Say Hello to my Little Friend!

This lil wooden¬†mannequin was a necessary purchase. No, I’m not doing any life drawing anytime soon – that class was just intense. I just remember my mom having multiple of these little dudes and playing with them when i was a kiddo. I saw him at ikea this weekend for about 4 bucks and he just HAD to come home with me. So into my awkwardly large ikea shopping bag he went. He has landed right on my desk. I think he likes to take care of my pens for me.

He also likes to hand me things like scissors. Hes pretty strong for a little dude.

And he’s been making friends really quickly. He’s definitely bonded with my chinese lion bookend….

Yes i know im a geek. Anyway, lots of fun entertainment and all for just a few bucks! I thought about painting him a fun color or even staining him, but for now i like the light natural wood. Now i just need to figure out what the heck im going to name him. Of course, woody was my first thought. which is terrible… so we’re still working on it. Any votes?

Kitchen Art

So these guys all started from my constant need to check kitchen conversions online – im just bad at remembering how many cups in a liter, tablespoons in teaspoons, etc. so i decided to make a quick an easy “art” guide right there on the wall. So i made some more ūüôā Find them all on my Etsy shop, here! Without the logo at the bottom, of course!

Cant wait to see this guys in my kitchen:

Can you tell I got a part time job at starbucks?!

Also made this chart to remember cooking temperatures – super helpful!

Hopefully these art charts will be helpful while cooking up some delish grub!

-Rach

Renegade Craft Fair

Hey guys! Had an awesome time at the Renegade Craft Fair this year. Somehow this was my first time going – how do i miss out on such cool events?!

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I loved this booth Рthe handmade fabrics in fun mod designs and colors. Had to force myself to slowly back away. Head over to Cloth & Ink to check out all the goods.

One of my favorite was Satchel and Sage where I picked up an oh so fun feather print.

Seriously, how cute is this “birds of a feather” print?! Now i just need to run to Ikea to pick up a nice new frame for it!

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molly m designs creates unique lasercut jewelry and art Рthere were SO many pieces that i just adored. Check out her site to see

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Here are some more booths and artists that i loved: Feb10 Design, By Jeannie Jewelry, the merriweather council, DA Metals,  Squeeze My Hand, SimplyPlanted, Ceramica Botanica, and littleMinnow Designs. To check out the other artists that were there head over to  Renegade Craft Fair Artists.

Have a good weekend, Lovelies!

-Rach

Decorating 101: Walls

So Ive had multiple people tell me this week that i need to come over and decorate. First off, heck yes! I love to decorate, especially when its with someone elses credit card. What I’m realizing is how hard it is to move into a house with horrible paint color… throw your furniture wherever it best fits and then to be overwhelmed with how the heck to start decorating. So i put together a few tips! The most important thing to know is that its going to take time. Its not going to change overnight unless you have the money to do so. Even then, its better to just gather pieces you love, pillows you adore and random crap to make your house (or apartment) a home!

So first up, we are talking about cho walls. This is the easiest way to change up the feel of the room. And sometimes drastically. You can add paint, wall paper, shelving, pictures or art… this is a great way to add some color and have a little fun!

Paint

My first advice is not to go too crazy. or too boring. I’ve been house hunting and some houses are completely white… not a single hint of color on a single wall. And theres other houses where you feel like you’re walking through a rainbow. And thats not a good thing. Feel free to go bold on one wall, but not 20. Not sure about what color you want? Check out My Colortopia! This is a great new website where you can import an image and it comes up with multiple corresponding colors for you. For example, i uploaded this image from Desire to Inspire.

I uploaded the image and then it asked me to select a part of the room that i love in particular. It came up with a few selections of colors. Pick each of those colors and it comes up with a full color palate for you. This is a great option when you have no clue or maybe you like one rug or accessory in particular but youre not sure what colors would go great as paint colors. So definitely check it out, its a great resource!

A coat of paint can do wonders to a space. West Elm turned this boring office into a cozy space with a great deep ocean blue.

Your color choice always determines the mood of the room. If you want a calm, relaxing “spa-like” environment, go for lighter colors like sea green.

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Also dont be afraid to try some crazy colors. Maybe a bold yellow, green or even purple. I wouldnt suggest your whole house be eggplant, but one accent wall in the bathroom would bring out a nice relaxing space to come home to.

