2014

It’s a new year, and as a new year’s present WordPress sent us this”annual report” that displays a bunch of our stats and figures in a really cool infographic (psst- check it out by clicking the image below!)

Screen Shot 2014-01-05 at 10.06.34 PM

Seeing all those stats made us all warm and fuzzy knowing our blog baby has done as well as it has (seriously, we thought only our moms would read this thing). But it also made us feel guilty about neglecting the blog for so long, so we wanted to touch base with you guys, let you know we’re still alive, and tell you that we have LOTS of stuff planned for 2014!

Item number one on the to-do list is to get our butts married already! Ok now I’m picturing just our butts united in holy matrimony. “Do you Katelyn’s butt take Evan’s butt to be your lawfully wedding butt-husband for as long as you both shall butt?” Ok I’m taking this butt thing too far. What a nice way to start a post. Sorry guys, I have the humor of a 13 year old boy.

-51 copy Item number two is to catch you guys up on the projects we’ve been completing! I’ll be honest, posts will probably still be few and far between until after the wedding this April, but we’ll have a butt load to share with you when we get our free time back (there I go with butts again…). A few things you can look forward too are:

-Fixing a door we used to have to body-check to close
-Moving a derpy off-center ceiling light (and replacing it with a new badass one!)
-Making an easy modern solid wood side table that’s way cheaper than you could buy in stores

IMG_4781 Item number three is to share our DIY wedding projects! We decided to keep them secret until after the wedding because we don’t want them to seem like old news by the time the big day gets here. But post-wedding, you’ll be seeing things like:

-Centerpieces we upcycled from free stuff
-A big still-in-progress backdrop we’re making
-An artsy guestbook alternative that we can display in our house forever

IMG_4309 copy Item number four is sharing all the projects we want to do this year! We are both super excited to have the time to tackle more house projects, like:

-Painting more rooms
-Painting the cream trim white (gulp!)
-Updating the lights/fans in all our rooms
-Painting our kitchen cabinets (if I grow the balls to do so)
-Giving our master bathroom a nice makeover (I still think it’s super awkward)
-Replacing our siding and giving our exterior a new paint job (might hire this one out though)

We are so happy that we still get views and comments from our readers and we’re really sorry the posts have been so slow lately! Cross my heart, as soon as we catch our breath after the wedding craziness we’ll be jumping headfirst into house stuff again and the consistent-blogging will commence!

DIY Floating Ghosts

As I mentioned in our last Halloween decor post, any money we spent this year on Halloween decorations would be devoted to things we could put outside. It’s our first Halloween in the house (eeeeep!!!) and we want to lure in some innocent children get some trick-or-treaters without breaking the bank or having loads of decorations to store later.

So after much Pinteresting and Googling, we decided to make some fabric ghosts to hang in our trees! It seemed like they would be pretty cheap and easily storable, but we couldn’t find tutorials we liked to we decided to wing it.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

The idea was to get some fabric, make a round “head” for the fabric to be draped over, and somehow attach a string to this “head” that we could hang from fishing wire.

We wanted to make 7 ghosts, so we went to Joann’s and found some super cheap white muslin fabric and bought 7 yards of it. Then we passed by some 50% off “Halloween fabric” that was light gray, sheer, and quite ghostly. We decided to pick up 7 yards of that as well so that we could overlay it on top of the solid white fabric.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

To make our “heads,” we considered several options: styrofoam balls, light plastic upside-down bowls, and balled up plastic bags. We ended up going with the bags idea because it was free (we always have a collection of grocery bags) and easy. Who knew styrofoam was like $17.99 for a ball the size we wanted?!? Shit cray.

So here’s how we did it. I cut the fabric into seven 1-yard-long pieces (you could make yours bigger or smaller depending on how long you wanted your ghosts to be). I separated them into piles to keep everything straight.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

We tested out the length of the cuts to figure out how big of a head the ghosts needed (we wanted it to be proportional their length). It was decided that something between a Mochi sized head and a Katelyn sized head would suffice.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

Evan started forming the heads. He would basically take one plastic grocery bag, stuff 5 or so more inside it, and bundle it into a loose ball. At first we were just going to use enough tape to keep the main bag closed, but we decided to just wrap the entire head in duct tape to make it a little more sturdy (and hopefully to prevent rain/moisture from getting trapped in the bags).

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

The little white things Evan is holding the balls from are wire hangers. He used some heavy duty clippers to cut them and pliers to bend them into little loops that could be taped to the top of our bag-and-tape balls. This is is what the ghosts would hang from.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

He sort of rounded the “arms” so that they fit nicely with the curve of the ball. Then we just placed them on top and added a little tape to secure them.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

I snipped a little hole in the center of each fabric to poke the hanger loop through. We put the first whole ghost together and he looked just like we hoped for!

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

For eyes, I wanted something that would be water proof so construction paper and poster board were not an option. I decided to cut pieces of black gorilla tape into round eyes and tape those on the inner solid fabric so that the outer sheer one would overlay the eyes.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

Mochi approves!

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

So at this point the ghosts were pretty much ready. But we had one more bonus element we wanted to add:

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

Of course, something battery powered or wired would be way brighter and longer lasting. But we wanted something easy, water proof, and cheap. But glowsticks aren’t going to last more than one night, so we had to rig a way to prepare the ghosts for a quick and easy glowstick attachment come Halloween night.

