My Quick Tips For Wallpaper

My Tips For Wallpaper

It is a well-known fact that I love wallpaper. In fact I think it may be one of the things that makes it onto my tombstone one day. I know some people “just can’t” when it comes to pretty patterned sticky paper but I can. And I will. I do have a few wallpaper tricks up my sleeve that have lead my wallpapering adventures to success and I’d like to share them with you.

  1. Neutrals NEVER go out of style. You can put a pattern on your wall and still stay classic by choosing a neutral color palette. You will find that this will be especially true in children’s rooms and large spaces.
  2. Use for texture. Sometimes there isn’t any specific pattern you are after, you room just needs a little depth. Consider the good ole fashion standby – grasscloth. Grasscloth allows you to achieve depth and texture without added pattern. Grasscloth is available in almost every color and is great to use in bathrooms, for feature walls and in the back of built-in bookshelves.
  3. Spray bottles are your friend. When using pre-pasted wallpaper instead of dunking the wallpaper into a sink full of water use a spray bottle of water to wet the wallpaper.

I hope you can file away these quick little tips for your next wallpapering adventure! Happy Monday everybody!

Back Porch Oasis In-Progress.

*Disclaimer: This posts contains affiliate links, which means I am paid a commission on any merchandise sold through the links listed in this post. However I did not receive any free product for writing this post; all thoughts and opinions listed here are my own.

Good afternoon my people! are you all enjoying this amazing weather? I know we have been! In fact it has inspired us to start revamping our back deck. Just last summer my sweet in-laws came to town and Alex and his Dad built us an awesome pergola, new porch railing and leveled out the once sagging deck.

Back Porch Revamp In-Progress

And then there was me, who was very pregnant and very lazy uncomfortable in the heat and opted not to decorate the back porch. WELL this year I am NOT pregnant and I’m in the mood to do a little sprucing before our house goes on the market. We have a short list of things that need to be done to the deck- the biggest task is sanding the older deck boards and staining the wood a nice deep brown. This is on my task list for this weekend. Last weekend I kicked off the sprucing by up-cycling those lovely old wooden patio chairs you see above. Here is another picture so you can see just how “lovely” they were…

Back Porch Revamp In-Progress

I know what you’re thinking…Pretty! RIGHT????

They were in seriously bad shape, the arms had been totally chewed when we had a big dog for a hot second ( he went to go work on a cattle farm- turns out we’re not big dog people, who knew!), the stain was completely faded and they were just sad. I decided that I could salvage what little shred of dignity they had left by sawing the arms off at seat level. I did that and then I added a coat of Minwax Polyshades in classic black.

  

The cushions I bought last year on clearance from target for $7.00 a piece which is a steal for patio cushions by the way! I decided I would just recover them. Do you guys recall the banana leaf madness that occurred last summer? I do, I’m riding that crazy train until she breaks down! I love the banana leaf print…on.anything. Dorothy Draper and I could be best friends. Well, when this madness first cropped up I splurged for some $35 per yard Tommy Bahama “Swaying Palms” indoor/outdoor fabric, which consequently you can now find for less than $10.00 per yard at Fabric.com.

Back Porch Revamp In-Progress

I made really simple little covers for the cushions leaving two little holes in the back for the “ties” to pop through and secure the cushion to the chair.

Back Porch Revamp In-Progress

I love how the chair turned out. I have one more chair that needs the same treatment and they will complete the small sitting area on one side of our deck( this photo shows just how horrendous the deck boards are). I topped the chair with this sweet little striped pillow. The pillow cover is from Ikea.

I put this little garden stool out as a side table, I’ve been hoarding keeping it in the basement for a few years now. And of course my little DIY gold lantern and faux succulents, because y’all know I can’t keep anything alive besides humans and puppies….and that last one is even iffy sometimes.

Back Porch Revamp In-Progress

Y’all, thanks for stopping by and checking out what I’ve gotten accomplished on the porch so far. I can’t wait to share more with you!

 

How I Whitewashed Exposed Brick

Hey y’all thanks for stopping by the blog, today I want to share with you guys the whitewashed exposed brick in our breakfast nook and what it took to get to that point.

