Tuesday, October 30, 2012

DIY Bat Mitzvah Candle Lighting Board

Hello!  Welcome to  my blog!  I've been busy, busy for the past few weeks getting ready for my stepdaughter's Bat Mitzvah.  I did a bunch of DIY projects for this event.  Today I'm going to show you how to make this awesome candle lighting board.  Its a tradition for the bar/bat mitzvah to call up a close friend or relative to help light each of her 13 candles (the bat mitzvah is celebrated when a jewish child turns 13 so its also a birthday party).


4"x4" post approximately 24" long (this will vary depending on how many candles and the size of the candles)
taper candles
3/4" drill bit
ribbon, tulle and letters to decorate and embellish


Gather your supplies. 

I had a left over 4"x4" post from building our refrigerator platform and purchased some white taper candles from Walmart.  Using the width of the taper candles and length of the board, we measured and marked where each hole would be drilled.

I drilled each hole approximately 1/2 deep.

Paint the entire board.  I used Kyrlon spray paint and primer in white.  It took at least 3-4 coats.

Wrap the outside of the board in ribbon.  I used the silver ribbon shown above.  Secure with hot glue.  The idea here is to cover up the outside so it doesn't look like a block of wood.

Embellish with tulle and letters.  I got the letters at AC Moore for $2 each.

Before placing the candles in the holes, we folded a piece of tulle and placed it over the hole.  This created a 'pouf' of tulle around each candle and helped to finish off the hole edges.  I was really trying to disguise this block of wood.  You can kind of see the poufs in the pic below.


That's it!  Thanks for stopping by and visiting my blog.


Sunday, September 9, 2012

Foyer Updates and Kids Cubby Labels

Hello!  We moved into this home 2 years ago.  One of the first problems I saw when we were house shopping was that this home had no mudroom, a tiny hall closet and no other space to put the kids shoes, coats, backpacks, and etc.  In our last home we built lockers for each child in the small mudroom area that was completely out of view, right off the garage.  So nice! 

The temporary solution we came up with for this house was to stick our extra Expedit shelf in the foyer.  Four columns of shelves was perfect for 4 kids.  We planned on building some nice lockers in this area. 

After 2 years here we decided that we like the Expedit shelves and they work fairly well.

Get ready for this "beautiful" iphone pic.

I don't love that I have all of this open shelving showing all of the kids stuff but I know from experience that if I had doors or baskets or whatever the kids are less likely to use the shelves and then everything ends up on the floor. Also, there is no mudroom (or room for a mudroom) in this house.

So, without spending a lot of $$ I made some update/improvements to this area. 

List of problems:
1. The shelves would not sit flush on the wall due to the moulding on the floor.
2. The walls still had the builder beige flat paint and they were dirty.
3. I wanted the area to look brighter and the artwork to draw the eye up more.

First, I added some CAPITA legs to the shelf unit.  The legs were purchased separately from IKEA, I think they were $6.

Then, I painted the walls in a light grey/taupe color, I made some new cubby names and added new artwork (also from IKEA, I already had these sitting in my basement from our last home).

I switched to my DSLR for this pic but obivously still not a good pic, sorry.

Here is a close up of the cubby label.

I started with some simple white frames I had on hand, also from IKEA.

And some letters purchased from the craft store.
The kids can change out the picture when they like.  I hot glued the letters to each frame and used command strips (love those!) to hang each frame to the shelves.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

DIY Floating Shelves

Hello!  I just posted about updating my son's room and wanted to explain how I made the floating shelves. 

I knew that I wanted some long shelves for this wall.  He needed room for all of his legos and stuff.  Also, this wall needed something large to fill up the space.

I started looking for floating shelves in various stores.  I liked IKEA's Lack shelving but a) they weren't the length I wanted, b) they weren't the width I wanted, and c) they were a little more than I wanted to spend.

I ended up spending about $20 on wood and have more wood left over. 

I started by taping off where I wanted the shelves to hang, and how wide I wanted them.

I purchased 2  1"x6"x8' preprimed mdf boards (one for each shelf) and 2  1"x2"x8' preprimed mdf boards.  I cut the 1x6 boards down to the length that I wanted the shelf (68 inches) and the 1x2 boards a little shorter (67 inches). 

