Sunday, October 23, 2011

lyrical DIY

i finally got around to finishing a project that i've been thinking of non-stop since seeing the how-to on A Beautiful Mess (which, if you don't read, you are definitely missing out! Elsie is downright adorable, and i love every single post and project--so much inspiration!). in the original how-to she uses a scenic painting, but i had the hardest time finding one at second hand shops, or a paint by numbers to do myself, so i switched it up a bit and just painted my own background. here's my version of the song lyric wall art--enjoy!

supplies you'll need:

  • letter stickers (mine are Martha Stewart, but next time i plan to use something with more sticking power, they did not want to stay down)
  • paint brushes
  • painters or masking tape
  • paint--both white paint, and whatever colors you choose for the base
  • canvas
Step one: paint your design

i chose to do stripes for this first go 'round, basically because they are so darn simple. i did them in two steps. first i used tape to create guidelines for the bigger stripes (shown above). then, once they were completely dry, i painted in the lines where the tape was, again using tape over the already painted areas to keep the clean lines (i didn't get a photo of the second round of painting, but the fourth color i used was a deep plum).

steps two & three: put your letters on and paint over them

i also forgot to snap a photo before i painted over the letters, but you can see the stickers through the paint here. like i said earlier, these stickers did not want to stay down, which led to some of the white bleeding into the letters. the lyrics i chose are from this song, one of my favorites. 

step four: peel the stickers and enjoy!
 i also taped off the left side of the canvas before painting on the white to show more of the stripe pattern, which i'm glad i did with how much white ended up getting into the words. right now it's home is on one of our bedside tables next to my jewelry. i can't wait to make another one, there are infinite possibilities for more because i have so many favorite songs!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


it's no secret that pinterest is hands down the most inspirational and pretty way to waste time. if you don't know about it yet (have you been living under a cyber rock?!), pinterest is a visual bookmarking site that lets users "pin" images to virtual boards. you can follow other users to see what pretty things they pin, and you can search for items based on what you're looking for, plus the entire site is categorized to make searching that much easier. it's seriously a one-stop shop for anything and everything you could imagine, from DIY projects, recipes, fashion, celebrities, and just all around pretty images. i am constantly searching and browsing and pinning, sometimes inevitably for hours on end (you can follow me here

a lot of times i'll go to pinterest when i want inspiration for a project i'm working on, or when i want ideas for a new project. this week, i'm searching for the perfect design for this little guy that i've been dying to get on my desk at work:

it definitely needs to be prettied up. here are some of the pins that i've been eyeing for some inspiration--now i just have to choose!

love the neon...

scrapbook paper and modge podge never let me down...

but something about this au naturale look speaks to me

thoughts?! i'd love to hear your ideas!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

productive surroundings

i've been thinking a lot lately about how much your job and the environment that you work in impacts your life. i think it is safe to say that high stress jobs or workplaces usually lead to highly stressed people, while more relaxed working environments have a similar effect. all jobs, however, are going to have stressful moments, days, months, and no matter how calm cool and collected your outlook (or office space) may be, we're only human and those emotions are going to take over at some point or another. when i was in college i would dream about the day that i would have my own classroom and how perfect it would be. in this fantasy world i was always organized, with students eager to learn, an impeccably adorable wardrobe that would earn me the reputation of best dressed educator, and an endless supply of awesome lessons that would keep 'em coming back for more. i always knew that it would never be that simple or glamourous, but just thinking about the ideals always made me feel more calm, and in some ways it gave me motivation to achieve such perfection.

life has taken me down a much different path than what i ever had imagined, and i find myself drifting farther and farther away from being able to even fantasize about what my perfect job would look like. it's almost as though some form of contentment with stagnation is creeping into me and i can't quite fight it. don't get me wrong, i feel very fortunate to be in the place that i am right now -- i have a good job (heck, these days even just having a job, let alone a decently paying one, is a blessing) that allows me to live life pretty comfortably and has opened my eyes to more opportunities than i would have ever even known about. but there is always that thought in the back of my mind that says 'what are you missing out on?' what if i've lost my chance to have that dream, that fantasy of an adorable life in a job i love, like the ones portrayed on tv and in movies (read: Jess from New Girl...she is who i used to dream about becoming)? but as easy as it is to get sucked into the void of "what if's" and "what else," i have been trying to see the world in a more positive light. sure, my path may not be the one i'd envisioned, but that doesn't mean that it can't lead to somewhere great. it doesn't mean that there isn't something out there waiting for me that is going to feel perfect and wonderful just like i've pictured it. it just means i have to work harder, and be patient, and most importantly, not give up. that last one, that's the stickler...sometimes you have to just keep swimming.

apologies for that novel of word vomit, to make up for it here is a video i can't stop watching, of a place i would love to someday be. cheers!