Earlier this week I was at my home away from home, otherwise known as the black hole that is Target, when I came across the ginormous, it’s-taken-over-half-our-store, back to school section. Just when I was about to unleash some serious sass on Target for having their back to school stuff out so early I took amount to pause (see…my filter works once in awhile) and realized, “holy cow, it’s mid August!” In fact, here in Maine it’s starting to feel like fall. It’s a little bit nippy at night. Just an excuse to blanket up. So….since August is already half over, it’s about time I got around to rounding up all our Instagram photos for the month. Let’s just say, July was a doozy!
The biggest news in photos for the month is that Colby and I traded in both our cars (my silver, Misubishi Montero Sport and Colby’s white, Chevy Silverado). It was bittersweet and also a HUGE deal for us to trade in our cars for a shiny new one…well…new to us. Both of our vehicles were older (10+ years) and were starting to find their way into the garage a bit more often than they were on the road. So when mine died of Maine car cancer (rust from all the salt slush stuff they dump on our roads in the winter), we knew it was time. And since Colby has a company car, we really didn’t need two vehicles. So we traded them both in for a GMC Sierra…and a month later we still can’t believe that truck is ours!
July was also had the nicest stretch of weather all summer! In June, it poured…every…single…day! But July was gor-geous (she says in a thick Jersey accent). So we lived it up, took a few trips to the coast, and Colby ate some steam-ahs (I’m allergic…doh)!
July was also a big month for me because it was the month I turned thirty…eeeeek! I’m still not 100% okay with it. I feel so old! Well, at least I’m not as old as Colby! He LOVES it when I bring that up. We had a blast for my birthday and took a little mid-week trip over to Bar Harbor (which is just about a 45 minute to an hour road trip for us). We scoffed down some hub cap nachos from Getty’s, devoured some infamous mac & cheese at Side Street Cafe, and drank a few Bar Harbor Real Ales. Best…birthday…ever. And I can’t forget mentioning the piston that Colby bought me for my birthday off Etsy.
So now for my favorite part of the Instagram roundup, the part where we pick our favorite images. Here’s my pick for the month:
Mostly because it’s a perfect representation of what it’s like to be married and living with Colby. Never a dull moment. Never. And do you recognize the bowls? They’re the ones we spray painted and turned into plant hangers for the Urban Outfitters portion of the Inspired Design Challenge.
This one is Colby’s fave:
This is one of Goose’s favorite begging positions. It’s what I like to call the “lazy beg” where he’s lounging in the chair with his front paws on the floor, and he just doesn’t have enough energy to hold his head up (hence why he’s begging for food…even though his food dish is full) so he has to rest his head on the couch. Silly Goose.
And this pic was our joint runner up pic:
How could we resist sharing a photo of our new whip?! Do people still use that word? Was that just so 2001? We are smitten with our new truck. No joke, we fight over who gets to drive it. That never used to happen with our old cars. Back then we would fight over who had to drive. It’s so nice to have a reliable vehicle again…Vermont road trip here we come!
Pssst…As always, if you can’t WAIT to catch our Instagram roundup each month you can follow us @angiesroost on Instagram. It’s like the live, studio audience version of this post. Missed a few? Play catch up and read all our Instagram roundups here.
So while I was galavanting around Atlanta…scratch that…the Hyatt in Atlanta for the Haven conference, I learned a few important things about myself. One, I truly am meant to be a blogger/creative business owner…two, I can handle 7+ hours in an airport waiting for a flight as long as I have my laptop and a blog post/project to work on…three, I am HORRIBLE with accessories! Like hanging my head in shame I’m so bad at accessorizing my own home. While I may be bad at accessories, I am damn good with an orbital sander! But I came back home from Haven invigorated to accessorize the snot out of our house and really start fine tuning some of our spaces. No sooner did I get home, but I was off on the great pillow hunt of 2013 to update our couch with some fresh, colorful pillows…bam…updated couch in your face!
We have a pretty colorful living room thanks to the postcard ledges with the hula girl postcards, so there really wasn’t a color that was off limits. With the pile of pillows home with me, I proceeded to “play” pillows for the afternoon, switching up combos until I found one that I loved! So here’s Option 1:
Pssst…In completely unrelated news, in the last couple of weeks we’ve been featured on a few other blogs including Knock Off Decor here, Ten June here, and most recently at Thrifty Decor Chick here. Thanks ladies for all the bloggy love!
