Thursday, October 23, 2008

Can you believe a week has gone by and our laundry room still isn't completed! Are you wondering, "What's up with that?" The truth is... I'm burnt out! In an attempt to hang two shelves, I encountered more difficulties. The top shelf isn't level and the second shelf - remains unhung due to my dropping not one, but two, screws down behind the dryer. Urghhh! I somehow mustered up the courage to say, "Screw It." and walked away! LOL! Sometimes, you just need a break, so I'm taking one. I can always pull out the dryer and attempt this again another day.
I've been focusing my attention on simply keeping up. I've been writing in my journals {I've two now - one more personal in nature; the other titled "The Wednesday Letters" in which I write a weekly letter to my hubby. {He hasn't read any of the entries I've written yet} and making a few sketches and notes in my sketchbook.
My mind's been on gettting back to the studio re-organizing. I really need to begin tackling my magazines; when I came across several piles of them within our home, the first question in my mind was "just what am I supposed to do with these?" Uhmmm, I gotta come up with some solution! Once the re-organizing is done, I have some decorating to complete there that I've put off for far too long. You know how you have that vision in your head and heart but you're studio doesn't reflect what's there? That's where I am at.
In other news, we've basically been relaxing. Taking care of our home, inside and out, cooking and dining, visiting with family members and friends. We recently talked about taking a Autumn road trip but haven't made any efforts to do so. Maybe this weekend? I definately need something to motive me once again........

Thursday, October 16, 2008

How about another "Sneak Peek"?

Since decorating our laundry room has proven t be a much bigger project than I originally envisioned it to be! I don't have any finished photographs to show you yet! I know, I know... I need to get busy!
I have to admit that's it has been exciting to see the room transform and become. I've truly enjoyed coming up with a variety of creative ways to decorate the space. It's all that prep work that seems to have burnt me out and I really needed to get away from it for a few days!!!
Thankfully, Don picked up where I left off.
He's been busy --- running to the hardware store for more white spray paint, spray painting the shelf brackets white once again, cutting the shelving to the needed lengths, and PATIENTLY putting the slats back into the broken shutter door; and Yes! he even managed to get it re-hung.! Talk about making me feel bad?! But that didn't stop me as he continued to work on the laundry room, and I played!
Do you see that beautiful jar? It's a recycled, plastic Mayo container that I hung onto, believing I could use it for something. {Perhaps, a fairy in a jar for my studio?} Anyways, I had all the laundry products that we use on a regular basis out on our kitchen counter, when I discovered
that I had three boxes of powdered Clorox II. Since I can use it on my own colored clothes as Don has very sensitive skin, I quickly realized that I certainly wouldn't need three boxes of the stuff cluttering up the freshly painted cabinet! That's when it realized how much it appeared to look like a white sand on a beach so I tried to take advantage of that by pouring it into the jar, tossing in a few seashells, and adding a piece of the co-ordinating fabric and jute tied over the lid! Talk about a visual escape!!! Isn't it
simply perfect for the space?
Well, today, my "beach escape" seems to be over.
Don, threw the beach ball back to me when he gave me
instructions" of where the shelf brackets, the level, and the shelving is located before he left for work today. And all I seem to be thinking about is finding or creating a "Gone To The Beach" sign.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The "Laundry Room" Saga Continues....

