rinse off up there/bathe eventual small children, but Nate and I both shower downstairs anyway- so why make the ceilings shorter/block natural light?

Plus, when you do shower up there you have to have two curtains and two liners (one for each side so you don't get the walls wet) and the plastic touches my fat. That freaks me out. Nothing like trying to wake up in the morning to nasty old plastic clinging to your cellulite.

On the other side, by the door, there is a pedestal sink and awkwardly small/high medicine cabinet.I can only see my cheek bones and up in this mirror.

Has anyone else noticed yet that there's no storage in this bathroom?

Yeah, it's a problem, and one of the reasons we almost never use it. That's why I'm thinking taking down the shower might be nice so we could add some floating shelves or something over the tub. We can't add a vanity because my hips almost touch the sink and side of the tub as it is. We know adding a larger medicine cabinet and adding wall mounted toothbrush/soap holders will help a lot but for now we have a shoe organizer on the back of the door to hold our extra stuff (AKA Tampons, curling irons, etc.) That's also fun because it's being held up by hooks and will randomly crash down in the middle of the night because the door doesn't close if the over-the-door things are on.

Not that I ever get to pee with the door closed anyway. This is usually what I see.

I constantly get judged while I use the facilities- whether it be showering, blow drying or cleaning it (like today). It took a lot of effort just to get them OUT so I could take pictures of the room. Ugh- children puppies.

So, we do have materials to do this bathroom and we have a very thorough plan. Well, it was thorough until the floors downstairs failed. But we are planning on doing a nice lipstick job up here. I pinky promise. We are not going to get into lists and all that though until Nate decides if this room is next on the list or not. The man has a strict "one room has to be done before we can move on" rule. He claims it prevents me from having a dozen unfinished projects- Jokes on him, I could name at least twenty unfinished projects in this house right now. BAM.

Did everyone have a good holiday? Don't forget that Monday is the start of our Link party, so get your Young House Love books out and do a project this weekend!

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Thank you to everyone who makes this blog fun to do. Without you, nothing would get done in my house. 

See you tomorrow & Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

I faked a place setting

I felt like I should hop on the place setting wagon...but I've never really set a fancy table before so I kind of faked it. I feel like if I had real food it'd look pretty...the clear plates are hard to make look pretty when they are empty.

But, I did something else last night!

I saw super cute burlap utensil holders on Pinterest, so I decided BITCHES I CAN DO THAT! So I did.

I had these two burlap pillow cases (that you'll remember I used some of their fabric for insets in picture frames) after a certain of three demons attacked them.

I eyed how much I would fold over to make little pockets and cut some lining fabric to the same size.

I then used my zig zag stitch to secure the pieces together (the zig zag helps make sure that the burlap doesn't fray. I then sewed the two sides of the little fold over.

After I stuffed it with silverware and a napkin, I made a fake setting for you guys to pretend to like :D

I even lit candles for some drama.

And here's the money shot of the dishes. BAM.

I made the little silverware things for free, so overall, a good night. I think they could use some bling or a flower or something.

I am going to be taking tomorrow off and I hope you guys do too! Turn the computer off and stuff yourselves senseless!

Also, don't forget to work on your Young House Love projects this weekend. The link party starts Monday! (deets here)

I love you guys, and I'm thankful for each and every one of you for motivating me to keep pushing forward on the house. You guys are the best and you truly make my day.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Missing with Dishes

With the day we had yesterday, if a dog had run or away or something I would not have been surprised. Nothing went the way we wanted it to, therefore nothing insanely productive was accomplished. Wait, I take that back, I shopped for Thanksgiving Dinner.

That totally counts as productive. ...Right?

First off, to answer some confusion from yesterday. This is a terrible rendering of our floor plan upstairs.

There's also an entrance to the attic and all that other stuff upstairs. So yeah, the room of doom is a small bedroom that has a bump off it it.

We all got it?


So back to the whole Thanksgiving thing. As you all know, we just finished our fantastic sex oozing dining set. There was just one issue with it; we only had lime green dishes that matched our old dining set. Maybe I'm a little obsessive...but it was mildly to moderately (read: insanely) bothering me.

We had the Fargrik diningware set from IKEA. You know, the set that everyone has because it's adorable? Also, it's ridiculously affordable and actually holds up pretty well.

This set still looked really adorable with our Kitchen, but when we pulled them in the colors clashed horribly. We had to figure out what would work with both rooms.

After much tossing around we narrowed it down to cobalt blue or white. They'd work in both rooms and they would add a little bit of sass in the dining room.

So, when we got another glorious World Market coupon last night that announced that dishes were 20% off, and I had been hoarding two $10 off coupons we knew it was time to strike like a cobra.

We headed over there and began sorting through the aisles upon aisles of dishes.

Then these babies found me and my heart went pitter pat.

The fact that they're clear means they'll fo-sho go with both rooms AND I think the simplicity is kind of rustic in a weird way, meaning they'll look SICK on the dining table (and I can forever play with cool chargers or place mats).

Also, it doesn't hurt that we got service for 8 for $35, putting it comparable to what we paid for the green IKEA stuff.

