Procreate-ing

Having young kids plus a full time job is an around the clock venture. Now that my kids are a little older I am finding pockets of time to do some creating again. I am really enjoying messing around in Procreate on my iPad. Starting with simple tracing of images I soon started looking around for tutorials to help me understand what Procreate can really do. I have been thoroughly enjoying the tutorials put together by Teela of Every Tuesday. She does such a great job of walking through every step and has a wide variety of projects. It has inspired me to practice my lettering, which is a little shaky at the moment.

Cozy Reading

photo of the fully extended reading nook

There is nothing more satisfying than taking unused items and giving them purpose. We recently needed to find a space for my youngest daughter to relax and read or draw or color. Space is at a premium in our apartment and the kids’ shared bedroom wasn’t an option.

Time to get creative. I grabbed a storage bench that had outlived its usefulness, an IKEA bed tent, and some scarves we got from our building’s share table (more on that in another post.) I added a pillow I got from amazon (the only thing I purchased for this project), a wall hook, and a few binder clips. Voila! V loves her new reading nook and when she isn’t snuggled inside we use the wall hook to fold back the tent.

M + E

Valentine’s Day is almost upon us. Personally I am not a huge fan of the holiday but I do like creative DIY projects and what better excuse to make one up than V Day. I seriously heart this fingerprint poster tutorial over at Man Made. Super clear directions and great tips (printing at a local print shop, WDITOT!?) help you come up with a personalized work of art that is not to sappy but still pretty sweet and won’t break the bank. I am thinking I might make our equation include a little tiny fingerprint. via

Hacking IKEA for Kids

I heart IKEA. I know I have talked about my love for the cheap trendy Swedish superstore of housewares and meatballs. I have had a special place in my heart for the As Is section which has provided many ridiculously cheap treasures over the years including the cushions for our couches and three butcher block table tops. Many an IKEA product has made its way into our home only to be turned into something else.  Sam Johnson over at Ten Plan has given us complete instructions to create these adorable rolling toys with a few IKEA parts and some tools you probably have on hand. If kids toys aren’t your thing there are nine other clever projects to check out all with instructions on how to make them. Oh and if you have never been over to IKEA hacker go now. I will see you in a few hours.  via

Lovely Lamp Shade

I am very particular about the quality of light in our apartment. I very much dislike most light that comes from overhead fixtures (my friend who also doesn’t like this type of light calls it the big light) and would prefer that all fixtures give off a soft diffuse light from a bit above my eye level. Add to that the fact that I am not a huge fan of most conventional lampshades out there and you can imagine how difficult it can be to find light sources. I love this DIY shade solution by Janis from Pinecone Camp! Not only is it a lovely alternative to white or beige shades it also would help cast a lovely magenta (or any color you choose!) light throughout the room. It doesn’t hurt that this base is so simple and beautiful. I will certainly be looking a little more closely at some of the thrift store lamps that would normally not get a second glance.

White Is Wonderful

White. So simple and so beautiful. I didn’t always love white for walls and furniture. In fact until recently I didn’t understand the potential the crisp cleanness that comes from white as a major color in interiors. I think it was too many years living in rentals where I couldn’t paint the white walls and did not know what to do with all that white. Now I see how the lovely white palette can help the color pieces you choose really pop and look more lovely than they do when they get lost in a sea of color. I see many lovely white interiors as a click around the blogosphere, today’s image comes via Apartment Therapy. We have an abundance of white paint and primer from our changing table makeover and I am starting to get the itch to paint some of our other pieces of furniture, you guessed it, white.

Plumen

One of my beefs with CFLs has always been that while they are super energy efficient and last 10 times as long as an incandescent bulb they have are just meh when it comes to style. So if you have a fixture that doesn’t hide your bulb, you have a meh looking bulb hanging out for all to see. The Plumen bulbs are the perfect example of how form doesn’t have to take a back seat to function. Sadly they are only available in Europe until next year.

New Life for Cashmere

At the risk of repeating myself, I heart cashmere. So much so that even when a sweater isn’t quite right on me anymore, I have trouble letting it go. I have been considering what I might be able to do with these misfits considering my limited sewing skills. A cashmere baby blanket seems well within what I can accomplish but I do wish I was able to do something a little more special. Something perhaps like these endangered stuffies by the ladies behind Modifyd who use the all pieces and parts of garment industry cast-offs to make pillows, cup cozies, and pet beds in addition to the stuffed animals. Personally I am in love with the elephants… for baby of course. OK, maybe for me too. Who’s up for a little thrift store cashmere hunting? via

Barn Furniture

I love the way these side tables from The Steel Fork bring together two materials that are so different in such a simple elegant form. At first I thought they were stools and could definitely see a version scattered around our small deck upstate for those times we have guests. via

Holiday Cabana

I am not sure what I like best about this lakeside retreat in Sri Lanka. Maybe it is the creative use of a shipping container or that all the materials used were found on site. The nicely sized covered deck sitting on top of the container is a nice touch. Although maybe it is the incredible view of the lake and mountains. It looks wonderfully peaceful and I can imagine myself sitting on the deck sipping a faux-jito.