Saturday, August 20, 2011

The New Ottoman

Just a quick side note, this project is about my creation of a new ottoman, but have you ever wondered why the piece of furniture we put our legs on is called an ottoman. Does it have anything to do with that ancient empire? Does anyone know??

We have had this lovely ottoman in our living room since Elyse was in my tummy. It's worked great and is a perfect piece of furniture to store a bunch of junk. But, it has seen better days. It has a few scratches on the side (mostly from me being to lazy to move it when I vacuum the rug) and the brown on brown just bugged me.

So I've been thinking of creating a new one for this space.

I was at Home Goods a few months ago and ran across this:

It's a leather top to an ottoman that must have lost its legs along the way. I grabbed it!

The brown "leather" would have been nice except for the lack of contrast on the brown rug. Enter two yards of fabric from Ikea, a can of black spray paint and four spindles from Home Depot.

I used my handy staple gun to adhere the fabric to the top.

The corners were tricky but I cut off some excess fabric, pulled one side over and stapled it and then made a fold on the other piece to cover the raw edge (that probably makes no sense and I'm sorry I don't have a picture).

I spray painted the legs (easy enough) but ran into a big problem when I went to attach them to the top.

The holes (already in the ottoman) were too big for the screws (already part of the spindles). Luckily, I consulted the experts at my home improvement store and they had a perfect solution.

I removed the screws from the spindles and screwed in the right size. Worked perfectly!

And I'm in love with the final result!

I know my Home Goods purchase was a lucky find but I am convinced this could be done without it. Just a piece of plywood, some foam and batting and a version of this could come to life. Maybe I'll give it a try someday!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Escondido Children's Museum

We met some friends at the Escondido Children's Museum recently. The girls loved it (and I loved it too...a big room where they could play and it was free for military!)

A Reminder

It's not when the kids are all out of diapers

or when we get a new car

or when the house is finally decorated

or at our next duty station

or when I lose 10 pounds

or when Dennis retires

or when I find a way to get eight hours of sleep a night

or I win the lottery

It's right moment.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


There's a great park on base and we went there today to play with some friends. I captured a few shots of my (matching) girls!

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Fifty Nifty!

I saw this just last week and I knew I had to make one of my own.

You see, I love maps (from my dad) and pretty patterns (from my mom) and this project is the perfect marriage of the two.

Luckily, last Thursday when I was inspired to start it right away, it was the perfect time because my mom was here to help me figure it out.

So here's what I did.

I started off with a blank canvas I happened to have in my closet. It was white so I decided to spray paint it yellow.

Then I found a map to use online. I just Googled "USA map coloring page" and one came up.

I printed it off the computer. It wasn't close to being big enough so I enlarged it 200% on my copier and taped the pages together.
(Maddy was sitting with a marker nearby and decided to add some color to my map)

Then, I labeled each state on the back, 1-50.
The example I found used scrapbook paper but I decided to use fabric (my mom had just brought me lots of her scraps!). We decided wonder under would work to both work as a template to cut the shapes and attach the fabric to the board.

I laid the map face down on my white kitchen counter and traced each of the 50 states onto a piece of Wonder Under (so it was in mirror image). That's when I decided this project would have been much easier back on 1776 when there were only 13 colonies. I labeled each state with the number from my map so I wouldn't get them confused.

I then took each state and ironed it to a piece of fabric and cut out the shape.

I laid out each state on the canvas as I went.

After they were all cut out and laid out, I peeled off the back of the wonder under off each state and ironed it to the canvas (ironing on one at a time).

I'm in love with how it turned out.

If I did this project again, I would be a little more exact when tracing each state. If you look closely, you will see some gaps like this one between Montana and North Dakota.

I might add some buttons to mark where we have lived.

The plan is to add this to a gallery wall in the playroom I have in the works.

I hope you give it a try!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Art Zone

I was inspired by this post a few months back to replicate this art area. I try so hard to keep our art stuff organized but it's hard!

Here's how we adjusted it for us. Day one...success! (Thank goodness for IKEA and all their cheap and fun organizing stuff).

On a side note, we came up with a business plan the other day...I'll shop at IKEA for all the poor people around the country without one and ship off the goods for a reasonable sum. I think it could work!

Part of the success was because of the success of these paints my parents brought with them. Genius!

Our Superheroes