Friday, November 22, 2013

Prepping for Christmas: A Tree Stump & A Little Fur

Happy Friday!  It is cold and rainy here in Indiana today! I have been thinking about Christmas decorating...but I haven't started yet!  Maybe sometime next week.  Just trying to get ideas at the moment.  I want to do some new things in my house this year.  But, before I drag out all my Christmas decor, I wanted to give my house a good, deep-down scrub!  Like one of those, turn the music way up and get on your hands and knees, kind of cleans!!!  However, this isn't just a boring post about me cleaning one afternoon.  Amidst all my cleaning, I freshened up some of my decor as well!

 So, I turned the music up loud and went to town scrubbing every inch of the house!  Once I start something, I am a bit of a perfectionist.  So, vacuuming and dusting wasn't going to cut it this time.  I started moving all of the furniture out of the room or to the other side of the room so I could really get all of those dust bunnies under the couch once and for all!

When I started moving all of the furniture back into place, I thought, I could really use some rearranging in here!  With a couch this large, there isn't a lot of options for moving it.  Just this one actually.  But I needed to change the other areas a bit.  I was getting bored with the way it looked.  Imagine that!   I change my home decor quite a bit for that reason!  But just in small ways to make it look a little different from time to time.  I will move the pillows to different areas or take a couple away, just so when I bring them back into the room after a few months it's like having new pillows!  Or I will move some of my picture frames or vases around.  Add a couple new things from another room and take a few things away!  Nothing crazy. 

I tried this arrangement.  I moved my couch and side table away from the wall, removed the table lamp I had there, and added a side chair and floor lamp I had originally placed opposite of the couch.  But something was off!  The art work above the couch no longer was centered -- and that was bothering me, and by moving the couch, the dining room now seemed way too scrunched!  So I moved it back to its original place.  I am still deciding where to put my Christmas tree this year (half the reason I started moving furniture around) so we just might see this arrangement come back once I bring the tree in. 

The chair and floor lamp went back to its original home and then I remembered!!  The tree stump I have been working on!  It would be perfect here! 

Have you seen the tree stump side table craze?!?

I've seen natural ones (costing $200!!!!) :
West Elm

I've seen gold ones:

West Elm

I've seen other great DIY versions: 

This is from The Art of Doing Stuff, where I originally got the idea.  I saw her post back in 2011 and I had to make me a tree stump table!  So I did! 

Rewind about 2 years, when I started this tree stump table project.  Coincidentally, my uncle had just cut down a tree in his backyard, so I jumped on the chance to go pick up and pick out the perfect stump for my end table. 

My tools of choice!  With just a hammer and a chisel and the determination to make my own side table, I chiseled away at this tree stump for hours!

The hardest part was getting the first layer of bark off. 

And once I started, it really just started coming off in large sections.  Under the bark I found a lot of dark areas like these.  Mainly from it just being wet and soaking through a little.  So I kept chiseling away and finally sanding it to get the loose wood splinters to stop from continually peeling away.  Until I had a clean, smooth tree stump. 

The plan was always to let is dry out for a couple of months and then polyurethane the whole thing maybe with some stain to create a nice, finished side table. 

Well,  it eventually sat in my garage for over a year to dry out until I was cleaning today, and thought, I am finally going to use my tree stump table!!  So it may not be perfect, and it may not ever be completed, but I am just happy to finally be using it the way I intended!  And I kind of like the natural look of it!!

I also had some chairs sitting around that I still haven't decided what to do with.  You can see more of that here.  So, I decided to bring one into the dining room to add a little something "new" to the space.  It doesn't have seat cushions quite yet, but I had just the thing to fix that!   

I have been obsessed with this faux white sheepskin fur rug from Ikea for quite some time now.  I never knew what I would use it for or where I would put it, so I never bought it.  Well, at only $10, I decided to just buy one when I was at Ikea a couple of weeks ago.  I threw it over my desk chair for a while and I loved it!  I didn't care where I put it, I just had to have this faux fur for some reason. 

I decided to throw it across this little lost chair until I find it a permanent home.  It looks pretty cute for now, so I think I will keep it for a while. 

The next time you do some cleaning, maybe try rearranging things a bit for a fresh, new look to your space.  You never know what you may already have in your house that can be used in a new way to add new life to your space.  I mean, what doesn't say "getting ready for Winter" better than a tree stump in your living room and a little fur in the dining room!

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