Feeling Smurfy

My blue finger

Those of you who follow me on Facebook already got a little preview of this project. Well, not so much the actual project – more like what happened to my finger while doing this project.

I’ve been working on my master bedroom update for awhile and have been collecting new stuff for the room over the past few months – new duvet cover, a pretty quilt, curtains, a new trunk for the end of the bed, blah blah blah. Well, all these thing cost money and I was starting to feel like this project was adding up to WAY more than I wanted (I haven’t actually totaled everything yet, I was just getting that feeling).

So, when I started shopping around for new sheets and realized that I couldn’t find exactly the color I imagined in my head AND they were all super expensive, I decided to get a little crafty.

I already had a pair of flannel sheets that were super worn and comfy, but they were kind of an ugly light green color. I’ve never actually dyed anything before (besides my hair and tye-dying stuff at Girl Scout camp), so I was a bit apprehensive about dying my sheets. It just seemed like a great big pain in the keister while also being quite messy.

I put on my big girl pants and decided to do it and I’m kind of mixed on the results.

First, here’s my step-by-step of what I did:

Step 1: wet the sheets. Hey look, having an ugly green tub comes in handy because I don’t have to worry about staining it!
Step 2: fill plastic container with hot water and add 2 bottles of Rit dye. I used Evening Blue.
Step 3: add wet sheets to container of dye/water and swish them around for 30 minutes. I’m wearing gloves AND used a paint stirrer to swoosh, but I still ended up getting dye on my fingers.
Step 4: yeah, you didn’t really think I was actually going to stir for 30 minutes did you? I stabbed the sheets down with my paint stirrers and wandered away after about 10 minutes.
Step 5: CAREFULLY dump out the dye/water. No splashing around otherwise you’ll dye everything blue!
Step 6: rinse out the sheets over and over again until the water finally runs clear. Once again, I’m kind of lazy, so it wasn’t TOTALLY clear but close enough. I then threw the sheets in the washer and put it through with my normal detergent.
All done — here are the finished sheets after going through the washer and dryer (washed them on cold, but I pretty much wash everything with cold water).

So, yay — I saved money and dyed my own sheets. I kind of half-way followed the directions on the Rit bottle, but looking back I probably should have bought a couple more bottles of dye to throw in there. I really wanted a more vibrant blue color… kind of like the shade of blue they were before I washed all the dye out. Of course, who knows if the sheets would have even sucked in more dye if it had been added.

All in all, I’m not really going to call this little project a “win”, more like a “eh..better than they were before”. In person, they do look like a pretty faded blue, rather than a dumpy pissy green. So, I can’t really complain too much — I spent around $8 and it took less than 30 minutes of my time.

How about you, have you dyed anything instead of buying new?

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Broaching the Brooches

For my second little project that went down when I was home on Hurricane Sandy arrest, it literally took me about 10 minutes and made me super happy.

My Nana passed away in March and after her passing my grandfather allowed me to choose some of her jewelry for my own. Well, I’m kind of a picky jewelry person but I did find a few pieces that really reminded me of her so I added them to my collection.

Some of the things that were so very Nana were a few of her brooches. She wore them all the time to dress up a nice jacket or sweater and liked them so much that my mom started giving her one each year at Christmas.

She had one pin in particular that was very special to me, a small circle that was engraved with her name, Claire. She had lent me that pin on my wedding day as my “something borrowed” and I had it attached to my bouquet that I carried down the aisle. At the reception, instead of throwing my bouquet, I presented it to my grandmother because she and my grandfather were celebrating 60 years of marriage that same year that my husband and I got married.

When going through her jewelry, I chose that pin as well as four other brooches that she liked. Since I don’t really wear pins myself, I decided to use them for a fun project while still keeping them untouched so I could wear them in the future.

I had a couple canvas frames left over from when I ripped the monkey and lion pictures off them for Jack’s room and also had a scrap of neutral fabric left over from my kitchen curtains. So I gathered my materials:

My materials: fabric (which needed ironed), frame and pins. Staple gun not pictured.

I stapled the fabric on to the frame with a staple gun, keeping it pulled tight all the way around.

Ka-BAM goes the stapler


Then, I just stuck the pins through the fabric in a way that I thought was pretty. That was it. Super simple and a snazzy way to display my Nana’s brooches when I’m not wearing them.

Finished project. So easy and so pretty!

I’m not exactly sure where I’ll put the brooch canvas yet. I’m thinking that after I finish my master bedroom update I might hang it or lean it against the wall. I just think it’s a cute way to display my grandmother’s jewelry and makes me smile whenever I see it.

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Feeling a bit Bookish

Hello, hello, hello my fabulous Pocketful readers – I’ve missed you all so much! And yes, I know that sounds a bit lame. But I was home for 6 days straight and at no point did I lay out on a beach or even get any home improvement projects completed, so you know I wasn’t having too much fun.

Actually, I did have a BIT of fun since my husband was home with me and Jack on both Monday and Tuesday. Which means there was lots of comfort food making/eating, TV watching, fire building and all around family snuggling time. So that was pretty awesome.

With Jack battling bronchiolitis, Hurricane Sandy on the rampage and oh yeah me being super sick too, it was a very quiet few days. Our internet was also having massive issues, so I could only get online occasionally which was kind of annoying.

So, now that it’s Tuesday evening and I’ll be able to upload everything tomorrow morning, I’m finally taking a minute to sit down and catch up with my online life!

I DID have a chance to do a couple mini projects during my time at home. One of which made me think of my friend Katie from Words for Worms. I showed you all my den when I first changed things around, but here’s a little refresher on what it looked like before we moved in:

Here’s the den from the old online listing of our house. Nice boombox and GOLD fireplace insert.

And what it looked like once I got my grimy hands on the place:

Back in March after I did my thing.

Well, I was never really IN LOVE with the stuff I threw up on my mantle. I liked it all individually, but it wasn’t really doing it for me perched up there. The mirror was kind of oddly sized and everything just felt a bit bare and sad.

Our main plan is to build some bookshelves in that odd little corner in the room, but that project is way down the list at this point. Also, I’m thinking that corner will be a perfect place for a Christmas tree – so I want to try that out before I made the big decision to start building shelves.

All of my lovely books were still living in boxes in one of our closets, which is just so incredibly sad, don’t you think? So I had the bright idea to bring some of them out and see how they looked displayed on the mantle… and I LOVE the finished look!

Ooh pretty — a roaring fire and a crapload of books!
Front end
Butt end.


Oh and for your sharp-eyed people out there I’d like to point out that NOT EVEN ONE of these books is a piece of highbrow fancy-schmanchy literature. They are my tried and true favorites that I actually like to curl up and read. So, no trying to impress anyone here! Unless you’re impressed with the Harry Potter series, Artemis Fowl, all the Stephanie Plum books and a crapload of chick lit. Actually, if you ARE impressed by that you are totally invited to be my friend because I think we’ll get along great!

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