September 20, 2014

My Chalkboard Kitchen Wall & Some Kitchen Organization

I wanted to show you guys my new chalkboard kitchen wall and a few little changes in the kitchen! My kitchen has been in a crazy state lately because I’m clearing my counters off, re-organizing cabinets and purging lots of stuff.

What a cute idea! A chalkboard wall with a  kitchen measurement conversion chart on it!

So this chalkboard project started because I  had lots of stuff sitting on this part of my kitchen counter (next to my cook top) that I moved to other places and then, since this area looked so nice, I just wanted a new look. :)  So I painted that wall with some chalkboard paint that I already had and for now I have a sort of kitchen measurement conversion chart on it.

DIY Toile Art

This is the before. I made these pictures I think about 10 years ago. They’re just pieces of toile fabric that I glued onto some cardboard and framed. This wall is a little strange in that the wall oven is behind it. This wall is actually covered in white with gold fleck formica! I’ve painted over it many many times because this kitchen has been about 7 different colors!

Cooking measurements chalkboard wall

This is the after. I thought cooking measurements would be cute for now.  I can always change it to something else like dinner menus or a saying later on. That’s the beauty of chalkboard – it’s definitely for those who like to change things up!

organize your cooking oils on a lazy susan

Some changes I made to this little counter top area -I used a Lazy Susan that I was using in my refrigerator to organize my most used oils (not sure I like it in the fridge – I think it took up too much space). I would have liked to have put the oils in the cabinet with the spices but those shelves don’t move so these bottles don’t fit. That’s my fancy Davis & Waddell pepper mill that I got at the thrift store in May!

Target Threshold white utensil holder

I don’t have a lot of drawers so I like to keep my larger utensils out since it makes them easy to grab when I’m cooking. I cook a lot! I sometimes cook 3 meals a day – most days at least 2. So whatever makes things easier for me!  I just got this cute utensil holder at Target – it’s part of the Threshold line.

black and white marble checkerboard floor and chalkboard wall

So this little counter space used to be filled with all kinds of things that have found new homes! Now I have a little more room to the left of my cook top and I was really shocked at what a difference this little change makes in my enjoyment of cooking!

Chalkboard wall in the kitchen with cooking measurements

My favorite thing though is the chalkboard wall!

I also re-organized my broom closet turned pantry and a few other things in the kitchen – so look for those future posts!

Have a great weekend!

Two-Tone DIY Wooden Spoon Plant Markers

I was looking for a cute new idea for some plant markers (last year I did paint stick plant markers) and came across several ideas using wooden spoons as plant markers. Which I thought was a good idea as wooden spoons are very inexpensive. You can find a bag of them just about anywhere. I found a bag of 8 at TJMaxx for $3.99 but I know the dollar stores have them as well as the big box stores.

DIY Wooden Spoon Plant Markers - so easy to make and inexpensive!

Last year I didn’t seal the paint stick plant markers I made and most of them didn’t make it  through the winter (I probably shouldn’t have left them in the garden). So this year I used some outdoor Mod Podge to seal my new plant markers because even though they weren’t hard to make they were a bit more labor intensive than just writing a plant name on a paint stick! So I want them to last!

I made two tone wooden spoon plant markers using the same blue that I used on my vegetable garden gate and arbor and back screen door. I’m trying to unify the backyard with color – so I’m using that aqua color and sprinkling it around.

cute herb plant marker made from a wooden spoon

How to make wood spoon plant markers


  1. wooden spoons
  2. 2 different colors of acrylic paint
  3. alphabet stickers
  4. Mod Podge Outdoor


1. paint your wooden spoon the color you want your lettering to be and let dry for a few hours

tutorial for how to make wooden spoon plant markers

2. spell out your plant name on the flat side of the spoon with your alphabet stickers

3. paint over the alphabet stickers with your 2nd paint choice. Let dry about 20 minutes.

how to make wooden spoon plant markers

4. Carefully remove your stickers. Use your fingernail and start at one edge and gently lift off.  As you remove the sticker you will see that the color you painted first will form your letter.

