Category: Home Improvement

How To Hang An Outdoor Daybed (On Video!)

Last week we shared how we built the DIY outdoor hanging daybed that we installed on our front porch. And as promised, I’m back to share how we hung it since, if you’re like me, hanging things that are meant to support the full weight of a human body (or two!) can make you a little nervous.

It was actually extremely easy to do. So easy that we did it more than once (ha!) so that it resulted in the smoothest and most non-tipsy sway possible (our first hanging attempt made it tip forward and backwards a bit, which wasn’t ideal). Thankfully the second attempt worked like a charm. Plus it meant we could document the entire thing for you, so you can just skip right to doing it the better way on the first try.

Here’s how it looked when you last saw it, after our initial hanging attempt:

We mentioned were going to rehang it in last week’s post, because almost immediately after hanging it with just two ceiling hooks, we realized that suspending it that way made the daybed swing front-to-back a bit more than we hoped, like an actual swing you’d find on a playground.

Continue reading How To Hang An Outdoor Daybed (On Video!) at Young House Love.

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A Tribute To Burger

We shared some sad news on Instagram Stories last week, but wanted to make sure to post something here too, because Burger was such a huge part of our blog. Last Monday, our sweet chihuahua Burger passed away at the age of 15. It was a long wonderful life, but we miss him so so much. The house is way too quiet without him.

We got him when we were 24 years old. Before we got married, before the blog, before we had kids, before almost every adult experience we had together. He was there through it all.

He was always such a happy boy. We are so grateful for all the years we shared. He seemed to pass away peacefully in his sleep. For a dog that was diagnosed with a severe heart murmur six years ago, we are grateful for all the extra years that he defied the odds after that.

Continue reading A Tribute To Burger at Young House Love.

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DIY Recipe Tea Towels

‘Tis the season when we’re all cooking and baking and giving gifts! Why not combine them? I thought it was finally time I rounded up some of the family’s famous recipes to commemorate them in the form of keepsake tea towels.

Every Thanksgiving we make Grandma Carole’s key lime pie (in addition to pumpkin), and Aunt Emily’s dolma recipe is the #1 most recommend food for all gatherings on Matt’s side of the family.

I typed the two recipes on templates I created and uploaded them to Spoonflower for printing on fabric. Once they arrived, I sewed them into keepsake tea towels to give as gifts.

This project has been around forever, and it’s such a great idea! Spoonflower wrote up an article about turning recipes into tea towels many years ago. That tutorial includes photocopies of handwritten recipes (also very charming) but for these versions I added text to .jpg templates I created. If you’re interested in more ways, this article offers variations on this idea, using Gimp or Canva and other programs.

I didn’t have the handwritten recipes and I wanted to get creative with photos and illustrations instead. For the key lime pie recipe, I turned to Canva where you can find royalty free illustrations, graphics, and photos for all your creative projects. I used this lime and leaves image for the key lime pie, and with Photoshop I eliminated a few images to create space for the recipe text. This watercolor lemon is a good image for personal use if you’re making something with lemons.


To recreate this project, you need .jpg file in the 18×27” size, which is the size of a fat quarter in the linen/cotton canvas fabric on Spoonflower, its texture and thickness work really well for tea towels.

The 18×27” is the fat quarter size but if you select a full yard, you’ll get four tea towels per yard.

For those unfamiliar with Spoonflower, don’t worry, this project is easy to upload and print. First set up a basic account with your name and email then upload your design. For this project, a 18×27” image at 150 dpi (dots per inch) and 1 ½ inch border for seam allowance works best. (I’ve included some free templates below for your use!)


You’ll need to upload the image rotated 90 degrees.

This is how it looks on Spoonflower as a fat quarter…


…and as a full yard.

Basic shipping with Spoonflower takes about a week to arrive.

I’m a big fan of iron-on adhesive tape for various no sew projects, but because this is a tea towel that will need to go through the wash, hemming the edges with a sewing machine is recommended. But good news, it’s a straight stitch with white thread, that’s all you need to do!

For clean edges, I found folding over and ironing the rough edge 1/2 inch helped create a clean straight line, then I folded it over once more and sewed a straight line on my sewing machine.

Finish corners by folding one over the other. It helps to cut away the fabric underneath.


Or if you’ve got a sewing machine that does fancy stiches then add one of those!

I bought the Singer 9960 model about ten years ago and it’s still going strong and has never given me any problems. I use it for all my sewing projects. I used one of the many built in computerized embroidery stitches to add a decorative edge with lime green thread.

For the dolma recipe tea towel, I created a watercolor leaf motif template. I’ve linked to it below for your use!

For your personal use, below are four tea towel templates you can use for this project! Each one has an approximate 1½” white border to allow for hemming the edges.

