Posts Tagged ‘decor’

Zero Budget Project: Wall Decals


I finally got around to finishing the decal. I decided on simply, “to forever and back”. It’s a nod to “I love you to the moon and back”. It’s not cheeky like I had originally planned, but I really like the sentiment.


It’s sort of hard to capture this well on photograph, since it is in one of the darkest parts of our house, but you definitely get the idea.


I’m pretty thrilled with how this turned out, and I think I may be doing more wall decals in my future. I’m putting it on the calendar for next week.

What are your DIYing plans for the weekend?

Flu Season Wins


I’ve been popping pills like an addict to stave off the pain and fever basically all weekend. I’m pretty sure this is how I felt when I had strep throat many years ago, but we won’t find out for sure until later this afternoon.


I feel like at least one of us has been sick at any given time since the end of January. No reprieve for us. Penelope has been hit the hardest, poor girl. Seriously, look at that face. It stinks, but it could always be worse. We are counting our blessings.


And then there’s Felix. He seemed to be least affected by all the bugs flying around our house. Look at this guy! He’s so happy and cuddly, it doesn’t matter what’s going on (unless Penelope takes away one of his toys).

empty hallway

On a more positive note, we got rid of a bunch of old furniture that has been cluttering up our hallway. It’s only taken us 3 months to do it. No big deal! Our hallway feels so empty without the headboard and six foot desk propped up against the walls. It’s time to put artwork up there instead.


I’m planning on taking it relatively easy this week and focusing on hanging art in the hallway and living room. We’ve got an expansive blank wall above our couch, something needs to be done about it. Stat.

We were very pleased to get our new vacuum last week (huge splurge) – it actually works unlike our last one. It’s got so many beautifully engineered bells and whistles I’ve actually enjoyed vacuuming the floors (!!). P has even joined in on the fun, too.

We also got the most lovely wool rug from Dash & Albert. I’ll show more pictures once this space is complete, but you get the idea. I won it at Alt Summit – I’ve been eyeing it for months, so I couldn’t be more thrilled about our new piece. It definitely makes the living room look more posh.

Zero Budget Project: Family Art


I’ve hung up two pieces in our house this week. That’s pretty sad considering I have about 50 or more pieces all ready to hang. All of our artwork is just hanging out in a pile in a nook in my bedroom. It takes up quite a bit of space so there’s not much room on my side of the bed. It’s amazing how hanging art will make a house look lived in.

We have a very blank wall above the stairway. It’s one of the first things you see when you walk into our home. It needed art on it badly. I had this vision in my head to do some lettering with all the nicknames we call each other and just fill the entire paper with those nicknames (kinda like Penelope’s old room sign -scroll to bottom). I’m still not sold on that idea, so I just did: Chris, Melissa, Penelope and Felix forever.

I went through about 7 sheets trying to get it all perfect and this is the best that I came up with. I’m still not thrilled about it. But no matter. I’ve got loads of this paper, I’ll just practice some more. It’s not very hard to replace the art, either.

I like the idea of something about our little family and our names and having those words fill the page entirely, bleeding off the page behind the frame. What do you think? What should it say?

Before & After: Rocking Chair


Chris and I made over this chair years ago. We found it at a second hand store in San Mateo for $30 and was clearly in need of some TLC. The previous owner had tried to make it over with a half-hearted effort and a can of black spray paint.

This was our first rework with paint remover and a tinted stain, and it took somewhere around 30 hours to rework. The spindles were definitely the hardest. Perhaps that explains why I went for a dresser with such clean lines.

This rocking chair looks worlds better with its new stain, and since we did it right the first time, the finish has lasted 5 moves! This is exactly why taking an extra hour (or 20) makes a huge difference when reworking furniture.

Zero Budget Project: The Dresser


I finished the dresser. It’s been nearly a year and a half since I bought it with the intention of revamping it. I knew if I wanted to get it done, I had to do it before the cold set in and I’d only be motivated to cuddle in blankets and drink a cup of hot abuelita (I’m hooked thanks to Celeste).

This dresser was originally going to be stained yellow like my rocking chair, but I kept feeling a nagging feeling that I’d be falling back on a crutch. I tend to fall into color ruts from time to time. In high school it was burgundy and navy. In college it was red and black. When I first got married, it was just black and tan. When we moved to Utah, it was yellow and black. Then it moved to yellow and orange.

Picking this color was a huge risk, because the guy behind the paint counter just mixed a bunch of colors and I went for it. There were no samples to go by (besides the paint stick he stained). I knew the wood on the dresser would take the stain differently because it’s not pine. It’s a veneered redwood or something warm like that. Maybe cherry?

I’m glad I went for the stain as opposed to an opaque paint, because the color and grain of the wood really shows trough to add a lot of dimension to this piece.

Also, I never consulted Chris on this color. I knew I was taking on a big risk by not asking him what he thought. While I was mid-job, he rolled in from work and I got more than a bit nervous for his reaction. Turns out he loves it! Bullet dodged. I do need to be better about communicating my home decor plans with him, though. He, too, bought this house.

Chris lets me use this dresser just for my clothes. He’s really nice about that. Atop the dresser I have a little ikea runner I made (fabric I scored for $1 a yard at a garage sale) to protect the finish from my accessories. My accessories are stored in Spice of Life jars and on an old 1950s lunch tray.

I’m proud of how this dresser turned out. Now I need to get our bed situation figured out. It looks like we’re going to buy a new bed for our room soon. And I want to make my first quilt for our room, too.

So have you ever stained wood a color before? I definitely think I’ll be doing that again with any other wood rehab projects I work on in the future.

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