DIY

An Overdue Apartment Update

The hubs and I recently had ourselves a little staycation.  And as I’ve said a million times before, spring is the only season I’ll openly advocate for everyone to move here.  We thought we might head to Austin or even catch a last minute travel deal to Vegas, but why go somewhere else when it is the perfect time to hang out in the 4th largest city in the country.  Believe me, come August, I’ll be begging for strangers to take me in!

During this week of heavenly respite, we made a pact to treat our town as if we were seeing it with fresh eyes and go to places we wouldn’t normally go (i.e. Try New Restaurants Lazy!)  And eat we did!  We also visited the zoo, went shopping, drove down streets we don’t normally take, grilled outside, watched foreign films… treated it like it was all new…  from the comfort of our own home.  And there will be updates coming of our fun Houston adventures.  But we also took advantage of the free time to clean and organize our home.  (Don’t worry it’s a disaster again already.)  The hubs worked on a new (and amazing!) furniture project and I assessed our art situation and tried to remedy it myself (not happening any time soon!).  So although we are about to install a new major piece of furniture, I figured I’m always going to “soon get another piece of furniture”… thus, just take the picture already!  So here’s a little snapshot of the new arrangement.  But to see the full story, go here or click on Apartment Living up top there.

Apartment Update

Over on that other page, I’ve included links to my DIY hanging pendant, our handmade coffee table, an ikea hack, and a few other things! 

(another) ikea hack

I had the vision for these chairs before I even knew I could find the base so cheap *ahem* affordable.  First of all — chairs are not cheap people!  Seriously, a good dining chair is at least $100 and more like $150+ if you want something well designed.  And I have been in the market for multiple chairs for the studio.  Thank goodness for Ikea is all I have to say.  Once again, they completely delivered!  This fabulous little number is only $39 and completely versatile, and not too bad on the tush either.

The hack is super simple.  It involved a jar of mod podge (& sponge applicator), pictures from magazines or printed at home from the interwebs,  some scissors or an X-acto knife, and a little sandpaper to finish the edges.  I figured out my layout and then started gluing it all together.  Once dry I trimmed the edges with the knife and the put 9,000 layers of mod podge on top.  To finish I sanded down any rough edges and reapplied more mod podge.  It was all very decoupage-my-college-dorm-furniture-a-la-1996… and still just as fun!  I think I might just have to decoupage a few more things…

Ikea Chair Hack

**I feel that I must make a disclaimer that I was only comfortable using images from the internet because I knew these chairs were for my own personal use.  I would not advocate using someone else’s proprietary work for any resale. 

P.S.  Here is another simple Ikea Hack we did 2 years ago.

DIY pendant light (step by step photos)

It starts like this…

Pendant-Light-DIY-Inspiration

Materials

DIY-Pendant-Light

Drill (forever without a diamond tip — only 5 minutes with!) | Run the cord through new hole.

DIY Pendant Light How To

Wire the socket.

DIY Pendant Light How To (2)

Test said socket.  (Yeah — it worked!)

(9)-Testing

Pull electrical cord to the top and start to wrap with favorite colored twine/thread/etc. (I just glued the end)

Pendant Light Materials

Hang and admire.

DIY Pendant Light How To

a bright idea — DIY pendant light

DIY-Pendant-Light-Gif

A few weeks ago at a quick pop into High Fashion Home, I spotted a pendant light that I thought I could hack.  A few craft stores later, we have a light. Ok, so it wasn’t that easy, but it wasn’t as difficult as we I thought it might be.  We the hubs just needed to have a lot of patience using a drill bit for glass and tile that was NOT a diamond tip.  (Have I ever mentioned just how cheap we can be?!)  But instead of taking 5 minutes to drill through the glass it took just over an hour.  No kidding.  (So maybe it would have worth my his time to pay the $25 difference?!)

Regardless, it’s done and it was relatively cheap.  The glass jar was $10 (with a Michaels coupon), the light socket was $4, the (extra thick) cord was $8, and I already had the hot pink construction cord.  We also spent $6 on the now-questionable drill bit.  So for around $30 we made ourselves a pretty niffty knock-off.

Tomorrow I’ll post the photo step-by-step.

weekend scene

We were so pleasantly surprised to have a few cool(er) mornings, which meant we had to find a spot to enjoy said weather and the Whole Foods breakfast bar was calling our name.  An impromptu trip to a favorite store ended up inspiring a DIY and simultaneously caused me to start wish-listing a new bookcase.  Curses… I hate that I have champagne taste on a beer budget!

The hubs finally finished a project for the in-laws and I’ll be glad to share it when it’s done.  They are wanting to create a significant addition to their little retro bungalow and he felt up to the challenge.  And then for the next two weekends he’ll be helping out my sis by doing a little office remodel in her office.  Soon, maybe, we’ll finish what we started around here 3 months ago…

And I’ve got my own creative/maker stuff brewing too…we’ll see how it all turns out.

Late Summer Weekend

modern art DIY

Once the dust settles around here (mid-June) we are going to do a major overhaul of our little space.  And one of the first things we’re going to do is re-do our art situation.  We’ve got many ideas brewing and we were both tickled at the idea below.  I’ve had the George Washington painting (on the left) on my computer for as long as I can remember and then last week or so I came across the Oliver Jeffers painting (on the right).  A mini-trend about to bloom? I can see the DIY-ers taking this one to the bank.  And I might just have to join in…that is, if I can find just the right painting to edit.

DIY ART

(another) handmade holiday

I love that my best friend in the world, the love of my life, is just as crazy as I am.  (I’ve always said, it’s why we work.)  We are makers.  If it can be made, we’re going to attempt it.  His projects are usually larger than mine, but occasionally, I’ll tackle something big too (remember this attic bathroom shower?)  The holidays (and birthdays) provide the perfect platform for us to exercise our insanity.  This year I made a few personalized items for my recipient, but I spent some time this year making my own wrapping paper.  I used regular mixed media paper 14 x 17 sheets and basic acrylic paint.  And since I didn’t have near as many packages to wrap this year (as opposed to last year), it was totally doable in one afternoon.

The hubs however, has had his project in the making for about a year.  While we were off the grid last year in West Texas, he busied himself by hand harvesting a few limbs of Wild Texas Persimmon. He then learned how to turn that wood into beautiful tools of the civilized world.  He made a few pens, pencils, and stylus’.  I think they are beautiful.  The persimmon has unknown markings with each piece you turn and it just so happened that the stylus for his mother had a beautiful black mark, almost like it was painted there.  It was perfect.

He’s so handy.  (And handsome to boot!)

Handmade Holiday 2012

concrete planter DIY

This had to be one of the easiest DIY’s we’ve done in a long time.  We actually made it over two weekends though, instead of just one.  We mixed and poured two weekends ago, and then finally pulled it apart this past weekend.

Step 1. Mix the concrete.  We used one of these Quikrete products (the hubs would have to specify  which one– who knew they had so many?!)

Step 2. Pour wet mixture into a form.  For this we used a milk carton and a smaller whipping creme carton.  We used tape to help hold the shape.

Step 3. Once it dries (times will vary depending on the mixture) pull it apart.

Step 4 (and 4 1/2).  Admire your work.  I honestly had no idea it wasn’t going to have a level top.  I thought we did enough banging and shaking to have everything level off.  But oh well.

Step 5. Give those rough edges a quick rub with some sandpaper.

Step 6. Fill with your desired contents.  This little gem was going to be home for a succulent the hubs brought home some weeks ago.

This was so easy to make I can see giving these out as gifts, especially a housewarming gift.  (Here is another succulent container I made for my sis.)