Sunday, April 29

Project Nursery: Sew A Crib Skirt

Sewing a crib skirt is an easy project.  It's a great way to create concealed under crib storage.  Here is the crib before.

My material choice was classic white with black ribbon detailing.  Two yards of fabric was more then enough.

Starting across the front of the crib, first measure your crib length from leg to leg.  Next measure the top of the base (where the mattress will lay) to the floor.  This will give you your finished fabric size.  Add an inch on all four sides for a hem.

Take the same measurement for the side of the crib - length and height.

Depending on where your crib is in the room you may only need 3 sides.  Mine is up against a wall so I only had to make a front and 2 sides.

If you don't have a sewing machine you can easily use fabric adhesive glue or heat and bond tape (applied with an iron).  I've seen it done before however do not know how well it washes. 

After cutting my fabric to size I pressed and pinned the edges for sewing.

After sewing all 3 sides with clean hems I went back and measured the mattress.  Take the mattress size, add an inch on all 4 sides for a hem and press/pin/sew this piece.

Next I sewed the 3 crib skirt sides to the 1 large piece of fabric that will lay over the base of the crib underneath the mattress.  I only attached the crib skirt sides to the base piece of fabric along the tops - I did not attach the front skirt to the side skirt along the height seams.

The final touch was adding black satin ribbon.  I used fabric adhesive hold the ribbon in place and pinned it down while drying.

Here is the finished crib skirt.  I already have storage totes and packs of diapers hiding behind the skirt!

Thursday, April 26

Druet v. Girouard Update and the Kijiji Buyer

For those of you that have been following the court case I've been involved in for the past 17 months, the decision was released today by the Court of Appeal of NB.  Entering the ranks of the self-represented was not easy but through perseverance I got through it and the justice system prevailed.
You can read the full decision here:
You may recall this article on, also in the Toronto Star and many other publications, after I lost at the Court of the Queen’s Bench in Moncton. 
A quick recap of how I got sued for ‘Specific Performance’ initially:
Background (taken from decision)
"The accepted facts are as follows. The respondent, Marc Girouard, was interested in purchasing a condominium unit in the same building in which Ms. Druet owned and rented a unit (#203). The unit is located in Moncton, where Mr. Girouard resides. Ms. Druet lives in Halifax. Mr. Girouard saw that a condo unit in the building was being advertised for rent on Kijiji, and, on October 22, 2010, he tracked down the owner, Ms. Druet, to discuss the possibility of purchasing it for $150,000. It was agreed they would continue negotiations by email. 
It is important to note the parties appear to have agreed on an amount, but no information whatsoever has been exchanged about the outstanding mortgage Mr. Girouard was to assume, nor had Mr. Girouard or his wife viewed the unit in question. It is also noteworthy that, after they agreed on the amount, arrangements were still being made for Mrs. Girouard to view the unit.
Approximately three hours later, Ms. Druet sent another email to Mr. Girouard in which she indicates that, after speaking with her partner who had just returned from Peru, she was not prepared to sell because of the price.
The next day, Mr. Girouard wrote to Ms. Druet informing her that he considered her to be contractually bound to sell him the condo unit. Eventually, he commenced an action against Ms. Druet, seeking specific performance or damages for breach of contract."
As a Real Estate Agent and DIY blogger who frequently purchases items on Kijiji I find this piece about buying goods sight unseen interesting, as said in the decision:
“People who agree to buy and sell goods on Kijiji do not normally expect to be bound until they have the opportunity to inspect the goods, even though they may have agreed to the essential terms. The general understanding is that the first person to make it to the door with cash in hand is the buyer. People who buy goods on eBay know well the risks of buying without an inspection, but are provided with ways of evaluating the trustworthiness of the vendor before pushing the enter key to confirm a bid or to exercise the “Buy it Now” option. Frankly, there is more legal formality surrounding the millions of transactions that occur daily on eBay than what occurred in the present case. Parties to a real estate transaction who are strangers usually fix a closing date, obtain a deposit and, most importantly, sign a formal purchase and sale agreement. “
So yeah,  I won! I won! I WON!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks for reading,

Wednesday, April 25

Project Nursery: Retro Rocking Chair

An easy retro rocker update that took no time at all...

I wasn't sure if I really needed a rocking chair for the nursery, so many different opinions but I do like rocking chairs so I figured for this good of a deal I couldn't pass it up.  The retro rocker was found on Kijiji for $30.  Here she is, before...

I've seen these rockers in design pictures, re-upholstered and sometimes painted.

Don't ever be afraid to re-upholster.  As you take a piece apart you will see how it was done and will be able to put it back together, you can take pictures along the way to help.

I removed the seat and back.  There was a basic piece of plywood with foam cushioning and a brown faux leather material covering it. 

After removing the faux leather material I used a soft terry baby blanket I had to re-upholster the piece.  I wanted something comfortable against my skin for warm summer nights.  Next I stretched the fabric around the seat and back, and used a staple gun to secure fabric into place.

Check it.  This retro rocker is breathing a new life!

And for the little guy, a vintage Big Bird chair, straight from my parents basement.  Once enjoyed by my sister and I.

Friday, April 20

Project Nursery: Vintage Suitcase

As I complete the final projects in the nursery I'll be blogging about them.  My grandmother picked up this vintage suitcase at a yard sale years ago for my mother, who then gave it to me. 

I'm using the suitcase in the nursery to store books and toys.

You can find vintage suitcases at flea markets, the Salvation Army, thrift stores, your grandmothers attic, yard sales, everywhere. I've seen so many projects done with them from beside tables, coffee tables, storage spaces, you get my drift.  Tap into your creative side and put these beauties to good use!

