The Princess turns 6 today!

I can't believe my baby girl is six! I am so grateful that I have her to be girly-girls with in the middle of our little testosterone-filled world! With three brothers, though, this young lady can definitely hold her own! How I love her!!! Happy Birthday, Princess!!

A wicked sinus infection has me moving a little slower than usual, so look for some fun details of the Princess' Fancy Nancy birthday party, along with some great decorating ideas next week!

And, just in case you all thought I forgot...the winner of the Crowned Heart necklace is...Amy at Beyond Normalcy! Congratulations Amy!!! Drop me an email and we'll set you up with your lovely new necklace!

Have a great weekend!


Still Life~

This lovely vignette is courtesy of Mr. Two.

"The dinosaur go here, Mommy!" he said emphatically, pointing at the side table as I tried to convince him to put the orange plastic monster away with the other toys. "The dinosaur go here!"

Ya know, I just might leave it there. The kid has an eye for design.

Have a lovely Thursday~


Skirting the Issue~

This is the tale of how a little old chair got all dressed up!

Last year the Hubby and I found a pair of antique ladderback chairs being thrown out by the local auction house. Their lines were lovely, but their rush-woven seats had seen better days. As in, one was missing entirely, and the other one...well see for yourself. But they were cute, so we hauled them home, and planned on cutting out and upholstering new seats for them.

We have desperately needed a chair for our piano for a while now. Whenever anyone wants to play, they have to drag over a chair from the kitchen. So the other night as I lay in bed, I had a brainstorm. It is for exactly these reasons that I keep my inspiration notebook by the bed. I jotted down the idea, and knew it would be safe until morning.

So yesterday I went to work. First I tied on some chair cushions- left over from the rocking chair that used to be in the boys' nursery- to make it soft and cushy for the tushy.

I have some old cotton duck PB slipcovers which have served me well, but have seen better days. So I grabbed one of them. The old ladderback was much too tall for the cover, but I didn't let that deter me. I cut a slit in the top and rolled and tucked...it looked good, but something was missing. And being the queen of photo transfers, I had a brainstorm. I printed out a vintage sheet music cover and transferred it onto the seat of the slipcover. Now my pretty ladderback has a nice, new, perfectly shabby skirt. Ain't she purdy?

Don't Forget!!! Today is the last day to enter the drawing for the lovely crowned heart necklace.

Have a lovely Wednesday~


Inspire-Me Tuesday~

I may or may not have mentioned it before, but I have a bit of a love affair with paper. I love stationery of all kinds. I have an obsession with scrapbook paper. I love to create with paper. Paper. Paper. Paper.

The Princess turns 6 on Friday. So we are in the throws of creating a Fancy Nancy birthday party. Normally, being the paper-obsessed person that I am...my favorite part of throwing a party is creating the invitations. SERIOUSLY. One of these days I'll share a few of my creations... But, while browsing in Target, I ran across these darling invitations by Anna Griffin. (The girls can wear them...)

And I did a first a for me. I purchased invitations. But seriously, folks, these little crowns are perfect for Fancy Nancy invites...I admit, I did add a little glitter glue to look like gems, but other than that...perfection.

So, just for fun, I looked up the Anna Griffin website. If you love paper...or fabric...or just eye candy...pop over. And her blog is wonderful too.

Now go forth, inspire, and be inspired.



Bird Brain~

Since the name of my blog is The Shabby Nest I guess it should come as no surprise that I like birds. I guess you could say I have birds on the brain. Here are just a few of the winged creatures that make their home in my nest.

Some of you may remember when I found this real live nest. It looks so sweet in it's little jar next to this darling bird print.
I made this little fella for Christmas, but he is still sitting there in my Sweetheart tree...yeah, I'm leaving it up until the end of the month.

This birdie is in the Princess' room...hanging from her lamp. A toile bird...two of my favorite things in one...

And I found these darling little salt and pepper shakers at Target for only $5.99! I can't wait to use them at a Spring brunch...ooh, and on Easter! They make a lovely addition to my kitchen shelves. (And yes, I noticed that I typed my watermark wrong on the bottom picture of these little birds...I'm clever like that.)

