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currently: april 2017

April 2017. The last Currently post before I turn thirty. Ajkdfhgkjhjdf. 

I don’t know, though, guys. If thirty is anything like 29 years, 11 months, and 24 days (and I’m told it’s actually extremely similar), I think I’ll be okay. This month in preparation for the new decade, I faced a couple fears of mine – flying by myself and giving up sugar, grains, dairy, and alcohol on Whole30. Turns out it IS possible for me to do both of those things (although on day 11 of the Whole30 I tripped and fell into an order of Torchy’s chips and queso.) (And then I cheated a few times towards the end.) So less of a Whole30 and more of a Whole23 or something. Better than a WholeZero, right?

yellow ranunculus

Making: This little key print to say goodbye to our first apartment together! If you missed it, we found a house to rent. Can’t wait to share more! 
Cooking: My Whole30 staples were- Coffee: cold brew, water, and half a frozen banana blended together and served over ice. It was a little creamy and sweet and delicious. Breakfast: Eggs, avocado, hot sauce, and homemade turkey breakfast sausages sometimes with baked sweet potato fries. Lunch: Taco salad with ground turkey seasoned with compliant taco seasoning, avocado, fresh salsa, red onion, green onion, romaine, and this yummy compliant ranch. Dinner: Salmon topped with a little of this compliant mayo and charred broccoli . This obviously isn’t a food blog so I won’t go into more detail, but definitely reach out if you’re thinking of doing Whole30 or have any questions!
Reading: I finished In Cold Blood and it was amazing and fascinating and so well-written and researched by Truman Capote…but holy moly I need at least three very bad/light/easy beach reads to cleanse my palette. Yeesh.
Wanting
: ALL OF THE THINGS for the new house. The flooring isn’t my favorite…it’s not terrible, but I’m definitely in the market for several large area rugs. Holler at me if you see a deal. So far I’m tempted by this in 8×10 (in “Natural) for the bedroom. 
Enjoying: Insanely good (read: non-humid) spring weather today in Austin. Windows open and a good hair day. I assume this is why people move to California. 
Listening: Finished S-Town in about two days. My most vivid memory of it is when I was listening to it in the grocery store (pro-tip: this makes grocery shopping way easier to endure) and I walked down a full aisle without realizing my jaw had dropped/my mouth had been hanging open. 
Needing: A team of fairies to come pack for us one night as we sleep. Salagadoola mechicka boola bibbidi-bobbidi-boo!
Smelling: Ye olde standby candle. It’s so good for spring.
Wearing: These slides like every day, this kimono/cardigan thing for upcoming cold weather in Colorado, these too-good-to-be-true knockoffs, this possibly perfect one-piece swimsuit, these gold earrings, and this maxi dress which happens to be the perfect length if you are five feet tall.
Loving: New month, same thing: date nights at our favorite neighborhood spot made even better by patio weather + Beans. 
Watching: Matt had to travel for work for a week, and when that happens I take advantage of watching the stuff I think he probably wouldn’t be in to. This time it was Girlboss, which was cute and made me feel like I too could sell things on eBay and build a business empire. Turns out this is harder than I thought. Also, I gobbled up the first three episode of The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu and can’t WAIT for more episodes. Elisabeth Moss really can do no wrong. 
Bookmarking: Little Green Notebook is my favorite for pretty/easy DIYS and this one is no different, I’ve been using Pinterest to save a lot of the things I’m eyeing for the new house, and I love this post about what you miss about “home.” 
Feeling: Very excited to for everything May holds, which is not limited to turning thirty but also includes my brother’s graduation in Colorado, our move, and a trip to LA to stay with my best friend and watch our other best friend get married. Woo!

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saying c-ya with cyanotype: DIY cyanotype key sunprints

So, good news first: we found a place to lease next year! A bona fide house with a yard and storage and everything! We are thrilled: me, to be done with house-hunting and to start planning a new space, and Matt: to have me done with the house-hunting part. Let’s just say I take to house-hunts like a fish to water. An incredibly stressed, frazzled fish who systematically checks five different housing websites every six hours.

But, sad news: did you guys know that moving to a new place typically means leaving the one you’re living in currently? The first lease you signed together, the first time you made a home together, the place where Matt finally watched The Office all the way through? I’m super sentimental and even though I could not be more excited about our next place (it is SO cute and having a house will be so fun and now we can actually have more than two people over for dinner and not make them eat on our couch AND A YARD FOR FINN) but I can’t stop the feels about leaving our cozy little apartment. Home means a lot to me.

DIY cyanotype key sunprint

Commemorating our first place together seemed important. When I saw Little Green Notebook’s cyanotype prints for her playroom, I knew that would be perfect. Cyanotype prints work really well with flat objects – leaves, dried flowers, etc., so I thought I’d make a print of the key to our apartment. The cobalt color of the paper is so pretty, it looked pretty easy, and I could order the kit on Amazon which is just so dang appealing. Here’s the quick how-to:

how to make a cyanotype key sunprint

How To Create a Cyanotype Key Sunprint

 

What You’ll Need:

  • Sunprint paper kit (this is the one I used)
  • House key
  • 9″ x 12″ tray or dish
  • Water
  • Paper towels or paper bags
  • Heavy books

making a cyanotype key sunprint

  1. Keep the paper in the kit while you’re setting up – any exposure to sun will start the reaction, so keep it protected until you need it.
  2. Fill a tray or long pan with water. You’ll submerge the paper when it’s done sitting in the sun, so you want this ready to go. 
  3. Lay some paper towels or paper bags on the counter so that you have a place to set the wet paper to dry.
  4. You’re ready! Take a sheet of paper, lay it outside in direct sunlight, and place the object you want to make a print of in your desired position on the paper. Let the paper sit in the sun for anywhere from 30 seconds to 5 minutes or so. The longer the paper is in the sun, the deeper the blue hue will be when it has processed. I experimented with different times and liked the ones in the 3-4 minute range. Probably a good idea to buy some extra paper if you want to experiment a lot or are looking to make several prints. 
  5. When the paper has been in the sun for the desired amount of time, pick it up and lay it in the water, completely submerging it to stop the chemical reaction. 
  6. Gently remove the paper from the water and lay it down on the paper towels or paper bags to dry.
  7. When it’s dried completely, use some heavy books to sit on top of it to remove any wrinkling or curling on the edges.