Then I used the sturdiest screws I could find in the house (sorry if thats a poor description) and screwed the 1x6 and 1x2 together to create an L.  I used 5 screws down the length of the board, I wanted it to be sturdy.

To hang the shelves, we first located the studs.  I marked a small 's' on the tape to indicate where a stud was.  There were 4 studs across the space each shelf would hang. 

We then held the shelf up to the wall and created a helper hand using the ladder.  Really, Alex was holding the shelf as I drilled a hole through both the shelf and the stud. 

To get this first screw in, we took the shelf down and drilled the screw in so it was poking through the shelfabout 1/4 of an inch.  That way Alex could hold the shelf and we could guide the screw into that first pilot hole.   Then, finish screwing that first screw.

The rest of the screws were easier now that the first screw was supporting the shelf.  Just check for level and screw through to the next stud. 
 My screws are visible, but won't be noticable after I paint the whole shelf with a coat of white paint.  If I do this again, I have to make sure to get screws that I can countersink (or maybe I have to drill so I can countersink?). 

Here I am filling in nail holes and touching up paint.

Not too hard and I'm so happy with the size of the shelves.

Thanks for stopping by!



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Monday, August 27, 2012

Tweenage Boy Room in Grey, White and Red

I started this blog about a year-and-a-half ago and the very first project that I posted were these lego shelves for my son's room.   Problem is that my son has too much stuff, including too many legos.  This room still had builder-beige walls and my son has had the same denim comforters for almost a decade.  Time for some paint and a few updates.

My son had was completely resistant to any change in his room for the longest time.  When I finally conviced him to let me do a few things he had stipulations:  he had to keep his furniture and it had to stay where it was.  No painting the actual furniture either.  So here is where we started.  p.s.  I had already taped up the room for painting before I took the "before" pics.  Ha ha.

Before:  The lego display shelves that I put up for my first blog project.  They are great, but the lego collection far outgrew the space.  Also, this wall needed something larger to fill up the space, the arrangement I had was too sparse.

Before:  There is not alot I can do with the furntiure layout in this room.  There are 3 windows and 3 doorways.  The bunkbeds had to cover a window somewhere.  I put the desk in front of the other window.  My son was adamant about moving any of the furniture but even if he was willing to move it I'm not sure what would work.  Smallish room and largish furniture.  Lots of kid stuff and clutter.  I liked the comforters but they were almost 10 years old and I was ready for a change (I realize that a lot most of this home improvement is for me.  :) ).

Before:  Desk area.

Before:  My son's very own diy wall art.  Yes, the duck tape did pull off the part of the wall when I removed it.  I used almost a whole tube of dry wall filler on this wall.   

And now the AFTER!!!  I used the same grey paint from the powder room makover.  I started painting one evening while my son was out with the intention of doing 1 or 2 walls to see if he liked the color.  By the time he got home I had done the whole room with the first coat.  Fortunately he liked the color.  :)  Second coat went on a few nights later when I had 1 1/2 hours before I had to be at school orientation for my 3rd grader. 

Duvet covers are from Target.  They retailed for $39.99 each and I needed 2.  I waited and waited until they went on sale--sale price was $17 (more of a Target type price, don't you think?) and I tried to order 2 of them.  Problem was they were out of stock online.  I went back to the store several times and asked at customer service and each time I was told that Target online is separate from the Target store and the sales didn't coincide.  Ugggg!  I totally lucked out one day when I was in Target for a quick stop (is there really any such thing?) and there they were--2 (and only 2 were on the shelf) grey and white duvets for $17 each!   

AFTER.  I still have a mirror waiting to be hung for this wall.   I moved his 'H' coathook to the other side of the door so he can grab a jacket on his way out.

AFTER.  New DIY floating shelves!!!  I will have a separate post about how I built these.  Very easy.  They fill up this wall so much better and have a lot of room for more legos and tween boy stuff.


AFTER.  Desk area is the same.  I added a magnetic board, from IKEA.


Thanks for stopping by!!

----  Adrienne 

I'm adding the paint color used in this room to this post after I got a very nice email from a reader.  Unfortunately I don't know the original source of the swatch I asked Home Depot to color match but here is the formula from the paint can.


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