Tag Archives: upholstery

Real Readers: Caroline, Taylor, and Sheridan

23 Jan

These days, I am obsessed with the chic, sophisticated and downright pretty house of these cute girls!

Names: Caroline, Taylor, Sheridan

Age: 24-ish

Current City: Houston, TX

Jobs:
Caroline – Event/Fundraiser Coordinator for a Non-Profit Organization
Taylor – Law Firm Recruiter
Sheridan – Pediatric Intensive Care Nurse

Decorating Styles:
Caroline – Traditional,  anything “anqituey” — she likes having a neutral base and then throwing in a splash of color.
Taylor – Shabby Chic, French Country…a self-proclaimed “Plain Jane” who gravitates towards creams, whites, and neutrals over bold and bright.
Sheridan – Likes coming home to a soft, calming atmosphere. She chooses any piece that makes her happy.

Right when you walk in, you are greeted with a quaint little set up. The antique-looking carte goes great with the wall sconces and framed artwork.

The streamers hanging down from the door frames are not a part of their usual decor. They were party decorations for Caroline’s 24th birthday! (Happy Birthday!) This is the visual you get in when you come out of the entry way. Believe it or not, all of these pieces of furniture are hand-me-downs from their various grandparents. The chairs were a completely different fabric and got recovered in simple white from the Design Center of Houston to match the house’s clean motif.

Cute crystal-looking lamps! Try Target, Marshalls’, West Elm or Pottery Barn for some inexpensive ones.

Taylor already had this zebra print pillow in her possession but lacked its matching partner. Thankfully, she found it at a cute boutique in Houston called, A Bientot. Don’t forget to try gift shop and jewelry boutiques for small home accents.

This pretty piece is perfect for holding all your knick-knacks. I even have the same painting they do at the top! Love!

Pretty little dining room set up. All antique hand-me-downs from the grandparents again…slipcovered in a softer linen fabric to protect the seats and cover up older fabric.

It’s all about the crystal and clear glass. Classic and easy to find at so many stores.

Islands in kitchens add SO much space and personality. Obviously not everyone has one built in but if you have the room, you can buy a stainless steel table/island and use it much in the same way. Here are all of Caroline’s birthday treats laid out!

The  curtains actually came with the house! Rather than spending a fortune on new Roman shades (that’s what they’re called) they added a few cute candlitas (little candles? si?) and made it their own.

The couches were covered in white by Sheridan and the unique end tables are from Nadeua in Highland Village in Houston. The glass lamps are from Marshall’s, and the pristine linen lampshades are from Pottery Barn. The pine wooden coffee table is from her parents’ house, but try Craigslist for other people’s old pieces.

 

These paintings are another great bi-product of Pinot’s Palette…the place in Houston where you get to BYOB and learn to paint a famous painting in a group. It’s only $35 for the canvas and a 3 hour class then you get beautiful art work to bring home.

CAROLINE’S ROOM

A beautiful 4 poster bed (handed down from her parents) with stunning white bedding from Kuhl-Linscomb make for a fresh combination or old and new. The walls came the pale seafoam color and Caroline used it to her advantage to keep it classy with the white linens and paisley euro shams (Pottery Barn). Although she is not the biggest fan of her room (she thinks the Pottery Barn pillows were a random impulse buy)…I think it is sooo much more sophisticated than I could ever hope to be. But then again I guess I am 2 years younger than her? Does that count? Let’s hope so.

Crystal knobs on the dresser are a fun add too! Pretty, pretty!

TAYLOR’S ROOM

All of Taylor’s gorgeous bed linens are from Pine Cone Hill. At the store I’m working at now, we sell this brand all the time. It has so many beautiful options for a VERY reasonable price. And it looks custom! Check out their website for more details (or come into Nest & Cot to order!).


BATHROOM

Even the bathroom is pretty! Baskets are an easy way to both hide and store all of your bathroom necessities. And wicker and white go so well together!