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Wallpaper

How about some wallpaper? Theres a ton of really great new modern wall paper like what MadebyGirl used in her office over at Graham and Brown. Isnt this so cute?!

Stencils

What about stenciling? I love the look of a high glossed stencil over a matte paint color. Does this look classy or what!? I’ve heard it takes a while but its always worth it. Image from Cutting Edge Stencils.

I love everything about this shot. Such a pretty wall!

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How about a chevron accent wall? How can you not love this!? Adorbs.

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Shelving

The best way to keep your house from feeling like your home is to have big blank walls. I know that you’ve got a ton of really cute pictures that need to be printed and framed. How about a cute mirror to add some depth. Even an old poster could be spruced up by throwin a fancy frame on it. Put up some floating shelves and add some decor, frames and accessories.

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Frames

Over at Young House Love they snagged some inexpensive frames from ikea that are huge and square. Then they simply added colored paper! Its really that easy to get a fun pop of color.

You can always change it later to polaroids or photos.

Art

You dont have to be a millionaire to have some great art. Etsy has really made some incredible art accessible. If you know me, you know i love Mae Chevrette. As must as I’d love an original piece, you can grab a high quality, archival print for less than 50 bucks (depending on what size you get!) $42 bucks for a 16 x 20 of this “Always” print would look just lovely on my walls.

How about 42 bucks for a large 18 x 22 print of this Boston skyline:

And one of my favorite “Bloom” paintings:

All four images above are by Mae Chevrette!

Just get on Etsy and dig around. You can find tons of amazing artists selling either originals or inexpensive prints! Go find YOUR favorite artist!

DIY Art

You could also always make your own art! I am no painter. Read here and you know i just like to push around paint… its more fun than anything for me. But just sometimes i come up with something i enjoy enough to put up on my walls. In this case, my best friend’s wall:

Or these recent fun, small little paintings that add a great splash of color to my office:

Or this piece that i put up in our bedroom. Love maps? Paint one! What do you love? What colors do you love? Its definitely the cheapest way to bring some art into your home.

I’ve even got a piece in my kitchen. If you cant paint walls while in an apartment, a large blue painting is a great way to add some color:

Wall Decor

Theres also other things you can put on your wall other than just paintings. I love adding dimension. Like these wall sculptures that are remarkable affordable bring nature inside and add a lot of fun depth to your walls:

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I also love these antique wall tiles i found for  a few bucks a piece at the City Wide Garage Sale. Just find fun things like this that are interesting or pretty to you and throw them up on the wall. I love the texture and interest those two tiles create.

How about just throw some freakin plants on the wall like here from West Elm. Just make sure you have a ton of light in this space or else you’ll have a lot of dead plants on your wall.

How about a chalkboard and 3D letters. I love this space because the walls are covered… but somehow its still not too much. Love it!

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So get to it! Go grab a bucket of paint and add a little character to your walls.

Also coming up, I’ll be posting Decor 101: Furniture and Decor 101: Accessories. Stay tuned!

-Rachel

Dream Art Studio

So I’m goin crazy crammed in my little office corner. I am blessed to have as much space as i have… but I’ve been dreaming of a larger space… not just an office but enough room for an actual studio.

Heres some studios I’ve been drooling over…

Incredible studio for printmaking. Link found here

This colorful art studio just seems to draw out creativity… love the space for multiple different projects. Might throw me into ADD mode. See more pictures here.

LOVE this antique cubby. Great for storage.. theres antique boxes and shelves all over the room that add beautiful texture and peeling paint – just love it. See more of the studio here.

This is such a bright room! Check out more shots here.

I adore this bright, clean art studio. All the storage space and table space… oh the things i would create in there! Check out dozens of pictures on Donnas blog.

This studio to the artist Marina Dorignac is inspirational.

And of course last but not least, Mae Chevrette.

I’ve posted about her beautiful art over here but just wanted to show off her incredible, funky studio.

I know, right? I love it. The texture, the greenery, the color… love it. Also check out her work… ¬†youll love that even more ūüôā Till next time!

-Rach

*For original source of each image – click image!

