Number Plates

Other ideas for titles of this post:

1.  My obsession with salad/bread/dessert plates continues 2.  Why I stay out of stores If you don’t go to the store, you never see what’s there.  If you never see what’s there, you don’t know what you’re missing.  If you don’t know what you’re missing, you’ll never know you wanted it.  Generally I do a pretty good job of this.

If you go to the store, you might see it, and really really like it.  And buy it.

The only thing that could make these plates better would be to have the numbers go higher than four.  I’d like them to ten.

It was that hunt for one last back to school item that sent me into Target.  Now that it’s taken care of, I’m done shopping for a long, long time.  This time of year always makes me sick of spending money.

Does it help that I had a gift card in my wallet?

Hopeful Homemaker P.S.  In my local store they were sold individually, but they also sell them online in a set .

Garage Sale Finds

Hitting some garage sales with my Dad is one of my favorite things to do when we’re in Colorado.  Last weekend was no exception.  This time it was doubly fun because my brother and sister and their spouses were also there, and they feel the same way.  We went as a group.  I picked up some great things and spent only $9 total.

I scored this awesome mirror for $5.00.  I plan to paint it.  I bought another oval mirror recently and think I may use them together.  We’ll see.

gold oval mirror

This wood cutout was only $1.00, and I think it will look really neat with a coat of paint, and perhaps a mirror behind it.  And yes, I really like mirrors.  We have many of them in our home, and I love them.  I love the way they reflect light around the room.

I picked up a couple of old hardback books for $1 each.  One is a collection of  Edgar Allen Poe’s short stories, and one is a copy of Tales from Shakespeare by Mary and Charles Lamb.  The Tales from Shakespeare is over 100 years old.   Not bad for a dollar!  I love that the cover says it’s “profusely illustrated.”

Lastly, I also picked up a really cute pair of leather boots for $1.00 which pleased my five year old.  She’s already worn them.

In all, it was a lot of fun.  The garage sales in Colorado are amazing.  My parents and sister have decorated their homes with beautiful pieces of furniture they’ve found for very little money.   I was half hoping to find an incredible piece while I was there, but was also relieved when I didn’t.  What I picked up was all we had room for in the car.  Anything bigger would be an adventure to haul home.  I took my parents to an upscale home decor store when they were in Utah a month or two ago, and after walking them around the entire shop I took them to the last corner and showed them my favorite piece, a huge wreath made with antlers.  It was painted a flat white, and I’m smitten with it.  I don’t even think it’s for sale.  They had it custom made.  I showed it to my Dad and he said, “Oh, we bought one like that at a garage sale the other day, but there are more antlers and they’re smaller.  The circle is a little smaller too.   Maybe I should paint it white.”  Man!  I wish I’d been with them that day!  I’m pretty sure my Dad can find anything at a garage sale.  In fact, the car my husband and I drove when we were first married was a $100 garage sale purchase.  We drove it for 4 years.

Too bad we can’t just spend all of our Friday and Saturday mornings in Denver.  It would be a lot of fun.  And thanks, Dad, for the memory.


Bird Nest Place Card Holder DIY (like Pottery Barn’s)

A month or two ago I spied these cuties in the Pottery Barn catalog:

I really liked them, but at $24 (plus shipping) for a set of 4, that was awfully steep.

Then I spotted some little 4 inch birds nests at a craft store for 99 cents each, and decided to make my own.
Here’s what you need:  nest, wire, wire cutters, pliers, spool or dowel about 1 inch in diameter.

I began by making 4 loops in my wire, each about 4 inches long.

I then pinched the other ends of the loops and wrapped the wire tightly around them.

Next I measured about 20 inches from where I’d just wrapped and cut my wire.  This left me a nice long piece to work with in securing the nest to the base and for making the paper holder.

Now push the end of the wire up through the bottom of the nest.

Push the nest down to where the loops are, and then decide how far above the bottom of the nest you want your loops for securing a place card to sit.  Then, using your spool or dowel, wrap the wire tightly around the dowel to form a good circle.  I wrapped mine 3 times.

Remove the dowel and twist the wire at the base of the loops to secure them together.

Now push the end of the wire back down through the bottom of the nest (in a different spot for better stability) toward the loops.  If the nest seems a bit floppy when you hold it upright, then loop the wire back up through the bottom of the nest and down again to secure it.  Then tightly wrap the end of your wire around the base near where you wrapped previously.  Use your pliers to tuck the ends of the wire in.

Now decide on the height of your place card holder and carefully bend the ends of your loops to form the base.

My nest had some long pieces sticking out in random places.  I chose to clip them so I could have a more compact piece that won’t catch on things when I use them.

Fiddle with the base until your nest stands without tipping.

Now squeeze your loops on top together and make sure they will hold a piece of paper.

I like it!  Each of these holders took me 5-7 minutes to make, and because I had the black wire on hand, the entire project cost me $4.00.  SO much better than $24 plus shipping.  I have a feeling I’ll enjoy them even more because I made them.

bird nest place card holders

Now to use them!  These would be fun at an Easter dinner, but you could also use them to hold little trinkets.

Hope you’ll try it!

Posted at DIY Day , Transformation Thursday and Blue Cricket Design .

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