Be There: Hearts & Crafts

July 29, 2011   //  Posted in: Helping The Economy   //  By: Emily   //  Leave a comment

In the vein of handcrafted-awesomeness, I have a little unsolicited promo to sing about this afternoon.

It’s a small-but-amazing event that, if you’re local, or maybe in Syracuse, or maybe in Buffalo, or maybe in Ithaca (I could go on and on), you should consider attending this Saturday and/or Sunday.

Hearts & Crafts, this Saturday and Sunday!

Hearts & Crafts is hosted a few times a year, and each event has brought more and more attention to local artists, crafters, makers of our area. Pete and I are big fans and supporters of handmade goods, as well as local economy and the whole 3/50 project. We’re not even getting paid or perked to sing these praises, yo, we’re just friendly with the brain children (which is a word I’m not quite sure you can pluralize) behind the extravaganza and want to spread the love.

It’s so big this time around that it’ll be in two venues: 11a-5p each day, baby.

On Saturday: Starry Nites at 696 University Ave is host to Part 1 of the event, which features makers of wearable art. You know, I’m talkin’ the clothing, accessories, and jewelry that deserve a spot on you.

Photo courtesy of Hearts & Crafts and Beadwork By Amanda, who will be at the event!

On Sunday: You’ll be wanting more coffee + art, so go to Java’s Cafe at 16 Gibbs St for the more traditional Hearts and Crafts market that many people already all know and love, featuring the diverse wares of over 30 local makers, including (but not limited to!) paperie, ceramic goods, toys, and accessories.

Oh. Hell. Yes. And as my Mom reminded me this week… it’s not too early to begin your Christmas shopping. So why not add it to your agenda this weekend?

Photos courtesy of Hearts & Crafts and are the property of Beadwork by Amanda and Dock2 Letterpress, respectfully.

Houseplant Mania

July 29, 2011   //  Posted in: Gardening   //  By: Emily   //  10 responses

I picked up the Great Dane and Chihuahua of house plants at Home Depot yesterday because I couldn’t help myself; all of the plants in the store were looking so green and lush after the last few weeks of heat – full of new growth and chlorophyll. Plus, you know I can’t resist a baby succulent, which is that speck of dirt you see dwarfed on the step.

Big plant. Little plant.

Of course the succulent I really considered getting was this other one that looks oddly like a butt, or maybe a bad guy from Mario Bros., but is squishy and tiny and just made me smile. If you’re really wondering, I believe it’s name to be Split Rock, but I was sad to see that it would only grow about 2″ tall so back to the shelf it went. I wanted plants with serious growth potential.

Split Rock Succulent. Or a butt.

Speaking of butts when I shouldn’t be speaking of butts, what’s this about? (Caught my eye at Marshall’s. You try to walk by it and not laugh a little.)

Stainless spoon rest. Or a butt.

Back to the main, plant-intensive topic. I can’t turn down a good one when I see it, especially if it’s almost as big as me, only $13, and doesn’t look overly like something you’d find in Florida or the tropics, because vegetation like that always looks odd and out of place in NY homes, in my opinion.

The leafy greens I lugged home in my passenger’s seat measured about 52″ tall, even though the tag tells me I should expect to see it max out around 48″. Meaning it’s a superstar plant and I’m lucky to have it.

Tall plant. I'm 5'9" by the way.

It’s given name is the Umbrella Tree (or Schefflera arboricola if you’re a fanciful horticulturist), and it even towered over Cody, who’s almost knocked its precarious 10″ plastic base over on five separate occassions with a single swing of his tail. I also couldn’t take a photo of him not howling in a where’s-my-treat-for-staying-still fit. The doof.

The other plant I bought was one of the <$3 baby succulents, this one kindly named Elephant Bush, as in, this is the plant that elephants thrive off of on safari. Cool. I obviously picked the tallest one with the most stems to optimize my opportunity for success.

Elephant Bush beside starfish art.