Click on the text links (not the template images) to download the full resolution templates to your desktop, laptop, tablet, or phone.

Happy creating!

18×27” tea towel templates (with white border/seam allowance)

Holiday Berries 18×27” template

Winter Plaid 18×27” template


Simple Gray Stripe 18×27” template

Watercolor Leaves 18×27” template

I added the recipe text to my tea towel templates with Photoshop, but if you’re not familiar with Photoshop, there are a few other ways to add font to a .jpg online.

Try these three online programs for typing your recipe on .jpg on a desktop or laptop:

1. Picfont


2. Sign up for a free trial with PicMonkey

(skip the billing page)



3. Text2Photo online editor

Have fun being creative with your tea towels this season! Feel free to ask any questions in the comments!


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Bathroom Design: Fixed Shower Panels

Yesterday I shared on my Instagram stories some progress shots on our little two bedroom flip house and created the final to-do checklist before we can list it for sale.

For both bathroom remodels, I chose single pane glass shower panels. It’s a contemporary look, but one I prefer in small to mid size bathrooms with walk in showers. These tempered glass panels are available in a few different styles: framed, frameless, screen, and etched. Installation requires U brackets secured to the wall and shower floor with added silicone on both sides of the glass to stabilize the pane.

For my shower remodels I bought two of these frameless panels in satin brass, they were a lot less expensive than a local bid I got for shower doors. I’m so pleased with how light they feel compared to the alternative of framed sliding or a hinged shower door. (And less glass to clean!) The same panels are also available here with multiple bracket finishes available.

This “barely there” frameless style works for any walk in shower where there is additional space for entry and exit beyond the panel.

Below are a few examples where other designers have installed a similar fixed shower panel. Also find budget friendly sources for a similar style if you’re planning a shower remodel in the future. 🙂

melanie beynon

eva holbrook

adore magazine

the beach people

three birds renovation

Budget Friendly Shower Glass Panels:

curved top in satin brass

matte brass frame

matte black frame


matte black grid

fluted glass

framed fluted & clear

frameless panel (U bracket in chrome, bronze, black & brass)

arched top (multiple finishes)

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Weekend Reading 9.4.21

Happy holiday weekend! I’m headed to San Francisco for the weekend, the weather is always so good in September. I’ll be having dinner downtown to celebrate our wedding anniversary and taking a long hike through the Presidio tomorrow.

Things are progressing fast on our flip project. The kitchen cabinets are installed, now we’re waiting for countertops. The bathrooms are nearing completion too! I’m looking forward to sharing those transformed spaces very soon! Wishing you all a lovely weekend, I’m sure we could all benefit from a few relaxing days.

Favorite links found this week:

Modern meets farmhouse style in this family friendly country property.

So pretty: the sand dune tile in this bathroom reno.

Styling perfection using wood and natural textures.

So in love with this kitchen backsplash.

This budget kitchen makeover shows the power of paint and new countertops.

The interior of a crumbling Italian structure transformed into a contemporary retreat.

DIY crepe paper flowers with Halloween flair.

Low cal dinner recipes filled with fall flavors.

Venice is implementing new restrictions and fees to combat overtourism.

Vacation rental of the week: these boutique apartments on the Gold Coast.

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Leaf Luminaries & Choosing Simplicity

It hits me every year, the last week of October. I begin to feel the expectations building, the stress of content creation, the subtle nudge to please all the people around me, and the pressure to make it look effortless. So a few years ago I made a promise to myself that I wouldn’t sacrifice my physical and emotional health during the holidays even if that meant saying “no” a lot more. I chose instead to simplify the season.

I stopped throwing a Christmas party and sending holiday cards. I make the living room festive and I hang garland on the stairs but I no longer decorate the entire house. I wait until December to buy a Christmas tree and decorate it with my kids. Once I took the pressure off myself the immediate result was I began to feel more joy during the holiday season.

I watch the stories of people I follow on Instagram and already there’s so much creativity happening. I love it, it’s beautiful, and I look forward to being inspired by more. I still like to make things and if they turn out well, I share them here on the blog.

But one thing I’ve realized as the years go by and in all the holiday seasons I’ve celebrated is that time is the only thing with real value and our energy is finite. We get to choose where we spend it.

So instead of stressing myself out during the holiday season, I opt for simplicity in decorating and entertaining. Right now that looks like leaves clipped from the backyard paired with luminaries made of leaves and wax paper.


To me, simplicity is a choice to not get caught up in what everyone else is (or seems to be) doing.

To you maybe that looks like decorating with swags of popcorn or construction paper garlands made by your kids or grandkids instead of store bought gilded versions.

Perhaps it’s the pie you buy from the bakery to bring to a party because you don’t have time to bake.