Cocoa & Hearts

Do you know Madebygirl yet? She is one of those blogs i can’t go a day without reading… her style, her love for color, her paintings have always been inspirational. In fact, her beautiful office was huge inspiration for my newly updated office! Jen Ramos is an incredible designer and graphic artist that proves you can make a living off blogging and online sales. Jen recently just opened her new shop called Cocoa & Hearts an online shop for all of her original paintings. They are all acrylic on canvas and generally pretty large – 48 inches long! They are definitely statement pieces

And good for Jen – most of her paintings were sold in only a week or two! Incredible! But don’t worry – there are still more to purchase and also she will be coming out with some 8x10s for the oh so stylish yet oh so broke ones of us! Go check the place out and check back often – she’s a paint-o-holic and I’m sure will add new work weekly.

-Rachel

First Painting: Sold! (kind of…)

So i love to paint. I’m not super great at it because its really more the relaxation of it for me. Usually i paint something 20 times over before i ever actually like what comes out of it. Like this red painting:

I just started to paint it just because i felt like painting. Not crazy about it, but i don’t hate it. This one (the map painting on the right) ¬†i LOVE:

Would you even consider a piece with only 2 colors a painting? Well, this next sucker, i can say i am proud of. In fact, its the first piece i sold! Well… could have, I had a “buyer” offer some lovely cash for it. BUT of course, i gave it away. What can i say? She was my best friend and graduating from college… OF COURSE i have to give her an awesome graduation present (for the record, i only say my painting was an awesome present because she was nuts-o about it). Still, the fact that i had a buyer willing to put down the cash… in my head, i sold my first painting!

Here is some good textcha fo ya…

Want some crazy awesome news? This weekend Michael’s was having their 50% off canvas sale.. ¬†PLUS i got the hook up to an ADDITIONAL %25 off coupon (that counts even with sales!) So i got 75% off of 3 massive canvases…. soooo i assume there will be lots of painting in my near future!

-Rachel

Office Chair Revamp: Part 1

So in my last post, i mentioned how much i loved this chair. Still do. Wallet doesnt. So to Craigslist i went and found this lovely chair posted for $40 bucks… and guess who got it down to $25! What i like the best about it is that its a very cushioned, comfy parsons chair… with wheels!

The Downsides:

-Dirty weird fitting slip cover

-brown wood that doesnt match anything

-boring fabric

-sketchy wheels (one is basically hanging off!)

So today, my main focus was to say bye bye brown!

Step 1: Clean legs, wheels and any surface to be painted. COMPLETE

Step 2: Remove legs from chair. EPIC FAIL The screws were all horribly stripped and really didnt want to let go. So i quit trying.

Step 3: Remove wheels. SECOND EPIC FAIL I’m really not sure how those suckers were even put on. It might look like a philips but it definitely was some crazy contraption meant to never be removed (for now). So i quit again.

It definitely would have been a lot easier if i could have taken everything apart but let me tell you… it just refused to let me. So out came the plastic bags and tape.


I’ve used Krylon for just about everything. This was a plain glossy white… I usually dont like a lot of high gloss when i spray paint, but this was definitely an exception. Its really more of a Satin/gloss. ¬†Keep in mind, use THIN layers and use quite a few layers. Especially with a piece like this, i would do an incredibly light layer of paint, wait 1 minute and do it all over again. Takes some time but then it really comes out beautifully with NO DRIPS! I also flipped the chair over to paint underneath since you could see the sides it missed from the top.

I then used Krylon Metallic silver for the wheels. They were sort of an off color bronze that just wouldnt look very good with the new fresh legs. I’ve never tried metallic before so i was definitely hesitant… but this was a last effort to attempt to salvage the wheels. Just check out those beautiful legs!

And heres the wheels after they were painted silver:

I know, right? Looks pretty legit! ¬†So this is the first time to really use spray paint on something considered “high traffic” so we will see how well it holds up. I’ve never had to worry about picture frames or vases getting stepped on so this will be a good test to see if the spray paint that we all know and love can really stand “The Test of Rollie Chair”

I know… not a huge before and after – but this is step one, people! Definitely looks heaps better than what it did before here. I love how much one piece adds to a room. PLUS its 1000000x better than sitting on that dang ottoman. It was so low i felt like i could barely see over the top of the desk!

I’m on the search for some good fabric. I’m really digging grey and yellow right now and I will either go that route or find a good patterned neutral and attempt to sew a new slipcover. Note: Check out my fresh new sewing machine i won in a Goodwill auction for 20 bucks! AND works beautifully! Double Note: I am very inexperienced with sewing. The first and only other thing I’ve sewn was the cushions for my outdoor sectional and chair here.