Why is it when you attempt to correct or change one thing while decorating, repairing, or remodeling within your home, you're entire house becomes a huge mess? Well, that's the way it goes around here anyways. It seems one thing always leads to another! And those little somethings have kept the two of us very busy!
Since my shutter door for shelving idea had to be shelved, we needed to brainstorm for alternate ideas, and decided to purchased a closet organizer and some white laminate shelving. We got the two sections of shelving for the tower assembled while the paint on the laundry room floor was drying. Once dry everything was moved into the laundry room space and then, the washer and dryer were hooked back up temporarily, sp I could take advantage of the opportunity to get caught up on our laundry.
On Tuesday, Don purchased a sheet of drywall to repair and replace a section that was removed eight long years ago when we originally moved the laundry appliances upstairs from our basement. The washer and dryer was unhooked, and moved out again, so that he could installed it on Wednesday. On Thursday, I got it mudded up and on Friday, I got it sanded. I'm ready to begin removing any traces of dust that remain, and am ready to paint that last little section. I'll have few areas of the floor to sand and re-paint, shelving to cut to size and install and we'll finally be finished!
My friend, Elainia, came over yesterday and we taped up the glass on the large outdoor light and spray painted it. It's beautiful in black! We, also, spray painted a indoor planter box and lid, 6 shelving brackets, and one wrought iron bedside table that I'll put in the room. The entire room is coming along nicely but I've still a few obstacles like where to put Alexxis' toys to face.
Here's what I didn't mention...
I had to unhook and remove my computer from the adjacent bedroom. I moved a dresser by myself so I could shampoo the carpet. That we took Alexxis' crib down, packed up all the little linens, and put up the twin "big girl" bed in its place Or did I forget to mention that the matress and box springs to said twin bed were stored upstairs in our storage room and had to be brought down? And to make room for my computer and desk, we had to take down and move the living room hutch? Needless to say, there's stuff everywhere! And I haven't even made it to cleaning out the closet! I guess I'm going to be busy for yet another week getting things back in order. I'll share some pictures of the finished results soon.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Good Morning!

As I sat with anticipation of Don's arrival home, I was so excited to show him all that I accomplished and created yesterday. I was so giddy! I felt like a three year old in a candy shop and no way was I able to sit still, so I sewed up a couple more laundry bags.
Those little bags are the greatest and fastest things to create. Before I knew it I had the rectangles cut out, the tops folded and ironed over, and a crease iron on the bottom. It seemed as if they just flew under the sewing machine needle! First one, then another, before I realized that I would need something to tie them up with, oh, and some seashellls! So off to the studio I flew, gathering up a bit of this, that, and the other along with my glue gun.

Upon entering back into the house, I looked up and saw this beautiful white wire basket sitting on the breakfast bar. I'd completely forgotten about it as I'd moved it out of my way earlier in the day while setting up my sewing machine but I didn't miss it twice! The basket was included in a Bath N Body gift set that I'd received for Christmas a few years ago. I used it on top of the linen closet for the longest time, well until I made the recent changes and this is one of those items that I just desired to re-locate somewhere else in our home. Won't it be perfect for use in the laundry area? Well, I thought so. So, I grabbed the basket, the less than 1/2 yard of fabric, scooped up all my faux clothesline panels and little laundry bags and headed back into the laundry area.

Of course, I just had to see what it would all look like in the space and then, one thing lead to another. Hmmm, wonder what this fabric would look like on top of the dryer? Perhaps, I could sew up a nice topper to use for a dryer cover... it would definitely prevent the top of the dryer from scratches. Then, I placed the pretty white basket on top and filled it with the faux clothesline panels, envisioning how I'll hang them and in what order. I tucked in a small laundry bag here, and there, and one over there, and I smiled the biggest smile! Just as I was feeling like the woman on the Lowe's Creative Ideas commercial with her proud loook of "I did that!" in walked my hubby and guess what? He loves what I've done and created! I believe I have him so stoked that he won't even mind helping me cut the shutter style bifold door down so I can use them for shelves today and do a bit of shopping for some new shelf brackets and the glass that I'll be needing to cover them. I know it's still early, but when did you say he was getting out of bed? LOL!
Well, there's still a bit more to do to laundry room area today before I'll be ready to hang the shelves and begin to accessorize, but I'm certain that well have this little project completed by the end of the weekend. For less than, $30, I believe this is going to be one of my favorite places in our house and I won't even mind doing the laundry. Although, I think I should add a "Gone To the Beach" sign, just a reminder to myself to take a break every now and then.
I'm so sorry to keep posting pictures of my faux clothesline panels and little laundry bags, but I am just so stoked! "You made that? Hmmmm. And That? And That." I won't tell you how many times I came just to the doorway of this room last night "just to peek in". I just had to make sure that I wasn't dreaming! And this morning, I grabbed my cup of coffee and peeked in again. Guess what? There still here, in all their little loveliness!

