Memorial Day Sales!

Well, its memorial day and of course that means great sales! Yesterday me and a buddy, Amy headed over to one of my all time favorite stores in the world. West Elm! Because of Memorial Day, everything thats already reduced is on sale another 15% in addition to whats already marked down! On top of that, they were trying to sell their floor models so a lot of items were marked down by 100s of bucks! Halla!

This table I’ve been eyeing for a while… our ourdoor table isnt so much an outdoor table. Its more a cheap $10 target temporary that is falling apart with all the moisture. But at 70 bucks, i just couldn’t make the purchase. BUT there was a floor model on sale for 30 plus the 15% off! Still suprised I didn’t snatch that up… so cute!

Amy was eyeing these pillows for her living room. But i thought it would be fun to find just a plain white pillow cover, get some fabric paint and paint it yourself! That would be so much more fun (and cheaper!)

Can’t wait to have a sweet dining room and dining table! Love the mix of the cozy chairs and the bench!

You know i have a love for succulents, I’m diggin them as a centerpiece…

I am definitely lovin this centerpiece – definitely a little messy for Memorial Day weekend but the mix of silver and teal just makes me happy…

Love this guy. Definitely approve of the faux animal head mounts. Always creeps me out to have an actually dead animal head on the wall. So sad. This is a very agreeable alternative.

Though this would be a horrible idea in my house (Im pretty sure I’ve mentioned how horribly clumsy I am, but i just loved those dozens of bottles all clumped together. Please dont do this at your house either. I think it works for West Elm, but not a home. Maybe pick up half a dozen. Not 100.

LOVE the mix of white lacquer and whitewash of these dressers and bed frame. It just has a beachy spa-like feel to it. I dig it.

I laughed out loud when i saw this cute lil owl in his cage. Poor lil guy.. his friends are free but he is not.

I ALWAYS love the displays… this would be awesome! Just paint one fun wall with chalkboard paint and add frames! Such a fun idea!

I love paint. Having “painted” bedding is definitely my idea of a good time. Plus i love the blues!

Amy crashed after a long day into one of the most comfy, absurdly expensive outdoor chairs in existence. Pretty sure its around 1,300. But its on sale! (for maybe 1,200…)

So go out and get you some cheap ol furniture. Also, did anyone notice the Room Store going out of business? So sad but you can definitely grab a great piece of furniture for super cheap!

Happy Memorial Day, Y’all!

-Rach

Clutter, Clutter, Clutter

I am a messy person. I like to blame that on my creative side…. i create, i dont organize. Though I have been REALLY trying like here, here and here. Still, I’ve narrowed down the problem to clutter. And apartment size. Now, we have a pretty decent sized apartment, but when your stuff alone could pack the place out… then you get hitched and add another persons stuff as well… dang, theres just stuff everywhere.

I’m photographing a wedding today so I have a wide angle lens and went to town photographing the apartment. One thing you’ll notice… we have stuff everywhere! Theres just not enough space to hold everything!

This next photo makes me cringe. The issue: my fav chair. That beige chair + a book + the best blanket ever created = what i call a good time. I LOVE that chair. Its such a big chair there is no way it would fit in our bedroom. Plus the sectional is also huge. So our way to solve the problem… just shove them in a tiny space and get cozy. Honestly my priority over design was comfort. Usually is. When its not, thats when you end up with museums for interiors. I’m not knocking it but thats just not my style. If its not cozy and homey, its not me. Or kenny. really the whole left side of this image is just gross. We play board games all the times so those are a must, magazines, books… always a must. And everything else, well theres just no where else to put it. And this is how a bunch of stuff turns into clutter. Usually if you have a bunch of stuff that has no place – you get rid of it. EXCEPT if you are in that weird in-between of apartment to a house. You want to buy a house but you’re not quite there yet. You dont want to get rid of any furniture because though it might be crowded right now, soon as you move into a house, you dont have enough furniture!

So thats what we’ve got right now. I’ll of course keep fining more ways to clean up and de-clutter, but until we move out of an itty bitty apartment, thats just what we are going to be stuck with! Just check out the left of the tv. Yikes. We have hundreds of movies (in stacks on the floor since they don’t all fit on the shelf). We have my record player, and of course old school nintendo games. Because what is life without mario cart? We definitely had a tetris tournament the other day. halla!

Any ideas on better ways to organize in a tiny space? My plan is to tackle one project at a time and be thankful for the beautiful space that we have!

