Monday, August 30, 2010

An Inviting Entryway { Updated }

Last week I mentioned I was doing finishing some projects, but didn't say exactly what. I was able to finish up a ton of projects from our living room and will be sharing the updates over the week. First up our entryway, we made some changes. For those who have been reading our blog for quite sometime, you know that we originally updated our entry way late last year in December. We painted the inside of our front door white and hung shelves. Anyways last week, Mr. CLH mentioned we should add another shelf in the entryway and wouldn't it be nice if they were longer. I've always liked the Holman Ledge from Pottery Barn. I'm not loving the price $55.00 bucks for a 4ft ledge, no thanks.




I was inspired to diy our own ledges after seeing Fawn from Frugal Home Design diy version of the Ikea lack shelves. She built the shelves to hold her kids books, and they turned out great! I looked at the way the ledges were made and decided to make them, after-all the diy floating shelves my husband made for sons tween room turned out nice. I decided to tackle the Holman Ledge the diy way. I made a quick trip to Lowes and picked up Mdf board and finishing nails.


I purchased one of each: 1.5in x 8ft Mdf, 2.5 in x 8ft Mdf and 3.5in x 8ft Mdf boards, the one of each easily made two ledges. For the third ledge I bought 1.5in x 6ft Mdf, 2.5 x 5ft Mdf and 3.5 x 5ft Mdf for the I opted to have them do the cuts for me, I didn't want to try and figure out how I was going to put three 8 feet pieces of lumbar in my Mazda3. I had them make 42inch cuts, so each shelf will be 3.5 feet long, which will fit nicely on our wall. My local Lowes charges .25 cents per cut, which is nada and they only charged me for two cuts.



When I got home I began my project, the 3.5in width board is the base of the ledge, the 2.5in width is the back of the ledge an the 1.5in with is the front of the ledge. I applied a thin amount of wood glue on the my base and then attached the back of the ledge.

Then I used blue painters tape to keep everything in tact. I waited an hour and then glued the front small board on the base, and again used painters tape. While that board was drying I worked on the next ledge. 




After each board was dry and used 8 finishing nails in groups of two along the length of the front of board and the back of the board. I counter sunk each nail and filled the hole with caulk - to make the nail disappear. 



Then I applied a thin line of caulk in the inside seam of the ledge, which gave the inside of the ledge a nice seamless look, and another thin line of caulk to the bottom seams. Since the Mdf was already primed (which was nice) I applied two coats of Glossy White paint. 

I loved how the ledges were turning out even before I painted them. We used blue painters tape on the wall to determine the placement of the ledges and mark each stud on the wall. I used the blue painters tape again to determine of high each frame would lean against the wall, I wanted to make sure frames would look nice between the ledges. Next I patched up the old holes left behind and from the old shevles and painted. We then pre-drilled three holes into the ledge according to where the stud was and then attached them to the wall using wood screws.


Before I show our diy version of the Holman ledges, lets take a trip down memory lane. Here's how of our entryway once looked. All dark and dated just blah.



Our entryway looked like this only a few short days ago. 


Our entryway now feels so much larger and fresh, I love the the new length and depth of our ledges. I addded a few more picutres from our wedding and keep the detail pictures in color and picturses of 'us' in black & white. I only had to purchase one new frame for the ledges{ I had a few Ikea & other frames laying around} Our new ledges hold more pictures and are wide enough to objects which will be fun when the holiday season rolls around.



A reminder our old ledges were 3 feet long and 3 inches deep, our new ones are 3 1/2 feet long and 4 1/2 inches deep. Our front door opens into our ledges, but does not hit them, which is great! Here's a room shot of our ledges, the new style ties in so nice with our living room. I love that all three ledges cost us around $ 20.00!  This picture gives a better idea how of entryway looks in our living room, since its not actual 'entryway' and how the ledges ties in with our living room. I spent around $ 20.00 bucks on this project!


A view from the hallway


Closeups, love how the pictures look leaning against the wall 



What do do you think of the little makeover we did in our entryway? Have you've been thinking about diy ledges for your home? If so go for it!

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Friday, August 27, 2010

The Dish: Spinach & Cheese Enchiladas

Like most families were on a budget all while trying to be more aware of what we eat. Which for my family means: no eating out (maybe once or twice a month) and cooking yummy lighter meals. I'm by no means a foodie or an awesome cook, but I'm good at finding yummy recipes to make for friends and family. So I decided to start a new weekly feature on my blog about yummy healthy cheap recipes we made during the week. I'll share everything from yummy dinners to tasty deserts.