Saturday, October 04, 2008

The Embellished Faux Clothesline Panels...

I embellished all six of the faux clothesline panels I had previously created. Won't these be so adorable hanging on a faux clothesline above my laundry cabinet and shelves? I used the sewing machine a bit more to speed things up and you know I'm getting tired when my right foot keeps searching for the sewing machine controls while I type, LOL! It's definitely time to call it a day!

Clothesline Panels...

I'm off to a great start on sewing these panels for my faux "clothesline" Can you tell I just randomly use this here and that there? LOL! Well, I'm off to the studio --- gotta go find some small seashells, starfish, and perhaps, some shell style buttons. See ya soon...
{smiles and waves...}

Laundry Room update...

While the last coat of paint was drying on the cabinet, I couldn't wait to get started painting the walls! Is that color gorgeous? Perfect for my sun-washed beach theme! {The shadows are cast from the ceiling light in the bedroom and this is the closest to the actual paint color that I could get} For a touch of "unexpected whimsy" I decided to paint a couple of our clothespins using the Azul and White..
While the walls are also drying, I decided to play around with transfering my images on to the muslin. Normally, when I print on fabric, I use the freezer paper method of iron the muslin to the shiny side of the freezer paper and trimming before I begin, but since I didn't have any freezer paper handy, I used the painter's tape instead. Just cut the muslin 7 1/2"x 10" {smaller than the paper your adhering the muslin to} and taped it along all four sides {to prevent my printer from jamming} and print. The photo above shows my prints, fresh from the printer, and the bottom right shows one of the prints sewn on one my laundry room clothesline panels.
Since I cannot do much more until the paint dries, I figure I may as well work on the clothesline and the little laundry bags! I'm getting stoked about seeing this laundry room finished!!!!

Images for my faux "clothesline"....

While I'm waiting for paint to dry {Yep! I paint fast!} I googled images of beaches that I could save, turn sepia using my photo-editing program, and print off on some muslin fabric. So far, I'm leaning towards these:

Laundry Room decorating update...

Painting the laundry room cabinet white has made such a world of difference in the appearance of our laundry room space. It's lighter, brighter, and so much more clean looking! Over the course of the past few days, I continued painting the cabinet; well, until I ran out of paint! Which proved to be a good thing since I'm using an enamel paint and it requires time to cure completely before additional layers can be painted. With nothing else to do, but wait, I decided to get myself busy creating the fabric panels for my decorative clothesline.
Since I had already decided on using a beach theme for our laundry room and I knew the turquoise, beige, white color scheme I had planned, I choose to create my panels out of left over unbleached muslin. Does any fabric shout, "sun-loving, sun-washed out" more than muslin does? Yes, ticking would definately work well, but for the foundation pieces, I wanted something a bit more neutral so I began cutting my laundry day pieces in 8"x10" pieces, then got set up to sew them up. Altogether, I sewed six little banners, although I made need a few more. To assist with how these will hang, I decided to leave a small 1/3 opening in the top, so that once they were turned right side out, I could stuff them with a little polyfiber fill, before sewing them shut.
After Don arrived home, we ran a few errands, stopped by a friends, then made a trip to WalMart for the additional quart of white paint I'll be needing. Of course, when you're in the paint department, you also look at paint chips, and guess what? I found a beautiful color called Azul. It's one of Kilz Casual Colors and offers a one coat guarantee! So, I had a quart mixed up, which saves me another shopping trip! The paint samples are in both of the photographs, isn't it gorgeous?

