Thursday, January 31, 2013

{DIY} Twine Bottle Topper

This little jug {the same one from here & here} sits next to our television in our living room. It collects dust wine corks {when we remember...} and fills an empty spot on our side table for some balance and symmetry. 

For months and months whenever I lounged on the sofa I would remember that I should 'finish' the jug with some twine. Twine that I own. To be adhered by hot glue. Hot glue that I own. The only thing missing was the energy to just do it already. 

I used some thin twine leftover from wedding crafts. A thicker twine would look great though! 

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Mag Club: {Lonny Jan/Feb 2013}

Isn't an evening spent with a glass of wine, a cozy blanket and the latest Lonny just dreamy?
There is something so sweet and innocent about a day bed

What little lady wouldn't adore letting her imagination run wild in this beautiful room 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Our Favorite Pasta: Sweet & Spicy Sausage Pasta

Do you have a go-to recipe? One that you know by heart and always keep the ingredients on hand? 
I have two go-to recipes. Both of them were taught to me by my mom :) 

 {Recipe: Sweet & Spicy Sausage Pasta}

-1 box shaped pasta of your choice
-2 cans of diced tomatoes
-Red pepper flakes, to taste
-2 garlic cloves
-1 pound sweet ground Italian sausage
-3+ tablespoons of AP flour
-1 cup heavy cream {or milk}
-wine, for the chef

Monday, January 28, 2013

design & decorate: spoonflower

{I may be late to the party...} but I just discovered Spoonflower and I am blown away at what a genius idea this is! Regular ole people just like you and me {or fancy pants designers and artists...that I want to be} can create custom fabrics and wallpapers that feature their designs. You can literally bring your doodles to life...your color, your pattern size, your a pillow, a pair of curtains, a wall decal or wallpaper. Wonderful! 

And for those that prefer to just purchase...{hand raised} choose from tons of patterns already created by artists {and doodlers alike}. 

Check out my friend's friend's Spoonflower shop- Ann Tuck
I loooove this flower & bee print! Abstract, sweet, simple and happy

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

{DIY} Mercury Glass Bottle Lamp

{DIY} Mercury Glass Bottle Lamp

Back when I made the bottle lamps, I made 2 versions. Two of the lamps had holes drilled into the bottom for the cord to feed through {pictured above}. The other lamp did not have a hole- the cord fed straight out of the light bulb holder. 

In order for the light bulb holder contraption {technical term} to stay on the bottle I had to line the bottle with some super glue. No big deal. For the bottles with the hole....

A couple of days later I noticed that the bottle without the hole did not turn out so well. The super glue created a smoky film on the inside of the bottle. Unfortunately the film was streaky and strange looking so I decided to cover it up with a layer of mercury glass spray paint. 

I had heard that mercury glass spray paint was a bit difficult to work with, so Mom and I tested an old salsa jar first. We were pleased!

The trick to mercury glass is a spray bottle of water and vinegar!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

long weekend

Happy Tuesday {that feels every bit as tired as a Monday}! What did you do this weekend? 

We spent every single moment of our glorious 3 day weekend busting out DIY projects and painting our new house. It was hard work but we are so excited to move that we were happy and energized the whole time! 

Plus a late night trip to QT for coffee helped with the energy levels. Is it sad that our favorite coffee is from a gas station? 

Josh surprised me with Young House Love book on Friday while on our way to the new house! {Thoughtful Husband of the year award goes to...}
I have been obsessing over the YHL blog lately and was dying to get my hands on their book. It is every bit as fun and inspiring as I had hoped- I am excited to add some of their DIY projects on to my list anddddddddd to {hopefully} meet them on Feb 7 {come with us- more info here}!

It took no less than 3 trips to Lowes and Sherwin-Williams {each.} to finish anything. Does anyone really complete an entire project with only one trip? Don't tell me if you do. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

recipe review: Mustard Butter Popcorn by Heidi Swanson

{recipe review: Mustard Butter Popcorn by Heidi Swanson}

Did you know that Popcorn is one of my very favorite foods in the whole wide world? It's true. 

Since the 'Clean Eating' revolution hit the Hall household I have learned to pop my own kernels old school style on the stove top. It's my new favorite food trick. 

Anywho. Mom gave me this beautiful cookbook from Anthropologie for Christmas. Isn't it gorgeous?!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Recipe Review: Pioneer Woman Chicken Fried Steak

This was the best part of dinner. 

Disappointment is not a feeling anyone wants to experience. Especially when it directly relates to the dinner you have cooked. 

But Tuesday night...after a long week of market...with a hopeful heart and hungry stomach...Josh and I experienced dinner disappointment. 

{Recipe Review: Pioneer Woman Chicken Fried Steak}

Disclaimer: I looooove lurve love Pioneer Woman, that Ree Drummond makes my hungry heart sing. But today I must bring you...honesty. Because I love you. 

Pioneer Woman's picture.

My picture. 

{sad face}

Maybe things went wrong with my flour mixture...or my egg/milk mixture...

or here...

or here....

or with the gravy {yes, most definitely with the gravy.}

By the time the Chicken Fried Steak got to our plates, it was low on taste and far from tender. We globed on the gravy {I think you could call it that}, piled on the mashed potatoes and ate it anyways. Its what newlyweds do.

Josh blames a boring cut of meat, I blame a lack of seasoning {there ya go PW, you're off the hook}. If you want to give it try check out the full recipe on May you have much better luck than I!

Chicken Fried Honesty

Wish List: IKEA

{Wish List: IKEA}

We are moving soon {keys in hand!} which means we have a couple of new corners to fill, new DIY project ideas in mind and some room re-dos in mind.

