Monday, April 14, 2014

Get those BUNS ready for Spring! Gold Leaf is the answer!

Are your buns ready for Spring? Mine are!  Nope, I'm not talking about extra work at the gym--because me workout? Ok, I do workout....sometimes...

I'm talking about these buns:

The little thrift store bunnies. They were each under a buck, and looked like they should be at grandma's house. I took them home for a Spring makeover.

(I already showed you the ducks when I gave them their quick makeover last week in my Spring Vignette post.)

Anyway, Let's start with bunny #1 (because I forgot to take a before photo of bunny #2, oops).

He's fine--- but kind of 1991 if you ask me. Time for this bunny to hop into 2014.

To start, I gave both bunnies a coat of white spray paint as a base.

Already better with the pure white. I even thought of leaving him this way. But, I had this jar of gold leaf that was just sitting there staring at me. It was saying "GOLD LEAF ALL THE THINGS!". Because everything should be gold leafed, obviously.

Time for these baby bunnies to get the golden touch!

You can get this gold leaf at Hobby Lobby for about 4 bucks, cheaper if you have a coupon.

Liquid gold leaf in antique gold, a paint brush, and 5 minutes later....

I thought I would like the bigger one better because he seemed to have prettier lines that would show through, but the gold leaf adhered to them each differently. I was surprised because they looked like they had similar lines before the gold leaf!

I still like the end result on each. Different but cute!

Now the fun part, finding new homes for them around the house.

Little bunny found a home next to the Easter nest my momma gave me...
Look close...Scout is in this photo...twice.

Do you decorate for Spring? 
Have you ever gold leafed something and it turned out way different then you imagined?

Pssssss! In case you missed it! Check out the rest of my Spring Decor in my Spring Vignette and Mantel post!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Spring Vignette and Mantel

Finally! Was that a long winter or what?  Spring is here, and apparently so are the April Showers...which I keep reminding myself...
Then sadly, I remembered I didn't even plant May flowers. I did plant a few June flowers. Gah, not good enough. I made a mental note to plant 5,000 tulips for next Spring. I need tulips in my life!

Anyway, my favorite "Spring-y decor" in our house is our entryway.
This old sewing machine table is really beat up, but I kinda like it that way. To create this vignette I shopped my house and the thrift store.

My sweet baby lamby greets guests at the door. I think she fits perfect in the Spring theme.

I took some cheap-o dollar store plastic eggs and mod podged some old book pages to them. Then stuffed them in a mason jar. Done.

I found a few ducks and bunnies at the thrift store and gave them a few coats of silver spray paint.

QUICK STORY: When I posted the above photo on my Instagram, somebunny (my mother) demanded she have the bunny holding the egg for herself. So off to her house this little rabbit went...

EDIT: here is the bunny in his new home, on my mom's kitchen counter.

Anyway, back to the vignette. The chalkboard was an old frame from Family Dollar of all places. I sprayed the frame white then used a little antique gold rub and buff.
Add a spritz of fresh grocery store flowers for a cheap and true spring touch. (If you are smart and planted yourself some tulips, you are lucky, you can use those!)

I love decorating with old books. The funny thing is, I pick them up for a quarter at the thrift store, and my husband ends up reading them. If he knew I ripped out the pages of some to make these eggs he would may or may not be cranky.

My mantel also had a few Spring additions. I made a burlap and lace banner one evening with a girlfriend at our monthly "Wine and Design"

Added a few little bunnies too, and my mantel is ready for Spring!

See my Winter/ New Year Vignette.
See my Fall/ Autumn Vignette.
You can jump back and see my Christmas Mantel right here.

What do you do to get ready for Spring in your house?
Do you have Spring flowers popping up?

Friday, April 4, 2014

Gulf Shores Adventures

A little over a week ago. Adam and I and 3 other couples headed down to Gulf Shores Alabama for a quick getaway.

We rented a beach house. On the beach of course.

We cooked out.

The men cookin'......

We walked on the beach, even on the day it was chilly (65 degrees, steaming HOT compared to Illinois!).

Played a little beach football and some serious games of sand volleyball!

We relaxed by the ocean.

Enjoyed several of these milkshakes---with booze in it.
Alabama Bushwhacker

Went out for a night on the town....err at the Marina club...

The lovely ladies before an evening at Tacky Jacks...

Went fishing....

and caught just a few...

Went out for oysters.

And shrimp and crab legs!

And giant drinks.

Swigged a couple afternoon drinks at a pink bar on the beach.

