Springified Card Catalog Vignette

Guess what?  I got my camera back.  Woot!  The camera body and both of my lenses had issues.  (Not my fault.)  Craziness.  Now that I have it back I’m able to get down to business.  Blogging without a functioning camera is very limiting, as you can imagine.  Although, I’m very proud of my iPhone 4s for standing in for this post and this post.

Anyway, I recently springified the card catalog.  I used some things from around the house, and I bought a few new things.

spring card catalog

I used the canvas of us k-i-s-s-i-n-g in some trees since, well, there are trees in the photo, and trees are green and springlike.  Although this engagement photo was taken in the fall, but you can’t tell.

spring card catalog vignette

The books were Christmas gifts– great coffee table books, by the way.  I scored the coral from Kohls for $10.  The agate slice under the coral is from a rock and gem show in Arizona.  You may have seen the photo I posted on Instagram of my treasures.  My middleman, Caitlin, from Desert Domicile was my agate slice scout.  I put those little cabinet bumper things on the bottom of this slice so it wouldn’t mark up the book.

books agate slice and coral

Sidebar: Didn’t Caitlin pick out the most gorgeous agate slices for me?  More on what I do with the rest of them later.

agate slices

I picked up the wooden crate and greenery ball thing at Home Goods with a Christmas gift card.  I already had the books and candle holder.  In case you’re wondering, which you probably aren’t, the candle is Coco Loco from Bath & Body Works.  If you know me, you know I have an obsession with coconut scented candles, reed diffusers, car fresheners… basically anything that smells like coconut.

crate with books

I didn’t get an up-close photo of the blanket basket, but I used the same quilt and knit blanket I always keep in the wire basket below the card catalog.  The thing I love about the multicolored quilt is that I can fold it so seasonal colors are showing.  For Christmas, I folded it so red and green colors were showing.  I’m pretty sure my great-grandma had this in mind when she made it decades ago.

Have you been springifying your home?
Do you have agate slices mixed into your decor?
Who loves coconut scented things as much as me?

two twenty one

Living Room Picture Ledges {Picture Ledge}

I’ve said it before, I love the vaulted ceilings in our great room, but they plague me.  It’s hard to find the right wall art or furniture to fill the large sections of wall.  Well, score one more for me because I figured out another area of wall– the space above our love seat.

A few months back I saw some picture ledges in a magazine, and I was all “Oh, I can make those.”  Then, on my last trip to Ikea I spotted these 45 inch, white Ribba picture ledges.  For $15 each.  Sold.  Sometimes it’s easier to pony up the cash than to do-it-yourself.  If I would have done this project I probably would have spent close to $30 on the wood and paint.  And not to mention the 2-3 hours of work I’d have to put into them.  There’s a little DIY cost-benefit analysis for ya.

ikea ribba picture ledge

Before we get into all the details let me show you what I was working with before.  The before and after image made me laugh because it totally looks like one of those weight loss before and afters.

I was basically trying to work with what I had.  But as you can see, it definitely wasn’t working.  To say I love the ‘after’ is a definite given.  The white ledges and frames and the colorful prints brighten up the space.  Even the throw pillows I swapped in made this small area more fresh and less dated.

living room picture ledge before and after

Securing the ledges to the wall was pretty easy.  Each ledge comes with three pre-drilled holes.  We managed to get the middle screw into a stud, and we used drywall anchors to secure the other two screws.  If you plan to install these ledges I highly recommend getting your middle screw into a stud.  I don’t think the ledges would hold if they were installed with only drywall anchors and screws.

living room picture ledges

Putting up the picture ledges was a breeze.  Styling the ledges was another thing.  You wouldn’t think it’d take much time but it did.  My need to create visual triangles can be time consuming.  So pairing my perfectionist ways and my will to include only images that have some sort of meaning to us resulted in an hour or so of switching photos around.

ribba picture ledges 1

Here’s a breakdown of all the photos I used, in case you’re interested.

1.  Sketch of Jack I created in Photoshop.
2.  Reprint of watercolor painting I picked up in St. Martin while on a cruise we took in 2008.
3.  Wedding print (where we got engaged and had our first look).
4.  I made this custom monogram on the Wedding Chicks blog.
5.  Black and white photo of a street sign– it’s where Brad and I met in Bloomington.  Well, not on a street corner– Brad’s fraternity live out house was at the corner of 18th and Lincoln, so the house was always called ’18th and Lincoln’.  Unfortunately, we don’t have a Pretty Woman love story.
6.  Wedding print (again, where we got engaged and had our first look).
7.  Wedding photo of our rings with Scrabble tiles that make out the word ‘love’.  Awww.
8.  Our wedding guest book tree.  I flippin’ love that thing.
9.  Black and white photo of Jack as a pup.

All of the frames are from Ikea.

white picture ledges

In the end, I spent less than $75 for the entire display.  I haven’t figured out how to secure everything to the wall yet.  But we’ve had this up for over a month and nothing has fallen off.  I’ll get around to the securing part eventually.  But if you happen to come over and sit on the love seat, you’ve been warned.

What do you think about the picture ledges?
Have you ever purchased a piece rather than doing it yourself?
Who watched the Downton Abbey premiere last night?  Thoughts?

Stalk away!


Card Catalog Styling

I did a little switcheroo in the living room area of our great room this past weekend.  I gave our dinky bookcase, that housed our DVDs, the boot and replaced it with the card catalog, that was living happily in the dining room area of our great room.  And so far I’m loving the bookcase eviction action plan.