5. Seal with a few thin coats of Mod Podge Outdoor letting it dry 15 minutes or so between coats. Let your spoons dry for 24 hours before putting them outside (or skip the sealer part if you don’t care if they last more than one  season)

DIY wooden spoon plant marker

These are really easy to make and if you set up assembly line style you should be able to make these plant markers quickly!

I know what plants are what – the plant markers aren’t for me but for other family members who for some reason will not can not remember where the pepper plants are or what’s basil and what’s mint!


Linking to: Thrifty Thursday

Easy to make DIY wooden spoon plant markers

Back Door Area Makeover

Well I’m finally starting to see the light with some of our outdoor projects! Just in time too. It’s already hot early in the morning so soon working outside at any time is not going to be happening. Let me show you what we did with the area outside our back door.

Beautiful back door area makeover with lots of budget friendly ideas!

I finished painting the gingerbread screen door we installed and the door behind it.  I’m excited that I  can cross that off my many painting projects list! This is just an in stock wood screen door from Home Depot. It already has all the gingerbread trim on it. (If we were staying here you know I would have painted that door more than one color :) )

wooden screen door before and after makeover

I used to have my potting bench here that my husband made me out of reclaimed pallets and wood. Which worked for me but we didn’t think most people would be happy to see a huge bench outside the backdoor. So we moved the potting bench into the garden (I’ll show you the new potting area soon) and used a lot of what we had to make this cute little seating area.

Pretty outdoor seating area by a back door -aqua screen door and containers with topiaries

The glider I found at Goodwill many years ago and it was on our patio so we just moved it here. As you can imagine, I have lots of pots!

renew your old resin pots with spray paint!

I’ve had these resin containers for probably 10 years or more! All I did was 1. wash the dirt off the outside, 2.then a couple of light coats of spray paint ( Rustoleum Aqua). Then I 3.sanded the raised areas to let the original tan color show through a bit and I have new pots!

I did buy the topiaries but since they’re planted in pots they will be coming with me when we move. They’re underplanted with yellow Portulaca (which is heat and drought tolerant).

fun outdoor pillows and doormat complete the look for this back door makeover

I bought two outdoor cushions from Garden Ridge and a new door mat from Target. I also had to special order shutters for the window above the glider. It’s an odd size but they weren’t too pricey. I think they were $35 for 2 from Home Depot.  They match the other shutters on the house and give this area a finished look.

We also invested in some rubber patio pavers so we wouldn’t have to trim around and under the glider and pots when mowing the lawn. These we just set on top of the ground – no digging required!

pretty outdoor seating area makeover with lots of great ideas

I have a few hydrangeas next to this area. This one isn’t in bloom yet, but I think this area will look even prettier when they’re in bloom!

9 Cute Tea Cup Gardens

Turn old teacups into charming mini gardens!  Here are a few ideas to get you started.

9 Cute teacup gardens

These also make cute gifts!

Mini teacup garden by Camp Makery

Camp Makery has a wonderful step by step tutorial on how to make these super cute mini teacup gardens.

Tea cup herb garden

Teacup herb garden by The Brower Bird Stories

teacup planter pots

Teacup planter pots via Go Make Me

succulents planted in a tea cup

Succulents planted in a teacup by  Kerry Michaels @ About. Com Container Garden Ideas

basil growing in a teacup

Basil growing in a teacup via Creative Juice

cacti planted in teacups

Cacti in teacups via Casos de Casa

pansies in a teacup

Pansies in teacups via  My Place in the Sun

mini pond in a teacup

Little pond plants in  a teacup via BuzzFeed

teacup garden

HGTV Gardens has easy steps for creating this teacup garden

These are really simple to make!

DIY Fabric Wrapped Spring Wreath

This easy project is a great way to use up scraps of fabric! I made this fabric wrapped wreath for a  spring display that I’m working on in my dining room.

DIY fabric covered spring wreath

This is so easy and cute!


