Chicken Wire Memo Board (Bye-Bye Buck)

Do you remember a few weeks back when I bought that hideous framed print of the deer from the thrift store? I re-assured you that I bought “Buck” only for the frame, remember? You were really doubting me on that one, weren’t you? Are you ready to see what I did with it? 
I transformed it into a new memo board for my craft room! I actually found out from a reader that the deer print “is from Home Interiors, circa 1980′s. It is a reprint of original John Wayne owned.” Huh, who knew? Another reader told me her father had it when she was little! Maybe I should have left it alone? Nah!

Bye-bye Buck! I removed the backing, print and glass.

Hubby measured, cut and stapled chicken wire to the back. You can find chicken wire at your local hardware/home improvement store. It’s near the fencing supplies {outdoors at Home Depot or Lowes}.

I painted the frame with Olympic Heavy Cream and sprayed the chicken wire with a combination of Rust-Oleum Satin Metallics Oil-Rubbed Bronze and Aged Copper spray paints.

Then {of course} I distressed the paint with sandpaper. I had planned on being finished at this point, but I didn’t like the way it looked against the wall.

So I measured and cut a piece of fabric and hot-glued it to the back of the frame.

Much better! But it still needed a little something. I added some rosettes {two burlap and one of the same fabric} to the top left corner. You can find my rosette tutorial here.

I added some clothespins {which I think I will darken a bit with distress ink or stain} and my new memo board is complete! If only I could say the same about my craft room!
Don’t forget to enter the Trendy Trinket giveaway

Recycling Old Frames

I recently revealed to you my new dining room! What a difference a change of color can make! I still walk by the room and am surprised at how much brighter it is. 
If you are a follower of mine, you know that I love to renovate and re-decorate but I do not like to spend a lot of money! So my dining room renovation was no exception! The only major purchase I made in my dining room was the fabric for the curtains {which I made using my existing rods} which still cost WAY less than catalog or department store window treatments. I also bought the mirror, painting and floral arrangements from Kirklands, but  they were all on sale and I used a coupon for all of them! So they were a steal! As was most of the other decor in the room. Of course there was granny’s dresser that I refinished after  my SIL gave it to me for FREE! As badly as I wanted a new dining table, it wasn’t gonna happen, so I recovered my chairs and painted my table. And, of course, my “new” china handed down to me by my grandma. So what else did I create on a budget? Check out these prints.
I bought the pair from the Humane Society Thrift Store for $6! So was I about to pay big bucks to have them  matted and framed? 

HECK NO! I had my boys 6-month photos hung in these frames in the “old” dining room. Since I went from gold to silver, the frames were useless, right? NO!

I took the photos and matte out and took those babies outside . . .

and sprayed them with my favorite Krylon color, brushed nickel. 
But, they didn’t quite look right. Too “painted” looking. 
So I brought out my walnut distressing ink and went to town. 
It did a number on my fingers, but in the end. . . .

It looked perfectly antiqued! 

I still needed the matte in the frame {to make it look professional, of course}. so I removed the gold layer that was just stuck with glue. 

I took my prints,

 and put them in the frames with the ivory mattes. 

There you have it! Six dollar, matted, framed prints. That’s just $3 each! Am I doing a little happy dance? YES, I AM! 
You don’t have to spend a lot of money to renovate a room. Spend the money where it is necessary, then look around to see what can be recycled or re-invented into something else! 

Framed Hanging Silhouette Plaques

Happy Friday! The theme for round two of American Crafter was home decor. A pretty open theme. I decided to use a little something that I made my mom for Mother’s Day for my entry this week. She loved it and I hope you will too!
Framed Hanging Silhouette Plaques

