DIY Cork Stamps

Happy Monday, y’all!! We were up bright and early this morning – me so I can blog this post & the hubs so he could finish some work for his teacher’s certification. Aaand I’ll probably need another cup of coffee by noon. The struggle is real, peeps. The struggle is real.

Any who, we had an eventful weekend! Our church hosts a volunteer appreciation dinner once a year for all of the serve teams in the church and each year, they somehow top the previous one. It’s always a wacky, crazy, belly laughs, fun night, full of ridiculousness. So that happened last night and boy howdy… what a night! It was medieval themed, complete with crowns and jousting. Yes, you read that correctly. Jousting. Oh! And our pastors made an epic music video remix of “What Does The Fox Say?”. Why, you ask? Because they’re awesome like that. I’ll post that video as soon as it’s up. And if you follow me on Instagram (_theculturedcavewoman), there’s a short clip of the hubs and I dueling it out in the jousting ring! I’d like to let the record state that I WON. I’d also like to believe it was fair and square, so let’s pretend, okay? Okay.

OH! And I got 2 of the most gorgeous chairs for our livingroom yesterday!! That’s a whole other post for another day, but here’s a sneak peek. Thank you, World Market, for fulfilling all of my heart’s desires. Gah, I would live in that store if I could.

LOVE at first sight!

LOVE at first sight!

And now, the REAL reason I wrote this blog post! Another Valentine’s Day craft!!! Yippee, right?! I’ve seen this craft all around Pinterest, so I decided to try it out myself. It was SO easy, only took 30 min and I didn’t even lose a finger. I’d call that a success! There are soo many possibilities with this craft – so dream big!

First, find some old corks (make sure they’re actual cork, not the foam corks!) & trace out your letters or symbols or whatever you’ve decided to do! And make sure you write the letters in a mirrored image. I didn’t on the “L” the first time and theeen realized it. Bah. ;)

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Using an exacto knife, CAREFULLY (I repeat, CAREFULLLLLLLLLY), trace your letter with the knife, then cut sideways into the cork, to make the two cuts meet. The excess cork should pop out pretty easily. Do that on the remaining letters. It took me about 30 min to draw the letters and cut them out. The first few cuts are kinda nerve wracking, but I promise, it gets easier!!

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Make sure your cuts are deep enough so the edges don’t smear ink everywhere! I went back later and trimmed mine down a bit more because of that very issue!

Alrighty, here’s how mine turned out! I LOVE them!! And now I want to make cork stamps of EVERYTHING!

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So, what do you think?? I’d love to hear from you!! You can find me on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram (search “theculturedcavewoman”) :)

(Multiple) New Beginnings!

Woooo, it’s Friday!! Seriously. This week seemed like it stretched on FOREVER, but that miiiight have something to do with all of the major changes that happened to me this week. I’ve been telling you guys that life has been insane lately & I couldn’t quite discuss it yet – but I can now! Somewhat, anyways. Sooo for those interested… here’s a cliff notes version of that story. I quit my job on Monday (as in, here’s my resignation.. effective right NOW). It was a really bad situation and got to a point where my husband (wonderful man that he is) texted me Monday at work and said the beautiful words I’d been longing to hear: “You’re done. Get out of there.” Hallelujah, praise Jesus. I’ve never felt so FREE!

Aaaand then I was jobless. Happy but jobless. Thankfully, my wonderful former employer has graciously agreed to let me to work for her (nannying) for the month of December until an opportunity I have lined up starts in January. I can’t really talk about what THAT will be quite yet, since it’s not officially official. I mean, it’s like 98% official. But still. Seriously guys, my life is really not this interesting – all these secrets and things I “can’t walk about”. Fo real. You’re REALLY not missing out on anything (I promise!) – I just want to respect the other parties involved in all of these situation. So you’ll know when I know! ;) But for now, I’m just enjoying spending time with my nanny fam (whom I ADORE), days off to paint our house, putter around, and watch my husband’s jr high basketball games! Life is beautiful :)

Okay, enough of the serious stuff. Here’s a sneak peek of our dining room that I’ve been working on! I still need to finish the top sections around the room and down by the baseboards – which will require a much smaller brush. So I’m kiiinda avoiding that right now. But it should be done on Monday! Which is super exciting. Especially since the chair remodel is finally done (you can find those before and after pics here) – I was so ready to complete the room! And I’m loving what this brand spankin’ new color is doin’ for it!

