Thursday, July 16, 2015

What We're Making: A Wall-Mounted Jewelry Holder

A couple weeks ago I posted a little DIY project to Instagram and when my pal Meg from A Daily Dose of Balance asked for a tutorial, I knew a step-by-step post was in order.

Besides, it's been awhile since I shared a "What We're Making" story.

After seeing a bagillion cute jewelry holding solutions on Pinterest, I was jonesing to make one for our new closet. And in my stash of random things longing to become craft projects, I had a wooden box that used to hold kids' puzzles. I nabbed it at the Goodwill probably 4 years ago and hung onto it all this time. My little Cinderella just waiting for her ball.

The first step was finding some sort of dowels to use as earring holders. I grabbed a handful of shish-kabob skewers to see if they would work and it turns out they're the perfect size. Bam.

Next I gave the skewers and the casing a good spray with some high gloss white Rustoleum.

After they were dry enough (I probably should have let them dry overnight but I had decorating ants in my pants...), I brought them in and drafted a template for the holes we needed to drill to insert the skewers. I love graph paper so much. When I was little, I used to steal it from my dad and sketch up elaborate floor plans of the houses I planned to own one day...when I had 2 kids and 2 dogs and unlimited finances at age 24. Ah, the ignorance of youth.

Mr. W stepped in to help with the drilling (Not that I couldn't do it. I own my own drill, ya know. His was just warmed up already).

Once we had the holes in there, we trimmed the spiked ends off the skewers and slid them into the holes. Fit like a glove. I attached picture hangers to the back and it was ready to go up on the wall.

Makes me smile every time I walk in the closet and see it. And so far, it's held together like a champ. My Cinderella skewers aren't just great for teryaki chicken, they hold hoops and chandeliers like nobody's business.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Full Moons, Wild Hairs, and Creativity in the Closet

They say full moons make people do crazy stuff. I remember once in my twenties, after a night out dancing, my girlfriends and I decided it would be a good idea to drive through Carl's Jr. wearing only our bras and pants. All the cooks filed out of the kitchen to get a look at us. So, naturally, we asked them to take our picture. One of my friends still has it framed in her house, I think. And also...there may not have been a full moon that night. But you get the point. People do crazy stuff when they see that bright light in the sky.

During last week's full moon, I totally got a wild hair.

I'd told Mr. W that at some point I wanted to build a little crafting desk in the closet of our guest room. But I planned to tackle that during like phase 14 of our house projects. It was super low priority.

Until the full moon.

Not sure what came over me, but I decided to try to build the desk myself. I found that one of the top  sliding doors of our old bedroom closet made the perfect desk top, and I figured I could rig up supports on the wall and on top of my file cabinet.

As you can see, I'm super skilled with the screw gun. I broke the head off of one screw and couldn't even get another into the wood. Before I could even get that far, Mr. W had to come help me find studs to screw into (there's a dirty joke in there somewhere). My sneaky full moon project turned out to be a bigger undertaking than I thought it would.

So to make matters even more complicated, of course I had to crank it all up a notch with a custom paint job.

I wanted to build a little space that would inspire me to want to write and create. It kind of turned into a shrine for random stuff I love—like Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band the movie and Saturday Night Fever and tiny glass animals and U2. But whatev.

I decided to go with it and throw some candles and a Buddha statue in there so it would be a proper altar.

And at that altar I shall lay my thoughts and words and scraps of glue or fabric. I shall lose myself in the wall paint that reminds me of the cover of one of my sister's yearbooks from the 80s or maybe a sweater Mr. W had in junior high. I will smile every time I open the closet doors. And I will hope that I get a wild hair that yields as awesome a result as this one next time there's a full moon.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Showering With Homer

If you  haven't already heard, California is in a nasty drought right now. Brown is the new green when it comes to lawns. Trees are in distress everywhere. Riverbeds are bone dry. Being a third-generation CA girl, this breaks my heart. So I decided to do something that others have championed during past times of regional dehydration.

I got myself a shower buddy.

And it's not my husband.

He's strong and smooth. My naked legs always brush against him as I step into the tub. He takes up a fair amount of space, but I don't mind.

"Let's do this," he says.

And there in the steam and spray, we do.

He collects the extra water while I wash the funk from my frame.

He is my Home Depot 5-gallon bucket. And I call him Homer. 

It's pretty amazing how full he gets during each shower. Just using him under the faucet when I'm warming up the water allows me recycle a gallon or two. Add that to the drops he catches while I'm washing my hair and bod, and I've got close to 4 gallons after every one of our little trysts.

I was hopeful that if I dumped him on our dead grass (dead, thanks to many subcontractors driving over it for weeks on end...and us not watering it)...anyway, I was hopeful that I'd be able to bring the grass back to life.

Homer has his work cut out for him there.

He's been doing a dandy job of keeping our baby fruit trees watered, though. And for now, we can do without the grass. By the time we're ready to make it green again, we'll be re-landscaping to make things more drought-tolerant anyway.

Even if the drought ends, I might keep Homer around, though.

I'm getting pretty used to showering with my friend.