Gallery Wall

I have always wanted to do a gallery wall in our home, and it took me awhile to decide what I wanted it to look like.  Also, it was hard to find just the right pieces to adorn the walls with.  So little by little, I started collecting pieces that I thought would represent our family well.   Here is the finished product!

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I think the reason I like gallery walls is because they can be so unique.  They don’t have to follow many rules!  Pieces can be different sizes, shapes, and textures.  Mix metals, wood, fabric!

Here are examples of different gallery walls that have been done by others:

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Hopefully these ideas gave you some inspiration for creating your own personalized gallery wall!

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Jewelry Storage Issue — SOLVED!!

Awhile back I wrote about how I was looking for new ways to store my jewelry. {Read that article here if you’d like a refresher}  Well, I finally found something that works for me!  It is a bit outside the box, and the pieces I used weren’t really supposed to be for jewelry, but, hey — live a little, right?!

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All the pieces I used I found at Kohls.  They were like 60% off, plus another 30% off, plus I had Kohls Cash.  So really, they were free.  (ok not really, but it did feel like it!)

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I loved this shelf for so many reasons, but mainly loved the lacy look of it.  It gave a little dimension and interest to the wall, and I loved that there were holes in it to poke all of my earrings through.

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I think this is supposed to be a hat hook & coat rack?!  That is the area of the store I found it in at least.  But I thought that hanging necklaces, bracelets, and watches from it would be fantastic!  Plus I loved the color and the vintage look of the metal.  Bonus was that even my rings fit over the prongs!  Win!

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So this was the wall I had open, and I think the pieces look super pretty up there!  It was lots of fun to add my jewelry to it as well!!

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I added a treasure box up on the shelf to hold all of the odds and ends that my jewelry box used to house.  Safety pins, extra earring backs, chain extenders, etc.

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I’m so happy to share this with you!  Blessings dear friends!

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DIY Lighting

Lighting has always been a pet-peeve of mine.  Probably because we have only 3 rooms in the house (school room, kitchen, dining room) that have ceiling lights and all the rest are lamps.  I feel like it is constantly dim here.  So I wanted to figure out a way to get lamps off the tables, and light towards the ceiling more.  I can’t say that I am in LOVE with how these turned out, but I like them a whole lot better than what was there previously.

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First, Hobby Lobby had these sphere, corded lamps for $35 (that is the sale price).  I decided to add a little shabby chic to them and weave lace through the rods, so the light could escape through the lace, and the lace could add some interest to the light.

I cut the lace into strips and hot glued them as I went.  I wanted a more “messy” look so they are not going to be perfect.  Here is how they turned out:

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They add some visual interest to the space, which is what I was going for.  Having them be “corded” is a bit tricky, because cord hiders are needed to cover up the wiring and the switches need to end up in a good location so it is easy to turn these light spheres on and off.  There really is no other choice in this house. These may move from my living room into my bedroom and replace the lamps on my end tables and illuminate the pallet wall.  {if you missed that post, click HERE} .  For now, I’m just going to enjoy them as is.

Be a light unto others!

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Family Scrabble Tiles

Since things are changing around in my family room with the addition of new furniture, I am finally decorating how I have always wanted it.  My thought?  Make it warm and cozy — and pretty!  One idea that had been floating around in my head for a while is doing a Scrabble Wall.

I want the family room to be just about that — FAMILY.  So it was either going to be a family tree on the wall, or family scrabble tiles.  I opted for the latter.

I printed out some graph paper, and started to plop our family names onto the grid. You can erase and redo until you come up with a configuration that you like.  It took me about 4 tries to come up with something I liked!

Once I knew the layout, I figured out how big I wanted the tiles to be.  You don’t want the wall over powered, but you don’t want them dinky either. Finding the right balance is key to this project.  Based on our wall, I decided on 5″ tiles.  So now it was time to put handy hubby to work 🙂

He cut out 30 tiles out of so oak boards he had laying around.

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Then I had to decide on coloring.  Since we were using oak, I really wanted to be able to see the wood grain come through, but stain the wood dark.  For this project, I used a dark walnut stain.

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Now, as a focal point, i decided to make our last name painted in my accent color, which is teal {if you haven’t figured out already, I LOVE LOVE teal and dark brown together}.  So I made 5 tiles teal and left the rest dark brown with stain.

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For the vinyl lettering, I looked long and hard to find a company that would do the lettering for a reasonable price.  I went with www.doityourselflettering.com – I actually emailed the owner explaining my project and gave him dimensions for the lettering and the font I liked.  Since my tiles were 5″, I didn’t want my lettering to be any more than 4″.  He gave me a great deal and they shipped fast.  The other reason I liked using this company, is that they guarantee the lettering.  If you mess up, they will replace it for you for free.

