Cheap & Easy Valentine’s Day Banner

Grab some old paper books from the thrift store and get to cutting some hearts for an easy easy cheap Valentine’s Day banner. Here’s how I made mine!

What you’ll need – 

Jute String 

Scissors 

Hole Puncher 

Old Books (Any old novel will do.. careful not to use an antique book though!)

What to do – 

1 – Rip out some pages from the old books and begin to cut heart shaped pieces. I trimmed paper hearts to all different sizes to add size variation.

2 -Snap some holes in the hearts with your hole puncher. I punched holes on the side edge of each heart.

3 – Cut a line of jute string. Make sure you cut the string to the exact length you want the banner to be.

4 – One by one, place each heart on the jute string and tie a knot securing exactly where you want the paper heart.

Enjoy

You can hang this banner just about anywhere. Here’s a few ideas – across the mantel, above the kitchen sink, over a bed or drape it flat across a coffee/dining table.

This is a good craft to include the kiddos!! Let them cut the hearts and make memories together. Hope you have a WONDERFUL Valentine’s Day!

XOXO, 

Karlee Bowman 

 

Spooky Flying Bats Dining Room Décor

Halloween is nearly here so I decided to play in the (fake) spider webs.🕷 🕸 Honestly, this was my very first time decorating for Halloween and I had a blast! 🎃 I was inspired to bring elements of the outdoors inside on this project.

What I used –

Tree Limbs (Our backyard)

Clear Fishing Wire

Finishing Nails

Fake Spider Webs  (Target Dollar Spot)

Paper Bats (World Market)

 

What I did-

We hung tree limbs from our ceiling with clear fish wire and finishing nails. Our goal was to make the tree limbs to look abstract around the chandelier.

Next, I intertwined the fake white spider webs into the tree limbs. The webs looked better more stretched out. 🤗 🕸No tape needed, I just wrapped/draped the web around.

Finally, it was time to add the paper bats from World Market. 👻 So I added those all around the limbs and webs.

BAM, and we’re ready for Halloween!! 😁 This little festive touch didn’t cost much money at all! 🤑 Side note – nailing sticks to our ceiling was definitely fun! 😂

Cheers to spooky decor, spider webs and pumpkin spice lattes.🎃

Thanks for Reading!!

Karlee Bowman

Desk/Before and After

Anyone else love before and after pictures? ☺️

Especially if it’s an antique desk with original hardware??😍 

I found this beautiful desk from a fellow picker friend. He sold the desk to me “as is” and let me tell ya, it needed some love! 😷 Example- the kinda love you give when you’re scrubbing the inside of drawers with vinegar.

  👈🏻 BEFORE

This desk was my Saturday night project piece. 👍🏻 It kept me busy/productive while my husband Aaron worked.

When purchasing a piece, I always like to take a step back and decide what it needs.🤔I envision the piece in someone’s home and how it needs to look. Then I decide what I’ve got to do in order to make my vision a reality. I determine if my vision involves paint, polish, wood wax and/or new hardware.

Given the character and rough shape, I immediately knew this pieces needed paint! After examining the hardware, I knew those were a keeper and they would contrast well with white paint.

So I painted the desk white and distressed the heck out of it to expose some of the original wood.😍

After screwing the handle hardware in the drawers, this desk was finished! Goodness, it turned out beautiful! ☺️ I hope it makes the perfect space for someone to study, hustle or write!

Btw – I’ve had several readers ask me to blog more about redoing furniture. So there it is! As always, thanks for stopping by!!😉

Karlee Bowman

5 Random Facts About the Chicken Coop 🐓

Well, we finished building our chicken coop! Finally. We began this project on Memorial Day. It took us a little while to build it because: A- I was being picky. (Imagine that!😜) B- We were building it between our many jobs. (We take our hustle seriously.😉)

Regardless, I’m beyond excited to have it finished. We plan on getting the chickens within a few weeks. We’ve (Aaron) has been doing research on what type of chickens to get and why. 👨🏻‍💻 Soon I’ll be writing about why we chose a specific breed.

 

 

Honestly, I wish I could provide the plans we used for this chicken coop but Aaron made it up as he went..

However, I’ll point out a few interesting facts.

1 – The foundation of this structure is built on random rocks and bricks we found around our property. 😂

2 – The entire project cost around $800. (Yikes, we went over budget for sure! 🤑)

3 – We installed windows to allow the coop to air out when needed! 👃🏻😷

4 – The door was a splurge! 😍 It’s an antique door from a local vintage shop.

