Tag Archives: do it yourself

DIY: Photographs in Oil

7 Sep

I am so excited about this post!

One of my very first posts (over a year ago, wow!) was about the many uses of mason jars. Within my post, I discussed one particular way to use mason jars to showcase photographs suspended in oil for a unique spin on picture display.

“Lastly, a less common but very interesting way to use mason jars is to make it into a one-of-a-kind picture frame. The clear jars would be best for this, and by pouring olive oil (try to avoid the garlic kind — could get stinky!) in the jar with an upright picture, you can get a sepia effect and a new way to display your pics.”

Inspired by: Flickr

Over the past year, I have received many comments and questions about how exactly to go about recreating the photograph in the mason jar. Mostly what I have been asked is “Would a color or black and white picture work best”?

And after an in-depth experiment when I was bored to tears on one night…I finally have answers.

To break it down for you more easily, I’m about to get old school on you by using the scientific method.

  1. Question
  2. Research
  3. Hypothesis
  4. Experiment
  5. Conclusion
  6. Communicate
Now if only I had this sparkly beau-hunky vampirific lab partner, my night would have been complete.

Why yes readers, that is Edward Cullen awaiting me at our lab desk. The lab desk that we share. We share it since we are lovers...I mean partners. In science. And perhaps in life as well.

Me like-a-da Ray Bans 🙂

Back to the business at hand…

1. Question: What type of picture will work best to re-create this mason jar picture frame? Color, black and white, sepia, or antiqued/faded?

2. Research: Google helped me see if there were any other great answers out there. There are not.

3. Hypothesis: After my research and personal opinions, I believe a black and white picture would make the photo in my mason jar picture frame most visible.

4. Experiment: Using a cake pan filled with about a half inch of olive oil (don’t worry, I didn’t waste much…I used it to cook some pasta afterwards), I submergered 4 different pictures/treatments to figure out which looked best and the most clear. If you want to re-create it to figure out the best results for your particular picture, by all means go for it. Try these easy steps:

Step 1: Fill pan with 1/2

COLOR PHOTO

Step 2: Grab a regular color photograph.

Step 3: Submerge color photograph.

Step 4: Observe results. Then repeat for each time of photograph you are considering.

BLACK & WHITE PHOTO

Black & white photo.

Black & white photo in olive oil.

Black & white photo in olive oil results.

FADED/ANTIQUED PHOTO

Faded/antiqued photo

Faded/antiqued photo in olive oil.

Faded/antiqued photo results.

SEPIA PHOTO

Sepia photo.

Sepia photo in olive oil.

Sepia photo results.

5. Conclusions: This is a multi-part conclusion.

1) It appears to me that the original mason jar used a black and white photograph in the olive oil.

2) However, I actually ended up liking the effect of the antiqued/faded picture the best.

Therefore as our friend Captain Planet would say, the power/choice is yours.

6. Communicate your results: Done. Boom.

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DIY: Fabulous Floorcloths

25 Jun

Stumbled across this today and it looks so fun! Turning fabric into a floorcloth/rug. 

All you need is fabric or a table cloth, floor finish, and a paint roller.

Let me know what you think!

Inspired by: Design Share

Real Readers: Christina & Jodi

7 Jun

I have featured Christina & Jodi in my recent post about Etsy activists but today I want to share more about this creative roommate duo.

Christina is an accomplished jewelry designer (now taking it to the next level and moving to New York!) and Jodi is a Psychology graduate student and homemade card designer.

Now, take a deeper look into how their innovative minds worked together to decorate their chic and comfortable Houston apartment.

Christina & Jodi

CHRISTINA’S ROOM

How she came up with the feel of her room, in her own words:

“I love white brown and turquoise. I found the duvet from Target and the Headboard from Hayneedle. I love that the headboard is an ivory color with nailheads. I found the turquoise mirror from Marshall’s and think it adds a great touch and finish to my room. All the pillows are from Target. (Yes, I looove pillows) I’m really happy how my bedroom came out from the white base color to the brown and turquoise accents. It feels fresh and like me.”

Christina

The bedside tables are from Z Gallerie — a great store to find mirrored furniture for decent prices. The crystal lamps that are from Marshall’s complete the old Hollywood glam look that Christina loves.

This piece is from a furniture store in Fort Worth, Texas. Christina’s next move is changing out the drawer handles which is a perfect way to change the look without ruining a piece of perfectly good furniture.

Take a note from Christina’s book and hand paint a few plain wooden frames! This way she can match other painted pieces in her room (see below) and get the perfect pop of color she was going for. Ever the little artista, she decided to add the hanging caged candle holders to the corner to “add dimension” to her room.

In her own words:

“I painted the drawer turquoise to add a pop of color and then added a fun knob. This is my jewelry making table as you can see the various items already made. As you can see from my room, I love flowers and since I can’t afford to switch them out every week, I went with the fake ones. The cross was stolen from my parent’s house and I love it.”