Take a look on how the lettering went on:

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The lettering went on like butter.  So smooth!  Thirty tiles later, they were ready to go on the wall!

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Here is the FINAL PRODUCT!!!

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This is on a focal wall in our family room.  We see it literally every time we sit on the couch.  And every time I look at it, I love it even more.  Seeing everyone’s names on the wall reminds me of just how blessed I am to have these sweet people as part of my family.

Is there a way you can remind yourself of all of your blessings daily?

Praise, God from whom all blessings flow, (James 1:17)
Praise Him all creatures here below; (Psalm 145:21)
Praise Him above, ye heav’nly host; (Rev 5:11-14)
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost (Matt 28:19)

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Bedroom Pallet Wall

I have waited for months before I was able to write this post.  I can finally say…

IT-IS-FINISHED!!!

The pallet wall in the master bedroom is complete and the room is virtually finished!  A few projects are still straggling about (paint the cedar chest and make bookshelves for the wall) but for the most part, the harder projects are done.

Here is how it all began — this was my inspiration wall:

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So to start, we sourced out pallet boards for wood.  I found a guy in town that has them already taken apart and sells them for a quarter a piece.  So for under $40, we got all we needed.  By finding this stash, it saved us a TON of time trying to cut apart pallets.  However the wood was wet, as it was stored outside in our Wisconsin winters.  So the process of drying them out began.

Once they were good and dry, we sanded the boards lightly.  Actually, my handy hubby sanded the boards.  When that sanding process was finished, we tested the stain that we had on hand on a few boards.  It was a great way to use up existing stain.  The colors we chose were Natural, Early American, Dark Oak, and Golden Pecan.

Since we had 4 stains, we divided the boards into fourths to be sure we ended up with a nice variation of color.  I do not recommend picking an even number of stains.  In hind-sight I wish we would have chosen 3 colors so the boards didn’t end up so linear on the wall.  But it still looks nice.

It was so beautiful to see the grain come through on these boards.  Read about that HERE in a past post.  I had such a preconceived notion that staining was hard and tiresome, but after this process, I am in love with staining!

The next step was to lay boards out to see how the coloring was going to look once it was on the wall.  We figured out measurements and started laying out the boards.

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The wall is ready to go up!  My husband got our bed out of the way, found the studs, and worked from top to bottom.  Our walls and ceiling were not perfectly straight, so it was very important to make sure that first row was level.

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(Even our tiny dancer needed to get in on helping Daddy!)

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And…….Drum Roll Please……..

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We love the finished product!  I feels warm and cozy, full of life and character!  I love the variation of colors and the way it just adds some depth to the bedroom!

Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below!  The good news is that we have a bunch of stained boards left that maybe, just maybe I can convince my hubby to do a small pallet wall in our downstairs bathroom?!

Go and be a blessing to someone today!!

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Finding Beauty Within

Our household has been all-a-flutter with activity recently.   We have a bunch of projects going right now that will all be turned into blog posts, but some projects are taking a bit longer than anticipated!

This week will bring changes to our Living Room.  New furniture arriving on Friday will add a different feel to the room, and some added comfort!  I am in the process of working on lighting, a gallery wall, and scrabble tiles for a different wall – all of which are taking more time than originally thought!  More on this will follow as progress is made!

In our bedroom, we have been planning a pallet wall for months!  I found a guy locally who dismantles pallets and sells the boards for $0.25/each.  So that saved us a ton of time!  However, the wood was really wet so we had to dry it out good before we could even think of staining it.  And since the WI weather doesn’t really get warm in March/April, there has been a big delay getting on with the project.  Finally, the boards are dry and ready to accept stain!

It was hard to figure out what color stains to go with.  I wanted to have a variation on the wall of colors, but still keep that rustic look.  In the end, I went with a natural, golden pecan, dark oak, and early american stain.  I think they will all compliment each other once on the wall.  Here was our wall inspiration photo:

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Once the wall is up in our room, I will post a picture of that.  But for now, you will have to hang in suspense!

Now that the boards are dry, I could go ahead with staining them.  Staining is not my thing….but for some reason, I just really enjoyed my time applying the stain (the sunshine sure helped!).  It really got me thinking about the beauty that was hidden in these old boards that will grace my walls very soon.  It was amazing to me how just a simple brushstroke could change the look of the boards drastically.

It was like a direct comparison to my time on this Earth, and how God has transformed my heart and my mind.  His goodness and grace is all around us.  Sometimes we let ourselves be “brushed” by His might; other times we turn it away and deny Him.  Those “brushstrokes” could be a friend’s word, invite, song, thought, prayer, nudging you to enter into a relationship with the Lord.  I know for me, God worked a long time to get into my heart.  I could always sense Him around me, but never did I truly understand His calling for me.  Until one Friday night in 2000 at a concert when I finally opened the door to my heart and let Him in.  It was like that unfinished wood that is now beautiful and free to show its “grain”.  It was my Maker’s brushstroke that set me free.

