Friday, September 28, 2012

Mycolor Blog Post

To learn more about this project I completed for Sherry Hart, head over to the Mycolor blog post today!


Happy Friday, folks.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Pillow Talk

This may be my most creative post title ever. I've written before about how my post titles are never good, nor creative, but hey... look at me now.

Anyway... I bought some new pillow shams the other day, and really was diggin' the combo I've got going on in my bedroom now, so I thought I'd share.

I bought these cute Indian-inspired shams at World Market (they are not online, I can't find them anywhere... maybe they're new?):


(the ones behind the leopard print)

You like? I was drawn to that turquoisey pale blue -- it seems to be my color of the moment. Wait til you see new pictures of my living room - I've been incorporating it everywhere. I've always been a big turquoise fan, and I used to love to pair it with red. 


Again - my computer is messed up and not letting me save edited photos, so the white balance is off on these. I guess it's time to cave in and take it to the Genius Bar.

Anyway, for a summary, I bought the Zig Zag pillow in this etsy shop, the leopard ones in this etsy shop, the shams at World Market, the sheets are from Target (I love them!) and the bedspread and Euro shams are from Pottery Barn.

I love changing up the look of things in my house with throw pillows... mine move all around the house, too. 


(also, I wish the cords for my lamps beside the bed were invisible... Clearly, I have no photoshop skills!)


The fabric for my curtains is from Spoonflower - they are really fun and vibrant, and I love them paired with my pale turquoise walls. If you are new around here, you can read about how I made my curtains here, and if you're curious about that little sun-shaped mirror above the bed, you can read about how I bought it (then painted it) here. Actually - come to think of it, I have made or painted almost everything in this room. Hah! I painted the swing arm lamps from brass to oil-rubbed bronze, I painted the night stands (and wallpapered them!), and I painted the sconces above the nightstands. I'm a crazy painting freak.


I wanted to take a minute and say thanks to everyone for shopping my Joss & Main sale! It was a great success, and I'm hoping to host another in the future. If you missed it and still want to check out some goods (They have tons of great stuff - I love all the curated collections!), head on over. Joss & Main is an invite-only website, but I have a special link for you here.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Trellis Walls

I painted my trellis stencil (A stencil that I hand cut... it is not available online for sale) on a client's daughter's bedroom walls recently, and I loved it paired with the pale blue background. Take a look:


I paint each of these diamond like shapes by hand... all the way around the room! It's pretty time consuming. This is a stencil I've considered selling in my Etsy stencil shop... would you guys be interested?




Tuesday, September 25, 2012

New Stencil Design

Hi guys...

I wanted to drop in and show off a new stencil that I made and used for a client recently. It's based off of Madeline Weinrib's awesome rug pattern (Mandala), and I love the soft, subtle look we achieved with it.


(I have messed up some setting on my computer, and therefore photos won't save after I've edited them. Very annoying. So, these photos are completely unedited!)


I adore the soft pink/peach/beigey color that was chosen by the talented Heather Roberts of Ivy and Vine. Isn't it awesome paired with my pretty opaque pearl paint? This is going to be a baby girl's nursery, and I'll be sure and share the real "After" shots with you guys when it's all done - I know it will be beautiful.




if you'd like to see a photo of the stencil making process, you can go here:

As you can see, it's quite the process to make them. For this one, I projected a copy of the pattern onto the wall with my projector, traced the pattern onto paper, then traced that onto my clear paper for the stencil, then cut it out with a razor. My arm was hurting the next day from cutting this one - all the round edges were hard! 

I think all the hard work paid off though...what do you think?

Friday, September 21, 2012

Mycolor Blog Post

Hi guys!


Also, I'm excited to announce a new project we have been working on... the Mycolor Blogger Paint Party! It's coming up soon... look out for myself and several other bloggers using Mycolor paints and posting about our projects, along with free giveaways.


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Pillow switcheroo

Lately I've been getting annoyed with myself, because I promised to myself (and on this blog in January!) that I would start doing more personal DIY projects again this year, and it just totally hasn't happened. My house has been in a sort of in-between state this entire year, because of being busy with work, and not giving enough time to it (to decorate it how I want). 

Oh well, such is life, live and learn. 

I enjoy clicking on the posts I've done in the past (this blog is going on five years soon!) with all my little projects. My how my decor has changed in the 3 years we've lived here. I just love changing things up. I can't help it. 


All that to say - I did a couple of wee house projects yesterday. I got home from work early (about 3pm) and was a bad girl and didn't go to the studio.

I came home and sewed a pillow and painted a dresser mint green. The dresser photo will have to wait until it's nice and cured and I can style it up and photograph it for you guys (it's awesome though!), but here is my little pillow project.

My mom recently bought a couple of cheap-o pillows at some discount store. We decided to have some custom pillows made for chairs in her bedroom, but she decided that instead of buying inserts, she'd just toss the pillow covers that came with her pillows, and use the inserts. They were really inexpensive (compared to buying them at a fabric store), and that was my inspiration here. (or at least I think it was - sometimes I do things subconsciously, then realize where the idea came from. I think that's what happened here!). 

