Archives For Organization

The Odd Couple

Jennifer —  September 20, 2013 — Leave a comment

When we packed up our house Lee tried to get me to toss the drywall frames.  “You can do them again if you really want them, but you probably won’t use them.”  More than likely he was going to be right but I could not do it.  I was thinking of many ways I could re-use these.  Today, I am glad that I didn’t pitch them.  For those of you who don’t know what I am talking about this is my drywall frame wall in my old house.  You can see how I made them here:

 Living Room 15

Thankfully I packed some of them with my lamps, which was a box that I unpacked.  I forgot they were in there so I was pleasantly surprised!  I didn’t know how I would use them but I knew that I would figure it out.  I am into organizing my stuff these days. I have lived out of suitcases, bags and boxes for the last four months so its kind of the way I am figuring out what I have.  I was planning on doing a cheap jewelry organizer from a Pinterest Pin like this one or this one until I glanced over at my drywall frames and thought…I could use those.  I grabbed a box of pins out of my sewing box and this is what I came up with.; jewelry storage

Who knew that Drywall + Jewelry could equal storage.  They are an Odd Couple but they work together well.  For those of you who wasn’t reading my blog a year ago, I covered a cut up piece of clearnace drywall to hang on the wall.  It served as a psuedo bulletin board.  Here is how I did it.  Each frame cost me about $1.50.  The drywall takes a little more “umph” to get the pins in, but when they are in…they are sturdy; jewelry storage

 I did find this burlap covered canvas at Wal-mart for $3.97; jewelry storage

You are getting a little preview of my new master bedroom.  Do you see the green?  I love green but wow…it is bold.  It also is so bold that it shows the imperfections on the wall…because your eye naturally is drawn to that wall.  I am learning that if you have a wall with imperfections…maybe fix the imperfections before painting bold OR paint the wall a more neutral color.; jewelry storage


Its a rental so it is what it is….so I am working with it. .  It works much better for earrings than the drywall.  I love the color that my jewelry adds to the room without having to hang any decorations.

Have a great weekend.

Thanks for reading,


Lindsay emailed me a few months ago asking me to help her with some kitchen ideas.  Here was what she emailed me:

“Wondering if you would be willing to help me decide on ideas for my kitchen. I just got black appliances (rid the white) and now feel like back splash and a floor change would make the world of difference. Maybe new hardware for the cupboards too. The hood range is also coming in black soon I hope. So: if you have time and any thoughts could you tell me what you think would look nice in the way of backsplash/flooring and hardware? Thanks a million.”

After asking her tons of questions about her style, colors that she likes, and any thoughts that they had they emailed me and told me that they had just bought black appliances and that they had one idea for the backsplash:

“Also, we have thoughts about the backsplash. My husband works in he glass industry and installed this kitchen a few years ago that he really wants to replicate. It is one solid piece of glass used for backsplash which is painted on the backside (any colour).  So the glass is transparent but coloured from the painted side. Not sure if you can imagine that or if you have seen anything like it?”

I was pumped!  I love it when a reader gives me something that they have in mind.  The glass backsplash was genius and it would brighten that entire place up and make it so fresh.  I am so glad they thought of it and it was the inspiration for the entire mood board.  Here is her kitchen.


What Lindsay wanted:

  • Find a place for the microwave
  • Add a dishwasher either on the wall the microwave is currently on or add an apartment sized DW by the sink.
  • Wanted fun color.

My Strategy:


I wanted the floors to compliment the black appliances, but still look good if they sold the house and someone bought another style.  I love the classic look of black and white floors.  Here is an example.  I thought, what if you tiled in a stripe pattern.  It would make the room look bigger and make the roo stand out.  I googled it and found this and this.  I was sold.  If they wanted to do it on the cheap, they could do the peel and stick linoleum tiles.  If they wanted to spend a little more they could do the ceramic tiles.


The glass of course and I am counting on Lindsay and her husband to teach me how to do it!  You won”t see the backsplash in the mood board, but imagine the wall color behind it!


Keep the dark wood. I love dark wood.

