Tuesday, July 22, 2014

DYI No Crease Pants Hangers!

Some people just HATE ironing....but....don't think I am crazy when I say....
I don't mind ironing....in fact it can be kind of relaxing!
But what I do hate is when the pants that I have ironed get creases in them hanging in the closet!
The problem is the hangers.....

Even wooden pants hangers don't seem to solve the problem for me.

The wood bar still leaves creases....and I don't like to hang my pants from the cuffs!

I have looked all over for padded hangers for pants and have been unsuccessful!  And chances are...if I ever do find some....I will be too "cheap" to shell out the $$$ for them!

A couple years ago, I made these padded hangers.....

In effect, they are batting filled tubes wrapped around the hanger and hand stictched closed.

I tied some ribbon around the ends to stabilize them.

You can hop over to read the tutorial by CLICKING HERE.

I made about 10 of these  pants hangers....but since I do go to the thrift store a lot.....I have (gasp) more than 10 pairs of pants!!!!
It was time to make more padded hangers....and to be honest.....I am not all that much in love with these (another gasp)!

Then I thought about this stuff!
If you don't recognize it....it is pipe insulation.

Home Depot sells it for a buck twenty five for six feet!

I have used this stuff to hide electrical cords.....a post for another day!

I even used it for the trunks of the Truffala Trees ala The Lorax (click to see how)

What a versatile product!  I probably should ask Mr. S if we actually use it to insulate the pipes!

Anyway....I had an AHA moment and figured that this stuff would be perfect for streamlining the padded hanger project!

I was right....It was super simple....It was fast.....It was CHEAP!

I used inexpensive plastic hangers. 
(already had 'em so no cost there)

I had some nice crisp lightweight cotton canvas, but you could use any smooth crisp fabric.
 (already had this so instead of cost it was a benefit  to empty the fabric stash)

I bought 18 feet of foam tubing.....total cost $3.84
I also used the glue gun!

The process is almost too simple!

Cut the tube the width of the bottom of the hanger (in my case 15 inches)

The foam already has a scored line to separate it (you know....to get it to go around the pipe)....so it is easy to cut the slit in the foam.

 Cut a piece of fabric 2 inches wider than the tube by 5 inches.

Then it is just a simple matter of tucking the fabric into one side of the tube...

Then smoothly roll the fabric around the tube and tuck it into the other side.

The extra fabric helps to fill the space around the plastic hanger bar.

Tuck the extra end fabric into the tube on both ends.

Then you slide the fabric covered tube on to the bottom of the hanger!

Seriously....could it be simpler?

I secured the plastic hanger to the tube by squirting a little glue from the glue gun into the space.

You would not have to do the gluing....but the tubing did shift a little.

I also added a squirt of glue to each end to secure that fabric.

 These four hangers took about 15 minutes to make....and I have supplies to make 6 more!

So in an hour I can have 10 pretty snazzy pants hangers for less than 5 dollars!

Since I used such a crisp canvas....I think they almost look "manly" enough to get some use on the other side of the closet!

Have any of you found "AHA" uses for pipe insulation?  I would love to hear about them!

Have A Great Day!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

The Best Dish Scrubber.... Ever!

When you think of souvenirs from Mexico you probably think of things like these!

Pretty.....and pretty expensive!  
And to be honest they aren't exactly the right look for my decor....except for the jewelry!

This is my absolute FAVORITE purchase from the Mercado!

Yup.....it is a dish scrubber!!!!

Oh....not just any dish scrubber.....but one that works better than any other scrubber I have ever used!

Notice how you can hold on to the scrubber up high enough to keep your hands out of "yucky" stuff!

Notice the strong broom corn bristles!

Broom corn is what they make those really good Amish brooms out of!

Broom corn seems to be almost indisructable....this little scrubber has been used for over 2 years now....and it is going strong!

 I have another one up in the gift closet.....but....hmmmmm....I think it won't be a gift after all....just in case this one does wear out before our next trip to Mexico!

My scrubber was 10 Pesos at the Saturday Market in Santiago...

Like I said....I bought 2!

I am such a big spender!


If you aren't heading to the Mercado any time soon....

These cost a bit more than 10 Pesos.....but you don't have to buy the airline ticket!

I also have heard that you can find these scrubbers at any grocery store that is primarily Mexican foods.....I haven't personally seen them....but it would be worth a trip down the cleaning supply aisle if you have a store like this close to you.

I think I should have had a Mexican Broom Corn Scrubber back in the day when I was helping my Grandma with the dishes on the farm!

Maybe I would have looked a little happier to be slaving at the sink!

Have A Wonderful Day!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Super Simple Almost NO SEW Ottoman Slipcover!

Recovering an ottoman can seem like a daunting project!
It doesn't have to be!
If you have an hour....
If you can sew a straight seam...
You can do it!

Would you believe THIS....?

looked like THIS just a couple of days ago......?
I think I recovered it (poorly) over 15 years ago and it was time for an update!!!

The process was pretty simple....but of course I forgot to take pictures!
If you click on this post you can see the project that I did for the ottoman in the living room....
Living Room Ottoman
The crisp cotton slipcover is simply pulled over the existing print upholstery for a new look.  
This one is not attached on the bottom....just neatly hemmed.
It can be easily removed and laundered should it get dirty!

The process outlined in the post is the same that I used for this ottoman slipcover project except for the finishing on the bottom.

The seam from the mitering runs along each corner.

This makes the slipcover fit tightly.

Then I just tipped it over and stapled the bottom edge of the fabric under the edge.

