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Pretty Quick: Burlap Pillow Doodle

29 Jun

Happy Friday!

Is it just me or has this week been a million years long? Maybe it’s because this was the week I returned to reality after Haven.

Sigh.

Anyway, today’s post is going to be short and sweet, with a fun little project that was, well, short and sweet.

DIY pillow

One thing you must know about me: I hate decor that says things.

You know, a wall hanging that says “Dream” or a tablescape that says “Family.” It’s just not my cup of tea. (I also hate songs with instructions, but that’s another topic for another day.)

But I had the idea a while back that a DIY doormat that greets guests with a cheeky little “hi” could be cute. While the doormat never happened (it still might), I got the idea out of my head and onto a pillow the other night.

And I kind of love it.

DIY pillow

Woodblock letters found at Michaels for $1

No tutorial, because there wasn’t really a process. I used some scrap burlap to cover a pillow form, traced the letters onto the pillow and then colored them in with a black Sharpie marker.

If I wasn’t distracted by Breaking Bad (currently catching up on Season 4!) I may have taken some more time with it, or if I knew how to embroider, maybe I would have done that.

But for a quick little doodle, it makes me smile.

What fun projects have you worked on lately?

Have a happy weekend!

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Pretty Quick: 10 Minutes + $10 = A Lamp Makeover

6 Jun

So last night was kind of a DIY whirlwind.

What started out as a plan to hang a mirror in the living room (more on that later) turned into an hour of table vignette arranging. The surfaces reflected in said mirror need to look pretty, right?

Well, I realized I had the perfect lamp base for the table, but the shade…not so much.

lamp before

It was then I remembered this little guy I picked up awhile back from Michael’s for $9.99:

lampshade

It’s a self-adhesive lampshade, made to be easily covered with fabric of your choice (hopefully your choice doesn’t include the questionable selections pictured on the label).

It’s a bit gimmicky, but I took it for a spin and I’m pretty happy with the results.

First, I snagged this old linen curtain I’d been hanging on to for several years. (Tip: Don’t throw away curtains! Even if they don’t work in your house, the fabric can still be used.)

curtain fabric

sticky lampshade

pattern

After peeling off the label, I taped it to the fabric to use as a pattern. I traced roughly an inch around the pattern on the top and the bottom to allow for tucking behind the lampshade.

The, I got to sticking.

shade

I wasn’t so sure about this guy at this point, but I kept working. After all, it was free and Law and Order SVU was on.

glue

I used tacky glue to stick the extra fabric inside of the lampshade. The paint brush helped me to keep the glue in line.

rubber band

The shade ring was a little big for my lamp base, so to make it secure I wrapped two thick hairbands around it before adding the shade.

Here’s the finished product!

lamp after

lamp after 2

Pretty cute, I think! It’s certainly not the most exquisite lamp I’ve seen, but it works to add some height to the table (which you may recognize as my curbside find! )

I might move around some items on the table – it feels a tad bit crowded – but for right now the other items displayed are:

  • Two glass light fixtures found in an antique store in Savannah, TN. These originally hung in a plantation home and were salvaged before the home was sadly torn down. I love their texture and found them for a steal ($36 for the pair!). I plan to hang them one day, but for now, they’ll stay tabletop. They’re actually the same height, but the second one is on a block to add some dimension.
  • My great-grandmother’s tea set from Japan. No, she wasn’t Japanese, but she visited there and brought these home with her. My grandmother gave the pieces to me last year and I treasure them. The colors and patterns are incredibly intricate and they look almost modern. There’s two larger pieces also for which I’ve yet to find a home.
  • Garden Lily jar candle from Target

Have you ever used a self-adhesive lampshade? What’s the most gimmicky home decor item you’ve used? (I know people who swear by this one!)

Pretty Quick: Clean Your Makeup Brushes

7 Mar

Makeup Brushes

Oh, makeup brushes. I use you everyday, but often neglect you when it comes to the washing department.

I’ll be the first to admit I’m a little lax in keeping my brushes as clean as I should. But unclean brushes can be a breeding ground for bacteria, and can spread that bacteria to your face.

Gross.

Here’s how to show them some love:

  • Run each brush under warm water, gently loosening any leftover makeup from the bristles.
  • Squeeze a little shampoo in your hand and swirl the brush around in it, making sure you get in-between all the bristles.
  • Thoroughly rinse the brush out until the water runs clear.
  • Fluff the bristles and lay to dry on a clean towel overnight.
  • In the morning, fluff the bristles out a bit and you’re done!
Cleaning Makeup Brushes

You really will feel a difference after washing your brushes – it’s like having new tools. Repeat the process about once a week to keep your makeup brushes in tip-top shape.

