Coffee Bar = Best space in the house!

I finally finished it, ya’ll! I can’t stop admiring it and now I wonder how I’ve ever lived without it! If you’re a coffee lover I definitely recommend making a coffee bar in your own home. Even if you have limited space (as I do) it’s likely you can make it work. Mine occupies the smallest corner of the dining room which has otherwise been empty since most functional pieces of furniture would never fit. I had a large-ish palm there for a little while but I think this is such a better use of space!

This project made me feel a bit like Dr. Frankenstein and you’re about to see why. I was never able to find the perfect piece to make-over (one that fit in my budget, that is) so I had to mix and match to get what I wanted.

Here’s what I started out with. Two small (very small) silver cabinets about a foot wide each and 1 and half feet tall for $15. The little shelf I got on a garbage digging excursion (but it’s not part of this project) and the white cabinet was $5.

I took the little feet off the two silver cabinets and busted out the jigsaw. I had to eliminate the overhang of the trim around the top and bottom.

Now, here is where the Frankenstein comes in. Using some scrap plywood I retrieved from someone’s curbside donation pile (better?) I cut a piece in the size of the bottoms of the two cabinets side by side and then glued and screwed them to it. I then used a metal bracket on the back top edge to stabilize the two together and filled the gap with a healthy dose of wood filler.

 

I basically made a box out of plywood for the two to sit on and then used wood filler again to smooth out the areas where the cabinets attach to the plywood. I also reattached the feet to the bottom and I had to turn around one of the doors since they were originally facing in the same direction.

I sanded and painted it and voila!

The white cabinet I simply used as is and hung it on the wall above. Actually, all of the knobs were shiny silver so I spray painted them to look brushed.

Best little corner of the house!

After all that, a cappuccino was in order 🙂

Like I said, I recommend this for anyone that appreciates a good cup of joe. It would be a much simpler project if you have an old chest or dresser that you could revamp and maybe do some simple open shelving on the wall with hooks to hang your cups. The possibilities are endless!

I am way behind on my checklist for make-over completion and I have only a week to get it done! Here is what I have left (in no particular order)

  • Buffet
  • Window covering
  • Artwork
  • Table extension
  • Chair redos
  • Stool redos (plus I need to find one more)
  • Rug
  • Apron holder
  • New menu board (in progress)
  • Chandelier revamp

YIKES! This is list is frighteningly long! Anyone want to volunteer to help?

The chandy, rug, apron holder and window covering are lower priority but I haven’t given up yet. I still have hope that I can finish all of this so please join me in my fantasy world and try to keep up because I’ll be moving at warp speed this week. Thank goodness my coffee bar is done; I see lots of espresso shots and abnormally large pots of coffee in my immediate future!

Have a fantastic Sunday and GO COWBOYS!

DIY Lamp from Vase

I am in super scramble mode as Thanksgiving is sneaking up on me a bit quicker than I thought it would. My brother and his girlfriend will be here on the 19th so that is my deadline to have my dining room make-over completed. YIKES! With less than two weeks left I have a TON of work to do still but (fingers crossed) I think I can get it done.

While I wait for paint to dry on other projects I decided to tackle a project I’ve wanted to do for a while. It was surprisingly quick and easy! I had heard that you can drill holes into glass using a carbide bit and knew exactly what I was going to do. A few years ago my sister gave me two large sea foam colored glass vases (which she got from Ross more than 5 years ago for $9 each) and I’ve always thought they would make great lamps. In addition to that, I came across some FREE drum style lamp shades that I’ve been dying to make use of. With the help of a carbide drill bit and lamp kit from Lowe’s I am now the proud owner of a self-made $30 lamp…and I love it!

Please excuse the terrible iPhone pics!

I like that it’s a bit worn and it’s transparent enough that you can see the cord a bit but you could always paint it. Spray paint on the outside for a matte finish or use watered down paint on the inside for a glossy look.

I plan on converting the other vase just the same and these two handsome guys will make their new home in my dining room when the new buffet is done (should be ready this weekend!).

Here are the simple steps.

Vase

tape an x in the spot where you want the hole and slowly drill, spritzing with water often to keep everything from over heating. You will need to go MUCH slower than you would if you were just drilling a hole into wood. This is going to take time and patience!

see the hole??

now rinse it out and let it dry THOROUGHLY (the hard part)

follow the directions on the lamp kit and attach your lamp shade!

This vase had a ball shaped lid with cork so I just removed the ball and used the cork as a way to hold the bulb housing in place. You could always just buy a chunk of cork and cut it to size.

Love!

It’s very likely that my coffee bar will be ready for sharing tomorrow (that’s the goal anyway) so stay tuned!

Turn a Lined Skirt Into a Dress

 

My Grandma gave me this skirt she found at a thrift store. It’s an Old Navy skirt that looks brand new since there is no fading at all. It was a little too big and an unflattering length but it had a great coral lining and I knew I could do something with it. Here’s how I turned it into a dress.

