Archive for the ‘inexpensive design’ Category

my first wreath


Posted by Rebecca, December 7th, 2010

Another item on my Christmas to-do list was to make some crafts, including a wreath.  So last night, I gathered my supplies.

Yes, I am crafting on my kitchen countertops.  Take one guess why that is.  Mhmm, because of Macky.  For some reason he doesn’t acknowledge anything we do on the countertops. The last thing I needed was a glitter covered cat!

I had no plan of attack.  Actually I did, I wanted to make a full-out ornament wreath.  But then I saw this woodsy wreath at Michael’s and I bought it.  I wanted some of it to show through, but I wasn’t sure how to approach it.  So I attached some floral wire to some ornaments and started adding them in bunches…

(Please ignore my reflection… I am wearing a giant shirt that is even too big for Mike)

I remembered I had some silver ribbon upstairs that I got to decorate our staircase.  I grabbed that and wrapped it around the wreath.  I wanted to make the ornaments into a sort of wrap around pattern and I figured I could follow the lines of the ribbon to do so.

After I attached the ornaments with wire, I hot glued them to one another to give the tight cluster effect.

Then I just continued to make clusters around the pattern of the ribbon, wiring and gluing!

Then I added a silver bow off to the side to finish it off.

And tada! All finished!! I hung it inside until we decorate the outside of the house this weekend.

For good measure, I took some pictures in the partial daylight this morning.

The dining room gets the most light in the morning, so I brought the wreath in there for a few shots.

I usually prefer cleaner, simpler wreaths, but I decided to step outside of my comfort zone.  I was unsure at first, but now I like my little creation. The different sizes of ornaments have a bubble-like effect and the wooden wreath still shows to add a rustic element.  As I said earlier, this will be going on our front door which is covered by our porch.  To feed my need for a simple wreath, I am planning on making one for the inside too! 🙂

why I should drink more wine


Posted by Rebecca, November 28th, 2010

On Thanksgiving, my mom brought over this bottle of Luna Di Luna wine.

Yesterday I was about to put it in the recycling bin when I realized how pretty the blue bottle was.  I never thought of saving bottles since I’m not a big fan of the green ones, but I remembered Young House Love mentioning that they had previously done a post on removing labels.  So I hunted it down and found out that there was no miracle mixture, they just used hot water. I figured it was worth a shot!

Warning: I took more pictures than necessary, but I think that makes it more fun… like a picture book 🙂

FIrst I filled up our sink with hot, soapy water…

Then I threw the bottle in…

Added a little more water until it was submerged…

And then I waited… or maybe walked away and forgot about it for well over an hour…

When I took it out, it peeled off ridiculously easy.  And I was all ready to whip out the scrubby sponge…

The top piece was a little harder and I had to use some scissors…

Then tada! All clean!

I stuck it on our kitchen window for now, since I’m not exactly sure what I’m going to do with it, but it’s a pretty piece to work with.

This label came off so easily that I’m wondering if I should have tried to take it off before the soak? Hmmm.

Anyway, the result was great and now I have two criteria to use when buying wine….#1. pretty labels and #2. pretty colored bottles!

a Thanksgiving table


Posted by Rebecca, November 24th, 2010

I always wanted to do a fancy table setting, then last week Mike randomly told me I should try one of those fancy table settings, so I considered it a challenge. Up until about 2 hours ago, I had no clue what I was doing. I went to Michael’s earlier in the week and grabbed a few things, but they were mostly for Christmas. I was planning on just winging this.

So I began by cleaning out some old, reliable vases we have that got very cloudy from constant use (note: I use these 2 vases to decorate A LOT. My parents got them for free when they took home a centerpiece from a wedding)

I peeked out our kitchen window and had a revelation… I should go get some sticks!

So I went outside, with no jacket or plan in mind.  It was freezing out there, but our yard is very sticky…

(That sign on the tree way back there is a no hunting sign.  I’m glad there will be no bullets flying in my animal loving yard.)

In the midst of my stick search, I heard my neighbors come outside.  I am now the looney chick who picks sticks with one hand, holds camera in the other. Great.

My gatherings…

(another note: In the midst of taking these pictures, I complained to Mike about how the kitchen appears so orange when I take pictures.  So he showed me how to adjust the white balance on the camera, genius! From this picture on, the colors of the countertop/backsplash are much more accurate!)

We also had a bowl of apples from when we went apple picking in September. They’re not good enough to eat but they’re good enough for props!

And my vases are now sparkling!

So still, no plan.  But I began to throw things in this square banana leaf basket I got at Michael’s and things just sort of took off. Pine cones are from Michael’s, mini-pumpkins we had, apples we had and sticks from the yard…

That’s a napkin in there, it was all looking too brown so I had to improvise.  Then I stuck it on the table, on a ramie runner I picked up at Target.

