Oxidized Wood Entertainment Center

I love my husband so very much and for so many different reasons. One of the things I love most is the passion he has for his hobbies. I mentioned in the post about the DVD shelf his obsession with movies and everything that has to do with them. That includes what he watches them through (notice the difference in TV sizes in the pictures below) and how he listens to them.
Back in January he got himself and new sound system. Then this is what my living room looked like: IMG_6936Beautiful, right? He’s really creative in the styling department… If you look over to the left, that speaker is balancing on the arm of that chair. That takes skill, people!
I knew that the current entertainment center wouldn’t work so I went on the hunt for a new one. I thought it would be more fun (and somewhat cheaper) to build one ourselves. I found this tutorial on Pinterest and loved its simplicity and rustic look so I put James and my father-in-law to work.
For the finish I decided to try a steel wool and vinegar stain.

OW Entertainment Center

For this stain you need the following:

OW Entertainment Center7Fill the jar with vinegar and then take a piece of steel wool, break it apart, put it in the jar, and seal it. What is supposed to happen is your steel wool essentially dissolves and you begin to see signs of rust in the jar within a few days. That’s not exactly what happened to mine. The steel wool floated at the top for 3 weeks. I dipped my brush in and tried some on a scrap piece of wood and it still worked so I went with it. As you can see from the picture above, it all eventually dissolved once I started using it. I used this tutorial for the stain and she explains how it all works very well.

Because the top of the table was a different species of wood, it wouldn’t stain as dark as the frame pieces. This is where you can use things like black tea, green tea, and coffee to bring out a certain color in the wood. The black tea made it darker, as you may have already guessed, so it was my ideal choice for brushing on the top and on the inner shelf pieces.  The interesting thing is that the tea doesn’t actually change the wood color until you put the oxidizing solution over it. This may not blow your mind but it does mine! The outside frame pieces didn’t need any help from the tea, all I used was the oxidizing solution.

OW Entertainment Canter5

OW Entertainment Center2It takes about 20 min for it to get this dark. When it’s completely dry, if it’s too dark for your taste, give it a light sanding to even out the color.

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Here’s the living room way back when we first moved in. The shelves are long gone but the entertainment center arrangement pretty much looked like this up until the new speakers came.OW Entertainment Center8 OW Entertainment Center3 OW Entertainment Center4The new piece gives everything a much cleaner look and it somehow makes the living room feel bigger. As you can see, all his speakers (except the sub, not much I could do there) fit nicely into this one space instead of sitting wherever they wouldn’t topple over.

IMG_7137My favorite detail is the criss-crossed sides. It gives it a great dynamic.

IMG_7130I tried to balance out the black as much as possible…

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You’re probably dying to know where the old entertainment center went! I dragged it down to the playroom and filled the boxes with toys, puzzles, blankets, and purses. The colors are perfect for this room. My heart smiles every time I walk by unless it’s a complete disaster which is 85% of the time. In that case I just focus on the curtains and let them warm my heart. IMG_7142

The cool thing about this room is that everything in it had a different purpose or home at one point. I have never bought anything specifically for this room. The desk was my grandmother’s, the curtains from my wedding, the fabric strip wall from a party, the pillows used to be on my couch, the child is even someone else’s! If that’s not the definition of frugal I don’t know what is! OW Entertainment Center6

Industrial Pipe DVD Shelf

Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (6 of 11)Everyone has their “thing”. The thing they could talk about non-stop, spend endless amounts of money on, and feel the urge to show anyone who walks through the door. For me it’s my house and whatever cute new thing I’ve added to it and for my husband it’s movies.
For a long time now his movies have been tucked away in the boxes under the tv and that was just not ok with him. NOT OK! So for christmas I decided to build him a shelf that was functional (for him) yet flowed with the style of the living room (for me).
I had seen industrial pipe shelving on Pinterest and thought that would be an easy way to bring functionality with a simple modern twist that wouldn’t make my living room feel overwhelmed with furniture. I never found a great tutorial for the kind of shelf I was looking for so I decided to wing it and see what happens.
I didn’t get any step-by-step photos so I hope I explain this ok:
Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (8 of 11)For a 2 ft. high shelf that is 6 ft. long you need: 

  • 3 boards (mine were 6 ft. long and 7 in. wide; the perfect size for movies)
  • Wood stain (I used Minwax: Walnut)
  • 10 pipes (mine were 10 in.)
  • 20 floor flanges
  • Screws (make sure they are big enough to not slide through the hole on the flanges but short enough so they won’t poke through the other side of the wood)
  1. The first thing I did was stain my boards. After I did that, I let them dry overnight before attempting to screw the pipes in.
  2. Next thing I did was position where I would want my pipe legs to go. I did two pipes on each end for extra support and just one in the middle (per level).
  3. Once you have your pipes placed where you want them, take them apart and screw in your first set of flanges. Once those are in, you can screw the pipes back in them (as tight as you possibly can) and then twist the next set of flanges on the tops of those pipes.
  4. Put your middle board on the ground and flip the board and pipes you just put together over and screw them down to the middle board.
  5. Repeat this process with the next level but be sure to match up the pipes exactly.

Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (10 of 11)Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (11 of 11) Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (4 of 11)Then you just have to fill it with movies, style the top, and this simple project is complete! Industrial Pipe DVD Shelf

Geometric Accent Wall

Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (1 of 5)4This week I finally pulled the trigger and painted an accent wall in my entryway. I wanted something that added dimension but wasn’t too crazy since it’s a smaller space. When I found this tutorial on Vintage Revivals I knew this was it!
All it requires is a straight edge and a Sharpie paint pen. It has to be a paint pen and it must be water-based. If you get oil-based you’ll have to primer before ever painting over it again. I found these on Amazon.

Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (5 of 5)Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (4 of 5)1Step 1: Draw the horizontal lines. I measured my wall from top to bottom and divided that number by 5. So for my wall, I drew a line with a pencil every 18.5 in. (be sure to use a level)
Step 2: Decide how big you want your triangles. I made my base 12 inches.
Step 3: Pick the side of the wall you want to start on. Once you’ve picked, at the start of each horizontal line you will alternate marking 12 inches and 6 inches going down your wall (vertically). After you have your starting points, you then can just mark every 12 inches across your horizontal line until you get to the other end.
I really hope that makes sense…

Then you will just take your straightedge and connect the dots!

Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (2 of 5)3*TIP: Don’t go over your horizontal lines with the paint pen until after you’ve connected the dots. Otherwise you will cover up the dots that you measured out. Geometric Accent Wall. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (3 of 5)2This project was surprisingly fast; I got it done in less than 2 hours. But obviously, if you have a bigger wall it will take longer.

My plan now is to add hooks on the wall as well as a mirror and bench. My goal is to have a more organized space where the kids I watch can hang their coats and store their shoes instead of piling it on the floor.

Here is kind of what I have in mind:

Entryway Board2

Favorite Posts From This Year

At this point last year, I was stuck at home with a husband in a neck brace about to pull my hair out because I hadn’t left my house in a week. I was the epitome of going stir crazy. That’s when this whole idea of a blog started. I was craving a creative outlet; something that challenged me and kept me on my toes.
With it being Christmas break again, the memories come flooding back of my afternoons wallowing on the living room floor (yes, I literally rolled around on the floor out of boredom) trying to think of something to do and yearning for a sense of accomplishment. A year later as I look back through this journey to my very first post, that is exactly what I feel; accomplished.

I went through and compiled a list of ten of my favorite blog posts from this year. Each picture has a link to that post so you can go back and take a look for yourself.

Favorite Posts of 2014_5

Favorite Finds of 2014_2

Favorite Posts of 2014_8

Favorite Posts of 2014_4

 

FAVORITE POSTS OF 2014_9

 

Favorite Posts of 2014_3

 

Favorite Posts of 2014 Favorite Posts of 2014_6 Favorite Posts of 2014_7 FAVORITE POSTS OF 2014_10

 

Which post was your favorite? Leave a comment below!

DIY Animal Pillows

DIY Animal Pillows. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (1 of 6I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! I’ve been dying to share this tutorial with you guys but since these were gifts for the little ones in my life, I wanted to keep them a surprise until after they were opened.

I can now scratch one more thing off my bucket list; I have learned to sew! I received a sewing machine for my birthday in May but it took me up until now to lean how to use it. And of course as soon as I learn, I decide it would be a good idea to make all my nieces and nephews their christmas presents this year. Seems logical, right?
For awhile I wondered what on earth I was thinking but I can now say that I am very proud of myself and kind of wish I could keep all these pillows for myself…
I made 3 different versions of the same type of pillow; An owl, fox, and monster. I looked around on Pinterest and compiled different features of several DIY animal pillows and kind of made my own version.
Here’s what you need:

DIY Animal Pillow. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog4

For all the pillows I cut out the same body shape. I didn’t use a pattern, I just used a piece of chalk and traced out a shape I liked. The only thing I would do differently next time is make the ears fatter.