And don’t be fooled, this baby only measures 5″ tall right now but has potential of reaching the same 48″ vertical of the Umbrella Tree.

I just hope it grows faster than the Anniversary Jade.

Impromptu Switcheroo

July 28, 2011   //  Posted in: Bedrooms   //  By: Emily   //  6 responses

I finally got fed up with the full-size bed in the master bedroom. Who lives like this anyways?

Imagine me. Jammed in there. 5’9″ body hardly fitting end-to-end. I was too used to my feet overhanging the end. And I had had enough of that.

The master bedroom – my gray, cozy, iron headboard-ed dwelling – had been arranged this way for over a year. It’s no different from what you’ve seen before (like here, when it made it’s grand reveal) except that I removed the down comforter from the IKEA duvet and have only been sleeping beneath the top sheet and the duvet cover. It’s pure light-yet-warm-and-clean fun, I tell ya. A true summertime treat.

Master bedroom (view from the doorway) before.

But get this: The guest room mattress was queen-sized. I brought it home last winter. How well do I treat my guests? That well. More comfortable than me well.

But don’t focus on how undecorated and unassembled the room is overall. Just focus on the queen mattress, because that’s what I’m swooning over today after spending another night with my ankles uncomfortably resting over the foot of the bed. Visual guest room happiness is clearly not top of mind over here (yet), but I had comfort nailed down. Shucks, I hadn’t even bought or made a bed skirt. Or tucked in the top sheet nicely.

Guest room (view from the doorway) before.Switching the smaller bed with the larger guest room mattress had crossed my mind before, although last time I played around and made the switch I wasn’t happy with how tightly the queen fit in the much-smaller master bedroom. It seemed too tall given the shorter ceilings, too wide for to all of the windows, and too large for the fit-for-a-full-size iron headboard.

But when I gave consideration to how the larger bed might fit if not for the metal framing and the iron headboard, I thought the queen bed might just work out in my favor. So I flip-flopped the beds and made some executive decisions in another moment of trial (hoping desperately that it wouldn’t be an error because those damn mattresses aren’t easy to move).

When it came right on down to it, the guest room hardly changed at all visually. The only obvious change is that the bedskirt is over yonder now. The bed even aligned just fine under the herringbone headboard (I DIY’ed that, you know, and you can find out how right here).

Guest room (view from the doorway) after. Slightly longer quilt and a bedskirt.

On the other hand, the master, my new little lair, looks much improved now. A little low-rise swanky room if you ask me. And hopefully you read that right; I said swanky, not low-rise skanky, like some shorts I didn’t want to be seeing at the beach yesterday afternoon.

Master bedroom after.And there’s still more to do. Like, hang some art up, and maybe some curtains since I’m feelin’ a curtain-y kick coming at you… but what else is different?

  • No framing; the box spring is directly on the ground for now, although I’d love to get a nice low platform bed someday and nix the box all together.
  • No headboard; I shifted the entire bed left to sit more beneath the window.
  • Shifted the carpet closer to the door (and am considering rotating it to expose even more).
  • Moved the dresser to the other wall; it’s now beside the closet.

Master bedroom after.

And I decided that I really should start ironing my bedding before it’s on international bloggy-dom. Whatever, we’re all snuggly, duvet-crunching humans, right?

I’m still fussing with how the bed sits beneath the window; we use enough pillows for it not to be an issue when we’re sleeping against it, but should it directly beneath the window, or am I content to keep it a smidgen off center and balance the variance out with art just because I’m allowed to do what I want? The reason it can’t go further left and perfectly centered (as shown in the next photo) is because the IKEA bedside table is wedged between the bed and the wall where the dresser had been previously. It may need to move to the other side of the bed if centering is the ultimate gameplan.

Master bedroom after.And it really surprised me that adding the bed to the room like this made the room feel bigger; I think forcing it away from the doorway was a good decision.

Did I mention it’s way cushier than the old mattress? Sorry guests. I’ll be working on updating and beautifying your room soon enough if it’s any concession.

P.S. Project Runway tonight!