Google+ Nine Red: August 2013

Friday, August 30, 2013

How To: Hang Perfect Pictures

Earlier in the month I showed you my gigantic Marilyn Monroe string art piece that sits above my desk. Some of you wrote me and asked how I was able to hang each piece without nailing 65 different holes in the walls to get it right, and I'm here to share it! It was the first time I tried this technique, and it was definitely the easiest picture hanging experience I've ever had.    Ever.
I originally came across this awesome tutorial on Celebrate Everyday, who saw it on Pinterest - I'm sure you all have too. So it's been circulating for a while, I shared it with you all (because it's genius!) a while back, and finally got to put it to the test.  I needed to hang the 12 tablets that make up Marilyn, which was really intimidating as they needed to line up.  Here's a lovely photo run through:
  1. Hammer a small nail halfway through the end of a ruler (anywhere near the end).
  2. Make sure it sits half in, half out.
  3. Use the nail to hold your picture, and float it to the wall.
  4. Line the picture exactly where you want it, and use your free hand to hold the ruler against the wall.
  5. Remove the photo (while keeping the ruler in place) and push the nail into the wall with your thumb, to make a mark.
  6. Remove the ruler & don't lose that mark. Circle it in pencil if you need to.
  7. Hammer a new nail into the mark you made, and put the photo back up. It should hang exactly where you had it before. 
  8. Repeat!
That's it! It really was easy! What I thought would take me hours to do, took about 45 minutes. for 12 tablets. I felt so proud that I didn't have to repeat any, why haven't I tried this before? I rewarded my productivity by not doing anything for the rest of the day. I mean it looked like I did a lot, right? Heh... right.  This would be perfect for arranging a gallery wall, especially if you don't have all the pieces collected for your gallery yet.  Easy to add onto.

So that's that. We're done.  For this post I tried to go more, condensed, Pinterest friendly tutorial style - but if you're the type that likes more details, they are all included - photo by photo - after the break. 

Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend everyone!


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Monday, August 26, 2013

Curb Appeal: Part 2

Oops! I forgot to update you all when we finished chopping those ginormous bushes down in front.  So, remember in this post when we first tackled the beasts? Well we were only halfway done, and we finally finished! These things, were enormous.  We bought a chainsaw (yeeeea buddy!! Here's the one we got, it was great) and decided the easiest way to tackle them, was to chop 'em in half and clean up the damage. Check the progress out:

 Here's a wide view, it's so weird to be able to look out the windows and see more than just bushes! It's soooo barren now though! Don't worry - the bushes are still alive, they just got a much needed trim:
So the only drawback is our privacy level dropped, but since we're up high, we still have a lot of privacy inside the house. I just love that you can SEE the house now.  That water utility box... major eyesore. I'm not sure what we are allowed to do with it, so I'm just going to plant a big bush in front. I can't wait to fill up the hill with fun (deer-resistant!) flowering shrubs. 

And through the magic of the internet (Or, because we trimmed in June & I forgot to post) you can see the bushes have returned and the hill is filling up a little bit:
 The bushes are coming back but it's still kinda barren in front. This will be a big project! To keep things pretty, here's what I've got goin so far that the deer haven't eaten:
1. Lantana
2. Begonia (up high, otherwise I think they'd mow it down!)
3. Mexican Sage.

Everything else they eat, or try to eat.  I know, I know, clean that roof! Right? Well, I tried. I got up there, cleaned most of it, then got to the front and realized I was really... really...high up there. Scary! So until we get a mega ladder that will reach up there, let's hope the wind handles it.

What's your take? Is this too out in the open? Do you like homes that are cozy & private or standing proud in sight? 

Let's make it a great week!


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Friday, August 23, 2013

Winner Announced!

Good Morning! A week ago I announced that Pfister was going to giveaway a faucet to one of my readers.  Welp - the time has come...  drum-roll please...
Sarah G.!

Congratulations Sarah!! I'll be notifying you by email, so keep an eye on your inbox.  Thank you so much to everyone who entered, and a HUGE thank you to Pfister for offering such a great giveaway.  Seriously, Sarah you're gonna love your new faucet - mine's incredible.

