Suitcase Storage Solution Upcycle

While helping clean out my Grandmother’s farm we found this suit case, it is beat up and was wrote on with a marker which made is unsellable. Around the same time we have had an overflow of Lego Duplos in our house, they can be found just about every room of our house because we have so many. So we needed a better storage solution just like we did for my oldest’s dress up stuff.

Which gave me the idea to mod podge this suit case for my boys Duplo’s.

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During my trip to help at the Grandmothers estate there were plenty of books, especially children’s picture books some were not in the best condition or there were doubles so I grab a nice collection to use on the suitcase.
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If you don’t know what mod podge is it is the best glue every for crafts. You put glue down where you want to apply your paper, once it is down you glue over it as well. It is pretty simple and you can’t use to much glue, which is great for me since I tend to over do it.
mod  podge I know it looks like it is something from the 70’s but you can find at most major retail stores.

 

 

 

 

after cutting out pictures from each of the books, I especially like the Winnie the Pooh book, the illustrations were beautiful and were several different sizes throughout the book. So I used that book completely up with this project

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As you can see the glue is still very wet on this side as I was about 3/4 the way done adding pictures to it.
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Finished product of side #1. I decided to pain to sides green to give it a more cohesive look and to hide the imperfection as well, plus both of my boys like the color green so that helped significantly.

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With side #2 I decided to do large pieces instead of bunches of little ones, because lets be honest cutting detailed stuff out sucks a lot. Plus I wanted to be able to use these great Winnie the Pooh illustrations.

Honestly I am in love with how this turned out, it turned a beat up and kind of ugly suitcase into something fun and decorative storage solution.

Until next time,

~Kristen

 

 

 

 

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Shoe Display

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I love it when I find things in unexpected places that most people would throw out, for instance this wooden shoe display was found in the North House while we were cleaning it out. Tucked away in one of the closets was this primitive looking shoe display/holder in all its glory of crackled paint and rough edges.

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As I was getting ready for a vintage fair in Walnut Creek Ohio at the time, this was exactly what I needed for all of the shoes I planned on taking with me.
IMG_20160530_173626394However it needed a few things done to it before the fair; my husband trimmed the top off for me and I sanded it smooth.

 

 

 

Once it was sanded, I washed off all the excess dirt and waited for it to dry. At first I couldn’t decide what color to paint this piece as I did not like the original paint job, plus I am not a primitive decor kind of gal. So I decided to give it the old glossy black paint job. Let me say that I’m happy with how it turned out.
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Sometimes all you need is a can of spray paint to turn something ugly to pretty over night.

Until Next Time,

~Kristen

Rental Renovation – Campbell House Part 1

My husband and I acquired this rental house about 3 years ago, it was instant love for us. As it is in need of some updating, I am attempting to do some of it while our renters are living there. So I decided to start with the front entrance/hallway, it was covered in a yellow flower wallpaper that made the area dark and dingy even though the wallpaper was rather pretty. Especially since there is very little light in that corner and since the ceiling and walls are plaster putting new lights is almost impossible unless you don’t mind making a mess.

This was one of those projects that isn’t hard to complete it is just messy and takes time. Again finding a babysitter is the hardest part of this project for me, but having 4 children tends to do that.

Ok. So this front entrance had 2 layers of wallpaper on it, I once again used just a spray bottle and plastic putty knife to remove it.

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As you can see it was rather pretty wallpaper. Even the ceiling has a thick wallpaper on it, that needed to be removed. Because of the carpet I put just a cheap plastic drop cloth that I could throw away at the end of the day since it would be covered in wet pieces of wallpaper. I also brought a step ladder and borrowed the renters step ladder, I be bringing my own step ladder once we start to paint and of course our cloth drop cloth.

 

 

 

 

 

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There is just so much going on in this front entrance that we want to make it a cohesive and bright color. We are going to paint the section of dark paneling by the stairs and leave the red color. Although a we are putting a small piece of trim between the paneling and the red wall going up the steps.

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One thing we will be replacing is the pendant light, while it is beautiful it doesn’t put out a lot of light. We are going to find vintage style chandelier for this space instead, that way it gives our tenants the light they need and open up the space with just light.

It took 2 days a total of 6 hours to remove all of the wallpaper on the walls, the paper on the ceiling came down in giant strips in less than 5 minutes.

 

Until Next Time,
~Kristen

 

Rental Renovation Project – The North House Part 3

The living room, I’m so excited to show you the living room. Man oh man has it changed since we first bought the place back in September.

If you remember it was this super dark wallpaper with heavy white curtains over the single window in this room. I peeled the wallpaper off in this room pretty quickly, all I used was a spray bottle of water and a plastic putty knife. I was surprised to see that it came off pretty easily and without to many problems.

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It was so stinking dark in this room, the ceiling light/fan didn’t work so that didn’t help matters any.

