Tag Archives | diy

trunk or treat? 12th man style.

Is anyone else asking how is it already almost Halloween? Which means it’s almost November. I swear school starts, you blink and the holidays have arrived. Please tell me I’m not the only one who feels this way.

Trunk or Treat and fall festivities are all the rage right now. In fact, last Friday was the boys’ Trunk or Treat event at their school. I got roped into doing a trunk and put the boys on a mission to figure out what they wanted our theme and game to be. I love that they love helping me with this stuff now.

After much perusing of Pinterest and thinking through what we already had so as not to break the bank we came up with a {Seahawk’s Themed Trunk} any Seahawk fan or their auntie Lisa would be proud of. Just look how cute it turned out…


For the record, all the credit goes to Mr. Grayson who designed and made the entire display in the back. It’s was seriously too cute. I would put things up and he would say, “No mom. Not there.” Gulp. Ooooo-kay. I guessed I asked for help, right?!

For the event, the trunk also had to have a “carnival-style” game that went along with the trunk. Pinterest gave us some direction and helped us create this football field-inspired table that my cute lil’ 3rd grader helped paint with spray paint. You can find the table idea here. We also used an adorable gal’s post to create a goal post made out of PVC pipe that can be found here.


Best part? It was a low cost project my other half would be proud of. Oh, and I convinced my ‘almost’ 9 year old that it would be super cool to have a football-themed birthday party after all that hard work. It’s a win-win. My only cost was the turf from Lowes that I found a remnant of, PVC pipe materials and spray paint. Woot.

Maybe you have a Trunk or Treat coming up or maybe it’s a ‘pin it’ for another day. Regardless, get your 12th man on and show a little Seahawk pride. GO HAWKS.

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J XO

want to see some other {halloween} ideas?
take a lookey-loo at what you may have missed.

{s’mores pancakes. spooky breakfast.}

{treat for you. printable halloween tags.}


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the week. my to do list. yours too?

I am a list girl. I have a thousand all over the place. The perfect gift for me? Post-it notes or a notepad. Serious. Not joking. Ok, and maybe some new clothes or shoes.

A list for me and a list for you. I am calling it my {the week. what to do.}. A little place where I get organized and get er’ done.

The template is {free} and just for YOU. It’s as easy as copy, print, cut. A cute way to stay organized and on top of things.

{you will need}
paper cutter
paper and printer
the week. what to do template. weekly. and the week. what to do template. list.
cardboard and chipboard
pad/book compound


step 1. print the ‘the week. what to do.’ template by clicking {here for weekly template} and {here for list template}.

step 2. cut the template in half… it should measure 8.5″ x 5.5″ for the weekly list and cut in fourths for the list template.

step 3. cut the cardboard/chipboard to same dimensions  … i used cardboard that backed a print I had lying around.

step 4. use your clamps to hold down the sides. apply the glue with a small paintbrush.
– apply at least two coats of glue for an even consistency.
– place a clamp in the middle as well to keep from puckering in the middle
– if you are wanting to make these right away… rumor has it that caulking from the hardware store will work too!

step 5. dry. write. get er’ done.

to do notepad 2 What better way to get organized and efficiently get through your week? As I said before, the task is easy peasy and will take you a little less than five minutes to get er’ done. Maybe one for you and one for a friend or two? Maybe getting ready for those end of the year teacher gifts?

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J XO

did you miss other diy related posts?
Take a lookey loo at what you may have missed before…

{thank you cards for the family.than}

{diy personalized key art.}

{lemon bars. printable tags..}

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a {how to} ikea hack. an upgrade to bookshelves.

The other week I shared about the shelves in our bedroom that went from boring black to something that makes your heart skip a beat. It’s true that they were originally found among the aisles of Ikea, but now I think they have a little nod to Restoration Hardware. Ahhh, a little more my style.

1-ikea hack

Remember, I was on a budget? The whole project cost me under $200, including all the paint. I started with {two} black bookshelves from the Vittsjo series. Each shelf cost $79 and I was out of that place for just about $160. And, when they were placed in the room with love they took up a whopping six feet of wall space.

It really was super easy and didn’t cost a lot of money. But, you have to be willing to take on a {paint it on, look at it, decide to add more} approach. A little trial and error approach. Just a few things will get you started.

