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DIY FILES:: How to Organize Your Clutch Purses

25 Jul

Clutches: American ApparelClare VivierPersifor, and K. Slademade

I often find that the best ideas are the simplest, most why-didn’t-I-think-of-that moments of brilliance. Those but of course lightning bolts that happen when you least expect it – like in the shower, or just as you’re falling asleep. My most compelling thesis arguments always happened mid-shower (quite inconvenient really, when you need to write them down on a piece of paper before you forget). But anyhoo, this is one of those ideas.
This idea comes courtesy of the oh so talented Mackenzie Horan of Design Darling, who decided to start filing her clutches the way she sorts her mail: in an acrylic letter sorter. If you’re thinking “but my clutches don’t stand up by themselves” then Mackenzie’s got you covered, just slip a piece of cardboard into each clutch so that they hold their shape. (This is probably better for them anyway). I actually use this same method to make my tall boots stand up when I display them. 
She found the letter sorter at The Container Store. I think I could actually use one on my desk at work. The best part about this DIY, is that I’m now feeling super inspired to find simple, pretty ways to organize the rest of my home and workspace. What else could you display in a letter sorter? Pretty file folders? Wallets? Lipsticks? I hope this DIY has inspired you to organize one spot in your home or workspace too.
And if y’all haven’t visited Mackenzie’s boutique yet, go now! It’s just darling. 
xo Cristina


7 Malachite Decor Diys

18 Apr


There are not one but TWO geologists in my immediate family. So rocks have a special place in my life. As a toddler I recited colors as “sapphire, ruby, topaz and emerald” instead of “blue, red, yellow, and green,” and fossils were my toys. Suffice it to say, I like rocks. The evidence is scattered around my apartment in the form of marble, agate and geodes performing as my magnets, bookends, and coffee table.

So far these have been small geologic accents, but now I’m thinking big. Like a malachite table. A malachite dining table even. But in the event that I can’t find or afford a solid slab of malachite to serve as my table top, I’m considering one of these lovely diy’s that I found on the interwebs.

2. Boxes by Mimosa Lane
5. Tray by Burlap and Lace
6. Accent Wall by Jessica Jones Murals

Which one’s your fav?
xo Cristina



16 Apr
Hideous upholstered table
Updated midcentury modern

Far Out Home Fittings, r.i.p.

Ikea hack, $35 table top
Parents are the best
New table top + old legs, and re-upholstered chair

As promised, I’m going to be sharing my experience living in and decorating a tiny studio apartment. You saw the before pictures here, but now it’s looking much more lived in. So today I’m going to tell you a little bit about my dining area. We can’t call it a room, because it’s not in any way closed off and sits just 10 feet from my bed, but it’s an important part of the space nonetheless. So let me tell you a little story about the ugliest table in the world…

There was once a totally groovy vintage furniture store here in Austin called Far Out Home Fittings. It wasn’t beautiful, but if you looked closely there were some excellent finds. Take for example this dining table and chairs. Really I only wanted the chairs for my dining room, but it came as a set and the table had sweet legs. Sadly Far Out is no longer there, and I miss popping in for the oddball find.
But seriously, is this not the ugliest upholstery you have ever seen? Brown, orange and mustard velvet, these photos don’t do it justice. Who upholsters a table top anyway? Imagine all of the spilt food that would soak into it. It had to go. But it turns out upholstery is quite an expensive service, so I only had enough in my budget to reupholster one of the chairs with white leatherette, I just threw a sheepskin over the other as a temporary fix.
Then I went to Ikea and bought this white lacquer table top for just $35The new top is larger and rectangular, which was far more practical than the oval shape (the old table could only seat 4 people and the new one seats 6 comfortably). And all it took was a few quick turns with a wrench to remove the legs from the old top and a regular screwdriver to attach them to the new top! Easiest Ikea hack ever, and it doesn’t even look like Ikea with the authentic vintage legs on it.

Oh and do you like my sunglass storage? I got the crystal pedestal bowl from Flashback for just $12! They were actually using it to display belts and accessories but agreed to sell it to me, and at a bargain price as well. I told you I love that place. The blue horse head is one of my favorite pieces, I spotted it in Dwell magazine years ago and searched for it tirelessly until I made one mine. It’s by Bitossi. The coasters are Anthropologie and so are the polkadot napkins, a thoughtful gift from Cass at coco+kelley (thanks Cass!). You might remember the pink painting from my old home tour, and the before photos of my studio from this post. During my time in Sydney I fell head over heels in love with Aboriginal artwork and this painting by Betty Mbitjana is just one of the pieces I brought back with me. The gold table runner is a Moma find, and the black tray was part of the Neiman Marcus Target collection. I like to keep a tray on the table to corral all of the random things that end up on my dining table – like mail, sunglasses, and cameras (when you’re a blogger).
That about sums up my dining room area (oh yea, and my dying orchid makes an appearance too) and by the time I post this I will probably have rearranged it all again. Redecorating is my favorite midnight activity. It always seems like a better idea than sleep at the time. 
I hope you guys liked my ugliest-table-in-the-world transformation!
xoxo Cristina



6 Mar
Handles Ansaldi & Sons / Paint Behr Herbal Tea / Corner brackets Hardware World
I feel like a fake and a phony posting this. This was not my idea and I won’t claim to be original. In fact when I was contemplating this DIY this is the conversation that went down:
Me: I really want to DIY myself some green campaign drawers, but I just feel like EVERYONE has them
Marisa: Nobody has them, I’ve never met anyone that has them. Have you?
Me: Well no.
Marisa: You don’t actually know anyone with campaign drawers then.
Me: No, I guess I don’t. But it feels like I do.
Sometimes the lines between real life and the internet are blurred, does anyone else feel this way?
It all started with this little spread in Lonny magazine. And then the bloggers were off. I was infected with Campaign fever from the start, so (after the aforementioned conversation) I studied the RAST hacks and cherry picked the bits that I liked most, and here are my results! I’d first like to acknowledge the hackers that came before me: I used the Campaign drawer handles from LittleGreenNotebook and the corner brackets on Design Manifest.

