Friday, March 30, 2012

March's Project and Feature Friday: My Friend Darcy

I didn't have many (any?) local friends who love DIY projects and blogging as much as I do....until, my friend Darcy bought a "fixer upper" last fall.  She has tackled so many projects around her home and I'm impressed with the changes she's made.  Darcy is a mom to four kiddos and is also a professional photographer.  She posts beautiful pictures and blogs about her life and family at New Beginnings.

Here's Darcy and her cute girls.  She also has a two-year old son who didn't make it into this picture.

The day Darcy moved in, she had second thoughts about purchasing the house.  Check out her kitchen:
What's up with the two-tone and the dirty, ripped up floor?

Darcy did a project that I have been too scared to try...she painted her cabinets!

Doesn't it look so much better?  I know it was a lot of work.  But, her hard work paid off.

I like the hardware she chose:

She also took out the center of each cabinet and replaced it with beadboard.  She installed beadboard on the island too.


Remember way back at the beginning of March, I linked up this post to Lisa's monthly before and after party?

I had HUGE aspirations to paint, stencil, build shelving and paint some more in this little niche.

What was I thinking???  I was a little too ambitious this month.

I did get some stenciling done.

Here's the bottom section completed.

Here's the top and I started on my shelving project:

I was having problems stenciling in the tight space and I couldn't get the corners to look right.  I kind of gave up and thought I could just live with the imperfections, but they were way to big and glaring.

So, I decided to paint over the stencil.

I had some leftover paint, Martha Stewart's Plumage, out in the garage that I tried.  I didn't love it. 

So, I'm back to square one!!!  This month was a bit of a failure.  I've tried stenciling in the past and it never turns out like I hope it will.  Lesson learned...NO MORE stenciling for me!

Here's to better luck in April!

Stop by the Before and After party at Shine Your Light to see some bloggers who had more success in completing their projects. 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Suzy's House Party #36 - Link Up!

You can find me guest posting for my friend Jessamie over at Bird and Branch Redesign today.  Poor girl has had the stomach flu.  I'm posting about my new favorite color.  Jessamie and I are also teaming up with a bunch of other bloggers on a fun new challenge all about color that starts next week.

I know I say this all of the time, but this was the BEST party ever.  Really, it was!  I want to feature almost every project, but I had to narrow it down.  I decided to go with a spring garden theme to help me pick a few projects.

First up are these adorable side tables from Groovy Green Designs:

Sticking with the blue and floral theme is Life We Live 4's adorable garden bench.  I love the pillows.

I'm so impressed with Under a Pile of Scrap's entire garden from the garden gate, to potting shed, to the bench planter.

<div align="center"><a href="" title="Saved by Suzy"><img src="" alt="Saved by Suzy" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

•Link up your home decor project. Pretty much anything to do with you house is fine.

•Please provide a link back to my blog. A text link is fine, or feel free to grab my "Saved by Suzy" party button from the sidebar. The more people that know about the party and participate the better for all of us.

•Be sure to share the love and leave comments for others.

•That's it.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Guest Post: How to Make a Bedskirt out of Curtain Panels

I have my favorite guest poster to share with you today.  Why is she my favorite?  She's my one and only SISTER!  I've been begging her to share some of her craftiness and now that she is home on maternity leave, she finally has a little spare time.  My sister is the creative and crafty one.  She taught herself to sew just about anything and later attended Parsons School of Design and FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) in New York.  Gina doesn't have a blog, but I'm hoping to occasionally share more of her talent here.  Here's her first-ever blog post!

Hi I'm Suzy's sister, Gina. I live in a 2-bedroom apartment in New York. I thought I'd help my sister with a guest post, due to her recent finger injury! Although her finger injury does not seem to be slowing her down much.

