Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Last Minute Halloween Decor + My Cute Little Owl

Pin It Ok, so before we can talk about my last minute Halloween decor, can we take a moment and observe the cuteness that is Miss L in her Halloween costume:

Seriously?!  Even I couldn't envision how darn cute this costume would turn out to be!  I was laughing so hard while I was snapping these pictures.

I love the way my first DIY Halloween costume turned out! If you could see me now, you'd see me doing a happy dance (imagine dance moves like the sprinkler and other "moves" that I bust out occasionally...and by occasionally I mean anytime I hear music). 

To see my first post about her costume, including where I found the tutorial and materials needed  click here.

Okay, moving on to some last minute Halloween decor.
I found this milk glass pedestal (shallow) bowl at Goodwill last week for $6...(bring on that happy dance again)!  I pulled out some ribbon and wove it through the scalloped edges.  Add some mini pumpkins and you've got yourself a Halloweeny looking centerpiece!

Okay, don't even get me started on this cute little footed stacked bowl thingy that I got at Marshall's last week for $12.99!  It's so versatile and will become a staple for all kinds of decorating around here.  I'm thinking about going back and seeing if they have more...wouldn't they make great Christmas presents?  I simply added some little pumpkins, some grass, made some cute bows...yadda, yadda, yadda.

I had my fall wreath out ages ago (and by ages I mean like a few days ago).  I've had this sign for years, and I just hung it up in front of the wreath.  Easy! :)  I'm going to try to find a Thanksgiving sign or something to hang in front of the wreath next.

I know you've seen the bat thing everywhere.  I have too, and I love it!  I can't believe that I didn't just cut them out of paper myself, but I actually bought pre-cut bats at Michael's. (Stop shaking your head at me...stop it.)  They were from Martha Stewart's line, and they were cheap (can't remember exact price, but only a few dollars).  I used magnets to attach the bats to my door for two reasons.  1)  I only wanted them up for a couple of hours due to high winds.  2)  I didn't want to use the sticky things that came with the bats because I was afraid that it might take off the door paint when I peeled them off.  I would cry for hours if that happened...not really, but I wouldn't be happy.  Not. at. all.

Last, but not least, I busted out my easy peasy mummy candles and alternated them with mini pumpkins (the same ones from inside) along the walkway.  To see the easy peasy mummy candle tutorial click here.

Now, what are you waiting for?!?  Get out there and decorate a little for Halloween...you're running out of time! :)

I linked up at:
Today's Creative Blog
Home Stories A2Z
The Girl Creative

Monday, October 29, 2012

Weekend O' Pumpkin Fun!

Pin It Happy Monday to you!  I hope you had a great weekend!  With the front door and entryway finished, I'm like a new (much happier) woman!

We took Miss L. to a "pumpkin patch".  I put that in quotes because most of the pumpkins were rotten and yucky.  They had a few decent ones left, so we arranged them around her to make it look like they were everywhere.

I really didn't mind.  My goals were to get her in a super-cute outfit and take some pictures with pumpkins.  We bought some apples from the "pumpkin patch" and then went straight to Wal-Mart to pick out a pumpkin that we liked.

Jared was doing all kinds of things to make her smile and laugh.  She thinks her dad is soooo funny!

I love the faux-fur vest.  It was a gift from a friend when she was born.  I'm so glad it ended up fitting her at this time of the year.  The sparkly shoes are also fab!  I made the bow about 5 minutes before we left...I think it works!

Wook at that wittle face!!!

Come here, you!

Babygirl and her daddy.

Last night we got down to pumpkin carving business.  Miss L was tentative at first, but then dug right in.  She loved the texture of the pumpkin (guts?).   It ended up in her hair, on her face, all over her arms, etc.  Pumpkin time was directly followed by bath time. 

She was really gettin' in there! :)
In honor of her first Halloween, we modeled the pumpkin after Miss L.  Two teeth on bottom, four on top, and a bow in her "hair". 
Tonight is trick or treating for our town!  I'm excited to get Miss L. in her costume and add some Halloween decor to the outside of our house...pictures tomorrow! :)

Friday, October 26, 2012

Hello Gorgeous!