I didn’t think to take a before picture, so I scoured my computer in an attempt to find a photo.  Here’s the best one I found of the bookcase… lightly decorated for Christmas 2009, our first Christmas in this house.  Doesn’t it look sad and alone?  I’m happy to report that the bookcase is enjoying its new home in our closet, where it’s housing my shoes.  (Can you spot the lazy dog?)

The size of the card catalog is perfect for this area of our living room.  We have vaulted ceilings in our great room, so the card catalog provides good height.  It’s going to be hard to take down this set up when I get around to redesigning the card catalog, but I’m already planning the card catalog’s replacement in this space.

Most of you know that I scored the card catalog for $85 from Craigslist (read about that here and here).  I also purchased the blue chair from someone off Craigslist for $40 almost two years ago– a little pricey, but it’s a great chair and was barely used.  Buying from old people has its benefits:  they take care of their stuff.  I stole the chevron pillow (purchased from Home Goods earlier this year) from our guest bedroom.

I adopted this adorable elephant from Home Goods yesterday.  His name is Percy.  He was free to me because I used a gift card, but he came with an $8 price tag in case you’re wondering.  The Readers Digest book was a Goodwill Outlet find from yesterday ($.69). The pink and white book is a thrift store book I covered with fabric leftover from my fabric covered message board.



I’m calling the white wire basket the Goodwill Outlet score of the month.  I came across 10 The Container Store elfa wire baskets (5 tall and 5 short) at the GW Outlet yesterday.  Score.  I brought home 5 tall and 3 short (two of the short baskets were too rusty for my liking).  The tall baskets were about $1.75 each.  My original plan was to use them in the garage, but I think I’ll put them to use in our master closet.
I filled one of the tall wire baskets with my great-grandmother’s quilt and the afghan my great aunt knitted for Brad and me.  It’s the softest blanket ever.  I have to fight to keep Jack off it when I use it.


Kroger keeps spoiling me with $.50 tulips.  Seriously, who turns down half a dozen tulips for two quarters?  I put these beauties in one of my thrifted hobnail milk glass vase.  I may or may not have three of these same exact vases.



What do you think of the new set up?
Isn’t Percy adorable?  Love that little guy.
Could you say no to fifty cent tulips?

How to Make Curtains {DIY}

My mom and step-dad came to town for a visit two weeks ago.  The purpose of their visit?  So my mom and I could play curtain sweat shop.  I mean, doesn’t everyone put their parents to work when said parents drive 3 hours to spend quality time with their dear offspring?

Great tutorial on how to make curtains!

This whole process started when I saw Kim’s dining room curtains.  Who knew it was so easy (and cost effective) to make your own curtains?  Kim’s curtains led me to Meredith’s tutorial on how to make curtains.

So in mid-June when I came across a fabric that I loved (54″ Waverly Lovely Lattice Lagoon), I knew I had to make curtains for our snoozefest of a living room.  Isn’t it dreamy?

I called my mom at 9:30PM on a Saturday night.  She was sleeping.  But I was sitting at home on my laptop on a Saturday night so I guess that’s no better.  We chatted on the phone about how much yardage I would need to buy.  At one point, she disagreed with me and I remember saying, “Bonnie, you’re not understanding my vision.”  To which she said, “I guess I don’t, Chelsea Ann”.  Ahh, mother-daughter relationships.

I purchased 10.5 yards for $98.  Tip: Always search for a coupon code before purchasing.  That’s how I saved $17.  Boom.

OK, back to the slave labor.  

We cut four 95 inch panels.  Then we got to work folding over the length-wise edges and sewing them.  We didn’t bother cutting off the edges because 1. no one sees them and 2. it won’t fray, so why bother?

We did about a 4 inch hem at the top.

And about a 5 inch hem at the bottom.

We hung the curtain panels with ribbon that I hot glued on.  Sounds kind of crazy, doesn’t it?  We used 1 1/2 inch x 3 inch and 5/8 inch x 3 inch ribbon, spaced about 4-5 inches apart.  I used a lighter to melt the edges and keep them from fraying.  The thicker strips were used in the middle, while the thinner strips on the ends.  Why’d we do that?  Well, I realized that if we used the thicker ribbon on the ends it would look a little wonkier once we got the curtains up on the rods.

Now, this project didn’t go without some snags.  First, my sewing machine desperately needs to be serviced.  Secondly, the fabric was printed crooked.  This drove my Type A self bonkers.  

The tape measure in the photo is straight.  The fabric, however, is not.

But we worked it out, and you can’t tell that it’s crooked now that they’re hung.

I love a good before and after so here’s the before.

And the after.

Can I just say that I HATE photographing our living room?  I probably spent 3 hours (I wish I was kidding) trying to photograph the dresser turned TV stand.  There’s something about the light that I just can’t get.  I’m also going to blame my 7 year old DSLR.  Mama needs a new camera.  I’m talking to you, Santa.

My step-dad thought I was crazy for putting curtains on our backdoor.  He kept saying, “I’ve never seen curtains on a backdoor”.  To which I replied that I’m a visionary, and I’m going to start a trend.  I also may have gone on and on about my love of symmetry.

The door curtains have worked out fine.  We just have to remember to move them out of the way when we open and close the door.

Because I’m all about transparency, here’s the breakdown of how much cheddar I dropped on this project.

Fabric: $98… Fabric.com (also found here)
Curtain rods: $22… Target
Ribbon:  $3… JoAnn Fabric– I used 50% off coupons
Thread: $0… already had it
TOTAL:  $123
Not bad, right?


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