Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Yard Sale-ing Away

I enjoy a good yard sale, but my husband is the real yard sale king in our family. He has some sort of weird yard sale mojo, where he sort of decides what he is looking for and comes home with it that day. His best yard sale scores have been of the practical nature (shop vac, weed eater, seed spreader thingy), where mine have been more happenstance-things-I-like.

My favorite yard sale find is not my cheapest, but I must share it here (as part of the linky party over at Nesting Place today) with some poorly-lit photos. YOU'RE WELCOME.

This is a vintage 1950s floor lamp from a Miami hotel. I bought it from a collector in my neighborhood who was moving. I paid $35 for it--a princely sum in yard sale world, but a major steal by any other standards. It works great, it's in pristine condition, and I'm constantly getting compliments on it.

Not that you can see it that well in the photo above, but it totally fits with the vibe of my living room. Plus it's turquoise, which is always a plus for me.

Cost-wise, our biggest yard sale score was our dryer. We had just been forced to buy a new washing machine because our old one (which came with our house) was twenty-plus years old and finally gave out. We had a feeling the old dryer wasn't far behind, when lo and behold, we saw the dryer that matched our BRAND NEW Whirlpool washing machine at a yard sale. FOR FIVE DOLLARS. The homeowner was buying a new set and just wanted to get rid of it. I will spare you a photo because my washer and dryer are in my basement, and good Lord, nobody needs to see that mess. Just know that Seth and I are still high-fiving over that deal. Well, we would be if we were the high-fiving type. Pin It

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Lil' Dee Dubya--Artwork in the Nursery

When I was pregnant with Graham, I tried to think of some fun way to display his name in his room. Then I gave up and went with the ubiquitous wooden letters over the crib solution. I think it's cute but nothing new.

With this new little nugget, I thought I might try initials instead. I had seen a few typography posters here and there and on Etsy, but none offered something I liked in the letters and colors I was looking for. I thought I might as well try my hand at creating something with whatever s(crap) I had lying around--it's free, and if I ended up not liking it, I could still go buy something else.

I had a lot of scrapbook card stock left over from Mimi's baby shower, some of it conveniently in red and turquoise. I searched online for silhouettes of images I liked, a deer (well, a fawn, because baby animals are cute. Except baby scorpions, which I learned last week. Thanks a lot, Zooborns.) and a wagon (being pulled by a little boy! Or a girl with kind of a mullet, whatever), to correspond with D and W. (New baby's name is Dean--have I said that here? Probably not, since my mother is the only one who reads this, and she already knows his name. Anyway, welcome, Dean Eliot!) I printed them out, cut them, traced them onto the white card stock, cut them again, swatted Graham away when he kept trying to take them, cut out some more for him to play with (of course he had lost interest by then). I then did the same thing with the upper- and lowercase letters for D and W (you could do this with a die-cut machine, if you have a font you like, but I just wanted old-school Times New Roman and I didn't want to pay $50 for a Cricut cartridge for four letters).

Card stock tends to come in weird sizes at the craft store. My sheets are all 12x12, which I thought I would need to trim to 8x10 to fit a standard picture frame, but then I remembered that we had some random LP frames lying around the basement that might work!

This is the LP Seth had chosen to frame. Hmm, I can't imagine why this never made it up on to any of our walls.

I spray painted them white. Then, I pieced together some pieces of white cardstock to fill the gaps around the edges--fake matting, if you will.

For the space behind the glider, I commissioned some lithographs from a local underground artist. I'm totally kidding--I found these for 3.49 apiece on clearance at Target. I am so lame. But look, a scooter--we have one of those!

And a bike--we may even have two of those. It's been a while since I've visited that corner of the Hoarder Basement beneath my house. Sorry, bikes. Anyway, I pretty much had to buy these at $3.49 apiece. I couldn't have made anything that cheaply.

The other little piece of artwork currently in the nursery is an adorable painted canvas from my sister Mary Ruth--a cute take on  "See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil" featuring sock monkeys, hanging over the dresser/changing table. (Better picture of it to  come soon.)

I have a couple other art-y things to put in the nursery, and if I ever get around to finishing them, you'll be the first to know. Pin It

Nursery: As Good As It Gets

Or rather, as good as it's going to get. I am out of time and patience and funds. Here's Baby 2.0's new digs!


Crib: Ariel Stages crib, originally from Target 2007, hand-me-down from Graham

Bedding: bumper and skirt made by my mom with Moda Funky Monkey fabric via; sheets from Koala baby

Bookshelf: Dolce shelf from Target, circa 1998. Has followed me around since college. Painted white. Red fabric bins are Closetmaid, $6 apiece, available at Target and Lowe's.

Glider/Rocker and ottoman: Dutalier via Craigslist three years ago, $60. Painted white; cushions recovered with red microfiber from JoAnn.

Robot pillow: gift from sister-in-law, handmade by via Old Made Good shop in Nashville.

Dresser: vintage Bassett via Craigslist, $30. Painted with high gloss Candy Apple Red from Glidden.

Rug: Ikea Sveje, no longer available, $12. (If anyone spots another one, please tell me! I want one more because just one is really too small for the space.)

Window valances: Target, $11 apiece.

Roller shades: KMart, $10 apiece. I hate these, by the way.

Lamp: Adesso Millennium Wood Spindle lamp, originally in our living room. Shades replaced (after Graham shattered the original ones) with JC Penney drum shades.

Corner table: Lowe's (?), circa ten years ago. We used it in the kitchen of our first apartment after we were married. I think it may have been $18 back then. It has lots of random paint splatters on it that I try to hide with books or lamps.

Light Fixture: Lowe's, $42.

Artwork (more on this later): various--made by my sister, made by me, purchased from the Target. Pin It

Monday, June 6, 2011

Lulu's Rainbow Party

Rainbow parties have been making the rounds in the ol' blogosphere for a while now, and it's a charming theme I really love. When my friend Marianne, co-writer of the hilarious and adorable Looks Good from the Back, decided to go with a rainbow theme for her daughter Lulu's second birthday party, she did what she always does with her clothes: takes a trend and makes it look effortless, chic, and better than most people do it.

I love this giant "2" balloon:

What a clever and easy (though I'm betting time-consuming) way to dress up some plain wood columns:
 Marianne made the cake herself and painstakingly placed every M&M to make the cool rainbow stripes.

Taste the rainbow! (Sorry, I just wanted to say that. In fact, I probably would have said it multiple times if I had been at the party. I guess this is why I don't get invited to things?)

Food included M&Ms, rainbow goldfish, multicolored tortilla chips with salsa, and this awesome fruit rainbow.

Activities for younger guests included bubbles and finger painting (activities for older guests likely involved that box of wine I spy in the background above. That's what I'm talkin' about). The kids also enjoyed feeding the fish in Marianne's parents' koi pond, and taking "fairy walks" in the woods. Favors were fun rainbow crayons individually wrapped in wax paper.

Rainbow tutu?! Stripey babylegs? Sponge painting? PIGTAILS? I think I just died from cute overload.

Happy Birthday, Lu! And great job, Marianne!
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