Saturday, April 4, 2009

We're not exactly the Jacksons

And just like that, my dreams of having a family band are shattered.

What do you think?  Can I at least hope for high school marching band?

A thing I like
I'm reading a book called Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer by Novella Carpenter. It's not officially out until mid-June but you can read her blog here.  She has a full-on farm going in a vacant lot in the ghetto of Oakland, CA.  She's majorly hardcore, but sort of my hardy and hale DYI model.  I mean, I just want a couple laying hens and some cucumbers and she kills her own bunnies for meat.  Still, very interesting stuff.  Sort of Mad Max meets Wendell Berry.  

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Why your life is not like a magazine

I'm in the Phoenix airport right now, on my way back from a photo shoot in Tucson.  I like how that sort of makes me sound like a model.  Alas, we were shooting a house, not me in my awesome bikini (look for the story in the July issue of Sunset!).Here's a little secret I'll let you in on: very few houses actually look like they look in magazines.  They may be beautiful, well-decorated, impeccably tricked out, but they still don't look like they do in magazines.  I know this because we just spent two days clearing all the unphotogenic stuff out of the house so we could shoot: Speakers? Out! Plants? Out! Art? Out! Personal photos?  Out!  As our style editor said, "It's all about editing," meaning it's all about getting rid of your personal effects and replacing them with our own, brand new and much better looking items.  No junk mail, fridge magnets, pony tail holders on the bathroom sink. It's all fake.  I just want you to know so you don't feel bad about yourself. 
Still, it wouldn't kill you to dust every now and again. 
Our style editor Miranda making everything pretty, pretty, pretty.

A thing I like

The Sonoran hot dog. People, are you ready for this? A hot dog, wrapped in bacon and served in a bun with pinto beans, tomatoes, mayo, mustard, guac, and cheese with a big cheese stuffed chile also wrapped in bacon on the side.  They only have them in Tucson (and it can be assumed across the border in Sonora, Mexico.)  I had my first one yesterday.  And yes, it's a little gross.  But in a completely delicious way. Take that, vegetarians!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Kitchen chairs makeover (or another reason I'm not getting much writing done)

Remember that date I had with the Mister?  And the trip to the upholstery warehouse?  Well, I'm ready to debut the new dining room chairs we found on the street, and which were 100% inspired by these beauties I saw on Design Sponge and then again on our very own Sunset Home blog.   
But first, a breakdown:
Cost: chairs-free, paint and painting supplies-about $30, fabric-$22 TOTAL: $52
Time: a week, but if you were more industrious and say, maybe laid off and single, you could get it done in a weekend (including dry time).
Unanticipated side effects: numb right index finger from prolonged depression of spray paint button.  Sudden and acute need to buy new kitchen table and paint the walls. It's never ending, really.

Ok, so maybe they don't look so bad here but let me 
just say that the maple is fake and the fabric was filthy.

And—wait for it, wait for it.

Yes, we did all four chairs.  I just got sick of posing them.

What we did: sanded, primed with a spray primer (1 coat), painted with Rust-Oleum American Classics in Blossom White (3 coats), covered seat with a Schumacher fabric remnant. And, voila!
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