Archive | DiY

DIY play kitchen

this post is about two weeks late. but oh well! i just wanted to share how we created a little kitchenette for Sophia for Christmas. i knew that she would LOVE playing with a kitchen because of how much she loved the one at Nana’s house. but i also didn’t want to spend the money to buy a plastic one… that could be potentially ugly, since it would be hanging out in our main living space. plus, Husbuddy and i have so much fun with projects, we knew we wanted to give this one a try!

we followed the steps from the YHL website but tweaked it to fit what we wanted. {for full step by step directions, go there!}

basically, we started with this:

IMG_5584  it is a cabinet that is 24″ tall and about 30″ wide. it probably had it’s first life above a refridgerator. we found it at the Habitat for Humanity REstore{such an awesome place btw!}

then we split up. Husbuddy made a counter and stained it and we found a metal bowl for the sink. i painted the outside and the inside because Husbuddy hates painting. Husbuddy rehung the right door so it would open like an oven door.  IMG_5674  then we added details.

it’s ALL IN THE DETAILS! you guys! seriously, it’s the details that makes it fun.

  • we found a cheap faucet and installed it.
  • we thought about trying to make a fake one out of pvc pipe or something…but i’m sooooo glad we didn’t because the sink faucet is her favorite part!
  • we got little wooden drawer pulls and painted them silver,
  • painted the stove top on
  • we got new hardware
  • we attached a hook on the side for a future apron{Nana, we’re waiting for it…}
  • we got a push light and attached it to the ceiling of the “oven” side so that we can have light in there{totally stole that idea from YHL!},
  • we made a pink shelf for the cabinet side under the sink
  • we added little feet(which you can’t see in the pictures) to keep the cabinet about an inch off the ground since our floors are uneven.
  • and i took apart an old cookie rack so that we could have an oven shelf.
  • we cut out a hole in the oven door and glued plexi glass on.

whew! it was fun to figure it all out.


and here it was all set up for Christmas:  kitchenette cmas eve

kitchenette cmas morning

the minute we walked down the stairs on Christmas morning, Sophia squealed! she had no idea what was going on! but she ran straight to that kitchen sink and played with the faucet. immediately. ha. it was super cute. i had also found a little kids chair at an antique shop and painted it as her other xmas gift from us. she promptly moved the teddy bear that was sitting on it and scooted the chair over the sink. it really made us so excited to have created this for her!

kitchenette play2

later that day we moved the kitchenette over to it’s place next to our refridgerator and in front of the chalk board. it’s super easy to move. she enjoys working in her kitchen while i’m working in mine. hee hee. all the grandparents supplied the necessities to fill the kitchen, so it worked out great!

kitchenette play

the only thing that we haven’t figured out is that the plexi glass popped off that day. it was super glued on, so we’re not sure how else we’re going to attach it. right now it works just fine with an open hole that she can reach in anyway.

playing on cmas day

and now, her birthday is tomorrow and we don’t know what to get her. ha. she’s two, do you think she really needs anything else? haha.

has anyone else ever made their own kitchenette verses buying one? how did it turn out for you?

xoxo-kimberly renee
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painting a perfectly fine piece of furniture

little cleaner  it was months… MONTHS ago that i posted this photo on instagram of the little miss cutie patotee helping me clean my birthday present from hubby.

let me back up.

one day while wandering around the Habitat for Humanity ReStore looking for something else, we found an old {giant} hutch  for a steal. it was only $199! what?! we abandoned all previous plans and tried to figure out if we could really get this. we’ve been wanting one. it was on a wish list- like years down the road. it was pretty beat up, with lots of scratches. -and weird ones, like on one side of the counter but not the other?  but all the doors and drawers still opened beautifully and it really was a nice piece… so he said it was my birthday present. no need to convince me!

then we had to figure out how to get it home.


besides that, it was a total dream! and i knew i wanted to paint it. i actually had planned to paint it the next week. or the week after at the latest…

well, babies get sick. mommas get sick. life happens and all of a sudden months pass.

and it still looked like this:

pre paint  {ha, besides the cleaning rag from the first day}

which was fine. i was totally used to it. i still thought it was pretty. it was the perfect piece for our rather empty dining room.

but i knew. i just knew that it wanted to be a brighter, happier color. and i knew, i just knew that the beadboard in the back wanted to be white, it wanted to pop. i finally just took the whole thing apart and began painting.

have you all used Annie Sloan chalk paint. let me tell you, i LOVE this stuff! it goes on like a dream. you can add water to make it run on smoother, you can mix your own colors SUPER easy. i mixed dutch blue with pure white. holla!

the picture below is after the first coat! process  but seriously, three words: SO MUCH DENTAL.


