Friday, October 24, 2014

DIY Kate Spade Inspired Ikea Storage Boxes

It's Friday!!!!

Let me start by saying I'm sorry, it's me not you:) I've been working....allot. I'll try to post more often. Don't hate me.

You've heard me say it before and I'll say it again, kids come with clutter! The key to kids rooms is to give them a place to put the clutter. Case in point is my daughter Isabella's room which has driven me close to the point of insanity. It is small and challenging, which is typical for kids rooms.

For me the Ikea Expedit (now called the Kallax) has been great for organization and is a universal solution in most of the children's rooms that I design. It's compact, affordable, is perhaps one of the most versatile pieces EVER, and can be so chic when staged well.

Case in point for todays post was inspired from the image below.

That Ikea unit is staged so beautifully with decorative boxes from Kate Spade and I wanted them! Sadly, at close to $60 for a set of 3 and the fact that I am a Crazy Designer Lady and change my mind (and my house) far too often I wasn't shelling out that cash for the amount of boxes I need.

My solution was this crafty little tutorial that I found on The Decoist using the very affordable Kassett storage boxes which I already had from Ikea.

Her tutorial was so simple. Take an Ikea Kassett box and electrical tape and wrap it. Use your tape as a spacer. Fast, easy and affordable. Check out her blog for a step by step.

For the polka dotted boxes I had to be a little more creative. My solution was to take the Flatpack Decals Dots/Blocks wall decals that I found in a pack for only $9.99 from Target and stick them on the boxes. Yes, it really was that simple. The one problem was that there weren't enough black ones so I took a black Sharpie and colored all of the blue. Done!

Here are my results for my DIY Kate Spade Inspired Storage Boxes in Isabella's room.

Here are a couple detailed shots for you of the DIY Kate Spade Inspired (easy as heck) Storage Boxes.

I'm obsessed with the results!

In case you are interested in any of the other items, I included a list of what was recently purchased (the rest are things I owned prior in my ever rotating house).

Storage Boxes-White Ikea Kassett **various sizes, Pink Ikea TJENA
Brass urchins 3pk
Lamp and shade
Brass Magazine Holder Nate Berkus for Target

Let me know if you're happy to see me again so that I know if I should keep making this blog a priority. It's been rough lately, but if you want the posts to keep on coming I will commit to getting them out there for you guys. I love my followers and I love your feedback!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

DIY Moroccan Wedding Blanket, Oh Yea!

Good morning,

I've been very busy lately and in and out of town for personal business, but I have been dying to share with you a recent DIY project that I completed and I think many a fan will be VERY excited about this one.

I'm talking about an easy DIY Moroccan wedding blanket using nothing more than trim and fabric glue!  You heard me correct, I glued trim to an awesome blanket that I found and created a similar version to the costly crowd favorite at a much lower cost.


Here is my DIY Moroccan Wedding Blanket.
Sequins and lamb's wool and cotton, Oh my! Let's take a look at where the obsession started. You can find these blankets in white or in shades of cream and with some color to them as well, and they all have the most amazing sequins and trim details. Here are some of my inspiration images which I used to drool over guide my DIY Moroccan wedding blanket.

Moroccan wedding blankets are known as handira and are hand woven from cotton, wool and linen by Berber women and given to brides who wear them on their wedding day. They are said to ward off evil and to award fertility. These blankets are hand woven which you can imagine takes a lil bit of time and effort. They are gifted to the bride who wears them as a sort of cape for her journey home.

Here is a close up of one I found on Ebay.

How cool is that? As you would imagine, these hand woven babies can cost hundreds of $$$ and since I don't have any Berber women around weaving me one up I decided that I had to either pony up the cash, or figure out how to make one of my own which is exactly what I did.

DIY Moroccan Wedding Blanket Tutorial (No Sew!):

To start off with I needed to find a blanket, and preferably one with some texture to it so that it better resembles the natural texture of the woven handira or Moroccan wedding blankets.