 

1. Turn the skirt inside-out and separate from the lining with the lining inside-out as well. Determine how wide you want your neckline, mark the middle point of the bottom edge of the lining (which will become the shoulders and neck) then measure out your neckline evenly centered. Pin and sew each edge up to neckline marks backing over beginning and ending stitches to secure.

2. Figure out how big you want your armhole to be and measure down from shoulder seam then cut the outer seam off creating an opening. I finished my armhole by just doing a zig zag stitch along the edge but you could fold over and hem if you like.

 

3. Measure a straight line down from your middle mark and cut in from top to open up the neckline (cut only on the front of the dress).

4. Zig zag stitch along the raw edges or hem.

 

5. & 6. I added a personalized tag by using a t-shirt transfer and  ironing directly onto the inside of the dress.

 

7. Measure and mark the desired hemline and cut.

8. Finish the edge as you have done the others and you’re done! (by the way, I lightly ironed my “collar” outward to achieve the look in the final picture)

 

 

Slacks to Skirt Refashion

Like I said yesterday, this is my favorite of the refashions so far and I wore it only for about three hours and got tons of compliments. It was fun to be at such a beautiful event where I know people wear their best and every time someone tells me “You look gorgeous! Love the dress!” I just snicker to myself knowing that I made this 🙂 …from hideous over-sized MC Hammer-like way-too-pleated $2 slacks from Goodwill!

This really could not be more simple. Grab some slacks from a second-hand store (or your dad, grandpa, husband’s closet). Mine were actually women’s pants which is really not necessary. All that matters is that you like the material.

Turn them inside out and fold them in half. Making sure all of the fabric is straight and the legs are lined up. Pull the crotch out so it looks like the picture below. Using a ruler and tailor’s chalk mark a line straight down from just below the end of the zipper to wherever that straight line lands at the edge of the pant leg.

Now measure how long you want your skirt and add an inch then mark with your chalk and ruler.

These are your cut marks. Make sure the cut up near the crotch is as straight as possible.

Now, open it up and fold in half like you’re going to iron a crease. This will give you two open sides which will end up the middle front and middle back seams of the skirt. Pin down these sides and sew together.

IF the pants previously fit in the waist then all you have left to do is hem the bottom.

For me, my pants were not just too big in the waist but they were waaaay to big through the hips (did you see all that pleating?) and thighs.

I also wanted a curvy shape that tapered at the bottom but had plenty of room in the hips. So I just sewed from the top of the waistband down to the bottom in the shape I wanted.

I didn’t get any pictures of this step but I did a little drawing for your amusement (and clarification). Red is the sew line. As you can see, I had to sew the pockets closed, which I’m still not very happy about but, trying to keep them and get this thing to fit properly would have required more time than I had available (I made it at midnight a couple of days before the wedding).

There you have it, folks. In case you were wondering, yes, I made the bodice as well. It wasn’t a refashion but it was made from clearance fabric 🙂 . It’s a bit more complicated as it’s completely fitted with seam shapes I’ve never attempted before but, it turned out as I wanted. One day, I will share with you how I did it.

Also, the earrings, made those too 🙂 tutorial is coming soon.

And for those of you that are interested the bag is vintage (it was my mom’s) and the shoes are my newest obsession. Vera Wang (got em 60% off though!). I got a ton of complements on these too. Can you see why?

 

 

Thrifted Blouse to Simple Summer Bag

I’m loving this bag! Oddly, it seems to go well with a lot of things I own. I guess because I tend to go for neutrals but, it’s great because this adds a little lot of color and interest to anything I wear it with. My favorite thing about this bag is that you use the buttons of the shirt to open and close it. It’s not as fast as a zipper or a snap but it’s a cute and unique detail.

I’m proud to say that I snagged this blouse at my favorite thrift store for only $1.50. I wasn’t sure what I would do with it but I loved the colors and couldn’t pass it up at that price.

I didn’t do a lining or pockets because I wanted this to be extremely simple and I didn’t want to stiffen it by adding an extra layer fabric. I like the way it slouches due to the blousy fabric.

Here’s what you need to make one:

Large colorful blouse

Scissors & pins

Sewing matching and thread

  1. Cut off the shirt across the armpits and along the side seams.
  2. Fold in half, side seams meeting and right sides facing in. Pin and sew. I recommend a straight stitch about a 1/4 inch in and then go back and zig zag stitch along the edge to prevent fraying.
  3. Cut a strip of fabric from the back panel of the shirt about 20 inches long and 8 inches wide.
  4. Fold in half lengthwise with right sides facing. Pin and sew along long edge.
  5. Turn strap inside out and gather (pleat) the ends. Sew across pleats to hold in place.
  6. Unbutton and put the ends of the strap at each of the top corners lining up the stitches you just made on the ends of the straps with the point where you will sew up the sides. I twisted my strap for interest.
  7. Line up the corners and sides then pin in place making sure you keep your straps correctly lined up.
  8. Sew along the edges about 1/4 inch in from sides then zig zag stitch to prevent fraying.

That’s it! Easy, huh?

Don’t forget to check back tomorrow for another thrift store find refashion. Tomorrow’s is BY FAR my favorite! I wore it to a wedding last weekend and got a thousand (give or take 😉 )complements!