Saturday, July 31, 2010

I Want To Go Shopping

Have you noticed all the fall/back to school clothing that is hitting stores right now? I'm loving so much of it. I love fall and spring weather, cool mornings and mild afternoons. I enjoy wearing layers and being comfortable. I'm not a shorts person at all, and I have just this summer started wearing sleeveless shirts out of the house. The heat has just gotten to me worse this year than in the past (except for those summers I was pregnant, but they don't count) and I've gotten over as many clothing issues as I can. I still refuse to leave the house in shorts that are more than 2 inches above my knee. OK, that may be a little drastic, but you get my meaning.

I've been looking at all the new cardigans and layering pieces and I have already started my "want list". I thought I would share a few things I'm thinking about.

I love this cardigan and shirt. Both are made from a really soft knit, the kind that will keep it's shape but just get softer with each washing. The shirt is also available in other stripe color combos and in solids.

Again, the knit Boyfriend Cardigan, but this time in a great soft red. I'm not a huge fan of bright colors, but this red just screams fall to me. And the tank, I know it's hard to tell, but it has small flowers on it that are the same color red and the cardigan brings out the color really well.

This is another knit combo. I really like that with the cardigan you can wear it dressy or casual and I like that the tank has a banded bottom. The banded bottom helps camoflage the bit of "baby belly" I still have left over. (yes, my youngest is almost 3, but that is a whole other post!) Oh, and both of these pieces just went on clearance for $19.95, I may just have to push them to the top of my list ;)

Don't you just love the ruffles on this cute sweater? Lindsey was looking at these with me and she now wants one too (hehe, that's my girl!). It's available in other colors, so you could buy one for every day of the week! And the tank is another knit that has off white dots that match the sweater perfectly. Cute, cute, cute!

All of the pieces are available at American Eagle, or at except for the ruffle sweater, that is from Target, and is also available online.

Hopefully you'll see me in one or more of these outfits in a WIW post really soon!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

What I Wore. . . Thursday?

Welcome back to another edition of What I Wore, er, Thursday! I know it's usually on Wednesday, but I guess Lindsey over at The Pleated Poppy is having a week like mine. Everything seems to be running behind. The heat around here hasn't helped at all. I live in North Carolina, and if you've never been here in the summer you may not understand what the heat is like here. For much of the past week the temps have been in the mid-90's with the heat index at 100+ with an average of 90% humidity. Imagine walking into a steam room every time you leave the house. That's what it's been like here. Sounds fun doesn't it?

That should pretty much explain my outfits for the past week, nothing fancy, and as cool as I could manage. Again I'm linking up with the party at The Pleated Poppy

Hanging around the house except for taking Gabe to soccer practice.
Tank - AE

Boyfit Jeans - AE

Flops - AE

Work in the morning, then errands

Floral Tank - AE

Tank (under floral shirt) - AE

Boy Fit Jeans - AE

Shoes - Target

I LOVE these shoes! I think they are one of the cutest pairs I own, so I decided they deserved there own picture.

Took Hubby lunch, then ran to the grocery store.
Tank - Target

Straight Jeans - AE

Flops - AE

Took the kids to a movie (hence the sweater) and had family day.

Tank - Target

Dress - Old Navy

Sweater - AE

Flops - Hobby Lobby

Flower Pin - Me!

And again, really cute shoes that I wanted to show off!
Running errands in the hot, humid rain.
Tank - AE

Sweater - AE

Capri Jeans - Target

Shoes - Target

So there you have it, another oh so thrilling week (hehe). And until the heat breaks, it will probably stay with me dressing about the same each week. I have started planning for fall and winter and I'm hoping to start picking up some items that I can use with what I already have. Maybe then I can look like I put a little effort into what I wear.

I also have an exciting (to me at least) announcement. I went just this morning and started gathering supplies for my mini kitchen re-do. It will mostly involve paint, fabric and little odds and ends, but I'm hoping it makes just enough difference that it will look fresh and new. Keep on the look out for pics!

Have a great day!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Ikea Love

I Love Ikea! I mean I really, truly, big fat puffy heart love Ikea. I live in North Carolina, and Ikea just opened here a little over a year ago. Up until that point I had only heard of Ikea and only had a faint idea of what I was missing by not having one in my life. I went the second weekend they were opened (FYI for anyone planning to go to one that is newly opened - leave the kids at home) and within about 5 minutes I looked at my Husband and said "How is it we have never been to an Ikea before now?" I'm sure he now regrets taking me on that little adventure. I guess I should also let you know that I live over an hour away from my closest store. That is the only reason that I'm not there weekly spending money I don't have on things I just can't live without.