  • straw or styrofoam wreath form
  • 1 inch wide strips of fabric
  • push pins
  • other embellishments you might want to add like lace, rick rack, flowers, brooches etc

materials needed to make a fabric covered wreath

I used a small  straw wreath – 8 inches I believe. The 10 inch straw wreaths are $2.99 and I think the one I used was $1.99?(can’t remember).  You can find them in any craft store as well as thrift stores.

I made 1 inch wide strips of fabric since my wreath was small. I would use 2 inch wide strips for a larger wreath. The strips varied in length but most were at least 15 inches long.  You want to wrap your strips around at least 3 times.

pin fabric to wreath

Wrap your strip of fabric around the wreath and pin it at the back. Continue until the entire wreath is covered with our fabric strips and then add any other embellishments if you wish.

That’s it!

easy to make wreath using fabric scraps

Actually I think it would be just as cute for summer too!


Dining Room Decorating – Autumn Changes I Made

So a while ago I said I wanted to make a new chain cover for my dining room chandelier but I wasn’t sure what color/pattern of material to use. You wouldn’t think it would be hard to decide on such a little thing would you? But I find that it’s the little details that make a room. Sure the big elements make the biggest statement, but it’s often the little things that bring it all together and add personality!

burlap ribbon chandelier chain cover

Anyway, all of that is to say that I made a chain cover for my chandelier :)

burlap harvest banner

Well, first I made a Harvest banner for my cow chalkboard which is burlap and I also had used a burlap runner in my dining room Thanksgiving display plus my dining room typography rug is bamboo and has the same brownish tone. So I thought why not burlap?

burlap ribbon

I did try strips of burlap fabric but that didn’t work too well and burlap is so incredibly messy with those fibers and threads flying every where! But I had a few rolls of burlap ribbon which I got at Hobby Lobby a few months ago when ribbon was 50%. So for  $2.49 I have myself a new cord cover that I’ll keep up at least through Christmas! Plus I can just unwind it and use it for something else if  I get tired of it. 

diy chandelier chain cover

Basically I just started at the top with the 15 feet of ribbon and fluffed it, pinned strategically with some push pins to keep it up, wrapped the chain and fluffed some more, tucked the ends in the fluffing and was done in a few minutes!

dining room chandelier

Easiest no sew chain cover ever!!

burlap Thanksgiving bunting

I gotta say “Harvest” may have been an unfortunate word to choose to hang under the cow! By the way, the cow chalkboard is available as a printable in my daughter’s etsy shop along with some other animals (she did a series).

dining room chandelier with burlap chain cover

Hope you all have a great weekend!

DIY Saturday: DIY Twine Star

I was looking for easy to make DIY Christmas ornaments and found a great project that you can make that’s not only inexpensive but looks great as well! It’s a really easy DIY Twine Star from Lowe’s. It’s rated at a beginner skill level and should only cost about $10 to make if you have to buy all the supplies. But you may just have most of the supplies already!

DIY Saturday Featured Project @ A Cultivated Nest: DIY Twine Star from Lowe's Creative IdeasNot only is this a perfect project for Christmas (you could even spray paint it red when it’s done) but it’s really great for anytime of year.


  • Wood glue
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks


  • 8-in wood shims, pack of 14
  • 2 – 1/16-in natural twisted jute

Directions: for complete instructions on how to make this twine star go to Lowe’s Creative Ideas

DIY Saturday: Easy DIY Shower Curtain Ideas

A shower curtain really adds to the design of a bathroom and sometimes you just can’t find the perfect one.  Take a look at these pretty and easy DIY Shower curtain ideas.

easy & pretty diy shower curtain ideas that anyone could make

Change the look of your bathroom with these easy ideas!

DIY Chevron Shower Curtain

You could take this idea of chevron’s and use it to do other patterns like stripes or dots. Tutorial @  The Good, The Bad, The Truth

DIY Stenciled Shower Curtain

This shower curtain is made using a stencil and they’re drop cloths! Super thrifty! Stencil the whole thing or stencil just the top or middle. Tutorial @  SAS Interiors

diy stenciled drop cloth shower curtain

This elegant shower curtain is another great example of using a paint and a stencil. Once again being able to to use whatever color of paint and stencil is a great way to get a custom look for pennies!  Tutorial @ Refresh Restyle

DIY ruffled shower curtain

So cute! This would be a great way to use up a bunch of leftover material! Tutorial @ Spoonful of Imagination

diy flower petal shower curtain

This pretty one requires some super easy sewing. Tutorial @ Mama Says Sew

diy gold spray painted shower curtain

Dress up a clear shower curtain with some spray paint! Change the design to suit your decor. Tutorial @ Run Way Chef

All materials and directions can be found at the linked blogs.