It’s upon us…the last week of the Inspired Design Challenge. Picture me lounging on the couch all ugly face crying because it’s about to come to a close. I’ve been in serious love with this challenge mostly because it has “challenged” me to work on the little projects a little bit more. I’m one to quickly pick up the paint brush to paint a room or a hammer to help Colby lay down a new floor, but when it comes to the little projects like covering a lamp shade or spray painting lamps, I’m not always as motivated. And this week’s project, inspired by World Market, is another one of those little projects that’s been on my to-do list for nearly three years…spray painting and installing an old switch plate:
Now, I’m sure some of you out there are about to hate me as I spray paint this bad boy, but let’s just say that the switch plate’s former condition was just not my jam. I like bright and white….not dark and dingy. So I painted it and distressed it. Go ahead…hate me…but I’m still cool with my decision. Let’s get painting shall we?! Here are the supplies:
After cleaning up the switch plate, I started waxing it. Yes, you heard correctly…waxing it. This is one of those tricks I learned while at the Haven Conference. When you’re distressing an item, before you paint it, rub wax over the high points in the areas where you want the paint/finish to rub off. The wax prevents the paint from sticking to the item making it so simple to sand off once the paint is dry.
But now for the best part of this project…the budget breakdown. This project cost us precisely zero point zero dollars to tackle. Hootie hoo! The switch plate was an old one that came with our house, the spray paint was leftover from one of many spray painting projects, the candle was an extra from our wedding decor, and we already bought the liquid deglosser for the spray painted lamp project. Gotta love a free project!
So now let’s check in with my four fabulous co-hosts of this little challenge.
- Jennifer from Brave New Home
- Sara from Embrace My Space
- Kristin from Bliss At Home
- Lindsay from Life Of Splendor
Oh inspiration goodness! I can’t wait to check in with these ladies and see what they tackled this week. So go check out their projects and show them a little love!
Pssst…So sad the challenge is over…for now. It may come back down the road so keep stopping by!
Tonight’s behind the
music stain is brought to you by Minwax. It’s a battle royale of sorts. Just picture that famous wrestling/boxer announcer dude in his booming voice going “IN THIS CORNER….WEIGHING IN AT 32 OUNCES….WAAAATER BASED STAAAAAAIIIIN…AND IN THIS CORNER…WEARING THE YELLOW…ALSO AT 32 OUNCES….OOOOOIIIIIIIILLLLL BASED STAIN!” But seriously, this is a post about water based vs. oil based stain, just for clarification’s sake.
We have been doing A LOT of staining and polying these days. Seriously. We just hit the 200+ mark in iPad/cookbook stand production for our Etsy shop, Roostic. Since I’m always looking for ways to make production faster, easier or generally more pleasant, switching out our stinky oil based stain for a slightly more pleasant smelling water based version seemed like a logical choice. So I took the water based stain for a test drive and compared the results. Can you tell which stain is which?
I was hesitant about the water based stain from the moment I opened up the can and revealed this:
For those of you who have worked with oil based stain but not water based stain, the water based is a completely different consistency. It’s thicker, milky, and almost paint like. Which kind of makes sense since when you buy the stuff, you have to get it tinted first at the paint desk. So I gave the can a good little mix up and then test stained a piece of scrap wood.
As I suspected, the water based stain went on sooooo much thicker than your typical oil based stain. I probably used 2-3 times as much water based stain for the same coverage as the oil based stain. The staining process is the same for both finishes. You just slap it on with a brush, let it sit for your chosen amount of time, and wipe off with a clean cloth. So here’s the result after staining one iPad rand with water based and one with oil based (both stands are made from the same board):
I’m not gonna lie, I don’t really like the water based stain’s finish as much as the oil based stain. The oil based stain brings out the wood grain and really enhances it where the water based stain seems to sit on top of the wood and mask the beautiful grains. I even tried scraping my finger nail across each iPad stand to verify this hypothesis, which resulted in the finish scraping off for the water based stand but not for the oil based one. Even after laying on a couple coats of glossy, water based poly, I still wasn’t overly impressed with the water based stain finish.
Here’s the closeup:
Even though the stains are the same shade, it’s like the water based stain has more red undertones in it. Me thinks I’ll stick to my typical oil based stain for iPad stand production. Although, it’s hard to beat this cleanup!
But who am I kidding! I stain every single day and have probably cleaned my brush three times in the last three months. I’m a shameless wrap my brush in saran wrap until my next staining session kind of stainer in lieu of cleaning it with mineral spirits every day. It even serves as stain every day motivation so I don’t ever have to worry about cleaning my brush! Shameless!
