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Nov
13
2014
The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Project

And the show must go on... you see...

Once upon a time, in a land not so far away, a poor little courtyard patio had seen her better day. Once she was loved and cherished so, but now her color had begun to go. Worn and tattered, not looking her best, this patio used to be heads above the rest.

Mixing the Paint for The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Project

Once the weatherman gave her the green light, she pulled out her Rescue It! and the finish line was in sight!

Painting the Seams with a Brush for The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Project

She taped on her brush and painted the seams, it went on like butter, no need for extremes!

Painting the Surface with a Roller for The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Project

Then she pulled out her roller and painted away, this was the beginning of a brand new day. As soon as it dries her kids come out and play, she was so overjoyed, hip hip hooray! 

This is the story of her fairy tale, from tattered and worn with much travail. She has triumphed over all and can't wait to unveil, hard work and good prep will always prevail. 

To watch her story from beginning to end, hit the play button below I do highly recommend.

Finished Project for The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Project

It has been a wild and eventful journey but her transformation has made her so dreamy. I hope her tale inspires you to try it, hard work pays off you have to admit. She looks so pretty I could cry but for now I will simply say goodbye!

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This project was created in partnership with Olympic, all opinions and crazy talk are 100% my own. Thank you for supporting the partners that make the new and original content on this site possible. I heart you guys.

Nov
03
2014
The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Prep Work

Once upon a time, in a land not so far away, a poor little courtyard patio had seen her better day. Once she was loved and cherished so, but now her color had begun to go. Worn and tattered, not looking her best, this patio used to be heads above the rest.

Hosing down the Plants before Cleaning for The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Prep Work

The next day she began and took matters into her own hands, she gathered up some prep work supplies to fix these wastelands. A hose, garden sprayer, deck cleaner and a push broom, that is all she needed to make this well prepped space bloom. You see, it's the prep that matters the most, when creating a space worthy of champagne toast.

Spray the Deck Cleaner for The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Prep Work

With plants watered well to keep them protected, she sprayed herself down with deck cleaner and waited. The gunk and grime was washing away, there will be no more dirt when she's done with this spray, hooray!

Let the Cleaner Sit for The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Prep Work

Now that the patio is fairly well wetted, she will let the deck cleaner sit till it's dry and all signs of dirt have been vetted.

Once Dry the Concrete is Ready for The Design Confidential Patio Rescue and Resurface Prep Work

Look at her shine, she is all nice and clean, she will continue tomorrow but till then she is pristine. She will gather supplies to rescue her finish, she is excited to no longer be so unstylish.

To be continued...;

Sources
Note

This project was created in partnership with Olympic, all opinions and crazy talk are 100% my own. Thank you for supporting the partners that make the new and original content on this site possible. I heart you guys.

Jul
16
2014
Hammock and Lounging Area for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition

I gave you the sneak peek last week, and today I get to share the full reveal of this formerly unused space in my backyard! I was asked by my friends at Home Depot to create a fun DIY outdoor game as part of a new edition of their Style Challenge Series.

Macrame Badminton Net and Outdoor Living Space for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition
Picnic and Entertaining for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition
Lounge Area for Kids and Pets for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition
Teepee Tent Fort for Kids in the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition
Kids Enjoying Outdoor Picnic in Outdoor Oasis for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition

Here in this crazy yard of ours, it's hot in the summertime. Too hot to actually enjoy, which is such a bummer when you have young kids who want to run and jump and play all the live long day. It's also a pretty big bummer for this gal who loves to be outside and adores outdoor entertaining that doesn't involve a sweat off as the designated group activity. With virtually no mature trees in the entire yard except for this little cluster of plum trees in the far corner, it's fairly slim picken's if you are hoping to nab a cozy spot in the shade.

And then it occurred to me... If I couldn't bring the shade to outdoor living space, then perhaps the solution is to bring a new living space to the shade. And just like that my Outdoor Oasis was born, and she's quite the star of the show. 

