Forward Facing Bookshelves

Oscar loves books (Almost as much as I love a good Ikea hack.) Every night he goes around his room picking up book after book and putting them on our lap to read. We know that it is likely a stall tactic, not wanting to go to bed, but we can't help but find it really cute. Over the last week I made some forward facing bookshelves out of Ikea Spice Racks for his room. I simply sprayed them white and ta-da! They were done.  The two shelves hide behind his door in his room and he can now pick out his own as the shelves are at his height.

Originally seen on Mon Petit Amour Blog, Idea from Domestic Simplicity


Don't Throw Your Old Pillow Cases Away! Another Easy Pillow Project.

We recently bought a new bed that was a different size than our old one.  I was getting all of the old sheets together to give away when I found a set in the back of the linen closet that was made of cotton and cream colored.  Hmmm, I am always on the lookout for fabrics to make pillows with and love that a pillow case has a tight weave to take an iron on transfer really well.

I started by ironing the end of the pillow case really well.  (yes, the picture above is before I ironed it!)  :)  I then put a board inside of the pillow case so both sides weren't touching.

I printed off this cute bike graphic that I purchased for $1 from Graphique on


**** Please note that if you are trying to transfer a graphic with writing on it, be sure to FLIP the image in Picnik or other program before copying it.  (In Picnik, it's in the ROTATE tab).

I used my trusty Jolee's Easy Image Transfer sheets (purchased at Michael's)  and my inkjet printer. 

I cut pretty close to the image so there wasn't a lot of white edging showing.  I ironed it on and let it cool completely before peeling off the backing.


I used an Ikea pillow insert (the long, skinny one that's about 20"x14") that I had on hand.  I think the inserts are about $6 at Ikea.

I cut the open edge of the pillowcase to the size of the pillow insert and only had to sew one side.  

And here's the finished project:

This was such an easy project and cost me almost nothing!

I am excited to use the other pillow cases and the fabric from the sheets to make some more things.

Thanks so much for coming by!


 I am linking up to the following parties:

 French Country Cottage's Feathered Nest Friday
Savvy Southern Style's Wow Us Wednesday
You Are Talking Too Much's First Link Party
My Romantic Home's Show & Tell Friday
Unexpected Elegance's Transfer Link Party


Our Dining Room Table is home for....

On the heels of the last post, our Dining Room table has been a hangout for a number of frames and art waiting to find a home on our walls.

Previously all the frames were in hiding spots, but in an act of desperation to get some colour on the walls, I pulled them all out and placed the growing collection on the table. I thought maybe seeing them all together will help me come up with a vision. Not yet. But getting there. ;)


Ikea Frames Up...Art next

Well, we're closer to having art....We finally hung some frames in our living room. Since January we debated hanging 1 huge print [see post] but in the end, I liked the idea of having the relief and having 2 frames. I'm trying to figure out what to put in them. What I do know is the Ikea matting is coming out and I'm going to cut a new mat. [I find Ikea matting is yellow] Hopefully I'll tackle that this week. xo Lindsay

Re-caulking Your Shower

If you ask any local handyman or contractor how often you should re-caulk your shower and tub, most will say about every three to five years however, some people choose to make this a yearly task. It’s important to remove old caulk because moisture can get inside your wall which in turn can cause mildew and even damage sheetrock.

If you decide to take on this project yourself, here are the steps to take when replacing the caulk:

Clean the area: Use a bathroom cleanser/soap scum remover to pre-clean the area. Cut or scrape away old caulk with a knife or razor blade. It should peel off easily. To soften stubborn and/or dried caulk use commercial caulk remover or a hairdryer to warm the caulk. This will allow you to scrape it away more easily. You can also use a heat gun however, be careful not to overheat any particular area of the bathtub or shower stall. Work your way around the edge of the tub or shower, softening and then removing the caulk with your razor, screwdriver or knife. Note: New silicone caulk will not bond to old silicone caulk; therefore it is important that the seam area be cleaned thoroughly prior to caulking.

Check for mildew: Vacuum up remaining bits of caulk and clean the seams with rubbing alcohol to remove leftover caulk, soap scum, and other materials that accumulate in the shower’s corners. Check to see if there is mildew growing behind the caulk. If so, use a mildew killer or a mixture of bleach and water to get rid of it. Let the area dry thoroughly (24 to 36 hours) before you start re-caulking. Note: Make sure you use a caulk meant for bathroom applications. Usually these types of caulk are mildew resistant.

