Thursday, April 25, 2013

Quick and Easy Upholstery!

BEFORE:                                                                              AFTER:

When I saw this idea from "Four Generations One Roof" on Pinterest I was excited because my rocking chair was waiting for just such a solution!  This is such a great idea to staple new fabric right over the old chair.  Why pull out millions of little staples and remove the old fabric?  You can basically skip the tedious and boring part of upholstery!  Yeah!

You can see Jessica's full tutorial here - I highly recommend checking it out!

So I have had this rocking chair from Pottery Barn for 10 years now and I was tired of the yellow slipcover it came with.  The chair is still in great shape so I figured I would have to get a new custom slipcover made, which can be pricey but I was not about to attempt sewing one myself.  When I came across this idea on Pinterest I was a little worried about ruining such a nice chair but figured it was worth a shot- if it didn't work out, I could still have a slipcover made.  I gotta say I am surprised by how good this turned out - especially since it only took a couple hours to do!  Total cost was just the price of the fabric (you need about 7 yards of 45" wide or 5 3/4 yards for the wider 54" rolls) - this fabric was on sale at Hancock Fabrics for about $80 (for 5 yards).

As the tutorial suggests I started by covering the front of the arms and the sides of the chair first.  I used a staple gun connected to an air compressor, that way the staples are very small and yet very sturdy.  I stapled right into the fabric and hoped it would catch some of the wood frame underneath - sometimes it didn't and I just pulled those staples out.  As you can see, it made a bit of an ugly "pucker" around the staples but I knew that would end up being covered with more fabric.

Next you fold your fabric along the edges for a nice finish (this covers up your ugly staples underneath).  The arm fabric gets stapled just under the rolled edge of the arm where you can't really see the staples.

Before stapling the back, I attached the fabric to the sides of the chair, then continued wrapping the back fabric all the way to the bottom of the chair where the staples are hidden.  I didn't take a ton of pictures of the process because it is already very well detailed and explained in the tutorial - sorry! :) 

 The Finished Product!  It ends up looking very much like a custom slipcover!
I cheated and just tucked some fabric around the seat cushion for now - I will have to resort to some sewing to get that part done (or I may just pay someone to do that so that it turns out nice!).  I figure one small cushion cover should be cheap to hire out?

Here you can see the small staples hidden under the roll of the arm (below is a more zoomed in view).  I also did staple the fabric in a "visible" area going down the side of the leg but I think it's still not too noticeable from the front - the staples really are so small.  I realized later I probably should have used fabric glue to hold down the areas that are more visible and staples for the areas that are hidden.  Next time!

For just the price of fabric and only 2 hours of my time - I am a happy girl (and ready to do it again, I already have my next subject! *UPDATE: to see how that turned out click here)

Now I can finally say the Nursery is done (too bad my baby is 9 months old now!).

*UPDATE: Click Here and Here to see more chairs I reupholstered using this same technique!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Pinterest Experiments - April 2013

Banana Tres Leches Cake    WOW!!!  This cake is really great - sits like a brick, very dense, but really good.  My favorite part was the warm banana topping - make plenty of that because you'll want one in every bite!  I froze half the cake (without the topping) and was able to whip up some more topping and eat it a couple weeks later which was nice.  I definitely recommend this one!  (Pinterest Link Here)

Amish Friendship Bread  - This was a great recipe since it doesn't require days of work (like the original Amish Friendship Bread).  This recipe gets a great result in one day with No Kneading!  I liked the suggestion of one lady on the blog to replace half the butter with apple sauce.  I plan to use "chunky applesauce" next time I make it so that there are chunks of apples in the bread - YUM.  The only other suggestion I would make is that I like a good sugar crust on top so rather than swirling with a knife at the very end, I think next time I will swirl it just before adding the last bit of sugar topping!  Another great recipe I recommend!  (Pinterest Link Here)

Mongolian Beef  Loved this one too!  Great flavors and really quite easy!  After cutting up my flank steak, I cooked half of it for dinner and froze the rest for later.  After eating we still had a lot of sauce leftover and I couldn't bring myself to throw it out -so I froze that too.  That was a couple months ago.  Last night I pulled the steak and sauce out of the freezer and cooked it up.  It was delicious all over again without much effort at all!  The only change I made was to add fresh green beans to the sauce, it tasted great and I'm sure other veggies would too!  Thumbs up!  (Pinterest Link Here)

Funeral Sandwiches.  Time for a Thumbs Down?  Sorry if you have tried these and liked them but I am not a fan.  I can see why they are called Funeral Sandwiches - because if they don't give you a heart attack they will certainly depress you!  Actually they aren't bad, I just hate to eat something that is loaded with fat and not have it taste Amazing!  Personally I think they are a waste of your daily calories.
(Pinterest Link Here)

Croques Monsieur.  These babies on the other hand, are loaded with fat and I was perfectly ok with it.  I couldn't believe how good they were and I loved every bit of them!  My kids thought they had died and gone to heaven.  AMAZING!  I will probably only make them a couple times a year but that will just add to their allure!  Be careful with your broiler - you don't want to go to all that work only to have them burn at the very end.    (Pinterest Link Here)

See why I need to work out 4x a week!  

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Lifting Weight to Loose Weight

This post is not about me bragging - quite the contrary.   This is way out of my comfort zone and embarrassing for me to share something so personal - but, I promised I would!  I told you in a post 6 months ago that I wanted to loose 15 pounds.  I did it and here is the proof!  Honestly 6 months is longer than I expected - but hey I'm just glad it happened and I can wear all my pre-pregnancy clothes again.  I didn't do anything extreme, just steadily kept at my routine and steadily lost the weight.  It was definitely not a "quick fix" but as a result I know this weight is gone for good!  My hope in posting these less than flattering pictures is simply to show you the proof and hopefully encourage you to get healthy too!

BEFORE                                                                                       AFTER



I explained my weight lifting workout routine in this post, so go there for more information.  If you already workout regularly and are unhappy with the results - I STRONGLY recommend that you try weight lifting!  For anyone else out there that currently doesn't work out at all and you are encouraged to give this a try please do - It Works!  
Years ago when I was at my biggest size I told myself to just be happy with who I was and content.  I told myself that I should just accept the fact that I was older, my metabolism had changed, I had been pregnant a couple times, and this was just how my body was going to look for the rest of my life.  The first time I lost this much weight I couldn't believe that it was possible and I had been selling myself short.  Now I know THIS is the real me.  The other (larger) version was not living a healthy lifestyle and was lying to herself about it.
I would love to hear if any of you out there were encouraged by my previous weight lifting post and gave it a shot!  Please share if you are enjoying weight lifting or seeing some positive results!  It would make posting these pictures on the internet a little less painful for me :)

Now let's get back to decorating!