Tuesday, June 18, 2019

How To Paint Your Own Vases To Match Your Rooms Decor

On Sunday I shared My New Living Room!  In that post I mentioned that I painted a clear glass vase to match the rooms decor.  Painting a vase is a great idea if you can't find an exact color match in the store.  All you need is a clear glass vase (I already had one in my stash, but you can find these for pennies at any thrift store) and a small bottle of craft paint.  I used craft paint I already had, but if you don't have any it is available at any craft store like Hobby Lobby.

The technique is so simple!  Just pour the paint INSIDE the vase, and swirl it around the bit to get all the sides well coated.  Next, turn it upside down and put it on a wire rack with the wax paper underneath.  In the photo below I did it wrong and the paint pooled out around the vase.  I quickly realized my mistake and put the paper UNDER the rack.

A lot of paint dripped out.  Being the frugal gal that I am, I scooped it up and put it back in the paint bottle.  The hardest thing about this project is patience.  It takes a long time for the paint to drip out and dry.  I'd leave it alone at least 24 hours.

Here's a very short video I posted to my Instastories.  Notice the wax paper is now UNDER the wire rack.  🤣

I do want to mention that this was not my idea.  I found it on the Health, Home, and Heart blog where she does a great photo tutorial for you to follow if you want to do one for yourself.  Check it out:  "Easy DIY Painted Vases"!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Monday, June 17, 2019

Stitch Fix #29 Review

I can't believe this is the 29th box I'm reviewing from Stitch Fix.  Next month with be my 30th box! Wow!  I must really love Stitch Fix to stick with it this long.  Honestly, the older I get the less I like shopping.  I really love the convenience of someone else picking out my clothes for me and the luxury of trying them on in my own home.  I also love having three days to decide what to keep.  But what I think I love most is seeing if I have other items already in my closet to go with the Stitch Fix item;  OR being able to look in my closet to make sure I don't already own something similar.  I tend to forget what I already own. 🤣

Well, enough about why I love Stitch Fix, let's get on to the review.  I was actually hoping for a bad box this month because I didn't want to be tempted to keep anything. 😊  Last month's Fix was so great, I kept EVERYTHING, so I knew I had to balance that out and not buy much this month. Unfortunately, Stitch Fix sent me another great box and I really had to muster all the willpower inside of me not to keep most of it.  I was pretty good, I only kept two out of five items.  I'll let you know my decision process as I review each piece as well as the results of my Instagram Poll.  

In the picture below I'm wearing three pieces Stitch Fix sent me:  the white top, the coral pants, and the sandals.  Let's talk about the pants first.

Cosmic Blue Love "Moriah Straight Leg Pants"

Status:  KEPT!

I absolutely LOVED these pants.  The color was so pretty and perfect for summer.  They are very lightweight and a little loose, so they won't cling to my skin on hot summer days.  They are super comfortable because they have a little bit of stretch in them.  They polled very well on Instagram coming in at #1!  76% of Instagram Pollsters said to "Keep" the pants, and only 24% said to "Return" them.

Daniel Rainn "Kiera Eyelet Detail Top"

Status:  Returned

And now I go from the #1 item on my Instagram Poll to the least popular item...this white top.  It came in at #5 with only 46% of pollsters saying to "Keep" and 54% said to "Return".  I think the only thing I liked about this top was the eyelet yoke.  The short sleeve caps did my heavy arms no favors.  I also was turned off by how wrinkly the top was when I opened the box.  I don't like clothes that need to be ironed because I know the second I sit down in a car and strap on the seat belt, even if I ironed the top before I left the house, it will be all full of wrinkles when I step out of the car.

Franco Sarto "Gia Leather Sandal"

Status:  Returned

Original Post
I was tempted to keep the sandals, because they were so comfortable, but my husband really didn't like them.  I also thought I didn't really need them.  I already own a similar pair of brown sandals, but those are starting to show some wear.  In the end, I felt this style was just a bit too rugged for my taste, so back they went.  Instagram Pollsters really liked the sandals.  they tied at second place coming in at 69%  "Keep",  31%  "Return".

Wisp "Hanna Knit Dress"

Status:  Kept!

