Archive for the ‘DIY’ Category

Since I was not out Ho Ho Hoing today…. Nothing like a full day with no where to go and nothing to do to get some projects done around the house.

First up: The bar-cart… My buddy Eric from GO HOME finally delivered this thing a few days ago and I couldn’t wait to stock it. It has a really cool vintage/industrial feel to it… I love it!

Its pretty rickety so I dont know if I can really leave it like this with the little wrecking ball around. I am testing it out for a few days to see how she deals with it. Up top I put a bunch of liquors that we had out already, some tonic and the bone can opener I bought in Africa. Next level features these black glasses I bought at an antique store in Asbury, a Michael Aram pitcher , monogramed napkins etc… The last level has a cake stand and ice bucket and some books. I think if I used it for guests I would put the soda there or something…. The great thing about having your bar set up all the time is that you are much more apt to use it! And use it I did….

Next I made this faux Franz Kline for the wall that is almost in my kitchen…. Actually, for weeks I was layering white on white paint with a pallat knife creating texture. Then I hung it on the wall and the whole white on white thing fell flat. So I got out my brush and my black paint and I actually painted it while it was hung on the wall. Pretty cool idea cause you can tell how things are going to look in their context. It wasn’t really messy because I didn’t use any medium with the oil paint, so it was really thick and didn’t splatter or drip. It probably wont dry for a week. I  used heavy duty aluminum foil as a mixing tray and when I was done I just balled it up and threw it right out. A pretty easy DIY in terms of cleanliness, but you would be surprised at how hard it is to come up with something that looks good. Not as easy as it looks.

I know its not a REAL Franz anything, but looking at it in pictures I can see why so many designers use them. The visual impact of bold black strokes commands attention. I think mine might need some adjustments(maybe too many skinny lines) … but thats what’s great about doing your own art… You can change it any time you want! Nothing priceless here… (Though Mint.com did tell my husband that I spent $250 dollars on “hobbies” this month!)

The inspiration: Miles Redd loves this one so much he used it twice, as Rebecca June pointed out. Hmmm…

I dont know if this one is by Franz, but it looks like it… 

And this one is another inspired by…. by Nick Olsen. I actually really like it! What do you guys think? Do you guys make art for your houses?


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So I know I polled you guys about what fabric I should use for my little cork board, information center. BUT, then I went to Ikea and I saw this adorable fabric that was along the same lines so I bought some, just to see if I liked it…. I also bought a cork board there too… Then I went to the art store and bought some spray glue and a staple gun. I dont know how I lived so long with out those two.

This is pretty much the easiest and most successful project I have ever done. Usually, my DIY projects end up costing a fortune and making a HUGE mess. But this one was damage free and took 10 minutes!


1. Spray the cork board with the glue.

2. Center the fabric, leave about 4 inches extra on each side.

3. Lay the fabric on the cork board.

4. Rub out all of the bubbles. I wrapped the fabric around the frame because I thought it looked cool.

5. Then I stapled the back of the fabric to the cork board for extra hold and trimmed the excess. The trickiest part was getting the corners to look good. You have to master some sort of hospital corner.

And you are done! That’s it! So easy and cute!!
Now I have to get the hubby to  hang it! I dont hang things by myself because as my hubby says I am not the “measure twice, cut once” type of girl.

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I just want to show you what a little elbow grease can do. No one is exempt from being stylish and having a beautiful home. Not you, renters. Nor you, college kids. Nor you, budget deficient.

If you cant afford it, you can MAKE IT!!!

First up, the best Ikea Hack of all time:

And then this entry way from Pure Style Home.

Both are truly AMAZING.

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If you are like me, you like doing projects. Like arts and craft projects when you are a kid? As an adult, those sometimes turn into Sunday afternoon DIY projects… Here are my list of  DONTs.  I tell you this stuff out of love and experience.

1. DONT try to make anything you can buy in a store for less than 10 dollars. Or 20. Or 30.

2. DONT begin without the proper craft supplies.

3. DONT begin without the proper cleaning supplies. DO keep a garbage bag on hand, and a vacuum.

4. DONT attempt to DIY on anything permanent in your house… IE windowsills…

5. DONT begin with children at home.

6. DONT rely on husband to watch said children when there is football on.

7. DONT be impatient and not wait for things to dry.

8. DONT do projects on your dining room table.

9. DONT try to improve anything you already like and will miss if its gone.

10. DONT attempt a DIY after a fresh manicure.

Weekened Gold Leafing of a picture frame….

I dont know why I bothered with this. I really wanted a simple gold frame, not the kind that has any decorative carving. So I tried it. And it is such a goddamn mess. I made every dont mistake up there( In my first apartment I silver leafed my windowsills, then had to scratch them off when I hated it)…. I always am unprepared, I freakin applied the tack with q-tips and cotton balls! I didnt wait for it to dry, and it didnt turn out to be that special…. But here it is, another use for the Ikea Ribba frame: Beginning, middle and end.

Gold leaf 1Gold leaf 2Gold leaf 3In case any of you are going to try to gold leaf anything today, Ill give you some steps and tips:

First you are supposed to sand down your surface. I didnt.

Then you are supposed to apply your sizing evenly with a nice brush. I used a cotton ball.

Next you wait an hour to three hours for the tack to get tacky. I waited a half hour.

Then, wearing nice soft white gloves, you apply the sheets of gold leaf. Try not to touch the gold leaf. If it cracks or there are holes, dont worry it will still come out looking good but it will just be messier.

Smooth down the gold leaf by patting/rubbing with cheese cloth. If you do it too hard, the leaf will rub right off so be careful.

If you have any holes, which I am sure you will, just put some more gold leaf over it. If the tack isnt sticky any more, dab some on, wait and reapply the gold leaf.

Now you have to kind of rub away all of the excess gold leaf…. Vacuum immediately!

Tomorrow I am going to apply some kind of lacquer varnish on top of it so that this thing wont constantly be shedding all over my house…. and the picture is kind of lame, but I had it on hand so, there ya go! How good would it look with one of the horse photos from last week?

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For weeks I have been staring at this:
picture wall beforePathetic. And for months before that I was staring at an electrical box. But today it was pretty nasty out here in NYC, and the hubby was watching football, and the baby was sleeping so I finally did this:
frame wall1The Ikea Ribba frames come with the most bizarre matting sizes, so I really had to scrounge around my house for things that would fit. I wanted to keep to a black and white theme. I found: A schumacher wallpaper sample, a drawing I did at a nude drawing class when I was 15, a picture of my husband and me in Ibiza, a scrap of Ikat fabric, and a photo of charcoal that my friend Spencer  took in college.

Think I should add more frames?

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marble paper 1Marbled paper from your local art store + framed in Ikea’s Ribba Frame = ART.

You can buy the above papers from Paper Mojo or you can make your own!

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Look What I Made

box2One ugly box, a bag of turquoise rocks from M&J Trimming and a glue gun. Voila: turquoise box

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