DIY

Shutterfly Coupon for The Gallery Wall Project

To say that Groupon has some what fueled our social lives since moving to Chicago would be an understatement. We have gone golfing, enjoyed an amazing prohibition tour through the city (which deserves it’s own post) dined out, and decorated our new place.

Imagine my glee when I discovered that Groupon now does coupons! I was so excited to see there was an offer from Shutterfly because I have wanted to develop some of my own photography to use on a gallery wall I am (pitifully) attempting to put together.

With a 45% off coupon, I was able to upload my photo to Shutterfly, edit it as needed, and five days later, I got my orange package in the mail with my fabulous canvas.

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So, we continue to piece together this “gallery” wall:

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It is a fun work in progress that can easily be shifted, but for right now, I kind of like the unconventional-ness of it 🙂

Hope everyone is well, and I will have more next week. I am off to Long Beach to stay on the historic Queen Mary for a night!

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A case of the DIYs

It is no secret that Paul and I are moving in less than 2 months (yay!), and I have been in full on type-A mode prepping for our new apartment. I feel that it is time to do away with all of my used and loved college furniture and get a fresher look for our home.

Enter new couch, new rug, new comforters, and new desk… oh wait, I’m poor; so that was the end of our new stuff. Time to get creative.

For years I have had an orange couch, a burgundy recliner, and an overall “fall theme” in my living room.  it is time to lighten things up.  Not being able to afford a new recliner, and truly loving the one I have, I decided to take it into my own hands, along with a staple gun and some fabric, to create a new look:

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I started out with this bad boy.  Paul just left me to my own devices in the 3-season room and said “don’t staple yourself”.  An hour and a half later:

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Voila! 

It wasn’t without its struggles, oh no, but from the front it is extremely presentable.

Advice to others:

1. If you read a blog and they say “I just got 5 yards of fabric to redo my chair”, get 6.  Just trust me, get 6…. and don’t look at the back of my chair which is currently still burgundy.

2. I know buying a staple gun is exciting, but make sure that you buy the right size staples.  I knew there were different lengths, but surprise! There are also different widths.

3. Read the instructions before attempting to load the staple gun.

My next project was redoing the top half of a desk that has been in my family for 20 years.  I have decided to keep the top half to use as a book shelf in the new apartment.  I figured “how hard could it be to paint over wood?”.  Paul, the voice of reason and experience, my own personal Yoda, suggested that I sand it down first so the paint sticks. I figured paint would just stick to wood anyway, but ok. 

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After finding extra paint in the basement, I realized that I didn’t have a paint brush.  This was divine intervention because I figured while I was out, I should get some fabric to cover inside and make it really cool!

I went out, got my brush, got my fabric, and settled down in the living room to get to work. “Did you get primer?”

The F&$K?!?!

Why does Paul insist on interrupting my “shoot and holler shit” methodology of life with practicality and legitimate questions?

“Um….” glancing quickly at my bucket of paint, modern invention is on my side.”PAINT AND PRIMER IN ONE!!!” I yell at him, as if saying “Boom! I already thought of that”. Nope, I just got lucky.

2 coats of paint later, I was ready to put on some fabric.  Not to sound like a kindergarten drop-out, but I am AWFUL at cutting straight lines. It was not pretty, but after a number of attempts, my master piece was finished:

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Now I kind of want to keep the  bottom half of the desk and just repaint that too.  

I have never been much of a DIY person, but I am having some fun 🙂 

t-minus 57 days until the move!

 

Dabbling in DIY and Redecorating

I love decorating.  It is probably my favorite part about moving or reorganizing… redecorating!

I am in super decoration mode for our impending move, which is ridiculous seeing as we don’t even have our apartment guaranteed yet. This does not detour my Type A personality…I have that place 90% decorated in my head (the power of positive thinking goes a long way).

Today, we have a new couch being delivered (moving or not, we needed a new couch), I have ordered new rugs, bed spreads, and have started collecting decorative things that will fit with my new design palette, which I can see in my head, but have yet to define very well. (All of this is thanks to my tax return… and sales).

Paul bought me our first new piece for our guest bedroom/office this weekend. An early birthday present in the form of a new writing desk/makeup station that we found at an antique store.

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I am madly in love with it already, and plan on loving it more in our new place surrounded by these, and other choice items: 

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I have also been in a search for an old ladder that I could use to hang blankets on in our living room.  I think I found the idea on http://www.livecreatingyourself.com/ , a blog that I absolutely love. I feel as if we have extremely similar taste (and she loves her dogs), but I would be ecstatic to live in her apartment.  

Anywho, I get so sick of our blankets just hanging off of our couch (or on the floor where Max likes them), so I was giddy when I finally found an antique ladder last weekend.

It started out kind of gross (and smelled like horses, Paul thought), but when you are antiquing or DIY-ing, you have to look at potential, not what you are presented with.  Bless Paul’s heart because I was just going to take it home and put some old sand paper to it, but he escorted me to the hardware store to buy me 3 kinds of sand paper, a mask, and blocks to wrap the sand paper around (who knew?!?).

An hour later, I had results that were beyond my expectation:

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A little grungy… definitely loved by someone

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Voila!!! I love the color!

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Now we just need to get some classier blankets…

I suppose my need to decorate a new apartment that we aren’t even in yet stems from the fact that things are still so up in the air about our move.  We will hopefully find our exact move date this weekend, school starts in September, but it is still to early to find jobs and have other things fall into place.

One thing I can control is our home, so that is where all my energy is going.  Call it the anxiety-control freak side of me.

Damn is it fun!

Is there something in your house that you particularly love or did yourself?