Friday, January 31, 2014

The Rise and Fall of the Ottoman Empire

OR How we changed out the legs on our ottoman

First things first - a shoot out to my favorite Ottoman Turk who will never see this anyway, Tolga! A solid dude about to become a solid doctor dude. Now that important matters are out of the way, let's talk about changing the legs on this here storage ottoman. Behold it in all of its glory! 

Sup, Cat?

Now this thing has served us well. It's been recovered about 18 times. And by "recovered" I mean Sarah has put new fabric over the old fabric 18 times. We really like its size and function. The covering gets updated with whatever our living room happens to look like at the time (which, married to an interior designer, changes just as often as you'd think). The legs have never really been our style, so we'd been wanting to change them out. Sarah found these on some website that shipped them to our local lumber store.

These are the supplies we used.  Total cost: $24.

You may notice there's not a lot of thread on the bolt sticking out of these new legs. That presented a bit of a problem since the existing legs were pretty deep and we had 18 layers of fabric to contend with. That's why we bought these little t-plates at our local, independently owned hardware store! (Always shop local - unless a big national chain is closer and is way cheaper. Really I don't care.) So once we stained these new legs and had a snow day some extra time, it was time to actually put them on.

Legs stained. Ready to put on the t-plate and screw them in.

We had to trim and pull back the existing fabric to get the t-plates as flush as possible.

One t-plate down.

One leg down.

That's pretty much it. It was a really easy. Take a look at the finished project.


Anyone want these old legs? Free to a good home.

So why did we decide to change these? When we originally started this blog, it was because we were putting an offer on a house and we wanted to blog about the renovations we had planned. Obviously that didn't happen. But guess what? It's happening now. And we've got a lot more potential to work with in this one because it's pretty much all original from 1962. Between actually doing the renovations and raising our baby, who knows how much we'll actually be able to document. Hopefully a decent bit. We've got a lot planned.

Here's a little drawing I did for Sarah. No, it's not in Southern California - but it looks like it could be!
Currently there's ivy growing all over that big brick chimney, which I conveniently left out of the drawing. You see, I want to tear it off as I think it'll look cleaner and more in keeping of the style of the era. Sarah wants to keep it to avoid that big brick mass. You help us decide - your vote counts!*
*it doesn't really count.

We've gotten some complaints recently...

There's been a lot of priss and not a lot of punk. You're right. And thanks for voicing your opinion to our staff. Without further ado...

The weekend after we close on the new house, I'll be heading out for a weekend with the band I play in, Gut Feeling. We are excited to being headed out with vegan straight edge pioneers Earth Crisis! Of the ten guys in the two bands, only our drummer Dan and I aren't vegan. This should lead to some interesting meals! As I told a friend of mine, if you would have told me 15 years ago that A) I'd still be playing hardcore music, B) Earth Crisis would still be playing, and C) your band would be doing a weekend tour with them, I wouldn't have believed you. But here we are, and I'm pretty excited about it. At the tender young age of 33, I'll be the second youngest guy on the tour. Come say hello if you're in any of the above cities!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Take two.

"Everybody deserves a second chance in this world. That's basically all I ask."
-Shannen Doherty
If there's one person I trust in this world, it's Brenda Walsh.  And even though I alluded to the fact that I was going to give it another go in my last post, B-Walsh's words of wisdom really sealed the deal for me.  
So I gots me another Fix.  And let me go ahead and was WAY better this time around.  I'd heard from a lot of ladies that the 2nd box is always better because you're able to give really detailed feedback.  When you "check out" online after you receive your box, there's an opportunity (whether you keep the item or not) to give detailed reviews of each piece and for the Fix overall. 

Me, being the wordy bird that I am, took full advantage and even sent a link to my last blog post.   When I got this box, the note from my stylist Hayley even mentioned that she'd checked out my Pinterest board and read my blog post.  
What can I say?  She gets me.

I could tell she really had done some amount of research on me because this box was SIGNIFICANTLY better than last time and very in line with what I'd requested.  I didn't end up keeping it all, but the potential was there.  So let's get down to brass tacks.  (P.S.  Is anyone else LURVING that brass is making a major comeback in interiors?)

It's cute, don't get me wrong.

