Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Sponsor Shout out to Everyday Vinyl, and a little PB&J update

As I'm heading out for a week vacation I wanted to mention quickly that one of my most favorite sponsors Everyday Vinyl has expanded their vinyl inventory and cut some awesome deals on Silhouette starter kits!

They have added some new fun colors to their vinyl selection which can be seen here.

I have used Everyday Vinyl as my go to shop for ALL my vinyl needs for my Cricut.  I actually own two different Cricuts and I <3 them so so much. 

If you're in the market for a new Silhouette (or already have one) Everyday Vinyl sells the Silhouette machines plus newly reduced prices on starter kits. See their full selection here.

They offer a wide variety of sheet sizes for vinyl that are pre-cut and ready to be used in your cutter machine, or you can be a little more economical and save some money by buying their bulk rolls.  I always do the 12" rolls and just cut sheets myself as I'm always needing different sizes for different projects.

As for what's going on in the PB&J world, we're leaving tomorrow morning for Minnesota!  Both our families live there, actually they live within 6 blocks of each other so makes it super convenient.

We haven't been back to MN since January, which is a long break for us so very excited to see all our family and friends.  I'll also get to meet my new nephew, Max!  He's my Sister in Law's second child, and I CANNOT believe we haven't seen him yet either.  Jackson is very excited to see all his grandparents, auntie, uncles, cousins and god parents too. 

My bestie Ashley is an amazing photographer, Ashley J Tyler Photography, and last Sunday did a photo shoot of my Sister in Law's family and just need to share a few of those photos!

To die right?
That's Max and Yaya (Jackson's nickname for Amelia)

We're having our own photo shoot with her Thursday night, I'm a little stressed about it because I'm sort of in that awkward phase for pregnancy.  Not quite showing yet but pants are still starting to become a little tighter, a few lbs have been put on... just that "frumpy" stage ya know? Not the most optimal time to get pictures taken, but gotta take advantage of being in MN with Ashley around :)

How often do you get photo shoots with your family?

I have a couple posts lined up while I'm away but hoping to pop on too and post some fun updated pictures of family and friends too. I'm kinda actually excited to be away for a week with no DIY projects and sign making to do's.  It's just the vaca I need :)


Thursday, July 26, 2012

How to Paint Horizontal Stripes in your Home

PBJstories painting horizontal stripes

This was my first attempt at painting stripes in any room of our home, and with a little time, patience and motivation you can get great results just like I did!
Here's my step by step of what I did in the room to be sure I was making straight horizontal lines that were evenly spaced.

PBJstories painting planning

I started by making a very rough draft of my plan.  I measured the length of the wall and then divided by the width of the stripes I wanted to figure out how many stripes I'd need.  To get the width of the stripes I played around for a bit just eye balling what I'd like.  I knew I wanted wider stripes so I started at foot and seemed just a tad too small, and played around between 12" to 14" until I was happy and decided on 13".  I took the height of the wall divided by 13" and got just over 7, so I knew lucky # 7 was the number of stripes I'd end up with plus a little extra.  Instead of trying to figure out that ".07" left over across the 7 stripes I just added that extra to the last stripe on the bottom.  No one would be able to notice it's actually 13 + a little if it's at the bottom (do this! It's so much easier than trying to make each strip perfectly even and have them all be like 13.02 inches!)

PBJstories painting stripes

Because I was tackling this room by myself as my hubs was downstairs occupying our son I didn't have an extra set of hands to hold the measuring tape for me to measure out my stripes so I came up with an alternate solution.  I just taped up the measuring tape directly to the top of my wall so I could measure out and mark every 13".  Easy peezy.  I did this every couple feet along each well so I'd have even marks for my stripes. 

PBJstories painting tip for toiletPBJstories painting tip

Here are two of my other painting tips!
Tip 1: Use a garbage bag and slip it over the back of your toilet and pull the handles to make it a tight fit.  Super easy and completely covers your toilet from painting around it. 
Tip 2: Use tin foil wrapped around your painting pan for easy clean up rather than having to scrub the whole thing clean afterwards.  Once you're done just unwrap and toss away. Super easy clean up.

Getting back to the stripes.  So now every few feet on my walls I had even lines marked out for my stripes.  Then I grabbed my Frog Tape to use for taping off my lines.  I STRONGLY suggest using this tape.  It was the first time I've used it for this type of project and I'll NEVER go back to a different product.  It made the cleanest, crispest lines for my stripes which makes ALL the prep work and final results so much better.  I would have CRIED my eyes out after all my hard work if my lines weren't perfect and had bleed lines.