Then today, what should come in the mail? But this beautiful, little, mercury glass bird from sweetheart Shannon over at Bless Our Nest! After reading my "Smitten" post, she saw this little beauty and thought I should have it! What a wonderful surprise! And she wrapped it in...what else?...the same TOILE wrapping paper I framed up for my 10-minute bathroom makeover. Does this girl get me or what? THANKS SHANNON!!!

Have a wonderful weekend~


The Forgotten Room

Our upstairs bathroom is the orphan room in our house. It is slated to get a total remodel, and because we plan to redo it, I have neglected it. As a result, it is one of my least favorite rooms in the entire house...second only to the dungeon basement that is waiting to be finished into our studio/office and family room. But I digress. The Nester is having a "10 minutes to a room you love" party today! And I decided to join in.

Now because I know that this room is going to be done in the next few months (that is me being optimistic) I didn't want to spend a lot of time or a lot of money doing anything to it. I just wanted to enjoy it a little more. So I decided to take the Nester at her word, and see if I could make it more bearable beautiful in just 10 minutes. It actually took me about 15 minutes, but that's close enough in my book. She's good, that Nester. Soooo let me show you what I did.

The one thing I do love about this room is that it is painted a gorgeous shade of blue. And I love the way that pale gray-blue plays off of black and white. So I have been working along that theme.

First, the poor room needed some art. This little project took me all of five minutes to accomplish. Some of you may remember my toile barn star. Well, when the Princess and I cleaned out her room the other day we discovered some more of my toile wrapping paper stuffed in the back of her dresser (her dresser used to be my craft supply station). So I cut out a couple of pieces and framed them up. They look lovely!

I already had the pretty white shower curtains (which are going to be embroidered with a black monogram one day soon), but adding fluffy white towels made the dated white and brass towel bars look much better. (They are going to be replaced with hooks along the lines of what I did in the boys room.)

The toilet paper holder was ripped off the walls by my toddler demolition team months ago, but because the room is going to be redone, I haven't replaced it. Putting the roll of TP in this basket does the trick, and looks cute!

I added a few little things I love - like this little jar of vintage buttons - just to make the room homier.

Bringing in some of the tulips from yesterday's post really helped make the room more pleasant! I just love fresh flowers everywhere...but in unexpected places like a bathroom, they really make a statement! (The tumbler that is holding them used to house our toothbrushes, but I listened to Nester and hid all hygiene products in the cabinets.)

I've shown my bathroom mistreatment before, but here she is again!


Thanks for visiting~


Waiting for spring~

The Hubby gave me these lovely tulips for Valentine's Day. Tulips are my absolute favorite flower. As I look at them sitting on the table, I find myself longing for Spring. This winter has been a fierce one in New England, and this girl just can't wait for some warmer weather!

But the more I look at these little lovelies, the happier I feel. Studies have shown that having fresh flowers in the home is actually a mood elevator and that the flowers act as a stress reliever.

So go buy yourself a few flowers...a few dollars spent to chase away those winter blues isn't such a bad deal!

And while I'm on the subject of spring, I'm getting started on my spring cleaning a little early. I was so inspired by Shannon's pantry organization project, that I quit procrastinating, and finally started organizing my kiddo's rooms!

Lest you think that the Shabby Nest is always spic and span...here is a before photo of the boys' closet/reading nook.
After a good hour or so - and a lot of purging of unused toys and papers etc.-here is the AFTER! Now I'm even inspired to paint the inside of the closet...another project I have been procrastinating! The closet cleaning led to a good thorough clean of the whole room. And then the Princess' room got the same treatment. I'm on a roll! Thanks for the inspiration Shannon!

Edited to add: M.L over the House of Whimsy has a darling post about the Crown Pillow she bought from my Etsy store. Pop over and give her a visit! It's so wonderful to have a happy customer!!!

Have a great Wednesday~


A quick project for the laundry room~

Some of you might remember my laundry room remodel from a few months back. Well, I can't leave well enough alone. I am always tweaking. There are still some things I have on my list to do before the laundry room is "finished" (ha! like that word is really in my decorating vocabulary!) For instance, I would like to add a counter top above the washer and dryer.
But, that is not what I'm going to share today. (Had y'all a little excited to see a new counter didn't I?) Nope. My project for today is much simpler...but it is cute!