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One Sunday I only had my youngest with me in other words I was babywearing, so I only scraped wallpaper as far as I could reach since it wasn’t safe to climb a ladder while wearing her. This work was literally an hours worth of work, I do love results like that.
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A few days later I was able to make my escape, I mean find a babysitter and finish pulling the wallpaper off the walls. The wallpaper only went to the tops of the built-ins so that was great news.

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What a mess

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The corner where the built-ins were located

 

During our repaint of the living room I decided that the ceiling would need painting too since it was an almond color and didn’t fit the updated color scheme. It was amazing how much brighter it became once the ceiling was painted a bright white.IMG_20160625_181323809

Lets just say the updated colors turned out fantastic. Honestly my husband and I have thought about using this same gray in our living room when we repaint at some point.

Now the fireplace mantle looked a little drab after seeing everything painted white as it was an off white almost cream color.

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The corner wasn’t painted yet due to needing the corner fixed with a bit of dry wall mud.

The next picture is just after the first coat of white paint.

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The difference was perfect and changed the whole look without damaging it at all. If it hadn’t already been painted we wouldn’t have done so.

Until Next Time,
~Kristen

Rental Renovation Project – The North House Part 2

So last week I wrote about one of our rentals we have been working on the North House, today’s post is all about the dining room.

If you remember it had ugly stained carpet, accordion wallpaper and paneling wainscoting right? Well here it is in all of its ugly carpet glory. We did keep the light fixture as it was beautiful and fit the space perfectly.
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It was pretty boring except the exceptional fireplace mantle.
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However the wallpaper got painted this hideous green, but like I said in my last post the green was really pretty on the paint swatch.
We replaced the carpet with a soft beige carpet and the walls were painted, so it was really just cosmetic things done in this room.
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I’m pretty sure it is pea soup green, but hey our renters like it so that is all that matters right? Right.

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Keep an eye out for our next blog post on the living room, it is my favorite room in this house.

Until Next Time,
~Kristen

Rental Renovation Project – The North House Part 1

My husband and I own several rentals and over the course of this summer we have been renovating one of them and I’ll be updating a few area’s of another one as well. I thought why not write about the updates we are doing in these great houses.

The first house we call the North House due to the owners before us being the North’s  plus it makes it easier on us to name the houses.

The North house was purchased last September at a local auction, it is a beautiful gray brick house built in the 1890’s. Mr. North had quite a few rentals and wasn’t known to be the best repairman so many of the things we have come across were put in poorly. So we have had to deal with that long with other problems, but fixing one thing at a time has this house ready to rent out to a lovely couple.

Several of the projects we worked on in that house was painting the living room and dining room, updating/fixing 2 of the 4 bathrooms, removing a drop ceiling in one bedroom and repairing the ceiling and chimney in that room. We have also removed a closet that was built in a doorway, fixed a few cracks and holes in the ceilings with plaster and dry wall mud. Replaced a few lights as well. So it has definitely been a busy summer working on that house between our regular schedule lives.

Today is all about before pictures.

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The dining room has some weird accordion wallpaper and a horribly stained carpet. So the walls were painted a hideous green that our renters picked out and to be fair it is a pretty color on the paint swatch. We replaced the carpet in this room and the room to the right, it was a pale pink carpet in there. It was replaced with a soft beige.

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The living room was so dark

The living room was dark, oh so dark with its green wallpaper and heavy white curtains on the windows. Although there really is only 1 true window to the outside in this room. So I removed all of the wallpaper on the walls, my husband removed the built in bookcases since they were not in great condition. Oh and all the cords you see in the right hand corner of the bottom picture, well Mr. North used oodles of short extension cords, we found about 30 of them while cleaning out the house.

We have come across a few strange things like the plugin light switch. The reflective tape around the light bulbs in the kitchen light. And the mess of wiring, plumbing and air vent disaster in one of the bathrooms. Repairing and fixing this work has taken a while but we are slowly getting it done.

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Where can I get a skirt with this print?

There have been a few treasures such as this wallpaper in one of the upstairs bathroom above the drop ceiling. I’m pretty sure this is one my favorite things in this whole house.

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This mantle is my favorite one. The tile is pink and cream which I have never seen before.

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The detail work is amazing

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One thing this house has going for it is the beautiful mantels. The large mantels are downstairs while the small fireplace mantels are in 2 of the 3 bedrooms.

Until Next Time,
~Kristen

 

Buckles and Belts

I rarely buy belts, not that I don’t like them I just don’t come across to many that strike my fancy. That is until last September when I found a light blue scale belt, when I say scale it literally has scales like a fish or a dragon. I’m pretty sure I snatched it up as quickly as I could and threw my money at the booth owner and ran the opposite direction laughing gleefully the whole way home.

This week I finally got around to photographing said belt and it will be up in the shop this week so be sure to keep an eye out for it.

Isn’t it great?

Until Next Time,
~Kris