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Wednesday, February 29

DIY BULLETIN BOARD MAKEOVER

Last year I bought a cork bulletin board to use above my desk.  It held a collection of pictures that inspire and motivate me. The board itself however was very plain and I've been wanting for months to give it a little makeover.  I loved what Lindsay @ Aubrey + Lindsay's Blog and Courtney @ A Thoughtful Place did to theirs and decided to try it out with some leftover fabric that I already had from a previous project

Here's what I used: 
  • about a yard of fabric
  • multi-purpose spray adhesive
  • staple gun
  • upholstery nails (about 120)

The first step was to trim my fabric to size. I left about 3 inches on each side.


I then ironned my fabric so that it would look clean and crisp. 


 

Next I sprayed a thin layer of adhesive onto the entire surface of the cork board. To protect the frame, I used a thick paper to block it while I sprayed.


I then smoothed out the fabric onto the board; working from the center to the edges.  


I drew a faint line across all four sides to ensure that my upholstery nails go in straight. 


I started out by first pinning down the four corners. Then I worked my way in (Excuse the wet spot to the right. I oversprayed in that one section. o.O).


After all the nails are pushed in, I pulled the fabric tight and secured it to the back with a staple gun. 


I folded my edges in for a clean finish. 

                       

Here's my updated board up close! I totally love it!

 



Happy Wednesday,

Tuesday, February 28

DIY WEDDING SHOWER DECOR

A few weekends ago my friend and I had the pleasure of throwing a wedding shower for a wonderful bride-to-be.  We kept the decor simple and set up a small chocolate fondue bar, a coffee/tea drink bar, and delicious cupcakes from a cupcake shop.

The color purple and burlap was the main theme of the decor. I trimmed down a yard of burlap and used it as the runner for an earthy/vintage feel.



Rather than using fresh flowers, I made some out of tissue paper (the tissue paper that Anthropologie wraps purchases in are great for this and they turned out gorgeous!. Unlike regular tissue paper, it was thicker and some had unique patterns and shades of colors.) To make the flowers I layered 8 sheets of tissue paper on top of each other and folded them into an accordion. Then I tied it at the center with a piece of string, rounded the corners and carefully unfolded each layer. Skewers were used to hold up the flowers.  




Here I mixed the paper flowers with some fake flowers. I really loved the combination! :)


I also made some pom poms (using the same technique but fluffed up the layers more) from thicker napkins and hung them from the ceiling light using thin strings pulled out from the burlap runner.

I've always loved floating candles and found them to be a simple way to add a touch of elegance to any setting. Since I only needed two, I decided to make some myself using votive candles that I already had. Using a candle warmer hot plate (a pot of hot water works too), I fully melted a vanilla votive candle in a small condiment glass bowl that had a flat wide surface. Once it liquefied, I removed it from the heat and centered the wick using a pair of sticks (pencils, chopsticks, etc). The candle quickly conformed to the shape of the bowl and hardened withn a few minutes.

To remove the candle from the bowl, I placed the bowl back into the pot of hot water (make sure the water level reaches the level of the candle). The edges will loosen up and allow the candle to slide out easily.   



For party favors, I wrapped a few silky dark raspberry swirled Dove chocolates in pretty matching fabric and tied it with the burlap string along with a small thank you note.  


(Side note: The chocolate fondue bar turned out to be a great idea because it needed minimal preparation and allowed the guests to have a variety of (healthy) choices to snack on. Plus, the softly lit pot of warm creamy chocolate served as a great addition to the decor!)

Thankfully, everyone had a sweet time together at the shower and our bride-to-be was glowing and happy. :) We attended their beautiful wedding this past weekend and couldn't be happier for them!


Sunday, February 26

HEALTHY AVOCADO SMOOTHIE

I LOVE avocados. I love them in salads, burgers, sandwiches, as dips, and even in drinks. :) 
Packed with nutrients, this fruit is especially great for babies in their normal growth and brain development. 

Tonight I made this delicious avocado smoothie for E - an easy way to get tons of protein and fiber into my little guy. The green specks are actually spinach (don't worry, you can't taste it once it's blended in with the other ingredients). 


Ingredients:
small handful of baby spinach*
1/2 of a ripe Hass avocado
1/2 C crushed ice
3/4 C whole milk
2 T brown sugar (packed)

Blend all the ingredients together and enjoy!


Friday, February 24

FRIDAY TREATS

Happy Friday everyone! Here's the second round of the "Friday Treats" series. Check out some of my favorite links from this week ! :)


I totally adore this four dollar side table that Kate @ Centsational Girl made over! Check out her blog to see the before... you'll be amazed! 



Pamela's master bedroom re-do @ PB&J Stories is making me want to work on our bedroom now! She did such a great job. Love the color scheme! :)


Try out these spicy cayenne kale chips by Jenn @ Peas and Crayons. A healthy snack that's nutritious and savory! :)


I must be on a spicy kick because these spicy baked green bean fries (with meyer lemon aioli) by Adrianna @ A Cozy Kitchen also left me drooling...