1-Recently Updated4

For all of those type-a people this may not be your favorite {how-to} diy. I literally painted a little on, wiped a little off and then sat back and stared at it. I kept doing that throughout the week until it looked the way I wanted. I know, eeek. Sorry, folks. If you are in the mood for a little trial and error, {and I assure you there is no way to mess it up} follow along.

 {step 1}
take off glass shelves and prepare work space.
Pretty easy. Prepare space. Enough said.

 {step 2}
use dry brush technique with
brushed pewter metallic paint, wipe off areas that are saturated with paint. 
Squeeze paint on to a paper plate. Dip brush into paint and use wiping cloth {or a hub’s old white t-shirt} to remove a majority of paint on brush. Haphazardly and in quick strokes, paint the piece in various directions. Try not saturate one area. At this point, less is more. Continue dipping, wiping brush and painting on shelves, while trying to achieve a very “rough, unfinished” look.

 {step 3}
use dry brush technique with
medium gray paint, wipe off areas that are saturated with paint.
Clean out brush or use a new one. Squeeze paint on to a paper plate. Dip brush into paint and use wiping cloth to remove a majority of paint on brush. Continue applying paint in a haphazard fashion, remembering that less is more and you will continue this process a few times with each paint color. Continue dipping, wiping brush and painting on shelves with second color. It should still have a very “rough, unfinished” look.

 {step 4}
use dry brush technique with
french linen paint, wipe off areas that are saturated with paint.
Repeat steps 2/3 using that same technique, but with the french linen paint. Use this paint very minimally or exclude all together. This allows for a gray hue to be layered, but only small amounts are necessary. More will be used on the bottom shelf.

{step 5}
repeat steps 2 – 4 until piece has a layered, brushed
Continue repeating steps until you have achieved the weathered, iron look. I used the metallic paint and gray the most and continued to alternate between paint coats several times. Paint it on, step back and look at it to decide what areas need additional paint or layers.
You’re probably going to love this part… I let it sit in the bedroom for a week and would add layers of paint a day at a time until I had it just the way I wanted it. Sorry for those out there who love instant gratification.

when you’re done it could look something like this…

{step 6}
painting the base of the shelf.

For the bottom shelf I used all three paint colors, but used 2x more french linen than the other two. I used the dry brush technique, but also used a painting block I have to spread the paint in a “chipped” fashion. Again, I used the dry brush to wipe on layers of paint and continued this for several different layers.


To be honest, the shelf is not my most favorite part. It didn’t turn out exactly how I envisioned because it is a different material than the shelving unit. Next time around, I might add a stained wood shelf to the bottom or leave it black. Fortunately, I had some crates and larger items that do a pretty good job of hiding my least favorite part. Phew.

{step 6}
looking glass spray on glass shelves.
I repeat. Totally optional. I only did this because I already had the Looking Glass spray and I have a secret crush on anything that has a mercury glass look. Totally not necessary, but I totally did it anyways.

Using Krylon Looking Glass Spray, give the shelves a mirrored, mercury glass look using a vinegar and spray technique. You can see directions and how I achieved the same look on a chandelier here.

looking glass

I mean, come on. How amazing are? I would say they are a huge improvement and turn something that is a little ho-hum into something that makes you just want to smile. A few days of painting and there you go. So. Much. Better.
thx cards & bookshelves

Looking for some styling tips and a way to fill those shelves on a budget? Find some tips here. Maybe a simple transformation can change up a boring piece into something a little more jaw dropping. Make a statement. On a budget, of course.

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J XO

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styling shelves. tips and tricks.

Earlier I shared about the ikea shelves that I turned into something a little more me.  You can find more about it here. Today is a day all about styling. I seriously heart styling anything. Shelves. Mantels. Tables. It’s a serious problem, but it could be good news for you.

I think I have said it a million times before, but I am all about making a statement, albeit while being on a budget. Don’t get me wrong, I could style a room and make it cost big bucks, but that’s not real life for me. The bright side is that there are simple ways to make a shelf look a little prettier without spending oodles of money. A few simple tips that turn it from blah to a little bit of fancy.

  styling tip 1

Truth. Do all things in 3s. My mom taught me this. Make a trio and all is well. This simple trick will make any shelf look a little more polished and a little less thrown together. Believe it or not, in styling odd numbers are your friend.

styling tip 2

 Add some depth and dimension by making sure that you have items of different heights. Adhere to the “rule of thirds” so that everything looks proportionate to one another. Did you know this applies to clothes too?  Varying heights will turn something a-ok into something pretty amaze-ing. Try it. Love it? Hope so.

styling tip 3 As you have heard, I am a total bookworm and I have a huge collection of books. But, I am all about style and sometimes the books don’t actually go with my decor. I have a few tricks to solve that problem that are easy as pie.

