Thursday, December 20, 2012

My Favorite Christmas Decorations

I love Christmas decorations! I try really hard to have sentimental decorations, ones I've had for years and most of my tree ornaments are ones my mom made when we were babies or my great grandma crocheted! I love these because Christmas for me is all about traditions, so to use decorations that mean something to me is the best! Some of my favorite things this year:

I ALWAYS love seeing everyone's cards and displaying them somewhere we can see them all the time!

A live wreath is awesome, smells so good! And I loved hanging these bells on the doorknob, and hearing them jingle every time the door opened and closed! So merry!

I've had this Christmas village since before I got married, it goes up every year.

My mom collects nativities and has some amazing ones, she found this one and gave it to me. I love that it has a little drummer boy, so cute!

And the reason I love Christmas the most: making it special for the kids! haha

Friday, November 2, 2012

The Painting of The Girls' Room

What an adventure its been trying to get this house put together! It seems the same problem keeps happening: I think a project will only take so long, and I really should just double it. ;)

I've been working on the girls room for a while now and have run into a few hiccups. First up, I decided not to prime over the light turquoise walls. My thinking was that the white paint had covered the darker turquoise in the boys room, and since I was doing yellow, it would cover easier right??


What really happened was that it took four coats and the entire gallon of paint to cover three walls (basically two because one wall is just around the closet, not hardly any wall to cover). I would start painting and it would look like it was covering so well and as it started to dry, the turquoise and the yellow would blend into a weird greenish yellow. :/

Finally I went out and bought another gallon of paint, this time a lighter yellow. I had picked out a sort of mustardy yellow and I wasn't loving it. This time I got more of a butter yellow and I think its perfect!

Here's the before, and aaallll that minty color. Once again, the old owners decided to paint EVERYTHING, including the baseboards, the windowsill, inside the closet, even the closet ceiling! What fun they were!! *strong sarcasm here*

Here's the start of the yellow:

Here's after the new yellow gets going:

The last wall I wanted to do something fun for, and decided on stripes. So I got smart and used primer for that one! haha Then I did a coat of regular white and then I started measuring. I wanted the wall split up in three sections, so I measured the wall, did the math and made three vertical lines. Then I measured the height of the wall and split up how wide I wanted my stripes to be. I decided on three inch stripes, so I made little tick marks every three inches all the way up the lines I originally did.

Then I started taping, I just laid one end of the tape on a mark, pulled it tight and lined it up with the mark at the other end, then pushed it all down flat (if that makes sense?). The lines are definitely not perfectly straight but I don't think its noticeable at all. Especially once there's furniture and pictures on the wall it will be even less.

 (this is where I ran out of tape.) (the little white lines are where my tape isn't quite wide enough to go the full three inches, why do they make tape 1.4 inches wide? Thats dumb.)

Here's the gray going on. Did two coats of that.

And here it is with the tape all off:

See I don't think its that easy to tell if any lines aren't perfectly straight! But I think it looks so fun! What do you think? Would you take on a stripe wall?

 Can't wait to show you the finished room! Yay!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Desk Makeover

I mentioned two posts back (the one with the lamp) that my father in law gave me his old desk. Last year my sister had a Masquerade Party and we had a photo booth set up for it, I quickly painted and covered the seat of the desk chair to use as part of the booth. But then the rest of the desk sat unused in our garage until now!

When we moved, I had planned on using the desk for my computer desk instead of the crappy old thing we had from Walmart. ;) I started spray painting it before the move but life got in the way and I didn't finish. So a day or so after we moved in, I hauled it outside and finished it--I needed my computer guys!

Here's the before:

 (yes, that is an old carseat...)

 You can't really tell here, but those three panels are leather, not wood. Pretty cool if you ask me!

 Good looking knobs even!

I love this key hole, I just think its so darling!

And the afters:

 The color is Pistachio (from Krylon), and I think its so cheery!

 Gotta show that key hole again! ;)

 Here's the leather panels, I think they're such a cool detail!