SHERIDAN’S ROOM

Coral, white and turquoise…oh my! This traditional bed belonged to her grandparents and she had it recovered by a local guy in a flax linen color. She then uses this linen again to create a romantic little vanity.

Cute knobs!

And she has a coral bowl! LOVE!

A plastic organizer for jewelry. It’s great for storage and being able to see exactly what you’re looking for.

In case you didn’t know…How To Be A Lady. I may actually need a copy of this?

A vanity is both romantic and practical. Every girl needs one! (I know all the guys are rolling their eyes at this point…if there is even one reading). The mirror is from Marshall’s. Further proof that you can always find something to fit your style for cheap there!

Caroline, Taylor and Sheridan’s house is proof that you can mix old and new, vintage and modern, inexpensive and expensive to create a comfortable and chic home. And despite all of their class and style, they say their favorite part is actually one of their more modern creature comforts: Speakers all over the house! This includes the backyard and the bathroom (I would know — I was listening to a football game while I was using it!). TMI?! Who cares.

Hope you enjoyed visiting their home as much as I did!

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Casa de Funky Bear: Day 2 – My Room

21 Dec

As much as I wanted to wait until my room is absolute decoration perfection before revealing it to the blogosphere, I have decided that now is the time. No matter how complete or incomplete it is. I still look at my room and not all of it feels like me — the only pieces I am truly obsessed with are my bed and my necklace holder. Everything else to me is just “eh.” I know over time I will accumulate nicer, more quality pieces that speak to me but for now, hand-me-down furniture and re-sale shop mirrors suit me just fine. So without further adieu…here is my room!

This picture definitely makes my accent wall look more green than it actually is. The color is Sherwin-Williams Hazel 6471  which is more of a blue turquoise than green (Blair’s is SW Interesting Aqua 6220 if you are interested). My mom and dad introduced me to this wonderful color as it coats the walls of their laundry room! Ultimately the color scheme of my room is turquoise, white, gray, and dark brown. I am OBSESSED with these colors together 🙂

My bedding is from West Elm and I got both the duvet cover and standard shams in white ruched. Tip: If you like your bed and duvet cover extra fluffy, buy a King size down comforter to slip into the Queen size duvet cover. It will bunch up to fit in the smaller case and be super puffy, fluffy and awesome.

Above my self-upholstered headboard (see my DIY article here), I artfully placed a mirror and two canvas paintings I did.

I simply used spray and acrylic paint to re-create some type of branchy/flowery/Japanese-y drawings I feel like I have seen before. They are just supposed to be little blossoms but I used the silver backgrounds to tie in the gray in my room without making it dull.

I randomly found the brown and white zebra pillows at Marshall’s — which is quickly becoming my favorite spot to buy household items on a budget. I cannot tell you enough how great this store is. Especially Marshall’s HomeGoods stores. You can always find unique, neat little pieces for less than $15.00. What’s not to like?

Here are my gray sheets and pillow cases that I am absolutely in love with. They are a fairly dark shade of gray but surprisingly not boring or gothic at all. With the white they look crisp yet edgy. I ended up getting Calvin Klein sheets because they had the highest thread count I could find in the color I wanted. Sheets are everything people – don’t skimp on them!

One day, I decided to tile a mirror with smaller pieces of glassed mirror. I thought I could make a great mosaic-ed piece. Instead I wasted about $100 and am so bitter about how it turned out, I couldn’t even finish. I think I had the right idea but wasted so much time, energy and money on it. You can buy just as cute of one from West Elm, Michael’s, Hobby Lobby, or Marshall’s for a lot less everything  So worth the money to save your sanity. Next time, that is the route I’m going.

Here are my amazing turquoise lamps I found at Marshall’s so long ago this Summer! I have been waiting and waiting to incorporate them into my room and now the time is finally here. I practically planned the color of my room around them. I wanted them to match the walls so they were almost camouflaged in — I thought it would make a cool effect. Turns out I was right.

