Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Bye Bye Stalkers! | Installing a Window Cling

Remember when I complained about the window next to the front door that essentially was an All You Can Stalk Buffet for creepy people?

I finally fixed it! It took me a little while to finally get this one done, mostly because some other life and work projects took precedence. Although it seems simple on the surface, it requires measuring and finesse, two things I'm not very good at. Plus, I was debating whether or not to make it myself (which involves using contact paper), but ultimately decided against it due to time constraints and wanting to devote my precious time to other projects instead.

I ended up purchasing a large roll of one with a cute leaf pattern from Amazon. Instructions came with it, and I more or less followed them. I won't wax poetic on it, because it's fairly basic stuff (ya know, clean the window, measure and cut the film, spray soapy water on it, slap it up there, squeegee it, and BAM you're done).

However, some tips I'd suggest if you're thinking about attempting something like this in your own home:

  • Order twice the amount you think you'll need. We're human and make mistakes (or maybe I'm just more mistake-prone than the average DIYer), so having some extra wiggle room in case you cut too much off will be a lifesaver.
  • If you don't have one already, buy a small spray bottle. You'll need one to apply the soapy water that makes the clings stick to the window. I had one laying around that I used to use for my hair, so it was easy to re-purpose for this. They're about a dollar at Walgreens or Target.
  • Get a second opinion halfway through the process. It can be as simple as "Honey, how's this looking so far?" That simple question led Brian to admit that the window cling on the bottom window was against the grain (the first two were vertical, and I cut the last one I cut horizontally for some odd reason), so that bit of feedback helped keep things consistent. Would I have noticed it on my own? Yeah, probably, but likely not until after I cleaned up and put everything away.

Here's the view from the inside, which really isn't all that great because it was too backlit. But hopefully  you at least get the general gist of it.

Here's another photo, a bit more up close and personal. See what I mean about the vertical grain? Husbands do come in handy every now and then. ;)

And here's the view from outside:

And here's the whole kit 'n kiboodle - although you can't really make out the window clings, I swear they're there!

Let me tell ya, it's sooooooo nice to not have to worry about people peeking in through that window any longer. Huge load off my shoulders, that's for damn sure!

Anyone else attach a window cling lately? Any other tips/tricks to share?

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*

Friday, September 12, 2014

Decorating the Home Office

Not to confuse it with my work office. ;)

Remember when I mentioned I was offered a new job? Well, I started there this week, and get this: I have my own office. With a window!!! Coming from the Land of the Cubicles, this is a big freaking deal, peeps.

Eventually I'll think more about how I want to decorate my new and fabulous work space, but for now I'll concentrating on my home office, which we recently painted and reorganized. It's been awesome to finally be able to use this space for its intended purpose, although the walls are kind of lacking in pretty things at the moment. And we all know how much I like pretty things.

Here are some options I'm considering:

I'm really liking the shelving concept of this set-up, especially since I have a whole bunch of books and random knick knacks that need a home.

I really like the crate box shelving idea, along with the leather chair. I've always wanted a nice comfy corner in my office to either philosophize about the meaning of life or just to read a good book. Quite warm and cozy.

Anyone who knows me well knows that I'm a big fan of polka dots. Perhaps I could do an accent wall or the area around my desk with these puppies.

Although I like the light fixture that's currently in the office, I'm thinking about switching it up. This option from the Restoration Hardware Kids collection is pretty nifty, and honestly it looks rather easy to re-create myself if I really wanted to.

Orbital Sphere Flushmount Light, $199, RHKids

I love me a good gallery wall, and really like how this one turned out. Looks classy yet warm and inviting.

So there you have it - essentially a hodgepodge of what I'm thinking as far as decorating the office. Perhaps I'll do a more formal mood board in the near future. 

Any other ideas out there for storage/decor/organization? 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

September Deals & Steals

So sorry for not posting on Friday, peeps. I had every intention of doing so, but got smacked down by a really random virus that clogged up my sinuses and made me into a zombie version of myself. I'm finally feeling like myself again - only took two days in bed, some NyQuil and extra strength Mucinex.

Oh, and some Starbucks. ;)

Anyway....when I wasn't feeling like a total zombie I got inspired by a fellow blogger (albeit a much better known one than yours truly). Some of you might be aware of Emily Henderson's Trolling Cragislist post series, where she posts the most intriguing Craigslist design finds from different cities.

I like it so much that I'm going to do my own twist on it: a monthly post series about some of the most character-filled bargains I've found in the Chicago area via a variety of sources, whether it be garage sales, thrift stores or Craigslist. Although, let's face it, a lot of the stuff I find will likely be on Craigslist because I don't have time to be driving all over the ding dang place looking for bargains.

Here's a snapshot of some awesome stuff I've found this week. Please note that some of these items may or may not still be for sale.

Happy bargain shopping! :)

1.) Two Butcher Blocks for $500, Craigslist. This would be a great addition to a cookie-cutter kitchen to give it a more rustic look.

2.) Pine End Table, $35, Craigslist. This would be an easy one to paint and add new hardware to in order to make it your own. Plus it's in really great shape!

3.) Solid Wood Long Dresser, $150, Craigslist. Ohhhhh my. I'm kind of in love with this one. I can SO picture sanding it down, painting it another color, and adding some nifty hardware to make it mine. 

4.) Unique Armchair, $35, Craigslist. Definitely a unique-looking chair that can be easily spruced up and re-upholstered.

5.) Wood Windows, $20 each, Craigslist. I can find about a dozen decorative uses for these puppies. Come to mama.

Anyone else find any awesome bargains lately (on Craigslist or otherwise)? Sharing is caring, my friends.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Saving bland front doors, one paint stroke at a time.

Compared to last weekend, this weekend felt comparatively lazy. We basically hung out and made pretzels.

Oh, and I painted the front door. So I guess it was semi-productive, in a fun sort of way. :)

Ain't she pretty?! I'm thinking I may do a third coat of paint, since you can still see the paint brush strokes...we'll see. It works for the time being. And really, you can't tell unless you're right in front of the door. Or have a camera lens like mine that focuses a little too well sometimes. 

As a reminder of how it looked before, here's a quick look. Quite a difference, eh?! Definitely pops out a bit more now.

I ended up using Valspar Exterior Reserve in Whipped Strawberry. I got so used to using interior paints that it felt strange to use this stuff. The consistency was very different - this paint was a lot thicker than the stuff I'm used to. I didn't even use a drop cloth because there wasn't much risk of drips because it was so thick.

Although it's now painted (yay!!), that doesn't necessarily mean we're done with this door yet. Here are some upcoming to-do's, done visually because that's how I roll:

It's still definitely a work in progress. Then again, isn't everything?

Think I should do a third coat? Any ideas on new door hardware (which we can't install until after the sale is complete)?