I very much liked the idea of this bangle.  I mentioned that I'd like to have an accessory in this Fix and I got it.  I love the arrow pattern and I like the gold.  It wasn't too girly and really quite cute.  But I've got a couple issues with it.  One, the quality is a little iffy.  It seemed to be bent in a few places and knowing how un-graceful I am, I would probably jack this thing up good within a few wearings.  Second, the more I looked at it, the more it reminded me of a pipe clamp.  

Tres chic.

While I would normally get down with something offbeat like that, the third straw for me was the price.  At $28, I would have never picked that up in a store.  And generally, with stores like H&M, Francesca's and the like, I'm never dropping much more than $20 for costume jewelry.  So it gets sent back.  But I totally get why Hayley sent it to me and so she gets 10 cool points for it.


Yeeesh.  This one was the bust of the box.  Not good.  First of all, I do not understand this pattern.  As Nick put it, "It's like you're trying to be a Bama fan, but you're not going full Bama. Roll Tide."

For those unfamiliar with the reference, just bing Alabama Football houndstooth.  Or Bear Bryant.  Whichevs.

It also fit weird.  It kind of made me look like I had a third droopy breast hiding between my actual breasts.  And I may not know much about fashion, but I'm relatively certain that's not a hot look.

The one redeeming factor was the cost.  At $34, I would definitely have bought a cute wrap dress.  But this was not that dress.  And I had a come-to-Jesus moment as I tried to consider if I kept all 5 items, what I would do with this dress since I would have essentially gotten it for free (b/c you get a 25% discount off the entire order if you keep it all.)  Luckily, I chose not to keep the bangle either so it all worked out fine.  But I was pretty stressed out about how to regift this fug.  Crisis averted.


I love the style cards but those little strappy shoes show up way too often and I'm not headed to any junior proms anytime soon.

There are a number of descriptors I could throw around for this top but I'm going to go with, "fierce."  I made it pretty clear in my last post that I was a bit of a stripes hater so I was a little surprised to find this one in the box.  But the embellished shoulders and shoulder pads make me forget about the stripes and any reminder of the dreaded striped maternity wear.  And yes, you read that right...there are shoulder pads in this sucka.

I think it's clear: I don't play.

When I put it on for Nick I said "isn't it so edgy and bad ass?"  His reply was "I like it.  It looks really good.  It is in no way edgy or bad ass."

Agree to disagree, Husbo.  I guess I just thought the metallic accents made me feel like I could go into battle.  A fashion battle. 

Don't be fooled by the face, y'all.

Needless to say, this was a big ol' keep.


I'm not sure I can put into words just how much I love this sweater.  I'd been looking for an Aztec print to work into my wardrobe for a while and even though I never explicitly said so, I was hoping my stylist would read my mind.

Kudos, Hayley.  Well done.

Besides the fact that it's amazingly warm and cozy soft, I love the way it looks.  And I'm aware that this may not be everyone's cup of tea, but I don't drink tea unless it's sweet and from Bojangles so...I think you see what I mean.

To me, it's the perfect blend of Hollywood chic meets Dumb & Dumber.

This plus...

...this equals...
Lloyd Couture.

Nick didn't understand the math and couldn't see how it was a good thing.  I tried to explain that it's the perfect balance I try to hit with all my outfits. 

For real though, I've gotten a lot of compliments on it already (I wore it the next day to work) and I'm pretty sure they weren't blowing smoke up my bum.  So big thumbs up here.  Keeper!

Taking photos is so awkward.


Alright, here's where the interactive portion of the blog comes in to play.  I'm torn on this guy. 

A fun game to play is to guess what noise I'm making with this face.

The fit, shape and quality of this shirt are great.  The price is even better.  And I like plaid.  My husband likes plaid.  (Which is an understatement as he give Al Borland a run for his money when it comes to flannels and the like.)  But this plaid?  I dunno you guys.  It's got such an autumnal feel and I'm much more of a winter.  (Don't worry, I'm judging myself for using that type of terminology.)  So I'm on the fence here.  I've got two clear winners in the box...but do I keep the third?  Let me know what you think.  I'm interested.

Does my adorable baby sway your decision?

So that's it.  In short, this box was substantially better than the last, I made a new BFF with my stylist, and I've got a rockin' new sweater to wear to the Dumb & Dumber 2 Premiere.  That's success if I've ever heard it.

Try it for yourself!  And use this link so I can keep up this horrible habit.  Really, won't you sleep better at night knowing you're helping the world bring back shoulder pads, one gal at a time?