-Rachel

More fun news!

Oh! NEWS TIME! So there is good news and bad news. Badish news first: we are officially not getting a house… yet. We were pre-approved which rocks but we decided instead of moving directly into a fixer upper and having to focus on that, we can just focus on the whole marriage thing instead. We are both happy with the decision and theres always time to be homeowners in the future.

So the good news: We got an apartment and i move in on MONDAY!!! What what!! For serious you guys. I am beyond stoked…  Sweet Kenny will have to move in with his parents (hey, free food and rent!) until the wedding but he doesnt mind at all… yay mooching! So this means I will have more than just 2 rooms to decorate… whoot!

Lets have a fun pros/cons list, shall we?

Things that I will not miss about my current living situation:

  • Livin under the airport. I swear, they barely miss our house every time they pass by
  • poop on the bathroom wall (for real… please dont ask, i have no clue)
  • dirty dishes 98% of the time
  • couches soaked in dog pee
Things that I will miss:
  • Spending a lot of time quality time annoying my big brother
  • Having a large office/art studio
  • a back yard and doggie door for Maggie
  • not having to go up three flights of stairs

So anyway, here is the floor plan of the new digs:

Yea… two porches, bay windows, massive walk in closet, garden tub… all the rooms are huge. Oh, and its pretty dang cheap. I love austin : )  So i never realized how important it is to me to have windows… but when we were looking for houses, we would find rooms with ZERO windows. Eww. It looked like a jail cell… anyway this guys got 11 windows! Love love love…

The only main issue is my office. Working from home is amazing but we are tryin to save $ so a 2 bedroom wouldn’t make sense. My thinking is to just use the “dining” space as my office space so that way i have tons of windows to distract me with but a nice little nook to really work in. Plus we dont have a dining table yet so we wouldn’t have anything else to put in there anyway.

As far as the porches, I am beyond stoked that I finally will have outdoor space again! My outdoor sectional and lounge chair have been collecting dust in the garage instead of soaking up the sun so I cant wait to sip some coffee on the porch with a good book.

I guess this means I should actually FINISH the dang thing! I just need some big huge fluffy pillows and some fun throw pillows. Since the seats are such bright colors i thought if the backrests were the same color it would be overload… would two tones be weird? just a fun linen texture or a light grey…. maybe a navy?  oh the choices…

Of course we will be hauling Big Red up three flights of stairs so that should be interesting:

Note: puppy pictured has since been replaced with an upgraded Maggie version. Just kidding. Thats just my roommates pup Obie Wan Kenobi. 

So i have no clue yet how I will have an office… maybe i just need a big bookcase to put all this stuff in.

I dont know if my door desk will even fit! Maybe i can just cut it down a bit and paint it… who knows! I didn’t measure the space so I really have no idea what is going to fit and what wont. Plus theres the whole… husband’s furniture thing once he moves it. Crap! Well, i guess that is what closets are for. Joke… hes got some good fun stuff. Including swords. That he wants on the mantel. Wait, we don’t have a mantel. But just somewhere important. Yea, swords. They were passed down from his grandma (apparently she is a super cool lady since she decorates with swords!) So it should be interesting combining stuff.

Oh! and we dont have a washer or dryer… sounds like I’m going to be swinging by my friend’s apartment a lot! I guess i didn’t mention that either, a good friend already lives in the complex  (we will name her “Honey Ryder”)… so I’m pumped to go to the pool and gym with her like… every 5 hours to get in hot bride shape. Seriously, yo! I’m determined. Hooray for embarrassing workout videos in the living room!!

What else? Oh, my sweet hand-me-down barstools from my oh so stylish mother will be put to use again! The kitchen has an awesome bar which will have to be our dining table until we build or refurnish an actual table. Forget buying. I’m so over buying furniture. Thats a lie. I put these sweet chairs (from CB2) on my wedding registry (they are actually cheaper than most chairs i found at target! woot!)

Pretty sweet lookin, huh? I guess i should run it over with the ol ball and chain (yes, that applies to dudes too) but I definitely have been trying to decorate for a guy as well. And lets be honest here… my style is fairly masculine to begin with. Ok wait, i did register for these cute little porcelain love bunnies…

No seriously. I really did. But just look how dang cute they are! You know you want one. I know you’re just waiting for me to tell you where i got them from so you can go pick one up. Hmm… i’ll think about it.

