Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Day 13 - Window Topper

So I finally figured out a treatment thing to do to the bathroom window.

I came up with this....



A little something sheer to draw attention to the shutters.

If you would like to know how I did it you can find it here. You will also find....



my first linky party!

Come on and join the fun!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Day 11 - A Shuttering Experience!

I bet you are expecting a Halloween post huh?

Nope!

I was back in the bathroom this weekend. Besides being in the girls room also. See I got this....



So I got these....



8.00! I looked at these new online for about 150.00 for that itty bitty window. Pffft! I almost gave up the idea of having these in the bathroom. When I was growing up we had these in our main bath and I really liked them. But not in bright 1970 aqua like we had.

So I spray painted them....



Why spray paint? They looked like a real PITA to paint with a brush and I was just too lazy. After I sprayed them I brought them in to my hi-tech painting area and went to work. I lightly sanded them to distress them a bit and then wiped on watered down dark brown craft paint.



You can see each of the steps here going from right to left. Then I hinged them together so if by some miracle they ever are opened they will fold up accordion style. Then I hinged it to the inside of the window frame. I won't try to explain how I did this cause I gave new meaning to the saying "monkey screwing a bowling ball". Not real sure what I was doing but I got it done!

So... what do you think of the new treatment?


I'm not too sure about the shabby look of the shutters though. I am still trying to decide if I like it or should paint them the same at the trim.

Whatcha think?!

Posted at Metamorphosis Monday and I apologize that I am such a dork! I forgot to change the title from the faux countertops to this shutter one.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Day 8 - Dominoes

I saw this next project on a new blog that I found chock full of good ideas.

This was one such project!

I saw these at Shanty 2 Chic and immediately knew what I was going to do with them.



They were sooo easy to make! Ignore the ugly light in the middle, that is on my list to redo.

I scrounged in the garage for some wood. I found these leftover scraps and decided to put them to use.



These are 12 x 12 so I cut them in the middle. I then rounded the corners with the sander. I painted them with SW Modest White.



I know you are jealous of my fabulous painting table area thingy. Kitchen tables and veggie cans work great! I did use pumpkin cans to be in the fall mood though.

Anyways, after they were dry, I made a circle out of paper to use for a stencil. You can see it sitting on the table. I used a magic marker to make the dots and the dividing line. I used electrical tape to mark off a line. I like how the marker is faded making them look old.



I also took the sander to them again and distressed the edges and corners. I then went over the whole thing with dark walnut stain to give them a vintagey look. Sawtooth hangers on the back and I was done.

The numbers are our address. I had seen people put their address numbers over their sinks. I am putting ours on the back door, so I didn't want too much repitition.

So, what do you think?!


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Day 7 - It's a Pleat Thing!

I am by no means a girly girl. I don't think I have a feminine bone in my body. My idea of being dressed up is wearing anything but sweats. So, ruffles are not my thing. I'm not saying I dislike ruffles, they are just not fitting on me. I am a pleat girl though.

I love me some pleats!

It's evident around the house too. So let's make some pleats!

First, you need to measure the length of where you want the pleats. I will use the bedskirt I made as an example. I measured the outside edges, both sides and the bottom of the box spring. Next I measured how long I wanted the pleats to be. For example, the top of the box spring to the floor.



I then determined where I wanted the pleats to fall. I knew that I wanted a pleat at each corner so I stuck a pin in the center of the corner. I then determined, using my measurements, how far apart each pleat would be. I stuck a pin at those increments to see how it would all work out.

I added 3" to the length of the skirt, 1/2" for a seam at the top and 2 - 1/2" for a hem. I added 6" to the width between pleats. For example if my pleats are 12" apart, I added 6" to that. I cut out the individual pleat sections that I needed. I also added up the amount of pleats I would have and cut sections 6" x length of skirt + 3" for each pleat.

Do I still have you or did I confuse you?



