DIY Faux “Barn Wood” Wall Art

DIY faux barn wood wall art

Do you love that old barn wood look? One weekend I decided I wanted to make something with barn wood or something similar for our master bedroom. I searched online for a while to see if there was anywhere close to me to purchase and everything was a far drive. After stumbling across this post from Young House Love on how to make new wood look old I decided to try!

It was really easy. Plus I happened to find some Minwax wood stain in Ebony with the oops paint for $5.

I started with different widths of one inch thick pieces of wood and had them cut at the hardwood store. It was about $25-30 of wood for 3ft.x 5ft area.

With the paintbrush I would paint a layer of water and then a layer of stain and rub it off quickly with a rag to get that gray color. The water keeps the stain from getting too far in the wood so it’ll be gray not black.

Pallet Wood Wall Art DIY

We cut two separate pieces of plywood and then nailed all the boards to the plywood to keep them together. “We” meaning my husband…. The last things we did is attached picture hangers..two of those big claw things.( The picture I have above is when we tried to do a wire hanger which didn’t work out.)

how to stain pallets

I really like how that grey looking stain turned out! It looks great as part of our room makeover!

faux barn wood wall art

These nice iron sconces I found at Goodwill and are from our last house.


DIY Painted Pallets

I decided to spray paint them Krylon Coral Isle. I love it, hubby liked them better before…sigh 🙂 oh well. I think it looks more modern.

So these little “swooshy” shaped unfinished frames and birds are from Michael’s. With coupons they are really inexpensive. Aren’t they cute?!

Michael's Unfinished Wood Frames

I painted the little birds too and glued them on the 8×10. I was thinking…Wouldn’t this be a great wedding gift?

painted love birds unfinished wood frame

And here’s the view from above my bed…This room is really coming along! What do you think? Would you like something like this in your house?

Master bedroom

Thanks so much for stopping by today.

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St. Patrick’s Day Mint Chocolate Dipped Pound Cake Treats

Mint Chocolate Sara Lee Pound Cake

Due to the unexpected success of my little Fourth of July Trifle post,

4th of July Triffle


the nice people at Sara Lee Desserts have asked me to come up with another recipe for National Pound Cake Day which is on March 4,2013.

I decided to make a St. Patrick’s day treat and it’s very easy and quick.

Sara Lee Recipe

I started with slicing a family sized Sara Lee pound cake in half horizontally.

Clover shaped pound cake

I was able to cut six shamrocks altogether with my size cookie cutter.

Sara Lee Treats

Mint Chocolate Dipping Sauce:

6 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips

1/2 tsp mint extract

1 tsp shortening

Mix together and melt in microwave for about 2-3 min,

mint chocolate chips dessert

Dip the very top of your shamrock and add sprinkles. Refrigerate until hardened.

Shamrock shaped treats

Sara Lee Pound Cake Recipe

Do you have a great recipe using a Sara Lee dessert? Make sure to enter it in their “Share the Sweetness” recipe contest now through April 19, 2013.

Stay tuned for an exciting giveaway exclusively for Fancy Frugal Life readers sponsored by Sara Lee coming soon! Yay!

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New Photos of My Satin Flowers Spring Wreath

spring wreath tutorial

The wreath I am sharing today is one made a couple years ago and goes perfect with spring and Easter decor! Here is the original post. It was my very first “popular” project and if you are new you may have not seen it. Yesterday I took the time to take new pictures.

These sweet little satin flowers can be used as hair accessories, but also make a fun easy wreath.

how to make satin flowers

All you need for this project is a blank Styrofoam wreath, straight pins, lighter or candle, paper brads and satin fabric in the colors you choose.

Satin Flower Spring Wreath

 Cut three circles in sizes small, medium, and large from satin fabric. Then burn the edges carefully with a lighter or candle to make them curl. They magically turn into flower petals. Then secure all three petals with a paper brad. That’s it!!!

 Attach all the flowers with straight pins to the wreath form. Make sure to pin under the first flower layer so your pins don’t show.  I decided to hang mine inside a frame I painted pink and distressed.

Easy Spring Wreath

pink & green spring wreath

That’s it… easy, right? Happy spring decorating!

Don’t forget to follow along and never miss a post 🙂

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DIY Upgraded Full Length Mirror (Master Bedroom Project)

DIY Mirror upgrade

Check another project off on our master bedroom makeover!