Sunday, April 15

Antique settee makeover

My antique settee, refurbished!

While Pinteresting one day I found the following antique settee and fell in love. Notice the french ticking fabric used for the seating - this is absolute bliss to me!

I recently renovated my kitchen but afterwards I felt like the dining area was lacking a feeling of comfort.  Avoiding an expensive built in that can't be easily moved I decided a small sofa or settee would be really cute in that space and achieve the comfort and coziness I was going for. 

After browsing Kijiji I found this beauty.

The transport home.  Who says you need a truck...

It sure takes some imagination to see the end result.  This settee had back cushions that hid the caning and upholstered in a hideous pink material.  The light colored caning made it appear piecey with the wood trim in between the three cane sections.

I started by removing the old fabric, taking the bottom seat off and staining the caning.  I used a water based dark walnut stain that I had left over in the basement from another project.

Ah, much better...

Next I used unbleached cotton to reupholster the foam and attached a new backing underneath the seat to protect it.  Here you can see the settee bottom laying on the table getting the new cotton top and backing underneath.

To reattach the seat was easy, there were screws holding it in place originally.  I had to tuck the cotton fabric around the front piece of the seat cushion and staple it to the wood as you can see below.  For seat cushions I purchased new 4" thick firm foam and covered it with a soft white knit blanket I already had.  I couldn't find a french linen ticking fabric locally so I'll wait until my next trip to Toronto to source it.

Tools needed:

Staple gun
Screw Driver
Pliers (to rip off old fabric and pull out staples)

Project costs:

Used settee on Kijiji - $80
Unbleached cotton to reupholster foam - 2.5 metres - $12
Backing - 2.5 meters - $4
2 Pieces of 4" thick firm foam seating - $55
The pillows, and white knit blanket on the foam seating were sourced from my home.

There you have it, another DIY makeover gives a new life to a beautiful piece of furniture!

Saturday, April 7

Kids Dresser Makeover

Here is a sneak peek for what's to come in the baby's room.  Unfortunately I forgot to take a before picture of this dresser and remembered while priming it.  I found this solid wood antique dresser on kijiji and paid $50 for it...what a deal!

The dresser was dark wood with some wear and scratches on the top.  I gave it a light hand sanding, cleaned it and then applied a latex primer.  Next I painted the dresser with a melamine paint for durability.  The color is ribbon yellow by Dulux.

The original hardware was old and dingy.  I was struggling to find knobs that suited the dresser so I went on ebay and found these handmade wooden owl knobs. 

The design was already engraved into the drawers so I just followed the outline and painted inside the drawer design yellow for a little contrast.

So that's it!  Thanks for reading and watch out for the upcoming baby's room post :)

Wednesday, April 4

Eggcellent Eco Easter Eggs

Easter customs vary across the globe however decorating Easter eggs is common amongst many of us.  Sometimes overlooked is the waste involved that comes with the holidays.  Old Easter baskets (along with the paper trim and frills) that get tossed away into landfills are detrimental.  Be kind to our planet by simply making your own Easter basket.  Teaching your kids these values now while they are young is so important, and the best part is you are spending time with them!

That being said you can make your own natural egg dyes using God-given resources.  Plus who knows what mystery chemicals are in those store-bought dyes. For colored egg creations you can use...

-Pink and red eggs, juice from cranberries or beets. 
-Yellow eggs, tumeric or orange peels.
-Purple eggs, red wine.
-Blue eggs, try red cabbage or canned blueberries
-Brown eggs, coffee grounds.
-Orange eggs, onion skins.

To achieve this you boil your eggs, remove from the water and pat dry.  Using the same water add a teaspoon of vinegar (helps absorb color) to boiling water, add your food coloring choice to water along with eggs then boil for fifteen minutes or longer for a deeper color.  Now you'll have your own eggcellent creations!

Another option is wooden eggs that you can decorate but make sure you’re using non-toxic paints.  With wooden eggs you've got handmade keepsakes that will last for years to come, and if desired can even be re-used by re-painting!

Make a Green Easter Basket

Use a flower pot, a bucket or check out your local thrift store for an excellent source of baskets.  Decorate the basket by weaving spring colored ribbon or use string or attach home made decorations with a hot glue gun.  Inside the basket you can fill it with crafting feathers, colorful tissue that you've saved (which can be cut into long strips), shredded junk mail or wild flowers. 

Don't forget eco-candy such as fair trade chocolate and healthy treats like fun fruits and nuts.

Be sure to save your baskets, wooden eggs, and other decorations for next year!


Sunday, April 1

A Whine And Cheese Baby Shower

My besties put on a Whine and Cheese themed baby shower for me Saturday night!  They incorporated the theme into almost every bit of the shower. The decorations and ideas were all crafted by them.

The invitations were designed and provided by my sister Shannon.

The centerpieces and decor consisted of decorative wine bottles, plants, grapes and corks with light jazz music playing. 

The shower was held from 6-8pm and consisted of the following menu options:

Assorted cheeses
Fruit tray
Assorted crackers
Assorted mini sandwiches
A great selection of wine and sparkling non-alcholic wine for the mama to be and anyone who preferred.

Hung on a clothesline was an assortment of baby gifts like clothes, bibs and socks.  It went along with the whole France, wine, cheese feeling - what a great idea!


Meet Christa and Candice, the hostess(es) {WITH the mostess}

My mom provided this beautiful theme inspired cake.

My sis, moi and our mom.

For shower games the girls led a baby facts trivia questionnaire and guess/measure the mama-to-be's belly with yarn.

Thanks to everyone who came, for all your goodies to the wee one and many thanks to Christa and Candice and their mom Patty for organizing the shower! 

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