Going Yard With Fabrics {Deck Pillows}

I may have gone a bit overboard with my pattern selections for the pillows on our deck. I wanted to match and enhance the color of the chairs, tables, and flowers on our deck. But my main jumping off point was our deck umbrella. Its stripes have blue, green, yellow, red, and even orange. They’re bright and perky, perfect for an outdoor living space. I feel as though you can take more risks and be a bit bolder outdoors. Plus, if you really don’t like it, or get sick of it after a season, it’s easy to change! No walls to paint!

Here are all the finished pillows. I'm starting from the end of the story and then shooting to the beginning. Bear with me here...

Here are all the finished pillows. I’m starting from the end of the story and then shooting to the beginning. Bear with me here…

Anyway, so here’s how I made those lovely pillows.

I purchased six pillow forms (with plenty of fabric and coupons to boot) from JoAnns. Make sure, when making outdoor fabric pieces, that you actually choose outdoor fabric. These fabrics are typically more durable, machine washable, and are less likely to fade in the sun as quickly as a typical cotton fabric. I originally picked two coordinating fabrics to use, but ran out of the stripe and needed extra. So I went back and purchased the floral print, which I also adore (though I think the red is probably my favorite, I’m a sucker for a geometric print).

I wanted to make sure that these pillows weren’t like the ones that I had made in the past. I actually wanted to tackle a pillow slip cover, so that if I decided to change it out, it wouldn’t be removing stuffing and starting all over again. I looked online and landed on a simple, straight forward tutorial over at vixenMade. She gives tips and suggestions for making an envelope style pillow cover which is almost exactly like what I wanted.

So here it goes, how to make a simple slip cover, with a few differences from the vixenMade tutorial.

First, measure around your pillow form. I left about an inch around each side. This is more because I'm not totally proficient at the sewing machine. Giving myself some extra room just in case my stitches aren't straight insures that the pillow covers will fit.

First, measure around your pillow form. I left about an inch around each side. This is more because I’m not totally proficient at the sewing machine. Giving myself some extra room just in case my stitches aren’t straight insures that the pillow covers will fit.

 

Two: cut two pieces of fabric for the front and back of the pillow cover. I cut the second piece slightly larger than the first, so that it would still be the same size after hemming the cut edges. Cut the larger piece in half. This will be the back "envelope" part of your slip cover.

Two: cut two pieces of fabric for the front and back of the pillow cover. I cut the second piece slightly larger than the first, so that it would still be the same size after hemming the cut edges. Cut the larger piece in half. This will be the back “envelope” part of your slip cover.

 

Three: iron down the sides that you will add the hem to. Then hem/serge with a stitch that you are comfortable using on your machine.

Three: iron down the sides that you will add the hem to. Then hem/serge with a stitch that you are comfortable using on your machine.

 

Pin these pieces to the other larger side piece. Make sure you do this inside out! I accidentally sewed an entire pillow, only to remember I didn't put the pieces inside out so half had the inner part of the fabric showing. What a pain to take out all those stitches!

Pin these pieces to the other larger side piece. Make sure you do this inside out! I accidentally sewed an entire pillow, only to remember I didn’t put the pieces inside out so half had the inner part of the fabric showing. What a pain to take out all those stitches!

 

And let’s not pretend that bad things didn’t happen. Because, whenever I complete a sewing project, something is BOUND to go wrong.

Hmm...that's not what it's supposed to look like...

Hmm…that’s not what it’s supposed to look like. I miss measured and just went for it, of course. That was a mistake. Not to mention I forgot what color thread I’ve already set in the machine, so it definitely didn’t blend with the fabric.

 

But after all the mistakes, sewing machine headaches, and having to get some extra fabric, I’m happy to say that this project is done!

 

Happy? Perky? I hope our neighbors don't mind all the color!

Happy? Perky? I hope our neighbors don’t mind all the color!

Aren't my new red chairs the cutest? The pillows work perfectly and make it look a bit more inviting. Now, if only I could find a tiny table to go in between...

