Saturday, September 29, 2012

Two signs for sale

I have a couple of signs left over from my wood working class last week in the etsy shop. First is a brown, grey, and yellow sign. It's listed here.

And the second one is all grey and white, distressed, and antiqued. It's listed here.

I had a blast at the class. I loved chatting with other grown ups. I'm planning on having another one at the beginning of November for a different project. I'm excited to show you what we'll be making then!

Friday, September 28, 2012

First Magazine Feature!

Back in July I had some photographers and stylists from This Old House Magazine come to my home to take pictures of my boys room and kitchen.

It was crazy to see the process from start to finish. It really takes a lot to get a magazine worthy picture! I loved the whole thing and was on cloud nine. Here is the end result and the picture that is in the October issue...

Looking at how great their photo turned out made me realize how insanely inadequate the photos are on my blog. My pre-new years resolution is to work on my photography.

I can't wait to see how the pictures of the kitchen turned out even though it was pre-tile. The kitchen is supposed to be in a future issue/ online article. I decided the great photographers and stylist can make anything look beautiful! Click on the picture above to go to This Old House website. They also chose my picture as a sneak preview for what's in the issue which I thought was great!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Fabric watch bands

This was a pinterest project I've been meaning to do for a while. I'm not really that much of a watch person, but I want to be now.

I wore the mustard yellow polka dot one to church on Sunday. Someone asked what time it was and I still dug through my purse for my iphone. They looked at me a like I was an invalid. They're probably right.

The insides of the burlap ones are lined with softer fabric so they won't be all itchy against your skin. And the burlap is an amazing new burlap that doesn't fray and fall apart like normal burlap.

I used bronze snaps to finish them off. I just ordered a vintage watch face off etsy that will match it perfectly!

The best news is, if you want one, I will be selling some at the next barn sale. So come for a watch and leave with a car full of stuff! Here's the info for the sale...

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Burlap pumpkins

My friend Jamie and I went to Hobby Lobby in search of buttons for some fabric watch bands we were making. More on that later. But while we were perusing the shelves we saw this really cute burlap pumpkin.

Remembering that I bought some burlap grain sacks from the last junkrestore barn sale, Jamie and I decided to diy them instead. Isn't that how it usually goes? Go in to Hobby Lobby for supplies for one project, come out with supplies for three.

I love how they turned out though. And it took about 20 minutes for both. I didn't stitch them with brown embroidery thread because I loved the stripe in the grain sack and didn't want to distract from it. 

I really love the imperfections in the burlap. And the formality of the velvet leaves dresses it up perfectly. Now if I can just get my kids to stop playing soccer with them, I'll be in good shape!

I was obviously not the first one to do this project. You can find some great tutorials online. Here. Or here. Since I used left over material from sacks I already bought, this project only cost a few dollars for the velvet.

Happy Fall Yall!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Fall front door decor

Well, it's not really fall here. But I like to light my pumpkin spice candles, buy fake leaves and pinecones, and pretend like the rest of the people in Arizona that there's more than just two seasons, "Blazing hot" and "A little better".

I bought a bunch of gourds from Walmart and stuck them in whatever I could find around the house. I also made this HAYRIDES sign out of some wood we salvaged out of my friends back yard in Flagstaff.

My wreath is actually an old film canister. I loved the metal finish and sat there brain storming ways I could use it. My thought process went something like this. "It's old... and round... and cool!... what are things that are round?... and cool... A WREATH!!!" My antique hole punch I mounted straight on my door holds it up with burlap ribbon.

And of course, a pennant banner because you really can't have too many.

I hung some old pulleys I've had forever from the fascia of the roof with an eye hook. I filled an antique basket with more gourds and used my old school chair under it with a white fake pumpkin from Hobby Lobby.

Today I'm making some fun fabric watch bands with one of my best girlfriends. No rest for the wicked!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Brighton Cottage

I received an order from a lady named Tricia for the Bakery sign. She has her own blog called Brighton Cottage. I visited her site and spent a good 3 hours looking at great pictures. 3 hours that probably should have been spent monitoring my children's sugar intake. Dirty rats ate an entire box of fruit snacks. Anyways, check out my favorite room from her house...

I love her stools and the old hanger her hand towel hangs from.

And, of course, her open shelving. I haven't seen it tucked into a corner like this before and I love it!

Her French breakfast table and bread bowl are fantastic.

From the breakfast nook you can see into her laundry room. Normally I wouldn't think the laundry room right off the kitchen would be very visually appealing, but when your laundry room looks like hers...