I bought this shaggy pillow (What kind of hair is this supposed to be? Falcor hair?) at Target a few months ago. I like the way it looks, but I gotta tell you - the main difference between "nice" pillows and Target pillows are those darned inserts. NEVER BUY PILLOWS THAT DONT HAVE FEATHER INSERTS.

You can't karate chop them properly. Also, my pillow started coming apart at one seam. Sadface.

Here it is, un-karate-chopped:

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

like a piece of paper, right?

And here is what I bought to remedy it:
Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

That pretty Christmas pillow on the left was bought at Marshalls for something like $8. At most stores, inserts are at least $15-30 bucks, so I thought I'd buy this one, unzip the zipper, remove the insert and toss the old pillow out. If you want to dig through our trash, you are welcome to it. I know, I felt kind of bad.

I just used a seam ripper to remove that one side of the seam, and pulled out all the gross stuffing which was lumpy and making my pillow flat.

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

put the insert in:

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

and sewed that baby up (I just did a whipstitch. I still don't have my sewing machine fixed.)

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

My whipstitch was VERY rough, but who cares, I was dealing with Falcor-fluff to cover it up.

And here she is - all karate chopped, and much more comfy to lay your head upon:

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Striped Playroom Walls

The past two days were spent striping the walls of this awesome playroom, and I couldn't love the outcome more! My client and I came up with the idea to create a fun, playful, bright and happy playroom about a year ago, and we finally got to do it this week. I am actually also making some artwork for the walls, so it's not totally done, but I think you can get a great idea of where we're headed with these photos. 

Here were some photos I snapped while taping the stripes off:


tracing/taping the stripes actually took about 4 hours. Not an easy process. The long walls are easy, but the little skinny thin areas around corners and behind doors are what get ya!

I actually use the level app on my iPhone for these little areas now - pretty convenient for getting into teensy spaces.


And here it is, striped:

2012-09-18 01


That wall to the right is where my artwork will go.





Love the pops of orange with that blue - perfection. And don't you love her Ikea light fixture in this space? Perfect contrast with the blue ceiling.

2012-09-18 01

2012-09-18 01

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Quadrille "wallpaper"

A few months ago, I was commissioned by Heather Roberts, of Ivy and Vine, to create a Quadrille-inspired stencil for a small closet in a nursery she was designing. 

It was a fun job, and I really thought the nursery was one of the cutest I've seen! This is the little closet before I painted it:

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

During my stencil-making process:
Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

painting it on (LOTS of touch ups involved in this pattern):
Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

And after:


Heather chose an awesome lacquer-looking navy paint for the shelves and little built-in seat, and then I painted my stencil in with an eggshell version of the same color. As you can see, the pattern is tiny and was a lot of work, but we were so happy with the results! Quadrille actually makes a wallpaper like this, but there is a 5-roll minimum on orders, and they only needed enough for this small space, so I was able to do the job for cheaper (not to mention, hiring artists is always a nice thing to do ;) ) than buying the wallpaper.

Here it is if you step back a little (Excuse the iPhone poor quality shots!)




Here is a photo I took before the artwork was hung:


Dont' you adore the grasscloth walls mixed with modern furniture and that killer rug? Lucky baby.

I also painted the ring around the bamboo chandelier bright yellow!

The parents of the lucky baby are music buffs, so check out the cool artwork over that modern changing table:

records! I thought that was awesome. 

This is a better view of the whole room:


So cute, right?!

The elephant artwork was taken by the homeowners on a trip, and Heather had it blown up and framed. 


Friday, September 14, 2012

MYcolor blog post

Happy weekend!

I just wanted to let you guys know that I blogged over at the Mycolor blog today. A reader tried her hand at my DIY Ikat plate project, and had smashing results...

Thursday, September 13, 2012

How I did it: Penny Tile Table

A while back, I wrote a short post about how I was starting a penny-tile project.  I had just glued down all the pennies, and things were peachy. 

I finally finished the project with great results, but not without a few (very annoying!) hiccups along the way. 

Here are some stats for my project:

Five thousand pennies were used for this dining table (which is about 3.5' x 7' long), which equals about $2.04 per square foot in pennies. This is valuable info that I could not find anywhere online! Sounds silly, but is very helpful when you are trying to get a bunch of pennies at Wells Fargo, and have no idea how many you need. I got $25.00 at first, but had to go back for a second round. 


I also used this resin, which was the only option at Lowe's:


It's Famowood's clear glaze coat.

It comes in 3 different sizes, and I got the largest, which is about $70 per gallon. Not cheap.

So, onto the table! My clients had this table built specifically for their space, so the top was raw wood. I first painted it a dark brown, and let it dry. 

After that, I glued my pennies. You want to find a really good pattern that makes sense for your square footage, because let me tell you (due to painful past experience) pennies are impossible to cut or saw once placed. I tried. 