Aren’t my new red chairs the cutest? The pillows work perfectly and make it look a bit more inviting. Now, if only I could find a tiny table to go in between…

 

Now, I know it’s a lot of color and pattern, but I think because the color family plays so well together, it doesn’t seem quite as busy. But even if it is busy, that’s all part of the fun!

 

XOXO,

Ashley

 

PS- This project was a bit more expensive than my typical projects. I spent around $50 for all the fabric and the pillow forms. Because I had so many coupons, plus a gift card, I was able to get better pillow forms and fabric that wasn’t necessarily on sale. I will say, however, that all the gloriously done pillows I found at places at HomeGoods were at least $40 for a set of four, and I needed six. Plus, I wouldn’t have been able to pick all different fabrics!

Bringing the Shore Back Home {Updating the Office}

Hey everyone,

Sorry for the delay but…

I did it, I finally did it! Now that we’ve gone on our summer trip for the year, which of course included a beach and water (and of course, shelling), I finally had the time to get to work on my home office.

My final color choice was the lighter of the two, Beach Glass by Pantone. It had a calming tone but was still very beachy. It definitely reminded me of a happy shore house. The color, because it was Pantone, had to be the highest end paint by Valspar, which included primer as well (this ran about $31 a gallon). This was great for getting the paint on smoothly and for covering the awful color and stains from the previous owners.  I didn’t need multiple coats because the color was so vibrant and it was so easy to apply. It also was low-VOC, which is great for painting a small room in the summer heat.

 

41tBBYdG+nL._SS500_

See? What a lovely swatch. The perfect, shade of NOT seafoam. 

 

I taped, like you ALWAYS should, and ended up only needing one full day to get the paint on the walls and dried. I really didn’t need a full gallon, because I only needed one GREAT coat. I also only needed one roll of tape to get the window, doors, and ceiling/moldings. So this is was a minimal supplies needed project. Just for your information, you should always make sure when painting that you have the following (because it makes your life WAY easier):

Paint Roller

Angled Paint Brush (for corners and cutting-in)

Paint

Paint Tray with Removable Liner (makes clean up easy)

Tarp/Plastic Covering

Tape

The brush, roller, tray, and liner all came in a great kit that I picked up at Lowes. Saved me a ton of time and money, and now I have these supplies for future projects! So little stress, low cost, few supplies but a definite re-do! Whether or not I’m totally satisfied with the color is yet to be determined. It required a lot of trust on my part. When I got two of the walls painted, I quickly realized just how bright the color was. It’s shockingly aqua, a lot less beachy than I expected.

 

See the difference? Holy moly! It almost pales the original green because it's so bright.

See the difference? Holy moly! It almost pales the original green because it’s so bright.

 

Once I finally got through all the walls, it took all my patience to not start hanging my shadow boxes and framed prints right away. I was hoping that with things on the wall, furniture in the room, and drapes on the window, the color will be a bit less abrasive. This proved to be MOSTLY true and I’m just going to live with the color for awhile and decide my next steps. But here, for your enjoyment, my nicely staged home office with the new colors, hung pictures and shadowboxes, and furniture in place. Thoughts?

 

See how small this room is and how intense the color can be? This is an ALMOST 360 of the room. I've got space for my sewing cart (next to my desk), my high back chair, and all my shells on the floor...ignore those.

See how small this room is and how intense the color can be? This is an ALMOST 360 of the room. I’ve got space for my sewing cart (next to my desk), my high back chair, and all my shells on the floor…ignore those.

 

I made those matching canvas pin boards with just canvas and beige/metallic polka dotted fabric. We've had them since our first place and because they're a neutral, they can always find a home somewhere. I also took my old, white spray painted cork board and covered it in burlap for a more beachy cork board.

I made those matching canvas pin boards with just canvas and beige/metallic polka dotted fabric. We’ve had them since our first place and because they’re a neutral, they can always find a home somewhere. I also took my old, white spray painted cork board and covered it in burlap for a more beachy cork board. I’m using my flea market find to file my design magazines (see left of desk) and my colored mason jars for supplies that need to be right at arms length. 