Original Post

I loved, loved, loved this dress!  Hubby loved it too.  In fact, he loved it so much he wanted me to look up the brand and order more in different colors.  The main reason I love the dress is that is so cool and comfortable.  It is made with Spandex so it really gives when I move, yet it's not clingy at all like a lot of knit dresses.  It barely touches my skin, making it perfect to wear in hot weather.  And even though it's loose, it's a very nice fit because it is tapered in the back, making it more figure flattering than your typical shift dress.  The length is also perfect for my 5'7 frame.  I think the print and colors are pretty for summer too.  It came in at #2, tying with the sandals, at 69% "Keep" and 31% "Return".

41 Hawthorn "Breyson Pleated Detail Blouse"

Status:  Returned!
Original Post

The last item to be reviewed is this sleeveless yellow top.  I liked the top, but I wasn't crazy about it.  I didn't think it was very flattering for my figure.  It seemed to accentuate my large bust and arms instead of minimizing them.  I also didn't like the sheerness of the top.  I would have to wear a camisole underneath it;  and who wants to do that on a hot summer day?  I also already own two yellow tops and didn't think I needed a third.  But, I did like a few things about the top, primarily the color and how cute it looked with my pants.  I also like the looseness around the waistline.  Instagram Pollsters weren't thrilled with this top either.  It came in at #4 (or #3 since we had a tie in this Fix) with 56% said "Keep" and 50% said "Return".

In summary, in this Fix I received two tops, one dress, one pair of pants, and a pair of sandals.  I kept two items:  the pants and the dress.  So what do you think?  Did I keep the right items?  I'd love to hear from you in the comments below.

If you've never tried Stitch Fix before, use my Referral Code to receive $25.00 off your first box!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Sunday, June 16, 2019

My New Living Room: From Dark and Dated to Light and Modern

I know, surprise, surprise!  So many of you thought you would never see this post.  I started this new redecorating project of my living room WAY back in February with this Inspirational Post.  In that post I shared inspirational pictures of what I hoped the room would like and also what I wanted the purposes of the room to be.  However, everything took a lot longer than we thought it would (we waited a month and a half just for our furniture to arrive!) and we had one frustrating issue after another.  It truly was a re-decorating nightmare!  In the end, I did not get everything on my wish list, but overall I'm pleased with the room.  Let's begin our tour and I'll tell you all about it!  First, here is the "Before" picture.  It was a very dated, dark, small, cluttered room.


And here is the "AFTER" picture taken from the exact same spot as the "BEFORE" picture.  What a difference, eh? Looking at these pictures it's hard to believe it's the same room.   It is no longer a dark, cluttered space.  Now it is open, bright, and cheerful.


The most obvious difference is the wall color and new floor.  Gone is the dark, blue-green color on the walls and gold/brown rug.  The wall color was replaced with "Colonial White" in a semi gloss.  The ceiling and trim were painted in Ultra White High Gloss.  Because my house is over 100 years old, there are a lot of small rooms.  When I first purchased my house 20 years ago, I painted all the rooms dark colors because HGTV said it would make my small rooms "cozier".  Ugh!  Big mistake!  It only made the small rooms even smaller and darker.  Light colors, especially whites, open up and brighten a room!  

Finding furniture for this tiny room was a challenge as it not only is very small, but there is virtually NO wall space.  I think I went to every furniture store in town and looked on-line,  and I just could not find anything that I liked or would fit.  Finally, out of total exhaustion and frustration, I just "settled" and purchased a recliner and a leather chair.  The leather chair did not work in the room at all so we moved it to another room.  Even though we measured before we went shopping, once the chair was in the room it just seemed too dark and heavy and overwhelmed the space.  (You can see the leather chair in this post HERE if your interested).  The recliner on the other hand, I didn't mind.  The fabric had a pretty sheen to it, and it seemed to fit the corner nicely.  Although it's not my preferred style of furniture,  it's very practical, especially as I age.  It is also a "Heat & Massage" recliner, which is a big bonus to me.  I can't tell you how many times I've enjoyed sitting in this chair after a long day in the garden!