My husband and I had a baby in February and with all of the baby stuff in our apartment, we had to start storing stuff under the bed in bins. I had to raise the bed onto bed risers in order to fit the bins under the bed, and I did not like how this looked. Enter the idea of a bed skirt! But h how I hate how traditional bedskirts get all bunched up and generally look a mess. I recently made a super easy bedskirt for the baby's crib so I thought I'd make a similar one for my bed.

Here's her cute baby, Tre.

Gina made all of the bedding herself.

I was planning to use some fabric I had around the house or a set of sheets, but none of the fabrics I had were heavy enough to completely hide what was under the bed. In the process of converting our bedroom to a bedroom/nursery I bought some blackout curtains from TJ Maxx. As I was sitting around the house recently I thought to myself why not get some more curtains from TJ Maxx to use to make a bedskirt. The weight of the curtains would be perfect to completely hide everything I now have stashed under the bed, and a bedskirt in the same fabric as the curtains would bring a nice continuity to the room.

$19.99 for a pack of two panels at TJ Maxx.

So here goes my first ever how to blog post….

I only needed the bedskirt to cover 3/4 of my full size bed, so I was able to make the bedskirt out of one package of two 40'' x 84'' panels . If you wanted to make a bedskirt to completely go around your bed you would have to buy a total of four panels.

I have our bed situated against the wall, like a day-bed flanked by two Ikea dressers. So I only needed to make 3 panels for the bedskirt. One for the length and two for the width of the bed.

She was originally going to velcro the bedskirt to the box spring.

I began by making the panel for the length of the bed out of one curtain panel. I cut a piece of fabric that was about 72'' x 26'', the length of the bed 72'' by 26'' (which is the height from the box spring to the floor + 6''). I used the hemmed side of the curtain for the bottom of the bed skirt, thus there was no need to sew a hem for the bottom of the bedskirt and an added bonus being that the bottom of your bed skirt will have a perfectly straight hem. All I had to do was sew the sides of the panel (you could even do this by hand if you did not have a sewing machine). Don't worry to much about your length measurement as there will be corner pieces that will allow for any imperfections in length (if anything I'd make your panels a little bit shorter than the length of the bed).

I then needed two panels for the width of my bed, I planned on using the second curtain panel for this. The second curtain panel was not long enough to cover the length of both ends of the bed, so I made my end panels only 3/4 of the length of my bed ends. Part of the sides of my bed are hidden behind the dressers. I cut a 26'' wide panel out of the entire length of the curtain and then cut it in half in order to get my side panels.

I originally planned to attach my bedskirt to the bed with velcro. So I finished off the cut side of my panels with a hem and velcro, but once I was done I realized this step is not necessary (unless you want to hot glue velcro to your box spring and attach the bed skirt with velcro). At the last minute my husband had the brilliant idea to attach the bedskirt to the box springs using safety pins. I used quilting safety pins because they have a little bend in the middle which makes them easier to use.

I WISH I was this organized.  I would be frantically scrambling in a junk drawer to find a safety pin.

I used velcro to attach a bed skirt to our baby's crib, but safety pins work great for attaching the bedskirt panels to the box spring if you don't want to deal with the hassle of hot glue. Here are some pictures of my son's crib.

She used velcro to attach the crib skirt to the board.

Out of the scraps I had left over from my curtain panels I cut two 10'' x 26'' pieces to to cover the corners of the bed. I used the part of the curtains that had the grommets, just to make it a little interesting. If you were making a bed skirt to go around your entire bed you would need to have four of these pieces.

Once I had all my pieces cut and had hemmed the side edges I was ready to attach the bedskirt to the box spring. I started by pinning the corner pieces first, and then attached my three side panels. I placed a safety pin every 6-12 inches.

I like the idea of safety pinning or velcroing the bed skirt to the box spring, because it is sure to remain in place. When I had a bed skirt I had bought from the store it always got bunched up and would look all messy every time I tried to make the bed.

Here's a picture of the completed project. I hope you enjoyed!!