1 quart high gloss paint – I used Behr Herbal Tea
6 Campaign handles from Ansaldi & Sons
6 packets of corner brackets (they come 4/set), Hardware World
paint brush
wood filler
sand paper
optional: hot glue

Step 1: Buy Ikea RAST drawers

They are only $34.99 each. If you’ve searched for side tables (especially with drawers) you will know that this is a steal. Alternatively, if you already have drawers at home that could use a facelift, use those!
Step 2: Choose paint color
A few people have asked me how I got the lacquer look to mine, I just used a high gloss paint. I’ve seen some fabulous renditions of these in pink, grey, black, and white – you could really go any color with these. I’d love to re-do mine in orange! 
Note: this wood soaks up paint, if you don’t use a primer it will take 2-3 coats and the finished product might not be completely even. I didn’t use a primer so I don’t know if that would fix this.
Step 3: Fill in handle holes & paint
Use woodfiller to fill in the holes meant for the Ikea drawer pulls, there are two on each drawer. Once this has dried sand them down until smooth. Then paint everything your color of choice.
Note: Save yourself time (and paint) by figuring out which sides will be showing. I went ahead and painted everything green (even insides of drawers) but no one will ever see those.
Step 4. You can begin to assemble the RAST once the paint has dried (don’t assemble the drawers yet)

Step 5. Measure the center of the drawer and then drill the handle pulls in. Measure twice, drill once.
Note: it’s difficult to get these centered… mine are slightly off but I don’t think anyone can notice

Step 6. Attach the corner brackets, then slide the drawers into place!
I drilled mine in with the small screws that came with the brackets BUT I would recommend skipping the screws and hot glueing them instead, because when I open and close the drawers the screws rub against each other, making it difficult to close the drawers all the way. One day, I’d like to remove the screws and re-attach them with hot glue, but… it’s been a year and I have not gotten around to it. Save yourself the trouble.

I really hope this helps, but if you have any questions leave them in the comments below and I’ll get back to every single one! 
And for more photos of my nightstands and my home, look here and here.
xoxo Cristina


How to DIY crystal fridge magnets

21 Nov
If you have a bit of downtime over the Thanksgiving holiday, I have just the project for you. This was one of the quickest diy’s I’ve ever done, hands down. But you’d never guess by the outcome! My fridge was looking a little bare, and you know I love a good moodboard. So this diy was born! First I went to a rock and crystal store here in Austin (aptly named ‘We Rock!’) and picked up a few crystals. I wanted to have some variety so I chose a few different types, but it could be fun to have a set of all the same crystals too. They ranged from 50 cents to $3, really reasonably priced. Then I bought a pack of round magnets from Home Depot. The last and easiest step was to hot glue the crystals to the magnets. I wish I had more to write but that’s really all there was to it!  An incredibly simple DIY that you could easily complete with a full and happy belly this Thanksgiving weekend. 
Might I add, these make a great Christmas gift!
xoxo Cristina


DIY DIP DYE: Koolaid Hair Tutorial

20 Nov

This weekend was action packed. In addition to the race, we dip dyed Nancy’s hair in Koolaid! Slightly impromptu, totally effective. This was an excellent way to spend an evening. Nancy’s hair was already ombre’d so her tips were lighter than the rest of her hair to begin with. If you have blonde hair you can skip this step, but if you have dark hair you’ll probably have to bleach the ends first. First we boiled a small pot of water, then added 5 packs of Koolaid. We were going for a pink rather than red result, so we used 4 packs of Pink Lemonade and 1 packet of Watermelon Cherry. Nancy’s hair is quite long, so if your hair is shorter you could use less Koolaid. Stir the mixture until the Koolaid has dissolved, then transfer it into a large heat safe bowl.

Next, Nancy put on an old t-shirt (in case of stains) and then dipped the ends of her hair into the bowl. She left it in for about 30 minutes, but you could probably leave it for less. We passed the time by gossiping and drinking hot cocoa. When you’re all done, simply blow dry. Voila! Hot pink hair. You should know this is a semi-permanent dye, it will eventually fade but it definitely won’t wash out for a few weeks. Lemme know if you have any questions!

xoxo Cristina



DIY Files: Butterflies & Pumpkins

23 Oct


In this set of DIY Files, we’ve got butterflies, pumpkins, and butterflies on pumpkins. 

The steps and materials are essentially the same for all of three of these DIYs! Print clip art butterflies onto vellum sheets, and stick them to a lightbulb, a branch, a pumpkin, or anything you’d like. And if you’d prefer, you can use these butterfly decals instead.

I think this would be a fabulous way to add character to a ceiling light if you live in an apartment and can’t change out your fixtures. For materials and directions, you’ve gotta check out Suzonne’s post over at Urban Comfort. She even pulled together a pinterest board of butterfly clip art! Such a good resource.

Let me know if you try any of these DIYs, or if you decide to add butterflies to anything else in your home!
xoxo Cristina