January 30, 2013

Raised in Cotton Frames giveaway!

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Hey y'all!
  I have a pretty awesome giveaway for y'all today! I've been so stink in' excited about this, I could barely keep quiet! My talented friend, Jessica, from Raised In Cotton Interiors is giving away three of her gorgeous, hand painted frames to THREE lucky winners. Seriously, yes, three lucky people! How amazing is she? She has a huge variety of colors, designs, and sizes to choose from & all of them are handmade and hand painted from her shop! If you would like to take a look at her shop on Etsy, you can find it by clicking here!
How gorgeous is this pattern with this pretty blue and the crisp white?

And I am drooling over this beige frame with the burlap bow. Gosh, I just adore these :)

The uniqueness and quality of these frames is beyond impressive and I can't wait to receive a couple of my own! Can you tell how excited I am yet? Since Jessica has graciously allowed me to give away THREE frames...that means THREE of you can win! Each winner will be able to choose their own custom colors & patterns to make your frame unique to you. (Monograms not included). They handmade 4 different sizes. 10x12, 12x12, 16x20 & 24x24. The glass size can be anything from a 3.5x5 to a 11x14. They offer solid, prints, burlap bows & single & 3 letter monograms. (Monograms not included) The possibilities are endless and to be able to customize your own will be awesome for your space! These are sure to be a hit in any home and I know I will be getting a lot of compliments on them.... and I bet you will too! So are you excited yet? Jessica will have the frames ready for you within 1-2 weeks after she gets back from a much needed vaca. If you are one of the lucky three winners, we will contact you and let you know when you can expect your awesome new custom frames from Raised in Cotton Interiors
It will be super easy to enter and we're actually giving quite a few ways to have multiple entries for each of you! Having many more ways to enter the giveaway means more chances of winning! And still... THREE of you get to win a frame! How awesome, seriously!? The winners will be chosen on 
Friday, February 8th, 2013 {2-8-12} at 9pm eastern time. 

"LIKE" Raised in Cotton Interiors on Facebook by clicking HERE! 

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"FOLLOW" Raised in Cotton Interiors on their blog by clicking HERE! 

"FOLLOW" Home by Ally on my blog by clicking HERE! 

"FOLLOW" Home by Ally" on Pinterest by clicking HERE!

"SHARE" The contest on Facebook HERE!

"REPIN" the contest on Pinterest by clicking HERE!

That is a grand total of {SEVEN} possible entries PER person! Be sure to leave the comments here on Home by Ally telling me which ones you did so I can count your entries! And remember we will check back to see that you did all that you say so please be fair and be honest! Remember, {Three} lucky people will win! Best of luck to y'all! We will contact the winners after contest and let you know the timeline in which you can expect your frames. Thank you again to Raised in Cotton Interiors for sponsoring this giveaway!



****All entry options are only optional! Do as few or as many as you like!****

January 29, 2013

Dining Room Tour: Some small updates & a DIY

Hey y'all! Happy Tuesday :) It is a beautiful day here in the sunshine state, almost 80 degrees outside and it's the end of January! Crazy right? So I haven't really taken any photos of anything lately, of our home in particular here in Florida because it's been going through lots and lots of changes. Remember that I said before, if we weren't renting and actually owned these, I'd probably have white breadboard ceilings and pretty hardwood floors. And these walls would probably be a nice light and airy grey or blue. Well we're working on that... if we're going to be here, I want it to feel like home. And I can't break the bank doing it. So...

I've put myself on a *ONE ROOM* limit. I cannot work on any other room in the house without first getting the room I'm working on at a good stopping point, i.e., basically where it has a bed, decor, etc and looks presentable ;) So... the whole to me has been in limbo since we moved in because we all know that I change my mind a lot. All I know is I want something where everyone feels comfortable when they walk in. A place where our puppies can run and I don't have to worry about them staining or making a disaster of anything. So.... today I'll give you a dining room update.

Awhile back, a lot of you saw that we got our new dining table. And I'm still getting emails to this day about where we bought it! I'm still just as crazy about it as I was before. If you haven't read that post, you can find it by clicking here.

I'm a pretty simple person. If I had to describe my design style, I would say traditional meets cozy cottage. I love white couches, fresh linens, lots of neutrals, natural elements with fun pops of color. All of that and it has to be functional. I will never see the point in buying something if it's not functional for your family so that is something that we always keep in mind. 

As you see below, this *WAS* our entryway table. Back in North Dakota, it also served as our tv stand. I am still in love with this piece, now over 2 years after buying it. It is *functional* serving both for storage and it looks pretty. I moved it into the dining room last week to serve as a semi-buffet table. I flanked it with my two shabby lamps I bought from Tuesday Morning a few months back.

