Archive for July, 2011

Easy DIY Idea: Making A Ribbon Chandelier

After admiring various ribbon chandeliers in baby stores, catalogs, magazines, and even over on Pintrest, I decided to try my hand at one for Clara’s closet. Her closet is actually big enough to become a little reading nook when she’s a little older (I have visions of making her a beanbag for chillaxing on the floor with a book). And I love that the closet has its own light but it’s one of those fugly bare bulb ones that you tug on a piece of string to turn on and off. So I thought a happy little ribbon chandy could pretty things up.

So I spent $2 for an embroidery hoop (with a 10″ diameter from Ben Franklin) and used some white spray paint and a box full of old ribbons that I already had (I save them like gift bags to recycle them ’cause I’m cool cheap like that).

So the total project cost was just two dolla. Holla. (Yup, that’s the second holla I’ve used today- and yup, I’m counting).

Anyway, first I went outside and spray painted my big metal embroidery ring thing with white paint on a piece of cardboard. While it was drying I went through all of the old ribbon scraps that I have and picked out the ones I wanted to use. Then I popped back outside to flip my ring over with a stick so I could spray the other side.

Then it was back inside while it dried to cut 16″ lengths of ribbon from all of the ones I picked to use. Here are most of them cut and ready to glue to my drying ring (I still had a few more hot pink ones to be added to the mix). Oh and I should note that I wasn’t exact about my cutting at all. If I wanted to use a strand of ribbon that I could almost get two lengths out of, I’d cut it in half (even if each piece was only 14″ instead of 16″). Yeah, call me Loosey Goosey. Wait, that sounds bad. Don’t.

Here’s where I’d show you a few photos of me and my handy glue gun as I glued each ribbon to the now-white-and-dry metal embroidery hoop. I just curled it over the top and glued the ribbon to itself in the inside of the hoop and worked my way around the top, just gluing each ribbon in place next to the other one with about an eight of an inch of space between them so they didn’t get all up in each other’s area. And I burned my fingers approximately fifteen times, which might be why there are no photos. But it was worth it. No pain, no gain. Sidenote: I accidentally typed “no paint, no gain” at first, but upon thinking about it, I also believe that’s true.

Here’s the bare bulb we’re dealing with in Clara’s closet. And I only realized as I took this photo that we never switched it out for a CFL. Probably because we never actually turn it on, but still – shame on us. It has been rectified. And the old bulb betta recognize. I’m in a weird mood today, huh?

See those hooks on either side of it? We had those in the ol’ tool drawer, and I thought they’d come in handy for stringing up my ribbon chandy. I was going to use fishing wire but I couldn’t find it so I went with white string (you know, sewing machine string?). Wait I mean thread. Anyway, it worked like a charm.

I just made four loops of white thread at four even intervals around the ring and looped them up over the two hooks so they sort of pulled from four points and stabilized the hoop o’ ribbon. Here’s what I was left with:

Cute, right? When Clara woke up from her nap I couldn’t wait to hang it slash show it to her. She loves it. And that my friends (as Martha would say) is a good thing. Oh and I totally should have ironed the ribbons before gluing but I was feeling lazy. I figured I can always take it down (it’s just hanging on those little hooks) and iron it if the urge ever strikes. Not that I’m counting on it. For now I look at it like wavy hair. There’s a place for it.

See that cute pink ribbon with the bunnies on it? It’s from this Easter basket we made her a while back. Memories. Oh and note that the bottom of the ribbons are random and staggered and some are cut at an angle or dove-tailed (is that what it’s called or did I make that up?). I went with the keep-it-casual approach.

As for how it looks from the rest of the room, I love how it just sort of peeks out from behind the curtain like her bright little dresses. So you don’t really know what’s going on until you get closer…

… and peer up to see those fun little ribbons.

So there you have it. A $2 project that the ceramic animals in Clara’s closet get to enjoy (they’re up there because they’re breakable and now that Clara is toddling around they were in constant peril on her dresser and side table- so up they went. And yes, that’s a framed photo of Burger. Clara’s quite fond of him.

Oh and when I showed John he said “how’s it hanging?” and I said “har-har very funny” and he said “no, I’m asking you a question- how is it hanging from the ceiling?” and I explained it while trying not to wet myself. Maybe you had to be there though.

Anyone else making things out of ribbon? Or dressing up a bare bulb in another way? Tell $herdog all about it.

Psst- Don’t burn your house down! Many lamp shades are made from fabric and paper, so ribbon is cool. Just make sure it’s not even close to the bulb (and definitely not pressing against it). Our 10″ hoop offered lots of space for the heat to escape, and using CFLs helps too since they burn cooler than the regular guys. In some places exposed bulbs in closets aren’t even to code (glass domes are recommended, which could still be covered with a fun little ribbon chandy to dress them up).



Mood Board Making: En Fuego

I was inspired by a chipper yellow table runner and a fiery pendant light to make a warm-blooded dining room mood board just for fun. Whoop, here it is:

1. The wall color could be a soft olive-khaki tone, like the stripe in the background of the mood board (try Benjamin Moore’s Limestone 513) with browns, oranges, deeper olives, pops of yellow, and some crisp white in the furnishings/accessories. Maybe even a smidge of navy if you’re into that sort of thing. And now that I see that stripe of olive-khaki, big wide horizontal tone-on-tone stripes might be pretty fun for the walls if you’re feeling feisty (try Benjamin Moore’s Limestone 513 and Flowering Herbs 514).

2. These Target chairs are $70 a pop, and the Ikea table is under $300 (but you could always find something on craigslist and refinish it for even less if that’s your jam).

3. This Stacy Garcia pendant (along with the fun chevron runner) were the inspiration for this entire board. Isn’t the geometric kinda Moroccan-ish pattern fun? It’s down from $225 to $149 with free shipping for anyone interested. I wonder if you could search for a coupon code to take it down even further.

4. Yellow mug = happy life forever. At least that’s a theory I’m working on. Who can sip from this guy and not smile? He’s even called the beam mug.

5. Klimt has always been a favorite of mine. I have another theory that his painting called The Kiss is akin to the movie Titanic (it makes all the ladies swoon). And this lesser known garden print is painterly and soft – which makes it a nice counterpart to the graphic pops of pattern in the chevron runner and the geometric pendant. I also love that it has olive, orange, white, and even a dash of navy. Holla.

6. This giant braided jute rug from Overstock would bring in some natural texture to balance the graphic patterns and sleek dining table (it’s $230 for an 8 x 10 and has tons of 5 star ratings).

7. These bright little appetizer trays ($2.95 each) would be so charming mixed in with crisp white china, a few of those yellow mugs, and the sunny chevron runner.

8. Here’s that chevron runner (from etsy for $15) that started it all (well, I guess he’s in cahoots with the pendant, who also sparked this board). Cute, no?

Anyone out there doing some dining room makeover-ing? Or sipping from a happy yellow mug? Either way, it sounds like a good time.

Psst- See 150+ other mood boards (and sort them by room or color) here. Oh and we just heard the new 376 page (!) Ikea catalog is out here.