So yes, it is another project that is happening in my home.  But for me, staining those boards reminded me of how beautiful my Lord has made my life.  How blessed I am to know Him and be loved by Him.

Friends, keep on with those projects — and look for the beauty in each one!

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Unconditional Love

 

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My heart is very full dear friends.  Tonight, my little Maggie (age 5) climbed up on my lap, threw her arms around my neck and said in her soft sweet voice, “I am so so glad you are my mommy!”  I wish I had a magic wand to stop time.  To freeze moments like those so they can stay fresh in my memory.  I need to remember those sweet times because let’s face it — life is hard and cruel.  And we can so very easily get wrapped up in the hard and cruel of life.   But there is a side of life beyond that — a side that is full of joy, peace, hopefulness, and love.  

I truly believe that God gave me children to help me understand the concept of Unconditional Love.  Man, I would do anything for these kids of mine.  Really, I would.  Until my dying day I will love them with every part of my soul.  They are beautifully and wonderfully made.  Why is it so easy to think and know that about my kids, but sometimes, I can’t believe that same feeling exists between God and me.  It is so easy to cut ourselves down with the “Not Good Enough” thoughts.  You know the ones I mean — not patient enough, not skinny enough, not loving enough, not tolerant enough, not helpful enough, not thoughtful enough — I mean really, the list can go on and on.  And this list can wreck us.  

But God loves us ALL of the time.  Not just sometimes, or when He’s in a good mood.  Not just when He’s gotten enough sleep, or when all the bills are paid.  Not just when the weather is perfect and there is nothing on the “to do” list.  ALL THE TIME.  You see, He doesn’t put any parameters or conditions on His love.  He loves us through the good, bad and ugly — through the times we don’t feel very lovable.  

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Nothing.  Nadda.  Zippo.  Zilch.  Zero.  

Now that is peace I can rest in.  That is the kind of love that I want to have in my life.  And God, my heavenly Father is the one who can provide it — and DOES.  He loves all of us so very much, with that never-ending kind of love.  He loves us so much that he sent His child to die for US.  Just let that sink in.  I don’t know if I could survive giving one of my children up to be a sacrifice, especially if their life was going to pay the price for someone else’s sin.  That would be beyond difficult to do.  But God did it for YOU and for ME.  

So I pray for you all friends, that during Easter, you remember what this day of celebration is really about — God’s unfailing LOVE for you.  Ask Him into your heart.  Let Him take away all the garbage and damage and ugly — He will instead replace it with that peace, joy, hopefulness and love.  The feeling of Him coming into your heart will be like nothing you have ever experienced.  I promise.  Let Him lead you and love you — for who you are right now is good enough.  You are fearfully and wonderfully made by a Creator who loves you to the moon.  

 “And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge— that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”  Ephesians 3:17-19

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Necklace Storage Ideas

 

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Hey Everyone!!  Well, remodeling of our master bedroom is in full swing.  More on that as we make progress towards our goal.  But now that everything is a mess, I might as well come up with some good alternatives to jewelry storage.  My last post gave earring storage options (click here if you missed that one).  But this post will focus on NECKLACES!

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Now this type of necklace storage is very simple and usually easy to find.  This particular one is Bed, Bath, and Beyond, and runs about $20.  If you have dresser room, or shelving in your room, this could be a good option for you.  As for me, we got rid of all our dressers now, so there really is no surface to store this on.  So it won’t work for my necklaces, but it could work for yours!

 

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Now this piece I really like, because it almost looks like a work of art rather than jewelry storage!  It is from Pottery Barn and runs about $99.

 

 

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What a fun, rustic looking piece!  Screw together two old boards, weather and layer with paint (you choose the colors!).  Sand down and screw in as many hooks as you need.  Makes for a neat shelf too!  This one is easy to make and very affordable.   This particular idea is from Etsy and runs about $32.

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So why can’t a tie carousel work for necklaces, right?!   This one is from Amazon – you get two carousels for $6.99!!!  It would be a great way to tuck away your necklaces, yet keep them from knotting up on you.  Also, very easy to see what you have, and could be sorted by color.

 

 

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Isn’t this a neat way to display necklaces???  A piece of driftwood and a bunch of fun knobs could also do the trick!  What a neat way to bring in some color and diversity to the design in your room.  Knobs are a fun way of accessorizing any piece of wood.  What a stunning display this could make!

 

 

 

 

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All this idea needs is a towel bar and some metal shower hooks!  SIMPLE! Easy to get at your necklaces, and this could make a wonderful display for your jewelry!  Necklaces would not twist together and you could sort by color, metal, and lengths.  You could also do another bar above this one for bracelets.

