June 28, 2011

Baby Bow Ribbon Board

This board here is for one of my closest cousins, Lizzie. She's a mommy-to-be to a girl due sometime in July. We took a trip to Wally World and she picked out the fabrics to match the little one's room. Frame: 4 Bucks!!! All we needed was half a yard, I suppose, but I bought a yard for another $4.

It's a work in progress, especially since upon showing the board, my dear father said it was crooked. I stapled that fabric in the back to foam core board which is something you can get just about anywhere, it's mostly used for science projects. I used about a hundred staples doing this board. The more, the stabler. I stapled more of the striped ribbon on top of the frame for hanging.

It's a mess in the back and there's possibly some loose staples so I'm covering the back with extra fabric to secure it all together.

What I learned:

  • Never show papi anything! He WILL find something wrong.

  • Once an imperfection is pointed out, I will never stop noticing it and therefore will have to do it again.

  • Using striped or polkadotted fabrics is less forgiving if it's not on entirely straight.

  • The more quilt batting, the more plush your board will be but the harder to staple.

  • Cardboard is another alternative or can be added to the mix for a sturdier board.

  • Better to staple on the ugly green carpet than on the desk and making holes into said desk.

  • The wood of the frame was harder that what I've used in the past so make sure you can adjust the pressure to the staple gun.

June 27, 2011

Driving my roommate crazy

Next to our sink in the little counterspace my roommate and I have, there's a collection of washed jars. Spaghetti jars, pickle jars, jam jars, you name it, I've washed it. I've left them there on our counter to dry. After weeks of "drying", my roommate had enough.

Erika! What are doing with all of these jars?! If you don't do something with these, I'm gonna throw them away!

La Tati didn't throw them away, thankfully, and she gave me the opportunity to show her what I wanted to do. I have a patio that's being under utilized. It's actually a storage area for La Tati's broken down entertainment center. It looks something like this...

Except it's way more faded, no glass attached, it's partly warped and it doesn't accomodate the tv she purchased for our living room. It also bulked up our living room. I was able to find another piece for that area and this big monster is now sitting in the back waiting for someone to use it again.

We thought of using Craiglist to sell it but I think La Tati wants to keep for future use. It's like her blanky, I guess. So it's been collecting dust in that patio of ours, looking more and more pathetic than the day before. Out of sight, out of mind, hidden behind the blinds.

But where there's a decrepit piece of furniture, lies opportunity. So, it will display all these recycled jars that I've turned into lanterns. Like everything I do, it's a work in progress and lets just hope it doesn't drive the roomy too crazy.

When one becomes two.

I'm in shock. If I hadn't been so distracted, I would have caught on to the hints.

I'm going to be an aunt.

I still can't believe it. My brother and my roommate, who happened to be dating for the past two and a half years, are preparing for a dramatic lifestyle change in the next nine months. You're joking right? I asked my brother, he's four years my junior and still working to get his college degree.

Here's the crazy part....she's the second roommate of mine to soon bear a child. We always joked about how she could be next for the mere fact that I live with her.

If you and Tito move in together, even HE might get pregnant, said one of the other relatives that my brother called to tell the good news. My parents, my sister and I huddled around him as he called his closest family and friends. We caught everyone's reactions through the speakerphone. Each reaction was different but most thought it was a joke at first. One cousin wants to see a sonogram and another sounds like he won the lottery. It was at times bittersweet moment, so when are you gonna marry her, asked an uncle representing the old school and the traditional but even my mother supports my brother doing the right thing on his time. I feel the same way.

I'm just proud that he's planning to be there for her and that now I can say that my roommate will also be my family. I'm praying for them. I know I'll have some spoiling to do. Afterall what are aunties for.

June 23, 2011

My Inner Clairee Belcher

What ever happened to....

...If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all?

Oh, I know! Steel Magnolias came along and so did Lil' Miss Clairee Belcher. She told another character in that Louisiana drawl:

If you can't find anything good to say about anybody, come sit by me.

I think we all have inner Clairee Belchers. Sometimes they entertain and other times well...they're blunt and by blunt I mean hurtful and unintentionally nasty.

I'm guilty of not always taming the Clairee Belcher inside of me and I've gotten myself in trouble. Not once but multiple times with people. The people who really know me though, get over it. It's just Erika being Erika. Don't tell Erika if you want to keep it a secret. That's why I don't tell you things! Sometimes they don't. I'm never telling you anything ever again.