 

This is one of my favorite spots in the room. That piece of furniture is NOT a chest of drawers. It IS however, a mini-murphy bed. My office will always have to do double-duty and include some form of guest accommodations.

This is one of my favorite spots in the room. That piece of furniture is NOT a chest of drawers. It IS however, a mini-murphy bed. My office will always have to do double-duty and include some form of guest accommodations. The mirror was a clearance find at Homegoods, and with its capiz shell pattern is perfect for the space. It even matches our little frame and lamp. Oh, and of course, my apothecary jars filled to the brim with shells.

 

My reading corner...sans books. I finally did my last purge of college textbooks and now have plenty of space for my design books!

My reading corner…sans books. I finally did my last purge of college textbooks and now have plenty of space for my design books! The bear has made it ten years, and hopefully if I can keep it away from Truman, it will make it ten more! It’s sitting on the chair that I received from my grandmother earlier this year. The wall is now full with a collage of my shadow boxes and personal photography. Plus, I hung my shell covered “F” in the perfect place. It’s one of the first things you see when you walk into the room. That little box next to the chair is an unfinished project, but I promise to update you on its new life very soon!

 

XOXO,

Ashley

A Little White Pop {Adding to Our Living Space}

Hey all,

For awhile, we’ve been living with a big hole in our lives. You know, we were sans couch table! After we got our much larger TV for the bedroom (to match the massive bed and massive art piece from this post), it needed a home. I moved our lovely IKEA console table up to the bedroom for the perfect fit. But this perfect fit left a perfectly large hole in our living room. Now, let’s have some honesty time. When I decided to move that table, I kidded myself thinking that we wouldn’t need anything behind the couch. This proved to be very wrong. Because of the layout of our house, and the minimal space for our formal living room, we can only have one side table with out couch. So if you want to rest your glass somewhere, or god forbid a plate (YES WE EAT ON THE COUCH), there isn’t space to do so without that lovely console table. So, while rummaging through my parents basement, I eyed this lovely little table.

Okay, so it needed some love. But it was acting as minimal storage in their unfinished part of their basement. I figured I would offer to take it off their hands.

Okay, so it needed some love. But it was acting as minimal storage in their unfinished part of their basement. I figured I would offer to take it off their hands.

Yes, it looks a bit sad. Yes, it’s not typically our style. It has these beautiful carvings on the the side and the legs are a bit more ornate than I would traditionally lean towards, but something grabbed me. Plus, I’m a sucker for family history and this piece was one of my great grandmother’s. Knowing this made me need to have it even more. I took it home, plopped it under our deck IMMEDIATELY, and got to work. And as a spray paint junkie, it shouldn’t be a surprise that I had not only two cans of primer for this little lady, but also a full can of white, matte paint. I originally thought that I would paint it black, or a glossy white, which makes it much easier to disguise the ugly notes and quickly revamp the piece. But you know what? The black would have been a mistake. We don’t have anything else painted black in that room and it would have looked like I was trying to hard to mask problems and match it to the existing pieces. The gloss also would have been off putting, making it stand out way more than we wanted it to.

562509_639383752774_90183590_n

Look at those legs! This is the perfect little table. So happy to have it.

So after the two coats primer and a good coating of the white, it was ready to go into its new home. And then I realized, maybe it was too big! Ah! Would I actually like it there? It was wider than I really expected. I left it there, let it grow on me, and just today accessorized the little lady. And we’re in love again. She’s just perfect.

I moved the lamp from the side table to the new table. Now our engagement scrapbook has a proper home and there is still plenty of room for several coasters for drinks.

I moved the lamp from the side table to the new table. Now our engagement scrapbook has a proper home and there is still plenty of room for several coasters for drinks. If you look really hard to you can see that I finally added the gold accents to those tile coasters. A little gold is always good.