After returning home, it was too late to paint, so I began stuffing, sewing, and embellishing one of the panels. I'll be adding some sepia colored beach photos to them at a later date, but it's a start!!!
I also found these three fabrics at WalMart in the discounted $1-$2 bin! Aren't these fabrics and colors perfect for my little project? I cannot wait to work on them some more. But first things first, I gotta get back to painting the second coat of paint on the cabinet. Here's to hoping all goes well!

Friday, October 03, 2008

Decorating our laundry room...& the ideas I have!

The idea of decorating our laundry room came to me during the summer as I sat with an issue of BH&G's DIY Ideas book. Within it's pages, I discovered a beautiful paint chip called "Turquoise Mist" by Benjamin & Moore paints. The color is a beautiful turquoise, like the color of a Carribean sea, and don't try to look it up online as the paint chip shown is NOT the color I saw --- perhaps, differences in computer monitors, but anyways, I loved that color! It goes with the paint color already in the bedroom {Martha Stewart's Lilac}, and since that is the room our laundry room resides in, I won't have to change it or any of the bedding or any other bedroom decor!
Anyways, as I turned each page, a new DIY idea would pop out at me, like painting and then, putting my clothes pin in a clear class topped apothecary jar, or my dryer sheets in small, just the right size, seagrass basket. I swear as I turned the pages within the magazine, my imagination began running wild! I could begin envisioning the crispness of the fresh turquoise painted walls. I could see my ugly brown cabinet gone and in it's place a beautiful white cabinet. There would white shelves, created out of one of our broken shutter doors, on which a cut to size piece of glass would rest. On the shelves would be the clear apothecary jar with my clothespins and a basket filled with our dryer sheets. Needless to say, I jotted these ideas down, sat creating me a "To Get Started" list, sketched out some pictures, and made a few more sketches.
Then, I re-discovered this while researching for thoughts and ideas for my altered book. It's the Designing With Fabric book, put out by Autumn Leaves. {* I have to add an endorsement here: If your not familiar with Autumn Leaves line of books, you've gotta check them out! I have almost a completed collection and I turn to them often. There isn't one book that I haven't referred to over and over again!}
While browsing through the Designing With Fabric book, I stumbled upon this:

Isn't it gorgeous?! The little laundry bags in the baskets were created by Debbie Crouse and the "At the Beach" fabric-covered wall hanging was designed by Carol Wingert, but the following inspiration came to me! See that white cotton clothes line with the adorable lightly painted clothes pins? Well, it just so happens that I've an approximately 14" space above the cabinet in my laundry room and I thought a clothes line is perfect for up there! And those little cloth decorated fabric panels, how cool would those be clipped to it to form a fabric banner? A french laundry basket, painted light beige or white, could sit on my shelves, holding my stain stick removers within those adorable laundry bags.

Then, I saw this page! See those gorgeous fabric created panels? And the by the sea vintage appearing theme? It's perfect! Not only would the theme look good in my laundry area, but I can cherish all my beach themed accessories year round!

Then, my mind whirled! I began envisioning my birdhouse sand castle, my seashells and starfish, my set of fishes, and the candles my sister brought me from Texas! They would be the perfect accessories for my "newly decorated laundry room!"

So, I began working, checking off some of the task on the "to get started" list, created a "new to do", and dreamt some more. A supply list got created along with a shopping list for some fabrics! And just when I thought I had it all figured out, along came this beauty!!!

Isn't she gorgeous? Okay, well for a laundry bag, I think it's precious!!!! {* I cannot remember where I obtained this picture from I'm desiring to create my own.} I love those cute little ruffles so add finding a ruffled child's slip to my list. Little by little, I'll be plugging away creating this. I can't wait to show you!!!

Autumn Nesting and other news....

