Hello, I hope you all had a wonderful week! I wanted to take a minute to thank everyone who stopped by my humble little blog to check out my craft room makeover. I have truly enjoyed meeting new bloggers and reading through your comments... you are all so amazing! I hope you come back soon to visit with me ... I truly enjoy your company!
Now on to my "Cottage" sign tutorial I promised in my last post.....
I have to start this tutorial with a bit of a disclaimer.... I do not own a vinyl machine, so this sign is made the old fashioned way, with stencils and hand painting. I'm sure there are at least one or two of you out there who are also machine-less and may find this tutorial helpful. This is an easy project, but somewhat time consuming!
Here are the supplies needed:
* Piece of wood. I used a 4 x 6 plank from an old fence.
* Craft paint (acrylic) in your choice of colors. For my sign I used PLAID acrylics in Wicker White, Pure Black and Bright Red.
* 2-inch self adhesive vinyl lettering.
*Card stock. Any color will do.
* A black Sharpie marker.
* A glue stick.
* Medium size paint brush.
* Small artists paintbrush, for touch ups.
* A way to print out your lettering (computer and printer).
* Picture hanging kit.
I started by painting a light whitewash over my board of choice, which happened to be a plank from my neighbors old fence. It was destined for the trash heap, so I asked if I could have it. Luckily, they are DIY'ers and didn't question my motives....
This board already had that worn, shabby look I was after, but I wanted the "chippy white paint" look, so I gave it a dry brushing with white craft paint, diluted with water to a "milky" consistency. I purposely left lots of wood showing through to help with the "weathered" look. For this technique, the shabbier and more rustic the wood, the better (just watch out for splinters!)
While the paint dried, I printed my wording onto card stock. It took a bit of trial and error to find the sizes that worked best, but I finally figured it out. For my sign I used Book Antiqua in font size 450 for the "Cottage" wording and Abbeyline in font size 170 for the "Cozy" wording. This font was downloaded for free from this site. A little tip: For the wording, I printed my words using the "outline" option in Microsoft Word. This is a huge ink saver! For the "For Rent" wording, cut a piece of card stock to the size and shape you want, then use that as a template for figuring out your letter spacing. I used a 5 1/4 x 6 1/2 inch size piece of card stock.
I then laid all of the lettering out on my board to verify spacing, etc. Once I was happy with the way it looked, I used a sharpie marker to trace the "Cottage" letters onto the board.
Next, I filled in the letters using black craft paint watered down to make a glaze. I did not make it really "solid", as I wanted to be able to see the wood a bit, adding to the aged look.
For the "Cozy" wording, I found it easier to use a reverse stencil (don't ask me how long it took me to figure this out!) I printed out my word, then cut it out of the paper, being careful to leave the paper as intact as possible. Make sure you get the little pieces inside the "C", the middle of the "O" and the tail of the "Y". You will need these to make your stencil correctly!
Using a glue stick, I applied glue to the back of the stencil ....
then placed the stencil on my board. Press down well around the edges so the paint can't leak under. Glue those little pieces I just mentioned (the C, O and Y pieces) into the appropriate spots. Try to move quickly through this step so the glue does not have time to set (if it does, you will have a hard time getting your stencil off of your board!)
I used a sponge brush loaded with black craft paint and "dabbed" my paint on.
I carefully peeled off my stencil...
and made any necessary touch-ups.
For the FOR RENT sign, you will need your vinyl letters. You can find these at Wal-Mart, Target and most office supply stores.
I selected the lettering I wanted to use and separated them from the sheet.
I cut out the letters.... and set them aside.
To make the red background, I used that card stock template I made previously. I placed it on my board and traced around it with my Sharpie. (I folded the paper over the sides and traced the corners as well... this was a little tricky, but it worked!)
After making sure my letters were well placed, I peeled them off the paper backing and stuck them to my board. Make sure you press down firmly so that paint doesn't leak under during the next step....
which is to paint the rectangle area using the red paint. I used a dry brush technique here, too.