Caulking: Place strips of masking tape approximately 1/8 inch from the seam to prevent caulk from spilling over onto tile or walls. Place the caulk in the caulk gun and cut off the container’s tip with scissors (using a caulking gun is much easier to use the caulk you have to squeeze out like toothpaste; you’ll have more control over where the caulk is going). Depress the caulk gun’s trigger and run the caulk along the seam in a smooth, steady motion, leaving a thin bead of caulk which covers the seam completely. Make sure you put on enough or it will not provide complete protection. As you dispense the caulk, use this handyman trick and smooth it out with a wet finger. Tip: If you are caulking a shower stall, work from the inside out. Caulk the inside seams first, followed by the external ones. Also, caulk the vertical line first, followed by the horizontal lines. Caulk the vertical lines from top to bottom to ensure the best look.

Let it dry: Once you’ve caulked all the seams, wait at least 30 minutes and then remove the tape. Wait 24 to 48 hours before using the shower or tub. If possible, don’t use the bathroom at all during this time. Caulk will dry more completely in an unused bathroom.

Re-caulking can be a difficult and timely task. Even with the proper techniques it can still take a long time to complete and not look as good as you want. If you don’t have patience, you may want to hire a local handyman to re-caulk for you.

For more information on how to properly caulking visit NATCO.



Keep These Drop Cloths Off the Floor

I've seen so many great projects in blogland using drop cloths.  I found this one at Lowe's.  I think I paid $6 for it. 

I had my sewing machine out today and thought I'd try to make something.  Let me tell you, my sewing skills are very, very basic!  My 7th grade Home Ec teacher probably wouldn't be too happy, but really, all I am good at with the sewing machine is sewing simple straight lines!  

I cut out a piece of fabric and made sure I kept the side with the finished edge.  I used this for the top.  

I folded it in half, turned it wrong side out and sewed the bottom and side.  When I finished it, it was way too long for a bottle, so I sewed another seam about 5" up and cut it off there.  It fit the bottle nicely.  (of course I could've measured first to make it easier...)  :)

I added a piece of ribbon and it was done!  What an inexpensive and simple project. 

Here's another project I made.

I sewed three sides of the fabric and left the top alone.  On this one, I did not use the part of the fabric with the finished edge.

I then used a stencil and black craft paint.

Be sure to put foil or something between the layers of the fabric so the paint doesn't bleed through to the back.

 Spray it with a clear sealer and it's good to go.

I'm not sure how long it'll last outside, but I'm going to enjoy while it does.

I used less than half of the drop cloth to make both projects.

Thanks for visiting!


I am linking to the following parties:


Mini Me Table

I bought a Svala wood table from Ikea for Oscar. I can't get over how cute it is. Granted, he is too young to use it properly but because he is showing little signs of wanting to eat on his own, I thought having a little table in the house couldn't hurt.

Seeing as no Ikea product is safe from hacking in our house, I stained it the same colour as our desk, Walnut, but it soaked in really well so turned out a bit darker. And, originally I was going to paint the top blue like in this post but I realized he will be banging the table with his trains/toys/spill juice and that table top if it was painted would get chipped/stained. So, it's staying as is. Plus, it looks like a "mini me" table beside our Dining table in our [work in progress] dining room.

In other news, check out my post on my obsession with Chevrons over on Style at Home, and my feature over on The Hip Urban Girl's Guide website , I was their "Hip + Urban Girl of the week". [don't laugh, I do think I'm exceptionally hip. ;) ]


Work / Life Balance?

Before Oscar I used to work all the time. I could work until 3am and be happy. But when the little guy arrived, things obviously changed and for the last year I've been trying to find a work/life balance. We need my income, but also I am lucky to absolutely adore my job so finding time to work is a pleasure for me. It is also my "alone" time. I set aside certain times to work to make sure it doesn't impact this...

He's at the age where he's fully interacting and we play in the living room making forts (or, take them down)

But, my determination for work life balance hasn't been easy, in fact I've been working away at it for a year. I set up ground rules about my work schedule -  and although it helped me gain somewhat of a work/life balance, I did loose a corporate client recently who prior to Oscar, didn't have to deal with me having set office hours. They preferred my 7 day a week availability and and my new set office hours of 3 office days, weren't agreeable to them.

I was kind of bummed about the whole thing - for a little bit I felt like a bit of a failure not being able to handle it all - surely other people worked ALL the time and had kids? It was a fleeting moment, however, as I knew to be a good Mom, and a good business person, I needed to have boundaries. I saw this post on the Work Life Balance Project over on Design Mom. I loved # 4 where she writes 4) Multi-tasking creates poor results. Do one thing at a time and do it well. 

This was my ah-ha moment. After reading this I removed all work e-mail accounts from my blackberry. A small thing but already has positively impacted my life. No longer am I standing there making lunch for Oscar, just "checking" to see if anyone needs me. Responding to a customer while I'm making lunch for Oscar results in a poor response to my customer and Oscar, is not getting my full attention.

Anyhow, really this was all stemmed from reading the post on Design Mom and wanting to share it with you - I think it's a nice, clear list of how she juggles it all. I'm trying myself, a few balls are dropping, but I'm hoping to have it all figured out one day.


