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Sunday, June 17, 2012


I know....for those who have been following my projects, you are wondering, is she ever going to finish that bathroom? 

I'm pretty darn close now.....I just finished the shower valance; the last of the DIY projects .  Then, I just want to get one of those nice memory foam carpets for when our guest steps out of the shower and it will be done, done, done.....that is, until the next great idea comes to me  ;)

Nice touch, don'tcha think?  
There are some beautiful embroidered cottons available in the fabric stores today and when the purple and green one caught my eye, I thought it would enhance the existing shower curtain.   I know you've got to appreciate this more than my husband did......tell me, you do!?

Some of the fabrics can be kind of spendy, so time your purchase with one of the sales that seem to always be going on and keep in mind that you will only need a yard since the standard shower rod is 70" wide.  Most of the cottons are 45-48" wide, so you'll be able to cut the fabric in half lengthwise  to give you a total of 72" (36" x 2).  That added two inches will give you what you need for a rolled hem on both widths of the valance.  Hopefully, you are following along so far.
The two other items that I used were trim and 2" wide woven interfacing (the interfacing is used at the top of the valance).  You could actually use non-woven interfacing if you'd like since the valance doesn't have the same construction as tailored drapes; I've just used the woven in the past when I've made draperies and I like the structure it gives to the header.  Just know that the purpose is to give it a crisp line and stability for the 12 buttonholes that will go across the top of the valance.

Now for the finished dimensions of my valance, again; just my thoughts, you may want yours narrower or wider than mine.   It measures 17" wide. 
The construction is not too difficult. The very first thing I did was make a rolled edge hem on each side so that my finished width was 70".   Next, I finished the top edge for the header.  I pressed under the raw edge 1/2" and then folded 2" toward the wrong side, or what would become the inside, sliding the interfacing between the layers:machine stitch 1/4" from the top edge and 1/4" from the bottom edge. I then took care of my buttonholes.  As I mentioned earlier, there are a total of twelve.   I simply measured the existing shower curtain for proper placement.

 After that, I chose to add three tucks horizontally from one edge to the other.  Obviously, this part is totally up to you.  I just  felt they added an interesting design element.  My first tuck is 8" from the finished top edge.
The final step was to finish the bottom edge.  I used a finishing stitch on the raw edge and folded the finished edge up 1/2" to the underside of the valance.  From the right side of the fabric, I stitched the trim so that it hung just below the finished hemline.

If you look closely in the picture below, you can see projects from previous posts like the wall stencils and decoupage tiles....on the countertop (which you can't see in this picture) is the decanter with the layers of colored sand.....the blog post just prior to this one.

Saturday, June 16, 2012


With my daughter's wedding right around the corner, I was purchasing the sand they will be using for their ceremony and realized there are so many beautiful colors that it would be cool to make something for my house.  Who cares if I'm not getting married or didn't have a chance to have a sand ceremony (since 29 years ago, nobody ain't never heard of such a thing!)....if I want a decanter with sand in it, then I'm going to do it.

There are a number of different vendors that sell sand; one particular one I found had over 60 colors, including "sparkle" sand....ooooohh...right up my alley!  Although, you can also find some basic colors at Hobby Lobby, Michael's and JoAnn's. 

So, what do you need?  It's about as simple as you can get.  You will need a glass decanter, bowl, bottle, or whatever you want to use.....AND, sand.  Dang, how much simpler can it get?

I'm sure through thrift stores or garage sales I may have been able to find a decanter that I liked, but I had been admiring a number of styles that Hobby Lobby carries.  So being the frugal gal that I am I used my 40% off Sunday coupon to buy one I really liked.   

 I chose to use four different colors of sand and then just began pouring and tilting the decanter to get the effect that I wanted. 

This project could make fun Christmas gifts, housewarming, bridal just need to know the home decor colors, get your supplies and you're good to go!

This literally took me about 20 minutes to put together.  That included taking the pictures.


Sunday, June 10, 2012


I have been really busy with my business over the last couple of weeks, making it difficult to find time to blog.....I'm so excited though that I just have to share!
 Here are my labels via Air Mail from Hong Kong.  Woo Hoo!!!! Aren't they sweet?   I found them through Etsy and the company was really easy to work with   I've already used them since I am working on a project for my niece in Texas who will be photographing a bride whose wedding party includes twelve bridesmaids!  It's true that everything is bigger in Texas.

To the right are my "Thank You" cards (front and back).  I plan to attach these to the garments with a handwritten note to my customer.
I love my scissors.  I found these at Hobby Lobby; they were unfinished wood when I bought them.  So I painted them with the blue paint I used to paint my distressed cabinet and then used an antique paint for the handles.  I found a transparent sheet with adhesive backing and ran that through my printer so that I could add my logo and finished it off with some adhesive backed pearls at the base of the handle. 

Below is a little corner of my design studio...just to the right of the mirror is a folding screen which corners off a little section for changing, which includes garment hooks and a full-length mirror.  That was used for the first time this morning when I had a bride come in so that I could add bustles for the train on her wedding gown.

This is a "sneak peek" at a few of the bridesmaid skirts that have been consuming me over the last several weeks.  I'll be sure to add actual photos from the wedding onto my website at sometime later this summer since the wedding is at the end of June.

I have several other projects I plan to work on that I hope to be able to tackle soon, and of course there are goodies for an upcoming bridal shower and more wedding goodies still in store so stay tuned!

Sunday, June 3, 2012


As part of the redecoration of the upstairs bath, I wanted to add some wall stenciling.  You can find a relatively large selection at Michael's, JoAnn's and Michael's.   I've learned to hang on to my purchases since I've found that I have reused them over the years; some of them are pretty pricey, so it makes sense not to toss them after the project is completed.   Many of them are pretty durable; holding up well through several uses and the plastic is easy to clean with paper towel.  I apologize for the pictures; again bathroom lighting is a challenge!

Other than the stencil templates, you'll need either firm brushes or stencil sponges, stencil paint and masking tape.

A couple of tips to ensure a quality outcome:
  • Be sure to use stencil paint; it comes in a little tub and is the consistency of paste which keeps it from seeping beneath the stencil.  Also, there are plenty of colors to choose from.
  • Be sure to use either a firm brush or stencil sponges to apply the paint.
  • Based upon the pressure you use when blotting and/or the number of layers of paint you choose to use, you can control the intensity of the final color of the finished product; from pastel to rich.
  • I use my other hand to hold the template firmly to the wall as I'm blotting; this helps to ensure the paint doesn't bleed underneath and makes for clean lines; especially those that are more delicate.
 After I applied the green to the foliage and the pink to the flowers, I came back and hand painted in some petals and dots with purple and gold (other colors in the shower curtain and decoupage tiles) with craft paints and a paintbrush.  I also added some contrasting green paint to some of the leaves for added interest.

I placed a double repeat of stencils between the countertop and the medicine chest, as well as inside the shower stall itself; above the tile line.   The room is really coming together now!