The reason I'm writing about this now is that the new Ikea catalog will be released the beginning of August. Do you know what that means? More eye candy for me to drowl over, a catalog that equals (to me) the Christmas toybook! I get giddy just thinking about it!

I thought I would just give you a look at just of a few of my favorite things from there.

First off, my Gynnsam knife. This is hands down the best knife I have ever owned. It is extremely well made, sharp, and cheap! I have worked for both Williams Sonoma and Sur La Table, I have had knife training from Wustof and Shun, and I have sold many different types of knives (good and bad) and this is still my favorite knife. And at $14.99, I could just go buy another one when it needs sharpening, and would still save money. I have been using this knife since Christmas (it was a gift for my Hubby) usually daily. I always handwash it (you should always handwash good knifes) and it still cuts like it is new.

Second is the Ikea 365 white wine glass. Love this glass. It costs $2.99 and is comparable to the $20.00 Riedel glasses. The size is perfect, they are dishwasher safe, and hold up well with a somewhat clumsy Hubby.

This is the Arstid wall lamp. We have these hanging in our bedroom on either side of the bed. I love that they can work in either a formal or casual room. I also love that at $14.99 each, I could put them in every room and not worry about the little kids breaking them.

And then there is this. I am sure if you read any blogs that have anything to do with decorating you have seen and heard about the Ektorp couch. No, I don't have one - yet. This is on my wishlist. We are on our second hand-me-down couch that matches nothing else we own. I feel like we owe it to ourselves to save up the $400.00 ($400.00!!! where else can you get a brand new couch for that?) and have a couch we will all be happy with. It probably won't happen until tax time next year, but it will happen!

And lastly, the best reason to make your Ikea trip and day trip - Swedish Meatballs! Even if you don't spend the day, make sure you go hungry so you can enjoy a plate of these. Yummy Delish!!!

So there is my little Ikea spiel for today. I'm sure that after I get my new catalog (yay! happy dance!) I'll have lots to add to the wishlist. And another trip will be in order. I guess my Hubby should start planning now.

Have a great day, I'll probably post later today for WIWW. Yay, the week is half done!

Monday, July 26, 2010

DIY Fabric Flowers

These flowers are all the rage right now, and why not? They're really cute! You can pin them to your shirt and dress up an otherwise plain outfit, or sew (or glue) them to a plain bag to make it fabulous. I have seen them all over and finally decided to learn how to make them myself. This is really a combination of 2 tutorials I found online that works pretty well for me.
First off, lets go over what you will need.

Scrap material (You can use either 1 or 2 different) cut into circles. I used 3" and 2.5", and you will need 6 of each. A small piece of felt cut to the same dimensions of your smallest circle. Scissors to cut all you circles (duh!?!), sewing thread, sewing needles, straight pins and a button.

First off, find the center of your felt circle. The felt will be used for your backing. I like using a straight pin, it just makes it a little easier for me.

Next, take one of your bigger circles and fold it in in half 3 times. It will look like this,

You will then cut a curve into the top of the piece.

When you unfold it you will have a scolloped circle. Do this to another (you will have 2 total), these will be your base of the flower.

Make sure they are centered (this is where the pin helps) and that they are not perfectly aligned with each other.

Now, take the rest of your large circles and fold them like before. This time however you only want to cut half of a curve. Make sure the folded side is the highest side or your petal won't turn out right. Believe me, I know.

Once you unfold it you will have a petal that looks basically like this.

Now fold it in half so that the scallops are uneven, like below.

Now fold again and you will have your petal. It will looks kind of like a heart.

Now, again, using your pin as a guide, center you petal and stich it on just at the point.

Do the same with the remaining 3 petals. It will look something like this.

Now repeat the same process with the smaller circles. Make sure all your stiches are in the middle.

Once all the smaller petals are attached you will be ready to sew on your button. You can use any kind of button, but I've just been using these little plain ones. The biggest reason for this is that I bought the whole box at the dollar store and don't really feel like laying out any more money when I have plenty right now.

The button is the last step! You now have a cute fabric flower. You may have to fluff up the petals a bit, but other than that you should be good.

