Friday, November 2, 2012

Wine Crate Cabinet

This is a piece of furniture that I got for free, covered in pieces of wine crates and palette wood that I also got for free. Not too bad for a free addition to my furniture collection!

It was a standard white laminate cabinet with doors and shelves. I removed the doors and went from there.

I used the ends of the wine crates and the pieces with writing to cover the sides and trim up the white that was showing from the front. I was lucky enough to find a blue palette with just the right amount of weathering to cut wood for the top and the bottom gap. I sanded the edges, put a clear sealer on the palette pieces, painted the inside black and covered the shelves in repurposed Trader Joe's bags with some clip-art for fun. Voila! I have this piece in my entry to toss keys, sunglasses and magazines.
You would never know there is white laminate under there!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Lighting up

Having moved into an apartment with nothing of my own and no lighting fixtures in any of the rooms, I am left to come up with my own ways of lighting up each dark corner of this living space. It just so happens that I have a slight fetish with lighting. I see things every day that make me think "I could turn that into a lamp" or "That would look so cool with some lights behind it!"
I bought a couple bulb and cord pieces from ikea and a couple edison bulbs from home depot. I happen to have a huge spool of thick black wire and I've been eyeing some really great driftwood at the nearby beaches. I have the inspiration of spring all around me. Now what?

Here are a few of the pieces I've been staring at for the last week or so...

I really can't stop staring at these two (above and below). So whimsical and Springy!

 How simple and beautiful is a piece of driftwood with a lightbulb just sitting on it? Quite a showpiece. But is it really functionally efficient?

My other problem is that I can't just hang a light somewhere. I've never had this problem, but I live in an apartment that has a cement ceiling! What in the world.....?? How do I hang something? In my living room I bought a couple shelf-brackets from home depot and attached them to the wall. I have pendant lamps hanging from them. It doesn't look half bad and I'm sure we could get even more creative with the style of brackets.

Please excuse the lack of color. I'm working on that.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Free Art

It does say "Reusable, Recyclable" on every one of those Trader Joe's bags I bring home. It also says "Is framing the bag and hanging it on the wall reusing or recycling?" Well, I can do slightly better than that.
These bags combined with a Union Market bag, created this fun piece for my kitchen. All pieces were glued onto a piece of light-blue painted cardboard. Now that's eco-proper!

How is that, Trader Joe?


In my new apartment, the kitchen is white on white on white. Not like the beautiful pics in the magazines, but white formica, chipped floor tile and appliances that for some reason have spots where someone felt the need to put white paint. I try to ignore these things.
I also have two dogs that eat raw food (meaning-raw meat) and they don't always like to be neat about it.
So, I have been mopping my floors with hot water, white vinegar and sometimes a splash of lemon. I do this mainly for the safety of my dogs, who again, eat off the floor.
Today while wiping my counters with a clorox disinfecting wipe I thought "what if there was a vinegar wipe so that I could more easily and safely clean the surfaces I eat on....?!" Of course by me thinking it, I therefore have invented it! I will make millions! Brilliant!

Lo and behold, and thank you to google, I have discovered these great products.
Now THAT is eco-proper!

Wipex makes all-purpose, glass, and furniture wipes that have no more ingredients than rosemary oil, orange oil and vinegar. So surprising that someone actually wrote a review that they were disappointed in the incomplete ingredient list! Numbskull.
The price is right for both of these, depending on where you buy them. I know I have seen Seventh Generation in the stores and this package has 70 wipes. I will probably go with that one.
Haven't spent as much time as I would like on this. I must speed up the process if I want to get started on some more serious paintings. But I love the progress and am looking forward to all the fun little detailing.
I'm thinking I should maybe bring the dark blue down a little further.... like to the mid-point. What say you? Does it look too cloudy? or is it in need of more mood...?

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Project Inspiration

These are the images that I am loving for inspiration for my own chinoiserie project. The pink color palatte is amazing! Maybe for my next one...