Then I used an oversized crystal doorknob that my sister gave me as a book end. So cute and ties in all of my crystal and silver picture frames.

I got this old dresser from Goodwill and after cleaning it off, I added two new knobs I got from Hobby Lobby. You can get all different kinds of knobs at stores like Hobby Lobby, Anthropologie and Home Depot or Lowe’s. Or try specialty stores online. Mine are turquoise and brown — duh!

This little area of my room sits at the foot of my bed. I have an old slipper chair in pink and white that I toss this cool hand-quilted blanket over. Again…that is my dresser from Goodwill. It cleaned up nice, didn’t it?

To tie this wall in with the rest of the room, I used a third canvas painting of my branches above the TV. I have started collecting jewelry more and more in recent years and decided to display them so I can enjoy them every day, even when I’m not wearing them.

I bought an antique-looking frame from a frame store (think: Aaron Brothers if you’re from Houston) to show case all of my dangly earrings. For the time being, I am using a scrap piece of leopard print fabric from my chairs to hold it up. Finding a better ribbon or fabric is on my to-do list.

This has got to be one of my favorite things ever. I bought an inexpensive shelf with hooks attached and spray painted it Satin Nickel. After letting it dry overnight, I hung it up and put all of my long and chunky necklaces on it. This makes for easy access and an artful appearance on my wall. Hooks of any sort are always great for jewelry display.

My bathroom is a awesome as well. Huge bathtubs are a great commodity — except that I don’t even like taking baths (I think it’s nast-ay to sit in stagnant water and act like you’re getting “clean”. Ew). My turquoise and brown shower curtain (again…duh) is from Marshall’s. I bought shiny gem-looking curtain holders from there too. Love!

My absolute favorite thing in my bathroom is the antique shelving unit. It used to be my grandmother’s and my parents were ready to hawk it…I salvaged this baby. I put some of my favorite things and pictures of my favorite people on here too.

A long time ago, I saw a painting from a street vendor when I was on a family vacation in Italy of a naked woman’s back. I know it is weird — but it spoke to me. I loved the way it looked with the water colors. So I have been scouring the internet and finally found something similar on Etsy.com. Don’t you like it in my bathroom?

My room is definitely a work in progress and I haven’t totally pinned down my personal style in life. I’m working on it though and I think the best piece of advice I can give/lesson I’ve learned is that you have to surround yourself with art, furniture, and bedding that really make you happy and comfortable when you see them. My unique pieces such as my antique shelving unit and painting in the bathroom, how I display my jewelry, and my soft gray sheets make me SO happy. So find what makes you happy and surround yourself with it in your room 🙂

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DIY: Re-upholstering Chairs

11 Oct

After having great (personal) success with upholstering my brand new, super fab headboard, I decided to take a a few more upholstery projects under consideration. This time around my medium is chairs.

We have had these chairs in our family’s possession for a long time (maybe even the 40’s?) but they have been in major need of an update.

Bleh, look at these nast-ay seats! Time has definitely taken its toll.

It was time for a big change. Inspired by this picture of a the re-painting of a similarly structured bamboo-esque chair…

…I decided to take matters into my own hands. All it took was a couple of cans of spray paint, two yards of fabric and patience!

Here is my final product, I am so proud and obsessed!

If you like what you see, read below to find out how you can do it yourself, too!

**Please note — everything noted below is only my personal opinion about how to dive into the process of re-upholstering chairs. Please check with more websites for extra help and steps…I am just an amateur working with what I’ve got.

**Also note — I am using two different projects to illustrate the steps for re-upholstery. Don’t be alarmed by the sudden switch of fabric and scenery!

MATERIALS:

1. Old chairs — if you don’t have a spare set, try local garage sales or thrift stores for great prices.

2. Spray paint — most spray paint from Home Depot or Lowe’s works on both metal and wood. You do need to choose whether you want a matte or shiny finish (I chose shiny navy paint)j.

