Design Obsession: Chevron Pattern

In my earlier post this week you may have caught a glimpse of chevron awesomeness…I am absolutely in love with this zigzag pattern!  So in love in fact, I bough a whole bolt of this lovely brown/natural fabric on clearance from

But you will just have to wait till tomorrow to hear more about that!  In the meantime, here are a few lovely chevron projects from around blogland to inspire you!

Grey, brown, aqua or yellow I love them all!  Do you have chevrons in your home?  Planning any chevron pattern projects?

Guest Posting at Little Blue Chairs Today

I’m so excited to be guest posting at Little Blue Chairs today.  Laurie has a wonderful thrifty blog where the tag line is “Decorating for real life by real people”.  I’m down with that!

If you were wondering what I did with that bolt of chevron pattern fabric I showed you yesterday, head on over to Little Blue Chairs and satisfy your curiosity!

Spring Break Hangover

Ever since I visited my parents house over spring break I am feeling just the wee bit LAY-ZAY.  I sit here surrounded by projects in progress and I haven’t got a one finished to share with you.  So much for quality content eh?

To try to get my mojo back I have been perusing the Craigslist.  Oh boy have I been finding inspiration there:  antique desks for $20 and chests of drawers for $15.  They are just calling to me!  Saaaaraaaah, Saaaarrraaaah!

Too bad my husband suggested that I finish one of my ongoing projects before heaping more furniture into the already crowded garage (isn’t he a party pooper?)  He may be a tad bit concerned that I’m a hoarder in the early stages.  I can’t be the only one who get’s that right? right?

Anyway.  If ya need me I’ll be busy finishing up this coffee table to ottoman transformation so I can get back to hoarding painting furniture!

Since I’m keepin’ it real in this blog post, it’s the perfect time to suggest you hop on over and visit my sister’s fashion blog, Closet Floor Finds.  She always Keeps it Real on Mondays!

Quick Mother’s Day Craft

When I saw this adorable handprint trees wrapped canvas from Come Together Kids I knew I wanted to make my own version to give to my kids’ grandmas for Mother’s Day.

In the original version Laura goes all out thrifty using fabric from worn out clothes on the canvas!  For my version I decided to use scrapbooking paper and a clearance 8×10 frame from from Michaels.  I already had pink scrapbooking paper and a multi-flower punch on hand so my total spent was about $7.00.

I wasn’t sure what to use for the white centers of the flowers so I ended up dabbing some craft glue on them and shaking a little white glitter on top.  It’s hard to see in the picture (it’s nearly impossible to get a good pic of a frame with glass!) but the glitter gives the trees some subtle shimmer.

My Mother-in-law loved the special and personal gift from the kids so that’s good enough for me!  Please click over to Laura’s blog to read the project tutorial.  I could see this craft adapted for a teacher or birthday as well.

Make Mother’s Day Last: Frechetta Simply Inspired Pizza Giveaway

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of FRESCHETTA® for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.
If you’re like me the best Mother’s Day gift you can receive is a break from everyday chores like cooking and cleaning.  Well the nice people at Freschetta helped me avoid the dinner grind by giving me a gift certificate to try their new Simply Inspired Pizza.
This new line of pizzas comes in eight delicious-sounding varieties:

  • Harvest Supreme
  • Classic Bruschetta
  • Hawaiian Style
  • Chicken Bianco
  • Farmers Market Veggie
  • Rustic Pepperoni Pomodoro
  • Southern BBQ Recipe Chicken
  • Tuscan Farmhouse

Since my husband was doing the shopping, I let him choose the flavor for us to try.  He came home with the Classic Bruschetta.

The Fresch-Taste Seal Packing is extremely easy to open and uses 30% less packing material.  This pizza isn’t shrink wrapped so there’s no hassle removing the plastic as well as half your toppings!
But what my husband and I really like is the light, crispy crust and flavorful sauce.  It was more like eating a restaurant-style artisan pizza than a frozen one.
And now you can taste for yourself!  Freschetta is kindly offering one of my lucky readers a gift certificate to try  their Simply Inspired line of pizzas as well as a bamboo cutting board!

