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Growing Green Onions?

26 Apr

We are really loving our little herb garden.  We have cilantro coming out our ears and basil that makes my homemade spaghetti sing!

Does anyone use green onions as much as I do?  We love them and they add just enough flavor…but I usually only use a 1 stalk and the rest go to waste.

I saw on Pinterest this little ditty…and thought I’d give it a try.  And it would be fun for the kids to watch and measure…if it really worked.

First try…we cut the ends way too short.

After a week and changing the water every other day…we got nothing.  And to the trash they went.  My daughter told me to add them to our compost.  But we don’t have any compost.  I think we need to start some compost since she already thinks we have compost.  (How many times can you say compost?)

A week went by and I needed green onions again.  Off to the store.  Only used 1 stalk, of course.  This time, we cut the stems leaving a good 3 inches and place in a glass of fresh water near a sunny window.

Started as this:

3 days later, they looked like this:

And day 6, we have full grown, yummy green onions in our kitchen.

We change the water every other day and it has been so fun watching them grow.

Give it a try!

 

 

DIY Demolition!!

27 Mar

I haven’t blogged much about our woes trying to obtain the renovation permit for our coffee shop. I didn’t because I felt talking about it wouldn’t be positive and would just make things worse.   By things worse, I mean my attitude and faith.  To make a long story short, all we wanted to do was open a small coffee shop but it’s been a long painful journey.  (We actually started the process for our coffee shop dream in October 2011.)  It’s taken months and months working with city officials…and it’s also cost thousands and thousands of dollars.

For a tiny coffee shop with a small coffee bar, the city required us to hire architects and engineers.  We even had install things we’ll probably never use like a grease trap.  The trials have been exhausting both mentally and financially.

But I can talk about it now because it’s all in the past!

I finally have good news to report….we received our renovation permit!!!  WOOOOOOHOOOOOO!

We received our permit at 4pm last Thursday.  I immediately called our contractors but because of the last minute notice, none of them could come until the following week.

So instead of sitting still and waiting for contractors, my 66 year old dad and I decided to demo the place ourselves!!  My dad may be 66, but he’s the strongest toughest man I know.  He didn’t hesitate at all when I said I had hoped to start some demolition work.

So at 7am Friday, my dad and I started the demolition process!

(Half the left wall removed)

There was a wall that separated the store space that needed to be completely removed and a wall to the bathroom had to be removed so that the bathroom could be expanded.

 (Bathroom wall coming down)

It might seem like a fun job…knocking down walls.  But it was HARD work.  My right bicep still hurts like hell from swinging sledgehammers and even an axe at times.

(Starting on the other half of the big wall)

By the way, if you are considering tearing a wall and have never done it before…it’s VERY important to make sure the wall is not “load bearing“.  Load bearing means that part of the structure (usually the ceiling) is depending on it.  If a load bearing wall is removed, the structure above could collapse.  So please verify structure integrity before tearing down walls.  The walls we removed were not load bearing which is why we felt comfortable doing the project ourselves without professionals.

(Main wall almost completely down)

My dad and I completely demo’d out all the walls on Friday. Thanks to our demo work, the contractors were able to start working on carpentry, plumbing and electrical work today!!

(Demolition Complete!)

I’ll take pictures and start showing the entire transformation…which hopefully will be fully completed in a few weeks!

Viva La Revolucion!

-Angie

 

DIY : 3rd times a charm??

20 Mar

This armoire.

This armoire is driving me nuts.

Originally white and distressed (I can’t find the before picture to save my life).

I decided I wanted some gold metallic in my life.

So I painted it Martha Stewart’s Vintage Gold.

martha stewart vintage gold metallic paint

I turned out okay.  Nothing great.  Didn’t set off any fireworks.

Definitely not one of my favorite pieces.

So yesterday, I decided it needed to be yellow.  And beat up and rubbed up with some stain.  And given some new crystal knobs.

Here’s a glimpse.  One coat of paint.  I’m a lazy painter…leave it in the room is my motto.

I’m digging it.

But my husbands gonna kill me.

I’ll share the final product next week.

xoxo,

Carrie

DIY :: Entry Table & Annie Sloan’s

6 Mar

After searching Craigslist, thrift stores, and everywhere in between, I found this table at Marshall’s…when I didn’t even go to Marshall’s looking for a table.

Isn’t that how it always goes??

This table was the perfect width for my entry.  And I almost passed it up too.  Then this picture flashed in my mind:

Benedetta 58 inch Console

A Ballard Designs table for 4 bones.  $400.