it wasn’t going to be perfect, lines where the blue meets the white are not perfect, there are still some dings and scratches that show through and with a little buddy constantly needing me the project took multiple days (over a week to get the thing back together!) but it’s done and it’s beautiful. #idhtbptbb “It Doesn’t Have To Be Perfect To Be Beautiful!” {from The Nester}

speaking of… i have been putting off typing up this post because i keep meaning to get my nice camera out to take the pictures. let’s just be honest, it hasn’t happened for the last two weeks, it’s not going to happen any time soon so i might as well just post these iphone photos and get done with it! HA.

again…double hashtag idhtbptbb!!! blue hutch  i left the hardware exactly the same. i thought about cleaning the brass up but i was afraid it would be too shiny…brass color… instead of this patina of antique brass which i loved, so i just left it.

the only sad part is that as we were putting it back together one of the pieces of glass in the doors broke. sad day! but you can’t really tell, right?

top half  now i smile every time i see the dining room. it’s so much happier and brighter. one day we will paint the walls and change the light fixture. until then, i’m going to live with this beauty.  hutch  so, moral of the story?

1. go with your gut and just do it. just paint the darn thing that’s been sitting there begging to be painted for months.


2. ALWAYS remember, it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.

xoxo-kimberly renee

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“little architect blocks” {easy diy gift!}

i’m kind of in love with these cute little blocks that i made Sophia and our Godson for Christmas. i’ve been a busy bee working on architectural renderings for my etsy shop.  i have windows and doors on the brain and so when i saw THESE cute little blocks, i was inspired to put my own twist on it. AND, i need to start imparting my architecty-ways on the offspring. LOL. ya right.


if you need a last minute diy gift for a baby/toddler in your life, check this out!  diy little architect blocks

first of all, i found these blocks at Michaels.  i sanded and primed them. blocks start

blocks how to 1 then i painted them with acrylic-non-toxic paint and sanded them again. i wanted to make all the edges soft. and i like the worn look so i don’t have to worry about it looking perfect!  blocks how to 2 then i added black shapes for the windows and doors and then highlighted them with white pen. THAT EASY.

just repeat for all you blocks!   blocks how to 3  i may have added letters to the bottoms of the  blocks just for fun. now that i think about it- it would have been a little fun to use stamp letters! oh well! next time!

blocks details1a and for the “roof” i drew on little shingles and pitches. i wanted to cut the blocks to have them have triangle roofs, but this way was simplier and more fun to switch the blocks around.  blocks details3 then i added some details! what are little architect blocks without details? window boxes- check. light fixtures-check. balcony railings- check. round windows- DUH.

the words were a space filler for the bottoms of the in-between-floors… but you could always add more windows or something so it could be rotated.  blocks details2a  they were polished with beeswax which is an allnatural wax that wood-toy makers use. i thought it was a good idea for little people who like to put these in their mouth.

i also made drawstring bags to store them in because of course, the houses need a place to sleep at night.

sophias blocks

for Sophia’s set i actually have two sizes. just an experiment. it will be funny to see which size she likes better. of course, she can always mix and match! that’s the beauty of this “design”! ha.  bag it’s all wrapped up and under the Christmas tree! i hope  this project gives you any ideas for something you can make!

xoxo-kimberly renee

{ps- i also wondered if this would be a fun thing to offer in my shop for purchase? what do you think?}

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diy advent calendar {easy!}

advent is only a couple days away from starting! so i wanted to share this little project with you. diy advent

the past couple of years, Husbuddy and i have walked through John Piper’s advent book: {which can be found here:} i think that’s my favorite thing about advent. we actually sit down and read scripture or a ltitle devo together! we TOTALLY need to be better about that the rest of the year! but i LOVE the tradition of preparing our hearts for Jesus.

Good News of Great Joy (Free Advent eBook)


{a little snippet from the free ebook!}

i really like what Desiring God says in the preface about what Advent is for. it’s for ADORING JESUS!

it has been very fun to have this little “tradition” together and it has been very meaningful for us! here is a sample of the daily reading:


and in case you need other ideas, here are a few that i am interested in: Slide5

Ann Voskamp Unwrapping the Greatest Gift and The Greatest Gift both look awesome. when Sophie gets older, i’m thinking Unwrapping the Greatest Gift will be great because it has a story for every day! The Greatest Gift looks like it would be really good for my heart. and the Dobson one: Family Christmas looks like it has family stories as well.

ok, so what i wanted to do is to make my own advent calendar using the verses from Piper’s ebook! {note, these are for his older ebook, they just came out with a new one this year!}

2014-11-18 21.06.26


  • i got these paper bags {set of 25!} but you can also find them at Michaels.
  • i have 25 number tags {printable below!} -just download and print!
  • set of 25 verses {printable below!} -just download and print!
  • twine, washi tape, mini clothes pins, ornaments anything else you need to decorate!