 

So overall, a great decision. She’s happy, I’m happy, so we’re one happy household. So what have you been up to? Spray painting pieces? Accessorizing the house? Let me know!

 

XOXO,

Ashley

Market Days and Fleas {Rummaging through MD and VA}

Hey all!

Just a quick post because I really should be getting back to my list of “to-do’s” for this week. I had a GREAT day on Saturday, full of searching and finding some gorgeous pieces that I wish I had the space for. I left a lot behind but got a lot of interesting ideas and my wish list continues to grow. We started our day at Chartreuse’s Market Days (you can find more pictures and information here). There were many tempting wares to feast our eyes on!

IMG_4572

My mom asked why I would consider buying a big boy like this. Answer? Because it would look AWESOME in my beachy office. I didn’t end up buying him this time around but I keep thinking about him.

 

IMG_4573

I’m a sucker for typography. This would be great on our fence for the backyard. I love the colors, the rust, and the font.

 

IMG_4575

I’m just now re-reading the price tag on these iron pieces. I am now regretting leaving them there. They would have been great, painted in a bright color to match one of our rooms or black and put onto the wall going up the stairwell. And a vintage, one-of-a-kind pair for $18? Man, kicking myself.

 

IMG_4580

I was immediately drawn to this large glass jar. The beauty of the color as well as the unusual size was AMAZING.

 

IMG_4583

My mother thought this might be a solution for her kitchen nook problems. She walked away without it, though I still think it’s photo worthy. I loved the glass doors.

 

IMG_4587

Hello, vintage! This guy was in the “project barn.” He’d be a great addition to a shelf collage or a birthday gift for the music aficionado.

 

IMG_4592

For what it is, it may have been a bit expensive ($29). But I absolutely adore the color and the storage. If this is there next time, I’m snatching it up. The problem is, what you see once may be gone by the next time. I really have to get better about just buying sometimes!

 

IMG_4595

MMM. Green glass. The little bubbles and the different shapes were super charming. Not quite the right green for our bedroom, though.

 

IMG_4597

Future project alert! My lovely friend reminded me that I could quite easily get this look done on my own. So look out for a future rope wrapping tutorial! And you know what is so great? Sometimes, the best things that come out of these trips are the ideas and inspirations, not just the goodies purchased.

 

IMG_4605

I’m a sucker for a good owl pun. This vendor hand paints all her window and glass pieces. They’re just fantastic. She also had several nautical versions, which may need to come home with me.

 

IMG_4650

I had no room for these but I just couldn’t help taking a picture. These would be GREAT for someone with a “man cave” or bar. I can just see them leaning behind a bar. It’s such a shame that someone painted over the original Old Export Beer ad.

 

But this was a busy weekend, full of not only Chartreuse and Co’s market days, but also The Old Lucketts Store’s Design House! Again, so many beautiful things, not enough space to put them in my house!

 

IMG_4643

The coral was just too beautiful to not sneak a picture. I can only hope to get a few pieces for my office or really anywhere in the house.

 

IMG_4639

DRIFTWOOD BASKET! The best.

 

IMG_4647

There was a much larger collection outside of Old Lucketts Store but I really liked this part of the group. The manicured bushes and cement planters are so classically beautiful, I just wish I had a larger yard.

 

IMG_4648

One- I love cubbies, especially ones with history. Two- the color of these cubbies is just divine. I need them. I must have them.

 

IMG_4610

I have an obsession with mirrors; this is something I cannot deny. But this cluster is great for a few reasons. One- each mirror is a different shape. Two- the odd number is pleasing to the eye (no really!). Three- don’t they remind you of…driftwood?

 

I did end up taking home two small candlesticks, but otherwise I left empty handed. I am now regretting that decision! So many beautiful options. Thanks Chartreuse and Co and Old Lucketts Store! You made a great Saturday search day!

 

XOXO,

Ashley

 

PS- What’s coming up next? A seashell wreath for our front door, rope wrapped home decor, and more framing projects. Stay tuned!