Bar Cart with Refreshments for Outdoor Sitting Area for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition
Little Kids Playing Badminton for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition
Big Kids Playing Badminton for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition
Outdoor Games and Fun with Relaxing Outdoor Living Space for the Home Depot Style Challenge Outdoor Games Edition

Without wanting to incur the cost of an entire backyard renovation at this moment in time, I decided to improvise by using items that would create a non-permanent living space and one that I can bring in a store away during the wet season here. I used a heavy duty jute rug as the foundation and then built in the fun that would keep even the littlest occupied while the grown ups got down to business with some friendly competition. There were sword fights, bug stomping, fort making, and some good old fashioned r and r. I even managed to sneak in some healthy treats that are normally pretty tough to get these kids to eat. Of course it helped that it was 100 degrees plus in the sun and that I froze some of the fruit to give it just a bit of refreshing coolness. Anything cold and sweet is considered a popsicle to the Bird so he was on cloud 9 with the crazy good spread to choose from. 

It makes me feel pretty damn good to finish another space here and to have created something that works overtime in the memory making department. We definitely don't get as much of that as I would like... But now we have the Oasis to call our own and something fun for everyone to enjoy, regardless of their age! 

TDC 
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Jun
17
2014
DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint

I am so excited to share this project with you guys today. This was definitely the showstopper from Blake's Boho still Boyish and Beachy Bedroom Makeover and It is one of those that looks really complicated or like you need to have a special skill in painting to get this right, but you do not, I assure you.

Paint Mixture for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint
Apply First Circles for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint

Our first step requires a 1:2:1/2 ratio of color to white to water with half the amount of your color to the amount of white and half of that still in water. You need a decent amount of product for this step so you can start with something like 1/4 cup of your colored paint, 1/2 cup of white and an 1/8 cup of water.

You will work about 2/3's of the way up your wall and the total area you cover will be about 2 feet in height for the majority of the paint application and a few scattered swirls will fall in the foot above and the 2 feet below this strip of swirls. 

We are going to be using a circular swirling motion for every single step of this project. For this step you will swirl your brush into a circle that is approximately 4 inches in size like you see above. They don't need to be perfect, in fact this will be better in the end if they aren't and have some white showing through or if you can see your brush strokes. If you find your paint to be a bit to thick to easily make the circles, just add a few more drops until it's easy to swirl it on, but doesn't run or drip when you apply it. 

** This is very important. Drips will be a problem during any of the steps that have colored paint so make sure your formula is never too runny that you have drips. 

Expand Circle Area for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint
Fill In Circles for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint

You will continue making your circles all the way around your room in a section that is 2 feet high and scattered as you see in the first image above. Once you finish doing this you will follow it up by filling in the white space for the middle portion of your section with a slightly concentrated number of circles that overlap like you see in the second image above. It's easier to do this in two steps so that you don't have a solid 2 foot section and instead end up with the middle being more concentrated than the top and bottom of this section. I learned this the hard way. 

Lighter Color Circles for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint
Lighter Circles Above Below for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint

For this next step you are going to use a formula of 1:6:1 with 1 part colored paint, 6 parts white paint and 1 part water. This will be a much lighter concoction that you will sprinkle over the top of your section in a scattered very spaced out manner. Then you will pull this color down below your section and place your swirls in a very scattered pattern that runs about 2 feet below your section. Once you do that you will also scatter this color above your section sporadically, about a foot above your section. 

Wash Out Circles for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint

While this step might seem counterintuitive, I promise it will be important for helping you get that watercolor look later without using watercolors or knowing how to paint, so just go with me on this. You will need a mixture of 1:1 white paint to water. This should be about the color of milk but not quite as runny, though not much more thick. You don't want to be painting for this step, you will want to be washing, which means when you apply this it will be see-through a bit but will wash out the color your applied so you will need to judge your consistency by testing in a discreet area. 

