Tutorial: DIY West Elm-esque Decorative Balls

Stef at Frugal Home Ideas came up with this super simple way to make some decorative twine balls for accessorizing. I just love this idea and can't wait to use it. Read how easy it is!

I forgot where I saw this tutorial so if you know where this is from, or if it was yours - let me know so I can give credit.
I need some knick-knacks for my built-in in the dining room, but here's my problem.  I just can't buy knick knacks.  Yes, I've done it before - but usually only when staging a house, so I considered it more of an "investment" to get the house sold.  Don't get me wrong - I love knick knacks.  I walk through the aisles of Home Goods and drool.  It's one of the first things I envy in others homes.  But when it comes to forking over the cash for a ceramic dog, or in this case, "balls of string" (as my husband named them), I just can't do it.  I can't pay for something that doesn't have meaning or function or sentimental value that will just need to be dusted.  I hate the idea of spending money on something random purely to take up space. 

But that doesn't mean I won't accept a gift!  Or re do a tacky good will find, or make something from scratch.  That I can handle.

So this time, it's made from scratch.

This is so easy, and I am pleased with the result.

All you need is a few balloons, a ball of twine and some Stiffy

(make sure you have your search engine on "safe mode" when googling an image of this product)

Blow up your balloons to your desired size, then wrap them in twine.  You're just wrapping them at this point to determine how much twine you want. 

Remove the twine from one of your balloons, and put it in a ziplock baggie

(this baggie was left over from a diaper consumer research that I participated in.  If you are ever asked to participate in one of those - don't do it! Gross)

Then pour some stiffy in the bag to saturate your twine, rewrap the balloons, and hang 'em up to dry

(that poor little one on the bottom.  the balloon deflated when it was already wrapped and it didn't quite turn out right.  I was sad for it, like the runt of the litter.  He did make it into the arrangement - I didn't have the heart to throw him away, but he's toward the back.

Tip:  it may be worth it to invest in new balloons, rather than using some that has been kept in a tupperware tea pitcher at your mother in law's house dating back to at least 1985

The largest chiming in at $50! Followed by the next size at $30 and the next at $10.  My arrangement would have cost at least $75 from West Elm, but it only cost me about $8 total!  Granted theirs does look way better - mine has the same-is effect for WAY less money. 

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great new blog i just found.

i just found this new (to me) blog. perfectly imperfect. shaunna (the writer) is seriously amazing! i was going through her whole website and found this section of faqs she gets asked. here's a link. what a valuable resource! i hope you have time to read all of her tips.
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dining chairs update

well, i was hoping to have my dining chairs finished tonight! but, my staple gun stopped working.. so, i have to get a new one or borrow one before i can do anymore. didn't want you to think i left you hanging.
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dining chairs preview.

we just bought 4 dining chairs for $25. score! we've been using metal folding chairs at our dining table. blah. so, here's what they looked like before. i have plans for these babies..
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mini project #1.. complete!

yes! i finished my first project since starting my blog. hurray! i feel so accomplished. well, sort of. it's a mini project.

anyways, like i said before. we're starting on the bathroom. so, last weekend when i was garage saling, i found this great little ladder. it was painted black and i thought it'd be cute to hang little hand towels on. i decided to paint it a green color that was on a frame that we got on our honeymoon.

so, here it is before (sort of). i forgot to take a picture of what it totally looked like. but you can see the black here.

and during..

and after!

 (there is some distressing on it, but you can't really see it)

i'm linking up to frugal friday over at the shabby nest as well as fab friday. check it out!
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mason jars...

so, i have all these mason jars sitting in a box at my house, waiting to be used. but for what? i had no idea until some inspiring things popped up on my blog today!

um, hello! can you say storage in craft room? weeping cherries

how easy is this? soap dispenser decor chic
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...there is none! we have been too busy in the last couple days for me to even think about painting or sanding or even nailing anything to the wall! urgh.

we did get my work area set up one night. my hubby even put in another light fixture for me, just so i would be able to see better. sweet.

tomorrow night there is nothing.on.the.schedule. hurray! maybe i'll finally get to start my first project. maybe. i do need to clean, do the dishes, make dinner, fry hamburger, etc. after work. oh well.
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so many ideas!

you should have heard me last week. i was talking to my hubby so fast i was tripping all over my words. i just got so excited looking at all the diy blogs and was so inspired, i was trying to share all of my ideas at once! well, my excitement must have worn off a little bit because caleb (my hubby) started looking for new projects too! once again, our thoughts were tripping over each other so we decided to start in one room.

we chose...the bathroom! it needs some major over-hauling and we won't be able to do it all right away. what we want to start with is:

1. paint the tile. we have tile halfway up the walls and covering our bathtub surround. the tile has gross rose-colored flowers painted on them and we tried to sand them off, and one of them took FOREVER. so, i looked up painting ceramic tile to see if it can be done and oila! it can be. i'll post a tutorial on how to do it once we are done.

2. replace carpet with tile. ew. i'm sorry if you're one of those people who likes the cushy feeling of carpet after stepping out of the shower, but that is one place i feel carpet does not belong! so, we are putting in new tile.

3. re-do vanity. we're either going to re-furbish our existing vanity or try to find an old dresser to make into a vanity. and obviously, we'll need a new top to go with our new look!

4. change all fixtures. right now, all of our fixtures are polished brass. lovely. maybe i should move this to the top of the list!

5. miscellaneous. i'm going to build some shelves to put by the tub to give us some storage (we don't even have a linen closet). and of course, i'll need to do some decorating!

just wanted to give you an idea of what it looked like/ currently looks like.

here's what it looked like before we moved in:

and after we tore out the wallpaper and painted a light blue:
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my new look!

thanks to Mr. Wonderful (aka my hubby) for helping me design a new look! it sure pays to have him be a computer programmer. he even helped me design my logo.

hope you enjoy the new look! if you have any other suggestions, i would welcome them.
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window frame headboard.

here it is! after buying these old wooden panels at a garage sale for $2, i have made them into a headboard with a little paint and some picture hangers.

i roughed them up a bit first so the paint would stick better.

then came the paint. i chose an off-white that would pop out against the dark blue-green of our wall.

i put some simple picture hangers hangers on the back.

here's what the first one looks like.

the final(ish) result!

i say final(ish) because when i find the perfect fabric, i will place them inside the panes, so it's more of an upholstered feel. also, when they come down for the fabric, i will distress them a little bit.

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the weekend coming up.

so, this weekend is time for garage saling and e-saling! i've been on craigslist and have come across a couple doozys. i think they will look just perfect on our porch after a little love. but first, i need to buy them!

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everyone's doing it.

so i decided to join in. welcome to my brand new blog! you'll have to forgive me as i tweak this here and there. it's all new to me!

anyway, i thought i should share the meaning of why i decided to do this.

recently, i got into the refurbishing of things for as little money as i can get away with! i was inspired by other people's blogs and decided to start my own. look and see who's blogs i follow to get an idea of what helped bring on my creativity.

coming up soon. my first project. old window panes turned headboard. stay tuned.
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