Here is a view of one 6" section with a between pleat section on either side. Now you are going to make one long strip in this manner : Between pleat section, 6" section, between pleat section, 6" section.... Keep repeating til all sections are used. Use a 1/2" seam allowance throughout.

Now with a pin, mark the center of each 6 " section. Fold with the pin on the fold. Mark 5" from the pin and 5" down from that point. This will be your sewing line for your pleat. Sew all your pleats. Taking each pleat individually, lay it flat with right side up on an ironing board and iron flat.

Cut a piece of material the size of your box spring plus 1/2" all the way around. I used an old sheet. I left the finished edge of the sheet at the head of the bed to not have to finish a raw edge. Pin your pleat strip to this piece and sew the top edge seam. Put on bed and pin your hem. Sew.

You are now done. I do like the look of a button at the middle of the pleat. I love doing this detail on my pleats. I simply covered a button for each pleat and sew in place.



My finished bed skirt. Shamelessly copied from this....



$20.00 for my version, $100.00 for theirs.

In fact, I like them so much they have also turned up here....



I call these "Peek a boo" pleats cause the underpleat is a different pattern than the outer fabric. This one I used a thin black piping at the hemline.




A closer view of the kitchen valance. You can see the piping, button and underpleat. The kitchen valances were a no cost do. Everything was leftover from previous projects!

Do you know how much I love pleats?

In case I totally confused you, here is a post I made about this on my other blog.


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Day 6 - Stairs

So taking one thing in each room that I loved when we bought this house and in the foyer would be the stairs. Ok, there are two things in the foyer,the front door also. That has yet to be done.

I liked the staircase cause in out old bungalow the staircase was enclosed. This is partially open with an oak bannister. The spindles were painted by the previous owners. I have yet to get the "let's change out the spindles" wild hair so they are still there.



The carpet is ugly though. It would definitely have to go. No telling what is under there either. So after much whining and crying, it got ripped out. It was not pretty either. My talented husband replaced all the treads with stained oak treads. He had to cut each one individually since it seems the staircase is wider at the bottom than at the top. I was in charge of painting.



Now, the normal person would have been content with them and moved on. I am by no means normal. After alot of coffee and a box of GS Thin Mint cookies (i gained 15 lbs just by being co-leader this year) I got an idea. The next day....



They had a whole new look! I love them now and I get so many compliments too. But why stop there?!



Now the top of the stairs looks plain and boring. The landing is too narrow to put anything up there to get your interest. What is a girl to do?


THIS!! I saw this graphic on a website. I immediately fell in love with it. $500.00!! I can do that for less. I copied down everything, made a stencil, painted the wall chocolate brown and stenciled the wall. I make it sound so easy! It took me two weeks to do. The first attempt did not turn out so well so I had to start over. I love the whole thing now. I still have yet to paint here, but I just decided on a color for it.

I see a new project in the near future!

Posted @ Funky Junk Interiors

DIY Party


Come join the fun with a DIY Party!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Day 5 - Wallpaper.....

....it's not just for grandma's house any more!

I love love love the look of beadboard! After doing some research and thinking though I almost gave up on this wonderful look. I would have to remove baseboards and reinstall them. Put up the panels of beadboard, which at $40 a sheet is not cheap. All this thinking made me sadly give up the idea until I found paintable prepasted beadboard wallpaper! $21.00 a roll and it does something like 56 square feet. I can do wallpaper and I can paint!



I got 2 rolls for the kitchen. More than enough to do that. I decided to go to just under the cupboards. The chair rail stayed where it is and I kept it stained cuz it matches the oak cabinetry.



You just measure and cut your strips.



Now wet your paper in warm water to activate the paste and book it. Booking paper means to put the pasted sides together without creasing it. Let all the excess water drip off. I used the bathtub for this since I do believe that my wallpaper trough has found another purpose of holding gook in the garage.



Apply it to your wall and smooth flat getting out all the air bubbles. I used my hand since the anaglyptic wallpaper is fragile. If you are not careful you can remove the embossing on the paper. Once it is dry, I let mine dry overnight, you can paint.



