Sunday, February 28, 2010

I Made An Art!

Last night my friend Amber hosted a sleepover for some of the girls. Is it still considered a slumber party when you’re all pushing 30? Anyway, she has a cute painting hanging in her living room that we all loved and we started talking about how easy it would be to make some of the paintings we see in stores. It reminded me of something I made a couple years ago which caused me to yell like a four year old “I MADE AN ART!"

For less than $10 I cobbled together a simple painting from items bought at AC Moore. I bought a plain canvas and a few of those acrylic stencil paints that you can get on sale for less than $1. I painted the canvas cream and let it dry, then stood above it and made concentric hearts with each color paint, squeezed straigh from the bottle. Complicated right? Admittedly I am no Picasso but it was super simple and cheap to create something that matched my décor and the technique (if you call it that) can be used in many variations.  It’s now hanging in my kitchen, which has become the land of misfit art.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Etsy Love for 3LambsGraphics.

I could probably spend 2 solid days digging through Etsy. There are so many different channels to browse but one of my favorite is Local. While looking through all the amazing creations in and around Boston I stumbled across 3LambsGraphics. They make delectable designs that would look great framed just about anywhere (like my apartment).

I’ll be killing the rest of the day on Etsy if you need me.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Well Hello Mellow Yellow!

I remember an episode of Oprah a few years back where the incomparable Nate Berkus decorated an entire bedroom using only items from Walmart. I am not quite that brave, but I did create another “dream room” using only items from the glorious Target (read: Tar-gét).

During such a gloomy New England week I needed to create my own dose of Sunshine, so here is my lemony sunshiney and affordable Mellow Yellow dream room.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

To The Left To The Left!

No self respecting woman could put the Break Up playlist on blast without following it up with a healthy dose of self esteem. This list has also been refined over the years and burned and shared with countless friends that just need the boost to realize that they really are “Soooo Much Better Than Him.” So ladies, here are some jams to shake your fanny to while you pack your emotional baggage and get ready to say once and for all… LATER LOSER!

You Can Wallow… For 5 Minutes

It’s fair to say I’ve experienced a break up or two in my day and I know I’m not alone. Your girlfriends will tell you “don’t be upset” and “he isn’t worth it’ blah blah blah. Personally before I can let the healing begin I need to wallow in a big ol’ dose of self pity and Pino Noir set to this soundtrack. Jeesh, I could cry just looking through the set list. Wallow away.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

This Dream Room Is For The Birds

My biggest gripe about my apartment is that I can't decorate as much as I'd like to because my home is the size of a shoe box.  And so... the Dream Room series is born!  In its maiden voyage I have created a mush of a bunch of items that I think would make a lovely room, inspired by the Conjure Rug from Anthropologie. 

I hope you enjoy. I expect many more of these to follow!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Holy Simplicity.

I hit the mother load. I went to Joanne Fabric for some interfacing so I could start on the Burda Cofee Date Dress and I came home with 19 Simplicity patterns. NINETEEN SIMPLICITY PATTERNS! They were on sale 5 for $5, and of the 20 I looked for all but one were available including 4 or 5 Cynthia Rowleys. What are the odds? And at a normal price of $15-$17 per pop it was a steal of a deal.

I need to get crackin so I have dresses to wear this summer, and I’m not locked inside tied to my Singer making these frocks. I will keep you posted!

OK, Wendy Did It.

I told you I have some crafty sisters. This weekend at my mom's 60th birthday party my niece Samirah rolled in wearing the most fabulous leg warmers. I asked my sister where she got the pattern so I could link to it, but the crafty lady just whipped it up herself, sans pattern! She said it's a simple tube, and she wove some satin ribbon through.

Is she not the cutest and most stylish 3 year old around?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Studio Living... Urban Chic

Living in a studio apartment certainly presents some challenges, and forces you to get creative with space. My best friend Kate has deemed my apartment "Urban Chic" (LOVE HER). Here is one of my favorite solutions for creative studio living. This is the play by play of how I make the most of my space.

First things first... the bones are a Metro Shelf from the Container Store. I have the canvas cover that zips closed if you ever want to completely conceal the goods. This shelf is totally customizable, and I used to use it with a closet bar. Great investment, when you get sick of it one day when you have a real house you could even put it in the basement or garage.

