A Place for Hanging

Moving into a place in September has it’s perks. No need to worry about where to hang your coats. Once late October hits however, a place to hang coats that isn’t a distant closet or draped over a knee wall is crucial. Rather than running out to a local store to buy a $30 piece of wood with hooks we decided to build our own. Building a coat rack was cheap, easy, and allowed us to customize the length and color to match an awesome mirror we found to hang above. (Unfortunately the mirror was purchased before realizing our landlord left a massive mirror opposite our rack, but still built custom for our future house.)

All you need is a 1″ x 4″ piece of wood, hooks, stain/paint, and mounting brackets. Have your home improvement store cut down the wood to your desired length, hit it with a coat or 2 of stain/paint space your hooks as you would like them. Pre-drill some holes, screw in hooks, and mount. THAT easy. Not to mention now you have something to brag about building yourself that you will be guaranteed to see every day from October to May.

Ahh. Organization. Can’t tell you how many times I walked by this when it was first hung and went “just lovely.”

Brand New Antique Shelves

On September 15, 2010 Brendan and I moved into our first apartment. That same day we realized that our apartment with it’s many closets were simply large voids behind doors. Not a single one had a shelf inside. To remedy the problem, specifically in the pantry, my wonderful man built me free standing shelves that we can take with us to our next home but still shove in the closet and hold all of our non perishable items. (Extra fabulous because we’ve moved into the smallest kitchen possible)

The shelves were inspired buy this lovely antique from White Flower Farm House:

I HIGHLY suggest anyone in the eastern Long Island area stop by. Small place, but full of such cute stuff.  When I went, of course, my dream shelves were already sold. So we build out own. Costing roughly $20 for materials, I drew plans, Brendan assembled, and I finished. We make such a fabulous team.

To Build:
We used 1″ x 12″  planks of wood, cut to fit (roughly 3′-0″ wide) little 1″x 2″ for ledgers, and 2″ x 4″ for the legs. Assembly was simple (I’m told). First, get your local hardware store to cut everything to your required dimension. Second, space ledgers evenly, screw to legs kind of building 2 ladders. Once the ledgers are in place add your 1″x 12″ shelves starting with the bottom shelf, then the top, then fill in the middle. Screw each shelf into the ledger as you go.

Our shelves are anchored into the wall since it’s in a closet. If you want a free standing set of shelves we recommend adding cross bracing across the back using something like a 1×2 diagonally across the back. (See the white flower farmhouse image as example)

Once built it was my turn to play. To create an “already been around for 100 years” look I used a candle to wax up the shelves before painting. Add wax to the areas where wear and tear would normally happen. (edges, fronts of shelves, bottom legs). Paint with 1 coat of a color you would like to see peaking through the paint (I chose white). Once dry wax again, I did a mix of same areas 1st wax was applied and a few new places. Paint with top coat paint (Robin’s Egg Blue to match the kitchen aid).  Once second coat is dry break out your sand paper and start sanding the areas the wax was applied. It’s AMAZING, little effort and the paint starts peeling off. It really makes an awesome weathered look.

Every time I walk into my pantry I smile. I love these shelves.

A Hell of a Year

I don’t know how many people that read this know the in’s and out’s of Liz. As readers may have noticed this blog’s been idol since February, and I apologize for this. To fill you in on the last 8 months requires me to fill you in on the months leading up to the creation of this blog.

In May of ’09 my little sister was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. After 12 treatments of chemo, buzzing her head on Father’s Day, and watching her tackle this card she was dealt with such grace she got a clean bill of health late November ’09. We as a family made it through the holidays with a different outlook on life, as most of you know cancer effects everyone. After the holidays and the year we had with my sister I wanted to turn over a new leaf and become more productive.

I should mention that my sister, while on Chemotherapy, started her own t shirt  “company” which was lovingly called Baldies. She spray painted her hairless self on shirts and sold them to friends and family members to keep herself busy and help bring in some extra bucks.

Baldie Poster

After watching all of this I had to think what’s stopping me? Seriously? On Chemo my sister accomplished more than I had in years. So I started this blog to help keep me on track and get serious about doing more with my life.

So why the stop I’m sure you are asking yourself around now? Well. It turns out that while my sister had been getting better, my mother was getting worse. Late February of 2010 my mother was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Her tumor “popped” at almost the exact location as my sisters, the side of her neck. We sent her results over to my sister’s doctor and waited. Within hours the doctor was calling asking what the hell was going on? Mom said “I dunno Doc, you tell me… you said it doesn’t run in families and isn’t environmental”. Needless to say we had another 12 rounds of chemo. We all rallied around my mom. It was all very deja-vue-ish. Mom got her all clean in early September.

Now, not all heartbreaking “that poor family” happened. As they say “it’s always darkest before the dawn”. August 29, 2010 after my mother finished her chemo treatments my boyfriend of 5 years, and my very best friend on this Earth, proposed. That’s right. Officially engaged. And he really outdid himself. More on that to come in future posts. 24 hours after our engagement we signed a lease on our first apartment. So From September until now we’ve been packing our lives, attempting to unpack, getting settled, and learning to adjust to all the extra “stuff” we have to do now. It’s all so exciting and I have SO much to share. Giving an Interior Designer her first place is a dangerous thing. Trust me. Thanks for sticking around and as they say “the best is yet to come”.