Wednesday, March 26, 2014

DIY French Inspired Distressed Dining Table...

For those of you who loved my Dining Room Makeover from last week and want to know how to distress your own dining table, we've got a tutorial!


  • a sturdy old dining table
  • course sand paper to sand down the table
  • base coat in paint in Beach House White, by Behr from Home Depot with primer in it
  • top coat of paint in Gem Turquoise by Behr
  • steel wool
  • medium or fine sandpaper for distressing
  • roller brush with an additional brush and 2 - 4 foam brushes
  • clear topcoat
  • tarp to protect the floor

My table has already been painted white for a few years, so I don't have a picture of this first step.

1.First sand your table and get off an lacquer or bumps and be sure to sand out any scratches or dents too. Wipe off the table and let it dry. Paint  the table with a roller brush in Beach House White and let it completely dry.

2. Poor a big blob of your top coat color, smack dab in the middle of the table and evenly roll it on the entire top of the table. While it is still wet, run a foam brush over the top to give it a little vintage hand painted look. Then evenly paint the sides and base of the table with the foam brush.

3. Let the table completely dry. Next gently sand the whole entire table with the steel wool. This gets rid of bubbles, bumps, and little paint blobs you may have missed. This might rub off some of the paint, but you'll want to use the sand paper for that to really get a nice distressed look. 

sand the table with steel wool
Pay no attention to the paint on my...oops!

Using the medium coarse sandpaper, sand the sides, edges, and top of the table. I just did it randomly all over until I liked the way it looked. If you mess up, just paint over it with the foam brush and then buff it out with the steel wool. 

 Wipe the table down really well and get rid of any loose particles. Put a finishing polycrylic clear coat over the top to protect your work. I gave it 2 coats to be safe.  Let it dry and wipe it down with soap and water. All Done!

Send us pictures of your new table! We'd love to see them:


Saturday, March 22, 2014

Chelsea's Dining Room Makeover...

I have a confession...  

I am renter

There, now I said it and it's out in the open.

I loved renting at first. Never having to worry about fixing things that break down or fall apart. Never any obligation to stay in one place. It was great for the 3 years we were in California going to Chiropractic School, but we've been out of school for 3 years now and are still renting. It totally stinks!

I know there are much worse things than being an eternal renter, but when you have an addiction to painting everything you own and you love a lot of detail, renting is torture. 

My solution to this little problem of mine has been finding things around the house that I'm sick of looking at OR heading out on a Saturday to yard sales or thrift stores and finding things that are cheap, old, and usually pretty ugly to make over. My husband will tell you, I have some really hideous things tucked away for a later date. Just hideous.

 This seems to have done the trick for the time being and I'm actually really excited about turning this whole neutral zone I'm living in, into a DIY wonderland!

 Today I'm starting today with my dining room. It got a complete makeover and I'm in LOVE.

 The first thing I did was paint my old dining table. It was my parents and has been in my family for 40 years or so. It started out a nice chocolaty brown that was fabulous for it's first 30 years of use, but it got beat up and outdated. So I painted it beach house white by Behr which I totally loved, but let's face it, white gets dirty and my whole entire house is painted all one color. They seriously spray painted the walls, doors, ceilings, and baseboards one single color. It's so boring and totally blah!  The white table seemed to blend into the walls and I just couldn't stand it for one more day. 

 So, I went to Home Depot, wearing my favorite turquoise ring and found a paint color that matched it perfectly. I am obsessed with turquoise so why not paint my most favorite piece of furniture that color?  The result is beautiful!  I'll have a tutorial up next Tuesday on how to paint a table just like this, with the name of the paint color too!

 The next thing I did was fix up my Grandpa Rock's old dining chairs. They were pretty much ready to paint and just needed a few screws tightened and a new chair cushion. I spray painted them Winter Gray in gloss by Krylon and cut up my old curtains made from Amy Butler's Belle fabric in orange and aqua (my all time favorite) to make new cushions.

Then I made custom covers for my extremely cheap Target brand Parson Chairs. These babies have lasted us almost 6 years! I'm kind of amazed.  We kept the plain brown leather for the first 3 years, then did Pier One slipcovers that were cute enough, but this takes the cake! Made from a simple canvas fabric, with numbers stenciled on the back. I'm in Love.

