Paper Dolls for Boys

Raising 2 crafty boys and thrifting every chance I get.

Craft Room iphone Snippets March 5, 2011

Filed under: Craft,Home,iphone — twlowenstein @ 1:28 pm

Got the antlers at an estate sale and hung them on my shelves.

Ring on antler from the antique mall where our booth used to be (was not as fun as I imagined it to be).

Thrifted wooden shoes with gourds grown by my father and tagged by my brother for my boys,

Thrifted metal tea set stacked on top of a thrifted Mason jar filled with glitter, water and a found pink doll shoe.


Breath May 5, 2010

Filed under: Home,Uncategorized — twlowenstein @ 7:10 pm

It’s the final push at work, summer vacation coming.  Feeling emotional to say goodbye to a wonderful group of kiddos and feeling a little like I am swimming in all the work of wrapping up a school year.

So I am taking the time to really appreciate spring, not flash forward to summer but to really take the time to notice all the new growth at our house.  This is our first spring in the new house, our first house, and it’s so exciting to mark time by what’s blooming.

I feel lucky that this beautiful mature wisteria graces our front porch.

I am taking the time to smell (and photograph) the flowers.


Matinee Showing March 28, 2010

Filed under: Family & Friends,Home,Uncategorized — twlowenstein @ 8:55 pm
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We are lucky enough to have these amazing vintage puppets on loan.  They are so detailed and vibrant.  The boys spent at least an hour setting up plays.  Not so much dialogue but apparently the puppets are Irish step dancing enthusiasts.

Moment of deep concentration.

My youngest had to ask me for a few weeks to get these down off the top shelf.  I was dragging my feet but am glad I took them from decorative to functional play today.  The boys were careful with them and had a great time, not to mention I got a few shots out of it!

And now for all you Beyonce fans, we’re starting them young:


Craft: March 25, 2010

Filed under: Home,Uncategorized — twlowenstein @ 11:33 pm
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Shazam! I would have cleaned up had I known you were coming!

Nothing like a little shout out from Craft, to make you feel tingly all ovah.


Craft Room, In Progress January 24, 2010

Filed under: Craft,Home — twlowenstein @ 9:46 pm
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You’ve seen this space as it has progressed, here and here.

If I waited until it was “done” we’d all be done with blogging so I thought I’d put up what I’ve got up.

I’m standing in the doorway, taking this shot.  The room is longer than it is wide.  A funky little space that came with this great built-in bookcase.  The previous owners used it as a little girls room:


I had some much needed help from my friend Kate and son painting the walls and shelves.  It was a bigger job than I anticipated and hence, the only room I have repainted thus far.  Kate?

A lot of these shots are taken on different days at various times of the day.   Plus I am sure I punched up the color on some of the ones in my rare, non-lazy moments.

Decoupaged the closet door with sewing tissue paper.  I had planned to do the backs of the shelves with the same treatment but realized it would take forever and wouldn’t showcase my collections as well as just the blue (am looking up the color in the basement, will report soon).

I have yet to hang this blue door I found on the curb.  I am replacing the entry door with it.   Big plans for that puppy.  Will unveil that after February break, it’s on the list.


Some of my collections.

Antlers and wooden bits on the left and wooden men with moustaches on the right.  Line ’em up!



I am still digging on my granny smock curtains.  I got them at my most favorite thrift store (miss you Charlie and Pat) and saved them for a year before I moved without a clear plan but when I painted this room the Dark Celery color, I knew they would be perfect!  I love it when it when stuff works out.  My collection of faux bois metal boxes, not working as much.  Not even going to talk about my attempted IKEA hack on that little yellow table.

Craft corner.  I did not clean up for you.  Trying to show all the bits, not just the pretty posed bits (and there are TONS of them as well).  I keep all my stamps, thread and various other little bits of crafting crap in the tangerine crates.  Luckily my youngest can eat his way through a crate a week so I have no shortage of storage.

“No Soliciting”, a nicer way of saying, “Leave me alone!”.

Just got a new Brother sewing machine from Costco.  Still trying to figure out how to thread it.  I think I can, I think I can…

This is a shot of my old craft room focal wall.  I took it TTV (through the viewfinder) and it might be one of my favorite photos I have taken, not including the kiddos.  I loved the fabric hoops on this wall but wanted something a little different this time around.  I had planned to put Fishel up on the long wall in my new space but couldn’t figure out how to a fix him to our plaster and lath walls.

Here is what I could hang using twine and push pins.  Thanks to Meg (and Stacy) for letting me “store” these amazing finds in my little craft room.

And this is what I love best about my craft room.; room for my boys to join me in crafting fun and memories.  And since I am still in that “keeping it real” phase, moments after this was taken I believe I made my oldest cry because I was too impatient with his sewing skills.  Well, here’s to more and BETTER memories in my craft room!


Mantel January 12, 2010

Filed under: Home,Uncategorized — twlowenstein @ 4:29 pm
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I have never lived in a house with a mantel.  I am kind of stumped.  What do you put on the mantel?  Do you rotate collections? 

This is Valentine’s inspired.  Why yes, little astounded 17 year old self, I DO decorate for Valentine’s Day.

