Sunday, February 28, 2010

I heart Craigslist- Finding Deals 101

Since everyone was so impressed with my $50 dining room set I thought I would post some of the other things I have found on Craigslist and share some savvy skills I use when finding my deals. Hold on to your britches and be prepared to be blown away. :)
1. A tip to finding any good deal is being at the right place at the right time. Search for your item(s) as often as you can. I search for my items at least once a day. It only takes a few minutes to type in my items look though the new postings and go on my way.
The first thing I ever bought off of Craiglist was my daughter's little playhouse for $20. I bought it in October knowing that they would be scarce in December. It was Santa's big present. She loved it of course, and our neighbors gave us the little rocking horse for free. Perfect for Kentucky don't ya think?
2 . Be Patient! OH so important. I waited 6 years for a king bed and when we got into our first home we finally had the space for it. Yes! And since my husband had a bad habit of elbowing me in the head far too often it was the first thing I purchased for our new home. But I didn't go get one from the store or one of the first one's listed on Craigslist. You usually have to wait for a deal. I searched everyday for 2 months to find this brand new in the box cherry wood headboard and foot board for $50.
3. Be prepared to Act. When you find your treasure act right away. Call or email asap. I usually say something like I can pick it up at your earliest convenience and give phone #. (P.S. I looked for about 4 months before we even got in our house for my dining set)
4. Be kinda picky I found our Sealy king sized mattress and box springs for $125. I was pretty picky about that one- I made sure it was from a nice neighborhood near me. And that it had no stains. It is very comfortable and I sleep much better with no elbows in my face. Yes it is hard to find exactly what you want for the right price, but if you can live by #2 and be patient I bet you can find what you want in reasonable time. (PLEASE excuse my lack of pillows and window mistreatments. I am currently working on them.)
5. Be prepared to say no if you go see an item and it won't work in your home. This goes along with #4, be picky. If it won't work in your home don't feel obliged to buy it even if it is a good deal. It is a bummer driving away with nothing, but it is better than being stuck with something you don't really like.
I got both of these beautiful chandeliers for $100. Trust me they are much better than the cheapo builder's standard ones that were there before. Do you know how much these would have cost me new? eek.
6. Bargain. Most everyone is willing to go down on their price so just ask. They expect it.

6. Tell your friends to keep an eye out for you. I saved the best for last. This antique dresser and mirror were free!! My grandma actually found them for me on the side off the road. Who in their right mind would put this on the street? AHH I'll take it!!!! Thank you to whoever passed it on, because I love it. So any Kentucky peeps know where I can get a china cabinet for cheap? ;)

Did I miss any Craigslist Savvy Skills? What have you found lately that was a steal of a deal?

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Crochet Flower Hat

I recently learned to crochet and this is my first hat. Not to bad. Now if my daughter would actually wear it, argh.

Thanks Amber and Carlie. I look forward to making many more. For those of you who "speak" crochet instructions coming soon.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Ruffle Camera Strap

Here's my ruffle camera strap cover. Amazingly easy to do. I measured and cut my fabric, sewed the ends, ironed on the padding, sewed the ruffle, attached the ruffle, sewed it all together, turned right side out and scrunched it over my camera strap.

An absolute must for SLRs, or even for your video camera. Now just waiting to get my camera, haha. Check, I have one thing done on my crafty to do list.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Love These Things

Here are a few things I love that are on my crafty to do list. This drying rack is from Ballard Designs, and is $200. It would be so cute as well as functional in my laundry room. I bet I could make it for $20.

This would be fabulous in my craft room! Mmm. Except I would use embroidery hoops for the circles and may or may not add color.

If you have a child in preschool I bet you can really use this. I am totally overflowing with preschool art. I NEED to make one of these for the playroom ASAP. I already have the clothespins.

I don't know about you but my kids books are never on their bookshelf. When I make this canvas book display I think it will be a harder for them to pull all the books out. Of course mine will be pink duck cloth, to match their headboards, and white sides. When I make this I will post a tutorial. YAY.

I will have to make one of these when I get my new SLR camera. A girls just got to have a stylin crafty camera strap. My friend at nannygoat has a great tutorial on a reversible one.

And there you have it. Fun.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Warm Windows & Ebates

With everyone getting so much snow lately, I thought I'd do a post on thermal curtains. Yep have you heard of those? They are lined with "foam backing" and help to cut energy costs. They claim to reduce heating and cooling costs by 30%. They are also light blocking.
Well our house was curtainless in January and our two story family room and kitchen were getting quite cold. I thought I give thermal curtains a try. We got them up and man can I tell a difference. I don't know if our energy bill has gone down at all, but I can tell that the room is WARMER!! Yes, a good investment. And it is supposed to help in the summer too.