I'll have a tutorial on the chairs in a week!

I created a little drama with some custom striped drapes hanging from ceiling to floor from some fancy, but very inexpensive rods from Target. Click HERE for a tutorial on how to make your own striped curtains. 

For the finishing touches, I went to a favorite local home dec store of mine called Tai Pan (oh yeah! They're online!) for dishes and nick-nacks.  I also added fresh herbs to some pre-labled pots to give it some Green.

For the framed pictures, I spray painted old frames in the same winter gray as the dining chairs and printed out E A T on my home computer. The runner on the dinging table is made from the same fabric as the Parson Chairs. I cut it into a long strip, zig zagged around the edges, and then threw it in the dryer to give a vintage touch.

The stunning geometric rug is from Target, but was borrowed from our theater room floor.  I think it might have to stay!

All in all this dining room makeover was easily under $200 (not including the rug). Using coupons for my fabric purchase's was key in keeping the cost down. 

Other ways to save when redoing a room is to snag things from other areas of the house. You can also replace it later with something new or something from another room!  I also love having nick nack swapping party with friends. That's loads of fun and it always feels like something new. 

I hope you enjoyed my Dining Room Makeover! So once again here's the before and after pics. I seriously can't even believe the before was in my house.  Not cute!





Monday, March 17, 2014

Nail Polish and a Little Sparkle

So if you know me and are reading this you know my obsession with painting my nails. I feel more put together when they are freshly painted.  The only problem is that they chip and peel and never last. Ahhh!   I have searched far and wide for the perfect combo to making nail polish last for more than 1 day.  I think I have finally done it!
Nail polish remover
Gelous gel base coat
Nail polish
Chill Zone topcoat or Out the Door topcoat
 The ONYX Professional Nail Polish Remover is awesome!  It takes your polish off so fast  I love it.  I got mine at Walmart.  I heard about this base coat on pinterest and thought "what do I have to lose?"   I went and bought it and it worked!  So I went back and bought a few more bottles so I wouldn't run out.  I got Mine at Sally's Beauty Supply.  Remember to get the one with the green lid.  Grab your favorite nail polish color.  And last but not least the topcoat.  There are 2 that I really like.  The first one is called Chill Zone.  I have a beauty license so I can purchase this from Peerless.  If you don't have a license you will have to ask someone you know who does really nice maybe with some sugar cookies to go get you some.  Its amazing!  The second one I really like is Out the Door top coat.  You can buy this one from Sally's Beauty Supply which is open to the public.
Now that you have all your needed supplies lets get started. 
1- Remove all your old nail polish and file nails to desired shape.  I like mine really short.
2- Swipe each nail one more time with nail polish remover.  This gets all the oils off helping the polish stay on longer.
3- Paint nails with the Gelous base coat and let dry for 1 minute.
4- Paint nails with nail polish and let dry for 1 minute.
5- Paint nails with Gelous base coat and let dry for 1 minute.
6- Paint nails with nail polish and let dry for 1 minute.
7- Paint nails with topcoat and let dry fully.
After painting my nails this way they will usually stay looking really nice for almost a week!
Now that you have fabulous nails.  How does that wedding ring of yours look?  If it looks anything like mine it probably has lotion, dirt, hairspray, and who knows what else stuck in it making it look dull.
As I have said before I love sparkly things and so it's time to polish up the old ring.  I am a lover of DIY so I called my jeweler and asked her how I could clean my ring myself.  With a 3 year old a trip to the jewelers to have them clean my ring sounds like pure torture.  So here is what she told me.  Now I can clean my ring anytime I want. Woo hoo!
You will need windex, a glass, and an old toothbrush.
Pour a little bit of windex in your glass, enough to cover your ring.  Place your glass with windex in the microwave and warm for 30 seconds.  Careful when you take it out it can get hot.
Drop your rings in while it is still hot and let it work its magic.  I usually leave mine in for about a minute.  Take them out and dip the toothbrush in the windex and scrub your ring inside and out.  Rinse with water and dry off.
This is my favorite part, putting it back on and admiring how sparkly is looks again.  The picture doesn't do it justice.
Now we have fabulous nails and a sparkly ring!  Success!
Happy Painting!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Apple Butternut Soup...