Maybe it’s prioritizing kicking your feet up and snuggling with your favorite people with just a string of twinkle lights for the mood, instead of hauling out bins of holiday decor and decking the halls for days only to have to put it away a few weeks later.

Whatever it looks like to you I guarantee, choosing simplicity means a less stressful and more joyful holiday season.


If you’re interested in how to make these simple leaf luminaries with wax paper, I posted the supplies and instructions on Instagram Reels today. This fall craft is a return to basics – decoupage leaves as a simple centerpiece. (Just be sure to use flameless candles). I used the leftover skeleton leaves from these embellished pumpkins.

Today’s post is really just a word of encouragement and a reminder this holiday season there’s no need to stress out when decorating or entertaining. You can choose simplicity in all you do and still create seasonal beauty.

Did you miss our previous article…

Thanksgiving Table Linens

For the past few years we’ve been away for Thanksgiving in different parts of the country, but this year it’s my turn to host so I started gathering supplies to pull together a table setting for guests.

I’m keeping with the theme of simplicity I’ve adopted this season, working with square chargers and plates I already have, but adding embroidered linens and taper candles in deep green, gold flatware, and fresh eucalyptus for scent.

crewel runnernapkinsflatwaretapers

Every year I look forward to the seasonal linens that arrive in stores. Today’s feature is a collection of seasonal patterns for setting your Thanksgiving tables too. 🙂



harvest plaid

linen leaveswillow leaf

golden hollyacorn leaf


paisleyterra cotta

southwestcopper leaf




embroidered leaf

green grid

turkey jaquard

thyme tablecloth


watercolor leaves 

harvest wheat / golden pears

watercolor pumpkin / euro swirl


leaf patterns (multiple colors)

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Holiday Screensavers

The holidays are here! To add some some cheer to your desktop, laptop, cell phones and tablets, I had fun sketching four new holiday themed patterns. Download these screensavers (wallpapers) for free for your personal use!

Winter Berries | Sketched dark and pale blue stems with bright red berries.



Winter Berries Screensavers

desktop 16:9  |   laptop 16:10 ratio

ipad/tablet 3:4 ratio  |  cell phone 9:16 ratio



Bokeh Trees | Abstract painted evergreen trees with subtle bokeh highlights.


Bokeh Trees Screensavers

desktop 16:9  |   laptop 16:10 ratio

ipad/tablet 3:4 ratio  |  cell phone 9:16 ratio



ll is Bright Snowflakes | Playful pastel watercolor snowflakes on a white background


ll is Bright Snowflake Screensavers

desktop 16:9  |   laptop 16:10 ratio

ipad/tablet 3:4 ratio |  cell phone 9:16 ratio


Retro Ornaments | Sketched mid mod ornaments hang from beaded swag

Retro Ornaments

desktop 16:9  |   laptop 16:10 ratio

ipad/tablet 4:3 ratio  |  cell phone 9:16 ratio


*for personal use only

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5 Things to Know Before You Begin a Property Renovation Project

Change is an inevitable part of all aspects of life- and our home lives are no exception. As we spend so much of our time in our homes (even more so due to the ongoing pandemic), it’s no wonder we look for change in terms of interior design and in the structure of our properties. From lifestyle changes- such as starting a family which requires interior change and perhaps change to the exterior, to modernising a home, a new theme or style- home renovations are something all homeowners will do at least once in their life. Renovating your property can be a challenging experience, however the transformational change to your home can be rewarding. Each property renovation task you undertake will bring new challenges and unexpected twists, and there are plenty of tips and tricks that can help if you find yourself in a sticky home renovation situation. Additionally, home renovations are a great way to add value to the cost of your property, as it enables you to adjust your home to the property market, therefore making it more desirable while adding value onto the property. If you’re wondering “how can I sell my house fast?”, then home renovations are a perfect place to start. But before you begin, here at We Buy Any House have compiled a list of things you should know before you begin a property renovation project.

Start With a Building Survey:

Before renovating any part of your property- you should commission a chartered building surveyor. This is especially important if you are planning on doing any structural renovations, such as building an extension or doing a loft conversion. The price of a surveyor typically ranges from £500 to over £1,000, depending on the age, size and location of the house. However, they will highlight important issues such as problems with the roofing, damp or any structural movement- which can cause major damage if not assessed properly. 

Budgets and Quotes:

We all love to indulge in home-makeover TV shows- however they aren’t the greatest advisor when it comes to renovating your own home in terms of budget and expenses. It’s important that you don’t underestimate the cost of your renovation project, as this may result in you taking loans from the bank and ending up in financial hardship. Instead, before your project commences, sit down with your family/partner and work out how much things will cost- down to the last little details. Then, put some extra money aside in case anything goes wrong as an emergency fund.

