Monday, December 30, 2013

Lucite Curtain Rods..& A Question.

Raise your hand if you noticed my curtains were ready for a flood when I showed off our Christmas home tour.  Come on...admit it.  I know plenty of you were asking yourself what the heck I must have been doing when I hemmed my curtains.  But for the few of you who are kindly pretending like you didn't see them floating a good 8 inches off the floor in some photos, here's a lovely reminder.

And to answer the question in your, I didn't do this intentionally.  In fact, if you remember when I showed off my DIY striped curtains last year, they were the perfect length that just slightly pooled onto our dark hardwoods.

Did I shrink them?  Nope.  I finally found the perfect curtain rods for our home, so our curtains can be hung where they should have been from day one...high and wide!!

When we first moved in, I wasn't sure what kind of curtain rod I wanted to get for our living/dining room area since the window width to cover was so long. To keep the price, work and wall damage minimal, I found inexpensive rods from Amazon and used these Kwik Hang rod supports as a placeholder. They went up quickly, and added a much needed softness to the space.

Two things bothered me about the set up.  The curtains were hung low {a major decorating no-no} and the rod and middle support were not pleasing to my eye...especially since we never use curtain to cover the windows.  I lived with things as they were for almost two years while I brainstormed what I wanted.  One day, it finally hit me and I was no longer afraid to drill something permanently into our delicate plaster walls...eeeeek!

It was lucite rods for the win!!  I thought they'd be beautiful in our home.  And I was hoping I'd be able to save a bit of money since I didn't need a rod that would span the entire width of windows...two smaller rods hung wide at the ends of the windows would work just fine, and get rid of some of the visual clutter.

I hopped onto the Internet and searched my little heart out.

As I predicted, lucite {or acrylic} rods can be quite expensive...especially when they are sold as curtain rods.  So instead of looking for home decor suppliers, I turned my efforts to finding plastic manufacturers who could make rods that I could cut-to-size myself.  The prices for the rods themselves were reasonable, but the shipping costs were out of control.  Thankfully, I came across a manufacturer who is semi-local {about a 30 minute drive}, who would make the rods, cut them to size, and allow me to pick them up.  I couldn't get my exact measurements and place my order fast enough!

Once that was completed, I was on the hunt to find the perfect curtain drapery rings and mounting hardware to go with the rods.  It didn't take long for me to come across just what I wanted on Ebay.  Sold!!!

After hubby picked up our rods and the hardware arrived, it was time to turn my vision into a reality.  Admittedly, I put this off for many weeks.  Drilling into plaster, making sure the rods are level, blah,'s just not my jam.  I'd rather do many things besides installing curtain rods, but hubby and I got our bedroom done in one night and our great room done another.  I'm SO happy we bit the bullet and got them up!

So basically, {if you are still reading star for you!}, this was my very long-winded way to tell you about my awesome lucite curtain rods and now-too-short-curtains. :)

Do you like?!  I loooooove.  I could definitely use more lucite in my life in 2014.

Speaking of which....can you believe the new year is almost here?!  I can't!!  December passed in the blink of an eye, and now I'm scrambling to get the blog prepped for the new year.  Is there anything you guys would like to see/hear more of?  Or less of?  Let me know!  I'd love to get some input from you guys. :)

Happy Last Monday of the Year!!!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Have Yourself...

...a merry little Christmas!  I hope you all have a wonderful holiday filled with loving family and friends!  I just wanted to take a minute and tell you guys how thankful I am for each and every one of you!  The fact that you take time out of your day to pop into my little corner of the blog-o-sphere means the world to me!!

So from our house to yours, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!  I'll see you in 2014! :)

Oh, and I surely couldn't let the holiday pass without sharing hubby's fab lighting skills!  He made our house perfectly festive. :)

Isn't he the best?!?! ;)

Monday, December 23, 2013

Search is Restored!!!

Hi friends!  I just wanted to pop in and let you know that the search feature in my sidebar is FINALLY working again!  The one I had there has been giving me trouble for entirely too long, so I figured out a replacement and so far so good!  Please let me know if this one goes crazy and stops working too!

Happy Christmas Eve Eve!! ;)

Friday, December 20, 2013

DIY Christmas Wreath.

I have been a crafting machine this Christmas season!  The Blogger Stylin' Home Tour totally lit a fire under me and had me churning out projects left and right!  Okay, that might be a slight exaggeration, but it definitely upped my productivity this month.

One of my favorite things I made was my Christmas wreath.  I used my holiday inspiration pretty literally in this project.

I started with a blank wreath form and some wide B&W striped ribbon.

