Monday, February 28, 2011

Oh Martha Monday - Painted Furniture

I love how paint can update and transform.

cane bedframe updated with paint
how-to here

update a classic with a coat of unexpected color
how-to here

create a rug by painting canvas
how-to here

Hope you had a nice weekend!   We got home late last night after a weekend visiting with friends.  Great fun, but boy am I tired.  Happy Monday!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Rug Reveal

 Last month I mentioned {here} that we were looking for a new area rug for our family room.  After a lot of research and some compromise... 

we ended up with this rug from Overstock

{the before}
with our thin and small old rug. 

{the after}

I'll be honest, it wasn't love at first sight.  At first I thought it was too neutral, then the shedding began and everything (including my kids) was covered in rug fuzz.  It was like having a pet that shed. A lot. Everytime I vacuumed, it looked like a little cream-colored fuzzy creature got sucked into the canister.

But now that it has stopped shedding, it has grown on me.  I can appreciate how thick and soft the rug is, the kids can now sit on the floor without freezing their patooties off, and though still very neutral, it does add a fun modern touch to our family room. Plus, I think it makes the room look warmer & larger.

Have a great Friday!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Terrarium Decor

Lately I've been drawn to terrariums.  They are retro. They are zen.  They are green.  And since I don't have a single houseplant, the plant/oxygen factor appeals to me.  I can't say I have the greenest thumb, but I've been known to keep air plants and succulents alive.  Well, except for that batch of air plants that I left outside that the rabbits ate-- apparently air plants are wild bunny delicacy... who knew??

I especially like hanging glass terrariums. 

via etsy

via amazon

i air plants.  no dirt = no dirt.   awesome!

via etsy
what a fun DIY  kit.

these beauties are made from recycled glass

via etsy
these glass globes are reasonably priced

via etsy
a fun shape

I'd love to hang them over our kitchen table like this--

Wouldn't they be perfect in this space?

I just need to find a way to secure them to the ceiling.  Since we live in earthquake country, glass dangling from the ceiling makes me a little nervous.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Craft Room Update - Feb 2011

I've finally made some progress in my craft room.  At least I can see the floor and the top of my desk!  I'm going to tackle my gift wrap this week and see if I can come up with some way to tame the ridiculous amounts of gift bags that I've accumulated, but am unable to part with-- I like the upcycle part of gift bags, but find they're a bit hard to organize without taking up a bunch of space.

This weekend I stopped at West Elm for a few minutes of happy solitude-- I seriously love that place. I think I found the perfect chair for my craft room.  I'm not sure how comfy it is, but I love the feminine design--

I didn't end up buying it, but I did purchase this lovely ceramic bird house with the extra 15% President's Day coupon.

It's time to change-up the mantel and I think birds and birdhouses will be perfect for spring.

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Oh Martha - Felt Tissue Box Cover

Since I recently posted  kid-friendly felt tissue box covers, I thought I'd share this adult-friendly version:

how-to here

Wouldn't this be pretty with the addition of a couple felt flowers?
I think I'll make one for our guest room.

If you're in the U.S., Happy President's Day!  We're lucky to have the day off, so we're on our way to the Happiest Place on Earth.  Have a great Monday!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Achoo! - Felt Tissue Paper Covers

This year our family is flying through tissue paper. Since school started in September, I don't think we've had a week where someone didn't have a runny nose.  [sigh]  Ah well, hopefully that just means that they are building up some sort of superstar immune system.  In the meantime, I'm thinking of buying some stock in Kleenex...

So now that I'm finally personalizing the kids' space, I thought that the pink box of tissue paper in Smarty Pant's Car Room was looking sadly out of place.  And with my felt-addiction, I thought I could easily make something fun, unbreakable and boy-friendly.

With a little craft felt, upcycled boxes, foam board (for the wheels) and a hot glue gun, this took shape...

Ooh, maybe I should color in the wheels... they look like Oreos!

I'm thinking of adding some text... like "honk if you mean it"... or something nose-related  :)

I also made one for the boys' bathroom.  I'm a little tired of cars, trucks, fish and robots (the typical boy themes), so I think I'm going to go whimsical-- whales, hot air balloons, and such.  I saw these wooden whale tissue covers the other day and was inspired. Since my kids like to carry around their tissue boxes, we can't do wood... but felt works!