5 – The wood siding is actually wood that’s typically used for fencing. We just snipped the “dog ear” edge with a Jig Saw.

I recently shared on Instagram the the brief history of our home. It was built as a farmhouse in the 1920’s. So us having chickens and possibly more farm animals restores some of the awesome history!

Stay tune to hear more about our chicken journey! 😘

Thrift Painting Makeover

Recently, I’ve learned about another treasure you can find at thrift stores!! Beautiful paintings!! 😍 Yes, all that time and love someone invested into a painting ends up at a thrift store. 😕 Sad, but good for me, right?

Helpful Hint – Look for the paintings where you can get lost in the scene. For me, this is a scene of farm land or a cozy house.☺️

If you can stare at the picture and get lost daydreaming, buy it. 👍🏻 That means you’ll love it in your home.

Weeks ago, I spotted another beautiful oil painting at a thrift store for $11. It was lovely, but the wooden frame wasn’t doing much for it. I painted the wooden frame and the picture came to life!

Here’s how I painted the frame –

First, I taped the edges of the picture with painter’s tape I found in our “junk drawer”. (Random question – Does everyone have a junk drawer?) 🤔

Second, I lightly coated the frame with Rust-Oleum Linen White Chalk Paint. Even though I taped the edges of the painting, to not get much paint on the tape because I didn’t want any chalk paint soaking through.

Finally, once the paint is dried I went through with sandpaper and lightly distressed the frame to show the wood. This trick adds a little character to the frame and helps blend in the chalk paint.Tada, it’s beautiful!! Here’s another $5 painting where I painted the frame.👇🏻

Also, here’s another canvas I found at a thrift store for $3.👇🏻

To read more about thrift store finds click 👉🏻 here

Btw – Here’s the link to the chalk paint brush I ALWAYS use 👉🏻 here

DIY Drop Cloth Curtains

Okay, I thought everyone knew about these DIY drop cloth curtains.. However, I get messages all the time asking where I found the curtains throughout my home. Well, I made my curtains with supplies from the hardware store. (Or Amazon 😉)

Please note – I did not come up with this genius idea. In fact, I read about it in an amazing book called A Touch of Farmhouse Charm. 👉🏻 You can read more about this book HERE!You’ll Need –

2 6×9 Canvas Drop Cloth Curtains

Pack of Black Metal Curtain Clips (This pack is enough for several sets 😉)

 

What You’ll Do – 

Iron the drop cloth.

Fold the drop cloth down along the top. (This step is optional..)

Clip the metal clips along the top of the canvas drop cloth.

Slide clips on your curtain rod!!!

Finally, DM me a picture so I can see what a pretty job you did!! 😘PS – CLICK HERE to see where I get my curtain rods!

Vintage Recipes Meet Repurposed Fireplace Mantel

I love repurposing fireplace mantels as shelves. 😍 I have several old wooden mantels throughout my home. In fact, my motto could be “here a mantel, there a mantel, everywhere a mantel”. 🤷🏼‍♀️ Haha, but honestly an old slim mantel can fit just about anywhere and add an old architectural charm.

We have an antique mantel in our kitchen. (I tricked my husband into this one.. he thought I was buying it to resell until I brought it home and said, “it goes here” and pointed to specific corner in our kitchen.👆🏻😉)  This mantel is perfect for displaying my milk glass vases. However, I felt it could use a little creativity. 🤔

So, I popped on Etsy to order some old handwritten recipe cards. 😌 (I can’t begin to imagine who could part with family recipe cards but I’m glad they did.)

I got some double sided tape and began taping the recipe cards to the wall inside the mantel. The cards are lined up corner to corner so the wall itself doesn’t show. The goal of this project was to make the inside of the mantel look like a wall of recipes.

I went line by line until BAM it was done!! 💃🏼 🤚🏻 (However, I did run out of recipe cards and had to order more, so the project was delayed..)

Side Note – Vintage recipe cards are hard to find. If you have trouble finding recipe cards, try using an old cookbook. 😉 Perhaps a cookbook that’s already falling apart.

Another Side Note – If your repurposed mantel is in another room besides a kitchen or dining room, you could use old book pages. You don’t have to rip apart an antique books. Just look for a worn out novel at your local thrift store.