I love the look of it! It cleans up so easily too. You can also see the finished countertops here in the kitchen. I used the same method as in the bathroom to do these. Back to the wallpaper, I painted mine with a high gloss pure white I had leftover from another painting job. The cleanup on it is wonderful. You can also patch holes from hanging pics, or a towel rod that happened to be in the wrong place, with some spackle and simply touch up the paint.

Since 2 rolls was more than enough to do the kitchen, I used the leftover to also do the bathroom.



I still have some leftover for a future project. The total cost for the 2 rooms was $48.00 compared to $500+ for just the kitchen and alot of work.

I was worried about how easy it would be to remove incase I do change my mind. My 2 year old answered that question. She got "bored" on the potty chair and had a ball ripping of a big hunk of it. So it comes off pretty easy. Also repairs easy though. I just took some Elmer's glue, glued it back in place and then repainted it. Can't even tell!


Sunday, October 4, 2009

Day 3 & 4 - Sidetracked!

I was going to start on the entryway at the back door. But I chickened out. I've been neglecting the bathroom for quite awhile now, so I thought that I should make an attempt to do something to it.

While I have been doing this house, I've been trying to remember one thing in each room that I loved when we were looking at the house to buy it. To be honest, all I can remember about this bathroom is that I liked my old bathroom better. Ok, one good thing is that it is 1' longer than the old one. So there ya go, one good thing.

Anybody else have these ugly old gray formica countertops?



I feel for ya if you do. I just drool over granite countertops. Have to take a nitro pill when I see the price though! So with a wild hair firmly growing up my buttocks, I set about to change it.

I peeled off the backsplashy thingy on the wall....



It popped off which was kinda scary. Usually these things start off bad from the start!

Then I sanded the "gloss" and dried up nail polish from the countertop. I also scrapped any leftover caulk too. The whole thing was primed with Kilz....



The faucet is new. I would love to act like I was Wonder Woman and replaced this also this weekend. But I didn't. Then I painted with 3 coats of SW Caviar. This was leftover from painting a bench, but I cheated on it. Sherwin Williams does quarts for sample colors for $5.00! They only sell it in flat finish though. It was perfect for this project though since I am putting a high gloss finish on it. Being the pro that I am, ok being the lazy person I am, I let it dry overnight.



You can see the sample in the sink. Teehee! Then 3 coats of urethane....



I love it! Now to keep everyone out of the ONLY bathroom in the house for the next 3 days. The backsplash will be done after about a week when the urethane is totally cured.

I do have a few painting tips though for you!
* When working in a tight space, watch where your butt is going. You can ruin a good pair of pants that way!

* No paint liner? Tinfoil works great in a pinch. Such an easy cleanup for pennies too!



While the paint was drying I did sneak in some shopping.



New towels from Walmart. Bath towels $3.50, hand towels $2.50 and an 18 pack of washcloths $3.50.


New shower curtain $20.00



New rug $6.00

This take 2 days with drying time in there. While it was drying, I did have time to "surf the blogs". I found this really cute tutorial on how to make pumpkins out of old sweaters. Since I didn't have any old sweaters, I kinda changed it up from a no-sew project to one with one seam.

So here is my version of the...

Shabby Chic Pumpkin

I used muslin for this. I cut off a piece, folded it in half and sewed a simple seam on the edge to make a tube.


Then I took some polished hemp and wrapped it seven times from my thumb to my elbow. I cut the strings in half and tied a knot. Then I slipped it through the tube....


I gathered the end with the knot up and wrapped a rubberband around the end.



Then I turned it inside out, put some beans in the bottom and filled it up with fiberfil. Once I was happy with how full it was, I wrapped another rubberband around the end to close. Then I pulled each of the strings up and tied them off at the top. To finish it, it tore some strips of ticking fabric, wrapped them around the end to form a stem and tied it in a bow.