Have a wild weekend everybody!  Come by on Monday when I show you how drastically different our house looks without those 20 foot bushes in front... so open...


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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

How-To: Black and White Brushstroke Art

After we had whitewashed the fireplace, and painted the living room, it was time to add some visual interest to the fireplace wall.  I thought about doing fabric wall scrolls with a nice modern print, but worried it might be too busy. Perfect timing: I had seen this awesome black & white brushstroke art over at the Hunted Interior, and knew this was the project I was searching for:
Aren't those lovely.. I'm a mega fan of abstract, and the black & white contrast is really clean & modern.  
Since we wanted to incorporate more modern elements into the house, I showed these to Ralph & he was totally on board.  Luckily, we had everything on hand (I always keep canvas around!) & were able to start. This project is so easy, and so fun!

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Monday, August 19, 2013

Readers Projects: Striped Round Table

I love when you guys send me your projects! I've got two beauties to share with you today, inspired by the Striped Round Table Tutorial.  This has been one of my most popular tutorials, and these girls pulled them off beautifully.

Here's one from Brandi, it's a pedestal table & it came out great:
Very cute dining nook now, I also love the old window frames on the walls.

Kristina kept the stripes but took it a different direction, rectangular:

Very nice! Those legs are really familiar, I think I've worked on a few tables with something similar. 

Great job ladies & thanks so much for sharing! 

If you'd like to try your hand at a striped tabletop effect, revisit the Striped Round Table Tutorial & have fun! It's a fun one. 


Don't forget the Pfister Giveaway is still going! I'll announce a winner this Friday. If you missed it, click  here.

If you  have a project you'd like to share, e-mail

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Friday, August 16, 2013

Giveaway Alert: Pfister Faucet

Last week I showed our amazing kitchen faucet installation to you, and mentioned that one of these days there would be a giveaway for one. Friends... that time has come!
Yes! When the good people over at Pfister told me to give away one of these beautiful faucets to you guys, it totally made my day. I got even more excited once ours was installed, because it was so easy and it is a seriously fancy faucet.  Really, I've been living in rentals all my life until now, this is the best faucet my dishes & I have shared a kitchen with. 

So here's the deal, enter ala Rafflecopter below & I'll announce one lucky winner next Friday, August 23rd, 2013. While you wait, hop over to Pfister Faucets website and browse around - the winner gets to choose any faucet they want, up to $300!
**If you're reading this post in a reader or via email, the giveaway form may not show. Click here to be taken to the entry form. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you missed the installation of my very own Pfister faucet (I chose Mystique...) you can hop back & see it here.

Update: We have a winner! Thank you everyone for playing :)


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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

How To: Build a TV Stand

I've shared how we've been tackling some of the living room projects we've been meaning to do.  We've whitewashed the fireplace, painted half the room green, built a modern style bookshelf, and added Marilyn to the mix.  The list is shrinking, I think.  One major improvement we finished recently was for our TV.  First, my fancy cover photo, for the people who pin & want to save this project for later:

Yes, that's mood lighting.. ooh!  OK back it up, here's our living room when we swapped the furniture around:
Take note of the TV, and what is holding it up.  This room has been so hard to arrange, because as luck would have it, each wall has either a door, or a fireplace/heater on it. Also a stairway practically in the middle of the room. Arranging a cozy living room around those obstacles was rough, but we finally found the solution - we just have our living room "zone" as I like to call it, floating in the middle.  And I love it!

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Monday, August 12, 2013

Spotlight: Caramel Solarium

We painted again this weekend, so my brain is in recovery mode.  So I thought in the meantime I'd share a piece of eye candy with you guys.  One of my favorite blogs in the world (If It's Hip It's Here) brought this amazing caramel solarium by William Lanson to my attention recently - I had to share. It's gorgeous:

Photo Sources: William Lamson, Storm King and This is Colossal - via If It's Hip It's Here.
No joke - this thing is made of sugar. Pure, caramelized sugar! I love rich color when the sun shines through it.  I have mega deer problems at this house (I'm sure I've mentioned that like 500 times) and have been on the hunt for a greenhouse so I can have SOME plants. Though, maybe the deer would eat right through this one...  

