Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Before and After: Pillows and Dining Room Chairs

While the house isn't totally clean, or unpacked...we did reupholster the dining room chairs and recover the couch cushions (most of them anyway). What a dramatic difference in appearance (for both) and comfort (for the dining room chairs). Both projects together total about $31. $1 for the fabric and $30 for the foam for the dining room chairs. And I have enough foam leftover to cover the piano bench as well. In the end the foam was sold out at the craft store and they weren't getting any more in before Christmas...and living on an island it's not like I can drive to the next Joann's or Hobby Lobby. So I headed to Walmart and found a couple of choices, but settled on the 1.5 foam/memory foam combo. (The eggcrate stuff was half the price, but I wanted to make sure it was going to look nice, hold up and be comfortable.)

As for the pillows, the fabric is the same as the $1 upholstery fabric from the dining room as well as some leftover natural canvas drop cloths from previous projects. I changed up the scrabble pillows, instead of using a plain dark fabric I used the same fabric as the rest. And while I like the effect I need to kick up some contrasting color for my own sake...I don't want things too match-y. I was thinking about an appliqued version of my old Candid Memory Cards, and some knitted covers. (something like these)

There are so many colors to work with in this fabric from light blue to rust orange...which I love. Plus I've been wanting to make a quilt with each block being an appliqued memory, so a pillow would give me a chance to do a quick trial version.

(plus I still totally want to make a whale pillow...I just can't help myself, inspiration below)

Whatever the end result I will post it soon!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Last Minute Upholstery (for a buck!)

I SHOULD be cleaning for our company tomorrow...but instead, I'm starting the reupholstery project that I've been meaning to do for years. We finally hit the point where it can't wait anymore. Most of the fabric is torn at least partially off. (See? I wasn't kidding...yikes!)

Thankfully I'm ready with fabric in hand...and guess how much it cost me? $1. That's right, I can reupholster 6 dining room chairs for $1 of beautiful upholstery fabric. can't buy fabric for that. BUT YOU CAN!! (Not here in Alaska of course...but in Georgia you can) So for those friends still in GA it's a little family owned place on GA 20 between Loganville and Snellville. She sells her leftovers from her upholstery projects (as well as other fabrics) for $1.

I have yards and yards of fabric with panels cut out. I use the large pieces in between the panels for things like this, and the small bits for smaller projects. I've used these fabrics for purses, fabric bins, etc. It's such a sturdy weight of fabric with some really fun prints. I even have an uncut hand printed fabric that I'm waiting for just the right project. It's gorgeous. But I love this print as well and I can't wait to see the finished project. (I just hope I can finish it all by tomorow night!)

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Alaskan Christmas Tree

So what do you do when you live in Alaska and you need a Christmas tree? can go the artificial route (but it's just not the same to me), you can buy one from the boyscouts (boring) OR you can hike into the Tongass National Rainforest and cut one down.

We actually pondered this one for a minute...but in the end we decided to do what we came here to do LIVE BIG. So we drove to Bear Mountain, trudged through the snow, picked a tree, sunk in the snow getting to the tree, cut down the tree, dragged the tree back to the car, tied it on top the car, carried it inside the house, realized it was 5 feet too tall, cut off the bottom, stood it up and.....laughed. It is the scraggliest Charlie Brown looking tree you ever did see. (apparently we cut off the wrong 5 feet!)

But so what, right? We had a blast, we got to play in the snow, we got to feel in touch with nature...and in touch with our lives. I can't even compare it with last year (we picked it up at the Kroger on the way home one night)...not comparable at all.

It's the best Christmas tree long as you don't look at it too closely.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Cushion Re-Cover-y

Time to recover those hideous Rooms-to-go couch cushions that came with our couch. And while I'm on the topic WHY ON EARTH do they have to make couch cushions so ugly? Unless you can afford to buy your couch at Ethan Allen or Pottery Barn you are destined for ugly hotel lobby pillows. I have 11 pillows to re-cover (though recover is appropriate as in recover from the hideous ugly disease they were inflicted with)

Four of them I will be doing something like this...(from pillowhappy on ETSY)

But here is some more ETSY ispiration for my pillows...

I should have enough fabric to do them for free, I have a bunch of natural canvas we bought when we were working on the reno-house in that will do at least 6 of the pillows. Free is good...though I was tempted by some batik fabric at the store with native fish symbols. The native symbols are everywhere here, and I really love the block print feel of them. Like these...

In the end I'm just going to start working on them and see how they come out...wish me luck! I will be posting soon with the cushion recovery as well as dining room chair reulpholstering (for $1!!!)
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