And I paid $100 for mine.  Go ahead and scream…I did.

ballard design console table

I bought a sample size of the most beautiful Antibes Green Annie Sloan’s paint for $9.99.  I debated on getting the quart but at $38 and not really wanting an entire house of green furniture, I stuck with the 4oz sample size and prayed to the paint gods that it would cover the entire table.

And down to the last drop of paint, the table looked like this:

annie sloan antibes green

And distressed with american walnut colored stain:

 

Here she sits, partially styled.  I’m looking for more industrial lamps and a couple Fu Dogs (thanks to Angie for introducing those to me!)

Antibes Green is the most perfect vintage green I’ve ever found!

xoxo,

Carrie

 

Today’s Creative Blog Tip Junkie, Home Stories AtoZ, Blah to Beautiful

DIY Aiden Gray Laundry Basket

28 Feb

Don’t you love Aiden Gray? I love all their vintage French inspired decor and have especially eyed this laundry basket for a long time.

Now thanks to Katie Steuernagle with Apartment Therapy, it’s possible to make a pretty close replica for $20. I don’t believe Katie made this to resemble Aiden Gray’s version but it would be close enough if the word “Laundry” was stenciled on. And not to mention a huge savings since Aiden Gray’s basket cost $252 plus shipping and tax.

The process looks easy to make with galvanized steel wire fencing.

You can check out Katie’s full tutorial with pictures here:

http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/make-a-vintage-inspired-wire-hamper-for-cheaphow-to-164532

-Angie

DIY Coffee Shop Chair Redos

21 Feb

Commercial restaurant chairs are very expensive.  We couldn’t find any restaurant quality chairs for our new coffee shop that cost under $100.  On one of my estate sale crusades, I happened to come across a warehouse that was being liquidated.  It was there I found these used restaurant chairs priced at $25 each.  Because we bought 18, they let us have them discounted at $15 each. Score!

The chairs were a great style that fit into the decor we were striving for.  They were well made with solid iron and wood yet lightweight and the perfect size to fit under the coffee shop tables we were going to use.

BUT as with most DIY great deals… they needed quite a bit of work.

The seat covers were in horrible condition and the fabric was damaged.

And the wood had seen a lot of wear and tear and was chipped all over.

Nothing a little fabric, sanding, stain and elbow grease can’t solve!

Thankfully my mother-in-law moved to San Antonio because she was my refinishing buddy on these chairs. Being that there were 18 of them, I needed all the help I could get.

First, the chairs were scrubbed clean.  Then the seat covers were unscrewed and removed.

Once the seat covers were removed, more problems were identified.

More scratches…

as well as discoloration and lots of dirt!

Which involved more and more cleaning.

Then we sanded away.  The chairs only needed a light sanding in most places but more extensive sanding in the chipped areas.  We sanded everywhere including the sides and even the parts of the chairs that weren’t damaged so that the stain would adhere.

Next, it was time to stain.  The chairs came in 3 colors and we wanted to maintain that variety and keep them the same color. I tried my best to find stain colors that matched the current colors and the colors that seemed to be best suited were Minwax’s Natural, Red Oak and Ebony.

The stain made a large difference.  The chairs actually looked new again.

Here are the red ones before…

and then after…

Looks new doesn’t it!?

After all the chairs were stained and the excess wiped off, Howard Feed N Wax sealer was applied.

Next it was time to work on the chair seats.  I don’t have pictures of this in process but it was very easy.  The old fabric was removed and new fabric was adhered by stapling underneath.  We used duck cloth which is one of my favorite fabrics to work with.  Duck cloth is relatively inexpensive and it’s strong enough to be used for upholstery fabric. It’s a thick canvas like material that’s very durable.  Duck cloth comes in lots of solid colors and is usually always available at most fabric stores.

Since the wood on the chairs came in a variety of colors, we decided to also use a little variation with the seat covers by using two different fabric colors: blue and grey.

Here are our assembly lines of our work in process.  All 18 seat covers were replaced and sprayed with 3 layers of Scotch Guard. Since they will receive lots of traffic, the Scotch Guard will help protect against spills and dirt.

The blonde and red colored chairs still have sealer drying on them but the black chairs are dry and completed.

All the black chairs are completely finished and have their new seat covers reattached.  I am really impressed with the difference.  Even though it was quite a bit of work, it was a large savings and the results are better than any of the “new” chairs available for purchase.

Here is another before and after comparison!

Such a transformation, don’t you agree?  I’m very excited about how well they are turning out. I’ll post pictures of all of them including the blonde and red ones after they are all completed this week.

- Angie

Friday Favorite :: Apartment Freakin’ Therapy!!!

10 Feb

Seriously the coolest thing to happen lately…

Apartment Therapy featuring our Ballard Design bench.

Unfreakin’ believable.