To lighten up the dark chair a bit, I added a pretty throw by Vera Wang to the back of it.  The pillow is one of my old gold pillows that I just covered with a silver pillow cover from Hobby Lobby.  Pillow covers are the most economical way to update old pillows.  They cost half as much as a pillow.  This one only cost around $2.50 because I purchased it during a half-off sale.

Once we knew we were keeping the recliner in this room, the next issue was a table to put drinks on and hold our remotes.  A table would not fit in any practical spot near the recliner where one could easily reach for their drinks.  So my husband built this floating shelf out of distressed shelving.    I also needed a place to store all our extra blankets, so I added this basket from Home Goods.

It was very important to me to not have anything in this room that doesn't serve a purpose (except for my one small corner of knick knacks, which you will see when you read on).  I really wanted it to be easy and quick to clean.

I added a basket to the top of the shelf to hold all our remotes, my eyeglasses, and hand lotion.  Now everything I need is at easy reach, yet out of site.  A pretty orchid arrangement from TJMaxx completed the look.

Once all the heavy drapes of the old room were removed we marveled at all the beautiful sunlight in the room.  Why did we ever have the windows so covered up before?  The room has a southern exposure and great views of the garden below.  At first we we weren't going to have any drapes on the windows at all.  My husband put more trim on the windows and we wanted the large windows, and the light and view to be seen.  But after I lived in the room awhile, I felt the room was incomplete without window treatments.  So we just put one white panel on each end of the windows.  This way, the window frame, and the view, can still be seen.

This window faces east and has the most gorgeous morning sunlight.  My husband surprised me and said a hanging plant would look great in this window.  I was surprised because he normally doesn't let me put real plants in any room but the sun room.  He thinks the water spills ruins floors and furniture.  But I found a ceramic hanging pot from Ross that does not have holes on the bottom so it won't leak.  The plant sits in a plastic liner inside the ceramic pot.  The macrame plant holder I found on Amazon for less than $10.00.  I love that macrame is making a comeback, don't you?

The bead board ceiling and wood stove area were left unchanged other than fresh coats of paint.  The inspirational picture is from Hobby Lobby.  We did change the sconces from the gold "funeral parlor style" ones we had before to these Tuscan beauties.

View from southern window.

In the corner opposite the recliner, next to the wood stove,  I created a little reading corner.  After wasting a lot of money on furniture, I could not bring myself to try again, so I just slip covered my old wing back chair.  Yes folks, that's a slipcover.  They don't make them like they use to!  I had a friend over to the house last week, and she couldn't believe this was a slipcover.  She thought I bought  a brand new chair.  I purchased it for $50.00 on sale from SureFit.  It's like I got a whole new chair for only $50.00!!!!!

The slipcover is a stretchy jacquard damask material.  It forms beautifully to the chair and is secured underneath with Velcro straps.  I chose blue instead of white or grey because even though "all white everything" is "in" my husband and I both like a little contrast between the furniture and the wall.  Blue, especially this color of blue, is very trendy right now in home decor too.  To keep with the modern trend of "all white everything" I simply added a white pillow and throw to the chair.
The white pillow (Home Goods) and crochet throw (vintage) soften the blue and help blend it just a bit to the all white room without losing the color.

When I initially designed the room, I wasn't going to have any rug in the room at all.  One reason is that we loved the new floor so much, we didn't want to cover it up.  The second reason is that this is such a high traffic room because you have to walk through this room to get to the upstairs bedrooms.  Any rug we ever put in this room before always got worn very quickly.  But, my husband and I both felt the reading corner needed be distinguished from the rest of the room and what better way to do that than to anchor it with a rug.  The round rug was a perfect choice, because it never gets stepped on  when walking across the room to get to the staircase.  I purchased it from Amazon.  The colors go great with the room colors.

This is a view looking down into the room from the staircase.  Some of my readers may remember me writing about the footstool.  I love the crochet footstool.  I feel it adds a contemporary touch to the room and needs to stay to balance out all the more traditional elements.  My husband on the other hand hates it and wants it to go.  But it's past the point of no return now, so it's staying!  At least, until it's worn or I find a better one for a good price.  When shopping for footstools, I was shocked at how expensive they were.  I found this one at TJMaxx for $40.00.

