Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Striped Wall & Monogram

Just for fun, I thought I would post the after picture of this project first!

Okay, so here is the before...we have this boring little wall that is kind of awkward to decorate because of the thermostat in the middle of the wall...

So I was thinking about what I could do with it, and I decided that I could add a monogram like I did in our office...

But first I decided to paint horizontal stripes on the wall. Using the laser level is the best thing ever when trying to tapes off straight lines! They are not very expensive, so you should totally invest in one if you do not have one yet!

Place a piece of tape in the areas that you do not want to paint, so that you do not get confused while you are painting. Here is the wall after I had painted it, but before I took the tape off. (I just used leftover paint from the family room-Glidden Natural Linen color matched in Behr paint and primer)

Note: Take the painters tape off after you are finished painting. Don't wait for it to be completely dry or your lines may not be as straight.

We have had problems with the tape pulling the finish off of the ceiling if we wait for it to completely dry before removing it.

After I finished with the wall, I used my Cricut to cut out the A. I used the Scriptina front. I liked it because it kind of looks art deco-ish

Here is the finished product!

The Frame is from Ikea. It is 20x20, and it only costs $17.99 at my local Ikea. The hook is from Hobby Lobby. They were 50% off that day, so it was $5.00. Now my hubby will NOT lose his keys because he has a visible place to hang them!

That's it....super easy and took me about an hour to have everything done! Of course I waited until the next day to hang things on the wall. So, what do you think? Would you paint stripes on your wall?

Monday, February 28, 2011

Alternative to Door Painting!

Chandler: They do me?
Phoebe: You know, like... uh, okay: "Could that report be any later?"
Chandler: I don't sound like that.
Ross: Oh, oh Chandler...
Joey: Yeah, you do.
Ross: "The hills were alive with the sound of music.
Joey: My scones!
Phoebe, Ross, & Joey: "My scones!"
Chandler: Okay, I don't sound like that. That is so not true. That is so not... That is so not... Oh, shut up!

Did you guys watch Friends? My mom and I used to watch it every week! I miss it! You are probably wonder what this has to do with an alternative to painting!


Remember the door that was in Monica & Rachel's apartment? You know the one that had the frame around the peep hole angled door viewer?

So, I got to thinking instead of painting the door...why not add a frame? So I set out to find one that I was fully intending on spray painting gold...I found this one at a thrift store for $.75

I made a quick stop at Walmart to get something, and I was walking past the fabric when I saw this fabric.

They have a whole section of 1/4 yard sections for $1.25, so the gold spray paint when out the window. It would obviously be much cooler to cover the frame with fabric, right?


So I just measured the fabric to fit the frame, and cut it down. I the cut a square out of the center and made a cut a 45 degree angle in all of the corners.

Does that make sense?

I then just used the hot glue gun to glue the fabric to the underside of the frame like this

I am sure that I could have made the back look better, but nobody will ever see it anyway. I then added ribbon to the top of the frame just by looping it around, and gluing it to the back of the frame.

But it still needed something else so I added a "bow". Which I made by gluing the ends of a short piece of ribbon together, and then wrapping another piece of ribbon around the center of it.

All done...time to hang it on the door

Except it wasn't what I was picturing once I got it on the door

So I just pulled out my Cricut...downloaded this bird silhouette off of google...and cut it out on vinyl

Here it is on the door...

New and improved door with frosted glass, a peep hole angled door viewer, and a picture frame

We just hung the frame on the door with 3M Command Strips, so it is all completely removable if we tire of it. The only problem is...I still kind of want to paint the door

Shhhhhh....don't tell Tyler

How To: frost a window and add an angle door viewer

I was going to title this post How To: frost a window and add a peep hole, but I thought that sounded a little bit creepy. Like I was some weirdo teaching you to install a peep hole in the boys/girls locker room. Don't worry friends we aint that kind of blog!!!

Isn't that what its called though? A peep hole in the door? Well apparently, according to the package, its called an angle door viewer...but I digress. We have been living with our door looking like this for the past 3 1/2 years

It was supposed to be a temporary fix. When you come down the stairs you pass the door, and for the sake of everyone passing by, we felt like we needed to cover the window. So we were going to order a new window pane for the door, when we came across the window frosting at Lowes. It was only $18.00 and comes with 6 ft of window frosting! All you do is unroll the window frosting, measure it to fit your window, and cut it 1 inch larger than your window on each side.

One you have cut out your piece of window frosting you are ready to attach it to the window. Note: Clean your window before you apply the frosting!
You don't want to have all the dirt trapped between the window and the film for all to see!

Now I am sure you could just use water, a credit card and a razor blade to apply the frosting to the window, but for $8.00 we just bought the kit.

Here is a little trick that we learned. The backing on the film is almost impossible to get off! I am sure it probably gives you directions on how to get it off in the instructions, but we just used tape. Simply place tape on both sides of the film and pull in opposite directions. Viola! You are now able to separate the 2 sides

Next, spray the back of the film with your solution, and also spray the window you are applying it to. We learned that if you get too much liquid on the window the film will slide all over and it will be difficult to get it in the right place.

You then use a credit card, or the included tool, to get all of the air bubbles out. Start in the middle and work your way to the edges.

Next you will need your cutting tool. Use your credit card as a guide, and cut off the excess film, so that it fits to the exact size of your window. The corners can be a little tricky! So, grab a pair of scissors and cut off the loose pieces on the sides before you get to the corners.

