Monday

Bamboo Nightstands

I completed this project a few months ago but forgot to share it with you guys here.  I've always loved the look of bamboo furniture, but it's popularity can make it tricky to find, especially for a good price.  So when I was looking for nightstands for our guest room, I decided to make my own with some IKEA Rasts and pre made bamboo molding.  You can find the full tutorial over at Ehow.



Also, today is the last day to vote for me in the Bob Vila lighting challenge.  I so appreciate all of you who have voted for me so far!  I'm in second place right now and the voting ends tonight!  If you have a minute you can VOTE HERE, even if you've already voted you can vote again.  It only takes a second, no registration required, just a quick click.  
  

Thanks so much!
  

Tuesday

Birch Tree Stencil and Tips

Well I finally went for it last week and started stenciling the walls in the nursery.  Do you ever have those projects that seem like they are going to be huge and really ambiguous so you put them off?  That's how I felt about this, but I'm happy to report I was wrong!  Don't get me wrong, it was definitely a big project but very manageable.  It's totally doable for anyone.  All you need is a little time and patience.  

Ever since we found out we were having a boy I knew I wanted to use the silver birches allover stencil from Olive Leaf Stencils.  It was the starting point for the design board for his room.  I've always loved the Cole and Son Wood Wallpaper, but it would have cost me a small fortune to do that in this room.  So I knew I could get a similar look for a fraction of the cost using this stencil.  

Let me give you a little peek at the before of the room.  We hadn't touched this room since we moved in since we hoped we would be able to use it for a nursery one day.  The walls were the same builder basic white that is in other areas of our home.  It's not bad, but the undertones weren't right for this space.  I really wasn't thrilled about painting the whole room first, but thankfully my mom and husband came to the rescue and helped a ton with this step.  I chose to paint the walls and ceiling Sherwin Williams Pure White.  I can't tell you how glad I am that I did this.

So again, here's the before.



I learned a few things along the way that I thought I'd share with you guys in case you decide to tackle this yourself.  I have to say that this stencil is very forgiving which makes it so much easier to work with.  Since birch trees in nature aren't perfect and are a little more organic, the stenciling can be the same way.  So don't worry if it's not perfect!  I promise it will all come together in the end. 

First, I set up a little station in the bathroom with my paint, foam roller, and a stack of paper towels.  More on this in a minute.


Then I started in an inconspicuous corner of the room, behind the door, to make sure I didn't completely mess up.  I was amazed at how easy it was!  I used a laser level to make sure everything was even.  If you don't have one it's well worth the $15 investment.  I can't tell you how many times I've used this thing.  (I have this one)


Then I taped down the edges with painters tape.  If you are concerned about getting things super crisp you can use spray adhesive on the back of the stencil and skip the tape.  I was a little worried about the adhesive showing up on the white wall and yellowing over time so I went the tape route instead.  It was definitely easier and worked just fine for me. 


You want to make sure you don't oversaturate the roller with paint.  Less is more when it comes to this project.  Even if you have to do a few coats it's better to start lightly and add multiple thin layers.  So dip your foam roller in the paint and then roll off some of the excess on the stack of paper towels.  (see first picture)  Roll gently over the whole stencil and then repeat if necessary.  Slowly pull the stencil off the wall.  


I can't tell you how excited I was to pull it off and see how well it worked.

I continued to work my way around the room following the same process.  I started in the middle of the wall and waited for that to dry.  Then I would do another one right beside it and while it was drying I would do the top and bottom portion of the previous section.  This allowed me to not have to wait several minutes for each section to dry before moving on.  I also slightly staggered the stencil from side to side.  


I taped off the baseboards and ceilings to avoid getting paint on those areas.  Of course I still made a few mistakes so I just touched up those areas afterwards.  I also just sort of bent the stencil to make it work along the edges and top and bottom since it wasn't an exact fit.  Once again don't worry about it being perfect.  You won't be able to tell!  




