Outdoor Furniture Refresh!

If you know me, you know one of my love languages is throw pillows (also Twizzlers, in case you want to send me a gift 😉). Even as a young person, I have loved changing up my decor. I would re-arrange my room, re-organize my drawers, change up my posters -not you Ben Affleck from Armageddon. You’re not going anywhere. Wasn’t I cool? Yeesh.

Anyway, knowing me also means you know I really enjoy a good deal, and pillows cost about $25 a piece.  Ouch.

In the last two weeks, I have re-covered, as in used my sewing machine to re-cover,  5 outdoor pillows and 6 throw pillows. I have re bobbin-ed the bobbin thingy at least three times, re-threaded the needle many, many times (there are 5 steps. Do not forget a step. The whole thing will go funky and you will cry) and even changed my thread color completely more than once. I have gained lots of confidence with my sewing abilities and although I still have a very elementary understanding, and obvious lack of terminology, I love how I have been able to change the look of pretty much all my throw pillows and outdoor furniture for about $45. That includes ticking, and printed duck. If you know about fabric at all, those are two types that are never, or rarely on sale and are about 9.99 per yard.

Here’s the sewing machine I use. It’s a Singer Simple *, and as the name suggests, it actually is pretty simple, and intuitive to use. It is a pretty popular model as well, as I have found many you tube videos and blog posts out there about maintenance etc. So the information is available, should you need it.

When we bought this outdoor furniture it came with a good amount of pillows, which I liked, but they were….ugly. They just were. Anyway, obviously I got over it since I am just now recovering them.

Here’s the “before”:

sofa before


Also, I have had to flip over all the cushions since the frickin’ frackin’ squirrels pulled holes in them for their dadgum nests.

To recover the couch cushion, I got an indoor/outdoor tablecloth from Hobby Lobby for $15, with a 40% off coupon. It is a bright, light navy. It’s comfy enough to sit on, but durable enough to be on the porch.

To cover the couch cushion, which is one large cushion, I stretched the tablecloth over the cushion and then “gift-wrap” style folded the corners in.

close up wrap

 

I used safety pins to attach it to the corners, as well as at the back to prevent it slipping. I didn’t feel like sewing it was necessary, but you do you. Overachiever. 😏

I bought a yard of a blue ikat printed duck, and a half a yard of the yellow striped duck. That was exactly enough to cover two 18 x 18 inch pillows (in ikat) and one rectangular pillow.

done

The lemon pillow was from last year, at Target. If I were buying an outdoor pillow this year, it would be this precious bicycle pillow. But, I’m all about using what you have, and I still love this lemon pillow and I think it looks just right.

If we share the same taste, and you’re looking for outdoor pillows and/or cushions, Target really has so many cute ones. Lots of yellows and blues, florals AND they are 25% off this week.

Shopping there is what motivated me to finally re-cover my cushions. That, and the great weather we were having.

As always, I love all the questions and comments, so keep them coming! I have a post coming up Friday, so come back then to check it out!

 

Thank you for reading! XO, Steph

 

*Were you to purchase the sewing machine using my provided link to Amazon, I would receive a portion of your sale. This is at no extra cost to you.

How-To Make a Quick, Easy, Springy Lemon Tree!

Happy Monday! It is gloomy, wet and dreary here at our sweet, yellow house this morning.
But no worries, because I’m cleaning, crock pot cooking, laundering, and blogging. So it’s shaping up to be a productive day, filled with the oh-so-gratifying to-do list checking.
I did an easy and super fun project Friday while the kids were at school and I have been looking forward to sharing it! It cost me less than $10 and took me about 15 minutes. Like, maybe 15 minutes. That only adds to my love for it, because it’s just so pretty, and springy…and yellow. I give you….the Lemon Tree-piary.

I’m calling it a Tree-piary because it’s really a hybrid between a topiary tree, and a tree tree. I also just think it’s fun to smoosh words together. I do this often in my “speaking life” and continue to be amused by it. I can laugh at my own jokes, I have no problem with that. 😂

Here’s my inspiration, from Instagram:
If you’re on Instagram, Erin shares lots of beautiful photos of her amazing home and her amazing style. She also has a blog: http://www.cottonstem.com/blog/
Also, Alicia, @vintageporch. She also shares lots of inspirational photos of all her vintage treasures, and has impeccable taste.
She also has a blog: http://www.myvintageporch.com/
Blog goals, people. I dream big.
Also, this:
In my mind, that awesome lemon tree, and the topiary tree had a beautiful baby, and here is her “birth” story:
That pot was on promotion for 60% off at Michael’s. Total: $2.39. I used coupons for the lemon stem, and the bag of small lemons. They are regularly priced at $7. I actually didn’t end up using those mini lemons for this gig, but bought them just in case I needed some filler. Nothing worse than being mid-inspirational project and not having something you need.

That being said, here’s your complete list of materials:

  • pot of your choice
  • lemon stem, I got mine from Michael’s
  • moss
  • jute
  • floral foam, or styrofoam
  • sturdy paper strips, or bendable cardboard
  • scissors
  • hot glue gun
I already had roll of  jute, and some floral foam but if you don’t have these things,  they can be found at most craft stores and  on Amazon. They aren’t very expensive, and can be used in other projects. (Let me give a little PSA about the floral foam: it’s obnoxious. It leaves little foamy pieces everywhere that are difficult to wipe up.  And somehow, as an extra irritating charascteristic, it feels simultaneously gritty and slimy. Touching it gives me the willies. blech. 😝)I cut the foam to fit into my pot. I centered the stem into the foam, and then very tightly wrapped the jute around the stem.

I used some recycled newspaper ads to make a prop inside my pot. This way, I use less of my moss to fill in the top.

I filled in the pot with the moss. A little bit goes a long way. The moss was also something I already had, from previous projects. It can also be found at a craft store. They usually sell it in bags.

Next, I used my hot glue gun to secure the lemons to each other, and ensure that topiary look.

I just love how it turned out and wish I had made two! I tried it out all over the house: my sofa table, my mantel, next to my sink:
I had fun moving it around, and loved the way it looked everywhere I put it. But, since my mantel is where I mostly struggle to “get settled”, that’s where it ended up.
What do y’all think? I would love to know what y’all think! Let me know if you make your own Lemon Tree-piary, and send me a picture! Get it ready this week, in time for your Easter tablescape!
This Easter tablescape created by Carolynn. Didn’t she do a good job?! She also had an idea for the mini lemons, and begged me not to return them. More on that another day.
Thank you so much for reading! I love your comments, questions and shares, so bring ’em on. Have a great week!
XO, Steph
(Originally Published April 10, 2017)