3. Drop cloth — this plastic film will help protect the floors or outdoors from excess paint.

4. New fabric — try Joann’s Fabric, etc.

5. Scissors — good fabric scissors are best.

6. Staple Gun — invest in electric!

7. Staples — use 1/2 inch staples or best judgement based on the thickness of fabric and chair.

8. Measuring tape — to measure your seats and help you decide upon the amount of new fabric needed.

PROCESS:

Skip to step 7 if you do not want to spray paint your chairs.

1. Remove seats. In order to spray paint your chairs, you will need to first remove the seats to keep excess paint off of them. Move them aside for the time being.

2. Place drop cloth on ground. Always spray paint outside since little flecks will fly every where. Use a drop cloth (plastic sheet that can be purchased at Home Depot etc) to protect the ground.

3. Spray paint chairs. Most spray paints are the same, but always read the instructions on the outer label before using. Hold the spray paint about 6 inches away from what you are spraying and give it one generous coat.

4. Let chairs dry. For best results, let your chairs sit to ensure they are completely dry. You can let them sit outside if the weather is less than 90 degrees (otherwise it may bubble like mine did at first!).

5. Re-spray paint. You will get the highest quality by following up the next day with another coat of spray paint. Looking at your chairs in a different light may help you see spots you missed the day before.

6. Let chairs dry (again). Once again, let your chairs dry completely. It’s almost time to re-upholster…

7. Measure your seats. Make sure you have enough fabric to cover all of your seats. Most seats can be covered in a half (1/2) square yard of fabric. For my 4 seats, I purchased 2 yards of fabric.. FYI — 1 yard = 3 feet = 36 inches.

8. Pick and buy a fabric. Try Joann’s or your local fabric store for a wide selection. It is best to invest in a nicer form of fabric made for upholstery because it is thicker and more durable than simple cotton. You may want to keep in mind where and how much the chairs will be used when picking out the fabric. White or light colors can be dangerous in a kitchen area! And always get a little more than you think you will need, just in case.

9. Cut fabric. Once home, measure your fabric to fit each of your seats. You can make sure it fits by wrapping the cut fabric around the seat leaving 3-4 inches on the back of each edge.

10. Place fabric. Begin the process one chair seat at a time. Place the fabric upside down on the floor and the seat on top of it. Wrap the fabric around the seat, secure with your hands or fabric pins.

11. Staple the edges of the fabric. With the seat turned upside down towards the floor, begin folding the fabric over all of the edges, pulling tight and stapling as you go. I started with 2 parallel sides to pull the fabric tight, and then repeated on the other 2 sides. Always start in the middle and work your way out on both sides, making sure to smooth wrinkles as you go.

12. Work the corners. Corners are always tricky (even on making the bed!). I’m sure there are better tips out there, but I seriously worked the corners by making them like a bed. Fold one side over its edge, and the adjacent side on top of that. In my opinion, it looks better and more professional to try to keep the fold line on the corner. It can take a few extra tries to get right, but if you play with it enough it will look great.

13. Check your work. Check all of your work and then congratulations! You are the proud owner of new, re-furbished chairs!

P.S. Check out these chairs I helped my mom with after the successfully complete my leopard print chairs 🙂 They are FULL of IKAT  FABULOSITY.

The best part about both of these projects is that ANYONE can do them, I promise. Truly, all it takes is a little patience, amateur engineering of fabric and a staple gun. Think you’re up for it? Give it a try this week and send me your pictures! Good luck!

Spotlight On: Headboards

28 Sep

After my recent post about customized headboards that you can do yourself, I thought I’d give everyone some food for thought on this topic.

Browse through the following pictures for some genuine headboard decoration inspiration. Then get crackin’ on the DIY part. And send me your pictures of your projects! I love getting updates from you.

Try dark brown, tan or even burlap to cover a headboard for a warm, inviting look.