A few other things to keep in mind.  I originally planned on using black or a dark charcoal gray.  I changed my mind because I was worried the high contrast would be a little too busy with me doing all four walls.  I'm so glad I did because it was also much easier to stencil with a lighter color.  And in case anyone is wondering I used Sherwin Williams Windstorm.  I really love this shade of gray.  It's gray with just a touch of warmth to it to keep it from being too blue.  I also washed the stencil about halfway through each wall.  You'll realize when it's time to do this.  You'll have to start pushing harder to get the paint to go through the stencil and the edges won't be as crisp.  It's well worth the effort it takes to quickly clean it.  I found the easiest way to do this was to let it soak in the bathtub for a few minutes and then I could peel large sections of paint off it and rinse it.  Since I used a water based paint it came off pretty easily.

Overall it took me three days to finish.  I tried to do a little more than a wall a day and it took me about 5-6 hours each day.  It went by pretty quickly and was well worth the effort!  

So in summary, since I realize that was a little wordy...



Now that this part is done everything has really started coming together.  We picked up a light at the West Elm outlet this past weekend and I found a great rug at Homegoods.  Just a few more projects and it will be done!  I can't wait to show you the end result!  If you have any questions feel free to ask in the comments and I'll do my best to answer them.



*I was provided with a stencil for review, all opinions are 100% mine.
    

Wednesday

DIY sputnik chandelier

Goodness, I did not mean to take that long of a break from the blog!  I am actually just popping in today to ask a quick favor.  My DIY sputnik chandelier is part of a contest from Bob Vila.  It only takes a second to vote and I would so appreciate it!  CLICK HERE TO VOTE


I'm starting on the stenciling in the nursery today so wish me luck!  It's going to be a tedious project so I'm hoping I can knock it out this week and then get to the fun stuff.  Hopefully I'll have an update on it soon.  Thanks for sticking with me!

DIY Bow Organizer

My daughter's bow collection has grown a bit out of control over the last few years and she needed a new way to store them and keep things a little more organized.  I didn't really want to spend much on this project so I turned my garage and some leftover ribbon for inspiration.  This is so easy to do and has worked great for us so far!  

You'll basically just need some ribbon, cup hooks, a frame, and a hot glue gun.  I keep a stash of frames in my garage for projects just like this one.  

To start, I spray painted the frame gold.  Then I drilled holes all along the bottom edge about one inch apart.


After the holes are drilled, gently screw in the cup hooks.  These hooks work great for headbands, necklaces, and belts.   


After your hooks are attached, flip the frame over and attach the ribbons.  I used a little hot glue to secure the ribbons to the frame on each end.  You could also try using a staple gun for this, but I couldn't get the staples to go into this particular frame. 


Flip it over and start organizing!    



Somehow we've already managed to fill the bow portion completely up!  I think this would make a great baby shower gift or even a birthday gift for a little girl.  It's so easy to make and personalize too! 

Thursday

Nursery Plans

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!  We had a great time just hanging out with family and exchanging gifts.  It was definitely a great Christmas and one of the best parts was that we found out we are having a baby boy!  If you follow me on instagram (dwellingsbydevore) then you may have already seen this little announcement.  Thank you all for your sweet words and congratulations, I read every one and it meant so much to me!  We are beyond thrilled and feel incredibly thankful that the Lord has blessed us with another addition to our family.  This also explains my lack of blogging lately.  I just haven't had the motivation to blog and my focus has been elsewhere, but now that I'm right at the halfway mark I'm ready to start kicking out some projects that I know will be much harder to complete once I have a newborn.  

One of the biggest things on my list is the nursery.  I loved designing my daughter's nursery (so funny how much my taste has changed) and now her big girl room, but I have to say I'm really excited about designing a boy room.  I love all things earthy and natural and I just feel like those things are perfect for a masculine space.  So here's a little peek of where we are heading.  Of course as the plan evolves I'm sure things will change here and there.  It actually all started with this giant bear head that we found at Target after Christmas.  It was 50% off in the store and I thought it definitely screamed boy!  Of course my husband locked eyes on it and was immediately sold on it.  He's a little more interested in the nursery this time around and it's sweet to see the things he picks.  So the overall plan is woodsy with maybe a subtle camping/animal theme. 