Next, peel off the vinyl letters. If any paint did leak under the vinyl, you can touch up using your white paint/glaze mixture and a small artists' brush.
The last step is adding the hardware for hanging the sign. I used this kind because, honestly, that's what I had in the ole' toolbox. It ended up working perfectly. You can find these little do-dads in the picture hanging section of your hardware store.
I flipped my board over and hammered one on each end, towards the top edge.
That's it! Now go hang it on your wall, stand back and admire your handiwork!
I don't know about you, but I'm always on the lookout for new recipes that are both delicious and family friendly. I saw this recipe on Food Network and knew that I must give it a try! This is a terrific fusion of my family's two favorite foods: tacos and pizza. I have this meal slated for Wednesday, I'll let you know how it turns out....
Total Time: 1 hr 25 min.
Prep: 1 hr 5 min.
Cook: 20 min.
Yield: 3 individual pizzas .
For the Taco Seasoning:
2 tablespoons onion powder
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the Guacamole:
1 avocado, halved, pitted and flesh diced small
1 lime, juiced
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 tablespoon finely diced red onions
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the Pizzas:
1/4 cup canola oil, plus more for brushing
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 16-ounce tube pizza dough
All-purpose flour, for dusting
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar
Make the taco seasoning: Mix all of the ingredients with 1 tablespoon each salt and black pepper in a bowl.
Make the guacamole: Using a potato masher, fork, or hand mixer, mash the avacodo. Add the other ingredients and mix well.
Prepare the pizza: Mix 2 tablespoons of the taco seasoning and the canola oil in a shallow bowl. Pound the chicken between 2 pieces of plastic wrap to 1/4 inch thick. Add the chicken to the bowl, turning to coat, and marinate 30 minutes.
Preheat a grill to medium high. Grill the chicken until cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Let cool, then cut into bite-size pieces.
Divide the dough into 3 pieces. Roll out each on a floured surface into an 8-inch round. Brush with canola oil, sprinkle with taco seasoning and grill until crisp, 3 to 5 minutes per side; remove from the grill.
Mix the cheeses in a bowl, then sprinkle on the crusts and top with the chicken. Return the pizzas to the grill, and cook until the cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, mix the avocado, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, red onion, and salt and pepper to taste. Top the pizzas with the avocado mixture, salsa, sour cream and cilantro.
Recipe courtesy of Aaron McCargo Jr. for Food Network
I was beginning to think this day would never come.... but here it is! My craft room makeover is finally finished and ready to share!
Of course, before I show you anymore after pictures, I'm going to make you look at the before pictures (again) just so you can fully appreciate how far this room has come. Brace yourselves, it's pretty bad.....
Don't say I didn't warn you! These pictures were taken shortly after we moved in, and we had no idea how to go about decorating this space. We thought it was going to function as both a home office and a craft room, but after trekking up the stairs several times a day for this or that, I decided to create a home office in an unused space downstairs, instead. I like my exercise, but not that much. Lucky for me, creating a separate home office downstairs, meant that this quirky loft space could now be used solely as a craft room. Yay for me! Of course, the room had quite a few decorating challenges:
Challenge #1 : Size. It is a bit on the small side, considering all of the stuff I needed to fit into it. The room measures 14' x 10' and had to accommodate a seven foot long farm table and three bookshelves that came with us in the move. Oh yeah, and a large trunk, formerly used as a coffee table.
Challenge #2 : Shape. Long and narrow, with sloped ceilings.
Challenge #3 : Only three walls and a railing that overlooks the great room and kitchen below. The room and its contents were completely visible from the first floor.
Challenge #4: No closet. That's right, there was no storage of any kind. This was, by far, the biggest challenge in this makeover.
Challenge #5: This makeover had to be done using mostly items I already had. My budget was tiny, so I had to stretch my dollars to the max.
Challenge #6 : As renters, no painting or construction allowed!
