Your brains, Fezzik’s strength, my steel. And a wheelbarrow and a holocaust cloak.

So, like I said a while back, this is a process. Life doesn’t slow down to give you a chance to get all your projects done, and occasionally lets all the water out of your budget to do them.

windowOne project I’ve been trying to figure out how to do with zero funds is turning this awesome window (snagged on sale for $15 at Community Forklift, which if you’re in the DMV and haven’t been there and you dig this stuff, go immediately because it’s fantastic) into… something. What I would really like to do is weld a long, low frame similar to the end table frame I made and make the window the top of a coffee table, which is a thing we could really use. Our living room currently contains a sofa, two end tables, two small armchairs, a shelf with some tchotchkes on it, and some piles of random… stuff. It’s like we got 80% of the way towards unpacking and setting up in here, and then just never got round to finishing it off.

On the other hand, the financial situation in our house has gotten unexpectedly precarious. At this point, it’s sort of up in the air whether we’ll be able to stay in this apartment, so I’m not really sure whether to keep nesting or, you know, start packing. And I definitely don’t have the money to get studio time at the Art League, or rent a rig. (Obviously I need to take up some cheaper hobbies.) So I’ve been casting about for temporary alternatives that would be as close to “free” as possible and wouldn’t be completely hideous. Maybe this will motivate me to learn how to nail two pieces of wood together. Money is really stupid and annoying, you guys, at least when you don’t have any.

I HAZ A DISAPPOINT.

Okay, so, I’m doing a complete makeover on my bedroom, right, because it’s a new house and a new life and all that jazz. And so far, outside of a truly epic number of trips to IKEA (which seems weird when you look at my room, because it is… not IKEA-y), it’s gone pretty well so far. I mean, I’ve spent a small fortune, for me, but a small fortune for me is like a couple hundred dollars. So it’s been mostly all good. I discovered that hanging curtains, for example, is WAAAAY easier without my ex’s help. As is putting together anything from IKEA, for that matter. 

 
But today, a major setback. I adore the idea of a canopy over a bed that isn’t a four-poster — you can just look at my Pinterest, it’s like, all bed canopies all the time. And now that I’m totally doing just what I want to do, I was psyched to put mount some curtain rods on the ceiling and go to town. So I marked the spots to mount the brackets, got out my drill, and …. drilled uselessly and totally ineffectively against the concrete slab that is my ceiling. 
 
It shouldn’t be a huge shock to me that the ceiling is just spackle on top of a concrete slab — I live in a high-rise, so structural integrity is kind of a big deal. But I’ve never lived in anything besides an old house or a garden apartment before, so it was a rude awakening for me. 
 
So, now I have to either re-conceptualize and abandon my beloved canopy bed, or come up with some ingenious way to hang things from the ceiling without actually putting anything in the ceiling. Wish me luck. 

DIY Project: Copper Pipe Sconce

Copper Pipe Wall Sconce

Credit to clairezinnecker at Camille Styles

I love this project — I’ve been thinking about something similar ever since I was in Brooklyn and saw pipe-based lighting fixtures everywhere. Don’t let a boutique in Williamsburg charge you an arm and a leg for this, just follow Claire’s awesome tutorial. I might tweak it a bit for a table lamp and try it myself.

Take a look at the tutorial at Camille Styles.