DIY Animal Pillow. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog1The Monster:

– Cut out the body shapes
– Cut out 2 different size circles out of the white felt for the whites of the eyes
– Cut 2 different size circles out the the black felt for the pupils
– Using the white felt, cut 2 small triangles and 2 large for the teeth
– Once everything is cut out, arrange it on the body how you like it
– Glue each piece down with fabric glue so it doesn’t move when you sew it on
– In your sewing machine, sew each piece along the edge of the shape
– I hand stitched the black part of the eyes but if you are more talented with the sewing machine than I, go for it!
– Lay your face face down on the second piece of the body and pin it around the edge
– Sew around the edge leaving a small gap at the bottom where you can pull the pillow right side out
– Once your pillow is turned right side out, begin the stuffing process. Make sure you get it up in the ears
-After its stuffed, hand stitch a blind stitch at the small opening to close it up

DIY Animal Pillows. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (3 of 6)

DIY Animal Pillow. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog2The Owl:

– Cut out the body shapes
– Cut 2 round circles out of white fleece (same size)
– Cut 2 smaller round circles out of black felt
– With yellow felt, cut out a beak
– With grey felt (or with white fleece) cut out half oval wings
– Once everything is cut out, arrange it on the body how you like it
– Glue each piece down with fabric glue so it doesn’t move when you sew it on
– In your sewing machine, sew each piece along the edge of the shape
– I hand stitched the black part of the eyes but if you are more talented with the sewing machine than I, go for it!
– Lay your face face down on the second piece of the body and pin it around the edge
– Sew around the edge leaving a small gap at the bottom where you can pull the pillow right side out
– Once your pillow is turned right side out, begin the stuffing process. Make sure you get it up in the ears
-After its stuffed, hand stitch a blind stitch at the small opening to close it up

DIY Animal Pillows. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (4 of 6)

DIY Animal Pillow. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog3The Fox:

– Cut out 3 big black circles for the eyes and nose
– Out the white fleece cut out a circle with a flat bottom for the belly
– Cut out a “fox-stache” out the white fleece (again, I just used chalk and free handed this until I felt it was the right shape
– Once everything is cut out, arrange it on the body how you like it
– Glue each piece down with fabric glue so it doesn’t move when you sew it on
– In your sewing machine, sew each piece along the edge of the shape
– I hand stitched the black part of the eyes but if you are more talented with the sewing machine than I, go for it!
– Lay your face face down on the second piece of the body and pin it around the edge
– Sew around the edge leaving a small gap at the bottom where you can pull the pillow right side out
– Once your pillow is turned right side out, begin the stuffing process. Make sure you get it up in the ears
-After its stuffed, hand stitch a blind stitch at the small opening to close it up

DIY Animal Pillows. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (5 of 6)

DIY Animal Pillows. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (6 of 6)

I seriously could not be happier with how they turned out! They were so simple to make that I’m trying to think of all the different ways I could change these up for future gifts!

Creative Gift Wrap

Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (1 of 9)Last christmas I made one of the best purchases of my life. A giant roll of brown kraft paper.  I can’t even begin to list all of the things I’ve used this paper for because I could go on and on but the last two years I have used it for all of my christmas wrapping. The reason I love it so much is because of the blank canvas it provides for me to be creative with each gift I wrap. It’s a fun challenge trying to think of something different for each present.
Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (9 of 9)These are just a few different things I use to spruce up my brown packages. Yarn, fabric, twine, paper, and washi tape are things you probably already have laying around the house.
Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (8 of 9) Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (7 of 9)Here is one way I like to use the yarn that is different from the traditional bow you see on presents. Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (6 of 9)For a more elegant look, you could add some gold spray painted tree trimmings. Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (5 of 9) These gold paper polka dots were previously used as confetti but I taped some to the top of this gift and now it’s one of my favorites!  Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (4 of 9) Here I used small strips of fabric and tied them together into one long piece to make a bow. Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (3 of 9)For the name tags I layered gold and white cardstock. You can use any color paper you want and cut it into any shape your heart desires. Creative Gift Wrap. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (2 of 9)These are just a few ways you can stretch yourself creatively and take your gift wrapping to the next level at the same time. Those are the best projects!

What are some creative ways you like to wrap your gifts?

DIY: Half Painted Door

Half Painted Door. Playroom. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (3 of 7)Wow, its been a long time since I’ve posted a DIY project so I’m excited to share this one with you guys! I saw this idea on A Beautiful Mess and thought it would be a bold and easy statement to add to the play room.
I first taped off the area I wanted painted and enlisted one of the children I babysit to wipe the door down, as you can see. I swear she wanted to help.
Half Painted Door. Playroom. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (1 of 7)

With some extra paint I had on hand I painted two coats of mint green to the door and then it was done!
Half Painted Door. Playroom. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (3 of 7) Half Painted Door. Playroom. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (6 of 7) Half Painted Door. Playroom. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (5 of 7)2Half Painted Door. Playroom. She Loves Happy Lifestyle Blog (1 of 1)