Thursday, April 29, 2010

Elephants Never Forget

After starring at my bedroom wall decal for a few days I still felt the wall was too blah... don't get me wrong I LOVE my new decal... but its a very big wall and the view from the bed left a lot of empty wall space! So after some thought and some bantering back and forth between Ryan and I we found a saying we thought was very appropriate for us. Just to paint a picture, we have a rule that we kiss each other goodnight. Yes thats right it is a rule.... if one of us forgets they wake the other up just for that kiss. Its kind of a funny joke now between the two of us. Anyway, now with our new decal we will never forget!!! (You know that Elephants Never Forget!)
I know it looks crooked in the picture... it really isn't THAT crooked.. I had to do each letter individually which was a little bit tricky but I love the end result!!!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


ITS A LOVE IT TUESDAY! I plan every Tuesday (hopefully... as long as I'm not swamped) to post links of projects that I would LOVE to try out... and I may just eventually try them out too!! This weeks LOVE IT project I found on one of the blogs I follow periodically, Addicted to Decorating. It is a handmade antique looking family sign.

You can find the tutorial on how it was created here.

I love this idea for many reasons... the biggest reason is that maybe if I can make one of these successfully I can get rid of the 1970's made 'The Guerin's" sign that Ryan refuses to get rid of and is hanging in my back hallway.... IT HAS CARTOON BUNNIES ON IT!!!!!! No matter how many places I hide it, it just keeps coming back! SO if I can successfully make a new one maybe just maybe we can get rid of the bunnies!!!! WISH ME LUCK!!! I will post how it turns out when I get around to it... even if my attempt looks AWFUL I'll still post it!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Homemade Wall Decals (on a budget)

I'm sure everyone at some point has looked at the wall decals that are becoming the fast and easy way to decorate a room. Most of the ones in the stores run over $20 for a few small vinyl decals. I have been looking for the perfect picture for the large blank wall that is in our bedroom. The problem is that there is less than a foot of space between the wall and the foot of the bed and that is the way Ryan gets to his side of the bed (did I mention we have a small room!) So putting an actual picture on the wall would have been a disaster as everytime Ryan would try to get to his side of the bed the picture would inevitably have fallen. So I knew wall decals were the way to go, BUT they are a little too pricey for my wallet. I resorted to finding another solution that wouldn't ruin the paint on my wall (I'm not about to repaint!). SO I found one solution, using liquid starch apparently sticks fabric to walls. I went on a search for liquid starch...... Seriously WHERE DO YOU FIND LIQUID STARCH??? After checking EVERYWHERE I gave up on that idea. Then I found this person who had used applique webbing and ironed it on the wall. She said it worked great and didn't ruin the paint. So on a rather rainy Sunday I ran off to Fabricland to pick up some material as well as the webbing. I was in luck, they had a 40% off everything in the store sale!!! NICE!! I ended up buying about 10 feet of the webbing (I have a LOT of decals in mind for the house...) and a few metres of material for various projects. This set me back about $34, but considering I plan on making 2 sets of curtains AND many wall art projects I think its a bargain!

Anyway, down to the process!! I asked Ryan what he wanted on the wall and since he is obsessed with FERBA (he had a crazy dream and invented an 'association'... Asking him all about FERBA if you need a really good laugh!!) and inevitably elephants. So I went on the computer and put together a template which I printed out. Then I grabbed my large roll of Heat N' Bond webbing and ironed it to the wrong side of the fabric.

Then I peeled back the paper layer and lightly placed my stenciled out elephant against the sticky side. Then I cut out my shapes. Now came the trial and error stage, I placed the elephants on the wall and lightly used my iron to stick it to the wall. If it was placed wrong I found I could actually remove it slowly and reposition without ruining the wall or the decal. It was amazing!! One tip though when trying this, only heat the decal for a few seconds, it will stick no problem BUT it will also make it easier to remove in the future. The longer you iron it the harder it will be to remove. I tried picking at the edges to make sure they would stay and they are stuck there, BUT can be remove with a little picking and if you slowly pull them off they leave the wall untouched!!! SOO here is the result of my art project! I LOVE IT!!! It brings out the greens and purples in my quilt and looks great!!! What do you think??

And just to prove that there is little space between the bed and the wall.. here you go. Yes the brown knob at the bottom of the picture is the bed.

