What a difference 11 years make!

MAGAZINE PURGING!

I am been systematically going through supplies and am determined to set up the studio of my dreams (within my budget anyway).   This weekend I went through the collections to magazines.  I had these organized in magazine holders which I moved around my scrapbooking space several times.  I have not looked at these since I got them and realized how dumb it was to keep moving and storing them.  I thought I would share my results with you.  I have a really fun time doing this and going down "memory lane".  Wow have our methods, supplies and techniques changed over the years.  I have been scrapbooking since 1995 and never realized how much things have changed.  I had Memory Makers and Creating Keepsakes magazines saved since 1999.  I do remember I stopped getting the CK mags, since I almost exclusively used Creative Memories back then and CK was not my style.  Their pages tended to be very busy with lots of patterned paper and they really specialized in fancy lettering:



Making Memories had cleaner pages and were more my style:

All of the early magazine had many article about the safety of the supplies used:
ACID FREE being a big buzz word at the time.

After going through stacks and stacks of magazines, I have managed to save almost 10 feet of space.  Look at the stack of magazines in the photo and then compare how much I thought I would actually refer to.  Multiply that by years of magazines and imagine the space they were wasting.  I tore out pages that I thought I might copy the idea, use the title or layouts or just like the general look of the page and would use as inspiration.

I ran across this article in one of the old magazines.  The Zyron was my first big ticket purchase and I still have my original machine.  I can not believe the cost of this, almost as much as a Cricut machine!!!  WOW!!!

I really recommend doing this organization project yourself.  It was fun to look at old ideas and see how much we have changed and also get some fresh ideas that we will still use today.  The space I saved was huge and well worth the time I took to do this.  I plan to file the articles and pages I saved so I can find them again, and maybe hang a few for inspiration every month in my studio.  My plan going forward is to do this once a year or so from now on.  I don't buy as many magazines as I used to now, so I think that will work out well for me.

Master Bedroom - Clothes, Purses, Shoes, Oh My!!!

 I am very lucky to have two large closets all to myself.  However, I have been neglecting them for over a year and they have become crammed full of clothes, purses and shoes.  So much so that I wear the same outfits over and over again because I can't stand to open my closets and deal with the mess.  I forgot to take real before photos so you will have to use your imagination . . . but trust me, it was so bad I couldn't even put another hanger on the rod.

Here is the first photo I remembered to take.  One closet completely empty and 25 year old carpeting removed from the floor.  I removed the shelves and patched all the holes from the various closet remodels I have done over the years.  I gave it three coats of fresh glossy white paint.  I feel better already.
The next step was dealing with the hardwood floor.  I thought about stripping and sanding, but decided that fresh glossy white paint made me happy on the walls, so why not?
BEFORE

AFTER
I hung a pair of pants on the road to make sure my pants would have enough room to clear the floor.  I installed 3 new 16" wide laminate shelves.  Now the hard part, sorting, trying on, donating and trashing the contents.  This took me several days to do while the paint dried in the closet.  I am very happy with the results, although I honestly think more weeding out of clothing is necessary for the near future.



Upper Half of the Closet

Lower Half of the Closet

I am Happy, Happy, Happy!!!  I can see everything and appreciate what I have.  I have been wearing more of my clothing now in the weeks since I finished this closet and realize I have absolutely no reason to shop for any more clothes for some time to come.  I have a whole closet to shop from now!!!

The only thing I love more than new clothes are new shoes!!!  I want to share my new system for storing and keeping track of my many pairs of shoes.  I did give away many pairs that I was no longer wearing or no longer have the outfit I bought the shoes to go with.  I kept the ones I love and needed a way to remember my shoes and therefore, get more use and wear out of them.  Here is what I came up with and so far, it is working very well for me.  The initial investment in the clear shoe boxes and the time it took to organized them will pay off in the future.  I can now decide what shoes I would like to wear and find them easily and REMEMBER that I have them and not buy duplicate styles and colors.

I keep my everyday casual and "go to" shoes on this revolving shoe rack I bought many years ago from QVC.  It has served me well for a long time and I will continue to use this method.  The rack sits in a corner next to my armoire, so is not too much of an eyesore and it really is easy peasy to choose a pair and, more importantly, put them back instead of leaving them all over the house or in the middle of the bedroom floor.


All of my beaded, sequined, evening, glamour shoes are kept on the very upper shelf.  I need a step stool to reach them, but since we aren't going out dancing or to a wedding or fancy party every night, that is just fine with me.  The problem was remembering what was up there and when it was time to plan an outfit to go to a special affair, I would take down all the boxes and create a big mess to clean up.  Many years ago, I used to always take a photo of my shoes and tape it to the outside of the shoe box.  This worked pretty well, but the different size and colors of shoe boxes wasn't very visually neat looking and I would have to take a photo, get it printed and then tape it to the box.  I still had to climb up and look at the photos to see what I had.    Here is a photo of the "old" method.  I did keep these boxes with the photo on them and simply numbered them as they are my wedding and honeymoon shoes and I have a bit of a sentimental attachment to them.


