Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Burlap fabric flower

I am obsessed with burlap and I am obsessed with fabric flowers. So I decided to marry the two and see what I could come up with. And it's super cute. I put a pin on the back so it can go on a pillow or a scarf or a t shirt. This one I gave to my friend who has started a business making burlap home accessories and gifts. I call her the "Burlap Queen".
I have gave all my kids teachers and a bunch of my friends these felt flowers for Christmas. They were so cute I am going to do hot pink and red ones for valentines day. Still looking for inspiration on appropriate fabric for summer...

Monday, December 20, 2010

Book Page Paper Chain

another totally crap photo courtesy of my cellphone

Wait, what are these things called anyway? Paper garland? Paper ring garland? paper chain? I don't know, it's been a few years since I had a kid in pre school. All I know is that this is one project you can have the kids help you with (although I didn't... I am too anal for my own good sometimes), and it's cheap. Dare I say for the cost of scotch tape you could have your very own Book Page Paper Ring Garland Chain all over your whole house. But as I said in a previous post, I am trying to keep it simple.
Seeing that as long as you have been to kindergarten you will know how to make these, the only "tutorial" I will include is the fact that I folded my book pages 3 at a time in quarters lengthwise and cut strips. And pick a book with long enough pages. A fat little paperback might yield strips that are too short.

As an amusing aside... the book I tore up to make this was an old water-damaged hardcopy of Madame Bovary. Adding a little "spice" to the holidays!

Monday, December 13, 2010

It's the Simple Things

Sometimes Christmas and the holidays can seem like the world's biggest excuse for excess, especially when it comes to decorating the house. My old method of getting the house ready for the holidays was to get everything I owned that was Christmas related and put it out, somewhere, anywhere! It was for many years an ill-conceived holiday mash-up.

88 cents worth of candycanes

euww I think i need to repaint the door to the garage

everything here is there year round, except for the snowy candle and the candycanes.
These days I take a much simpler approach (except on my two mantles where I have fun doing vingettes... but with a lot more care than in years past). I have really learned this year that it's sometimes the easiest, cheapest and simplest little decoration that is the real winner...
again i apologize for the crummy photos. I am hoping if I make the house extra-inviting I might get a good Canon Rebel digital SLR for Christmas...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Christmas Mantle Vingettes

I keep messing with my mantles... adding stuff, taking away. Somebody stop me! I think that today I may actually be done. i needed some greenery in the kitchen for my book page paper train and so I stole it from the Family Room. So I made a book page wreath to replace the green one. These wreaths are all over blogland and I love them but I was intimidated about the time it might take. Actually it took me maybe an hour. Which is why it isn't as awesome as this or this, but it's fine.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Laundry Room Rehab

Let's face it, we all spend WAAAY too much time doing laundry. And it will never end until we die, so we might as well try and make it a little pleasant.

Luckily you can't see the Mount Everest of laundry

Of course I have no before pictures of my laundry room becasue I never dreamed anyone would want to see it. Imagine if you will a square room, with builder's chalky white paint on the walls, nasty faux tile linoleum, brass knobs, dust bunnies and piles of laundry (naturally).
I am lucky to have a fairly large laundry room, upstairs. It also has a skylight so the room is always full of light. And it came with built in cabinets, to hide stuff, my favorite way to organize.
When we had a bathroom added on to the laundry room to serve the baby's nursery, I got to sneak in a little rehab to the laundry room. New paint, new floors, new cabinet knobs. And I tarted up the detergent and laundry sheets. It makes such a difference, and cost very little. (I did put some rubber matting under the burlap to help with grip). Of course you could make it even cuter by using a cheery fabric in place of the burlap.
 The jars are from Amazon but you can find them at Wal Mart as well and cost $9.99 for the large one and $7.99 for the small one. Seriously. I also got the metal scoops at Amazon, but they have them at the kitchen aisle at Wal Mart.  The tray was my own, but you don't even need it. And I am addicted to mini clothes pins (they are hanging from the tag on the cabinet knob). I use them to clip baby socks together in the wash, and also in the kitchen for closing bags. I also use them to hold things to a "memo ribbon" (stay tuned for that one), among other things.
 I also have the small glass jar with a small scoop on my kitchen counter for dishwasher powder. Just make sure if you do that you label it so no one mistakes it for sugar or flour!