Monday, August 26, 2013

Shellac Hack

I LOVE gel (also called Shellac) nail polish!  There is nothing better for a Mom like me.  It lasts for days without chipping and you don't have to worry about your nails looking horrendous for a good week to two weeks after getting them done.  The problem...gel manicures are expensive.

So, when I saw this post, I was on it!

diy gel manicure
Originally found at
I have a ton of OPI and Essie polish so I just went out and got Hard as Wraps and the No Chip top coat.  I looked at Target and Walmart with no luck and ending up finding them both at Walgreens.  I spent around $10.

I followed the instructions and started out with clean, dry hands.  I did one coat of Hard as Wraps, then two coats of my favorite polish which happens to be by OPI.  Followed it up with one coat of the No Chip top coat.

They looked great...but less than 12 hours later, yes that's right I said 12:

diy gel manicure gone wrong

diy gel manicure gone wrong

CHIPS on both hands!  The right hand was far worse than the left but there was a pretty sizable chunk out of the left hand's middle finger that is hard to see in this picture because of the glare.

I had high hopes for this one.  I thought I wouldn't see a manicure table for months!  This was an epic waste of $10. So the moral of this post is, in the case of gel nail polish, you get what you pay for.  Save your $10 and put it towards your next mani.  TOTAL PASS!

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Sunday, August 18, 2013

Vanity Organizing Pinterest Style

A while back I did a post on organizing my linen closet and it's gotten a number of repins on Pinterest so I decided to do a second post on the topic organizing since it seems popular!  Here goes...I don't have a master bathroom so my space to get ready each day is limited.  I bought this small vanity that I keep in my office so I can get ready without someone climbing over me to get in the bathroom!  The problem is it is always messy so I decided to organize it a bit.  Here's what I started with:

Messy Vanity

Here's my inspiration for cleaning up this mess!

DIY - Makeup brush storage
Originally found at Liz Marie Blog
I know it doesn't seem like a lot but I took a few of the things I did in previous organizing posts and used them here as well.  First, I bought a craft organizing box from the Dollar Tree to clean up my bobbie pins, q-tips, etc.  Like in previous posts, I used bins to organize stuff in my drawers, then used this smaller storage for further organize the bins themselves.   

vanity organization using a plastic craft storage box

vanity organization using a craft storage box

Then I added a Command hook to the side of my vanity to hang my blow dryer up.  It was annoying being on the floor all the time.  You see Command hooks used a lot in various ways on Pinterest.  

vanity organization with Command hooks

Last, I got a glass jar from the Dollar Tree and filled it with flat decorative marbles I had laying around my house.  I didn't quite as fancy as the original poster did with decorating her jar.  I just didn't have the time and needed it function rather than look fancy!  Maybe I'll spruce it up one day.

vanity organization - DIY makeup brush storage

Here's my end result...a cleaned up, organized vanity!

vanity organization

Overall I spent $2 on this project!!! Which is totally great, so this gets a PIN.  I hope you enjoyed my ideas for vanity organization and it gave you some ideas to get your own vanity or makeup area in order!  

Links to previous organizing posts in case you missed them!

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Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Unique Bridal Shower Favors and More Inspired by Pinterest

So true!  Luckily for me, I have a younger sister who is engaged and getting married in October so while I can't have the Pinterest inspired wedding of MY dreams, I can sneak some of my stuff into her upcoming event!

As the Maid of Honor, I was in charge of the bridal shower so of course I turned to Pinterest for inspiration.  I found a TON of stuff!  With my budget in hand I got to work on figuring out what I could implement.  Here is my inspiration, (get ready there is a lot):

Couture Wedding Dress Bridal Shower Invitation
Originally found at

cupcake flowers
No original website was found just random picture in cyber space!

Purple and gold floral arrangement
Originally found at

Wedding Centerpiece
Originally found at

Black cake with purple scrolling
Originally found on Flickr

There was a million more, so if you'd like to check out the whole board, visit my Pinterest page and visit the board I set up for her.

First things, first, invitations!  They set the tone for the whole event and the ones above were perfect!  I went to Zazzle and ordered them.  Zazzle is very easy to use and reasonably priced.  The only problem was the increments they came in, I had to buy more than I needed but that was ok.  I don't have a picture of our finished product but they look exactly as the inspiration above and came out great, PIN!

Onto the centerpieces!  These were not as easy.  I originally wanted to do wine glasses upside down with candles on top (see my board for pins) as a means of doing an inexpensive DIY centerpiece that looked really cute, plus the Bride loves wine!  However, the venue wouldn't let us use their glasses in case wax dripped so we had to move to plan B.  

