April 25, 2013

diy board and batten.

we moved into this house knowing it would need a lot of love from us to make it a place that felt like "us".  after removing carpet from the front entry and adding more of the bamboo hardwood featured in the rest of the house {in place when we purchased - not what i would have chosen!}, the entry needed a little something else.  i had been watching board and batten pop up around blogs and magazines and love the look.  so i mustered up the courage to show my husband and ask him if he would be willing to tackle a board and batten treatment on one wall of our entry.  he loved it and we went to work planning it out right away!!


i don't have any great photos of it - these {in progress photos} are all iPhone pics, but it give you an idea.  the finished product photos were done at night, so they aren't great, either {such is life}.  we used these two  {really great} tutorials for guidance along the way:

here is our version.  it was a Memorial Day weekend project last year.  i left the house with the three littles so my husband could start and complete the project - all in two days!

here is what we started with.  before i left town, we ran painters tape along the wall where we wanted the ledge above the paneling to reach.

john sent photos all weekend to show me his progress.

we also fixed up the baseboard trim with shoe moulding along the bottom {something we will continue as we work on rooms around the house}.

primed & painted paneling.  primed and painted walls.

finished.  then we just added hooks from target {of all places!}

April 19, 2013

how i got the streaks out of my stainless appliances.

we moved into this house 18 months ago and it was not clean {not even close}.  so, being 4 months pregnant, i hired a woman to clean the house.  but, that didn't go so well.  even after her service at the house, it was not clean {not to my standards}.  so, i had to take matters into my own hands.

my stainless appliances had crazy streaks that i couldn't remove with microfiber cloths or stainless steel cleaner.  so, i searched for ways to remove streaks and found an easy solution that worked for me!


plain old olive oil and a paper towel!

first, i clean up the appliance {get rid of any spills or drips}, usually using my norwex cloth.

then i {and my little helper} drip some olive oil on a paper towel and rub it over the stainless, in the same direction as the grain of the stainless steel.  that's it!  sometimes there is a little lint from the paper towel or a little excess oil so i go over the appliance again with a dry towel.

my range had purple streaks going against the grain and i thought for sure there was no hope, that is was damaged and i wouldn't be able to fix it.  after about 3 applications of olive oil, it looks perfect {seriously}.  amazing!

April 18, 2013

{un}crafty - no sew fabric strip garland.

here we go: another super easy, no skill required, fun little craft for you!

i made this fabric garland to hang in our toy room 
{this is a live action shot from a sick day at our house - "Dolphin Tale" anyone?}

its fun, festive, and so easy to make.

supplies you need:

rotary cutter & cutting mat {or just a plain old scissors!}


fabric scraps {anything will do}


i had some cloth napkins in bright colors that were screaming for a re-purpose, so i finally decided to do this craft.  i followed some advice from Joy's Hope blog to get me started.

i started by ironing out the napkins.  then i used a rotary cutter and mat to measure and cut.  i measured 1x18 inch strips and cut accordingly.  it was a lot of cutting!  i think the strips could be longer if your fabric allows - my tassels ended up being pretty short once they were tied on.

i lined up all the fabric strips and got out my ribbon.  
i followed a pattern, but random would be really cute, too!

to tie the strips onto/around your ribbon, i followed the steps shown above.  
kind-of a loop, more than a traditional tie.

i just kept going until i had a length long enough for the wall i intended the garland to hang on.  i used command strips to hold the banner up and we like it!

i'm thinking of making another for my living room using an old tablecloth, some burlap, and ribbon...

happy {un}crafting!

April 17, 2013

easy pumpkin muffins.

i only do easy recipes.  here's one we always enjoy!

1 spice cake box mix
1 small can pumpkin
1/2 cup applesauce
1/2 water
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

preheat over to 375.  mix ingredients together.  grease muffin pan and fill {i only fill each space with about 2 tablespoons of mix} and bake 25-30 min.  makes about 30 muffins {and lasts about a day at my house}.


April 16, 2013

{un}crafty - faux metal letters.

of course we have all seen anthropolgie's metal letters that are awesome.  but i was looking for a cheaper way to make metal letters in my boys' room.  i had previously covered letters in scrapbook paper for my oldest son's room in our other house.  but i wanted something more modern and more boyish for this room.  so, i set out to fine a way...

forgive me, but i found this idea somewhere online.  i have no idea where.  if you google "faux metal painted letters" you will find a million tutorials.

just a reminder: the crafts you find here don't require any artistic skill or crazy tools to complete.  just a little patience and some post-bedtime minutes {and a glass of wine...ok that's up to you}.

supplies you need:

paper mache/cardboard letters {joann's has sales or use a coupon}

black craft paint

silver craft paint

foam brush

 paint your letters black and let them dry.

then brush silver over the black running your foam brush in all directions.  you can't even mess it up, just brush like crazy with the silver paint until you have covered all the black.

this whole project took only a part of one evening for me.  i had 12 letters to paint and it was super quick.  one coat of black, then by the time i was done with all 12 letters, the first were ready for a crazy coat of silver.  i hung them up using 3M command velcro strips - easy!

your letters will look like galvanized steel.  voila.

happy {un}crafting!