It's warming up where we live in the desert, but there's still a few weeks left of cool winter nights. So I'm making soup and lot's of it, because when summer hits all I want is ice cream. 

This is one of my fall favorites, but I love it so much I'll eat any time. Enjoy!

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 4 cups chopped yellow onions (3 large)
  • 2 tablespoons mild curry powder
  • 5 pounds butternut squash (2 large)
  • 1 1/2 pounds sweet apples, such as McIntosh (4 apples)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups good apple cider or juice


Warm the butter, olive oil, onions, and curry powder in a large stockpot uncovered over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, until the onions are tender. Stir occasionally, scraping the bottom of the pot.
Peel the squash, cut in half, and remove the seeds. Cut the squash into chunks. Peel, quarter, and core the apples. Cut into chunks.
Add the squash, apples, salt, pepper, and 2 cups of water to the pot. Bring to a boil, cover, and cook over low heat for 30 to 40 minutes, until the squash and apples are very soft. Process the soup through a food mill fitted with a large blade, or puree it coarsely in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade.
Pour the soup back into the pot. Add the apple cider or juice and enough water to make the soup the consistency you like; it should be slightly sweet and quite thick. Check the salt and pepper and serve hot.

*I wish I knew where this recipe came from. Somewhere on the internet. I've tried to find out so I could give credit, but it's lost in a sea of soup recipes. So Thank You whoever you are, for making this delicious soup. 

Friday, March 7, 2014

Contact Paper

For Chloe's room I wanted to do a fun wall with giant polka dots.  I love Polka Dots!! But I didn't want to paint them on because I tend to change my mind a lot.  I didn't want to have to sand the wall to repaint it.  I have used vinyl before and love how easy it is to use and remove.  But for a project this size it would be a small fortune.  So I found the next best thing.  CONTACT PAPER!!!! It is my new best friend.  It is easy to apply and remove.  I'm in love. I know I know now you are all wondering where can I buy this amazing stuff.  I found mine at Lowes. You can get a giant roll for around $10. I still haven't used a whole roll yet.  I know Home Depot has it as well.  You can also find different colors online. 
For the huge polka dots I just traced a dinner plate on the back of the contact paper and cut it out.  Peel the backing off and stick it to the wall. Easy as that.  I originally had these on a different wall.  I changed my mind, he he he, and just pulled them off and stuck them on where I wanted them.
In our kitchen we don't have a back splash.  We are still trying to decide what we want to do sooo in the meantime I used my handy dandy contact paper and added chevron.  I love it!  The best part is that when I'm ready to install a real back splash I can just peel this one off.  
My sister has also used contact paper for her back splash.  She cut 3" x 6 " pieces of contact paper with a rotary cutter, ruler , and cutting mat and then just stuck them on her wall. This is also a great option if your renting.  A fun way to add some character without it being permanent or causing any damage.

You can also use contact paper in your cricut or sillouette. 

My sister also added these darling stripes in her boys bedroom.  I am wanting to do the same thing in Kayla's room.  I love the stripes!

  I hope I have given you lots of options to get your creative juices flowing.  The possibilities are endless. 
Happy Crafting

Sunday, March 2, 2014

St. Patrick's Day Pillows...

Here's a few more fun PDF pillow patterns to add to your collection! 
Do you see a trend here? Yep, we'll be doing pillows for every holiday and sometimes just for fun. All of these are Free tutorials on our blog. Just click on the links!

First up we have 7 So Lucky. This 18" pillow is a piece of cake to make. I literally sewed it up in under 30 minutes, but you do have to give the paint some time to dry, so plan for that! It's made from burlap and I was lucky enough to find some burlap with gold thread weaved in! Love it!

Pot of Gold is also an 18" pillow with a zipper closure. If you hate zippers, don't worry! Our step by step instructions make it easy. And those glitter dots are TDF.

End of the Rainbow is a really fun and easy to make ruffle pillow! It's a custom finished size of 19" x 9.5" so you will need to make your own pillow insert. Instructions are included for that too! 

Lucky You!