I’m thinking you may have had or still have one of these inexpensive Walmart mirrors. This one I think my hubby bought in college, It received an easy upgrade this weekend!

mirror upgrade before and afterWe bought a piece of bead board from the hardware store and had it cut to a size we wanted.

So this scrolling piece of decorative wood is something I spotted on bulk trash day in our old neighborhood with some cabinet doors someone was throwing out. It’s been waiting in the garage for the perfect project and this was it!!

I’m pretty sure I’ve seen similar pieces at home improvement stores if you went to purchase one.

(Ha I just noticed you can see the hanging ball I have to hit to get my car in the perfect way so it fits!)

beadboard mirror

 We nailed everything together and I painted it all a glossy white.

diy decorative mirror

Mirror Makeover


We LOVE how it tuned out!! Such a major difference, right?

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Decorating Shelves (My Thoughts)

how to decorate shelves

I think I finally have our master bedroom built in shelves arranged how I want them.

Here they are before. Embarrassed to admit we’ve been in this house for over 6 months now. Ha

The contact paper I found at TJ Maxx went up.

My color combo inspiration 🙂

Brown, White & Coral

My strategy for arranging accessories is the decorating in triangles. I think I learned that tip from watching the Nate Berkus Show. I love that guy and miss the show, don’t you?

decorating tiangles

Love the elephant family…a gift from my Grammy. White decorative frame from Ross ($4.99).


I spray painted this stand and am displaying one of my homemade canvas photos in it.

My sweet husband bought these roses for me at Costco ($14), for my milk glass vase ($3).

coral and brown decorating

Already had these just gave the jewelry box a makeover.

decorating shelves

My jewelry organizing projects from a couple weeks ago.

styling shelves

Lots of thrifty makeovers, and things I already had went into this space and I think it all works well together? Plus it’s still functional with our “stuff” organized.

Well actually my husband gets a little space on the bottom left for his stuff. Ha

tips for styling bookshelves

I appreciate you stopping by!

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Tuesday Talent Show Link Party at Chef in Training! It is held weekly and has some amazing link ups!


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Painted Valentine’s $1 Wood Frames

cute dollar craft frames

On Thursday I am in charge of my son’s first grade Valentine’s Day party. For me this is the super fun part of having school age kids! They get so excited, and of course so do I.

I wanted to come up with a craft each child could make for their parents. A few years ago we made these exact frames at a local Michael’s in store craft workshop and my husband still has his on his desk at work.

So last week we painted thirty of these $1 unfinished wood frames a background color so each child can embellish them during the class party.


I had my daughter make an example of how to do some cute thumbprint hearts on her frame.

DSC_0087My son used a heart shaped cookie cutter to stamp hearts in two different colors.



I decided to join in and paint one with chalkboard paint for my husband.


chalkboard painted frames

Just add a favorite photo and you’ve got a fantastic personal Valentine.

Who else is hosting parties for little ones this week?? My kids are so looking forward to it.

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I got a job blogging! It’s real. I’m excited.

central valley moms screen shot

After almost 5 years of leaving the workforce I’m slowly returning part time. Only this time someone is paying for my creativity! Isn’t that cool?? I’m super excited to tell you about it because I never thought starting a blog would lead me to these types of opportunities and it’s happening!

My professional background is actually in advertising I sold print and digital products to small businesses in the Phoenix area and eventually left that to stay at home with my small kids and have been moving around for my husband’s job opportunities.

For me blogging and completing creative type projects has filled that professional social void for me that I miss about working outside the home. It can be isolating staying at home caring for kids all day. Social media has helped me stay connected to friends, family, and I’ve made so many more along the way…

Starting Fancy Frugal Life is something that I’ve done by myself for me. I’ve taught myself Blogger, WordPress plugins, RSS feeds, Google Analytics parent vs. child themes, designed headers, blog buttons, photography, all of that stuff by trial and error and “googling” everything. I swear I ask Google 50 questions a day! ha So my point is if I can do it, trust me so can you! And it turns out all this “stuff” I’ve learned in only 2 years is marketable!

central valley moms logo

I am happy to announce I am managing and contributing to Central Valley Moms. This is a website owned by the Fresno Bee, my local newspaper. I will be the voice of Central Valley Moms and it’s social media. This is part time work but most importantly it is work from home! Yippee!

central valley moms screen shot

Plus I may get to contribute to their print lifestyle magazine Central Valley as a freelance writer and photography.