To enter:
1. Review the flavor varieties at FRESCHETTA® Simply…Inspired™ and leave a comment telling me which flavor you would like to try.
2. Like Freschetta on Facebook or follow them on Twitter and leave me a comment to let me know.
The lucky winner will be chosen on Friday, May 18th, 2011!

Winner, Winner, Pizza Dinner!

Today I’m announcing the winner of the Freschetta Simply Inspired pizza & cutting board giveaway!  Thank you to everyone who entered to win.  The winner is…

Lesley Mitchell from the blog One Cheap Chick 
Lesley send me an email at so I can arrange to send you your pizza gift card and cutting board!

First Trip to Lucketts Spring Market

On Sunday I packed up the whole family to check out the Lucketts Spring Market.  As soon as we pulled up to the stoplight near the Old Lucketts Store I started to get excited!  There were so many great items everywhere I looked.

After we parked the cars (we brought two so we could bring home more goodies!) we strolled through the rows and rows of dealer booths.  I wanted to take home one of everything.

The whole time I kept my eyes peeled for Cassie from Primitive & Proper and Marian, AKA Miss Mustard Seed.  I came around the corner of one row and saw a booth that I loved filled with beautiful, colorful pieces.  Then I recognized some of the furniture from Cassie’s blog.

Cassie and I had a great time chatting and she got to meet the whole crazy family.  One of the best blog buddies a girl can have!  You can read more about Cassie & Lucketts here.

Cassie’s booth was next to Wild Rose & Co so I got a chance to chat with Lynette and peruse the goods at my perennial fav Chartreuse & Co.

Finally I spotted Miss Mustard Seed’s booth.  It was difficult to recognize at first because the place was wiped out!  You can see the before and after here.  Marian convinced me to give chalk paint a try (putting an order in soon) and was so very encouraging and supportive!

Now you are probably wondering about the shopping.  While these folks enjoyed hot dogs, funnel cakes & lemonade I got down to business and visited the Lucketts Store, the design house and several booths.
Now my friends: the eye candy!
My favorite part was the design house.  Miss Mustard Seed told me that they change the decor every month – WOW!  My daughter decided this was the princess room.  See there’s her crown on the table!
I went to the market on a mission to find a chest of drawers for my daughter’s room but didn’t have any luck.  Instead I picked up a cute leather cuff for my sister and a cool wrought iron globe.  I couldn’t go home empty handed.
More Lucketts pics on my Facebook page…

Coffee Table to Upholstered Ottoman

This project has been torturing me for a while now.  I just wasn’t sure I could pull it off.  But when I finally hunkered down today and finished the skirt, I was really surprised by the results!  Here’s how this baby started out.

This coffee table has been haunting me for nearly ten years and two houses.  My husband bought it before we were married.  It is a quality, heavy piece of furniture but it never seemed to work with my vision for the family room.   You know me, though, I never wanted to shell out the big bucks for something new so I lived with it.  Then it struck me that upholstering it in drop cloths might be just the makeover the coffee table needed!

I started by removing the feet and giving them a quick shot of black spray paint.  (Like my ingenious styrofoam paint pedestal?  I have used it over and over to paint and I love it.  Don’t throw out your large pieces of styrofoam!)

Next I covered the whole table top and sides with two to three layers of egg crate mattress pads using spray adhesive.  I researched the price for upholstery foam but just could not justify $30/yard!  Two full size egg crates cost me only $30 dollars total at Target and was enough to get the job done.

When I got to the upholstering part that’s when things started to get hairy!  I’m sure I didn’t go about it in the proper fashion and the ottoman may have ended up a little lumpy in places.  But much to my surprise adding the skirt and ribbon along with a ton of staples and hot glue really saved the project!

And see that tray on top?  I fashioned it out of the old coffee table drawers.  Then I painted the interior the same turquoise as my favorite lampand added the same chevron material as the curtains to the bottom. LOVE. IT.

I am having a drawer repurposing moment right now.  Got another project using drawers coming up later in the week.  So stay tuned!

Repurposed Drawers

Remember these old cabinets I removed for my laundry room makeover?

Did you think I just kicked those babies to the curb?  Heck no!  Much to my husband’s consternation I have been hanging on to the upper cabinet and the lower drawers (the lower cabinet fell apart during demo or I would have kept it too).  Mr. Thriftress thoroughly detests just loves old cabinets and drawers strewn about the house!  So to tidy up an bit and keep the whining to a minimum I set to work repurposing the drawers for my son’s room.  With a little paint and some wheels the drawers became these adorable rolling storage carts for the Lego table!