Some Changes I’ve Made That Didn’t Cost Me a Dime!

You know those red and white toile curtains with yellow pom pom fringe that used to hang in my living room?  Well I moved them into my office/craftroom because I’m either making or buying new curtains for my living room (I’m testing some ideas) and I love those curtains. I’ve had them forever and I wasn’t quite ready to say good-bye just yet! I have the chair that I painted and recovered in there too and they look so cute together.

red buffalocheck chair and toile curtains

Red buffalo check and red toile is such a good combination! Plus I love how the red looks with the Annie Sloan Provence color I used on the chair and the blue in the print.

red toile curtains

It’s hard taking a photo of a window! The plate holder over the window has been there for years (I think I got it at Bed Bath & Beyond). The chair makeover can be found here. The drop leaf table I’ve had for years and used to be in my living room. It’s now used for my husband’s suitcase (he travels a lot for business).  His closet is in this room too. So the chair gives him someplace to sit to put on his shoes and some place for people in general to sit to visit with me in the office. Like with most not so big old homes – this room is multi-purpose!

One day I’ll show you the whole room at one time but I’m still working on organizing all my craft stuff!

free printable

I wanted some new art for the sliver of wall in-between the closet and window so I looked in my printables board on Pinterest and found this fun print! This is a free printable which you can find here (it comes in several colors).

doily wall art

I needed another piece of art to put above the printable and made this. The frame used to be green and had a piece of black and white toile wallpaper in it. I spray painted it red and covered the insert with burlap and glued a Michael’s doily on it. Instant Granny Chic wall art!

DIY wall art

The white crochet pillow is from Ikea a few years ago and looks like a big white doily!

our greatest glory sign

My husband just put up the shelf that the sign is sitting on. I still have to decide how I want to organize my craft stuff and I have several pictures I want to hang on the wall.

There’s so much still left to do in this room!

Linking to: Frugal Crafty Home

Thrifty Thursday

DIY Saturday: Rooting Rose Cuttings

Did you know you could propagate roses? I found this technique for rooting cuttings that seems so easy I want to give it a try.  What a frugal way to have a beautiful garden! Growing roses from cuttings.

DIY Saturday: Rooting rose cuttings

Try to take your cuttings in the mornings and from what I’ve read, florist roses are not good candidates for this process (but who knows,  you might get lucky).  You can root roses over the winter or anytime during the growing season depending on your climate.

F.Y.I.  If a plant is patented or trademark (such as Knockout Roses) then you can’t legally reproduce them via cuttings.

DIY Rose Propagation


  1. A plastic half-gallon jug
  2. A 2-liter soda bottle
  3. A sharp knife
  4. Rooting hormone
  5. Pruners


Directions with photos can be found at Hartwood Roses

*Rooting Hormone can be found at any of the big box stores or garden centers. You can make your own  Natural Rooting Hormone as well. Here are six alternatives for rooting hormone courtesy of Preparedness Mamma


DIY Fall Spray Painted Burlap Pillow

I’ve had quite a few people ask how I made the fall leaf burlap pillow out on my screened porch, so here’s a little tutorial. It’s really quick and really easy to make. All you need is burlap, spray paint, stick on letters and a leaf (or other shape) from Michael’s or the dollar store. Burlap is soooo inexpensive that it makes sense to always have a few yards of it because you can use it in all kinds of home decor projects.

How to make this is a super easy to make spray painted fall burlap pillow #burlap

This is basically the same technique I used in this DIY Gratitude Wall Art I made last year.  Even though this pillow is for fall you could apply this method to any other season or holiday.