DIY cobalt cyanotype key print

Voila! A pretty sweet way to commemorate your first home together. Or your first place of your own. Or the key to your shop. You get the gist. And since I technically spent a grand total of about $1 on the print, I wanted to dress it up in a really special frame that I might not normally splurge on. Enter Framebridge!

framing a DIY cyanotype key sunprint with Framebridge

Framebridge was the perfect answer to a frame for this pretty but unusually sized print. Here’s how it works: you go to their site, choose a digital image or upload a picture of your physical art, enter the dimensions of the art, and then click through their frames where they mock up how the art will look in the frame. It’s incredibly satisfying if you’re super visually-motivated like I am. As soon as my eyeballs saw the blue key print mocked up in the burl-wood Cairo frame, they fell out of their sockets like a cartoon boy dog looking at a cartoon pretty girl dog. 

Framebridge review - pretty details!

Once I got the eyeball situation figured out, I sent off my print to Framebridge in a package they provided with a shipping label also provided. A few weeks later, I got my got-dang gorgeous frame back and had to deal with my eyeballs all over again. They even dress up the backing with this pretty Matisse-style print. LOVE. And bonus for yall: use the code bigadventure15 to get 15% off your first Framebridge order!

framing a DIY key sunprint with Framebridge

cairo burl wood frame from Framebridge with a cyanotype print

Still a little sad about moving, but I’m really glad to have a little physical memento of a home and a time that was pretty great to us. And yes, I realize that I also have two years of blog posts, but who knows how long this “internet” thing will stick around. 

 

I was provided with product by Framebridge, but all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the companies that support ABA!

How to make a DIY cyanotype key print
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you can go shave your couch now: how to remove pilling from upholstery

And now, for something completely different: taking a departure from room tours, currently posts, and crafty things to sit yall down and tell you about the night that I shaved my couch. Yah. Let that settle.

You may remember that I mentioned in this post about how things are holding up that the couch is still as comfy as ever, but was showing a bunch of pilling on the upholstery. I totally admit fault to buying a sofa with an open-weave knit fabric and letting my 65 pound dog on it every single day, but I was stressing about what to do. Buy a new slipcover? Those are expensive, so should we just get a new couch altogether? 

How to remove pilling from upholstery

Blech. Thankfully (!!) an old friend and reader reached out to say that she had a coworker who had a similar sofa issue, and that person had purchased a fabric shaver normally used on sweaters and used it on her couch. At this point I need to address a couple things. 1) I’ve noticed recently that I do *not* use the interwebz as much as I should. Why wouldn’t I just Google “how to remove pilling from upholstery”?? Why did I jump right to buying a whole new GD couch? I literally have a blog that other people find by using the interwebz in a similar fashion. I do not understand why I don’t do the same thing. 2) Thank you, stranger, for your inventive use of a sweater shaver. 3) Thank you, person who invented sweater shavers. I did not know your product existed but it just saved me beaucoups of money. 4) Who knew that’s how you spell beaucoup? Not me.

How to defuzz your sofa

It was definitely starting to make my eye twitch. It didn’t look too bad from afar, but I sit on this bad boy daily. I mean it wasn’t like…ruining my day. But it was one of those things that I’d make a subtle mental note of all the time. I wanted this monkey OFF MY BACK. 

Removing pills from a sofa or couch

Here’s my claw and my claw’s new best friend, the Conair Fabric Defuzzer – Shaver. (I got the battery-operated one.) What a name. What a guy. First, I tested it on an inconspicuous part of the couch to make sure it wasn’t gonna shred the fabric to death. (It didn’t.) Then, I put it on the lowest setting so I could give my couch a close shave. Molly Richardson, Couch Barber, at your service. I tried it right there on the middle cushion of the couch to take some photos for this post, using slow circular motions over the entire cover. The after, right below, gives me SO MUCH SATISFACTION.

How to get pills of your upholstered furniture

PEACE OUT FUZZIES! Good riddance! I was not anticipating how much enjoyment I would get out of this activity. If I were a smarter blog-writer, I’d probably keep that to myself, but we all know that’s not how I roll. I’m not ashamed to admit that after taking these photos, I took every cushion out and shaved every upholstered surface of the whole couch. I was worried that the little motor of the defuzzer-shaver wouldn’t be able to keep up, but darnit if that thing didn’t happily endure the work. 

Using a fabric shaver to remove pilling from upholstery

And that, my friends, is the story of how I became a couch barber. So glad to have this little tool in my arsenal now, and to use it on my sweaters next winter! Any tools you’re loving that saved you heartache or dollars or both? 

 

This post is not sponsored, but affiliate links are used for your convenience.

Using a fabric shaver to remove pilling from upholstery
How to easily remove pilling from upholstery
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