  • Rip off the book covers. Gasp. Yes, I really do this. In fact, I just bought 40 books for a women’s ministry event at a local thrift store and ripped off every single cover. Grab those covers, rip them off and tie a few together with twine. The neutral palette of the pages will go with just about everything. Can you find the cover I ripped off on my shelf?
  • Cover with something you have lying around. I have used dictionary pages, atlas pages, newspaper, and even fabric from a ripped laundry basket {that was a cheap one}. When using paper, tape it to the inside covers of the book securing tightly on each side. If you go the fabric route, invest in some spray adhesive and glue it to the cover.
  • Visit a thrift store or Habitat for Humanity. Head over to the hardback cover books {I get mine for $2 each} and start looking underneath the dust jacket covers. Find a color palette or hue that would work in your room and look for books that have similar spine and cover colors. I walked out of our Habitat for Humanity with a stack of light blue and pale pink books for less than $10. Stack them and you have a great addition to any shelf without spending a whole lotta’ money.

What makes you smile? Find an item you love and go on a hunt for more. I stumbled across these two phones at thrift stores and couldn’t get over how cute they were. The white one was a steal for $10 and the black one had to come along too. They are the perfect accessory and add a little interest. For me, it’s phones and scales. Look around my house and you might find a few of those gems hidden. What about you? What makes your heart skip a beat?

styling tip 5

Yep. It’s that simple. Don’t worry about hanging and putting nail holes in the wall, instead find a few frames {notice my trio on the right?} and rest away. An easy way to showcase art without having to worry about symmetry and makes changing out frames a cinch.

Can I tell you one of my favorite parts of these frames? That cutie on the top left is my Grandma. After she passed in November, I found this picture of her working on a Boeing plane in the Seattle factory during the war years. Each day I’m reminded of this special lady who was quite the fashionista, even during the war years. Oh, g-ma. I heart you.

 Are you sold? Did you learn a few new styling tricks? I hope so. Try a few of them out at home and let me know how it goes. This post is a special shout out to my girl Mrs. Barcello who thought I should do this post about five years ago. Here you go, this one’s for you AB. xo

Coming up next week… how to achieve the restoration hardware look on your own shelves for a just under $20.

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J XO

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bedroom shelves. my own ikea hack.

Our bedroom is huge. Why do they do that? It totally annoys me. For a personality like me, it means that I have to spend more money buying furniture to make it look ‘done’. Well, after almost three years it is finally done. Deep breath. Then a smile.

I need a statement piece, but this girl is on a budget, so I found something at Ikea and made it a little more me. The whole project cost me under $200, including all the paint. I love when things just work.  Here’s the {before}.

ikea shelf

I started with {two} black bookshelves from the Vittsjo series. Each shelf cost $79 and I was out of that place for just about $160. But, the best part was that my shelves took up six feet of wall space in our room. What could be better?

DSC_0009 After a little bit of styling, some thrifting for books at a Thrift store and visiting ‘my store’ for some unused items, I now look and smile. What started with something that wasn’t really me has turned into a piece that I am smitten with.

thx cards & bookshelves1 thx cards & bookshelves

A few coats of paint and some stylish pieces make any bookcase better. Are you looking to fill up a large space in your house, too? Maybe these will be the perfect addition for your space. A little sweat and then a lotta’ smiles.

Coming up… simple tips for styling shelves on a budget and how to achieve the restoration hardware look on your own shelves.

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J XO


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diy headboard and reading lamp. perfect for the boy.

My boy is getting big. Time for a big boy bedroom. Earlier this week, I shared our inspiration. You can read more about it here. My little man and I worked hard to get this {summer} project done and he was seriously the cutest little helper eva’. Oh, and the new piece is pretty gosh darn amazing too.

