Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Envelope Pillow Covers (Part 1)

We have had some awesome pillows on our couches since we got married...the problem? They didn't match very well.  They didn't match what I wanted our living room to be or what it was.  They were just sad, and out of place.  Then, this week, I took the leap to recover them!  I knew exactly what I wanted them to be like and dove in!

First, I measured our pillows, they are 18".  Next, cut out the three different pieces of fabric for the cover.  For this size, the first piece was 19"x19" to allow for a 1/2" seam allowance on all sides.  This will become the front face of the pillow.
The next was 19"x14", and the last was 19"x10".  This became the back of the pillow cover, or the envelope part.

Next, take the two envelope pieces and sew a 1/2" seam on one 19" side of each piece.

 Then, take the two envelope pieces and lay them on top of the front piece.  *All right sides facing IN!*  So the pillow cover should be inside out.  Pin that together and then sew completely around the four sides of the cover.

Snip the corners to allow them to point once on the pillow.

Next comes the fun part!  I found some 3" letter stencils in the font I wanted and then found some quotes I thought were "pillow worthy."

The quote on the blue pillow says:
life doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful

And the quote on the off white pillow says:
a good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures for anything

I had to use some shorter quotes so they would fit, if your stencils are smaller or your pillow is bigger, a longer quote would fit wonderfully!  One thing that really helped me, (but I am OCD...) is to sketch the lines of the quotes on a picture of a pillow...lame...but it really helped!

After you know what your spacing will be, I started smack dab in the middle of my pillows and began stenciling on the words and slowing worked out and up and down.

Last, I took a sharpie and colored in the penciled lines placing a piece of cardboard inside the cover so the sharpie didn't bleed through.

And TADA!  Our pillows aren't sad anymore, they are fabulous!
I love the look:]

So, are you wondering why this is only part one?
Because, I have some other wonderful envelope pillow "how to's" to show you!
I'm all about simple, and these envelope pillow covers are so so simple!

Hope you all have a great day!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

For about a year and a half, I have been growing my hair out.  No change, just growth and lately, I have been so sick of it!  I needed to spice things up somewhere...

I'm not one to lighten my hair, I have done it a couple times in the past, but never liked it well enough that it stuck.  I know, just plain old brown hair.  So when I mentioned to one of the sweetest girls on the planet, Serenity (who is currently going to hair school), that I have been secretly falling in love with ombre hair, she told me to dive in, and just DO IT!  Here are a few before pictures taken by my awesome sister Abi...she is the greatest!

She is a doll and I wouldn't trade her for the world.  Love that girl.  Anyways!  So I made the appointment.  As it got closer and closer, I started to feel a pit growing in my stomach...I was so nervous.  I was terrified that lightening my hair would ruin it, that it would go way way way too light and I would hate it, or that I would regret it afterward.
I got to the salon and as soon as she sat me down in front of a mirror, I noticed that my chest and neck were all red and splotchy.  (If you have known me since high school, you might know that before a big game, or competition, that when I am nervous, this disease strikes...and it's awkwardly embarrassing...)  This hasn't happened since high school...that is how nervous I was!

So, with some encouragement, they got to bleaching and I looked somewhat like I had some aswesome dread locks.  It was sweet!  Then they rinsed and finished up the color and here is how it turned out:


It wasn't too light, my hair wasn't fried, and I don't regret it one bit!  She did an amazing job and did exactly what I wanted!  Thank you Serenity!

And, Josh loves it too!  (Don't our matching stripes and eyes rock?) It has been years since I did anything but plain brown so even just a little gradual lightening was a huge step for me!
I would recommend going to Serenity in a heartbeat! 

Hope you all have a great day, let me know if you would like her number for an appointment;]

Friday, January 20, 2012

Change Around the House...

If there is one thing that Josh hates, it is change.  If there is one thing that I hate, it is committing to start painting rooms.  This was like pulling teeth for the both of us, but it needed to get done!
I have mentioned that I repainted some rooms in our house, the first of which is the dining room: 

Three of the walls used to be a sea foam greenish grayish who-knows-what-colorish...it was awful. 