Like I said before you can attach a pin so that you can wear it on your clothes (or jacket or hat or so on) or you can use a low heat glue gun and attach then to a bag. This flower is actually going to be used on a mini tote bag I'm making for Lindsey for her birthday. I've been making a lot of these lately, and she has just gone crazy over them. She'll love that she will have a bag that she can use as another pocketbook, and that it has flowers.

I hope you enjoyed this little tutorial. I'm going to try to keep these going at least once a week, but I can't promise they will all be as fun and easy as this. But I'll try!

Have a great week!

Linking to:
The Girl Creative
The Girl Creative

Between Naps On The Porch

The DIY Showoff
The DIY Show Off

Skip To My Lou

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Scenes from a Kitchen

Hello again! I thought I would give you a little peek into my life. Yesterday after Brody finally decided to take a nap (he's 2, and really good at it) I made lunch for Lindsey. After she sat down to eat I realized that it was a perfect time to take some pics of the house. But, of course, I had been dealing with a 2 and 4 year old who couldn't agree on anything all morning, and nothing had been done. I did manage to load and run the dishwasher early in the morning, but that was the extent of my cleaning. So don't get your hopes up yet, here are just a few little glimpses.

I've mentioned before how much I love my coffee. I have accumulated quite a collection of coffee cups, but this is my favorite. I got it at Dillard's the day after Christmas, I think I paid about $2.00 for it. That's just another reason to love it!

The kind of "healthy" lunch that my kids love, animal shaped chicken nuggets and cheese puffs.

See, she actually sits and eats when she gets these kind of gourmet meals.

Now this is some of my DIY Dollar Store Art. Pretty cute, huh? See that one on the left, you know, the crooked one? Believe it or not, it gets straightened at least once a day. I just can't figure it out. If they weren't hanging above the pantry doors I would totally think one of the kids was doing it just to drive me crazy.

And just to keep it real, this is my kitchen and how it looks pretty much every day around lunch time, whether it's been cleaned or not. Look at your own risk!

So there is your first glimpse into my home. Exciting, wasn't it? I promise, soon I'm going to clean, hide all the toys, arrange all my little decorating pieces that the kids like to play with and take some real pictures. I'm sure you wait with baited breath. . .

Have a great day!

P.S. I'm linking up at The Girl Creative. Check it out and check out some new blogs.

New Friend Fridays

So Easy Glass Etching

This is a super easy and inexpensive project. It can also be used in many different ways and makes great gifts. Here is what you will need:
A Glass Object - I used beer mugs from the Dollar Store. I lucked up finding these, they are huge and heavy and would sell for much, much more anywhere else.
Repositionable Contact Paper
Letter Stickers
Cutting Mat
Exacto Knife
Armor Etch etching cream

Decide where you want your text positioned and cut your contact paper to the measurement you need. It's pretty easy as the paper has 1/2 inch scores on it which helps.

Next position your contact paper on the item, then place your lettering. I have found it is easiest if you begin in the middle and work your way out from either side. Make sure all the edges are pressed down securely, this will help prevent any of the etching cream from seeping under and messing up your lines. I ended up using a little painters tape on the corners where one side was cut just a bit more than the other.

Next you will apply the etching cream. I have seen this done several ways, but I just use a cheap 1/2" natural bristle brush. Be very careful not to get any of this on your skin. It's not paint, but chemicals that react with the glass, and can do real damage to your skin.
Brush on a good coating. The thicker it is the better it will cover, but don't overdo it. The etching cream can be expensive, so you don't want to waste any.

Once the cream is on, let it set for 5 minutes.

After the five minutes is up you simply rinse it off with water. Again, don't use your hands. I usually use the paint brush I used to put on the cream to help make sure all the cream is rinsed off.

Sometimes you will get a small spot that for one reason or another just didn't take. Just wipe on a little bit more etching cream and let it set for another five minutes and rinse again. This will usually work.

Then you take off all the stickers and contact paper, clean and dry your item, and you are ready to go. The etching is permanent, heat proof, dishwasher safe and food safe.

There are so many different things you can do with this. I have so many projects running through my head right now! I have a cousin getting married next month, so I think my next project will be an etched glass baking dish to give as a present. Then there are the hurricane candle holders I want to do for Christmas gifts, and maybe some Christmas ornaments. . . Hope you are all ready for more projects. More to come soon!
Have a great day!
P.S. - Sorry about the crappy pics, I tend to do most projects at night, and I hate using the flash. Something else for me to work on!

Linking up with:
Fireflies and Jellybeans

House of Hepworths

Fine Craft Guild
Fine Craft Guild