Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Bloggy Exchange- Welcome Kristina from ReMadeSimple!

Today I have a special treat for you!  Kristina from ReMadeSimple is here to share a chandelier project with you!  If you don't already read Kristina's blog, you need to, she's amazing!  Everything she makes seems to turn our wonderfully & her photography is always beautiful.  I'm over at her blog today sharing a mobile I made for my cousin's baby shower, but I'm gonna let Kristina take it away from here.


Hi, my name is Kristina and I blog over at ReMadeSimple-where I focus on thrifty decorating and crafts by repurposing, recycling and revamping.  I am happy to be guest blogging  with Sarah today here at Renewed Upon a Dream.  I can tell Sarah is a great person-she always leaves the nicest comments on my blog and she has a lot of great creative ideas too!  She is sharing a cool mobile idea over at my site today and it's funny that we both used embroidery hoops for our projects and we didn't talk about it before hand! 

As I was browsing through ideas for a DIY chandelier, this beautiful photo caught my eye.  I loved the look of this shabby chic style fabric chandelier-and I hear this particular one is located in Paris. And, I was inspired to make something like this for my bedroom-but on a much smaller scale. 

So, I went to Scrap for Art (my favorite scrap supply store) and looked to see what I could find.

I was so excited it cost me only $6 to fill up my bag with everything I'd need to create one of these cool light fixtures. 

Here's what I used for my project: 

- embroidery hoops in 4 different sizes
-scraps of fabric in 4 different colors and textures
-low temp glue gun
-ribbon
-fabric scissors
-thread

First, I cut strips of fabric about 2 in. wide and 12 in. long, not worrying about them being perfect-the shabbier the better.


Then, I hot glued the strips next to each other onto each embroidery hoop. 


Then, I tied 4 even lengths of thread around the largest hoop to connect it to the next smallest hoop, and repeated until all hoops were connected. (Wire would also work for this).

Finally,  I glued ribbon to the edge of the largest hoop to cover over the tops of the strips where they were glued to the hoop.



And I was done! 


I plan on hanging my chandelier in my bedroom after removing the fan blades of an outdated ceiling fan. I was happy that my inspiring photo led me to come up with a really thrifty and artistic solution to updating 
my lighting. Not bad for only six dollars, huh? 

Hope you enjoyed this post and thanks for checking out ReMadeSimple! 


Yea!  I love this project!  It turned out lovely, I really like the pretty fabric scraps she used.  This gives me an idea for something for my home... I have the perfect spot... love when I read a post that gets the wheels turning like this one.  Thank you so much Kristina!!

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Another Baby Shower!?!? Hats, Headbands, Cocoons, and Bibs

Apparently this has been a month of baby showers for me.  I had another one to attend over this past weekend.  I've pretty much gotten nothing done in our house lately because I've been so busy working on baby shower gifts!  Everything I gave both my friend two weeks ago & my cousin yesterday was hand made.

I wanted to show you some of the things I made for my cousin Tara, and presented to her this past Saturday.  She is having a baby girl in April!  I ended up crocheting a lot of little gifts & making a bunch of interchangeable flowers to attach to the gifts &/or her hair if she has some :)


I made two different sized hats, two headbands


and a baby cocoon.  I think these are so cute when used in babies newborn pictures.  I kept seeing adorable wrapped up newborn photos & knew I had to make one.


All of the flowers were attached to little hair clips.  So they can stay on these items, or go in her hair, or attach to an elastic headband as well.  Whatever she wants.  I made some fabric ones as well as some crocheted ones for variety.


I also stitched a little bib for her.  I got a package of two bibs by Martha Stewart at Micheal's a few weeks ago.  The bibs were exactly the same, so I made one for my friend's shower, and the other one for my cousin's.  They are so cute!


I also gave my cousin one other bigger gift, that I will be sharing tomorrow.  It took about a week to put it all together & I totally didn't know what I was doing, but it turned out really well & I think they really liked it... so check in tomorrow to see about that!!!

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I'm linking this post up to:
{Primp}
Organize & Decorate Everything 
Southern Lovely
It's Overflowing 
Shabby Creek Cottage
52 Mantels
Crafty, Scrappy, Happy 
Delightful Order 
Two Yellow Birds 
Somewhat Simple 
2805 
At the Picket Fence 
Making Lemonade 
My Repurposed Life 
Whipperberry
Chic on a Shoestring
The Shabby Nest
Nap Time Crafters 
Remodelaholic 
Our DIY Diaries
Sassy Sites!
Addicted 2 Decorating 
Fingerprints on the Fridge
Tater Tots & Jello
Lolly Jane
Funky Junk Interiors
I Heart Nap Time 
Vintage Wanna Bee 
Today's Creative Blog 
At Home with K 
Home Stories A2Z 
A Diamond in the Stuff 
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

Monday, February 27, 2012

Bloggy Exchange! Welcome Alecia from Chicken Scratch

Today I'm doing a blog exchange with Alecia from Chicken Scratch.  I am over at her place with a posting about making your own wax scent blocks, and she's here to share an easy recipe with you!  Woot!  Take it away Alicia!