So heres some fabric I’ve been shopping for. How About Orange just came out with a new line of fabrics that i adore!

Option A: Frond

Option B: Picket

Both are super fun fabrics while keeping with my grey and yellow office theme. I do love wildflower too but for a chair, that might be too much. Moving on…

Option C: Premier Prints – Definitely a bright bold yellow pattern!

Option D: Premier Prints – This is a light grey though it looks much more blue in the image. I think this pattern is a little “safe”.

Option E: Premier Prints Chevron – Always a fun pattern and I’ve definitely been seeing this style lately.

Option F: Ty Pettington – This is one of my favorites but OF COURSE the most expensive as well. Click on it larger to see the pattern a little easier.

Option G & H: Both Waverly Cross Section fabrics. Again, grey might be the easier route to go incase of any future changes but green would be bold, fun and eye catching.

I’m also new to fabric shopping so if you guys know of any great places for quality fabrics, please let me know! Jo Ann’s just doesnt cut it these days. (pun not intended… but always acceptable)

Any votes?! Help me out!

-Rach


The Deets…

Alright, here it is… the nitty gritty. Down and dirty. The deets. Are you ready? I currently live with my brother, Justin. My older, messy, unorganized, grody, cage-fighting brother. I also live with (currently one) other dude named Shad who happens to also be a messy, grody cage fighter. Supposedly, i might soon be living with three. ¬†At least security will never be an issue here…

This blog is basically my attempt to A. Stay sane. B. Make a space that is my own in a house that isn’t and C. explore my interior decorating/designing girl side in a house full of dudes. Thankfully i bribed Justin to let me have a second room (hes got FIVE bedrooms in this house! plenty to spare : ) So i use the smaller of the two as my bedroom and the larger as a living room/ art studio. I really think this was a brilliant move. Though my bedroom is tiny, it has a walk in closet and it’s really all the space i need to sleep and read.

See what i mean? pretty small… but cozy! ¬†It definitely ¬†needs a ton of work. Notice no baseboards and random paint missing in sections. Also i sleep on a mattress on the floor – it super comfy, but its still just a mattress on the floor. Its a work in progress, people!

And here is my “living room”

I’m very glad i was able to fit my couch in there – i’d hate to see that beauty go into storage, plus it’s a nice getaway from all the testosterone downstairs.¬†That amazing chalkboard wall was actually there before i moved in. Justin offered to pain over it before i moved in – umm, heck no! ¬†The lovely drawings by my darling friends; Riley thought he should show his “mad artistic skills” by drawing the only thing he knows how to draw: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. He is so talented. Also, the puppy isn’t mine, he is my roomie’s. He does like to see what the heck I am up to all the time which is fun… there should always be more puppies in the world.¬†Heres some cute pictures of him the other morning.

Ok, i hate to post the rest of this – but here is my “art studio.” It is in quotes for a reason. I’ve never had a space just for my art so it’s just kind of all thrown into a corner. I am working on organization and I will post about that soon!

I know. Its awful. A few things to note: A. No, the image isn’t in black and white, its just boring with no color. Sad day. Its a work in progress, people! B. yes, i use an ottoman as my chair. Its horrible. Way too short and just really silly. I feel like a 5 year old trying to see over the top of the desk. C. Decent Ikea desk with almost no space.

So here is the plan: i want to build a new desk. Definitely something brighter and larger. There is just not enough space with this tiny desk and large monitor. So I’ve been drooling over this sucker:

It would definitely bring in more space, storage and really brighten up the area. Plus the plans are FREE online here. Thanks Ana : ) Once i have a larger desk Рi am in serious need of a chair. I LOVE the chairs used by Jen of Made by Girl.


The great thing is they are on Overstock for a measly $187.99 and shipping is only 2 bones! Crazy! Much cheaper than even buying them locally and they have great reviews for comfort and quality. Most likely going to be a purchase in the near future! Ok, scroll down at your own risk… this is where i keep all of my art supplies.

Ahhh, i know right? Scary! Anyway, the room has 2 great closets that are perfect for storage but the one on the right is in desperate need of a coat (or 7) of paint and well, i just really need some sort of organized system. I recently bought a few things from ikea: those white storage boxes and the metal storage on the wall. I think that was step one in about 20 but I’m definitely excited to see how this space evolves. I am going to post room by room soon to give you a better picture of the space and really explain the way i plan on approaching these (many) tasks ahead!

-Rachel