Anyway, so I am going to spend the entire weekend packing… and shopping. What? Its tax free weekend here in the ATX! Gotta get me some wedding shoes! Speaking of… whadya think about these guys?

I’m pretty sure i may have just given my mother-in-law a panic attack with that one. No, I am not REALLY going to wear these down the isle. Though it would be pretty sweet… Oh and i just decided to call my mother-in-law “Phyllis” on the ol blog. Why? Only because shes the best character on The Office, of course. Keep in mind though, my mother-in-law A. looks nothing like Phyllis or even has the mannerisms of Phyllis B. isn’t your typical mother-in-law. Why, you might ask? Because i actually like her : ) scratch that, love her. And no, im not just saying that because its 4am or because I’m pretty sure she reads my blog. (Hi, Phyllis!) Lets just say shes pretty awesome lady that likes to rock some pretty sweet leather pants and dance for about 5 hours straight. Can you say that about your mother in law? Case in point. Random tangent… it’s now 5am so i have an excuse.

Point is… I’m movin out and its about time! Love my brosif but I’m beyond pumped to have my own place then live with a dude that is cleaner than me. I know right! Love my mother-in-law AND have a clean future husband? I really am blessed…

-Rachel

* Did anyone catch the 007 reference? anyone?

**Bunnies are from UrbanOutfitters. Go on, i know you wana get them : )

Before & After: Door to Desk

Alrighty… its *FINALLY* done! Not that it took long to make, it just took forever to get the time to finish painting! But here we go… the “before” of Mr. Door:

And here is the oh so beautiful after:

Isn’t that just refreshing? And incase you forgot what the space looked like before… yikes! Heres a little reminder:

Eww… i know. Sorry to post such a disaster but it makes the After shot much sweeter…

In this last shot you can see the door knob hole where i run the cables through. I initially thought I’d put the desk against the wall so i didn’t expect to need to fill the latch hole but I’m definitely going to have to do a quick fix!

I will post soon my how-to on the paint! If you want to read about the building process go here, here and here!

Also,  (drum roll please) the main reason why I’ve been so determined to get my office up and running: starting friday at 6pm I am officially a full time freelance artist! I semi blame this book for gettin the fire started… read it at your own risk…  four months later you might end up quitting your job too!

-Rach

Grey + Yellow Office

I adore the combo. So, of course… I’m redoing my art studio and office in yellow + grey! Here is my “dream setup” and gives you an idea of whats goin on in my mind brain.

A. Hand build desk similar to this guy by West Elm, Ana White shows you step by step instructions on how to build your own for MUCH cheaper here.

B. Rug by West Elm

C. Sabertooth Scull from ZGallerie. Why? Because everyone needs a sabertooth tiger scull in their art studio…

D. Bookshelf from Overstock

E. cleaver Bookend from CB2

F. Manhattan office chair from Overstock (though you can see my craigslist find here)

G. Filing cabinet from CB2 or find an old one and spray paint! (saves $100+ that way!)

H. Pillow from Target

Considering i have a ton of built in shelving and really dont need a sabertooth scull (though i think it would REALLY help me get inspired… somehow) this is just fun inspiration. Hopefully i’ll be able to post the before and afters soon!

-Rachel

Sew Rad

Man, i am beyond cheesey these days. Deal with it. Ok so i realized the other day that i never posted about a small little project i did a while back…. my outdoor sectional! Crazy! This was my first furniture build and my first time to sew anything! SO here we go… If you dont already know and love Mrs. Ana White, you definitely need to meet her (and then “accidently” spend 3 hours searching through her site for furniture you  HAVE to build).

Now, I’m a huge outdoor person… always have been. And my last apartment (which i miss dearly now that i live in this yucky boys house) had an AMAZING porch – pretty large AND it overlooked the lake! Seriously breath taking every morning… the issue is… I’d just ahve to stand there. Because again, I’m a recent graduate where the only furniture you have is bean bags and crappy dorm room stuff. Anyway, so i stumbled across this beauty:

*enter heavenly music here*  I HAD to build it. SO i bought wood, borrowed some tools that day and started to build:

And then, voila!

I was super impressed: not only did it look great, it was SUPER sturdy too! So fabric was purchased:

Purchased outdoor fabric for cheap over at Fabric.com.  I then decided to tackle my first sewing project (with the help of Ana again with these outdoor cushion plans, and my mommy, of course!)