I just made me this little sign for the room. Typed up the definition of laundry and printed it out. That's not the fun part of this project. The fun part is the way I hung it up. I just clipped that little sign in a pant hanger and hung it from one of the shelf brackets. How. cute. is. that? So simple, but a great statement for the laundry room!

So run out and grab a pant hanger (I found 4 for $2.50 at the dollar spot at Target), and put up a picture, or a definition like mine, or anything that might make doing laundry a little more bearable!

I also wanted to thank Amy at Down South Musings for this great award!

Have a lovely Monday~


Two LOVE-ly Projects~

I have been a busy girl this week! With Valentine's Day right around the corner, my "spare" time has been filled with LOVE-ly projects.

First of all, the Princess' kindergarten class is having their Valentine's Party on Friday, and they have been requested to wear something Valentines-y. In my book, that is an invitation to create something fun for her to wear. So I tried my hand at applique. A very long time ago, I asked the lovely ladies at Little Birdie Secrets for a tutorial on easy appliques...and they came through for me. So here is the link. It was actually very easy!And I love the results. (So does she...she can't wait to show up at school gettin' her Valentine on!)

Because we are on a budget this year (as everyone seems to be) I was looking for something I could do for the Hubby that wouldn't break the bank. Inspired by a couple of different things that I have seen in my blog wanderings, I came up with this little project...

I found a photo on-line of the building where the Hubby and I had our wedding reception and I played around with it on Picnik (if you are at all into photography, and you've never been to this site...you should hop over right now...don't worry, I'll wait). I made the photo a little more sepia-toned, softened it a little so it would look a bit more like a painting, then added the text. Then I just used some Mod Podge (yes, by now you should know that I have a bit of a love affair with Mod Podge) to affix it to a pre-stretched paint canvas that I bought a long time ago. So my cost for this romantic little gift...FREE!

Well, I'm off to put the finishing touches on the kiddo's Valentine's teacher gifts...a mother's work is never done. ;-)

Have a lovely Thursday~


A Little Valentine Project~

Early in January I found this cute Valentine wreath on the Williams Sonoma website.

Image from Williams Sonoma

But I decided I could make one I like even better (and save myself a little $$). So I set to work trying to find some vintage Valentine printables on-line. I had no luck until a couple of days ago when Heather Bullard posted some free vintage Valentines. They are so cute! So I printed them up for my wreath.

I didn't want to use as many Valentine's as they used in the WS wreath because I thought it was a bit "busy" for my taste. So I just used one of each. They made a circle just the size of one of my dinner plates. So I traced one out on some cardboard and used a small bowl for the inner circle. I cut out the wreath shape, and simply used stick glue to adhere the cards to my cardboard wreath.

It was very cute, but I decided that it needed a little something more, so I used some Mod Podge and glitter...of course! Added a pretty little bit of ribbon and VOILA! I just love it!

Happy Crafting~


Inspire-Me Tuesday~

Today I'm thinking about home offices and studio spaces.

If you want a lot of inspiration for creative studio spaces pick up a copy of Where Women Create. So much amazing talent! WOW! They just came out with a new issue (I've got to run and grab myself a copy!) No, they didn't pay me to tell you this...I'm just a big fan!

Here are a couple of the things that I have in my little computer closet/home office. You'll notice that they are cropped in very closely....because my little office space isn't done yet...as in no walls...just studs. Just keepin' it real.

I just love dance...maybe it's my20+ years of it...These photos are beautiful and inspiring to me.

And this little vignette has my little New Year's fairy (because I've decided 2009 is going to be MY YEAR! - hey, a girl's got to have goals, right?) A little dry erase board, I made using a pretty frame, some ribbon snippets, and some scrapbook paper behind glass. (Really...you can write on the glass with a dry erase marker and it will come right off.) And a pretty glittery star that the Princess painted on my Christmas giftwrap this year. It's the little things that inspire.

Edited to add: My bloggy friend Kasey over at Lola B.'s posted yesterday on her beautiful Studio/office and even talked about Where Women Create. I didn't see her post until today, but asked her if I could link to it. Pop over and take a look. BEAUTIFUL. Tell her Wendy sent ya!

Go forth, inspire, and be inspired.


The Sweetheart Tree~

Okay, so in third grade we had a music teacher that taught us some of the most obscure songs imaginable. But there was one that has always stuck in my head... and I find myself singing it occasionally in spite of myself. It is rather sweet, and very applicable to the *heart* holiday. It's called the Sweetheart Tree.