One of my favorite yummy recipes I recently started making for dinner is Cheese & Spinach Enchiladas. The ingredients combine the fresh with the fast. 
Spinach & Cheese Enchiladas
Ingredients


8 Corn tortillas { I prefer using La Tortilla Factory the tortillas are thick healthy & yummy }
1/2 cup of Reduced fat Mexican Blend Cheese
1/4 cup Reduced fat cream cheese soften
1 can of Rosita Red or Green Enchilada Sauce
2 cups of fresh spinach
1/2 cup of black olives  
These are the best tortillas ever! Check our more information about La Tortilla Factory { here }. I use them all the time when making tacos, enchiladas, and quesadillas. 

Heat the oven to 425 degrees

Pour half of your enchilada sauce in the bottom on your baking dish. Then on a separate plate pour your sauce and dip each tortilla in the dish and cover with sauce. Next smear a little cream cheese on the tortilla. Place spinach and cheese inside and roll up, then pace in the dish { seam side down} Repeat. Pour the remaining sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle cheese, olives and cilantro on top.


They already look yummy prior to baking!
Cover your baking dish with tin foil and cook for 20 minutes or until cheese is melted.

For sides I usually serve with black beans. Drain your black beans and heat on stove top and garnish with cilantro & feta cheese.


Serve & Enjoy! 


I also like making like using green enchiladas sauce with this recipe. This is one of my favorite easy and yummy healthy recipes I enjoy making. What's yours?
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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Finishing Up Some Projects

We've been finishing up some projects around our Casa, and I can't wait to share soon! Here's a little glimpse of one of the projects that's almost done. A little building project.



The projects I'm working on include the following tools: primer, paint, wood glue, sewing machine, and a trip to Ikea & the Goodwill. Notice I listed Ikea and Goodwill as a tool, lol.

Any guesses what I'm working on? Hint 'It's and Inviting Upgrade' What proejcts are you working on?
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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Painted Rug Round Up

I was reading a recent post from Amanda from Our Humble A {bowe)d and loved the diy chevron rug she painted for her sons bedroom. She took a simple jute rug and transformed. Love the results. Here's the view the lovely rug. She posted the a great how to (here)

Image via (here)
I rounded up some more pretty diy painted rugs for inspiration, I'm thinking making a simple diy painted rug for our house. These all give me so much inspiration. More pretty chevron stripes, this time in an array of purple.

image via (here)

A stencil transforms the a basic rug, into a wow rug. Isn't the diy rug amazing.


image via (here)

I love this jute textured rug, the tan tones of the with the yellow paint look so pretty. I love this painted chevron rug.

image via (here)

I love the idea of painted a rug and creating a custom look (without the price) Have you been thinking about painting a rug for your home? Or already you already, I'd love to see if you have?

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Monday, August 23, 2010

So Looking Forward to This

I can't help but be so excited for Iman's home decor fabric coming this fall to Calico Corners! From the look of the picture, the fabric is going to be lovely with a global eclectic flair. I love her style and grace, so I'm looking forward to seeing the fabric collection she's completed. 



I bought Iman's book The Beauty of Color a few years back and loved is refreshing take on skincare, makeup and beauty regardless of what color your are. I loved all the tips on applying makeup correctly to achieve a wide array of looks

"From the beloved fashion icon and cosmetics entrepreneur, the first book to embrace global beauty and women of all ethnicities"  Publishers Weekly


What are you looking forward to about fall?