Breakfast nook and coffee bar

Many many moons ago when I was watching HGTV and feeling really really brave I decided that I was going to expose the brick coal chimney that runs up through a corner of our breakfast nook. The chimney runs up from our basement so we knew it was brick and that it was probably in good condition.

lovethetompkins.com

Unfortunately for me the chimney was wrapped with about 17 layers wallpaper, 5 of paint, wood paneling and the plaster wall. A hammer, chisel, scrapper and wire brush were my weapons of choice to break through all the stuff surrounding the brick. I also used cheap plastic drop cloths and painters tape to make a little clean room around the chimney so that dust and plaster didn’t fly all over the kitchen. Also, if you are planning on exposing a little brick of your own you definitely need  to procure a respirator mask and some killer safety googles. I chiseled and scraped and hammered for HOURS and only got about a square foot exposed.

lovethetompkins.com

Little boys are said to be tornados of destruction so it stands to reason that big boys are capable of even more destruction so I did the rational thing and had my husband finish the demo for me. He had the whole thing exposed so fast- I couldn’t believe it.

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After Alex exposed all the brick I washed it down with warm soapy water and a bristle brush to release any barely attached particles and clear off any remaining dust.

Emily Wren Photography

while I love painted brick and white washed brick I am not a fan of regular red brick (unless it’s a brick sidewalk) so white washing the brick was my obvious choice of finish for the chimney. I pinned the above picture to my kitchen renovation board for some inspiration, I love how uneven and messy it looks. I think with some of the shiny new finishes in our kitchen, the chimney will balance the look and pull off a great over all look.

lovethetompkins.com

I had about 1/3 of a quart of eggshell white paint and  1.5 cups of warm water that I mixed together to make the white wash.

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I used an old terry cloth wash rag to dab the paint onto the chimney although I’m sure a really bristly old paintbrush would work fine too. I just dabbed the paint onto the brick, I tried to focus on the mortar lines the most since they tend to soak up the paint more than the actual brick itself. I also used a damp rag to take paint off of some of the bricks if I felt that the paint was looking to uniform in certain areas or if I got too much of the whitewash on the brick.

lovethetompkins.com

Whitewashing the brick only took about 15 minutes and I love the look. after demolishing the wall around the chimney there were gaps between the chimney and the remaining walls, I patched the gaps so that I can repaint the chalkboard wall right up to the left of the chimney and wall paper on the right.

Are you a whitewashed brick kinda person? Or does red brick have your heart? I’d love to hear from you!

 

Living Room Makeover Ideas and (re)Painting Our Piano

Hey Friends! Our living room has been going through some color pallet transitions as of late and I just wanted to pop in and share our journey from deep jewel tones to bright spring colors!

Our living room color pallet has revolved around some very specific pillows for a few years now. I love the colors and the style but a girl needs a change now and again amIright?! I whipped up this cute little design board as a summary of the style and colors that we’ve had going on for a while.

photo

Cute right?! The “specific pillows” I had mentioned before are the colorful Chiang Mai Dragon print seen on the design board as well as the bold leopard print. You can see that we had painted our piano a bold blue which was amazing in the space-Here is the link to that post. Having white couches allows me to do incredibly bold things with furniture and pillows, I love it!

Here is a little snapshot from Christmas before last.

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And a beautiful view of our amazing $30 piano all made over with some bright blue chalk paint.

Chalk Painted Piano Makeover

While I love the bright bold colors and constantly received compliments on how amazing it all looked together I wanted to spruce up the area with some new pillows and accessories that are a little more neutral. We will be putting our home on the market in the late spring and I’m feeling lucky with a slightly less in-your-face color scheme 😉

Of course I have another adorable little design board to show you!

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The great thing about this makeover is that my walls are staying exactly the same. Neutral walls are a blessing! My couches are staying white and my curtains will be the same- white with black pompom trim. Although I will be switching out the curtain rods for these super chic brass rods from Crate & Barrel. If you follow me on the Instagram you will notice that I already received that beautiful rug! It’s Safavieh available on Overstock and it.is.heavenly. It’s wonderfully soft and the colors are subtle but amazing!

