Living Room- Before and After.

We love thrift stores, antiques, anything with a story behind it (not to mention the deals ad good prices!).  I am fascinated to think about what an item has “seen” in it’s life thus far, and where it has been.  Over out time in this apartment, we have accumulated treasures, engaged in DIY projects and crafts, and transformed our space into one that is more “us”, one that is cozy and warm.  The Artist also loves interiors, he loves hunting for items for our living space and has the most amazing eye for it too.

Here is our living room when we first moved in, in 2012.  Followed by some photos on Halloween night.  What a difference, eh?

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2012

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Halloween 2015

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DIY Dreamcatcher.

I love to make things.  There is something so soothing to my soul about making things with my own two hands.  The Artist and I are in the middle of glazing a bunch of items that we made on the wheel with clay, and I will post about that when they are done.  I also love knitting, weaving, working with beads, clay, and so many other things, as I am sure is evident in this blog.  My latest project was making a dreamcatcher.  I got some supplies and had at it.  I loved it so much, I made another, and still have supplies for one more!  These cost me between $2-$2.50 a piece to make, a great bargain.  They are super easy to make, and incredibly customizable, with no right or wrong way to make them.

To make them, I just looked at some pictures I found on the internet and read a few quick tutorials about the weaving part, and got started.  After you see how to start the weaving part, you are good to go.  It is very easy, and fun to make.  I used metal rings and wrapped suede-like cord around them, then used hemp string to weave, leaving a space/circle in the middle.  I used beads and feathers to decorate, and just tied everything in place.  You would also use glue I would imagine, but I didn’t have any and just tied double knots for he beads and feathers.  Note that in these photos there are shadows of the string, so it looks “doubled”.

I am in love with these!

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Homemade Woven Coasters

As a working woman, I find that I don’t have much time to just be.  Time to lounge around, watch TV, read, work on my latest project, write a blog post, or just have some time with my thoughts.  Having this time is something that is very important to me, and I try and savour it whenever I can, even if it exists for only a short period of time.

To say that the Artist is a night owl would be an understatement.  Every night as we are climbing into bed to watch TV, a movie, or read, he has lots of energy and is bouncing off the walls.  Literally.  He has the most energy at this time of the day, and in turn, sleeps in during the morning.  Long after I have fallen asleep, sometimes on the couch, the Artist is “arting” away through the night creating his masterpieces.  So on the weekends, I get up at my usual hour, sometimes sleep in a tad, and enjoy a nice, slow, relaxing morning.  If I sleep in too late, and I will if I don’t set an alarm, my sleep schedule gets so thrown off and I am dragging myself around all week until I crash.  So these mornings are my primary time to read, learn, and relax.

My latest project has been weaving, and I am addicted to it.  So I have been putting on an old sitcom like Friends and weaving away in the mornings.  I made a make shift loom using cardboard, and have been making these coasters that I really love.  The Artist saw them on a blog… http://www.prettyprudent.com/2014/09/prudent-home/diy-woven-coasters/ and asked me if I could make some, as I am fairly decent at “crafting”.  I loved these, and they are just our style.  So here are just a few, I have been making tons of these.  When weaving, I feel very zen.  It is like meditating.  Just typing about it is making me crave a weaving session this morning.

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Without my special weekend mornings, I feel off balance and kind of irritated.  I guess it just goes to show how important self-care is for our overall well-being, and that we should engage in it often.  By taking care of myself, I am the best wife I could possibly be, the best daughter, friend, and colleague that I could possibly be.  I am the best version of me, in all of my roles.

 

DIY Bleached Jean Jacket!

The Artist and I love to thrift shop.  I had been wanting a jean jacket lately, and hadn’t been finding anything that I liked.  So one day while thrifting, the Artist held up a jean jacket and said I should try it on.  I did not like the colour at all, but then he said if it fits nicely, he could bleach it to what I want.  GENIUS!  It was a perfect fit.  I took home my jacket that cost only a few dollars, $3-$4 I think it was, the Artist made some magic happen.  He has worked with bleach in his works before, and was very familiar with how to handle it.  I was after a blotchy look, where the jacket was lighter coloured and the seams were darker.  Here are some tips on what he did!

This is how it started:

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Firstly- wear gloves to do this, in a well ventilated area or outside.

1. He started off diluting the bleach with water to gauge how quickly and severely it would affect the fabric.  Al fabrics react differently.  After a while, he started using undiluted bleach as the fabric was holding up very well.

2. He used a paintbrush to apply it.  That way, he could control where the bleach went, and how much, versus dunking it in a bucket.  And I wanted the seams to be dark still.

3. He “splattered” and “dripped” bleach onto it as well.

4. When it looked almost done, we vigorously dunked it in a bucket of just water we had waiting.  This will stop the bleaching process.  Stopping it when almost done worked well, because even though we dunked it in water it still continued to get a little lighter for a few minutes afterwards.

5. After vigorously dunking, I took it inside and washed it in the bathtub with laundry soap, again, vigorously.  The goal is to stop the bleaching process and rinse the jacket of all the bleach.

6. I let it air dry, and then added it to a load of laundry in the washer to get rid of the remaining bleach smell, and air dried again.  I prefer to air dry most of my clothes so they don’t shrink, and didn’t want to risk this jacket shrinking.  I don’t know how the dryer would affect a bleached item.

We thought it might need some touch ups, but it didn’t.  For touch ups, we planned on dabbing it with bleach where needed, but it didn’t need it.

And after all that- I have what I had been looking for 😀  Watching my jacket get created was like watching the Artist paint.  He is so talented in so many ways, and I get to witness true works of art in every day situations ❤

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