As the weather turns colder here in Ohio, my thoughts and actions still think about Autumn Nesting. It's hard to believe that just earlier this week, I was out on our deck, enjoying the sunshine as I painted a $2 yard sale find and a gift from a friend. Now, I'm snuggling underneath anything I can find trying to stay warm! It's definitely time to start thinking about and re-organizing those closets and dresser drawers so that we can pull out those blue jeans, long sleeved T's, and comfy sweathers!

On Sunday, Don and I met up with our wonderful friends, Jim and Rosella for lunch at the the Tin Duck Bar and Grill. It's been a while since we've seen them so it was great to find the time to get together and catch up!

Afterwards, we made a trip to Kohl's where I purchased myself a couple new pairs of pants. I finally decided to stop struggling with not enough blue jeans to get through the week because I want to lose some weight and would love it if I had some jeans that would fit me then! Wouldn't you know I'd find two pairs that I love {a pr. of bootcut jeans and a pr. of brown cords} and both pairs of them will require hemming! Is it no wonder that my "To Do" list never seem to end?
I, also couldn't resist, picking up Little Miss a pair jeans, two long sleeved T's, and a hooded long sleeved fleece pullover. Did I tell you that she'll be starting Preschool two days a week? I cannot get over how fast she seems to be growing up! Wasn't it just yesterday we sat in the rocking chair singing her lullabyes? What do I mean "Preschool"???

It seems Mommy has become a bit concerned over Alexxis' inability to get along with other children. Alexxis is very "Me & Mine" oriented and a bit of bully when it comes to playing with other kids. But aren't most 2 1/2 year old this way? Anyways, since Mommy was concerned she arranged for a Preschool teacher to come into their home and assess Alexxis' learning level. It seems she is above where she should be for her age development but believing Alexxis would benefit from being with other children in or near her own age group {socail development}, Alexxis has been accepted!

So, last week, her Daddy and I visited her new preschool. We got to see her classroom, meet the teachers, observe the children in a very structured for their age environment, and I think this is going to be a good thing! She will be transported back and forth to preschool on a school bus and she'll have a wonderful opportunity to learn so much more that any of us have time for! Not that we don't work with her, just its more of that "re-inforcing what she's learning" thing...

On Tuesday, it rained and that autumn chill was certainly in the air. As I sat inside, curled up on the couch with a good book and a throw, I kept noticing myself shaking off the cold. Finally, not being able to stand it any longer, I decided to turn on the heat, grumbling, the entire time. I'm really not ready for those higher gas bills! As I passed by our home's front window, I couldn't help but to notice how fast the trees in our front yard are turning! The weight from the rain has strewn colorful leaves all over our yard, saying it's definately "Fall, Y'all!" which encouraged me to create this:
See where I've laid my newest craft creation? It's a bit hard to see that it spells "blessings" but the color of the cardstocks I'd chosen certainly help to bring the autumn color outdoors - well, indoors! Using the freshly-painted black candlesticks, a friend gifted to me, I created another centerpiece for our kitchen table. The pumpkins were $1 find at The Dollar Tree and those beautiful gold, glittered roses are from our wedding! Aren't those gorgeous?
The pears, grapes, and flowers are fakes, but those apples are real!

While I worked on clearing out and cleaning our laundry area {another on-going project}, I discovered this previous $4 yard sale find and moved it out onto our coffee table. Won't it be wonderful to be able to sit down after dinner, with a warm cup of whatever, and enjoy a game of this {There's a checkerboard on the reverse side.}:

After all the cleaning was done, I got to work on painting this previously ugly brown cabinet in our laundry room. I cannot begin to tell you how long I've waited to do this! For some time now, I've been thinking, pondering, searching for ideas and I finally believe that I've found my laundry room decorating answer! Little by little the clues began to revealed themselves... a paint color chip here, a shelving idea there, and accessory idea there, and a craft project there, a fabric sample from here,... and a place to store some of own home's accessories here.

Unfortunately, this is just the beginning, but I'm excited as I embark on yet another new journey! Just wait until you see what I have planned!