Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Free Spirit

I know what you're thinking-"OMG Rachel, what a sweet bike!" I totally agree. I scooped up this sweet ride at an estate sale.

The bicycle was originally priced at $150, but we made it to the estate sale on the last day, so everything was 50% off. Luckily, I had my master-bargainer sister along, who talked them down to $50 (they were really nice about the price change, we didn't have to fight dirty or anything, but we would have if the situation called for it-we liked the bike THAT much).

It was love at first sight. She's from the 1970's, a Free Spirit model (like it was made just for me) and we thought it would need a lot of work, but we aired up the tires, greased her up a bit and off I went! She's been a lovely bike so far, although we do plan on taking her apart, cleaning her all up and putting her back together so she stays with us for a long time.

I also plan on adding some baskets, possibly a little headlight and most likely a bell. All in good time.

Rachel May

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Design File: My Living Room (June Progress)

Here's what my living room looks like now! There are still a lot of things that I would like to change, but the space will keep evolving as I invest time and money into it.

I think this room went from an 8x8 jail cell to a lovely space. We use it all of the time-whether it be reading, crafting and for having guests over.

1. I moved the chair out of the space-I have other intentions for the space that the chair just doesn't suit. Eventually we will get there, but at least right now we gained some space in the room.

2. The couch was slipcovered, by me! I used canvas dropcloths at Lowe's, pinned them all over the couch, and sewed away! It took me a day for the main body of the slipcover, and I'm still working on the cushions (procrastination!). It looks SO much better.

3. I added a quilt wall. This wasn't really intentional for the room, but I like it. It adds a punch of color to the space and it's totally functional. I think I'll come up with a nicer way to hang it and keep it there.

4. The gray curtains were changed out for some semi-sheer ones. This really brightened up the space, and in such a small room, you need all the sunshine you can get! I've relocated the gray curtains to the other side of the room, blocking the studio space from view.

Hope you like it so far!

Rachel May

Monday, June 28, 2010

Design File: My Living Room (May Progress)

You've seen the before pictures, and here's some progress I made in the month of May:

1. Sold the purple couch. The Boyfriend was SO mad at me for getting rid of the most comfortable couch in the world, but I told him he'd have to deal. An 8' couch in an 8' space is just too much (especially if it's purple).
2. Purchased a new couch (only $40-score!) that has a pull-out mattress, so now the room functions as our guest space as well. Changes to said couch are forthcoming!

3. Rolled up the red area rug. I say rolled up because I meant to sell it, but it's still sitting in the corner, leaning against the wall. I'm a procrastinator.
4. Gave the room a good deep clean.

This is great progress, and I still think the room is okay, but it could be better. Luckily, there will be more progress to show soon!

Rachel May

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Design File: My Living Room Before

The space:
We live in a small house (me, The Boyfriend and The Roommate), approximately 600ish square feet. Our living room is actually supposed to be the dining room, but we opted out of a large living room to have a nice studio space (I believe you should design a home around how you use it and your priorities). This room is equivalent to the size of a jail cell (8'x8'), but it's got a lot of potential.

The layout:
The setup in the before pictures are crazy, I know. I decided to mix purple and red-wowsa!

The furniture:
The couch was free (and oh-so-comfortable) and so was the chair, so that's what we had for our budget. I purchased the shelf for Target (it's actually for towels in a bathroom) and loaded it up with books, and the chest/coffee table was made by The Boyfriend's Dad as a college gift (very nice. very heavy).

The Accessories:
When we moved into our little rental house, there were no window treatments, so I've slowly been adding my own. I installed rods and hung grey grommet curtains from Target, threw in an old area rug, bought a vase and stole a pillow from the bedroom. The artwork is an unfinished self portrait of The Boyfriend, and I find it hilarious (he scrunched up his face and painted it that way) so I had to hang it up.

This space worked alright, but we really never used it. The couch was comfy but far too large for the room, and the rug and curtains were so dark that it seemed like a cave. It has been ready for a redesign for a while now.