Check out how Martha Stewart transformed this baking sheet with the help of some pretty fabric into a beautiful decorative tray.


For all the new mommies or mommies-to-be out there, learn how to make your own Moby wrap with Leanne's tutorial @ Elle Apparel. When E was just born, the Moby was my favorite and one of the most useful baby items I owned. I was able to keep him close while my hands were free to do things around the house.  



Finally, I leave you with Michaela's post "You know you're a blogger if..." @ Michaela Noelle Designs. A fun read for all you fellow bloggers. ;)



Hope you all have a fantastic weekend!

Thursday, February 23

DIY GRID-TUFTED HEADBOARD REVEAL


For the longest time, we've been without a headboard. When we purchased our bed frame from West Elm years ago we thought we'd be fine without one. However after a while, I got tired of our pillows constantly falling behind the bed and E hitting his head against the wall every time he came to sleep with us. Plus our bed just seemed kind of bare...

I've always liked the upholstered ones and had been eyeing this one from West Elm.  However, at the cost of over $500 it was more than we'd like to spend.



So after doing some research and seeing some amazing DIY results in various blogs, I convinced my husband to let me make one too. Here's the tutorial that I used as a guide.

8 hours later over a period of 3 days... Here's our newest addition! :D


For the frame, I went to Lowe's and bought a sheet of 5/32" x 4' x 8' plywood and had them cut it down to match the dimensions of our queen bed.  The width of our bed frame is 62’’ and we wanted a slightly elevated headboard. We were deciding on a final height between 48’’ and 52’’; we settled on 50’’.  The board was cut to the dimensions of 62" x 35" (the remainder of the height was added on by the legs which I will discuss later).  


Next, we decided on the type of tufted pattern we wanted to use. Diamond-tufted headboards are extremely popular, however we preferred the grid-tufted headboards like the one from West Elm. I then marked the board with where the holes would be drilled.





Instead of hanging our headboard to the wall, we decided to attach legs to the board to make it easier to move around. I bought four 3" fence rails that were 2 x 3 x 8 and had them cut to the height of our headboard, 50 inches long. The leftover pieces were cut to fit in between the legs for a more consistent look. We drilled all the pieces straight onto the board.

*note: our middle leg had to be placed off-centered due to the grid pattern we drew.


Here's how it looked on the back.


Next, I laid the foam underneath the frame to mark the location of the holes on the foam.  I will be removing the foam where the buttons go to help with the tufting. This is a tip I got from Little Green Notebook to help make deep tufts. Since I didn't have a pen with a point long enough to go through the frame, I used skewers that had been dipped in paint. It worked perfectly!  



I used a paring knife to cut the holes in the foam and then twisted them out with my fingers.


I then wrapped batting around the foam to secure it tightly to the board and legs with a staple gun.


I attached the fabric as well with a staple gun. It's important to pull the fabric tight around the edges to ensure a smooth result.



Now we get to the tufting. To be honest, this was the most difficult and time consuming part of the whole project for me. To make the covered buttons I bought a metal kit from Joann's.


The directions looked simple. Wrap my fabric around the tops, then snap on the backing plate. However, these directions seemed to be more suited towards lighter fabrics...my thick upholstery fabric made it nearly impossible.


After 30 minutes of utter frustration, I decided to use these pliers that I had lying on my desk. Success! I simply wrapped my fabric around the top without having to tuck it all neatly into the teeth, pushed the back plate on, then pushed them together with the pliers. They snapped together with a satisfying *click*.


Aren't they just beautiful?? ;) After making twenty of these, I double threaded an upholstery needle with upholstery grade thread and pushed it through the pre-drilled hole, the foam and fabric, and then slipped on one of these buttons. Then I pushed the needle back down into the fabric and all the way out the back.  


Pushing the button as far down as I could with one hand and pulling the thread tight on the other side of the board with the other hand, I then let go of the button and quickly stapled the thread to the board. I put a bunch of staples into the board in a criss-cross fashion to tightly secure the thread to the board. I tied a triple knot at the last staple.



The tighter the tension of the string, the deeper your tufts will be. I must warn you though, your fingers will already be throbbing from the staple gun by this point and will be even worse after this process is over so please do it in parts. I was too excited and tried to finish it all in one night. I woke up with extremely sore fingers o.O...



Finally, I wrapped the legs and tightly secured the fabrics onto the wood with a staple gun.  




Here's how the headboard looks on its side. I love how nicely it sits against the mattress.






Here's the breakdown of the costs:

Joann's Fabric
2" Foam ~$ 40.89 (50% off sale)
Quilter's Batting - already had
Doll soft sculpture needle ~ $2.49
4 - 5 pack 5/8 button cover ~ $11.96
upholstery thread ~$2.49
3 yards fabric - $18 (red tag sale)

Lowe's
5/32" x 4' x 8' 3 Ply sheet ~ $14.87
4 - 3" fence rails 2x3x8 ~ 8.84
Nails 1-5/8" ~ $4.58

For a total of $104.12, I pretty much adore our new headboard! What a great change it makes to the room! :)