It's a drug I tell you. A DRUG! I majored in journalism for that feeling of wanting to be the first to know. A long time ago, I've realized I have much more important things to do, like a jewelry board, or actual work, but then here comes somebody in the form of my mother or one of my other 30 relatives and it's all: Go ahead, Erika, take a hit. Take a puff. That's it. Easy does it. Don't inhale. Ugh!

You know what's the worst kind of gossip...the Facebook kind. Yep that's right. I said it, Facebook. The ultimate crack of gossip. When will they ever learn?

If you have nothing nice to say, don't put it on Facebook.

That's what the new rule should be, think about it people. You're embarrasing your loved ones and possibly hurting them and anyone else who cares for that person.

Now I understand freedom of speech. If I hadn't, I would have never graduated from college. But do you really have to take it that far? Even when Clairee Belcher is on full force, she still has some decorum and did her best to act like a lady and never would she take it so far as to demean a person's worth. If she did, she would actually display some mea culpa.

So if you're out there in Facebooklandia, just ask yourself. What would Clairee do?

If there's anybody out there that I've hurt. I just want to say sorry. It wasn't my intention. I'm not perfect and if you're really my friend, you'll forgive me. If you don't, then I'm not really losing a friend, now am I?

More Steel Magnolia quotes here.

June 20, 2011

Elisa and the Green Room Part Deux

I knew it was going to be a long day when I open the door to my sister's room and see this:

Elisa "organized" her things in garbage bags and she was still sorting through her laundry when I arrived. I wasn forbidden to post this picture showing the laundry. Muahaha.

Elisa, have the room ready to paint. At least have all of the clothes and the stuff on the shelves out of the way so I can help you with moving the furniture. Pfft. That didn't happen.

I'm gonna miss my red room. But looking at this picture made me realize how the color made it look like a dungeon instead of a room.

Everything on the shelves were to be removed. Pfft. Didn't happen. I came with some boxes just in case. We put them to use. Eventually the room was ready. Kind of.

The carpet that we shall not speak of.

I only bought a gallon of paint thinking it was all I needed for this room. I used primer and paint together and the red was still pretty evident, also evident was that we were going to need another gallon.

We also had the daunting task of painting the edges. There's a million edges in this room and it took most of Day 2 to paint it.

Her bureau was one of two pieces of furniture that we had to work around. Eventually we moved it out because we kept bumping into it. As we painted the wall we got more and more excited. It was exactly what my sister wanted.

This is Elisa's satisfied face. The color is called sweet midori and after we painted, we checked the site to see how close we matched to the color. It was an exact match. Woohoo. Too bad my camera doesn't do a good job of showing that. Do not look at the carpet....imagine that it's not there.

Coming up:

How we made her doors pop.

June 14, 2011

Headboard Inspiration

I love this project, so much that I started following hodge:podge. Seriously considering doing something like this for my sister's room. I'll have to borrow some tools to do this but it's possible and way affordable than what being sold in retail. Build something for what...$50 - $100 depending on what materials you decide to use or buying something that will cost me 10 times more than that.

Here's a West Elm Headboard that costs over $500:

Target has headboards too:
That one costs $249.00 for a full-size bed. Target also has inflatable headboards and as much as I appreciate spending $119 on one of these lovelies:

I can also imagine little sister or one of her friends play-fighting or jumping around and pop! no more headboard.

So I really think making a headboard is a lot more economical.

Joanne's How To:

HGTV How To:

SAS Interiors:

Silver Lining:

Wonderful work and what I like most about it is that headboard can really show off the owner's personality and my sister has lots of that.

June 13, 2011

Jewelry Organizing Update

I love jewelry. Not the expensive stuff either, they don't make the type of statements I'm trying to make. I like the big stuff. The multi-chained necklaces and the loop earrings that are so large that I could use as bracelets. Those pieces are also the little monsters that gets tangled with the delicate stuff that I've been given, like this beautiful necklace my cousin presented to me when I was a bridesmaid for her wedding.

It's so easy to express yourself with you jewelry:

I want to be prissy today, so I'll grab a long strand of pearls and some pearl studs.

I want to be ghetto fab, what the cousins call "103rd", just give me the door-knocker earrings and the silver chain with the studded-cross pendant attached.

