Friday, March 29, 2013

Egg-asperating!

The egg saga continues...
So coats one and two of the spray paint worked great.  But when I went back the following day to do  some touch up where the color was bleeding through, my paint started crackling!  Like instantly.  

The Builder asked if I shook the can well enough as this is apparently what can happen.  Umh, YES!   I do know a thing or two about spray paint.

I have to say, I was pretty upset at first.  I mean look at that crackled mess!  And all the eggs I touched up are like this, but I didn't need to touch up all of them (does that make sense?!) so  there's not necessarily a uniformity to them

But you know....real eggs are actually all that smooth.  They actually have a subtle texture to them.  And while this is far from subtle, I think with a little speckling, these may actually just do the trick...



More to come...

Monday, March 25, 2013

The Great Egg Caper

You know when you see the perfect project.  You admire it.  You think about it.  You realize you could absolutely do THAT project and it would look fabulous in your home.  Yes, I have many of those 'ah ha!' moments.  My problem is that I always feel the need to make the project my own.  So with that for shadowing, let's start with my latest project

It's an egg garland.  Made from brown eggs.  Seriously, how much easier could it get?  I have certainly blown out eggs before.  We actually eat quite a few eggs in a week.  No issues with eggs.

My journey began with my quest for brown eggs.  You may have noticed from my last post with the table runner, I'm going for a more natural feel for Easter this year.  So I figured I would just buy 5 dozen brown eggs at Sam's or Costco and call it good.  Or...not.  Neither store carried brown and the minimum to buy was 15 dozen at Sam's.  Yeah, I don't need that many!!  Second, only my local grocer sold brown eggs, and at $3.50 a dozen, it was quickly adding up to what my egg garland could cost.

Then I have a light bulb moment.  I would simply tea dye my eggs!  I've used tea or coffee to stain many things before, and I find natural fibers dye the best.  Eggs are natural, right?  So this is what my first dozen looked like:

NOT pretty.  Certainly not anything that I would want to hang up every year.  And blown eggs are so delicate!  While I do store my holiday decor in plastic totes, it wouldn't take much for the egg garland to get smashed and broken.

Not willing to admit defeat, I thought about a few more options.  Like papermache eggs.  But I'm feeling pressured on time to make them (and I was worried they'd look homemade!) and I couldn't find any local that were what I would consider to be an affordable price.  Back to the drawing board.

I was at Hobby Lobby today exchanging bias tape when I remembered a wreath I had pinned.  I seemed to recall that she just spray painted plastic eggs to match her decor.  Could it really be so simple?  I have a ton of eggs I bought after Easter last year at Target on clearance.  My only concern was that my eggs are small, and I thought maybe I might want some a little larger.  So I picked up a couple of packets of medium-ish sized eggs, a can of paint, and headed home.
Oh. My.  Some of these eggs are BRIGHT!  I didn't think the first coat of paint did much, until I saw the top photo.  Ok, so that's toned down.  But still not neutral creamy-tannish color I'm going for.  Clearly, it's going to take several more coats of paint to get them where need them to be. I've already added second coat as I write this blog, and they're looking...better...still not quite right though.  I'm hoping the third coat is the charm!  Well, then there's the speckling to do as well.  Because I need brown speckled eggs for my garland, right?

To add insult to injury, this is what's hanging on my front door:

I didn't even bother to edit the photo, it's such a pathetic excuse for a wreath.  So I need these eggs to come out as I'm picturing them in my head to save me from total egg disgrace!

More to come...

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Switching Gears

So last week it was all about the green, and this week I had to switch gears quickly for Easter next week.  Yikes!!  To say I'm behind on my Easter projects would be an understatement.  I struggle with decorating for Easter every year.  I'm not really a pastel person.  I don't own any pastel colored clothes and nothing in my home is pastel.  So I decided to go with a natural palette, following in the footsteps of my rustic look for St. Patrick's Day.  This table runner was hard to photograph, but it turned out super cute in person!  Here's a close up of the bunny's:
This project was supposed to be SO easy.  In fact, I was going to break my hard fast rule of "I don't do no-sew projects" and do a no-sew project.  That was the goal!  I started with this adorable table runner:

 

So cute, right? She even gives step by step instructions for the bunny tails.  Adorable!  But, I decided I didn't want to paint mine on, I wanted a little more dimension.  Not a problem, I could cut my bunnies out of brown felt.  My plan was to use fabric glue and call it done.  Yeah, and if the pompoms would have glued well to the felt, it might have worked out great.  But they didn't.  To really make it a 'must' sew project, I ended up adding the cutest ribbon to the ends of the table runner...which you can't see well in the first photo, but it's there, and I love it in person.  Again, gluing it on was my intention, but ultimately, I sewed it on.  I did use my hot glue gun for the bunny tails and the bunnies themselves, which worked well.  But I still want to finish the edges with brown bias tape because, well, the unfinished edges are driving me crazy!  Which is why I generally end up with some sewing on no-sew projects.

