To Buy Or To Make, That Is The Question

I meant to get out my sewing machine and dust it off. I really did. Except one day I rounded the last corner of the last aisle in the home section of TJ Maxx and there they were, my new bedroom curtains. They practically jumped out of someone else’s cart and into mine. I’m not kidding.

So here are the curtains that were in our master bedroom.

Curtains Before

 These sheer curtains with the burnout pattern were holdovers from our apartment in Germany. When we moved back into our house, I had enough panels, I just used them as place holders in almost every room. I always meant to replace them with something more substantial, less transparent. I seem to favor linen fabrics, so that is what I had in mind. Something light-colored and plain, maybe with a dark border. Then I found these curtains in TJ Maxx. I picked them up off the shelf and another shopper said, “I just had those in my cart. I was looking for a bedspread to match.” Ha! Her loss and honey, you don’t need things to match, just coordinate! That is a lesson for another day.

New Curtains

A linen looking fabric that I love, plus a pretty pattern that adds a nice touch, but coordinates easily with nearly everything. Two 96″ panels for $30. Score! I picked up two packages. I like to hang my curtain rods high on the wall, so I need the eight foot panels instead of the typical seven. If I were going to make my own curtain panels, I would purchase about three yards per panel. Well, it’s unlikely I’d find six yards of fabric that I love for $30. If I can find fabric I like for $10 or $20 a yard, that is a deal, $5 a yard is an absolute steal!

Here you can see the new panel on the left and the old sheer curtain on the right.

Curtain Comparison

See how transparent the old curtains were? The new panels let the light through, but they feel so much nicer. Here is where I apologize for the poor picture quality. It’s a combination of an inexpensive camera (I don’t want to spring for a DSLR just yet) and my favorite photo editing website has not been working for me lately. Ugh! To avoid the window burnout, I took the following picture at night.

Curtains After

I like my new curtains so much better than the old. It isn’t a dramatic change visually, but when you are actually in the room, well, it FEELS so much nicer. That seems to be a running theme with me lately, not so much the dramatic change, but a minor change that makes a room feel better. Full disclosure, I did wash the curtains before I hung them and they shrunk to just the right length. Whoa! Not sure I’d take that risk again.

So, that was my To Buy or To Make choice that pretty much decided itself. Have you had decisions like that? Have you ever had something go from another shopper’s cart to yours? Did you feel lucky or guilty?

Living with a DIY

title shotI have been enjoying my DIY beaded wall sconces for several months now and I thought it would be interesting to share how it has been living with a DIY.  Sometimes these DIYs seem like a great idea but but over time they show their true colors.

Fortunately, I am still enjoying my wall sconces.  I use them everyday, well every night really, as they are the last things I click off each evening.  I have really enjoyed the convenience of the switch being an arms length away.  I simply have to reach over and switch them off.  They provide just the right amount of light for reading before going to bed, not too bright, and not too dark.  Originally, I worried that the clear glass would mean too bright of a light to read by, but I ended up using an Edison vintage style bulb that is a lower wattage and has a bit of a darker tint to it.  So with the new bulb it is an easy light to read by at night.

Another worry I had with these was that since they are basically only held to the wall with one screw I thought that when I went to turn them off that they would move around and become all wonky.  Thankfully that hasn’t happened.

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So far the biggest negative with these light fixtures is that they get dusty inside and you have to use a duster to get inside to clean them up.  Other than that I really like the look of them.  The clear glass and wooden beads give them a trendy feel but since they aren’t store-bought they have their own original look.

So all in all this is a DIY I can live with!  Do you have any DIYs you love?  Or do you have some that just didn’t measure up? Let me know!

Hello, Gorgeous!

Hi, everyone! This is just a quick update to share my new favorite thing around the house. We finally replaced the horrible faucet in our kitchen. Here it is in all of it’s formerly nasty glory.

Old Faucet

Aaack! I can’t believe we’ve owned our house for six years and I put up with that thing for so long. It really was the cheapest of it’s type that you can buy. The finish under the handles was so corroded that it was impossible to keep clean. Not to mention how inconvenient the two handles are when you have greasy, gooey hands.

Look at my new faucet.

New Faucet

It’s the Delta Lewiston in chrome. Isn’t it gorgeous? First of all, I love that it’s the single lever style, which is so much easier to use. I really like that I can pull the sprayer out of the spout and there are two spray options. We used the old sprayer hole for the soap dispenser that came with the faucet. Neato! Improving the little things that you use every day can make your home so much more pleasant. Don’t you agree?