PBJstories Frog Tape

Use it. Just do it :)

PBJstories stripes prepping

So I got to taping.  The biggest thing to remember when doing this is to remember which side of your mark to place your tape.  I wanted my first stripe to be the taupe color so at that first 13" mark I placed the tape below the mark line allowing the painted area to be 13".  Then the next 13" mark I placed ABOVE the mark line as this is the second stripe and will be white.  So every other line you'll be placing the tape below, then above, then  below, then above. 

PBJstories prep for painting stripes

As I went I used tape to make "x"s to mark where the white stripes area, so I know that this is the area I will NOT paint in. 

PBJstories stripes in bathroom

Once all the prep work is complete it's time to get to started painting.  I started with cutting my ceiling trim, and then made my way around the windows and corners.  Once I was done with all the trim I was able to just roll in with a roller brush for a quick and easy finish.

PBJstories prep for painting stripes (2)

I ended up needing to do two coats of paint and once I completed the second coat, when it was still wet, it was time to start pulling the tape.
It's best to pull it when your paint is still wet, also if you pull up, or down, at an angle it'll help "cut" that line of the tape.  Just keep your eye where you're pulling to be sure you're not pulling off any of the paint or any bleeds have occurred.

PBJstories stripes with frog tape

Do you see those lines!?!!! PERFECT. STRAIGHT. CRISP lines!  Yup. Better believe I was doing my {happy dance}!
Follow these steps and you too will have amazing results painting your own stripes.


Monday, July 16, 2012

A daunting task–Cleaning every window in the house made easy thanks to Fish Window Cleaning!

It’s morning and usually I’m rushing to get everything put together and ready for the day of work and school.  This morning I was able to sit back and relax a little before rushing off to another day of work.

I was greeted bright and early by Josh of Fish Window Cleaning who was here to clean our windows!!  One of the biggest pluses of our beautiful home is our big and plentiful amount of windows.  They’re MASSIVE.  They aren’t be any means standard size, and almost reach from ceiling to floor on the first level.  Our open floor plan from our kitchen, to dining area, to living space is one big room with a total of 6 windows just in that area.  Not to mention the entryway, stairwell, front bathroom and our entire upstairs. 
Needless to say, the big beautiful windows have been neglected by dear ol’ me since we moved in.  I RARELY get to cleaning them, and if I do, it’s only the inside. 

Inside House View 2Inside House View
Do you see all those windows!? And do you see how BIG they are! They’re MASSIVE!
Do you see that cute little guy sitting on the couch enjoying cartoons? He's ADORABLE! ;)

That’s why when I had the opportunity to have Fish Window Cleaning come out for a visit I was thrilled!  I’ve actually used their at-home window cleaning products for almost a year.  It’s different than your “typical” window cleaner … that’s why these guys stand out in their field.  They’ve developed their own exclusive product that is a foam based window cleaner and alcohol based. What’s that mean?


Well the foam -
It’s easy to spray, doesn’t drip, and don’t have to deal with overspray.  Also this is my little weird favorite part of it, it’s an aerosol can so you just spray the nozzle button down once to apply it to the window.  Seriously, when I use traditional window cleaners that are the pump spray nozzle, my hand literally gets exhausted having to continuously pump it to cover the window.  Like I said I have a LOT of windows so yes, it’s an issue. Fish Foam – saving hands one cramp at a time. (New Motto?)
Alcohol based -
The next big difference between Fish Foam and its competitors is the fact it’s alcohol based.  Other cleaners are waxed based leaving that streaky appearance you’re sometimes left with on your windows and mirrors.

Now to the goodness – they don’t just have an at-home cleaner for you to use, but they provide a full service window cleaning team that will come to your home and clean your entire homes worth of windows! 

Fish Foam Window Cleaning 2Fish Foam Window Cleaning 3

Fish Foam Window Cleaning
They came out for an initial estimate which I actually wasn’t even home for, which is nice because the less time I have to take off from work from appointments, the better.  Then they called back to schedule the cleaning appointment.  They were not only on time, he was early which is GREAT because they knew I had to get back to work so I appreciated their efforts for accommodating!

I had a moment where I was mortified when I realized that not only would they be cleaning outside the house, but they’d be cleaning the inside of the windows.  WAIT – that means he has to come into this disaster of a messy home, including MY BEDROOM AND BATHROOM. Oh Lord.
Dear Josh of Fish Foam – I apologize for the ungodly mess that is my room, and bathroom. Please don’t take pictures and use as black mail against me. Yours Truly, Pamela.
When you were growing up did your mom ever have you clean the house before the maids came and you just looked at her like she’s crazy? I now realize why she does that.