As always, I had the hardest time finding a table and lamp for this room.  Every time I redecorate a room, these two items are always the most difficult for me to find.  I couldn't stomach spending hundreds of dollars for an end table;  especially the ones that were heavily distressed and looked like they came from a rummage sale.   So I hit my local thrift store and found this one for $25.00.  I'm trying to decide whether I should chalk paint and distress it.  My hubby and daughter both say "no" but my friend says "yes".  What are your thoughts?

The lamp I purchased at Ross for $15.00.  I liked the neutral color and burlap shade.  I framed one of my favorite pictures of Alethea and I with a new frame from Kirklands.  The color and style of the frame went perfect with the boho look I have going on in the room.  The colors in the picture also go well with the rest of the room decor.  Two baskets were added, one for the top of the shelf and one to hold magazines on the lower shelf.  And lastly, I added a coaster to protect the table top surface.

This picture was the only item left from the previous room.  I thought the design and colors went beautifully with the new decor so I kept it.  I simply moved it from the opposite wall to above the wing back chair.

Right side view of living room as seen from inside the adjoining dining room.  In addition to painting living room "Colonial White" this winter,  I also painted the dining room and office the same color.  The office is right next to the dining room (not shown in this post.  I will do another post showing all three rooms later).  I love how my semi-open floor plan seems even more open now just because all three rooms are painted the same color.

Left side view of living room as seen from dining room

I really wanted to keep this room clutter free and minimally decorated as possible.  I didn't want a lot of nick knacks that I have to dust.  As I have been going around my house, updating and redecorating rooms,   I try to keep my old age in mind.  I want the flow to be unrestricted, nothing to trip over,  and I want the rooms to be easy to clean.  But when all was said and done, this room seemed a little too minimalist to me.  So I went and bought this corner shelf from Hobby Lobby ($55.00) and filled it with just a few nick knacks.  There use to be a round table in this corner, which really tightened up the space.  The corner shelf on the other hand, is so minuscule, that it still allow plenty of room for foot traffic at the stair case landing.  And, I have a little spot for my nick knacks.  What can I say?  A Granny has to have a spot for her nick knacks.

On the top shelf,  I put a modern blue glass vase (Home Goods $5.00).  On the second shelf I placed a Dollar Store bird canvas on an easel and then I added a succulent planter that I made myself.  The third shelf is a picture of our entire family at my daughter's wedding.  I thought the teal dress I was wearing coordinated perfectly with the other blues in the room.  I then added a teal vase with white faux flowers next to it.  I painted the vase teal myself (post coming soon).  The bottom shelf was a tricky one as it is so close to the floor I couldn't put anything breakable on it.  When I found this lantern at Aldi for around $6.00 I thought it was perfect for the spot.

View of living room as seen from back wall of dining room.

View of living room as seen from staircase landing.

I really needed a TV in this room as it is right off the kitchen.  Often when cooking, I like to sit down and watch TV when something is in the oven or simmering on the stove.  The other living space is too far away for that.  So, we then mulled over how to put a TV in such a small, awkward space.  It used to be in the corner, where the wing back chair is now.  But I never really liked it there because of the windows.  So we decided to move it and put it between the two windows.  The size of the TV fit perfect there.  At first, we we were going to purchase a new entertainment center.  We couldn't just put the TV on the wall because we have components.  But again, price sticker shock affected me.  I just can't believe how much furniture costs these days, can you?  So I started looking at thrift stores for something I could alter.  But then hubby said "Why do we need an entertainment center?  We don't need the storage for Cd's or videos anymore.  All we need is a way to hold our components."  So he came up with this ingenious idea of creating another floating shelf.  The TV sits on the top shelf, and the components sit on the second shelf. We hung a black cloth to hide the cords and the rest of the cords inside the molding on the lower left window.  The window curtain covers up the bottom portion of the cords that go into the basement.

It was a brilliant idea!  The floating shelf has a clean, modern look, yet, the distressed wood shelving keeps with the character of the house.  Above the TV I hung a boho style architectural piece.  We felt something was missing above the TV but we didn't want to put a real picture there because we felt it would compete for attention with the TV.  Because it is white, and blends with the wall, the architectural pieces fills the space without overwhelming it.