Complete with a pink viewfinder.

Had lots of laughs, along with a few hangovers and sunburns....

Then said goodbye to the ocean and the sand, packed the cars up and headed back to the cornfields of Illinois.
We loved Gulf Shores and we will be back!

Have you ever been on a road trip to the beach? 
Ever rented a beach house? 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Quick Boot Fix with Leather Nova

Do you have a favorite pair of leather boots? My husband does. He wears them while doing manly things like chopping wood for the fireplace and building things in the garage. They are part of his uniform when working outside on the house.

Adam has already built me a number of things while sporting these work boots: Farmhouse Table, our DIY Coffee Table are two of my favorites.

Anyway, the boots:
These boots were made for building me things.
Woof. They are in rough shape aren't they? You can tell they get some wear. These babies aren't cheap, we need to make them last as long as possible. Although they are work boots and of course get roughed up and scuffed, it's nice to keep them looking decent.
If he wants to be seen in public with me he needs to put a little effort in...I kid, I kid.

The answer to the grungy boot problem? Conditioner. Leather conditioner.

Conditioner is better! Well first, I wiped the boots down with soap and warm water to get rid of the grime and dirt.
I let them dry. Then I just rubbed and buffed a little of the leather conditioner with the handy dandy foam applicator sponge which was included with the product.

The results?
Much better. Still roughed up enough to be manly workin' boots. But in so much better shape.

I'd say this was a major improvement. The conditioner will protect the leather from more damage too.

I will be using this leather conditioner on my own boots, and a few other leather products we own.

I used Leather Nova by Instanatural LLC. You can purchase Leather Nova from Amazon. Why use Leather Nova as your go-to leather conditioner?
  • They have 90 day 100% money back guarantee
  • Nourishes, restores and protects all leather and vinyl surfaces
  • Non-toxic
  • Made in the USA
  • It works!
Have you ever conditioned your leather shoes before? 
What do you think Adam should build next now that his boots are shiny again?

Thanks to the kind folks from Instanatural who provided me with the product used in this post. Like  Leather Nova on Facebook! I was not compensated in any way for my thoughts.  As always all opinions are my own! There are NO affiliate links in this post.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Be My Guest | Stephanie from Furniture Flippin'

While I'm relaxing on the warm (fingers crossed) and sunny beach in Gulf Shores Alabama. I've wrangled up some of my favorite ladies to keep you entertained. Maybe you already know them and follow, and maybe you will find a new blog to add to your reader. Today's guest Is Stephanie from Furniture Flippin'

Oh the pressure!  The pressure is getting to me.  I have a fondness for my former fellow Illinois Valley dweller Trina and when she put out a call for Guest Bloggers I volunteered.  Now, here it is one week before her deadline and I don't know what to write!  

Do I confess to you the real reason behind my blog Furniture Flippin'?  Do I tell you why my firstborn blog The Hardscrabble Home has been sitting idle for almost a year?  Do I admit that I am hooked on Sons Of Anarchy, The Walking Dead and more recently, Bates Motel?  AND, that my son now calls me Norma?  Or do I share with you news of my on the way very first grandchild and the panic that is ensuing because I don't know how to knit or crochet and I think that's a requirement for becoming a grandmother? 

Sigh.  I suppose I should start with The Hardscrabble Home.  I wanted a creative outlet.  I have always loved to write and thought that a blog would be the ideal thing to tackle since the book on my life (Yes, MY life - even ordinary people can have interesting lives) has sat untouched for 12 years.  I began The Hardscrabble Home and then realized "THIS IS A LOT OF WORK!".  I can't come up with recipes and tips and projects on a regular basis.  I mean, how many aprons out of blue jeans can one person produce?  

I'm not Martha Stewart.  I don't possess the street cred she does.  I'm not a homemaking expert and I've certainly never served time in the Big House like she did no matter what this picture of me suggests.  (Relax.  I used to work there.) 

However, along the way with that blog I got serious about repurposing furniture.  Two of my favorite flips are the Dumpster Dresser and the Triple Rocker
That's when it hit me!  I can do my flips at my leisure and just write about other people's work.  Let them carry the burden.  I'd make a great boss, wouldn't I?  Except I give credit where credit is due.  Hehehe...

So, that's what I did.  In starting Furniture Flippin' I've met some talented and awesome people.  Trina being one of them.  