– Christina

If you ever get the opportunity to travel, you must buy art from the cities you visit. It is a great way to relive a special vacation or memory from your life and adds such interest to your home. The art hanging above Christina’s toilet is a little piece she purchased in Paris while traveling abroad. Luckily it depicts the entire city AND the colors coordinate perfectly with her scheme. The two silver jewelry boxes below the mirror were handed down in her family from her Great Aunt Dorothy. So much history!

Here is another piece of decor from Marshall’s — Christina uses the silver vase here to pull silver from her bedroom and coordinate with the vintage metallic jewelry box given to her by her cousin.

Jewelry organization — clearly an obsession of every girl on the planet — is at its peak here in Christina’s bathroom. As I mentioned, she is just starting out in her jewelry making profession and has been enamored of jewelry as long as she can remember. Using these inexpensive square corkboards (from Target, Office Max, Hobby Lobby, etc), she added pushpins at the top so that her necklaces never tangle. Genius!

JODI’S ROOM

Beautiful Bella Notte bedding! This stuff is expensive but completely worth it. The softest assortment of textured fabrics you’ve ever felt, everything is dyed to order, and the best part is that it’s all washable. We sell it at the store that both Jodi and I work for, Nest & Cot. I have the same coverlet on my bed. Love!

Jodi’s mom picked up this gem of a chair and ottoman at the Dallas Market — a place for designers and vendors to come together and see all the goods at once. If you know anybody who is a designer or has a license of any kind in interior design, chances are they get great wholesale deals. You should ask them if they’ll help you make some nice purchases for a small fee or help you find discounts — it will still be less than retail pricing.

Sidenote: Jodi admits that her big weakness in life is trying to keep everything organized and she’s still looking for a way to keep all of her school books and gadget cords neat!

Jodi’s parents picked this gorgeous Hermes scarf on a special vacation. Jodi went to a custom framing shop to get it stretched and framed. It now serves as a focal point in her mature post-college apartment and an heirloom for the future.

Here’s a great tip: Look for furniture in the “damaged goods” or outlet section of a large store. Jodi found this huge and sturdy dresser in just such a section of Crate & Barrel. A simple scratch (that you wouldn’t even notice) brought the price down by over $1000.

Jodi’s sister, Jessica, followed in suit of her parents and returned from travels with this vintage Spain poster. Vibrant colors and a great story.

Love the shower curtain…it’s from Target!

Such a simple and chic way to decorate a blank wall: Framed cards bought on Etsy!

A neutral mirror bought at Marshall’s decorates this side of Jodi’s bathroom. Anthropologie can be an expensive store to outfit your entire house from, but try simply purchasing one vase or another small item for a punch of style. Jodi’s turquoise vase and cup for make up brushes do just that.

LIVING AREA & KITCHEN

A drop leaf table is an amazing way to utilize space in a small city apartment. This particular one was purchased at a  consignment store and extends to a full dining table. The fact that is it a beautiful antique only adds to its appeal.

A nice view of the kitchen. Christina had originally intended to use the trunk on its side as a nightstand but fell in love with the mirrored ones you saw above. Now it acts as extra seating and a place for the girls to stub their toes. Ouch!

The wine rack is a surprisingly functional and beautiful find…for $60 from Sears?! Christina got it in college from Sears’ online store because she loved one that a friend already owned. A self-admitted wino, it allows her to hold everything she wants and needs 🙂

The turquoise flower picture is another product of Christina’s artistic abilities, created for her college room and now an integral part of a wall collage in her and Jodi’s apartment. According to both girls, the wall is a “work in progress.”

Who says the word “vintage” has to mean from decades ago? This special little pink phone is from Jodi’s 6th grade room — a “vintage” Pottery Barn find.


The girls combined many of their extra decorations in the kitchen to make it home-y.

Their living area is both inviting and fashion-forward. The zebra chairs actually have a significant history being passed down from generation to generation (and being recovered along the way) in Christina’s family. Other pieces in the room such as the throws were gifts from friends. The cow hide rug was won at a Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo auction. No home in Texas should be without one. Except mine is…I need to get on that.

Another antique piece that finds its way into the modern girl’s home. This vintage round table was once Christina’s grandmothers.

Another special hand-me-down item is this mirror which belonged to Christina’s late grandmother. She plans to keep it prominent in every future house she owns as a testament to her grandmother’s great taste and as an inspiration to her jewelry line.

The couch is from Pier One. Gotta love the nailhead look.


Thank you Christina and Jodi for letting us pick apart your lovely home!

Spotlight On: Multifunctional Wine Crates

23 May

No Napa? No problem.

Get your wine fix by decorating with empty wine crates. You can look on eBay or call your local Spec’s, grocery or liquor store to see if you can find some used crates.

Inspired by: Apartment Therapy

Inspired by: Pintrest

Inspired by: Posted Home

Inspired by: Apartment Therapy

Inspired by: Factory Direct

Inspired by: Apartment Therapy
Inspired by: Apartment Therapy

Inspired by: Apartment Therapy

Inspired by: Apartment Therapy

Inspired by: Instructables

Inspired by: Curbly

I’ll leave you with this piece of glowy good-ness.  Goodnight…

Blog Buzz/Book Buzz: The Salvage Sisters

18 Apr

I may have found my true calling where I can utilize my creativity and my Craigslist habit — and it turns out it is a profession. Believe it. And I found out all of this thanks to a couple of sisters who share a love of upcycling old things and their book that explores the art.