One more shot. The chair has been beat up over the last year, so now the desk will get a little distressing to match!

Of course, now it has all my computer stuff set up on it, and I'm still trying to figure out the best way to hide all the wires, but I still LOVE it!

What do you think? What color would you have chosen?

Monday, October 15, 2012

Different Flooring Options

Its been a little while because: we bought a house!

It was a short sale, so of course that means it was a long process and I'm just so glad to be done with it! Meanwhile, we've been installing and upgrading and redoing as many things as we can! One of the projects I worked on last week was my boys' room. Here's some pictures of the process:

I started painting at night so thats why this is so dark, but this is the "before"--which means, turquoise. Turquoise walls, baseboards, even the window sills. Sheesh, it was a lot of turquoise! :)

Here it is with the white on the bottom. It took at LEAST three coats of a paint/primer in one to cover it. In fact, I used the entire gallon of paint on this room!

The top part got two coats of a navy blue, and then the carpets were pulled out. Did you notice them in the other pictures? They were blue. A very 80's blue. And gross. So glad to have them gone!
 So we're down to the subfloor. Which is just plywood. My original plan was just to paint the plywood. When I pulled back the carpet, guess what I found?! A whole bunch of overspray from the wall texture on all the edges of the floor! Isn't that just lovely?! So pulled the carpet out, removed the tack strips and all the staples (this took a long time!). Right now would be a good time to check for squeaks. If you step down and its squeaks, put a screw in there.

 This is the doorway, you can see a little bit of the overspray but also a nice wire coming out of the middle of the floor! Another not expected surprise! At that point, I thought I wouldn't be able to use the subfloor and went out and bought MDF to cover the whole thing. Later I checked out that wire--yeah, it was cut and didn't lead to anything. So I COULD have pulled the wire out, patched the whole and used the subfloor as is. BUT, then I would have had to sand all the overspray off, pull off all the baseboards and re-attach them 1/2 an inch lower. I also like the thought of having a little bit thicker floor, just seems sturdier to me!

So I went out and bought four sheets of MDF. Now, here's my disclaimer: this probably isn't the best choice for flooring. It would probably be better to get plywood at the very least (I've seen tutorials about painting plywood floors, like here or here). I was on a super tight budget and just trying to make things work. In a couple months I'll let you know how well its held up ok? :) So the sheets come in 4 ft by 8 ft, and I had the guy at Lowe's cut them in 4 ft by 2 ft planks. After I got them home I laid them out and had to make some extra cuts. It was actually kind of fun, like putting a puzzle together! Then after I had them all laid out, I nailed them all down. Probably would be a better idea to screw them down, but I'm gonna be honest, I'm kind of lazy. :) (And yes, I did hit my thumb at least twice--ouch!)

The boards didn't fit in 100% tight, so I had to fill in a couple small gaps--either my boards weren't totally straight or the walls aren't. :)

After that I painted on a layer of primer, and then a layer of white porch paint. Here's my tip for painting floors: don't use white. I've already noticed as soon as you step on it theres a foot print. They will be much harder to keep clean!

So then I painted on navy stripes. I wanted to do this the whole time and thought it would add such a fun detail to the room. I'm going for a nautical theme and it just seemed perfect. This also helps with the dirty factor, footprints don't show up on the navy! So I did two coats of the navy and two coats of the white porch paint.

And this is what happens when you're too liberal with your paint-- it bleeds under your tape. Another tip: if you're a sloppy painter, don't do stripes! haha In all honesty, you do need to be careful when you want a nice line, putting on too much paint is going to cause things to bleed and then you'll have to go through and touch it all up again. Also if you notice, my tape pulled up some of the paint--thats why you wait until your paint has COMPLETELY dried before you put tape on it! :)

So that is the tale of the boys' room floors! Hopefully it will give you some ideas if you are on a tight budget of what you can do! I will be posting a complete finished look soon but I still need to hang pictures and finish up last touches! Look forward to it!