Those profile silhouettes are my two brothers and myself. A couple weeks ago in my MOPS {Mothers of Preschoolers} group we learned how to make silhouettes using sweet Kristyn’s {I met her at GNO AZ} tutorial at Lil’ Luna. Here are the ones I cut of my boys during our craft session. 
Now I can remember my parents paying big bucks to an artist at Disney World to have our silhouettes made. Of course he could just look at us and cut a perfect profile silhouette! This method is much easier {and much more friendly on your wallet}! All you need is a camera, a printer and some scissors. 
Here are the steps for cutting the silhouette:
1. Take a close up profile photograph.
2. Print the photo on regular paper to the size you wish to cut. For these I printed 5×7.
3. Cut around the profile leaving a 1-2 inch border.
4. Using a pen, trace around the profile making sure to capture small details such as lips, hair lines, etc. At this point you can also add things like bows, collars, etc.
5. Using double-sided adhesive on ONLY the outer edges that will be discarded, secure the photo to card stock so it will not slip.
6. Use sharp scissors to cut around the traced line of the photo.
Easy enough, right? 
Ok, now for the plaques:

I started with three unfinished wooden plaques {$1.99 each} from Hobby Lobby.

I stained the wood using a dark colored stain. Mine is mocha but any dark wood stain will work fine.
I used one light coat of primer and two coats of Olympic Irish Cream latex paint.
After the paint was completely dry I used a low grit sandpaper to remove areas of paint around the plaque to let the dark stain show through. You can do this as much or as little as you like. It all depends on your preference. I like a lot of wood showing through. Then I used a template to cut ovals {slightly smaller then the face of the plaque} from an old book.
 I used Mod Podge to adhere them to the wood. One coat on the wood and two coats on top was plenty. *Note: the paper did bubble up in a few places. I used a plastic scraper to gently smooth out the bubbles. 
I used the same double-sided adhesive to attach the silhouettes to the plaques.

I used a glue gun to attach ribbon to the back of each plaque for hanging.

After hanging all three silhouette plaques I enclosed them in a large, open frame made out of some scrap trim pieces we had in the garage.
And that was {one of} my gifts to my awesome mom who put up with a lot of stuff from me over the years.
Thanks mom! 
If you have a minute, head over to Nap Time Crafters to cast your vote for round two!
Pretty, pretty please!

A New (Seriously Homemade) Bulletin Board

 Yesterday I shared with you the new work table I put in Parker’s nursery in attempt to make it more of a “big boy” room without changing the decor. 
Yes, I love the table, and so does he, but I felt like it was missing something. Hmmmm, what does this little table need? Well, there definitely needs to be something to cover that big blank space between the table and the hanging plaques. But what?
I’ve got it!

The little work table needs a bulletin board! 

Problem:
I’m not going to the store, what do I have laying around the house to create something resembling a bulletin board? 
Solution:
I went up to my attic and found this empty frame. The glass had broken a while back and I just knew I could use this frame for something! {I really do have some hoarding tendencies, I think. In this case, those tendencies worked in my favor.} Good thing I saved it! And for the bulletin board, well, I just bought a box of diapers this week and the box was still in the garage!
And I still had lots of fabric leftover from the window treatments and pillows I made for his room. 
Let’s get started, shall we?!
First I measured the frame and cut two pieces from the box to fit snuggly inside the frame. I wanted to use both fabrics, so I cut one large piece for the bottom portion and a smaller one for the section at the top. 
Then I used my stapler {yep, a regular old stapler} to attach the fabric, wrapping it tightly around the edges.
I crisscrossed white grosgrain ribbon across the bottom board and secured it using a small dab of hot glue where the ribbon met the edge of the board. This secured the ribbons in place so I could flip the board over and wrap the ribbon around the edge, again using hot glue to secure it.

Here is what it looked like after I glued the ribbon in place. Something was missing. I needed buttons. I didn’t have enough matching buttons, so off to Hobby Lobby I went. Sigh. . . 
The trip to the store was worth it. The buttons are a really nice accent. I secured them using the hot glue gun. Now into the frame the fabric-covered cardboard went.
But wait, since this is going on the distressed table, I decided to use a little distress ink so they match.
And, I really wanted to add his name, so I used my best bud Cricut to cut some letters out of white card stock and just Mod Podged them to the fabric. Easy as that. 
And now Parker has a lovely bulletin board to go along with his big boy work table. 
{I took this photo when the Mod Podge was still drying. The white film has dried clear}

Now he needs to make some big boy artwork to hang on it!
And since I love telling y’all how much little I spend on my projects, this one is easy. I spent about $2 on buttons. So there you have it folks, a bulletin board for 2 bucks! 

