Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Ten sheets to the wind!

That's right...Welcome Sunshine Home is ten sheets to the wind!  This is a quick and easy (no sew) project and I'll show you how to do it!  Here's a peek at the project in progress...
I don't know about your neighborhood but this isn't something you see every day in Maine.  Why did we go for it?  We have a convenient city lot which requires minimal yard work (yay!) but the trade off is limited privacy.  We have a7ft x 24ft farmers porch that's been unused five years and it's time to enjoy it!  Plus, I think it looks pretty.  :)

It all started last weekend with the purchase of these bountiful beauties. 
We thought hanging the huge purple one on the end of the porch facing our neighbors would block the view of their side door and windows.  We were right!  Here's what it looked like before our porch makeover. 
I started thinking that even more privacy would be better and saw the new secret ingredient for the Iron Crafter Challenge was sheets and pillowcases.  I put the two together and promptly set off to tell Jake about my latest idea.  I expected him to think I'd gone nutty and try to talk me out of it but he happily jumped aboard my crazy train.  We took measurements of everything, loaded up the pups, and headed out for the Great Sheet Hunt of 2010 on Father's day. 
We quickly determined that ten white twin size sheets from walmart at $3 a pop (I can't seem to find them online) would get us the most fabric for our buck.  They are 8ft long and that's in the range we were hunting for.  We snagged six 44"-88" curtain rods for $7 each at Christmas Tree Shop.  We also spent about $100 on some new outdoor pillows, more flowers, and a few other random items (like Scotchguard) during our travels to complete the front porch makeover.

It's tutorial time!
Step 1: Prepare.  Measure.  Measure again then gather all your supplies.  Decide how many curtain rods and sheets you need to get the look you want.  We used one rod and two twin sheets on each 7ft end of the porch, and four rods and six twin sheets across the 24ft front.  I considered using some full sheets ($6) across the front because they are the same length (8ft) but I like the flexibility I'll have to slide the 6 sheets around (I might even pick up two more).  You can pre-wash the sheets if you want.  I didn't bother because I don't mind if they shrink some when I wash them later. 
Step 2: Install your curtain rods.  Jake did this while I got the sheets ready to hang.  Consider the length of your sheets and if you want them to puddle or not.  I wanted our to be a bit off the deck (pretty much even with our bottom rail) so I can easily sweep under them.
Proof that we're level.  Pretty good for a house that's 100+ years old, huh?
Step 3: Remove packaging from walmart sheets and save the fabric pouch for use later in step 7.
Step 4: Let 'er rip!  Find the two top hem corners of each sheet.  Release the side hem (3-4") on each of these corners.  This creates a pocket that a curtain rod can easily slide into.  Use fray block as desired.  I choose not to sew and finish these hems properly because these edges can only be seen from on our porch if you look really closely.  If you're on our porch, then you are family or friends and you could care less about finished edges on my outdoor sheet curtains.  Plus they are easy to just sort of tuck under once they are on the rod.  :)   Behold the wonder of the No Sew outdoor curtains.  See I told ya I could do it!
Step 5: Iron each sheet.  Ok, so, um, I was way too excited to see the finished results to iron.  Let's say I'm experimenting to see if the natural heat and humidity of summer takes care of the wrinkles.
Shark Professional Series Intelligent Electronic Iron, GI490

Step 6: Hang each sheet and spray them with Scotchguard if you want to.  Step back and admire your handiwork thus far, squeal with girlish delight, and get back to work.
Step 7: Find the fabric pouches you set aside in step 3 above.  These make handy tie backs!  Wrap the tab top around the bunched fabric, snap it, tuck the tail in, and fluff it a bit.  This reminds me of the puff on the back of some bridemaids' dresses.  :)  Bonus: you won't have to worry about any colors running onto the white sheets.  I have sisal rope that I was planning to use so I'll probably mix things up soon.
Step 8: Relax with some ice cold lemonade or sweet tea. 
Before (morning)
After (evening)
There are two sheets swagged together between the iron hanging baskets to help balance the opening for the porch entrance.
What do you think?  Would you try this at home?

Secret Ingredient #2 for the Iron Crafter Challenge is Sheets and Pillowcases and I'm linking up to join in the fun again!  I participated in their first challenge here. **UPDATE: We came in third.  Thanks for voting for us!
This week's challenge at The CSI Project is Outdoor Decor. This is my first time linking up!
Kelly's Korner hosts a weekly Show Us Your Life series and this week's topic is Show Us What You Make!   
Show Us Your Life with Kelly's Korner

Monday, June 28, 2010

HGTV Green Home Winner Announced!

We won!  Haha!  We wish.  :)  Sandra and Kermit Gilson from Scotia, NY won!

Kick back and explore the 2010 HGTV Green Home in a series of posts about our tour of the house in May.  I took some quirky shots, shared paint colors, and where to buy info.  You can read about our road trip from Portland, ME to Plymouth, MA here and the house's exterior here

Click the room names below to see all our photos and read the full posts.

Jake's favorite room: kitchen

Want to tour the house yourself?  The charity tour will continue through July 2nd.  Go here for ticket info.

I Heart Faces - Pets

This week's theme at I Heart Faces Photography is Pets.  All skill levels are welcome.  Go link up and have fun visiting each other!

October 2009

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sunset beach picnic

Hi!  Last weekend Jake and I enjoyed a fantastic sunset picnic at Pine Point.  We started visiting this particular stretch of beach in March this year thanks to an early spring.  It is dog friendly during certain hours but the pups stayed home this trip.

Here's where we settled in.  Pretty nice, right?

A simple dinner for two of locally made cheese, veggies, hummus, Angus roast beef, herb turkey, buttery crackers, fresh pineapple, and sparkling lemonade. 

After we ate and lounged around for a while, we packed up and headed over to watch the sunset over the marshes.

I had fun playing with our camera's zoom (look for the pitched roof line under the sun in the first photo).

So, what's in your picnic basket?


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