Friday, March 16, 2012

Mural to-go

This is a 9 foot by 12 foot extra thick canvas drop-cloth. It is hung on the wall with pushpins about a foot to 16 inches apart all the way across the top, bottom and down the sides. When hanging this, you will want to put the same size of a plastic drop-cloth on the back in between it and the wall. Pull all of the sides very tight when pinning and the layers of primer will help to smooth the wrinkles.
There is a seam in the middle of this at the halfway mark.
I would suggest using Kilz basic acrylic primer. You may be able to stretch one gallon into 2 coats. This is the easiest primer to use and it works well. The first coat is likely to sink right in to the canvas but let it dry completely before adding the second coat.
Once this tedious preparation is done, the fun begins with laying out your design. After this is done, I can begin to fill in the background. I think I may do the dark peacock teal at the top and fade it down into a bright turquoise that I picked up. Super exciting!

The peacock color will start at the top and wash down over the turquoise, but I have started to blend the turquoise up to make in more gradual. I am not sure how the darker color will fill in the little exposed canvas parts, but they are all over the turquoise. This might be something I can fill later with an aged finish when the whole thing is complete or wash the peacock color over to give it some dark mottling. Perhaps a test later.
Once the background is done, I will start to add in all the leaves and flowers... maybe some birds or bugs.

All of these paints are "oops" paints from Home Depot ($5-$7 per gallon). One man's mistake is another man's treasure!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

White wall-ternative

I was one step away from painting my boring white apartment walls, when I had a much better idea.
I decided that a mural would be more fun than a single color and then, why paint a mural on the wall when I would just have to paint over it later.

Well, now I wanted a large tapestry. Why not take a large piece of canvas and make my own? So, I bought a piece of unprimed canvas (or painter's dropcloth) at home depot for $30 and am in the process of priming it to begin this exciting project. The canvas is 9 ft. x 12 ft! Pictures to come soon.

Imagine this:

In a palette like this:

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Starting Over

Moving to a new place brings a mixture of feelings good and bad. For one, there are a whole lotta thrift stores I've never been to, a new craigslist area to cover, oodles of unwanted furniture pieces on curbs and a completely blank canvas to decorate on! The bad part is not having a job or money to buy the really pretty things I want to fill the apartment with and believe me, the one leather chair is well fought over. Gladly, there is a plethora of other man's trash to inspire up a treasure with and this is the inspiration I need-to make something out of nothing!

So... I have created a palette with what I have gathered so far and added a few future wishes.

This apartment is white walls, cabinets, kitchen tile.... and luckily a little laminate here and there. The wood is in the light color shown and goes quite well with a hand-me-down dining set. Found a really beautiful piece of driftwood that is just leaning in the corner at the moment. Sea-glass covers my dining table from my obsessively searching walks on the beach (not sure what to do with that yet). The peacock-colored curtains and antique settee as well as the sunburst mirror are on my wish list.
The white tiles have been popping up on the beach one-by-one and are waiting for a purpose. The colors in the center are my gallons of oops! paint finds at home depot. They are being used in a detachable wall mural for my naked walls. You'll see that in the next post.

I think I've done a swell job. Can't wait to have it be more than a couple random pieces floating around the room...

Monday, October 3, 2011

Wedding Dress

Here are some shots from my wedding this August. I made the flowers and some of the petalwork and my wonderfully talented friend made the rest of our design come to life! Lucky me! More about the dress later...
Please check out Tania Bambridge at elleBsee.

And of course, photography by Gordon Dooley
I've been looking at home magazines for a long time... not really reading, mostly ripping. I can tell you if a magazine is really good by the number of pages I rip out. These pages have some element that inspires me to create something else or re-purpose an item I already have; re-decorate or redefine a space.
These posts
are the records of the wheels turning in my head, the realization of my ideas.

Do you need an idea? Ask me and I will do my best...