Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A Gradual Ease Into Fall

Have you noticed the slight dip in temperature over the last week? It has been a subtle reminder that summer is drawing to an end, and fall is right around the corner...sniff, sniff.  Along with the temperature drop I noticed that many stores have geared up for the fall.  I was in Target today and found myself wandering up and down the "Back To School" aisle.  I love the smell of new crayons, notebook paper, and's the teacher in me.  I will always find enjoyment in school supplies! Also in Target I found a couple of pretty items that I thought I would share with you.  

I always find the month of September a little tricky when it comes to seasonal decorating.  It certainly doesn't feel like fall in these parts, but you feel like it's time to take down the hydrangea wreath and swap out the brightly colored throw pillows for more neutral options.  That's why I really fell for this wreath.  I love the color combination of cream, brown, and pale green.  A perfect transition from summer to fall.

I added a brown ribbon and hung it on the front door...okay, correction, my mother-in-law added the brown ribbon.  She can make a professional looking bow in about 3 seconds flat!

I was also giddy with excitement to find a farmhouse collection end-cap in Target's kitchen section.  They had a lot of pretty cranberry colored stoneware and a couple grain sack fabric dishtowels...yep, had to have one! Grain sack fabric is my thing....weird?  Maybe...but I just love industrial fabrics! Maybe I can convince you with these examples:

Love the grainsack chair faux grain sack pillow Sack Cloth LOVE this grain sack chair

Anyway, here is my little dishtowel...

I swapped out a cheerful summer set for this one.  Much better for September I would say!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Give It The Slip

Now that I have a baby I am loving a slipcover more than ever.  Not only can it give a room with mismatched furniture an effortless and inexpensive look of unity, but also functionality! I have a white couch...yes, I said "WHITE"... hold your gasps! With a dog, baby, and husband (and, okay, me too...I eat chocolate chip cookies on the couch...guilty!), I wash the slipcovers probably once every couple of weeks (sometimes more often).  A little Tide, one scoop of Oxiclean, and a cap of bleach later, they are good as new.

Check out these slipcover variations.  I love the knife pleat on the first, and am drooling over the monogram on the chairs!



I also love how relaxed and inviting a room looks with a slipcovered couch and/or chairs.  Makes you want to kick off your shoes and stay a spell. 

In case you are wondering, my slipcovered couch is a great steal! It is the Ikea Ektorp, priced at $399!  I wasn't sure of the quality upon purchase, but I have been pleasantly surprised! Our little couch is going on 3 years old (with the original slipcovers) and still looks pretty great! 

EKTORP Sofa, Blekinge white Width: 85 7/8 " Depth: 34 5/8 " Height: 34 5/8 " Seat depth: 19 5/8 " Seat height: 17 3/4 "  Width: 218 cm Depth: 88 cm Height: 88 cm Seat depth: 50 cm Seat height: 45 cm

I am thinking of purchasing two of the adorable club chairs to go with the couch.  Cute, huh!? You can purchase the matching chairs for a mere $199 apiece!

EKTORP JENNYLUND Chair, Blekinge white Width: 30 3/4 " Depth: 33 1/2 " Height: 33 1/8 " Seat width: 18 7/8 " Seat depth: 21 5/8 " Seat height: 16 7/8 "  Width: 78 cm Depth: 85 cm Height: 84 cm Seat width: 48 cm Seat depth: 55 cm Seat height: 43 cm

Slipcovers are also a great way to mask unattractive fabrics.  Check out this little bench.  I'm sure you remember it from my Couture Collection.  I purchased it from Craigslist because it had such pretty legs! No cat calls, please!

However, it had a little unfortunate checked fabric covering the cushion.  A perfect opportunity for a slipcover! 

I had this one made from cotton duck cloth ($4 a yard) and a little white ruffle ($3.50 a yard).  The ruffle gave the effect of a knife pleat that I like so much without the extra cost and labor.  The end adorable bench that you can actually prop your feet on without any worries. 