1-3) Baskets from the Christmas Tree Shop. I store bathing suits, beach towels, and other out of season goods you don't need to access often.

4) Mini version of the same Christmas Tree baskets, perfect for DVDs

5) IKEA EMU boxes, good for storing mail and bills

6) Place to stash throw pillows. Great pattern coming up for the white and grey one...

7-8) I can't find these little beauties on the IKEA site, but I use them for storing small random things like phone chargers, hand weights, extensions cords etc. I said random!

9-11) From the same IKEA series. #9 is crewneck & turtleneck sweaters, #10 is cardigans and #11 is my dirty laundry. But it looks pretty doesn't it?

With a couple tricks you can disguise your lame and ugly things so that even though they are technically on display in your living room, no one knows the wiser. Now that's Urban Chic!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Liz Likes... Parapluie. Oui Oui!

Take a gander at this print I found over at Oh Brooke. Purely Frenchy beautious. Book me a flight to Charles De Gaulle s'il vous plaît.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I Fell In Love With A Sandwich

I fell head over heels in love with a 7.5″x 10″ oil on linen painting of a PB&J sandwich.

A few years ago I stumbled across Duane Keiser’s website: A Painting A Day. He paints the most ordinary and fantastic things like a cupcake, chocolate covered cherries, a lollipop. eggs, onion, lemon slices, and wax lips!

You can now buy a print of PB&J, and believe me I’ve thought about it. But one day, I want the real thing. Or a kitchen wall covered in his little gems. Or if I’m really lucky, this beauty.

For the record, he does paint more than food.

Pump Up The Gym Jams

I find the gym less than enjoyable. If I am going to be stuck on a glorified hamster wheel for 60 minutes I need some good music to keep me motivated.

If you Google “gym music” or “songs for running” nine out of ten playlists will include “Eye of the Tiger” and the theme from Rocky. L-A-M-E.
These are some of my favorite picks that will hopefully give you a boost to keep going.

Here is the iMix. Hope you enjoy!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Sew Challenge… Burda Coffee Date Dress

I come from a long line of crafty women. My great grandmother was a hat maker. My grandma owned a dress making shop. My mom sewed both of my sisters’ wedding dresses, one with a broken wrist (and a hot pink cast). Either one of my sisters could sew, knit, and paint circles around Martha. I have a twinge of it but it could certainly be developed.

Even though it is 22 degrees on this balmy Boston day I feel like Spring is around the corner. Every year at this time I get the sewing bug, with the intention of crafting my own Spring/Summer wardrobe of skirts and dresses from scratch. This year is no exception and my first slated project is the Burda Coffee Date Dress. This amazing free pattern is begging to be added to my wardrobe.

With generations of such crafty divas before me, I can’t fail right? And by putting it in writing, I have no choice but to rise to the challenge. Pictures to come this Spring…

All Dressed Up

I recently invested in a micoplane because after watching countless hours of the Food Network, how could I not have one in my arsenal? I thought for its inaugural voyage I would take a crack at making my own salad dressing.

As long as I can remember, my dad has been making Good Seasons salad dressing. That little packet of salty seasoned goodness mixed with copious amounts of vegetable oil and cheap vinegar made a magical concoction that beckons me back to summers of my youth. Part of me thought “Why mess with a good thing?” The other part thought… “To hell with it. I’m making it my own!”

The ingredients are simple. Olive oil, vinegar (I had apple cider on hand), a lemon, a shallot, garlic, various herbs & spices. The rest is easy. Microplane the shallot and two cloves of garlic (watch your little fingers!). Take the zest off the lemon, and drop them all in your container of choice. My choice is obviously a good seasons bottle. Juice the lemon, and add as much olive oil as you like. I drizzled mine out of the bottle until it felt excessive, but it is no doubt a fraction of what you’d get in store bought. Add a splash of vinegar, some pepper, Italian herbs, whatever you like, and VOILA!
And as an added bonus, mine is mostly organic. Everything but the vinegar and pepper are certified organic, which make me feel even better about it. Keep it on the counter, give it a good shake, and you have cheap and healthy homemade dressing for the week.