Here is my new method.  I purchased these clear stackable shoe boxes:

 I still take the photo, but I don't print it out nor do I tape it to the box.  I only put a number on the box now and that number corresponds to the digital photo of the actual shoes.  I numbered the upper shelf starting with 200 and the lower shelf with 100.  I can now flip through the photos on my i-pad, decided which shoes I want to wear, and immediately pull out that pair of shoes.  I know, seems like a lot of trouble doesn't it?  However, I really wanted to start wearing all of the fabulous shoes I have purchased instead of just "collecting" shoes and wearing the same half dozen pair over and over again.  I hope those of you with similar shoe collecting issues will give this a try.  




I made the label, stuck it temporarily to the shoe and took a digital photo.  I then put the shoes in the clear box and put the label on the box and up on the shelf they went.  I can now just scroll through the photos on my I-Pad or computer and remember what I have.  It will be just like shopping online only it won't cost me a thing!!!  The hubster will be happy about that.

When I decide to donate or trash a pair of shoes, I can then just reuse the number, take another photo reusing that number for a new pair and delete the photo of the pair I got rid of.
I hope this will help motivate you to organize and clean out your closet.  Leave me a comment below if you have any questions.

Sealing the Bathroom Grout

Today I sealed the tile and grout in the bathroom.  After the successful cleaning yesterday, I wanted to get this done before any dirt started knocking at the door again.  You can read about how I got the grout sparkling again in my previous post HERE.

I used this product following the directions on the bottle.  It was recommended to me by the kitchen tile installer as the best on the market.  It was a bit pricier than others, but he said it was worth it.
It was surprisingly easy to do.  I used a sponge paint brush and painted it on the grout.  I did two coats on everything and it is really amazing.  Although my tile is only a year old, the difference is remarkable.  The hubby even noticed and said it looked brand new again.
All white & shiny again!
You can really see the shine after using the sealer.



SPRING CLEANING THE BATHROOM TILE or Why I don't wear glasses in the shower . . .

It has been about a year since my bathroom remodel was finished and as part of my spring cleaning this year, I wanted to give the new tile a good scrub and seal all the grout.  I gathered my supplies and off I went wearing my reading glasses.













Well, the good thing about getting older and needing glasses is that when I don't wear them, I can't see all the secret dirt that hides in corners and lurks in nooks and crannies.  So, I had a choice to make, take the glasses off and do a fair job of scrubbing the tile . . . or, leave them on and really get this shower clean.  I choose the latter and am very pleased with the results.
I mixed a paste of baking soda and peroxide to use on the corner shelves that got quite yucky from the shampoo and shower gel bottles.



BEFORE:


This was the only spot that was really bad, so I took a photo to see how clean I could get it.










AFTER:

It really only took a few minutes of leaving the solution on and giving it a light scrub with a toothbrush.  I then sprayed the rest of the walls with my favorite homemade bathtub cleaner recipe I found HERE on Pinterest and gave it a good cleaning with a scrub brush.





I bought a spray bottle of peroxide at the dollar store and squirted it on any of the grout lines that seemed not as white as a year ago.  Again, this worked very quickly and the grout is really white now and ready for the sealer.


I recorded the journey here about the bathroom reno we did last year and was very happy with the white tile choice.  However, with my glasses on and looking very closely at it, I see that the installer didn't get all the grout off of the tile in certain areas and it stuck in the little crannies.  It would be so noticeable, except  I can see that the grout is attracting soap scum and getting discolored; especially around the faucets and in the corners.

It didn't scrub off easily using the baking soda paste.    I then tried the Dawn/vinegar bathtub cleaner.  It came off somewhat, but not perfect.  I didn't want to scratch the tile, so I thought about my plastic scraper from Pampered Chef.  Worked like a charm.
It did take some time, but I was able to chip away and clear out most of the stray grout.  I dipped the corner of the scraper in the peroxide/baking soda paste and cleared out each little nook.  I now know what it must feel like to be a Dental Hygienist and scrap away at the tartar on teeth. I have a greater respect and admiration for my hygienist now!


 Look at the difference about an hour of my time and some elbow grease made.  The entire shower area looks like new and I will tackle the grout sealer next.












DISCLAIMER:  I make no guarantees or warranties on how this will work on your shower.  Everyone has different materials and you should test any homemade cleaners in an inconspicuous spot before using.

