Two half makeovers (Kitchen is Finished! Jacket is Short!)

S on Snowdonia

Happy New Year! What a ride it’s been since last year at this time. K and I had just returned home from Christmas festivities with the family, but the next day instead of going to work, we had to fly to the midwest to see our grandmother on her death bed. She was born in 1919, so she had lived to see so much.

2013 was a year of big changes for your resident egg halves. K got her MBA and moved in with her long distance boyfriend of five years. The Architect and I moved here to be with her. I got my worm bin and started growing plants for the first time ever. I sewed through my finger with my sewing machine. And now this week the Architect is starting his new job here. I am looking to 2014 to find a new career and explore. Now that he has a job, it isn’t so critical that I find one right away, so I’m planning to take my time and make sure I find a job I truly want.

And now I’ll jump back into Two 1/2 Eggs land. Here’s a reminder of some of our favorite posts from this, our first year blogging.

Posts by me:

First Wedding Anniversary

Refashions and more refashions

A Goodbye Apartment Dance

Posts by K:

Making Bath Salts for Relaxation and Gifts

Ren Faire Fun

Table Surgery

And now, without further ado, we move to this weeks’ projects. Back home visiting my mother, I made her a Christmas present of a refashioned jacket out of a too-large denim jacket I found at a thrift store:

Mom jacket beforeAs you can see, it isn’t the most flattering thing you’ve ever seen. This refashion was a bit more involved than most of them I do. I took out the seam at the hem of the lining, took in the jacket through the shoulders and back, cropped the jacket, and then rehemmed the bottom. It came out looking rather lovely, if I do say so myself:

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Ahhh. That’s better.

You can also see our other project in the background of that photo. Yes, the Architect and I finished the kitchen makeover that K and the Artist started at Thanksgiving. When we arrived at my parent’s house for Christmas, this is the state of the kitchen. Exhibit A: missing wallpaper.

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Exhibit B: The cabinet pulls don’t go with the light switch covers.

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For problem A with the wallpaper, we simply installed it along the chair rails around the room. It was pretty simple. The wallpaper was pre-glued, so all we had to do was wet the backs and then smooth it over. We used a razor and a putty knife to get it tight in the corners. Here’s the Architect being awesome.

IMG_20131224_110408 (1)As you can see, the wallpaper is little coffee cups. We decided to go with a little French cafe look for the kitchen, so little coffee cups was step one.  The next thing to do was to fix the cabinet pull situation. Mom had these ugly beige pulls that had come with the house, and the Architect decided they were just the thing.

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The metal tabs on the end went with the outlet covers, but the beige was just so drab looking. So we acquired some spray paint that’s formulated to stick on enamel, and dismantled the handles, leaving this big pile. The drab color is washed out in this photo, but you can see how dirty they were.

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We cleaned them off, and then the Architect put some nails in some boards and then spray painted the hands with nice, even coats.

IMG_20131227_113800Then we put them back together. You can see what a difference the spray paint made for the color in this photograph:

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We installed those, changed out the big painting on the wall to something that definitely looks more French cafe, and did a little styling. And the kitchen makeover is complete! Before I show you the beautiful after photos, though, I thought I would go ahead and remind you what the whole thing looked like before K and the Artist painted at Thanksgiving.

BeforeAlright, here goes!  The suspense is killing you, right?

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Oven after

Two Winter Refashions

S on Snowdonia

 

Last week, K showed you guys the dress from our grandma that I refashioned for you all. Today, I’m going to give you some more details about how I got all that done. Also, I’m going to show you a fun Christmas cocktail dress refashion that I actually did ages ago for another party, but I’ve been holding off on showing you guys so that I could wait around until it would be appropriate to re-refashion it into a Christmas dress. So, without further ado, dresses!

First off, I’ll tell you more detail about Grandma’s dress. For review, here’s the before-before, when she was wearing the dress at our high school graduation.

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She used to wear it to all kinds of family events: weddings, birthday parties. Everything. Here’s how it looked when I first put it on:

Grandma dress beforeYikes! A dreary day and a dreary fit! Something obviously had to be done. First step, I took off the sleeves because they obviously weren’t helping. There was this strange fold over the shoulders I decided to keep as little epaulets, so the next step was to finish folding those shoulder folds all the way down the sides. I also took in the side seams some so that the armpits would sit where they should. Then, once I folded those epaulet/dart things toward the sides, I realized that they just folded over each other on the side seam and make the dress fit beautifully! So I stitched them down on the sides, and hemmed it to knee length. And voila! An updated dress with ancestral history. Here’s another picture of K wearing it. She’s got a silly hat, a silly smile, and a silly pose, but you can get a better idea of how it fits than the picture she posted about it last week.

Grandma dress after

 

And now for the second refashion: A cocktail dress out of an 80’s prom dress. I picked up this frightfully outdated dress at my local thrift store, and decided I could give it some love.