Thank you Apartment Therapy!  Now we are off to celebrate with some wine coolers.

Check our feature here!!

Happy Friday everyone!!

xoxo,

Carrie and Angie

Tuesday’s DIY: 10 Minute Chair Makeover

7 Feb

These chairs needed a little updating.  I bought them at them at an estate sale recently and they were a great find at $30 bucks each.

The upholstery is in near perfect condition, they have great shape and they are mid-century which is one of my favorite styles.

Despite the blue checkered upholstery being in excellent shape, I’m not that keen on the print of the fabric. The print is adequate but the chair would look killer with a new bold bright fabric on it. However, because the fabric is in such good quality, it doesn’t seem rational to tear it off and redo it.  Not to mention upholstery fabric is expensive and this chair would require a tremendous amount of work to upholster.

My mind was racing trying to come up with an idea that would give these chairs a little facelift and also be both quick and economical.  Good thing I met my new San Antonio friend, Donno Rullo.  Donna, who is a brilliant designer and always full of great ideas suggested painting the legs.  Perfect idea!

So here is a quick makeover that took less than 10 minutes.  I painted the legs silver using Martha Stewart Precious Metals Paint in the shade Silver Leaf,

the same silver I previously used on this desk:

Painting the legs was the easiest furniture project I’ve probably ever completed. I painted two coats and the combined work time took 10 minutes.

The silver looks a little flat in the picture but in person, it’s really nice with lots of silver variations.  I think it made a big difference in the chair’s appearance and it now looks much more modern.

Here’s another side by side comparison.

What you do think about the new legs?!  Like? :)

-Angie

Tuesday’s DIY :: Upcycled Frame

31 Jan

I found this huge open frame at a tag sale months ago for $3.  I couldn’t believe it.  It’s about 4 feet in length so I snatched it up, not knowing what to do with it.  It drives my husband crazy because we have a stack of frames in our garage.

Since we are still working on my daughter’s room, and she loves to write notes and play school, we decided to turn it into a chalkboard.  Not to original, I know, but it turned out great.

Using Annie Sloan’s Paris Grey, we started with this:

$3 frame

MDF board cut to size at Home Depot.  I just brought my measurements and they cut it for me.  The board cost about $1.50.

The frame looked like this originally:

I love the linen and gold border so I left those alone.  Now the frame looks like this:

It is so sweet and calming.

Using spray chalkboard paint:

Dropped it in the frame and duct taped it to the back:

Done.  And she loves it.  I love it too.

The entire project took less than 30 minutes and cost less than $5.

I’ll show the finished wall soon.  We painted 2 frames hot pink, distressed them and ordered large prints of her ballet shoes and riding her horse.  Can’t wait to get those on the wall!

I’ll be back tomorrow with my favorite recipe, ever.

xoxo,

Carrie

Tuesday DIY :: Whipperberry {Pendant Light}

24 Jan

Totally loving this pendant light from Heather @ Whipperberry.

Totally something I want to do in my kitchen.

Here’s the lowdown on how Heather did it:

To begin you need to drill a hole into the bottom of your basket.  For this project my SWEET brother-in-law came over and helped.  He is BRILLIANT when it comes to anything around the home.  He used the step drill to drill the hole in the metal at the bottom of the basket…

The step drill in a fabulous tool to help you slowly and carefully create the proper size whole that you will need.  We also drilled it in a box to minimize metal shavings flying all over the garage.

  

It was amazing how slick the step drill was.  As you can see the edges were pretty rough so he filed down the edges with a round metal file…

Place the clamp connector into the hole and secure…

  

Cut the plug off the pendant light and feed the cable through the clamp.  Secure the clamp and voila… you have yourself your very own cage pendant light.

Now I don’t plan on posting about how to hardwire this to your electrical system, because quite frankly I am not an electrician.  I would recommend that you have someone who knows what they are doing hard wire your lights into your system.  I will post some suggestions on how to place your light or lights soon.  I made a set of three lights in order to create a fun pendant cluster to put over my kitchen table.

Looks pretty simple, right? I think so!

Have an awesome Tuesday, friends! Angie’s here tomorrow with a great recipe…can’t wait!

xoxo,
Carrie

DIY Feature :: PB&J Stories

17 Jan

We have a little infatuation with Pamela from PB&J Stories.  Not only is she super cute, she’s super creative.

Check out this truck:

Turned into this:

Adorable!

You can read all about the details here.  It’s such a fantastic idea…my husband has an old trunk in the garage.  I wonder if he’ll let me have it??