My Craft Channel


I have been a fan of My Craft Channel since it started some time ago and have purchased several of their "Buy of the Day" specials.  They have super videos to demonstrate and sell the product.  I always wish I would have saved the videos for later reference and I can never find them again once the product or kit has sold out.  Soooo, I have created a page on my blog to house those videos for later reference.  Hope you will find these helpful to you as well.  Click on page tab at the top or here.

Here is a link if you are not familiar with this website:  My Craft Channel


Close To My Heart - Spanning the Space features tips and tricks for stamping across multiple surfaces

Tomorrow is the last day to order for me to get credit. Also, the best deal on the stamp sets and also the new Cricut cartridge is now. Scroll down to see that post.

CTMH Swipe Hype stamping techniqie

If you don't already have a CTMH consultant, I would love you to place your order for my gathering. My niece is trying to get her business going and she is really doing great so far. My gathering ends on Thursday, September 27th, so please check it out before that date.

Click HERE to browse the catalog and place your order online. It will be shipped directly to you. Just be sure that it says my name as the gathering when you are ready to check out. Of course, you can order anything you would like, but check out this cool new stamping technique video.

Easy Altered Scrap 'n Easel vs. the Easel-Ette

I really wanted the relatively new smaller Scrap 'n Easel-ette and have been looking on eBay for several months hoping for a good deal but they were always $40.  I just received an email this week from Contain ya Crafts, the manufacturer, that they were having an anniversary sale.  I almost brought one until I had a better idea (for my purposes anyway).  Here is a video I filmed in real time showing how I altered my old Scrap 'n Easel and made myself an easel-ette!



Here is Part 2, with a few more notes about this process. 

Please leave me comments, on here and/or on YouTube and let me know what you think or if you have any questions.

New Layout - CTMH "It's Your Day" stamp set

Wanted to share a Close to my Heart layout I just finished using the new It's Your Day stamp special for this month and the new instruction book MAKE IT FROM YOUR HEART.  





I really think this is a very versatile stamp that I will get a lot of use out of.  I've decided to have an online gathering (commonly known as a "Catalog Party").  If you don't already have a CTMH consultant, I would love you to place your order for my gathering.  My niece is trying to get her business going and she is really doing great so far.  My gathering ends on Thursday, September 27th, so please check it out before that date.

Click HERE to browse the catalog and place your order online.  It will be shipped directly to you.  Just be sure that it says my name as the gathering when you are ready to check out.  Of course, you can order anything you would like, but here is the fabulous deal I am ordering:


September Specials

Between September 1st-30th, get your Cricut Artiste cartridge for $99.00. The Cricut Artiste bundle includes:  

Cricut Artiste (suggested retail price of $ 59.99), Three Stamp Sets (retail value of $17.95 each), & Three Dimensional Element chipboard sets (retail value of $4.95 each). That is a total recommended retail price of $128.69 for the much lower price of $99!
 


If you need help or have any questions on your order email me and I'll help you.  Happy scrappin' and stampin'!

BATHROOM RENO - THE BIG REVEAL

THE BIG REVEAL - Come on in!

I have finally put all the finishing touches on the bathroom and am so excited to share it all with you.  Please take a moment to leave me a comment and let me know what you think or if you have any questions.  I would be happy to help out by answering any questions you might have.


Don't dream your LIFE, LIVE your dreams

I found this candle at Joann's.  The colors match and the saying for this bathroom is right on the money.  I placed this one and another matching one on the window sill to fill the space and add some color.




Here is the glass tile in all it's glory.  I'm thinking I might like this in my kitchen next!

I decided on cut crystal accents for some sparkle.



The walls are all painted a bright semi-gloss white.  The lighting in here made it really hard to photograph.


I used aqua as an accent color.  I purchased two shower curtains that were a double layer of aqua and brown and I made a window curtain from one of them.  I used a bracelet I purchased at Michael's as a tie back to cover the twist tie I used as a way to gather the top layer.
I found this set of three pictures at Joann's.  They are the perfect color and have a mirrored background.

So, I placed some small round mirrors to "mirror" the effect of the artwork and bring some sparkle to the window wall which you see as soon as you walk in the door.

The shower curtain closed.  I need to replace the matching hooks I bought, they keep falling off.

Shower curtain opened to show tub and shower.


This brings us around to the last wall.  I like to keep my robe on a hanger instead of just on a hook, I think it looks so much more inviting.
We replaced this door entirely, which lead me to want to replace all the doors in the house.  
Stay tuned for that one!

Here are some BEFORE photos.  Whaddya think?  Please leave click on comment and let me know.




Now on to organizing the inside of the cabinets, drawers and closets.

Click here to follow the entire bathroom renovation experience:  The Whole Story

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All content, including designs, concepts, text and photographs are COPYRIGHT ©2011 Karen Prusiewicz. Original artworks are shared for your personal inspiration & enjoyment only and may not be used for profit, publication or design contest.
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