Congratulations! You now have a frosted window, and now the neighbors will not be able to see you walking by in your underwear!


until you realize that you now can't tell who is at the door...am I the only one who likes to see who is there before I open the door? Now it is time to add your peep hole angle door viewer. We found ours, again at Lowes, for $5.00

Next you need to decided where to place the hole. We just marked on the door with a pencil. The problem was that Tyler is very tall, and he thought that it should be much higher than I thought it should be. See the top mark? I couldn't even reach it on my tip toes. Tylers suggestion was why don't you just get a step stool? Seriously? No I am sorry my friend you are going to have to bend down a bit. We settle on the lower line, which btw I still have to stand on my tip toes to see out.

Next you grab your 1/2 inch drill bit and make a hole.

Note: make sure to keep the bit level when drilling. Otherwise you may be stuck viewing your visitors shoes instead of their face.

Last step is to screw the two pieces of the viewer together in place, and you are finished!

Here is our new and improved door...

I like that the light is still able to shine through, and that nobody can see in. I have been debating about whether or not to paint the inside of the door black...the jury is still out on that one!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Vinyl design made easy

I have been wanting a Circut or some other kind of vinyl cutting machine for some time now. Tyler and I had decided that we would save up to purchase a professional machine because they came with computer software. We always felt like the Cricut was really expensive because of all of the cartridges that you have to purchase with it. We had heard about the silhouette, but it was almost just expensive as the professional cutters we were looking at. Well, we learned about the software called Sure Cuts A Lot 2. It allows you to hook up any vinyl cutting machine to your computer to create and cut font, graphics and so forth. So, Tyler bought me a Cricut for Christmas. He purchased it from Overstock. He got the deal of the century. The larger size Cricut, 2 cartridges, 2 cutting mats, and the My Storybook Maker with the laminating paper, binding books and paper cutter. He got all of this for $240.

So back to the Sure Cuts A Lot software...we tested it out for the first time today, and it is fantastic! Tyler wanted to put a vinyl image of the Ashton Family Crest on his laptop. So, did an internet search, and this is what he came up with

He saved it to the computer, and then opened the Sure Cuts A Lot program

Then all he did was press the trace button on the main screen, and select the picture he wanted. This is what he was left with after the image had been traced

He then just re-sized the image, and cut it out. Seriously 5 minuets later, and he was done! Here it is on his work laptop.

This program also has a lot of editing feature that you can use once you import your picture. It also has a ton of fonts, and any font that you download is added to your library. Needless to say, I think that we are going to be using our new "toy" a lot!

What do you use to design and cut vinyl?

Oh and for those that were wondering, I am not getting paid in anyway for this post. I just thought I would share this great software find for those of you that already have a Cricut or other devices with out software.

Family Room Update

Here is a little update on the family room so far. Of course you have seen the stenciled wall, mirror and lamps before, but I wanted to show you want the rest of the room is looking like these days. We kept the ottoman, and the red pillows for a little bit of contrast to the blue. It is hard to tell from the pictures, but this is a big room 20x20, and we have a few more projects that need to be done to make the room feel more complete.

Close up of two of some of the pillows...I am thinking of sewing some ruffles and felt flowers around the center of the white pillow

This is a picture of the hutch that we have behind the couch...we purchased it a few years ago, and refinished it in black. I have been toying with the idea of painting it white (along with the buffet that the TV sits on). I want to add a sitting area against the banister here...remember these chairs? I think that we may put them there.

I know it isn't normal to show a picture of the TV, but here is the buffet that it sits on. I have been thinking about maybe putting a big built in on this wall instead to hold the TV.

Here is a close up of the chaise and some more pillows. I am thinking of sewing some ribbon on the white curtain panels to give them a pop of color...

Looking from the stenciled wall back towards the dinning area

I think that this is my favorite pillow. I love the embroidery. I am going to dress up this plain white pillow as well.

And lastly here is a picture from in from of the TV...

We still need to get a new rug! I love a zebra print one that I saw at Home Fabrics. The current rug that we have in here is 10x16, so we need something big! We also are looking for new side tables. I would love to have them painted white with mirrored tops.

We love the change so far! It is amazing how much lighter a room can feel just from changing curtains...But this is still a work in progress, so I will show you another update when one is ready!

What do you think?

Any ideas or suggestions are welcome!

Until next time,


Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy V-Day!!!

I just wanted to wish everyone a happy valentines day!



to you and yours!!!

Friday, February 11, 2011


When we started throwing around the idea of redecorating the family room, we knew that we were going to need something to replace the picture that was hanging between the windows:

We thought that a mirror would be the perfect solution. The problem was that mirrors are so expensive! We needed something that was at least 3 ft x 3 ft. So I decided to check out KSL.com to see if I could find anything. I found this mirror listed for $50:

When we went to look at it, we asked the girl if she would take $35 and she did. Then we happily took the mirror home. I knew that it would need to be painted since it is a brown color, and doesn't match anything in our house.

I was lucky because even though it looks like wood this mirror is metal. So, no sanding would be involved in the refinishing process. I just took it out to the garage, covered the mirror with newspaper, and spray painted it with THIS spray paint. It is Valspar's Gloss Mediterranean (#65089).Here is a close up of the finished product. I love the color...you can also see some of the new couch pillows in the reflection.

And again here is a picture of the wall where the mirror hangs:

I love the way that it turned out and it is a perfect contrast to the colors of the stenciled wall, and the new white curtains. More updates on the family to come!