You’ll notice that I have three pillow options on the board, one of each for each couch is what I’m thinking. I’l be making the black and white gingham pillows with fabric from Ikea, which is apparently only available in red and beige now. The floral pillows and coral pillows are both Caitlin Wilson Textiles. I love her products! You may have heard her name from me before, when I revealed our breakfast nook -my pink and blue pillows are from CWT.

And remember, I said I painted our piano? Well here it is people!

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I love it in grey! And such a pretty creamy grey at that! can I tell you a secret? It’s that same grey as my walls! It’s Woodlawn Colonial Grey from Valspar, incase you were wondering. The brass lamp was a Target buy, it’s a good little lamp.

And here is what is going down over on the mantle.

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Oh look! The artwork from my design board. Which you can find here on Etsy.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this sweet little look into our new color pallet for our living room because I’m totally loving it! Thanks for stopping by friends!

Linked with: One Room Challenge

Other Posts you may like:

Breakfast nook and coffee bar  DSC_0279 Chalk Painted Piano Makeover

 

Breakfast Nook & Coffee Bar, DIY Faux Fireplace, Chalk Painted Piano Makeover

How To Build a Greek Key Planter

Happy Thursday y’all! I hope you have been enjoying your week, we have had some surprisingly mild-ish (for Kansas) weather here and we are taking full advantage of it! I’m hoping to get out and do some much needed gardening this week and I think the boy would love to help me.

Today I want to share a little tutorial I whipped up a few months ago for Ella Claire Inspired. I built a greek key planter from scrap wood we had laying around the garage and it is by far one of the cutest planters I’ve ever seen, if I do say so myself. It was really quite easy and it looks great in my house, I bet it’d look great in yours too 😉 Stick around and read all about how I built it!

How To Build A Greek Key Planter

Supply List

Wood Glue/Construction Adhesive

Nail Gun/ Brad Nailer/ Trim Nailer and Nails

Caulk or Wood Filler

Paint of Your Choosing

2 Pieces of 1″ Plywood Cut to 11″ w x 12″ h

2 Pieces of 1/2″ Plywood Cut to 12″x 12″

1 Piece 11″x 10 1/2″ Pine ( or plywood)

4 Pieces of 2-3″ 1″x 2″ Trim

4 Pieces of 14″ 1″x 2″ Trim

4 Pieces of 10 3/8″ 1″x 2″ Trim

2  12″ Pieces of 2″w Lattice Strips (also called kraft board)

2  12 1/4″ Pieces of 2″w Lattice Strips

16  5″ Pieces of  2″w Lattice Strips

16  3 7/8″ Pieces of 2″w Lattice Strips

16  2 5/8″ Pieces of 2″w Lattice Strips

16  1 1/2″ Pieces of 2″w Lattice Strips

4  1 1/2″ Pieces of 1″x 1″ Square Dowel

I know that the cut list seems a little extensive but I’ll go step by step and the cuts are really simple to make, there are just a lot of them! Also, this is a project that I totally tweaked along the way- there is tons of room for error, no one can mess it up!

Diy Greek Key Planter

This is the first group of wood you’ll be working with and it will make up the body of the planter. These are the cuts pictured,

2 Pieces of 1″ plywood cut to 11″ w x 12″ h

2 Pieces of 1/2″ plywood cut to 12″x 12″

1 Piece 11″x 10 1/2″ pine ( or plywood)

4 Pieces of 2-3″ 1″x 2″ trim

Each side of the planter box needs to be 12″x 12″. You will need to take one piece of the 1″, 11″w x 12″ h plywood and butt the edge of the plywood against the inside edge of 1 piece of the 1/2″,  12″x12″ plywood and nail it in place. The edge of the 1″ plywood should be covered by the 1/2″ plywood and this will create the first corner of the planter box.

DIY Greek Key Planter

This is what your corner should look like.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Next fasten the other piece of 1″ plywood to the other end of the 1/2″ plywood to form a table shape.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Then the second piece of 1/2″ plywood can be nailed to cover both exposed edges of the 1″ plywood, creating a box shape.

