Tag Archives: how to


30 Dec

Check out how I turned an old set of twin mattresses into a cute little daybed for the office by clicking here.


Fireplace Painted!

19 Oct

This was hands-down one of the most tedious and time-consuming paint projects I have taken on in this house to date, yet will most likely prove to be one of the most rewarding.  It wasn’t a quick little paint job like my bedroom closet or the laundry room like I first had in mind.  Well actually, I think I may have known deep down inside that it would be a bit of a feat, that’s probably why it has taken me this long to finally get the job done, even though it was one of the very first things I absolutely knew I wanted to do upon moving in almost two years ago.  All the deep grooves around every single brick had to be hand-painted with a 1-inch brush since the roller just couldn’t get deep enough in there to get them covered, even when using the “extra-rough texture” roller.  So yeah, wrist-cramp anyone?  But I’m not complaining, I am more than thrilled with the results!

As I mentioned in this post, the fireplace, located centrally within the house in the kitchen, was a very dark, “energy-sucking doo doo brown” I believe is exactly how I worded it.  Here’s how the fireplace looked before:

You can see how all the Christmas decorations just blend into the dark, brown backdrop, creating a muddled arrangement instead of a bright and poppy one.  I first toyed with the idea of painting the fireplace red since I intend to paint the kitchen walls robins-egg blue, and I really love a pale blue and red color combination, but decided against it since red is also quite energy-sucking and wouldn’t adapt as well with the changing seasons and correlating decorum the way a more neutral white would.  Also, my eyes and my heart just kept going back to all of the white brick fireplaces I’ve seen and imagined, and have absolutely swooned over.  So white (off-white, Behr’s “Creamy White” to be exact) it went, not without first getting a good cleaning with the assistance of my best little helper of course:

… and also getting a coat of primer to make sure the white paint didn’t just get absorbed right into the underlying brown paint:

Here’s a close-in detailed shot to show you just how deep the grooves around the bricks really are:

And here it is after two days of about ten man-hours later in all of its whitewashed glory:

Not the greatest after/final reveal photograph, but it was late when I finally got it done and was eager to get this posted.  Olive and I have already gotten it all dressed and gussied up for the upcoming Halloween festivities, and I am more than enamored with how much more light and airy the room feels from making this one simple change!

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Doggie-Door & Side-Gate Install

23 Feb

Last month, for my birthday, my older-younger brother (I have two younger brothers) gifted me the service of installing a doggie-door!  It’s definitely a sign of aging when you request services rather than things and stuff for your birthdays (just a side-note).  Anyhow, this was a quick and fairly easy project with only a couple of hitches that we needed to work around.

 First, the side of the house had to be blocked off – the backyard has a chain-link fence that is located several feet back from the kitchen door (which would allow for the dogs to run out into the front-yard – no bueno!), so it was either bring the fence up closer to the front of the house, or just add a simple fencing solution and create a sort of penned area on this side of the house… as you can see in the picture below, I went the latter, lazier option, but it works.  These are just two simple garden gates bought from Lowe’s that required only sledge-hammering in a couple stakes into the ground and then inserting a pole through a top and bottom hole on each side of the gate.  Probably not the best looking solution out there, but it was definitely a cheap one.  I mean these are only 7 – 8 pound chihuahua’s that we’re dealing with here – since this project has been completed we have welcomed a second female chihuahua pup into the family whom Olive has decided to call “Peanut”.

So moving right along… After following the manufacturers instructions, I used the included template to mark where the hole needed to be cut (they recommend measuring the lenght from the floor to the top of the dog’s chest to know where to mark your outline).  Using this hand-dandy little saw, Jonathan (the afore-mentioned brother of mine) went-a-cutting-away…

YAY, a hole in the door!

Next, he caulked and screwed the doggie-door in place and then added weather-stripping around the top part of it where the actual door is slightly recessed, and then caulked around all of that…

(EWWW, please excuse the extremely dirty door, YIKES!)

Not too shabby! Looks pretty darn good to me!

We had to coax Bitsy and hold the flap up at first for her to come through the door, but since the arrival of Peanut (who uses the door like a pro) Bitsy is no longer timid. 

I love having this door, it is so much more convenient than having to take the dogs out to the backyard every time they want/need letting out.  Also, even though they are paper-trained, it has cut-back on the amount of “going” they do on the papers, which is also very refreshing to say the least!

Appologies for the blurry pics, one of my resolutions for this year was to only use the manual settings on my DSLR, so this was one of my first goes at doing that, they’ve gotten better since 🙂

Can I Get a Hoot Hoot!?

6 Oct

So here it is… my first “real” post! YAY!

There’s nothing like a new baby entering the family to get one’s creative sparks flying.  This is the owl mobile that I made back in March of this year for the newest addition to the family, my baby niece Hazel. 

My sis and her hubby went with an owl/woodland creature theme for the nursery.  You can check out how we painted this tree mural and how I updated this armoire for the nursery. 

For a full tutorial on how I whipped up this little mobile, click here.

You can view more photos of this owl mobile here.

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