Throw & Go

For me, the hardest part of making throw pillows is finding the motivation to get the sewing machine out of storage! I’m no expert by annnymeans, but I’ve learned a few things that I thought I’d pass on.

1. Use fabric napkins!

Picture this… you walk into pier one and walk to their wall of throw pillows…and walk away because you can’t find one for less than $30 (even the clearance).  Instead of leaving disappointed, head on over to where they keep the napkins for $1.50, pick up two, and sew them together!  You’ll probably even find a few napkins that are the same pattern and fabric as their pillows.  Plus – a lot of cloth napkins have texture on them, which gives the pillows a little something extra.

2. Use place mats!

Examples from target.

Though a little more expensive than napkins, place mats usually have awesome details!  Most of the time, you can even pull the seams out that are holding the front and back of the place mat together and stuff in a pillow!

3. Create a removable pillow cover.  It is so much easier to take off the pillow case and throw it in the wash, than to try to spot-clean a throw pillow. Thrify and Chic has an awesome tutorial for creating an awesome pillow cover.

4. Buy cheap ugly pillows.  Depending on the size and plush-ness, even insert pillows can cost over $10, so next time you see that super ugly – super clearance throw, pick it up and recover it!

5. Recover your pillows.  Going along with #3, instead of buying a new insert pillow every time you make a pillow, just recover a pillow you already have.  I mean – you can only have so many pillows before your guests have to start sitting on the floor!  This works perfect for holiday themed pillows, since they’ll only be out for a couple of weeks.

Photo wall

During college, I had a set of white photo frames, that moved from house to house with me.  I purchased the collection from walmart (I’m sure you’ve seen the ones for 3 or 4 bucks).  The frames were cheap, plasticky, and I spray painted them all white.  Every time they fell off the wall, a little bit of the paint would chip, so they ended up looking – umm rustic?

Needless to say, I threw them out as soon as I graduated, and moved up to a set of frames from Kohl’s. My pitiful attempt at a photo wall ended up with too few frames, and way to matchy – matchy.

Since I didn’t want to go out and purchase more of the same frames, I decided to hit up the Rustic Market (a goodwill type store) and picked up a couple wooden frames.

$7.35 and 7 frames later, I was pretty impressed with my purchases.  I tried to get various sizes, and frames to spice up my boring wall.  Since these were solid, wood frames, I wasn’t afraid of them falling apart either. Did I mention that the backs of my Walmart frames would literally separate from the front making them completely useless?!

But back to my new frames, I got to work taking out and cleaning all the glass, then took the frames outside to spray paint them black to match the existing frames.

Then came the fun part – picking out pictures and other fun things to put in the frames!  I had left over fabric from making the ottoman, so that was the first frame  I tackled.  I filled the other frames with anniversary cards, fun quotes, and of course pictures.

As you can tell, I still have more frames to hang up, but I was too excited to show you to wait!

The Next HGTV Design Star

Sometimes you stare at something in your house/apartment for so long, you forget its even there (or that it looks terrible!)  A couple weeks ago I purchased a painted vase from a homegoods store ($30 sale!) and its been sitting empty next to the TV ever since.

Nick finally said we need to give the poor pot some lovin’ when I dragged him into Michael’s.  He picked out three bundles of sticks and flowers (don’t worry – we used 40% off coupons!).  I will admit, I thought he was crazy when he selected some bright yellow flowers.

Nick informed me that the yellow color would coordinate with the other touches of yellow in our apartment, but I was skeptical until we got home and saw the final result.  Who knew!…I might sign him up for the next Design Star :)


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