I found this lovely blanket from Linen Source in a size king for $89.95. You can find your own here.

It comes in a variety of colors, however for the purpose of a Moroccan wedding blanket either the white or the natural would work best. I used the white. I love the textured lines on it as well as the fringe which adds a worldly touch in my opinion;)

Total blanket cost $89.95 with free shipping.

Next you have to get some trim. This can get expensive so measure wisely. For my blanket I decided to go with 3 types of trim, a gold sequin trim, a silver sequin trim and a yarn that I found on clearance for $2.00 per roll which was shades of grey with slight gold sequins in it. I decided after the fact to omit some of the gold which just didn't work in the space. You can see how this would be a costly mistake.

Here is a close up of my trims.

The tricky part is figuring out how many rows you will want to do. I found that each row needed 3.17yds of trim. As you see from the picture above I spaced them out by two rows for each sequin trim and one row in the middle of each yarn trim. You can do yours any way you like with as much or as little as you prefer. What you will need to know if how much of each trim you will need in total.
For my blanket I used:
- Patons Pirouette in Silver Sparkle that I happened to find on clearance at Joanne's crafts for only $2.99. I made 32 total rows of this which comes 17 yds. per pack which was a total usage of 5 packs.
-7/8" silver stretch sequin trim for $3.99/yd. I used 10 total rows at 3.17yds per row which was roughly 32 yds. at $3.99 minus a discount coupon of 40% (oh yea!) for a total cost of around $76.
-7/8" gold stretch sequin trim for $3.99/yd. Same usage and cost as above.

Total trim cost: $166.95
Next up is the easiest part of all, original tacky glue which is basically fabric glue. Do yourself the favor and get the mega large one, you'll need it. It's about $7.00 for 16oz.
Total cost of glue: $6.99

The only other thing you will need for this project is scissors.

To actually make your blanket you will need some time, and patience. To begin you simply run your trim down the blanket and measure it. Cut it when it gets to the ends of the fuzzy raised part of the blanket just before the fringe. Once you have a few pieces measured, cut and laid out you simply run the glue down the length of the blanket and then come back over the glue with your trim pressing it down in to the glue. I found it easy for me to get a paper towel and run it over the entire strip to make sure that it was securely pressed evenly down the blanket. I also glued the trim directly on to the raised fuzzy part.

Here I am in the beginning process to give you an idea. As you see, you will need some space for this one.

That's it! Hours of labor and cutting, laying out and gluing aside you can stand back as I did and marvel at your new creation.

This was a late night shot when I got to stand back and finally see it completed, and I just thought it was stunning!

And here are a few shots of the room in it's progress with the new addition.

Master Bedroom Update/ DIY Moroccan Wedding Blanket:

Now this is much less expensive than the $700-$800 dollar blankets in the larger sizes I wanted, though admittedly it wasn't exactly a "cheap" DIY it still brings a smile to my face when I walk in to my bright bedroom and see it sparkle. You could cut your own costs down by going with a smaller sized blanket which would in turn need less trim and less mullah $$. You could also shop around for trim and see what discounts you find. What I love about DIY is that there is a sense of instant gratification AND you get to tell a story about something. As an interior designer I LOVE THAT! It's not only about how much something costs, or where it comes from as much as it is the story of how a space comes together that makes it truly magical. I'm sure there will more changes as things progress such as with the accents and pillows until I'm truly happy with it (and when I'm finished rotating things from all over my house,) but for now things are shaping up nicely.
What do you think?

Monday, April 28, 2014

Styling A Sexy Bar Cart

Happy Monday!

Today I wanted to switch gears and do a little post on styling bar carts.

A little fact about me is that I use bar carts in most every single space I design, and then I kind of leave them there for my client to add on to for their choosing and needs.

