Room updates with Lulu and Georgia

Thank you everyone for your kind comments about our lovely new bedroom makeover. We are loving the new room although pretty much anything would have been an upgrade compared to what it looked like previously.  One of the reasons it takes me SO LONG to pull a room together is I don’t have an unlimited budget.  I guess could be tempted to spend my boys college fund but then I remember I’m a grown up and have to be responsible.
The reality is I have to collect and DIY things over time.  One of the things I’ve missed having is a bench at the foot of the bed.
The fab online store Lulu and Georgia sent their Lovisa Bench to incorporate in to our home.
They have also been so gracious to extend a 20% discount to my loyal readers (use code 4MEN1LADY20).


I also got their Acrylic Sheepskin to add some softness.


I have always admired and wanted this classic bench.


It’s been 95% perfect…the other 5% is my own fault.
Got up in the middle of the night and walked right in to the thing, except if felt more like I was doing wind sprints and ran in to the thing.
My shin was crying.
Then the next night, same stinkin’ thing!  I’m usually not that slow at learning lessons, except if it’s at 2:36am.
First thing the next morning it got moved.
Now it’s here:


…and I love it even more.



While I was photographing, this little man comes through, clueless that I’m taking pictures, totally in his own world with his Kendama.  (I didn’t stop him).  Have your kids gotten in to this latest craze? He’s Kendama-ing first thing out of bed and last thing before bed.


I could fill every corner of my house with Lulu and Georgia goods.
Don’t forget to use code 4MEN1LADY20 when you click over to Lulu and Georgia for your 20% discount.

*I received the Lulu and Georgia bench and throw to review.  All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.*

Etched plates.

I’ve been having myself an etching party around here.  I’ve admitted this before…I tend to collect (hoard) things when I find something I like.  Well, I had so much fun doing  my etched plate project yesterday, why not etch everything in my house today?


I love giving gifts (getting gifts ain’t too shabby either).  Who would balk at getting a dozen cookies on a paper plate? No one.  But talk about stepping up your  cookie game when you give a treat on a personalized plate where both the cookies and the plate are the gift.
Huh! Huh!
(I’m fearing this is starting to sound corny because it’s late and I’m deliriously tired and I’m trying to submit this before midnight to the Cricut Design Star Challenge).
Go team 7!

I picked up this clear glass plates and the thrift store for $1.00 each.  Then I decided to deck them out with a holiday motif using my Cricut Explore.


Check out full tutorial on my last post.


Photographing a clear, etched plate is really tricky.  I tried about 10 different ways to photograph them but I just couldn’t get the design to show up.  I finally figured that just holding them up outside in full light against a contrasting background worked best.  Where’s a hand model when you need one?


My little squirrel friend looked like he went through war to get this acorn.  Here’s what not to do: Don’t stick the vinyl decal on your surface then peel if off to readjust and then reapply.   As you can see it doesn’t adhere to the surface very well the second time around.  I also used a sub-par etching paste that was old and dry.  Cutting corners doesn’t pay.  Sorry little guy.

Check out the Cricut Explore.  It rocks.  You can etch lots of cool stuff.
Ok, off to bed. Peace out.

P.S. I made it to the Cricut Design Star finals! Please oh please with a cherry on top would you mind clicking over here and voting for my Etched Plate project!?

Thanks a million!

DIY personalized etched glass

Every year I tell myself I’m going to have my Christmas shopping at least 3 weeks prior to the holiday but it never happens.  Retailers already have their holiday decor out which is a tad early in my opinion but a good reminder for me to get a jump start on thinking about gifting.

I found this LARGE serving platter at Target for $6.99 this week and I came up with an idea…what if I etched a personalized monogram on it for some friends who recently got married and give it to them for Christmas?
Heck, at $6.99 I could personalize a whole stack of them and give them out to all my friends and in-law’s.
You can’t really tell from the picture but this platter is large!


The first thing I did was create a few designs in PicMonkey (which is my go-to photo editing and graphic design program because it’s super user friendly).

PicMonkey Collage

Then I uploaded one of my designs in to Cricut’s Design Space.  I’ve raved about my Cricut cutting machine before which it the next best thing since chocolate.  A bold statement, I know, but the Cricut Explore is just that good. (Check out some of my other projects I made with my Cricut here).

I could have actually just used and combined one of their thousands of images and fonts in their design program which I often do but the Cricut is just that cool that you can go either route, yours or theirs.

 Next, I loaded up some clear vinyl (you can use any color) and cut out my design.


(On a side note: You can do this without a Cricut Explore machine by just cutting out whatever design you want by hand but it will take forever and won’t be as precise. Plus the Cricut Explore is so versatile where you can not print from your own printer then cut.  Also, the Cricut will cut paper, some leather, vinyl, iron-on vinyl, it’s amazing).

Whatever you decide to etch it is important to make sure the surface is really clean.  The price sticker was right where I wanted to etch and it left its sticky goo.


I used a magic eraser to remove every last bit of goo and ensure it was squeaky clean.

Next, I used transfer tape to transfer my vinyl image to the bottom of the plate.


Tip: Because I would be etching the bottom of the plate it was important that I flipped the image backwards so that it would read correctly when I turned the plate over.

Once you adhere the image with transfer tape use something like a credit card, squeegee scraper, Pampered Chef scraper (ahem) to squeeze all the air bubbles out from under your project.


Once my vinyl was on I removed the transfer tape and then the negative space vinyl (all the area around the lettering) which is where I wanted my etching cream work.


Suggested set time is 1-5 minutes (I let mine sit for 2 1/2 minutes).  You can see after just that short of time it works fast!

I bought this etching cream but ended using the left over from a different brand I had.  The reviews I read favor the Armour brand a little better..



After my plate was etched I then removed the rest of the vinyl that protected the areas from not being etched.


I then glued a candle stick holder I picked up at Savers and made it raised serving platter. (Tutorial on making pedestal plates here).


One down, several more to go.  Can’t beat a personalized gift like that for under $10.00!

To find out more about the Cricut Explore check them out here.

See other projects I’ve made with the Cricut Explore:

indexCookie favors.

IMG_3439Personalized canvas library bag.