Pin It Say goodbye to boring, brass, and brown.  Say helloooo gorgeous!  This front door/entryway has been about a week long process, but feels much longer....
I started by painting the columns (while Miss L napped one afternoon) and the door's trim with Dutch Boy's "Ashen".  It's an exterior primer/paint in one, and I was pretty impressed with the coverage.  It took one good all over coat, then one more touch up here and there.

The old icky brassy windowswere replaced with simple glass inserts.  We went to Home Depot (which is where the door was purchased) with window measurements in hand and ordered replacement glass inserts.  The total cost for all three window inserts was just $100!  They came with new trim and hardware to install them. This is way cheaper than ordering a new door (trust me, I checked).

The door color is Dutch Boy's "Frosty Glade".  It is the same primer/paint that I used on the colums and trim.  It took two tries to get the right shade of blue.  I actually had them darken "Frosty Glade" with a few more drops of pigment. (Yes, they'll do that!)

I found the large galvinized bucket at Marshall's yesterday for $10!  Score!  The bucket on the chair is actually a cheap plastic flower pot that I spray painted with Krylon's "Brushed Nickel".  The other accessories were found for free in my basement! :)  I threw in the wellies just to be cute.

It feels so much better to have this nice entryway!  I keep going out and staring at my door.  I'm pretty sure that my neighbors think I'm crazy awesome!

Not bad, considering this is where I started:

We've come a long way!
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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Boring, Brass, and Brown

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I have front door envy.  I look through other blogs, pinterest and websites and see the most beautiful entryways and front doors.
Now meet my front door:

Boring!  Brass!   Brown!  These are the adjectives that come to mind.

We bought this house from an older couple whose tastes aren't compatible with mine.  (That was my attempt to put it nicely.)   I have been cringing at this entryway since we moved here, and I decided that it was finally time to do something about it.  No time like late October to tackle an exterior painting project!  I've been doing what I can with the beautiful weather we've been lucky enough to have lately.

I still have a few finishing touches to work on today, so I'll be posting the new front door tomorrow! 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Quick Trip to NYC!

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I just returned from one of my favorite places, New York City!  I met up with two of my favorite and oldest friends, Annette (middle), and Erika (right).  Erika lives in NYC and was the perfect hostess.  It was so nice to see the city with someone who actually knows where to go, how to get there, and what to do!

We did so much in three days, that I couldn't possibly get it all down in a reasonable sized blog post, but I will give you the highlights!

We went to several cute restaurants and bars including Aspen Social Club for brunch, Burrito Loco and Vinyl for dinner, and The FBPC and Phebe's for some good, old fashioned, girls' night out fun!

During the day we walked, taxied, and took the subway back and forth around the city.  We took an NBC Studios tour and got to see where they tape Doctor Oz, Jimmy Fallon, and SNL!  We saw Chicago on Broadway.  We shopped at a cool street fair, in Chinatown, and in Times Square.


Erika's good friend is a producer for Anderson Cooper's talk show.  I happen to watch his show every evening while I'm making Miss L's dinner, so I was pretty pumped to actually go!  Her friend was able to get us VIP passes and even let us get our picture taken in Anderson's photo booth!  How lucky were we?!?  I wonder if Anderson needs a Mid West DIY blogger correspondant?  Anderson...call me!!!!

I was sad to leave NYC, but I glad to get home to my family and more home projects! :)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Sunburst Shim Mirror

Pin It If you are a fellow home decor/DIY blog fanatic reader, then you have seen many versions of the shim sunburst mirrors.  I have admired quite a few, (like here and here) and wanted to try one for myself.  Could it really be so easy?  So cheap?  Yet so expensive looking?  I think so....
I really have to say that I didn't think it could possibly turn out so cute.  I used this tutorial but will give you a little one myself too.