April 15, 2013

the boys' room.

aka {the fraternity}.
aka {where the wild things are}.

i gave you a tour of the nursery, so here's a little look into the boys room.  i'm proud of the boys' room and its been a long work-in-progress.  i've been adding to the room for over a year and i still don't feel like its quiet to the finish line.  but sometimes tweaking over time is the best method for me...i have to try things out and then decide how to change them up.

of course there is a pennant on the door...obsessed, i tell you.

now, this room was inspired by a layout in the Land of Nod catalog.  in fact, we had some paint color matched to a Mythic paint sample we ordered from Land of Nod.  then i found sheets, comforters, throw blankets {at Target, of course!} to mimic some of the colors and layering from the catalog.

my super crafty mom made the chevron valances for us.  just like in eden's room.
my dad even got in on the project.  
parents rock.

this dresser is from the nursery at our old house and i finally changed out the knobs.  of course, now i wish i did different knobs, but these will do.  pretty sure the boys do.not.care.  inside the drawers are always a disaster.  truth.

the shelves hold some special things that don't have another home right now.  this whole wall is so-so...it looks ok, but i'd like to add more interest...
the locker bins hold lots of junk!  usually if the boys have something that we don't want little sister to get or if they get a trinket somewhere, i tell them they can keep it in their bin.  then, periodically we have to go through the bin and decide what to keep and what to throw out.

i recently made this art out of paint chips.  i originally wanted photos in these frames, but i didn't have the right size on hand.  i decided something that i don't need to update or switch out would be good in these frames.  so...i cut up paint chips and pasted them onto cardstock and framed them.  easy. 

this is my favorite corner of the room.  we don't use the chair a lot and it takes up a lot of space, but there isn't another place in our house for it right now.  at bedtime if the boys ask us to sit in their room for a few minutes, or if we are telling a story, we will use the chair.  maybe it won't be in there forever.  the bookshelf was made by my grandpa and my dad and then assembled and stained by my dad.  its great!

more pennant, a world map, and their names.

my sneaky helper.

we really lucked out on these Room & Board bunks we found on craigslist!  the storage drawers underneath are a life saver and the quality is awesome.  the boys love them.  of course, bunk beds are not easy to make - the sheets and blankets are a pain.  {here's a realistic approach to making bunks} but we are easy going about that - making beds isn't a priority around here...yet.  also, i don't think bunk beds are a "forever" solution.  when the boys are big they are probably not going to want to be bunked.

the final little corner of the room.  their chalkboards/corkboards.

props to my husband who has to do lots of the dirty work when it comes to re-doing any room.  we did the majority of this makeover in a 48 hour period when i was 5 months pregnant.  enough said.  he did a lot.  the walls and ceiling of this old room were pretty damaged and by the time he was done with joint compound and a sander, they looked brand new.

i'm sure i'll be making small changes in this room...i'll keep you posted.

April 12, 2013

{un}crafty - easy kids art.

its not always easy to get the kids painting.  trust me {i know}.  as a stay at home mom, making the mess of painting with little kids can sometimes be the last thing you want to do.  but its ok to let go of that fear and help your kids create something they are proud of and had fun making.  it doesn't have to be a {huge} mess!

supplies you need:

garbage bags

acrylic paints {kids crayola paints work great}

paint brushes {or foam brushes, or old sponges}

paper plates

canvases {cardboard, paper - anything to else to frame}

i cut open a garbage bag so it lays flat to cover our table and pour paints onto a paper plate for each child.

then i let the kids use paint brushes and old sponges to make a masterpiece.  we used small canvases i had on hand, but any piece of cardstock or paper would work in a frame.

kids love to be creative and with the paper plates and garbage bag, my only clean up is washing out and paintbrushes or sponges i want to keep.  easy.

 this particular project was painting canvases to hang in baby sister's room.  she was about to arrive and the boys wanted to make something special for her brand new nursery.  its probably the most special part of her room!

let your kids create something for a new sibling, grandparents, or neighbors who are sure to love the special gift!

happy {un}crafting!

April 11, 2013

{un}crafty - fabric flower pom poms.

every craft you see her is do-able by everybody.  no skill or special tool needed {just patience and a little me-time}.  this is the tutorial i followed to make the pom poms in my sweet little daughter's room.

i call it a nursery, but i hope she loves the room for a long time!  after my best friend, mollie, and i completed these poms poms {long hours and late nights pre-baby!}, i joked that eden has to have these somewhere at her wedding.  kidding-not-kidding.

supplies you need:

paper lanterns, styrofoam balls, or anything else that you want to use for your pom pom {consider size and shape when you choose your object}

fabric {iron our your fabric - doesn't have to be perfect}


circle pattern {trace a circle on a cereal box or piece of cardstock}


hot glue gun 


use your circle pattern, trace with a pencil, cut out with a scissors...just keep going.

then glue those circle to the lantern over and over again until you get the finished product!

mine were originally paper lanterns with a wire in the top, so i tied ribbons on and hung them from hooks in the ceiling.

happy {un}crafting!

*photo credits: mollybaileyphotography.com