DIY Greek Key Planter

This is where the piece of pine comes into play (and it doesn’t have to be pine, it can really be any kind of 1-1/2″ thick scrap wood). The measurement is approximate and can be tweaked, as I had to shave off the tiniest bit to wedge my piece into the bottom of the box.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Once you have cut the bottom piece to fit, let the piece sit in the bottom of the box and nail around the bottom edge of the box to fasten it in place.

DIY Greek Key Planter

 

Then you will use the four pieces of 1×2 trim and nail then vertically into each corner to act as a support for the bottom and corners.

*Tip: I put a nail up through the bottom into each of these corner supports and one from both sides of the corners.*

DIY Greek Key planter

These next cuts are the top and bottom ledge trim for your planter box.

DIY Greek Key Planter

These cuts are as follows…

4 Pieces of 14″ 1″x 2″ trim

4 Pieces of 10 3/8″ 1″x 2″ trim

DIY Greek Key Planter

Center and nail down one of the 14″ trim pieces to the top ledge of the box, covering the raw edge of the plywood.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Then a 10″ trim piece should be added to the adjacent edge, with it’s end butting against the previously placed trim. Continue to do this with the two other pieces of trim for the top ledge. The top and bottom of the planter should each receive 2 14″ pieces and 2 10″ pieces.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Next the box should be flipped over and trim applied to the bottom in the same fashion.

DIY Greek Key Planter

The Planter is starting to take shape! the next step is to cut the greek key trim pieces and apply them to each face of the planter.

DIY Greek key Planter

The toughest thing about this part of the project is just being patient through this list of wood cuts and here they are…

2  12″ Pieces of 2″w lattice strips (also called kraft board)

2  12 1/4″ Pieces of 2″w lattice strips

16  5″ Pieces of  2″w lattice strips

16  3 7/8″ Pieces of 2″w lattice strips

16  2 5/8″ Pieces of 2″w lattice strips

16 1 1/2″ Pieces of 2″w Lattice strips

DIY Greek Key Planter

Using wood glue attach one of the 12″ lattice strips horizontally across the middle of one face of the planter.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Next glue 4 of the 5″ pieces of lattice strip to the planter to make an H shape.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Glue 4 of the 3″ pieces to create E shapes.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Next glue the 2″ pieces to make C’s.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Gluing down the 1″ pieces of trim will complete the greek key design for this side. Next you will need to turn the planter over to the exact opposite side and complete the design just as this side was completed.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Now that both sides are completed if the planter is turned to the side, both edges of the planter will look like this.  When the trim for the next two sides are added make sure to butt the side trim up against the edge of the existing trim to create a nice edge, just as was done with the plywood.

DIY Greek Key Planter

The two slightly longer pieces of lattice strips will be used for these remaining two sides. Next the four pieces that form the H will be added, making sure that they too cover the edge.

DIY Greek Key Planter

After the H pieces are in place, complete the trim in the same manner as the other sides.

The planter should begin to look like this.

DIY Greek Key Planter

 

 

At this point we are almost at the finish! Yay!

I wanted to add some little feet to the planter so I cut 4 – 1 1/2″ pieces of 1″x 1″ square dowel.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Turn the Planter upside down and add one “foot” to each corner.

DIY Greek Key Planter

Once again I used my trusty little nail gun and fastened the feet into place.

Now you can turn the planter right side up and admire your beautiful work!

DIY Greek Key Planter

Now it time to paint this bad boy! My planter is going in my living room so I decided that I just wanted to spray paint it white, that way it can really POP against our grey walls and dark hardwood floors.

* This is just a tip: know yourself and your paint, if small cracks and imperfections bug you, use caulk or wood filler to remedy those problem areas before you paint. Also note that sometimes thicker paints will cover these areas and make them less visible while thinner paints like spray paint may enhance an issue.*

Once again I turned to my trusty can of white spray paint to get the job done. This is my favorite.

DIY Greek Key Planter

After the paint is all dry you have the sweetest little planter for a new plant addition to your home!

DIY Greek Key Planter

DIY Greek Key Planter

DIY Greek key Planter

This was the perfect addition for our space! What about you, could you see your house rocking this cute preppy accessory?

 

 

This post was originally published at Ella Claire on April 24, 2015.