We already have several of the big items, like the crib and glider, so we will mostly just be filling in the gaps with some accessories and paint.  I can't wait to get started.  I'm pretty sure I'll be regretting picking that stencil, but I really do have my heart set on it.  So if you have any stenciling tips I'm all ears!

*This post contains affiliate links.  Thank you for your support!*    

Friday

Sweet Treat Themed Tree

Hi friends!  I'm breaking my unintentional blog hiatus with a quick post about my daughter's sweet treat themed tree.  I like to do something a little fun for her tree every year and this year we went with this fun theme.  


It started with these ornaments my mom picked up for her at Hobby Lobby.


I mean who can resist a tiny pink mixer?


And then I picked up this Hallmark ornament on sale last year because I just thought it was so cute.


We still needed to fill in the gaps so we made a few of our own creations.  I love making salt dough ornaments every year.  You can see the ones we made a few years ago here.  They are still some of my favorites!  It's a really fun tradition that my daughter loves.  They are so cheap and easy to make and if a few get broken in storage it's not a big deal.  It also allows you to change your theme up without breaking the bank.  

The recipe we use is: 

1 cup salt
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup water

Combine all the ingredients together until a soft dough forms.  Kneed the dough for a few minutes until it's soft and no longer crumbly.  Roll it out on a lightly floured surface just like you would cookie dough.  Cut out the shapes using cookie cutters of your choice.  If the dough sticks just add a little flour to the cookie cutters.  Then bake the ornaments in a 200 degree oven for 2-3 hours.  The amount of time will depend on the thickness of the ornaments.  After they have cooled paint them and then seal them with a clear sealer of your choice.  The first year we used a spray clear sealer and this year we used modge podge.  Both seemed to work well. 

I decorated some of them.


And then I resisted my inner perfectionist and let my daughter go to town on the rest.  The girl does not shy away from color or paint!







Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!  If you get around to trying this recipe I'd love to hear how it goes!

Thursday

Christmas Home Tour

It's hard to believe Christmastime is already here!  We put our tree up a few weeks before Thanksgiving just so we could enjoy it a little longer this year, as it always feels like the holidays fly by.  Today I'm sharing a little bit of our Christmas decor and participating in the Blogger Stylin' Home Tours hosted by Lindsay at The White Buffalo Styling Co.  If you missed the tours from earlier this week head on over to her blog and work your way through.  Also, if you are popping over from Michaela Noelle Designs beautiful tour, welcome!  I so appreciate you taking the time to stop by.  Let's get started with the tour.

For the last several years I've gone with a more neutral color palette for Christmas and this year I decided to change it up a bit.  I wanted something different and fun and it all started with a thrifted white Christmas tree I found.  I've always loved the look of a white Christmas tree, but I couldn't really justify buying one when we already had a perfectly good one.  So I  actually bought two identical trees at the Habitat Restore that someone had donated and pieced them together to make one tree with working lights :)  


I also added a little red to the mantle to tie the two areas together.




And I was able to use my red zebra wrapping paper from the after Christmas sale at Target last year.







These gold metallic pillows were way cheap at Ross and I thought they would add just the right amount of holiday cheer to our sectional.  And of course I love metallics so I'm sure they'll stick around after Christmas too.


I hated to not use our Christmas tree from last year so I added little festiveness to my office.  I loved being able to add a few touches of pink too.


I decided to forgo the garland in the foyer this year and just keep it simple.  The Trader Joe's boxwood wreaths are a favorite of mine this time of year.




I'm still putting a few finishing holiday touches on some other areas of our home so be sure to check back for those soon.  Now head on over to A Creative Day Blog to see her beautiful home all decorated for the  season!

And for a peek at last year's tour click here