I hot glued my black and white striped ribbon into place, and then tightly wrapped the ribbon around the form until I was back at my starting point.  I cut the ribbon and used another bead of hot glue to secure the end into place.

Then I used two different sized sparkly beads I had in my craft stash to create a cluster on the wrapped form.  These beads were pretty heavy, so I held each in place until the hot glue was 100% dry.

Once the cluster was big enough for my liking, I added some greenery using two small pieces from an artificial pine tree stem.  Then I just cut a sliver of leftover plaid fabric and pulled the loose strings off to give it a little worn, rustic vibe.  I tucked the ends of the plaid fabric behind the mirror on our mantel, using the weight of the mirror to hold the wreath in place.

I really love the combo of black and white stripes and plaid in this wreath.  Plus, it's got a bit of shine to it, and if you've been here for a while, you know I looooove me some shiny stuff!!  This is the third wreath I've made for our mantel {here was the first and second} and I love them more and more each time!

Happy Friday! :):)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

A Confession.

This Christmas season has been a total whirlwind for me.  Our weekdays and weekends have been jam packed, leaving little time for certain items on my to-do list.  One of those things that still isn't done...our Christmas cards.  I mean, I completed part of the job.  I personalized a design from Minted, placed my order and it arrived on our doorstep Tuesday.  Now I need to find the time to address and send them out. People may get our cards on Christmas, or even the day after, but I am determined to get them out.  You hear me?  D-e-t-e-r-m-i-n-e-d.

Ahhhh, now that I've got that off my chest, I'll leave you with some time to browse Minted's fabulous website.  It's seriously amazing.  {I was not compensated to endorse Minted.  They have absolutely no idea who I am.  I just love their stuff and wanted to share with you guys!!}

PS-Perny really needs to pull his weight around our household.  Maybe I should teach him how to address cards so he can help me out instead of doing this all day, every day....

He's lucky he's cute. ;)

Anyone else feeling overwhelmed with to-do lists lately?! Tis' the season!!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Jingle Mingle - DIY Monogram Stocking Ornaments

Anyone a fan of jingle bells?!  I know I am.  They're metallic.  They're shiny.  They make a joyful little noise.  I mean...what's not to love?  You know what else I love?  Coming up with fun Christmas crafts.  So when I was asked to participate in a jingle mingle with these fine ladies {Cuckoo4DesignShift Ctrl Alt, Nalle's HousePrimitive & ProperDwellings by Devore, and Bliss at Home}, I knew I couldn't resist!

No joke, after I got the invite for this fun series, I couldn't stop myself from using jingle bells everywhere! They were the perfect DIY addition to my Christmas home tour.

I used some to create cute little wreaths that adorn that back of our bar stools.

I also made a simple mistletoe to hang over our kitchen sink.

I even decorated my gift bags for a super fun ornament exchange night with friends!

We got to wear pj's and eat lots of yummy breakfast food for dinner.  {You need some cooking is who was in charge!  Check her out.  She rocks.}  It was basically a perfectly festive night. ;)

Anywho, I digress....

Back to the jingle bell project that started it DIY monogram stocking ornaments! :)  They were super simple to make, and added a nice touch to our Tar-jay fur stockings.

I started with plain white MDF letters I purchased at Michael's...a "G" for me and a "P" for hubby.

White just wouldn't do it for me, so I busted out my trusty gold spray paint.  Once the letters were dry, it was time to add some ribbon and jingle bells!

First I added a loop of ribbon to the top of the "G", making sure it had enough slack to hang low on the stocking.  I used a thumb tack to secure my ribbon to the back of the MDF letter.

After that, I strung ribbon through the two different types of jingle bells {that I also I picked up from Michael's}.  I tied a knot at the end of each bell and cut the ribbon long enough so I could play around with what length would work best. Once I found out the right arrangement of the bells, I simply used another thumbtack to hold the ribbon in place on the back of the letter and trimmed the excess ribbon.

I repeated the same process for the "P".

Then it was time to hang and enjoy!!  In 10-15 minutes I was able to easily dress up our formerly-bare stockings.

I absolutely love the pop of gold on top of the fur texture!  Would any of you ever tackle this easy DIY?!

Don't forget to mingle on over to Cuckoo4DesignShift Ctrl Alt, Nalle's HousePrimitive & ProperDwellings by Devore, and Bliss at Home to see what projects they came up with! :)

Linking up to:

Monday, December 16, 2013

DIY Starburst Tree Topper

Hubs and I have a skinny, pre-lit, artificial tree in our home.  My parents bought it for me when I first purchased my townhouse in November 2006.  It was perfect then because we didn't have a ton of floor space to work with, and luckily, the skinny tree transitioned well into our new home.  Even though we now have much more space, our layout is very open, and that makes Christmas tree placement quite tricky. Therefore, our skinny lil' tree = still our best bet.

