Saturday, July 13, 2013

Poll Time: Which Do You Prefer?

I'm working on a new line of beachy prints right now--crustaceans, sea shells, coral, etc..

I have three different style ideas, all of which I think are appealing, but I'm wondering what YOU think? Which of these three styles would you like most on your walls? Feel free to comment after taking the poll if you have anything else you'd like to add!

Thanks in advance for participating. My shop is very important to me--it helps me keep my daughter's art supplies stocked, helps us go on various daily outings from the zoo to strawberry picking, and helps us pay any medical or veterinary bills that arise. Your support is greatly appreciated and I'm so grateful for each and every one of you!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

300 Followers? Giveaway Time!

We hit the 300 mark on the Scarlet Blvd Facebook page! So it's time for a giveaway!

Three prizes are up for grabs:

 First Prize: $50 Credit to Scarlet Blvd!

Second Prize: Two free prints--One for you AND one for your friend!
Third Prize: One free print!



Entering is easy! Up to 10 entries per person, plus an extra daily entry if you tweet the giveaway daily. Use the Rafflecopter widget below. Giveaway runs through midnight on July 8th! Share the giveaway with your friends by referring them to this blog post or to the giveaway form on Scarlet Blvd's Facebook page!


Saturday, June 15, 2013

Updated my boring bench cover

Right before we moved into our new home in February, Home Depot had a fantastic sale on their Home Decorators Collection Brexley entryway bench. We picked it up for only $49. A complete steal, despite the dreadfully boring taupe/brown seat cushion cover. But that's an easy fix! Being an abysmal seamstress, I just kind of made it up as I went, but it worked out well enough.

First up, buy some fabric. I bought 2 yards of heavy duck cloth.

Original Bench

This was me cutting off the selvage edge of my new fabric. I think that was probably stupid...I wouldn't do that if I were you.

I laid down the cushion on the fabric and cut where I thought I should. The fabric was the perfect width to just fold in half, making my job so much easier. Ta da!

First, fold the seam allowance and iron it. It makes sewing it all together so much easier. Then make a pretty corner (whatever you think is pretty will work!) and put some pins in it to keep it in place.

Make sure it closes enough to allow for the seam allowance. Then pin seam, turn inside out, sew, and repeat on the other side!

So far you've got two seams. Easy so far, no matter your sewing level.

I completely forgot to take pictures of the back where it closes. I simply folded and ironed the hem and hemmed around the entire opening. Then sew velcro along the length and close it up! I used blue velcro to match the fabric. Easy peasy! 

Finished product! We love it! I'm going to make a couple more so I can switch it out for different looks. I'd love a bold floral in the entryway here, too.

I know this tutorial is somewhat lacking--I'm really bad at explaining sewing endeavors. If you have any questions, feel free to ask and I'll answer to the best of my limited ability. :) 








Friday, June 14, 2013

Repainted Goodwill Mirror

It's been a big week for projects in this house. After finishing the end tables from the previous post, I found a great mirror at Goodwill for $3.99. Huge and heavy, with a brown wood frame that had seen better days. I'd been wanting to create a block corner for Scarlet with a mirror to help with three dimensional block play, like I'd seen on An Everyday Story's blog. I used the same Lagoon paint I used for the drawers on the end tables to repaint the mirror frame so it'd match the rest of the room, and still be bright enough to encourage creativity and provide a bright play atmosphere.

It was really simple--just cover the mirror with newspaper, and spray paint the frame. I did three coats (prime it first and you won't need to do that many, but I was out of primer and didn't want to make a trip to the store), followed by two coats of Hard Coat Mod Podge.

I'd like to get a sturdier surface for her block play, but she really loves this play mat so it's a good option for now. She loves it and it matches her new mirror.



Thursday, June 13, 2013

70s Endtables: Beat Up to New & Chic

Recently I found some end tables at a neighbor's rummage sale (during our designated town-wide rummage sale weekend--yup, those exist!) and they had some great bones. They were already in pretty good shape, just dated and a little scratched up from 30 or so years of use, but in remarkably good condition considering their age. So I picked them up at $4 a piece and they've been sitting in my garage waiting for me to finish them for the last month.

Our family room needed a finishing touch and I figured these end tables were just what was needed, so my husband and I went and pick up our supplies. In addition to some Rustoleum primer and some lace I'd picked up at a Joann's store closing sale, I used these colors--Dark Walnut, Lagoon, and Lacquer (useless--don't use it).

 

The tables before:

 




I covered the drawer fronts in lace using basic mod podge (glossy formula because I already had it in my art supplies):


 Primed it all with Rustoleum gray spray primer:


Painted the drawers Lagoon--inside and out--makes the inside of the drawer more fun. And painted the tables with the Dark Walnut. Two coats of each. 


Painted the handles with some Rustoleum Oil-Rubbed Bronze that I had on hand.


After all of this dried, I applied the lacquer. And then applied more lacquer. And then went and bought more lacquer and applied more lacquer. And it was blotchy and uneven and left behind a weird texture. So I gave up on that and finished it with Mod Podge Hard Coat--a hard, durable satin-finish mod podge for furniture. And ta-da! The finished product!


 


Really easy project for really big impact and great results! It finishes the room off nicely. Next I'll be re-upholstering this chair to go opposite the LoveSac in this room to create another "grown up" seating space. ;)


Linked up to blog party at Home Stories A to Z! Check them out for more cool DIY!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Pinterest to the Rescue: Saving My Beloved Anthropologie Shower Hooks

To anyone else, my light green porcelain shower curtain hooks might seem boring. But I love them. My husband got them for me for Christmas 6 years ago from Anthropologie and they've been in our main bathroom every since.

