Monday, August 30, 2010


Congrats to ME for making it one year in the blogiverse, and congrats to my CSN giveaway winner, The Cape on the Corner!

I got such a great response, thank you all for reading my little blog!  What's on deck for the next 12 months?  Well, I'm starting to get into the thick of my wedding planning, so I hope that you won't mind if I throw a couple crafty wedding projects on here once in awhile?  I promise some big house projects are in the works, too.  Have a great week, everyone! 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Trash to treasure

Ok, our free loveseat was not trash.  In fact, it's a very nice solid piece of furniture that is currently sold for a lot more than 'free' on This End Up's website.  When our neighbor a few houses down was giving this away in their driveway, Shaun made me proud and TOLD ME ABOUT IT instead of shielding my eyes and talking about ice cream to distract me. 
By some stroke of luck, we actually had my parent's truck that day, so we drove a few houses down and picked it up.  They even had a couch to match, but it was gigantic and our porch was, uh, full of crap.  So I turned it down and now I'm kicking myself while staring at my mostly empty porch that could use another seating area!  Oh, well.  This thing sat covered with a pink sheet until last month.  And there was a lot of this going on.....
I swear I love both my cats, this one just loves getting his photo taken, so I oblige!  I voted to keep the piece wood because I thought it would be cool against the white walls, but Shaun really wanted to paint it.  So I let him win and helped him take it outside for a makeover. 
We lightly sanded, then used BIN to prime and Behr Premium in semi-gloss Ultra Pure White for the finish coats.  I admit I got a little sad when he did these first strokes of primer! 
Did you catch the 80's pastel southwestern cushions?  Here's a closeup of that mess!
A local upholstery shop quoted me $300 to recover these rectangles of foam, so I said HELL TO THE NO to that.  There are companies online that make cushion covers specifically for This End Up furniture, but the fabrics you get to choose from look mostly like this:
Um, why do they all look like they are made from 70's muppet fur?  I'm so confused.  Not a beige cotton or natural twill to be found.  So, for now it has a 96" long linen drape from Target tucked around the cushions, and that works well enough. 
Do you think we should've kept it wood, or does the white paint look better?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Blogiversary Giveaway!

So, I realized last week that I am staring down my one year anniversary of having my face in a computer at all times starting Russet Street Reno.  Wow, so much has happened since then!  To celebrate my ability to 'stick to it' for the last 12 months, I thought I'd give my readers a treat in the form of another CSN giveway!  I have been so happy with all my purchases from CSN, from my copper torches...
to the sexy ceiling fan in our porch...
I have been so pleased with the customer service and quality of the items.  This is important to me, because I would never promote a company that I wouldn't purchase from myself.  Although CSN certainly needs no introduction to most of us, for those unaquainted with the sweet splendor of over 200 stores selling furniture like bistro sets and kitchen brands like Le Creuset, just trust me that they are awesome. 

Giveaway details:
The prize: one $60 gift certificate to any of the 200+ CSN Stores!

How to enter: just leave a comment on this post.  Please make sure I can contact you by either an email address in the comment, or a link to your email on your blog. 

How to enter again: if you want to blog about my giveaway, I will give you an extra entry!  Please leave a second comment with the link to your post if you do this. 

Deadline:  The giveaway will close on Sunday August 29th at midnight, so I can announce the winner on Monday, my one-year blogiversary. 


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Where the heck am I?

I'm a terrible blogger.  I've been eating chips and salsa all week and that is why I can't come to the computer.  I blame it on Jenny @ Anything Pretty for posting the ingredients for the 'zesty' salsa that she made.  I was so inspired that I actually went to the grocery store that evening and purchased Ball jars.  This does not happen at my house, trust me.  Just like Jenny, all the ingredients came from our garden except for the prissy cilantro that is TOO GOOD to grow for home gardeners.  Also like Jenny, an entire jar disappeared within a very short time.  I still have alot left, though. 
It is chunky and deliciously spicy because I threw some jalapeno seeds in there.  I swear, if I didn't make it myself I would think it had crack in it.  Shaun also thinks this salsa is the bomb diggity....too bad I couldn't recreate it easily.  I certainly didn't measure out all those ingredients, I just kept using the food processor on everything and mixing it together until it tasted like happiness and rainbows.  Walah!  

Monday, August 16, 2010

I'm a winner!

My friends over at One Project Closer have named me the best renovator ever picked my art room renovation as their weekly winner in their 'Before and After 2010' contest supporting Habitat for Humanity! 
The contest runs for the summer, and anyone can submit a project to the One Project Closer team at  Every week, they choose the best submission and that person gets to choose a $50 gift card to Home Depot, Lowes, or Amazon. Plus, they make a $100 donation to Habitat for Humanity in the winner's honor!  I always spend at least 1 day per summer sweating profusely on a Habitat build in my area, so this is a very cool prize.  Winners of the weekly contest also get entered into an end-of-summer showdown where readers can vote for the best Before and After, and the winner will get another $150 to the home improvement store of their choice.  I will be doing my best to blackmail votes out of you lovely folks when the time comes, trust me! 