Inspired by: Better Homes & Gardens New Decorating Book

For double the trouble, cover two twin headboards in a bright, bold fabric like this magenta. It really adds a special color pop to the otherwise calm room.

Inspired by: Decor Pad

If you can find fabric like this, then great. But if not, try painting letters on with fabric paint. Or if you're really skilled, cut the letters out of a different colored fabric and sew them onto your headboard fabric! That's where my arts and crafts skills end...sewing.

Inspired by: The Decorista

Obviously the more intricate you get the wood for your headboard cut, the more complex and possibly difficult it will be to cover it smoothly and properly. But great challenges often yield great rewards -- like this dramatic red headboard.

Inspired by: Lonny Mag

This is a cute and very do-able headboard because it is so simple in design/construction. To imitate this look, pick a fun patterned fabric and pair with other plain bedroom textiles and furniture.

Inspired by: Decorati, Designer: Massucco Warner Miller

Here is another Massucco Warner Miller design. Again, use a patterned fabric with unpatterned bed materials for a young, fresh look.

Inspired by: Decorati, Designer: Massucco Warner Miller

LOVE the kelly green, cow print and white. A little plain jane yet fabulous at the same time.

Inspired by: High Heeled Foot in the Door

This busy fabric acts as the centerpiece of this room. If you can find the perfect fabric, I highly recommend this option to up the ante in a room with plain walls.

Inspired by: Decor Pad

Here's another fun fabric as the centerpiece.

Inspired by: La Dolce Vita

Another interesting way to mix up your headboard is to use two separate pieces of wood to cover. This creates fun panels and is SO easy. You just repeat the DIY process twice! You could also use cork in them (and forgo the padding) and pin up pictures for a more personalized feel.

Inspired by: Living Etc.

Pair a super neutral, clean fabric (such as white) with a crazy color for a bedroom.

Inspired by: The Decorista

Now go forth and be inspired today!!

DIY: Upholstering Headboards

26 Sep

Although I am now living in my fabulous apartment, I have been holding off on the big unveil of my new digs on Funky Bear. I apologize for the delay but I want to make sure it looks its best before showing the world.

For now, I can give you a sneak peak into my place by showing you how to create your own headboard — a project I recently completed for my apartment with my mom. There are tons of helpful articles online about the various ways you can do this and although they seem wordy, the process can actually be quite simple.

Better Homes & Gardens

Do It Yourself

HGTV

Be Jane

So if you don’t feel like watching Sunday football all afternoon with your dad, brother, or boyfriend all day for some strange reason (what, no football?!?), then get started on this fun and decorative do-it-yourself project!

There are many ways of decorating a headboard…

ACRYLIC STICKER HEADBOARDS

Inspired by: Alkemie

PAINTED WALLS

Inspired by: The Decorista

PAINTED HEADBOARD

Inspired by: Oh Joy!

UPHOLSTERY

Inspired by: Decorati

DECOUPAGE
(definition: gluing tons of paper, wall paper, or wrapping paper overlapping in an enticing pattern)

Inspired by: Lovely Undergrad

In my humble opinion, the best and most dramatic way to create a beautiful and attention-grabbing headboard is to upholster it.

Upholstering involves applying stuffing and/or cushions, and then covering this padding  with fabric of your choosing. Depending on the look you are going for, upholstering a headboard can be young and sweet, glamorous and dramatic, or even mature and sophisticated.

I mentioned a few different websites above that give a helpful breakdown of this DIY upholstery project. But here is how my mom and I created the look in a more quick and dirty (and less detailed) way than most of these articles offer:

MATERIALS:

1. Old wood headboard (in dire need of re-purposing) — this could also be a piece of plywood that you have cut to fit your bed in any shape. If you go to Home Depot or Lowe’s you can purchase the wood and have them cut to your specific dimensions. Just make sure to measure what you want first!

2. Thick foam — can be bought from most fabric stores such as Joann’s. I chose 2-inch thick foam but this can be whatever you want depending on how thick you want the padding on your headboard to be.