 

 

 

 

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My hubby would love this one as he is a huge nature lover!  It brings the outdoors indoors!  Pick a few branches out of your yard, or from a wooded area, and mount them inside a wooden frame.  You can use the shoots off the branches to display your necklaces (or scarves, or bracelets).  This would be a neat display piece for any room that needs a little texture and nature incorporated into it!

 

 

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This looks like an amazing storage space, doesn’t it?!  Apparently this one is from IKEA (Alex Cabinet) but I heard that Michaels also carries something along this line.  This could be an option that could work, depending on how big the cabinet is and how much space you have to fill.

 

So do you have any favorites?  I think #2, 4, 5, and 6 are my top picks for right now.  I’m almost ready to make a decision for my own bedroom.  Tell me your favorites below in the comments section!! (And don’t forget to subscribe to my site to receive email notifications right to your inbox when new blog posts are put up!)

Praying for you, dear Organized Blessings friends!  May your days be filled with peace.  Remember to Choose LOVE!

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Practical Earring Storage

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{All of these BEAUTIFUL earrings can be purchased at SelaDesign on Etsy.com.  Prices range from $12 – $36.  Gorgeous pieces — trust me! And all profits go to a great cause!}

Earring Storage 

I have been struggling with jewelry storage for some time now.  I just have not found the right system to work for me yet!  {if you missed my post on that, click here to check it out!} Within the next month or so our bedroom is going to be overhauled as we are changing our bed and getting rid of dressers.  So my plan is to figure out this jewelry situation once and for all!  It’s not like I have a lot of jewelry, but what I do have definitely needs to be organized better!

So I’m starting with earrings.  There are a lot of different ways to organize earrings, plus you have to take into consideration how the earrings attach — leverback, hook, or post.  Here are a few possibilities that I will be considering.

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Bulletin Board with Ribbon & Tacks

This simple bulletin board would be an easy and cheap way to store earrings.  Hook earrings can go right over the ribbon.  Leverback earrings can attach around the ribbon.  Post earrings can go through the ribbon.  Simple!

 

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Cooling Rack

Now I would have never thought to use a cooling rack to store my earrings!  But I can see the genius in it!  I can see this one working really well for leverback earrings and for hook earrings, but post earrings could be an issue.  My solution would be to thread some thick ribbon through a few of the bottom rows in order to have something to poke the posts through.  That could work!

 

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Chain?!

Now this one could be really neat if you have some wall space for it.  A hook on either side of the chain, two different lengths of chain, and you have yourself a way to store those earrings!

 

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Ice Cube Trays

If you have an open drawer, a few ice cube trays could fit in nicely!  This could work for a cheap and easy solution to separating out earrings!  Who would have thought?!

 

 

 

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Old Frame and Chicken Wire

This is such a classy and elegant way to store your earrings!  The frame could be fancy or plain, depending on what you need to match your decor.  Frames are so easy to find at garage sales or thrift stores.  Throw some paint on it, or spray paint it and you could have a beautiful display for your earrings!

 

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Earring Caddy

There are so many shapes and sizes of these caddies.  Check them out on Amazon when you have time {click here for the link!} You could probably get a nice stand for under $20.  This particular one sells for about $15.

 

 

 

So lot of options to think through.  I will have to see what kind of wall space I end up with when the bedroom shifting is all done and then I can make my final decision and post it for you.

In the next few posts I will be working on Necklace and Bracelet storage!  Stay tuned!  If you want to be updated as soon as they are posted, just subscribe to this page in the link below!

Blessings to you all!

 

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**Spice Rack Update**

UPDATE!  SPICE RACK UPDATE!

I thought I would update the last post I did about my spice cabinet.  If you missed it, click here and you can refresh your memory about what my cabinet looked like before. Eek.

Well, I originally wanted all the jars to look the same and uniform, so I ran across this deal at Target for the clear jars — 5 jars for $3!!!  What a steal!  I bought some chalk labels at Walmart, and for around $20 put the finishing touches on the cabinet.

Handy Hubby did have to screw in the spice jar holders, as the sticky back did give away after about a week.  But a few screws later and everything has held beautifully.

So this was the before:

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The different sized jars drove me crazy.  I know — it’s minor — but it seriously drove me crazy every time I was in this cabinet.

Now that everything is similar and labeled, I think it looks so pretty and uniform!  I did have a helper putting on the labels, so I just have to get over the fact that they are not all straight, because having my daughter’s help was more important than straight labels 🙂

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Now I think I can leave this cabinet alone and move onto something else!  Hmm…….what’s next?!  You’ll have to wait and find out!

Praying for you all dear blog friends.  Praying that God is controlling your days.  Praying that He is the one who has your heart.  Praying that relationships are restored and forgiveness is happening.  Keep leaning on Him for strength, support, love and joy.

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