8/25/11

diy: cherry blossom stain

(Before)
(After)



I think it's safe to say that this will probably be my last diy project of the summer.  Over the last few months I specifically tried to work on projects that could only really be done outside - things like sanding, stripping, and painting.  I made quite a bit of progress on some of the old furniture that we had lying around, including this old cabinet that I picked up a few years back to hold sewing supplies and other misc. craft items.  I think it's original rustic charm wore off and it was really just starting to look dingy.  I was super hesitant when picking out the colored stain, but kept telling myself to step outside my comfort zone (I was this close to staining it grey or light green.)  My studio is really lacking in color so ultimately I think I'll be really happy that I went bold!  Cherry blossom bold!  The old paint stripped off really easily, I sanded my little heart out, repaired some of the broken wood, learned how to properly apply stain (yes, it did involve a do-over), applied the clear coat, and installed new hardware.  I think picking out the handles was my favorite part.  It makes me want to put handles on more things.  It feels good to have all of my sewing gear stuffed inside and not lying around where dogs and babies can get into them.  I'm beginning to feel more organized.  Nesting?  Probably!

Also, my finished wing back chair is finally making its blog debut!  I finished it months ago (in-progress photos here) but have been a pretty lazy photographer.  So I snuck it in for ya!  I guess there is something about old furniture that I need to get out of my system.  It's super fun to work on, but really time consuming.  The chair took me (and the 2 professionals teaching me) about 40 hours to complete and the total cost was $450.  Upholstery fabric is expensive so I'm really glad that I had help and did not attempt this one on my own.  I'm beginning to learn a thing or two about what diy projects are worth giving a shot and which ones are not.  I don't feel confident enough to tackle any more big upholstery on my own, but I have a few small things around my house that are calling my name!  I think they'll make for good inside projects this fall.   

8/14/11

summer crafting




































I seem to have found my summer crafting streak and am currently loving the Patchwork Quilted Gifts book.  It was the inspiration for this (much needed) pincushion project as well as my first baby quilt!  I am almost finished with the quilt which I hope to use as a wall hanging in the baby's room.  Once we get our crib situation figured out I'll share photos.

Speaking of photos, I'm declaring this "the summer of Instagram," which is basically the most fun and addicting app of all time.  I worry that I may forget how to use my DSLR if I don't quit taking iphone photos.  I'm hoping once my summer laziness wears off I'll pull out my real camera again.  In the mean time I'm going to squeeze every minute out of summer that I can and make the most of my extra crafting time before September hits.  It's going to be a crazy/awesome fall!     

8/9/11

bayfield










































Here are a few phone shots from our quick get-a-way to Bayfield, WI.  Our main goal was to kayak the sea caves on Lake Superior, but we also snuck in some tent camping, a rousing night with Garrison Keillor at Big Top, lunch with some wonderful friends who are moving to Milan soon, a bit of trail time, caaaaaaanndy, and some gorgeous views of Lake Superior.  I don't want to speak too soon, but this may be one of our last hurrahs of the summer.  School will be starting and this belly of mine is really only getting bigger (we're 24 weeks along now!)...making adventure a bit trickier.  Although, I did great in the kayak.  We didn't need wetsuits because the water was so warm and our splash skirts kept baby and I safe and dry.   The sea caves are really amazing and it was one of the most beautiful kayaking trips we've taken together.  We went through a guided outfitter who packed us lunch and gave us the scoop on the Red Cliff Rocks that make up the caves.  We always have a great time in Bayfield and are already planning our trip for next summer, with baby of course!

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