The cabinet I actually purchased at Ashley furniture a few years back. I just changed some hardware and did some minor tweaks to it. The chalk board is a DIY project that my husband and I just finished yesterday! I saw the same one at TjMaxx for $40! Below you can see a before collage that I took with my iPhone. I love how it turned out and I can't wait to make more. I'll probably make a few for the sale as well because I've gotten a lot of compliments on it already!

 Here's a side view of the cabinet. The greens are fake and from Ikea. This house doesn't get a lot of natural light so Ikea saves the day. The old handheld tool box holds the greens. I picked it up at an antique mall here in Florida. I love it as well. You can use greens, candles, etc for it and it can be used like I have it or for a center piece for a table. There are endless possibilities. You could also use it in a restroom and fill it with toilet paper and magazines. Just a thought :)

I've also received a lot of compliements on this wreath hanging on my new DIY chalkboard. Sadly, I can't take credit for this beauty. I purchased it at TJMaxx about a month or so back. I kick myself for not getting the other one that they had! It was only $12.99! Crazy! If anyone ever sees another like this, you should let me know, mkay? Just saying.

Here's a peek at our kitchen. Nothing much has really changed, I've just moved a few things around. I'm still in search of the perfect 5x7 rug for in here. I want something with a pattern or some kind of floral or something. I actually DON'T want it plain, can you believe that? This plain jane girl is getting out of her element, woohoo! Seriously though... it's driving me nuts. I added a basket of lemons for a pop of yellow also. And there's some babies breath over by the window in a butter yellow vase that makes me swoon :) I don't really think anything else has changed much in here.

Here's a peek at our dining table again. I seriously can't ever stop looking at it because I think it's just so beautiful! And my $22 Lowe's chandelier that I love as well. I made a DIY lamp cord cover for it out of burlap. I should do a post on that soon because I'm sure that could help some of you out! My DIY burlap runner is also on my table with a twig runner from Target. If you want to learn how to make my DIY no sew burlap runner, you can see the blog post by clicking here. The huge creamy vase is from Lowes and was only like $15 I think? That's a steal for a vase that big. It has pretty green hydrangeas in it, one of my favorite flowers and definitely my favorite flower to decorate with. I've been searching forever for 11x14 frames or larger for both sides of that window. I hope I find them soon.

Here's another peek.

My mother in law offered to buy me the saw to start cutting monograms, handmade ornaments, etc for my birthday. How sweet of her, especially since my birthday is in July ;-) I still need to paint the monogram a brighter green so it pops more against the door. I also want to order a vinyl of our house numbers to go underneath the monogram. Ah, the things to do. 

Oh yeah and there's Tito having the hardest life ever.

Here's another view of the lighting from the window. I love having the windows open this time of year.

So, let me know what y'all think about my updated dining room and little details. I would also love to find a new rug for the door to the right above. It leads to the garage and is a high traffic area. Just a tip, don't use a jute rug for a high traffic area. They collect dirt quickly. I just needed something really quick when we moved in and I found that one along with my front door entryway rug on clearance too. 

I hope y'all are doing great and you locals are getting ready for my repurpose sale on March 2nd! It's only about a month away now and it's coming up quick so I better get to work huh?

Have a great day and talk to y'all soon!


January 21, 2013

Guest Bathroom Refresh: Before & After

Hey y'all! This past weekend I was super productive and went through all of our closets, drawers, storage totes, etc. and organized! I feel so much better after, don't y'all when you organize your things? With the new year, I wanted a clean house. And I don't mean straightened up for company coming over clean. I mean, wipe all base boards down, all ceiling fans down, vacuum every nook and cranny... etc. So that is exactly what I did!

 I have been desperately wanting to get every room done in our home since we moved in just over 5 months ago... but I am slowly (snail speed guys) trying to focus on ONE room at a time. Just one! You heard that right! And what better way to start than the smallest room of the house besides the closets, the guest bathroom. Our guest bathroom is off of the upstairs hallway. You walk up our stairs and round the corner and it is to your immediate right. Since we had company so quickly after our move, I found the most decent shower curtain I could find at Target one night and threw it in there with some towels I happen to have that "sorta" matched. Here's a before for y'all.

Hello! That's me in the mirror! 

Ok, so boring and no life. The shower curtain was pretty but not what I would usually choose. Maroons, golds, chocolate browns and beige. I'll be selling this one as well considering it's practical brand new, was only hung for looks ;-) Are y'all ready for the repurpose sale yet? I am still working on pieces and getting new pieces in every other day! It's never ending!

