10.8.2014 / Niece Nursery Plans

It’s been a very long while since I mentioned anything about my soon-to-be niece’s nursery.  For reasons beyond my control, it looks like she’ll get here before her nursery is completed, but we had a chat and she told me she doesn’t mind as long as I knock the room out of the park.  You got it, little lady.

This is definitely one of those spaces that will evolve once we get the staple pieces into it.  Even in putting this board together, it doesn’t look like it’s fully jiving just yet, but have faith!  I know the accessories and little touches here will pull it all together.  My vision for this little girl is an eclectic but classic space with a very slight vintage twist.

The craigslisted dresser (that I finally decided on) is mid-make-over in Millie’s garage and is coming out better than I hoped for.  I can’t wait to show it off!

Niece-Room-plan

Why yes, I do plan to put a vintage Kilim striped pillow in a nursery as long as my sister lets me (pretty please, Sis?  It’ll be amazing, I promise!!).  The room will be getting a fresh coat of yellow paint this weekend and then the pieces will start to fall into place!

I’ll provide sources with the room reveal when the time comes, but feel free to ask if you just HAVE to know now!

I’d love to hear what you think!  Is my vision making sense yet, or are you waiting to see how I tie it all together?

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09.29.2014 / Fly Away

This past weekend, I had the joy of being asked to do a DIY demo at my local Habitat for Humanity ReStore’s “Fall for All” event.  As soon as they asked, I had a spark of an idea.  I’ve been wanting to try my hand at some 3d cut paper butterfly art for my future niece’s nursery and the event would be a perfect practice.  For all those visiting because we met at the ReStore, WELCOME!

DIY cut 3d butterfly art via Year of Serendipity

I swear, it is so much easier than it looks!  I was able to put one together in 2 hours at my Demo table at the ReStore.  All it takes is a frame, some paper, and some exacto knife skills.

After my demo, I recreated the art for my soon-to-be niece’s room.  I started with an empty frame from, you guessed it, the ReStore, a piece of thick watercolor paper, a piece of thick chip board or thin cardboard for the backing, and one curious kitten.  (no kittens were harmed in the making of this art)

DIY cut 3d butterfly art supplies via Year of Serendipity

After cutting the 2 pieces to fit within the frame, it was time to get messy!  I chose to layer some rice paper onto the backing with Mod Podge to add a pop of color to the background.  Painting the backing piece would have the same effect, but I had some rice paper on hand and an idea in my head.  Don’t you worry, it’ll dry clear!

DIY cut 3d butterfly art backer via Year of Serendipity

Once you have the backing covered, set that aside to dry for a while.  Now on to the butterflies!!

The prep step that I’m not showing you was figuring out a few butterfly shapes.  They could totally be drawn freehand, but I thought it would be easier to create a template.  Using a scrap of paper folded in half, I played around with butterfly shapes and sizes until I had 8 of varied sized that I thought could work.  I traced them onto scrap cardboard from the recycle bin and cut the butterflies out with an exacto.  Thus a template was born!  If you ask really nicely, maybe I’ll scan it in and make a printable template available.

DIY cut 3d butterfly art process via Year of Serendipity

Next, on your watercolor paper, figure out a flight path for your butterflies.  I decided I wanted to start small in the corner and fan them out at the top.  I drew to guide lines for the general shape planned, then started tracing butterflies willy nilly.  Go crazy!  Fill up your paper!

DIY cut 3d butterfly art process via Year of Serendipity

Just make sure to leave about a half inch around the outside for your frame and don’t allow your butterflies to touch or overlap.  While tracing my templates, I made sure to leave a space between the 2 halves of the butterfly.  This is an important step when you’re cutting since you want to leave a gap where the butterfly body would normally be.  I tried to bump up the contrast on this one so you could see my light handed butterflies, but the color got a bit wonky.

DIY cut 3d butterfly art process via Year of Serendipity

Once you have your butterflies all drawn out, break out an exacto knife with a new, sharp blade.  Sharp blades make cutting much easier, so I’d be sure have a few on hand.  This part is not as challenging as it looks, I promise!

DIY cut 3d butterfly art process via Year of Serendipity

Go slow, be careful, rotate your paper as necessary to get the best angle, and make sure to leave a gap between each butterfly’s wings.  This ‘body gap’ is what allows you to fold out the wings.  The best part about this is you don’t have to be exact!  If you don’t follow your lines precisely, it doesn’t matter, as long as it still resembles a butterfly wing.