So we decided to attach the little plastic caps (that come with the glowstick bracelets) to tape that was hanging under the ghosts. We wanted it hanging so that the light was lower than it would be it we just attached the cap directly to the bottom of the ghosts head.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

We took some of the gorilla tape (just duct tape would be fine too) and taped a cap in between two long pieces. We closed it around the cap but left the other end open so that we could stick it to the bottom of the ghost heads. On Halloween, we can just pop a glowstick into the cap under each ghost.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

Hehe. That ghost looks violated. Now they were ready to hang outside! We used some clear line from Michael’s to hang them as invisibly as possible.

They’re pretty light so they didn’t require any super heavy branches or anything. We decided to hang them at staggered heights in our trees.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

We used our staple gun to tack a few staples to the underside of our roof overhang to hang some more ghosts by our windows.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

We really like how they turned out!!!

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

Because there are so many of them, there’s always at least a few with their eyes turned towards you at any one time. The outer fabric is super light and flowy so it catches the breeze really well and gives them that ghostly transparent feel, while the inner fabric is opaque enough to conceal the heads underneath.

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Floating Ghosts - evanandkatelyn.com

The super awesome thing is that all the fabric cost us $28 because of Joann’s coupons, and the rest of the materials we had on hand! At $4 per ghost, I’d say this was a pretty sweet deal. We aren’t adding the glowsticks until Halloween day but we will be sure to post some updated photos with our ghosts looking all glowy after the 31st!

***Update***

Haha, the glowsticks were a total fail. They just weren’t bright enough to really make a difference. You win some, you lose some. So I’d say if you want your ghosts to glow, stick on a battery powered light to their underside.

There’s Nothing Like Halloween…

…to motivate you to post again!

Even though house DIY projects and such have been on the backburner as I tackle work and wedding planning, I couldn’t resist decorating our house for it’s first Halloween aka my favorite holiday of the year!!

Since we’ve never needed exterior Halloween decorations before (being apartment dwellers and all), I knew I’d be spending a little money to spruce up the front yard in order to lure in innocent trick-or-treaters (I sound like a witch…). So I made it my goal to not spend a penny on any new interior decorations. Instead, I found ways to use decorations we already had and create a bigger visual impact by incorporating things that weren’t necessarily Halloween decor, but fit right in with the spooky stuff.

The first place to get the Halloween (trick-or-)treatment was our big media center, onto which I piled on the faux pumpkins, candles, and books. It’s cool how black books, natural-fibered items like baskets, and plain white candles can instantly become Halloween decorations when surrounded by other Halloween-y stuff.

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Those white pumpkins are faux gourds I got at Hobby Lobby on the cheap a couple years ago. They used to be sort of barf-colored (eww) so I painted them white with black stems. I like how the white stands out against the black glittery pumpkins and the big orange ones.

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

I had a chalkboard-painted candle holder already, so I added a couple chalkboard spray-painted bottles to the mix and drew on some spooky stuff. I put twigs from our yard in the bottles and painted the tips of some of them white to add a little interest. Also I of course have a creepy old Dante’s Inferno book to add to the mix and make things extra creepy :)

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

The candle holders I also got from Hobby Lobby a couple years ago for a few bucks a piece, but you could easily find something at Goodwill to spray paint instead. Candelabras are instantly creepy!

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Ignore the fact that we never finished carving Jack Skellington’s face into that pumpkin (doing it soon haha!). This batch of pumpkins and spooky stuff is on the right side of where our TV sits.

Again, I took just a few actual Halloween decor items (the ghost and pumpkins) and paired them with non-Halloween items (the candles, candlesticks, books, and our little “all you need is love… and a cat” block) and it gives the entire display much more visual impact. I especially love using those books to add height to the pumpkins.

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Boo!

To the right of that pumpkin patch, we decorated our L.O.V.E. letters with creepy spiderwebs! Though we aren’t turning them on in fear of starting a fire haha.

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

And on the shelf below that, I have my Jack and Sally ornaments hanging in front of an empty frame, a print I made in college (“Moon Kitty”) and a little soot sprite amigurumi my mom made!

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Our coffee table got some goodies too: my favorite little raven from World Market, the best smelling candle in existence, and the MOST BADASS COFFEE TABLE BOOK EVER aka THE ART OF TIM BURTON!!! (Oh and you can see some of the decor on the back door in this pic too, more on that soon!)

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Onto other parts of the house! Our entry way got some black jack-o-lantern luminaries (picked those up at Target during a post-Halloween sale one year) and a black rose garland. To add some color, I clustered my little Nightmare Before Christmas figurines around the luminaries.

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Our dining room built ins got covered in all the spiderweb that wasn’t used up on the L.O.V.E. letters. That spider web stuff is super cheap and has a big creep-factor, and if you are careful (and only use it indoors!) you can use it again year after year. I’ve been using this same batch for at least 3 years now!

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Oh and I scored those adorable jack-o-lantern place mats at Target during another post-Halloween sale. So cute! Though I’ll admit, I get nervous about actually eating on them and messing them up!

Our back door got another Target find, this black wreath, and a bunch of bats I just made out of construction paper and taped to the door. Even though they’re just construction paper, I’ve been able to keep them in good shape and they’ve lasted me as long as the spiderweb!

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Our kitchen bar got a little love too, with a couple more store-bought faux pumpkins and the 7 teeny ones Evan and I made last year out of craft clay and curly vines/twigs that we cut off of a twig wreath we had. I also taped some fall leaf garlands to the underside of the bar overhang.

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Lastly our guest bathroom got some decor, with this cool wooden black cat carving on the counter and some glitter skulls in the silver tray.

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com

Of course, we also have the best year-round black cat Halloween accessory. Our little fluff! The perfect living Halloween decoration. I hope she sits in our window and glares at trick-or-treaters as intensely as she’s glaring at that cat figurine!

Halloween Decor Ideas- evanandkatelyn.com