Just a few simple materials will get the job done. A little something I like to call… easy, peasy.

fence boards {total of 6}
Pine 1×4 ripped down to 2″ wide {total of 1}
white paint
red paint
stain {i used special walnut}
ruler or 2×6 to measure straight lines
first aid stencil template
sconce {optional}

bed materials

bed 1

{wish i would have… used painters tape to tape the outside and then filled it in. would have made life a whole lot easier and a little less stressful while grayson was painting away. whelp, now i know.}

Seriously adorable, right? I love it. He loves it. I love it. What could be better? Oh, I know. The entire project cost me a whopping $38. You heard it… THIRTY-EIGHT DOLLARS. Fortunately, I have a lot of goodies hanging around the house and extra paint for days, so I only had to purchase the wood {$15} and the sconce {$20} plus a little tax. Sigh. Clap. Smile.


Maybe a new piece of art or a reading lamp for your room too? Who knows, maybe these will end up all over my house because I love them so much.

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J XO

I linked up at Moonlight & Mason Jars. Won’t you follow along too? Find it here.

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bedroom for boy. new version. the inspiration.

Holy cannoli. My first born. My baby. My lil’ G is… OLD. When did that happen? He is seriously growing up before my eyes. Can you hear the tears rolling down my cheek? He officially started 2nd grade and this mama is having a few {okay, maybe more than a few} issues with that. So sad.

Well, this summer it was our goal to transform his room a bit. The little Lulu got his old bed and he got a chance to upgrade to a bigger bed and a more {mature} twist on his room. Gulp.

The room reveal will come later. For now, the inspiration that started it all. Mr. Grayson was all over helping, giving ideas and being a part of the whole process, which required some serious mommy patience. Painting with a 7 year old? Need I say more?

Step 1. New bed.
The man of the house built him a new platform bed which we stained. More the come later.
Bed? Check.

Step 2. Light issues.
G is totally into reading right now. Oh how that makes my heart smile. So, we needed a way for him to read, but also some type of headboard to offset the low platform bed. After some brainstorming we came up with an idea… a framed out piece of art that would hold a plug-in sconce.

Aha, inspiration. G and I got to work brainstorming some different options and came up with our top seven. Stop it. Too cute.


| 1 schoolhouse electric princeton | 2 world market ethan3 ikea ranarp |
| 4 schoolhouse electric radar | 5 restoration hardware industrial era | 6 ikea ranarp |
| 7 barn light electric lovell |

Let’s be real. I have expensive taste and apparently my son inherited it from me. Our first choice? Number 4. I mean, die. It is ADORABLE. That was the one we HAD to have.

But then my voice of reason, otherwise know as the husband, gave us a big fat n-o. Why is it the cutest? Well, because it is a whopping $205 buckaroos. Oh boo. The husband won again. He reminded me that our 7 year old will not appreciate a $200 sconce. Well, I guess I will just have to find another place for it where I can appreciate it.

So, we settled on Grayson’s second choice and most inexpensive. Holla.

Just a little sneak peek…

{ikea ranarp plug-in sconce.}

Seriously in love with this one-of-a kind art piece. When I walk by Grayson’s room my smile gets a little wider. Later this week, find out how to make one of your own. Get excited.

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J XO

did you miss other similar posts?
Take a lookey loo at what you may have missed before…

{striped linoleum floors. amaze-ing.}

playroom floors collage

{master bath redo. on a budget.}

{mercury glass chandelier.}
mercury chand 1

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chalkboard wall. school style.

It’s hard to believe, but another year is here. What??? I swear my babies should still be in diapers. But no, a little tear is shed as they head off to 2nd grade and kinder. Boo. Can’t they just stay little forever?

I’m thinking that’s a no, so I better make the most of it. A real winner of a chalkboard wall to get them geared up for the school year. Here it is…

For this month, some school inspiration and a reminder of what school is all about.

Our back-to-school chalkboard wall. A place where we get to look at those lil’ cuties all month long. 

The theme for this month? First day excitement and a {repeated} memory verse.

Part 1. Memory Verse.
I’ll admit it. It’s a repeat. Partly because I told my kids they have to memorize it and we are still not there. But, mainly because I was laze-y. Regardless, they will learn it, live it and memorize it by the end of September. That’s our goal.

Part 2. School Rocks. 
It’s official. School has started. Say, what? A little shout out to my boys as they enter into their kindergarten and 2nd grade year. And, a reminder that they must ‘go there’. Well, wherever that may be.