DIY cut 3d butterfly art process via Year of Serendipity

Be prepared to spend a bit of time on this step- although it doesn’t take hours, its the longest part of the process.

After all of your butterflies have been cut, you have 2 options: take an eraser and erase all of your pencil lines or flip your paper over and use the back as the front.  I chose to erase since I had some patches on the back where I overcut a few of my fliers (oops).  If taking the erasing route, I recommend holding down the wings as you erase so they don’t get crunched up by an overzealous eraser.

DIY cut 3d butterfly art process via Year of Serendipity

Now it’s time to make them fly!  Carefully peel up each wing and crease it at the body.

DIY cut 3d butterfly art process via Year of Serendipity

Repeat until all your wings are taking flight.

DIY cut 3d butterfly art via Year of Serendipity

Bring back your backer piece which should be totally dry by this point.  I decided to use Mod Podge again to adhere my butterflies to the backing.  Spread a THIN layer, wait for a few moments until its a bit tacky and not totally wet, and carefully place your cut paper over the backing.  If the glue is too wet, it’ll warp your paper… trust me, I’ve learned from experience…

DIY cut 3d butterfly art backer via Year of Serendipity

Once aligned, run your finger between the butterflies to make sure that the negative space sticks down and your wings stay flying free.

DIY cut 3d butterfly art process via Year of Serendipity

While it’s drying, you can take this opportunity to put it in the frame (make sure if you’re using a frame that has glass in it, remove the glass since it will just flatten your flying friends).  Since I was using an empty frame, I used framing points to hold the art in the frame.

All that’s left is to hang and admire!

DIY cut 3d butterfly art via Year of Serendipity

DIY cut 3d butterfly art via Year of Serendipity

It even earned the kitten stamp of approval (which naturally is indifference, but I’ll take it!)

DIY cut 3d butterfly art via Year of Serendipity

What I love about this project is that it’s so customizable.  Want to make it smaller or bigger?  No problem!  Want to make your butterflies into a letter?  Go for it!  Whatever way you want, they butterflies will be dynamic and playful, but still the right amount of elegance.

So, what do you think?  The perfect addition to a little girl’s nursery?

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09.1.2014 / Pillow Fight!

I hope you’re enjoying a nice relaxing long weekend.  Can someone please explain to me how September just happened??  I digress….

Pillows!

Along with a new sofa comes the need for some new pillows.  Yes, the need.  I’ve come to the conclusion that it must be in the female DNA because men just don’t get pillows.  Every single time I say something about a new pillow, Hubby responds with “ya know, I was just thinking we didn’t have enough pillows.”  You are right, Hubby, one can never have enough pillows!  Who’s with me???  Pillows are a relatively inexpensive and non-committal way to instantly switch up a room.

mgbw-dianes-sofa

Exhibit A- our new sofa.  While I love the simplicity of just the single center pillow (a HomeGoods find that I still adore), functionality-wise, we need to add a pillow on each side.  I want something fun and colorful that won’t compete with the adjacent ikat chair or the orange/coral pillow.  That’s not too much to ask.

Pillow-round-up

 

 

  1. Fanner Diamond Pillow Cover in Platinum from West Elm.  Simplicity with artistic flare in the form of texture
  2. British Bouquet pillow from Caitlin Wilson Textiles.  Color and fun.
  3. Embroidered Dot Pillow Cover in Blue Lagoon from West Elm.  So pretty and simple.  It would be rather simple to take this as an inspiration and create a custom version.
  4. Paint Palette Pillow via Tonic Living.  The fabric itself is also available from Tonic Living and I think is the current front-runner in my sofa race.  An artsy floral with enough color that it can hold up next to the existing pillow.
  5. Blue, Purple, and Green Linen Pillow Cover from Pillow Flight on etsy.  This shop has such great affordable options!  I’m also a sucker for paisley-inspired florals.  I think I need to veer out of the box, though.
  6. Cowhide Pillow Cover from Wisteria.  I’m not going to lie and tell you I love the cowhide… It would not be very comfortable to rest your head on during detective show binge-watching… BUT I love the style/idea here.  Creating a pattern with individual fabric pieces and leaving raw edges- beautiful.  With felt, jersey, or some other cozy material I’d be totally sold.

I could day dream about pillows all day if I wasn’t careful.  So many options!  Such pretty fabrics!  Endless possibilities!  I bit pillow-crazy? maybe!

 

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