Voila! A shabby chic pumpkin!

And that is all folks! I would post a recipe, but Ronald would not give out the one for his special sauce. Good thing, cause that always sounded so wrong to me!

Would love to know what you think about the project here though!


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Day 2 - Where To Start?

So where to start?

Hmmm...

Well... see our house is weird. The back of it faces the sub so all the kids friends use the back door. Also part of our driveway makes a circle around a large walnut tree. The drive continues around to the back porch. We wanted for guests to park in the circle drive. I pull my car around the back cause I usually look like a sorry pack mule with everything I have to carry in. One of my pet peeves is that I asked everyone to park in the circle, which they do, EXCEPT for my MIL. She refuses to park in the circle and insists on parking behind me which drives me crazy. Doesn't take alot for that to happen.

Anyway...... my point is that the back door is where everyone usually walks in. So I am starting at the back door.

I know when you think of warm, black is not the first color that pops into your head. There are 4 doors in this small area.



This is the first area you see when walking in the back door. The view is from the kitchen. The door at the end of the hall is the bathroom door. To the left of that is a closet. The back door you can see a sliver of on the left of the sign sitting on the floor. Directly across from that is a door that is the stairs to the dungeon. I was leery of painting 4 doors in one small space black, but it is gorgeous. It also does not confine this space at all. Another benefit to black doors? Dirty fingerprints are hidden! I used Caviar by Sherwin Williams in a semi gloss finish.


It has magenta in the formula. My husband would have liked a color that you can see the red in it when the sun hits it. I always liked black, but I have to say using this color helped me overcome my fear that black makes a room small. I was also surprised that it took 4 coats to get a solid color. The doors are flat plain jane doors. I got a little something up my sleeve for a future project to dress them up though.

Cost: $0.00 Paint was leftover from a job

Now for the treat! And it is quite a treat. One of my favs and super simple to make. Today was an Indian Summer kind of day. So this is always one of my fav dishes for summer. Plus, I got to use my favorite pan, my stove top griddle. I love my griddle! I also love vinegar. This dish uses a vinagarette to give it a Greek taste. So without further ado....



Greek Grilled Chicken Salad

4 Boneless skinless chicken breasts
Red Wine Vinagarette (bottled or homemade)
1lb Cherry or Heirloom tomatoes
Feta Cheese
Spinach (fresh)
Pita rounds

Marinate the chicken breasts in 1 cup of red wine vinagarette for atleast 1 hour in the refrigerator. The longer the better!

Remove the breasts from the marinade when ready to cook. Discard marinade. Grill the chicken on both sides until done throughout. When cooked, set aside for 5 minutes to cool. Always cool meat after cooking for atleast 5 minutes to seal in the juices.

While the chicken is cooking, cut the tomatoes in half. Once the chicken is cooked, cook the tomatoes til soft with light grill marks. Remove and set aside when done. Cut the pita rounds in half and lightly brown on the grill.

Add enough spinach to a bowl to cover a platter. Add vinagarette to spinach and toss to coat. Arrange the spinach on a platter. Cut the chicken in thick slices, about 3/4". Arrange the chicken on the spinach. Spread the tomatoes over the chicken. Crumble the feta cheese over the entire dish and serve. You can either arrange the pita bread on the outside edge of the platter or put on a separate plate.

Quick, easy and ohhh so yummy!





Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Day 1 - Picking A Style

If you could describe your style in one word what would it be?

Romantic?



Country?



Traditional?



Contemporary?



I realized lately that I had no style, unless they have added ugly hand me downs to the list. So I searched for style quizzes.

This quiz says my style is modernist. NOT!!

This one says my style is cottage chic. Okay, I can live with that.

The only thing I learned from this was that you can spend a week doing all the quizzes and still come away clueless. So now what?! The best place of all that I found to find my decorating style was my closet. Yup, you read that right. My closet.

