Okay, our garage is really full right now…

…but it’s filled with goodness!

Over the past two weeks, we’ve had some great luck with Craig’s List and thrift stores. We also finally hit up Habitat for Humanity’s Restore (the one in Austin is the original one, did you know that?) and was amazed at all the stuff in there.

First up, my favorite find – a dresser for the nursery!

We found this dresser at our favorite thrift store, Next to New (where we found our campaign nightstands). I saw it tucked away in a crowded area in the store and thought it would be too expensive. I pointed it out to Nick and he checked the price – it was around $225. Yeah, too expensive.

But the dresser had been there for weeks now and the price had dropped down to $56! We snatched that baby right up.

Finally… after months of looking on Craig’s List and sellers who never responded or sold their dresser after promising it to me and saying “sorry” to me when I knocked on their door, we now have an awesome dresser for the nursery! And this is more beautiful than any other dresser that I looked at, and at a better price. It was meant to be!

I’m not sure what our plans are for the dresser, so we’ll drag it up to the nursery soon and let it marinate for a while before we decide anything.

Oh – you noticed the missing drawer?

So sad. The dresser tilted over in the truck while we were driving it home, and this broke. But we’ll fix it, no worries.

The dresser also came with this mirror:

I’m not sure what we’ll do with it. Any ideas?

At the Restore, we looked for cabinets for our laundry room. This is what we bought:

We also bought a third matching cabinet – it’s not pictured here. These cabinets will probably require a lot of work – paint stripping, sanding, and painting. But it will be worth it in the end, especially for the low price ($55 for all three cabinets) we paid! I’m so sick of our little shelf that our towels and stuff always fall off, especially when Tala’s hanging out there.

The cabinets might end up a dark gray with the walls a light blue… Not 100% sure yet.

What else? I got this funky cabinet/side table at Goodwill:

It’s not real wood, so we’ll definitely be painting that sucker. Perhaps something other than white… maybe turquoise? It depends on what we’ll use it for – we could use it as a bar cabinet in our dining room or as an entry table. It has a little shelf that could be great for storing wine bottles or shoes, so we have options.

We also got nightstands for our guest room via Craig’s List:

I like the detail down the middle – with paint and new pulls, they will be looking snazzy in no time.

Okay, that’s the end of our thrifting spree! We have a lot of work ahead us in refinishing all these pieces, but right now I’m just giddy with the possibilities.

Can you tell I’m in a good mood?


The Little Side Table That Could

This poor side table has gone through a lot of changes.

We got it through Craig’s List for a measly 7 bucks and we planned to use it as a side table for our orange-gray guest bedroom. I dreamed about silver-leafing it and giving it a glass knob.

Then came the little baby in my belly, so we changed our plans and turned the guest room into a nursery. I planned to leave the side table there to hold a lamp. I dreamed about painting it black and painting gold borders on it.

But then I realized that it had a total of SIX very sharp corners. The little alien in my stomach is very active – I think it’s going to be a soccer player. I can just imagine his/her little body running around as a two-year-old and getting one of the sharp corners right in the eye. Ouch.

So it got relocated to the blue guest room downstairs. This time, I didn’t have lofty dreams for the side table. Since the walls were so saturated, I thought about just painting it a simple white.

Can you guess what happened next? We realized that our dresser wouldn’t fit in the room, so we needed space for guests to put their clothes. The little side table wouldn’t hold much – we’re currently on the search for nightstands that have at least three dressers.

The homeless little side table sat and waited for us to find a new place for it. We realized that we needed side tables for our game room, so that was where it would go. Finally!

After we painted our game room a dark gray, we decided a light gray color would work for the little side table, since an ultra-white table wouldn’t look good next to our cream-colored sectional sofa.

First, we had to clean the little side table – it had been sitting in the garage for far too long. The little side table felt happy – it had a home! It was finally getting some attention and TLC!

We filled in the weird slats with wood putty to modernize it a bit.

Then we attacked it with two coats of primer and two coats of light gray. A turquoise knob was purchased and drilled in.

We put it next to the sectional sofa and stood back. The little side table knew that it was homeless once again. It just didn’t belong. The colors weren’t right and the size was off.