Hi everyone! My name is Alecia, I blog over at Chicken Scratch NY. I'm usually running in about a hundred different directions and my blog reflects that! I've got a small zoo on 5 acres in Central NY. I've always been a crafty person, I sew, crochet, garden, cook and paint. I'm trying my hardest to live a 'simple' life, training myself to cook everything from scratch while also growing food and decorating my new house.

I'd love for you to stop by and check out my life!


This is one of my favorite [non]recipes. I make this at least once a week during the winter. It's easy, cheap and healthy. I'm pretty sure this is actually culinary magic. You take four really basic ingredients and turn them in to an amazing side dish [or if you're like me, a main course!]

Some day I'll give it a fun name, but for now it's just:



Ingredients:
2 med onions [or 1 large]
Olive oil
Salt
1 small green cabbage


The real key to this recipe isn't the ingredients, it's the tools. I'd like to introduce you to my best friend:


Okay, my other best friend:


I love my Mandolin! Mine is from Oneida, it was about 30$ at Bed, Bath and Beyond. If you do a lot of cooking with fresh veggies this thing is necessary. I can slice an onion in seconds. Seriously? I'd still be looking for a sharp knife! AND the slices are all uniform. The black thing with the onion stuck to it is the safety guard, that blade is sharp! I cut myself on this once, and it bled a lot. Not a toy for the kids that's for sure!


 One of my favorite things about this slicer is the adjustable blade.  The black knob [in the blue box] can be turned to make the slices really thin or pretty thick. I usually keep it set to about a 1/4 inch.

Back to the good part!




Slice up both of the onions.
Heat some olive oil in a large pan with high [at least 3 inches] sides, over medium/low heat.
Add the onions, separating the rings. Stir well to coat all the onions, you don't want to fry the onions!
Cook them until they start to go translucent.
While they are cooking slice your cabbage.


Don't be nervous! This looks like a crazy amount of cabbage but it cooks down a lot!
Start adding the cabbage to the onions a little at few handfuls at a time, you need to be able to stir without over flowing.

Keep adding more cabbage as it cooks down. Add some salt as you go, it seasons and helps to draw out the water.


If you're patient you'll go from nice, happy green to delicious, buttery brown. Depending on the amount of cabbage this can take up to an hour. But you mostly ignore it, so it's not labor intensive.

Your helper may abandon you
Did I mention you can't ruin this dish unless you light it on fire? I love it really cooked, until the sugars caramelize and it's soft and buttery tasting. BUT you can also eat it at any stage.


Just be careful eating out of the pan while it's cooking, you can burn your tongue (not that I would know...)

Many thanks to Sarah for swapping blogs with me today!


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Friday, February 24, 2012

Making Your Home Smell Nice: Some Options & Opinions

Back in December, my husband & I went to visit my little brother in Arizona.  The moment we walked in his house, we noticed something... it. smelled. amazing!  I was totally blown away by my "little" brother's great smelling house. If you have a little brother, you know that little brothers typically smell... different.  So I was not expecting this at all.  I had to investigate his methods.

Upon questioning, I discovered that most of the good smells coming from various rooms were from Scentsy warmers & waxes.  He also had some waxes from Good Housekeeping (which are available at Walmart) mixed in there.  Then in the bedroom, he had a humidifier, in which he would put a few drops of oil every once in a while to make it smell great as well.  So the good smelling home was that way because of a combination of things.  I resolved to make my house smell just as wonderful.

I think that the way a space smells can have a real effect on your comfort in a place.  Smells can make you feel energized or relaxed or sleepy or they can get you in the mood... *wink wink*.  I also think that your taste in smells can change over the years.  At least mine have.  I used to be very into baking smells.  Cake and vanilla and cookies were the kinds of smells that attracted me.  Now I'm more into "clean" smells or more subtle floral smells.  I also really like to rotate my scents by season.  In December, I used mostly pine-type scents or cranberry.  Now, it's still winter, but I'm itching for spring, so we're going with lighter scents.