On to Sons Of Anarchy.  I binge watched Seasons 1 - 6 this winter with my husband during Snowmageddon.  I got so into it I referred to myself as my husband's old lady and whenever anything happened I would say, "This better not blow back on me!"  Also, every time a Harley roared by the house I looked out the window hoping to catch a glimpse of Jax.  

As for The Walking Dead - if you are a fan of the show, here is what you need to know.  I have an RV, I have a plan in place and on the weekends my husband, son & I try and scare each other in an effort to thwart any tendency to scream.  It's imperative that you are quiet and do not startle easily during a Zombie apocalypse.  I have to say I have become quite skilled at exiting the bathroom without making a sound and I never jump when someone leaps out at me from behind the door.  Stick with me.  Even if you don't possess the skill set that we do, we can always use Trippers to buy us time in case a herd of Walkers come along.  Think of it as taking one for the team.

Bates Motel is a series we just recently started watching.  We rarely watch TV no matter what this blog post suggests but when you are stuck inside by a horrible Illinois winter your options are limited.  You can only eat so many pickles and make so many pickle jar lamps.  I held off on watching this show because I was afraid it would be creepy.  Instead it's more campy and the mother Norma cracks me up.  

Finally, knitting and crocheting.  Do any of you knit or crochet?  Can I Youtube that and learn?  I doubt it.  I'll just wait until the weather warms up and get busy on flipping the furniture for my first grandchild's nursery.  We find out this month whether it's a boy or girl.  I can't wait.  A boy's name has been picked out but they are still looking for a girl's name.  The middle name will be Jo after my daughter and me.  If you have any suggestions, let me know.

So, there you have it.  I fretted over nothing.  I accomplished my first guest blog post.  I'd love it if you visited me on Furniture Flippin'.  Tell you what.  You can start by checking out the feature I did on Trina and her amazing bathroom vanity.  Once you are done, if you have a flip of your own, feel free to email it to me.  I'd love to see it.
~ Stephanie

Omg, you never know what she is going to say! She's too funny, and her blog is full of fabulous flips and hilarious commentary. Everybody get over to her blog now, and if you have a flip (which I know most of you do!) send it to her so she can feature it!  Xoxo Trina

HEY ALSO... Have you entered our Giveaway yet from Teak Closeouts? I know you want to win this bench. So hop to it! Enter here.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Be My Guest | Ashley from Attempts at Domestication

While I am relaxing somewhere on a (hopefully sunny) beach. I've asked a few ladies to fill in for me. Today's guest is my friend Ashley.

Hey there Let's Just Build a House readers! I'm so excited to be here while Trina is on vacation, even though I'm totally jealous. I'm Ashley and I blog over at Attempts at Domestication! I live in Richmond, VA with my handsome husband of three years in a cute little house in the suburbs. View More: I blog about all things domestic from crafts, home decor, cooking, sewing and life. My husband and I have also dabbled into woodworking and the pieces that we've built together are some of my favorite things about my house! Our first project was building a large 8 person farmhouse dining room table. We painted the legs and apron a crisp white and stained the tabletop dark walnut. It's an amazing combination and I never thought I could love a piece of furniture so much! dining-room-updates-tableThe chairs were an awesome $80 find on Craigslist and I really think they compliment the table very well. I plan on refinishing them, but I can't decide if I should finish them in a fun color or leave them white. After successfully building a table we got brave enough to try our hands at building a nightstand for our master bedroom. We searched high and low for a nightstand that met all of my requirements, which included having a drawer, a shelf and being made from actual wood. My husband did a fantastic job at constructing the nightstand and I absolutely love it. diy-nightstandIt is painted the same crisp white as the dining table and the top is the same shade of walnut. We splurged a little on the knob, it was $8 at Anthropologie, but I think it's the perfect finishing touch. My favorite home decor projects to date has to be the old window that I turned into a picture frame for a few of our wedding pictures. window9 I love having reminders of our special day hanging up in our bedroom in such a fun way. I also created some fun typography of our vows that hang over our nightstands. vow-art-for-the-bedroom To see more of my projects and to get to know me a little better be sure to pop over to Attempts at Domestication or follow me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Thanks so much to Trina for having me over! I hope you are having a blast on your vacation! :)

I've been reading Ashley's blog for a few years and I'm still impressed with her crafting and DIYs. You should follow her on instagram too. She posts her adorable outfits and photos of her wine drinking (like me!). Be sure to hop over and visit her. I know you will stick around! 

If you haven't entered the Giveaway for the super awesome Teak Bench from Teak Closeouts Please head over here to enter for your chance to win! Giveaway closes in a few days!
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