Ok, so I found the little mirror at Hobby Lobby for $2.99.  I had the Minwax Wood Finish in Classic Gray 271 left over from another project.  I grabbed several bags of 6" shims for .99 a bag (you'll need 4 bags) from Menards.  You can buy longer 12" shims for a larger scale mirror.  I just wanted a mini sunburst.  I also used a glue gun, lots of glue sticks, and my staple gun. So, if you're keeping track, that's around $7.00 that I spent on this fabulous mirror.

First, paint or finish (or go all natural) your shims:

To make sunburst arrangement, I hot glue gunned sets of three shims together, then glued them down to the back of the mirror in two sets of four (think of a plus sign, then another plus sign).  I then hot glue gunned extra shims in to fill the empty spaces.  The back looked like a hot mess (see below).  I used a staple gun to secure the shims together.  (Make sure that you are using staples that will not go through and crack the mirror.)

Where did I hang my mirror?  Above the utility sink in the laundry room.  Why?  Because I didn't have any other place to put it. 

I love this mirror and will be making more in different colors for some future room re-do's.

Don't forget to get in on a chance to win a $25 gift card from T.J. Maxx/Home Goods/Marshall's in House by Hoff's first official giveaway! All you have to do is become a House by Hoff follower by clicking "join this site" on the side bar below and "Like" House by Hoff on Facebook for a chance to win the gift card! That's it! Easy!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Quick Family Photo Shoot

Pin It My sister-in-law asked me to snap some pictures of her family.  I was happy to do it and glad to gain some experience with taking pictures of other people's kiddos!  I love how the photos came out.

Good looking fam, huh?

My nephew is quite photogenic, don't you think?  He was easy!

He's such a ham!  He wanted to look at the camera screen after every silly face he made.  He cracks himself (and me) up!

Miss G. isn't as easy to photograph as her brother.  She's just as photogenic but doesn't really like having her picture taken.  My trick?  Booger jokes! :)

Love this!

Hello, Gorgeous!  Is he not adorable?

This is just one more cutie-pie niece of mine.  She doesn't take a bad picture. :) 

We did this photo shoot in about 20 minutes total!  With kids, you have to shoot fast and take as many pics as possible!  I enjoyed myself, and I think we ended up with some awesome pics!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Little Vinyl Goes a Long Way...

Pin It I love the big glass jars in my newly redone laundry room.  I got them at Wally World several years ago and have used them in many different ways.  I was ready to add a little detail to them and thought that vinyl numbers would be an inexpensive and cute solution. 

If you're new to vinyl decals, I'll give you a quick tutorial.

1.  The numbers came all on one sheet.  I simply used scissors to cut them apart.
2.  Sloooowly pull off the bottom layer. 
3.  The number or letter should appear backwards.
4.  Place the number (sticky side down) on your clean jar.  Start at the bottom and and work your way up.  Use your finger to firmly press and rub on the vinyl.  You want to work out any air bubbles.
5.  Pull off the adhesive cover.  Remove slowly and carefully!
6.  Done!  If you see any air bubbles, use your finger to press them out.

Monogrammed, labeled, and numbered glassware is everywhere like in Pottery Barn and West Elm.  A much cheaper option is buying the glassware at a discount store and then adding your own vinyl decals.  The other bonus?  You can easily remove the vinyl when you're ready to change it up again!  I buy all my vinyl numbers and letters on Etsy.  You can find just about any size, color, or font!

Here are some other ways I have used vinyl decals:
On a plate!

I placed the H decal on the glass of the picture frame.  I can change out the scrapbook paper underneath to match different color schemes.  Love this idea!  Are you noticing all of the framed dog photos we have around here?

...and of course Miss L's buckets in her nursery.

My hubby found this little goodie in the alley one day.  I like to think I brought her dignity back by painting her a robin egg blue and slapping a vinyl H on her.  She never looked better!

Want to have some vinyl fun too?  Shelly, over at House of Smiths (one of the most amazing DIY blogs you will EVER see) sells super cute decals for the home, holidays, etc.