Getting rid of the dark grey/navy!

Getting rid of the dark grey/navy!

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See that tiny space between the baseboard and the windowsill?? Whyyyy?? ;)

I also want to give you a preview for a recipe I’m going to be posting on Monday – Grilled Flank Steak Salad! With homemade Paleo creamy balsamic dressing. It is quite possibly the most delicious salad ever made. And it has steak. So it’s def husband friendly! PS: Sorry for the poor picture quality – this was before I got my Canon 30D (more on that later – I’m obsessed though, just so you know!).

Soo good!

Soo good!

I hope you have a beautiful Friday – thanks for stopping by! :)

Friday Finds!

Maybe it’s just me, but this week went by SO fast… not that I’m complaining! But it seems like no matter what, once we hit holiday season, our schedule explodes and the days rapidly melt into one another. And I rediscover my love for strong coffee, my cozy bed and peppermint ice cream (speaking of, WHY does this creamy deliciousness only come out once a year?!)

Seriously though, as I’m sure some of you can relate, our calendar is PACKED for the foreseeable future – 6 weeks of endless activities. Tis the season, right?? ;) Thankful for God’s peace and rest in the midst of chaos. Breathing deeply, trying to keep first things first and not be distracted by the unavoidable busyness!

And on that note… FRIDAY FINDS! Haha. I know, such a smooth transition, riiight?? Anywhoo, I’m really excited to share this week’s finds with you – mostly because I am the proud owner of one of the 5 items I’m sharing today! Can’t wait for you to see all the goodies, so let’s get this show on the road.

Crisanto Hexagon Mirror $99.95 @ Pier One

Crisanto Hexagon Mirror $99.95 @ Pier One

This mirror. I would LOVE to see this in an entry way, over a cute table or a few of them placed together in a cluster above a bed! There are so many options with this kind of mirror – it really could be used any way you can think of. Be creative!

InterDesign Zeno Shower Curtain - Blue/White $24.99 @ Target (sold online only)

InterDesign Zeno Shower Curtain – Blue/White $24.99 @ Target (sold online only)

This shower curtain. Seriously, I am OBSESSED with mint lately (as is the rest of the world). But mint AND stripes?! Be still my heart. I love how this would brighten up any bathroom and add the perfect pop of subtle color. It kinda makes me want to redo my bathroom (husband, you didn’t just read that).

Alloy Numeral Clock $158.00 @ Anthropologie

Alloy Numeral Clock $158.00 @ Anthropologie

This clock. I love that it’s not in a frame! This is perfect for a dining room wall or in a kitchen because I feel like it would add that ideal touch of whimsy to whatever space it’s in. Plus, I’m always a fan of something different that will catch a guest’s eye!

Threshold Antiqued Stoneware Pitcher Vase - $19.99 @ Target (sold online only)

Threshold Antiqued Stoneware Pitcher Vase – $19.99 @ Target (sold online only)

At 12″ tall, this vase has so many possibilities! You could place small wooden decorating sticks in it and put it on top of your mantle. You could fill it with fresh flowers and keep it as a centerpiece on your dining room table. The beauty of a piece like this, is that it makes a statement, but it’s also simple enough to go with ANY decor. Plus, since you can change out what you put in it and how you use it, it can be in your house all year long! Pretty AND economical. Boom.

Two Birds Throw Pillow $34.99 @ World Market

Two Birds Throw Pillow $34.99 @ World Market

Last but not least: this pillow (!!!). This is the item that I currently am obsessed with own. I have been drooling over these pillows for MONTHS and finally picked one up! I’m getting a second one next month (hey, we’re on a budget!) and I can’t wait to see them together in the livingroom! The texture, the colors, everything about them… swoon! And it has birds on it. ‘Nuff said.

Welp, I hope you enjoyed this week’s finds & even more than that, I hope they inspired you! I’d love to hear which was your favorite & if you plan on purchasing any of them… AND how YOU cope with the craziness of Thanksgiving and Christmas and family drama! ;) What are some of your tips and tricks??

Happy Friday, y’all!

Friday Finds!

YAY! It’s Friday! Maybe it’s me, but I feel like the past few weeks have FLOWN by.. not that I’m complaining or anything!!