{one} Eivor Throw $20 {two} Lidan Baskets $10 {three*} Tarva Chest $80 {four} Fjalltag Area Rug $25 {five} Rens Sheepskin $30 {six*} Agen Chair $30  {seven*} Kilby Bookcase $25

*DIY project ready! You won't even recognize them when we are through :) 

shopping time! 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

DIY: Girly Thank You Cards

As a bride {now newlywed} you learn a billion different ways to say thank you. There are 'thank yous' to be given every single step of the way- and believe me, each one so very deserved!!! Shower hosts, shower guests, program attendants, vendors, bridesmaids, wedding guests, musicians, parents, fiance, the list goes on. It meant a lot to me for each 'thank you' be unique and special. 

This series of thank you cards is a top favorite- fun to make and just so happy looking! 

This set went to all of my bachelorette party attendees. We had the best time and each and every girl made the trip so very special! My Maid of Honor, Lydia got the hot pink card in the middle- she put in sooo much work to make the weekend flawless and fun-filled! 

The rest of my ladies got these frilly thank you cards- they are so cute! 

I had a great time making each one of them and remembering what a fabulous time we had. 

Thank you bachelorette ladies! I hope you know how much you mean to me!  

Hopefully this is the first post of many where I will {finally} write about our wedding. There were so many special touches that my family, Josh and I put into the festivities and frankly...I think they are worth sharing. :) {slash..I want to relive it all! yay!}

thank you- in the frilliest way possible
:) amch

P.S. I have considered custom making these and selling them in our Etsy shop. Holler if you're interested and I'll grab my calligraphy pen and glue gun! :)

Before & After: Goodwill Dresser Refurb Project


{Goodwill Dresser Refurb Project}
Our first married people DIY project {I think...bad memory} was born out of a complete storage NEED! Being the wannabe DIY-ers that we are, we instantly knew that we would salvage someone else's furniture discard instead of purchasing a new {probably IKEA...} piece of furniture. Let's save money and bond, shall we? 

We lucked out! On our first trip to Goodwill we found this solid wood castaway. Great height, loved the amount of drawers and couldn't beat the $30 price tag. Without a moment of hesitation, we loaded it up and took it home. 

We immediately knew that we wanted to white wash it; we were going for a neutral looking bedroom and wanted the piece to have a mis-matched look against the rest of our {currently...} dark brown bedroom furniture. 

I believe we gave it two dry-brushed coats of a shade of white called Almond. I wanted the original wood to come through- I love the paneling detail. 

The old drawer pulls were quickly replaced with these great oil-rubbed-bronze pulls from Lowes. Each pull was about $4 a piece- a price tag that these first timers were surprised by- but this is exactly the look I was going for and I was so excited to find them!

I didn't give the piece a top coat- but once we move I probably will go back and add one. Just to be safe. Gotta take care of our first baby! :)

We are so happy with our first project! 

dressed and ready
:) amch

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

project plans: kitchen island & coffee/bar cart

At all times Josh and I {mostly me...} have a DIY to-do list running in our minds. Thankfully for me, Josh has really taken to doing projects, mostly becuase they involve tools and trips to HD and Lowes. And I am sure because he just loves the quality time with me :) 

We are moving soon and our kitchen will be slightly bigger- here are two projects I hope to tackle post-move:

{Project One}: IKEA Kitchen Island Hack

Hoping to have space for the Ikea Forhoja - There are endless beautifying possibilities and a relatively easy price tag 

I love the drawer upcycle that the couple from Hunted Interior did- hope to do it ourselves!

Plus we want to add a butcher-block-look stain to the top, a coat of white paint to the rest of it, some baskets on the shelves and a towel rack on the side...then the Hall's will have made it their own! 

{Project Two} also takes place in the kitchen. {But it is more of a purchase than a project...}

Thanks to wonderful friends and family we are owners of tons of beautiful white coffee mugs and a brilliant Keurig coffee machine. I love the idea of creating a little coffee/tea corner like this one:

I am beside myself obsessed with this wall shelf from Hobby Lobby {same one used as the picture above}. Mom and I actually saw it on Black Friday and loooooved it and I honestly haven't stopped thinking about it since. When I saw it on Pinterest today {in the picture above}, I about jumped out of my seat. Major want!

P.S....Is it acceptable to store both coffee/tea items AND bar items on the same cart? 

P.P.S. If checked yes....could {Project One} and {Project Two} be combined into ONE AWESOME PROJECT?! The libation station?! 

bar cart/kitchen island wheels are turning
:) amch

lonny love

Do I wish I could physically thumb through the pages of Lonny? Yup. Do I get along just fine clicking my way through the design mag? Sure do. 

Best part? Online magazines allow us to save, post and archive favorite images. 

Some of mine from the Dec 2012 issue:

All it takes is two matching club chairs to set the tone of a room. 
Upholstered in yellow and they are the story of the room. Set in black and they complete a striking room. 

Styling a bookcase is truly a marketable skill. Gold and turquoise will forever be color lovers. 

I love the layers and layers of fabrics and textures in this master. From the floor to the upholstered accent furniture to the drapes and the beautiful canopy, the two toned neutral room is anything but a one-note production. 

This dining set is so sweet and perfect to me- hoping to replicate in our own home soon. 

A sexy staircase and sultry office. Strong and statement making rooms. 

The rug and lamps in this room take the cake for me. But not far behind are the layers of gold rustic frames on the mantle and the cluster of gold and glass nesting tables. Brilliantly rich, sophisticated and livable. 

I need to live in this room. I am obsessed with the thick draped throws, overstuffed pillows, minimalistic wall art and gorgeous ceiling beams. 

Click over to {best on a tablet or Kindle with a glass of wine and cozy chair} to see the full articles and more rooms that wow. 

now to the Jan/Feb 13 issue
:) amch

p.s. repin the images you love from my pinterest board