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Why I Suck at Sewing (and that’s OK)


Masterpiece...ugh.

I recently had a dog move in with me (don’t worry, she pays rent) and I thought I could make her a cute little hobo bed. So I took scraps of cloth and decided to basically fabric glue this piece of monstrosity together with a bit of stitching toward the end for structure.

Well, let me be the first to say “Bahahahaha” and “Bahahahaha.”

Honestly, I’ve never put on airs about my sewing. I can do the minimal hand stitching for reupholstering, but aside from that, me and a lobster have equal sewing capacities. I even have a sweet sewing machine but the bobbin and tension totally harsh my mellow.

Soooooo what’s the point of this post? As much as I love good, old fashion, self-depricating humor, there really is a purpose. You see, this post is coming hot on the heels of a conversation I had with a friend. She was feeling down about nothing specific. Not just the “winter icks,” but the “I-look-around-me-and-see-that-everyone-seems-to-be-making-it-work-with-ease-and-here-I-am-just-waiting-for-improvement-itis.” It’s something we all feel occasionally. You’re genuinely happy for someone else’s luck/success/what have you, but at the same time you wonder, “how do they do it?” or “what are they doing differently than me?”

The answer I have found is pretty simple- nothing. I devote my spare time to woodworking, running, home improvement, my band, furniture nonsense and messing up my life with power tools. It isn’t fair for me to turn around and expect to be great at sewing when it isn’t even remotely on my to-do list. Nor are cooking, bowling, dancing, golfing (I could go on forever.) Do I sacrifice for my hobbies? Again, my to-do list is not extensive. I rarely bowl, go dancing, buy gourmet food etc. It’s just a matter of picking my battles, even though they are always with myself.

No matter what we have/don’t have or where we excel/fail, at the end of the day everyone is tired, everyone tried, everyone is waiting for the next day to be a little better and we’ve all sacrificed something in order to be what we are (good or bad.)

When it comes down to it, it’s always good to see the potential in yourself but keep in mind the value of all that you are. Where would we be if Eric Clapton decided to try his Slowhand (get it?) at body-building? Or dry cleaning? Or macrame? All that he has done is not overshadowed by all that he chose not to do.

So, it’s OK, go ahead and suck at something.

Discom-BULB-ulated


Ahhh the 70’s; the memorable era of carpeted walls, brass fixtures and oversized, yellow spotted lamps.

Spots

 

Yeah, that’s real. 

Since, in my opinion, a lamp is just a bulb on a long cord that is run through a hollowed-out vase (in layman’s terms) I decided there was no harm in loosening a few wing nuts and pulling the old girl apart.

 

 

Rod

 

In this instance there is a hollow, threaded rod inserted through the middle because this behemoth of a lamp weighs more than a small child and comes in three separate pieces.

This is where the spray paint enters the scene.

I taped off the cord and socket (because even though the lamp unscrewed, the parts were inseparable) primed with spray primer, then did what I do best…make bad decisions quickly with my eyes closed.

Well Look ye' Here

My decision making process went something like this.

“I like blue. What is better than blue? Three different blues!!” The end.

Come here often, lovely?

 

The spray primer was a good, sticky base for the spray paint so I didn’t use spray sealant on top. PLUS, in my experience, most glossy spray paints tend to turn a bit matte when coated with a sealant (even if it seems like a glossy sealant) so I avoid it whenever possible.

OK, maybe the 70’s didn’t always have the greatest concept of space or regard for complimentary colors, but in theory, a massive, speckled lamp sounds stunning to just about everyone, right?…Yeah, I didn’t think so.

 

 

 

 

 

Face Forward


resurfacing

O.A.’s Bookcase


Thank God–A Bathroom Story


My bathroom is done and it makes me want to drink dance! It’s been the bane of my existence for about five months. A half bath should NOT have taken so long, but I get sidetracked so easily!

No time for talking

on to the pictures!

Before

Before

Before

Before

During

During

During

During

During

During

During

During

During

During

During. Adding a sink.

During. Adding a sink.