Sadly, when I go back to my client's houses I often see these sad little bar carts in exactly the same shape I left them in. Not sexy and styled up as a bar cart should be. This is something that I can actually relate to since I left my sad little bar cart near naked and abandoned since probably Christmas. It is time to change that, and to make all the bar carts, trays and stands out there the sexy little beasts they should be since they are the life of the party after all;)

Bar Cart Basics:

Here are some ideas for items that take your own cart and cart tending abilities up a notch, at least style wise.


I started with an adorable little cart that I just happened to find at Target for only $130!!! I'll be honest it wasn't exactly what I was looking for but it had nice bones and for that price there was no way I wasn't taking this cart home since I had a party that night. But I never did REALLY love her. She was just a bit too rustic for me.

 Bar carts range in price and can get really expensive!! Since my little gem isn't currently available here are some other contenders on the market right now in a varied price ranges.

This is usually the easiest part isn't it? Now let's add some layers to the cart and really take things up a notch...or two.
Here is my cart as she sits all pretty and dressed up just waiting for the next occasion, and now that she's all glammed up I LOVE her and I am so happy that I didn't pass this one up.


Here are the bar cart basics:

I'm all about trays EVERYWHERE, but specifically on the bar cat they are a great way to keep things organized. In my case they also added some much needed shine and polish to my other wise a bit too rustic cart (for my taste).

Bar Tools, Containers And Gadgets:

Get some bar tools and display them proudly. As you can see I placed mine in a pink Keep Calm And Carry On Tea Tin. You can find these bar tools such as jiggers, cocktail stirrers, bottle openers and strainers sold in sets at most places that sell home goods and bar ware. 
Here is a Stainless Steel Bar Tools Set from Williams Sonoma for $89.95.
Get yourself a decorative bowel. I have been putting my wine corks in the little DIY Ikat Bowl that I made a long time ago which I can later use as place settings for dinner parties. Little decorative bowels are a great way to add style to your bar, and are easily converted in to a lemon and lime containers when entertaining.
I am loving these adorable Ikat printed bowls from West Elm for only $8.
Get yourself some napkins. I put these pink napkins out for staging, but I really HATE my napkin holder. I'm on the hunt for a Lucite napkin holder, and I play with napkins. There are too many funny ones out there to not get a laugh out of them.
I am in LOVE with these paper napkins from Z Gallery for only $5.95 that say "After Monday and Tuesday the calendar says W.T.F" How fun would that be on a Friday cocktail hour?!

Get yourself an ice bucket AND a martini shaker. I am on the hunt for a gold ice bucket since I didn't buy "The One" at Christmas time and have now convinced myself that I cannot live without it. An ice bucket or champagne bucket both serve essentially the same purpose where space is limited, but are great for keeping things cold, and keeping ice readily available for guests.
I'm LOVING this gold rimmed and chrome ice bucket sold at Wayfair made by Krafteware.
Get yourself a liquor decanter. I have seen some amazing modern ones out there, but I prefer the vintage crystal that weigh a hundred pounds and mine is the real deal. They are just so classic and are a bit of an ode to the bar carts that my grandparents had.
I'm loving these Glass Bottles With Wood Stoppers from West Elm from $19-$39.
Get yourself some liquor. Truth be told I'm a pretty solid red wine gal, but I keep the basics on hand at all times for when we go out or for impromptu guests. My main friends are The Goose (Grey Goose), Good Ol Jack (Jack Daniel's), Johnnie (as in Johnnie Walker Black label) and my personal bestie Patron Silver (as in it will bite you in the ass but make for a whole lotta fun, Patron on ice). We really only drink The Patron, but we keep the bar stocked with the other friends for guests. I stock more when we have large parties and need a real bar. This is why bar carts are personal, you stock it the way you like. So you're not a drinker? No problem, stock it with bottled sparking water and books. Get creative!

Now for the top of my bar cart, let's take a closer look.

Traditionally for the top of the cart you will see many pretty glasses which I do for company just not for everyday. I don't need glasses sitting there. Instead, here's what I did.