And before I close, I should also mention we replaced our old stair case runner with a new one.  I had to go through old post archives to find a picture, as I forgot to take one.  But that's OK because now I have my precious Alethea in a picture!  The new runner is a beautiful grey and white with flecks of blue in it.  It matches the round rug very well.

Well, that's it.  Sorry it took me four months to post the final results but we had a lot of struggles, frustrations, and waiting periods till it was all done.  Even though the room didn't exactly turn out like my dreams,  I'm pretty pleased with it.  What do you think?

Summary of Room Remodel Costs:

Flooring:                                                                                                                                    $500.00

Paint:  Free, with rebates

Lighting:                                                                                                                                     $75.00

Rug and Runner:                                                                                                                         $125.00                  

Furniture:  (I'm not including the cost of the leather chair as we did not use it in this room)  $525.00

Wood For Shelves, Trim:                                                                                                            $125.00

Window Treatments:                                                                                                                    $50.00

Decorations:                                                                                                                                 $245.00

Grand Total:                                                                                                                           $1645.00

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Friday, June 14, 2019

Three Summer Pieces From Stitch Fix

Today I am showing the last three pieces I received in my May box from Stitch Fix.  I've already shown you two pieces:  a yellow sleeveless top and a printed dress.  In this post, I am revealing a top, pants, and sandals.

First, let's talk about the top.  You might have noticed it's pretty wrinkly.  I left the wrinkles in the top on purpose because I wanted you to see how easily the top wrinkles.  I don't like any material that wrinkles easy.

I also don't like the sleeves.  I think this is the second top Stitch Fix sent me with these type of sleeves.  They totally don't work on gals with bigger arms like me.

But, I do like the eyelet yoke.  I think that's very pretty.

The top is by Daniel Rainn and is called "Kiara Eyelet Detail Top"

The second item I received were these pair of Franco Sarto "Gia Leather Sandals".  They were super comfy.  The stripes are made of suede.  There is a big toe loop.  Hubby didn't like the sandals at all.  I thought they were OK, but the style was a bit rugged for my taste.

The last item I received was a pair of lightweight coral pants:  perfect for summer.  I thought all three items in the Fix went so well together,  I styled them all together with a hat and straw bag.

I wore coral and white jewelry to match the colors in the outfit.  The straw bag was purchased in a garden center years ago.

I loved everything about these pants.  The material is very thin and comfy:  perfect for summer.  I love the cropped length too.

The hat is from H&M.

And my favorite thing about the pants?  It has BELT LOOPS!  🤣 If you remember I received a pair of light blue pants in my last Fix which did not have belt loops, so I had to sew my own on to keep my pants from falling off.  I was so thrilled I would not have to do that again with these pants.

The pants are by Cosmic Blue Love and called "Moriah Straight Leg Pant".

On Monday I will do a Stitch Fix Review post letting you know what I kept and what I sent back;  although I'm sure ya'll guessed by now!  🤣 I'll also reveal my Instagram Poll results in that post.

If you've never tried Stitch Fix before, use my REFERRAL CODE to receive $25.00 off your first box.

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

A Cute Card For Father’s Day

I made this cute little card for my husband for Father's Day.  I don't normally go "cute" with guys, but I saw these pre-stamped images in my stash and thought they'd make a cute Father's Day card;  especially now that we have grandchildren.  The little girl image reminds me so much of Alethea, and we have a grandson on the way too!

The stamp set is retired SU! "Kid's At Play".  I sold my set long ago, but I always stamp off a few images before I send it off in the mail.  I'm sure you can find this set on EBAY if you like it.

Because all the images were stamped off on a separate sheet of card stock I had to fussy cut them all out.  I created a sky background using gelatos, then I glued the images on top of it.  The cloud was cut with an MFT die.

I hand wrote "Happy Father's Day" in the flag.  The butterflies and flowers are from an MFT set.  I colored in some grass using Copic Markers.  The images were also colored with Copics.  The sentiment on the bottom right corner is an old dollar bin stamp.

Have A Happy Father's Day!

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!