Another thing to do is ask for an accurate estimate. Don’t trust the valuation of one person, seek several experts in that field and get an average estimate of the cost for specific jobs. Additionally, don’t rely on a ‘textimate’ (over the phone estimate). Encourage the person to come and view your property in person, so they can see what they’re dealing with firsthand.

Create a Realistic Timeline:

In an ideal world, all renovation projects would be done at the click of a finger. However, unfortunately, in reality this isn’t always the case. It’s important to have a sense of realism about home renovation projects and understand that even though you have probably been given a rough estimate by contractors, there may be factors which implicate this. Prepare for things to take longer than assumed and try to avoid feelings of frustration by envisioning the finalised result. A tip to get around this is to order your new updates before you have the existing materials removed, so that there’s no waiting time.

Expect the Unexpected:

Midway through your home renovation, there may be an unexpected occurrence. Whether it’s regarding uneven floors due to a shifted center joist, a roofing problem or problem with your water system, this can have a huge impact on the time scale of the project. The renovations will stop, and you will have to source a specialist who can repair that specific issue- and then renovations will resume when the site is safe and legally sound. This is just one reason why it’s better to allocate extra time and money into your renovation project- so you are protected from unanticipated mishaps along the way.

Be Specific:

Time is money and money is time. Your home renovation will probably not be cheap, so its best to have a clear plan before you give the green light. Although things may crop up along the way, there are certain things that should be concrete throughout the process (no pun intended!). Where you plan for things such as your radiators to be positioned, sockets and lighting layout should all be thought of well in advance. After all, it’s you that will be struggling to use your phone whilst its charging. The same goes for interior design. Don’t be swayed by a designer that thinks they know your style and taste and want free reign (unless you’re comfortable and happy with this). Instead, pre plan the interior of your home, and if it can’t be an exact match, get something close.

Did you miss our previous article…

Find Your Deck’s Flaws and Transform Them: Useful Tips to Beautify Your Outdoor

The deck is one of the most important parts of your home. It is a place where you can relax and enjoy the outdoors and entertain friends and family. But before it becomes everything that you want it to be, some things need to be done first. This article will give you useful tips on beautifying your deck so that it fits your needs perfectly!

1. Paint your deck a color that will stand out against the scenery

.Your deck should be a stand-out piece of your backyard, but it can’t do that if you paint it the same color as all the other parts. Paint it in an accent color or even just brighten up your old worn-down deck with some fresh coats of white to make sure that people are drawn to this area when they enter your yard.

Don’t forget about painting railings and posts either! If these areas look shabby now, no one is going to want them near their home either!

You might also consider using cedar for any exterior wood on your house because not only does this type of wood come naturally in beautiful shades of browns and reds already, but it’s very durable against rain damage too.

2. Add a bench or two to make it more comfortable for sitting and relaxing

A deck is typically a place where you can relax and enjoy the great outdoors, but if there isn’t any seating on your deck, then how are people supposed to do that? A bench or two will go a long way in making this area more comfortable.

You could also add some other little touches, such as potted plants for color and hanging flowers from railings so that it feels like part of the yard rather than just another room inside of your house.

3. Install a new railing system so you can enjoy the view from higher up

It is especially useful if you have a higher deck because it gives people the opportunity to see everything that your backyard has to offer. A railing with glass panels will also make this area seem more spacious, which can be perfect for entertaining guests or just enjoying some peace at home by yourself.

You could always go ahead and invest in an outdoor TV as well so that everyone who comes over has something fun they can do while hanging out on your deck!

4. Get rid of any clutter on your deck, including old clothes, shoes, and books 

It doesn’t matter how beautiful your deck is if there are clothes, shoes, and books scattered all over it because then no one will want to enjoy that space. If you don’t have the time or energy to make sure everything looks perfect on a day-to-day basis, just get rid of these items altogether, so they aren’t an eyesore anymore!

5. Keep your grill clean by using an outdoor cleaner every once in a while 

It is one of the most used pieces on your deck, so it deserves to be kept in tip-top shape. Using an outdoor cleaner will remove all residue that can build up over time and make sure that you enjoy cooking out every single time!

6. Place potted plants around to add some greenery to the space

A deck is a great place to enjoy the outdoors, but what if it has no greenery around? There isn’t any need to worry because there are so many different potted plants available that you can choose from. Choose one or two small ones and put them on your outside table!

When looking for flowers to plant in your garden, try taking some time out this year just for yourself by purchasing an herb planter! They look beautiful too, with little tags next to each herb, so people know what they’re called.

These were some useful tips for how to beautify your deck! If you follow these steps, people won’t even recognize this area as it once was before making any changes. The color options alone should be enough inspiration because there aren’t too many other colors besides neutral shades like browns or grays that would work well with a backyard’s natural scenery. Learn more from the experts of dock construction here

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