Pretty Quick: Drawer Pull Kitchen Hooks

20 Feb Drawer Pulls Kitchen Hooks

For me, DIY inspiration comes and goes. I could go weeks without a project and then all of a sudden I’m knee deep in sawdust and pinterest boards, excitedly skipping from one thing to the next to improve my little home.

I love how creativity comes in waves.

This weekend marked a stopping point in several back-to-back long work weeks, so I was thrilled to get a coinciding wave of decor inspiration.

Out of that wave came this simple little project that has since put a smile on my face every time I’ve passed it. And really, isn’t that the test by which all things in our lives should be judged? If it doesn’t put a smile on your face, why bother?

Drawer Pull Kitchen Hooks

I love fabric and aprons are no exception. Actually, they are a big chunk of that fabric obsession. How happy is it to be able to throw a bright piece of fabric around you as you bake cookies or frost a cake?

Admittedly, I know do these thing so seldom that my aprons sit in drawers for months at a time. But just as with any other room, the kitchen could benefit from a nice burst of happy fabric. So why not display an apron or two? And hey, maybe it will inspire me to throw one on once and awhile.

aprons

Funny coincidence: That pink apron looks almost exactly like my pink apron, found in an antique store. It must have been a popular pattern in the 50s.

I wanted “happy hooks” because there was nothing utilitarian about this projects. Aprons are pretty much fluff, sprinkles among the other practical things in the kitchen really, so their hooks should match.

I hit up Hobby Lobby, my not-so-secret source for half-price Anthropologie-esque hooks and drawer pulls. I was disappointed in their hook selection, but in the drawer pull bins, I spotted these guys:

Drawer Pulls

Pretty happy, huh? And for $2 a pop, they were even happier.

The back of the pulls, as with all pulls, were basically screws.

Drawer Pulls.Back

One problem – the front was not a screw, so getting these into my kitchen wall in their original condition wasn’t going to work. However, I got lucky…I remembered I had held on to the screws from the Curbside Beauty project.

I pulled apart the drawer pulls, stuck in the new drawer pull screws, and voila! I was ready to hang my hooks.

New Drawer Pull

After using a power drill to drill two holes in the wall, I used a screwdriver to screw each drawer pull into the wall. I hung them high so that the aprons would fall at eye level.

Hung Drawer Pulls

Drawer Pull Kitchen Hooks

Drawer Pulls Kitchen Hooks
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Kitchen with Aprons

Kitchen with Aprons 2

Lesson? Look beyond the traditional uses for things. And hold on to random screws from old projects. You never know when they might help make a room a little happier.

Not many things can put a smile on your face for $4!

What simple or not-so-simple projects have you done lately? Does creativity come to you in waves too?

This project was linked up to Thrifty Decor Chick’s Show Us Your House Party!

Pretty Quick: Clean Your Ceiling Fan

25 Jan

No matter how pretty you make the rooms in your home, if you’ve got a dusty ceiling fan hanging above it all – yuck.

Here’s a quick cleaning trick I’ve been using for years, via Real Simple.

Wrap an old pillow case around each fan blade, pull it slowly and collect the dust inside. Shake the pillowcase outside and throw it in the wash.

A clean fan is a happy fan.

Added tip? Once you’ve dusted the blades, wipe each of them down with a dryer sheet to help prevent dust from sticking in the future.

Ahhh…don’t you feel like you can breathe a bit better in those pretty rooms now?

Pretty Quick: Cozy Candles

29 Nov Cozy Candles

What makes a room cozier?

Candles.

What makes a candle cozier?

A sweater.

Who wants cozy candles?

You, after you see how crazy simple they are to make.

Cozy Candles

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I used a mason jar and two dollar store glass candle holders, all lit by tealights. I grabbed a sweater I no longer wear and cut off both sleeves. I slid the sleeves around the candles (I trimmed a bit for the shorter one) and tada!

Cozy Candles Lit

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Cozy candles.

If you don’t have an old sweater lying around, check Goodwill. You can find an abundance of cozy sweaters there for a dollar or so.

Feelin’ cozy?

Got a Pretty Quick holiday decor trick? Share it in the comments!