Thanks Gina!  Gina has all kinds of ideas for redecorating her apartment, including making a super-cool headboard.  I hope we get to see more of her projects soon...and I don't have to cut off my fingers to get another blog post out of her!!!  I love you Gina!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Dipped Design

Thank you for all of your sweet comments regarding my little injury.  Things could have been so much worse and I'm grateful that I'll have the full use of my fingers.  In the meantime, I have to wear a splint for two weeks that basically immobilizes my hand and fingers.  Have you ever tried washing or blowdrying your hair with one hand?  It's harder than you think! 

I just took my splint off to write this short post.  I'm supposed to do range-of-motion exercises each day...I think typing counts.  :)

Anways, dipped furniture and decor is nothing new.  I think it's so pretty and can be replicated easily at home with a simple DIY project.

What is dipped furniture?  It's furniture that looks like it has been dipped in a big bucket of paint, like these tables from West Elm.

Here's another example of dipped decor from West Elm:

And Wisteria:

Source: via Suzanne on Pinterest

Martha Stewart even provides a tutorial on how to make your own dipped baskets.

Bundle up a bunch of wooden dipped kitchen utensils for a unique gift.

Both of these projects were spray painted, but have that same "dipped" feeling.

In addition to paint dipped decor, you can also dip dye fabric.  How easy would it be to make something similar to these Antropologie curtains?

Source: via Suzanne on Pinterest

Looking for a new way to do your Easter eggs, dip them!

Once my hand is healed, I'll definitely be doing some dipping!

Sunday, March 25, 2012


I was so excited to spend the weekend working on the yard in the gorgeous spring weather.  Instead, I spent a good part of Saturday in the ER.

My fingers had a nasty run in with the hedge trimmers.
Notice the bloody toe?

 Nervously awaiting the stitches.  I'm a big baby around needles and blood.

Peace!  All stiched up and ready to go!

Four hours, seven shots and ten stitches later, Big K and I rushed straight to our dinner and a movie date.  We were meeting 20 friends for dinner and the Hunger Games.  It was fun (maybe it was the painkillers?).  My only regret was that I was still wearing my bloody gardening clothes, while all my friends looked so pretty.  Oh, and every time they showed a gory wound in the movie, my own gory wound would throb.

I'm down to the use of one hand and typing with one finger.  So bear with me in the lackluster blogging.  I can't imagine doing projects any time soon.  I also don't see myself using any sort of saw for awhile.  My little injury scared me!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Bedroom

I think my bedroom is probably the most neglected room in the house, which might explain why I've never shown you pictures of it.   Well here it is:

Yes, that would be a gigantic wedding picture circa 1999.

And a pair of mismatched lamp shades:

Big K likes to read children's books before the three year old who always ends up in our room.

That was one of my first DIY projects - wrapping a lampshade in jute twine.

Just this morning, I decided to see what small changes I could make using things I have around the house.  Coral and gray is a new favorite color palette, so I wanted to incorporate those colors.

I replaced the wedding picture with this sunburst mirror I purchased at Home Depot several weeks ago.  If you're looking for a mirror this one was a bargain at $35.

The lamps got some new lampshades.  I got these at Target on clearance plus it was buy one, get one 50%.

The lamps needed something else, so I decided to paint them.  When painting lamps, I protect the top by tightly wrapping it in tinfoil.

I wrap the cord in tape and then place the remainder of the cord in plastic grocery bags.
Here's the lamp painted with Krylon's Coral Isle spray paint.

I flipped the quilt to the white side, put on some different shams, and moved pillows from the living room to the bed.

It's not perfect, but it's a start.  It's also fun to try to reuse things I already have...OR have gotten for free!  I got a quart of free paint at Ace Hardware.  They are giving away free quarts every Saturday in March.  This is the color I'll be painting my room.

Update: I stopped at the thrift store this evening and found a pair of lamps that I'm going to replace my little stick lamps with.  Don't worry, I'm still going to spray paint them coral.  I'll post pics when I'm done.