So we repainted the entire room so now everything matches, we were able to fill in some wall scars, and it is overall, a much happier room!

This is one of my favorite places in our house:

Yep, that's right, the shelf in our living room!
After all of the Christmas decorations came down, I needed to fill the space with happy things.  My mom gave me some beautiful porcelain birds for Christmas, and now, they are perched on top of our shelf. Nice and symmetrical...just how I like it... :]

I also repainted our bedroom and bathroom.  The previous paint was almost 16 years old, it needed an update!  But, sadly, our room isn't "done" yet, so you will only get a hint of what it looks like.  This was taken from the bottom of our stairs, looking up to our bedroom.

I am loving the nice new paint jobs!
One more thing that is new in our home:

Yep...Nutella!  I love it!  Josh doesn't care for it much so that leaves the whole bottle to me! (maybe that will come back and bite me!) It is my guilty pleasure...and I don't mind that at all!

I hope whatever changes are going on in your home are just as good, productive, and tasty as ours!
Happy weekend!
Wish us luck at our search for a rocking chair!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Frame Collage

Our bedroom has been stuck in a rut or almost seven months...so ever since we moved in.  It is crazy how that is the last room to get decorated and personalized when it should be one of the first!  Well, that is all coming to a sweet ending:]
Looking up our stairs, we used to have our bookshelf right as you walked into our room, it wasn't the most attractive thing to look at all the time.  So, with the help of my strong husband, we finally moved the bookshelf across the room.  This left a blank space at the top of our stairs that we could see through our bedroom door and this drove me ever more crazy, until I decided what to do with it!
In come the hoards of picture frames I have just lying around.

I found eight frames, and painted them either mustard yellow, or white.
Then, after about a million arrangements, I finally came up with one:

After I decided on their placements, I flipped them over (that is why they look so raggy...) on top of some tissue paper that had been taped together.  Then, mark on the tissue paper where the nails should go in the wall.

Then, tape the whole sha-bang up on the wall! Take the time to situate the tissue paper exactly where you want it, there is no going back after this!

Pretty big empty space huh?

Now that the paper is up and all of your marks have been made, take the plunge and put the nails in.
It took a few minutes of Josh's coaxing to start...the walls were still fresh and clean from the new paint and it just about killed me to put some nails in the wall, but now, I am so glad I did!

 After eight of them, down came the tissue paper, and up went the frames!

Now, just imagine a rocking chair and side table under the collage...perfect right?  I can't wait until that hunt is over and our room is back together!
I loved using the tissue paper!  If I had to do it all over again, I really do think that was the easiest way to get the spacing just right.  With the tissue paper, you can measure, measure again, and get everything perfect before even touching a nail!  So smart.
If you have any questions, put them in the comments!

Hope you have a great day!  It's good to be back!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Life has kept me on my toes lately, but it's good because I know we are being shaped and molded to become what we have the potential to become.  I have been a terrible blogger...really, terrible.  I know that in the long run, blog posts won't matter, but I know that sharing my thoughts, my thoughts that help me become stronger, might, just might, help someone else.
Lately I have felt us going places, doing things that I am proud of, but at the same time, I feel run down and tired.  Tired from all the "go go go" of everyday.  Tired of not being able to breath out of my nose.  Tired of our schedule, no sleeping in and staying up later than we should (let's face it, 10:30-11 isn't too bad!).  Tired of all of this.
Then I take a step back at the end of the day, right before my head hits the pillow, and I think: " we are so incredibly blessed.  Blessed to be doing things and getting things done.  Blessed to be busy.  Blessed to have medicine to help my nose do it's job (so I can actually rest instead of just sleep).  Blessed to have a schedule, blessed to have structure.  Blessed to be hard workers with wonderful jobs.  This is a big one, I can't believe how lucky we are to both love what we are doing right now.  Our home and our jobs are more than we deserve.  Blessed to have good work ethics.  Blessed to be in love.  Blessed to have each other.  Blessed to not be lonely every night.  Blessed with health, blessed with security.
I am so thankful for today.
I am so thankful that our Heavenly Father is shaping us, pushing us, refining us.  Boy, do I need it all!
So, I am going to find these wonderful things out of the things that I complain about.  Life is tough.  But it is beautiful when we get tough and work hard.
Hope you all have a wonderful day!  I really do promise, I will post some projects soon!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Mustard Yellow, Welcome:]