But...we're not here to talk about that ;-) Let me show you a few in between photos. Below is a photo of my inspiration. I found the shower curtain in TjMaxx here. It caught my eye because it was so fresh looking! And not my usually WHITE or BEIGE. I usually NEVER decorate with pink, weird right? But I especially love the bright green and the pink in this shower curtain! I snatched up a few Nautica Towels to try with it and headed on my way.

Here is a tip for y'all that I found so long ago and it is my saving grace when it comes to hanging ANYTHING now! Painters tape! Measure the hangers on the back of any object you are hanging by cutting the painters tape to that size. Put it on the wall, make sure it looks even and put your nails on both sides. Now, hang your decor! Perfecto! Oh, don't forget to take the tape off too ;-)

Alrighty! So are y'all ready for the refreshed guest bath? I still have a few minor tweaks for this bathroom but for now, I am definitely enjoying it a lot more! Please enjoy!

Remember the...


And now enjoy the...

Below you will see that I moved the "You can make plans but the Lord's purpose will prevail quote." up here from the living room. I love this quote and it's such an important daily reminder. I also added an outlet wax warmer from Walmart with some yummy vanilla wax melting in it. I wish y'all could smell it, so good! A blue antique mason sits in-between each sink with fake yellow hydrangeas in it. Hopefully I'll have some real hydrangeas this summer to put in it :)

I am seriously in love with this print. I keep walking by and turning the light on just to look. It is just so refreshing, happy and bright. And color. Oh color. 

A better view of the shower curtain below. Little birds, twigs and beautiful flowers in greys, hot and light pinks, lime green and darker sage green... equals yummy!

I already know that I will be getting new towels for all of this but I used what I had in the linen closet just for the photos. It doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful! I really wanna add some green in those towels! I'll keep y'all updated!

The mirror below is from Hobby Lobby. I used chrome shower curtain hooks I already had. The mirror is directly across from the towel bar. I want to add something above the towel bar too, maybe a quote sign or little iron decor. We will see... things are never done around here!

If you loved my new updated and refreshed bathroom, feel free to "Pin it" on Pinterest. You can follow me on Pinterest by clicking here and clicking "Follow All." An easy way that I am working on is to simply click "Pin it" below. Pick any photo you like but I created one especially for you below the "pin it" button! Enjoy and thanks for listening! 

Linking up here.
Liz Marie Blog

Home Stories A2Z

January 20, 2013

Easy Rosette Wreath Tutorial

Have you ever heard of the easiest Rosette Wreath Tutorial ever? You just found it here at Home by Ally. I saw a wreath similar to this one on Pinterest that you can find here. This particular wreath will be available at the repurpose sale {March 2nd} but will be hanging on one of my old windows for now :) Which by the way, if you follow me on Instagram {@Allyschmidheiser}, you may have seen that I have been picking up some old windows. I've sold a few here lately but will have a few available at the sale as well :-) And quite possibly ON sale. Most things at the sale will be discounted if they have previously been for sale. So, if there's something you've had your eye on, maybe you can get it!

Seriously, a few of these windows had me swooning. Especiall the large 9 pane one that came out of an old building. And the mint green ones up there to the right? Craftsman style, yummy.

Ok! So, about this easy rosette wreath thing! Here's what you'll need! Keep in mind you don't have to use burlap, you could use any fabric you have on hand! This project cost me absolutely nothing to make! Don't ya love those kinds of projects? I already had the wreath hanging on an old window a few months ago. But since we all know that nothing stays the same in this house, I had it sitting in my "decor closet" up stairs. Yes, I have a decor closet. Why don't you?

-Twig Wreath (Hobby Lobby)
Hot Glue Gun with extra sticks
-Fabric of your choosing

I didn't actually take any photos of myself doing this project but if you refer back to the video I did on the paper wreath tutorial, I showed you how to make a burlap rosette. But for some reason, I cannot find this video right now! So...my dears, I am terribly sorry if you do not know how to make a rosette. The most simple way I can tell you how to make one through *words* is to simply roll your fabric into a cinnamon roll. Yes, a cinnamon roll. Hold it tightly and hot glue the ends to the back and then to the wreath, Oh shucks, I know I'm absolutely no help! And I'm still looking for the video people!

Here's an up close and personal view of this FREE wreath for me! Simplicity at its best.

So, what do you guys think of this tutorial? Besides me being totally awesome and NOT finding the video to help y'all out.... how do you like this wreath? Are you going to make it? Don't forget to *LIKE* Home by Ally on Facebook by clicking here. There will be a pretty sweet giveaway this week if I do say so myself so stay tuned!