So to recap the water based stain trial:
- Pro: Does not stink (in comparison to oil based stain)
- Con: Goes on super thick meaning you’ll use a ton more than it’s oil based counterpart
- Pro: Cleans up super easy with just water (no mineral spirits needed)
- Con: Masks the wood grain and brings more red out in the wood
Pssst…How about you guys? Have you ever toyed with water based stain? Do you have a preference?
And I’m back (back) back in a New York groove….errrr…a Maine groove?! Nope, it just doesn’t have the same ring to it. But anyway, I’m back in Maine after an extra long weekend down in Hotlanta (translation for my mom…that’s “hot Atlanta”) for the Haven Conference. Just what is the Haven Conference? Good question! I’m glad you asked! Here’s the “official” definition straight from the Haven website:
Haven is a two-day conference August 1-3, 2013 that will allow people to learn from and gather with some of the most notable DIY/Home bloggers in blogland. Conference sessions will focus on DIY instruction with a mix of blogging and social media.
But how I like to put it, it’s a weekend with my people. It’s like having 300 other Angie’s over for a weekend of DIY, blogging, photography, and working on a creative business. It was so crazy to be surrounded by SO many people that “get me”. It was a strange but oddly exhilarating feeling.
I’m not gonna lie, I was nervous before going to Haven! Nervous nervous. Like a sometimes I get nervous Mary Katherine Gallagher smelling her pits kind of nervous (random side note…someday ask me about the time I “played” MKG in a talent show…it’s a doozy of a story and I LOVE to tell it). But the second I stepped off the plane and hooked up with cab ride buddies, Linda of Oh So Shabby and Michelle from Our Rosey Life, I knew I was in for some serious fun times. The entire conference I couldn’t shut my mouth…ever…seriously…just stop talking. Even with the sponsors. Who is this girl just walking up to Home Depot and expressing her desire to work with the mega store?! It’s like I don’t even know her?!
This is where I could start going into a ginourmous play by play of all the dirty details but I kind of want to go to bed before 11:00 pm tonight and you guys would probably crawl up under your desk just so you can take a nap since the blog post is getting all run on style and you just can’t make it through the whole thing without a nap, or strong cocktail, or both. So I’m going to leave you with my top ten moments of Haven:
- Ana White I love you even more! Seriously! Not only can that girl rock some serious heels while building furniture that she designed, but she is now my blogging idol after listening to her keynote speech. Her theme was “brick by brick” and that blogging (or business) success doesn’t come overnight. Just focus on building great content and it will come. Be great at the one thing that sets you apart (like great content) and be just good enough at everything else (SEO, photography, etc.).
- There was a flash mob…it was called the DIY Shuffle…it was epic! I’m now a firm believer that every conference should have their own flash mob and I am now judging whether or not I will attend conferences based on the shear fact that there is/isn’t a flash mob.
- I limited myself to just one palm/forehead moment. You see…there is this blogger…her name is KariAnne at Thistlewood Farm…she has taken the blogging world by storm (and she’s a doll)…and I didn’t know who she was. I’m pretty sure I was the only person at the conference that she had to introduce herself to. But I did get to take a picture with her.
- Did I mention flash mobs rock?!
- I got to meet some of favorite blogging buddies including Lindsay of Life of Splendor and Kristin from Bliss At Home (fellow Inspired Design Challenge co-bloggers…pic stolen from Lindsay’s blog).
- I took a class on growing your creative business, focusing on Etsy shops, put on by the fabulous Jennifer Rizzo of Jennifer Rizzo and Gina Luker of the Shabby Creek Cottage. My favorite takeaway was when to judge if you’re ready to make the jump from your creative business being your side gig to the full time job: when all you want to do is curl up in a corner and cry because you’re so busy/overwhelmed. Hmmm…been there…several times!
- Another class I took was on working with chalk paint and milk paint with Marian Parsons otherwise known as Miss Mustard Seed. Changed my life! I now want to paint/repaint every, single thing in my home including the dog. Poor Goose.
- Swag…oh the swag! Ryobi power tools were going home with just about every blogger there! And we were each given a gorgeous Ballard tote filled to the brim with goodies!
- Because it was that awesome…again…the FLASH MOB!
- And finally, most importantly, the people! I made so many new blog friends and my must read blog list has nearly doubled! The entire conference was nothing short of smiling, bubbly, amazingly talented women and I will never forget my experience.
So here’s to Haven 2014! Do you have your ticket yet?! A little birdie (Rhoda) has mentioned that the conference looks like a go for July of next year. I’m in! And not just for the swag…but maybe just for the flash mob!
Pssst….alright Haven Mavens…what did I miss? What were your favorite parts of Haven?