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Friday, August 20, 2010

Lighting the Way

Last night I was chilling on the sofa while Mojo our lovable Chihuahua was laying on my, when I glanced into our dining room. I realized then that our house has come a long way since we bought it late December 2008 and moved in January 2009. I think one the changes I love most that we've done thus far is the lighting. Finding the right light fixture has been the starting point of most our room re-dos. When we first moved into our home, our living room had the ugliest ceiling fan. It was an ugly faux wood grain brown one. Although I'm not the biggest lover of ceiling fans they are a must for No. California heat waves. See what I mean. 
Since the fan was a keeper, we did a quick update with white spray paint. Perfect solution for updated a dreary ceiling fan. Our ceiling fan now blends into the our what ceiling and is not not and ugly eyesore. See you can barely tell its there.
Since spray painted our of ceiling fan white, most of of lighting updates have happened this year. Since I love the look of drum shades over dining room tables, they look so chic and give off a great cool vibe in a room, we upgraded our old basic dining room light. Here's how our old dining room, right after we started taking the sucker down. Yay its was really up there! Lovely. 
 We customized the Eden Drum shade we purchased from CB2 by hardwiring it and using a down-rod similar to styles you see in resutrants, which gives the light fixutre a nice clean look for our dining room.
I love the the ambiance the light gives off when its on. 
Next we upgraded the same light in our sons room (the previous owner installed the light fixture in every room in the house! I think they took the more is the merrier approach. Again this light fixture was ho hum.
The look of is bedroom change the instant Mr. CLH installed his new light fixture. I found a wood grain style drum shade on clearance at Lowes for $ 53 bucks (read more about it here) His new bedroom light is a serous upgrade and cool. 
Inside of the light fixture is a cityscape, I love the warm glow in casts in his bedroom.
I saved the the best for last, Ok maybe I'm a little biased because the light fixture is in my bedroom! We swamped out the same light fixture that was in my sons room for a modern version of the chandelier. For me its the wow factor in our bedroom and I love it, we also added a dimmer switch on the chandelier. Here's the chandelier in the late evening with the dimmer switch on. 
And with the lights all the way. I love the shadows the light fixture cast in the room.  
So far we switched out or upgraded five light fixtures in our home, I know ones missing our bathroom! But thats a post for another day. For me lighting and paint is one of the best ways to add instant drama into a room and make it personal. Have you've been slowly updated the lighting your home? What's your biggest wow factor lighting upgrade so far, or what will it be?

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Thursday, August 19, 2010

Fabric Swatches, Headboards & Pillows Oh My

I guess I was channeling Dorthy from the Wizard of Oz, with the post title! Moving on...a few weeks back I ordered some fabric samples for our diy headboard, possible pillows & living room dogie bed. First up potential fabric swatches for our long forgotten Master Bedroom re-do. It's been on pause while I work on my sons tween bedroom re-do (which should be done soon). When Mr. CLH & I talked about our headboard, we both agreed we didn't want white and a pattern could be fun, but then it limits the other colors and patterns we can include in our bedroom down the line. Since we decided to stick with solid fabric I wanted the fabric to have texture and be soft. Here are the two fabric swatches we are considering for our headboard. The darker fabric is a Medium Weight Linen the color is Charcoal. The lighter fabric is from Diversitex Claridge Basket weave the color is Elephant.


Here's how the potential headboard fabric would look with our bedding, the white represents our duvet, the grey our coverlet and the grey & white fabric Euro pillows. At first glance I really like the darker shade.


Looking closer, I really like the pattern weave on the Elephant swatch, I think the color might be too light? 


My other options is going with charcoal, which looks like more like a deep grey.


I'm hooked on the Nail head upholstered headboard from West Elm. Its no huge surprise I love the color of the hardboard and the texture. I also like the idea of doing double nail-head trim. I also love how close the nail head time is to the edge of the headboard, it creates a nice finished look. I've never done a nail head trim, hopefully its not hard, I'm thinking black round nail heads.
Double the fun? Or more work? lol



Here are my other two fabric swatches, I'm considering sewing some pillow covers for our living room with this fabric, so its subtle Ikat print (swatch # 2 on the right). They would cover our yellow pillows - I would use the pillow covers from time to time, when I wanted to freshen up the look of our living room. The colors and fabric type are a perfect match with our lumbar pillows. I hope you gals aren't tiring of my love from yellow!


Often when I come home from work Mojo's on our sofa on one of the pillows, and I find myself washing our pillows more often than a want. Even though he's small he still sheds some in the Summertime.  I decided to make him a bed for living room that's cool enough to lay on the floor, like his bed in our bedroom.  I'm thinking the Chevron print with turquoise / blue piping - for an additional fun pop of color. This picture below from Eddie Ross, sums up how I love cute dogie beds on living room floors. It just makes me smile. 



What do you think of the fabric swatches for the diy headboard? Basket weave or linen, for those of you that have done nail hoards before, any tips? Thanks 

Secondly - Chevron floor dogie pillow for Mojo? Or am taking on too many projects, lol
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