Then after about 57 mishaps with staining, sewing and other small disasters, i introduce to you… my first furniture build!:

So then, of course, Ana decides to post an entire outdoor sectional:

GOSH ANA! SERIOUSLY?! But the great thing about this plan, you can build it piece by piece. One end piece here, one center piece there… and you end up with this:

Isn’t she pretty?! I never got a chance to finish the back cushions… and the sad part of the story? Half of her is at my boyfriend’s apartment and the other half is IN THE GARAGE FOR STORAGE! Sad sad sad story…. but this project started my crazy furniture desires to become a reality. This week i refinished an office chair and will finish building my new office desk this week! The key to start building something… just go buy the wood. If you force yourself to do that, you’re just going to have to try! You might suprise yourself….

*All graphics by Ana White

-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


Dining room table update!

Well guys, i decided against building my own table and chairs… as cool as that would be to say “hey, i built that!” there are SO many choices on Craigslist popping up daily for less that what it would cost for me to build. So instead… i plan on finding a piece of junk and refurbishing it! Theres nothing like breathing some life into old furniture. PLUS, its recycling! Hooray! I’ve also decided now on with whatever i build to not buy new wood. Instead i will do what i can to find used. You can use palates, find old barn wood, fences or even deconstruct old furniture. It might take longer to find the wood but if that means one less tree gets chopped down, its worth it, right?! Just make sure that the wood is not rotting or termite infested… that would be pretty awful to build an awesome chair and then have it break in half with your grandma in it sending termites running all over the dining room! (ok, a little overdramatic but hey! i could happen) Here are are some examples of furniture build from reclaimed wood. The last dining table is actually build out of old railroad wood! Talk about a conversation starter….

Older woods are great for that rustic look but also work out for modern or shabby chic… All depends on how you treat it. Till next time!

-Rachel

Forget politics, vote for this!

My next build project (first one is here) is a dining room table and chairs! This is the table I’ve decided to build. It seats 6 but for a 30$ part i can make it… EXTENDABLE to fit 8! Cool, huh? Also, while those 2 extra chairs aren’t in use, i can have them at my work desk and art table (which currently dont have chairs) So i figure… if i’m going to put in the effort of building a dining table from scratch, might as well shove as many friends/family around it as possible. I like really simple and i love dark wood so this table is really what i’m aiming for!

Initially, I was just going to build the table and just buy chairs, but good ol’ Ana recently posted some “easy” DIY chairs… the thing is, i like them both! What are your thoughts?

Option A: Square Chair

Option B: Upholstered Parson Chair

There are multiple pros and cons with each chair. Lets start with cons because, well… i like to mix things up.

CONS:

  • Opt A: intricate woodwork will be tricky to get even and also make the chair less sturdy (the more you chop up wood like that, the weaker it will be)
  • Opt B: Well just look at that sucker! It would probably take me a month just to get through one chair! And if i extend the table that means 8 months just for all the chairs!! Also, I am not a seamstress.  Oh, i know what you’re thinking – my cushions were AMAZING for my lounge chair… but that was just a sewn square – this is an entire chair. Its also more expensive with the cushions, batting, more wood, etc.

PROS:

  • Opt A: Love this chair ever since i saw it on West Elm. Just a fun, unique design that adds character to a room. Most of the chair is super easy to build and wouldn’t take more than a day or two.
  • Opt B: Have also always loved the Parson Chairs and never once thought I could build one from scratch by myself. Until now. MUCH more comfortable than bare wood. One of my favorite parts is i would be able to pick my own fabric! I love funky fabric so that would bring a completely new element to my dining room!

 

So there you have it! Opt A: the Squared chair; Opt B: Parson Chair, Opt C: No chairs and make my guests sit on the floor.  What do you guys think?!

 

-Rach

 

Ana-White.com

This is a shout out to my girl, Ana! If you know me at all or have ever read my blog, you’ve seen furniture I’ve built from scratch. I am not a woodworker and have ZERO experience, but the one thing I did have was this website., Ana-White.com Everything you could ever need to know to build modern, sturdy, beautiful furniture. The first thing I built was The Outdoor Lounge Chair and very quickly moved on to my entire porch and build an outdoor sectional! I’m still in the process of making cushions but it is beautiful, comfortable and incredibly sturdy. Keep checkin back for updates on my current building projects and some fun how tos!

 

 

Ana-White.com.