The Mood Board:

Source List with Links:

Fabric: Joel Dewberry Notting Hill Pristine Poppy (For the window shade); Pendant:  (For over the sink); Flooring: Home Depot  (these are vinyl tiles which would cost them about $50, you could do ceramic tiles);  Cabinets: Ebay (these are just for show, this is a color similar to hers);  Hardware Pulls:  Lowes   (for the doors)   Hardware pulls: Amazon (For drawers); Countertop: Lowes (This is a laminate countertop)  Door: Pinterest   (this is a screen door from a blog that was not linked in Pinterest…boo, You could replace the screen with wood and put a chalkboard or add more of the fun fabric to the back of the screen); Light: Shades of Light; Cart: Ikea  (for the microwave wall…see the sketches below); Wall Shelves: Ikea (for the microwave wall);  Wall Color: Sherwin Williams Waterscape

Here were my ideas in amateur sketches for the microwave wall.  My first thought was a pantry but her pantry is in her laundry room, which is the doorway you see in the picture

Option #1

This would be how they can use the space if they removed the drawers by the sink and added a apartment sized dishwasher.

Option #2

This option is if they decide to move the dishwasher over to the wall where the microwave is currently.   Its the most costly option because you have to move plumbing but not that bad because the washer is on the other side of the wall.


Here are all my ideas I gave her on how to DIY or other options.  Its kind of long, but if you want to read them here they are.

Thank you Lindsay for thinking of me to help you.  I hope this inspired your own ideas and I can”t wait to see what you do!


We Got Audited

Jennifer —  January 15, 2013 — 2 Comments

Mom, don’t freak out.  The IRS is not after us, we pay our taxes on time.  We got an energy audit., energy Audit

Continue Reading…

Today we are skipping back to my guest bathroom progress.  I shared with you here that one of the main problems with the bathroom was the light fixture hung too low for a mirror to be hung high enough for someone to see their head.

I wanted to face the mirror lengthwise and yet I didn”t want an electrician to have to come to move the wiring so my goal was to find something that did either of the following:

  1. Was short enough to allow a mirror to hang lengthwise
  2. Or the light hung out far enough that the framed mirror could go behind the mirror.

The second option was harder to find than I expected.  If you see here in this post I had a plan for this bathroom.  It included stripes that I found in a This Old House Magazine.  I loved how the white and light tan stripes looked with the brown which totally matched my existing cabinet.

via this old house

Continue Reading…

The DIY reality is that you sometimes don’t foresee little issues. Things were clipping along in this bathroom renovation that started out like this:

Here was our project List:

  • Get rid of the wall paper border
  • Paint
  • New Floor
  • Painted Cabinet
  • New white countertop
  • Epoxy paint the tile like we did in the kitchen

Everything was going along as planned. I will explain how I did some of the above in upcoming posts. Today…I want to talk about the tile.

I painted the dingy almond speckled tile with white appliance spray paint. It took two coats with an hour drying time in between coats, and a 24 hour “don’t touch” period after the second coat. It was easy, smooth and no runs!

Continue Reading…

Upcycled Mail Sorting System

Jennifer —  September 9, 2011

Raise your hands if you get sick of a cluttered kitchen table because you don’t have a good “entry system”?  Both hands of mine are up.  Our kitchen table can get filled with bags, mail, keys, and junk that we bring in daily.  After 3½ years of living here I finally wanted to remedy that.  The laundry room reorganization gave me that motivation.  So, I went to target and TJ Max looking for a cheap solution.  Yes, they did have options, but nothing in my color scheme.  Target’s real simple had purple, gray, black and a turquoise.  None of those were the colors I wanted.  I know I am cheap, but $9.99 for something that isn’t perfect I just can’t do.  Really, it would end up being $20.00 because I needed two.  All the other options were metal or plastic and I wanted something a little softer.  TJ Max did not have much to choose from this time around.  Our TJ Max and Target are right next door.  Isn’t that convenient?  So I went back to Target for sure that I missed something…and I did.  I found the clear mail/file sorter for 2.99.  I can’t beat that price.  I knew that I had some fabric at home that I could use to cover them so I snagged them and went home.  Here was my material list.

  • Two plastic Mail/File bins Re-Style from Target: $2.99 a piece – $6.00
  • Fabric remnant:  Had it.  I literally used ¼yard of upholstery fabric (This could go in one of those books…”what you can do with a yard of fabric”) -$0
  • Craft Spray Adhesive:  Had it
  • Scissors
  • Hot Glue Gun
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