But we were determined to find it a home. We tried it out in the office, since our other table wobbled hard when we used our printer. We put the printer on top and it was a perfect fit!

We should have been done, but we weren’t. I stared at it everyday and felt that it wasn’t living to its potential. Something was missing. It was too plain. If you glanced around the room, you wouldn’t even notice the little side table that held the printer with strength and determination. It needed… something.

When I was using all of my different shades of tester gray paint to decide the ceiling color for our green bathroom, I looked at one of the little bottles and realized that I could use it to jazz up the little side table.

With a little green tape and some freehand outlining with a silver colored pencil, the little side table finally looked beautiful. I love it, and I hope that it knows just how pretty and useful it is now.

I think it does.

Paint It Yourself: Part 2

We’ve been checking out the free ads on Craig’s List lately and we’ve gotten a couple of good stuff, including these picture frames:

Awesome. See how big they are – compare their size with the spray paint canisters on the left.

I feel even more motivated to DIY some art for all the blank walls in the house. I’ve rounded up some DIY art ideas in this post, but since then I’ve filled away many more ideas instead of actually doing anything. Well, now that we have all these frames, I’m gonna seriously get started soon. Soon-ish. No, really soon! It’s summer vacation and I have no more excuses.

Some more DIY art ideas for me and you:

You really can’t go wrong with anything chevron, and DIY art is no exception. I really enjoy this art and it could be easy to make. Measure and draw vertical lines all over your canvas and then just paint on the chevron stripes with several different colors. Limit it to 5-6 colors so it all works together. Photo via Molly Loot.

Want something even simpler?

Paint a canvas with your favorite color and then get a paint marker and make lines with your ruler. It doesn’t get any simpler than this!! Photo via Lonny.

Prefer something more colorful?

There are a couple of methods that you could try in order to DIY this. You could make a stencil and paint the diamond shape (or any other shape you want) over and over again with different colors. Or you could cut out a shape in some foam (like McLaura did for her DIY rug) and use it like a stamp. OR you could just use painter’s tape. Whatever method you use, be sure to allow for drying time. Photo via Made by Girl.

Do you like shapes, but not too much color?

Choose a 3-D shape that you like and create it with black paint, black marker, or even thin black tape. You could have some fun with Japanese tape – there are so many different designs and colors out there! (Psst – see the white fringe on this sofa? I think this really could work for our game room sofa!) Photo via Design Crisis.

Perhaps you prefer meaningful words over meaningless shapes?

Write or paint your favorite quote across three (or two or five or 20) canvases. I recently read this Swedish proverb that I just love: “Shared joy is double joy. Shared sorrow is half sorrow.” Photo via… no idea. 😦

OK, I’m definitely inspired now and will be off to the store this weekend to get myself some art supplies and get started. Before using our new free frames, however, I need to fill in the frames in the living room. They have been looking at me with their sad eyes and asking me when I will make them pretty. I saw a great piece of art at an Anthropologie store that I fell in love with… so I will try to recreate that. More on that later!!

Make a wish on this star…

Behold – another Craig’s List find!

But we cannot claim any credit for this find, other than actually driving to the location and purchasing it. It’s all thanks to the awesome blog Design Crisis (written by Craig’s List queens Erin and Karly).

They live in Austin, so I always enjoy reading their CL finds. A few weeks ago, I saw this post: Austin Craigslist, Cheapskate Edition. I fell in love with the star light on their list and eagerly clicked over to the CL ad. However, the link didn’t work, so I wrote them a comment asking for the weblink. They sweetly sent me an email with the link… and that led us to a cool little house with a cool little dog and this cool big star light!

Nick installs all the lights in this house, so he naturally installed this one. But his method was a bit different this time around:

Yes, he’s standing on a chair that’s dangerously balanced on the bed. I wonder if mom slept with dents in the mattress that night? Sigh.

Well, what’s important is that it’s installed and I love it so much that I want to put it in a room where I’m in more often so I can enjoy it more! The guest bedroom is off to a great start.

Ignore everything else in the room – we need to start working in that room sometime soon, but I’d prefer to focus on the nursery first. It’s OK for now for guests, but I just love how that light makes the room look 34 times better.