A little washi tape, first day pictures and some old-school flashcards make this chalkboard wall virtually effortless. Hooray.

The start of the school year is my favorite. Yours too? Wishing you a {stress-less} start to the school year and a chance to celebrate those little ones as they head off to school.

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J XO

{If you missed it, learn how you can make your own {DIY Chalkboard and Magnetic Wall}. Take a quick peek {here} to find out just how easy it is to transform an empty space into something that will make you smile.}

want to see some other {september} chalkboard walls?
take a lookey-loo at some of my past boards.

{september 2014}

september 2014.

{september 2013}


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auction project. teepee time.

Don’t worry. I didn’t fall off the face of the earth. I know you were worried. Nope. It’s just that projects overtook my life and finding the time to blog didn’t happen. But I’m back, for now.

Most of you know, I’m a project girl. To my hub’s dismay I am usually either knee-deep in one project or have multiple projects going on at one time. This time, it was the latter. Too many projects and one little lady that seriously loves to “help”. A little trickier than when I got my sta-uff done during her naps. Oh well.

First project. Teepee. Tag it. Remind yourself for next year. You won’t regret it. Promise. The cutest darn teepee you will ever find. Don’t you think?


This little beauty was for G’s 1st grade auction project. I’m not going to lie, it had a huge learning curve, but I promise that it was worth it. It was in our front room for a few weeks and we were in it every night reading books and practicing our spelling. The kiddos loved it so much that I promised I would make one for them. Another thing to add to the list.

If you ever come across a need for an auction project and you can sew {even if just a little} I think you should tackle this one. I used this tutorial as a reference, but changed a few things along the way. Also, they are assuming you use a 45″ width for the top fabric. Remember that. I didn’t and mine was 54″. Had to do lots of recutting. Oops!

I am hoping it will be a real money maker. And, it is just too, too cute.


Want to get the kids involved?

First, I went into the classroom and had them make tassels {they loved} for the garland out of colorful yarn. I also drilled small holes in birch circles which they wrote their name and favorite book on. The hope is that whatever lucky winner has some reading adventures while sitting in their new teepee.


At the end, I brought in the teepee and had them stitch Xs on the bottom using the same cream yarn and upholstery needles. Canvas is pretty easy to poke a hope through, so my other half helped me to measure and mark where each kid was to sew. The kids seriously loved the “sewing” part and it add the perfect final touch.


Crossing my fingers its a money maker. If not, at least someone has a cute place to play, read or just be. Are you thinking it might be a winner for your next auction project too?

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J  XO

did you miss other similar posts?
Take a lookey loo at what you may have missed before…

{etsy shop. build-a-fort kits.}

{diy outdoor clock.}

{diy outdoor curtains.}

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lamp makeover. less than $3. no commitment necessary.

You may have already heard… I have been {finally} getting around to decorating our dining room. It’s taken about forever. If you missed my big reveal you can find it here.

dining after 1

It just might be one of my favorite places to now visit in our home. And, I did it on a budget. Doesn’t that make it even better?

Here’s the skinny. Home Goods is my fave place to find lamps. I found some little gems months ago and they have traveled from room to room looking for the perfect home. They have a metallic finish on the shades and are some kind of adorable, but once I put them in my room the linen blended in with the wall color. Oh boo. What is a girl to do?

Easy. A $3 {or less} transformation. All you need is…

twine or ribbon

dining console after

Truly, it’s as easy as tie in a knot as a starting point, wrap in a criss cross fashion, and secure the ends. Say what? Yep, that’s it. No real rhyme or reason, except for getting those {X} shapes to be the same size.

revamp a lamp shade

I mean, really, just look at these gorgeous {and unique} lamp shades. The good news is it adds a little something to your standard shade, costs virtually nothing and if you aren’t a fan of commitment {that’s me} you can change them at any time. Perfect, right?

dining console after 2

Are you sold? Are you going to try it? Who knows, you may have found just the thing that was needed with your own lamp shades at home. Give it a try, won’t you?

try. enjoy. share.

Letter J  XO

did you miss other similar posts?
Take a lookey loo at what you may have missed before…

{striped linoleum floors. amaze-ing.}

playroom floors collage

{master bath redo. on a budget.}

{dining room reveal.}
dining after 2

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