here are the two printables:


PRINTABLES : Number TAGS  & Verses {page 1, page 2}




see? only 4 steps! easy peasy! haha.

here are some more samples to give you ideas:

Slide11  via pinterest


{via pinterest }

they can be super simple or really decorative!

other ideas to put in envelopes:

  • ornaments/candy
  • family time together (game night, ice skating, make xmas cookies, xmas movie night, caroling…)
  • scavenger hunt clues
  • service projects to do together (make cookies for neighbors, give toys away, buy a toy for a stranger…)
  • be creative!

ok, so just so you know, ALL i did was cut out the verses and put them in the envelopes and glued the number tags on the outside. that IS IT. i didn’t get too creative. but it still looks fun hanging on our wall and it will be good just to have the daily reminder to read our devotional and focus on Jesus!  advent is about preparing our hearts and our homes for Jesus’ coming on Christmas. making it fun with a daily advent reading is a great tradition!

don’t be intimidated to try to make it perfect! just have fun counting down the days and bringing your family back to focus on the reason for this season!

have fun!

xoxo-kimberly renee

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{ps- there are some affliate links in this post!}

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abusing the hymnal for the sake of design

hymn wall closeup

well, i guess it was a couple of weeks ago now… i posted this photo on instagram:


I have a little wallpapering helper 😉 #yesimgluinghymnstomywall… #idhtbptbb #decidedtowaittillnaptimetofinish

View on Instagram

needless to say, it took me a little longer then naptime to finish… but it really wasn’t that hard of a project! and once i convinced the husbuddy that it would look cool, and that it’s ok that i’m putting glue on our walls…because well, they are OUR walls… we moved forward! haha.

so i took apart a hymn book and glued it to my wall.

yup. all you book-ophiles. or if you’re like my sister and you’re horrified i’d actaully rip pages from a book. um, i do it all the time for art. so why not? this book was headed for storage or trash. so why not?

yup. all you design-nerds-who’d-yell-at-me-for-doing-this-the-wrong-way. you’re horrified that i used tacky glue. that i used book pages. it won’t last. it won’t keep. it won’t have a nice finish…yaddyaya… well, i think it looks cool, i know it won’t last forever…so WHY NOT?

yup. all you perfectionists… sorry, avert your eyes…cause this is NOT perfect. the pages don’t line up exact. some the rips show the paint through the side of the sheet…um, i’ve allowed myself to not be a perfectionist for multiple reasons and i’m still working on letting that BE OK… so ya. it’s ok. IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE PERFECT TO BE BEAUTIFUL {#idhtbptbb}


ok, now that i’ve got that out of my system…

want to see more pictures of my new wall?

hymn wall

i kind of LOVE it.


1. it was CHEAP. i had the book already. and i had the glue. i didn’t have to spend a dime.

2. it was easy. although it took a little longer then i expected(um, what doesn’t these days with a 9 month old?) all i had to do was line up paper and glue.’s pretty! i love having music on my wall! and i love that it’s hymns. i didn’t plan it, but there are a couple of our favorites up there and they make me smile.

hymn wall2

now, once Husbuddy gets over the shock that i got out his cello without telling him{during naptime, i promise!!}… i wanted to mention that this is not how this wall normally looks. some day down the road, we’re hoping to have a little sitting area here. it won’t always be just an empty wall with a music stand and a couple of musical instruments leaning(IN THEIR CASES!!) against it…. some day we’ll have a little side table, a light, a cozy little reading chair… someday! ha.

hymn wall detail wall detail

ha. so, there ya go. this blog was started in the name of art and design and for the first time in months i finally posted about design and art. hee hee.

oh well.

so what do you think? am i crazy because i glued old book pages to a wall? or do you love it like i do?

go ahead and vote… crazy or brilliant?

hee hee. there’s a fine line between the two, isn’t there?

xoxo-kimberly renee

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the adventure of side tables

this is about the longest post ever written on bedside tables. who knew i could find so much to say about the process of finding side tables! well. i just did.

you may have noticed, during the super-long post on our headboard, that we don’t really have much room for side tables. we have 18″ max on each side of the bed. and i thought this was ok, because we could just wait and find some antique tables. antiques are always smaller than the side tables on the market today anyway, so i thought it would work out. i was just going to wait and see…

but that was before i realized that i was literally killing husbuddy slowly by making him wait for it.

i was willing to be patient, but to him, i was messing with his system…every. single. day. oi.

don’t judge the man too harshly. we all have the things in our life that we just need to be just right to be able to function at a respectable level of stress.