I’ve always wanted one of these awesome Pottery Barn Kids activity tables with the carts that tuck underneath.

Now I’ve got my own for just the cost of 8 small wheels (about $18) available at the home improvement center!  I used the same dark blue paint as my son’s bed frame which I already had on hand and the handles are made from rope we had lying around the garage.  Sweet!  I’m so excited about making something out of nothing and maybe getting the Lego bits & pieces under control.

Here’s the step by step for making your own activity carts.

  1. Find a drawer to repurpose.  Mine are from a laundry room demo.  If you don’t have drawers on hand you can find them at thrift stores likeHabitat for Humanity ReStore or on Freecyle and Craigslist.
  2. Remove the hardware and rough up the surface of the drawer with the sander or sand paper.  My drawers are laminate so I gave them a thoroughsanding to make sure the paint would adhere.
  3. Drill holes for the rope handle or whatever hardware you plan to use.  The laminate tends to chip when drilling holes so I did this before priming & painting.
  4. Prime.
  5. Paint.
  6. Using a screwdriver attach the wheels to each corner of the drawer.
  7. Add the rope handle.  I simply knotted the rope on the inside and outside of the drawer to secure it.

Done!  Now you’ve got yourself a handy toy tote or under bed storage!

What have you repurposed in your home?

Knock Off Decor Feature Today!

Good afternoon!  Just want to let you know that my repurposed drawers project is featured on Knock Off Decor today!

If you have never visited Knock Off Decor before check it out!  Everyday Beckie from Infarrantly Creative features budget friendly projects inspired by the likes of Pottery Barn, Anthropologie and others.  Because after all “imitation is the highest form of flattery”!

How to Celebrate Your Sister’s 30th Birthday

First, cry a little bit because she’s your little sister!  Then get over it and work your magic to make her a glamorous birthday present.

I scored the vintage mirror at a yard sale for just $3!

I wasn’t sure about the urn and flowers detail at the top at first but once the turquoise spray paint (left over Krylon Bahama Sea from my lamp makeover) went on I love those details!

Next get dolled up for the big 30th birthday party and take a few fashion blogger shots with your sis!

Then eat some delish vanilla birthday cake.  Cake that says “30 Never Looked So Fashionable!” and wears a hot pink skinny belt!

Finish off the night dancing at a bar till closing and eating pizza in the wee hours of the morning.  Then catch a few hours of sleep and wish you were only 30 again!

Happy Birthday Melissa!  And remember…

Beachy Mud Room Update

I think all moms dream about an organized mud room with all the shoes and coats neatly lined up.  Something with big beautiful storage like this maybe?

I don’t have space (or $$) for something like that but I do have a nook perfect for a mud room right beside the backdoor. I purchased a clearance shelf from and added a white bench that used to be in my daughter’s room. Done! The perfect place to corral shoes and hang up coats!

Except…it wasn’t looking so hot.

The “mud room” became code for the “dumping ground”.   While I love to throw all the shoes on the bottom shelf to get them up off the floor, it just looks unkempt.  And let’s not even talk about the thoughtless arrangement of knick knacks on top of the shelf mkay?

A few weeks ago while browsing at The Container Store I found the perfecttotes to fit inside the bench cubbies.  And they even had beachy stripes with rope handles.  The price wasn’t terrible at $9.99 each so I bought them.  Once I got those totes home I knew I had to give the honey colored baskets a shot of spray paint as well to tie the whole look together.  Here’s what the corner looks like now.

I even managed to pull together a lovely arrangement on the shelf using items I had around the house: black and white framed photos of my kids, a chippy window frame, a canning jar and specimen art I made myself with a frame and pack of sand dollars.

The shoes are hidden and the color palette so much more sophisticated!  The look just makes me feel calm.

Countdown to Vacation

Two weeks from today my husband and I are leaving for a week long vacation in HAWAII!  And the kids are staying with my parents!

We haven’t been on a vacation – other than family trips to the beach – since our honeymoon in 2003.  I am beyond excited.  I never imagined we woud be going on this trip this year.  Normally we are practical people who feel guilty spending money on a reasonable rental in Ocean City.