This is just a sneak peak, hop over to If It's Hip It's Here for some amazing photos and a wonderful video. So happy to have come across this, what an amazing use for sugar. 

Good luck on your Monday today! Remember, there are only 4 or so a month. 4 outta 30ish ain't bad...


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Friday, August 9, 2013

Installing a New Faucet

Last weekend our lives were forever changed.  We installed our new kitchen faucet! Life changing might be a little dramatic, but seriously - this pup has had such an impact on the dish doing life. I'm in love. And you know what? It was SO easy! The hardest part was figuring out how to remove the old one. That took FOREVER. It was like a puzzle... a rusty, mysterious puzzle... Here's the newbie:
wee-woo! I don't know how to spell that nasty wolf whistle, but you get the idea.  What a beast, huh? It's the Price Pfister Mystique - oh la la... Here's the link for more info.   Picking a faucet was a piece of cake. I was pretty lost as to how to know what would fit, being my first time and all. I went under our sink and counted 4 holes, and I was able to sort the Pfister site to only show faucets for 4-hole sinks, and it was good.

Read along as I tell you the tale, that is our new faucet....

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Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Marilyn Monroe String Art + 4 Others

I finally, finally finished up my largest string art installation EVER.  I had an idea one day in the shower (all great ideas come from a good shower) that I should try a face in string.  One thing led to another, and it got bigger and bigger, and I finally settled on Marilyn Monroe.
I'm so happy with how it came out! I wasn't sure how it would all work, and I think it's working pretty well...  this now sits above my desk, in the living room, which was formerly blank. 
Majorly spruces up my work zone & gives me something to look at when I'm brainstorming.  The string is navy blue, on 12 Tea stained tablets.  I wanted some plant life on my desk but since I'm sadly not next to a window, a vase will fill in just fine. I threw this redwood tree trimming in and it's stayed alive for a while now:
Cute widdle twee.  I had finally caught up on my string art orders one week & was able to experiment with my new designs, this is Bluebird 2.0 - much more detail! Available here.
I was goin' for the vintage swallow tattoo... I love that style. Nailed it! Haha... get it, nailed it.. 
Favorite fabric!
I threw this design in the shop, available here.

Then I made this "Create" sign for Cassie over at Primitive & Proper, she was the winner of my recent string art giveaway over at Redoux:
Really happy with this fade, that pink is great:
Another lovely fabric:
This one was for my sister as a wedding present:
 Their living room is reds, creams, browns...
And I finally got to finish my makeably sign, which I did as a thank you gift for the awesome people over at

Just a lil update on the new stuff. Lots has been going on around the house too, we installed a new faucet - I can't wait to show it to you! It's changed my life. Well, the doing-dishes side of my life anyway. We also got the courage to paint a wall navy blue.  It came out awesome.

Off to Home Depot, what's new in your hood?


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Friday, August 2, 2013

DIY Modern Bookshelf

Happy August! Happy Friday! Happy Birthday to my brother! It's all kinds of stuff today. Woot! OK I'm not exactly thrilled about it being August already, but I feel like I make that complaint every month.  You'd think after 30 years I'd get used to how time flies, but nope.

Which brings me to today's project, time flew by since we built this & I didn't get to write up a proper tutorial. Until now! We've been working on the living room and needed a bookshelf to fit perfectly. So you know we had to build it:
Yep, that's a bookshelf. We wanted something with clean lines, something simple - the plan to go with simple was heavily influenced by the fact that simple = something we can actually build.  I'd never built a bookshelf from scratch, and after looking at 3 million ideas I decided the best plan was to just jump in and see what happens. Don't you love when you've had just enough coffee to make really big, daring decisions like that?  Luckily it worked out in our favor. Here was our  before situation, our horrible horrible before :

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