One of the things I've been using has been wax warmers.  I have two.  One is a table top warmer that is by Better Homes & Gardens from Walmart.  The other is a wall plug in warmer from Scentsy.  I got both of my warmers from my brother, one for Christmas & one for my birthday.  I have a few different kinds of scent blocks, from Scentsy & also from Better Homes & Gardens & from Yankee Candle as well.  I haven't really discriminated because I've been trying to figure out what I like best.  There seems to be advantages & disadvantages to each.  Mostly, all of these three types of waxes are challenging to come by.  Scentsy I need to order from someone, I don't often go to Walmart where the Better Homes & Gardens ones are, and the Yankee Candle ones are only sold as singles rather than as blocks.


I've also been using candles to make my house smell good. I love candles.  I love the little flame flicker & I love the lovely scent that they give off.  However, you can't leave a candle burning all day while your gone, so you can't walk into a great smelling home after a long day of work with a candle like you can with a warmer.



Another option is one that I talked about before in a sponsored post.  There are room sprays, as well as non-plug-in, oil dispensers.  I have used room sprays in the past, but the scent didn't seem to last long, and I haven't bought one of those in a while.  I did recently purchase an oil diffuser that is currently in our bedroom.  The scent is really nice & subtle.  Much more subtle that either the wax warmers or candles. The subtle scent is a plus in some ways, but also sometime I want to be able to smell it, but I feel like I can't.  For a while I wasn't sure if it was actually working or thought I might have set it up wrong.  I think these are best for smaller rooms, or maybe for those who are sensitive to smell.  It is nice though that they never turn off, and they don't use electricity.  I do think these types of products have seen great improvements in recent years.  They always used to seem to get messy & sticky when I used to use them in years past, I haven't had that problem with the products I've used recently.

I have been having a great time experimenting with these different products.  Right now, I've really been digging the warmers the most, but I still love a great candle for certain situations.  Scentsy is amazing & the Better Homes & Gardens warmer products I've used have been really great as well.  I haven't been sponsored to write this post or talk about any of these, but I wanted to chat about products we use to make our homes smell nice.  What kind of products do you use most often for this purpose?  What do you think the benefits are of each?  Let's discuss.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Treasure Hunting Thursdays - Light Dome

Ok guys, so this week in my treasure hunting I found this glass dome for $25.  I wasn't sure what it was at first, but after examining it & thinking, I figured it must be part of a light fixture. 


With a little paint to cover the gold, a light kit & some crystals or something to hang from the little hole there, and this could be a stunner!  We don't have any place in our house for a light fixture this large, but if we had I would have seriously considered this one.

Rambling Renovators
Martha Stewart
The Elemental Garden
 It could also be used as a cloche like the ones in the back of this picture.

Houzz
Or this... soooo pretty!

Roses & Rust
 
What do you think of these kinds of lights?  Pretty?  The glass dome I found was very heavy, so I would be very careful about where I hung it & what all I attached to it.  Are they all like that?  I think it could be very pretty in the right place.

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An Easy Craft Project: Stenciled Sheet Music Frame

Hey friends! I wanted to share a post that I did a few weeks ago over at Our DIY Diaries!  It was so much fun to guest post for Jen, Laryssa, and Courtney, but I wanted to share this project here too in case you missed it

So moving on to my project for today!  I'm sharing an easy little stenciled music sheet frame that I put together a couple of weekends ago.  This project is very easy & looks so nice when you're done.

 
Woot!  Cute right?  Ok, so this project was done with a little $1 wooden frame from Micheal's.  I have a bunch of these laying around at my house because we used them to make our table numbers for our wedding.  I have been trying to use them in various projects like my pretty drop cloth bathroom hooks.  Might as well do things with them rather than have them empty & laying around right?

Moving on, I had an old book of sheet music that I got from the local consignment shop for $0.50.  I chose this page to use for the frame because of the little numbers hand-written by someone on it.  This page was used!  That makes me smile.  So, I had my frame, page of sheet music, and Mod Podge ready to go.


The first step to making this frame is to Mod Podge the paper to the frame.  Don't worry about cutting out the hole in the middle of the frame yet.  You need to wait for the glue to dry first.  Use a layer of glue on the frame to attach it, then glue the excess paper around the back.  I just folded the edges like it was a gift I was wrapping, and trimmed any access after that.


Once your Mod Podge is dry, you'll cut out the center of the frame.  Leave some room at the edges of your cuts, because you'll then fold those edges into the frame, and glue them around to the back as well.  Once that's finished, put a layer of Mod Podge on the whole thing to seal it & make sure it's good & stuck!


