Tuesday, August 31, 2010

More Pottery Barn Knock Offs

Alicia...this one's for you.
See these guys?

They are from the Pottery Barn. Simple, elegant, chic...if you don't mind me sayin' so. I love them. I want them. But, frankly, I am too big a cheapskate to buy them.
And anyway, they're sold out, so I couldn't buy them even if I wanted to.
I can't say for certain how much they were originally, but I dare say they weren't less than $30 a piece.
Always willing and ready for a decorating challenge, I decided to see if it was possible to replicate the beauties. I'll let you be the judge of whether it was a success or not.
The first thing I did was run to IKEA. I had seen online that they carried white, linen pillow covers. (The pillows from PB are a cotton/linen blend and I wanted to stay as true to them as I could). They were $6 and I bought four, for a grand total of $24. (Still less than what you would have spent on one from PB).

Everything else I needed for the project I had at home. (black paint, stippling brush and garbage bag).
I made my own stensil using a font on the computer that I enlarged. I tried to choose a font that was similar to the one used on the PB sample. I traced the image onto heavy duty cardstock then cut the numbers out.

Before you start stenciling on your numbers it is a good idea to put a piece of plastic in between the two layers of your case (I used a garbage bag). You don't want the color bleeding through.

Next, center the number onto the pillow cover...

then using a stippling brush apply black paint all over inside of the stensil. (You can go here to learn how to stipple).

As you stipple the paint on, be sure to keep your hands clean and free of any awol paint splatter or accidental paint transfers. This might require you to constantly wipe your hands on a wet rag (like I had to). There's nothing worse than getting an unsightly and permanent paint smudge on your project.
Once you have entirely filled in your stensil, peel it back quickly and carefully.
Then let you pillow cover sit until the paint has had ample time to dry.

Once the paint is no longer wet, you can remove the plastic and insert your pillow form.

Then place them somewhere you can admire them often.

These pillows were super easy to make and super cheap to boot. In total I spent $24 and it only took about an hour to make all four. I love them and hope you do too.
The DIY Show Off

PB Inspired.

I love Pottery Barn. Every time I get my catalog in the mail, it's like Christmas has come early.
I love purusing the pages, dog earing the ones with a design idea I want to replicate or recreate on a shoe string budget.
Recently I made knock off vintage feed bag pillow cases like these in the PB Catalog.
I'm currently in the process of recreating some other decorative items straight out of Pottery Barn. I am hoping to have the results posted later today. So, be sure to check back soon.
But the thing I'm really excited about is this:

These are the Pottery Barn version of some fabulous dining chairs. I love the fun colors, upholstered seats and carved wood backs. They retail for $249-349.
Now take a look at this:

I found five of these luver-ly's at the local thrift store on Saturday. I spent $10 a piece on them. I know that the wood cut outs are a little different, but the styles are similar. I can harly wait to paint them and see just how closely I can get them to resemble the PB version (I am loving the pale blue color, in case you were wondering).
Now, look at this.

This little beauty retails for $999. *sigh* I could sit and admire her for hours. There is just something about a round, pedestal table I find so attractive.
Now, do you remember this?

I found her at the thrift store for $20. She's been waiting patiently in the garage for her moment to shine and think it's about time.

Stay tuned for the Pottery Barn vs. Erika's Garage showdown. It's gonna be a good one.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Where I Blog

Centsational Girl is having a fun linky party titled...Where do you blog?
To answer that question honestly I would have to say on the couch, on my bed, at the kids' desk, at the island in the kitchen at the kitchen table...pretty much anywhere.
However, I recently posted about my new, quaint, little writing nook.

I have blogged there only a few times, but it is now my newly designated writing area. It cost me all of $26.50 to design. Everything you see is from the thrift store...except for the bundle-o-books (which I made from old books I had scattered around the house), the twigs (which I gathered from the back yard), the bird (my only splurge at a retail store for $5.95) and the knock off vintage feed bag throw pillow (which I made for $2.50. You can click here for the tutorial).

Look What I Found!

Okay peeps. So flippin' excited I'm bouncing in my seat as I post. Hit the D.I. Saturday. Wasn't even planning on going, but felt "inspired" to stop...so I did. And look at this piece of awesomeness I found.

I know, hot right?

I have been looking for an eight seater table for some chairs I redid a while back. Here's what they look like in case you forgot. I'm so in love with these chairs.

They came with a table, but it was only a six seater, and frankly I just never had feelings for the table like I did the chairs (Listen table, it's not you. It's me. I'm sure there's someone out there for you. Someone who deserves you.)
So back to the D.I. it goes, to make room for something that's a little better fit.
I really love the chairs from this new table, but I already have some chairs in my life. However, I think I know someone who might want to meet them.