I found my 95 inch curtains online at for only $15 a panel and free shipping, they are normally $50 or more. Let me also say that it is impossible to find 6- 95 inch curtians in any store. No I am not getting paid for any of this, but I thought it might be helpful for some of you peeps who are freezing your little buns off now and want to save some money. What are some other energy saving ways you have kept your house warm?

Another good tip I have discovered recently is ebates. It is an online site where you get cash back for doing your regular online shopping. On average you get about 5% cash back. Almost every store that is online you can use through ebates. Macy's is 6%, Target is 4%, Jcpenny 3%. You also get $5- just for signing up. Hope this helps someone out there. Has anyone else used ebates?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

My Dining Room- Tips Tricks and Plans

So here is the antique walnut dining room table and chairs that I got for $50 off of Craigslist. I did redo the chairs, see my other post for that. But what a deal! It even extends to 102 inches. I just love those pedestals.

I believe every room should have meaningful as well as beautiful pieces. The white candlestick, which the topiary is on, was from our wedding centerpieces, and the glasses were wedding presents from my hubbies grandma.
I made this table runner. I fell in love with this beautiful fabric with the bold print and all of the bright colors. I think it's a bit traditional and a bit oriental.
I found these duponi silk curtains off of eBay. I added my fabric to the bottom. They were only 84 inches and I needed 95 inches for my 9 foot ceilings. Plus it ties the beautiful fabric and color around the room and gives it a custom look. Love it. Sorry for the bad picture.
The chandelier, not in love with it, :( came with the house. I'm not ready to spend a lot of money on a new one. I dressed it up with some lime green silk shades from eBay for $16. I like the bright color and that it is complimentary to the red drapes. A little fun and funky. I plan on making a fun scrunchy cover for the chain/cord.
The table top was not in the best condition. It had a big (5 in diameter) white heat mark on it when I got it! AHHH. But I knew I could get it out. Sorry I don't have a before picture but that was before the blog. It was pretty simple actually. I simply ironed on the top of a t shirt on a low heat setting. Keep moving it around and it disappears before your eyes! This was where the spot was, you can't see a thing. I also applied Old English with scratch cover to shine it up. Umm beautiful.

Now for my decorating plans in this room, the walls. It needs paint! Any suggestions? I was thinking about RL sterling- a gray with a metallic finish. I am also going to hang some collectible Norman Rockwell plates on the wall. Love him and they were a special gift. I will also add a white silvery bust I made of Venus di Milo. Got to have the personal touches.

For the furniture I am planning to make a long bench like this one at Z Galleries.
I also want to paint a china cabinet blue! Ahh yes a little crazy but it will look divine, trust me. I am envisioning an antique piece with a distressed, shabby look and a cerulean blue finish. Right now we have our old armoire in there. Totally traditional, a bit boring for me, and not functional. Right now my hubbies rockband set is in there, ha ha. I imagine the finish something like this.

So there you have it everyone my dining room now and some of my plans. Hopefully after all is said and done I will have spent less than $400. For everything, the whole kit and kaboodle! Wow!

I have been working on my photography skills. A little better right? Still trying to figure out how to photograph my window with a point and shoot. If I get an SLR for my upcoming birthday, mothers day and anniversary I'm sure they will look more professional. ;) .....right.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Cute Candy Cards for Valentine's

Aren't these the cutest cards you have ever seen? Candy in a card, it absolutely can't get any better. My darling Mother in law made these. I believe these stamps are from Stampin' Up.

I've never seen this before. My daughter and I are in love with it!
Pull the tab, and get your candy out!
My friend over at nannygoat, made this cute card this year. Just insert the lollipop (or whatever) through the card where her hand is. Love it!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tufted Headboard Tutorial

So here's the tufted headboard tutorial. This bad boy(or girl) only cost me$15 too! I tried to take lots of pictures, so this should be easy.
  • big piece of cardboard
  • 1/2 a sheet of plywood- and a jigsaw
  • 2 pieces of a 1x4-6 ft- have the store cut into 2- 18 inch pieces, and 2- 43 inch pieces
  • twin comforter- or 3 layers of high loft batting- can also use foam to make it extra plush
  • 1 1/2 yards thick material for front of headboard- I used duckcloth- feels like canvas
  • 1 1/2 inch flathead screws- drill
  • 12 nails- hammer
  • 12 buttons
  • upholstery needle and thread
  • Staple gun and lots of staples!!!