I've started the redesign, so I'll post my progress on that soon-I think you'll be surprised:)

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Card Club: Update

I spoke with Miss SkyleRae, our next Card Challenge leader, and she will be posting a new challenge, as well as her challenge card tomorrow. We got a little behind, but no worries, we are just behind one week and that's the joy of this club-we aren't slave-drivers here!

Can't wait to see what she comes up with!

Rachel May

Craft File: Picnic Time Quilt

Last weekend I decided I wanted to be a quilter...again. So I started the easiest quilt I could think of, a simple checkerboard quilt. I love the idea of just a mish-mash of reds and creams for a blanket, taking it out on a sunny summer day for a picnic. This was a scrappy project (I'm lucky enough to have to aunts that are big-time quilters, and they share their scraps with me) the red scraps were from the aunts, the creams are from my stash-I have a love for unbleached cotton fabric-so natural, such a great feel to it.

I'm pretty far along in the project, all the squares are cut, I'm in the middle of sewing the blocks together to make rows, then I will sew the rows together to make the quilt top!

I'm thinking of using a red binding and and unbleached cotton backing, but we will see. Those are fabrics that I'll actually have to purchase!

Details: 5x5" squares, 1/4" seam allowance, 11x11 rows/squares, cotton fabrics

Tips/Tricks: My aunts taught me that if you use a tablecloth with a cotton backing (like shown), the fabric squares will stick to it. It's a really helpful (and inexpensive) trick, especially if you're living in a tiny house like mine!

Rachel May

Saturday, June 12, 2010


...and now our roof is leaking. This is a rough Saturday. Luckily the leak is over the sink. It's a preexisting condition to the home that apparently no one knows how to fix. I'm going to ignore it, talk to our property manager on Monday and go back to my craft space (aka sanctuary-and the roof doesn't leak in there).

Rainy days make me whiny.

Rachel May

Rainy Saturday

Oh dear friends, my Saturday plans have been bumped! It's rainy and overcast today. I had high hopes of bouncing between garage sales, venturing to thrift stores and enjoying the sunshine.

That will have to wait for another day I suppose, but in the meantime, while I'm cooped up in the house (which really isn't much punishment for moi) I suppose I will get some much needed cleaning and crafting done.The rain has made our backyard "grass" (read:weeds) shoot up and now we have a jungle to work through. That will have to wait until the rain subsides.

What are your Saturday plans?

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Card Challenge #4 Requirements!

Now on to the next challenge! For the next two weeks, you need to create a flat notecard. Something that you could use to pass a note to a friend, tuck inside a gift bag, or tell your S.O. you love them. Your only requirement is that it must be flat-you can use any size you want, but keep in mind that you will still need to be able to write on it, so bulky embellishments might not work so well.
I used funky fibers to create dimension without adding bulk to the front of the card. This was designed to look like a postcard, the back is blank white for writing your message. I added bulk by adhering heavy cardstock to the middle, so even though this is a notecard and not a folded card, it still feels substantial. I might mess with the fiber a bit to push it away from the lettering on the stamp, but other than that, I'm pleased with the result.

Skyler, you're next!

In this Challenge: SkyleRae and Dee Dee

Good luck on this challenge and happy crafting!

Rachel May

Card Challenge #3 Results

Our challenge for the last two weeks was to create a monochromatic card, using 2 different patterned papers. I have to say that I really enjoyed this challenge. Here are my results:

I used Where the Heart Is/My Mind's Eye papers by Zoe Pearn, two different ones of course! And a stamp from the Boards and Beams stamping set from Papertry Ink, embossed in white. I think this would be an excellent card to give someone who just moved, or just purchased a new home.

Next Post: Card Challenge #4 Requirements

Rachel May

Breckenridge Weekend

Happy Birthday to me! Boyfriend and I spent the weekend here:

Breckenridge, CO

Rachel May