I’m writing this as Josh is cleaning the windows in our living room and my eyes just bulged out of my head how DIRTY the screen was that he just pulled out.  And now I’m hiding under a pillow from embarrassment. I swear I clean. Just not AS thorough as Fish Window Cleaning does I guess.

Fish Foam Window Cleaning Inside

He was truly courteous and respectful of our homes pieces that he had to move around to get to the windows.  Upstairs he had a lot to move and deal with in our bedroom, and downstairs too.  Poor guy had a lot of hurdles to battle, as you can see squeezing in between Jackson’s toys and all our things.
Window Close Up Before Fish Foam Details
Window Close up After Fish Foam Details
I tried so many times to really get pictures of how dirty my windows are… it’s tricky to take pictures of windows haha!

I’m kind of addicted now… I don’t know if I would have ever jumped on the bandwagon of professional window cleaning without this opportunity.  But I am so glad I did and I may be making it a regular scheduling now!

Be sure to check out Fish Window Cleaning and see if they’re available in your area!
Also you can order some of your own Fish Foam for your own easy window and mirror cleaning.

I was not paid for the review of Fish Window Cleaning, however the service was provided complimentary  Like always, I would never suggest or give a raving review to any product I would not use on my own good faith.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Turn your kids drawing into their favorite T-shirt with Deco Art Ink Effects

Ink Effects Kids Tshirt Drawing on PBJstories.com DIY

Recently I had the opportunity to work with Deco Art and one of their newest craft product lines, Ink Effects.  This is a brand new product and the first of its kind to the consumer hands!  It’s a paint that you use on traditional paper (unlike other products which you need a specific transfer paper), and then using a household iron as a heat source you apply it to fabric and the image is transferred.  The final result however, is what makes it so unique.  It’s not an applique, and it’s not a transferred paint.  The paint itself once heated turns into an ink on the fabric.  So what you’re left with is your final image on your fabric that feels like it’s been dyed on.  The image isn’t “hovering” over the fabric like with applique, and it’s not a stiff paint like screen printing or painted on designs. 


I was sent  a great collection of colors to choose from to use for my design.  They’re so bright and colorful I was really eager to try it out! 

Colors of Ink EffectsIMG_0307

I wanted to involve my 3 year old with this project so I thought a fun idea would be to have him color a picture and then have that transferred to the shirt.

InkEffects Book Coloring

First I had him use markers to color his picture of choice.  I had him use markers rather then use the ink effects paint because well… he’s still a bit messy and didn’t want him wasting any of my awesome new product Smile  I allowed him to use the colors of markers that I had matching in the paints so I would be able to go directly over his coloring with the paint.

Ink Effects Cotton Tshirt

Because I was using a fabric that was more than 30% cotton (I was using a 100% cotton T-shirt) I used the Ink Effects basecoat.  It’s an pretreatment spray that helps allow the paint/ink to be absorbed easier into the fabric.  If you use a fabric made up of synthetic material you won’t need to use this pretreatment and you’d be able to iron on directly to the fabric. Apply it evenly over the entire surface you’ll be applying the painting too, and let it fully dry for about 30 minutes.

Ink Effects StepIMG_0311

Once my son was done drawing I used the matching paint colors and went directly over where he colored.  I really wanted to keep the drawing authentic so I was extra particular of following his lines even if they went outside the coloring lines.  He even made the dinos belly extra colorful and I followed his colors to a T. Now the particular detail you have to remember is that the black lines from the coloring book will not transfer, so you have to paint those lines too with the black paint.  The only change I made was I added a few little colorful plants to help balance the dinosaur on the final t-shirt… also I eliminated what either was a partially colored volcano… or the dinosaurs leash.  I wasn’t sure Jackson’s artistic direction with that magenta line.

Ink Effects Iron On

Once that fully dried, I grabbed my iron and set it to the highest setting and let it heat up.  Then you just flip the image over so paint side is on the fabric and use your iron in a continuous motion for about 30 seconds over the entire surface.  The pretreatment made the surface a bit sticky, so was a little difficult to keep the iron in motion while trying to stay consistent.  After about 30 seconds I lifted the corner to see how it was transferring and it appeared to be working well so I just did a little longer to be sure and then lifted the image off.

Ink Effects Post Ironing

YAY! It worked!!!  There are a few light spots that could have been ironed a tad longer but was nervous about realigning the drawing exactly on point so I just left as is.  The trouble spot is right below the pocket too, I think the layered fabric made the image not transfer as evenly so I should have either applied more pressure there, or used a shirt without a pocket.
Next time.

Using your kids art for tshirts with Ink Effects
Ink Effects Kids Tshirt Drawing on PBJstories.com

Jackson's face when I showed him he had a shirt with the same exact drawing he just draw was PURE excitement.  HE LOVED IT! So thank you Ink Effects!!