I am always so glad I have my trusty air compressor and stapler when I do these quick projects.

You might have noticed the "welting" along the top of the ottoman!

It isn't REAL welting....which would take some fair amount of sewing....
which I DID NOT want to do!

Look really close and you will see the little stitches....yes hand stitches!
I used my trusty curved needle to stitch the "Faux" welting by hand!

Now....you might think this was a bit much....
but in less than the time it took to watch an episode of Suits....
I had a newly updated ottoman!

I think Marvin approves!

So the next time you see a nasty looking ottoman in the thrift store....
(or in my case....the basement)
Get yourself to the fabric store and try this for yourself!

Have a Great Day!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Custom Sized Rug "Use What You Have"

The Powder room at Sweetwater is little more than big enough to turn around in.....but it is on the main floor and handy....so I really shouldn't complain.

The floor space between the vanity and the toilet in this tiny room is an odd dimension....almost a perfect 3 foot square.

This makes finding a rug for the space difficult!  There aren't a lot of square bathroom rugs out there.

I found one at Target....but the colors aren't right.....

This one from the Company Store is okay....but it is $28....and looks a little too "bathroomy" for a main floor powder room.

1 Hour Rug Project!

I could have gone to the fabric store and found a piece of upholstery to make a new rug out of upholstery fabric!

Here is a link to a tutorial for doing just that!

But....shhh....don't tell Mr. S.....I really want to do some major stuff in this little room before we have the floors refinished in the fall....and I don't know what the color scheme will be....and I don't want to make a rug I love, love, love only to have it not fit that scheme....

Enter the "Use What I Have" Philosophy!

I had an old rug that is a nondescript sort of green plaid/check that doesn't look too bad in the room and is sort of summery.
BUT.....it was way too big for the space!

It was a simple project to cut the rug to size!
Then I used some more of what I had.....some white canvas....to bind the top and bottom edge.

I simply cut a 5 inch wide strip of fabric that was the width of the rug.
Then with right sides together....sewed the strip to the rug...folded it over and stitched it on the opposite side to finish the edges.

The rug is now the perfect size!
There is one less item in the closet!
There is one less item in the fabric stash!

And...there is a rug in the powder room that will "just do" until I decide what the new decor will be!

Have A Great Day!
Link Parties
Fluster Buster   Practically Functional  

Monday, July 7, 2014

Easy Summer Memory Wall Decor!

Once the 4th of July is over, we are in the thick of the Summer!

Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
Those days of soda and pretzels and beer
Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
You'll wish that summer could always be here!

Lyricist Charles Tobias 

 Well then.....
 Are you wondering why I am showing you a picture of a house taken in late fall?

Well....I want you to notice the red trimmed storm windows on this house...which is the house Mr. S grew up in!

When the house was sold....and it was time to clean out the garage...

We "rescued" one of the old stormwindows to hang in our house!

I decided to turn the window into a Summer Memory Gallery!

I dug through some photos and came up with some of my favorite family images of Summertime!
I used my trusty mat cutter to cut mats for them.....
but you could just stick the photos on the glass too!

Clockwise From the top left:

This photo is probably circa 1920....I don't know about your family....but we really don't wear suits for our campfires!

This is the Sweetwater Daughter helping her Grandma do the dishes in the hot kitchen!

That is little old me....at the sink at my Grandma's House!

The next image shows a group of people on the farm..."playing"...I think it is wonderful to imagine farmers who were working so hard....having time to play!

The Sweetwater Son with a slice of watermelon....hamming it up for the camera!

Mr. S and 2 of his brothers all decked out in their swimsuits...too cute!

This is a photo of my family in 1952....swimming in the Atlantic ocean....it may be the only picture of my Grandmother in a swimsuit!

It is fun to have these memories on the wall to enjoy!
There are a few other Summer  touches on the walls here:

This little treasure is the wool swimming suit that belonged to Mr. S's Grandfather...

It is dark navy blue....and oh so little!

Also...oh so heavy!

I had a navy and white beach bag that looks nice hanging along side!

This watermelon print is hanging on the refrgerator!

I used the trick of gluing magnets on the back of the frame!

 I was too lazy to take the chalkboard off the stairway wall....

That is why this picture is so terrible....sorry!

But...I saw this summertime message somewhere in blogland and thought it was really cute!

The lake map is actually a place mat from a lakeside restaurant we like!  

I think all of these little touches of Summer here at Sweetwater fit the philosophy of "Use What You Have"...

Have a Great SUMMER Day!

Friday, July 4, 2014

Hooray For The Red White and Blue!


Happy Fourth of July!

The flags are flying and we plan a simple celebration with family to view the fireworks from the dock at the Sweetwater Mom's lake house!

It is a beautiful summer day here at Sweetwater!
Take a peek at the simple patriotic decorations around here.
I have a collection of "stuff" and just plop it here and there!
Really....what is more like summer than the Red White and Blue?

Flags line the front gardens and the bakers rack gets some bunting!
The little fruit box is painted and stenciled to look like a flag!

This flower arrangement of Daisies, Red Bee Balm and Campanula sits on a patriotic runner on the Kitchen Table.
The framed postcards and painted baskets with a few flags decorate the bakers rack.  The big bow is made from a piece of gorgeous ribbon I splurged on long ago.....I felt guilty when I spent ten dollars for a yard of it.....but in hindsight it was worth it!

Even the Fairy Garden House is "Flying the Flag"!

You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness.  You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.  ~Erma Bombeck

Have A Wonderful 4th of July!

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