I plan to do some more hearts on the wall eventually, but for now I'm going to see how I like it over the week. On another note, here is a picture of what some of the other fabric I bought on my trip was transformed into. (I would like to note that I did make the bed and no matter what I did it looked lumpy. The duvet was being particularly fussy and lumpy.. It needs a good beating to put it back to shape.... which I will be doing shortly) :-)

Thursday, April 22, 2010


With the fabulous weather we have been having lately I have had a big urge to get out into my garden and start planting. BUT realistically I know it is still too early to plant anything outside as it still gets too cold at night. At this time last year I attempted to get out and garden but the ground was still frozen!!! SO I decided this year I would actually start planting my vegetable garden indoors. I have always planted from seeds outdoors and had no problems, but thought I would try starting them indoors and transplanting they outdoors when the weather gets warmer. So a few weeks ago I grabbed a bunch of random pots I had lying around and planted my seeds for my herbs and tomatoes. I put all of my pots in the kitchen by the window so they were sure to get lots of light. As I was starring at them I was like URGH this looks ugly with 4 different types of pots. But didn't think much about it. When at Dollarama a few days later I found they had Terracotta pots for only $1.25!!!! NICE!! So I bought 4 of them, not entirely sure what to do with them.

When I got home I decided I wanted to spruce them up so they would match my kitchen. My plan is to grow herbs in them year round so in the winter we have fresh herbs too!! I found my good trusty container of Podge It (same thing as Mod Podge) which is slowly running out. As you can see from the picture below its from White Rose... Not sure how many of you remember White Rose! I think it went out of business many many years ago!!! I refuse to buy a new bottle of Podge It until this one it completely done! I also found a package of really nice Italy inspired napkins that my mom had given me as a gift as they match my kitchen perfectly!

Now I wasn't quite sure how it would work out so it was a bit of a trial and error process. I grabbed a little sponge, my Podge It, one napkin and my pot. The first step was to peel off the top layer of the napkin and cut it to the size of the pot. I ended up needing 3 napkins because the piece I wanted from the napkin was only repeated once on each napkin. So I had to use 3 of them. After peeling off the top layer I coated the pot in mod podge, just a thin layer. Then I carefully lay the napkin on the pot. Placement is key because since the napkin is so thin there isn't much you can do if you stick it in the wrong spot as the napkin will tear! After all 3 pieces of napkin were on the pot I tried to put a layer of Podge It over to seal it all in. THAT didn't go very well... the napkin kept getting stuck to my sponge. SO this is when I had to exercise my patience. I had to wait until the pot was dry. Then after it was dry I could very easily put Podge It over top to seal in the napkin and give it a nice gloss look. I was VERY happy with the results!!!! It looks fantastic in my kitchen! When I have finished the rest of the pots I will post them all on here. But for now here is one!!! You've got to love the wine bottle and glasses!!! Totally fits my kitchen to a T!!! haahaaa!!!

These pots will go perfectly with what I have in mind for our kitchen! But shhhh Ryan isn't too impressed with my ideas.. mainly because it means more work! haaahaa!!! I will reveal that project in the months to come!!! I'm hoping to a mini kitchen makeover sometime this summer when I have a week off!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Don't Judge a Book By its Cover!

In our case, don't judge our house by the front door!!! When we moved in they had this hideous lock and door knob on the door. That was one of the first things to go, not so much because it was ugly. BUT because its always good to change your locks when you buy a new house because you never know who still has a key from the old owners! So we bought new knobs and locks for the door. When we took the old knob off we found that they had painted around the big rectangular knob/lock combo and it was tan underneath. Well with everything going on inside the house a new paint job was put on the back burner. THEN at Christmas time this year I found these awesome snowmen stickers that advertised how they were 'REUSEABLE' and how they could be used on windows and doors and taken off easily. Seeing as they were only 75 cents for like 8 snowmen I went for it. I even kept the backing so when I took the stickers off after Christmas I could reuse them the next year. WELL CANADIAN TIRE LIED TO ME!!!! They are NOT reuseable! In fact they were the hardest things in the world to get off the door and left my door looking like this!( Can you find the reminents of the tree sticker??)

Needless to say it was about time to paint the front door!! SO on the weekend I pulled out my trusty sand paper and got down to work. It was hard work sanding down the door but an hour later I had not only sanded it down but gotten all of the reminents of the stickers off the door as well as cleaned the door top to bottom. Then it was painting time! Since Ryan bought too much railing paint I pulled out the can (it was made for outdoor doors and railings so I was able to reuse it). I put down plastic so as not to drip all over everything (I'm a VERY messy painter!!). I also used some left over red tape to tape off the doorknob/lock and window so as to not get brown paint on it. And away I went! This is my door now! A little bit lighter but it looks SO much better!!! (the red tape still has to be removed, it was very wet still). I left the door open (luckily it was a nice day) all day so it could dry and so it didn't stink like paint in the house!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Nice and Neat

Today I decided to take on a big task of organizing our chaotic bathroom. For those who have seen our bathroom you know that we have a ridiculous cabinet behind the mirror. Now most people have storage shortages in their bathrooms. We have the opposite problem! Our cabinet is so ridiculously huge that I have never bothered organizing it because we have so much space. Just to visualize it here is our cabinet... and yes that is Ryan in it!!

