March 29, 2013

DIY Monogrammed Easter Eggs

Last night I made these adorable monogrammed Easter eggs in about an hour.  I will show you how you can make them too...



First you must start with hard boiled eggs that are dry and around room temperature.

I cut vinyl stickers on my Cricut Electronic Cutting Machine
in 1" and 2" heights.  I did mostly letters plus a few fun shapes.  If you don't have a cutter, you could also buy letter stickers at a craft store. 



I put my stickers onto the hard boiled eggs.  I made sure they were adhered well.  The stickers are hard to see in the picture below, so I outlined the "D" so you could see one of them clearly.


I purchased a $2.00 Paas Easter Egg Coloring Kit and that is all I used to color them.

I put an egg into each color and waited just a couple of minutes for the color to take.


I used the egg carton to space the eggs out while they dried.


I waited about a half an our for the color to completely dry and then I removed the stickers.




I love the finished results... Simple and beautiful colored eggs with wonderful charm and character!




I wish you and yours a wonderful and blessed Easter!

Diana

March 25, 2013

Flea Market Fun Finds - Look What I Found


We hadn't been to our local flea market in several weeks.  I'm so glad that yesterday morning we decided to make a trip to see what we could find.  I found two vintage beauties... and the amazing part is I spent only $35.  It was only ten dollars for the old wood and gesso frame and $25 for the dresser.  I believe they are both antiques.  They both need a little TLC, but I got them for a steal!


The frame has beautiful ornate details.  It is currently painted an ugly high gloss white and some of the antique gesso is chipped off.  I will give this beauty a makeover by painting it Heirloom White (with a satin finish) and then give it an antique glaze to enhance all of the details.


I haven't decided exactly what I will do with the dresser yet.  I have a few ideas, but I'm thinking I might try something new with this one.  I usually go for a shabby cottage white (safe), but I'm thinking of maybe putting some color on this one.  Possibly aqua :) 


I love shopping at flea markets!  You never know what you will find and there are so many great deals to be found :)

Until next time,
Happy decorating!

Diana


March 19, 2013

Decorating With Architectural Salvage Finds


I love architectural salvage yards and stores!!!  It always amazes me how much beauty is in so many of the old pieces I see there. Something like an old iron gate or vintage window can be used a beautiful piece of wall art.  An old corbel or a iron clawfoot from a vintage tub can be used as a bookend or as a decorative piece on a shelf. As I look through all the great stuff the ideas are endless! Each item has a ton of character, age and tells a story.  If you haven't been to an architectural salvage store yet, check the yellow pages or a local directory to find one in your neighborhood... Also, keep in mind that shopping salvaged items is considered "green" because you are repurposing (reusing) vintage items.

Flea markets are another great way to find vintage pieces and often great prices.. but at an Architectural Salvage store you get to see a large collection of beautiful and unique items all in one location.



My favorite architectural shop in Southern California is Architectural Salvage of San Diego.  It is located in downtown San Diego. It is an easy visit since it is located just off of the 5 freeway near downtown. The above photo is from their store.


I like this nicely detailed old radiator cover. With this piece I can imagine putting a wood top on it and using it as an entry hall table.  It would be so stunning!  It could also be used in a dining room as a small serving table.  If you were decorating a small space, you could use a glass table top.  The glass wouldn't feel as heavy in the room since you would be able to see through the glass to all of the beautiful scroll details. Vintage and antique radiator covers are often found made of metal or iron usually with a nice patina or painted with aged chippy paint (great for the shabby cottage chic look).  The aged look adds so much character. Just wire bush off any loose paint or debri and then I recommend sealing old items with a clear polyurathane.

Old barn doors..  I love them! Some would look at these and think they are junk... but they make great interior barn style sliding doors... and they add so much charm!  Use your imagination and take risks in decorating. It can be so much fun...
 
Shopping Architectural Salvage can give you ideas for things you may never think of when shopping your local home decor or hardware store. Just be willing to open up your mind and think outside the box. There are many unique treasures to be found.  Most vintage items can be mixed into any decorating style.  Mixing old with new is in!
 
Until next time,
Happy decorating!

Diana

March 12, 2013

Simple, Guilt Free Oatmeal Muffin Recipe




Oatmeal Muffins - Making it a healthy treat!!!


In my experience, healthy and gluten free treats are usually pretty boring and somewhat tasteless too!  Today my daughter wanted me to trust her and give her recipe a try... And wow!  These are wonderful :)
  
These muffins are amazing, simple and a totally guilt free treat that you, your kids and everyone will love!!!


Recipe:

Healthy Oatmeal Muffins

Ingredients:

3-4 Ripe Bananas
1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
2 Eggs
1 tbsp. Baking Powder
3 cups Oats
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
3 tsp. Cinnamon

(Optional) Fruits you can add to the mix:


1) Apples and Cinnamon
2) Banana and Pecans
3) Blueberries

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 F.  

Smash the bananas in a medium sized mixing bowl with a fork, until the lumps are mostly gone.
Then add the rest of the ingredients and stir together with your fork.  (Note: if desired, you can substitute the almond milk for your milk of choice).

At this point, this is your base. You could essentially add whatever fruit or mix in that you want (i.e. Fruit, Chocolate Chips, Peanut Butter, Raisins, etc.) 