January 6, 2013

Tips for distressing furniture: Bench Redo

Do you ever wonder how people get that perfect aged, worn, distressed look on furniture? I've had quite a few people ask me how I do it. And I don't think that there is necessarily a "right" way to do it.. just "my" way. I personally feel that a more natural distressed look which I will show you in my video tutorial looks better on furniture rather than random distressed lines from a piece of sandpaper where you can clearly tell someone just ran a piece of sandpaper over the paint. Again, I don't necessarily think that my way it is right, it is just the way that I prefer to distress!

Here is a bench that I picked up a few weeks ago. If you follow me on Instagram (@Allyschmidheiser) you might have saw the first photos of this little beauty. She had no seat, only the holes for upholstered seats. Well that's not really the look that I was going for so we improvised! We had wood from an old solid wood futon we had and cut it to size to form the seat. Talk about repurposing right? I picked it up from a thrift store and did I mention that I had been looking for one for MONTHS to go in our dining area. I planned to put it where our computer once was. I hated having a computer in the dining room but we needed to go through some things before we could make room for an office. PS, that reveal is coming soon! But there will be a few more posts before it...

Here is my little side kick loving the new bench. He immediately jumped up and made himself comfortable while we were cutting the wood slats to size for the seats.

And here is the final result. I am obviously head over heels. I first prepped the bench by giving it a great sanding all over. I then started with my first coat of yellow paint. At first, I thought I wanted it butter yellow but then I realized I how much I loved this grey blue so I did a layered look for that perfect naturally aged piece. You can see the yellow peaking out on certain areas where I distressed the bench which I love and I do think that it gives it a bit more character. Have you ever tried to layer your paint to give your piece just a little bit more depth? A tip I would give for this would be to make certain that your colors compliment each other so when do you go to distress it, its a pretty final look.

Now! Something I've only done a few times before but here's a video for a few tips about distressing furniture from Home by Ally. I figured that it would be a lot easier for me to video this for a tutorial rather than trying to tell you.

Keep in mind like I said in the video and I've heard this multiple times and it is somewhat true. Anyone can distress and anyone can run a piece of sandpaper over a painted piece of furniture but is it a natural look? Does it look like it's been there naturally and something that would have happened over the years? Look for quality pieces while shopping that looks like the painter took time and effort to make this piece as naturally aged as possible. And the same goes whenever you are doing your own furniture, take your time and don't rush it. You can always tell when someone is rushing and takes no pride in their work. Just a few tips that I always take into consideration when I am doing furniture. I try to provide clients with the best furniture quality that I can which includes fixing certain imperfections while leaving others which sometimes can create character in a piece. Providing a nice finish and a clean finish with natural distressing and a great seal for a long life. I've learned all that I have by just doing furniture and and it does come after trial and error. Some pieces I look back on and wonder what I was I thinking? Or I wish I would have known to do this, blah blah blah... but at least I know now!

Please enjoy a few photos of the after and also a few photos of a few items I've picked up that will be at the first repurpose sale for HOME BYALLY in Florida! Mark your calendars for Saturday,March 2nd, 2013! Be there or I guarantee you are missing out!

I adore this old yellow coke crate. What a great aged piece for a centerpiece to a dining room table or to put at the top of your kitchen cabinets. You could even use it as a coffee table tray in the living room.

Notice how I hit the edges and corners and it is not just straight lines but rather more random and thicker distressed edges, etc. 

I love this butter yellow vase with my hydrangeas. I just purchased the vase at TJMaxx here in Florida for $12.99. It's huge and I love that it is not the typical white vase. The hydrangeas are faux from Hobby Lobby. I have these in this cream color, a sage green and a beautiful purple. You can never have enough fresh greens and pretty hydrangeas in my opinion!

Here is a sneak peek below of our new curtains. I'm still trying them out in the dining room but I love how the colors of the curtains are picked up on this bench. I took a very unconventional approach to new curtains for this room and the total cost for four 120" panels was $32.00. Ready for that blogpost yet? It's coming but I am still working on the panels! I promise it's coming!

These two crates below, one Pepsi & one Coke will be available at the repurpose sale on March 2nd, 2013! The Pepsi is an original from Minot, North Dakota and is in EXCELLENT condition! The other is a yellow Coke crate that has aged wonderfully and invokes that perfect vintage look for your home!

If you also noticed the blue masons, I will most likely have a few of those at the sale as well. They are perfect for fresh flowers and little accents in your home. And the blue ones are becoming harder and harder to come by I have found! So get them while you can!

Beautiful, original and old! I love it! Original lids!

Well I'll hope that y'all enjoyed this post and the video tutorial and I hope it has helped at least a few of you! I gave you a sneak peek of some upcoming blog posts and items that will be at my sale so I hope you guys are getting excited for it! I know I am! Remember to follow me on Pinterest by clicking here! And help me help others by pinning this post here!

Talk to y'all soon!


Liz Marie Blog

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