During. Finished.

During. Finished.

New Trim. $1 at Habitat for Humanity ReStore!

New Trim. $1 at Habitat for Humanity ReStore!

After

After

After

After

After

After

After

After

After

After

…then I exhaled.

Layered Faux Dry-brush (Say What?)


My favorite painting technique is dry-brushing, hands down. Ever since I was little I loved the idea of painting with virtually no paint. However, I am never satisfied with a tried and true method. Of course, I must reinvent the wheel (then crash the cart, but we haven’t gotten there… yet.) When I “faux dry-brush,” essentially I treat the dry-brushed paint as though it were a faux finish. After I dry-brush, I wait for the paint to dry for 5 minutes, then I wipe across the painted surface with a paper towel just to thin the paint layer and antique the item a tad more (See? Faux finish style, just like I said.) The layering comes when I wipe off paint to reveal other previous painted layers…that’s a pretty simple concept.

Let’s see it applied…

Lovelies...?

I started with these crazy coin-ish type wall hangings which are about 7 inches in diameter. I spray painted them purple (photo not shown because I am not organized…but I digress.)

Once the purple spray paint dried I used steel wool to rub off a bit of the purple on some raised areas to reveal the previous gold color underneath.

Then the dry-brushing began (here’s a super short VIDEO, just for a visual.)

As I previously mentioned, when the dry-brushed layer had set for about 5 minutes (for satin and matte paints), I wiped hard with a paper towel to thin out some areas. The wiping removed the top layer of dark craft paint and allowed the gold and purple to peek through.

I didn’t even bother with a top layer of poly because they are wall hangings and I don’t foresee myself touching them too often.

Bird

chick

The whole point of my layered faux dry-brushing was because I wanted to age my pieces after I spray painted them purple so they’d blend better in my bedroom.

Now they look like just another another old lady bedroom treasure.

Mother’s Day Schmother’s Day


Happy Mother’s Day!!!

Please do not be turned off by my title, mothers are the most important person in a child’s life. We do everything; give life, love, feed, nurture, wash, discipline, color, teach, play, go for days with our hair in messy buns on our heads but ensure that our children are squeaky clean every day for school. We are amazing.

However, I have a four-year-old, which means… I am not getting celebrated on this sacred day. I don’t mean to rain on your parade, you’ve earned it so live it up; gush over macaroni necklaces and flowers picked from the neighbors yard. I’ll get mine eventually 🙂

Now let’s get plumbing…

Pretty right?

As I sluggishly move along on my bathroom update, I think I need to celebrate little victories on the road to completion. Today it is plumbing my sink.

Upon removing my sink I discovered a rusted pipe that broke very easily and water lines with so much build-up that they just had to go.

So essentially, this is the bare bones.

Cuffed

I was able to just twist the broken metal pipe off and replace it with 1 1/2 inch PVC pipe and this nifty cuff. Easy enough. I didn’t replace the water valves because I am cheap and they still work. Also, the plumbing was originally in the wall but was moved to come up from the floor, so I knew that everything was a little less than standard. I just didn’t want to make more problems for myself.

No Room

I bought a vanity and knew I would have to drill a hole for the pipes, but I didn’t realize just how close to the wall the water valves were soooooo a simple hole wasn’t going to be enough.

I literally had to knock out the whole bottom AND take a layer of backing off just so I could fit the back of the vanity between the water lines and the wall.

I also removed the beauty rings from where the pipes meet the floor because it kept making the vanity rock; which is the same reason I chipped up chunks of uneven grout. Trust me, this SOB is sturdier than a 75-year-old Oak.

During

Honestly, the plumbing was easier than reconfiguring the vanity.

The hardest part was cutting through the PVC pipe with a hack saw.

At this point, the plumbing is correct but a pipe must have a crack in it (what next?) so I have caulked as a temporary fix. I will probably be ripping this apart (slightly) one final time to replace the cracked pipe that came with my faucet. Then I will cut some wood to rebuild a half-shelf… but first things first.

What can I say? A mother’s work is never done.

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