Christmas DIY Project

Every year, my mom, Jeri comes up with creative but simple presents to give to her friends. Every year, it seems, they get cuter and cuter and every year I get more and more jealous that I didn't think of them myself. This year, I did some Pinteresting for a Craft Night some friends and I had and ran across these - painted (with Annie Sloan paint)  Ball jars vases and I THINK I may have one-upped her! (but not even close)

It's a super easy process: I just painted the jars with two coats of Annie Sloan's Old White (three would look even better) with a regular paint brush. After they dried, I applied a tiny bit of gold gilding wax to the screw part of the jar (at the top) to add some Christmas flair. (note: I did NOT wax them). Then  I  sanded the parts that were raised allowing the glass to show through for a distressed look. To finish them up, I tied a little gold raffia around the top, threw in some sprigs of greenery from around our house, and called it a day.

What do you think? Cute, right?


DIY - Chevron Desk (Completed)


I am absolutely obsessed with this desk. I found it on Craigslist for basically nothing and my initial intentions where to paint the whole thing white. While looking on Pinterest for inspiration, I saw a few posts that featured desks, credenzas, and dressers that were painted while still leaving some of the original wood. I figured I'd give it a try using masking tape to create a chevron pattern. I would normally explain the process, but I literally just eye-balled it. I never have patience for things like that, but honestly it looks pretty good.

I talked a bit about the process here. Hope you like the final product! (Now I just need a chair bc not I have to kneel. The. Worst.


DIY - Picture Collage


I have been on a DIY roll lately, but to be honest I'm not surprised at all. It's been over a year since I've owned my house and I've been waiting all this time until I found an apartment that I loved to execute the projects that have been building up. I love the space I'm in now: dark original wood floors, light gray trim and molding, and 12 ft high white walls. I love this clean, elegant look so as I move forward decorating my room, I'm using primarily light colors, simple silhouettes, and lots of white space.

Above my bed, I wanted to do something a little different (and something I had seen on Apartment Therapy when the did a tour of my friend, Allie's home.  However, since I don't have a ton of pictures and polaroids lying around, I used Printstagram to print some of my favorite Instagram photos. Literally they are amazing. (Instagram handle: @matthewcara) I've used them several times before for various projects/gifts and I HIGHLY recommend you check them out.

This is what I did:

1) nailed a thin strip of metal into my wall above my bed which is what your magnets will attach to (you can also use cork board and wooden push pins for this part)

2) arrange your pictured sporadically using small magnets (I used these) as you go to keep them I'm place. Adjust and arrange to get a "controlled chaos" look

3) there is no step 3. It's that simple

MawMaw Dominates San Francisco

Literally, I loved every single second of this.

MawMaw, my mom's mother is (without a doubt) the chicest, witty, funny, go-with-the-flow, always-ready-for-a-cocktail, open-minded woman I know. In essence, I want to be her when I grow up. She came to visit me a few weeks ago and it was SO great seeing her. Let me just say, she took SF by storm. At the end of days, just as I would get ready to say "Should we take a nap before dinner" she would pipe up "Should we get a martini or glass of wine?". Like - everything. Honestly, I feel like the majority of the trip was eating and drinking and I wouldn't have had it any differently. She had been before so didn't need to see the usuals. Instead, she did get me out of the Castro and into new areas of SF that I had not seen. Again, loved it.

MawMaw, if/when you're reading - I love you and had a BLAST!


Annie Sloan - Chevron Desk (BEFORE)

Get ready. This desk is complete but you'll have to wait for the "AFTER" pictures. For now, I want to show you the progress pictures. I bought this old desk from someone on Craigslist after I immediately fell in love. I was attracted to it's simple and effortless design and I knew that I could do something amazing with it using Annie Sloan's paints/waxes. Also, it was $30.

Since the chevron pattern is really trending, I decided to give it a try. It was literally the biggest pain the ass, but totally worth it. I would explain the process in words, but I suggest simply YouTubing it. Much easier. Make sure to keep checking for a post about the final product and hopefully you'll love it as much as I do.


So I've Moved...

Yes. Again. I have moved. Of course I'm still in San Francisco (like I'd ever leave), but now I'm in an apartment that I'm truly proud to call home. I've reunited with 12ft ceilings, stainless steel appliances, hardwood floors, and an IN UNIT washer and dryer. There will be a whole post dedicated to my new apartment, but for now, please know that I am back to DIYing using Annie Sloan's line of paints and waxes, and I couldn't be happier. For so many reasons, my new apartment just feels like...home. Above, I've included a picture of my room (that's still in progress) and some of the pieces I've been working on. Obviously, keep reading for the finished products.