Sunday, December 30, 2012

"Holy" socks

Have you ever put on a good pair of socks only to discover that there is a hole in one?  Well, when I went to put on my warm blue socks the other day, I was caught by surprise ~ here was a hole on the heel.  No worries!

I thought I would share with you how to darn a sock ~ that means fix a hole in a sock.  It's bit different that sewing up a hole in a shirt or pants.  Here you go...

 1 - Gather a needle, appropriate thread, small scissors, and a lightbulb.

2 - Turn the sock wrong side out and insert the lightbulb so that the hole in the sock is slightly stretched over the lightbulb.

3 - With your needle threaded and knotted, begin making stitches that go across the hole, catching a small bit on each side of the hole.  Once you have sewn it up, knot thread and clip.

4 - Viola!  No more hole!  The lightbulb helps one truly see the hole.  This is a trick that mom passed down to me from her grandmother.  Thanks Grandma Childress!

May your socks no longer have holes!


Saturday, December 29, 2012

Got to love the beat up ones!

I love to go to some local shops to find "not so pretty" pieces of furniture or household things to bring back to life.  Two of favorite places to visit is Goodwill on Rt. 1 near Ashland and Class and Trash, a local thrift store also on Rt. 1, just north of Interstate 295/95.  Craigslist is another place in which I have scored some great pieces as well.

Here are two before and afters.  

Not bad for $8 at Goodwill.
Looked like someone had a blast scratching
something all over it.

$10 off Craigslist
$5 knob from Hobby Lobby at 1/2 off - $2.50!

With each, all it took was some sanding, painting, and updating hardware. Sometimes I get a new knob or handle or I just spray paint the old one if it is a style I like.  The drawer pull on the first table, I did spray paint it because I couldn't find a new one that had the same distance from the screws.  In the end, I like it sprayed brushed nickel!

So.... the next time you see a little table or chair that has seen better days, give it a chance!  With a little sanding, painting, and tlc, it may become your favorite piece yet!

Have you ever found a piece and given it a new life?  Have you ever passed on a piece of furniture only to regret it later? I have numerous times.  My new motto is.... get it when you see it!  It might not be there tomorrow once you are done justifying it in your head!

Happy hunting!


Friday, December 28, 2012

Kitty Man Cave

Some say a man needs his space to relax and call his own, yet does that apply to male cats too?  According to my daughter, her male cat. Alphie, needed a place to curl up in privacy that was all his.

It all began with this inspiration from Pinterest:

In her bedroom she had the perfect bedside table!  Now the transformation began.

With measurements in hand, off she went to JoAnn Fabrics to find the "purrfect" polar fleece for a pillow and material for a curtain.  She chose a soft off white fleece and an off white and light turquoise chevron for the curtain.

After measuring the space inside where the pillow would go, I proceeded to cut the material 2' wider and deeper than measured to allow for seam allowance and for the stuffing.  I sewed 3 sides together and on the fourth, I sewed in 1/3 of the way from each side - leaving an opening to add the stuffing.  Once stuffed, I hand stitched it closed.

Next I measured the height of the opening where the curtain would hang and added 1/2' for the hem and 1 1/2' for the rod pocket at the top. I cut the fabric to the desired height and then using the full width of the fabric, cut it in half to make 2 panels.

Then I hemmed each side and hemmed the length.  Then I created a rod pocket for the tension rod at the top.  I then added the two panels  onto the tension rod and put into place.

Now Alphie has his own lil' Kitty Man Cave to sleep in at night!   

Sweet dreams Alphie!


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Oh my dear Clementine!

It's that time of year when clementines are in the stores and my daughter just loves them. And well, I can't throw things out.  I'm not a horder, yet I like to reuse and recycle anything possible. So I keep stuff in the garage, attic, or in my craft space until an idea hits me or I get inspired by something I saw on Pinterest.  I LOVE Pinterest ~ it has sparked my interest and desire to be creative.  Feel free to check out my boards:

Oh yea ..... the clementine crates.  I tend to talk fast and my mind goes at fast speed all the time.  I crash when I got to bed.  On to the crates!

