What to do when life gives you moth eaten sweaters? Why, first you make tiny felted sweaters out of them and then out of the tiny felted sweaters you make fingerless mittens!
I needed some gifts and I’ve been sitting on some old sweaters for some time wondering what to do with them. I saw this on WholeLiving.com and thought it was a great idea so it was time to get crafty.
On a side note, I was a little concerned about felting the sweaters in a front load washer as I had read it can be tough due to the lack of agitation. First, I put both sweaters in their own zippered pillowcases so the fuzz wouldn’t damage my washer. I threw two tennis balls and an old towel in with them and set the washer to hot wash, cold rinse and no spin. The spin cycle can cause creasing in your item so it’s best to turn it off if you can. If you don’t count my washer not draining (a little sink clog issue) it totally worked!
Recycled Craft: Fingerless Mittens, WholeLiving.com
No, this isn’t a post about potty training my cat. It’s actually a quick Friday before and after! When we signed the contract for our house we had requested the previous owners leave the existing window treatments. Great tip from Mom that we wouldn’t want to have to decide on curtains as soon as we moved in. Anyway, it didn’t really process that they’d be leaving us with these.
Oh my God, they’re gorgeous.
We fondly referred to them as “the diapers.” Though they’ve also got sort of a pantaloon thing going on. Sadly they hung around much longer than anyone wanted them to.
After many, many swatches from Smith + Noble and The Shade Store, we decided to go with a simple roller shade in a neutral color and natural texture. So now our windows look like this.
So the diapers are gone! Yay, everyone cheer!
Ahhh, the Ikea Billy. It’s everywhere. And it’s been in my life for at least 10 years. When they moved with us to the house I just wasn’t feeling their beech veneer anymore so I decided we should paint them. We still wanted to use them as bookshelves so we were very concerned about the painted shelves sticking to and ruining our books. Luckily our friendly neighborhood Home Depot paint man had a suggestion on how we should do this. Here are the steps we took.
How to Paint an Ikea Billy Bookcase
Step 1: Rough up your Billy with some sandpaper. This will help the paint stick better.
Step 2: Start with a coat or two of a good water based primer. We used Zinsser Bull’s Eye 123. We were pleasantly surprised at the mild smell of this but be you should still do this in a room where you can open some windows and use a fan.
Step 3: After the primer is dry apply a couple of coats of Porch and Floor paint. Mr. Paint Man suggested Behr Porch and Floor Low-Lustre Enamel. He said this was because we still wanted to use the shelves for books and that the floor paint would stand up to us pulling books on and off. Makes total sense and made all the difference. The color we used matched our walls, Behr Natural Linen. We were hoping it would help them blend into the room better.
Step 4: Let everything dry for a few days, we waited a week. When we felt they were dry and not sticky we put the shelves back in. I’ll warn you that 2 coats of primer and a few coats of paint will make the shelves fit tighter than they did before. We wound up having to sand the sides of the shelves to make them fit. I suppose you could paint them completely assembled but you’d have to be absolutely sure you were comfortable with your shelf placement.
Step 5: Put your books back on and enjoy Billy’s new look! So far so good on the shelves. We haven’t had a problem with sticking or the paint peeling off. At 70 bucks each and with more than 10 years of use Billy’s holding up pretty darn well.
The next room I’ll show you is the guest room. I’ve always kind of loved all white bedding but with two black cats it just hasn’t been in the cards. When I realized we’d have a guest room where I could shut the door (how novel) I figured this would be the place for a nice white bed.
Unfortunately I don’t have the best before pictures of this room but I can tell you it was a terribly faded blue. You’ll see in the picture that there were a lot of holes in the walls. And everywhere there was a hole there was also a faded rectangle left behind. It was pretty gross and definitely the room most in need of painting.
Here it is before
And this is what it looks like now
This room still needs some work, but it’s clean and uncluttered and most importantly comes with your own bedside copy of Us Weekly. I’m super happy with the Indian wagon wheel mirror we got from CB2. I’m hoping to get a nice small dresser to go under it, but for now Grandma’s telephone table is hanging out. We also painted our Ikea Billy bookshelves the same color as the walls (Behr, Natural Linen) to help them blend in.
Oh, and I forgot to mention. I had a helper with this one.
I’ll see you tomorrow with a post about how we painted those shelves.
Starting off the week with a fresh new blog home, a fresh new header and a fresh new before and after! I told you I would. And while I don’t consider any rooms in the house to be final afters there has been progress made so I figured I would show you where we started, where we are now and where we want to go.
This, my friends, is where the bedroom started. It was pink, covered in boxes and dirty laundry, had mismatched bedding and *gasp* floral valances. The horror! Shield your eyes, here it comes.
The only thing worth saving in this room was the bed frame (it wasn’t originally there, that mattress was on the floor for months) and well, the cat.
So after a fresh coat of Behr’s Canvas Tan on the walls and ceiling and Swiss Coffee on the trim, some new bedding and a rug this is what the bedroom looks like now.
Ahhhh, much better. But it still needs work. Here are two more views.
Obviously we’re lacking in artwork on the walls and I’m really hoping that pathetic wall mirror will turn into something like this mirror that I saw on Young House Love. As for the picture on the right, those dressers with the broken drawers need to go. I’d like to find a great tall danish dresser, something too high for that kitty to jump on! You may have guessed, he’s a total ham. But isn’t he handsome?
So there it is. I did it, I actually showed you! And now that I see the photos like this I don’t feel as bad or nervous about it. It’s pretty good progress for us and even though we are moving slowly, we’re moving. More rooms to come soon, so stay tuned.