I saw those beautiful cupcake flowers and considered doing a cupcake bouquet as a centerpiece for each table.  I thought it would be great because I could take care of the centerpieces and cake in one shot.  No such luck!  After two bakers and several attempts at putting the cupcake vases together (more pins on my site for this one too), I gave up.  They just weren't coming together like they were on Pinterest, cupcake centerpieces get a PASS!  

Plan C, flowers!  I used a combination of two of the inspiration photos above and came out with this:

They looked really nice, but they were by no means a DIY job.  We had to enlist the help of our local florist.  We supplied the vases and the bling band and she put together the flowers.  Overall this gets a PIN but if I had to do over I would have tried to find something a bit more unique.  

Onto the cake...the best part of the whole event!  Our colors were black, shades of purple and silver.  I saw the cake I listed in my inspiration and wanted it!  The bakery we used advised against it.  She said if she used fondant the cake wouldn't look as nice when people went to eat it and if she used black icing it could turn everyone's teeth we skipped the black cake and got this!

Bridal shower cake

So our cake was still Pinterest inspired, it looked great and tasted even better.  Using Pinterest for cake decorating inspiration....PIN!  Following it to a tee and turning your guest's teeth black...PASS!

Last but certainly not least my favorite, the favors.  I saw the idea to tie a scarf around a chair and use it as a favor when she first got engaged.  When we decided to do the shower in August I was hell bent I was doing scarves since Fall was just around the corner.  I found a distributor online that sold them in bulk so I got a GREAT deal on them.  I spent no more than I would have doing a nice box of chocolates or a wine stopper or something like that AND the Bride always wears scarves.  The venue we used supplied chair covers so they basically acted as sashes.  Here's how they looked:

black scarf used as a chair sash

LOVED THEM!  They looked really cute across the whole room and it seemed like everyone liked them alot.  This Pinterest idea is a definite PIN!  

Finally...the Bride and her cake!

Thanks everyone, I hope you enjoyed this one.  It was a long time in the making and I finally pulled it all together.  If you would like more information about anything you seen here, please don't hesitate to contact me via email.  

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Monday, August 5, 2013

Guest Post - Pinterest Inspired Bathroom Lighting

Today's guest post comes from Bethany in North Carolina. Her husband is my cousin!  He does amazing wood work which you'll see in the form of a bathroom vanity in this post and they are always doing awesome DIY projects.  If you'd like more information about him or products visit  Now on to the post!

Guest post by Bethany:

We are in the middle of a huge bathroom remodel, and I have been debating every, single detail over the past couple months.  I’ve had this DIY light tutorial on my Pinterest board for a while, and after purchasing some standard pendant lights, I decided to dive in and make these to go in the new bathroom/vanity area.

Now, I am REALLY not electrically skilled, but using the tutorial I got through this with almost no help from my (very talented) husband.  Using the hand pipe cutter was a workout for all the cuts, but it is easy and safe, compared to me using power tools.  Really all there was to it was cutting the copper and putting it together, stringing the light cord through, and drilling the wood to attach the copper with the tube straps.  I did stain the wood before putting it together, but that is totally optional (and easy when there is a wood shop in your backyard J).
My husband hard-wired these lights for us, but the light kit came equipped to just plug in and turn on/off with the switch in-line on the cord.
Copper Pipe Wall Sconce
Originally found at Camille Styles

Cost:  Before I decided to make the lights myself, the simple pendant lights I had bought were $20 for the cord kit, and $12 for the shade.  I thought I had a SCREAMING deal there at $32 per light.  Though they were pretty boring looking…

The cost for my copper pendant goes as follows:
Cord set (you can buy these to hang pendant lights, got mine at World Market) - $12.99 each
1/2” copper pipe (5 ft piece made 2 lights) - $7.75
½” copper elbows (2 per light at 75cents each) - $3.00
½” copper tube straps (2 per light, bought a 5 pack) - $2.30
Some things we had on hand:
Wood screws
4” x 12” piece of wood (cut to two pieces)
Light bulbs
Pipe cutter (you can buy these for about $7)

So all in all, we spent just under $40 on both lights and they are WAY more custom and interesting than the $64 in pendants I returned.  Fair enough, my husband having a wood shop made the project easier, but still an easy DIY project.
Description: Bath2

I LOVE the custom, rustic look of these lights, and I feel pretty good about making them myself.  The ability to swing the light side to side and raise and lower the cord length is a great feature.  Without a doubt, this project gets a PIN! I was intimidated when I read the instructions, but it is a totally doable DIY project.

I hope you enjoyed this guest post by Bethany.  If you or anyone you know has some Pinterest projects they'd like to share please email me at

Up next....a wedding shower with Pinterest inspired elements!

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