Category Archives: DIY

Furniture Makeover: Bookcase

This post (or any posts, for that matter) is long overdue. During my time spent in captivity inside our apartment because of Hurricane Sandy, I decided that I was going to be productive! While I may not have crossed everything off of my to-do list, I was pretty proud of myself for accomplishing a rather involved furniture restoration project — revamping an old bookcase.

Before

This bookcase holds absolutely no sentimental value. In fact, it was left in our apartment by the previous tenants. We already have a bookcase that we like much better than this one, so we decided that it would be best used as a shoe cubby of sorts. As you can see from the photo, it was in pretty rough shape. Virtually all of the finish had worn off of it, and it was a boring color. All of this wouldn’t really matter so much if it didn’t sit right inside our front door, making it the first thing you see when you come in.

After

After some sanding, staining, and painting of the back panel, I think it looks much better! Only next time, I’ll remember to ventilate our apartment before I start staining — the fumes were more than a little overwhelming! Have you tackled any projects lately?

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Something Old, Something New {Friday} (or Monday)

Better late than never! Here’s what was going on last week…

{Something Old}

I finally updated the music on my iPhone this week, and re-discovered No Doubt’s Return of Saturn! I was the BIGGEST No Doubt fan back in the day — I mean, I still am, really. But I’m thoroughly enjoying jamming out to old favorite tunes like “Simple Kind of Life” and “Artificial Sweetener.” And I may or may not be wishing that I had pink hair.

{Something New}

I did something completely new last week that I had never done before — painted a wall! I knew that I wanted to give our bedroom a new color, and decided that I wanted to do it myself. Frank was more than happy to let me have at it — he’s done the other paint jobs in our place since he used to work summers painting apartments, but when I arrived home to find that he had conveniently pushed back the furniture and set up all of the supplies for me, I knew it was my turn. It was a fun project, but definitely a workout. I’m really happy with how it turned out though, and it brings a little bit of sophistication into the room despite our mismatched furniture (everything in time).

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Filed under DIY, Home Decor, Something Old Something New

Building Terrariums

I’m just one of those people who tend to get fixated on hobbies. I love trying new ones and perfecting old ones (see: macarons), and if you talk to any of my friends, they’ll probably be able to tell you what my current one is. Because I never stop talking about them. Like, ever.

Maybe it’s because I live in the city and have somewhat limited access to what most people would consider “nature,” but when I saw a few terrariums popping up on design websites that I liked, I knew I had to look into them. I love that terrariums can look like a mini oasis — they can range from beautifully landscaped mini gardens to more simple planters, and can even be customized to be fun and whimsical. It turns out that there are many specialty florist shops in the city who sell beautiful pre-planted terrariums. It also turns out that said terrariums are not cheap. My roomie gave me the beautiful hanging glass planter above for Christmas, and I promptly killed the adorable air plant she bought for it (guess I should have researched a little more… oops). So this week, I decided to start fresh and use this great kit that I purchased on Etsy to help me put together some new ones.

Putting together a terrarium is actually really simple once you have all of the materials gathered. You just layer small stones in the bottom of the container, followed by activated charcoal (easily found in gardening stores) and soil. Then, you just arrange your plants as you like! For the pill-shaped container that I bought, I decided to try out another air plant which doesn’t need any soil. For more on planting your own terrarium, check out this great video on Design*Sponge.

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DIY: Fabric Flower Necklace

Remember this fabric that I posted about a few weeks ago? Well, I’ve been crafting since then and this is what I came up with! A new accessory for spring:

Each flower is like a tiny pillow, stuffed with fiberfill. Then, I wrapped them with colorful contrasting embroidery floss to form the petals and strung them together with chain! I think this will make for a fun accessory to add color to outfits! Want a DIY tutorial? Let me know in the comments!

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Pins & Needles Fabric Shop, NYC

Yesterday I visited a new fabric shop on the Upper East Side in Manhattan called Pins & Needles (isn’t their shopping bag so cute?). It’s a really cute little sh0p on the second floor, so you probably wouldn’t find it unless you knew what you were looking for! They carry all kinds of pretty printed fabrics from the UK and Japan — I was drooling over the selection they had!

I picked up these fat quarters to start a new project with. I’m a big fan of fat quarters, because they are super easy to lay out together to see how they’ll look next to each other, and they are just the right amount of fabric to do smaller projects, like the necklace I’m about to attempt. I’ll let you know how it pans out!

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DIY: Proenza Schouler Rope Necklace

In this post from a few weeks back, I mentioned that I was attempting a little DIY project to make a necklace similar to this fun one by Proenza Schouler.

Well, here are my results. I’m pretty impressed with myself for simply finishing a project that I started, but there is definite room for improvement with my crafting skills. I followed the directions from Honestly WTF, but I think the big problem is that my purple cord was cut too short — the directions say to use a yard, which is what I asked the guy at M&J Trimmings for, but I think I’d go with more next time since the loops sit way up at my collarbone.

Better luck with my next project, I guess! Have you done anything crafty lately?

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Filed under DIY, Fashion, Random