The vases? They got filled with apples and sticks (oh yeah, I had to go back outside and get more sticks!) Then I wrapped a sparkly brown, thick ribbon that I bought for Christmas around them.  I taped the ribbon so that it comes off easily and stuck them on our buffet.  Oh and on the bottom is a mini-wreath from Michael’s, also bought for my Christmas decor.

Here’s my Crate & Barrel pumpkin I bought a while back, on a “mini-runner” of two napkins…

And the completed table, assembled mostly from stuff I had…

What, the heads of your table don’t get their own special wooden bowls? Okay we only have 2 of those, but they’re too great to leave out!

Mission accomplished! Luckily, Macky was sleeping throughout this process, so he still has no clue of what I did.  I tiptoed through the house so I wouldn’t wake him.  Not to shabby for our first Thanksgiving and it was lots of fun.  Now on to some cooking!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! 🙂

an area rug plea


Posted by Rebecca, November 17th, 2010

Dear bloggy buddies, I need your help.

I’ve been searching for a grass greenish and white, graphic print area rug for our office.  I want a modern yet classy print, along the lines of this…

Happy Trellis Rug in Sprout from Shades of Light, approx. 5’x8′, $578

Yes, five-hundred-and-seventy-eight dollars.  So I set out to find a cheaper alternative.

I checked West Elm and found two favorites…

Zigzag Rug from West Elm, 5’x8′, $229

West Elm Andalusia Rug, 5’x8′, $229

Okay we cut the price in half! I love the Andalusia rug, even in yellow, but I don’t want yellow for the office. And neither are available in green 🙁

On to Target!

DwellStudio for Target Orbit Rug, 5’x7′, $139.99

Have I ever mentioned my love for DwellStudio? Especially their kids’ stuff? Love it.  It’s fail proof.  And I love the price of this rug and though the pattern isn’t as repeated-graphic-design as I originally wanted, if it was green I’d be all over it. But it’s not :::Snooki cry:::

Then there was this one, which I originally spotted in person at Target…

Target Home Medallion Wool Shag Rug, 5’x8′, $129.99

It’s like the less expensive, more neutral version of the above West Elm one.  I spotted this before I got the green idea in my head, so I almost pulled the trigger.  But it is very very fluffy.  So much so that I was afraid that Darwin would mistake it for one of our washable puppy pads and would pee on it.  TMI, but true story, we’ve learned from experience.  Oh and it’s still not green…

Then there was a glimmer of hope when I was browsing Pottery Barn Teen…

Pottery Barn Teen Double Dot Jacquard Rug, 5’x8′, on sale for $129.

I wasn’t sure about the dots, but I ran it by Mike to assess the girlyness and he declared it acceptable.  Not my ideal pattern, as I wanted something a little more sophisticated, but the size, price and colors were right.  So I got all set to order when I saw that the GREEN WAS SOLD OUT.

So I’m back to square one.  Has anyone seen any green and white patterned area rugs out there? Do you know of any rug retailers I haven’t thought of? (ps- I’ve been checking HomeGoods whenever we go, but they are so hit or miss) Or has anyone used those carpet tiles to build your own area rug?

Any help would be very much appreciated! 🙂

paint it paint it


Posted by Rebecca, November 4th, 2010

I know mood boards are the popular form of getting room ideas out there, but I’ve never made one and I’m not sure if they are totally me.  I normally don’t find stuff then decide to put it in a room, but rather I think of things then go out and find them… or make them, if possible.  I notoriously drew our condo living room with colored pencils while I was still in college, before we even owned a piece of furniture.  David Bromstad would be so proud.

I looked into getting some sort of software that I could use to get my room’s actual dimensions, where I could try paint on certain walls, a piece of furniture over here, see how the wall color looks with this or that in front of it.  But from the little research I did, they are rather expensive.  My latest method of planning things out/making things visual so Mike stops looking at me like I’m looney? Paint. As in, Microsoft Paint.

It started with some frame arrangements for over our mantle… (note: these are not drawn perfectly as they were made in like 2 seconds..)


We decided to go with neither of these.  Then I whipped up a similar type deal for one of the walls in the office…

The idea of green office walls has since gone out the window.

Then there was the idea for our Expedit bookcase…

This one is very rough but I wasn’t planning on sharing with everyone.  It was again a way to show Mike what I was picturing in my head.  The green cubes are storage bins, the gray ones are left open, the white are Ikea inserts, 2 cabinet doors and 4 drawers.  But I’m not planning on keeping the white totally white.  I just didn’t have time to sketch that in 🙂

So I figured I’d share, since I like using this method to see what options are most visually appealing.  Plus it takes about 5 seconds to make these things… no new software or techniques to learn!  Of course, Photoshop is an option as well, but everyone has Paint!

How does everyone else normally get ideas out of their heads? Mood boards? Sketches?

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