Tonight I'm going to play around with place settings and figuring out how I want everything to look. When you guys do T-Gives, do you do a formal table setting with place cards and everything or is it more of a family style buffet thing?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Room of Doom

Oh Hey...did you guys know we had a third bedroom?

I know, shocker.

The third bedroom has been dubbed "the room of doom" as it became the dumping ground for everything we didn't feel like dealing with when we moved in. Open a box, "I dunno. Doom it." Next thing you know, this happens;

With 15-20 people coming to my house this weekend, we thought it's better to be safe than sorry and to get this set up as a temporary guest room.

As you know, we already have a beautiful guest suite, but we had the room and the means to make another, so why the hell not.

When we moved in, we made an oath to ourselves not to do anything to this room until we have kids. This room will be a perfect nursery as it's actually two rooms.

BAM. Had ya thinking there was a weird cavey room for a minute there.

This room has a small bedroom in front with closet, and then a doorway way leads to the room you saw above.

 I suppose it's supposed to be a giant storage closet as this house doesn't have a linen or coat closet, but we think it'll make an awesome attached playroom/library. We may even have the whole thing designed already, but alas, there is no bun in this oven, nor are any adoption papers in so as for now we were only going to work with what we had.

Why design a room twice, ya know?

Thus, the name of the game was clean up, organization, and creation of the totally collapsible guest bedroom.

What did I just say?

We've been rocking the collapsible guest room for years. We began utilizing it when I started doing my jewelry business and needed a home office. I wanted a big and spacious office, but we couldn't sacrifice a whole room and have nowhere to put a guest. Thus, this system of being able to throw up or take down a guest room in ten minutes was created.

The thing that has to happen for this to work is for you to design beautiful office/whatever room and buy bedding that coordinates. Leave room on the floor to assemble the bed if needed. When this was in my Jewelry studio I had my necklaces hung up on the wall high enough that I could assemble the bed in front of it, but if the bed was down I could easily walk up and grab pieces that I needed to ship.

So, here is my secret for an oddly comfortable and totally collapsible guest bed. (We've been rocking this guest bed for about 1.5 years and have never had to replace anything.)

Step One- Buy the cheapest and simplest IKEA twin bed frame you can find. As you can see from that one leaning up against the wall, our is super thin and has four removable legs that simply twist on.

Step Two- Buy a $10 air mattress from Wal-Mart. Over inflate and put on bed frame.

I have a girlfriend who has slept on this 4 nights a months for over a year and she said it was comparable to a real bed (and she is a bigger girl. Big Girl Tested. What, What!) I think the trick to this is that because the bed frame has it up off the floor it stays warm and inflated, and it doesn't give you that awful deflated taco feeling in the middle of the night.

So after cleaning for HOURS, we threw it up, and put in a bookshelf to house our printer and all of our "Best-Aunt-and-Uncle-EVER" Toys (AKA legos, old cell phones, vintage McDonald's toys) to call it a day.

We still have a long way to go on the "doomy" side of the room, but that will be slowly hacked away at throughout the week.

Seamus PhotoBomb.
At least someone can sleep in there now, so that's a plus. This was also completely free, using things we already had. But I must and will press onward to finish it. For now, it will stay a mini guest room and we'll turn the play room into a music room. Then, someday, stars permitting, it will be an adorable baby's room. :)

How was everyone else's weekend?

Friday, November 16, 2012

Less Than A Week to Thanksgiving

Oh dear, we are less than a week to Thanksgiving and like, 15 people are coming. I haven't made enough progress on my list!

1. Finish the dining room table & purchase chairs
2. Install new bathroom countertop

3. Stain existing bathroom cabinet
4. Frame mirror in bathroom
5. Get a new pretty white energy star toilet for the downstairs
6. Add dual flusher to toilet upstairs
7. Paint the downstairs bath.
8. Paint the living room
9. Get the fireplace checked
10. Get curtains for the dining room
11. Get curtains for living room
12. Sew new throw pillows for the family room
13. Get a runner for the hallway
14. Create a boot drip for the front hallway
15. Get the garage door fixed

Now some of it isn't crucial, because, let's be honest, a Turkey on the table is more important than my garage door opening.

Here is my new goal by next Wednesday.

1. Finish Teagan's Dog Bed so we can put her Crate away.
2. Add dual flusher upstairs (we already bought it, Nate just needs to install it)
3. Get curtains for the living room (simply because that shit be drafty!)

It's so important for Nate and I to have the Holidays at our home. Not only is this our first holiday season in our home, but it's our first holiday season without Nate's dad (who passed in April) We are trying so hard to spend family time and make memories.

Speaking of memories, if you follow us on twitter, you saw that my mommy brought something very important to me when she was visiting last weekend (and yes, I have so many projects that I need to document, I just need to be home before the sun goes down!)

World. Meet my pink baby.

I am so excited to see her again! Now I just need to remember how to play her...

We took the night off and hung out on the couch with the dogs playing Smoke on the Water and other simple things there's no way one can forget how to play.

It was really nice just to take an evening to be calm and NOT hurrying our butts to finish a project. I promise I'll project tonight. I pinky promise. After all, it's less than a week to Thanksgiving.

What do you guys do to get ready for the holidays?