About Burlap

Some people wash their burlap and some don’t.  I think burlap smells so I washed mine but it does make it kind of fuzzy when you wash it, but it also get’s softer. So it’s up to you. If the pillow is purely decorative you may want to skip washing. If you are really going to use the pillow (like I do) you may want to wash it first.  Burlap is cheap try it both ways and see which you prefer. If you wash and put it in dryer you’ll have to steam iron it cause it’ll be wrinkly!

materials used to make a spray painted burlap fall pillow

To cut a straight edge on burlap you pick a spot where you want to cut it and pull on one of the threads until you  get one that goes all the way across. You pull that out and it leaves a visible line. That will give you a perfectly straight line to cut. That pile to the left is all the string I had to pull to get 8 straight edges.

diy fall burlap leaf pillow

Lay out your leaf and your letters however you want and spray with several coats of spray paint. I used a satin.

spray painted burlap

When you remove the letters and leaf you will have the shapes of  whatever you put down.

Then all you have to do is sew up your pillow. I used a summer outdoor pillow in mine.

how to make an easy fall burlap pillow #burlap

Super easy!


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DIY Saturday: How To Make A Sweater Pumpkin

Happy Weekend everyone! Is it starting to feel like fall where you are? Have you started decorating for fall? I can’t think of decorating for fall without adding a pumpkin or two. Sweater pumpkins are so cute and very easy to make. You can recycle an old sweater you’re no longer using or go to the thrift store and get one there. Here are 4 fabulous tutorials that show you how to make a sweater pumpkin.

Here's a roundup of 4 fabulous sweater pumpkin tutorials

Happy pumpkin making!

sweater pumpkin tutorial

How To Make Darling Sweater Pumpkins @ Facts From A Fact Woman

sweater pumpkin tutorial

This easy sweater pumpkin tutorial uses a dollar store pumpkin as the base @ Confessions of a Plate Addict

sweater pumpkin tutorial

These cute sweater pumpkins with the fabric stems are from Alderberry Hill.

white sweater pumpkin tutorial

This white sweater pumpkin uses plastic bags for stuffing @ Craftaholics Anonymous

Be sure to visit the blog  linked for the complete material list and tutorial.

Cornstalks & How To Make an Outdoor Banner

I want to show you how I make my outdoor banners.  Actually,  it’s not really so much how I make them that’s important, it’s more what I use to make them. I use vinyl tablecloths to make my outdoor bunting!

how to make an outdoor banner from a vinyl tablecloth from the dollar store

I grew these cornstalks. It’s fun to grow your fall decor if you have space to do so. I always grow some pumpkins and frequently corn. These are the stalks from the popcorn that I grew this summer.

Dollar store tablecloth outdoor banner

I made this fall banner for my screened porch since I’m doing a little fall decorating in there. It’s really been feeling like fall in the mornings.

DIY summer outdoor banner

You may remember that I made this  one for my summer porch. That one was made from a vinyl tablecloth too. It’s been out there all summer through the heat, rain and storms.

How To Make An Outdoor Banner

1. You need a vinyl tablecloth. I get mine from Big Lots or the dollar store.

vinyl fall tablecloth used to make a fall banner

2. Cut out the banner shape that you want to use. I used a different shape for each of my banners. Here’s the template I used to make the fall banner – bunting template (courtesy of

step 2 in making an outdoor banner from a vinyl tablecloth

3. Glue your cut out pieces to a piece of twine. I used hot glue on the low setting but you may want to use E6000 or some other glue. Hot glue worked fine for me on my porch.

step 3 in making an outdoor banner

That’s all to it. Is’t that easy! There are so many cute vinyl tablecloths out there that you could use. Or maybe you already have one that’s seen better days? This is a great way to upcycle them.

make an outdoor banner from a vinyl tablecloth

Then hang your banner on your fence, an arbor, your front porch, over your door, anywhere you want a touch of happiness.

how to make an outdoor banner from a dollar store vinyl tablecloth - template included in tutorial

Don’t banners just make you smile!

Linking to: Tutorials Tips & Tidbits

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