But our dear friends are getting married in Hawaii so we are going!  I nearly got down on my knees to thank them for their choice of venue.

I think the kids will do great with their grandparents.  My parents live about 5 hours away so they are looking forward to some quality time with the kids – although they might need a Hawaiian vacation when the week is over!  I just hope my husband and I can make it through the week without missing the kiddos too much.

So here’s where I need your help.  If you’ve been to Hawaii (specifically Oahu) I would love to hear your experiences.  What are the must-do activities?  Most importantly, what the heck should I pack?  I’m feeling like pack it all – to heck with baggage fees!  Not so thrifty.  I need help girls!

There’s wi-fi at the house where we are staying so get ready for a week of gorgeous Hawaii photos!


Red, White & Blue Cake Bites

Why not make some of these delicious cake bites this 4th of July?  Not sold on the idea?  Let me convince you.

  • This recipe is EASY – So easy the kids can help and you won’t pull your hair out.
  • It’s CHEAP – If you’re an extreme couponer you have the ingredients in your stockpile right now (and you probably got them for free).  If not, cake mix, frosting and chips are pretty reasonable even without coupons.
  • Cake bites are PURE AWESOME – When I made these for a BBQ people devoured them.  Zero cake bites left within 30 minutes.  Your guests will think you are a dessert goddess.

Okay let’s get started!  Gather your ingredients: 1 box cake mix, 1 tub frosting and 1 bag of chocolate chips.

I made two varieties: Lemon cream cheese white chocolate and sugar free vanilla and chocolate.  The lemon cream cheese was the clear winner.  The taste is refreshing and summery.  Perfect for a BBQ.  The sugar free version was also well received.  No one noticed it was a lower calorie alternative!

Step 1: Bake your cake according to the directions.  When it’s cool, call the kids and let them squish it up into crumbs.

Don’t worry, they will clean up all the stray crumbs!

Step 2: Add the tub of frosting to the cake and mix it up to create “dough”.  Chill the dough until it’s cold enough to work with without being too sticky. (1-2 hours)
Step 3: Roll the dough into one inch balls.
Step 4: Chill the cake balls in the freezer on a baking sheet. (1-2 hours) This will make it easier to roll the cake in the chocolate.
Step 5: Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave in 30 second intervals until melted and smooth.
Step 6: Using a spoon roll the cake bite in the melted chocolate.  Shake off excess chocolate and place the cake bites back on the baking sheet.  Immediately add red, white & blue sprinkles before the chocolate dries.
Step 7: EAT!

Have a Happy 4th of July!

Guest Posting at Keller Creative Today!

I’m running around trying to cross all the last minute items off my vacation checklist this week.  But I still managed to find some time to guest post at Keller Creative.  Kim is featuring a series of thrifty guest posts as a run up to The I <3 Thrifting event this weekend.

I’m so excited to be guest posting today talking about one of my favorite thrifty tools.

Click here to learn about how to get started with Freecycle in your area and check out the fabulous items I have found on my local list.  Including this antique dresser I picked up just this weekend…


Thrifting on Vacation: Kailua Salvation Army

Hey guys I am back from a wonderful trip to Hawaii!  When you’re on vacation you are supposed to relax and make time for the things you enjoy right?  Well I love thrifting – even in Hawaii!  One day I was out shopping for souvenirs in the trendy beach town of Kailua when I stumbled upon the local Salvation Army.

I grabbed my camera and snapped a few pics of the asian-inspired, vintage 70’s, Hawaiian goodies within for your viewing pleasure.  I think I also got the award for “Weirdest Tourist” while I was in there photographing a thrift store rather than the beautiful Hawaiian scenery.

The racks of second hand Hawaiian muumuus went on for miles.  The local eco-conscious store Muumuu Heaven takes vintage Aloha wear like this and transforms it into fashionable apparel and home decor.  Oh what you could DIY with a sewing machine and a couple of these babies…

The furniture department was a little sparse but I thought these chairs could be adorable with fun paint and fabric.

The bric-a-brac was where it’s at though, folks.  I really wish I could have figured out how to get some of these goodies home safely on the plane.

It was really fun to take a peek at a thrift store in paradise!  What thrift store gems have you found while traveling?