Hope everyone is having a wonderful week so far!  I’ll be seeing Angie this weekend in San Antonio!  I have conference there on Friday and my hubs and kiddos are coming along for the ride.  Can’t wait to her and give Angie her very belated birthday gift!  She already knows what it is, and I’m positive she’ll have some amazing projects to share using it!

xoxo,

Carrie

A “Just Because” Apron

10 Jan

My family gives each other birthday gifts and thoughtful “just because” gifts but we don’t exchange Christmas gifts anymore.  It’s not a religious belief or anything of that nature. We just decided a few years ago that exchanging Christmas gifts for so many family members was too expensive and stressful on everyone.

You see, I have a family full of procrastinators. We all waited until the last minute to shop, and then had no idea what to buy each other in a frantic rush. One of us finally had the genius idea that we forego all the stressful shopping drama and only get together at Christmas for a good time.  We still buy Christmas presents for the all the children in our family but not a single adult receives a gift.  We think it’s the best way to spend Christmas because more money and energy are spent gifting the kids. Making Christmas special for the kids is really what’s most important to us.  Now we have a fun happy carefree Christmas… and the presents aren’t missed one bit.

We celebrated Christmas this year, at my middle sister’s Becky’s house (there are three of us sisters and I’m the oldest).  It was a fantastic pig out session full of turkey, loads of creamy carb loaded delights and most importantly…Becky’s famous cornbread dressing.

It also involved washing a million dishes afterwards. When my sister and I we cleaning up, my nieces and nephews teased me about wearing an apron. Let’s just say they didn’t think it was too hip.  The fashionista I try to be could have cared less because I love aprons.  Ever since starting to wear one a few months ago, I’ve been addicted.  Aprons are a necessity for me now because they keep my clothes spot free when cooking and cleaning.

Becky joked that if she ever wore an apron, it would have to be some sort of waterproof apron because she is really messy when it comes to spilling water liquids on herself.   Waterproof?!?  That got me thinking…

I instantly knew what she needed : an oilcloth apron.

And that’s how the the idea for a special just because gift for Becky was born!

I had been saving some oilcloth for months for a purse I envisioned in my mind and wanted to attempt to make.  Since I didn’t have the hardware needed to make the purse, I decided to sacrifice the oilcloth and make Becky her much needed waterproof apron.

And BAM, here it is!

By the way, if you haven’t heard of oilcloth before it’s a fabric material that is coated on one side to make it waterproof.  The coating is oil based, hence the name “oilcloth”.  I discovered it on a vacation in Mexico where it is commonly used for tablecloths.

Here are the instructions for making your very own waterproof apron. All that’s needed are basic sewing machine skills, hot glue, clear nail polish and ribbon (two sizes: wide and narrow).

THINGS NEEDED:

  • 1 yard oilcloth
  • 7’5″ of  1.5″ width ribbon (for neck loop and waist ties)
  • 14′ of  3/8″ width ribbon (for exterior trim)
  • Clear nail polish

I started off drawing a pattern for the apron by hand.  This was probably my first ever free hand pattern and it couldn’t have been easier. An apron is basically a rectangle with concave cut outs at the top of each side. The concave cut makes the top of the apron narrower and frames the chest. My apron was approximately 27″ by 36″ (the wider section for the sides).  You can either attempt free handing or use another apron as a pattern.  (I’ll also try to figure out a way to create an apron pattern that can be download off our blog sometime in the future).

Cut the large width ribbon into the following lengths:  two 33″ pieces for waist ties and one 23″ piece for the neck loop.  I cut all the pieces with a straight edge except for one end of each waist tie which was given a slant cut shown below.  Those two slant ends will be the loose ends of the waist ties. The slant cut gives a more decorative edge and also helps with unraveling. (The straight edges will be sewn to the oilcloth which will also help against unraveling).

To further stop unraveling, I used a dab of nail polish on the ends of all the ribbon pieces, even the ones that will be sewn.  Clear polish works great but since I had a dark blue color that almost exactly matched the dark navy ribbon, I used it.

Sew the neck ribbon to both sides of the top of the apron using a 2/8″ seam.  This is necessary so that the 3/8″ decorative ribbon covers the stitching later.

After that sew each tie to the top of each side.

Next hot glue the thin ribbon to the entire perimeter of the apron.  I used a piece of paper underneath to protect my table from hot glue.

Glue flush to the oilcloth edge making sure to cover all stitch marks. Use only trace amounts of hot glue so that it doesn’t ooze under or through the ribbon (Only a tiny bit of hot glue is necessary).  I cut the ribbon at the corners to give it clean lines.

Once the entire perimeter has been covered with the trim ribbon the apron is complete.

That’s it.  Very simple and took about 45 minutes to make.

Now go make yourself one or give it as a gift just because. :)

-Angie

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