Tutorial: How to transform a floor lamp with spray paint and a lampshade

Do you love the utility of your torchiere floor lamp but hate the sight of it? Yes? Well, I can relate. Begrudgingly, I bought one this year, mainly because I didn't want to shell out big bucks and I really needed that little reading/task light that is attached to many torchiere lamps. But let me tell you - it is severely lacking in style or class. For starters, the pipe base comes in black, and when juxtaposed against my light-colored walls, it stands out like a sore thumb. (You can find floor lamps in silver, too, but you'll pay twice as much.) In addition, the plastic cone-shaped lampshade looks cheap and tacky.*

Here is the before...wha, wha...
This is the exact same lamp I got from Target, and it's sooo bad.
...and the after! :)
Same lamp with a makeover

To see the steps and additional pictures, click Read more.


Tutorial: How to make a unique paper lampshade

If you want a unique and pretty lampshade that also doesn't break the bank, then you should gather up 2 sheets of your favorite paper and make this cute paper lampshade. It will dress up any room and give it an edgy, non-traditional look. Not bad considering it will take you only 10 minutes and the materials are probably already in your house. Ready, get set, go!
Materials - 2 pieces of pretty 12 x 12 scrapbook paper (I found a big pack at Ross for $5); scissors ($2); clear tape ($1); clear Contact paper ($5.68); pencil ($0.50)

Time - 10 minutes

**Also, make sure the lamp base you are using has a lamp harp. The finial base is what will hold up the lampshade. Obviously, it would be a bad idea to have the lightbulb directly touching the clear contact paper.**

Oh and by the way, I had to Google all of those terms (i.e., lamp harp and finial base). In case you're like I was and don't know all of the technical terms, here is a diagram I got from this website.


Freebie: Poppies desktop wallpaper

Inspired by the free downloads posted on How About Orange, I decided to create my own freebie. Because I like to paint and draw sometimes, I thought I'd take a shot at creating a unique desktop wallpaper. In case you are interested, here is a link to my Picasa web album, where you can download the image and set it as your desktop background (I would be so flattered!).


Tutorial: How to make a simple and cute dog bed in 10 minutes

Have you shopped around for a cute dog bed lately? Well, don't bother if you want to find one that is both inexpensive and easy on the eyes. The trouble I've always had is finding one that fits in with my home decor.

I think the companies that make these dog beds are attempting to pick colors and patterns that will go with any decor, but herein lies the problem. These round, frumpy dog beds are usually an atrocious mix of pattern on top of pattern and clashing colors, which I guess is supposed to go with the color and style of any room...? Umm...fail! You probably know what I'm talking about if you have seen these generic dog beds at your local pet store.

So, for the people out there who want their dog to have his/her own comfortable space but who refuse to sacrifice style and a bunch of dough, I think I have a really simple solution. 

Materials - 1.5 yards of fabric of your choice ($5 for mine); standard pillow (used is preferable, new is $6); sewing machine (mine was $22) (or plain old needle and thread will work); measuring tape ($1); scissors ($2)

Time - approximately 10 minutes


Sew many possibilities with my mini sewing machine!

First of all, sorry for the cheesy title. Couldn't help myself. Too excited. 

Just wanted to share how thrilled I am with my new mini sewing machine! I'm dreaming of all of the projects that I will now be able to do with the help of this little guy. 
Specifically, I need to make curtains soon, and I would also like to make a tote. I think it can hold up to the challenge, too, because I have already used it to make one project - a dog bed. The little purple machine did a nice job. I pulled at the seems and the stitches seem quite strong, perhaps even strong enough to withstand the havoc my two little doggers will inevitably wreak on it. :)

Anyway, if you're looking for a starter sewing machine, as I was since I had not sewn in years, then you might want to look into this one. I got mine from HSN for $22 last week, which I thought was a bargain until I just found out that they're now selling it   for $17. Oh well...I'm still super pumped about all of the DIY possibilities!

UPDATE: In the last couple of weeks, my mini sewer stopped working. :( It's possible that I'm doing something wrong or messed it up in some way, but it's probably just that this inexpensive machine was not built to last. Sorry I suggested it before!


Tutorial: How to cover a file cabinet with contact paper

A file cabinet is a great organization tool and a necessity for most people, but let's face it. It's a big eyesore! Some people buy their file cabinets from secondhand stores, so they are typically pretty beaten up. Mine was actually brand new when I got it, but it came in this ugly putty color. I recently decided that I needed to do something about it. So, I covered it in woodgrain looking contact paper to make it fit in better with the bedroom decor. Here is how I did it:

But first, here is a before picture (except that I had already covered one drawer):

Materials - Contact paper ($5.68) (I used woodgrain, but I also think a crisp white would have looked nice.);    scissors ($2); plastic card, like a store rewards card, to smooth out bubbles (free); screwdriver ($1); X-Acto knife ($5); tape measure ($2)

Time - Approximately 6 hours (but I was a contact paper newbie)