 I have struggled with our bedroom ever since we moved in...I just didn't know which direction I should take with it.
White walls, awesome headboard (which you can find HERE!), splashed of blue and brown...to me, it has been unfinished and, dare I say? Boring.  It needed some help.
So, over the holiday break from school, I painted our bedroom a light brown, caramel-ish color, Hemp Rope by Valspar to be exact and I LOVED IT!  It is amazing what a simple coat of paint can do for a completely white room!  I think this is what jump started my motivation to decorate the whole room, finally.  So, the next question I needed to answer, was HOW?

I thought and thought, searched pinterest, thought some more, then decided to just start.
I started with some vases from DI, $1 each.

And then I got to pouring and mixing some paint.
This was also tough for me, I didn't want just a blue and brown and black room, so, because of my love affair with mustard yellow, I decided that would be an accent color to splash here and there.

This is the part I hated...the "being patient" part...pour some paint in and let gravity take it the right directions, then let dry overnight.

Dilemma #2? What to put into the vases.
This was tough, I didn't want fake flowers so I knew I needed to be creative with this part.
Then, I found the prettiest yarn dandelions on pinterest, (wanna follow? Click HERE!) and I was so excited!  As soon as I tried to find the like of the picture, the tutorial didn't exist...just the picture.  Then it was time to get creative.
I started by wrapping yarn around my three fingers 50 times.  Then, 80 times.  Neither of these were enough.  100 times around the fingers was the key.

Then, tie one single knot around the 100 strands of yarn, while keeping the first knot tight, flip the little bunch of yarn over, and tie a double knot.  Be sure to keep these three knots as tight as possible!  When you are done, it should look something like this:

Now is the fun part, start clipping all the loops!

After that is done, it should look something like this:

Then give it a good haircut.  Even out any stray strands, and when you are done, you will have something like this:

The two dandelions below show 80 loops v. 100 loops.  Big difference huh?  I had no idea...

Then, glue the dandelions onto some dead branches and you get this:

All because of those vases:]
I am so glad our bedroom decor now has a direction!  I can't wait to show you all what I have cooking up next for it!

Have a great day!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Where on EARTH have I been?

Sorry everyone, I have been off the radar for a while now.
I really have been busy, painting three rooms in our house, working, cooking, sewing...I have some great things to share with you!

But for right now, i'm just trying to get back into the groove of things.
Whoever thought that taking 3 online classes was going to be easy, (ehem...me...) is COMPLETELY out of their mind.  It is just like class, except you save some gas money, but you must find time for it, instead of making life fit school.  This semester will be a whole new challenge for me, but i'm up for it.  I might regret I ever said that in a month or so...these days just seem to wear me out.  Work, work, work, study, clean...it's a balancing act, but I know that these busy times are shaping me and making me stronger.  I am so thankful for our life and where we are.  My job has been the greatest blessing to us, I know it will continue to do so.  Life, is good.

So please, bear with me.  I do promise to get back into blogland soon!  I have some fabulous things to share with you! I hope you are all having a fabulous week!


Monday, January 2, 2012

Hello 2012!

2012 is going to be a wonderful year.  I can feel it!
I don't know about you, but I am so excited for the chance to start over, challenge myself, and grow.

Challenge my abilites.
Grow my blog.

I set a few goals for this year, and I cannot wait to take them on.
I want to become better and become a better version of me.
I have found that if I want to get anywhere, I need to push myself and aim high.
Some of my goals for 2012 are:

Reach 100 followers.
Learn to RELAX more...being uptight is overrated:]
Be a better wife, cherish my time with Josh even more than I do now.
Work harder.
Decorate our bedroom...the poor thing has been untouched since we moved in...
Serve others, at least one act of service a day.
Trust Heavenly Father's plan for us more fully.
Push my creativity.

Ok, now, I want you to hold me to this, push me.  Help me get there!
Thank you all for carrying me through 2011, I couldn't have done it without you!  Here's to an amazing 2012!