Check out their book for amazing advice and inspiration on how to decorate your home using salvaged, resale, or just plain ugly furniture.

If my words of excitement about them hasn’t piqued your interest, I will let their work do the talking. Check out these hot trends that the Salvage Sisters recreated using bits and pieces from resale stores, garage sales, and attics.

TREND: WOOD PALETTE BED

Inspired by: Pine Cone Hill

SALVAGED

Inspired by: Salvage Sisters

TREND: ANTLER/WOOD MIRROR

 Inspired by: lightshipsart on Etsy $895.00

SALVAGED

Inspired by: Salvage Sisters

TREND: WALL SHELF BOXES

Inspired by: Apartment Therapy

SALVAGEDInspired by: Salvage Sisters


DIY: Weekend Project Fun

18 Feb

Happy Friday to all!

Lucky for me, I have no class on Friday’s so I get to spend all day being lazy (and funkybear posting) I have some fun house projects to share with y’all that I’ve done! Let me know what you think.

Project #1: Antique Wood Shutter

So, my roommates and I found an old wood shutter at a thrift store in College Station last semester. Although it was pretty rough-looking, it was only ten bucks. What a steal. We weren’t sure at the time what to do with it, but a coat of paint later, it came to us.

We simply spray painted the shutter a serene sage green. After we let it dry for an hour or so, we started to distress it using some sand paper. We lightly went over all the natural places an old item would have worn over time — corners and edges, mostly. After wiping all of the sanding dust off with a wet rag, we put a stain on it. This stain simply put a darker tint to the sage green, and on the areas that we had distressed, it brought that out even more – making a very rich and finished looking piece!

As you can see, we didn’t stop there. In order to make it a functional piece — we found some fun knobs at Hobby Lobby (also can be found at a local hardware store, or if you’re wanting to splurge a little, Anthropologie is your answer). We had some fun finding mix-n-match knobs and then got one with each of our initials! The hardest part about all of this was working the screw driver (we’re girls, give us a break) but once we figured that part out, the rest of it was smoothe sailing.

Here’s some more close up views of how it turned out!

While we don’t hang our keys or purses on it, we absolutely LOVE this in our house. Over Christmas time, we hung up our stockings on there and it couldn’t have been more perfect.
Project #2: Old-timey Coat Rack

So, I’ve got lots of stuff whenever I walk in the door – umbrellas, jackets, scarfs, and so on. I tend to throw them on whatever chair I see first, or the floor if nothing else.
Over winter break when I was in Austin, my mom and I were just having a leisure day of Christmas shopping in the funky Hyde Park side of Austin (not only did we explore a lot of fun shops, but found a LOT of good food — let me know if you want any restaurant recommendations for that area. I love talking about food).
Any who, while browing an antique resale shop, we stumbled upon this old coat rack! Unfortunately, I did not take a before picture (rookie move I know, I’m still getting used to being a funkybear) — but I do have plenty of after pics! It was an old brass hat rack with lots of dings and scratches on it and looked like it belonged in my grandparents house (use your imagination).
Two coats of a bright NYC Big Apple-style RED later, and it was good to go. As you can see, I love spray paint. And the color red. Here are some shots of my new little baby:
And there you have it! Now go have some fun this weekend, relax, and if you got inspired by any of this, show me what you come up with!
Yours truly,
Caroline, the little FunkyBear

DIY: Create Your Dream Shelf

16 Feb

INSPIRATION:

 

Inspired by: The Decor Chick

The gorgeous-ness of it all is inspiring. BUT (isn’t there always a but?) even though this mantel is perfectly fabulous and lux, it must be noted that it is a $399 (plus tax and shipping) purchase from Pottery Barn. Not to mention all the wonderfully put together knick knacks and such that you would have to search for and pay for afterwards to complete the statement.

Look: Amaze-balls.

Price: Not so amaze-balls.

So see below for how I faked it and got the look, or for a more intricate, serious “fantel” (fake-mantel, of course) check out this blog, Being Brook.

BEFORE:

AFTER:

And I did it all by myself — boo yah Pottery Barn!

Quick Run Down of Materials:

  • 2 Long pieces of wood (about 60″)
  • Wavy/decorative molding — which I cut with my brand new saw 🙂 I am absolutely positive that I now have more tools than my boyfriend. Believe it.
  • 2 Sconces — pieces on end that hold it up; they usually come with the correct screws to attach to the wall securely
  • Small nails — to put it all together (you can do this as haphazardly as you want — you’re just going to spray paint over them!)
  • Flat white spray paint

Please send me before and after pictures of wonderful creations in YOUR house! I would love to see what everyone else out there is crafting and working on.

A) To know that I’m not alone in this quest for decoration inspiration

and

B) To be inspired!

Email me your pics at thefunkybear@gmail.com (that’s right, I’m viral people)

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