Hope this post inspired you to be creative! Thank for reading!!😘

The Estimated Cost –

Mantel $40

Tape $3

Recipe Cards $12

 

DIY Window Mantel

I was needing a quick easy decor idea for the mantel in my bedroom. Honestly, I envisioned an old metal fence gate above this mantel but each gate I found was over $200. 👎🏻

So, I came up with this window idea a few Saturdays ago. It’s easy and not much money! I found three windows all in one day. ☝🏻 I think I spent $25 for all three. 🤑

This idea could work on any fireplace mantel and any level decorator can TOTALLY handle it! 👍🏻 All you’ll need is three different sized windows.

First – Center the largest window.

 

Second – Grab the medium sized window and center it to one side of the larger window. 👈🏻 Like this👇🏻.  Third – Take the smallest window and center it to the other side. 👉🏻

(Ignore my sweet helper’s arm in the corner of this picture.) My little 9 years old sister was the photographer today. 😇 Thank you, Kelbee!!

 

Finally –  Send me an after pic!! If you do this decor project, I’d love to see it! So, tag me in your picture! 😘

Here’s an easy step by step mantel decor!!

Helpful Hint – Some people have a difficult time finding vintage windows in their area. (Hard to imagine since our community is completely saturated with old reasonable priced windows) If that’s the case for you, you could use old unique frames.

 

Painting a Stone Fireplace

First of all, allow me to explain why. Our home is slowly turning into a white neutral haven with french farmhouse detail. The stone fireplace was beautiful but no longer blended within the style of our home.🙄 So, we decided to paint it!

  Here’s a before picture!

Step One – Choose Color

I went with the same color as White Dove by Benjamin Moore but I had it mixed at Home Depot for convenience. (Tip – Home Depot has a formula for every Benjamin Moore color) 😌 White Dove is the color of our shiplap so I knew it would work.

Purchase Paint

Behr Masonry, Stucco and Brick Paint in a flat finish is what we used. One gallon can was around $20 🤑 and completely finished our large double sided fireplace.

Prep

Prep is self explanatory but important. I know first hand because we skipped it on one side and had to start over. Simple – wipe off the old dust. 😷

Also, this would be the time to tape plastic over anything you don’t want painted.

Begin Spraying

Here’s an electric paint sprayer off Amazon similar to what we used. We applied two coats to each side and BAM we were done! 😁 This projects was simple once we figured out what to do. Aaron and I literally stood in Home Depot and debated on how to go about this project.. (There might have been a slight disagreement) All in all, we figured it out and I couldn’t be more pleased with the results !😍

Btw – He was right about not priming the stone (I’m a advocate of primer) and I was right about the flat finish selection. Nothing builds a marriage better than a home improvement project. 😉

 

Shiplap, Yea or Nah?

I’ve heard both sides of the argument. Yea or Nah on shiplap? I’ll be honest, during our deciding process I totally lost sleep over it. I’m an over thinker and analyze everything. EVERYTHING.

Some people claim shiplap is the new 1970’s paneling and refused to take part in the shenanigans. Others feel shiplap is completely overrated. Joanna Gaines, you’ve caused quite the debate!

After researching both sides, studying pictures of people who have it and losing sleep, I finally made a decision.

Yea. I like shiplap. Here’s why!

Texture

I’m all about adding an extra layer of texture to a room. Welp, shiplap definitely brings a neutral texture to any room (or in my case ceiling too). That lovely texture comes in an unnoticed way which I’ll explain later.

Dimension

Call me totally crazy but I swear by this statement – our ceilings got taller. Okay, maybe not literally but OMG our walls look taller. It’s only an illusion but it’s a good one for sure!

Unnoticed

During one of my long emotional (inner turmoil) conversations with Aaron regarding shiplap, he pointed out that a previous owner had shiplapped our ceilings and I hadn’t grown tired of it. In fact, we barely noticed our shiplap ceilings when we bought our home. (We didn’t watch much Fixer Upper in those days and still don’t… who has time for TV??)

Happiness

There’s something about those white uniformed lines that makes me happier with each glance. So whether I keep it for a year or twenty years, what does it matter so long as I love it?!?

FYI – my go to shiplap color is Benjamin Moore White Dove. Here’s a secret, I actually get it in Behr from Home Depot. They have access to Benjamin Moore colors. It saves me moola!