Get yourself some pretty paper straws!

I added pink, silver and gold straws. You can find them at your local craft stores since they are commonly used for cake pops, but I found to have a huge selection of them. The problem for me is that they are so cute I don't want to really use them. Is there such thing as "show straws" like there is for "show towels"? I'm just asking.

I found these paper straws on 100 for only $7.00 in any color under the sun.

Get yourself some decorative storage boxes, and fill them with your everyday tools. I have a plastic wine opener from Italy that is nothing special in the looks department but it is my go to wine opener and has a built in foil cutter. I keep a little lighter in there for candle, and I also have my wine charms in there. Point being it looks pretty AND has a function.

I found this beauty at Home Goods, but I am drooling over this Pink Box With Himalayan Crystal decorative box from One Kings Lane for $99.00. If you want it hurry because it's only available until 5/3!
Get yourself a pretty hand towel if your cart has a handle!! I found mine at Home Goods, you can find yours just about anywhere to add that extra touch.

I'm digging the bohemian vibe of these West Elm Hammam Stripe Hand Towels for only $10.00
Bottom line here is to have fun and make your bar cart YOU. I've seen art, books, candles, boxes and anything else that you can think of styled on bar carts. For me since I often tire of the same thing day in and day out I see my $130 Target gem being something that I will absolutely enjoy for years to come.
If this inspires you to take your own bar cart up a level in style don't forget to email me and share your pictures! I'd love to see what you come up with.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Weekend Update: Paint Your Window Frames With Spray Paint!

Happy Friday!

Did you know that you can actually spray paint your window frames on the outside OR inside of your house?

This is a little too good to be true for me since we did a garage addition with new hurricane proof windows and bronze window panels, but haven't quite mustered up to replacing the rest of our windows. The result makes our nicely done addition look a little bit "off", and since it's a garage addition the last thing we wanted is for it to look any more "off" than it has to.

Let's take a look down memory lane with our house's transition from before until now and then I'll give you a quick and easy "How To" so that you can take this extended weekend and put some love on your very own update.

Here was our home when we started this journey.

There she was in all her yellow madness with her decorative trim, white garage and white windows. She had a pond/fountain just nice enough to serve as a frog mating pool, she had a teeny tiny drive way with a ton of useless grass, and she had a whole lot of fugly going on.

So things had to transition. Walls went up, block went in, concrete was poured and she lost her white garage, green grass and teeny tiny drive way....and gained a new master en-suite.

She was looking really nice and clean and modern even though the landscaping could be beefed up a bit. The only thing in this moment that really has always bothered me are the new window frames vs. the old white window frames (eye sore and a half!) Right now we don't have the budget to replace the rest of the windows so paint will have to do.
Off to Home Depot I went to find the best solution. I was told that this is the way to go.
Yup, this is spray paint my friends! It is Rust-Oleum Oil Rubbed Bronze Metallic Spray Paint which paints wood  and plastic, and yes metal!
Are you ready for the easy part?
**Special Tip: The first step for us was to remove the checkered window frame that was inside of the window itself. It is outdated and unnecessary. ESPECIALLY in modern designs. If you have this and want to remove it you can easily do so by placing razor blade knife under the frame and pulling them off piece by piece. Scrape the excess glue and done! I've don't this on several projects and it really changes the look of the space. It's little work for a big bang style wise.

Here is your super easy step by step to spray painting your window frames:

-Tape newspaper all over the window and the surrounding wall with painters tape. Remember that spray paint has over spray. 
-Paint the sides of the window frame in light coats never holding the can too close to the frame which can cause dripping.
-Apply 2-3 coats letting it dry a few minutes in between each coat.
-Remove paper.

There are new drapes going in the addition soon, so I will post about that one soon which will also make the windows look more uniform from the outside of the house.
I am so relieved to have this little easy project out of the way. What a great way to polish up the outside of the house with little cost and effort.
Have a wonderful Easter weekend~