Cute Little Topiaries

I love topiaries and had almost everything on hand to make some.  I have seen lots of blog posts on making them, so decided to try them myself.  It was a fun project.

I used the following materials:

  • terracotta pots

  • 2 1/2" styrofoam balls

  • 5/16" dowel

  • small block of styrofoam

  • bag of soft moss

  • bag of green moss

  • white paint

  • brown antique paint

  • glue gun and lots of glue sticks

  • foam brush

I started by painting the pots lightly with white paint,  then wiped some off using a damp paper towel.  I then applied some of the brown antique paint on very lightly.

I painted the dowels with the brown antique paint. I cut them to about 7".   I stuck the dowel into the center of the foam ball.  I added some hot glue in the hole to hold it.

I used the glue gun to apply hot glue in sections over the styrofoam ball.  I put the soft moss on it, using my hand to make sure it stuck.  (and tried to keep from burning the heck out of my hand)  :)  Once I got all of the moss on, I trimmed it a bit to make it into a ball shape.



I cut up pieces of the block of styrofoam and stuck it in the pot as tightly as I could. (This picture doesn't show the styrofoam wedged in the bottom of the pot, but it should)   I drizzled lots of hot glue in there to hold everything in place.  I then stuck the bottom of the dowel into the center.  

 I applied more glue, then stuck the green moss on top.

And here is the finished product.  I'm very happy with the way they turned out.  It was a messy project, but so satisfying!

Thanks so much for visiting and following my blog!

Do gifts matter?

Fieldstone Windows sent us a little thank you gift for hiring them to do our windows. When I opened the box, look what I found... Custom cookies with their logo and OSCAR! I FLIPPED OUT. I would have recommended Ken before, but the cookies were the cherry on top. I mean, we were in LOVE with the windows to begin with, but the cookies were a genius move.

It made me think about the "little things" that make you recommend companies. I've heard of people's real estate agents getting them move in gifts, and sending them Christmas Cards/Birthday Cards. My head usually whips around and I say .. "Whaaaaaat? Really? Who is your agent?" Our mortgage broker for the first year or so sent us cards but it kind of tapered off. But I remember thinking that it was a genius plan. It was a little dent in her commission that she got from us but it made an impression that was such a worthwhile investment as no other report, sales tactic when you *need* my business compared to the follow up for a long time after, thanking me for my business. That is what makes people recommend people I think.

Did/Does your real estate agent send you cards every year? Did they get you a nice gift when you bought a house? I'm not materialistic but I do think that the little things like that (little in the scheme of how much freaking money you spend on a house) are what make you go

Cookies from FieldStone Windows, ordered from Passion for Desserts


Some recent metions

I always freak out a little when we see our projects on other blogs because it means that we've likely inspired someone, which makes me super happy. Within the last few days I've spotted our DIY work on not one, but two sites I admire. Ohdeedoh/Apartment Therapy are always uber supportive of our projects, and I saw that today they gave us a shoutout on our Kitchen Bench, that as you know, is another one of our IKEA Hacks.

But what got me flippin' out like good ol' Jeff Lewis is the fact that they called Aubrey and I "DIY Masters". (AS IF!) Next up Sherry from Young House Love posted our DIY Desk on Pintrest, we've gotten some new readers (hello!)

What's the common denominator between the two, other than the fact that these people/sites I admire? Both are IKEA hacks. So thanks to both sites for the shoutouts, and also for your kind comments. Welcome. - Lindsay

Monte Chair

When I was designing my nursery I came across Monte, a Canadian manufacturer who makes gliders that fit into more modern home decor. It was refreshing to know that there were companies out there that took modern approaches to baby items. Although we didn't get our glider from them we bought our son Oscar this little Cubino chair from them for our TV room. Oscar is already in love (see him pictured above in it)

I fell in love with the the charcoal and green colour combo as it was soft, and soothing and went with the rest of our decor in our house. Monte Cubino Chair $109 + Shipping

August 31st Update: This got blogged about on Style at Home's Blog here too. [Same post]


Pretty Bird Nest Napkins

I love decorating with birds, nests, birdhouses, birdcages, etc., so I was thrilled when I found this image.

When I found plain white cotton napkins, I knew just what to do with them.

  I used my ink jet printer and Lesley Riley's TAP Transfer Artist Paper.  

I cut the image out so there wasn't any white showing around it.

 I ironed it on the back side as instructed.  (It took less than a minute to do this step).

 Here's the finished product.

I am excited to use these for my next dinner party. 

I've had a few questions about how washing affects the graphics.  I've never had any problems and the graphics still look great!

Thank you for visiting!


I am linking to the following parties:


UndertheTableandDreaming The DIY Show Off

My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia's Tuesday Treasures