Friday, August 31, 2012

DIY Linen and Paper Wall Art

DIY linen and paper wall art in the dining room by Stay At Home-ista

Our dining room desperately needed some additional soft surfaces to absorb the sound, and some texture to add a little bit of interest. We have lived here for over a year with nothing on the walls in here. 

4 walls. Nothing on them. This was right after we moved in, but it's a pretty accurate before pic.

So finally, I was inspired by Bryn Alexander to attempt my own DIY linen and paper wall art project.

The walls are huge, so I loved that the project was about $200 all in. For 4 pieces!

Linen and Paper DIY art

This way I am happy if we leave these up for 6 months or 6 years. My idea of gallery hopping and finding "real" art, was clearly a fantasy, it's just not happening for us for a long, long time.

Tutorial for DIY Linen and Paper Wall Art:

First I got 4 of the largest Ribba frames Ikea sells. 


I also ordered 4 different handmade papers from Kate's Paperie. I chose 4 different patterns, just to make each wall "go" but not be exactly the same. The paper is a bit longer than the frames, so I trimmed the ends, trying to keep the pattern looking as organic as possible.

                       Handmade Paper from Kate's Paperie into large scale artwork

Next I "upholstered" the backing with a gray linen that I bought on for $7.99 a yard. I used 5 yards, although I think I could have gotten away with 4 yards...

We cut the fabric out around the back of the frames, then used an industrial office stapler (that's what we had on hand) to pull it taut.


This is the part of the process that took too long. Just wanting to give you fair warning:)

Upholstered Ikea Ribba frames for DIY artwork

The tutorial I had pinned, had the paper behind the plexiglass of the frame. We tried it, but with the lighting in our room, it turned out looking too glare-y, so we improvised and took out the fake glass.

DIY Paper and Linen Gallery Art

I used Tacky glue to attach the paper in a few spots to the fabric, then weighed it all down with a selection of cookbooks.

Weighing down paper with cookbooks

I let everything dry overnight, and the next morning we hung them up.

Each one is slightly different which I love since it gives you a slightly different view from each spot.

From the living room.

                        StayatHomeista Dining room from Living Room

From the kitchen.

StayatHomeista Dining room into Living Room with DIY Paper and Linen Art

From my spot at the head of the table looking towards the library.

Paper Wall Art

I am so proud of myself (and my husband), this is a project that I pinned, he loved, and we tackled together. And just because I love to keep everything real, here is the "during" shot of our 60 foot long gallery.


What fun projects have you been up to? 

My house is featured today at Southern Hospitality for Feature Friday, stop by to see my house through Rhoda's eyes:)


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Thursday, August 30, 2012

The room where furniture goes to die

Just wanted to introduce you to our storage room.

I'd like to say that this is the before and that we will organize it with a million clearly labeled bins, after a thorough purge.

Nope. Just keeping it real in blog-land. Although most of the furniture is my mom's from when she reorganized her living room, I don't have high hopes of relinquishing it back to her anytime soon:)

This is pretty much how this room will stay. If you'd like to see examples of how I can be organized, I have an organized panty, neat and tidy spice drawer, a morning launching pad, and a pretty good system of storing outgrown children's clothes.

If you'd like to see my house looking all spic and span, head over to The Mustard Ceiling, where you can catch my home tour today.

Do you have any non-blog-worthy rooms hiding out in your house?


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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

I am the Mother of a Kindergartener

I am also the mother of a preschooler and a baby, but this week it's all about Kindergarten.

On her first day of school I paid extra special attention to making sure that her hair accessories coordinated with her dress.

That her outfit matched her backpack. Don't worry, I adjusted the straps!

That the lunchbox matched the backpack.

Both are a butterfly theme, perfect for my butterfly birthday girl.

Then I dug out my chalkboard writing slate from months ago, wrote a quick "K" on it, and made her pose for pictures.

I even put on earrings so I could look cute in the photos too.

Then it was off to school, where she took to it like a fish to water, loving her locker-like cubby, her Name Necklace, having an assigned spot in circle, even the super-duper-high monkey bars on the playground.

Now I just have to remember to pick her up at 3:30 everyday, not a time that I'm used to be out and about, it's more my preheat-the-oven-wake-the-baby-prep-dinner-sneak-in-a-book-with-the-preschooler time.