Comic Book Themed Baby Shower

You might be wondering what I have been up to lately…  Well if you’re a fan of my Facebook page you know that I’ve been busy crafting a co-ed baby shower BBQ for one of my husband’s oldest and dearest friends and his wife.

The father-to-be is a serious comic book collector so I used that as my inspiration for the decorations and color scheme.  Typically superhero or comic book themed events are for children’s birthday parties.  I worked hard to keep the decor sophisticated enough for adults without losing the element of fun!  Here’s what I dreamed up.

Guests were greeted by this fun wreath.  Ribbon, card stock and a foam wreath form is all it took to whip it up.

The cityscape backdrop really makes the dessert table come together.  Guests asked if I painted it – but it’s just a Target shower curtain!!  So. Easy.

I knew from the start I wanted a comic book banner.  You may have seen this before at One Charming Party.  I scored these comic books on Freecycle and hot glued them to dollar store ribbon.

Comic book sound effect toppers dressed up the cupcakes.  I simply designed the cupcake toppers using my word processing software and printed them on card stock.  (This party is all about the paper crafts!)

Dessert also included lemon cake pops, red velvet cake (we were celebrating a birthday as well), cherry pound cake, superhero lollipops (printable found here) and caramel corn.  Cityscape table runner also from Target.

The bar area dressed up with streamers and color coordinated accessories from Target.

The onesies were fun and easy to make with printer transfer paper.  The parents-to-be got to take them home as part of their gift too!

Martha’s tissue paper pom-poms over the kitchen table.  So addictive you may find them in every room of my house soon.   You can see the tutorial for yourself here but you have been warned. 🙂

The whole shindig came together more beautifully than I could have dreamed and was a totally fun time with great friends!  Congratulations Dennis & Veronica!

Black Bathroom Inspiration

Lately I’ve been slightly obsessed with painting my boring, closet of a powder room black.  But I’m hesitating.  I mean, it’s BLACK!  And the room has no windows to let in the light.   So of course, I headed over to Pinterest to find some inspiration…

Sexy and glamourous no?  Have you ever painted a room in your house black?  Or do you want to?  I would love to hear your opinions!

Quick Hostess Gift

My kids and I are lucky enough to be spending a few days at the Jersey shore this week with my aunt, my cousin and my cousin’s girls.  We really appreciate being invited to share their beach house so I wanted to bring a nice hostess gift to thank them.  Of course I tried to be a bit more creative than a bottle of wine! Here’s what I came up with.

Michael’s seasonal “trinket trays” turned into drink coasters.  I loved the nautical motifs!  These trays are available in the dollar section.  I just added adhesive felt circles so they won’t scratch the furniture.  To finish I tied the stack of coasters with twine and a sand dollar.

Elegant (and easy) silver star fish frame.  I simply hot glued a piece of drop cloth to the frame matting and then glued the star fish to the drop cloth. Reassemble the frame for instant art.

Add in two colorful beach towels and put it all in a basket for the perfect beach house hostess gift!


Back to School, Back on Track

This week my oldest started Kindergarten. (sniff, sniff)

I was nervous about the adjustment to Kindergarten but he took the changes in stride.  I couldn’t have asked for a better first week of school!

The lazy days of Summer have been fun but I must say I’m glad that we have the structure of school back in our lives.  I’ve got tons of projects scheduled to be completed before it’s too cold to paint outside.  First I’m going to tackle this motley group of furniture.

Amazingly I was able to acquire all this furniture for my daughter’s room for free!

Antique Jenny Lind twin bed – this piece was my Mother-in-law’s childhood bed.  I feel so fortunate that it has been passed down to my daughter.

Empire dresser from Freecycle.  A tall chest will fit the small space better than a long dresser.

Another Freecycle score.  I actually have two!

Quilt rack from my childhood bedroom.  My parents are moving so the quilt rack has found a new home with us.

I know right now that these pieces don’t make a very cohesive bedroom set but I’m hoping that Annie Sloan can help me out with that!

I ordered a quart of Old White from Repurposed and Refined and they were awesome enough to also send me a complimentary brush and 2 color samples!  I can’t wait to try the magic of chalk paint for myself.  Wish me luck!

What are you working on now that the kids are back in school?