Got the tin in a box lot at an auction, cheap.  The striped box is an old record case, FULL of old 45’s.  Including some children’s music with great graphics I am going to put into our shop.

I love all things vintage metal.  Particularly when they are red.  Thrifted at various spots.  Starting a collection.  Wish I had not donated some old ones in the move.

Not mantel related but a follow up on the evolving guest room walls.

Do you decorate for Valentine’s Day?  Are we dorks?  Leave links!!!  Plus, any mantel advice would be much appreciated.


Playroom December 30, 2009

Filed under: Home — twlowenstein @ 3:13 pm
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We were lucky enough to be able to buy our first house last summer.  After being crammed into a little apartment for 7 years, which was worth it because the trade-off was I got to be a stay at home mom, it has been a whole new world of quality family time.  A lot of it has been spent in the attic.  We had it converted into a playroom for the kids and a music room for my husband (he is a good sharer though).  Links to before posts: 1 & 2

And my little blur of motion going down those same stairs.


This is the building zone.  Blocks, games, people, etc.  Go ahead and say it, I’ve heard it before.  I don’t feel like my kids have an excessive amount of toys and I will proudly tell you that most of them are craigslisted, freecycled or thrifted.  A bit defensive, perhaps.  🙂

The book area over there behind the rubber ducky collection.  Okay, you have me here.  It IS excessive.  The boy loves his rubber duckies, what can I say?!

Dress up and dramatic play area.

This is the playmat area.  Our hope was to leave a big blank space that the kids could manipulate and rearrange as the game and their creativity dictated.  Also we wanted a place they could get their energy out in the winter.  Here they are this morning, building a house out of the of the playmats I scored off Craigslist (I searched for about a year and got lucky one day last summer!).

And here are the little ones getting some of that energy out the other day.

Can’t type much, too nervous.  Going to get an emergency root canal in an hour.  Arrrrgh.


Allow Me to Bore You September 7, 2009

Filed under: Home — twlowenstein @ 8:51 am

Attic in it’s raw state.


After the insulation spray foam guys were through. (P.U.)


After they laid the blue board.


It’s still really wet in this shot so you can’t see how beautiful the plaster looks.


And a different angle of the attic.


There is still more work to be done.  Painting and flooring being the biggest two.

But it looks like a livable space now and we’re getting really excited to see the finished rooms!


Duckie Love August 31, 2009

Thanks all for the extremely nice comments.  Glad you like our little under the stairs bathroom.  I imagine all my bloggy folks appreciate it much more than some of the people who will actually park their bums in there.  My FIL, for example, is probably not going to “get” our vision of a surprise woodland.


I thought I’d share some more snippets of a room still coming into shape.

The boys share a room and each gets his own wall space.  My youngest is still taken with all things duckies and here is his display area.  I still have to hang the banner from his party, me + ladders are not a great match.

Vintage Duckies

I got a bunch of vintage chalkware ducks from etsy and ebay, hope to supplement collection with thrift scores to come.  Good friends gave him the top framed rubber duckie photo for his and I took the bottom shot at the carnival this summer.  On the shelf (which is not quite the right size yet) sits a vintage valentine I gave him last year, more chalkware,  old book and a duck & egg toy I got from Charlie and Pats.


3 little ducks went out to play…

Boy's RoomThe previous owners painted the ceiling to look like a lovely calm sky.  The boys love it.

The center curtains I scored at the thrift store, new and unopened for 4 bucks (I think) and the side windows have panels from The Christmas Tree Shop.  Cheap cheap but are working well in their room and is keeping it from being a TOTAL Ikea experience.

If anyone would like to join my Flickr group, Just Moved, please do!  You do not need to have just moved (as the name would imply).

I also just found this Flickr group that I’m digging, Thrift Store Decor.  Wish I had thought of it first.


Bathroom Redo August 28, 2009

Before we Bought it:


The bathroom wasn’t properly vented, which I thought meant a fan but it means something I don’t quite understand about the pipes and gas and stuff.  So we had to take it to the studs



After (but not quite done):

Under the StairsWe got the Cole & Sons wallpaper (I’m the last to jump on the bandwagon, I’m a big girl so I run walk slowly).  I also would like to add that the periwinkle step thing is also a “before”.  On the list of things to rectify.

I bought if from Rose & Radish and I have to say the owner, Cate, was delightful to talk with over the phone.

Smallest Sink we Could Find

It was my husband’s idea to do the “grass” tiles.  We love it!

Tiny sink

Not quite done, still have to install the super cool mirror I scored on ebay and put in a handle.  But I could not wait to share!

Where the Wild Things Are

Hard to take a photo  inside the tiny bathroom but you get the idea.  We were going for a secret little woodland world under the stairway.

Edit to add: Want to acknowledge the other players on the team -wish we were DIYers but we’re really not.  Our contractor is AMAZING.  He thought of things I would never have like mimicking the trim around the door so it relates with the rest of the house and the baseboard molding, nice touch.   My husband had the idea for the grass flooring and our contractor hunted a distributor down.  I love that my husband trusts my instincts but also brings so much to the creation of our home.


Thanks for all the kind words.  I am embarrassed to admit how good it feels to read them.