You are going to keep on swirling and essentially swirl right on over the top of everything you just painted. This includes all of the scattered circles above and below. You want to wash out the color quite a bit so you are left with a milk mess of something that used to a paint project. It will look cray for just a bit. Don't worry. 

If your paint is too thick and it actually just blocks out the color you applied in the previous steps, completely, just add a few more drops of water at a time until it's not so thick. You can use a bit of water over the top of your test spot to 'undo' your test spot so that it isn't different from the other areas of your project. 

TDC 
Add Light Indigo Circles for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint

Now we will go right over the top of our original scatter section only in a more sporadic way using a formula of 1:1:1 ratio of colored paint, white paint and water. You want this to be easy to apply and a bit see-through-ish as you swirl, but not runny or drippy. Your circles will be spread out and you can do just a few that sit above the top of your section and a few that sit below it as well. Sparse is the name of the game here, you can always build, but less is definitely more.

Add Darker Indigo Circles for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint

For the final bit of color before the final step, you will want a ratio of 1:1/2-1 of colored paint to water. You will not use any white paint for this step, only the color itself watered down. This will make it runny to the point where your color is see through even in your paint pan. When you apply your swirls for this step you will need to put your color on your brush and then wring your brush out so that when you actually put it on the wall it's watery, but doesn't run. You can wring your brush out by pressing it against the sides of your container until most of the wetness runs out. If it is still coming out of your brush when you push it agains the side of your container, then it's probably going to cause drips... very dark drips. This isn't a project you can touch up very easily so I warn you against getting sloppy here. 

You are going to apply this layer in small and larger circles that overlap the previous layer and are more frequent than the previous layer, but are still sporadic.

Wash Over Entire Wall for DIY Faux Watercolor Wallpaper Wall Treatment with Paint

Woot woot! Your arm is probably very tired after all this swirling and whirling around your space. Mine was, especially since I did this project over and over again. Also, I learned you can actually wear the bristles on your brush down into a nub if you work it like this for an extended period of time... who knew? 

So for your final step we are going to create a wash again, similar to our wash earlier in this project, only this time it will be more runny and much more watery. Use a formula of 1:2 white paint to water and adjust until it looks like watered down milk. It won't matter quite that much if you have drips of this since it's white, but to avoid drips, wring your brush as in the previous step, and then apply covering the entire area you have painted. It will look like the image above after you apply your wash. You can see that the colors aren't saturated and look as though they have been painted over with a bit of milky water. 

You can also now see all the layers come together into what looks like an entirely watercolor application, and why you did the first several steps as the colors blend a bit and water down into this beauty! Yahoo! It gives you the look of blending with only the need to apply layer after layer of circles one on top of the next. 

Jan
31
2014
DIY Home Decor // How To Make Your Own Removable Wallpaper

There is no doubt I made you lovelies wait just a tad for this DIY project. I could tell you that I am sorry for that, and I am, but the truth is I have been blogging in slow motion since hatching the bird more than a year ago. Can't seem to snap out of it- do any of you have this problem? I'm sure I'm not alone here... it must be a bit like Mommy Brain, which by the way also hasn't gone away for me since bird #2 yet, eek! Anyhoo, as I was saying, the truth of the matter here is that I have had this project done for more than 3 months. Yep, I've been holding out on you...

Materials and Tools for DIY Home Decor // How To Make Your Own Removable Wallpaper

MATERIALS REQUIRED

Marbled Paper - 24" x 36" or a paper of your choosing. 

Double Sided Photo + Document Tape

Scissors

That's it. Except you may benefit from a ruler or long straight edge to act as a guide for cutting, and an exacto knife to touch up your edges if you get a bit crazy, but honestly you can simply overlap a bit more if you are off a tad on your cut dimensions, so not to worry.