Hope you're having a wonderful weekend!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Static Cling

Sorry for being MIA this week.  I attribute my blog absence to a severe case of Static Cling.  However, instead of socks, it's my kids that are attached to my pant legs and to the back of my shirt... sometimes, even my head!  Literally.  In fact, right now, one is climbing on the back of my chair and giving me karate chops to the shoulder-- in my house, it's called deep tissue massage.

Separation anxiety must be a developmental thing for the 2.5 and 4.5 crowd because I've been finding myself escorting kids to the bathroom-- Mommy, come with meeeeee.... It's scaaaaaaaary! ; kids having panic attacks when I'm doing laundry-- Moooommmmmy, where are youuuuuu!  I can't see you!  Aaaaah!; And kids underfoot when I'm trying to cook-- Mommy, come sit with meeeeeeeeee!  I'm lonely way over here (5 feet away).  And, of course, it's not just a day thing.  By midnight we find 2 very restless, perpendicular sleepers in our bed.

You get the picture.  It's basically very hard to do things with 64 pounds of extra weight dangling on ya!  However, I did manage to get a couple of project started in the 2 hours that they both sound asleep in their respective beds (hurray!).  One involving whales, and the other... scrabble. 

Hopefully I'll be able to crank something out over the weekend. Wish me luck!

Enjoy your weekend (and Happy President's Day!)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Rasterized Wall Art Tutorial

As promised, here's the step-by-step guide for creating your own Rasterized Wall Art.  It's really a pretty simple project.  For me, the hardest part was finding the right photo... and then finding the time to hang the artwork up.  But really, it's pretty simple and a huge bang for the buck!

Step 1
Find a photo that you love.
An image with decent contrast probably makes the biggest impact. And if you're going big, make sure your photo is high resolution.

Here's my original photo:
as you can tell, I photoshopped it a bit to give it a pop-art feel

Step 2 
Rasterize the image using The Rasterbator website.
There are two options-- online or download (I chose the online version).

Step 3
Get past the name "rasterbator" ;)

Step 4 
Using Rasterbator, crop or size your image (I found size to be easier);
Choose paper size & paper direction (I used US Letter in horizontal);
Choose Dot size (I chose 7mm) and Color mode (I chose Multi-color). 
That's it!  Let Rasterbator do the rest.

Step 5
Save the PDF file to your computer and print.

Step 6
There will be a border around each print.  Cut out each print... I know, I know...
(I cut mine out as I was mindlessly watching American Idol).

Step 7
Arrange your artwork and label the back with a pencil 
(it's easy to confuse the sheets when they're in rasterized form)

I used letters (A,B,C,D) for each row and numbers for each column (1-5)

Step 8
 Protect the art.
I chose to use these Self-Adhesive Laminating Sheets.  If you have access to a laminating machine, even better.  Modified page protectors, shop ticket holders , cheap frames (Ikea), and overhead transparencies will also work.

Step 9 
Measure and mask your wall with painter's tape.
This probably was the most "intricate" part of the project for me.
In your measurements, you'll also want to include the spacing between each sheet of paper.

If you have "crooked eyes" like moi, you may want to use a level before tacking things up.

Step 10
Using the masked-off rectangle as a guide, temporarily hang up your art using painters tape
(sorry for the poor quality of the photos.  Smarty Pants has black-out shades, so the lighting is all or nothing).

I did the bottom row first...

Followed by the left column...

Until all the sheets were tacked up...
there's a 1-inch space between each sheet

Step 11
Secure the art to the wall. 
To (hopefully) protect the paint, I used Command Poster Strips (Home Depot sells the value pack, 12 strips, for under $2).  If you use command strips, make sure to follow the instructions for easy application & removal.

Step 12
Remove painter's tape and "wah-lah", you're done!

I already had the self-laminating sheets, but the total cost for this project... $31

laminating sheets ($17) + 7 packs of command poster strips ($14) = $31
Not bad!

Here are some other Rasterized Wall Art displays that inspire:
black & white is so dramatic with the right contrast

 via apartment therapy
love the "window panes" effect.
apparently there's another site called blockposters that does the same thing (much more tame, but not as memorable of a name)

what fisherman wouldn't love this?

i'm thinking of doing something similar for Happy Vee's "around the world" room.

Happy Rasterbating!  :)