My big plans this weekend include loading up on the Advil Cold & Sinus and sleeping. Oh, and studying for that insurance licensing exam. We’re real partiers over here, y’all. Can hardly contain the party-ness. It’s practically oozing from us. Party. Party. Party. BTdubs, those last few sentences were pure sarcasm, just in case you didn’t catch it ;) Hopefully you have more exciting things on your plate this weekend than catching some zzz’s!

On a side note, I did happen to find some great items this week! I’m excited to share them with you guys! I hope that they inspire you to dream about your space and spark some new ideas in your planning!

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Faux Mongolian Lamb Pouf $149.99 @ West Elm

Okay, I realize this might be a little out there for some.. but I LOVE it! Such a great focal piece for a living room or bed room. It looks so soft and cozy. It makes me want to curl up on it and take a nap – which partially might be because I’m ridiculously sick right now, but hey, I’m just gonna go with it. Seriously though, I think this would add a great touch to a room that has a lot of wood or rustic pieces in it – it adds the perfect amount of softness without being overbearing.

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Metal Wrapped Braxton Dining Table $599.99 @ World Market

I LOVE this! I’m slightly obsessed with the metal/wood mixture lately, and this embodies that marriage perfectly! World Market has really cornered the market on affordable furniture that screams quality and desirability. This would be a great statement piece for your dining room!

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Soare placemat $3.99 @ IKEA

I’m about to head to IKEA in the next couple of weeks to grab some of these! I love that they’re so natural looking. They’ll go great with the dark wood of my table and chairs and the new fabric we’re (slowly) reupholstering with! I love mixing light and dark shades of brown and these would definitely help me accomplish that!

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Hektar Floor Lamp $69.99 @ IKEA

I just love that these look like spotlights! It’d be perfect in a teenager’s room or living room. They’re industrial looking, which I’m also obsessed with lately, and would be a great accent to almost any décor. They are fairly tall, so they definitely stand out, but the design is such that it’s eye-catching without being obnoxious! Love!

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Room Essentials Textured Rubgy Duvert Cover Set $29.99-$49.99 @ Target

The color grey. It’s my love language. I immediately am drawn to it in every store I walk into – clothes, furniture, everything. It drives my husband crazy! Haha! I love this bedding: grey, stripes, texture. My three favorite things in ONE place! I think this would be gorgeous in any bedroom, maybe a guest room even?? Casual but chic. Doesn’t get better than that!

Like I said, such great finds this week! I want them alllllllll!! Did you shop anywhere spectacular this week? What kind of pieces and elements are you drawn to? I’d love to hear from you!  :)

Friday Finds!

Friday, Friday, gotta get down on Friiiiday!

Seriously, who else loves this day?! Cuz I DO! It means the weekend is about to kick off, which is my favorite! My husband is a teacher, so we don’t see much of each other during the week except for a few hours at night… Saturdays are like gold to us! We sleep in and lounge around and do whatever the heck we feel like! It’s glorious.

In other exciting news: Our dishwasher is getting fixed tomorrow! Yay! It’s been such a pain to hand wash every single dish we own for the past 6 months!! First world probs, I know. But still! It’ll be nice to have it working again.

Also, my dining room chair fabric came in on Wednesday morning! Which means… this weekend will have more cutting & stapling than sleeping and lounging… soooorry, babe! I’m super excited to see how it all turns out though – new fabric is always such a breath of fresh air!

Okay, okay.. enough chit chat, time to get to the good stuff! A few of my fave finds this week:

Mudhut Jute Sphere Lamp - Brown $49.99 @ Target (online only)

Mudhut Jute Sphere Lamp – Brown $49.99 @ Target (online only)

This lamp. Y’all. If you haven’t already discovered, Target pretty much has an entire secret store within their store. There’s a HUGE selection of goodies that can ONLY be found online. It’s seriously like Christmas. This lamp is goorgeous. I love it. Such a great mix of rustic and sleek. Jute + grey = fave. If I was a lamp, I’d be this one. What? Is that weird?

Jackson Metal Tub Chair $119.99 @ World Market

Jackson Metal Tub Chair $119.99 @ World Market

This chair. I love these. Always have. Always will. My dining room table is too tall, otherwise I’d have at least 6 of these babies living at my house. Guess I’ll just have to experience their beauty vicariously though all of your homes!