Any advice for a new Kindergarten mom?


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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A new console table (My first grown up furniture)

OK, maybe not my first piece of grown up furniture, but it was delivered. And the packaging taken away. And after my love affair with Ikea and all things Expedit, it's pretty amazing to not have to put together every item in my house:)

Here is the space before.

We hung a giant triptych of a sailboat right away when we moved in, then did nothing except put a way-too-low ottoman beneath it. 

Wait one year.

Stalk the console table online, waiting for it to go on sale. 

Pass it up 3 times when it's only on sale by 20-25%.

Finally decide after an entire year has passed that 25% off is as good as it's going to get and hit the "purchase" button.

Wait 2 months for delivery...

In the meantime, my mom reorganized her living room and sent some of her furniture to our storage room/basement to live hang out a while. 

We decided to re-appropriate a nice black console table (with permission!) and brought it into the living room to hang out.

Then the "real" table arrived.


Now I had a problem since two console tables, one black the other wood were not happy next to each other, so I moved the black console to the other side of the opening and now all is happy.

Except that I still have to figure out this whole table-scaping business.

Have you been up to any furniture shuffling around your house? 


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Monday, August 27, 2012

Guest Room Reveal (Bloggers Without Borders)

Here it is, my *finished* guest room.

Yes, I had big plans for this room.

First you would be greeted by a lovely homemade art project.

                      starfish in frames


We used scrapbook paper as a mat, then glued starfish and favorite rocks on top.

Then the bedding would go from blah-blah-brown to wham-bam-pow pink, blue and green.


The wall behind the bed would get a fun confetti polka dot treatment.

Confetti Polka Dot wall treatment with vinyl decals


The closet doors would have a cute dress form decal on them.




In my fantasy, I made curtains, learned how to table-scape, had a guest bathroom stocked full of essential items...


Um... No check?

Instead, I spent a lovely summer with my kids, and just freshened up a bit.

The bathroom did get a new runner and a starfish accent. 


See how it was a bit bland before?


Plus I still have a few more weeks until our next house guest!

Please stop by and visit these lovely ladies who also stepped outside of their comfort zones, drank some wine, and changed things up in their own homes.

Any *almost* finished projects happening in your house?


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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Baby Portraits and Prenatal Vitamins

Nope, not pregnant.

Don't let the title fool you.

You might think the two are a unrelated but I have some pretty strong beliefs about prenatal vitamins.

First off, they clearly create beautiful children.

Obviously, since I take them and that is my adorable child:)

I started taking them when we decided to have our first daughter and I've just kept right on taking them, all the way through. With our third at 9 months, she's still nursing, so I know that what I put in my body still matters (not like it doesn't always matter, but it still matters for her)!

Even though our first had her baby portrait taken at a studio with out wedding photographer, and our second had his taken in the mall, I feel like this is a step up for our third. I took these pictures one day when she woke up super happy from her nap. Just popped her right into a fancy dress, plopped her in front of our new velvet curtains in our master bedroom, and started shooting.

Much less money, and still some great shots!

Those ten tiny fingers and ten tiny toes, I think a wee bit of all that baby perfection is due to the prenatals I took while pregnant.

I was almost out of vitamins when I received an adorable box in the mail from BrainStrong Prenatal.

I mean, seriously, who sends things like this? The crinkly paper was so adorable, plus the handwritten note?

My husband actually thought it was a 9 months late baby gift!

I love how the vitamin and DHA supplement are packaged together, so I don't have to remember two separate bottles. THe DHA supplement is the fish oil that makes babies stronger and healthier and smarter and better looking and have better eyesight. OK, so I'm not swearing to the better looking part:)

Here is what it would look like on the shelves (rather than as a "present" in the mail).

When the babies are growing, 70% of their energy is devoted to brain development. And only you can supply everything they need, including the DHA that is so critical for their little brains. My OB urged me to take a DHA supplement (as most do), and BrainStrong Prenatal offers an easy, safe, effective way of delivering all the "regular" prenatal vitamins as well as up to 75% more DHA than other over-the-counter prenatals.

Do you still take prenatal vitamins while nursing?


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I was compensated for writing this post. All opinions are my own, and the adorable baby is mine too:)

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