I want to be a club queen a la Snooki. Give me a five-strand, multi-chain necklace with my favorite pair of chandelier earrings and add some over-sized bangles just to accomplish the over-the-topness that I'm looking for.

I bet I can make each statement with the same basic, black, tank top and a pencil skirt.

I don't have to try on jewelry. As long as it works, I can buy it. No trying it on in an icky fitting room where my barefeet have to touch the same floor that other bare feet have touched.

My friends know me well when it comes to my accessories, because my birthday was really good this year. So good that my top-drawer of my dresser was ready to implode.

And so I needed some solutions.

I made a jewelry organizer to go in my dresser drawer:

I used foam board to create boxes of varying sizes. There's grid lines on the board so it was easy cut straight but even so, using an X-acto blade isn't the most reliable tool.

The zebra-print duct tape- yes, duct tape - was used to hide some of those imperfections. For the bottoms, I used a poster board that had all these signatures that wished me a happy birthday. After a few months it was taking up space but I still wanted to remember the day some how.

I hot glued the bottoms and to make sure everything was secured, I modge podged all of the corners and the insides.

I also made a jewelry board:

This frame involved layers of foam board, cardboard and embroidery canvas. I used a staple gun to put it all together. Punched some holes with a Philips screwdriver, dad would be so proud.

Dresser knobs from Hobby Lobby. Here's more ideas of what you can do with their vast collection of dresser knobs.

After looking at my board for a couple weeks, it looked pretty empty up top, so I added these hooks to fill some of the space:

Now I can display my favorite chandelier earrings. :D

What I learned:
-Do not use the X-acto blade on your wooden table, that what cutting boards are for.
-Modge Podge will make poster board warp but at least it's more durable
- Bristle brushes tend to shed when using Modge Podge
-Using a nail to make a hole helped me screw in the hooks a whole lot easier.
-If you're in desperate need of a hammer and dad or the boyfriend isn't around to judge you, the edge of a monkey wrench works really well.

June 10, 2011

...And then this happens...

I was at work, drawing out a spending plan so that I can save money. I worked on it for hours. My goal is to save up enough funds to start house hunting in six months but no matter how much I crunched the numbers. Six months was not cutting it.

I even talked to my co-workers about it...you might as well just borrow from your parents. No way! The point of getting a place is to show that I'm independent and that I can do it on my own. You know, the American Dream. Is looking pretty in a corner an option? No. But why don't you sell some of your crafts or work for a restaurant? Not a bad idea but I think I'm pretty slow at both creating and serving.

Well I decide to go home after a long day of....well after a long day and then....

...this happens. Even though the other driver was almost at a complete stop in a really bad spot in the curve of a highway merge, I'm at fault.

I know this especially after the lecture that the Geico representative gave me about how I need to be aware of my surroundings at all times and that you never know when a small child is chasing after a ball and . (On a Highway Merger?)

It took all effort to not cuss her out. I had to be lady-like. I can understand how you might think this was my fault, so can you please just tell me what are the next steps that I need to take.

Aware of my surroundings...seriously you're weren't there! You didn't see what happened to me so get off your high horse and tell me what the @#$k I need to do, gah!!! (That's what I didn't say.)

I have to pay a $1000 deductible to get all the repairs done. I'm crossing my fingers that the repairs are a little more affordable but I'm not getting my hopes up. Bumper has a hole, under carriage cover is loose, a side panel bent and that's what I know for now.

What was the first thing I did after I got everything situated with the insurance company? Called my dad. After all these years, and what do I do? I call Papi. Breathe, nena, breathe. He laughed at my attempt to breathe through my sobbing. His laughing made me laugh and finally I was able to relax. If you need help, we'll help you, so relax.

I have yet to relax- completely. How am I supposed to relax when the day before I thought I would be able to find a home. I even have a pre-qualification letter just to prove it and I even called my dad about it and he was shocked. I still could save up in six months but I take this accident as a sign. I need to save more than just a minimum for the house hunt but I also need to save up for a rainy day. Evidently, especially in Jacksonville, when it rains it pours.

So my dream is going to take a little bit longer to come to frution.

June 8, 2011

Elisa and the Green Room

This is my lovely sister....

Take note of the neon striped shirt she's wearing under her cardigan and well...how can you not notice her homemade sunglasses.