So here is what I started with today!

See the 3 feet of space!! The biggest task was cleaning the cabinet. It hadn't been cleaned since before we moved into the house.. the only spot in the entire house that wasn't cleaned! SO I tackled that first with a cloth, soap and warm water. It didn't take too long! The cabinet is made out of chip board so it has a lot of sharp edges. I didn't want our towels to get snagged so I found some shelf liner that we had lying around the house. And after cleaning the cabinet it was time to install the shelf liner.
Then it was time to organize, my favourite thing in the world to do! We had a bunch of extra baskets around the house that I thought would work great to keep things organized. I labelled the baskets so Ryan can find things easily (I'm tired of hearing "Meghan where are the nail clippers!") haahaa!! SO after about 2 hours of work look at the wonderful organization!!! YEAH!!! SOO much better!!!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

How to Paint an Old Metal Railing

The railing at the front of our house has been in desperate need of a good paint job since we bought the house. But time is always the issue... SO when we had nothing else to do on Easter Sunday I decided it was time to give it a face lift. This is how it looked before, you can see the paint chipping and the rust and ohhh its ugly!

See what I mean, ugly!!! I pulled out a scraper and some sand paper and got to work. It took me about an hour to chip off all of the old paint and sand down everything so it was smooth. You have to sand it all down so the new paint will stick to it and won't peel or chip easily. Getting into the corners was a pain but I managed. Ryan had bought a large can of CIL outdoor paint that was specifically for metal railings. (I would like to point out that a small can is MORE than enough paint for a railing.... Ryan had to go big though... I guess I will be painting EVERYTHING brown now... haahaa). SO after sanding everything down I put an old sheet and towels down so the paint wouldn't get on the stone. And away I painted. Make sure to get all of the drips because you don't want a big dried paint blob. It took a little while but the result looks fantastic!!! Here is the result!

Saturday, April 3, 2010


For the past month I have been scouring around looking for the perfect fabric for our living room curtains. Our living room walls are Behr Cabbage Green paint which is fairly bright. But we have toned down the brightness with dark furniture and medium brown flooring. I had temporarily put dark brown Ikea curtains on the windows but hated them. It was too dark and since we don't get a lot of sunlight in the living room I really wanted to find something to lighten the whole room up. WELL I was VERY successful this week. I found a fabric that I thought would be PERFECT but was sorely disappointed to find that it was $35 per yard!! AHHHH that's outrageous! SO I went on a serious hunt and on Wednesday I found it. I wasn't entirely sure how it would turn out but for a measly $4 per metre (at Fabricland) it was a steal!! I bought 6 metres just to be safe, plus I want to make pillows to tie the entire room together. Doesn't it blend the colours of my walls and floor perfectly as well as adding in a little zing with the blue stripe??

For those of you who know me well you know I love to sew but at the same time I get lazy and sewing straight lines bugs me. SOO I went the easy way out and used hem tape for the sides and bottom hem of my curtains and am VERY happy with the result. Here is what I did.

First I measured my window, then added 1inch for the bottom hem and 5 inches at the top for the top hem, I wanted a big fat top hem. Next I lay out my material on my living room floor and measured (twice) how long I wanted the material. Then to make sure I cut it evenly I lay it next to my area rug and cut along the edge of the rug so I had a nice even piece of fabric.

Then I got out my trusty hem tape. I was lucky with my window because the fabric I got was the perfect width so I didn't have to cut it and could use the finished edges on either side. But I still had to hem them in an inch. I first ironed the sides of my soon to be curtain an inch in. Since I was dealing with stripes it was very easy to keep things even, I didn't even have to pull out my ruler!!

After I had the edge ironed I took out my hem tape and put it in the fold and pressed with the iron for a few seconds. VOILA, instant hem!! Make sure to get an extra strong hem tape, some of the cheaper tapes end up coming loose after a period of time.
I completed that on the 2 side edges of both of the 2 curtain panels. Then I did the same on the top edge of both panels. Always leave the bottom hem to the very end because if you make a mistake with the top edge you can always make up for it in the bottom hem. After hemming the top down an inch it was time to make the rod pocket. I folded the material down about 4 inches and ironed the material to make it easier to sew.

Then I pulled out my wonderful sewing machine and making sure the seam was even I sewed the material in place. To make sure I was sewing even I put a piece of tape on the sewing machine so I knew where the edge of the material had to be.

I did this on both panels and then it was time to hem the bottom. I pulled out my hem tape and did the exact same thing I did on the side edges. The only extra step I did was after the first panel was finished I lay the second panel on top of it and made sure the second panel would be the exact same length as the first panel. Then I ironed the hem away and hung my curtains. Ryan walked into the room at this point and was amazed!! He was a little skeptical about the material I was using but LOVES the end result!!! What do you think??