I would welcome it with open arms and 8 laundry hampers full of dirty boy clothes.

Check out her blog Brighton Cottage.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

How to search Craigslist and a media console

I always have people asking me how I find stuff on craigslist. It's really popular to use that website here in Phoenix which means there are a TON of posts. I can't tell you what the absolute best way to do it is, but I can tell you how I do it.

But first and foremost, if you don't have craigs easy, get it. It is phenomenal. No more clicking on pictures and clicking back. All the pictures are pulled up for you. Go to for instructions.

On to the search... I decided I wanted to built a media console for my t.v. wall that looked a little like this image I saw on pinterest.

Of course, I needed to tweak the design for what I wanted, but the most obvious thing I needed was some sort of salvaged wood. So here's what I did.

I searched salvage wood in the search bar. There were only about 17 results so I didn't need to narrow it down. I also didn't have any luck with that search.

The trick is to use multiple words with multiple spellings. I might be searching for a couch but they might call it a sofa. I call something salvaged and some guy posting it on craigslist calls it "crappy wood".

So I also searched weathered wood, old wood, reclaimed wood and barn wood. There were a ton of posts with those key words so that's when narrowing it down helps. I always click on the tab of the area where I live (east valley) and that narrows it down quite a bit. The more you narrow the less overwhelmed you'll be. If you're not willing to spend over a certain amount fill out the max price field.

Not really finding what I wanted with those key words, I started thinking of materials that would be sturdy and out in the elements. Think. Think. Think. Light bulb...


Scaffolding is thick, usually has a great driftwood like patina, and cheap. Lucky for me, there was a guy a couple of miles away from me who was getting rid of ten 16' planks for $30.

And then we built this with them...

I wanted it to be HUGE. And it is. I love that my giant house allows me to design giant furniture to go in it. I bought those locker baskets at the last barn sale so I added a middle shelf to the design. I also knew I wanted to stack suitcases on either side like the inspiration photo so I left those open.

When we were building it we figured out dimensions using my body. What ??? You've never done that??? That's how I do most things seeing as how I can't ever find a dang measuring tape. I said I wanted it "oh... about to my hip" and "eh... about twice as long as I am tall". Well, we nailed it.

After it was built, I used furniture wax to seal it. It was my first time using wax and guess what? 

I hated it. It took away some of that grey patina and turned it yellow. Boo. I won't be using that in the future. Maybe some of you have a trick to using furniture wax... Let me know!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Savannah, Ga

I loved Savannah, Ga. So much that if someone told me we could move there tomorrow I'd have my stuff packed up in an hour. And I would live in this house.

All pictures were taken with my phone. Sorry for the quality.

I don't even think anyone lives there now. Everything was boarded up and windows were broken. Sad day :( It was such an awesome house though.

On one of the first days, Katie and I went to a store called Pinch of the past by historic main street. They had the most amazing salvaged wood.

I bought some of this gorgeous chippy wood to make into picture frames for me and the winner of my Savannah giveaway. I'm still working on that, sorry Katie!

And then we went to Tybee Island. I absolutely LOVE Tybee Island. The beach, the cottages everywhere, the laid back vibe. I practically gave up shaving a became a hobo on the beach right then and there. 

It was one of those vacations that made you want to telegraph the family to meet you back east cause you found gold and are taking up residence for them. Instead I came home to Arizona. With no beach and no grass and no one saying ya'll. But my family was waiting for me.

I guess I'll take them over all that. Maybe some day I could have both??? 

I miss you already bestie. Come see me.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Craft and wood working class

I always have women telling me they wished they knew how to use power tools. Well ladies, here's your chance to learn...

I'm teaching a class where you'll learn how to use a miter saw, air compressor and nail gun. You'll also learn a great technique for painting, distressing, and antiquing any wood product. Plus, you get to go home with one of these...

I recreated this 2' x 2' piece of art for your home that I saw on pinterest. I will have grey, black, brown and white paint available for the class. Any color other than those will have to be brought by you.

The price of the class includes all of the supplies to complete this project and I will be there every step of the way to answer any questions you may have.

I'm offering this class from my own home so space is limited. I will have the first class on a weeknight for people who work during the day and the second during the day for those who don't. The class times are as follows:

Wednesday, September 26th at 7pm 


Thursday, September 27th at 10am

The project takes around 2 hours to complete. It is $65 and I encourage you to bring a drink and a snack. I am excited to offer this class and hopefully it will give you the confidence and motivation to tackle projects on your own!