The best thing about the light? The shadows that it creates at night:

Sectional Sofa Dreams Answered by Craig

Know what? Nick is now addicted to Craig’s List and does MORE searching than me! How did that happen?? He’s even more successful than me… and I love it!

He found this sweet sectional sofa for $200!

This sofa is great – it’s comfortable, it’s pretty, and did I say it was only $200?

I enjoy the chevron pattern on it. I’ve been meaning to bring in some chevron in this house, but Nick did it for me. Awesome.

What’s more, the sofa is Drexel – solid, solid construction and will last a long time.

The sofa isn’t perfect, though:

I plan to add some trim to the sofa to cover up the imperfections. I checked out M & J Trimmings and here are our four top choices:

1, 2, 3, 4.

Now that I’ve gotten the trim search out of my system, I’ll probably just wait until we’ve got the rug and the art and the pillows in place before deciding on the trim. My mom suggested nail heads, which could be another cool option. Do you know of other stores where we can check out more trim choices at reasonable prices?

Just for fun, I considered a fringe trim for a hot second:

Wouldn’t this trim be so much fun? I remember seeing a great sofa with a crazy fringe in a magazine or online a little while ago – do you remember?? If so, please tell me where I can find it! I wouldn’t really put a fringe on this sofa, but it’s fun to think about.

Mirrors, mirrors on the wall.

We recently had a good mirror weekend.

But first, let me rewind to a month ago. I was all set on buying this mirror that I blathered on about in this post:

I went to Lowe’s with the cash burning in my pocket, found the mirror, and then proceeded to stand there staring at the mirror for a full 15 minutes. The mirror stared back at me, looking fat and stout. It needed to go on a diet. It had a pretty face, but it just wouldn’t work in my bathroom.

And I had just came from a thrift store, so I was thinking that the $69+ price tag was a bit high. I thought we COULD find a great mirror for a better price.

Ever since, I’ve been trolling Craig’s List and thrift stores with no luck… until now!

On Saturday, we went to HOMEGOODS (Yes, yes, they finally have one in Austin!) and Nick fell in love. So, we bought this mirror for $30.

It’s simple but the size is perfect and I really like the white outlines on the black mirror. It will go nicely with the stripes, whether we go with horizontal or vertical stripes. (no we have not decided yet) And it’s huge. And it was $30, did I tell you that?

The next day, we were exhausted from our shopping the previous day at Homegoods and other stores. We were on our way to Costco to do some food shopping when we spied the “liquidation sale” sign on a Stein Mart that we never visit.

Liquidation sale? Let’s check it out.

Ka-pow! This mirror, down from $200 to $70. We’ll take it!!

This mirror would work in ANY room in our house, it is really that versatile! We considered it for our dining room, our entryway, our upstairs bathroom (wouldn’t fit), above our bed, and our game room.

But our living room is pretty bare, so it will hang happily between our two windows above our sectional sofa! If we find something to replace it (original art, please?), it’ll definitely easily find another place in our home.

I am also eyeing this great mirror on Craig’s List:

Which reminds me of the mirror in this room:

{via Molly Loot}

I am so tempted! But I think we’ve met our mirror quota for the month.

The presence of a sectional sofa is finally bestowed upon us.

Gray. Soft. Long. High arms and back. Cozy. Unique. Only $400 off Craig’s List. Perfect.

We did not expect to buy a sectional sofa off Craig’s List. We planned to buy a new one, but we just couldn’t find one that we loved. There was one at Room and Board that was a possibility, but there’s no store near us for us to sit in a model and see if we liked it. We considered the Troy sofa at Crate and Barrel, but the colors and fabrics just didn’t work completely right and we weren’t in love. We might have gone with that if we didn’t find this sectional sofa on CL, though.

I just went on CL to check for ceiling light fixtures and decided on a whim to search for “gray sectional sofa” and BOOM there was the listing! We went for it and saw it in person and loved it. The only thing about it is that the cushions might need to be re-stuffed so to make them firmer – we’ll probably do that in a while, but it’s not so bad that it’s a priority. We’re chilling on it right now and it is SO comfy.

Chill, cats. I know you are angry at how blank the walls are, but one thing at a time. Observe – this is what the living room looked like before we got you guys.

Yes. That’s my new mantra. One… Thing… At… A… Time.