And I don't mind that we don't have a huge-statement-making tree.  In fact, it's one of my least favorite things to decorate for Christmas. {GASP!}  Maybe that'll change as we grow our family and they help to trim the tree, but for now, I have a lot more fun spreading the festive cheer to all different areas of our living space. The mantel is by far my favorite thing to decorate, and what I focus on most.

All of that back story may help to explain why I don't have a great tree topper for our beloved little skinny. As a matter of fact, I think there were a few Christmases where I never even used a tree topper. {GASP again!}  Any super cute topper I'd find in a store would inevitably be too heavy for fakey to hold up straight.  Usually, I'd end up MacGyver'ing something to finish our tree off each year.  This year, I was set to MacGyver something again, when I saw the best DIY tree topper from Bethany, and I knew I had to make my own!

Unfortunately, I didn't have the exact supplies she used, so I had to improvise because I was on a tight deadline for the Blogger Stylin' Home Tour series and I was too lazy to run out to the store. ;)  Thankfully, I had everything I needed to make a knock-off version of hers: 1) a small styrofoam ball {from a craft project that never came to be}, 2) toothpicks and 3) gold spray paint.

Bethany used a PVC pipe to hold her topper up, but since I didn't have one myself, I used a small screw driver and dug out a narrow hole that went 1/2 way through the ball.  I stuck the top branch of my tree through this hole to keep my topper on and upright.

Then I just started poking toothpicks into the styrofoam...nothing too difficult here!

Watching Home Alone while you make your topper ins't mandatory, although it makes the process go more quickly! ;)

What do you guys think?  Not bad for a $0 project!!  I might even use this topper in years to come! ;)

I'm linking up my project to the Dare to DIY series hosted by four amazing bloggers:

This week Kim is hosting, so make sure you go by to see her project and to link yours up too!

Also, make sure you come back Wednesday for some jingle bell inspiration! I am participating in a Jingle Mingle with Cuckoo4DesignShift Ctrl Alt, Nalle's House, Primitive & ProperDwellings by Devore, and Bliss at Home.  You'll want to see what we each have up our sleeves! :)

Linking up to:

Friday, December 13, 2013

Our Home Tour...The Christmas Edition!

Well the big day is here!!  It's my turn in the Blogger Stylin' Home Tour series to show you guys how we get all holly and jolly around here!  This awesome event is a blog hop, so if you are here from A Creative Day, thanks so much for stopping by!  I hope you like what you see.

I gave my Insta-friends and readers a peek at my Christmas inspiration this plaid, B&W stripes, mixed metallics, cozy textures, anything shiny and tons of string lights.  I used a lot of decor we already had, and added a few DIY touches, that ended up being some of my favorite accents.  Our house has officially been taken over by glitter, and I'm not sure if we'll ever get it back!! ;)

Now sit back and get reallllll cozy...because I've got entirely too many pictures for you to check out!!

And since I’m all about keeping things real with you guys, I couldn't help but post these last few pictures.  Yes, I know…the quality is poor.  The pictures are grainy.  They were clearly taken with my iPhone in “poor lighting”…but this is one of my favorite times of the day in our house.  The sun is just coming up, last weekend’s snow storm is still covering the ground and our string lights are the only thing switched on.  The house is aglow and so cozy.  It gives me one of those feelings that I wish I could bottle up and keep forever.

I was so close to deleting these photos and not sharing because, well, who wants to look fuzzy, amateur photography…but then I realized these are the best pictures to post.  They aren't perfect, but they make me feel Christmas….feelings of warmth, love and gratitude.

I hope you guys enjoyed the tour and thank you SO very much for stopping by!! Make sure you head straight over to Shannon Berrey Design now!

And in case you missed any of the other days, here is the full tour!  Happy Friday, all! :)

Roeshel - DIY Showoff
Jess and Monica - East Coast Creative
Laura - Finding Home
Gwen - The Makerista
Brittany - Brittany Makes
Caitlin - Desert Domicile
Sarah - The Thriftress
Carolyn - Sweet Chaos Home
Jamie - C.R.A.F.T.
Michelle - Decor and the Dog
Whitney - The Curtis Casa
Kristin - Bliss at Home
Summer - Simple Stylings

Jenna - SAS Interiors
Chris - Just a Girl
Michelle - Iron and Twine
Amanda - Our Humble Abode
Julia - Cuckoo 4 Design
Lindsay - Makely Home
Jennifer - Dimples & Tangles