These abstract paper art pieces were love at first sight. I originally found them on Pinterest, but all the hyperlinks led to know where, so I searched and searched for weeks until at last, I found them. They are from Ethan Allen, with a hefty price tag, $649 each! Funny thing is, I loved them so much I originally planned on coughing up the chunk of change to buy them (so out of character for me, but I wanted them so bad!). That was until I found a pair of beautifully matted picture frames with gold gilding at the Goodwill for $5 each. And poof, it was clear to me that I could totally turn the lovely Ethan Allen pieces into a DIY. And so I did, and it was super simple. All I did was draw triangles and circles in Photoshop and send the images to FedEx/Kinkos. They printed them for me for about $90. Total savings $1,198!
Glamorous, right? I actually found these chairs in a heaping pile of random furniture on the side of the road. They clearly needed work, but I was up for the challenge since they had really good bones. With a little sand paper, WD-40 to remove the screws that held the cushions in place, fabric and spray paint I was able to turn these not-so-cute (or sanitary) chairs into something totally perfect for our back porch. And the best part? The project literally cost $5. I found the fabric at a yard sale last weekend for $2, spray paint was $.99 a can and I used 3 cans.
Without revealing too many details about the dress, let’s just say it’s fabulous and everything I imagined it to be. It’s unlike any dress I’ve ever seen before, and that’s because I have literally never seen it before. The idea for the dress came to me about a year ago. It wasn’t something I had been dreaming of as a little girl — It came to me as my personal style evolved.
As soon as Adrian proposed in February I thought: YES, now I can start Googling/Fab Sugaring it. I searched and searched and could not find it. I took the advice of my best friend & maid of honor and checked out Demetrios Bridal in Tampa. There, I found a dress that was so so close to what I was thinking of and even had my mom & sister make the trip to Tampa because I thought it was the dress. I really thought it was the one, but in the back of my mind I knew I was settling, the price was too much ($2,800 w/o alterations) and that on my trip to NYC on Easter weekend I would find the dress. And well, Easter weekend came and I found it.
My best friend and I made an appointment to The Bridal Garden, a not-for-profit bridal shop that benefits education for disadvantaged children in NYC. Oh yeah, and the best part, they accept only designer dresses and offer dresses up to 75% off retail the retail price. So me, right?
As soon as we walked into our 11:30 a.m. appt, I saw the particular piece of fabric on a dress across the room. I freaked out and thought to myself: they are going to have tons of unnamed fabric dresses here. As soon as Gina, the most fantastic consultant ever, told me I could hang my coat up and shop, I ran. I grabbed the dress. Even though there was only one other bride with an appointment at 11:30 with me, I didn’t want her to think it was the dress for her — and that’s because it was made for me. We pulled tons of Vera Wang & Rosa Clara dresses, but no dress fit like the David Tutera (ironically, my late godfathers nephew is David, so perhaps it was fate!). The David dress was just ‘so me.’ It fit like a glove and requires no alterations (other than a slight hem, which depends on the shoes I wear).
I left NYC feeling so beautiful, which is exactly how every girl should feel when deciding on the dress. I can’t wait for Adrian to see it on our wedding day this October. I think he’ll freak out when he sees it — a good kind of freak out of course!
image via gigee marie
I’m beyond excited to share some very fantastic news — I’m getting married! Adrian proposed on V-Day and since then we secured a date, location, guest list, bride & groom’s parties and of course, the dress! Whew, and while it’s been a crazy busy time for us, it’s also been just as busy for a friend of mine who’s making a career switch. And in the midst of her reorganizing and reconstructing her life she said something that got me thinking… She didn’t want to be like everyone else — who’s just settling down, getting cush in their jobs, getting married, buying houses and having kids.
My immediate thought — are you saying I’m settling down?
Secondary thought — since when is romance, making money/building wealth, buying houses, getting engaged and planning weddings settling down? I’d take everything that I am experiencing right now over struggling, switching jobs, restructuring a life, having no cash and lacking love any day! Thankfully, I kept these thoughts to myself because, well… the empathy sat in. I put myself in her shoes and flashed back to a part of my life where I was in a somewhat similar situation. I was in college, and struggling financially and romantically. I was motivated by fear and truly felt like an independent woman. I kept saying to myself: I’d rather struggle than have my family jump in and save me. I felt rich with the little bit of money I was making, and oddly got a rush when I had to sell my clothes, jewelry and sometimes computers to pay my rent, tuition and to fix my crappy car.
But when I look back, that was one of the best times of my life. I learned about who I was and who I wanted to be. I focused on keeping off debt, passing classes and planning how I wanted my life to roll out. I know it doesn’t seem all that easy for my friend who’s a little bitter and lost right now, but it gets better. The best part about your life is molding it to exactly how you want to live in it. And yes, it’s easy to lack empathy and word vomit that people are settling down, getting married and popping out babies, but is that really settling down? Sounds to me like it’s settling up — they molded their lives and now they’re living it. Let them live theirs and you go on and live yours. Oh yeah, and that day when you save up enough to buy a house – I’ll come over and celebrate with you and listen to how fab your settled up life really is ; )
Removing the old blinds in the kitchen has definitely been high on my priority list. I searched and searched for alternatives to our dated, once white now yellow blinds, and couldn’t find any. I even went as far to suggest that we just shouldn’t have any blinds or curtains at all! Well, that didn’t happen. And here’s why: We made our own!
What You’ll Need for this DIY:
- Roller shade ($7 at Lowe’s)
- Fabric glue
- Fabric (40% off at JoAnn’s, $6 for 1 yard)
- Tape measure
Measure your window & cut fabric to fit w/ about 2″ extra on each side. My window was 36 x 37, so I did 38″ across and 39″ down. Then, put the fabric nice side down and put your roller shade on top of it. I suggest reviewing the pattern on the front side of the fabric to sure that you have the right pattern in the right location, according to your taste of course!