Monday, March 5, 2012

Our New Ottoman

Once day, a long long time ago, I found this AMAZING Quaker Oats wooden crate in an antique store. I maintain that we got it for $15 or less, but D believes it was a few bucks more. The bad part??? It's warped beyond belief. Two corners no longer sit on the ground, and it is a definite parallelogram. Really messed up. Hopefully you can get an idea of this from the picture (can you see the right corner lifting off the carpet?)

My plan was to create a lid for it and use padding to turn it into an ottoman. Instead, it sat (upside down!) in front of my couch for a few months first because that darn warped box seemed like such an awful project.

I finally did it! My hubby and his dad helped us make this lovely lid, which I then covered in 3" foam and fabric. The lid has two "support beams" on the underside which sit right up against the box, keeping it in place. We also used some random 3/4" trim all the way around to create a little edge to keep the lid in place. Hopefully you can see it in this pic:

That way, we didn't have to damage the box to get the lid to stay on. Also, we can store some things in there. Like the bottle of wood glue that I've forgotten about until now.

We were planning on installing wooden feet on the bottom (two slightly shorter to balance out the warped corners) but that would just make it too tall. And when it's sitting on the carpet, it doesn't wobble much.

I am soooo happy with how it turned out. It definitely was a project, because we had to cut individual pieces of wood specifically since it was so warped. But I'm in heaven.

Also, I tried to find out how much this little box was worth, since I was putting my feet on it. And I found out that the company that's listed on the side went out of business in 1881. I don't know what that means, but it sure makes a pretty ottoman!

Here, have another picture of the pretty wording.

Friday, January 13, 2012

"Yet another photo of my towels" OR "How I managed to use 2 1/2 rolls of paper towels in almost two years"

It's true. I bought a six-pack of paper towels when I got married and moved. We have 3 left in the cupboard and half of one on the paper towel holder.

It was a very easy transition to "nearly paper-free" for my family. Here's how to do it.

First, go buy yourself some new towels. Body towels, hand towels, washcloths, kitchen towels,
and kitchen washcloths. Also, get some cloth napkins that aren't too fancy. You know you want to, because all of yours are old and worn out and mismatched and stained from the cocoa recipe you decided to use. Here's the key: MAKE SURE THEY MATCH. In my house, kitchen stuff is yellow/white, and bathroom stuff is brown/tan.

Secondly, find a convenient place (or two) for your old towels. Mine go under the sink with cleaning supplies and in a closet. Tell everyone in your home what the new towels are for, and the old towels are for cleaning or
for things that will stain. It's easy to tell, since your new towels all match and your old towels are...old and gross. It's so nice to be able to wipe up the sink, dust, wash the windows (try cutting up old thin PJs), wipe up spills on the floor, and dry the car after washing without having to think about which towels to use.

Lastly, your cloth napkins are to be used. Even for spaghetti sauce or chocolate or yucky fingers from dinner. Because they're not too fancy and intimidating and it's okay to yuck them up.

It's really very easy and I don't think I do any more laundry from them since I tend to wash all my towels/dishcloths at the same time.

Just keep in mind that no matter how "paper-free" your household is, you should always keep an emergency paper towel roll on hand, because some messes are too yucky to be thrown in the washing machine. Like cleaning up the area around the mousetrap. Or dog vomit. :)

Monday, January 9, 2012

HELP! I have no storage in my bathroom!

So what does a person do when their bathroom has this much shelving/storage?

By the way, does anyone know what the two metal things above the sink are??? They look like toilet paper holders to me, but the curved back is going the wrong direction for that... Anyone?

Well, this girl got some metal baskets from Target (Dollar section, baby!) as Halloween decorations. Yup. Halloween. I removed a towel bar from the wall, and repurposed the nails in the walls and hung the baskets up. One for my hubby, one for me. Perfect! The only thing that would make it better was if I suddenly got more ambition and sewed some fabric liners so that I could store my smaller items like mascara without them falling through the bottom. But lets face it...that's not going to happen.