Christmas dress beforeOh, yeah. Check out that sexy slit and the weird ribbon design thingy on top. Sexy sexy. First thing I did, obviously, was to remove the applique on the bustline, take it in to fit on the sides, and change the hem to a more modern cocktail length, thus losing the slit. But it still lacked something, so enter this (terribly photographed) plaid shirt:

Christmas dress part 2 beforeI don’t like strapless dresses. I hate wearing them, I’m always worried that they will fall off. So this dress obviously needed at least one strap. The Architect and I came up with this crazy idea to make a strap for the dress out of this plaid. And then we went even further and decided to keep it going. Add in a wide white belt, and you have the perfect outfit to go to a fancy schmoozing event trying to get rich people to donate to the arts. The Architect’s firm was involved in decorating, so we got to go for free. Here are a couple of afters from that event. First up: Forking the Architect in a photobooth.

Christmas dress after 1Second round: posing in front of a car we could never hope to afford: The Architect and I, for what it’s worth, got many, many compliments from strangers on how well-dressed of a couple we are that night.

Christmas dress after 2

 

Ever since I refashioned that dress, though, I’ve been thinking it would make a great Christmas dress, if only it had a bow. It would be like the adorable Christmas package dress. So, when I found out this week that I get to go to the company party of the place I worked before we moved and surprised everyone, I knew this would be the perfect chance to dress like a Christmas present. I made a bow for the belt, and here it is:

photo (4)Now that I finished, I think the bow might look better if I attach it to the buckle on the belt and just wear the belt a little sideways so it lines up. I think it might look too busy with the buckle and the bow. What do you guys think?

Before and After

Before and After

 

 

 

 

 

Twinversary!

K on treeThis weekend, S and I celebrated our Twinversary!

I know, I know, you weirdo singletons don’t know what a Twinversary is. I’ll let you in on the secret. It’s our birthday. Otherwise known as the anniversary of our lives as twins officially beginning. The day we became soul mates instead of a single soul. When we turned 25, we called it our Sipperversary and gave each other silver gifts.

I’ll let you guys in on another secret. The nickname S and I call each other is “Sipper” which derived somehow or another from sister. So for our “Silver Sipperversary” I gave S a “silver sipper” which was in reality a sterling silver drinking straw, which I had engraved with “sipper.” Oh yeah. I was clever that year.

But THIS YEAR, S totally beat me out on gifts. Like, completely and utterly.

You know how she’s been doing the clothing refashioning lately? She did the most epic refashion ever for my birthday.

Backstory: Our wonderful grandmother passed away in January of this year. She was a very frugal woman, having reached adulthood during the depression. (She was born in 1919). As long as I can remember, she has had the same dress that she wore to all fancy occasions. I remember her wearing it to weddings, baby showers and birthday parties. She even wore it to our high school graduation. Here’s a picture of her, S and I at our high school graduation. graduation

When Grandma passed away, I inherited her dress. Unfortunately, it was too big for me to wear. So my birthday present for S was for her to refashion the dress into something I could wear. In the spirit of our grandmother’s taste for keeping things and keeping them useful, I can only expect she would have been happy for her dress to be used.

And now, I know you all want to see what I look like in the dress. Here’s a pic S snapped on our birthday.

Birthday dress

 

Enjoy the holidays! And let us know how you’re making gifts and remembering your family during the holidays.

An Egg Reunited!

S on Snowdonia The Architect and I arrived at our new apartment on Sunday night! We live with K and the Artist again! Hooray!

Except, in case you can’t tell from the photo, I’m sick. The Architect has been sick, too. We spent Thanksgiving with a sick baby, so of course we both have colds now. But he was cute even though he wouldn’t stop screaming! It was my first Thanksgiving with my in-laws, and I think it was really nice.

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I’m so happy about getting back together with my other half. But I’m sick, and, to be honest, we’ve been much too busy to really enjoy or appreciate the soulmate reunification. We’ve got unpacking to do! The movers dropped off all of our stuff yesterday, and since then, our house has seen a veritable explosion of things with no home yet, empty cardboard boxes, and crumpled paper. I think we’re starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel, though.

I noticed that some of our things are magic at making it seem like we live here. Those purple doors we’re standing in front of were like that. As soon as they were unpacked, K, the Architect, and I all kind of breathed and said it suddenly felt like our real house. And today, we accomplished our very first everyone-FINALLY-living-in-the-same-house DIY.

We had this mail sorter thingy in our old apartment, but never really found a good way to use it. Junk mail doesn’t even make it into the house. And I don’t understand why bills don’t go in the IN box? It’s not like we get a lot of real mail that isn’t junk or bills.

photo 1Also, p.s., see how much of a mess it’s been in here?

photo 2Anyway, I suggested that we assign each person their own box, since there are four of us. The Architect suggested putting letters on them in chalk pen, and the Artist took care of the rest. He’s fancy. First, he picked out pretty fonts to use. Then he printed out stencils using his fancy vinyl cutter. While it’s cutting, it totally sounds like a 1980s robot toy. Here he is working hard.

photo 3He used his fancy stencils to trace and then he filled them in by hand. We decided to use chalk pens so that the whole thing would be reversible in case we decided we don’t like it. Turns out we do like it, though. So we probably won’t wash it off.

IMG_20131203_144553And the final product! So pretty.

photoWe have named it Sbills Duh-junk Kin Dout.