Central Valley Magazine - January 2013


This whole thing started when I sent an email with a link to my blog to the editors introducing myself and asked if they had any contributing opportunities? They emailed back an hour later and asked for a meeting with me about managing their moms site! I didn’t even have a resume written!


So I prepared myself by updating my resume and made a basic media kit for Fancy Frugal Life and the meeting went well! I was nervous and didn’t really know what to expect but everyone is so nice there!


central valley moms logo


Feel free to follow me along there via Facebook if you’d like. Also if you happen to be a blogger in the Central Valley area of CA let me know! I’d love to create a local bloggers community on Central Valley Moms.

Thanks for reading and always being supportive along the way! Getting paid for doing something I love has ALWAYS been my dream, and this is a great step in the right direction! Don’t worry I’ll be blogging here too still 🙂

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I sewed these three throw pillows including a cute stenciled one!

make your own throw pillows

I knew I wanted this bright summer coral as an accent color in my master bedroom makeover project but haven’t been able to find some affordable ones I like locally. Throw pillows can be pricey!

Last year I picked up some 18×18 pillow inserts at Ikea and never made any pillows so today was the day!

This pretty fabric is from Joann’s.

DSC_0168The last time I sewed a pillow was in Mrs. Lindstrom’s 7th grade home economics class! I don’t even know how to sew a pillow cover but I thought I’d start with a basic pillow.

how to sew a basic throw pillow

Even not so great sewers (like me) can cut two squares a little smaller than the pillow insert and sew wrong sides together leaving room to turn inside out, stuff the pillow and hand sew the rest.

coral throw pillows DIY

I found this cute stencil on clearance at Joann’s and thought it would make a great 12×16 pillow.

stencil fabric and sew a pillow

I mixed acrylic paint with a little of that Martha Stewart fabric medium and stenciled one piece of my fabric. The next day I sewed the other side together.

I love it! And now I feel brave enough to stencil more fabric!

(My hubby asked if that stencil was a bunch of ballet slippers and why I was making our room pink?…Hugh? That stencil is leaves, and it’s called coral. Sheesh!) 🙂

DIY Coral throw pillows

This is our new upholstered bed. I love the linen fabric. I also replaced our old lamps that were damaged in the move with these beauties from Home Goods. The new fresh white bedding is also from Home Goods.

linen upholstered bed

Here is the before picture on our bedroom. The next step it to paint our dressers and night stands.

Master Bedroom Before

I think I want to use chalk paint in maybe a linen color with white accents? Stay tuned…

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Whoopee Cushion & Whistle Valentine’s

Whoopee Cushion Valentine

Happy February friends! Today I’m excited to share with you my kids’ Valentine’s they will hand out to classmates this year. I decided to start early on them because I’m also planning the 1st grade class party.

I love all the ideas lately I’ve been seeing lately on non candy valentine’s treats, don’t you?

Here are two that I came up with for this year.

We had a bunch of mini whoopee cushions left over from my son’s last birthday so I decided to buy some more from the party isle at Target and attach a photo tag for Valentine’s Day.

I made mine at It’s free for some features and they have cute Valentine’s Day themes including this heart shaped frame.on the site right now.

Fullscreen capture 1312013 111152 AM

I cropped my photo to more of a square shape and then cut them out in circles after printing.

how to make Valentine labels

I attached the tags to whoopee cushions with a paper clipped shaped into a heart. Here’s how to do that.

heart shaped paper clip

For my little girl I designed a photo card around heart shaped whistles (also from Target but in the Valentine isle).

lip whistle valentine's

I took a photo of her making her best “whistling face” and used to add text and embellishments.

Fullscreen capture 1312013 121805 PM

With a knife, I cut out a spot to stick in the whistle. love how these tuned out!

non candy valentine ideas

They are both really excited to hand these out 🙂

clever valentine ideas

I wanted to show you these cute adhesive chalkboard vinyl cut outs my dad sent the kids. Aren’t they cool? The label said the brand is Wall Candy.

Wall Candy

Last year on Valentine’s day I made this pizza with heart shaped pepperoni’s. You just fold them in half and cut out a heart. Thought you might like that idea.


Happy February crafting, baking, and cooking!

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