E-mail me directly at to reserve your spot and get more information. Sorry, I can't make one and ship it. Local crafters only :(

*****The classes are full. I'm starting a list in case anyone can't make it and you want to come. I'll let everyone know if spots open up on the 20th*****

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Wood look tile flooring

I've been avoiding blogging for a while because of one reason. I thought waiting for a little while to retell my war story about laying tile would somehow have made it less miserable. You know, like child birth. Well, it's been a couple of weeks since I gave birth to this flooring baby and I still don't want more kids. Ever.

If you have the attention span of a squirrel like my bestie and can't handle long posts, you'll get the moral of my story with this sentence.

If you're considering doing tile yourself, heed my words... Installing tile S-U-C-K-S.

My husband and I have done a lot of DIY projects and this is one we would sub out if we did it in the future. Our house was a disaster and my knees were bruised for 2 weeks. Here are a couple of pictures of our progress.

Day 1. Removal.

This was actually fun. For the first hour. The next 8 hours were a little aggravating. Thanks to all who came to help with this nasty, dusty, frustrating at times, part of the job.

Day 2 and 3 were spent in Camp Verde for our anniversary. We played soccer in my annual alumni game and killed the current high school team. Sorry you were beat by a bunch of old ladies. But not really.

Day 4 we ripped out the old baseboards and cleaned and prepped the floor for the tile.

Day 5 I went to pick up the tile in Tempe. Funny story. You remember the tile I picked out from Floor and Decor that they said they were getting 5,000 sq feet of at the beginning of August? Well, it didn't ever happen. Anywhere. The warehouse was back ordered until October. That would have been really useful information BEFORE I RIPPED OUT MY OLD FLOORING!

So with a knife in my back, I headed out to 8 other stores to see what they had that was comparable. I was not about to live the next 2 months with my oven in the middle of my living room.

The 8th store was Lowe's. I knew that they had some because it was where I first found it locally. To my surprise, they had a tile with the same coloring but a little less wood grain than I wanted. But it also had a hand scraped look that the other tile didn't. So I found a great tile AND it was on sale making it less than the one I wanted.

HERE is what I ended up going with...

I bought our 1,300 sq feet and went on my merry way. I started installing while my hubby was at work that afternoon and finished the front room walk way with his help that night.

Day 6 I finished the hallway and into the kitchen before my husband got home and he helped me finish half of the living room.

Day 7 I refused to touch a SINGLE TILE. I just wanted the stupid project to be done. Except my appliances were still in my living room. So after that tantrum came...

Day 8 We finished laying the tile in the rest of the living room, kitchen, and hallway to the kids room. And I felt like a ton of bricks had been lifted off my shoulders. Or tile anyways.

Day 9 I went on my merry way to pick out grout. I was on cloud 9 thinking I was almost finished. Ha. I was such a young naive girl back then. No one had dark, dark brown grout. And after all the advice from pretty much everyone that had laid wood look tile before, I was going darker than I wanted. I finally located a company that could get the darkest brown grout in overnight.

Day 10 I started installing the grout.

Day 11 I called all my friends to help, panicking because I wanted to stab myself. 37 times. In the chest.

You are so welcome for this picture Jen. This is what we looked like for 3 days. I didn't want to take a picture of myself because that would have been embarrassing...

Day 12 I installed baseboards and finished the grout and was so excited to FINALLY HAVE THE PROJECT DONE!!!

Wrong again. I still had to clean the tile.

Day 13 I installed the baseboards and had to get grout haze remover and scrubbed my floors for the next 3 days.

That's right. SIXTEEN DAYS. My house was a wreck for half a month. I was probably the meanest person in the world to anyone I came in contact with. Sorry about the stink eye neighbors.

You guys. If you learn anything from this blog... I mean ANYTHING... just hire out tile jobs. Tile guys are WAY under paid. It would have been fine... fun even, if I had just done it on a 5' x 8' bathroom or something. But 1,300 square feet almost killed me. And then who would be there to tell you to RUN LIKE HELL if you get the crazy idea to lay tile, huh?

So run.

On a happier note. I don't regret it. No. Now I know how to lay tile! Are my new floors beautiful? Boy howdy! I love them. I'm no longer screaming at my kids to not eat or drink on the carpet and I'm not worried about scratches. It DOES look just like wood but with the durability of tile. I absolutely recommend this product to anyone with children. But save yourself some heart ache and hire out.

The end. Sorry it was so long winded. Here's a pretty after picture of the floor and table my husband and I just built. I'll post more about that later too!

As you can see, I still have to clean the baseboards. No rest for the wicked.