In my craft space I have a closet where I have most of my supplies organized and stored.  I have lots of spools of ribbon and cards and I ran out of space to store them, so I use the crates.  To make them more attractive, I simply cut craft paper and mod podged it on the sides!  The neat thing about the crates is that they stack = more space saved.

What do you do with your left over clementine crates?  I'd love to hear your ideas!

Nevin :)

Free ornament storage

As I unpacked a new set of glasses that I received for christmas, I had a brain storm!  Since the box already has little compartments and in layers, which is oh so nice, I kept it to store christmas ornaments in.  I like how the bottom section was taller than the top section, so therefore, I could separate them by size.  The box even has cut out handles on each end ~ that will make it easier to pass it on to my husband as he places all the boxes on a high shelf in our garage.

So, the next time you get some new glasses, recycle the box!  Just add a label stating what's packed inside and you are set for next year.


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Turn the table!

Here is little table that I got from my mom that belonged to my Grandma.  It had seen better days and reeked of smoke.  (I think the smoke was stuck in the lacquer!) It's not tall enough to be an end table, yet it is a good height to have beside an occasional chair with low arms or put wherever!  It needed some help to be attractive again.

So, I spread out some cardboard and began the messy, daunting task of stripping it.  I could have sanded it using a palm sander, but the lacquer had to come off first.  And if you have never stripped a piece of furniture using paint stripper - take precaution.  Wear heavy duty rubber gloves, safety goggles, old clothes, and work in a well ventilated location, like outside.  The fumes from the stripper can be strong, so you need lot of fresh air.

So, needless to say, I was a real beaut this day out in my driveway tackling this little job!

Once I stripped it, sanded it down using fine sandpaper on my palm sander, I proceeded to paint it black.  To me, a neutral color.  Plus I wasn't really sure where it was going to go.  It was just one of those projects that I just wanted to do because I had the time!

Now for the fun part!  What to do with the top????  I could have painted it.  Nah.  I wanted to try something I had seen before, yet not sure how it would turn out.  So I took a chance.

Check it out.  What do you think I covered the top with?  Yes - I did add nail head trim to jazz it up a bit.

Leather???     No.    Faux leather???  Nope.   Give up???  Brown craft paper.  Really? Yep!

I got it off a large roll at my school (shhhh...) and cut it to cover the top, the sides, and to have a little bit to tuck under.  Next I just crushed it and crinkled it in my hands over and over.  Opening it and crushing it gain.  Twisting.  Rolling.  I wanted it to be pliable and have lots of wrinkles.  Then I used Mod Podge and glued it on to the top, sides, and under the edge.  I rubbed all over the bag with a dry rag to make sure that it was totally glued down and that there were no air bubbles.  I let it dry overnight.  The next day I used wood stain and an old rag  to apply it until I achieved the coloration I liked.  Don't forget to wear rubber gloves again so that your fingernails stay pretty!   I let this dry outside for a couple of hours.  Lastly, I applied 2 coats of poly-acrylic to protect it.  I followed the can for drying times.  

I used some left over nail heads and trimmed it out!  And there you have it ~ a snazzy little table with lots of character!


A New Beginning

First of all, I hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas with family and friends.  We prepare for this day for soooo long, then the next thing you know, it's over. How can that be?

Now that Christmas has come and gone (by one day I know!) it is high time that I finally get my blog off the ground.

Starting a blog has been one thing that I have wanted to do since I learned how to create and maintain a blog during the 2011-2012 school year.  I often thought about, "what do I blog about?  Who will read it?  Will I have the time to keep it up?"  The answers to these questions in my mind vary from day to day, week to week - all depending on how demanding my school year is.   I am not one for resolutions because honestly, I never keep them.  Sad, I know.  Oe can't wait for the right time ~ who knows when that might be!

Im my blog, I wish to share with others projects that I tackle, whether it has to do with school, home, crafts, whatever!  I am not one to sit still and have idle hands or mind.  I'm a busy body or my might say, busy bee.  Other bloggers have inspired me over the years to revisit my hobbies and be creative again as well as my dear friend, Lori.  So, I dedicate my blog to Lori for inspiring me and encouraging me to go on this venture.  Thanks dear ~ love ya!

So... here we go!

Nevin :)