I also used a slipcover for an unattractive table that holds the TV in our bedroom.  I could have painted the table, because it is actually kinda cute...but...I had a bigger problem.  Do you see what I do? WIRES!! Yuck!! 


One of my decorating pet peeves is wires, plugs, and outlets hanging out for the world to see.  I prefer them tucked out of sight and mind.  So, the answer?  Yep, you got it...a slipcover!  I used a little of my go-to fabric these days - burlap ($5 a yard) and had this little table skirt made for $40.  Instant texture to the room and bye-bye to the ugly table and the wires too!


I pointed out in pink (of course) the one outlet and wire I could not mask.  Boo! Sometimes it is just about impossible to hide all outlets and wires, so my suggestion is a light colored or clear cord.  It camouflages itself a bit better.  Still an improvement from before! 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

POP Quiz!

Okay, don't panic! This is a quiz that you will actually enjoy taking!

I was browsing a blog that I follow daily (yeah, yeah, I know...I need to get a life!) - Young Love House.  This adorable couple have an AMAZING blog where they pretty much document every home improvement they make to their "fixer upper" house in Richmond.  Anywho, their blog featured a design quiz that was just so darn fun to take I had to share it with you! 

Ethan Allan, although not on the thrifty side AT ALL, has a fabulous website! Included on their website is a "What is Your Signature Style" quiz.  Click on the link and it will take you to the "test site".  Here you will view a series of photos. You will click on the photos that appeal to you the most, then receive your style results - Elegance, Modern, Romance, Explorer, or Vintage. 

So fun, and SPOT ON in my case - Vintage!

Hmmm...not sure what all that means, and I'm also not sure about that outfit the model is rockin', BUT, I do see three words that ring true for my decorating style: PEACEFUL, COLLECTED, DISTRESSED.  

And the photos Ethan Allen provided in addition to describing my style confirmed it! I'm in decorating heaven...sigh.  Makes me want to go shopping at Ethan Allen...just kidding! 

So have some fun with this little quiz and see if it helps you pinpoint your decorating personality.  You may find the results spot on, or totally off!  Either way, it's a little free Thursday night entertainment...enjoy! 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Frugal Friday...On Monday...

because I was too busy to get to it on Friday! You understand, right? I hope so! Well, folks, I've been thrifting again! Check it out.

Let's talk about some plans for this junk collection of treasures! 

I probably having you scratching your head over that trophy, huh?  It is probably my favorite item in the pile.  I don't even plan on polishing it.  I love the patina! I found it in a local junk shop and got really excited because I thought it was a vintage equestrian silver cup....THOUGHT...not exactly, it is...wait for it...a bowling trophy! LOL! Not quite as cool, but I love it nonetheless.  I have been using it as a vase.

Next are the three terra-cotta pots.  Cute as they are, but I have already revamped them and made them a tad more interesting.  I gave them a coat of chalk-board paint (are you getting tired of the chalkboard paint yet? Me either!) Then, with a piece of chalk numbered the pots.  The grand finale - I added FAUX topiaries (because you know I don't do the real thing) that I picked up at Michaels for $3.50 each!

The chippy wooden frame is being added to my frame collection and saved for a future project.  More to come on that!  It already got a good scrub down and coat of cream paint.

My final treasure is the set of needlepoint wall art.  I like needlepoint, don't get me wrong, but it usually isn't something on my radar.  However, I fell in love with this darling little girl and boy.  The girl is holding a kitten and the boy, a puppy.  The colors are soft and sweet.  I couldn't help but picture this set in a nursery.  

However, the frames are gross. The faux cherry wood is too dark and there are a couple of chips in the wood.  I was thinking about cleaning them up and patching the chips with wood filler, but honestly, I'm just not in the mood. So, I saw these little bunny pillows online and decided to turn the needlepoint set into similar pillows for MW's nursery.  

I'll show you the results when the project is finished. In the meantime, don't forget about the vintage tray giveaway.  Simply refer as many of your friends possible to Castaway To Couture's Facebook site.  You have until Wednesday!