Today, we chose to keep it healthy and make three different muffins... Apple Cinnamon, Banana Nut and Blueberry.

After we mixed together the base, we split the mix into three different bowls. From this point, we added in the additional optional ingredients to make our favorite muffins.  The amount of fruit or nuts you add at this point is at your discretion.  It just depends on your preference.



Once you have everything mixed in, you are ready to put the mixture into your paper baking cups in your muffin tin.



Bake for 20 minutes in oven that has been preheated to 375F.   Remove from oven and let the muffins cool for about 10 minutes.


Now it's time to enjoy your healthy sweet treat, so yummy and totally guilt free!!  

My daughter Britney is a genius...  These are awesome!

Happy eating...

Diana

March 5, 2013

Flea Market Mirror Makeover (Before & After)


I found two mirrors at our local flea market (swap meet) for a total price of $8 ($3 and $5).  The frames are both made from some sort of poured plastic mold.  Vintage frames made from a mixture of plastic and resin are a common find at flea markets, yard sales and thrift stores.  You can find upcycled painted versions of these on eBay, Etsy and in vintage/antique stores for anywhere from $25 to $200.  I definitely prefer the budget (cheap and before paint) versions and then painting them myself!  Many of the vintage plastic frame mirrors I have come across were made by Syroco, Burwood and Homeco.  Most of them from the 70's and 80's, but some do date back even further.

These two mirrors are each a good size.  The larger one measures approximately 32" tall x 18" wide.  In their gold finishes they look cheap and plastic!  However, don't ever let plastic stop you from buying.  Remember, a can of spray paint can transform just about anything!  I've said it many times, I love what you can do with a few dollars and a little bit of paint.  It took me awhile to decide what color I wanted to paint them... But I decided to go with a flat black.  I've never done black on accessories before and I decided I wanted to do a black and white mirror and photo wall up our stairwell, so black it was.  Below is a picture of the mirrors as found.  The gold on both of these looks way better in the picture than it actually did in person.  They both were really ugly!!! 


  

Yesterday I removed the backs from the mirrors and separated the frames from them for easy painting. I gave them two coats of spray paint and allowed them to dry.  After the spray paint was dry (overnight), I distressed a little on the edging and details with a sandpaper sponge block.  Any sandpaper would work.  I just happen to like working with the sponge type because they are easy to hold.  You can get these sanding blocks at most home improvement stores for $3 or $4.



As the above photo says, this is just the start of my vintage mirror and black and white photo collage wall.  I have a few more mirrors and vintage frames to paint and then I need to find a few photos that I want to display.  This wall is large and it will be a work in progress for awhile, but I will share my progress with you.  I wasn't able to get good close up pictures of the mirrors on the wall.  However, as the project continues I will work on getting better close ups of them.

Until next time,
Happy decorating :)

Diana


Sharing at:
Domestically Speaking - Power of Paint Party

March 4, 2013

So Many Projects - So Little Time

Today I set out to makeover a couple of vintage mirrors that I found at the flea market awhile back.  I was all excited about getting a project started and finished today.  I even shared a comment on my Facebook blog page that said I was working on a flea market makeover and planned on having it posted by tonight.  


So why does it seem that other things always come up and get in the way, making it impossible to finish a project in a timely manner?  Everything takes longer than I ever expect it to!  I'm not complaining, it just seems like I have so many projects and yet so little time.  It wasn't even that big of a project... It should have been easy to accomplish this little task.  But, nope... It's not finished yet.
 
I was at home getting started on my project when just after 10:30 a.m. I heard the garage door opening.  On any other day, I don't hear the garage open until 5:30 or 6:00 p.m.  My poor hubby came home from work totally sick... with a fever, hacking up a lung (or two).  Poor thing sounds horrible, he looks horrible and of course, he feels horrible.  It's definitely upper respiratory.  His breathing is a bit labored and the constant coughing just won't stop.  

I finally helped him get settled.  Gave him some Tylenol and another medication with cough suppressant and expectorant.  And he actually managed to fall asleep for awhile.  Okay, good.... Now back to my project.

I had taken apart my two vintage mirrors.  The frames are both a plastic molded frame that had a back screwed on... so it was easy to remove the backing and the mirror, separating the frames from the mirrors for easy painting.  This way is so much easier than taping off the mirrors.  I then cleaned the frames removing all of the dirt and dust.  I used a dry paint brush to remove dust from the crevices.  Then just used a damp rag to wipe them down. 

Out to my garage/shop area and into my homemade paint booth.  If you haven't seen my paint booth, you can see it and read how we made it HERE.  Yeah, I love to paint!  Coat number one, then let it dry... an hour later a second coat of paint.  Tip: doing two thinner coats of paint and allowing it to dry in between helps to prevent any drips from occurring.  
 
This is where the project took a halt.  I ended my hubby to the doctors around 2:30 and did not get home until almost 6:00.   Needless to say, the project will not be complete until tomorrow.  Even if I finished it tonight, I would not be able to get good pictures since it's too dark.  Pictures in daylight are always better!

So tomorrow, God willing, I will get my finished mirrors put back together, hung on the wall and hopefully get good pictures of them to share with all of you.  What color will they be?  You'll just have to wait and see :)

Until then...
Happy decorating!

Diana