Once everything is dry, you can start stenciling.  You could also totally skip this step if you like the music page frame just as it is, but I thought it'd be fun to do a little stencil on my frame as well.  I laid my stencil over the frame, and dabbed at it with my sponge brush.  I used a gold shimmery paint that I had leftover from my tray that I made out of an old cabinet door.  Once the whole stencil has been painted, lift it up & let the paint fully dry.


I really like how the gold paint turned out on this project.  It's subtle, but pretty.  What do you think?  After that all dried, I added a little yellow flower I had made with a dab of hot glue.  This is just a ribbon flower, with the ribbon just turned in on itself & attached to a piece of felt on the back.  You can find tons of different flower tutorials on Pinterest!  This one was quick & easy & I had the ribbon laying around, so it was easy to whip up.


I cut some scrapbook paper down to size to fit in the frame, and then attached a photo to the paper with a little double sided tape.  These little frames don't come with glass, but I like how it looks this way anyway.


And yes, that picture is of me.  It's one of my senior pictures.  If you look close you can see what year I graduated & do the math to figure out how old I am now.  Ha!  Ah well.  I found this picture in a trunk my parents were getting rid of that held some random things of mine from college & I decided to keep it.  Cute right?  :)  I have this frame now sitting on our picture ledges that I built over the summer with some other fun photos & nick-nacks we've collected. 

This really is easy, the hardest part is waiting around for the glue to dry!  You don't have to use music sheets either.  You could use wrapping paper or an old encyclopedia or your kid's art or maps or whatever!  So many different options for these! 

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I'm linking this post up to:
The Shabby Creek Cottage
Crafty Scrappy Happy
52 Mantels 
Somewhat Simple
Delightful Order
Two Yellow Birds Decor 
At the Picket Fence 
2805 
The Shabby Nest
Fingerprints on the Fridge
Shabby Sites!
Chic on a Shoestring 
Whipperberry
Making Lemonade
Nap Time Crafters 
Remodelaholic
Our DIY Diaries
Addicted 2 Decorating 
Funky Junk Interiors
Tatertots & Jello
I Heart Nap Time 
The DIY Dreamer 
The DIY Showoff 
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia 
Today's Creative Blog
Home Stories A2Z
At Home With K 
A Diamond in the Stuff 
Cherished Bliss 
Jillify It 
{Primp} 
Organize & Decorate Everything 
Southern Lovely 
It's Overflowing 
52 Mantles
The Shabby Creek Cottage
Crafty, Scrappy, Happy 
Delightful Order 
The DIY Club Monthly Contest 
My Repurposed Life

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Crocheted Baby Blanket - About as Easy as They Come

Yesterday when I shared with you the dresser that I refinished into a changing table, I told you that I gave our friends another gift for their coming baby that took more time to produce than the dresser did.  That gift was a baby afghan!  After I crocheted my little winter hat a few weeks ago, I kinda was "hooked" by the crochet bug & I suddenly am unable to stop.  I decided that I was going to make them an afghan for their wee one.


I probably went a little overboard & made it a bit bigger than a usual baby afghan might be.  I'm not really sure how large they usually are, but mine was about 50+ inches square.  It's pretty much a giant granny square, that I just kept going on.  I don't know a whole lot of stitches, and I don't even know what this is called, but basically, I did a chain circle, then in the circle (3 double crochet, 2 chain) x4, then slip stitch to complete that round.  Then I kind of kept going around & around increasing each row as I went.


Ok, so I realize that this all sounds like gibberish, so I just googled around to try to find a suitable video demonstration to direct you to if you're interested.  This video appears to be very similar to what I did, only instead of stopping at a little square, I just kept going for-ev-er.  :)  The pattern I followed was 3 rounds white, 2 rounds grey, 1 round yellow.  I used a super soft baby yarn, and I loved it!  I kinda want one for me now made with that lovely soft yarn!  Next on the list?


Have you ever crocheted anything this large?  This blanket took me a little over 3 weeks to complete, and I was working on it a couple hours a day.  This is the biggest thing I've ever done, but I'm somewhat inspired now to try to make one big enough to hang out at the foot of our bed to add a little color.  Hum.  If I do another one though I'll try to find an actual pattern.  Something chevron maybe?  I've been pinning crochet stuff up a storm lately.  It's an addiction!