I submitted the art room project because it involved a little of everything: some building...
some mitering and nailgunning (yeah, I can make up words around here)...
some staining and polying, along with some wine spilling....
plenty of sanding, priming and painting....
and of course, decorating.  Check out the post over at One Project Closer here!  And if you missed my original post about this room, be sure to click on the photo on my sidebar, all the juicy details (including a cost breakdown) are there. 

PS - definitely enter your own before and after, there are still a few weeks left in August!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Aqua-tabley goodness

When I saw these rattan tables on Craigslist a month ago, I knew they had to be mine. 
In fact, when I emailed the lady who listed them, I actually said "Your rattan tables must be mine!"  I think she was amused.  I got them both for 20 bones! 
I chose a spray paint color that has been mentioned as a favorite on several blogs that I read, Krylon Blue Ocean Breeze. 
But before the awesome color could go on, I had to do my due diligence and prime the tables with Cover Stain primer.  And then I spent waaaay too long sanding down all the gross sandy texture the primer left behind. 
The middle part of the table was not fun to sand down.  Hell to the no. 
When it was finally time to spray the fun stuff, I realized that I did not obey the cardinal rule of spray paint.  The rule being, however many cans you think you need for the job, add two.  I got this far and had to go buy two more cans with the tops still unpainted. 
The final coat was a clear coat of gloss, the Rustoleum Ultra Cover 2X brand. 
This is some donkey stuff.  I was spraying and spraying and it didn't look like anything was happening.  It certainly wasn't was more like wannabe satin.  Either way, I blew through a can of this and said enough was enough. 
Once the glass was put on top (with clear rubber discs to avoid ruining my hard-earned paint finish) I was pretty pleased.
Total cost was $30 with the spray paint - there was a sweet sale, so I lucked out and got all four cans of Blue Ocean Breeze for just under $10.  Not bad!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

RIP Squash

Well, my squash plants have officially bit the dust. 
I guess with the frequent waterings, the soil level went down enough that the stems were exposed.  Before I realized what was happening, the stems were soft and rotten.  I blame the abundance of leaves for my misfortune!  But I can't say I'm that upset, I got some crazy zucchinis off this plant and I'm really sick of watering it, anyway.  Frankly, I'm tired of super heat, swarms of mosquitos and eyebrow sweat in general.  Are you with me? 

Friday, August 6, 2010

Good enough for now

Dudes!  I'm so glad you loved my hott lamps!  I know you were all riled up with my little sneak at the rest of the space.  Well, prepare to be underwhelmed.  The 'space' consists of lamps, end tables, and a 'curbside special' loveseat.  And some curtains and a rug.  Nothing else.  I wanted to share a perfect finished space, but I am not perfect, so here it is today:
I'll share more deets on the sweet aqua tables and loveseat next week! 
The other side is completely bare, only Ikea curtain panels are up so far.  I have plans to add a small little coat rack area as this is the pass through from the garage to the house.
The jute rug is from Pier 1, the cats love it and so far are not destroying it with their claws. I love that it stops short of the door area, so we don't get it all dirty walking through everyday.
There is much more to do in here, we need more seating, a coffee table, decor and a place to put our coats and shoes.  But I'm not going to work on this anymore for several reasons:  
a. I'm sick of it
b. I've got other projects that need my attention
c. The Craigslist gods are not smiling on me in my search of chairs and tables
d. I need to stop spending money in this one space
So for now, we are enjoying sitting in one spot staring at our french doors when it's not unbearably hot out there.  Sounds like fun, huh?  Oh well, it will be fabulous some day!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Hot lamps

I was on the prowl for a pair of lamps for the porch/sunroom, and by some miracle, I found what I needed after only two stores.  I saw these brass uglies beauties chilling at Value Village for $3 each.  Then I remembered that it was 'half off furniture' day, so I scored two 24 inch solid brass lamps for $3.15! 
So what if the socket was detached and crooked - it's nothing a little super glue couldn't fix!  These babies were cleaned, taped and primed within a day.   
I like to sand everything in between the primer and paint coat, even metal and plastic.  Primer can leave texture behind, and a light sanding with 400 grit will take care of it.  I barely put any pressure on it to avoid taking too much primer off.
So what color did I choose? 
Red, baby!  I've always wanted to have a pair of hot red lamps and this was the perfect opportunity.  It also helped that the Rustoleum Universal paint in 'red was on clearance at Hobby Lobby for $5, this paint is definitely superior to the cheaper cans.
After one coat I was in love!  After two more, I realized how much of a pain spraying curvy lamps is.  Then the stupid drop cloth blew up and ruined the final coat, so I had to bust out another can of paint to put a fourth coat on them.  UGH!
Regardless, I love the way they turned out and purchased the cream linen drum shades from Target to finish the look.
I love them!  The total cost was $3 for the lamps, $10 for two cans of paint (I shouldn't have needed two), and $50 for the two lamp shades.  $63 for two unique lamps?  Yes, please!
Have you sprayed anything a hot color lately?