Tuesday, April 30, 2013

little vintage sofa makeover

This is my little vintage sofa. I adore this thing. It is comfy, cute, and made from the perfect fabric (so soft and so easy to clean!)
I thought it was just right until I saw a couple pins on Pinterest over the weekend that made me gasp out loud. Seriously folks, the quickest, easiest vintage sofa/chair makeover ever.
Remove the skirt!!
Don't believe me? See for yourself.
with dingy, ruffled skirt.
and without!

I have a black dog who loves to lay up against the sofa so the skirt was pretty dirty. This just made perfect sense. It came off really easily. My husband pried it off with a butter knife while I went behind him and pulled all the staples out with pliers. 10 minutes and we were done. And now you can see darling sofa's pretty wood legs!

Here is a chair that was updated by removing the skirt.

And another sofa makeover here.

One more! Go check out my friend Chelsea's Instagram feed to see pics of her new thrifted sofa that she transformed by removing the skirt! It's amazing, right?

What do you think, friends! All vintage furniture should be freed from their skirts, yes? If you decide to transform a sofa or chair this way please send me a link or pics!

Friday, April 26, 2013

kombucha coffee * a new brew

Kombuchee? Coffucha? Still trying to decide what to call this new staple in our house. A friend suggested Kombucino, I like it.

So folks, this was my new kitchen experiment this week and it turned out really {really} good! I've been brewing and drinking kombucha tea for quite some time now and recently I came across this post at Cultured Food Life about using coffee instead of tea and I knew I had to give it a try (did you all know I have a slight coffee addiction?...) Fermenting coffee this way makes it less acidic so it is gentle on tummies and you also get all the lovely probiotics that are found in kombucha tea. Plus the iced coffee tastes divine and makes a very tasty treat!

If you have brewed kombucha this will all make sense. If you have not read these posts to get all caught up ::

counter top science experiments! SCOBYs on the left, kombucha coffee in progress on the right.
you will need ::
freshly brewed black coffee (either a gallon or half gallon)
sugar (1 cup for a gallon of coffee, 1/2 cup for 1/2 gallon) 
a scoby
The process is very similar to brewing kombucha tea. I brewed a half gallon of coffee, poured it into a glass jar and stirred a half cup of sugar into it while it was still hot. Once the sugar is dissolved set your sweetened coffee aside until it cools to room temperature. Once it has cooled put your scoby on top of the coffee and cover with a clean cloth secured with a rubber band. Set it on a counter top out of direct sunlight and let it work it's magic. I started tasting mine after 3 days. It was still pretty sweet but on day 5 it was only mildly sweet and ready to bottle. I strained it through a small funnel lined with a piece of cheesecloth (totally optional) into a half gallon mason jar and popped it into the fridge. You will serve this brew cold or at room temperature as heating it will kill all those good probiotics and such. I saved a cup or so of the fermented coffee to add to my next batch. I am very anxious to find out how it will effect the next jar. 

My scoby was pretty gnarly looking when I retrieved it from the jar and it is my understanding that it works best to use a new scoby each time so this one went into the compost pail.


Here is my final product - mildly sweet kombucha coffee over ice with a splash of almond milk! Yum!! New favorite treat!
Cheers to healthy guts and happy tummies, friends!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

ruffled tie tees * another re-fashion

I stitched these up for a friend last week.
thrifted tops + men's ties (also thrifted) + vintage buttons = adorable tees! 

The tutorial can be found here. Super cute and endless possibilities! So there you go friends, go re-fashion something!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

mama and monkey * this is how we spend the days

We go outside every single day. I tend to gardens and animals while he runs and climbs. We both get really dirty. Then sometimes when my backyard chores are done I pour myself a cup of coffee and lay in the hammock with a book while he plays. Or I can go into the kitchen and make food or clean dishes and watch him from the window.
Then we come in, full of fresh air and vitamin D and we cuddle and read. And he often sleeps and then I can pick up my book once again. Or sew something. Sometimes I roam around the internet during my quiet time.
I know I have said it dozens of times but outdoor living really does suit us well.

Friday, April 19, 2013

{this moment } monkey in the middle

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.
inspired by soule mama


Thursday, April 18, 2013

lace appliqued tanks * re-fashion

I picked up several of these lace appliques at a craft market last year. Then last month I found plain tanks on sale at jc penney for $5 each and decided embellishing them would be a quick, easy and super cute project. I searched "lace applique" and "vintage applique" on etsy and found lots of shops selling them for just a couple dollars each - I actually have two more on the way to me. I have decided I need a fancied up tank for every day of the week.
The first thing  you will want to do is wash and dry your tank top and iron your applique to make sure it is nice and flat. Ironing is not my favorite thing to do but trust me, it will make things so much easier!

Then place the applique exactly where you want it and pin, pin, pin! Again, pinning is not fun but you don't want anything shifting while you sew, so just do it!

Then stitch all around the applique. You can use a ball point needle which is generally recommended when sewing with knits but I just used a regular needle and did not have any issues. I removed my extension table to make it easier to work around the arm holes and neck.
Once you sew all around clip your thread tails and that's it! Time to wear your adorable new creation! Or you can add buttons like I did to my navy  top in the pics.

Here are the tanks I have made so far. Eek, aren't they pretty?

I have been wearing them with cardigans during the chilly Spring. They are darling with jeans and skirts.

I also have these little crocheted flowers and fabric yoyos that I used to embellish a tank last Summer. I don't love the fit of that top so I think I will take them off and sew them to something else. This is another instant gratification project that you can whip up in an afternoon or while watching a movie with your hubby (ask me how I know).
So there you go, a custom Summer wardrobe in just a few hours! If you make your own tanks be sure to message me so I can see!
Happy sewing, friends!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

*little rainbow farmette

the back corner of our property makes me ridiculously happy. it is a sunny patch that features our 450 square foot organic garden, two giant bins of  kitchen and yard waste breaking itself down into rich and lovely compost and our little rainbow coop that houses our backyard chickens. 

the barred rock hen in the photo above was the victim of a vicious raccoon attack a few weeks ago. i will spare you the gruesome fresh wound pics, but her neck was essentially just a big mess of bloody and mangled flesh. every single person who saw her in the week after told me she was going to die. as the injury heals little by little the scabs are replaced with soft scar tissue. no feathers will grow there again. she will be our funky looking yard bird from now on. but she has recovered and moved back in with the flock and is back to laying 2-3 eggs a week. we changed her name from ramona to ramona the brave.


i had hoped to expand the farmette this year adding some rabbits or perhaps a hive of honey bees. but there were no new additions to announce this spring. next year, for sure!

this is the crazy looking contraption we rigged up to keep our pea sprout babies safe from the chickens and the squirrels.

so far it is working like a charm!
Happy Spring!!

Monday, April 15, 2013

*Spring break {better late than never}

We recently spent another spring break on the lovely Salmon River. Nothing terribly exciting happened - just a lot of rock collecting (and hours of rock skipping and throwing) small hikes, fires in the sand, long walks, fresh mountain air, staying up late and sleeping in and reconnecting.
Just what I needed after a long and hard winter. It was pretty perfect, actually.

Now we are staying busy planning our garden and tidying up our outdoor living space. Flowers are blooming in our front beds and our sweet hens in the rainbow coop are supplying us with plenty of fresh eggs. Spring is here, friends! How are you celebrating?