From Thrift Store to Valentine’s Decor

A couple weeks ago I found this great thrift store right here in town. I don’t know how I hadn’t heard of it before. I found it after a Google search for thrift stores in the area. I wasn’t expecting much, but boy was I wrong. I couldn’t believe how much junk I found! It is run by the Humane Society, so the sixteen dollars and fifty cents I spent went to a good cause! 
So this is what I got. 2 amber wine goblets (50c each!), antique door handles (that were still in the package), a decanter (because I collect them), white curtain rod holders (which I panted black and used for my hanging buckets), a complete chess/Backgammon set (most of it still in original packaging) and two framed (ugly) pictures. All for $16.50. And yes, it’s probably just junk, but junk can be turned into marvelous things!
So I bought this lovely cherub picture with a gold frame because I liked the size of it. It was tall with a thin frame and I thought it would look nice (minus the picture and blue matting, of course) on my new shelves hubby put above my buffet (tutorial to come soon). 
When I removed the insides, I was surprised to find a perfect ivory matte hiding under the hideous blue one. SCORE! I found this nickel spray paint in a satin finish by Krylon. 

I sprayed two light coats on the frame and was in love with the color!
While the spray paint was drying I printed this Valentine’s subway art from While He Was Napping. It was fine just black and white, but I wanted to jazz it up just a bit so I used regular old Crayola markers to add a touch of color.

I traced around the outside and inside of the two largest words on the page. 
Then I cropped the paper with just a small 1/2 inch boarder around the words and mounted it on a piece of scrapbook paper which I bought in a pack at Target’s Dollar Spot. 

Remember that ivory matte I found underneath the ugliness? Worked perfectly in my new frame!!
It’s hard to see in the photo, but the word love is outlined in  bright-light pink.
And for less than $5, it’s a nice start to my Valentine’s shelf!

“LOVE” it!

Frames Go From Drab to Fab!

A simple DIY project to freshen up any frame!

Two 8×8 square frames purchased from Garden Ridge for $6.99 each. There is nothing wrong with these frames. They have a nice white matte and a decorative trim. But there is a very simple and very inexpensive way to make these simple frames look fabulous!

I got two yards of basic black silk ribbon from Hobby Lobby. Cost was just over $2.00. A whole roll of this ribbon wouldn’t have cost much more, but I could only find it by the yard at this store.

Tie a bow at one end of the ribbon and trim ends to suit. Cut the remaining ribbon into equal strips. You will need one more strip than you have frames. In other words, I had two frames, three strips. Fold one strip in half and snip one end at an angle to create “V” shaped edge. .
Flip your frames glass-side down. Using a hot glue gun, glue one cut ribbon to the top of the first frame with the excess ribbon hanging above the top of the frame. Glue a second ribbon strip to the bottom of the frame with the excess hanging below the frame. Do the same for the bottom of the second frame. Attach the excess ribbon from frame one to the top of frame two. *These frames are fairly light-weight. If you have a heavier frame you will need to secure the ribbon a little better.



Use your hot glue gun to attach the bow to the excess ribbon hanging from the top of frame one.  
Results. . . 


Do NOT hang your frames by the bow at the top! Use the hooks provided to hang the frames. This will take some measuring and leveling. Then after the frames are hung use a straight pin to secure the bow to the wall. Just hide it under the loop. 
I’ve done this with several frames in my house. You can often find small square frames at the dollar spot at Target that come in packs of three. Adding ribbon in between each one makes such a difference in the appearance when they are hung on the wall. Check it out. . .

Little Man #2′s room. I bought the Peter Rabbit plaques
off Ebay and attached a silk ribbon. Over his crib are three frames which all are “hung” by the same silk ribbon.
These are the frames I got at the dollar spot. They were white and I painted them red and attached a basic red ribbon.