Disclaimer- of course after we finished cutting and screwing all the wood together we discovered a better way to do it. Doesn't that always happen? So I will tell you the better way even though some of the pictures are our mess ups. You are so lucky to have this great tutorial. :)
1. Draw your design on your cardboard for a template. My measurements are 25 inches on the sides and the center tallest part is 34.5 inches, and it is 40 inches across. Cut out of cardboard and trace onto plywood.(our cardboard was little short, but that's ok)
2. Cut out plywood with a jigsaw.
3. Screw 43in pieces of 1x4 onto the back of the wood. So that it goes from the top and there is 18 inches from the headboard to the ground. (in pict-our wood was cut too short so we added some to top- that way the sides of headboard would all be the same thickness) You can also use some wood glue for extra strength.
4. Next screw the 18 inch pieces, from the backside, into the bottom of the 43 inch piece. Will be slightly raised- that's ok because you will have lots of padding. (we used a 2x4 instead of a 1x4, and added another layer of wood on the back- but it is not necessary)
5. Use your cardboard to draw where you want your buttons. I drew a line down the center and measured out 4 inches on either side drew 2 buttons. Then to off set them on the next row. I went down 5 inches drew button in the center, then out 8 inches. So the buttons were 8 inch apart horizontally and 10 inches apart vertically total. Does that make sense? Next lay your cardboard over your wood and drill through your marks. If you are painting your legs, Do it now before the upholstery section. Whew you are done with the woodworking section.
6. Cut out 2 pieces of batting (or in my case a comforter) the same size of the headboard. Am I cheap or what? no lumps though.
3. Cut out one piece that is larger than headboard by about 4 inches (mine was a bit too short)
4. Layer pieces of batting and start stapling. Corners are tricky.- make sure to cut out the extra batting in corners- see pict. Also see upholstery tips in my other chair upholstery tutorial.

5. Cut out fabric about 6 inches from headboard so that it will wrap all the way around the batting.
6. Staple fabric, cut at the curves, and try to get the corners all the way covered because you can kinda see them from the top. For the bottom part next to the legs I just folded it underneath itself and cut on the inside so it could wrap around the bottom. You'll understand once you start.
7. It should look something like this now. pretty good huh?

8. If you are upholstering your legs then do this now. I don't think batting is needed.
9. (I swear I took a picture of this one, but I have no idea what happend to it. I will get one up soon.)
Now for the tufted part. Turn to back side, and hammer in a nail about an inch from your drilled holes sticking out about an inch. With an upholstery needle and thread poke through your hole, put on your button and pull back through. Tie a double knot around your nail head. I used sparkly buttons but you can choose to cover your own buttons out of your fabric.
Next is the tricky part. With one hand holding down the button use the other one to pull the thread taught and wrap it as many times as you can around the nail head, when you think you can go no further, push and pull a little harder and get one more wrap out of it. Ahh one down 11 more to go. But after this you are done. Congratulations! And so am I, man that was a long one.

If have questions, feel free to email me.
I post this so other people can use. I hope you can use this. If you do use this and post it, please give me some credit and post a link back to me. I would LOVE to see your work!!!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Cute as a Button Headboard

My Hubby and I have finished. I present to you the long awaited pink tufted headboard.

How cute is that? Let me just say, the picture does not do it justice trust me. It looks a lot more plush in real life. I blame it on my point and shoot camera. I just love how girly it is with the sparkly buttons, the wonderful curve, and all the pink. My girls got their new "princess" bedding for Christmas and I made the curtains and bed skirts. I'm off to finish the other headboard, how cute are 2 going to be?! Next project for this room is the matching canvas book display.
OH and I forgot to mention I only spent about $15 for materials on each headboard!!! Can you even believe it????
Yippie- Tutorial now available- click here.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Like New Chairs

I got my beautiful antique dining room table and chairs for only $50!!! Yep, and it has 3 leafs, extends to 102 inches and has 2 beautiful pedestals. I love Craigslist. It only came with 4 chairs, but I plan on putting a long bench on one side. The chairs needed some work though, repadding and new upholstery. It was like sitting on a brick. So here's what I did for only $15.
The ugly hard before chair.

I got some square foam cushions at Walmart $10. I cut and reglued to shape of my chair. Instead of batting I used an old comforter from my college days. Make sure there are no lumps in it though. Put chair seat on top and cut out about 4 inches from chair, use this pattern to cut the rest of your batting and new upholstery fabric.
Set everything up chair, foam, batting and fabric with chair directly in center. Ready to staple, you can staple the batting and the fabric at the same time. I learned from HGTV to do one staple in the middle then pull the other side and staple one more and then do the other 2 sides the same way. Finish the stapling around the sides leaving the corners for last. Try to staple the same distance from the edge all the way around, that way you will see less bulging and puckering.
Cut the batting off the corners.
So it looks like this. Put a staple or two to hold the batting down.
Fold the corners and staple like this. This is kinda tricky to not get buldges and puckering.
Cut off extra batting and fabric then reattach your new seat to your chair.

Here's the after chair, it looks and feels so much better. Any one want to join us for dinner? P.S. I got my fabric from Walmart. It looks like microfiber and was only$3 a yard. I will show you my table and a very cool trick I used on it soon.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...