Meet Pedestal...pedestal table (She's been sitting in my garage, waiting for someone for months).

I think we have a match.

I can't wait to see how all of my pairings look after a little paint and some sprucing up. Stay tuned.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Halloween Garland-Tutorial

Kay. I've made it pretty clear how I feel about fall...Halloween specifically. But in case you didn't already know, I love, love, fah-reakin' love Halloween.
I love making all sorts of crafts and decorations for the holiday and I'm always looking for something fun and new.
Here's a simple and festive tutorial on how to make a Halloween garland that will totally get you excited everytime you look at it.

First you need to decide on a salutation: Happy Halloween (a little bland, but it works). Perhaps, All Hallow's Eve, Boo To You, Eat, Drink and Be Scary or Trick or Treat.
Once you've settled on your wording you can start gathering supplies. For this project you will need.
Letters...which I just enlarged and printed off the computer.

An assortment of scrapbook paper.

Some embellishments...buttons, stickers, ribbon etc.

A glue gun.

Twine...or something to sting your garland on to.

To start, cut out all of your letters and set them aside.

Next, cut squares/rectangles out of your scrapbook paper. Make sure they are large enough to fit the letter and some embellishments.

Arrange all of your squares and letters.

Layout all of your embellishments.

Once you have everything the way you want it, start glueing.

You can stop here, or mount the squares on a contrasting piece of paper, like I did.

If you have distressing ink you can add a little of that around the edges for a more vintage feel.

Finally, punch holes in the upper right and left corners of the squares.

Then string them onto your twine.

You can hang this baby just about anywhere, on a wall, above a door, over a mantle...
And it costs only dollars to make. Bonus!!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Knock Off Vintage Feed Bags-Tutorial

Okay. Is it just me or are vintage feed bags the hot item right now? I had no idea until I started seeing them all over various blogs and in my newest Pottery Barn Magazine. I may be a little late in the game, but better late than never I suppose.

And as with most fads, I find myself wanting in on the action. However, I was completely caught off guard by how expensive the little buggers were. When I saw that Pottery Barn was selling vintage feed back pillow covers for $89-$99...for one, I about had a coronary. As much as like them, there is absolutely no way I can justify spending that much...especially with the constant threat of cheeto fingers and chocolate milk face (did I mention I have five kiddies?)
So that gots me to thinking. How could I get the look of vintage feedbags without having sell one of the kids on the black market to fund my investment? Answer: make my own knock offs. So that's what I did.

Here are the items you will need:

(You could also use muslin or canvas if you're not into painters tarp...but it's hecka cheap, $6 for twenty-five square feet).
Oh, and some painters tape (not pictured).

To begin, decide on the size you want your pillows to be and cut your drop cloth accordingly (add and inch to your measurements to allow for seams.)
The pillow inserts I used measured 21x14 inches, so I cut my fabric 22x15

I don't know if you noticed, but the pillow covers in the Pottery Barn Mag are similar in design to a pillow case...meaning they have only three sewn sides. The fourth side is left unstitched and will provide the opening for your insert. I would recommend that when cutting your fabric you use the selvage edges on the fourth side. It will save you the hassle of having to hem the ends.

Once you've cut your pieces, it's time to tape off a pattern. I only painted the pattern on one side of the case, but if you're ambitious you could do both. I borrowed a design right off the Pottery Barn sample.

I started with one, thin, vertical stripe.
Just tape off the desired width using painters tape.

Using your stippling brush, stipple on your color inside the two pieces of tape (make sure that you are moving your hand in an up and down pattern...like you are tapping the fabric). I used acrylic craft paint in pewter grey.

Then add two, wider, vertical stripes on either side of it using the same method with the painters tape (again I used acrylic craft paint in Sky Blue), and a few numbers at the bottom. I use a stencil I purchased for $2 at Joann's. Follow the same stippling technique used for doing the stripes.

You can also add a few numbers or letters for a little something extra.

Now you are ready to sew your pieces together. (I recommend pinning the pieces together to minimize any sliding or moving of the fabric. Be aware that you want the right (or front sides of the fabric facing each other when pinning. The wrong sides of the fabric should be facing out.

Sew up the three raw, or unfinished edges, leaving the already finished fourth edge open. Then turn your case right side out.

Then put the insert inside your finished case.

Here are a few other variations I did. You can keep it simple...

or make it a little more complicated. I found this cool chicken pattern on the "net" and downloaded it. I made a stensil out of heavy cardstock (you could also use contact paper, or a plastic folder...whatever you have lying around the house). I just copied the image onto my cardstock then cut out the image of the chicken. I stippled a little gray paint over it and I turned out great. I added the wording using the letter stensil I purchased.

Boo-ya. Knock off vintage feed back pillow cases for $2.50. Now that's more like it.

Linking to:
Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special