But.

We just moved. And painted our main bathroom blue. And my shower hooks clash now. And they don't go with our master bathroom either. *Le Sigh*

I guess I got my use out of them. 6 years is pretty good for $16.

Hold on though! I can fix them to match our new bathroom (blue, black, and white)? And all it takes is a Sharpie and an oven?

I was going to buy new ones, so if I botched this I figured I wasn't out anything.

Cue The Sharpie!


The tutorial I saw (the really popular one on Pinterest, with the teal Sharpie knobs via Teal & Lime) showed the lines of the Sharpie kind of creating a variegated look as the lines overlapped--I'm guessing this is a product of the colored Sharpies. The black went on smoothly and without any sort of fussing. 

I poked them through a cardboard box to dry overnight--they do smear quite easily for the first hour or so.

Then I popped those babies into the oven the next day at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes. (Please note my hand painted "Tea Room," "Sugar Shop," and "Flour House" and my gorgeous yellow house cookie jar--THRIFTED. In perfect condition and thrifted! Thrifting is a new thing for me--and not because of that heinous "Thrift Shop" song. I've discovered that it's actually a very fun and useful way to shop sometimes. I highly recommend it as long as you have reputable stores--Goodwill, St. Vincent de Paul, or Vine stores, for instance.)


Please excuse my wrinkled shower curtain--I didn't pull it out of the dryer as quickly as I should have.

So pretty and shiny and matching! And it cost me $0 because I already owned a Sharpie. 

Thanks Teal & Lime and Pinterest! 


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

We're Big on Daily Arts and Crafts

As you can probably tell, I'm big on adding some sort of art or craft into our daily routine. But to do this, I have to be organized. 

Otherwise, it just won't happen.

I've had a few questions about how I get this done. A few things to remember to make it easy on yourself:


1. It doesn't have to be hard--think of the easiest system that will work for you!
2. Keep it simple--kids will figure out what they want to do with the materials with just a little guidance from you.
3. Keep it all in ONE PLACE. That makes clean up easy, and it's not so daunting to gather up the necessary materials to get started.
4. Buy a cheap plastic shower curtain. It's so handy. You can spread that out, let the art happen, then if the shower curtain is really messy, throw it in the washer on cold with either a little vinegar or a little bit of regular detergent, then pull out and hang to dry. (This is also a good tip for your regular shower curtains--keeps them looking new!)


Here's what I do:

Everything has it's own bag or container. That way when it's time to craft, I pull out the bag that we need for the project and get to work!

Coloring/painting supplies all together in the Crayola bucket, stickers all in one bag, Playdoh and cookie cutters all together, pipe cleaners and pom poms together in a box, and a bag of miscellaneous crafting supplies (easter grass, tulle, ribbon, etc...).

Paper/contact paper/coloring books all go together, a bag of adult tools (fancy paints, glue guns, scissors, etc...), a bag of glue and things to be glued, yarn, and even a bag of our "in process" crafts.

Our trusty shower curtain--cut in half for manageability

And it all fits in this little Ikea basket in the corner of our hallway closet! It's so convenient and easy!

And get creative with your craft supplies!! I have everything from pink tulle and fabric butterfly clips to wooden easter ornaments and the foil tops of festive garden stakes (they just pull right off the metal stake and are ready to be glued!).

And think creatively about where to get your arts and crafts supplies. Always check out the after-holiday clearance for things like stickers, the garden stakes I mentioned above, and other lightweight decorations. 

My local Goodwill is a treasure trove of crafting supplies. If you're lucky like I am and your local Goodwill is a Target clearinghouse, you can clean up on the Target Dollar Spot items. They come to the Goodwill and end up on the "Fun Items for $0.25" racks. I've gotten all our coolest crafting supplies from there! And there is usually a crafting supply section back in the aisles where they'll have fabric remnants, yarn, stamps, rhinestones, beads, etc...

You can easily fill a basket like this for under $15 and then you'll have everything you need for hours of fun with your kiddos!

To get some fun ideas for art time with your child, visit my Pinterest Art Time board.





Monday, April 8, 2013

Back from Hiatus

Life has settled back down.

Whew!

We're now living in the midwest (West Bend, WI) and my husband is a bioinformatics analyst and I get to be a stay at home mom to our adorable two year old daughter, Scarlet, and our three guinea pigs, Darwin, Einstein, and Tesla.

Now that life has settled down, I'm back at the art thing. With a new shop name: Scarlet Blvd. Same location--old links will all still work. But the new official address is http://scarletblvd.etsy.com.


I like this name better. We all like this name better.

Obviously I named it after my daughter.

There lots of new stuff in the shop--more modern things. Also historical things. Also just plain cool things. I've found a cool way to bridge my art history training with my art--blueprint art work. I'm just in love with it and I hope you like it, too. I'm still branching out into other things, too. I'm just having fun with it.

Hopefully you'll stick with me through this new transition. And hopefully you'll love my new stuff as much as I do.

Today, we're sick. Specifically, I'M sick. I built a big fort in my bedroom on our four poster bed, and Scarlet and I have been coloring and watching kiddie shows all day.

We did take a break for some fun painting time, though. I try to do something that explores her creativity each day--you'll see some of it here.
I discovered this great little FREE app in the Apple Store called Frametastic--it lets me do these fun framed photo collages. There are tons of different layouts to choose from within the free edition. I highly recommend it.