This product is really nice for this type of process.  As mentioned before you’re not left with an applique feel, or a stiff paint the colors true are absorbed by the fabrics for a printed ink feel and look.
If you’re familiar with screen printing or any printing on textile process, you’ll recognize that this process is very similar to sublimation.  Sublimation is the effect of printing directly on to a textile with ink from a computer.  It’s actually a very costly process, and can be done at home from your home printer, however the ink cartridges can be around $300 to $500! 

Deco Art truly has brought a unique product to the consumers hands at a very reasonable price in comparison to other options available on the market today.
There is a learning curve with this product, but as any brand new products to the market that’s to be expected.  I was really pleased with the quality of paints and products from Deco Arts new line and am excited to see what others do with the product too!

Ink Effects will be in JoAnn Fabric stores next week!  You’ll be able to pick some up yourself to give it a try, and be sure to check out Deco Art on Facebook, Pinterest and also get some helpful tips with their Youtube Channel.

You can also see what others have created with Ink Effects below!

I wrote this post as part of a paid campaign with Deco Art and Blueprint Social. The opinions in this post are my own and I only promote and use products I would use on my own.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

A Modern Bathroom Makeover for Kids

Modern Bathroom Makeover for Kids on PBJstories.com

I’m so excited to finally be revealing one of the latest room makeovers I did in my house!

PBJstories.com Bathroom Reveal (2)

Upstairs we have our second full bathroom that Jackson uses as his own, and it's one of the last rooms in our home that was "untouched" as far as being redone.  It still had the contractors paint color on the wall, and everything left as is. 

I initially had the idea for white on white in this bathroom, with fun splashes of color with accessories.  A couple months ago I began the project and did the base color of the walls in a flat white.  I let it sit like that for about a month because I was so unhappy with how the white looked.  It felt cold and had a blue tint from it (actually was the reflection of our neighbors house coming in through the window).  But I felt stuck and didn't know how to move forward with the bathroom.  That was until I decided to use a soft greyish taupe color for the stripes instead of the high gloss white. I'm SO happy I made the switch. I instantly HEARTED the stripes.  Like I would just go sit in the bathroom and smile. 

PBJstories.com Kids Bathroom Reveal

PBJstories.com Bathroom Design for Kids

PBJstories.com Bathroom Reveal Framed Mirror

By keeping the walls the neutral taupe & white stripes, and just adding in color with accessories, this room can be easily transformed from a kid's bathroom to a guest/formal bathroom.

PBJStories.com Bathroom Reveal Kids Towels

My son loves his hooded-animal towels, and wanted them to be easy access for him to reach so I used Command Water Resistant Bathroom Hooks
in Silver for a polished finish look for towel hooks, but without a permanent hole in our walls or door.

PBJstories.com Bathroom Reveal Printable

PBJstories.com Bathroom Reveal

That adorable printable is made by my super talented friend Kristin of Simply Klassic Home.  It's the perfect little addition to Jackson's bathroom, as The Beatles are dear to my family in tiny little ways.  Jackson's middle name is Jude (after The Beatles) so I love adding in subtle clues of The Beatles in his life.

PBJstories.com Bathroom Reveal Framed Mirror DIY

The framed mirror is another of my favorite additions to this bathroom.  There's SO many DIY tutorials how to build your own frame for any contractors mirror, and I simply just followed a few basic steps to create my own.  I added a couple changes that really helped me make it a super easy project that I'll be following up with it's own tutorial so keep an eye out for that.

PBJstories.com Bathroom Reveal Accessories

Instead of buying bathroom accessories that can add up (did you know the average cost for a tooth brush holder can be like $10+, kinda crazy) I just used some extra mason jars and glasses I had laying around to hold his toothbrushes and toothpaste, and one for a drinking glass.  It's a bit hard to see in the picture but I also used a shot glass to hold QTips within the larger jar and surround it with cotton balls (looks like I need to fill that up too!)

PBJstories.com Bathroom Sign

As many of you know I have my side business PB&Jcreations, my Etsy Shop where I create home decor signs.  Little known fact: I don't have any of my own hand painted signs hanging in my own home.  I'm too critical of myself to do it... but I braved my fears and finally made one to hang!  This cute little saying is what we have to scream say to Jackson every night for his routine.  I love the shade of green it's a perfect compliment to the blue used on the frame and bath mat.  His little step stool was painted in the same shade too. 

I’ll have a few follow up posts too to share how I painted the stripes and how I framed the mirror.

Remember – Pin it if you Love it! Smile

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Home Stories A to Z - Tutorials & Tips Tuesday
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