They say there's a tree in the forest,
A tree that will give you a sign.
Come away with me, to the sweetheart tree
Come and carve your name next to mine.

They say if you kiss the right sweetheart,
The one you've been waiting for,
Big blossoms of white, will burst into sight,
And your love will be true ever more.

A little cheesy...yes. But here, my dear readers, is my sweetheart tree.

I took my glittery hearts, and added a little sheer cream ribbon. Then hung them on my thankful snowflake sweetheart tree. I left the little birdie there because he looked so happy sitting amidst all the glitter! I just love Valentine's Day!

I'm off to get some more pillows made for my Etsy...

Have a lovely weekend~


Inspire-Me Tuesday~

In preparation for tomorrow's Taming Kid Clutter Linky Party, today's Inspire-Me Tuesday post features three more kid's rooms that have some great ideas!

I love this first room because it is for three kiddos. Some of you already know that my three boys share a room. Yep, three. boys. one. room. I have come up with a great layout and a workable plan for now, but that is because Little Mr. Three is still in a crib. I have been thinking about what I will do when he moves into a big boy bed. I actually like this room with the three matching beds. And the bookshelves with the baskets for plenty of storage. I like the idea of the little table and chairs...although for my boys, a lego table might be better suited. ;-)

This room is fabulous! Obviously aimed at a teenage boy...I love the built in storage around the desk. (And I'm partial to stripes on walls too.) PERFECTION!
All images from BHG

And finally, I've had this last picture in my inspiration file for ages. This is probably what I'll end up doing for my boys' room when they are all a little older. Aren't these bunk beds to die for? I mean really! And the idea of a built-in desk (complete with lighting) on each is such a space-conscious and totally stylish move! Oh yeah, the Hubby has known that he is going to have to build me some of these monster bunkbeds one of these days.
Now that I look at this room again, maybe it will be sooner rather than later. ;-)
I hope to see you all here tomorrow for the linky party! I know you all have great ideas...so make sure and link up! And even if you don't have kids, there will be plenty of good ideas for hiding clutter of all sorts...I'm sure! Can't wait to see you all there!
Now, go forth, inspire, and be inspired~


Conquering Kid Clutter

First I wanted to thank everyone for their wonderful comments and support of my new Etsy store! I feel like I had a very successful "Grand Opening" thanks to my wonderful readers!!!! I still have to sift through all the comments...so I'll have to post the winner of my giveaway a little later this week.

In the meantime, Wednesday is the Taming Kid Clutter linky party that I am hosting with Pretty Organizer here at the Shabby Nest! In preparation for the party, I wanted to share a few children's rooms that do a great job of incorporating tons of stylish storage.

Here are three FABULOUS designs from Candice Olsen. I *heart* Candice Olsen! Check out these fantastic ideas...
This nursery has a gazillion storage options...I love the little storage "tent" by the bed...something like that would be fairly simple to make with a wire shelf system and fabric. But she didn't stop there...no no no. See the skirted window bench on the right side of the photo...that has storage underneath as well. Then there's the bedside table, the little trunk, the changing table, the small cabinet under the window. Catch my drift? Storage galore!
I have always loved this shared space that Candice did for two little sisters. The bed under the eaves is a built in...and I love the stylish storage she has incorporated underneath...(I also think there is a trundle under that bed although I haven't seen this episode in a while, so I could be wrong...) Again, more storage in the little chest under the window. And the carpet? A great idea for kids...carpet squares. If one gets ruined, just pull it up and replace it...something like that would come in handy at my house.

All rooms by Candice Olsen. Photos from HGTV.

I borrowed an idea directly from this last room. We are lucky enough to have a walk-in closet in my boys' bedroom, and it happens to have built in shelves. I took off the door, replaced it with a curtain, put a kiddo-sized desk inside, and put books and toys on the shelves. VOILA! A secret-hideaway-study-play area. And it still holds clothes too.

Thanks for the great ideas Candice!

I'm guessing that you readers have ideas that are every bit as clever as these. So let's link up here on Wednesday and share...share...share!!! I'm looking forward to seeing what you all come up with!

Have a lovely Monday~