Gianna Recycled Yarn Kilim Indoor/Outdoor Rug $59-$799 @ Pottery Barn

Gianna Recycled Yarn Kilim Indoor/Outdoor Rug $59-$799 @ Pottery Barn

This rug. The pattern is breathtaking. I really love the rich colors! And for Pottery Barn, it’s actually not outrageously expensive (don’t get me wrong, it’s still expensive.. just not in a sell-your-firstborn-child way). I could definitely see this in my living room or dining room. So many good places it could go!

Provencal Oil Bottle $24.95 @ Sur La Table

Provencal Oil Bottle $24.95 @ Sur La Table

This jug. Love this. I’m absolutely obsessed with jugs right now. Especially super vintage-y and unique ones. I would love to keep this beauty in my kitchen for olive oil, vinegar, or even some fresh wildflowers! Whatever my little heart desires.

Metal Edge Laptop Desk ONE SALE $69.99 @ World Market

Metal Edge Laptop Desk ON SALE $69.99 @ World Market

This desk. I want this thing so bad, I’m almost whining about it. I really think it would help me work better. Oooh yeah, I can feel it now. HUGE motivator. But seriously, when I use cute things, it makes me a better person. No? Too far? Okay, it at least helps me produce higher quality work. Right? Come on! Throw me a bone!!

Well, there you have it! My favorite Friday Finds for this week. I hope they inspire you as your dream about and decorate your space! Did you stumble upon any great pieces this week? If so, share them in the comments below! I’d love to see what you found!

Fabric decisions…

Fabric, curtains, rugs… They all have the same thing in common: I can’t make a decision about one to save. my. LIFE. My dining room chairs have needed a makeover for awhile now… and I knew I wanted something with coral in it (it’s perfect with the color we’ll be painting the dining room, which I’ll reveal soon!). In general, it’s a great shade to complement the rest of the house while also standing out on its own. I was sure I had it all figured out, until I discovered a dirty little secret about myself.

I have pattern commitment issues. Seriously. I ponder on the long term consequences of each choice. My palms start sweating. And (I’m a little embarrassed about this one) I have even been known to have dreams about the options! I know, I know… You would think I’d have better things to obsess over (like starving children, world peace.. just to name a few), but alas, this is me, in all my glory. You’re welcome.

Ok, back to the fabric decision process. Are you scared to be in my mind for the next 5 minutes? Cuz you should be.

My original top 4 choices:

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The yellow (top left): I loved the simplicity of this print… but since I went a little wild with our coffee hutch (see that project {here}) & the fact that our dining room is only about, oh, 4 feet away from said hutch, I figured it might be yellow overload. Too muchy, if you catch my drift. I know what you’re thinking, Brenae, too much?! Pshhh…That is never the case.

The stripes (top right): Guys. I LOVED this one. It was my original first choice, but when I checked, they only had ONE yard left. One. And I needed at least 6. Sigh. That day was a very sad day in the Bradley household.

The birds (bottom left): My opinion is, one can never have too many bird-related items in one’s home. However, my hubs would strongly disagree! So, scratched this one off the list (but seriously, how beautiful is this?! Might need to find a way to incorporate it somewhere still…).

The floral (bottom right): This one had a few of the colors I was looking for, but I wasn’t fully sold on the floral print. I wrestled with it for a bit, but in the end, it just didn’t feel right.

I was about to give up on my search for awhile, when I found THIS!!

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What a beaut. I la la la LOVE it. Love the chevron. Love that it’s coral and tan (instead of stark white). It’s a pop of color without with obnoxious. I really like subtle pops. Is that an oxymoron? Oh well. I warned you about the dangers of my mind!

I also loved that it was on sale at Joanns.com ($19.99/yd instead of $39.99/yd). It’s a home decor fabric, so it’s a little more durable that most, which was a huge selling point. So last night, I swallowed my commitment phobia, took the plunge & ordered it!!

There you have it. The official fabric of the Great Chair Reupholstery Project of 2013! I can’t wait to see it in person & start the makeover!

What do you think? Was it the right decision? Which one would you have chosen?

PS (for your viewing pleasure):

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HAPPY HUMP DAY!!
(I love Wednesdays)