I have two more small Easter projects I'm hoping to get done today, and then it's time to switch gears again to a project for my master bathroom.  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Small Updates

 Let's talk creativity for a moment.

This is a cup cake tower that I recently made after seeing one on Shabby 2 Chic that I loved!  You can see hers here:

My Cupcake Tower!


How awesome is it?!  But here's a confession.  I'm not really a Shabby Chic girl style wise.  While I admire it in other people's homes, it doesn't work in mine.  So I decided to use the one I pinned last year for my inspiration!  I started with wooden chargers from Hobby Lobby.  This did add to the overall cost of the project, but I used  my 40% off coupon on each of the chargers because the big one is $10 without the coupon! (side note, I work right next door to Hobby Lobby - I assure you, it's a truly heaven burden I carry knowing that I can walk over even when I have a 30 min. lunch!) and the top piece was a round wooden 'disk' a little further down the wood aisle. 

I did have one EPIC failure while working on this project.  I first thought I wanted to stain this so the wood grain would show through.  On the wooden chargers, this looked great.  On the lower quality wood pieces, it looked awful.  So I thought I would 'just' spray paint over it.  I even bought a can Valspar with primer spray paint, recognizing the stain might be hard to cover.  Can I just tell you, it's the worst spray paint I've ever used?!  One whole can, and it still looked streaky.  So back to Home Depot I went and got Rustoleum spray paint.  One coat, and it was done - ok, one or two small touch ups, but really, it coated beautifully.  I will never use the other brand again.

This really fits the scale of my dining room too.  I didn't want something that would take up so much room that it would be hard to use the dining room table.

Here's a glimpse of my table runner too!  I've never had one for St. Patrick's Day, but I saw this fabric at Hobby Lobby (I did mention what a sacrifice it is to work so close!) and knew it needed to be a table runner.  I love that it makes my Kelly green chargers pop, which I got on clearance at Walmart after Christmas - 49 cents each!  My friend M told me she found green tinted carnations at The Dollar Tree, so I picked some up to go in my tea lights. My daughter is already planning on use it for the cupcakes she wants for her birthday sleep over that's coming up soon.

But of course, with Easter being this month too, I'll be switching things out as soon as St. Patrick's Day is over this weekend!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Holiday Decor

Do you decorate for all of the holidays?  Because I don't.  Christmas is The Big One for me.  My whole house goes Christmas.  I have neither the time nor the energy to do every holiday the way I do Christmas.  But this past year, I've found myself doing little projects to add a touch of the holiday.  Like this one:
You may have seen this wreath on Pinterest.  That's where I saw it.  And I instantly like it.  Completely different that both my Christmas and Valentine's Day wreath, and not...cutesy.  I didn't really want something overdone.  I wanted something more simple. 

The gottcha for me was that my inspiration wreath was small.  Very small.  The poster used a coat hanger for the form (side note, all of my hangers are white plastic - do people really just keep wire hangers laying around the house in case they need a project, and better yet, how often do they actually go to the dry cleaners to have said supply?! I digress...)  OK, maybe not small if you were putting it in the house, but I knew I wanted mine on the front door.  And as you may have noticed previously, I have a window in my front door.  Sometimes I use the wreath as a privacy screen (because it actually creeps me out that anyone can walk up and look into my house!) but other times, I want it to frame the window - the way it does with this wreath.  Also, my inspiration wreath used scrapbook papers for the color.  I loved this idea and even went out and bought the papers to do this.  Then I realized I needed double the number of clothes pins that were noted in the directions (double the size, double the clothes pins!) and realized that cutting all those TINY strips of paper and modge podgeing them onto my clothes pins was not something I really wanted to do.  WAY to much work for me!  So I headed back to the craft store and came back with bottles of paint in four colors.  Then I randomly painted clothes pins (that I had already attached to the wire wreath form!) until it was completely filled in.  If you are OCD, this would probably not work for you.  And while I am very OCD in some areas, this is not one of them.  
Currently I have two picks I got at Hobby Lobby.  I'm not sure they're working for me.  I bought ribbon that I can make a bow (like the inspiration) and I may do that too.  But for now, I'm good with this.

Supplies:
  • wire wreath form 
  • 100 clothes pins
  • 4 colors of craft paint
  • patience to space out the clothes pins properly!