Placing the Tape for DIY Home Decor // How To Make Your Own Removable Wallpaper

Ok so here is the skinny... Depending on the size of the area you plan to paper, you may need to cut your sheets down to size. I attempted to find pieces that either complimented each other in pattern or were very contrasting so that it would stand out and look like different sheets or tiles. I varied which of these I did depending on what I had in my patterning. For my space the size was such that I could place a whole sheet, then overlap a second sheet just a tad and cut off about 11" of excess. I did this in an every other pattern so that the top row had the left sheet as it's whole sheet, and the second row had the right sheet as the whole sheet. There is nothing worse than a bunch of accidentally aligned seams. It looks odd, trust me on that. 

Once you have your pattern figured out, place strips of the double sided tape along all 4 edges of your paper. I did a test fit before I removed the tape backing and actually stuck the sheets onto the wall. I also only removed one side of the tape backing at a time so that I could smooth and readjust as needed. I would begin on the top edge and peel back just a few inches of the tape backing, then smooth and peel  for the remainder of that edge, a little at a time. This kept me from sticking an edge down and having to peel it off to adjust. Since the pattern is organic and relatively busy, it's pretty hard to screw this up, but having a crooked sheet near an edge can be a tad obvious depending on the overlap. 

Baby Bird watching the Progress for DIY Home Decor // How To Make Your Own Removable Wallpaper

You can see my progress shot above. And the bird sitting with his babysitter, the tv. Don't judge... my other kid won't even watch tv so I am taking full advantage this time around!

I actually started on the second row first (after measuring down the proper distance), since I needed Mr. TDC to help me reach the top row. We inadvertently installed the Besta cabinet and secured it to the wall before I came up with this idea and so I couldn't reach the top portion, even with a ladder. Picture a velociraptor or T-Rex with short arms, that just can't quite reach. It wasn't pretty, but it might have been pretty funny... I had to get creative for the bottom portion, but found that essentially I could slide a portion of a sheet behind the cabinet pretty easily and just added the tape on the edges sticking out. Since many of the bottom sections only have tape on one edge and part of the top edge, that should tell you how well this particular tape has worked! And of course it's clearly not the kind of tape that will ruin the drywall when you attempt to remove it. Nope, it comes off easily but holds firmly while it's in place. Interesting little thing, this tape is. I guess those scrap bookers know a thing or two, eh?

Finished Wallpaper Project for DIY Home Decor // How To Make Your Own Removable Wallpaper

So that's it. That's all she wrote, quite literally. Wasn't that ridiculously easy? Told you it would be! Yahoo

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TDC 
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Nov
18
2013
Project Image

It only took me a couple of months, but I finally got this fabulous vintage light fixture cleaned up and installed. Some of you might remember this piece in it's ultra vintage condition (seen here), as in extremely dusty and rusty... and in truth it's still a tad rusty, but that is all part of the charm as far as I'm concerned!

There are dozens of tutorials and instructions to be found on the web for installing a light fixture or swapping out one light fixture for another, so I will spare you there. Just be sure you consult with an electrician when necessary and turn your power off completely before you begin messing around with electrical. And by completely, I actually do mean completely. Don't risk it by it by attempting to simply shut down the portion of your house you are working on. Sometimes that isn't enough... Otherwise, the swap is really pretty simple. Just unscrew and unfasten your current fixture, wrap the new wires with the existing wires in your electrical box above where the fixture lives, reattach and screw in place and you are essentially done. Obviously you should attempt to match up the wires (copper ground with copper ground and white with white) as best you can and wrap the matching pairs in the electrical caps. Sometimes they are all virtually identical so you will have to get a bit Sherlock on your electrical, but hopefully yours is not this way! 

Isn't she fabulous? I just love her... she is a beauty and wouldn't you know, the mister now likes her too. Of course he hated her at first, but as usual he couldn't see the vision before the vision was complete. And of course I know this, so I regularly ignore him and go forth anyhow. I always know he will come around once it's finished and will love whatever it is, just as I thought he would. All is right in the world at least for this one small project. Now for the remaining projects left to be done. Fingers crossed I will be just as successful. It's certainly not all rainbows and care bears in the world of DIY. 

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