My closet is by no means huge. Neither is my house. Everything has a place and it can all be easily accessed, unlike my house. So first of all is organize the house efficiently. Next is color. I found the expensive pieces of clothing are neutral colored. The less expensive items are colored and patterned. So, backgrounds neutral and accessories colored. The style of the higher dollar items is traditional, classic, timeless. The less expensive tend to be fads.

Now, if I haven't lost you yet, I applied this to my decorating style. The background of the house I chose to be neutral. The more expendable, smaller items would be color. That way if I fall madly in love with cobalt blue and yellow I can without having to change everything. More expensive and larger pieces are to be kept in the more traditional style. I can keep it updated with less expensive fad type accessories. Also, the house helped to dictate the style. It would be dumb to decorate a farmhouse in a contemporary style. Maybe someone more talented than me could pull it off.

Now where to start?....

While I ponder this question, I got a easy peasy recipe for meatloaf. Meatloaf always seems to be a nice fall entree.



Meatloaf

1 envelope of Onion soup mix
2lbs ground beef
3/4 cup plain bread crumbs
2 eggs
3/4 cup water
1/3 cup ketchup

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl combine all ingredients. Spray an ovenproof baking dish with a baking spray to prevent sticking. Shape meat mixture into an oval loaf shape. Bake 1 hour uncovered. Check to see if additional baking time is needed.

Of course the traditional side dish is mashed potatoes and gravy. You can also try mashed sweet potatoes also. Yummy!



Introduction


Here it is in all it's glory. Our 120 year old farmhouse that I am planning on recreating in 365 days. That is the purpose of this blog. My project is to redo this house in 365 days. There is a budget too....

$50.00 a week!

So we will be doing things on the cheap! I hope that you will find helpful information here that you can use in your own house. There also will be Mr Linky parties from time to time. There will also be little helpful hints on taking care of a house and recipes. I mean, who doesn't deserve a yummy treat at the end of the day?!

A little history about the house. The house is one of the originals to this area. It was built in the 1890's. The house was a working farm. We found some old parts to wagons and such buried on the property. I am not sure what the original acreage was but a large subdivision sits on what we presume to be the house's property. The house now sits on just shy of 2 acres.
The 2 story section holds the living room, a lower bedroom, a staircase and 2 upper bedrooms. One of the upper bedrooms is considered the master since it is the larger of the 3.

The 1 story section holds a large foyer. kitchen, bathroom and a staircase that accesses the basement. The basement is a typical Michigan basement. For those of you not familiar with that it is only about 7 foot deep. The walls are stone walls with a cement floor. Sometimes Michigan basements do have dirt floors. We are guessing that the house was originally only the 2 story section, with the 1 story section being added later. You can see that the basement was accessed at one time from the outside of the house through a cellar. The stairs to the basement as some point were under the staircase that goes to the 2nd story.

The house at one time was donated to the fire department for them to burn to practice fighting housefires. The attic area over the 1st story still has some scorch marks from the exercise. The house was then purchased and given to MSU for a construction project. The house was gutted and updated. It was then sold again to the people we purchased it from.

We purchased the house in 2005. We came here from a bungalow in Redford, MI. When we first moved here there was a grocery store, a CVS, 2 gas stations, a Big Boy and various other Mom and Pop stores. It has now grown to also have a Target, WalMart and a soon to open Meijer's!

We have done some things to the house. Some have worked out and some have failed. My disclaimer is that I AM NOT A PROFESSIONAL! My saving grace is that I am married to one. My husband is a Licensed General Contractor in the State of Michigan. He owns and operates his own construction company. I have been known to try out some crazy ideas on his various hunting trips! Sometimes much to his dismay...

So tomorrow, Oct 1st is the launch date for our projects. Coincidentally it is also opening day for deer hunting in Michigan. Hmmmm.... how did that happen? Oh well.... So sit back and enjoy the joys and pains of redoing this house. All comments are greatly appreciated also! I can use all the input y0u can give!