I started this makeover with this pretty floral pillow as my inspiration. I picked up two of these at GW about a year ago, for just a few bucks each. I love them, but because I have to keep my son and hubby in mind when decorating, they never seemed to find a place in my home. Since this room is going to be used primarily by me, I decided to design the room around these pillows, using florals and pinks and lots of flowy fabric.
What do you say I show you the room now? Yes? This is the view at the top of the stairs:
Fortunately, we already had all of the furniture that was used in the room. The challenge was in finding an arrangment that would work for this room. I hung curtains above the table, along with a sign I made for the room (tutorial coming soon!) I also made skirts for the table to hide extra storage, as well as one for the smaller bookshelf to conceal items I don't want to look at everyday, but still need easy access to (ahem, paper shredder and waste basket). I sorted, organized and labeled some baskets I already had and placed them on the larger bookshelves. These hold most of my scrapbooking and sewing supplies.
I also made an inspiration board so that I had visual reminders of things I like and am inspired by. The frame was found at GW, and the mirror was purchased on clearence from Target.
The smaller bookcase was a perfect fit for the shortest wall, under the sloped ceiling.
Above the bookcase is a favorite metal shelf, repainted and glazed, then decorated with GW finds.
To the right of the small bookcase is the artwork that I made for the room and a pretty silver tray from the GW (you can see the inspiration artwork here). This project was made using a garage sale picture frame, some curbside drawers, and scrapbook paper. This project was practically free to make! I will be posting a tutorial on this project soon too, so stay tuned for that!
I placed the other GW chair in the corner, next to the railing. I still haven't found the perfect fabric to recover the cushions, but the burlap I put on as a temporary fix is starting to grow on me.
Next on the tour is the trunk that I needed to fit into this room. I love that it adds even more storage space, but I didn't love having more dark wood in here. My solution was to lighten it up using fabric, while creating additional seating for visitors. Being on a budget, I had to get creative with my "upholsery" fabrics. The seat cushion is a king size pillow wrapped in a twin comforter, the back pillow is a king pillow sham and the arms are bolster pillows covered in coordinating fabric. All of these items were castoffs from my daughter's previous room decor.
The landing at the top of the stairs seemed like the perfect place for the rest of my birdcage collection. Can you tell I like birdcages? I almost forgot to mention my solution for the see-thru railing. As you can see in the pictures, I used fabric. Yes, more fabric! If I owned this house I would construct a solid half wall here, but since I am renting, two twin size sheets from W-Mart ($4.00 each) will solve the privacy issue for now.
And finally, the last stop on the tour is the "closet" I made to hide everything I couldn't fit on the bookshelves, under the table or in the trunk.... yes people, my name is Amy and I'm a hoarder.
As a renter on a super tight budget, I couldn't construct an actual closet, so I really had to think outside the box on this one. I got the idea while purusing an old IKEA catalog. It was advertising hard plastic "curtain" panels that slide on a track attached to the ceiling. I didn't have any hard plastic panels, but I had lots of fabric and some curtain rods from our former house. To make the closet, I screwed some simple J-hooks into the sloped ceiling, attached a curtain rod to the hooks, and hung some garage sale curtain panels from it using drapery rings with clips. Easy peasy! If I need to access the storage shelves behind the curtains, the panels just slide open, just like a curtain hung the traditional way.
Lets look at the before and afters one more time:
And that concludes the tour of the craftroom! I really couldn't be happier with the way it turned out! Thank you so much for hanging in there through the whole process, even though it took a bit longer that expected. Now I'm off to do heaps of laundry and mounds of dishes that piled up while I was busy snapping pictures.....
Hi, I'm Amy and I’ve been married for 18 years to an amazing man. Together we have two incredible kids, two cats and two very pampered dogs. I’m passionate about my family, reading, writing, and trying to make our house a home. Thanks for stopping by….I hope you’ll be back soon to check out my latest home “remedies”, projects, pictures and maybe even a recipe or two!