I wanted my pennies to go all the way to the edge, but I learned the hard way that I would not be able to saw them or cut them, so I created a pattern and a placement that looked nice on the table top. After that, I glued my pennies in place with super glue. If you attempt something like this, I suggest finding a friend to help. I would say overall, it took about 6 hours or so to place all these pennies. Sounds kind of ridiculous, and I consider myself pretty proficient in any kind of crafty project (and a lot of "handy" projects), but it just takes time to place, then glue, every little penny! The good thing is that it's mindless... and would probably even be something that kids would enjoy, if you have some of those hangin' around. :)


After I glued my pennies, it looked like this:



pretty cool in and of itself, I'd say. 

I let this dry overnight, and the next day I was ready to pour the resin. I was pretty nervous about this part, because it was my first resin pour. Like I said, though, I am pretty good at figuring out most tools/products, so I thought that my careful attention to the directions would be enough to get me through this project easily. 

Not necessarily so. You see, resin is really testy stuff - there are lots of conditions that the product has to be under for it to work properly and several very strict rules you MUST follow:

1) temperature needs to be perfect. The warmer the temp is, the faster your resin will dry. Suggested air temp in the room that you are working in should be between 70 and 80 degrees F. If it's below 70 degrees, it's going to dry slower. 

2) resin/hardener need to also be brought to room temp if they aren't already

3) you MUST measure your two liquids very exactly (the hardener and the resin)

My first pour went fine, it dried properly as aspected, but there were some bubbles in the surface that were no bueno, so I called the company that makes the product and asked them what I should do. They said get a very high-grit sandpaper (I got 400) and sand down each individual bubble, make it all smooth on top, then re-pour. They sent me a complementary new package in the mail for my trouble. 

This is where I get the feeling that their product is very hard to use, and they are constantly sending out free new resin packages, which is probably why the stuff is so $$$ to begin with. Hah. 

So I re-did it, and it was all smooth, but this time, the product didn't dry properly, and I had some areas that were completely dry, and others that were feeling more like jelly or honey. 

It's supposed to dry after 72 hours, and it had been 3 days, so I knew it was a problem. 

I called the company again (me and Chan, who runs the service desk and is a super nice guy with all the answers got to be friends), and was told that I would have to re-pour. This time, the product was not measured evenly at the warehouse, so the two elements (hardener and resin) were not displaced evenly, and therefore the table wasn't drying properly. I'm pretty sure that it eventually would dry, but my clients were itching to use their table, and I was wanting to get it DONE, so I repoured AGAIN. Chan sent me another free product. 

ANYWAY. All this to say, I ended up pouring a total of 4 times. The third time also gave me an un-even dry. Finally on pour 4, I got a perfect pour, and a nice, smooth, beautiful finish. Not without a lot of stress (and admittedly heartache. The resin was defeating my soul.). Chan gave great directions, but pretty much every time he told me I'd have to re-pour which was distressing. Haha. At least he sends free resins. 

Now I feel like a resin expert, so if you have questions, ask away.

This is how I ended up getting the perfect pour:

You need to have 2 2-quart sized (with MEASURING LINES ON THE SIDE) containers, plus 2 other gallon-sized containers. You pour your two separate liquids (The resin and the hardener) into the measuring cups and make sure you have the EXACT amount in each one. this is VERY important. Next, you pour A into B (I can't remember which was the hardener and which was the resin, but its in the instructions) and stir for 5 minutes. The instructions say 2 minutes, but Chan told me 5 is better. Then, you pour that whole mixture into another gallon sized container and stir that one for 5 minutes too. Then you are ready. This mixture (due to the chemical reaction) will get very hot, but that means its working nicely. Try not to get scared and call the help desk if it starts smoking and melting your stirring tool you left in there. Yes that happened to me. GAH!

Then pour away. You have 20 minutes to make your pour look how you want it to look. I used a little squeegee, which worked pretty well. 

Wait patiently for 72 hours and pray, cross your fingers and hope to Jesus that your resin dries properly. :)

After it was all dry (I created a frame/lip for my table to hold the resin in by using thick painter's tape all the way around the edges of the table to keep it from running. Worked like a charm. I used two layers of tape and pressed the edges of the table down hard.), and I pulled the tape, it was a little sharp on the edges, so I sanded it down with a rough grit (probably 120) hand-held sanding block.

Anyway, enough words... I hope I conveyed my points that I learned well enough for you guys. I certainly did a lot of resin research online during this whole process, but hopefully this will help more people like me out there that are having issues in the future. 

Feel free to ask me questions, people, because I know how frustrating it can be!



Looks pretty cool in the space, no?



The resin layer was almost 1/2" thick after 4 pours. Admittedly, it was a lot prettier with the 4 pours versus one. 

Here is a close-up photo of the edges:


So smooooooooooth like glass:


Oh! And I forgot to point out how to get rid of bubbles after you do your pour:

you manually blow them out with your mouth. yep. Tie that hair back, too (learned this the hard way as well - resin likes to stick to hair, clothes, skin, cars, tools...). Sounds kind of obvious but this is the easiest way to get rid of them! You have 20 minutes of working time after you pour, so this is when you will do this.