that’s what i get for having a totally type A spouse. don’t get me wrong, i LOVE IT so much- most of the time- like when he gets us places on time, and when he organizes our to-do lists with spreadsheets, and how he works hard so he can schedule time to spend with me and i think it’s super cute that he writes everything he does on a calendar so he can keep track of his day… but then there are these times.

so what’s a gal to do? we headed off to the used furniture store in Ephrata.

i was *hoping* that we’d find the perfect set of side tables that fit perfectly and we could end all the moaning… {ha. ok he really wasn’t complaining that much… i may be exaggerating for the sake of the story…}

i was *hoping* that they could be some pretty antique wood tables.

or even if the wood was bad, it could be something that i could paint.

i was searching for something that was narrow.

we needed something with drawers–> not open shelves.

and i was armed with about 80$ left from my birthday money. which, i reminded him, i could be spending on clothes or something just for me, but nope, i was willing to spend it on something we needed…lol. haha, let’s be honest, i’m having way too much fun using it for house stuff …but anyway… that was our limit. we knew we didn’t have anything else to spend!

so after searching through the hundreds of pieces of furniture on two levels…we came up empty.

until, right before we were going to give up, i saw these:

cabinets -efore

now i know what you’re thinking, “oooo, you found metal filing cabinets…whoopdedooo.”

but hear me out.

they were in great condition. they were 30$ each.

they were only 15″ wide {WHICH FIT WITHIN OUR 18″ max!}

and i turned to him and said, what if we spray painted them? and what if we added a wood top? they would be plenty of storage, and they’re the perfect size…and they could be “temporary” until we can find the perfect ‘antique-ish’ bedside tables!

he was game. either that or he just REALLY wanted something today.

but i love that he was able to trust me to try out this little adventure!

we got them.

cab during2 cab during

and started priming them that day.

cab during1

the spray painting took longer than we’d hoped. mostly because nap-times didn’t quite lend to perfect timing.

cabinets after closeup

we completed them and we love them. i’m not so sure they’re really “temporary”. we’ll see in a few years!

2014-04-21 14.45.22

we are going for a green/blue/ocean theme in the bedroom, so we painted them a dark blue. it’s going to take a while to pull it all together, but i think the palette will work. it’s just going to be slow. for now, we have a headboard, curtains and side tables!

cabinets after

they fit perfectly! actually, 18″ probably would have been too tight!

cabinet other side cabinet drawers

we spray painted the handles with polished nickle color and we painted the inside of the drawers white to make them feel clean. as you can see, we also really upped our game by using cardboard boxes as space dividers until we can afford baskets. aren’t we fancy? hey, it works! and i don’t know why i haven’t thought of that sooner! no cardboard box is safe in this house!

cabinet top

for the tops we used leftover plywood from making our headboard. we stained it a dark walnut color. it’s really hard to tell with the lighting going on here, but they are actually really pretty…not the weird yellowish brown… more of a dark dirty brown.

and  i kind of love that it looks like poor-mans-version of zebra wood. lol. ok, maybe not really. oh, interior design friends are rolling their eyes at me…but i think it’s fun!

cabinet inside

“it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful” THANK YOU NESTER! i talked about her book over in this post last week. i know, you’re already sick of me talking about it…but  let’s just say, it’s really inspired me lately!

cabinets puppy approves

puppycakes approves of our new side tables. husbuddy does too. phew! what do you think? i’d love to hear!

xoxo-kimberly renee

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things that happen while husbuddy is away

ok, so husbuddy was gone for a weekend trip last weekend. i may have started/half completed like 5 different projects at once. i couldn’t just start one and finish it…nope of course not! let’s just say i have a sickness.

anyway, here is one of my projects! a giant chalkboard in kitchen!


ok, so maybe i’m about ten years too late on the chalkboard bandwagon. i read somewhere talking about trends, that if you can see the “bandwagon” you’ve already missed it… ha!

oh well. i still thought it would be fun to have a giant one! and it’s my house, so i’ll do what i want. take that trend police!

chalkboard during

late at night painting does not equal good pictures…. but a little primer and a little chalkboard paint later… chalkboard almost after

granted, middle of the day isn’t much brighter in this kitchen! some day soon…those cabinets are going to be white! i promise!

the plan is to wrap the edge of the chalkboard in trim to create a picture frame around it. but that means we have to own a saw, buy some trim, and nail it up there. it may happen this summer… until then, i’m just going to enjoy my almost-finished-too-late-on-the-trend “imperfect chalkboard”

chalkboard whats next mom and these two, i can just feel the stares, “whatcha going to do next, momma?”

ha, oh sweet babies, just you wait and see.

do you do any projects while your spouse is out of town? hee hee. i remember one time my mom painted our living room pink while my dad was on a ski trip or something. guess we know where i got it…lol

xoxo-kimberly renee

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