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I'm linking this post up here:
Funky Junk Interiors
{Primp} 
Organize & Decorate Everything 
Southern Lovely 
It's Overflowing 
The Shabby Creek Cottage
Crafty Scrappy Happy
52 Mantels 
Delightful Order
Somewhat Simple
Two Yellow Birds Decor 
At the Picket Fence 
2805 
Shabby Sites!
Fingerprints on the Fridge
The Shabby Nest
Chic on a Shoestring 
Making Lemonade 
Whipperberry 
Nap Time Crafters 
Our DIY Diaries
Remodelaholic
Addicted 2 Decorating 
Tatertots & Jello 
I Heart Nap Time 
The DIY Dreamer 
The DIY Showoff 
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia 
Today's Creative Blog
Home Stories A2Z
A Diamond in the Stuff 
Cherished Bliss 
Mini Manor Blog 
My Repurposed Life

Monday, February 20, 2012

A Dresser Change Table for my Friends!

You saw last week the cute bubble wreath that I made as a decoration for my friends' baby shower.  Today I'm going to show you the big gift I made for them.  It was even too big to bring it to the actual shower.  Yep, I made them a changing table!  They actually knew I was doing this for them, as I told them I would back on New Year's Eve when they were talking about all of the things they still needed to get.  Of coarse I followed through on my promise, and I found a dresser at a nearby Salvation Army that was just perfect to refinish into a changing table!


Ta-da!  Why is it that I never take my before pictures until after I have removed some of the drawers?  Ah well.  Do you like it?  I bought this dresser because I liked the size, and I liked the feet on it.  The drawers were all very nicely made as well & clean inside.  Plus the hardware was all in tact & nice enough to just use a little spray paint on to spruce them up & reattach to the drawers.  AND, it was 30% off furniture day at the Salvation Army, so I picked up this little guy for just under $40.  The only other things I bought for this gift was the railing, and a sample sized light purple paint for the inner portion of the drawers.


I worked on this over at my parent's house, because I went with them to the thrift store to get it, since they have a truck & this baby can't fit in my little PT Cruiser.  It's actually still over there, since they'll have to bring it up to our friend's house when we figure out a good time that'll work for everyone.  My parents helped quite a bit on this one.  It was their first time refinishing furniture, so that was fun.  :)

So once we got this home, I cleaned it up & we primed everything.  While that was drying, we cut the railing to size.  This is just two pieces of railing that we got in the trim section of Home Depot.  It took us a while to find it, and it was the only ones of its kind that they had, but it worked perfectly.  We needed two lengths of it, & we just cut them to size & wood-glued then nailed them onto the top of our dresser.  I wasn't originally going to do this, but my dad was afraid the baby would fall off :-)  So we did it.


Then we painted the whole thing white.  It would have been so nice to have a sprayer at this point, because painting those railings with a brush was rough.  But it turned out ok.  Two coats of white later, we did the front of the drawers, just the section there inside the trim, in a very light purple, which I don't know the name of because they put the little smudge of paint that they always put on the lid right over the name of the color.  Doh!

I used an easy satin poly on this one to seal it up.  Three coats, sanding between coats.  The hardware got a couple coats of oil rubbed bronze spray paint before being reattached.


I took a bunch of pictures of it once it was done.  The last coat of poly was still drying, but I had to get on the road to get home by that point.  I needed pictures though right away so that they could see what they were getting!


I do think they were pretty excited about it.  My dad's bringing it to town tonight or tomorrow night to get it into their place.  I love that they can use this as a changing table or just a dresser if they prefer.  I love that I was able to create something personal that they needed for their new little one.  Here's a close up of the drawers & hardware as well.


Yea pretty!

I did also make another gift for them that I could actually bring to the shower!  I will show you all that tomorrow.  It was a smaller gift, but actually took more time to complete!  Let me know what you think of the dresser!

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I'm linking this post up here:

Funky Junk Interiors
Today's Creative Blog 
Home Stories A2Z 
Sassy Sites! 
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia 
{Primp} 
Organize & Decorate Everything 
Restore Interiors 
Southern Lovely
It's Overflowing  
Crafty Scrappy Happy
The Shabby Creek Cottage
52 Mantels 
Somewhat Simple
Delightful Order
Two Yellow Birds Decor 
At the Picket Fence 
2805 
The Shabby Nest
Fingerprints on the Fridge
Chic on a Shoestring
Miss Mustard Seed
Whipperberry
Making Lemonade
Nap Time Crafters 
Remodelaholic
Our DIY Diaries
Addicted 2 Decorating 
Tatertots & Jello 
I Heart Nap Time 
The DIY Dreamer 
The DIY Showoff 
Cherished Bliss 
Jillify It 
Beneath My Heart 
My Repurposed Life 
Thrifty Decor Chic 
Lovely Etc
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