3. Batting — also from Joann’s

4. Fabric — enough to cover the entire headboard with plenty of room to spare on all sides (at least 5 inches for wrapping around).

5. Staple gun — an electric staple gun is best. For the amount of stapling you are about to do, investing in a $30 piece of machinery like that will save you years of carpal tunnel syndrome. Even with the electric staple gun, you should still prepare yourself for a swollen hand after a few hours of upholstery.

6. Staples — don’t forget to buy these with the gun! Based on the fairly thick, furry fabric I chose coupled with the batting, I chose 1/2 inch staples.

7. Scissors — this one’s obvious.

8. Blue painters’ tape — this will help secure the batting and fabric so they don’t slide as you staple them in place.

9. Spray glue — this is necessary in order to adhere the foam to the headboard base while you work with the batting and fabric.

10. Old sheet or drop cloth — this will help protect the floor you are working on from the spray glue and any scraps of fabric or stray staples will be easy to clean.

11. A partner in crime — I don’t believe this project can be done by yourself so find a buddy to help.

APPROXIMATE TIME:

1 hour of purchasing materials

2 hours of upholstery time

PROCESS:

1. Cut foam: Lay out all of your materials on top of the sheet. Cut your foam out to the shape of your headboard. Try to get as close to the actual shape as possible, it will look much better in the end if everything lines up exactly. For mine, we had to use 2 layers of foam to cover the entire headboard so make sure everything is flush together with no spaces or cracks.

2. Glue foam: Once you have cut out your foam, use the spray glue to adhere it to the headboard. It doesn’t have to be perfect, this is just to keep the foam from moving when you add the  batting and eventually the fabric.

3. Apply batting: Cut a large piece of the batting that will cover the entire headboard. Smooth said batting over the entire front of the headboard. This is the batting’s entire purpose — to smooth out any cracks where the foam falls short and prepare the headboard for fabric application.

4. Staple batting: Wrap the sides of the batting around to the back of the headboard. This is where your partner comes in handy. With their help, stand up the headboard and use the blue painter’s tape to secure the batting in place to the back side. Then, flip the entire headboard over so you only see the back of it. Grab the staple gun and adhere the batting to the wood. The staples work best if placed relatively close to one another (.25 inches apart). Make sure to pull the batting tight each time you staple so the smoothing effect takes place.

5. Check batting: Have your partner hold up the headboard so that you may see the front. Ensure that you have stapled the batting down tight and now bumps or air pockets exist.

6. Cut fabric: Lay your headboard back down so the front with the new batting is facing up. Lay your fabric (or in my case, we bought a furry blanket) over the entire headboard. If need be, cut the fabric so that there are about 6 extra inches on all sides. These extra inches will be important when you wrap the fabric around the foam and batting.

7. Apply fabric: This part can get tricky because you really need to make sure the fabric is pulled tight and looks flawless — this is what everyone will be seeing! Carefully stand the headboard up again and adhere the long side pieces to the back with blue painter’s tape.

8. Staple fabric: Gently lay headboard so the fabric/front side is facing down, and the back is exposed. Staple your fabric making sure to pull tight and smooth as you go. Start from the middle of the top and work your way out. The top is the most important section because it will be the most prominent once the headboard is set up with your bed. It can be a tedious process, but perfection is key — this is what everyone will see as the final product! For the corners, we just played with folding the fabric as you would make the corners of a bed. As long as the front looks good, you will be fine. The back will most likely look like a jumbled mess of staples but no one will ever see it so it doesn’t matter.

9. Check fabric: Stand the headboard up and eyeball any areas that seem lumpy. Use your staple gun to smooth these areas. Again — it doesn’t matter how messy the back looks with all of the staples, so long as the front looks fabulous.

10. Admire your work: You’re done! Stand back and admire your work. Go place behind your bed immediately and accept all compliments you receive with a smile.

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