She likes the colors that are blindingly bright. She also likes to be unique. And now she wants to paint her bedroom. Elisa, why not just a pastel color for your room. Or something a little muted so you can match more stuff. How about a baby purple or a mint.

Nope. Elisa is a take all or nothing kind of girl. She wants neon green. She wants the type of green that will scare her parents away from of her room from how bright her room is. And she wants me to be her accomplice.

It all started when she decided to move into my room. She claimed it soon after I left home to live in my own place back in 2008. (Was it 2008?) Well since then she's been bugging me. You owe me, I helped you and now you need to help me. She was, what...10? 11? She painted the trimming to my walls and it wasn't all of the trimming, no 10-year-old has that length of attention span and hers is especially short. Maybe she did help me with a few other things but I did most of the grunt work.

I gave in last month. I'm taking two days off next week to work on her room. Did I tell you? I have to pay for the paint. Talk about paying interest.

She is inspired by a room that I found on this site. I love Rate My Space, I've found a lot of inspiration from the site and I can learn from other people's mistakes as well. Plenty of wall paper nightmares if you look hard enough. It helps in really looking for what you can't express in words.

Elisa had a hard time explaining what she wanted so I'd send her a bajillion pictures of rooms until she saw this one:

Here's the challenge. Her carpet...hunter green. Her room...not this big. Her furnishings also don't match. That's the curse of being the youngest. Lots of hand me downs that don't coordinate most of the time. She also has limited placement options when it comes to her bed because she has a built-in desk and there's more corners than walls in that room.

Highly doubt we can fit a chair in this room. Possibly the wire dress but that's pushing it.

Did I mention the carpet is green? I'm hoping she can practice her daddy's little girl face and convince dad to get a rug like this. Because big sis can't afford carpet.

June 7, 2011

A little review of what I've done so far...

My facebook friends probably thought I was a nerd with all of my projects. Some commented that they liked what I was doing and others like my dad would post that I have THAT much time on my hands that I should should go help him rake or clean out the garage.

Here's some of the things I've posted on facebook or texted friends about. Imagine getting one of those texts at midnight.

This is when I knew that I needed to start a blog. I was inspired by quite a few contributors on CraftGawker.

Those are dresser knobs from Hobby Lobby. I do plan on using more of those suckers later on.

This fan (not the best pic but just go with it) was actually a plain white fan given away to me by a good friend of mine who had bought another fan on sale. Fell in love with metalic acrylic paint after this project.

Here's some ornaments that I've made. They were white ceramic and about 30 cents each when I bought them. The tradition to paint ornaments and ceramics go back to my maternal grandmother. Roomy and I did these...I voluntold her to help me with it.

I'm a ribbon curler, could spend hours doing it. I was so proud of the fact that I was able to wrap this cylinder that I had to put it on facebook. Everybody wondered whowas the reciever of this present. It was for the mister. It was Jaguar shirt. (He's a Houston Texans fan, boo!) That's also the same paper I used for the decorative plates in the kitchen.

Yes, my Christmas theme was red, black and zebra. That color combination has been an obssession of mine and of my roommate's. My room and my bathroom are probably the only places that don't have the color scheme.

And yes, that's a post-it. When you're on phone conferences all day, you tend to do things to stay awake...I took notes of course, just not on this post-it.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

June 6, 2011

Avonlea Antique Mall

I recently went to this office complex that was converted to an antique mall. Never knew it existed but I'm pretty sure I've passed it a hundred times.

I can only assume the previous owner to these statues visited Japan in one point their lives. I love how unique each statue is. Hope they get to stay together.

I picture this repainted either white or yellow. Amazing shapes and lines.

I was drawn to birdcages and chandeliers.

One of the other chandeliers that I was drawn to. Definitely a spray paint project. Don't think all those colors would work with my decor.

This looks like a dinner room worthy chandelier. Very light and clean. Too bad the ceiling is too low in my apartment.

One of the many corridors of this mall. Lots of stuff to scan through before I was drawn to something else.

Things I've learned:
- Wear sneakers!
- Antiques are more expensive than thrift stores but there's a lot of mark downs if I look hard enough to find them.
- 30 minutes is not enough time to see everything
- inspiration is around every corner
- it can get a bit creepy especially with all the dolls staring at me